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Posts Tagged ‘MicroWiki’

“MicroWiki schism” comes to an end

The dispute which began in 2012 over which website should be considered the “true MicroWiki” came to an end yesterday evening, when Wikia staff officially renamed micronations.wika to MicroNations Fandom.

The website generally considered MicroWiki is at micronations.wiki, but another, smaller wiki at micronations.wikia – known by most as “MicroWikia” – has for six years now claimed to be the “true” MicroWiki due to being the original domain at which the community was founded.

The MicroWiki community left the Wikia site in 2010 in order to create a website independent from the Wikia corporation, but two years later some younger users left MicroWiki and reactivated the original website in a successful attempt to start their own community. Attempts to heal the rift were rejected by Wikia staff, who encouraged the new community in order to maximise advertisement revenue.

It had been intended for the original Wikia site to be left as an archive, displaying a “snapshot” of the community as it had been in 2010. However, subsequent editing and deletions by the break-off community lost a substantial amount of community and micronational history.

Poor leadership and generally immature users at MicroWikia prevented it from being seen by most as a serious alternative to the independent MicroWiki, but the very existence of the break-away community remained a sad reflection on the inability of some members of the wider community to work together.

Over the past few months, Emperor Jonathan I was able to get himself appointed as a leading administrator on the Wikia site, and lead the way in petitioning Wikia staff to rename the website.

With micronations.wikia no longer officially claiming the MicroWiki “title”, the rift between the two communities is formally at an end.

Although the community remaining at MicroNations Fandom is very small compared to that of MicroWiki, the fact that the former no longer claims the same name will make it far easier for its users to co-operate and interact with the main MicroWiki community.

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Racist Representative removed

Daniel Dankovsky – also known as Pavle Savovic – has been removed from Parliament for racist remarks.

Jovanovo was yesterday transitioned from a Town into a Crown Dependency in order to remove its now former Representative, Daniel Dankovsky, from Parliament.

Concerns over the behaviour of Dankovsky had been consistently raised both by members of Cabinet and by foreign leaders since he led Jovanovo – an enclave of Montenegro with a population of twelve – into Austenasia in August last year.

Introducing the legislation to downgrade Jovanovo, Emperor Jonathan I summarised what the other members of Parliament already knew; that “for the past seven months the Representative of Jovanovo has made frequent attempts to advocate fascist ideals within Austenasian government. He has consistently displayed a lack of respect towards Austenasia’s government, both in terms of the constitutional system and its members, and he has often publicly expressed views which are repugnant to the majority of decent people to the embarrasment of our nation.”

As early as October last year, Prime Minister Lord Admiral Kennedy found himself in the situation of having to release a statement clarifying that Dankovsky in no way represented Austenasia in a diplomatic context, after a series of controversial messages posted by the latter online.

On Sunday evening, the final line was crossed when Dankovsky posted in a Skype chatroom of diplomats and politicians that “Lower races should truly know their place.”

With unanimous agreement in Cabinet that the imperial government must distance itself from Dankovsky, the legislation to downgrade Jovanovo was entered into force under four hours after being introduced in Parliament, the fastest passage of an Act since records with timestamps began to be kept in late 2016.

The Emperor has also revealed to the Austenasian Times that Dankovsky had approached him in private requesting that the constitution be overthrown in favour of absolutist rule, and had recently suggested that the guarantee of basic human rights be legally denied to “Blacks, Muslims or Jews”.

The passage by Parliament yesterday of the Jovanovo Act 2018 has removed all Austenasian titles, offices and honours from Dankovsky. It also contains a paragraph condemning racism and racialism.

Speaking to Parliament, Prime Minister Kennedy stated that “Fascism and racism have no place in our Empire.”

Now removed from all positions of authority on a national level, Dankovsky has been made de jure Governing Commissioner of Jovanovo in order to nominally keep it under Austenasian rule, although in reality it is likely that he will soon seek to make it become independent.

