2020 State of the Federation Address
Welcome, one and all, to the 2020 UFOP: Starbase 118 State of the Federation Address!
This past year not only brought more fun and fantastic adventures, but a truly historic landmark; our 25th anniversary! Few role playing communities ever reach such a staggering achievement, and it is a testament to the enduring legacy of this group. A few of us are nearing a whopping twenty years of unfailing dedication to this fleet! How better to recognize this group as something utterly special.
Over the course of the last twelve months, our fleet has carved out new territory, welcomed new members, and continued the tradition of fine collaborative story-telling that we have come to know and love. Among these are the elevation of two senior members to captaincy, a veritable laundry list of successful plots and storylines, and the recognition of members far and wide for their writing abilities and efforts on the fleet’s behalf. At the same time, we’ve faced our share of hurdles and challenges. However, it is in the nature of this community we all have built to trudge forward into the unknown with optimism and excitement befitting the road ahead.
Just as our fine ships and installations have forged their paths, so to have our numerous teams and task forces. The Advanced Starship Design Bureau is in the process of commissioning a new class of vessel, and our training team has grown in membership as developing officers look forward to passing on their skills. The Image Collective continues to give faces to the compelling characters we all create, and our Podcast Team is more active than ever, releasing a number of new podcasts for the community to enjoy. There is good reason for pride and hope in this coming year.
-- LtCmdr Randal Shayne
A Look Back at 2019
Compared to previous years, 2019 was a year of stability across the fleet, and while we have reduced in size from the start of the year by three ships, we are still going strong with seven ships and installations. A healthy crew count across the fleet and enduring enthusiasm makes for a great start to 2020. Let’s take a closer look at what happened in 2019:
- We kicked off the year with the promotion of Jarred Thoran to Commander, while serving on the USS Columbia as First Officer.
- Our fundraising goal for 2019 was smashed in March — well before the May cut off — with 108% raised through donations.
- In April, Mei'konda and Oddas Aria — serving as commanding officers of the USS Montreal and the USS Eagle respectively — were promoted to Captain by the Executive Council. Alexander Williams received promotion to Commander, while serving on the USS Atlantis as First Officer.
- In June, the fleet launched the newly commissioned USS Astraeus under Captain Mei'konda.
- June also saw the celebration of the 25th anniversary of our community, founded in 1994!
- Our annual Award Ceremony kicked off with glorious fanfare in July, celebrating one another’s achievements over the last year and milestone commendations.
- Command of the USS Atlantis changed from Captain Brell to Commander Jarred Thoran in August.
- The USS Columbia under Captain Theo Whittaker was decommissioned in October.
- October played host once again to the annual Halloween Avatar Contest, 1st place going to the USS Gorkon for their Star Trek: Lower Decks theme, and 2nd place to the USS Constitution-B for their Starfleet Academy Yearbook theme!
- The USS Astraeus under Captain Mei'konda was decommissioned in November.
For those of you looking for some stats on those moves:
For their continued efforts in delivering excellence to each of the ships under their command and the wider fleet in all the out of character work they do, we also saw a number of commanding officers receive promotions in 2019. Sal Taybrim of Ops, Roshanara Rahman of Veritas, Jalana Rajel of Constitution-B were promoted to Fleet Captain, and Quinn Reynolds of Gorkon was promoted to Vice Admiral. Congratulations to them!
In recognition for his dedication to the fleet, Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman joined the EC in 2019 and the Captain-at-Large (a position voted upon by members of the EC at the end of every year) changed hands from Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman to Fleet Captain Kali Nicholotti.
2019 gave us an incredibly stable year of simming numbers, peaking in February, May, and November respectively.
While the numbers look average, this is a very encouraging sign overall for involvement and crew stability across the fleet. With a raft of experienced commanding officers in post ensuring cohesion in their staff and crew, and the dramatic increase in use of Discord, communication across crews has never been easier. This has enhanced the community feel to the group and brought about changes in simming, including the increase in cross-ship joint posts across the fleet as character relationships built and developed through friendships made, and the launch of the USS Juneau has heralded in a new way to conduct a Fleet Wide Plot for the year.
Visits to our website
Overall on average 2019 was on par with the traffic to the website as 2018. 2018 did see a couple of spikes in July, September and October which significantly increased the average views for that year.
