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Planet Moratorium - 2020
Hello all,

It has come to the attention of the Editors that OA has a bit of a contradiction going on. Specifically:

a) We say that the vast majority of the Terragen population lives in space habitats but,

b) The ‘facts on the ground’ as represented by the Systems and Worlds pages describe a very large number of systems hosting terraformed, Earthlike planets, giving the impression that most people in the setting live there.

As a secondary issue, many of the planets from the early history of the setting follow a pattern of a colony mission showing up and then somehow (despite limited resources, technology, and know-how) rapidly terraforming a planet almost before doing anything else.

As part of an effort to address these issues, the Editors have decided to declare a moratorium on new terraformed, Earth-like worlds being added to the EG for the duration of 2020. What this means in practice:
  • Beginning at 12:01 AM EST January 1, 2020, the OAUP will not accept any submissions that add an Earth-like terraformed planet to the EG. This will continue until 12:01 AM EST January 1, 2021.
  • During this period, the OAUP will both accept and give preferred editorial attention to EG entries focused on space habitats and space-based megastructures. The exact type of habitat or megastructure is up to the author. Whether the habitats are orbiting the local star or orbiting a non-Earthlike world or doing something else is up to the author. But we really want to see an increase in habitat-only, or habitat majority systems.
  • During this period, the OAUP will accept submissions depicting non-Earth-like worlds, whether natural or engineered, inhabited or not. ‘Non-Earth-like’ in this context means that a RL baseline human would not be able to survive more than 5 minutes (more or less) if exposed to the planetary environment.
  • Inhabited non-Earthlike world entries must include at least three paragraphs discussing space habitats operating in orbit or in the vicinity (e.g., a Lagrange point, a nearby orbit, whatever). It is preferred, but not required, that the majority of the population should live in the space habs rather than on the planet.
  • Non-Earthlike worlds depicting bubblehabs, supraplanetary shells/bands/plates, etc. are acceptable. World-housed worlds and moons containing non-Earthlike environments are acceptable. Space habitats depicting Earthlike or non-Earthlike environments are acceptable.
  • Updating EG articles on existing worlds/systems (Earth-like or not) to add in various sorts of space habitats is acceptable. Expanding existing stub articles while doing so doubly so. Updating older articles that depict early colony missions terraforming a world practically on arrival to add in a major habitat component and depict terraforming as taking longer and being more realistic triply so and will get the same level of editorial priority as new articles depicting nothing but space habs or megastructures.
  • To help show the way - and show we are willing to play by our own rules - each of the Editors has committed to producing at least one article of the kind we want to see in the course of 2020.
  • Earth-like terraformed worlds (whether standalone or part of a larger solar system EG article) that are begun in 2019 and are still ‘in process’ at the beginning of 2020 will be grandfathered in and can continue to be developed during 2020.

If you have any questions or concerns about any of the above, please don't hesitate to ask.


When you say that the majority of the population should live in space, does that include virtual sophonts? For example, Henson has an entirely virtual population, but their host computronium nodes were built in the planet's oceans for cooling purposes, which seems to me like a practical reason for preferring a planetary environment.
Non-Gaian worlds are not covered by the moratorium, so a waterworld used as a heatsink would be fine as an article. Basically we are concentrating on worlds and structures other than terraformed Earth clones.
(11-29-2019, 04:00 AM)stevebowers Wrote: Non-Gaian worlds are not covered by the moratorium, so a waterworld used as a heatsink would be fine as an article. Basically we are concentrating on worlds and structures other than terraformed Earth clones.

To this I will add that we can count computronium banks as a form of 'habitat'. We don't really describe the virtual side of the setting as much as we should (a lot of computronium is apparently embedded in the biont supporting infrastructure) so including more of these can kill two birds with one stone.

Note that the same basic rules apply as for space habs - so we'd prefer descriptions of orbiting or free space computronium nodes, there needs to be at least three paragraphs on computronium nodes and/or space habs if writing up a non-Earthlike inhabited world, etc. etc.

In all cases, extra brownie points for coming up with interesting/evocative descriptions and/or details for the habs/computronium.

Hope this helps,

Making this a sticky.

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