February ISM Results

Happy Zeta Anniversary!! It’s been a year since we migrated to the Zeta Server and here’ s for more to come. We had the ISM today and it was fairly short. Let’s get right into it!

Aurora Borealis

TeamAurora proposed AIX again, citing expansion of their community town of Augusta and completion of the A84 (which is pretty nice, by the way). Given that those were the conditions set from staff from the February GSM, staff approved TeamAurora to submit AIX. AIX will undergo the standard size check all governor airports go under using the allocations from Carnoustie, Lakeborough, Augusta, Kaloro City, and Skogheim. Once approved from there, TeamAurora can start construction on the main MRT server. They have been working on it offline on another server so feel free to join their discord and ask them to get a glimpse of what’s coming.

The 280 to the 580 to the 101

Bay area road joke, I’m not sorry.

We had one road proposal from FLIPEK03 to build the B394 from the A4.

This proposal was denied due to staff concerns over uneven inclines between lanes and other inaccessibility concerns based off current roads in his town. FLIPEK03 is encouraged to look at other B roads on the server to get a feel of the standard that we are looking for concerning road construction. Staff also requested to see a sample of what the road will look like when constructed upon re-submission.

Cryptic Games

imperial_block requested event funding for his puzzle/escape room gameshow, The Game of Kryptos. This was approved and will occur on March 6th at 6PM UTC.

MinecraftYoshi26 requested event funding to produce another MRTvision Screenshot Contest. This will be the eighth occurrence and the finals will be held in Covina. Given the success of the last, this was also approved. Deadline to join is March 7th with the submission deadline being March 13th. Semi-final voting will begin following the closing of submissions and will be open for a week. Finals voting will open the week after and conclude with the final ceremony in Covina on April 3rd.

What if I say “Please?”

Staff had one Inactive Asset Transfer request from EliteNeon. Elite requested the town to the east of New Mackinaw (Name of town could not be found but was owned by threadychunk296). Staff denied this request over the lack of detail on Elite’s plans for the town should he be approved. Elite planned to start a new “GSM Town” but did not go into further detail aside from that. Staff raised a few concerns over whether there is community interest and asked Elite to check if the community are interested in that style of community town.

And that’s it! GSM submissions are still open for the March GSM on March 13th at 7PM UTC. Reminder that mod nominations are open too!

Until the next one, cya!

– Sese


February GSM Results

Happy Valentine’s Day/Single’s Awareness Day! (be still, my beating heart). MRT staff and members spent the day going over a lot of things today so let’s get right to it!

Mod Nom Nom Nom

We had one candidate get 2 nominations, _cosmon. Discord channels were created and discussion occurred. For the voting, he didn’t receive enough votes to be promoted. Final tally was 0 For, 5 Neutral, and 7 Against for his promotion.

In addition to _cosmon’s nomination, we discussed changes to the Open Moderator Process. Over the course of the system since November, we’ve had problems such as:

  • Players providing their direct opinion about the candidate only (positive, neutral, or negative) without providing sufficient evidence or details.
  • Players intending on providing their opinion first, and then adding evidence later. (Include your evidence in your initial statement to prevent inevitable questions from others about where the evidence is)
  • Players providing “evidence” that is not relevant to moderator nomination criteria (ie: “nit-picking”)
  • Players providing “evidence” that is actually not based on factual information (ie: speculation, “what-ifs”, “could-haves”).
  • Players reacting impolitely and uncivilly to other players who do any of the above mentioned.

The intent of the system was to allow the public to discuss in civil fashion the candidates and give evidence to support their claims. Given the issues, many members and staff agreed that it would be a good idea to move nomination to e-mail only for feedback starting with the March GSM. Here’s how that flow will now work:

  • Up to the candidate accepting the nomination stays the same.
  • All comments will be added to the Moderator Nominations Document for people to see (similar to the GSM/ISM Agendas w/ comments)
  • Staff will be doing minimal vetting of comments. Mainly to make sure low-effort comments like what we saw in Discord don’t get posted on the agenda. Please don’t make it to where we have to fully vet comments.

