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Entirely too much bandwidth and moderator time is being invested in quashing the victimless crime of using borrowed terms in a query under the false pretense that such terms invade some third-party property rights. Succinctly, all questions about third party fictional worlds boil down to canon. Borrowed terms, whether they be from literature or from any other cultural origin, are in fact fully congruent with the goals and principles of both world-building practice, and this world-building site (WBSE). An offense exists if AND ONLY IF an explanatory answer exists in any canon not owned by the OP; thus, queries with canonical Delphicity* are by definition uncanonical to the third party world, and thus can NOT be judged as "off-topic" for the singular reason of a descriptive term's origins. I owe a proof of this:

  • The WBSE asks querents to post questions which are scannable. Terms with high information density serve this cause specifically. E.g., the two statements below are identical, but #2 is preferred:
  1. How can a quadrupedal mammal of the genus cannis, having very sharp canine teeth at the front of its mouth, that are designed to tear and puncture rather than pulverize, successfully pulverize the chewy bubble-gum creatures on my world?
  2. How can a dog pulverize the chewy bubble-gum creatures on my world?

The word dog has a vast information density that facilitates the scannability of the query. I am fairly certain all members can agree that use of this word is a "net plus" to our goals. Yet, the words "Warp" and "Light-sabre" and even "vampire" have come under recent inexplicable fire for being used in this same way.

  • The WBSE asks a querent to "do research" before engaging this community. Borrowed terms are the very product of earlier research. William Shakespeare gave us "Alligator" in Act 5 of Romeo and Juliet through the vernacular pronunciation of the Spanish term for "big lizard." That word today contains its own research. Gene Roddenberry gave us "Warp speed" which contains vast research into FTL. Using the word "warp" in a query is in keeping with our policy while the answer can not be derived from any of Roddenberry's worlds.

  • The WBSE asks for question titles to accurately and concisely summarize the problem in the title. Borrowed terms with high information density perfectly accomplish this goal. "Dog," "Mermaid," Vulcan," Darwinian," "Nazi," "Lovecraftian," "Delphic," "Muslim," are all words that contribute to the concise, accurate, and specific communication of the problem in your world.

  • The default WBSE assumption is that members are obeying the code of conduct, and are therefore creating their own worlds. I do agree that trends show rife disregard for third party property, yet trends do not set our principals; they set policies for the enforcement of those principles. It is NOT true that a querent owes a burden of proof as to ownership of their world. It is our general expectation that querents are being honest (we do NOT assume all new queries with the words "Hobbit" or "Warp" or "Liliputian" are pirating intellectual property by default). Instead, if we feel a query needs policing, we are expected to "be clear and constructive when giving feedback, and be open when receiving it."

  • Information density is both encouraged and discouraged in the same breath when taboos are levied against borrowed descriptive words. Consider that a query about an "anatomically correct Hobbit" is taboo, while an image of the creature pictured below (Wikimedia commons source) is actually encouraged under the ACS guidelines? This is not hypocritical and contrarian?

Wikimedia Commons image of Hobbit

Canonical Explanations vs. Canonical descriptions

The simple reason that an image is ENCOURAGED and a word is taboo is because an image is by nature descriptive of the problem. A word can be interpreted as either descriptive or explanatory, and so it can potentially include content which is not owned by the OP.

Thus, the simple proposed "canonical Delphicity" test is this:

  1. If an OP is clearly using a borrowed term from Swift, or Roddenberry, or Lovecraft, or Stoker, or Shakespeare for the purpose of clarity, brevity, and to describe their problem, then there is no harm or foul. This term is just as suitable for an on-topic question as an image of the same item would be. The OP retains the burden to focus the problem on specific features of the "wookie" or "elf" or "vampire," lest they earn the "needs more focus" VTC.

  2. If, in an expert opinion, the canon originating a borrowed term in a query explains the problem, or in fact, any third party canon not owned by the OP explains the problem, then WBSE can not offer an explanation to the problem.

