Covenant

From Wikipedia of the Dark Jedi Brotherhood, an online Star Wars Club
Real World Perspective.

The Dark Jedi Brotherhood is a fan-driven organization that brings the Star Wars fan experience to life. Established in 1995, the organization has grown from a handful of members to a membership base numbering in the thousands. The Dark Jedi Brotherhood is the premier Star Wars fan club on the internet.

The Dark Jedi Brotherhood adopted the Covenant in 2003 to detail the structure of the organization, to protect members’ rights, and to ensure that the club remains the respectable, enjoyable organization that it has been for so many years. The most important aspect of the Brotherhood, as well as its most valuable resource, is its membership. The Dark Jedi Brotherhood maintains a high standard of integrity, intellect, and achievement, providing the highest forms of entertainment value, social interaction, and fun for the online friends and fans of Star Wars. As such, members and their leaders are expected to be familiar with and abide by the rights and regulations of the Covenant.

Contents

Article 1. The Covenant

Section 1.01 Purpose and Usage

(a) The Covenant is the constitution of the Brotherhood and establishes its basic organization, the powers and limits of its leaders, and the rights of its members. The rules set forth in the Covenant ensure that the Dark Jedi Brotherhood remains a respectable, enjoyable organization that maintains a high standard of integrity, intellect, and achievement.
(b) Capitalized terms used throughout the Covenant are defined within specific sections of the Covenant. A glossary of defined terms can be found at the end of the document. Gender-specific terms are used for convenience only, and refer generally to any member.
(c) The Covenant has been the subject of a major revision which was adopted on January 1st, 2017. References to the Covenant pre-dating the revision are referred to as the “Old Covenant” and referenced to the current version are referred to as the “Covenant” or “New Covenant.” Unless otherwise provided, all rules set forth in the Covenant are to be applied retrospectively.

Section 1.02 Amending the Covenant

(a) Amendments Subject to Electorate Approval – All amendments to the Covenant require approval of three-fourths of the Electorate.
(b) Process for Amendments – To amend the Covenant, the following process will be followed:
(i) An amendment may be proposed by any member but all amendments must be sponsored by a member of the Electorate.
(ii) The member proposing the amendment must send a written proposal to the Electorate through the sponsor detailing the nature of the amendment, and providing a comparison of the prior Covenant text to the proposed Covenant text.
(iii) A Discussion Period will be held amongst the Electorate to consider the amendment.
(iv) A vote will be conducted to determine if the amendment passes.
(v) If approved, the amendment will be announced to the membership, with a copy of the proposal and text comparison made available.
(c) Documentation of Amendments – The Justicar is responsible for maintaining a public record of all amendments made to the Covenant.

Section 1.03 Brotherhood Policies

(a) Overview – While the Covenant provides a basic outline for all structures within the Brotherhood, the details of the daily process for running the Brotherhood are outlined by the leaders of the Brotherhood through various policies that are not contained within the text of the Covenant. The purpose of this section is to ensure that members are aware of Brotherhood policies and that the administration of the Brotherhood is consistent with its documented policies.
(b) Creation of Policies – Policies are created under the authority of the Grand Master, whose authority to create policies may be delegated to members of the Dark Council subject to approval by the Grand Master. Policies may be freely created and changed by the Grand Master and his delegates provided that the policies (i) do not conflict with the Covenant; (ii) are clearly delineated and posted for the membership’s reference; (iii) are of general application, not targeting a specific member or unit; and (iv) are announced to the membership.
(c) Documentation of Policies – All policies must be documented and publicly available to the membership. Policies that are intended to be permanent must be posted in a reference location outside of the news page, but short-term policies with a duration of no more than sixty days may be announced on the news page. In the event that a policy is not properly documented a member may object to the policy or its application as set forth in subsection (e) below. Under this provision, “properly documented” means that the documentation states (i) a description or statement of the policy itself; (ii) to whom or what it applies; and (iii) the purpose of the policy.
(d) Application of Policies – Once a policy is established, it will be applied uniformly to all members where the facts and circumstances of the application are substantially similar. Policies are not intended to cover all facts and circumstances, and leaders of the Brotherhood are able to interpret the application of policies based on (i) the intent of the policy, (ii) prior precedent, and (iii) the unique circumstances faced.
(e) Objection to Policy or Application of Policy – A member affected by a policy may state an objection to a policy or the application of the policy. Alternatively, the objection may be made on behalf of the member by a superior of the member within the member’s independent unit or the Left Hand of Justice. The initial objection must be sent to the person charged with enforcing the policy, such as the respective Dark Council member. In the event the dispute is not resolved at that level, the member or his representative may send the objection to the Grand Master and Justicar. The Grand Master and Justicar will convene to determine if the policy (i) comports with the terms of the Covenant; (ii) was properly documented; (iii) and was properly applied. The Grand Master holds the final say on whether a policy was properly applied and the Justicar holds the final say on the remaining matters. No rights of appeal exist after the Grand Master and Justicar’s determination. The presumption is that if a policy is not properly documented, it should not be applied unless in special circumstances.

Section 1.04 Interpretation of the Covenant and Brotherhood Policies

(a) Interpretation of the Covenant - The Chamber of Justice is the final interpreter of the Covenant. The Justicar, with advice and counsel from the Right Hand of Justice and Left Hand of Justice, will make all determinations as to the meaning and application of the Covenant.
(b) Interpretation of Brotherhood Policies - The Grand Master is charged with the oversight of policies and is the interpreter of those policies. Policies may not conflict with the terms of the Covenant. The Chamber of Justice decides whether a policy conflicts with the terms of the Covenant. To the extent that a policy conflicts with the Covenant, the Justicar may require that the policy be amended or removed.

Section 1.05 Voting

(a) The Electorate Defined – Unless otherwise stated, all votes called for under the Covenant will be votes among the Electorate, other than votes of the Star Chamber. The Electorate consists of (1) the sitting Grand Master; (2) the Justicar; (3) the full-time Dark Council members; and (4) the leader of each independent unit of the Brotherhood. In the event that there is a vacancy in the highest position in an independent unit, the vote will be made by the second-in-command. For the purpose of clarity, the term second-in-command as used in the Covenant refers only to a Proconsul to a Consul or an Aedile to a Quaestor. Praetors, Rollmasters, and other similar positions do not count as a second-in-command position. If there is no second-in-command eligible to vote, the Star Chamber will appoint a representative member of the unit to vote on behalf of its membership for any particular vote.
(b) Discussion Period Required - Any vote required by this Covenant must be preceded by Discussion Period that must last a minimum of 48-hours. During the discussion period, the voting members of the Electorate are free to ask any questions they may have, state any concerns or opinions, or ask to see other details which may be available to permit the Electorate to decide their vote. The Grand Master, Justicar or other member moving for the vote, as the case may be, must provide the requested information and answer questions where possible. At any time after the initial 48 hours, the Grand Master or Justicar may—but is not required to—call for the vote, at which time discussion does not end, but votes may be entered. Votes that are not received within 48 hours of the call for votes are considered to be abstentions.
(c) Quorum – In order to hold a vote of the Electorate, at least three-fourths of the positions within the Electorate must be filled with eligible voters. Unless otherwise noted in the Covenant section referencing a type of matter to be voted on, the member that moves for or otherwise calls the vote is still eligible to vote. In order to ensure that a vote cannot be tainted through the stacking of newly-appointed members, a member of the Electorate is only eligible to vote if he has been a member of the Electorate (in any position) for at least thirty days or has been second-in-command to a member of the Electorate for at least thirty days prior to the initiation of the voting process. As to unit leaders, if the member in charge of the unit is ineligible to vote, the second-in-command may vote if he would be eligible under the same rules. Otherwise, as to other members of the Electorate, if the member is deemed ineligible, the position is to be treated as if it were vacant.
(d) Vote Tallies, Abstention – Except to establish quorum, unfilled positions are not tallied in the voting totals in any fashion. If a position is empty, the total number of votes needed to pass a measure is reduced proportionally by one. Members of the Electorate are free to abstain from voting. Should a member abstain from voting, the required number of votes to pass the measure is not reduced. Any fractional number of votes required for a measure to pass will be rounded up to the next whole number. Any reference in the Covenant to a “majority” vote means a simple majority that exceeds 50% of the vote.
(e) Multiple Vote Prohibition – To the extent a member may be in multiple positions that would grant him two votes on the same topic, that member must choose in which voting capacity he will enter his vote. For example, a member that is in both the Electorate and the Star Chamber must choose to vote either as a member of the Electorate or as a member of the Star Chamber, and may not vote twice. This provision does not prevent any member from serving in dual capacities, only from voting on the same topic in dual capacities. As to unit leaders, if the member in charge of the unit chooses not to vote under this provision, the second-in-command may vote if he is otherwise eligible. Otherwise, as to other members of the Electorate, the position which is not voted is to be treated as if it were vacant.
(f) Voting Within Chamber of Justice Proceedings - The provisions of this section do not apply to any of the voting procedures used within the Chamber of Justice, its juries or the Appeals Panel.

