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The Cable - January 2021


The Cable

January 2021 | The Embassy

_ PREAMBLE

Our newsletter, The Cable, aims to build communications between our embassies. Please share this with your region-mates by posting a link on your RMB!

I'm thinking of taking a break from NS, so this might be the last edition. If you're anything like me, you'll have been spending December enjoying the season of sloth, goodwill, and gluttony. Abandoning NS, I indulged in the escapism of real life. Which meant that this month, we only ran a single poll. Luckily, others elsewhere enthusiastically entertained us. Tag raiders Lily kindly took time off from being busy bees, and gave us an interview. It didn't stop them closing some of our embassies at the same time though! Luckily for us, The Grey Wardens thwarted some of their attempts to close more. And, unusually for an embassy collector, I asked some other regions to help me close embassies.

But if you're just thinking, "I don't care about any of this. Why did I get a notification?", then this section is for you.

_ CHARITY - THE TREVOR PROJECT

Bringing multiple regions together, Aynia Moreaux, Miss Bad Life Choices, The Vanguard Fleet, and Wymondham organised an exceptional schedule of entertainments throughout December. Besides the fun, the aim was to raise funds for LinkThe Trevor Project. The Trevor Project describe themselves as "The leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25."

Having started with a $100 fund-raising target, support quickly went through the roof, achieving an astounding $3400 by Christmas day. But there's still time to boost that a little higher - Linkmake a donation here!

_ POLLS

In the US, the recent election was deemed to be fair by the international community. This view has been supported by the US courts, where dozens of accusations of voter fraud have been found to be baseless. The same is not the case elsewhere in the world - in Uganda, the EU aren't even bothering to send observers, as their previous recommendations have been ignored. With low faith in election impartiality, what will happen when Ugandans vote on 14 Jan? Keep up with the news Linkhere.
Click to see if we're running a poll. Need to vote some more? Check out your eligible polls.

_ AN EMBASSY COLLECTOR - LILY

With only 16 embassies, tag-raiding region Lily hardly counts as an Embassy Collector. But their jump point region, Plum Island very definitely does. At it's peak in August 2020, Plum Island held 1473 embassies, more than several of the other Embassy Collectors we've interviewed!

AR: Am I right in thinking that all these embassies are with regions that you tag-raided? Do you always open embassies with tagged regions?

Frenchy: Always. Though Ambassadors Reception, some of the embassies on Plum Island are trophies and delicious regions like Obama Moment, one of my favorites. The embassies are essential.

AR: *Throws you a meaningful dirty look* And do you always have to close their other embassies?

Frenchy: *Catches the dirty look and dunks it like Michael Jordan* Yes. Absolutely.

AR: Conventional wisdom says that raiders only target founderless regions. Yet that's not the case with you. Why is that?

Frenchy: Including founders gives more targets. More targets means more hits. More hits means more embassies.

AR: Do you think you were one of the first raider groups to include foundered regions as targets? If so, why do you suppose no-one else bothered before?

Frenchy: Beats me man. These are just tags anyway.

AR: 1473 is an impressive total. Back in May, you had only 43 embassies. It took only 23 days for you to open over 1000 new embassies. What motivated this latest burst of activity?

The Lily Command Hivemind:
I am the bone of my salt
Chloride is my body
Sodium is my blood
I have tagged over a thousand regions
Unaware of net loss
Nor aware of net gain
Withstood pain to tag regions, waiting for a condemnation
I have no regrets. This is the only path.
My whole life was Unlimited Salt Works

AR: What were the major milestones in your NS career before joining Lily?

Frenchy: Literally nothing.

AR: After the Predator scandal, it seemed that most of Gameplay shied away from automation. Lily on the other hand embraced the use of bots. Can you tell us the names of the bots you've developed, and what makes each better than the previous bot?

Frenchy: We use the almighty Buzzy Bee which spits out targets when we ask nicely. Its predecessor was Miso which was kind of similar but a little less accurate and wasn't adjusted for some site changes iirc. Chingis honestly just gets more toxeen every time we need a new one and it helps us out a bit.

AR: Back in September, Chingis was temporarily deleted when some code testing accidentally broke site rules. Can you reveal what that enhancement was supposed to do? And was it worth the shock of getting deleted!?

Frenchy: Chingis was testing a new N Day script at the time, but ran into a site-side error that lead to breaking a non-scripting rule. The mods restored his nation after he explained what had happened. From what I gather he figured out the issue pretty quickly and it was no huge deal.

AR: These are some cool bits of kit. Is there much cross-over between your NS coding and real life? For example, maybe you handed the code in as a homework assignment for computing class?

Frenchy: I would never dare tell a soul that I play NationStates. Though one time I made a pretty fun game about vaping for a computer class.