Those spikes do distort the numbers, but we can see from the breakdown that whilst the total number of visitors to the site is down, the time that people are spending on the site has increased as well as the amount of pages that people are viewing.
Although there has been a significant reduction in traffic to the website over the years (24,794 total sessions in 2016, compared to 9,113 in 2019), the numbers are an improvement from 2017.
Applications, Training and Placements
Applications and graduations for the fleet have improved only slightly since 2016 (our third lowest year overall). Though the numbers are painfully similar to 2017, we had a refreshing increase in passing rates that leveled 2019 closer to some of our more successful years.
The fleet saw roughly nine applicants to the fleet per month, and concluded the year with a 69% average pass rate with the graduation and placement of 77 cadets. This hits the standard Academy goal of a 60% yearly pass rate.
We ask each fleet ship and task force to report-in with an update on how they did for the year, which includes questions about challenges, accomplishments, and goals for next year. Below, you’ll find the retrospective information for each task force in 2019.
Teams were unable to track their goals using these reports with no SotFA released for the years of 2018 and 2019. It is important to recognize just how long this list of task forces is, and how much we’re engaging our members and helping our future staff develop skills. It’s quite an accomplishment, and cements the fact that we are a community, and not just a game.
This team is perhaps the most important in the fleet. All prospective members undergo a week-long training mission before they’re placed aboard a ship or installation in the fleet, so the effect that the Training Team can have on all new members, and therefore the fleet, is significant.
- Commandant: Vice Admiral Quinn Reynolds
- Deputy Commandants: Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman, Captain Oddas Aria, Commander Jarred Thoran
- Statisticians: Commander Alex Blair
- Rear Admiral Renos stepped down from Academy Commandant in the latter half of 2017, and then Rear Admiral Quinn Reynolds was appointed to the post.
- Captain Brell took a leave of absence from the Deputy Commandant position early in 2019, with Captain Oddas Aria, Commander Jarred Thoran assuming roles as Deputy Commandant later in the year.
- The goal of recruiting additional deputy commandants was fulfilled, and the academy now has a robust and stable administrative staff.
- Unfortunately due to staff turnover, the team did not achieve its goal of creating additional small class scenarios. As the current small class scenario has proven useful, this goal will be carried forward into 2020.
- The training team were not able to get feedback to the trainers as planned. This is a goal that has not been achieved over the course of several years, so an alternative method of delivering feedback will be considered.
- The issue of some trainers failing to volunteer once a month continues to persist, with many classes being staffed by trainers who have volunteered several weeks in a row. As this runs the risk of burning out a core group of volunteers, the training team staff will consider ways to remedy the situation and ensure more consistent participation from all team members.
- With the shift to the updated script format for sims, the academy's tutorials and scenarios were all updated to reflect the change.
- To ease some of the workload on the Fleet Placement Officer, several responsibilities have been transferred from that role, including announcement posts and the creation of wiki accounts for new ensigns. After a few initial bumps, the changes are working smoothly.
- Cadet feedback continues to be positive, citing prompt response times to applications, engaging and helpful trainers, and classes that made them feel prepared to enter the fleet.
The Training Team is always recruiting, and is open primarily to members who are ranked as lieutenant commanders and promising full lieutenants. If you are interested in joining the Training Team, speak with your commanding officer!
The (Image) Collective
This team is responsible for the creation and manipulation of all images that StarBase 118 uses, from character portraits to ship banners to new badges and awards.
- Current Facilitators: Lieutenant Commander Ayiana Sevo and Fleet Captain Jalana Rajel
- The Image Collective notes challenges in 2019 related to members responding to requests in a timely manner. Most work was completed only by a select few of members. With the addition of the fleet Discord, members opt to seek image manipulation services through direct messages, rather than over the forums, and is overall difficult for team facilitators to track. This could be a potential result of a frequent lack of quick response to requests, so people feel they would get results quicker by DMing members directly.
- The team notes its achievements in 2019 by reflecting on the recruitment of new members, with some still in the learning stages of photo manipulation.
- The team has also created new badges, ribbons, and awards for the fleet.
The Federation News Service (FNS) continues as a successful spinoff of our community, helping to create a shared universe of stories that reflect 118 canon and may be used by simming groups around the world.
- Current Facilitators: Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman, Lieutenant Commanders Randal Shayne and Jo Marshall.