UPDATE 23 APRIL 10:30 – Dankovsky has since accepted Jovanovo’s new status as a crown dependency, and openly declared it to follow a right-wing ideology called “Legionarism”. Despite Jovanovo remaining part of the Empire, Dankovsky will be unable from his new position to influence politics on a national level.

Robert Lethler revealed as Sebastian Linden

Sebastian Linden, Steward of Rudno, shocked the MicroWiki community yesterday evening by revealing that he had been the creator of and true identity behind “Robert Lethler”.

Robert Lethler was the name used by an individual who claimed to be the leader of “Erusia”, a micronation which through its claims of an impressively active political system and developed socialist culture was able to achieve a high level of diplomatic influence over the early MicroWiki community.

From late 2008 to mid-2010, Lethler acted as one of the main architects of the MicroWiki community, serving both as an administrator of the website and holding high office in the Grand Unified Micronational.

In July 2010, a dossier – co-authored by none other than Sebastian Linden – exposed Erusia as entirely fictional, and Lethler as a fake persona. Lethler departed the community, leaving behind rumours that his guidance of the community had been a socio-political “experiment”.

Other than three subsequent, brief returns to the community’s Skype rooms – the last of which was in March 2012 – “Robert Lethler” disappeared from history.

Linden’s surprise announcement yesterday evening that he had been Lethler all along was verified when he logged into an old Skype account previously used by Lethler. Numerous other pieces of evidence were put together in support of his claim, conclusively proving that Robert Lethler had been Sebastian Linden all along.

On the Grand Unified Micronational and what plagues it

Article by His Grace Bradley, Duke of Dullahan

This is not a work to discourage micronations from formal association or to harass, attack or demean the GUM. This article is written out of the pure observation of someone who studies public administration and has seen trends that make the governance and maintenance of an organisation structured like the GUM impossibly hard. In this article I try to explain some trends and developments in both the macronational and the micronational world which might explain the hardships organisations like the GUM face.

We must never shy away from taking a good look at the works we joined or constructed. Even the oldest institutions and oldest buildings need mending so now and then. Forgoing a sharp critique of what is in front of you due to prestige and history is ignorance. Should we turn a blind eye to the errors and shy those who wish to aid an organisation then we are no better than the leaders of the OAM, who ignored clear signs even if they were shown by members.

To this end I will write about the history of the GUM, the functions it had and served and what it inspired. But also what difficulties it faces in today’s world. I ask all who take their time to read this to reflect on the GUM and the analysis I put forward and please draw your own conclusions.

The GUM, its history, significance, and prestige

The GUM was an organisation that bound together those who wished to communicate with each other. It became a club of high professionalism, learning and prestige. If you joined it you were of the higher classes of micronations who proved to be serious and stable. The GUM in this solved problems of diplomacy and allowed members to speak about and try and resolve issues in the community better and faster than could be done on the wiki.

For many the GUM was a learning ground. During its refounding it modelled itself like its previous incarnation with the vision of spreading professionalism, aiding in a formal diplomatic venue for micronations and offering a way for faster communication. The shear prestige that the biggest influential nations brought to the organisation in all its incarnations as well as its accomplishments in peacekeeping and development of micronations brought it great success. But here we can see the cracks happening.

What people sometimes forget is that a large part of the community wasn’t on Skype; Skype wasn’t even in the picture yet. The OAM was the biggest forum and organisation; it gave, like the GUM, a platform to communicate and share information with each other, something the Wiki couldn’t do. This was the most relevant and prestigious part of contribution these organisations gave the community.

Changes in activity and the role of conflict

The GUM never drastically evolved or faced the problems it had. Without it people felt there was no place for serious or professional diplomacy and discussions on their micronational development. But in times that it existed the most active days were those with conflict. I do not like to pad myself on my own shoulder but the State of Sandus and the Kingdom of Wyvern’s feud with each other was something that kept the community active, especially the GUM which was once a fighting ground for control between factions that disliked each other. These conflicts, which are not limited to the Wyvern-Sandus conflicts, gave purpose to the organisation. It gave relevance to an organisation that was being out competed by other venues that were less organised.

