The World War IX ended a while ago, but discussions surrounding the issues presented during it continue echoing within our community. Do you remember how hard it was to find unaffiliated judges for every battle? In this post, we take a look at what the community thinks about how we handle affiliations.
If you don’t know already, World War IX began on June 1st. Initially, the Elite Guardians, Rebel Penguin Federation and Water Vikings declared war on the Army of Club Penguin. Soon, armies from the Sapphire Concordat rallied against the Blue Sunset Alliance and joined the Clovers. This move turned the war into a World War.
A lot of the reporters and judges employed by Club Penguin Armies and Club Penguin Army Judges are also leaders or staff members of an army participating in the war. Due to this, a huge number of the judges were not able to judge battles. The number of available unaffiliated reporters dropped to three in total. This drastic depletion of resources came as a direct consequence of the rules of affiliation. The affiliation rules dictate that you cannot officiate over not only your army, but allied armies as well. Moreover, you need to spend 3 months after retiring from your army in order to be considered completely unaffiliated to them.
This rule left the community dependent on people who retired from their armies a long time ago. Obviously, their retirements occurred because they were not as active as they used to be before. Although there were a good handful of people available to judge these battles, there are two things to be considered. Not all of the unaffiliated judges were actually available to judge. You also need to think about how many battles were fought every day. On June 6th alone, a mind-numbing 7 battles took place. Even at its lowest, the number of battles did not drop below 3 per day. Each day of the war was recorded by Club Penguin Armies, which can be read in our World War IX: Live Coverage article.
Furthermore, multiple battles went down in the same time zone, sometimes starting 10 minutes after the last battle began. For example, the Templars announced an invasion of RPF at 4:00 PM EST. Meanwhile, Special Weapons And Tactics invaded the Elite Guardians at 4:10 PM EST. The rule prohibiting multiple invasions in the same time zone is invalid here as the invasions involve different armies. On June 11th, 2 battles concluded 3 minutes apart from each other. After a while, judging can get very stressful in such high pressure battles. This especially rang true in the case of solo judges, who did not have the luxury of a second or third opinion.
However, the rule regarding affiliations has undeniable benefits. It guarantees an authentic judging experience, securing armies against potential biased judgements in their battles. Many leaders firmly believe that past experiences can definitely lead to favoritism. This rule also applies to reporters. Reporters are expected to be the voice of the community, getting the inside scoop with no strings attached. Their affiliations might interfere with their sense neutrality.
Ultimately, both media and judges fulfilled their responsibilities throughout this war. However, past incidents like the World War VIII serve as an example of how the situation could have just as easily been the opposite of what it was. This begs the question – is the affiliations rule really as good as we think it to be? While it definitely has a place in times of less frequent wars, the rule does not fit quite as well as it should during massive alliance wars.
Club Penguin Armies reached out to several people for their opinion on how much affiliations truly matter in terms of judging and reporting.
Do you believe that your affiliations in the past dictate your bias towards other armies?
Langly, People’s Imperial Confederation leader: It may vary from person to person, I’d say. Some people have their bias dictated and others don’t. It depends on how long you’ve stayed in the army or if you’ve left an extremely good reputation or are still friends with people in said army.
Mchappy, Club Penguin Armies Executive Producer: I believe the topic of affiliations should be judged on a case-by-case basis, as it depends on the individual. In my opinion, I am able to separate any sort of affiliations I may have considering I have been in armies for so long. Coupled with the fact that I’ve been the Legends Committee Head and, recently, I have become an administrator of the “community” website. As far as I am aware, there have not been any major issues brought to my attention about the way I’ve let “affiliations” sway me, either way.
Mabel, Water Vikings leader: For myself, my own affiliations won’t dictate bias. In general, it would be hard for myself to be biased when the other affiliated armies I have been in are long gone anyways lol ☠, but I know when there is something going on in a battle, even when judging my allied armies, I’ll be honest to them about what I saw, overall being even between both armies on that field, whatever opinion I held on them or not.
Sweater, Special Weapons And Tactics leader: I think it depends on how long you’ve been in the community, and your maturity. When I was in SWAT for the first time I was 9 or 10 years old. I definitely picked up a hatred for ACP at that time, but now that I’ve been around for so long / grown up a lot I don’t think so. If I was to judge an ACP battle back then, the other army could’ve maxed 5 against 30 and I’d have picked them to win. Now that I’ve grown a lot I realise that letting your army brainwash you into being hateful against another is silly. So no, I wouldn’t let my affiliations to past armies affect my writing, editing, or judging. It also isn’t worth risking my roles in CPA/CPAJ because I really enjoy this section of Armies.
