A Subtle Slip – CCP Changes CSM Candidacy Requirements

2016-01-22

The candidacy application period for Council of Stellar Management XI is now open and in full swing following an announcement by CCP Leeloo on January 15. This announcement follows up a previous post on January 8 breaking down the timetable for CSM XI’s campaigning and election period.

Another addition to this announcement was a mandated update to the CSM White Paper. For anyone unfamiliar with it, the White Paper is a document governing the structure of the CSM and its relationship with CCP. The update is broken down into 4 bullet points regarding age restrictions, privacy, permanent attendee seats, and a mechanism to remove CSM delegates. However, a close reading of the document indicates a subtle change slipped into the Candidate Requirements section.

“CCP employees, ISD volunteers, CCP interns, CCP affiliates, CCP strategic partners or employees of other gaming companies/games/gaming media and family members of CCP are all ineligible to run for the CSM. In cases were [sic] an active CSM delegate becomes involved in any of the above activities they must resign from the Council. “ –CSM Candidate Requirements

The wording of the change is vague, as is its intention. It would hinge on two distinct variables: what CCP classifies as a gaming media website, and how specifically an employee is defined.

A Gaming Media Website: Any website associated with or using EVE IP could be defined as a gaming media platform. As could blogs like Eveoganda and websites such Crossing Zebras, EveNews24, or TheMittaniDotCom itself.

Employees would have to be defined on the basis of what compensation is acceptable. If an ISK payment makes one an employee, that makes anyone who has ever written, coded, or otherwise contributed to an EVE website and received compensation an employee under that definition.

CSM Watch, a group run by the Capstable Podcast who interviews campaigning CSM members, has inquired into CCP about the wording. CCP’s response was deflected by Ned Coker, who said to wait and see in a proposed upcoming interview with CCP Leeloo.

CSM Watch also reported they have reached out to other various media platforms. A response from CZ and EveNews24 on CSM Watch’s article is quoted as “they have been in communication with Leeloo who has assured them that they are considered fan sites and hence are not affected by the new ruling.”

Twitter

On the January 11, a conversation broached by Diana Olympos (a CSM XI Hopeful) and sitting CSM X member Thoric Frosthammer to CCP Leeloo regarding the Other Media amendment.

CCP Leeloo states in response to Diana, specifically about CZ writers and Eve Radio DJ’s, that “other” is the key word, and EVE-related content is okay.

Thoric follows up with defining “other,” To which CCP Leeloo rebutts as Non-EVE Titles when inquired to specific sites: IGN, Games Radar as mentioned. It should also be noted that the CSM wasn’t informed of this revision

CSM Watch inquired into whether the provision applies to TMC covering other games and CCP working with the Kickstarter of the Fountain War book. CCP Leeloo stated that she will consult the legal team on both matters and provide clarification

CCP Leeloo discusses CSM Candidacy changes with Diana Olympos and Thoric Frosthammer

Analysis

The vagueness of the wording in the amendment is cause for concern, as it is left intentionally open-ended and was slipped in after the document had a preliminary viewing by the CSM. The CSM wasn’t notified about the addition of the amendment until it was announced publicly.

This goes on to show a declining lack of communication and/or trust between CCP and the CSM, especially on a critical document that is the core of the CSM.

Ned Coker’s deflection of the CSM Watch inquiry also shows that answer has been firmly left in CCP Leeloo’s hands. During the course of the twitter conversation, Leeloo says she will also need to go consult legal further in the matter.

If the provision is deliberately left vague as to apply to the broadest circumstances in which it is intended, any blog, podcast or website should fall under that umbrella equally. But when you have CCP Leeloo openly stating on twitter on as to which websites it applies to, that action openly contradicts the provision.

Ultimately, until CCP clarifies how it is defined publicly, the interpretation and enforcement of it is left to the CSM Coordinator. This can change on a whim of the person who holds that position. Alas, another person may come along and have an entirely different view on the provision.

This vague wording is harmful and requires revision to be more specific.

Editor’s Note: This submission comes to us from CSM IX member Silva.

This article originally appeared on TheMittani.com, written by Submissions.

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