Discussion of candidate(s) can happen in normal chat such as Discord/Minecraft however staff can/will issue warnings should discussion go out of hand.

Oh, and speaking of warnings…

Let Me Level with You

megascatterbomb put together a very thorough proposal (which was approved) to replace our current warning system with a new “warning level system” consisting of 7 levels. With the old system, staff faced multiple discussions of what punishment was appropriate and therefore impacting response time to the actual issue. Another problem was what punishments staff could use for any rule violation. At the current time, we had single, double, and verbal warnings. Verbal warnings were used for minor offenses but staff didn’t keep very good track of it (aside from messages in #staff in discord). Single and double warnings were our only other ways of dealing with issues. When we polled at the last GSM, 50% of members present thought double warnings were the “ceiling” of what we could give at any one time. While this isn’t the case, the rules page didn’t help either. When dealing with multiple incidents, we couldn’t stack punishments. Mega tried to keep all of this in mind with the redesign.

# of warningsPunishment# of weeks
1Ineligible for Moderator candidacy for 3 months.2
2Cannot rank up until all warnings expire.4
33 day temporary ban6
4Demoted to Member until all warnings expire and a reflection letter is accepted by admins.8
52 week temporary ban10
6Temporary ban until eligible to submit Offline reflection12
7Indefinite ban.26+
Warning Level Table

Some clarifications about the levels:

  • Each level would last for 2 weeks or 14 days.
  • Any level can be issued at once so our options have increased by 2x.
  • Warning times stack but temporary bans do not.
    • For example, if you are given a Level 5 warning, you would have a 2 week temporary ban but a warning level time of 10 weeks (2 * 5 = 10).

For level 6, offline reflection is a temporary ban that lasts until warning time expires (when member is able/eligible to submit a reflection letter). However, they are held at the level until the reflection letter is accepted by the admins. Essentially, they are “offline” from the server until they submit are within the time frame to submit a reflection letter.

With Level 3 being a 3 day temporary ban, staff increased the temp ban limit from 1 day to 3 days for mods to allow them to give out the ban, in the case that an admin may not be available.

Now, with all these levels, Mega gave staff some tips on when a certain level should be issued. These are “suggested” punishments. Bear in mind that staff are trying to learn the new system too.

No. of warningsInfringement
1 * Failure to file appropriate paperwork (e.g. missing 4k waiver).
* Failure to stop spamming, caps, other annoyances when instructed.
* Other technicalities like the 7500 block rule. 
2 * Anything that would comfortably constitute a single warning in the old system, such as:Jokes/remarks in poor taste.
* Obvious 300/500 block rule violations.
* Landscarring at non-trivial scales.
3 * Minor griefing e.g. building a small structure inside someone else’s town without permission. (as opposed to burning everything down)
* Plagiarism.
* Uncivil arguments.
4This is where the reflection letter is required, so whatever constitutes a double warning in the old system should incur 4 warnings here. Such infringements include:
* More blatant or widespread griefing.
* Disrespect or harassment.
* Unnecessary escalation of an argument.
5 / 6Generally reserved for extreme cases, or where a number of infringements are addressed at once.
7As above, or when Frumple uses his ban hammer in cases of sustained belligerent dissent.
Suggested level punishment for rule violations

We had a few other rule/policy changes from staff aside from the new warning level system…

Staff accepted a proposal from Chief that formalizes how staff deal with member requested bans (voluntary bans). Here’s the excerpt from the proposal:

Any member can request that their own account be temporarily or indefinitely banned by emailing the admins at any time and for any reason. These “voluntary bans” are treated just like the temporary or indefinite bans issued as a result of accumulating warnings, except:

  • Temporary voluntary bans can be issued for any duration up to six months and do not come with automatic loss of Discord access.
  • Any voluntary ban can be removed at any time by emailing the admins
  • When a voluntary ban expires or is removed, the member will maintain the rank they held at the time of their request.
  • Voluntary bans do not directly count against a member’s candidacy for moderator, however bans will be recorded for public viewing.