The line for WBSE suitability rests on ownership of the world and not the descriptors. The line for descriptor suitability rests on its explanitory power rather than its descriptive power. Informationally dense terms are encouraged; explanatory terms with origins outside the OP world are off-topic. Queries with words having both explanatory and descriptive power must actively distinguish themselves from canonical sources (they must establish canonical Delphicity within any coincident canon).

Burden of canonical intrusion lies with the claimant

To charge a question as offending any canon is to proclaim yourself as expert in that canon, because your downvote implies that: the answer or question is incorrect; and you are honest about that assessment. This can only mean you are an expert in the matter. If a question intrudes on worlds of Roddenberry or Swift or Lovecraft or the Incas, the civil thing to do is state where the intrusion lay.


FAQ (comment responses)

Q: Won't this create more work for the people responsible to keep WBSE clear of third party violations?

A: No one has the responsibility to secure the site against third-party content. Moderation starts with the community itself. The moderator agreement places no burden at all on them to keep WBSE clear of 3P world infringements, and in fact indemnifies Stack Exchange and the moderators against any damages due to any infringement.

Q: Aren't 'ideas' also 3rd party content? Isn't a world with an engine 'like a warp drive,' a city 'like Cloud City,' or a creature 'like a Mi-Go' automatically owned by someone else because they came up with it? Aren't you only changing the name?

**A: No, ideas are never third party and in fact they are very rarely original. The Orville is a knock-off of Star Trek. Put a "Sky-city-like" city in your world and it is still YOUR world. Put a light-sabre-like sword in your world and it is still YOUR world. Put a Predator-like creature in your world and it is still YOUR world. Put a Mi-Go like creature into your world and it is still YOUR world.

Q: Shouldn't Borrowed terms close a question simply because they are too broad?

A: No. True, a creature "Like Dracula" has entirely too much definition for one single question. However, a creature "that doesn't cast a reflection, like Dracula" is perfectly fine for this site, as long as your world defines the science/magic that makes such a quality possible. The example above of the light-sabre which cuts a tree is a suitable question because the science is defined.


Definitions

  • Canonical Dephicity A problem is canonically Delphic if an answer can not be provided by a canonical authority. It does not mean an answer does not exist in another canon, but that a valid solution cannot be had if a canonical authority (or third-party world oracle) were consulted, because the authority of the intellectual property is outside of that canon.

Example problem: "Could a 2000 Watt plasma light-sabre cut down a 2-foot thick tree in one swipe, if the blade were long enough?" Test: Can an authority in canon provide an answer?

  • Canonical reference: Light sabre
  • Canon source: Star Wars / George Lucas
  • Canon opinion: The functional operation of a light sabre have no definition within Star Wars canon, and they do not have Watts as a unit. The question can have no answer from an authority of Star Wars canon.
  • Conclusion: This question is canonically Delphic, and therefore is not off-topic under the third-party world rule.

Example problem: "Would a personal time machine be possible with only a 1 JiggaWatt flux capacitor, since the Delorean is much larger and has a 2-JiggaWatt flux capacitor?" Test: Could a canonical authority provide an answer?

  • Canonical reference: Flux capacitor, JiggaWatt, Delorean time machine
  • Canon source: Back To The Future franchise
  • Canon opinion: An authority in BTTF canon could form an explanatory answer to this question, even if they never have or chose not to, because the elements of the question occupy the BTTF world.
  • Conclusion: This problem fails the canonical Delphicity test, it does not occupy an original world owned by the OP.

Related post: Policy Clarification: Asking about commercial or third-party worlds.

