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Bylaws

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Introduction

The ECNet IRC network's goal is to provide an environment conductive to the communication of the individuals who utilize it. To support this goal, the following rules and regulations are codified here for all to see, and define the structure, rights, and responsibilities of the members of the network.

Administrative Organization

The administrative organization of ECNet is a compromise between absolute power vested in one individual and distributed power which leads to anarchy. The only people eligible for administrative positions are administrators of servers, unless otherwise noted.

Lead Network Administrator

The Lead Network Administrator is much like the president of the network. He or she is given the power to negotiate deals, and in general wield supreme executive authority. He or she is at the top of the "operator pyramid" and can be looked to for aid when you do not have enough authority to make a decision. Their power is checked by the organizational units and general consortium such that he or she only has the powers not delegated to an organizational unit. The Lead Network Administrator is voted into place by the general consortium and serves until resignation or removal from office. When the Lead Network Administrator position is vacant the general consortium must elect a new one immediately from their ranks, simple majority rules.

Organizational Units

Organizational units are chartered and have all their operating procedures contained within these charters. An organizational unit may be chartered by the direct approval of the Lead Network Administrator or by a vote of the general consortium. An organizational unit ceases to exist when any limitations in its charter which states when or why it will be dissolved are met, or by a vote of the consortium. This means the Lead Network Administrator may -NOT- dissolve an organizational unit. Once an organizational unit is dissolved, these functions fall back onto the Lead Network Administrator. Organizational unit charters are not meant to be used as amendments to this constitution, and as such they may not directly contradict any of the rules set forth here, but rather expand them. Furthermore, a new organizational unit may not contradict the charter of any other already existing organizational unit. There are two types of organizational units, committees and directors. Committees are groups of people whereas a director is a single person. In either case the same rules for chartering apply, the only difference is that a committee is meant for tasks that require a closed group whereas a director is designed to oversee some aspect of the network's operation or activity that doesn't require a closed group. In either case, a charter must specify the method of appointment, powers, limitations, and any other information about the organizational unit.

General Consortium

The general consortium consists of all administrators of servers. They each have a vote, and only have voting authority in certain matters, mostly powers given to them through team charters. The only three powers they have given to them directly in this document are the power to create and dissolve organizational units, the power to elect the lead network administrator, and the power to remove the Lead Network Administrator from office. Unless otherwise specified, all votes require a 2/3 majority to pass, the exception is the removal of the Lead Network Administrator, which requires a unanimous vote wherein the lead network administrator may not vote.

Server Administrators

Server administrators are given a level of autonomy, and in exchange are expected to be responsible. Below are the rights as well as responsibilities of a server's admin.

Rights

  1. A single administrative position and vote in the general consortium for their server
  2. The power to appoint IRC operators (local and global) to assist in the management of the server and network.
  3. Naming the server, setting its motd, and setting its rules providing they are not in conflict with network wide rules.
  4. If a leaf server, a backup o:line for themselves on their hub.
  5. Any rights conferred by charters of specific teams that are not in conflict with this document.

Responsibilities

  1. Maintaining a stable server and link
  2. Staying up to date with mandated changes/updates to the IRCd or network wide modules required to maintain network stability.
  3. Responsibility for IRC operators upon your server.
  4. Keeping the ECNet administration informed of any problems
  5. Reporting any and all people given staff positions on your server.
  6. Any responsibilities set forth by charters of specific teams that are not in conflict with this document.

Server Rules

Servers are free to set their rules to whatever makes the most sense for them. It should be noted that server rules are just that. Network rules apply to all users regardless of server, server rules apply to users on that specific server only and may include special provisions tailored to that specific server's conditions.

The following are prohibited from being in server rules

  1. Any limits on freedom of speech other than child pornography
  2. Any arbitrary rules which cannot be followed in good faith by IRC operators
  3. Any "catch all" rules which allow IRC operators the legitimate ability to randomly kline or kill users
  4. Any derogatory of prejudicial rules (ie: "no faggots")

IRC Operators and Other Staff

About Operators

IRC operators are given powers to maintain and improve the network, and as such are expected to act responsibly. Administrators are directly responsible for their IRC operators' actions, and as such should only appoint people of high standards. See the IRC Operator's Guide for details about being an Operator.

Appointment

IRC operators are appointed by the administrators of servers and they are free to appoint anyone to any IRC operator position with any combination of privileges subject to the following limitations. That being said, the following are the only officially recognized levels of operator power are local and global. Local operators are operators who do not have powers to affect the network as a whole (cannot G:line, shun, etc). Different rules apply to local and global operators. Administrators are always also global operators, but are not subject to the limitations of appointment set forth here.

  1. Local IRC operators may be appointed or dismissed by a server operator at their discretion.
  2. Global IRC operators may be appointed at any time for any reason but must pass through an appointment process. As these operators are given network-wide authority, the network must review them. All global operator appointments must be announced five days in advance before a global IRCop O:line is granted. These announcements may be made in the operator chatroom or via email to all admins. Any admin may challenge an appointment, the procedures in the case of such a challenge are laid out below. Should a challenge not occur by the end of the five days or a challenge was made and overuled the appointment may continue and the operator may be granted power

Challenges

A challenge can be made prior to final appointment during the five day announcement and consideration period. A challenge can be made by any admin and multiple challenges can be raised, but they will all be handled concurrently. When a challenge is recieved, the lead network administrator is charged with organizing a meeting of the general consortium. Until such a meeting is convened, the waiting period for appointment is frozen. Once convened, all challenges to the candidate for global operator status will be presented, and all parties permitted to speak. At this point, the appointment can be rescinded by the admin who placed it, in which case the process will be concluded as though the challenge was confirmed by the consortium. Once all parties in the challenge, including the appointing admin, have spoken, the consortium will consider the situation and vote. The decision is made by simple majority. If the consortium confirms the challenge, the appointment is blocked and the candidate cannot be appointed to a global position again for at least three months. Should the consortium overrule the challenges the appointment continues and the five day period continues, no further challenges may be made to the appointment after this.