- The FNS met its goals of posting articles (both monthly ship reports and other news updates) to the Community News feed. Relationships with other organisations outside of our own have slowed with some articles submitted by writers outside of SB118 in 2019.
- The start of the year and the end of last saw a flurry of articles submitted to the group covering a wide range of topics and editorial stances. There is a still a number of submitted articles to post currently going through the editing process and this year has seen a dramatic increase in members and article submissions overall.
- 2019 has been a great year for the FNS and we hope to continue it into the next!
Wiki Ops is responsible for the ongoing maintenance and improvement of our wiki. While everyone is welcome and encouraged to edit and contribute, the Wiki Ops team curates and helps make the experience more enjoyable and streamlined for all. The Administrators of the wiki are those members who have sysop rights on the wiki. Admins are generally tasked with keeping everything in order on the wiki, and ensuring that there is no vandalism or inappropriate posting.
- Team members operate independently in Wiki Operations. Report compiled by LtCmdr Sky Blake.
- Wiki Operations (WO) was merged into a more forum-oriented "guild" during 2017/18, promoting activity on the Wiki forum thread and make the team more open and inclusive to the membership at large. But as Discord became more prevalent in the day-to-day goings of our fleet, we found that members would choose to ask their questions on their ship servers, rather than travelling to the forum to create new posts.
- This resulted in a lapse of activity, and the team was unable to meet some of their charted goals from previous years.
- On January 13, 2019, Wiki Admin and Operations launched the #wiki channel on the Discord. Since then, #wiki has become our primary point of contact with the fleet at large, facilitating the conversation between admins or power users and members, seeking support on wiki pages.
- Thanks to the combined efforts of admin, WO, and fleet members across the forums and the chat room, we’ve achieved the following in 2019:
- Categorized all pages (totalling ‘’over 500 pages edited’’) and most images without categories
- Deleted the large backlog of pages/images marked for deletion
- Corrected a staggering amount of page names to proper convention
- Begun standardizing ILI pages into a uniform look, allowing members to contribute new information in-sim or in canon to each species.
- Created the Expansion needed template encouraging members to make these changes.
- Again pushed the use of the References template, linking these additions to sims or webpages outside the fleet.
- Created/promoted categories for easier catalogue of wiki pages -- such as categories for personnel logs, missions, etc.
In an effort to celebrate the continued quality of the community and share with a wider audience, the Top Sims Contest has been renamed to Appreciations. As there is no team assigned to this, a general overview is provided.
- This is tied into the Discord channels #appreciations, where members can link to the appreciated sim or appreciation post in the forums to draw attention for those who might not check the forums as often. Thus far, the change has been successful and seen growing participation in submissions varying from sims to thanks given, generating a good feeling among the community.
This team is incredibly important for helping to maintain – and when possible, increase – our membership size. These members help maintain our presence on social media and recruit new members, which makes their efforts extremely important to the future of the group.
- Current Facilitator: Commander Jarred Thoran
- One of the biggest challenges of 2019 was identifying channels that Publicity can utilise for our recruitment efforts. Many of the former places used to advertise have since become defunct.
- The team was able to the majority of its social media related goals (15x posts a month on Facebook, 10x posts a month on Tumblr). We have struggled with building relationships with outside groups over the past year.
- There has been an ongoing project to develop an eBook, which saw a few stumbling blocks. The hope is that the eBook will be available in 2020.
- The Publicity Team has had a rather stable year in terms of membership and has seen some growth in the size of the team and currently sits at 8 active members.
- Although short lived, 2019 did see a reactivation of Starbase 118’s Instagram which helped spread awareness of the group and resulted in the application of at least one member.
The Newsies are responsible for all of the news items you see on the main site, whether that responsibility involves collating information like ship reports or writing entirely new content for the news cycle.
This team is responsible for compiling and the weekly newsletter that all active members receive. With two active members, it’s also one of our smallest teams.
- Current Facilitator: Commander Alex Blair
- Our biggest challenge from last year was getting a newsletter out each week of the month. I had a few weeks where I simply did not have the time to get the newsletter prepared and thus nothing went out those weeks.
- Our biggest achievement was coordinating with the fleet's calendar master on adding scheduled events and birthdays to the newsletter.
This team addresses the concerns of longer-term members (that is, those who have moved beyond the rank of ensign) with a focus on the satisfaction and retention of those members.