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  • $\begingroup$ I somewhat get what you're saying. Hobbits are defined by Tolkien as human, so your argument makes little sense at that point. Vampires have no strict definition, so whilst information density is as you say, the term lacks specificity and therefore usefulness without considerable further clarification - and that was the sum of the comments left on the recent vampire post which you claim fell-foul of "inexplicable fire". Quite explicable, it seems to me. $\endgroup$ Jul 22, 2022 at 17:14
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ The problem is that a Peter Jackson Fellowship of the Ring elf is different from a J.R.R. Tolkien Lord of the Rings elf, which is profoundly different from the the ancestral folkloric elf; with the effect that without an actual explanation all the meaning the word carries is "some sort of low-level supernatural being that looks more-or-less like a human and likely lives in a forest". As for a **wookie, I don't know what it is; if it's a typo for a Star Wars Wookiee, those are men in monkeys suits introduced for pure comedic effect. And it is Lilliputian -- note the double ell. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Jul 22, 2022 at 19:12
  • $\begingroup$ All those small-almost-invisible deformations make me think that the question might be an encourangement for Chinese-style trademark evasion -- you know, Adibas, Rollex, HiPhone, iPed, etc. Oh, and I am pretty sure that one cannot have hobbits in their story without the approval of the Tolkien foundation; elfs, yes, as elfs are well-established Germanic folkore: but no hobbits. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Jul 22, 2022 at 19:15
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    $\begingroup$ "Hobbit" precedes Tolkien's story by about 30 years, apparently. The foundation can try to sue, but it'd be hair-splitting. $\endgroup$ Jul 22, 2022 at 19:43
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexP (and Angry Muppet) - the canonical Delphicity test doesn't alleviate the burdens of focus and single questions. As stated, a canonically delphic question "can NOT be judged as 'off-topic' for the singular reason of a descriptive term's origins." Yes, Stoker has a vampire. But also, yes, the word vampire is packed with information, so it is not focused. It also contains multiple questions without further scoping. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 22, 2022 at 20:09
  • $\begingroup$ You should tell what "delphicity" means. I can't find it in any dictionary, and wikipedia only gives the "Delphi" city. So far I'm missing key words :| ... $\endgroup$ Jul 22, 2022 at 21:01
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    $\begingroup$ It is the noun form of Delphic. I added the definition. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 22, 2022 at 21:50
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    $\begingroup$ What exactly is your question? $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    Jul 23, 2022 at 2:29
  • $\begingroup$ @elemtilas Is there a reason we can't draw this simple line for third-party content? Allow any descriptors you like in a query to make the question concise and easily scanned, but disallow "world" content? $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 23, 2022 at 2:46
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    $\begingroup$ invade some third-party property rights -1 just for saying that. This has never been about the legality of working with someone else's property. The goal of this site has always been focused on helping someone build a world of their own creation - not somebody else's world. Just because you're taking somebody else's idea and inserting it into your world doesn't change the fact that it's not your idea. The issue isn't that someone might hold the rights to Lovecraft's work. The issue is that it's not your work. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Jul 23, 2022 at 3:50
  • $\begingroup$ I do hope this clever but inept jab is not suggesting that my world isn’t my world, but the world of Cthulhu. Not a single element of this is not my work. You make the point of this post quite clear however. Burden is on you to show a querent’s world is “not their work.” Just saying so doesn’t make it so. Can you share whose work it is then? $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 23, 2022 at 4:08
  • $\begingroup$ @VogonPoet Did you create both pictures? Did you come up with the idea of the Mi-Go. I think it's ridiculous to claim credit for the work of others. What JBH is getting at isn't that you wrote the question but that as written there is no difference between you idly speculating about Lovecraft's Mi-Go and your ask. You say "It is also possible that different individuals have widely different forms." As worldbuilder you get to decide if they do or not. And if you're asking about their anatomy we need to know whether they have varying forms to be able to answer your question. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 4:37
  • $\begingroup$ You get to decide the details of your knockoff critter, and you need provide enough concrete information for us to be able to answer the question. Especially in the case of Lovecraft who loved describing his critters through the insane ravings of a man gone mad by the incomprehensible horror of what he just saw. That's not enough to go on to answer questions about their anatomy, diet or mechanism of propulsion. The issue was never that you asked about Lovecraft, the issue was that the form of the question was substantially lacking. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 4:50

3 Answers 3

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The issue with 3rd party worlds has nothing to do with intellectual property. In fact if Lucas (before he sold the rights to Star Wars) were to ask us "How do lightsabers work?" it would have the same issues as if I asked it myself1, despite him owning the rights to the world he was building. The question doesn't tell us enough about lightsabers to do anything besides brainstorm and generate ideas, which is prohibited.

