Server Announcement To address a recent incident; Moderation Statement

To address a recent incident

Part two; Moderation Statement


This post will be the final conclusion of the Fables & Fantasy RP Moderation Team regarding the accusations made against a player called Cat. We will be describing the context regarding some players and servers first, then we’ll move on to the accusations and what we have found about them. Lastly, we’ll be giving our thoughts, verdict and conclusion.

Due to the sensitive nature of the information in this case, almost all witnesses have requested to remain strictly anonymous. As a result, all persons who have not given clearance to use their names, have been assigned pseudonyms.


The start of this ordeal originated on a server called Aethier where Cat worked for the tech team of this server. Here, Cat developed plugins for the server together with the owner of the server, Steve. Since they worked on the plugins together, they decided verbally to share the rights of the plugins equally so that any plugin created on and for Aethier by them was fair use for both of them in the future. Aethier eventually came to an end after continuous staff misconduct was brought to the attention of the general public and the whole player base. An adult staff member which we will refer to by the name of Hank had been proven to have attempted to coax a minor girl into extremely inappropriate things. After this was revealed he was quickly labelled a pedophile. This reveal prompted the collapse of Aethier. The players who were trying to remove themselves from Hank, and those associated with him on the now discontinued Aethier server started a new server named Afterfall. The owner of Aethier, who was still friends with Hank, did not join Afterfall but instead conceptualised a new server, Server3.
The owner of the now late Aethier assumed Cat to come and help him in the development of Server3, giving him the credentials of a tech team member in Server3. Cat however, had never agreed to become a tech team member of Server3 and quickly withdrew. Instead, Cat became the lead tech developer for Afterfall and started developing for them. During his time in Afterfall, Cat had taken some Aethier plugins he worked on with Steve. Later Cat updated or modified a lot of the plugins which were in use on Aethier as the player base wanted Afterfall to play similarly to Aethier. The chat plugin created by Cat for Aethier was among those. Cat developed this plugin for Aethier to bypass some limitations with the original chat plugin that was in use on Aethier and he finished it just after Aethier had collapsed. Any additions and modifications after the first finished version were the property of Cat alone and for all intents and purposes created for Afterfall. The same goes for the other plugins that Cat shares with Steve. Any work made for and on Aethier was the property of both. So when Cat finished the project, even after Aethier's demise, he shared the project with Steve as to their agreement. Any work done to this plugin after its finalization for Aethier was considered work for Afterfall and was not shared with Steve.
The players of Afterfall seemed to be unaware of this, however, and when an audio recording of Steve confirming the sharing of plugins was leaked, the player base of Afterfall went after Cat for his involvement in helping a server which hosts their previous enemy, Hank. This negative feeling towards Cat was strengthened by an incident that happened earlier on Afterfall where the player base of the server wanted Cat to fire his co-lead of the tech team, John. They wanted him fired for being good friends with Steve, who in turn is good friends with Hank. Cat, however, did not find it ethical to fire the co-lead of the server after a year of hard work creating the server together, especially since this co-lead did not break any server rules. Being friends with a friend of Hank did not break any rules nor is it illegal in any way, so the claims were quickly dismissed. Though some players were sure of the situation and labelled John and Cat as pedo-enablers for associating with Server3 and sharing code with Server3. This sharing of code later also became a claim of stealing code from Afterfall and sharing it with a rival server.

Now that we know what the claims against Cat are and where they come from we can look at them in more detail. Beginning with the claim that Cat is a pedo-enabler or someone who protects pedo-enablers. This claim was made due to Cat's alleged connection with Server3 and his refusal to fire his co-lead over the same alleged connection.
The alleged connection Cat had with Server3 was that of being part of Server3’s tech team. Some individuals were under the impression Cat had joined the Server3 tech team due to his developer role in the Server3 discord and their staff list on Google docs. Furthermore, Cat had been accused of passing on Afterfall code to the owner of Server3, helping them in their development.
What we have found during our investigation is that Cat indeed visibly had the role of tech team on the various Server3 platforms. What is not widely known however is that this was a mistake by the owner of Server3. Steve had assumed that Cat would follow him to Server3 to work there as a developer, giving him the credentials preemptively. When Cat learned of this and was officially asked to work for Server3 he declined and withdrew himself from further involvement, though people had already seen him with the role so it was normal to assume he had been active there. Our investigation showed that Cat has never, up to this day, taken active duty on the development or other tech duties of Server3. The role was a product of the assumption of Steve that Cat would join Server3.

Cat had also been accused of passing on Afterfall code to Server3 to support them. Firstly, all the work Cat had done for Afterfall is unpaid and voluntary work and anything he created during his time on Afterfall is his personal property and he is allowed to do with it as he pleases. Although this is true we did want to find out if code was shared between the two to see if there is an intention to do so with F&F code as well. Through our investigation, it became clear that Cat indeed shares code with Steve. This was further reinforced by an audio message we found of Steve explicitly stating that they're sharing code too. What came to light about this sharing code was as follows; Cat and Steve share the rights of any and all code they together worked on during and for Aethier. Steve having a hand in writing the code together with Cat makes it very self-explanatory why they would share this code. Any code that was produced by Cat which is Afterfall original was never shared with Steve in the first place. The plugins that were shared are shared in a shared file which both Steve and Cat have access to. However, the plugins that were uploaded had never been edited after the collapse of Aethier. Any modifications or expansions that Cat had made to these plugins which they share have never reached the hands of Steve and were not shared between the two, only the original versions that were up to date until Aethier collapsed.
Due to Cat being spotted with the role and the statement made by Steve in the audio recording, it was assumed that Cat was secretly working for Server3 and he got 'exposed'. Players promptly started calling Cat out for it and labelling him a pedo-enabler while Cat had no idea why they would make such claims as he knew he was nothing of the sort. He made his decision that he did not want to be around an environment that would falsely accuse him like that and he proceeded to leave Afterfall.