- Current Facilitator: Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman
- Deputy Facilitator: Lieutenant Commander Alerta Millis
- Besides a roll call, the team was otherwise inactive in 2019. The 2017 goals still are worthwhile to pursue in 2020, and efforts have begun to see through to their completion by the end of this year.
This team is dedicated to ensuring that the long history of our community is preserved. Primarily, that work now takes place on the wiki, though they have a great wealth of sources to draw from, including old groups, past sims, the forums, defunct sites, and interviews with current and past members.
- Current Facilitators: Commander Sarah Mason, Lieutenant Commanders Jonathan Cumar and Gogigobo Fairhug
- Active vessels typically have someone from staff to do the mission summaries, crew histories, or awards histories to maintain their pages. With them being listed as “active” and new sims coming in, the team sometimes struggles to keep up with the ongoing demand.
- The biggest challenge faced by the team was the continued delays to the Archive launch. The team generated renewed interest when it was announced that the archive would be relaunching near the beginning of the year, but interest wavered as the launch date was and is still currently delayed. The majority of our work involves the archive, so it forced the team to re-evaluate contributions and role in the group.
- However, in 2019, the Community History Team:
This team is responsible for putting on monthly chats, including special chats.
- Current Facilitator: Fleet Captain Sal Taybrim
- Deputy Facilitator: FltAdml Tristan Wolf
- Communication through all vectors for maximum chat participation is a challenge being worked on through the TRello boards set up by Fleet Admiral Wolf.
- The Chat Team had a successful Trivia chat that incorporated new Trivia masters and new ideas.
- The team successfully integrated Discord technology into the fleetwide chats.
- Had a successful watch-a-long using the Rabbit platform.
Poll of the Week has been a source of intriguing inquiries, ponderous proposals and thought-provoking examinations. Though the team has changed significantly over the years, the goal has remained the same; continue to create questions that spark thought, debate or ideas that might not have occurred otherwise. In some cases, the polls simply ask for preference (“What was your favorite episode in season X of Star Trek and why?”).
- Current Facilitator: LtCmdr Randal Shayne
- Deputy Facilitator: LtCmdr Anath G'Renn
- The team, which was and is composed primarily by two individuals, experienced numerous difficulties throughout the year.
- Scheduling occasionally become troublesome, as sudden real-life interference or misunderstandings could delay the completion of a weekly poll by a day or more.
- Lacking a more solid, regimented system and other people to fall back on made self-regulation a challenge.
- Finding relevant and unique poll ideas could also be frustrating- even with a background as diverse and rich as ours, questions can run dry after a time.
- Despite numerous obstacles, the Polls of the Week continued. In the past year, the POTW has changed from a loosely organized entity into a fully established team, with goals to work toward and badges to acknowledge solid efforts. The questions provided have been generally engaging, and have succeeded in garnering interested responses from the fleet.
This team is responsible for the production of our podcasts. That includes creation of individual segments, recording, editing, and producing.
- Current Facilitators: Lieutenant Commanders Geoffrey Teller and German Galven
- The Podcast team notes struggles to recruit and retain members and our total group size remains relatively low, with participation varying significantly from one production to the next, including regular delays in production due to non-delivery or late delivery of promised content by members. This is sometimes attributed to RL issues around finding the time/privacy/environment necessary for audio production, which is especially difficult for some members.
- Due to variations in the equipment members have available to record segments, overall technical quality can vary significantly between members, leading to inconsistent audio.
- Efforts have often been stymied by a lack of time or enthusiasm to participate from the larger fleet. Attempts to conduct interviews are especially problematic as, along with the above mentioned issues, many members are uncomfortable contributing voicework.
- The last year started with the Podcast team being 'rebooted' after having gone inactive for a significant period. This lead to a period of relatively high output for the team, as they successfully produced and published 6 episodes, including a special related to the 25th Anniversary Rewards Ceremony.
- In addition, the team reviewed their production process and added a Trello task management board to our backend to try to streamline the segment assignment and the overall work process.
This team endeavors to keep everyone up to date on the Fleet's current and upcoming events by managing the Forum Calendar. The events are the lifeblood of the Fleet and the importance of knowing when events will take place helps the Fleet run smoothly. The Calendar is one of the best ways to see when events are happening or to help inform of upcoming events.
- Current Facilitator: Lieutenant Maddi Hyden
- The Calendar Team worked to make sure the Fleetwide OOC chats were scheduled and found on the forums.