Members are asked to not excessively request voluntary ban placements or removals.

Given the approval of the new warning levels, voluntary bans are kept separate from warning levels. Staff will add a new tab on the Member List that displays all voluntary bans.

Staff accepted a proposal from Cynra requiring admin approval to regen entire towns. This proposal formalizes a process that members, who want to regen a town or area of significant development, have to submit an email to admins, detailing why and where they want the regen.

kyyl_ submitted a proposal to add on how we judge towns for ranks, mainly clarifying the how we count franchises in build counts. After lengthy discussion, staff settled on the following:

Franchises built by other people don’t count towards scale in town promotions.

Credit to KittyCat11231 for final wording

Franchises still count for town ranks in other areas such as ambience and other areas but we consider the town mayor’s builds when looking at the scale aspect of town promotions.

Asphalt Heaven

We had a handful of transport projects proposed this GSM. Glad to see members building up infrastructure around the server.

I got proposed a road (B805) between Jeb and Moleville and it was approved.

HarborRandom852 proposed a road between the A92 and their town of Miu Wan, designated B988, which was approved.

kyyl_ proposed a network of A/B roads through Oparia and other reaches of the MetroNorth. This was approved so kyyl_ will have a fun time of roads, roads, and more roads. These roads are the following:

  • A1 through Oparia will be re-designated as B185.
  • A “new” A1 will be constructed to bypass Oparia and then extend the A1 across the bay.
  • B180 will extend from the A1 bypass, through riskinus’s unnamed town and end at notshort925‘s town of Cardinal Bay.
  • B190 will go from A1 into New Mackinaw (owned by EliteNeon).

_fwis proposed the B921 and a canal to Lake 4. The road was accepted with slight modifications to the route. The updated routing has the road going around the bay (instead of across) and using the road near the unknown town.

The canal below was accepted but changed to follow the river. _fwis will be expanding the river to allow for vessels to traverse the river.

Sasha9076 proposed a small reroute of A980 to include Ada_Virus’s town along the Western Line. This was accepted.

AIX (Aurora International Airport) was proposed again by TeamAurora. From the last GSM, staff mentioned that they needed to finish:

  • B889 (completed)
  • A84 (still in progress)
  • Build a town in between Carnoustie, Skogheim, Kaloro City (Wallace and Augusta were founded but currently both unranked)

Given the status of the following above, staff denied AIX citing that the A84 needs to be completed (mainly within Aurora) and that Augusta should increase in size (roughly, councilor standard).

New Plugins!

We considered a few plugins at the GSM. Most are paid plugins but given the community support of getting them, donations will be used to pay for it. Head Database had overwhelming support from members and will be tested on Beta.

A discussion was held on whether we should consider plugins that require resource packs or other client-side modifications. Many of staff and community wanted a near-vanilla experience. This narrowed down the few vehicle plugin possibilities to Vehicles.

After installed and trialed for a bit on Beta, a survey question will be posted by Frumple accessing how the community feel on possibly moving those plugins to Main.

Events? No, The Events!

We had an event funding proposal from Wipeout111 to fund an asynchronous game show, The Events. Wipeout has said the main season will start after Dalt’s The Great MRT Build Off. For a glimpse of the format, Wipeout said this:

The Events will be split up into 1-week blocks of time known as “sections”. Each section will start with an assignment, move to a secondary assignment, and end with an elimination.

  • An assignment may be a challenge, puzzle, or set of instructions for participants to follow that can last anywhere from 1 day to the majority of the section. Each assignment will contain prizes and advantages for one or more participants outplaying their acquaintances.
  • Similar to assignments, secondary assignments may consist of a wide range of contents but will have more focus on social connections and games between contestants. While not guaranteed, prizes and advantages may be earned during secondary assignments as well.
  • Each section will end with an Elimination. This may be done through a challenge pulling strings from the section or a challenge and voting combination. In case of the latter, ties will be decided by another round of voting or from an advantage earned earlier in the section. Every elimination will eliminate at least 1 contestant from the season with the results being announced on the night of the last day of the section in ET.
  • Prizes & advantages may be earned in both assignments and secondary assignments and may be spent on secondary assignments and eliminations. Each advantage & prize will be announced before each assignment and/or secondary assignment when necessary detailing how it can be earned, and how it can be spent. They may serve a wide range of uses, such as progressing the plot, helping a player or group of players, or hurting a player or group of players.
  • To end off the season, a live race filled with puzzles and challenges will occur between the finalists, which may be 2 or 3 participants depending on cast size. The winner of this race will win the entire season. The Events will last 4 sections with 1 live finale.

