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Our Vision of Rule Enforcement

Written by CipSoft on Wednesday 03 March 2010
Each month, many players inform us via our different feedback channels that they wish for a better rule violation reporting and rule enforcement system.
So we sat down, and developed a vision of such a system, trying to tackle as many negative points as possible that have been raised in the past.

Vision


  • In this vision, all players report rule violations to our inhouse customer support team. In prior discussions some of you have told us that you fear unfair banishments from gamemasters or unfair reports from tutors and senior tutors. Your reasoning was that they are also Tibia players who are part of the community themselves, with their own friends, enemies, conflicts, and interests. So, to eliminate all abuse potential, all of your reports are taken care of by professional employees of CipSoft. This ensures that your reports are taken care of with the necessary amount of objectivity.
  • Also, in our vision you are able to report a player whenever you feel disturbed by a rule violation. No more waiting for a gamemaster to come online, or for a tutor or a senior tutor to report an illegal name or public statement.



  • Currently, you can only make one rule violation report at a time. So you often have to decide who you want to report if you come across several rule violations. In the future, you will be less restricted in regards to the number of reports you can make. However, to avoid the spamming of rule violation reports, the amount of open reports you can have has to be restricted.
  • Further, your rule violation report will definitely reach our customer support team. Nowadays, your ingame report disappears if you log out. In the future, your report will still exist, even if you leave the game. You will be informed when you successfully submitted a report, and you will be informed again when your report was processed.
  • Our customer support team will investigate your report and consider the context of each rule violation, to ensure that all punishments are fair.
  • If a player should ever feel that he was treated unfairly, he will be able to complain to the same team of professional employees that will then handle the complaint as soon as possible.
  • In our vision, banishments will become a private matter to avoid any lynch law ingame. Only the banished player and the customer support team will be able to see and discuss the details of banishments.
  • Rules that are unclear and difficult to understand ought to be eliminated. For example, in prior discussions many of you have told us that it is difficult to know all game weaknesses if you are new to the game. So we plan to exclude all game weaknesses with time. No player ought to be punished for using something that is technically possible ingame and not considered a bug.
  • All these changes will make discussions about the interpretation of the Tibia Rules unnecessary. You, as a player should report another player only if you feel disturbed by his or her rule break. Our customer support team then has the right to decide banishments on a case-by-case basis, always considering the context of a rule violation report. Depending on the severity of the rule violation, there should be more harshness or leniency.

In the future, the Tibia Rules will form a guide of what is reportable in Tibia, however, please note that nobody has to be reported. Nobody should walk the lands of Tibia actively looking for rule violations. You are not obliged to report anybody. We want to be able to help our players when their fun in Tibia is affected negatively by another player. We want to take care of cases in which players actually feel disturbed and have problems due to the rule violation of others. A good example to clarify this point is a chat among you and your friends. If you are used to a certain type of tone which, strictly speaking, violates the Tibia Rules, none of you would feel disturbed by this. So there is no need to report each other. However, if another player insults you without any reason, you might actually feel disturbed. In such a case, we hope to be able to help you in the future.

Difficulties


In our vision our customer support team is able to handle all reports easily with this new reporting system. However, we know that we will meet several difficulties on our way. For example, as mentioned already, we will have to find a way to avoid the spamming of rule violation reports from a player whose only goal is to occupy our customer support team unnecessarily. Tibia's multilingual nature will most likely be a big challenge for us as well. We need to evaluate all effects of all changes thoroughly, in order to be able to adapt and react quickly to any arising difficulties. So we will approach our goals with small steps.

The first steps


The first step of this transition process will already come in short time. With this year's spring patch we plan to enable all Tibia players to report names to the customer support team.
When you have the ability to report names, please keep in mind that you should only report an illegal name if you really feel disturbed by it.
In the long run, we plan to give all players a tool to contact us whenever they feel disturbed by a rule violation.

Some of you might wonder now, what will happen with our tutors and our voluntary gamemasters. Our voluntary helpers have been doing a very good job up to today and we are really grateful for their help. We think that these two groups should form one group of voluntary helpers in the future, who will then focus on their main role as active helpers, to provide answers for players who have questions or problems, and they should not play a role in rule enforcement anymore. As explained before, we feel that rule enforcement should only be handled by professional employees in the future. This will also mean relief for several tutors, for example, who were often blamed for banishments and punished by other players ingame for reports they had allegedly made.

While the rule enforcement in Tibia is in the transition process, the old system will of course apply. We will not make any drastic changes, unless we can ensure that our changes yield a better alternative than the previous system.
Once we have adapted to the changes that all players can report names, and everything works fine, we would like to open up the rest of the current reporting system to all players, which might then also include private chat channels. Please understand though that we cannot present you a time frame for this yet, since we have to evaluate the effects of all changes beforehand. Depending on these results, our goals might even change in the course of the transition.

Further details about the upcoming changes will of course be presented to you in due time in a teaser before the spring patch 2010, so stay tuned!

We hope that the upcoming changes will provide a much more effective and satisfying rule enforcement in Tibia that is easily accessible for everybody.

For a better Tibia!
Your Community Managers