- The team also ensured birthdays of fleet members were in weekly announcements.
Advanced Starship Design Bureau
Our newest team, this group is responsible for building a new starship creation tool/game called the Starship Designer. The ASDB also maintains and expands the Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards ASDB Technical Database, which provides specifications and design histories for Starfleet starship classes and small craft.
- Current Facilitators: Captain Oddas Aria and Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman
- The ASDB struggled with team engagement and getting team members interested in specific goals and making the goals specific enough to engage.
- The original primary goal was the creation of a replacement, or at least supplement, to the strength tool used by the fleet but not designed by SB118. This has proven a lofty goal and has forced the team to consider what is possible with a task force of this type.
- Nevertheless, in 2019, ASDB has:
- Reviewed several Starship Class and Ship Design proposals, including the Diligent, the Celestial, and others.
- Been instrumental in the development of the Warp XV Engine by reviewing plot points, suggesting field trial procedures, and proofing the Warp XV information making its way to the Wiki — all culminating in the 'Capstone' project currently running and scheduled to end by the end of January 2020.
Each year, we ask task force leaders and ship captains to nominate members for special commendations.
- After a two year hiatus, the 2020 State of the Federation Address was made possible through the diligent efforts of Lieutenant Commander Sky Blake. With the spirit of a field marshal, Deliera, the writer behind Blake, spearheaded the project on the Captains Council to get this year’s address published, coordinating with ship COs and task force facilitators to compile the data and get reports submitted. Overseeing such a mammoth task was no easy feat, but it was one she was well-suited for with her experience as first officer of USS Veritas and Chief of Wiki Operations.
- Beyond the State of the Federation Address, Deliera is a contributor to the Federation News Service, Advanced Starship Design Bureau, and Department of Veterans Affairs teams and serves as a wiki administrator. With her nine years of experience in the fleet, she brings a trained eye and well-grounded counsel to newer members as a mentor and to her fellow staff members as a steadfast colleague and friend.
- Congratulations, Deliera, on seeing through to the completion of this year’s address, and thank you for your dedication to our fleet!
- In addition to her duties as first officer of the USS Gorkon, Lt. Commander Jocelyn Marshall is a driving force across many teams and task forces. She serves as an enthusiastic academy instructor, FNS editor/facilitator, and Image Collective contributor, and has been recognised by each of these teams for her incredible work. Every group she has participated in has benefitted from her passion to see them realized to their full potential.
- Not only that, Em, the writer behind Marshall, is just a fantastic person to work with. Friendly, funny, and supportive, she can be counted upon to bring that extra pizzazz to a project or that much needed morale boost to a team to help keep them on track. For this year’s State of the Federation Address, she also assisted Lt. Commander Sky Blake, compiling reports and data and contributing to the final address.
- Thank you, Em, for all that you do! You are a shining star among our community!
- Just like in any chain of command, the sudden absence of key staff members can cause great strain, and even instability in the ranks. Leaves of absence are, of course, understandable, and members may take a break whenever their real-life situations require, but it can still leave a ship in a bit of a lurch. Eagle was, unfortunately, placed in this position recently. During this dark hour, we called upon the one writer among us whom we knew could pick up the slack of half a ship’s staff, and do it with a smile.
- Justin, the writer behind Lieutenant Quentin Collins, has been, and continues to be, an absolute hero. From the very beginning, we could see that his enthusiasm and team spirit were simply unmatched, and though we were planning on introducing him to staff at a later date, when asked under less than august circumstances, he dived in without hesitation, taking on mentoring roles, leadership IC, and other tasks that would have easily overwhelmed the staff that remained.
- His commitment to and willingness to help out the Eagle cannot be overstated, and for his remarkable service to our community, as both a member and a new part of the staff, we feel it only appropriate that Justin be recognized with this token of gratitude on behalf of the ship he has done so much to keep flying.
- Kris, the writer behind Lieutenant Commander Drex, joined our fleet just as the Eagle was commissioned. Getting a ship up and running is always a busy affair, but what struck me the most at that time was her unwavering positivity. No task was too great for her to take on, no issue insurmountable. In many ways, she has been the spirit of the Eagle, personifying the best parts of this community, and our proud ship.
- Her kindness, helpfulness and impeccable character helped to define the early months of the Eagle, and there is no doubt that we would not be anything close to the same ship without her contributions.