Whether something exists in canon or not is irrelevant for determining whether a topic is suitable for this site or not.2,3 If you're speculating about someone else's world you are, by definition, not building a fictional world. Regardless of whether you're speculating about something that is established in canon or not. Asking "How many mediclorians are there in an average Jedi's cell" is off topic regardless of whether there's a canon answer to this or not. Similarly if you're wanting to build a variant on something within a 3rd party world, whether there's a canon explanation is irrelevant. Even if you're only making the minimum changes necessary to be legally distinct, you're still building your version, and can deviate from canon however you want. It does not mater that the power source for a lightsaber is established in Star Wars canon, it is still possible to ask about the power source for your lightsaber, provided you format your question correctly.

There are very few topics that are truly off topic on this site. More often than not questions are closed not for their selection of topic, but for the form of the question. These form of the question issues persist whether you're asking about creating a knockoff of a 3rd party world, your own variation on a critter, or a novel take on some trope like time travel or FTL.

It isn't suitable to ask "Can a lightsaber cut through a tree?" because we're not here to discuss 3rd party worlds. However it also isn't suitable to just ask "Can my lightsaber cut through a tree?" This holds true, even if you tell us "Star Wars isn't canon in my world". While you're definitely asking a question that cannot be answered by consulting a canon, and you're clearly asking about building a world, the form of the question runs violates site policy in numerous other ways. The question has many valid answers. It's underspecified. It's asking for brainstorming and idea generation. To answer this requires worldbuilders to decide how your lightsaber functions, and what a device with that functionality would be capable of cutting, effectively building your lightsaber for you. You resolve these issues conveniently enough by providing your own canon, in the body of the question. Asking "My lightsaber's blade is a 2000 watt plasma jet. Can it cut through a tree?" would be a solid question for this site.


1 Technically when I ask it I'm also not asking about building a world, I'm asking about Lucas's world.

2 While it's true that your question should probably not be asked here if your question can be answered by consulting a fan wiki, or a quick google search, we have other rules in place to prevent these questions without adding a new cannot-exist-in-cannon rule. More importantly the answer not being easily searchable is insufficient to determine whether a question is suitable for our site.

3 It should also be noted that rejecting questions that an authority in a canon could provide an answer to implies that every question with the hard-science tag should be rejected. The expert is a scientist and the canon is peer reviewed journals.