Zenishira, Help Force High Command: As of now, I have only been affiliated to Help Force. However, if we were to consider a hypothetical scenario where I would be affiliated with another army, or have no affiliations at all (after previously being affiliated to HF), I would still respect them. If we are considering me being an army leader of another army or a judge, then I will do everything in my power to be fair and non-biased.
Nicky, Templars leader: Past affiliations could dictate bias depending on how recent said affiliation was.
Cabin, Napalm Corps creator: To a certain extent, my previous army affiliations dictate my present biases toward armies. However, due to my growing disconnection with penguin politics, I do not hold as many biases as I used to.
Wynn, CPA Admin: I certainly think a previous affiliation can result in having a bias for or against a specific army. It all depends on the person, some will always try to support their former army or make it harder for somebody they have a grudge against. Thankfully there are also people who are able to remain impartial despite the affiliation. However, we shouldn’t take any risks, only because not everyone is the same.
Rxzer, Templars High Command: No, I don’t believe that my past affiliations (not that I have any lol) would dictate my bias in any sort of way in armies, it may depend if I left the army on bad terms and how recent that was. If I left the army on good terms or smth like that I wouldn’t really have any bias towards them.
Saber, Special Weapons And Tactics High Command: There’s obviously going to be bias regardless from personal experiences and friendships made within the community and honestly, even though I’ve only been in three armies I have personal opinions which could stand in the way of what I’d want to judge or post.
Mare, CPAJ Head Judge: It’s been months since I’ve been in an army and personally I don’t have any biased towards any of them. However, I do try to avoid judging battles of armies I was once in. Although, if there aren’t enough judges I will step in.
Spotty, CPAJ Head Judge: I do not believe that my past affiliations dictate any bias towards armies. However, I am able to use my experience with battle leading assist me when judging battles, as I can use experience to relate to how an army is performing. My affiliations consist of three major armies, although I have not been affiliated since summer 2021, so 2 years now of being unaffiliated. Furthermore, I do not interact closely with any army as I want to ensure that I am able to stay classified as completely unaffiliated.
Is a judge fit to judge a battle about an army they were previously affiliated with? Should reporters write articles about an army they were previously affiliated with?
Langly: I’d say that if they don’t show any tendencies of biased towards that army then they’d be fine to judge that battle. Say if they never associated themselves with said army ever again, that would be a positive indication against bias.
If a reporter never mentions the said army again then maybe it would be okay, or if they never associate themselves with the said army ever again, that’s then when they would fit.
Mchappy: I believe that judges are able to judge despite any past affiliations, and especially write an article on it. All of our articles written by reporters and under get second, or even multiple, pairs of eyes on it before it even gets posted. While I understand the concern with affiliations, it should only be used as a precaution. I believe that somewhere, the lines got blurred, and there is a belief that “non-affiliated” people are automatically the rise of the crop. We’ve seen that not be the case. At the end of the day, all of us came to this community to be a part of an army. To put it harshly, we’ve generally gotten lost in penguin politic discourse, with affiliations being a component of boxing people.
Mabel: For judges, I guess it all just depends on the judge and their maturity with it, but I’m pretty approving of setting a rule of how judges can’t judge an army’s battle that they’ve been affiliated with in maybe the past 6 months. Just keeps people from ”retiring” from an army for a duration of a war to give their army all the wins.
With reporters, I definitely feel like they should be allowed to write articles for armies they were previously affiliated with (not currently). Cause either way, even my own experience as a reporter, your post is going to be reviewed, and Head Reporters and Editors should be able to find bias at that point.
Sweater: It should be determined on a case by case basis. I think a huge part of determining whether or not it is okay is why that person left the army (good/bad terms?) and how they’ve spoken about that army/the army they would be fighting in battle. If a SWAT troop left on bad terms I wouldn’t want them judging SWAT battles. Similarly, if a person left a SWAT enemy army on good terms and has repeatedly bad mouthed SWAT then no, they aren’t fit to judge SWAT battles. I can’t speak for every army leader hence I only mentioned SWAT in my example.
