1. Our Purpose
The main goal of JUGs is to create a setting where a group of adults can enjoy the game as well as each other's company in an active, mature and drama-free environment. We believe that the best way to play the game is in the company of others and the guild was founded on that belief alone.
Here we document the fundamental aspects of how the guild is run and what we expect from its members as well as what they can expect from the guild.
While we have a Code of Conduct which lists violations which will get you kicked immediately from the guild, here you will find the methods and structure we use and abide by so you can decide if this guild is the right place for you.
2. How the Guild is Structured
JUGs operates under a very simple, and unintrusive structure which keeps the policies, procedures and therefore, bureaucracy to a minimum. Because this is a guild composed of adults who act like adults, we feel the need for over-moderation is unwarranted.
JUGs has no officers. Members instead possess the lion's share of guild privileges so that every member has the ability to fully utilize the guild's functions. The only exception is the reservation of privileges which would allow the accidental disruption of the guild or its members' activities.
JUGs comprises three ranks: Guild Leader, Member and Recruit. There is a secondary set of additional ranks but these are handed out temporarily or when circumstances dictate.
2.1. The Guild Leader
The Guild Leader is here to basically perform two functions:
- Making sure that any of the guild's administrative tasks (as required by the game) get accomplished.
- Provide additional coordination and organization when the need arises.
2.2. The Member
Guild members possess most of the in-game privileges and, as a result, can perform almost any guild-related task.
Included in these privileges are the following:
- Using the Guild Missions control panel (guild missions can be started by anyone and at any time).
- The Deposit and withdrawal of items from the Treasure Trove and Deep Cave.
- Decorating the guild hall and arena.
2.3. The Recruit
When someone first joins the guild, they begin with the rank of Recruit and are somewhat limited in regards to guild privileges. The purpose of this rank is so that a recruit and the membership have a chance to get to know one another and have a bit of time to determine if JUGs is the right guild for that person. Hopefully, it turns out that the recruit would make a welcome addition to the guild and it is then that the recruit is promoted to Member.
2.4. Additional Ranks
There are certain conditions under which other ranks may be assigned. Here are some examples of those ranks.
- On Break: If a member, for whatever reason needs to step away from the game for an extended period of time they are given this temporary rank. This rank removes access to the guild's resources as a protective measure (i.e. in case their account gets hacked while they're away).
- Interim Leader: This is usually granted if a leader goes on break or if the administrative workload warrants the need for additional help.
- Scribe: The Scribes, because of their need of specific materials to craft items for the guild, are granted access to the Guild Stash as well as the permissions required for the construction of these items.
3. Joining, Taking a Break and Leaving the Guild
Our guild has a very simple system for how we handle admission and what warrants removing a member from our active roster – or from the guild completely.
3.1. Joining Our Guild
All of those who want to join our guild must fill out a small application provided on our website. In the application, the prospective member will answer a few questions and indicate that they have read and agree to our guild's Code of Conduct.
The application is reviewed by the leadership and it is either accepted and the rank of Recruit is assigned, or for whatever reason (e.g. underage, immature responses, etc.), it is rejected. It is important to note that an applicant will never be turned away solely because of their skill level or aptitude in regards to the game.
Once the applicant becomes a Recruit, they'll spend a short, indeterminate amount of time running with the guild. Then it will be decided by general consensus if they would make a good addition to our membership. If so, they will be promoted to Member and receive all of the privileges of the rank.
EXCEPTION: If an applicant is referred to the guild by an existing member, it is accepted that the member is vouching for the applicant and, as a result, the applicant will be "fast-tracked" and will automatically receive the rank of Member. The caveat of this is that the referring member is to be considered a "sponsor" and is therefore responsible for the orientation and any initial actions or behavior of that new member.
3.2. Taking a Break
The the one rule we've placed above all others in this guild is that "real life always comes first" If any member, for whatever reason, needs to step away from the game or the guild, they'll be able to do so without any repercussions in regards to their membership in this guild.
If we notice someone has been absent from the game and our website for an extended period of time, then we will place them on a break.
