In order to provide a framework for relationships between dutystations, maintain a consistent timeline and protect the rights of the membership, the members of Borderlands hereby establish this Constitution.
As amended 2010/03/02 via CR201002
Legislative powers to be vested in Borderlands Council
All legislative powers granted herein will be vested in the Borderlands Council.
For clarification, all references to gender herein are to be interpreted in the generic manner and are not intended to insult.
Composition of the Borderlands Council
The Borderlands Council will be composed of four members from every dutystation. Both the CO & XO of each DS will be appointed to the Council; the other representatives will be elected.
Should a dutystation have more than two commanders, all are not automatically appointed to the Council.
If a representative is elected to Council Chair (and is thus no longer considered a DS representative), then another member will be elected to fill the vacated spot. In all situations, a full dutystation will retain its allotted number of representatives.
Appointed representatives will serve until their appointments are terminated.
Elected representatives will serve for one year. There will no term limits placed on elected representatives.
Appointed representatives (CO or XO) can designate another player from the DS to represent them.
Election of Council representatives
The time, method and manner for electing representatives to the Council shall be determined by each dutystation as it sees fit.
Quorum; Rules of procedure; Public records
A majority of the Council members shall constitute a quorum.
The Council will create rules of procedure as it sees fit, punish members for unruly behavior and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of the members, expel a member.
The Council will keep all records of its proceedings public, and will provide them to any dutystation member who requests them.
Amendments to the Constitution; Other rulings
Amendments to this Constitution require a minimum two-thirds vote. All other rulings require a simple majority vote. Any decision of the Council shall become binding immediately upon passage of the ruling, unless otherwise noted in the decision.
Powers of the Borderlands Council
The Borderlands Council will have the power to:
- Rule on all promotions of Commander (O-5) and above except in the case of Duty Station XO’s who may be promoted to O-5 by the Duty Station CO. In no case shall the promotion of a Duty Station XO be made that results in the XO outranking the CO of the Duty Station;
- Create and administer the Borderlands web site;
- Attract and distribute new members to dutystations;
- Create new dutystations;
- Maintain a common timeline across all dutystations;
- Create and maintain a player’s handbook;
- Track dutystation message traffic;
- Maintain a census of dutystation membership;
- Negotiate with outside groups as required.
Whether it be by succession, application or appointment, the Council shall allow every new Duty Station CO a one grade promotion, not to exceed O-6. Such a promotion is not mandatory and may be refused by the new Duty Station CO by notifying the council with a single post.
Impeachment of the Chair
The Council shall have the power to impeach the Chair for just cause. Should a motion to impeach be raised, a Chair Pro Tem shall be elected by the Council body to oversee the proceedings. After discussion of the motion, a vote shall be held. Both the Chair and the Chair Pro Tem will be bound by the provisions of Article II, Sections 2 and 3, during said proceeding. A two-thirds vote shall be necessary to remove the Chair.
Selection of Commanding Officers (COs)
There will be three means of establishing a new CO, with favor always going to the Succession mode:
SUCCESSION: When a CO departs voluntarily:
- Departing CO appoints incoming CO;
- DS approval through their own means;
- Departing CO notifies Council;
- Council records, endorsement not required.
APPLICATION: When a CO vanishes or departs due to DS decision:
- XO becomes interim CO;
- XO notifies Council of vacancy;
- Council polls for applications of interested senior players;
- Applications are presented to the DS for review and discussion;
- DS makes final determination;
- Elected rep (not XO!) notifies Council of DS decision.
APPOINTMENT: For a new DS, or a DS in dire need of leadership (no senior PCs):
- Council determines need. There must be a NEED for a new DS, or a NEED to appoint senior players to a foundering DS. In most cases, the DS itself will probably scream for help.
- Council polls for applications of interested senior players;
- Council selects CO, notifies DS;
- DS endorses or rejects interim CO. In cases of rejection, a reason must be returned to the Council for the rejection, and the process begins again.
Selection of Executive Officers (XOs)
A new CO will appoint his XO. It is suggested that the CO first ask the council if any other DS has a player who might be a good choice for the job. The CO in question would then speak to all possible choices before making a decision.
Rules for replacing an AWOL leadership player
In the event that a Leadership Player, being defined as the Council Chair, a CO or an XO of a duty station, being AWOL for a period of time, it is considered a resignation of their position.
Before any member can be relieved of duty with Council support, the following courtesies must be afforded:
In the event a Council Chair goes absent without leave for two weeks from the time of an email regarding the AWOL status, it is considered a resignation of their position, and the council may call for nominations and a vote of a new Council Chair.
In the event of a CO from a duty station goes absent without leave for three weeks from the time of an email regarding the AWOL status, it is considered a resignation of their position therefore the XO may become the CO, or call a vote on the duty station for a new CO that will then be approved by the council.
In the event a XO from a duty station is absent without leave for four weeks from the time of an email regarding the AWOL status, it is considered a resignation of their position, and the CO of the station may assign a new XO.
Other courtesies that will be afforded prior to council approval:
An additional email will be sent three days prior to the inauguration of the incoming position holder.
All emails regarding AWOL status and changes in positions will be copied to at least one other person beyond the author and the recipient.
Council will be informed upon the first email being sent out regarding inquiry of AWOL status.
AWOL or absent without leave is defined as a member not posting to a duty station or any borderland board, notifying anyone of an intent and date of return.
While it is encouraged that phone numbers of leadership members for a duty station be exchanged, phone calls and conversations cannot take the place of an actual posted status.
The Council shall create subcommittees as it deems necessary to address specific issues. These subcommittees will be manned by members of the Council and, when useful, volunteers or draftees from the General membership with special interests or skills pertaining to the particular subcommittee.