AR: There have been numerous Condemnations of Lily drafted in the Security Council forum. Mostly by people who don't understand how the SC works. You guys have broken a number of NS raiding records. If you were to write your own Condemnation, which of your records would you choose to include? Which are you proudest of, and why?

Frenchy: 576 hits in an update across three teams and 270 and 233 on one team. I would doubt people breaking those numbers with an equal or better hits per person.

AR: Many people seem to have a soft spot for Lily, but not so much for other raider groups. Why do you suppose that is?

Frenchy: Lily possesses a certain ability which is not explainable in objective terminology, rather it speaks for itself why we are held in such high regard. Though I will attempt to do so using a quote, AR, from a favorite song of mine. As the great Bill Withers once said, "If you want to kiss a funky beagle, hitch a ride upon an eagle, read a catalog from Spiegel, Go on and do it, do it, do it, go on and do it, do it, do it hey, do it, do it to it, but do it good."

AR: I have to ask this one. Back in July, Lardyland was tag raided by joint forces from Lily, The Grey Wardens, and the South Pacific. The suggestion at the time was that this was politically motivated. But to me, Lardyland has never seemed anything but spammy and stupid. What was the story behind that raid?

Frenchy: It was funny. TGW and TSP probably have other reasons but mine was plain and simple.

AR: If you could change one thing about NS, what would it be?

Frenchy: I absolutely despise the WA elite. Once you have one hundred endorsements, halve the voting power than a delegate currently has right now. We step on the little guy way too much.

AR: Thanks for your time!

Frenchy: AR, I'd like to leave you with some wisdom. Sometimes the big walleye of life will lick ya while you're just standing in the lake trying to fish. These ankle biters will lick ya real good, but there's ultimately no purpose to running from the scars they leave. Ya just gotta hook em when ya have the chance. Thanks for having me.

Frenchy II
Sweeze
Chingis
The Chariot

_ TOURADVISOR

Category (click to browse)

Total reviews

New this month

🗳️ Government

6

2

📖 WFE

11

👫 Community

34

11

🎟️ Activities

5

1

📗 Dispatches

4

🃏 Cards

2

🌍 TourAdvisor is the searchable, crowd-sourced guide of places to go in NS. Build the best browsable guide to the NS-verse by reviewing the places you've been, and the things that you've seen. Read our guidelines, and post your review!

We had a big boost to TourAdvisor this month, mostly due to a series of short reviews of NS communities by Untitled spreadsheet. Thanks for your contributions!


_ GAMEPLAY - LIGHTENING FAST DEFENCES

The Grey Wardens gave themselves the best Christmas present ever - a record breaking 118 defenses by a team during a ninety minute session. Click the link to get the story in their own words. Or here, to get it in Lily's.

_ THE EMBASSY'S EMBASSIES

For several months now, we've had a policy not to maintain embassies with regions tagged 'fascist'. We'd been avoiding opening embassies with those regions for far longer, but had never actively closed any until we were bribed with this offer:

For some reason, certain players are still under the delusion that the threat of violence forced us to take on this policy. Being raiders, they don't get that there are methods of persuasion other than threatening to raid. Methods such as bribery (above), and simply asking politely.

It was never part of the deal with Vippertooth to do anything other than close those embassies that we had. However, it got me thinking about my responsibilities as a citizen of NS, and a citizen of the world. So about six weeks back, it only took a small prompt from another player for me to send this message to 24 of Nazi region Genua's embassies:

Hi,

I'm hoping that you could do me a small favour, and help isolate hate. You have an embassy with Genua. Genua promotes an agenda of hate, spreading Islamophobia, and anti-semitic Nazi ideologies. This is evident from their WFE, RMB, and embassies. It is also well demonstrated in this dispatch where they boast of enslaving muslims, and finish the dispatch with a photo of marching Nazis.

Having an embassy with these people tarnishes your image. When looking at your region, it gives the appearance that you are tolerant of racism, and other hateful behaviours. When looking at their region, it gives the appearance that these behaviours are considered acceptable by the wider NationStates community.

I'm hoping that you would do me, yourselves, and the wider NationStates community a huge favour by taking the small step of closing that embassy with Genua.

Thanks for your time,

The Receptionist.

A few people took offense at this. Some people would have prefered me to telegram rather than post on their RMB. Others were angry that I was 'telling them what to do', 'interfering in their foreign policy' etc. But more than half chose to close their embassy with Genua, which sent a pretty powerful message.

A few days ago, I spotted that Aryan Resistance had been sending out a load of embassy requests. And a lot were being accepted. Again, the problem is that having these embassies makes racism appear normal and acceptable. Racism should not be normalised. I've sent out over 80 telegrams, very much like the following:

Hi,

I spotted that your region has an embassy with Aryan Resistance. You may be unaware that Aryan Resistance is named after a racist neo-nazi white supremacist organisation (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Aryan_Resistance).