Article 2. The Members

Section 2.01 Rights of the Members

(a) Overview - The most important aspect of the Brotherhood, as well as its most valuable resource, is its membership. The first goal of the Brotherhood’s leadership is to protect and serve the members, followed closely by a drive to meet the membership’s needs and wants as much as possible while keeping at the forefront of every action the overall goal of the Brotherhood which is to bring the Star Wars fan experience to life.
(b) Right to Membership – Every person that follows the rules of this Covenant and has signed up for and agreed to the terms and conditions of joining the Brotherhood has the right to be a member of the Brotherhood. However, violations of the Covenant may result in a loss of the right to membership.
(c) Justice - Every member has the right to a fair and impartial system of justice. All members regardless of rank or position will be held accountable under the same standards of conduct within the judicial system. All indictments, trials and subsequent punishments will make no distinction between members based on rank, position, independent unit membership, or tenure within the Brotherhood, except in such cases that the Covenant has special provisions outlined for certain ranks, positions or tenures.
(d) Free Speech - Members of the Brotherhood have a right to free speech and expression, but must also have respect for and protect the rights of other members and members who are under eighteen years of age. That is, the free speech of a member is subject to the provisions of the Covenant related to the Conduct of Members, such that a member is not free to commit harassment or other such violations of the Covenant. Furthermore, access to Brotherhood communication channels is a privilege—not a right—subject to the access policies established by the Grand Master.
(e) Choice of Independent Unit - Every member is free to choose whichever independent unit they wish to belong to, except in cases where a member (1) has been banned from an independent unit in accordance with the Covenant or is restricted through a probation, in which case a transfer may be denied by the Master at Arms or Justicar; or (2) is ineligible to be in the independent unit due to character restrictions. Members are also subject to temporary transfer restrictions established by the Dark Council, such as restrictions on transfers during Vendettas and other temporary restrictions established by the Master at Arms through his policies.
(f) No Retaliation - Any member may approach his superiors with issues and complaints without harm or retribution. Complaints can always be sent to the direct superior of the member. If the complaint involves that superior, the complaint should follow the chain of command.
(g) Awards According to Merit - Members will not be denied adequate and timely recognition of activity based on personal bias and prejudice of their superiors. Members believing that they have not been adequately awarded may petition the Master at Arms and Grand Master for a review of their service record and the allegations of personal bias or prejudice. Nothing in this provision should be interpreted as requiring the Dark Council to lower standards for awards to accommodate a member, even if the standards are subjective in nature.
(h) Recommendations - Any member, regardless of position, rank, class, or tenure within the Brotherhood, has the power to recommend another for elevation, awards or other honors. All recommendations must be made through the proper chain of command as set forth in applicable Brotherhood Policies.

Section 2.02 Termination of Membership

(a) Overview – A member who has chosen to discontinue his membership in the Brotherhood may have their dossier permanently removed from the website. Alternatively, if the member desires to retain his dossier but wishes to be moved to an inactive roster, the member can request to be moved to the Rogue member roster. Rogue member accounts will be maintained and may be used at any time. Further, a member may request that his dossier be set to invisible status without removing the dossier, which status prevents the dossier from being viewed by the public.
(b) Removal of Dossier – A member has the right to have his dossier permanently removed from the Brotherhood website subject to limitations that may be set out elsewhere in the Covenant. However, a person that requests removal of his dossier does so with the understanding that it is permanent and the dossier will never be permitted to be restored. Upon removal of the member’s dossier, the person no longer has any rights of members under the Covenant. For the purpose of clarity, the term “removed” is used instead of “deleted” in this section because the data from dossiers may remain in backup data of the website and there is no way to delete all dossier references. Therefore, the active website will have no record of the dossier, as the dossier will have been removed from the active website.
(c) Method for Requesting Removal of Dossier – A member requesting the removal of his dossier from the website must send a formal request in writing to the Master at Arms, Seneschal, Grand Master, and Justicar. The request should clearly declare that the member wishes to have his dossier removed. The Master at Arms must respond to the member’s request (copying the appropriate parties) with information indicating that the removal of the dossier is permanent and seeking confirmation from the member that he wants to proceed. Upon confirmation from the member, the dossier will be removed. The Master at Arms is charged with maintaining records of removal requests and passing such records on to subsequent office holders.
(d) Creation of New Dossier after Removal – With the express permission of the Master at Arms and Justicar, a member who has had a dossier removed may create a new dossier. In the event a member starts a new dossier, the new dossier will not have any of the rank, honors, history medals, or other characteristics from the prior dossier restored. Notwithstanding the foregoing, all Letters of Reprimand and Administrative Notes will be restored to the new dossier. Unless there are special circumstances approved by the Grand Master and Justicar requiring secrecy of the original identity of the member, no member is entitled to secrecy as to their original identity, and an Administrative Note will be added to the dossier informing the Dark Council of the original identity of the member.
(e) Limitations on Removal of Dossiers and Creation of New Dossiers – A member may only exercise the right to remove a dossier a single time. A second dossier that is created by a member will not be removed in the future. Use of the right to have a dossier removed to illicitly restart a dossier when prohibited by the Covenant or without permission from the Master at Arms is a form of cloning and subject to penalties through the Chamber of Justice.
(f) Prohibition of Removal of Dossiers for Members Convicted by the Chamber of Justice – Members that have been convicted by the Chamber of Justice under the provisions of the New Covenant may not have their dossier removed or create a new one. If a previously-convicted member creates a new dossier, the new dossier will be removed and the member will be charged with cloning. No honors or medals on the new dossier will be transferred to the old dossier.

Article 3. The Star Chamber

Section 3.01 Overview and Purpose of the Star Chamber

(a) Overview – The Star Chamber is the executive board of the Brotherhood. Its primary functions are to ensure the survival of the Brotherhood and serve as an advisory board to the Grand Master.
(b) Survival of the Brotherhood – The Star Chamber is charged with safeguarding the long-term security and ensuring the survival of the Brotherhood.
(c) Advisory Board – The Star Chamber serves as an advisory board to the sitting Grand Master, overseeing the long-term vision for the Brotherhood and approving major changes to the Brotherhood.

Section 3.02 Membership in the Star Chamber

(a) Grand Masters – The sitting Grand Master is not a member of the Star Chamber, but is the representative of the Dark Council to the Star Chamber. All former Grand Masters who have served in the position of Grand Master since April 13, 2003; that have not been forcibly removed from the position; and remain in good standing are automatically members of the Star Chamber. For the sake of clarity: a Grand Master that is serving a subsequent term (i.e. second or third term, etc.) as the sitting Grand Master does not serve on the Star Chamber for the duration of his term.
(b) Temporary Voting Members – Aside from the Grand Masters, there will be two voting positions on the Star Chamber for members who are not Grand Masters and remain in good standing. These temporary positions will be filled by senior members of the Brotherhood. Members of the Electorate are ineligible to be temporary members of the Star Chamber, unless the Grand Masters are unable to select a member outside of the Electorate.
(i) Qualifications of Temporary Voting Members – Qualified members must have two of the four following required traits:
1) Elder Rank;
2) Membership spanning at least eight years;
3) service on the Dark Council or as the leader of an independent unit for at least two total years; or
4) service as Deputy Grand Master or Justicar for at least one full year.
(ii) Terms of Temporary Voting Members - Temporary members of the Star Chamber serve non-consecutive, two year staggered terms so that one member will be replaced on an annual basis. The first election of Temporary Voting Members after the adoption of the New Covenant will be for a member serving a one-year term and another member serving a two-year term.
(iii) Nomination and Selection of Temporary Voting Members - Temporary members of the Star Chamber will be selected by the Grand Masters. Starting with the most recently-retired Grand Master and moving backward, each Grand Master will nominate a member for admission. The sitting Grand Master does not get a nomination. Prior to the next nomination, the other Grand Masters, including the sitting Grand Master, will be allowed to veto the proposed member after discussion. If no veto is offered, then the member is admitted. Each Grand Master is only allowed one veto per nomination of an open position. If a veto is made, the nominating Grand Master gets to nominate another member. Upon vacancy of a temporary membership position, the choice of member will fall to the most recently-retired Grand Master that did not get a nomination in the previous nomination process.
(c) Good Standing - A member of the Star Chamber is in good standing so long as the member can and will respond to Star Chamber communications within three days where a response is clearly indicated as required, unless the member on a previously and publicly-announced leave of absence. If a Star Chamber member fails to respond to Star Chamber communications in the time required, good standing is lost when, after the time period expires, any other member of the Star Chamber indicates that the member should be removed for lack of good standing. In addition, a member is no longer in good standing if they are convicted by the Chamber of Justice under the Covenant and the remaining members of the Star Chamber vote that the conviction is of such a nature that the member can no longer remain a Star Chamber member. The provisions of this section apply to both Grand Masters and temporary members.
(d) Failure to Maintain Good Standing, Replacement – A member that fails to maintain good standing will lose his position on the Star Chamber. In the case of a Chamber of Justice conviction of a Star Chamber member, the member will be removed after the exhaustion of all appeals and the vote outlined in section (c). Upon removal of a temporary member, an election to replace him will be held to fill out the remaining term. If the removed member is a Grand Master, the Grand Master may regain his position by becoming a member in good standing and remaining in good standing for a period of thirty days.
(e) Advisors to the Star Chamber – The Star Chamber may, at its discretion, include in its deliberations members that have specific knowledge of subject areas of the Brotherhood to assist in deliberations. This advisory role is not an official position.

Section 3.03 Voting by the Star Chamber

(a) Voting Required – All official actions of the Star Chamber require approval. No member of the Star Chamber has independent authority within the Brotherhood as a member of the Star Chamber outside of his ability to vote within the Star Chamber. When the Star Chamber is confirming a nomination for Grand Master or removing a member from a position, the actions must be announced to the membership by a representative of the Star Chamber.
(b) Vote Threshold – All votes of the Star Chamber are approved by a majority vote. All ties are considered a failed vote. Abstentions and unfilled temporary voting positions do not reduce the vote threshold. When a permanent member is no longer a member of the Star Chamber due to lack of good standing, the vote threshold is proportionally reduced by one.

Section 3.04 Actions of the Star Chamber

(a) Ownership of Assets – All digital assets of the Brotherhood will be held in the name of an active Grand Master of the Star Chamber. This includes all domain names, hosting accounts, social media accounts, financial accounts, chat rooms, and other assets.
(b) Grand Master’s Semi-Annual Report – The Star Chamber will work with the sitting Grand Master to ensure that there is a workable long-term plan for the Brotherhood. On at least a semi-annual basis, the sitting Grand Master of the Brotherhood must send a report to the Star Chamber detailing the following:
(i) the current state of affairs, including details of position assignments and training of leaders;
(ii) the short and long-term plans for the Brotherhood;
(iii) relevant membership metrics indicating the health of the Brotherhood; and
(iv) any hardships or problems in the foreseeable future.
(c) Review and Recognition of Grand Master – The Star Chamber will conduct an annual review of the performance of the Grand Master and will work with the Grand Master to ensure he is working towards accomplishment of the long-term goals of the Brotherhood. The Star Chamber is charged with ensuring proper recognition is given to the Grand Master for his services, including any appropriate medals or other honors, and will work with the Dark Council to provide for such.
(d) Succession Review – The Star Chamber will conduct an annual review of succession planning for the position of Grand Master and any other major Brotherhood leadership positions. The review will focus on evaluating potential successors to the positions as well as the leadership development plans and programs.
(e) Approval of Fundamental Changes – Prior to the sitting Grand Master enacting changes which may be considered fundamental to the Brotherhood (for example, changing the pillars of the Brotherhood, accepting a sister organization, etc.), the Grand Master must obtain approval of the Star Chamber.
(f) Confidentiality – Discussions of the Star Chamber are generally confidential, with transparency of the organization’s actions being announced through reports of the sitting Grand Master.