It was in our community’s culture to have conflicts, fights and arguments over nothing of importance. The admins and the GUM often called for peace and the return to calm micronational development. I once spoke with Emperor Jonathan Augustus of Austenasia regarding this topic. He seemed to notice that when we as a community began to disvalue conflicts and see them as idiotic child’s play on the internet, the inactivity rose sharply. Look at the Ideological conflicts, Black Marches, Yablokogate & the Leadership Scandal. These were the most active periods of time. The ‘’New Era’’ is one of the longest lasting and boring eras, and with it the GUM is faltering ever more.

Old age, no change, relevance issues and commitment

We see that organisation cultures are important. The GUM has a culture in its standards, behaviours and way of doing things. We can all see that it’s difficult to change the GUM and that has always remained the same in how it does things, even if the organisational structure is different. One of the cultural aspects that is the same but hurts it the most is the Chairman. The Chair is seen as the leader of the GUM and is tasked with the administration of the GUM. With this task the members see it as the Chair’s job to set the agenda, to set in motion activities and programs. The commitment of the members is low, it will also never increase. We tried hard, but to avail. Chair after Chair try and fail. We all try to change this, but a culture isn’t easily changed, especially when the ground cause is a world that is different than it was once.

Look around us, the world is faster and micronations on the Skype-part of this community are growing older, more busy. The youngsters do not always have the time either nor do they have the skills that we do. Look at who run the GUM or who guide the GUM from the sidelines. It is us, what these new ones call the Old Guard. If something is wrong with the GUM, Austenasia steps in and takes over to guide the GUM back to stability.

But should we? Isn’t it time that we let the GUM die and reform it into something that was tried once before? You see in the macronational world organisations and governments are having trouble with the governance of society as well. The complexity of the society has increased and the spread of data, information and knowledge is growing every day. Facebook, the Forum and Skype all provide venues where people can converse, enter into debates or share their development and news. In such a world the GUM makes itself obsolete. What relevance does the GUM hold? We have chats on Skype for informal diplomacy and chats/debates. We have the forum, wiki and Facebook for sharing our news and getting information, and we can use Skype for formal discussions as well. Why the need for structure in a society that moves from the traditional structures of hierarchy to complex networks?

The problems with reforming

Like I said earlier, forming a network out of the GUM in which the institutions are dropped is hard to keep as people desire to rebuild the old and try and give an old concept new life. Besides this it has been tried and then the relevance of the GUM slows down even more as other venues offer the same thing. But is perfect activity in a GUM network or discussion room bad? That is the question we need to ask ourselves.

To me it is simple. I have no time for the GUM and it adds nothing for me. Its surveys are meaningless if nothing is done with it, same goes for the guides. Quorums are barely even followed by half its members and many more wish to leave out of dissatisfaction. The Chair is the only person trying to pull the cart forward but no one pushes to help. Commitment is low and will remain this way. We must see reality. In a changing world where complexity and IT has changed the world of communication so drastically, should there be a GUM?

In conclusion

To recap, the GUM is an old institution that has lost its relevance and has its age-old problems still with it: lack of commitment, inactivity, losing more and more Old Guard and not able to address the lack of relevance for the organisation. With an evolving world of technology and communication we must face the facts that Discord, Facebook and informal Skype venues as well to some degree the Forums offer the same and even more then the GUM does; there are no commitments, people can put in what they like and take what they need at any time without the fear of being thrown out because of inactivity.

My suggestion is to make it a serious professional platform for sharing ideas, discussions and professional diplomacy. The Chair could be its admin, not its leader nor the leader of the executive branch. This might condemn the GUM to more inactivity, but it will solve the issues that are slowly killing it. Hierarchy in an organisation that only functions on the fuels of prestige and not purpose will eventually die.

 

 

Relations with Delvera break down

30 August 2017 1 comment

The past few weeks have seen diplomatic relations between the Empire of Austenasia and the Grand Republic of Delvera reach an historic low, primarily due to the inflammatory behaviour of Delvera’s leader, Consul Callahan.

