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Found 6 results

  1. Valued members of the StarBase 118 Community, We are sad to report that we've discovered what appears to be intentional tampering with our 2021 Awards nominations. We'd like to help you understand what we found, how it affected the outcome, and how we will ensure it doesn't happen again. BACKGROUND As you know, we use a form on our website to collect nominations. We use a WordPress plugin called "GravityForms" to build this form and manage the entries, and your nominations are stored in WordPress, in the GravityForms plugin database. When it's time to compile the nominations each year, we export the entries and transfer them via a CSV file into a Google spreadsheet. Our Awards Facilitator and their team then collate the nominations and separates them by type (General, Duty Post, etc.). In addition to storing entries in GravityForms, email notifications are generated from each nomination and sent to the original nominators for their records. An additional email record is sent to a private archive. We were alerted by a member that they were not on the list of people who were due to receive a nominator badge, despite receiving email confirmation of their nomination. We verified that the nomination had generated an email notification from the nomination form but was not present in our database of nominations in GravityForms. INVESTIGATION We then began an investigation to try and determine how we could be missing nominations in our database that had been properly entered into our form. Two staff members conducted a full audit of our backup archive of email notifications against what's in our database, and it became clear that a total of eight nominations were missing from our database and therefore not considered by the various committees that review and select award winners. These nominations were for two members, and half the missing nominations were for one member and one award. We also conducted an audit of our 2020 Awards nominations to see if we could find any missing ones there, and found none missing. As we investigated, we found that a former staff member who had left the group last year somehow had access to WordPress at the level required to delete GravityForms entries, despite having been removed from all staff-level access upon their departure – a fact that had been confirmed twice on separate occasions after that. We also found that this player had a secondary forum account from the one they had used as a staff member, and that this player had been logging in to our forums repeatedly around the time of the awards. And, perhaps most damningly, we found server access records that clearly linked the IP address used to log into that forum account to deleted entries in our WordPress Community News queue. Hoping someone would not be malicious enough to delete award nominations for a friend and former colleague in our community, we investigated other possibilities. But we could not establish a compelling, alternative theory on how these nominations disappeared. If the error had been technical, we would not expect to see only two people – from the same ship – affected: The nominations came from several people, who also had other nominations for other players, some for the same award or award category; The nominations were submitted on different days and different times, so where we originally suspected this could be due to overload at peak times of nomination submissions, this is not the case; Those whose nominations were missing received other nominations present in the lineup, both from the same nominators, and others. While we are fairly confident that the pattern of missing nominations, the login pattern on the forums coinciding with the awards release, and the relationship the former player in question had to those affected are pretty convincing evidence of guilt, we don't have an open-and-shut case. WordPress does not have native login tracking, and there are no logs to show records being deleted manually. As such, we are choosing not to reveal the identity of the player we believe may have been tampering with our site. There was extensive conversation amongst the Captain’s Council on this matter, and though some members considered the evidence that we have to be clear enough to name the player in question, we have decided to avoid doing so due to the fact that this evidence is circumstantial. WHAT HAPPENS NEXT The Captain's Council is mortified and upset to discover two members of our community were not properly considered for nominated awards this year due to the nefarious interference of a former member. We have made a personal apology to the two affected players, and we're making it again now in this public forum. Of course, our awards process is one of our most honored traditions in the group and we don't want anything to impact it now, or going forward. As such, we intend to make the following changes to our process immediately: We will increase the time between the closing of the nomination period and the beginning of the Awards Ceremony by one week. This will give us more time to audit the data we have and allow the Staff more time with the administration of awards, ensuring we're not adding stress where we can avoid it. We will change the access to WordPress in the coming weeks and, specifically, move the Awards Nomination Panel to its own WordPress subsite with access available to fewer people. We have already begun a process – and will continue to iterate on it – to strengthen our access control, safeguarding our community by removing members who have retired or taken long-term leave. The Captains Council also has a process of reviewing the awards post-ceremony each year – examining what went well and considering what needs improvement – and we'll be starting this sooner than we normally do, to ensure the most recent Awards Ceremony is fresher in our minds, for the sake of coming up with other recommendations on how to ensure the integrity of our process. Sincerely, Members of the Captains Council
  2. I didn't see a Red Carpet thread so I wanted to start one! Let's show off those fancy "formal" avatars. Here is Quentin at the BAFTAS...erm...Embassy banquet...
  3. So it's been mentioned quite a lot in Star Trek media that by the time of the 22nd century, human kind no longer uses currency at all. It's a perfect society where hunger, need for acquisition and disease have been eradicated. It's strange. We don't know what it's like to live in a society like that. We want to eat? We pay. We want go on vacation? We pay. The system may make many people corrupt and so but it works to be just in what you receive. But if we try to imagine it... If you were in the Federation you go to a restaurant and what? You leave without giving anything? Why would people even want to work? I mean for example those waiters in the restaurant... were they born wishing to be waiters? I doubt it, but then what's the incentive? I'm not complaining about the system at all, but it does seem a bit unrealistic. I realise Star Trek is this perfect utopia where people dance in rainbows, but using in-universe reasons, what's the logic behind it? I recently found myself simming in a situation where in this century you would normally pay but supposedly in the 24th you wouldn't, and I didn't know what was the correct way to proceed. Any insight on this is appreciated.
  4. Hey everybody, So, judging by the results of the poll on a similar topic, I have a feeling I know how the majority of people might feel about this question, but I was wondering, what are we going as our sim comes closer to approaching the year 2400? In another sim I was a part of, when the IC year hit 2395, we changed uniforms from the First Contact ones to what most refer to as the All Good Things uniform. So I was wondering, when that time comes (the year 2400, that is) what are we going to do, are we going to keep the current uniforms we have? As I know that we've pretty much accepted using the AGT commbadge at this point in time. I've always liked the AGT uniforms but I could definitely understand why other people might not necessarily be fans of it. I do think, however, that they are most likely to be the actual uniforms used by Starfleet in the early 25th Century on account of them showing up in TNG, DS9, and Voy. (I also just really dislike the STO uniforms which seem to be the only alternative...they just seem so militaristic and...not Star Trek to me)
  5. I'm sure everyone had heard of this by now, but the History Channel is showing a Documentary on Aug. 14 on the 50 years of Star Trek http://www.treknews.net/2016/08/08/50-years-of-star-trek-to-air-on-history-channel/ Set your DVRs.
  6. Just a quick question, given the Romulan homeward was destroyed, and I understand we observed that happening in our universe, have we done any follow up with how they are doing since then? Where is their new homeworld? What is their focus? If we have discussed some of that, then it's not on the wiki? At least not under the Romulan section. Which got me thinking, what is everyone else doing? Is Cardassia demilitarising? What is the Federation's focus etc? I know we operate in our own little timeline etc, but is it worth having a timeline that actually moves?
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