Article 4. The Grand Master

Section 4.01 Authority of the Grand Master

(a) Highest Authority - The Grand Master holds the highest executive authority in the Brotherhood, as granted to him and limited by the Covenant, subject to the rights of the Star Chamber to uphold the long-term security of the Brotherhood and the rights of the members guaranteed by the Covenant as guarded by the Chamber of Justice.
(b) Reservation of Authority to Grand Master - Authority not clearly delineated or reserved by this Covenant is reserved for the Grand Master.
(c) Executive Actions - Actions taken by the Grand Master are executive in nature—as opposed to judicial—and do not affect or usurp the performance or jurisdiction of the Chamber of Justice. That is, the Grand Master cannot interfere with actions of the Chamber of Justice without being granted such ability through the Covenant.

Section 4.02 Appointment of the Grand Master

(a) Eligibility - The Electorate is charged with verifying the adequacy of candidates for the position of Grand Master. No member is eligible to be Grand Master who has (1) been previously removed from the position of Grand Master; or (2) is not permitted to serve in accordance with the term limits set forth in this Article.
(b) Nomination, Initial Vote, and Ratification – A Grand Master that announces his resignation will remain in the position until a new Grand Master is installed. Upon announcing his resignation, the Grand Master may nominate to the Electorate a member to succeed him as the Grand Master. The Electorate will then vote to ratify the nominee by a three-fourths majority. Upon ratification, the nominee will be submitted to the Star Chamber for approval. For the purposes of appointing a Grand Master, the Electorate includes the retiring Grand Master and, if the nominated member is a member of the Electorate, the nominated member. Nothing in this provision prevents any member from stating their desire to be considered for Grand Master during the initial vote; that is, the Electorate is permitted to compare the nominee to other options for Grand Master, including members that have declared their desire to be Grand Master. Such declarations may be made to the Justicar, who will timely inform the Electorate of the interest.
(c) Secondary Election - If the Electorate does not ratify the initial nominee or if the retiring Grand Master does not submit a nomination within 48-hours of announcing his resignation, the Justicar will hold an election for the position of Grand Master using the following procedures:
(i) If the Justicar is candidate for the position or the position of Justicar is vacant, the Star Chamber will conduct the election.
(ii) The Justicar will accept nominations from any member of the Brotherhood. All nominations must be accepted by the nominee and seconded by a member of the Electorate.
(iii) The Electorate will vote to name the next Grand Master. A majority of votes must be obtained to become Grand Master. If no member gains a majority, the candidate with the lowest vote count will be removed and a vote will be held on the remaining candidates. This will be repeated until a majority is gained by a candidate. Once a candidate is so chosen, his name will be submitted to the Star Chamber for approval.
(d) Star Chamber Approval - The Star Chamber must approve of the new Grand Master. This approval will be assumed unless the Star Chamber votes to veto the nomination within 72 hours of the completion of the election. If a nominee is vetoed by the Star Chamber, another election will be held without the formerly approved candidate.
(e) Acting Grand Master During Vacancy - In the event of the vacancy of the position of Grand Master, the Deputy Grand Master—and if the Deputy Grand Master is unavailable to serve, a member of the Star Chamber followed by the next senior member of the Dark Council as ordered by length of time in office—will serve as acting Grand Master. An acting Grand Master has authority to run day-to-day operations of the Brotherhood but may not (i) make any changes to Brotherhood systems or policies; or (ii) appoint any new Dark Councilors or independent unit leaders. An acting Grand Master is not a member of the Star Chamber but will be included in the deliberations of the Star Chamber should the Star Chamber deem it necessary.

Section 4.03 Term Limits

(a) Term Duration – A single term of a Grand Master is limited to thirty-six months.
(b) Term Separation – The terms of a Grand Master must be separated by at least one year.

Section 4.04 Removal of the Grand Master

(a) Removal by Star Chamber – The Star Chamber may vote to remove a sitting Grand Master, ratified by a majority vote of the Electorate.
(b) Removal by Indictment – A Grand Master may be removed by indictment through the following process:
(i) The Grand Master has no voting rights in the Electorate with regards to his own indictment. The total number of votes needed to pass a measure under this section is reduced proportionally by one.
(ii) A charge against the Grand Master may be brought by any member of the Brotherhood to the Justicar. The Justicar will determine if the claim is actionable under the Covenant. A member may appeal to the Electorate on the Justicar’s ruling on whether the charge is actionable. The Electorate may overturn the Justicar’s ruling on whether the charge’s is actionable by a majority vote.
(iii) The Justicar will investigate all actionable claims that are brought before him. The Justicar must give the Grand Master notice of the investigation. Failure to do so will result in the indictment process being restarted.
(iv) The Justicar will send the results of his investigation to the Electorate and Star Chamber. The Electorate or Star Chamber must decide on whether the charges warrant a trial. If a majority of the Electorate votes yes, or the Star Chamber votes yes, the Grand Master will be sent to the Chamber of Justice for trial. If the claim is determined to be unworthy of a trial, the indictment process will cease.
(v) During the trial, the Justicar will sit as judge over a jury of twelve randomly selected Equite or Elder members from the Brotherhood to determine the guilt or innocence of the Grand Master. Chosen members must be currently in an independent unit or holding another active position. The burden on the Jury will be a three-fourths vote in favor of conviction, supported by a preponderance of the evidence, on each charge presented. Other than as set forth in this provision, all other jury procedures for the Chamber of Justice will be applied to the trial.
(vi) The following members are ineligible to serve as jury members for the trial: (1) members of the Electorate; (2) the complaining member; and (3) members of the Grand Master’s assistant staff.
(vii) Standard discovery and argument procedures for a Chamber of Justice jury trial will be applied to the trial.
(viii) If the Grand Master is found guilty of the indictment, he will be removed from his position.
(ix) The Grand Master is afforded the same right to appeal his case as given to all members. However, during his appeal, the Grand Master will be held under an Order of Advanced Incarceration and the Deputy Grand Master will be acting Grand Master during this time.
(c) Appointment of Successor upon Removal – Upon removal of the Grand Master, the Justicar will initiate the process to appoint the successor Grand Master as described in this Article. A Grand Master who has been so removed does not have the ability to nominate a successor for ratification or vote in any further elections.

Article 5. The Justicar

Section 5.01 Authority of the Justicar

(a) Overview - The Justicar is the Chief Judge of the Chamber of Justice, and convenes the court as necessary. There is no one with greater authority than the Justicar in relation to the execution of justice.
(b) Judicial Actions - Actions taken by the Justicar or the Chamber of Justice are judicial in nature and do not affect or usurp the performance or jurisdiction of the Grand Master. That is, the Justicar and Chamber of Justice may not interfere with the actions of the Grand Master unless provided for in the Covenant. Limitations and rules placed on the Chamber of Justice through the provisions of the Covenant do not apply to the Grand Master unless the application is clearly stated.

Section 5.02 Appointment of the Justicar, Biennial Confirmation

(a) Nomination - The Grand Master will nominate a member to the vacant position of Justicar.
(b) Confirmation of Nomination - The Electorate must confirm the nomination with a three-fourths majority vote. If the nomination is not confirmed, the nomination process restarts with a new nomination by the Grand Master.
(c) Biennial Confirmation - Every two years after the confirmation of a Justicar, the Justicar must be re-confirmed by the Electorate to remain in the position by a majority vote. If the Electorate does not re-confirm the Justicar, he will vacate the position upon confirmation of a successor.

Section 5.03 Removal of the Justicar

(a) Removal by Star Chamber – The Star Chamber may vote to remove a sitting Justicar.
(b) Removal by Grand Master – The Grand Master may move for the Justicar's removal. The Justicar will then be removed if the motion is approved by three-fourths vote of the Electorate.
(c) Removal by the Electorate – Any member of the Electorate may move for the Justicar's removal. The Justicar will then be removed if the motion is approved by four-fifths of the Electorate.
(d) Removal During Trial – Should the Justicar be removed while conducting any trial, the Appeals Panel will be convened to determine if the Justicar was removed in order to affect the outcome of the pending trial. If the Appeals Panel determines that the Justicar was removed for that reason, he will be allowed, at his option, to conduct that trial until a verdict has been reached, but is otherwise removed from his position immediately.
(e) Effect of Removal During or After Trial – The removal of the Justicar alone is not a grounds for appealing or setting aside a verdict in a case.
(f) Charges Against the Justicar - If, for any reason, charges are being brought against the Justicar, the Grand Master will appoint an acting Justicar from the Dark Council or from among the retired Justicars for handling that one case only and will further determine whether the Hands of Justice should similarly be replaced for the action in the Grand Master’s discretion. The sitting Justicar may otherwise continue in his normal capacity for all other matters. If the Justicar is convicted of a violation of the Covenant and his appeals are exhausted, he will be removed from his position.

Article 6. Pillars of the Brotherhood

Section 6.01 Dark Council

(a) Overview – The Dark Council assists the Grand Master in the administration and running of the Brotherhood.
(b) Members – The Dark Council consists of members in several positions created by the Grand Master to perform specific functions. The traditional Dark Council positions include the Deputy Grand Master, Master at Arms, Headmaster, Herald, Seneschal, Fist, and Voice, and may include other positions created by the Grand Master from time to time up to a maximum of ten positions. Although leaders of independent units may be included in deliberations of the Dark Council (and are part of the Electorate) they are not members of the Dark Council for purposes of the Covenant. The Justicar is not a member of the Dark Council, but is generally included in all Dark Council deliberations and actions.
(c) Authority - The Grand Master and the Dark Council have the authority to make policies and procedures within the limits of their positions as to the daily operations of the Brotherhood. Upon advice from and coordination with the unit leaders, the Grand Master and the Dark Council can affect changes to policies, procedures and structures of the Brotherhood.
(d) Executive Actions - With powers derived from the Grand Master, Dark Council actions are executive in nature and do not affect or usurp the performance or jurisdiction of the Chamber of Justice.

