[MUD-Dev] Community Relations

Matthew Mihaly diablo at best.com
Thu Jan 20 19:53:47 New Zealand Daylight Time 2000

On Fri, 21 Jan 2000, Ola Fosheim [iso-8859-1] Gr=F8stad wrote:

> Travis Casey wrote:
> > Also, this implies that a mud is a private space -- if it were a
> > public space, I would not be within my rights to monitor private
> > transactions between people in it.  Thus, you are, in fact, arguing
> > against yourself.
> > I don't agree.  There's an old maxim -- your rights end where mine
> > begin.  I have the right to control access to a space I own; the fact
> > that you happen to meet people there does not affect that.
> Says who?  What kind of "right"? Why doesn't your rights end where mine
> begin?

I THINK he's referring to the traditional distinction between positive and
negative rights, ie the right TO something (positive) as opposed to the
right to be FREE from something (negative). That maxim is describing a
negative-rights-only situation, ie you can do what you want, as long as
you don't infringe upon me. Positive rights, on the other hand, not only
allow, but essentially require that some people suffer so that others may
get what they believe they have a "right" to (food, medical care,
whatever...anything that potentially requires forcing someone else to
work for you directly or indirectly).

> > To put it another way -- if you're abusive to the staff of a
> > restaurant, and the manager chooses to bar you from entering on that
> > basis, does the fact that you meet friends there mean that he's
> > interfering with your social life and cannot do that?
> Most people know their friends telephone and don't spend their life in
> said restaurant so this is not a common situation, and common or very
> dangerous situations is what law deals with. So maybe the analogy is a
> bad one? I don't think law reflect some kind of higher ethics in this
> case. Sometimes it does, sometimes it does not.

Ah hah! And most people know their mud friend's ICQ/AIM number and e-mail
address, so why should you ever feel bad about kickimg someone off a mud
if your concern is truly depriving them of their social environment?=20

> > I have no idea what The Palace is, so I can't comment on that.  And,
> > at no point have I said that a mud's staff can treat people like trash
> No, Matt basically did, and I figured that was the basic issue.  What
> kind of restrictions are there morally, ethically and if you want,
> legally.

Right, I definitely said that, and I stick by it 100%. What kind of
restrictions there are morally and ethically are completely up to the
individual in my opinion. To me, morals are not subject to tyranny of the
majority. Legally of course, is a different matter, as that actually has
an effect (whereas, as I've said many times earlier, believe they are
wrong all you want. It's completely irrelvant to their ability to keep
treating the players like trash.)

> Caricatures may make things more visible. Legally, yes, most likely, but
> you can get away with lots of nasty thing legally. In moral and ethical
> terms, no way. Not just because someone interpreted what a player said
> as abusive.  I find it 100% acceptable for a worked up player to yell
> and whine for a while if the admins screw up. If the admins then choose
> to ban that player then I think he is doing it not because of the
> yelling and whining, but because it makes the mistake very real and very
> visible. That is not high standards in my book. Someone that kicks other
> people for a couple of hard words is basically not fit for having the
> kind of power over other people that a MUD affords.

In YOUR moral and ethical terms. Norway has a different legal system from
America. Is one more right or more wrong? No, they are just
different. Likewise, my moral system is different from yours. There isn't
some vast, universal two-dimensional scale on which we plot morals, so as
to say that this version of morality is better than that one. You might
say one is more efficient at attaining a particular goal (such as
retaining your player base) but I really don't see how you can say one is
better than another (unless you are a complete consequentialist, in which
case efficiency is where its at generally, but if that were the case, you
wouldn't bother speaking of Right and Wrong, as they are irrelevant, even
if you grant their existence (which I don't)).

> Then add the fact that many muds are dull for the first 30 hours, and
> intentionally so. You invest 30 hours with the expectations of being
> paid back with entertainment later. As you can tell I don't think
> "money" is the most important issue when it comes to adding up costs! (I
> wonder if Matt considers money to be real, or is it imaginary?)

Given that everyone on this list, bar a few comments here and there, seems
to be willing to treat "reality" in a materialistic way, why don't we just
agree to do that. If anyone has a problem with that, that's fine, but it's
going to make entertaining ourselves with discussions like this a lot
harder. Money isn't the most important issue when it comes to adding up
costs, in my opinion. I would generally say that time is (to me), but how
I could compare the value of time vs. money is well beyond this

Whether it costs the user or not is not important to me though, as it has
no bearing on whether a mud admin can treat his users like crap.

<snipped someting from Travis about "nowhere have I said that players have
more responsibility than mud admins">

I'll say it! Players have more responsibilty to the admins than the other
way around, UNLESS the admins _choose_ to take on responsibility. The
admin has methods of enforcing that responsibility (act in the way I
define was responsible towards me, or I'm going to messs you up), whereas
the players have none, unless the admins choose to give players that power
by starting to care about their player base, or by actually giving the
players some sort of real power over the admins, etc.

> Phone lines were not a necessity for businesses until phones existed.
> The same argument can be made for MUDs and any other communication
> technology. You depend on what you get used to.  For some reason
> something as volatile as money is considered to be more
> substantial/important then personal relationships...
Just because something is necessary to accomplish something else doesn't
mean it is necessary in some universal sense. People say things like "I
need a new tv" but that's crap. They need new tvs if they want to enjoy
those new high-definition broadcasts. People say "I need food.", but no
one NEEDS food. You only need food if you want to continue living. This
may seem pedantic to you, but it's not. No one NEEDS a mud. A mud (or
anything else) is only needed IN ORDER to accomplish something else, such
as accomplishing maintaining your social network (in the case of a mud for
instance) or accomplishing carrying on with life (in the case of food).=20

So given that, who judges what are worthy goals? You say you need to play
MuchFunMud. Ok. I say I need a Ferrari. You need to play MuchFunMud in
order not to lose your social circle (or whatever) and thus avoid
potential pain. I could make the same argument for needing a Ferrari. I
can hear your objections already, based on the idea of dependence, but
again, dependence assumes certain goals. I depend on this IN ORDER to
accomplish this. So, why is your goal any more worth than mine? If you
want to force a mud admin to allow Bob to play, based on Bob's claim that
he needs to play in order to be happy, then I'd expect that next time I'm
in Norway, you'll buy me that Ferrari I've had my eye on, or, at the very
least, help me beat up the dealer and take it, because, damn it, I NEED
that Ferrari.

> > Did I say that?  No.  My point was that if using the mud's resources
> > to do something else, the mud admins have every right to ask that
> > person to leave, and if he/she will not leave to "throw him out."
> I hope this relies upon some kind of notion of reasonable?=20

I am an individual. Why should I care what your notion of reasonable is
(assuming you were a complete stranger), providing you aren't holding the
proverbial gun to my head. Abortion/infanticide (same thing to me) is very
reasonable to me, but other people disagree so strongly that they have
been known to shoot doctors who perform the abortions. Who is Right? I am
right, but I certainly don't have the arrogance to believe I'm
Right. (clarification: I'm using lower-case to denote personal preference
and upper case to denote the idea of an ethic that is somehow built into
the very fabric of creation).

> Right/wrong is not so much in action as it is in consequences... *shrug*

Oh boy, don't even get me started here....I'll just say that I disagree in
the strongest possible termsm, and leave it at that.

MUD-Dev maillist  -  MUD-Dev at kanga.nu

More information about the MUD-Dev mailing list