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  • $\begingroup$ “If you're speculating about someone else's world you are, by definition, not building a fictional world.” That is not under debate or germaine to this proposal. The fundamental issue you have is the blind assumption that using a certain adjective de-facto means you are “speculating about someone else’s world.” It is just ridiculous and counter to the principles of creativity. The Death Star is Mongo. Landau Calrissian is Prince Vultan. Darth Vader is Ming. Lucas didn’t “create” a single thing in your warped interpretation of “idea ownership.” Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 23, 2022 at 13:16
  • $\begingroup$ 3: No. Facts are not ideas, and are not owned. Please, for all that’s holy. Do not refer to “hard science” as a third party canon! Will you strike that comment?! $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 23, 2022 at 13:31
  • $\begingroup$ Legally speaking canon isn't owned either. It's just a collection of works accepted as genuine. And what is peer reviewed research but a collection of works accepted as genuine. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 13:56
  • $\begingroup$ How are facts different than ideas exactly? What makes something a fact? As a worldbuilder you can establish facts of your world by saying "x is a face in my world" and there is nothing anyone can do to contradict or challenge it besides convince you to change your mind and change the facts of the world. But if you're wondering how a thing in works in Star Wars, you can't decide "in star wars x is true" this is the difference between speculating about a 3rd party world "x could work this way" and building a world deciding "x does work this way" $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 14:08
  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps it could be argued that you've come across an alternate method for assessing only whether an ask related to a 3rd party world could be about worldbuilding, ignoring anything about whether the form of the question is appropriate or not. But we already have an existing system for determining that which fits better with the site since it doesn't require specific knowledge of what is and isn't defined in a canon to determine if an ask is about worldbuilding. Our current method is also generally applicable to any question, not just Qs with established canon. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 14:13
  • $\begingroup$ Remember that questions requiring creativity aren't permitted on this site. Brainstorming, and idea generation are explicitly forbidden in the help center. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 14:18
  • $\begingroup$ This is a real debate? That hard science facts, in the perspective of world building, have some sort of ownership? I disagree, and nothing more needs to be said. No one is brainstorming, not sure why that post came up. “How can I propel my creature through space?” No. Not brainstorming. Not idea generation. Not building anyone else’s world. It is world building, in Hell. Which I own. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 23, 2022 at 19:58
  • $\begingroup$ They aren't owned but ownership isn't a criteria for being 3rd party not yours is the only criteria. I suggest you read the link I have above about fishing for ideas. If you're asking us to come up with a list of possible ideas that's brainstorming and long established site policy states that is forbidden. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Jul 23, 2022 at 20:41
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Canonical Delphicity as Concept vs Third Party World Ownership as Concept

Is there even an issue here?

The Question: Is there a reason we can't draw this simple line for third-party content? Allow any descriptors you like in a query to make the question concise and easily scanned, but disallow "world" content?

The "simple line" appears to be drawn between "world" and "descriptive term". The line for WBSE suitability rests on ownership of the world and not the descriptors. The line for descriptor suitability rests on its explanitory power rather than its descriptive power.

Assessment: I disagree that the line is between "world" and "term". This is a false dichotomy, in other words. The issue has always been one of "content of the query". Essentially, I concur with both of your statements, but neither one seems to point to the problem, unless I'm seriously misunderstanding something.

"Borrowed terms" have never been at issue. If someone asks a mechanics query about a reasonably sized disk shaped world and cites Discworld as a source of inspiration, use of the term "rimfall" is non-problematic simply because any disk shaped world of the type will likely have one. As you say, the borrowed term is used for clarity.

"Canon" has never been at issue either. Questions of Discworld canon are off topic simply because they are not worldbuilding queries. Such questions should be exported to SF/F a/o closed here.

Rather, the problem, and therefore the line, as I understand it, has always been between "my world" and "someone else's". Just in case the two things aren't clear, "my world" is the fictional world that a WB.SE OP has devised within her own mind and is thus the worldbuilder of; whereas "someone else's world" is a fictional world that a WB.SE OP has not, in point of fact, devised within her own mind and is thus not the worldbuilder of.

I'd argue that the better test might be:

Did I create the world that I'm asking about, or did I not? --- Y/N

If the answer is yes, then proceede; if the answer is no, then do not ask the question.

Examples:

  1. I'm working on a disk shaped world and have trouble with water management. I understand that PTerry's Discworld has a Rimfall where XYZ process recycles the water. I'm thinking of doing PRS in stead --- does this make sense? This query is a (classic) reality check / (modern) internal consistency query and is clearly on topic because it's focus is "my world".

  2. I'm working on a disk shaped world and have trouble with water management. I understand that PTerry's Discworld has a Rimfall where XYZ process recycles the water. I'm thinking of doing that too --- how does it actually work? This query is clearly a question about the mechanics of Discworld itself. Whether there is a canonical explanation or not is not the issue. (There might be, and that might not actually be the answer to the question!) Rather, this query is off topic because it's focus is "someone else's world".

Conclusion: I concur with your stated query 100%. We allow "descriptive terms"; we disallow "world content". But I disagree that canon, delphic or plain, is the appropriate test; and I disagree that it ought to be between these two things that a line be drawn. The line belongs elsewhere.