I don't believe that that type of agenda should have a place within NationStates. I'm hoping that you would reconsider this relationship, and would cancel the embassy via your regional admin page.

Thanks for your time!

At the time of writing, 20 of their established embassies are getting closed, and a number that were getting opened have now been cancelled. I've had over 20 telegrammed responses, including two who don't care and one angry old guy. The rest are all of a similar theme:

Thank you for telling us! It didn't click in my head until you said something, but now I can see it. Had I bothered to pay much attention I might have noticed that.

I am glad you picked up on it. That sort of thing has no place here. Thank you :)

The founder of Aryan Resistance is understandably upset about this, and started a forum thread about it. At the end of their post they ask:

My message to The Ambassadors Reception is: how about you let other people make their own choices instead of shaming them into submision?
Or maybe you can change the part of your WFE saying "connecting thousands to each other through a single, neutral point."

To their first point - I very much let people make their own choices. As demonstrated by our WFE links, I try to provide people with information to make better choices. This is exactly what is happening here. Most people who accepted embassies with Aryan Resistance simply hadn't realised what they'd accepted. There's no shame in that. And for the second point, can you be neutral on racism? If I hadn't sent out those telegrams, wouldn't that have made me complicit in normalising racism?

As at 1 January, we have 4,231 embassies, representing 17.09 percent of Nationstates' 24,761 regions.

_ THE NEWSSTAND - NEWS FROM ELSEWHERE

After over three and a half years of trading, region The NewsStand is being closed down. My intention had been to carry it on here, but I'm thinking of taking a break from NS, so that may not actually happen. For the same reason, The sands casino casino games at The Sands won't be continued.

Read all about it!
- The Rejected Times Brief News III
- Layem Times Issue 27
- LinkNS Today
- Daily Line

Get involved!
- Place a sports bet
- Sixth Annual Forest Photo Contest. Get your entries in by 18 January. (You're supposed to be in Forest or one of their embassies, but you might get away with moving a puppet to qualify for entry).

_ DIPLOMACY AWARDS

The Diplomacy Awards celebrate the foreign dignitaries that interacted with our RMB in the past month, either by making posts, or clicking 'Like'.

Floored Award

We can't say it straighter - you're the greater orator. This month's premiers of praises per post are:

Style

Likes per Post

Nations

🖋

6.33

The milk tea alliance

🖊

5.5

Lex da boi2

🖍

4.57

Hong kong umbrella movement

4th soviet russia, Alentejozinho and Algarvezinho, Algeria Stat, Apple kaiser, Aredita, Aryke, Autocrat, Boris Cult, Calriffian explorers, Celestial Wave, Celestialer, Chernarus State, Cieszynski Slask, Coradortodos, Cordel One, Creatoor laand, Demoncrazy, Doge Land, Dollystana, Eastern Tatarstan, Emperio maharlika, Erferndern, Eripolis, FNU, France and colonys, Fyrelendia, Grand Duchess Sophia von Bozen-Blutchen, Grishahakkaverchynot, GruffyRichard and HillbillyBob, Gypsy Lands, Haginon, Heale, Herzgevenia, Hindu Mahasabha, Hong kong umbrella movement, Imperium exterium, ISKCON Founder, Jacksonville state, Jagaira, Joeanian Republic, Kayden Nation, Kemalia, Kentucky friend chicken overlords, Lets free gagging, Lex da boi2, Life empire, Lovelyweatherforsleighride togetherwithu, Lumio Magika, Maria fay, Marmots, Mathuvan Union, Maxconian Khal, Midna fanboy not, Miksie, Miksy, Mons magnus, Mycelium Resistance, Naribobastan, New eastern-america, New Sarians, Nister, No ooooo the third, Nooooooooooooooo, North American Imperial State, North Cromch, Not pacific, Old russian order appeal, Old Zealand Founder, Oneid, Pokemon Talk, Pooor, Ravib, Region 122 ReFounder, Rhodanic, Romayomich, Russian Instigators, Rwekazaland, Rxcn, Samper Losand, Sett Tanion, Sexony, Sierra Minor, Socialist chilezuela, Spanish flu, Spirium Kingdom, Stratocratic-Anarchy Oceanic Empire, Tai-zan, Texas wanderers, The Age of Utopia, The alex islands, The Controller of Planet X, The Democratic Unionist Cool Kids, The Gold Mines, The imperialist fire nation, The milk tea alliance, The newsstand, The Reformed American Republic, The republic ofTexas and northern Mexico, The Socialist Republic of Astrakhan, The tark, The wandering Elmo, Tranzoria, Trappist 2 and 5, Treciene, Ultra luxe, Unified Korean Order, Unitess, Untitled spreadsheet, Urum, Velkij novgorod, Wapistan, Weffleunion, WWE WORLD, Xmas Past, Yuapian, Yuts Knenxland

* Nations making multiple posts during the month are eligible for The Floored Award.