Earlier in the month, Emperor Jonathan I was invited to take part in a discussion hosted on Facebook Messenger with Dylan Callahan, Consul of Delvera, and delegates from two micronations who are also members of the MicroWiki community.

Being unable to attend the first scheduled session of discussion due to urgent personal reasons, the Emperor noticed that he was referred to in a document drawn up by the others in a way that was disrespectful to his office as Austenasian Monarch. Upon pointing this out, he was met with a tirade of abuse from Callahan, who claimed that his inability to attend the earlier session resulted in the standard courtesy of correct styles of address being waived.

Callahan was eventually calmed by the intervention of Rev. Joseph Marx, a longstanding friend of the Emperor who was also present in the discussion group. Another document drawn up was then reviewed, which referred to the participants as all belonging to “micronations”, despite the policy of Austenasia to never refer to itself – or others it recognises as sovereign states – as such in official documents.

Callahan then criticised the Emperor’s decision to raise this issue, and referred to Delvera itself in terms which seemed ambiguous in regards to the Delveran government’s attitude to its own independence.

Upon unprovoked rudeness from another member of the group, the Emperor decided to leave it as not worth his time.

Callahan was contacted in regards to resolving the confusion arising from his statements concerning Delveran independence, and claimed that his government’s “relationship with Austenasia is a top priority” and that he was “very hopeful for mutually beneficial relations moving forward.”

It was agreed that diplomatic talks should take place between the Empire and Delvera to resolve the outstanding issues. However, in that time, Consul Callahan has – instead of attempting to schedule talks with the Emperor – spent his time accusing the Austenasian national flag of being “cancerous” on the MicroWiki Forums and accusing the Empire of being unable to conduct diplomatic relations.

Where all this leaves the future of Austenasian-Delveran relations remains to be seen. Diplomatic talks are, in theory, still to be scheduled, but nothing yet has come of this endeavour.

Consul Callahan is best known in the MicroWiki community for a protest in December last year over the administration’s decision to uphold a ban on foul language being used on the MicroWiki Forums.

Dissolution of St.Charlian recognised

26 January 2017 1 comment

National flag of the Federal Republic of St.Charlie.

An Act of Parliament was passed last night which finally recognised the Federal Republic of St.Charlie to be defunct.

After Prime Minister Alexander Eastwood controversially took supreme power as Chancellor in August 2015, the St.Charlian government effectively ceased to function. After a year and a half of complete inactivity, Eastwood informed Emperor Jonathan I on Saturday 21st earlier this month that he considered the nation “defunct”.

Yesterday’s Foreign Affairs Act 2017, amongst other provisions, cites “the inability of the St.Charlian government to continue to function to the extent necessary to exercise sovereignty” as the reason for the Empire revoking recognition of the Federal Republic.

Although the inactivity of St.Charlie’s government has long been known, Chancellor Eastwood’s admission that he himself considers the nation defunct has been seen as the official death-blow to the country.

Alexander Reinhardt, arguably St.Charlie’s most famous politician, refused suggestions that he should declare himself monarch in an attempt to restore the nation’s sovereignty.

St.Charlie was founded as a Kingdom on Christmas Day 2000 by King Patrizio I, who ruled until overthrown in November 2008 by Reinhardt, who established the Federal Republic. For years afterwards, St.Charlie was known as one of the most politically and culturally advanced small nations in the MicroWiki community, with a population peaking at 150 and land claims around the world.

Austenasia entered into mutual relations with St.Charlie in August 2009, signing an official treaty of mutual friendship with the nation in December later that year, and the now Emperor Jonathan I met with St.Charlian leaders in 2011 and 2012.

A decrease in governmental activity had been noted in St.Charlie by early 2014, which the then President put down to many St.Charlian leaders having to spend more time on other commitments as they grew older. The Presidency was abolished by Prime Minister Eastwood the following year, who declared himself head of both state and government as Chancellor.

There has been reaction to St.Charlie’s ‘official’ demise from members of the MicroWiki community. King Adam I of Uberstadt and Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy both reflected on how they had warned Eastwood that his reforms would damage St.Charlie, whereas Mercian diarch Richard Cunningham called it the “End of an era”.

