Originally, I was going to post this in the SA section, but I decided not to because this really applies to everyone in the community, whether you are the person who is banning or the person being banned. So why not get everyone on the same page? No reason to keep secrets.
Every once in awhile something comes across our path that makes us say "Wait...that's a rule? Where is that a thing?" If you guys know me personally and know the way I manage the community on the higher-up side of things, I like to have everything that is an official rule laid out for everyone to see. Back when I was an AO and Garfield owned this community, there was a lot of mismanaged crap everywhere. People were pulling obscure rules from long-lost threads created years and years ago. Plus my job requires me to read a lot of text written by lawyers, so I like to make sure everything is worded and phrased the exact way it should be: ie a rule saying you SHOULD do something vs. saying you SHALL do something, etc. Oftentimes these 'rules' get started by rumor. Sometimes these go on for so long that by the time someone questions it, the response is "Oh it's always been done that way." Not a valid excuse. The majority of the BD team has been here for 8-10 years. Black Rain is the newest one, but she's still been here for 4 years. For the most part, we pretty much can sniff out bullshit between the five of us. Sometimes, it eludes us, but the vast majority of the time it is caught by at least one of us. Sometimes there are situations so random that we have absolutely no rule for it, and for that, it falls under the golden rule of SG:
QuoteThe Board of Directors have the final say in any and all matters pertaining to SG.
I'm going off on a bit of a tangent from the original purpose of this thread, but I just wanted to give a bit of backstory so this didn't seem completely random.
Banning a Player for Leaving the Server
The point of this thread, 'unfair banning' is specifically mentioning something that I have seen a few admins do, varying across rank. As you can guess by the title, it's about admins issuing bans for players because they leave the server after committing some sort of deviation from the rules. Let me run two situations by you for example:
Situation A) A player joins and mass-free kills a bunch of people and mic-spamming "I wish I was in Dixie" while typing racial slurs. He disconnects and leaves the server before an admin can issue a punishment.
This situation is okay to issue a ban after they leave. They committed violations that would have gotten them banned anyways, and they were obviously just intentionally trying to grief.
Situation B) A player is on CT on prison break, and headshots a T for disobeying a rule. The admin and the CT are arguing about the justification of the kill after the CT dies. The admin sets the CT to be slayed on the next round because he thinks the CT should have given a warning shot. The player disconnects right after being set to slay because he doesn't want to wait another 5-10 minutes to be respawned and play.
This situation is not okay to ban the player for leaving. He wouldn't have gotten an immediate ban for this situation anyways. The point in admins using their powers against players is to deconflict a situation going on. The situation is entirely deconflicted at this point, and there is no reason (other than spite) to go onto sourcebans afterwards and ban him.
As I said earlier, we choose the wording in our rules very carefully. If an admin deviates from this standard set of rules (because there are random situations that don't fall under anything we have listed), he is expected to use common sense and good judgement. If their version of common sense and good judgment is frowned upon by all 12 higher ups, well it makes us question their judgment. We could go over hypothetical situations all day and night, but I encourage all admins and players to READ the actual rules we have listed. This is not to encourage people to skirt around any rules intentionally, it's meant so you guys essentially know when you're being banned unfairly or when an admin is enforcing something they shouldn't be enforcing. If you intentionally skirt around the rules to make an admin's job harder, we will probably punish you out of principle.
I'm aware that this has happened in the past, but it stops now. This has been discussed among the AO's+, and we have unanimously agreed that banning players for leaving the server is only legitimate in certain situations, mainly extreme ones where the player is intentionally trying to grief. If there are any questions, please let us know, but if I see a million hypothetical situations, I'm not going to keep entertaining them all, as that could go on endlessly. As an admin, if you are in a situation where you truly do not know how to handle it, I would recommend you messaging a higher up immediately. If you cannot get in touch with one, not taking action (or taking minimal action like a 5 minute or hour ban) may be the best way to go, and wait for further clarification.
And lastly, "Avoiding punishments" = people who are trying to disconnect and reconnect to avoid a slay, a mute, etc. Not the same thing this topic, and that is okay to punish for seeing as it is an actual ban reason.
SG's Management Team