Gaming as a social contract

Gaming at its core is a social undertaking (as we all know), but occasionally we lose perspective on how it also means to respect one another. I thought I would put out a few guidelines that I hope you can embrace. Boils down to “respect others you are gaming with”.
Players in a game
• You are responsible for helping out the Gamemaster in his storytelling duties. This could be as simple as a couple of sentences of backstory for your character.
• You are responsible for creating a character that fits within the framework of the GM’s campaign.
• You are responsible for creating and playing a character that works with the other PCs. The “lone wolf sociopath” might be great in a movie or book, but it’s lousy in a group oriented activity.
• You are responsible for at least knowing the basics of the rules.
• You are responsible for not stealing others’ moments in the spotlight.
• You are responsible for paying attention during the game. That means, while the game is going on, don’t surf the internet, watch a movie or TV show, play a video game, interrupt excessively with out of character comment…doing so is extremely rude and disrespectful, not only to your GM but to your fellow players as well. If you must, say, take a phone call, excuse yourself (this is especially important online where people can’t see you and don’t know what you are doing).
• You are responsible for working with your fellow players and GM to provide an entertaining, fun time.
• You are responsible for not being offensive to other players. Follow Wheaton’s Law (don’t be a dick).
• You are responsible for showing up to the game. If you cannot show up to the game you are responsible for letting the group know you can’t show up that week. If you cannot show up for most sessions, you should probably reconsider participating in the game. That said, occasionally stuff happens and someone can’t show for a session and cannot contact you..you are responsible for understanding this plight.
• You are responsible for accepting the GM’s authority, as GM of the game, when it comes to rulings and trivia about the world. That doesn’t mean you can’t question your GM, but if he/she doesn’t agree with you, accept and moveon. Bring up disagreements after the game or by email.
• You are responsible for not overly metagaming. A certain amount of metagaming is acceptable and even helpful, but if you’re looking up the stats for the monsters you’re facing or thumbing through the adventure in your off time, you’re going overboard.
• You are responsible for respecting your other players and your GM.
Gamemasters

• Are responsible for providing a framework for the adventure. Are also responsible for working with players to come up with a framework that would be enjoyable.
• Are responsible for the players’ enjoyment.
• Are responsible for fairness.
• Are responsible for knowing the rules, or at least responsible for knowing how to find the rules in the rulebooks
• Are responsible for giving everyone their moment in the spotlight.
• Are responsible for adjudicating the rules and helping to settle disputes
• Are responsible for most of the administrative bits and bobs that come along with running the game.
• Are responsible for respecting players.

Much thanks to Buddy Mcgehee for the inception of this.

Gaming as a social contract

Star Wars: Force and Destiny syrhakon