Section 6.02 Independent Units of the Brotherhood

(a) Overview – The membership of the Brotherhood consists of members of independent units, members in a non-unit leadership positions such as a Dark Council position, and rogue members that are not within a unit. Independent units are typically either Clans or Houses. Clans may have adopted Houses as sub-units, and Houses themselves are often divided into Battleteams.
(b) Purpose – The independent units of the Brotherhood provide an appropriately-sized venue for members to participate in Brotherhood activities, meet other members, develop as a member and leader, and otherwise become an active member. Independent units also exist to provide a competitive atmosphere to facilitate Vendettas and encourage activity across the Brotherhood.
(c) Leadership – The leadership of the independent units and their sub-units are charged with the administration and activity of the unit as they see fit and in conformity with the Covenant and Brotherhood Policies. They create and maintain the identity and culture of the unit. Independent unit leadership is appointed by the Grand Master under advisement from the members of the unit.
(d) Creation of New Independent Units – The creation of new independent units is determined by policies set by the Grand Master. However, in order to prevent the dilution of voting powers of other independent units under the Covenant, the addition of more than one new independent unit within six months of the creation of another requires approval of the Star Chamber.
(e) Rights of the Independent Units – Members that are formed into independent units hold rights similar to individual members, including the following:
(i) Free Speech – The association of members into independent units does not limit the rights of those members to free speech through the unit as a group of members, subject to the same limitations of individual free speech rights. However, independent units, speaking through their appointed leadership, must express speech in the appropriate forum and through the proper chain of command. Moreover, leaders of independent units are charged with ensuring that their speech on behalf of the unit matches the opinion of the unit and not solely their personal opinions.
(ii) Right to Members – Independent units are entitled to their share of new members received through the website new member rotation process.
(iii) Right to Exclude Member – Independent units are entitled to exclude members from their rolls in accordance with the provisions of the Covenant relating to the removal of members from units.
(iv) No Retaliation - Any unit may approach the Grand Master and Dark Council with issues and complaints without harm or retribution.
(v) Awards According to Merit - All unit rewards, possessions and recognitions are given according to merit through standards set forth in Brotherhood policies. However, independent units do not have an absolute right to retain possessions and honors received in the past under prior Grand Master administrations and policies; that is, if a Grand Master changes a policy that affects all units that results in the loss of unit possessions, the units have no rights against the policy change, subject to a reasonable expectation that units will retain the relative value of their possessions.
(vi) Uniform Standards – All independent units will be held to the same standards of conduct.

Section 6.03 Societies

(a) Formation - The Grand Master can establish or remove societies for furthering specific activities in the Brotherhood. Societies may have their own rank and honor systems.
(b) Leadership - Society leaders are not part of the Dark Council, but at the behest of the Grand Master, a Dark Councilor may perform the duties of a society leader through his office.

Section 6.04 Tribunes

(a) Overview - The Tribune positions are held by regular members and cover important non-Dark Council aspects of the Brotherhood. Tribunes are not members of the Dark Council.

Article 7. Justice

Section 7.01 The Chamber of Justice

(a) Purpose – The purpose of the Chamber of Justice is the following:
(i) to protect the rights of the members provided for under the Covenant;
(ii) to keep order within the Brotherhood through the enforcement of the Covenant, rules, and regulations of the Brotherhood;
(iii) to investigate all complaints brought to the Chamber of Justice and bring charges where appropriate;
(iv) to investigate member misconduct and bring charges against a member on behalf of the Brotherhood;
(v) to determine the guilt or innocence of members charged with violations of the Covenant, rules, and regulations of the Brotherhood;
(vi) to determine and impose appropriate punishments;
(vii) to interpret the Covenant, rules and regulations of the Brotherhood;
(viii) to provide guidance to the Grand Master and Dark Council in relation to all matters pertaining to justice.
(b) Membership – The Chamber of Justice consists of the Justicar, the Right Hand of Justice, the Left Hand of Justice, and the members of the Appeals Panel.
(c) Right Hand of Justice – The Right Hand of Justice serves as the primary investigator and prosecutor for the Chamber of Justice. His role is to evaluate all potential claims, develop any charges to be brought, and argue the charges to the Justicar or jury.
(d) Left Hand of Justice – The Left Hand of Justice serves as the primary advocate for members that stand accused before the Chamber of Justice. His role is to uphold the rule of law from a member’s perspective, ensuring that no member is unduly punished and that members are adequately informed of their rights.
(e) Terms of the Hands of Justice – The Right and Left Hands of Justice are appointed by the Justicar for twelve-month terms. No person may serve in the role of either Hand position for consecutive terms, however, a member may serve as Left Hand of Justice immediately after serving as Right Hand of Justice and vice versa. Hands of Justice may not serve three consecutive terms in any capacity.
(f) Timely Administration of Justice – The Chamber of Justice is dependent on the timely administration of justice. The Justicar must be available on a regular basis. If he is taking a leave of absence, provisions must provide for alternative methods of contact and the use of the Hands of Justice to administrate the Chamber, and such leave must be announced to the membership. The Justicar must be aware of his important role in the Brotherhood and must resign if time constraints keep the court on a constant delay.
(g) Recusal – When the involvement of a member of the Chamber of Justice would result in the appearance of conflict or impropriety, the member should consult with the Justicar to determine if recusal—the disqualification of service in their role for that trial—is necessary. No rule requires recusal, and the Justicar holds the final say on whether recusal is required. When a member is recused from a proceeding, the Justicar will select a temporary replacement who has experience in such matters.
(h) Recusal of the Justicar – In the event that the Justicar, in his own discretion, decides to recuse himself from a proceeding, the Justicar will appoint a temporary replacement from among the Star Chamber, Dark Councilors or former Justicars. The appointment must be approved by the Grand Master or Star Chamber.
(i) Policies and Procedures – The Justicar may create Chamber of Justice policies and procedures that are separate from and not in conflict with this Covenant.
(j) Precedent – Judicial decrees and opinions from the Justicar carry precedential effect. Rulings set forth in decisions on cases will be posted in public and have the full force and effect as a provision under the Covenant.
(k) Advisory Opinions – The Justicar may issue advisory opinions in relation to matters of interpretation of the Covenant, and rules and regulations of the Brotherhood, without the need for a trial. Advisory Opinions have the full force and effect as a provision under the Covenant, but only carry precedential value if posted in public. To request an Advisory Opinion, a member must send a request to the Justicar with a brief that explains (1) the rule or regulation to be interpreted; (2) the nature of the dispute or confusions surrounding the rule or regulation; (3) the position of the member with relation to the rule or regulation; and (4) the position of the opposition to the member (if applicable). The Justicar may issue Advisory Opinions on his own should he determine that a request has been made in some form.
(l) Governing Law – The Covenant, rules, and regulations of the Brotherhood, and the official Chamber of Justice policies and procedures exclusively govern all Chamber of Justice proceedings. No reference made to any outside or real world rule of law will be honored.
(m) Records of the Chamber of Justice – The Chamber of Justice is charged with maintaining records of its trials, opinions, and actions. It will keep records pertaining to members for use in cases of repeat offenses.

Section 7.02 Rights of the Accused

(a) Right to Due Process – Members accused of a violation of the Covenant are presumed innocent until proven guilty. No right granted by this Covenant may be revoked without following the process outlined in the Covenant and without providing proper notice to the member.
(b) Right to Trial – In accordance with the provisions of the Covenant, members are afforded a right to trial in relation to charges brought by the Chamber of Justice.
(c) Right to Remain Silent – Members have the right to remain silent, and not offer incriminating evidence against themselves, including in investigations prior to trial that are either executive or judicial in nature. No presumption in a judicial proceeding may be made against a member on the basis of the member remaining silent.
(d) Right to Counsel – During a trial before the Chamber of Justice, the member on trial will be offered the services of the Left Hand of Justice as an advocate to assist in the development of his defense starting at the point at which charges are sent. The member may enlist other individuals willing to assist in their defense, but only one person may be the representative for the defendant at trial in addition or—if the member elects—as a substitute for the Left Hand of Justice.
(e) Right to No Punishments Ex Post Facto – Members are guaranteed freedom from punishments ex post facto. That is, no member will be charged or punished with a rule that is made after the offense in question.
(f) Right to No Double Jeopardy – Members are guaranteed that once they are acquitted from charges of the Chamber of Justice, they will not be charged a second time for violations arising out of the same transaction unless specifically permitted by the Covenant.
(g) Right to Appeal – Members have the right to appeal decisions of the Chamber of Justice as set forth in the Covenant.
(h) Right to Charge Information – Members have the right to know what charges are being laid against them and a summary of facts that support the charge. In addition, at the time of being charged, members have the right to know the range of penalties the prosecution is seeking to have placed against the defendant in the case of a conviction.
(i) Right to Discovery – Members have the right to obtain copies of all evidence to be used against them at trial after a plea has been entered, but, in exchange, must provide to the Right Hand of Justice any evidence they intend to use at trial.