- Sadly, Kris was forced to take an LOA, but that doesn’t make her any less deserving of recognition. If she sees that, it is our hope that she will know just how vivid her impact on us has been, and how grateful we are for her service.
- This year, German Galven’s player Dane has been recognised with special commendations by not one but three teams for his hard work and dedication! Since joining the fleet in 2018, Dane has been a valuable asset to his sim postings and the teams he collaborates with. He frequently goes above and beyond the call of duty, cares deeply for our simming community, and seeks to improve upon his work while also guiding our newer members.
- Dane has consistently responded to requests for the Image Collective and FNS and improved his skills significantly since he first joined less than a year ago. His time as co-facilitator of the Podcast team deserves recognition for his unflagging enthusiasm. This year, he is also recognised by his captain on StarBase 118 Ops for his never-ending commitment to the sim. Well done, Dane, and many thanks for your service!
- FLASH! Presenting for the first time in the 2020 SOTFA, the amazing interplanetary adventures of Geoffrey Teller! A familiar voice to be heard on the revitalised podcast, Brian has made liquid gold seep into our ears and spark those vintage brain waves.
- With a voice for radio, and a love of humour and adventure, Brian’s contribution to the podcast team as a co-facilitator is commended by his colleagues for the work contributed through the year. Writing and lending his voice to the mission reports and news from throughout the Federation, Brian has ensured podcasts listeners have something to shout about. His contributions to the FNS team are also been exemplary, dedicating his time and creativity to the creation and editing of articles and reports, bolstering the team’s efforts over the last year. Every contribution is helpful and the team appreciates the endeavour tenfold.
- Stay tuned for the next exciting interplanetary adventure of Geoffrey Teller! Good Job Guaranteed!
- It’s no surprise to find Samira Neathler gracing this multi-commendation list for the year, however her writer might think entirely differently! While most of the commendations here have seen the writers thrust into the spotlight for one reason or another, Samira works tirelessly in the background.
- Commended by her CO for her good humour and efforts, she is a reliable source of stability on the Gorkon, providing direction for a flagging plot point, or tags for simmers at a loose end. She combs through every post on a monthly basis to kick off the ship Quote of the Month contest on the forum; a big job, but the contest is celebrating nearly two years of continuity thanks to her dedication!
- In conjunction, she is also commended by the Training Team for her unwavering devotion; volunteering for classes consistently and providing a dependable backbone for each class she takes part in. Her simming ability is second to none and each cadet who participates in a class with Samira has one of the best examples available in the team.
- Keep up the good work, Sami!
- Going through a decommissioning can be a difficult and emotional process, let alone two in quick succession. Despite the setbacks, Juliet, the writer behind Anath, has persevered. Since coming to the USS Atlantis, Juliet has solidified herself as a core member of the ship’s staff team. She is an outstanding example of what good simming style is, providing well crafted and thought out sims. It is evident that Juliet pays great care and attention to each of her sims.
- Out of character, Juliet is always happy to share her thoughts and provides valuable contributions to staff discussions, acting as an excellent sounding board for ideas.
- Additionally Juliet is one half of the Poll of the Week Team, supplying the fleet with interesting thought experiments and questions, and is also a prolific writer for the Federation News Service.
- Thank you Juliet for all you have done and continue to do!
- As Second Officer on the USS Gorkon, Elliot — the writer behind Genkos — has risen to a new challenge in a dynamic environment. He is a dependable and reliable simmer, going above and beyond the call of duty in his characterisation efforts, and bringing a spark to a scene that is unique. His work behind the curtain has seen him dedicate his time to mentoring efforts, provide a friendly face and good advice to those who need it, all with a hefty dose of the good old British humour.
- In addition, Elliot is consistently active in the Training Team and Publicity Team, ensuring the fleet is publicised across the internet, helping to bring those new faces into the community and champion UFOP in every facet. His enthusiasm is commended here and we look forward to what the next year will bring for him!
- Thank you for everything you do, Elliot!
Additional Ship Commendations
These players’ COs identified them as participating with a notable and sustained excellence over the course of the year. We join their COs in recognizing their efforts and their dedication in assisting the operation of their ships.
Additional Taskforce Commendations
Without the dedication of these talented members, more than one of the teams below would have been in dire straights. Their team facilitators selected them for special recognition, and we recognize and celebrate all the time they volunteered to making these teams and the whole of StarBase 118 into a better place!
