This is a collection of explanatory notes on the current RMB Moderation Regulations (full regulations here) to help newcomers and already established players to familiarise themselves with the rules, to better understand their provisions. For ease of use, the notes’ order follows that of the rules.
Posting three RMB messages in a row is forbidden.
Posting three RMB messages in a row, without another player posting in between them, is forbidden. This includes three posts from the same player made using different nations. Any message made by another player interrupts the chain, even if those messages are later deleted or suppressed. A message made by the same player but later deleted does not count.
This rule was initially created because NationStates did not save more than 10 RMB posts until a site update. But today, it is meant to prevent any single player from monopolising the discussion for too long without anyone else intervening.
Attempts at roleplay and in-character declarations are forbidden.
Attempts at roleplay, meaning the attempt to start roleplaying, and in-character declarations, meaning declarations done from the perspective of a fictional character and not the player behind it, are forbidden. Sharing dispatches or discussions about roleplay (also known as out-of-character) or the lore of the nations from a player’s perspective is however permitted and encouraged. The RMB should not be used as a forum for roleplay itself, but rather, to facilitate roleplay’s happening.
Roleplay inherently creates walls of text which are mostly, if not entirely, irrelevant to the uninitiated reader. We want the RMB to be readily accessible for people who just joined the region. Requiring them to read thousands of pages of RMB roleplay or some handbook explaining the complex and bewildering state of the world in a hypothetical regional roleplay is an enormous barrier which prevents meaningful uptake. This is exacerbated by the size and length of that roleplay crowding out casual discussion, which noticeably is not dependent on doing detailed background reading as to the state of the RP. Imperium Anglorum, NationStates (23 Jan 2021) page=rmb/postid=42496963.
“Greetings fellow Europeans, the king of Regnum Italiae is happy to invite you to the royal wedding of his most gracious daughter.”
“We declare war on Regnum Italiae”
“I’m gonna invade you”
“Hi, I wrote a dispatch on my royal wedding! Telegram me if you want to participate!”
“My nation gained its independence from Germany in 2013.”
Insulting, cursing, or promoting violence against someone or a distinct group of people because of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, etc is strictly forbidden.
You may not make any posts which contain threats of violence or violent acts against anyone.
Spreading lies to undermines someone’s reputation is forbidden.
A post is considered defamatory if it undermines someone’s reputation non-trivially with lies or unproven statements of fact. This does not include statements made in good faith, with an honest belief in their truthfulness, or with the consent of the person being described. Obvious jokes and other humorous expressions are not considered defamatory regardless.
This rule exists mostly to ensure discussions do not turn into a series of unsubstantiated personal attacks, even if made in a manner which is on the face a suitable tone for the discussion. If you are to make negative claims about other people, you must be able to substantiate them with evidence.
Linking illegal or harmful content is forbidden.
Linking videos, images, or any other content which is illegal (eg piracy or drugs), not suited for a younger audience (eg shock content or pornography) – a population which is generally not unprevalent in NationStates – or that may otherwise damage a user or computer is strictly forbidden. Linking sites where one can access such content is also prohibited.
Joking or exalting violent acts and their perpetrators is forbidden.
Joking about, exalting, or defending tragedies and atrocities (especially genocides) is strictly forbidden. The same applies to joking about or exalting the perpetrators of such atrocities or the ideologies behind them.
Maliciously editing a quote is forbidden.
Editing a quote with offensive or malicious intent is prohibited. Quote editing is permitted in a limited manner if done with humoristic intentions and with the assent of the quoted person, especially if the original content of the quote is still visible, such as when using the strike-through feature. It also is permitted to ‘snip’ or spoiler long quotes, as there is no ill will involved.
Posting meaningless or unsolicited messages is forbidden.
Spam is “irrelevant or unsolicited messages sent over the Internet[...]”. Recently, this rule has been applied more broadly than how it was in the past to appropriately react to increased amounts of spam-activity. The Moderation Committee, generally, stays strict to the rule's definition and considers the repetitiveness of the action merely as aggravating. Although players are encouraged to discuss freely, at the same time the constant search for attention through posts designed solely for this purpose is, as of now, generally regarded as spamming.
Greetings or expressions of agreement are not included in this definition unless they are made repeatedly without any kind of solicitation.
Posts designed specifically to be meaningless, untranslatable, or offensive are always considered spam.
Cursing or insulting someone to start a fight is forbidden.
The use of profanity, curses, insults, and other verbal abuse with the intent to provoke, harm someone’s feelings, or start a verbal fight is forbidden. Those starting the flame and those participating in the flame are punished equally.
Sexually explicit posts are forbidden.
Posts containing sexual contents of any nature are forbidden unless made during a serious discussion on topics like politics, biology or similar serious matters (eg age of consent in different countries or the reproduction habits of animal species) or with humoristic intentions if done without falling into mere vulgarity.
Trying to persuade players to join another region is forbidden.
Soliciting or furthering illicit behaviours is forbidden.
Any action that furthers or prompts a behaviour that violates any of the rules above (especially spam or flame) is punished as well. For example, in the case of spam, engaging with a troll or spammer in a way that furthers spam is considered a solicitation of spam and thus punished accordingly.
Generally speaking, confronting spammers or other offenders to warn them that their behaviour is against the rules is not forbidden, but constantly answering and bickering with them is considered a violation of this rule. Report believed infractions to a regional officer with proof (like a screenshot and direct link to a post) and avoid giving more attention since, in most of the cases, attention is what they want.
While not being part of the most recent RMB Moderation Regulation, the following clarification of selected provisions of the Criminal Law Act 2018 (full text here) are included because of their potential impact on communication through the RMB.
Invading privacy or releasing the personal information of someone is forbidden.
Carrying out or threatening to carry out an invasion of privacy or releasing someone’s personal information without their consent, also known as doxxing, is strictly forbidden. The definition of personal information includes name or full name, residence, address, age, nationality, sexual orientation, or any other information that someone might deem not to disclose to strangers online.