The Lord Admiral’s Corner: On the revived Grand Unified Micronational

16 June 2016 1 comment
gum_nlogo

The logo of the new Grand Unified Micronational

This article is one of a series of editorials from Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy known as The Lord Admiral’s Corner, where the Prime Minister will give his thoughts and opinions on issues affecting the micronation.org community. The opinions expressed in this series are the personal views of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Austenasian Times or the Austenasian Government.

I’ll admit, I was skeptical when His Imperial Majesty the Emperor told me of plans to revive the Grand Unified Micronational.

As a younger man, I was a very influential delegate from the now-defunct Ashukov Federation. I campaigned for the Chairmanship three times, though only the second one was successful. I was instrumental in the creation of the now-defunct GUM Library and established a committee dedicated to enacting a new Charter (which failed to accomplish its goal following the end of my term). I was as instrumental in attempting to revive the GUM as I was in its disestablishment as an organization; I was one of the first to advocate for its disestablishment and I served as the last Vice-Chairman of the old GUM under Adam of Adammia, my former rival and electoral opponent.

Eventually, I came to agree with efforts to revive the GUM for a few reasons: the lack of discourse between nations in this community and the rise of the very capable (with some exceptions) “new guard.” When the GUM was disestablished, there ceased to be a hub for intermicronational diplomacy, with the only other major organization remaining being the then-relevant and active Saint Josephsburg Economic Pact, which is currently planned to be dissolved by the remaining member-states. This community has needed something like this to revive discourse between numerous micronations and to ensure stability.

One of the reasons the old GUM failed was because, for a time, the number of lower quality new nations was exceptionally higher than the number of higher quality new nations (and because, against my advice, Quorum would vote to let anybody in, but that’s another story for another time). As older nations began to die off, a void was opened that newer nations weren’t able to fill. Now, with the rise of nations such as Mcarthia, Roseland, Zenrax, and the return of Koss, the GUM has enough higher quality nations to not totally stagnate.

As a former Chairman, Vice-Chairman and Supreme Judge, I have some advice to give the members of the new GUM.

First of all, as dreadful as this might sound, I strongly recommend the newer delegates wait an election or two before seeking the office of Chairman. Now, I understand why you might dislike this advice because I once attempted to run for the Chairmanship against King Ciprian of Juclandia after only serving as a delegate for around six months. In retrospect, I was nowhere near experienced enough to lead an organization such as the GUM. Now, as a former Chairman I can tell you that the job is no walk in the park (as a matter of fact, I wouldn’t accept the position if Quorum unanimously begged me to). It’s extremely time consuming, doubly so now due to the increase of the Chairman’s mandate from three to six months. It’s also extremely stressful – one mistake and Quorum will ridicule you (especially if you’ve made political enemies and rivals, which I did and I’m sure most delegates will do). Numerous past Chairmen (myself included) have stories of the job being so stressful they quite literally broke down for a time.

Finally; please, for the love of God, don’t admit just anyone into the GUM as a full member. My personal recommendation is to refuse admission to any nation which hasn’t existed for at least six months (before anyone points out that Ashukovo was a GUM member from day one of its existence, Ashukovo was a successor state of a prior GUM member-state and all Ashukov politicians were seasoned micronationalists with at least six months of experience), doesn’t maintain active relations with at least five full member-states and can’t compose a decent MicroWiki article. That doesn’t mean you should shun most of these nations entirely (excluding lost causes such as joke nations and obvious fakes), just advise them to seek observership so more seasoned members can help them improve and then seek full membership.

I believe the new GUM can be a positive force in the modern MicroWiki community so long as the new delegates avoid the errors of the past. I will serve as an Austenasian delegate and will occasionally voice my opinion and vote in Quorum, but at present I don’t plan on seeking office in the GUM. I wish the new and old delegates the best of luck and offer them my wholehearted support.

HIH Lord Admiral Joseph Kennedy, Duke of Bohemia