The US NST’s team has limited time and resources. There are only so many things to give out, and if we frequently offer everything, then it becomes less special (“If everyone’s super, then no one is.”) The US NST’s team tries to balance what is good for the game and- more importantly- what is good for the club in our policy of donating in-character items to charity auctions. For the twin reasons of keeping rare things rare and because the team has only limited time to give, the US NST staff has to set limits on donations. Sometimes we might have more time to do write-ups for items to donate, but to do so would be unfair to those conventions and GotMs that happen when we have little time. So, to be even-handed, we have set the following standards:
Requests must be in at least three months prior to the event to allow the ST’s to craft and manage approval of items to be provided. Items to be offered in charity events (auction, raffle, etc.) must be announced at least three days before the event; no last-minute or on-the-spot donations or changes to provided items will be accepted from Storytellers or players.
The National Convention is the largest, and to give the greatest opportunity to the greatest number of members, this is the first priority. Each genre ANST will provide three items to the charity events (auction plus raffle) at the National convention.
Regional Conventions are the next largest, and merit a lot of attention, so each genre ANST will provide two items to the charity events at each Regional event.
Games of the Month draw a large number of members, and are frequent, so we cannot adequately support those events from the National level, but Regional Storytellers are encouraged to do so.
Non-MES conventions large enough to merit TSC handling are rare, and may draw a large number of members- especially new or prospective members that should get to see the great charity work that the MES is rightfully proud of undertaking. For each non-MES but MES-supported convention, each genre ANST will provide one item for charity events.
The provided items will be developed based on each genre ANST’s best judgment about things that will be valuable enough to bring in significant charity donations, but not so unbalancing as to harm the overall game in a demonstrable way. Provided items will follow these rules (derived from the auction guidelines introduced by Dawn Lloyd during her term as MST):
- The item is entered into the DB at least 2 months prior to the event at the ST’s approval level, and the ST approves the item. This approval should include all pertinent information about the item, including any relevant mechanics. The ST must list the information on where the Auction is being held (which convention or event) and the dates of the event. The item must be submitted with the type “Auction Item.” The member winning the item in the charity event will be given the approval number.
- The player is provided a 6-month limit to redeem the item (this is a general policy that should be announced at the beginning of the auction so as not to take players unaware).
- The existing approval is updated with the purchaser information, including: Member name, Member number, Character (if known and applicable), Chapter/Domain info, and Selling Price. Each ST in the player’s chain must add a comment to the application stating their concurrence; without that concurrence, the item is not yet valid.
- The following items should never be approved for sale at an auction:
- Anything that would not normally be approved or sanctioned.
- Anything that breaks existing settings or rules, including all clarifications in the addendum.
- Event Charity leads may apply additional limitations, such as no more than one National-donated item per member, if they so choose.
After the Auction, each ST is responsible for tracking items they have provided to auctions. STs are encouraged, but not required, to send a reminder to players who are nearing the 6 month expiration.”