Here at MSO, we’re in the business of having fun and yet serious competition. And as every gamer knows, a thorough rulebook is the key to everyone having a good time, so here are our rules for a safe and fun Olympiad. If you have a question about a certain policy or guideline, be sure to read through all of our policies, but if that still doesn’t answer your question, email mindsportsolympiad@
- Follow all policies, venue rules, and staff directions
- No frantic running, jumping, throwing, or other unsafe shenanigans
- Support each other in maintaining a safe environment
- Report concerns to staff
- Don’t harass anyone
- Respect everyone’s physical and social boundaries and personal property
- No stealing, cheating, trolling, or griefing
- No playing while inebriated or under the influence of hallucinogenic or illegal drugs.
- Make a friend
- Compete in tournaments or try some demonstration games
- Explore the tournament rooms and feel free to spectate
- Remember to eat, sleep, and shower
Everyone should observe commonsense rules for behavior, personal interaction, courtesy, and respect. Harassing or offensive behavior will not be tolerated. MSO reserves the right to revoke, without refund, the entry of any participant not in compliance with this policy.
MSO is committed to providing a safe environment where everyone is treated with dignity and respect. Harassment or unwelcome conduct, whether verbal, physical, visual, or in any other form, is strictly prohibited. MSO’s anti-harassment policy applies to all persons involved in the operation or attendance of the Olympiad. MSO will not tolerate harassment of anyone by anyone, including participants, arbiters, vendors, or staff.
MSO defines harassment as any behavior that threatens a person or group or produces an unsafe or non-inclusive environment. Harassment includes, but is not limited to, offensive verbal comments or non-verbal expressions related to gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, or religious beliefs. Harassment also includes, but is not limited to, sexual or discriminatory images in public and quasi-public spaces (online and offline), intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention. Harassment may take the form of comments, epithets, slurs, jokes, teasing, display or discussion of written or graphic material, repeatedly standing too close to or brushing up against a person, or giving gifts of an unwanted or sexual nature. Advocating or encouraging any of the above is also considered harassment.
Harassment at MSO does not include respectful disagreement or critique offered in good faith. MSO reserves the right to alter or broaden its definition of harassment at its sole discretion.
No one should tolerate any conduct of this type. Should you experience or witness harassment, you may choose to take any of the following actions:
- If you feel safe and comfortable doing so, ask the offender to stop. Whether the offending behavior is intentional or unintentional, expressing your discomfort to the offender directly often puts a stop to that conduct.
- Leave the area. While this may be unfair to you, it is sometimes best for your safety and well-being if you to choose to leave the area, especially if you feel uncomfortable around the offender or their conduct. After separating yourself from the conduct, you may still choose to take additional actions.
- If you are comfortable doing so, ask MSO staff for help. You can find staff at the main office, managing events in various tournament rooms, and roaming the halls.
- Report the incident formally to MSO staff, on-site or online. You may go to the main office to file an incident report in person. This can also be done anytime during or after the Olympiad by emailing mindsportsolympiad@
- Contact the police or other appropriate authorities. Your health and safety is our most important concern. If you require immediate assistance from law enforcement, medical services, or other governmental entities, please do not hesitate to contact such services directly.
The Mind Sports Olympiad has a hard-earned reputation for fairness and integrity at the highest level. Cheating will not be tolerated. MSO participants agree not to cheat and understand that various anti-cheating detection methods may be used including a computer analysis of their games. Competitors agree to meet all reasonable requests by the Mind Sports Olympiad and its representatives, to determine the veracity of my tournament results, including but not limited to:
*Entering into an interview to discuss game concepts with an independently appointed arbiter.
*Playing a demonstration game in a discipline in which they have competed at the Mind Sports Olympiad, with Webcam monitoring in an interview with an arbiter.
*Providing previous game histories.
Based on any informal or formal complaint or report of harassment, MSO may take the following steps. Note that this list is not exhaustive, and other appropriate action may be taken as necessary.
- Read and investigate all reports. MSO documents and reviews all reports. Reporting parties may be contacted for further clarifying information unless they have submitted a report anonymously or asked to not be contacted further. Note that MSO will not share the results of these reports with anyone, including the person who filed the report, unless required by law.
- Intercede if and when appropriate. MSO staff may take immediate action to address harassment concerns, including but not limited to, escorting participants to a location in which they feel safe, refunding tickets, cancelling events, moving event locations, requesting participants leave a specific area, removing offenders from the event, or banning offenders from the Olympiad. Bans and removals may be on a temporary basis, for the duration of a specific event, or permanent.
- Contact police and medical authorities when appropriate. If, upon review, MSO finds that relevant local government officials should be notified, MSO may contact such entities and/or share confidential information as required by law.
- Sanction participants based on our investigations. MSO participants found to have violated the Code of Conduct will be subject to sanctions that are proportionate to the seriousness of the violation. MSO will take whatever reasonable steps it deems appropriate in order to maintain its reputation for safety, fairness and integrity. Those sanctions will include some or all of the following although this is not an exhaustive list:
- Verbal or written warning
- Requiring the participant to avoid any interaction with, and physical proximity to the party or parties involved
- Temporary suspension from any MSO sponsored events or online services
- A permanent ban from any MSO sponsored events or online services
- Immediate expulsion from the convention without refund
- Reporting of the incident to the appropriate authorities
- Publication to the MSO community and/or third parties of the details of the incident
MSO’s Code of Conduct applies in all physical and online spaces within MSO’s control. This includes, but is not limited to, event venues, MSO social media pages, and MSO forums. Occasionally MSO is made aware of behavior by participants (or potential participants) that has occurred outside of MSO—either online or offline—and is a gross violation of our Code of Conduct. These actions need not occur in MSO-affiliated spaces to be considered for sanctions by MSO. These include, but are not limited to:
- Individuals who have not attended MSO but have a history of abusive behavior and/or known incidents that took place outside MSO that may cause risks to a participant’s safety, or which may contribute to a hostile or non-inclusive environment at the convention
- MSO participants who have been reported for outside incidents, including, but not limited to, conduct at other conventions, threatening or abusive behavior online, or assault
We understand that, at times, participants will have disagreements or interpersonal conflicts that do not necessarily escalate to the point of harassment or abuse. MSO will not arbitrate such disagreements—we ask that you please leave these conflicts at home.
MSO continuously strives to create a safe and welcoming space. Should you have any suggestions for how we can improve, please email us at mindsportsolympiad@gmail.
We care about creating safe spaces to play games together, at our events and yours, so we’ve published our Code of Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy under a Creative Commons License. This means that you can freely use and adapt them for your convention or event. Have questions about how to use these policies? Email us at mindsportsolympiad@gmail.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.