Funding was fully approved so if you are interested, talk to Wipeout!

In addtion, Sasha9076 requested a warp hub exemption to help him set up Great MRT Riddle. Staff have increased his /homes temporarily to allow with his planning/setup.

Next staff meeting will be the February ISM on February 28th at 7PM UTC.

My cat has demanded more snuggles and to spend more time with him so I will go do that now.

– Sese


January ISM/ASM Results

Oh hey! ISM was today and bonus, an ASM too!

ASM Updates

After the ISM, we had a quick ASM. First one I get to write about so here we go!

godzilltrain has stepped down from his administrator role on January 28. A link to his resignation can be found here:

The title of Staff Meeting Coordinator (Chief’s title apart from Head Admin) is being removed since Chief/Frumple have already split the duties between themselves.

megascatterbomb has re-assumed the title of City Ranks Coordinator (Godz’s former title) as he has prior knowledge of running the system.

sesese9 (oh hey, that’s me) will assume the role of Press Secretary. I’m officially in charge of writing up da propaganda for GSMs/ISMs. In addition, I’ll be doing the Q&A next GSM (hehe).

And now, onto the ISM news!

On the Road Again

Quite a few roads were proposed this ISM and they were all approved. Here’s the rundown:

B9 (Starcubed)

A892 (CodyHM and fwisamongus)

A980 (Sasha9076)

I Sea You There

We also had a few water based transport projects proposed this time.

sixhundredcats has been approved for a seaplane base in Chansee on either Lake A or B in her proposal. If she uses Lake A, staff would like to see it expanded to make it more realistic.

time2makemymove‘s Lake 18-Elecna Bay Canal has been approved.

It’s Free Real Estate

I mean, not really but here’s the Inactive Asset Requests that we received/reviewed.

Racer395 has been approved to take over the B38 (both in finishing the road and extending to his town of Harmony Grove). However, we denied his request to IAT the town of Draton. Racer can request an IAT again in the future, pending Harmony Grove grows more.

time2makemymove has been granted full control of SkyTrans. Originally sent in as a caretaker request, staff deemed it would be easier to have 1 point of contact to deal with SkyTrans.

Go West!

VickiTori has opened the Western North Extension. 2 stations have been granted to:

  • WN38 -> cosmon
  • WN49 -> CyAmethyst

The rest of the stations have either been allocated to pre-existing towns or are open for claiming.

A La Carte

autobus22‘s proposal to move WN11 a little to the west was approved. This was approved and Chief will work with auto on making it happen.

Skelezomperman requested funding for a Spleef Tournament in Mons Pratus. This was approved. Skele has already opened signups through Discord in #event-announcements and will occur on February 21, 2021 at 7PM UTC

And that’s all, until the next one, see ya!

-Sese


Housekeeping Updates

We are excited to announce two housekeeping updates, based on the January GSM items, subsequent testing, and some agenda items for the February GSM:

  • Our first post-Zeta full-world Dynmap render is complete! Thank you to Mega and Frumple for testing this out and running it locally, to save us time and allowing WorldEdits and the like to continue. The map has been rendered based on a snapshot from January 10, so any changes made to the world since then will need to be rendered again, however we now have a full 3D render in addition to the flat render.
  • We are changing the GSM and ISM agenda release schedule. We have posted links to the February GSM and January ISM agendas in Discord. Going forward we will release agendas as soon as they open for submissions. Note that this does not impact moderator nominations: those are still due at 19:00 UTC seven days before a GSM, and we’ll publish those when all candidates have confirmed or declined their interest in the position.