The second accusation that has been made against Cat is that he would be enabling a pedophile and its behaviour or protecting those who are alleged pedo-enablers. This claim was made for two reasons. The first is; Cat secretly working for and sharing plugins with a server that hosts Hank, and thus is pedo-enabling according to the individuals who claim this. The second is; the refusal of firing John, the co-lead of the tech team in Afterfall, for being friends with Steve and having possible connections to Hank.
The first point we talked about at the start of this paragraph so we can safely say this was a misunderstanding. The second point however I will address further. John was the co-lead of the technical side of Afterfall. He was responsible for a great deal of the back-end of the server; he worked a great deal on the development of Afterfall under the supervision of his lead, Cat. When Aethier shut down, John followed Cat to Afterfall, but the connections he made on Aethier would not just disappear suddenly.
John always stayed friends with Steve due to their close relationship with Aethier. Steve became hated by the Afterfall players for sheltering Hank in their server, the players calling them enablers for not doing enough to stop Hank from harassing anyone else. Steve however chose to make an 18+ exclusive server and gave Hank a second chance. The players who knew about this were unhappy with the treatment Hank got in the end, it was too little too late and they felt that the people who stayed by Hank's side and those working with them were all enablers. John, who remained friends with Steve, was accused as such when people knew he was still in good contact with Steve. The players tried to pressure Cat to fire John for his contacts but Cat refused, saying it would be ungrateful and disingenuous to the work, time and effort that John had put into Afterfall all that time, Cat would have ruled the same for any other individual, it just happened to be John this time. On top of that, John did not break any server rules and being friends with Steve who is in turn friends with Hank is not punishable. Thus Cat did not bend to the pressure of the community and kept John as the co-lead of the tech team in Afterfall. This choice not to fire John would come to be known as protecting a pedo-enabler.
We checked the story with multiple witnesses of the situation and the story seems to line up with what is described above. The accusations, however, were all over the place and many players were aware they did not know the whole story. Due to the severity of Hank's offence, they'd rather be safe than sorry so they chose to remove themselves from all the individuals involved. When Cat came to F&F and was recognized it brought back many nasty memories for the players and they were quick to judge Cat for what they remembered was true back then, even if they did not know the whole story. We double-checked Cat's stance and relationship with Hank and we found out that Cat was one of the first high-ranking individuals on Aethier who advocated for Hank's removal of power and possibly from the server as Cat deemed him unfit for the community. Furthermore, Cat advised Steve to halt all communication with Hank after Aethier fell. When Steve refused to do so, Cat had a falling out with Steve at the time. This further consolidates the fact that Cat never had a positive relationship with Hank.

With both claims analysed and addressed, it's safe to say that Cat has been the subject of a lot of controversies which stem from Aethier and Afterfall. The claims that Cat shared and/or stole the Afterfall code were misunderstandings or assumptions by those who had gotten second-hand information. The claim that Cat is enabling or protecting potentially dangerous individuals and those who support them seems to have been made out of precaution in the heat of the moment and perhaps the claims were never investigated or defended before it was too late. The fact that Cat never shared any source code which was developed, created and used for or on Afterfall, combined with the fact that Cat has spoken out against Hank and those who might still affiliate with him on multiple occasions, we’ve come to the conclusion that the accusations against Cat are not justified and are a product of the blowing up of situations and emotions. Since the case of Hank was so severe and many players related to the victim it became extra painful to assume someone might be helping a person like that. But we do not feel it is fair to judge someone without knowing both sides and what's real versus what's an assumption. Cat heavily disliked Hank not just for his evil deeds but even before that for his abuse and personality. Cat had spoken out against him before the damning case about Hank came to light and when it did, he was more furious than ever knowing he was right. Sharing code with Steve is purely professional and should not be taken out of context to fit any narrative. Steve owns that code just as much as Cat and they have a verbal agreement which allows them both to use it, and once again this only means the code of Aethier, nothing which was on Afterfall made it to Steve or Server3.

Moderation Team spent a great deal conversing, debating and talking about this situation with many people involved. This thorough process has, as you will have surely noticed, taken a long time. We have all come to the conclusion that Cat would not harm anyone on F&F and has been accused due to a misunderstanding. We hope those affected by the situation can find peace in the research we've put in this case.
If you have any further questions you may contact the Moderation Team Manager on Discord: Ginger#2829

Thank you for your patience!
Fables & Fantasy RP
Moderation Team











John on being in the Server3 discord and the persecution of those on Server3.
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From the very beginning we have desired this case to be as open and transparent as possible. Unfortunately the reality is that these are sensitive matters, and understandably, not everyone was equally keen on being cited for a case in public like this.
However, almost all people who have been interviewed have agreed for their statements to be published under the condition that they remain anonymous.
Below is linked the document containing these statements, although of course anonymized.

 
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