Selection of Council Chair
The Council Chair will be selected from among the Council members by the Council members. The Chair will be elected by a simple majority.
The term of the Chair will be one year. The Chair will have no term limits.
Responsibilities of Council Chair
The Chair shall be responsible for:
- Guiding and participating in Council discussions;
- Tracking Council votes.
Restrictions on the Council Chair
The Chair shall be bound by the following restrictions:
May not represent a duty station as an elected or appointed member. Once a Chair is voted in, the dutystation must provide a replacement representative pursuant to Article I Section 3;
May vote only when necessary to resolve a tie situation.
In all other matters, the Chair may participate on the Council, in Council discussions, and in other ways that elected and appointed representatives serve.
The Council Chair is responsible for maintaining discipline on the Council list.
The Council Chair shall also have authority to deal with backchannel complaints which have been brought to their attention. In this instance the Chair shall try to resolve the issue privately by informing the CO’s of the respective players and allowing them to deal with it. If a complaint is made on the Council list about backchannel emails, then the issue is to be treated as if the comments have been posted there. The Chair would then hear both sides and make a decision.
There are 4 stages in the disciplinary process, which do not have to be followed sequentially. It is at the discretion of the Chair whether to move up a stage every time or to remain at the same stage. It is also at the Chair’s discretion whether to make the rulings public, but for all stages, the Chair will keep the member’s CO informed.
The four stages are:
Stage 1: Informal warning – individual email from Chair or Chair posts to the Council warning the individual(s) that their behaviour is unacceptable.
Stage 2: Formal warning, moderated posts for two weeks
It is envisaged that in most cases the first two stages will be sufficient and that will be the end of the matter. However,if a situation arises where a Council member is seriously disrupting Council activity, and these two steps have already been attempted then the following steps may be considered:
Stage 3: One month suspension
Stage 4: Two year Council ban
Any player who is currently moderated/suspended/banned may not voice their opinions to the Council via other reps.
There shall be a right of appeal for Stages 3 & 4. If a Player wishes to appeal they must inform both the Chair and an independent Council member they trust within 3 days. Each party then submits a statement to the Council (the Player’s statement is submitted through the independent member).
There shall be no discussion of the appeal or the circumstances of the ruling on the Council list. A three day poll is set up and every member of the Council votes to either uphold or overturn the Chair’s ruling.
The decision requires a simple majority vote.
From the date of the offense, if there have been no further transgressions within a certain time period, the slate is wiped clean. This varies, depending upon the stage in the process the player has reached.
- Stage 1: Six months
- Stage 2: Six months
- Stage 3: One year
- Stage 4: Two years
Membership review of Council decisions
Any of the membership may call for a Membership Review of a Council decision. Further, the Council may call for a Membership Review on issues that they deem necessary. General guidelines for a Membership Review are set forth here:
- The person calling for the review will notify his duty station via their game list of the issue;
- The CO for that station must notify the Council of the At Issue Item;
- Within the policy of the duty station, that station will have their own discussion and vote;
- A passing vote of the membership of that duty station will pass the item to the Council;
- The Council will call for a Membership Review;
- Within the policy of each duty station, all stations will have their own discussions and vote;
- The CO for each station shall present their vote totals to the Council;
- The Chair will tally the totals and announce to the membership the results;
- A 2/3 vote of the individual DS members will pass the issue.
Membership Reviews are time consuming and detract from the intent of Borderlands. These should not be called to overturn a ruling made within a duty station, or on issues that are in Council discussion unless determined necessary by the Council. Except in cases where the Review is called in opposition to a Council decision or ruling, the Council may elect to review the issue and present alternative solutions.
Appointments and plotlines; Plotline compatibility
All dutystations will recognize the appointments and plotlines of all other dutystations. The Council will create guidelines for ensuring compatibility of all plotlines.
Plotlines to fit general timeline and setting
All plot lines are to fit within the general Borderlands timeline and setting.
Monthly Dutystation reports
Each dutystation will provide to the Council a list of its active members and total messages in the last month once per month. Active members will be defined as any member who has posted in the past seven days, or who is currently on leave.
New dutystations can be added to Borderlands by the Council. However, no new dutystation can draw characters from an existing dutystation without the consent of that dutystation.
Dutystation right to call for constitutional convention
Should three-quarters of all dutystations request it, this constitution shall be set aside and a new constitutional convention will be held to create a new constitution.
Reservation of non-specified powers to Dutystations
Any powers not specifically granted to the Council in this Constitution are reserved for the dutystations.
Ratification of Constitution by Council and membership
Pursuant to the provisions of Article I, Section 5, this Constitution shall be ratified on an interim basis upon a two-thirds vote of the Council. Further, in keeping with the spirit of the Borderlands Concept, this Constitution shall automatically undergo Membership Review pursuant to Article III. Two-thirds approval of the membership is required for full ratification.
Recruiting between Dutystations
No dutystation representative shall contact a newly recruited player (NRP) on another dutystation with the intent of recruiting them to leave, or to play another character elsewhere, within the first six months after the NRP was recruited to their current dutystation, either off the Borderlands Application Board or individually by a representative of the NRP’s current dutystation, without the consent of the NRP’s current Ccommanding Officer (CO) or Executive Officer (XO). If a NRP independently contacts the CO or XO of another dutystation (directly or indirectly) within this six-month period, asking to change dutystations or start another character with that dutystation, then a courtesy contact between the COs or XOs of each dutystation is recommended. If a NRP, already on one dutystation, posts a new application to Borderlands within the six-month period, and another dutystation claims them, then no additional effort is required or expected.
A newly recruited player (NRP) is defined as one who has not been an active player on any Borderlands dutystation in the previous year.