Looking ahead to 2020
At the start of a new decade, the fleet faces several pressing challenges:
- Low application numbers
- Shrinking fleet numbers/member retention
- Addressing CO sustainability
- Low number of command candidates/commanders able to take command when a ship needs to be launched on short notice
- Low/reduced forum usage since the introduction of Discord along with new Discord behavioral issues we've discovered that consume a lot of staff time.
- Ships with good roster management tend to thrive while ones with poor roster management almost always fail.
To tackle some of these challenges, the Executive Council has set forth the following goals:
- Capitalize on the excitement of the new ‘’Star Trek: Picard’’ series through publicity efforts and possibly IC simming events to generate buzz with both existing members and Star Trek fans excited by the show who might then want to check out a Trek RPG.
- Continue to streamline administrative workloads to address CO and fleet staff sustainability.
- Improve training of new ship COs and staff on proper roster management for the health of their ships.
- Reassess and discuss current command candidates and efforts to train up-and-coming commanders.
- With many COs tending to step back after about a year in command, look at ways to extend that and provide more support in those first 12 months.
- Look back on the success of Reddit recruitment drives and whether they're viable to repeat. Previous drives brought in a massive influx of cadets, which was challenging for the academy and the existing ship rosters to handle as we weren't prepared for such an enthusiastic response, but with some warning it could be a really useful way to bring in new members (who might find things a little easier now we've changed our script format).
Task force Goals
- Audit participation on a quarterly basis to try and ensure all trainers are meeting their volunteering requirements.
- Create two more small class scenarios.
- Recruit 1-2 additional statisticians.
The (Image) Collective
- Due to the increased requests to team members individually via direct messages, Image Collective seeks a solution to either track DM requests, or limit group requests to forums only.
- Impose adding the fleet watermark and logo on ALL requested images, regardless of request source. The only exception will be to artists uploading their own work, as by omitting the watermark and logo on their own artwork and characters. This will be reinforced in an emails to the group.
- Create additional training resources for members to utilize, such as videos and tutorials.
- Run a census of The (Image) Collective to prune members who are no longer active or here from the Google Group.
Federation News Service
- The FNS is currently working with Warp XV Development to report on events occurring and to help fill in those who aren't participating as part of the project. In the spirit of the Fleet Wide Plot Arcs of years gone by, the hope is to channel a lot of the enthusiasm around this on the FNS.
- New goals include a regular posting schedule for articles and a new editing goal to aim for on a monthly basis.
- Planning for multiple FNS plot arcs is underway to be seen in the new year, alongside encouraging participation from everyone across the Fleet to submit articles of grand-scale events happening for characters that exist outside of the mission reports.
- Encourage new member participation.
- Continue ongoing maintenance as laid out in the maintenance category.
- Encourage new member participation on the wiki, to increase the active Power Users list by three members (at least), by the end of 2020.
- Create guidelines regarding what constitutes as wiki vandalism, to address users blanking pages.
- Continue to identify avenues that we can utilise to generate a steady stream of applications.
- Identify alternate methods to generate interest and bring potential members to our website.
- Maintain an active social media presence with those platforms that provide the greatest reach (x15 posts monthly on Facebook & Twitter, x10 posts on Tumblr monthly).
- Reactivate our Instagram profile and maintain at least x10 posts a month.
- Optimise the website to aid with improving our Google rankings and to improve our organic reach.
Weekly Newsletter Team
- To miss sending out a newsletter for no more than three weeks this year.
- To look into adding an assistant editor to the Newsletter Team.
- Build the Calendar Team and recruit more members.
- Find more tasks for the Calendar team to participate in.
Department of Veterans Affairs
- Provide fleet administration with a direct report of recommendations for increasing retention.
- Create rules page compiled from Constitution and Terms of Service.
- Create a viable proposal for a non-command pathway to staff membership to submit to fleet administration for consideration.
- Redefine the team’s role in the fleet, expanding projects to be more relevant.
- Once archive is back online, return to updating ship histories.
- Match writer IDs to players via forum postings of new academy graduates to add to our awards recipient compilation spreadsheet with all the awards & recipients.
- Have a “this month in history” segment on the forums every month.
- Create tutorial manuals for "how to history" and the various setups of pages.