Adored Award

We think it is great to appreciate a state. This month's 'like' button bashers are:

Hearts

Like Count

Nations

42

Autocrat

🧡

40

Boris Cult, The Potatoez

💛

38

Sett Tanion

[nation][/nation], 4th soviet russia, Accipitridia, Apple kaiser, Aredita, Arisyan, Celestial Wave, Cordel One, Demoncrazy, Doge Land, Dollystana, Emperio maharlika, Female m0squit0, FNU, France and colonys, Free libyan nationals, Glowing sea, Hollow boat chan, Holy Roman Empires2, Hong kong umbrella movement, Imperium exterium, ISKCON Founder, Joeanian Republic, Kingdom of Englands, Lets free gagging, Lex da boi2, Lucky 38, Lumio Magika, Mathuvan Union, Melons, Miksie, Miksy, Mons magnus, Nister, Nooooooooooooooo, North samraka, Not pacific, Old Zealand Founder, Oreostan, Peter iii, Pokemon Talk, Portugal macau, Rxcn, Sexony, Skwovet Union, Socialist chilezuela, Spanish flu, Steel samurai, Tai-zan, Texas wanderers, The Age of Utopia, The Controller of Planet X, The fire realm, The milk tea alliance, The Reformed American Republic, The tops casino, Third ecuadorian empire, Tsundere boris cult, Ultra luxe, Unitess, Village, Weffleunion, Zpuppet2
Scored Award

We get really psyched about those who were 'liked'. This month's most praised posters are:

Awards

Like Count

Nations

🥇

72

The Potatoez

🥈

51

Autocrat

🥉

43

Sierra Grand

4th soviet russia, Alentejozinho and Algarvezinho, Algeria Stat, Apple kaiser, Aredita, Aryke, Boris Cult, Calriffian explorers, Celestial Wave, Celestialer, Chernarus State, Cieszynski Slask, Coradortodos, Cordel One, Creatoor laand, Demoncrazy, Doge Land, Dollystana, Emperio maharlika, Erferndern, Eripolis, Female m0squit0, FNU, France and colonys, Fyrelendia, Grand Duchess Sophia von Bozen-Blutchen, Grishahakkaverchynot, GruffyRichard and HillbillyBob, Gypsy Lands, Haginon, Heale, Herzgevenia, Hindu Mahasabha, Hong kong umbrella movement, Imperium exterium, ISKCON Founder, Jacksonville state, Jagaira, Joeanian Republic, Kayden Nation, Kemalia, Kentucky friend chicken overlords, Lets free gagging, Lex da boi2, Life empire, Lovelyweatherforsleighride togetherwithu, Lumio Magika, Maria fay, Marmots, Mathuvan Union, Maxconian Khal, Midna fanboy not, Miksie, Miksy, Mons magnus, Mycelium Resistance, Naribobastan, New Sarians, Nister, No ooooo the third, Nooooooooooooooo, North American Imperial State, North Cromch, Not pacific, Old russian order appeal, Old Zealand Founder, Oneid, Pokemon Talk, Pooor, Ravib, Region 122 ReFounder, Rhodanic, Romayomich, Russian Instigators, Rwekazaland, Rxcn, Samper Losand, Sett Tanion, Sexony, Sierra Minor, Socialist chilezuela, Spanish flu, Spirium Kingdom, Stratocratic-Anarchy Oceanic Empire, Tai-zan, Texas wanderers, The Age of Utopia, The alex islands, The Controller of Planet X, The Democratic Unionist Cool Kids, The Gold Mines, The imperialist fire nation, The milk tea alliance, The newsstand, The Reformed American Republic, The republic ofTexas and northern Mexico, The Socialist Republic of Astrakhan, The tark, The wandering Elmo, Trappist 2 and 5, Treciene, Ultra luxe, Unified Korean Order, Unitess, Untitled spreadsheet, Urum, Velkij novgorod, Wapistan, Weffleunion, WWE WORLD, Xmas Past, Yuapian

_ NOTIFICATIONS

With thousands of embassies, it is difficult to stay in touch with them all. The Cable uses notifications as the most efficient way to share our news.
You will have received a notification if you have been mentioned somewhere in this dispatch, and have a tick in the "Dispatch mention" box of your subscriptions page.

Almost all nations mentioned will have:
- posted on our RMB during the month
- 'liked' a post on our RMB during the month
- voted in one of our polls during the month
- subscribed (specifically asked to be notified)

If you would prefer not to be notified in future, your choices are:
- Un-tick in the "Dispatch mention" box of your subscriptions page
- Don't interact with our RMB or polls
- Existing subscribers only: send The ambassadors reception a telegram asking to be removed as a subscriber. (Don't ask via our RMB, or it will automatically trigger another notification next time).

The ambassadors reception

Edited:

RawReport