Section 7.03 Process of Adjudication

(a) Investigations and Complaints – The process of adjudication before the Chamber of Justice may commence in one of two ways:
(i) Investigation by Chamber of Justice – The Chamber of Justice, primarily through the Right Hand of Justice, may investigate any incident that is brought to its attention. In the appropriate circumstances, the Justicar may appoint an independent member as a special investigator to assist with an investigation. Moreover, members in appropriate leadership positions are permitted to work with the Chamber of Justice to investigate claims.
(ii) Formal Complaint by Member – A member may submit a formal complaint to the Chamber of Justice. The complaint must indicate the parties to the action, must give a brief statement of the facts, and must clearly delineate that the member requires formal action from the Chamber of Justice rather than other action such as mediation. Sufficient for the last requirement are phrases such as "I present a formal complaint," "I officially request action be taken," or an email subject of "Formal Complaint against XXXXX." Upon the submission of a formal complaint, the Chamber of Justice may investigate the claim as it sees fit. The Chamber of Justice is in no way required to bring charges on every complaint, and may otherwise resolve the complaint as it sees fit.
(b) Statute of Limitations – A complaint must be received within ninety days of the discovery of the underlying event or else it will be dismissed as time-barred. If the complaint is derived from a series of events, the ninety-day time period will begin running from the last known event. Charges from the Chamber of Justice must be brought within one hundred twenty days of the discovery of the underlying event. An additional day is added to the statute of limitations for each day spent conducting a Chamber of Justice-led mediation. There is no statute of limitations for charges of Cloning.
(c) Statue of Repose – Notwithstanding the provisions governing the statute of limitations, if an event that might give rise to a complaint under the Covenant is not discovered within two years of the event, then no charge may be brought. If the discovery occurs within two years, the time limits under the statute of limitations apply. There is no statute of repose for charges of Cloning.
(d) Mediation and Informal Resolution – In cases that are initiated by a formal complaint by a member, or in other appropriate cases, generally where a complaint involves two members or two units, the Chamber of Justice will attempt to mediate any dispute between the parties. The mediator will generally be the Justicar, but may also be a Hand of Justice, a Star Chamber member, or a Dark Council Member. Attempted mediation does not bar the member from continuing the adjudication under their complaint if mediation fails. At the end of a successful mediation, the Justicar may ask for a withdrawal of the complaint or, if three months have passed since the end of a successful mediation without any further inquiries by the complaining member, the Justicar may dismiss the complaint himself. If mediation is unsuccessful and a case proceeds to trial, the Chamber of Justice and the various parties may continue to formulate an informal resolution of the case outside of trial. Nothing in this provision eliminates the need or the ability of the Grand Master or other Dark Council member to mediate disputes between members as they see fit, including command-level disputes between leaders.
(e) Confession, Plea Bargain, Change of Plea – If a member states his intent to formally confess in exchange for a lighter punishment; or states his intent to change his plea from innocent to guilty in exchange for a lighter punishment, the Justicar may, but is not required to, at any time accept such confession or plea deal and issue appropriate punishment in light of the member’s atonement.
(f) Analysis of Charges – After a formal complaint is received or an investigation by the Chamber of Justice is completed, the Chamber will convene to determine if charges should be pursued against the accused member. If the Justicar finds any merit to the claim as presented, the case will be pursued.
(g) Issuance of Charges – The Chamber of Justice will issue a summary of charges to the accused. The summary will include not only references to specific Covenant sections, rules or regulations, but also a brief factual overview of the charges. Upon issuance, the Left Hand of Justice will provide the accused a summary of his rights and the process of adjudication. The accused will have at least 72-hours to enter a plea of guilty or not-guilty. The plea may be submitted by the Left Hand of Justice on behalf of the accused only if the Left Hand of Justice has been given explicit authority to enter the plea by the accused. The following will occur upon each possible plea:
(i) Guilty Plea – If the accused pleads guilty, the Justicar will impose a sentence as outlined in the following sections.
(ii) Not-Guilty Plea – If the accused pleads not-guilty, the Chamber of Justice will initiate either a Trial by Justicar or Trial by Jury as outlined in the following sections.
(iii) Failure to Plea – If the accused fails to enter a plea within the allotted time, the case will automatically move to a Trial by Justicar. A member failing or refusing to enter a plea waives the right to submit evidence or argument on his behalf at trial.
(h) Type of Trial – There are two types of trials before the Chamber of Justice: a Trial by Justicar and a Trial by Jury.
(i) Trial by Justicar – In a Trial by Justicar, the Justicar serves as both the facilitator of the trial process as well as the trier of fact. The parties submit evidence and the Justicar determines the guilt or innocence of the accused. The Justicar, despite prior knowledge of the case through the Chamber’s investigation, is presumed to be impartial.
(ii) Trial by Jury – In a Trial by Jury, the Justicar serves as the facilitator of the trial process, but a jury of peers serves as the trier of fact. The parties submit evidence, and the jury determines the guilt of innocence of the accused.
(i) Choice of Trial – Upon entry of a plea, the accused may be offered the choice of type of trial, depending on the range of proposed penalties. For all charges in which the proposed penalty is a maximum of a one-grade Equite or Elder demotion, a two-grade Journeyman or Noviate demotion, a Letter of Reprimand, one year probation, or a combination of the above, a Trial by Justicar will be held unless the Justicar determines that it is appropriate to offer the member an option for a Trial by Jury. For all other charges, the accused will have at least 48-hours to choose between Trial by Justicar and Trial by Jury. In the event that no choice is made by the accused, a Trial by Justicar will be held.
(j) Stages of Trial – A trial consists of the following stages: discovery, argument, deliberation, and, if there is a conviction, sentencing.
(i) Discovery – During the first part of a trial, parties are required to exchange information. The Right Hand of Justice will provide to the accused all evidence that he plans to introduce at trial. The accused will provide to the Right Hand of Justice any evidence that may be used in his defense. The discovery process will last a minimum of four days. Any evidence that is not properly exchanged will be inadmissible, except if required for rebuttal on a case-by-case basis as determined by the Justicar.
(ii) Argument – Each party is entitled to make opening arguments and submit a rebuttal. The arguments for each party will be submitted at the same time to prevent one side from getting the last word. Opening arguments for each party will be submitted to the Justicar by the same deadline. The Justicar will send the opening arguments to each party after submission. Each party will then be provided additional time for a rebuttal. A minimum of four days will be provided to complete opening arguments and two days for a rebuttal.
(iii) Deliberation – After arguments are received, the Jury or the Justicar, as the case may be, are to deliberate as to the guilt or innocence of the accused. The Justicar may make further inquiries of the Hands of Justice during this time. A Jury may not make further factual inquiries, but may seek guidance from the Justicar as to procedural matters. The standard of proof is a preponderance of the evidence; that is, the standard is that the accused is more likely guilty than innocent or 51% guilty. After deliberation, a verdict of guilty or not-guilty will be announced.
(iv) Sentencing – In both a Trial by Justicar and a Trial by Jury, or when a member pleads guilty, the Justicar imposes the sentence. The Justicar may consult with the Grand Master and Hands of Justice as to the appropriate punishment. A member may request, but is not entitled to, a period of 48 hours to present argument related to sentencing. In appropriate situations, the Justicar may take into account mitigating circumstances to lower the penalty, or aggravating circumstances to raise it. No offense in the past will have any bearing on the guilt or innocence of a member in any subsequent case. However, the Justicar, in determining the sentence for a member found guilty, may consider the prior record of the accused. No acquittal may be used in the consideration of punishment for current offenses.
(k) Pronouncement - Upon conclusion of the trial, the Justicar will post the results in a posting on the Brotherhood website. This posting will contain a summary of the trial, the result, and the Justicar's opinion. The Justicar’s opinion will contain an official explanation for the Chamber of Justice's decision, the reasons for the specific sentence and any other comments the Chamber of Justice wishes to include.
(l) Acquittal - If the member is acquitted of all charges, the accused member may not be retried for the specific charge that was acquitted, even upon the revelation of new evidence, unless the verdict was delivered through a miscarriage or defamation of the judicial process as determined by the Appeals Panel. This does not apply to admissions of guilt. Any member that admits guilt post-trial may be re-tried and sentenced per that admission.
(m) Summary Dismissal – The Justicar, with approval from the Grand Master, may summarily dismiss charges regardless of the stage in the proceedings. Charges that have been dismissed through this provision may be re-filed within 30 days of the dismissal for a new trial. If no new issuance of charges is made, then the charges will be forever barred from being brought again.
(n) Rules of Evidence – The following rules of evidence apply in all trials before the Chamber of Justice:
(i) Hearsay – Hearsay evidence is generally not permitted. For the purposes of this rule, hearsay is the report of another person's words by a witness or third party. Direct logs of an incident are not hearsay. In the event that a charge relates to events that occurred over voice chat, the Justicar may make appropriate provisions for the admission of hearsay evidence if he determines that there are suitable witnesses and the trier of fact is cognizant of the potential reliability issues.
(ii) Relevance – Evidence that is not relevant to the case at hand will not be admitted. This includes evidence of prior crimes.
(iii) System Logs – Logs and records received from computer systems, including the Brotherhood website, are admissible and presumed to be accurate unless proven otherwise.
(iv) Exculpatory Evidence – Evidence that is clearly exculpatory in nature by showing, as determined by the Justicar, that the member is clearly not-guilty may be presented at any time during the trial. If exculpatory evidence is discovered after a conviction, the Justicar will present the evidence to the Appeals Panel. The Appeals Panel may overturn the conviction based on exculpatory evidence by a majority vote.
(v) Objections to Evidence – An objection to the admissibility of certain evidence may be made by separate writing at the time of the submission of opening briefs or rebuttal briefs. Objections may also be stated within the briefs themselves. The Justicar will quickly decide any such objections.
(o) Aggregate Cases - In cases where multiple members are alleged to have jointly committed any action prohibited by one or more Articles of Conduct the Justicar has the option of combining all related cases into a single jointly-administered case, with individual charges laid against specific accused as usual. This is a strictly administrative action, taken in the interest of efficient trial resolution and does not remove the individual rights of the accused. All accused still have the option of pleading guilt or innocence individually, and may choose their trial form. Guilt on each specific charge must still be established for each individual member and sentencing is also determined individually. Each defendant will receive counsel from the Left Hand of Justice, but may also obtain their own separate counsel.
(p) Extensions of Time – For good cause, the Justicar may upon request or unilaterally extend any time period provided for in this Article.
(q) No Motions – The Chamber of Justice does not recognize motions of any kind from any party to a case, unless explicitly allowed by other provisions.
(r) Communication With Grand Master – The Justicar must keep the Grand Master apprised of the progress in any investigation or trial, unless the Grand Master is the accused, in which case his rights are those of an accused Grand Master.

Section 7.04 Juries

(a) Composition – A Jury consists of one member of the Dark Council and five other random Equite or Elder members. In addition, two alternates will be selected in case a juror recuses himself or is absent without leave. The Seneschal will independently verify that the jury was selected at random, or, in the case that the Seneschal is on trial, the Grand Master will make the verification. No member may sit on a Jury deciding his own case. If the Justicar and Grand Master agree that a randomly-selected member would be unable to impartially try the case, that juror may be replaced. The identity of the Jurors is not confidential.
(b) Recusal and Challenge for Cause – Jury members should recuse themselves from the trial if they feel they cannot judge the action impartially. The defendant may challenge the inclusion of a juror for cause, but may only do so two times. The Justicar will ultimately decide whether a juror needs to be recused.
(c) Burden – The burden of the Jury will be to reach a decision on the innocence or guilt, supported by a preponderance of the evidence, of the accused on each charge presented. To obtain a guilty verdict, five of six jurors must agree.
(d) Expulsion Jury – In cases where the Justicar determines that the member should be expelled, the Justicar will convene an Expulsion Jury (consisting of the same make-up of six members) to vote on whether the charges warrant expulsion. To expel a member, five of six jurors must agree. If a member is not expelled per the jury’s vote, the Justicar will issue an alternative sentence.
(e) Records of Deliberations – All Juries must give logs and emails of all deliberations on the decision to the Justicar for archiving.

