www.whyville.net Apr 3, 2005 Weekly Issue

Times Writer

The Senate Platform DISASTER

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On Monday, March 28, I sat by the computer, frantically clicking on the Senate Platform link. Boy was it busy! Eventually the platform tool appeared, and in haste I copied and pasted my platform from a Word file I had compiled the previous day. My preparation would prove very useful later on.

Very much pleased with myself, I went into Whyville and campaigned. Often, I clicked on the Senate Platform link to see how many votes I had received.

Then I got a Y-mail. It was from someone I'd asked to read my platform. The problem is, they said, it wasn't there! Gobsmacked, I told them to look again. I looked as well -- only to discover what they'd said was true.

I sat, mortified, looking at the computer screen. Indeed, my platform, and those of the other members of my politcal party, weren't there! As it turns out, the platforms for at least 40-50 people have disappeared and not returned.

Are we at political armageddon? Someone has attempted to overthrow the whole of our democracy so that it seems Whyville is embroiled in anarchy. Well, we're not that far yet, but we are facing what I believe is one of the worst Whyville Senate Races ever.

As I had saved my platform on my computer the day before, I tried to re-submit it, but to no avail.

I checked back an hour later to find that there were now only four, count 'em, four platforms up. Many of my friends' platforms had disappeared. Now I was worried.

I asked around and I got two responses:

"People are manically reporting them," one Whyvillian said...

"They've been specially picked to go through to the next round," said another.

On a more official note, I got this reply from CW Bigfoot:

Help me tell everybody that this is because somebody annoying is probably 911 reporting all the platforms. If I find out who did it, I'll make sure they're punished, don't worry, but the important thing is, once your platform is okayed in the 911 tool, it can't be 911 reported again.

So the first suggestion I heard was the one to believe. It had definitely been very annoying, but I was glad to hear the platforms will come back up.

In response to Bigfoot's comments, every day the candidates and their supporters waited and watched. Some of us even did some campaigning. It's Friday, April 1 at the time of this writing, and only two platforms that I'd seen been have come back.

But it gets worse. At the time of this writing, the platform with the most votes wants to make several new rooms, including two parks where people can fight with fake guns. It will get 911'd, I'm sure, but as the events of before have showed us, it may never come back.

Will this senate race be able to end in two days like it usually does? No, I don't think so. (Editor's Note: Cobd is jumping the gun a bit here -- the platforms normally remain open for two weeks, not just one week. :-)

How many potentially great candidates have had their platforms disappear? I saw many, many excellent platforms that seem to be lost to us now.

The ones that remain want to open up the Face Factory to everyone, they want to lower prices of WhyPasses, they want to make loads and loads more chatrooms. Please Whyville please, half of these people with high ranking platforms don't know what they're doing!!!

*sigh* Maybe it is time to get rid of the Senate...

This is Cobd, my campaigner, my political party, and the running population of Whyville, biting our collective nails.

Editor's Note: You may be a bit hasty suggesting that we eliminate our government because of a problem with a haywire citizen, cobd, but I definitely respect your concern. What should we do? We need to brainstorm some solutions for incidents like this.

Should platforms be OK'd by City Workers before the race begins? That'd be awfully time consuming! Should we not allow them to be 911 reported? Just imagine what inappropriate stuff might get posted.... What do you folks think? Does there need to be a fix, or is this just one unusual incident?

To update you on what's going on, the platforms were NOT deleted, just as Bigfoot said. They were 911-reported by one or two very selfish, small-minded people. When platforms are 911-reported, they disappear because City Hall assumes that the reporter had a good reason for the report. However, if they did not, the person or people responsible will be severely punished -- possibly even banished.

Unfortunately, because so many platforms were reported, the 911 tool was really backlogged this past week. City Workers responded to the trouble quickly, but they're still catching up. Meanwhile, they're brainstorming improvements to the tool to help us avoid this problem in future elections.

The good news is, once a platform has been okay'ed by a City Worker, it cannot be 911-reported again.


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