All reports go through a reliable editing team that has both affiliated and unaffiliated people in it. Because of that, I’d say yes it should be okay – any bias would likely be removed. There have been Reporters who have written on my previous army, Fire Warriors, who had an open hatred for the army and I was surprised at how neutral their posts were at the time. If a Reporter cares about their craft, they will remain neutral but if they can’t, they should know not to write the post in the first place.
Zenshira: Certainly, a judge is expected to leave their affiliations behind and focus on which army performs better in battle. The judge might feel sad or embarassed if their previous army underperforms, but they have no choice. The CPAJ have their own guidelines they must adhere to and if a judge is found to be biased towards an army, then they will be expelled.
Reporters, on the other hand I find fit to write about their own army, because they obviously should know the ins and outs of it. Whether they should expose their own army’s wrongdoings is debatable. I am all for punishing corrupt army leaders, however a reporter should take into account their own safety if they plan on overthrowing their tyrants.
Nicky: For judging/reporting a person should be able to judge/ write an article on an army they were in before after a certain amount of time. (iirc it is currently 3 months)
Cabin: Since it is difficult on several levels to determine whether a judge or reporter can be fair when judging or reporting on an army they once affiliated with, I believe it is fair to forbid these actions.
Wynn: When talking about judges or reporters, for me it is not only about whether they would be impartial or not – I also wouldn’t want any unconscious bias to occur, or to create room for an unnecessary controversy, even if I trust my reporter to write professionally. At times I did ask another reporter to do an assignment, purely to stay on the safe side and provide the best media coverage we can. However, we shouldn’t consider people not fit for their jobs due to affiliation forever. I would say each case should be different, but we don’t always have that luxury.
Rxzer: I think it depends on if the judge/reporter left the army on bad terms or good terms, bad terms could mean some unfair judging and stuff. It also depends on how recently people left their army. I think a judge should be fit to judge a battle abt an army they were affiliated with. If they were biased a HJ would probably take them off judge or smth like that. Same goes for reporters as well.
Mare: It truly depends if it’s a war, or a practice battle and if the army leaders both approve. I would hope that judges would be trustworthy and not rig a battle because wtf are they gaining from that? Unless you’re paying them $500. Jk. Don’t do that! (Side note: My cashapp is: mareRigsBattles4u)/ Jk. But honestly, I think eventually they are able to be fit to judge hence why the 3 months rule is in place.
If they just left the army, then I doubt the reporting heads or EIC (whichever one it is) would allow that. Even if the reporters did write an article, it gets proof read by the editors and whoever else before even getting published.
Spotty: Yes I believe so, myself I have judged an army that I’m a legend in, and other armies I used to be affiliated to and have not struggled to do so. I think as long as a person waits enough time, (usually 3 months without any attendance or assistance), then whether they’re reporting or judging they should be fine. However, with judging for example or even posts, leaders can still always request for a change of judge or reporter even after the 3 months.
Would you say that the affiliations rule during World War IX was beneficial? The rule in question stating, “Do not accept battles if you have been affiliated to any of the armies participating in the war 3 months ago or less, or have attended the war”
Mare: I think it was difficult at times since almost all the judges were affiliated. However, it eliminated the possibility of someone being biased. Also, most army leaders would probably veto those who were affiliated somehow anyways. So yes, it definitely was beneficial even though it was challenging at times to find judges. Also, justice 4 my boy Da Best he ain’t do nuthin and was getting pre-vetoed :smhhh:
Yvng: I would say the judges affiliations rule during the war was not beneficial because it lessened the pool of judges that were actually able to judge during the war. Since practically every army in CPA currently was involved during WWIX, there was not a large number of judges that could have actually judged. During the war, it was mostly the same people judging due to this like Spotty, Pop, and Wynn who them three had 22, 12, and 11 [battles] in that order.
Spotty: The judging affiliations rule for World War IX was beneficial despite leaving us with only a handful of judges. If recently or currently affiliated judges judged then issues may have occurred with claims of bias being thrown about. Ensuring that affiliations were completely removed meant only 1 battle throughout the entire war was reviewed, with no claims of bias due to affiliations. Furthermore, no battles were cancelled, unlike a previous war in a different league that saw most of the war cancelled.
The community seems to be divided on the topic of affiliated judges and reporters. However, one thing remains clear. Both CPA and CPAJ seem determined in their efforts to push for quality over convenience. What do you think? Should previously affiliated judges or reporters be allowed to go ahead with their respective jobs?