Section 7.05 Appeals Panel

(a) Purpose – The Appeals Panel exists to review and determine whether the process of adjudication and the various rules set forth in the Covenant are followed. In terms of trials, the Appeals Panel does not exist to make an independent finding of whether a party is guilty or not-guilty under the evidence, but rather serves to ensure that justice was served fairly and in accordance with the Covenant. Therefore, the Appeals Panel focuses on procedural issues.
(b) Membership – The Appeals Panel consists of three active members selected from amongst the independent units of the Brotherhood. The members are chosen by the Justicar. Members serve twelve month, non-consecutive terms. The Justicar will prioritize between potential members of the Appeals Panel by trying to ensure each member of the panel is in a different independent unit.
(c) Issues Subject to Appeal – The Appeals Panel convenes to hear the following matters:
(i) appeals from trials of the Chamber of Justice, including review of the emergence of exculpatory evidence; the appropriateness of the punishment as compared to prior precedent; and whether Chamber of Justice members failed to properly recuse themselves;
(ii) legitimacy of Orders of Advanced Incarceration;
(iii) orders removing and banning members from a unit;
(iv) ability of a removed Justicar to complete pending trials;
(v) appeals from the issuance of a penalty issued by the Justicar without trial; and
(vi) the issuance of a penalty without an official judicial process, if not reviewed by the Justicar.
(d) Initiating an Appeal – Review by the Appeals Panel is triggered as follows:
(i) Automatic review – In certain instances, the Covenant provides that review by the Appeals Panel is automatically initiated. Automatic review by the Appeals Panel occurs for the following: (A) review of Orders of Advanced Incarceration; (B) the emergence of exculpatory evidence; (C) orders removing and banning members from units; and (D) issues pertaining to the removal of a Justicar. In instances where the appeal is automatic, the Justicar will present to the Appeals Panel a written description of the matter and provide all source material for the review. If the Justicar is a party to the appeal being taken, the Grand Master will perform this function.
(ii) Elective Review – For all other matters, appeals may only be taken after a conclusion of a trial or the issuance of any penalty outside of trial. If the accused or penalized member finds fault in a procedural aspect of the trial or in the issuance of the penalty, he has seven days from the pronouncement of the Chamber of Justice opinion or the issuance of the penalty to appeal. An appeal must be presented in writing to the Justicar. The writing should identify the issue to be reviewed on appeal and contain a memorandum explaining the member’s position. The Justicar is charged with providing the Appeals Panel additional official information about the trial or the issuance of the penalty.
(e) Standard of Review – The Appeals Panel must judge whether the alleged procedural error resulted in a change of the outcome of the proceeding. For example, for a trial that ended in a guilty verdict, the Appeals Panel must decide if, had the alleged error not occurred, the outcome would have been not guilty. The Appeals Panel must be substantially certain that the outcome would have been different had the error not occurred. Substantially certain means more than 80% certain. For the review of penalties, the Appeals Panel will review the penalty to ensure that the penalty (i) is generally in line with precedent of prior penalties issued to members; and (ii) is not outside the bounds of reasonableness given the offence.
(f) Method of Review by Appeals Panel – The Justicar will submit any appeals to the Appeals Panel. The Panel will examine the matter and debate the points brought by the appellant, if applicable. The Panel will examine the written appeal to make its decision, taking into account any applicable jury deliberation logs and emails, original case statements and any other document relating to the case or issuance of penalty. The Panel must reach a unanimous decision to overturn the original decision; any stalemate or lack of unanimous vote will cause the decision to stand. All appeals must be resolved within four days.
(g) Outcome of Appeal – In cases of trials, if the panel finds in favor of the appellant, the case is re-tried with the procedural error corrected or the person recused; or the penalty is removed, as the case may be. If the original case was a Trial by Jury, a new jury will be assembled. If the panel upholds the original verdict, the sentencing or penalty will go into effect.

Section 7.06 Conduct of Members

(a) Overview – Set forth in this section are specific codified rules that relate to the conduct of all members. Members must abide by these articles at all times.
(b) Brotherhood Proceedings – Whether or not specifically stated in the rule, these articles of conduct refer to any and all actions in relation to the Brotherhood, including actions taken under this Covenant, any executive action by the Grand Master, any action by the Dark Council, or any judicial action by the Chamber of Justice.
(c) Abuse of Power – Members must not use their position, rank, tenure or any other membership status to unfairly benefit themselves or others with rewards or promotions; or to unfairly influence any Brotherhood proceeding or Brotherhood competition. Abuse of power includes acts of treason, whereby a member abuses his power to actively harm the Brotherhood. Abuse of power also includes retaliation against members for exercising their rights under the Covenant to submit complaints without harm or retribution.
(d) Cheating and Exploitation – Members must not willfully or knowingly exploit, abuse, or otherwise tamper with official game play or official activity in the form of competitions, tests, or other activities. As used in this section, exploitation means the unsanctioned use of bugs or loopholes in gameplay for the purpose of gaining an obviously unfair advantage. Cheating means the use of any dishonest or unfair act for the purpose of gaining an advantage. Unauthorized use of the same submission in two separate competitions is a form of cheating.
(e) Cloning – Members must not, without prior approval of the Justicar, have more than one persona in a single household or on a single connection. Any offense committed by such an unauthorized clone will be attributed to the original member. Matching IP addresses create a presumption of cloning that can only be rebutted by evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that two people exist.
(f) Conspiracy to Commit – Members may be guilty of having conspired to commit certain of the foregoing articles of conduct and reprimand if they are caught ahead of conducting the act, and it is substantially certain that the act would have been committed but for the members being caught. Substantially certain means at least 80% certain. This provision only applies to Abuse of Power, Cheating and Exploitation, Cloning, Impersonation, Tampering with Evidence, False Statements, Hacking, and Jury Tampering and Retaliation.
(g) Crude Behavior – Members must not engage in crude behavior in any mode of communication. Crude behavior includes, but is not limited to: the excessive use of swear words; provocative speech; excessive sexual discussions; use of inappropriate graphics; and unabated insults toward another’s real-life political affiliation, nationality, gender, race, color, age, disability, military service, creed, heritage, or sexual orientation.
(h) Discrimination – Members must not discriminate against another member in regards to promotions, medal awards, praise and acknowledgement, or positions on the basis of real-life political affiliation, gender, race, color, age, disability, creed, heritage, military service, nationality or sexual orientation.
(i) Disreputable Behavior – Members must not partake in any action that brings disrepute onto the Brotherhood. This includes any action by a member, whether in a Brotherhood situation or not, that actively harms the image of the Brotherhood or its constituent parts in the view of outside observers. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a member is not acting disreputably when they engage in otherwise-legal speech in relation to the Brotherhood.
(j) False Statements – Members must not knowingly make false statements with the intent to change the outcome of a Brotherhood proceeding.
(k) Hacking – Members must not access or alter, without the proper permission and authority, any restricted section of the Brotherhood website, e-mail list, administrative settings of any gaming server, or other digital asset of the Brotherhood or of its members. Members must not misappropriate the dossier or personal information of another member. Such misappropriation includes, but is not limited to, changing passwords or e-mail addresses, unauthorized distribution of personal information, and submitting or processing promotion or award recommendations.
(l) Harassment – Members must not engage in persistent harassment or torment, outrageous attacks on any other member, or actions that are deliberately and maliciously meant to harm other members’ enjoyment of the Brotherhood. This includes statements and actions taken to attack a member’s real-life political affiliation, family or significant other, gender, race, color, age, disability, creed, heritage, military service, nationality or sexual orientation. This article extends to cover harassment through the distribution of personal information, the creation of groups or modes of communication for the purpose of attacking the member, and unwanted contact with the member through non-internet means of communication, whether or not related to official Brotherhood communications. Harassment punished under this article must be to the extent and of the form that would injure a reasonable person of normal sensibilities; mere mocking does not suffice.
(m) Impersonation – Members must not impersonate another member or use or exploit the account of another member for their own personal gain.
(n) Jury Tampering and Retaliation – Members must not unduly attempt to influence the composition, decisions, or verdict of a jury during the course of any trial in the Chamber of Justice. Members must not retaliate against jurors after a trial.
(o) Plagiarism – Members must not submit any plagiarized work as his own. Work of others may be used in a member’s work provided that appropriate credit is given to the real author or the sections of the work that are not original are identified and disclosed.
(p) Sexual Favors – Members must not accept, promote or solicit sexual favors in exchange for elevation, award, citation, position appointments, or other honors.
(q) Tampering With Evidence – Members must not forge, alter or otherwise tamper with evidence.
(r) Verbal Abuse – Members must not engage in the excessive verbal abuse (or the equivalent text-based abuse) of another, including, but not limited to: insults regarding a member’s real-life political affiliation, gender, race, creed, heritage, military service, nationality or sexual orientation; character assassination; or unjust use of Brotherhood resources to attack another through defamatory statements.
(s) Violations of Brotherhood Policies – These articles of conduct and reprimand are not all-inclusive and do not limit the authority of the Justicar to enforce Brotherhood policies, rules and regulations, provided that said policies are enacted in conformity with the Covenant.