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First, some clarifications

An offense exists if AND ONLY IF an explanatory answer exists in any canon not owned by the OP; thus, queries with canonical Delphicity are by definition uncanonical to the third party world

I might not have understood this, but questions are closed because their title and content don't match what's expected on WB:SE. Answers have nothing to do with that, and in fact might help in avoiding closure : I often stumble on questions where it's -from my point of view- on the fringe of needing rework. So I wait cautiously, then someone posts an answer and by relating with the question it helps understanding the thing that I overlooked.



The default WBSE assumption is that members are obeying the code of conduct, and are therefore creating their own worlds.

Yes, it's to some extent the principle of charity I use and a way to improve one's Netiquette. I told it in the post you linked... Just below!

It is NOT true that a querent owes a burden of proof as to ownership of their world. It is our general expectation that querents are being honest (we do NOT assume all new queries with the words "Hobbit" or "Warp" or "Liliputian" are pirating intellectual property by default).

I'm happy you gave a link to my post, but are you sure you fully understood it? There's a difference between giving proof it's your own world and giving proof you're making a world, that the purpose of worldbuilding is loud and clear. Can you see it?

The common issue when asking for plain 3rd party worlds is that it's too close to said world to make any derivation from it. Need an example, example... Let's take Elden Ring's Living Jar : You could ask stuff about it with its in-game description, but the more you do this, the more likely people will feel it's an Elden Ring lore question and will be enticed to answer with information about this video game's world instead of worldbuilding poetry. Indeed, it's already made and supposedly well-designed, why bother going further? The more this happens, the more likely you're not "creating" a world, but asking about an existing one. This is what I think is out of bound here :).

This is partially why I told to separate issues on your anatomically correct question about Mi-Gos; Beyond focusing your question, it separates yourself from the existing world and make creating other worlds much easier, like if you're asking for an existing wall brick color you could reuse instead of the wall itself that can only be used to make this exact manor, 2 Chtulhu St. in Horror town

Ah and yes, you can ask questions without having a specific world in mind, you just have to give us enough hints it can be used in worldbuilding : Is it ok to ask questions that don't have specific worldbuilding use? (max voted/accepted answer is "yes!")



To charge a question as offending any canon is to proclaim yourself as expert in that canon, because your downvote implies that: the answer or question is incorrect;

Not exactly. Downvote is not closure. A question can show "research, be useful and clear", yet not following the rules and therefore be closed. It doesn't happen frequently, but questions with high-votes yet closed can be seen.

Then, onto delphic analysis

Canonical Dephicity : A problem is canonically Delphic if an answer can not be provided by a canonical authority. It does not mean an answer does not exist in another canon, but that a valid solution cannot be had if a canonical authority (or third-party world oracle) were consulted, because the authority of the intellectual property is outside of that canon. [+clear examples, go take a look at them :)]

This implies a lot more work from close-voters, actually. Indeed, to prove that a question isn't asking about 3rd party world, it could mean that we have to prove that no existing work which uses this world (excluding fanfiction) can't already answer this question. For Star Wars, it is what... At least 9 movies, several TV shows, at least 4 or 5 games1, some books and comics... And we're not counting any element that could be deduced from said world, or any diverging element between two works on the same world (it happens to artists to forget their own world). It's much less time consuming to check if enough elements make it reasonable -simili-like to Bayesian reasoning - to tell someone is not in the process of creating a world (because it does happen, even if we should presume people are "innocent").

This also means we're doing the work of "answering" a typical Science-Fiction and Fantasy question, on top of the worldbuilding one. This seems quite time-consuming regarding the task moderators/close-voters already do...

And finally, this is closing questions by its potential answer. But like I said, questions should be closed because its content could be improved, not because someone found that canon and answer/could answer with it (alone or not). So... While I find the theory neat, it seems pretty harsh to execute in practice.



1 : By the way, in Star Wars Jedi : Fallen Order there's a moment where the hero makes a new lightsaber. As such, an answer could use the canon to explain the lightsaber functional operation ^^". I think it also happens in Knight of the old republic, too, though it's less evident there.