All we ask is that when possible, guild members give us a heads up about their break plans (we have a link in our forums that takes you to our "AFK" thread).
When that person would like to return to being active, they can announce their return in the AFK thread or message the leadership directly.
3.3. Leaving the Guild
While we hate to see people leave, circumstances may arise where a member has to leave:
- A member, because of whatever reason decides for themselves that they no longer can (or wish to) remain a member of this guild. We give these people our blessings and hope that one day we might see their return.
- A member's continued behavior or actions create a large amount friction or discord among the rest of the guild which results in them being asked to leave.
- Any violation of our Code of Conduct will result in immediate dismissal from the guild.
Depending on under which of these conditions the person left, they may still retain limited access (as a Friend of JUGs) inside our website.
4. Member Participation
When a person joins JUGs it is under the assumption that our guild will be their primary PvE guild and they will interact with other guild members in-game and visit our website to stay informed about things happening in the guild.
4.1 Being an Active Member
While we don't have a "rep requirement" that's carved in stone, we still want our members to maintain a high level of activity within our guild. After all, why join a PvE guild that you really don't run with that much? Real life always comes first and we never want to dictate how people who join our guild choose to enjoy the game. Still, we really do want our membership to be an active one.
So in keeping with this approach to running our guild, we're going to define active as someone who logs onto our website at least once a month.
We're not going to require that you sign up for x amount of events; we're not going to monitor how much you rep and we're not going to monitor how you play the game. Of course we'd prefer that you rep us, run with us and join us in TS but it's your call if you choose not to.
All we ask is that you demonstrate your wanting to be a part of our guild by being an active member (logging in to our website at least once a month) and logging into the game at least once per year.
4.2 The Importance of Logging In To Our Website
Our web hosting service, Shivtr, keeps track of the time since your last login. It is this time period that we will be using to confirm a member is remaining active. When you log in (with a username and password) to our website on a particular device, Shivtr will [attempt to] automatically log you in each subsequent time you visit the website on that device until you log out. So once you log in, all you should need to do is open the website's home page, and you're done.
We think that this 5-second activity once per month is more than reasonable to ask of our members to indicate they want to remain a part of our guild. But it's imperative that you get logged in -- visiting the website without being logged in will not update Shivtr's activity statistics. You can verify that you are actually logged in to our website because your display name will appear in the upper right-hand corner of all our website pages.
4.3 How Pruning Inactive Members From the Roster Is Done
What happens if you don't log in to our website for just over a month -- say, 6 weeks? Well, nothing actually. That's because our roster cleaning is going to allow for a very large inactivity window — just in case real life events become overwhelming. So here's how it will work:
- Once every 3 months [approximately] any full member who has been inactive for 6 months or more, or hasn't been in-game for at least 1 year, will have their website status changed to "Friend of JUGs" and be kicked from the guild in-game. They will be sent a website PM notifying them of their status change and what they need to do to reactivate their membership in JUGs.
- At that same time, any full member who has been inactive for 3 months or more will receive a website PM notifying them that if they wish to remain a member of JUGs, they need to log in to the website, as well as review the way we maintain the roster (i.e., what is being described here).
- If anyone has made a post in the "AFK" thread that they will be away for a while, we will not change their status due to inactivity until they have returned (so if you do make an "AFK" post, please make a follow-up when you're back).
- If a recruit has not logged in to the website at the point they are being considered for promotion to full member (which is usually about 1 month, or a bit longer, after they were made a recruit), they will be kicked from the guild and their website account will be deactivated. To become a member of JUGs, they will need to re-apply. BTW -- as soon as anyone becomes a JUGs recruit, they are sent both a website PM and in-game PM asking them to log in to the website and read a couple articles at their earliest convenience, so there is no practical reason that a recruit should not have logged in to the website by the time they are being considered for promotion to full member.
So even though we're asking for a logged in visit to our website once per month, it will actually take a nearly 6-month lapse before a full member is at risk of being removed from the roster. And if recruits read/follow the instructions they are sent when they join JUGs, they will be logged in well before they are being considered for promotion to full member.