For those who are considering nominating someone for Moderator, please submit nominations for the February GSM by 19:00 UTC on February 7. Several players have preemptively declined the position or been vetoed in previous cycles; those names are in a pinned message in #nominations-general in Discord or in the master member list.

Thanks all!

<3, Chief


January 2021 GSM Results

Happy new year, MRT!

Hope you had a fun end to the eventful year that was 2020. I know I did, haha. Anyway, it’s time for the stuff that happened at the January GSM!

MRT’s Neighborhood

Starting out on Community Issues, we discussed current feeling/thoughts on the warning system. Staff wanted to gauge opinion on whether we should overhaul the system. Many members and staff wanted to see a proposal so Mega will be working on a draft for a future GSM so stay tuned.

Mega put forth a proposal to add a cooldown to candidates that are repeatedly nominated for staff.

If a candidate’s nomination is rejected 2 times in a row, then a 2 GSM cooldown will come into effect.

Godz proposed adding the debug stick to the server. Beta server activated it and showed there is a possible abuse of setting walls to be invisible. Unlike barriers where you can see outlines, you can’t see an outline with an invisible wall. The permission has been enabled for staff so if you want to use the debug stick, ask a staff member.

EliteNeon proposed increasing the AFK time limit to 60 minutes. This was denied as the server has enough performance troubles as it is (thanks Minecraft devs) and the AFK limit serves to kick inactive players and reduce loaded chunks. Staff asked members if we should lower it and was vehemently opposed by members.

Mega and Frumple will be doing some testing on their computers to see if they can possibly run the dynmap render of the New World locally and transfer it to Zeta, avoiding a maintenance day to do a render. If this doesn’t work, we will make an announcement and update when we plan to do the render on Zeta.

Keeping on, keeping on

Starting out the GSM, Frumple had a few comments on the year and addressed concerns about whether he would shut down the server following the events of October 4th and other minor arguments that have flared.

The server lease has been renewed for 1 more year. There are strings attached, however:

  • As many may know, the staff haven’t been running as many events recently. This is mainly due to IRL commitments such as work, university, etc. We still make time to help run the server but our time is much smaller. That isn’t to say events are fundamentally dead. Many members have stepped up to the plate with different events. We love to see that and would encourage more of that.
  • Expect better server accountability. Given all the changes that we have tried to make as staff, we hope this has made it easier for you to bring any concerns to us.
  • For the sake of his well-being, Frumple has decided to shrink his presence on the server. That isn’t to say he’s going away. He still runs essential tasks for the server, guiding staff, and helping with disputes.
  • Try to learn skills to get along with others
  • If a player is clearly not reasonable and not willing to listen or understand, don’t be surprised if Frumple indefinitely bans them.

I would recommend to read the full statement linked below to read Frumple’s exact words and for more details.

Updates! Get your Updates!

On Monday, January 11th, all MRT services will be down at 5PM UTC (9AM PST). Expect it to be a few hours as we will be doing the following updates:

  • Servers
    • Main Server will be switching from AMP to Pterodactyl.
    • Paper and plugins will be updated on Beta after successful Beta testing.
  • Wiki
    • Mediawiki update to 1.35
    • UploadWizard extension will be added.
    • Some updates for mobile viewing will be done.

New Mod!

We considered two nominees for moderator, Echohue and MC_Protocol. Out of the two, Echohue was promoted to moderator, following a successful majority For votes. Congrats, Echo!

Now that we’ve had the moderator nominations underway for a while, we’ve wanted to give some feedback on the quality of the nominations that we’ve seen. There have been long nominations (such as 10 pages for one candidate) and short ones (like 1 page). We don’t have a length requirement however we encourage you to take a good look at your nomination and make sure it gets your points across in a clear and concise manner. In addition, make sure your evidence backs up your points for why that person should be a staff member.