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  • $\begingroup$ “ to prove that a question isn't asking about 3rd party world, it could mean that we have to prove that no existing work which uses this world.” That burden is backwards. If you make the positive claim that the world is in an existing canon, you must state the canon you accuse them of violating. Just “I think someone wrote this already, so I’m closing it.” is not acceptable behavior. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 22, 2022 at 23:10
  • $\begingroup$ We have already taken on the burden to filter third-world content. We now have the burden to do so responsibly and honestly. “ we're doing the work of "answering" a typical Science-Fiction and Fantasy question” - Yes. The choice to sort third-party worlds from OP worlds means we need to establish a yardstick. Or just be unfair about it and continue to have these never-ending debates. This is my yardstick suggestion, derived from many prior posts. We have chaos otherwise. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 22, 2022 at 23:18
  • $\begingroup$ And lastly, we do not have deputized canon police on this site, so voting and moderating policies do not “create work” for moderators. A concept that exists in some obscure Star Wars fan-fic might get on this site and never get closed. And no one is punished for that. The site is self-governed. A mod who happens to know of a plagiarized canon has the responsibility to act on that. A member who doesn’t know, has no burden to “sweep all canon”. We are not paid to actively seek out violations. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 22, 2022 at 23:28
  • $\begingroup$ @VogonPoet "We are not paid to actively seek out violations." Exactly, we are not paid. You come here with the issue that close-voters "are being invested in squashing victimless crimes", or what I'd rather call "make too much false-positives" (the first sentence is attributing morally bad internal causes to volunteers; But perhaps you were a little stressed back then). [...] $\endgroup$ Jul 23, 2022 at 10:08
  • $\begingroup$ [...] Therefore, you're asking with good intents if this new methodology could help reduce the number of false-positives. This has two logical implications : First, that we don't remove the rule about 3rd party, as you're willing to improve it. Then, that this new methodology has to be followed.[...] $\endgroup$ Jul 23, 2022 at 10:08
  • $\begingroup$ [...] However, this methodology requires a lot of work : Finding multiple elements comforting an idea (being 3rd party) and none invalidating it is much easier than having to look everywhere if no element comforts this same idea. A bit like not believing in unicorns' would require to check every forest for their inexistence, rather than just remembering you've never seen any horned horse since you were born so their existence is very unlikely.[...] $\endgroup$ Jul 23, 2022 at 10:14
  • $\begingroup$ [...] This means that the methodology is -unless you prove otherwise- much more work-intensive than what's currently done. Intensive enough that it's likely no one will use it to check if a question can be closed for being off-topic. If this is not used yet is the method which should be used, then banning for being off-topic (for being 3rd party) wouldn't be followed anymore, either, effectively deleting the 3rd party ban community rule. This goes against your initial proposal of improving our success rate at determining which is and isn't 3rd party, yes 🦋? $\endgroup$ Jul 23, 2022 at 10:14
  • $\begingroup$ I have placed your concern into the FAQ, and I hope it answers your concern. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 24, 2022 at 1:07
  • $\begingroup$ @VogonPoet You're contradicting yourself just a few words apart here. I am part of the community so yes, it's my responsibility to keep things clean. Besides, this doesn't answer at all why your method doesn't take time when you use it (not using it of course doesn't take time), and it shows you've missed entirely both Sphennings and my point... It's not about law, it's about building a world vs plain asking about an existing world. $\endgroup$ Jul 24, 2022 at 2:00
  • $\begingroup$ This just is not helpful. so far no one has suggest what “existing world” my world is. No one is trying to build anything but my world, and I’ve never asked to build anyone else’s world. As soon as I find out what makes you think someone else owns Hell, then I can address those concerns. $\endgroup$
    – Vogon Poet
    Jul 24, 2022 at 2:44
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @VogonPoet Please read again, you'll see clearly that the issue is not about being your world or not. $\endgroup$ Jul 24, 2022 at 3:12

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