4.4 Restoring Full Member Status
When there are no recorded logins for you on our website for at least 6 months, or no in-game login for more than 1 year, when we do our roster maintenance, you will be removed from our in-game roster and your website account status will be changed to "Friend of JUGs".
You will still have access to your website account and can still read our forums. If you would like to restore your Full Member status on the website and receive a fresh invitation back into JUGs in-game, just login to the website and click on the large yellow button on the home page labeled, "Got Kicked? Can't Log In". That will take you to a forum we monitor for former JUGs who wish to become active in the guild, once again. Please read and follow the instructions in that forum in the thread titled, "[READ BEFORE POSTING]..."
While our leadership will often be seen creating events, as mentioned before, the majority of activity will be generated by the membership (including recruits).
Whether the events are impromptu dungeon runs or scheduled guild missions, every person in the guild is granted the ability to schedule and initiate events.
As a rule of thumb, events that aren't limited to small parties of five (e.g. dungeon and fractal runs) should be scheduled in advance on our Event Calendar if a greater amount of attendance is desired. Otherwise, asking in guild chat or TeamSpeak is sufficient. Here are some examples of events that should be scheduled on the event calendar:
- Guild Missions
- World/Boss Events
- Farming/Map Runs
- Jumping Puzzles
We strongly encourage everyone to become involved in the participation and scheduling – whenever you're comfortable – of events. When guild members group for an event, the main focus is for everyone involved to have fun.
The more people enjoy themselves, the more they'll participate in events. This will serve to bolster the activity level that this guild needs to survive and grow.
6. Decorating and Scribing
In addition to events, the decoration of the guild hall and the creation of these decorations (scribing) are also activities which guild members can participate in.
Any member can decorate the main area of the guild hall as well as the arena. There is a large pool of decorations (aka "placeables") available to accomplish this. While we have a "fair use" policy in regards to these decorations, we do have some protocols which must be followed:
- Use some degree of taste and composition when placing decorations you intend to leave up for any period of time.
- Don't consider your "artwork" to be permanent unless you get the guild's concession to leave it up on permanent display.
- Only decorate areas that are easily reachable so that all guild members can enjoy your work.
- If you see decorations that appear to have taken a considerable amount of time for someone to put together, please leave them alone unless you get that person's blessing to remove or change it.
- Because placeables are used by Scribes to craft better or upgraded decorations, Scribes will reserve these materials by placing them in a designated section of the guild hall. These decorations are not to be used by anyone but the Scribe who placed them there.
There is a subforum on the website devoted to Decorating and it is a great place to communicate about your decorations, other people's work and what decorations or themes you'd like to see in the future.
Scribing is an important function for the guild as items required for certain upgrades and decorations can only be crafted by a Scribe.
Because of the inherent cost and responsibility in becoming a leveled Scribe, this activity isn't for everyone. There are those however, who find the activity immensely rewarding – despite the great personal cost in time, money and resources.
Here are some rules that need to be considered before anyone chooses to step into the role of a Scribe:
- The cost in materials and money in order to level your Scribe will not be provided by JUGs. You're going to have to foot that bill on your own.
- Scribes do not automatically get priority when it comes to placeables. They must be shared with those decorating the guild hall.
- If the guild's leadership asks a Scribe to craft a specific upgrade or placeable, the guild will provide (or reimburse) all necessary materials.
- In order to avoid over-allocation of placeables and other items required for scribing, there is a limit to how many will be granted the rank of Scribe at any given time. If there is an overabundance of people who want to serve as Scribe, we will institute a system of rotation in regards to who has the rank.
7. Etiquette and Respect
JUGs is an all-inclusive guild based on adults behaving as adults in regards to both manners and respect for the feelings of everyone else in the guild.
We do not discriminate based on ethnicity, religion, or sexuality. The only "discriminating factor" present is our age requirement; all guild members must be at least 30 years of age. This rule is present in hopes that a common maturity and wisdom of how to treat each other with respect and courtesy is present in the guild.
