Sunday, March 20, 2011

Theorycrafting: Oath Keeping

Maintaining the Spirit of W101

Oath : a statement or promise strengthened by such an appeal.
Keeper: a person charged with responsibility for the preservation and conservation of something valuable, as a curator

I have a deep love for Wizard 101, for many reasons. Sure, I've drifted away..but I always come back. One of the things I believe in is the sense of Community. W101 provides an atmosphere found in no other MMO, ever. In my many travels across all aspects of the Spiral, via historical record, I have run across persistent negative influences, (all parts of the human experience) . We in the W101 blogosphere enjoy great priveledge, in our unmoderated "Wild West". Nobody can tell us what to do, or what not to do. Therin lies the rub. In a fit of passion, we can, with our hastily typed words, affect people we have never, or will never meet. As Stan Lee says "With great power comes great responsibility.". We, the unmoderated bloggers of the Spiral, have the responsibility to conduct ourselves "out here", as we would "in game". 

There are many BlogRings and "blogger's clubs" that exist, for the sole purpose of , well, being bloggers. W101 has it's share, as well. To which point, I Theorycrafted the W101OathKeepers.Less of a BlogRing, and more of a Public Promise. Purely voluntary, it's a public display that one adheres to, advocates, and promotes to others. A "Social Contract" for we 'external' W101 bloggers and sites, who pledge on our honor , to uphold the same qualities in our off-game sites, that KingsIsle upholds in it's game: Fair play, non-discrimination, non-exploitation, co-operation, "kid-friendly" and Child Safe. Lacking in personal attacks. Giving more than you take. 

We, the W101 Community have "taken the ball, and run with it", creating various sites, of various functions. We have radio, video, databases, and text which we are allowed "free reign" with KI's intellectual Property. When I first started "Homework", it was a much smaller place. Millions of players later, and the landscape has grown immensely, both in and out of  the game. To be able to continue our pursuits freely, we must be (externally) self-policing, maintaining an integrity that conforms to the same Spirit that unites us, that is Wizard 101. W101 continues to grow, and we must grow with it.

I imagine a "Council of Pillars", comprised of W101 recognized external entities to watch over, and preserve KI's Trust in our external spheres.People who have gone "above and beyond", in enhancing the W101 experience. I would see The Friendly Necromancer, Diary of a Wizard, Ravenwood RadioThe Petnome Project , and Dittowizzard Representatives as "Pillars" (akin to the UN Security Council permanent members ), with Oversight Authority in creating and advising a "Code of Conduct", a voluntary set of guidelines for any external entity to adhere to to maintain inclusion in the Greater External Sphere. Not as a regulator of Free Speech, but advisors for maintaining the same positive Spirit of W101 in our external sites. Even negativity can be positively expressed.

Of course , some will cringe at any type of "authority", and that is why OathKeepers is voluntary. It's not about telling you "How to be.", it's about "How to be an individual part of Our External W101 Community". Any external site which consistently disregards the Agreed Code would be removed from listing on all OathKeeper voluntary member sites.

I'm sure that there are pros and cons yet to be considered, and I invite your debate. Keep it civilized, and tell me why (or why not) this idea has merit.

(*For purpose of definition, "External Sites" includes blogs, podcasts, databases, youtube videos, twitter feeds, and facebook pages.)

 I hereby pledge an Oath to Keep the Trust


Unknown said...

I second that oath

Kestrel Shadowthistle said...

I love this idea, and I guess I third? that oath, but I feel like a lot of (especially younger) bloggers will join just because everyone else is joining, and then inevitably cause "drama". Oh well, I guess that's unavoidable.