Section 7.07 Penalties

(a) Overview – This section outlines the penalties that may be imposed through the Covenant for all aspects of Brotherhood activity. Penalties may only be administered as set forth in this provision.
(b) Types of Penalties – There are two types of penalties that may be administered by the Brotherhood leadership:
(i) Executive Penalties – Penalties that do not require a judicial process and are within the realm of the Grand Master’s executive authority are called “Executive Penalties.”
(ii) Judicial Penalties – Penalties that require judicial action and may only be imposed by the Justicar are called “Judicial Penalties.”
(c) Uniform Application – The Justicar and Grand Master will uniformly apply Executive and Judicial Penalties for offenses that are similar in nature. The Justicar and Grand Master will communicate about the combined Executive and Judicial Penalties that will arise from a single transaction so as to refrain from over-penalizing a member.
(d) Notice to Member and Documentation – No Executive or Judicial Penalty outside of trial may be imposed on a member without first providing notice to the member and providing a 72-hour chance to respond to the accusations. The accusations and proposed penalty will be sufficiently documented and explained that the average member can understand the conduct that led to the penalty, the penalty itself, and, if applicable, the right of the member to appeal the penalty to the Justicar or Appeals Panel. After the 72-hour period, the penalty must be confirmed by the issuing party.
(e) General Time Restraints – Penalties outside of trial should be applied within a reasonable time after the infraction or conviction, generally 15 days. Failure to apply a penalty in a timely manner is prejudicial to a member and may result in the penalty being reversed or reduced on appeal.
(f) Executive Actions by Dark Council – Unless otherwise specifically stated herein, the Grand Master may, through a declaration in a Brotherhood policy, authorize Dark Council members to issue specific Executive Penalties related to their offices, and all references to “Grand Master” in this section refer to the Grand Master or any Dark Council member so permitted to issue the penalty. For example, the Grand Master may permit the Headmaster to issue Executive Penalties in relation to the Shadow Academy. The authority under this section must be documented in a Brotherhood Policy.
(g) Review by Justicar or Appeals Panel – If a penalty is issued without an official judicial process, it will be reviewed by the Justicar or Appeals Panel upon application of the affected member within 48 hours of when the penalty is confirmed. The Justicar may, in his sole discretion, review the issuance of an Executive Penalty, and is the final say on the legitimacy of the penalty. That is, if the Justicar blesses the issuance of an Executive Penalty, no appeal of the penalty may be taken to the Appeals Panel. If the Justicar chooses not to review the Executive Penalty, issue will be submitted to the Appeals Panel. Any penalty issued by the Justicar without a trial may be appealed to the Appeals Panel. Notwithstanding the normal focus of the Appeals Panel on process, during the review, the issues to be considered include, but are not limited to, the proper application of the rules and uniform application of punishment, and whether there was an actual infraction.
(h) Activity Bans – Banning a member from a certain type of activity may be either an Executive or Judicial Penalty. The Grand Master may order a member to be banned for a period of up to one month from a certain activity, including participation in the Shadow Academy, gaming, Vendettas, any possessions system, or other activities. Any activity ban beyond one month is a Judicial Penalty.
(i) Administrative Errors – Any medal, promotion, possession, or other benefit received by a member through an administrative error may be corrected by the appropriate Dark Councilor. Such correction is not a penalty under these provisions, but is merely an administrative remedy.
(j) Administrative Notes – Any member of the Dark Council or Star Chamber may make Administrative Notes on the dossier of a member. Members do not have a right to view the notes.
(k) Ban from Communications – Banning a member from a method of communication or Brotherhood media may be either an Executive or Judicial Penalty. The Grand Master may ban a member from a mode of communication for up to one month. Any ban beyond one month is a Judicial Penalty. For the purpose of clarity, communication bans are only for official Brotherhood communication modes. This section does not apply to unofficial communication modes, such as channels set up by independent units.
(l) Clones – The Justicar is charged with investigating all possible cloning activity within the Brotherhood and eliminating any clones that are identified. The Justicar has the ability to remove clones that are identified within the first six months of the registration of the dossier without going through any judicial process. Upon identifying a possible clone, the Justicar or the Right Hand of Justice will investigate the situation. If a member does not respond to an inquiry of the Chamber of Justice within seventy-two hours, or the Justicar determines based on the response of the member that the second dossier is a clone, the Justicar may summarily order the second dossier to be deleted. In general, a member will not be permitted to retain any ranks or honoraries from the second dossier, except in circumstances specifically approved by the Justicar. The Justicar, with advice from the Seneschal, may ban IP addresses that create frequent fraudulent accounts. Finally, if a new dossier is deleted, the Dark Council will take the necessary steps to ensure that the independent unit that was deprived of the new member opportunity is given a replacement opportunity for a new member prior to other units.
(m) Demotions – Demoting a member is a Judicial Penalty for both general ranks and society ranks.
(n) Disqualification – Disqualifying a member from a certain competition or event can be either an Executive Penalty or Judicial Penalty. Disqualifications may also be made by event or competition organizers, provided such disqualification is ultimately approved by the Master at Arms.
(o) Expulsion – Expelling a member is a Judicial Penalty.
(p) Letters of Reprimand – As a Judicial Penalty, the Justicar has the authority to issue a Letter of Reprimand to a member. A Letter of Reprimand is generally issued with any conviction by the Chamber of Justice. A Letter of Reprimand may also be issued by the Justicar without any trial or other judicial proceeding. A Letter of Reprimand signifies that the member has violated the rules of the Brotherhood to such a degree that his record should be marred. The Justicar may, upon application of the member and for good cause shown, expunge a Letter of Reprimand from a member’s dossier if the following criteria are met:
(i) the Justicar determines that the member has been completely rehabilitated;
(ii) at least two years have passed; and
(iii) the Justicar and the Grand Master agree that there is no future benefit to having a public reference on the member’s dossier.
(q) Loss of Progress – Removal from a member of progress gained toward promotion, possession or other honor is generally a Judicial Penalty. However, in the case of Society membership, progress toward the next rank may be removed as an Executive Penalty issued by the Grand Master if an infraction related to a Society occurs. Moreover, any issuance of penalties against a member may be used in consideration of whether a member is entitled to promotions or other honors.
(r) Other Judicial Penalties – Nothing in these provisions limits the ability of the Justicar to formulate the appropriate penalty for specific judicial needs; however, the Justicar must document the reasoning for any derivation from these penalties.
(s) Probation – As a Judicial Penalty, the Justicar has the authority to put a member on probation for a period of time. The purpose of probation is not to discourage activity from a member, but rather to put the judgment of the Chamber of Justice into full effect. The following provisions apply to probation:
(i) General Probation – The Justicar may issue general probation against a member for a period of time. The impact of general probation is that the member may not receive a merit medal, promotion, or position assignment without the express approval of the Justicar. The only purpose of general probation is to ensure that the judicial process is not abused by immediately giving back to a member honors that may have been stripped from him as penalties, or positions that have been lost. That is, generally the Justicar will approve all transactions that occur in the ordinary course of membership while a member is on general probation.
(ii) Strict Probation – The Justicar may issue strict probation against a member for a period of time. A strict probation has all of the same characteristics of general probation, but may also have any of the following characteristics:
1) Prohibition from receiving a promotion;
2) Prohibition from receiving a medal;
3) Bans from certain activities;
4) Removal or delaying of progress towards subsequent honors; or
5) Prohibition from serving in a leadership position.
(iii) Default Strict Probation – Unless otherwise ordered, strict probation defaults to a prohibition from receiving a promotion and the delaying of progress towards subsequent honors during strict probation.
(iv) Extension of Probation While in Rogues – Probation is extended for the period of time that a member is not in a position and is a rogue member. The countdown to the end of probation will resume when the member returns to a unit or position.
(t) Removal From or Denial of Position – The removal of a member from a position or denial of a position to a member as a penalty is generally an Executive Penalty that may be exercised by the Grand Master as a result of the outcome of a Chamber of Justice proceeding. In Chamber of Justice cases in which there is a Trial by Jury, the Justicar may also impose the removal from position as a Judicial Penalty, but such decisions are generally left to the Grand Master. For the purpose of clarity, the removal of a member as a penalty for violating the Covenant is not the same as the Grand Master firing a member from a position due to issues not relating to Covenant violations.
(u) Revocation of Medals or Possessions – Any removal of a medal, possession or other honor received by a member is a Judicial Penalty. Unless the medal, possession or other honor was received as a result of the conduct of the member that resulted in the penalty, a Justicar will generally not remove medals, possessions or other honors as a penalty. Rather, demotion is the preferred manner of punishment.

Section 7.08 Order of Advanced Incarceration

(a) Overview – The Grand Master or Justicar is entitled to special powers when they determine that (i) there is a time of crisis; (ii) the security of the Brotherhood is at risk; or (iii) a member has become an immediate threat to themselves or other members. The Grand Master or Justicar may enact an Order of Advanced Incarceration pending the trial of the accused which allows the Brotherhood to suspend the accused from all positions within the Brotherhood, deactivate the accused member’s dossier, remove access to the database, and ban the accused from all modes of Brotherhood communication or other media (such as gaming servers). The member is completely suspended until the Order of Advanced Incarceration is removed.
(b) Last Resort – Because an Order of Advanced Incarceration can immediately assign assumed guilt to the member, it should be used with caution and as a last resort.
(c) Review by Appeals Panel - Upon the issuance of an Order of Advanced Incarceration., the Appeals Panel must immediately convene and determine the order’s necessity, which determination must be made within 48 hours. If the Appeals Panel decides that the order was inappropriate by a unanimous vote, the order will be reversed. Otherwise, the order will stand until the end of the trial or until the threat has passed as determined by the Grand Master or Justicar.
(d) Use by Dark Council - In cases of otherwise unavoidable, immediate grave danger; any Dark Council member may impose such measures for a non-extendable period of a maximum of 48 hours. He must immediately inform the Grand Master and Justicar of this action and will be held accountable by the Chamber of Justice for any abuse of this power. Once so informed, the Grand Master and Justicar will follow the review provisions in this section.
(e) Use Against Grand Master or Justicar – In an extreme case, a Grand Master may issue an Order of Advanced Incarceration against the Justicar, and vice versa. In such instances, the order is established for a non-extendable period of a maximum of 48 hours. In order for that order to extend beyond 48 hours, it must be approved by a three-fourths vote of the Electorate which vote must immediately occur without the typical 48-hour discussion period. If the Electorate extends the order, the process will then move forward to the Appeals Panel review.