Skele proposed adding a general rule around sharing private messages in public. This was accepted. The website will be updated soon with this text:

Do not share private conversations to a third party without the consent of the person(s) in the conversation. The unauthorized sharing of private conversations is illegal in some jurisdictions in addition to being an unethical violation of privacy. Because of this, it is not okay to leak private conversations without permission even if it is done outside of MRT services. If something that happens in a private conversation requires the attention of Staff, do not draw attention to it in public; instead, discreetly email the details of the incident to the Staff.

From Here to There

Aurora International Airport (AIX) & Shared Airport Discussion by CaptainObi/Johngi/JavaIsBetter/DintyB/Needn_NL/ModernArt (Aurora Team) was denied. There was a very healthy discussion over the proposal to build a large shared airport in the NW near Carnousie, Kaloro City, Skogheim, Lakeborough, and Norwest. Staff thought it was novel idea to build one large airport for the area vs multiple tiny airfields however the main concern was over the spacing/intergration of the towns in the region. For Aurora, they agreed to build up more infrastructure and found another town in between Carnoustie and Kaloro to help bridge the gap between Carnoustie and the rest of the region. Also, staff split out the A84 (and approved it) from their plans to help their integration plans as seen below. JavaIsBetter will be heading up the road construction of this A road. Aurora posted their discord in #auxillary-discords so any member can view/give feedback on the AIX progress. Given that this is the first of a kind, this GSM served to help discuss expectations/standards of how to judge these projects. In the future, we hope that AIX becomes a standard of how we will judge similar regional proposals.

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/392064822604201984/797864963745251332/A84.png

Delvin Street Pedestrianization by EliteNeon was denied. The proposal that was sent in didn’t give a compelling argument to change the current design of the street in the area. Staff also asked Elite to remove the 2020 US Election Board from his plot since the 2020 elections have concluded in the States.

A15 + B287 by mibu1223 has been approved. Here’s a map of the roads for context.

B417 by Avaneesh2008 has been conditionally approved with staff guiding construction. There were some concerns over the proposal to stick to 1 elevation versus going with the terrain so we will keep a close eye and help Avaneesh as he builds it.

Auchendale Inactive Town Bypass by i____7d was approved. [Obligatory insert “newrail flr go brrr” joke here]

Make it Rain

We had a lot of events that requested event funding. Can’t wait to see them in action!

The Great MRT Riddle by sasha9076 was approved. This will start end of January/early February.

Get to X Tournament (Name Change Pending) by Avaneesh2008 was approved. We did ask Avaneesh to update the name as the description of the events taking place aren’t in the spirit of Get to X. This event will take place during January and February so stay peeled.

SuperTuxKart Rapid Racing by underscorepie was approved. Last session went well and pie decided to return with another session. This one is set for January 23rd at 7PM UTC.

London’s Pub Quiz: January 2021 by LondonThameslink was approved based off the success of his past sessions. We did suggest to London to shrink the amount of questions due to concerns over the length. If you have any feedback from past sessions, make sure to share it with him too!

The Great MRT Build-Off by daltdisneyland was approved. Dalt’s planning to air in February so keep alert for a ping in Discord.

Can I have this?

The GSM saw a lot of Inactive Asset Transfer requests:

  • Sweet Sand Dunes (requested by Noahrebl_) has been denied due to concerns over wanting to redo his current town. Staff encourage him to focus on that town for the time being.
  • Orel Airways (requested by time2makemymove) has been denied due to concerns over trying to just get a gate at the airport and that he didn’t try to contact the original owner, MishkaMan. The only asset of the airline was a gate at Kolpino City. If Mishka doesn’t reply by next ISM, time can resubmit.
  • Insula Montes Lanark-Laclede Express Station (requested by HarborRandom) has been approved.
  • Voltorb Kinetics (requested by Hightech_TR) has been approved on the condition that he doesn’t charge for the designs as he didn’t create the designs originally.
  • Villedyn (requested by decorminecraft) has been denied as the town was already given to Camelicano in August 2020.

Next staff meeting will be the ISM on January 30th at 7PM UTC. Can’t wait to see ya then!

– Sese