So that we can maintain a comfortable and enjoyable environment for all members, we ask that everyone abide by certain guidelines:
7.1. Discussion Topics and Language
First and foremost, JUGs does not censor anyone's choice of discussion topics or language. That being said, it is expected that all guild members are respectful of each other in what they discuss and how, and are expected to comply with any reasonable requests to change the conversation.
If we tried to make rules so that no conversation could offend anyone's sensibilities, we'd be stuck playing in absolute silence – it's just not possible. Instead, we ask that everyone continually show respect for other guild members by following these rules of thumb:
- No topic is inherently off-limits but use intelligence and wisdom when broaching topics that most deem sensitive as well as those known to be polarizing or volatile.
- Despite our liberal policy, any conversation or content that is a direct violation of our Code of Conduct (e.g. hate speech, verbal or sexual harassment, etc.) is strictly forbidden and usually ends in termination from the guild.
- If a discussion topic is making you uncomfortable, either ask to the group that the topic be changed or send a whisper to the person(s) involved and ask them privately. It is a person's responsibility to let others know that they would like a topic to be discontinued.
- We don't have officers to police conversations. If someone asks that a topic be discontinued, then please do so respectfully and without protest. If you are in TeamSpeak and want to continue that discussion, please switch to a different channel.
- In a similar vein, if someone requests that you "tone it down a bit" in regards to jokes, adult content or profanity, please do so.
This is self-explanatory. If you sign up for an event and confirm that you're going to be there, please show respect by showing up on time.
If you can't make it on time (real life happens) please make an effort to let the host or any other member of the group know of your delay or absence.
If you do happen to show up late, please join the event in progress in the least intrusive manner possible. Don't interrupt any activity in progress and don't expect the party to backtrack to catch you up.
7.3. Member Experience/Skill Level
JUGs comprises members of all experience and skill levels. We have a basic rule when it comes to expectations of JUGs members in an event: unless a particular event requires a certain experience or skill level, then anyone should be welcome to join the event.
Despite this policy of "come one, come all," there are certain activities that require particular skill levels or character attributes to be successful (for example, agony resistance in fractals, group composition in raids, mastery unlocks, etc.).
When the situation necessitates some constraints upon you or other members of the group, please observe the following:
- The requirements for the event should be clearly stated.
- It is OK to ask each member of the [proposed] party if they meet the minimum requirements; so please don't be offended if you are asked.
- If you have any doubts about meeting the requirements of the event, then please ask about it before the activity starts, rather than waiting for struggles to arise during the event.
- If you express uncertainty that you might not be able to accomplish the event without difficulty, but are still encouraged to go along – then by all means, join the group.
- If someone in the party clearly is not prepared to handle the challenges in the event, then it is fine to bring it to their attention – but please do so in a respectful and helpful manner.
- If you do have struggles during the event and it is brought to your attention, please do not take it personally; it is good that you become informed about what you need to adjust in your game play so that you can be better prepared for the next time.
7.4. The Use of TeamSpeak
JUGs uses TeamSpeak3 for voice communications. There are a number of channels available so that individual groups can use a dedicated channel for their events. When using TeamSpeak, please observe the following:
- The previous guidelines regarding discussion topics and language, apply.
- The "Lobby" channel is intended for socializing; event-specific communication should use a separate channel.
- If you see some friends in a non-Lobby channel and plan to drop in to say "hello", please do so in a way which does not disrupt their event.
- Background noise can be very distracting. Please use a push-to-talk mode if there is any chance background noise might be getting through.
- If you detect background noise coming through for someone else, please alert the person politely so they can switch microphone modes or make adjustments.
7.5. Use of Guild Chat
Guild chat (in-game text chat on the guild channel) is a great way to organize ad hoc events, ask questions, and socialize with other JUGs. Please observe the following when using guild chat:
- The previous guidelines regarding discussion topics and language, apply.
- If your small group is having a lengthy conversation that isn't relevant or appropriate for the whole guild (e.g. discussing their event), then please group up and use the party channel rather than the guild channel.
- Consider enabling the "whisper" channel in all your chat tabs so that if someone is trying to get in touch with you, you will be able to see the message.