Section 7.09 Removal of Member from Independent Unit

(a) Overview – While members have a general right to choose their unit, a member may be removed and banned from a unit under the provisions of this section.
(b) Mediation and Confrontation – Prior to submitting a complaint to remove or ban a member, a unit’s leaders must confront the subject member with the issues that give rise to the possible complaint, and must attempt to mediate the dispute with a senior leader as the mediator. Confrontation and mediation should be well-documented, preferably over e-mail.
(c) Complaint – The leader of an independent unit may issue a complaint to the Justicar and Grand Master seeking removal of the member, or seeking to ban the member from entrance into the unit. The complaint will contain a summary of facts, including any logs e-mails or other evidence to verify the facts of the complaint. The complaint must also detail the efforts made to confront the issue and mediate any dispute.
(d) Deliberation – The Grand Master and Justicar will deliberate the facts of the case and determine if there is a basis for removal of the member by a preponderance of the evidence. The Grand Master and Justicar must determine that the attempts to mediate the dispute were handled in accordance with the Covenant, and may indicate to the unit that additional attempts to mediate or confront the issue are required. Moreover, the Grand Master and Justicar will ensure that the independent unit is uniformly applying its membership standards and not discriminating against the affected member in particular. Otherwise, if both the Grand Master and Justicar are in agreement, an order will be issued by the Justicar to remove or ban the member.
(e) Review – Upon the issuance of an order removing or banning a member, the Appeals Panel must immediately convene and determine the order’s necessity. The decision of the Appeals Panel will be issued within five days. If the Appeals Panel decides that the order was inappropriate by a unanimous vote, the order will be reversed. Otherwise, the order will stand and be put into effect. For the purposes of the Appeal, the Left Hand of Justice will submit a memorandum on behalf of the member stating the case of the member to remain in or transfer to the unit.
(f) Complaint Related to Prior Chamber of Justice Convictions – As an alternative to the above procedures, the leader of an independent unit may issue a complaint to the Justicar and Grand Master seeking to stop the transfer of a member into their unit on the basis that the member has previously been convicted by the Chamber of Justice. The Grand Master and Justicar may enact a ban if the member has a conviction that the leader proves would result in an incompatibility with the unit. Typical convictions for this action include harassment of a sexual nature, or egregious cheating. Bans of this nature must be renewed on an annual basis.

Glossary of Terms

The following glossary of terms is for reference and ease-of-use purposes only. The definitions in this glossary are not controlling on the interpretation of the Covenant.

§ = article/section, §§ = plural of § ( ) = subsection Example: § 1.2(a) = Article 1, Section 2, Subsection a

a. Abstention - The act of not submitting a vote by choice or absence.
Defined in § 8.01(i)
Related References: §§ 1.05(b)-(d), 3.03(b)
b. Amendment - Any change made to the Covenant.
Defined in § 1.02
Related References: §§ 1.02(a)-(c), 1.04(b)
c. Appeal - Challenging a ruling on the grounds that proper procedure was not followed or use of the Appeals Panel to verify the proper use of a procedure.
Defined in § 7.05(c)
Related References: §§ 3.02(f); 4.04(b)(ii), (ix); 5.03(e)-(f); 7.02(g), 7.05(d)-(e); 7.07(e), (t); 7.09(e)
d. Appeals Panel- The panel of three members selected from the membership appointed to ensure that the Covenant is followed during the process of adjudication and that other actions of the leadership are completed in accordance with the Covenant.
Defined in § 7.05(a)
Related References: §§ 1.05(f); 7.01(b); 7.03(k), (m); 7.07(t); 7.08(c), (e); 7.09(e)
e. Conduct of Members - Specific articles outlined in the Covenant to which all members must adhere.
Defined in § 7.06
f. Discussion Period - A specific amount of time used to deliberate issues that have been submitted for votes.
Defined in § 1.05(b)
Related References: §§ 1.02(b)(iii); 1.05(b); 3.02(d); 3.04(f)
g. Electorate - A combination of the Dark Council and the leader of each Independent Unit that is convened to vote on specific actions, including electing a Grand Master or Justicar, or amending the Covenant.
Defined in § 1.05(a)
Related References: §§ 1.02(a), (b)(ii)-(iii); 1.05(a)-(e); 3.02(b); 4.02(a)-(c); 4.04(a)-(b); 5.02(b)-(c); 5.03(b)-(c)
h. Executive Action - Any action taken by the Grand Master or Dark Council, which cannot impede on the Chamber of Justice.
Defined in § 4.01(c)
Related References: §§ 4.01(c); 6.01(d); 7.06(b); 7.07(f)
i. Executive Penalty – A punishment imposed by the Grand Master that does not require the judicial process.
Defined in § 7.07(b)
Related References: § 7.07(b)-(d), (f)-(j), (n), (t)
j. Good Standing - The status required to be maintained by members of the Star Chamber.
Defined in § 3.02(e)
Related References: §§ 3.02(a), (b), (e), (f); 3.03(c)
k. Independent Unit – An organizational group that serves to provide a venue for participation and development for members with its own culture and identity; either a Clan or Independent House.
Defined in § 6.02(a)
Related References: §§ 1.05(a); 3.02(b); 4.04(b)(v); 6.01(b); 6.02; 7.05(b); 7.07; 7.09
l. Judicial Penalty - The imposed punishment on the accused by the Justicar upon a guilty verdict being reached in a Process of Adjudication, or imposed by the Justicar without process in accordance with the Covenant.
Defined in § 7.07(b)
Related References: § 7.07(b)-(d), (f)-(n), (q)-(s)
m. Jury - A group of individuals selected from Equites and Elders to determine guilt or innocence based on the preponderance of the evidence, or to reach a determination on expulsion.
Defined in § 7.04(a)
Related References: §§ 4.04(b)(v)-(vii); 7.01(c); 7.03(f)(ii); 7.03(g)-(i); 7.05(d)-(e); 7.06(q), 7.07(g)
n. Left Hand of Justice - Assists the Justicar in the interpretation of the Covenant and serves as defense counsel during the Process of Adjudication.
Defined in § 7.01(d)
Related References: §§ 1.04(a); 7.01(b), (d)-(f); 7.02(d); 7.03(c), (f), (i), (n); 7.09(e)
o. Order of Advanced Incarceration - An action taken by the Grand Master or Justicar which limits a member’s access to the Brotherhood’s assets if the Grand Master or Justicar determines there is risk to the Brotherhood, during a time of crisis, or if said member has become an immediate threat to themselves or another member.
Defined in § 7.08(a)
p. Policy - Any rule or actionable item established by the Dark Jedi Brotherhood which is not specifically defined in the Covenant
Defined in § 1.03(b)
Related References: §§ 1.03; 1.04(b); 2.01(h)-(i); 6.01(c); 6.02(c); 7.01(i)-(l); 7.06(s)
q. Process of Adjudication - The action taken by the Chamber of Justice when a member is accused of violating an article of Conduct and Reprimand.
Defined in § 7.03
Related References: § 7.05(a)
r. Quorum - The established minimum of filled positions required to hold a vote of the Electorate; set at three-quarters.
Defined in § 1.05(c)
Related References: § 1.05(d)
s. Recusal - The act of removing oneself from the Process of Adjudication if an individual does not feel that they are able to act in an impartial manner.
Defined in § 7.01(g)
Related References: § 7.04(a)-(b)
t. Right Hand of Justice - Assists the Justicar in the interpretation of the Covenant and serves as investigator and prosecutor during the Process of Adjudication.
Defined in § 7.01(c)
Related References: §§ 1.04(1); 7.01(b)-(c), (e)-(f); 7.02(i); 7.03(a)(i); 7.03(c), (i), (s)
u. Rights of the Accused - The articles applied specifically to the rights of an individual accused of violating an article of conduct and reprimand.
Defined in § 7.02
v. Rogue - A member who is not in an Independent Unit and does not hold a Dark Council position.
Defined in § 6.02(a)
Related References: §§ 2.02(a); 7.07(q)(iv)
w. Star Chamber - The executive board of the Dark Jedi Brotherhood, made up of former Grand Masters and two temporary members.
Defined in § 3.01(a)
Related References: §§ 1.05(a), (e); 3.01-3.04; 4.01(a); 4.02(b), (c)(iii); 4.02(d); 4.04(a); 4.04(b)(iv); 5.03(a); 7.07(p)
x. Term Limit - A set maximum amount of time an individual may serve in a position for a single period of time.
Defined in § 8.02(i)
Related References: §§ 3.02(c); 4.02(a); 4.03; 5.02(c); 7.01(e); 7.05(b)
y. Vote Threshold - The minimum required votes for approval.
Defined in § 8.01(j)
Related References: §§ 3.03(b); 4.02(b); 4.02(c)(iii); 4.04(a), (b)(iv); 5.02(b)-(c); 5.03; 7.04(c)-(d); 7.05(d); 7.07(c)-(e); 7.09(e)

Origins

The original version of the Dark Covenant was written by Telaris “Mav” Cantor and posted on the Brotherhood's message boards – it was merely the “Bylaws” or rules that the club would abide by. When Grand Master Firefox stepped down from his position, he made soon-to-be Grand Master Jac Cotelin promise to set up a process for the removal and appointment of Grand Masters. This was the beginning of the Dark Covenant project – which slowly grew until it encompassed every aspect of the Brotherhood, as our own Constitution.

The Covenant is the basic heart of the club – it lays the framework for all of our operations. The original text was developed by Jac Cotelin and Trevarus Caerick. It took more than a year to develop, with many members contributing to the numerous drafts that circulated during the two major revisions and countless minor ones. The debates which took place were a clear demonstration of our members eagerness to ensure the future success of this club.

On December 16, 2005, the new Dark Covenant was officially and unanimously ratified by the Dark Council. It served brilliantly as the guiding document of our Brotherhood, and showed it's flexibility through numerous amendments.

On February 26, 2015, Jac Cotelin was appointed by Grand Master Darth Pravus as Justicar. A primary goal of Cotelin as the Justicar was to revise, modernize, and update the Dark Covenant. It was recognized by that time that, although the Dark Covenant had been very successful in serving as the backbone of the Brotherhood for a decade, it had in many respects become out-dated, clunky, and hard to understand. Moreover, it did not incorporate the modern judicial process of the Chamber of Justice that had been refined through multiple Justicars and over 50 Chamber of Justice cases. Cotelin set out to recreate the Dark Covenant in a new-and-improved manner with a primary goal of readability and usability.

The process to create the "new" Covenant took nearly two years. Cotelin created the initial drafts of the Covenant and circulated it for revisions and comments to multiple groups of members with different focuses and influence, including the Star Chamber, the former Justicars, the current and former Grand Masters, 25 influential members, the Dark Council, Consuls, and finally to all of the members at large. Hundreds of comments were received and addressed by Cotelin during the process, which permitted for the Covenant to be improved greatly.

On November 21, 2016, the final vote was cast by the Electorate on a unanimous approval of the new Covenant. The new Covenant went live effective January 1, 2017.

Prior Versions