- Track down badge recipients for things like the trivia contest, SJAS author badge, awards ceremony badge lists, JSCE author badge, SFMJ author badge, etc. and add these to ship's award pages where awarded simmers were stationed.
- Hold at least three event chats in 2020. One will be Trivia. One will be a watch a long and one will be a new idea.
- Maintain at least 5 members on the team including myself (4 'crew' one facilitator) to cover crucial communications.
- Make sure all communication bases are covered each month: Newsletter, forum, worldtimebuddy, community news.
Poll of the Week Team
- Grow team membership by a full 100%- as there are currently two active members, achieving this goal would expand our ranks to four.
- Have each poll generate no less than 8 responses.
- Reduce delay with which Polls of the Week are released by an average of one day, potentially by means of automated reminders and regular scheduling conversations.
- Establish and adhere to a regular posting schedule - we believe this will create a sense of 'regularity' for members, and to our audience as a whole.
- Shake up format - in answer to some of the challenges the team faced in the previous year, they are exploring ways to retune their format to improve engagement within the team and audience as a whole. One such concept is a 'Dispatches from 118' narrative style, where-in the podcast episode is produced in full as an IC news service.
- Exploring additional avenues for improving ontime content production and delivery
- Leverage Trello scheduling and notification system to produce reminder emails/messaging to team members who have claimed projects.
- Public Production Calendar - Create a google calendar feed that team members can subscribe to which will inject a few periodic reminders as the podcast delivery date is 15/10/5 days away.
- Explore the concept of scheduling weekly or biweekly 'recording hours' where senior team members will be online and available to assist junior members in the creation or production of their segments.
Advanced Starship Design Bureau
- Complete the Write Up for 1 more Federation Class by the middle of 2020 by identifying those interested in the work by proactively working with those individuals interested in doing the work and identifying classes the group is most interested in.
- Complete the Write Up for 1 non-Federation Class (Tholians, Klingons, etc) by the end of 2020 working with members of the group and other members of the fleet to determine which would be the most interesting classes and powers to work with.
- Complete the supplemental questions proposed for the New Vessel template by the end of 2020 to ease the creation of new vessels by Captains, and others, in line with what the Executive Council expects and needs.
Team and Task Force Recruitment Status
- Training Team: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Lieutenant (with CO approval) or lieutenant commander (and above)
- The (Image) Collective: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: The team asks potential members to edit a request to gauge their skills or look at prior work they've done elsewhere, if they offer some.
- The team is happy to accept people with no photo manipulation skills and is open to teaching new members, though they will not ask them to immediately edit official requests.
- Federation News Service Team: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: Membership is also open to non-SB118 members. If you know people from outside our membership who may be interested, please put them in contact with this team’s leadership.
- 118Wiki:Operations (Wiki Operations Team): OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: This team is open to all members with an active StarBase 118 wiki account. To become a Power User, please contact a wiki administrators.
- Department of Veterans Affairs: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Lieutenant. Additionally, you must have been a member in good standing for at least one year prior to joining.
- Chat Team: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: To join, contact the team facilitator via email or Discord.
- Special note: Must have an active Discord account.
- Poll of the Week Team: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: To join, contact the current facilitator via Email or Discord.
- Podcast Team: OPEN to new members
- Rank required: Ensign
- Special note: Members are encouraged but not required to get their Commanding Officer's approval before joining the team. Once done, prospective members are encouraged to reach out directly (either via Discord DM or email) to LtCmdrs Galven and Teller with an idea of what they'd like to contribute to the team. No one is required to provide voicework if they're not inclined or able to do so, but naturally the team strongly encourages participation in that regard.
At present, the fleet consists of the following vessels:
- USS Atlantis, Intrepid Class Starship: Commander Jarred Thoran
- USS Constitution-B, Galaxy Class Starship: Fleet Captain Jalana Rajel
- USS Eagle, Intrepid Class Starship: Captain Oddas Aria
- USS Gorkon, Sovereign Class Starship: Vice Admiral Quinn Reynolds
- USS Veritas, Veritas Class Starship: Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman
- Duronis II Embassy, planet-based embassy, and USS Thor, Vesta Class Starship: Rear Admiral Toni Turner
- StarBase 118 Ops, Trojan-II Class Starbase, and USS Narendra, Ambassador Class Starship: Fleet Captain Sal Taybrim
The Executive Council
The Captains Council
Captains and Above