7.6. Communication During Guild-Wide Events
Successful (and fun) events often depend upon effective communication. This is especially important during Guild Missions where the activities of quite a few people must be coordinated – sometimes down to only a few seconds. When such coordination is necessary, please observe the following:
- Participation in Guild Missions requires the use of TeamSpeak. You do not need to speak, but you must be able to listen. There is one exception to this: If you are hearing-impaired, we will make every effort to accommodate you. Please let us know so that we can designate someone to transcribe what is being spoken on TeamSpeak to a whisper channel for you, and relay your comments to the rest of the group on TeamSpeak.
- Be sure that you are using the right channel when using chat. There are three channels that can be easily intermingled: guild, party, and squad. The event leader should identify which channel should be used for chat messages during the event.
- If you don't understand something during an event, please don't hesitate to ask. Questions are welcomed, and JUGs members are more than happy to share what they know.
- Please listen carefully and follow the event leader's instructions. When activities need tight coordination, success often depends on everyone acting in unison.
7.7. Forum Posts
JUGs has a very rich website which not only provides a means for guild members to share information via the forums, but also lots of tips, tricks, guides, general information, and even a good amount of non-game things people just wanted to share. When using the website forums, please observe the following:
- Please use good taste in what you post, per the guidelines for Discussion Topics and Language, above. This includes images, signatures, and avatars.
- If you include a link to something NSFW (Not Safe For Work), please indicate that near the link.
- If you're beginning a new thread, please check the forums to find the most appropriate forum for it.
In JUGs, we don't have a high threshold for those who create or perpetuate drama – at all. If you enjoy participating in, or inciting drama, find another guild.
8.1 What Constitutes Drama?
The definition of drama is somewhat subjective, but here are a few examples:
- Antagonizing, harassing, or outright disrespect for others.
- Condescension for others' beliefs, opinions, or perspectives – although disagreement is fine when done respectfully.
- Presenting a persistent "I'm always right" attitude.
- Constant whining and complaining.
- Repeated and/or frequent disclosure or inquiries of very personal information in a public forum (that information is best shared in a private group).
- Blatant and/or repetitive disregard for the guidelines for etiquette described above.
- Anything that violates the JUGs Code of Conduct.
8.2 How JUGs Handles Drama
JUGs does not have an anti-drama squad. It is the responsibility of every JUGs member to attempt to squelch drama when it rears its ugly head, before it gets out of hand. If it seems that an episode of drama is taking place (or about to), please:
- Privately mention to the person at the center of the drama that it seems that they seem a bit stressed, or their comments/behavior are a bit harsh and they might consider easing back a bit.
- If that fails to have the desired result, [optionally] consider being a bit more direct and point out to them (again privately) that you really think they should discontinue what they're doing.
- If that second attempt fails, bring the issue to the attention of one of the guild leaders who will deal with it more directly. Provide any notes you have (screenshots of chat exchanges are helpful), and a list (if possible) of who else was present during the episode of drama. But please make at least one attempt to shut down the drama before involving a guild leader.
- If someone repeatedly incites drama, please bring it to the attention of a guild leader. It may be necessary for that person to leave JUGs, and the guild leader(s) will need to make the proper assessments and take the necessary action(s), if any.
Drama has no place in JUGs. But we also realize that not all instances of drama are deliberate and many times are just due to temporary stress. That is why we try to give everyone a chance to be made aware of the drama-inducing activity, in the hope that it will not continue further after being brought to their attention.
If that awareness proves insufficient to stop the drama (or the events leading up to it), then the guild leaders will get involved and if necessary, remove the source(s) of drama from the guild.
Let's be very clear: If you incite drama, you don't belong in JUGs.
JUGs is a guild of adults and we assume that everyone knows how to be polite, courteous, helpful and friendly to one another. What has been stated here is not intended to be an imposing set of rules and regulations, but rather a way for us all to have a common understanding of some key aspects of how things work in JUGs.
Through this common understanding we hope that our guild members will have many enjoyable times playing Guild Wars 2 together.
See you in game!
Arch & Neksis