Speaker of the House
It's been brought to my attention that as congress activity is low, so to is my media footprint. One of the problems this creates is that new members don't know who the Speaker is - or rather who operates the Speaker account. When I resumed the post on day 4,000, I ensured for a couple of months that everyone joining congress was friended. This isn't however something I would expect to do every month going forward.
New Congress Members
It's your responsibility to know what congress is, what you're letting yourself in for and what if any actions you need to take. You should ask members of your party what being in congress means, how to conduct yourself and how to friend the speaker, should you run into problems not explained here. The Speaker is the eRep equivalent to House of Commons: Mr Bercow of rl fame. Articles are posted under the Speaker account, but the position is currently filled by Michael Ludgate. You need to be a friend of this player account, as the Speaker sends out a group mail for congress business that is the basis of how each member and the government communicate. In eRep, you can't send a group message to people you're not already friends with.
Previous Congress Members
For some curious reason, people choose to unfriend the Speaker, either immediately after the months group mailing is generated, or at the end of their congress term. This isn't required or good practice. It should be clear from the manner I operate, that the Speaker and the congress member who has party allegiance, whilst the same person, are operated with integrity to the requirement of the position. Not agreeing with my party (currently also a Party President) or myself as an individual player does not link to the Speaker directly - nobody is going to assume that because you maintain a friendship link, that you agree with either myself or my party's position on any matter. Please don't constantly unfriend, it's not a clever statement, it's just annoying.
A reminder that on the 24th whilst ordering your congress return list, you should be looking out for people that haven't been a congress member before / recently. As well as assessing the likelihood of them being elected with respect to others, these people need to be told to ensure they are friends with the Speaker. Feel free to keep a link to this article for new recruits, adding to the training you give them as appropriate. If you're concerned that the distinction between new party members and new to congress is likely to be an issue, I'm happy for you to suggest all new recruits befriend me.
Whilst we remain in ATO mode, congress is being administered slightly differently than usuall. Further to to ensure a smoother running ATO experience, I'll be continuing Speaker functions and the ATO Congress regardless of the number of seats available due to ATO actions.
If you've been asked by your PP to run for congress, to fill seats on the potential of partial or full congress, but don't get elected. Under ATO you will find yourself included in the ATO extended congress, this includes voting rights except where those votes using the official voting system. If for whatever reason you'd rather not be part of this ATO congress, please put a message below or send Michael Ludgate a PM. Likewise, shout if you've shown interest in congress by applying, but haven't been added to the ATO congress group message.
If you happen to be resident in an officially recognised PTO party or are regarded as a PTO player, this doesn't effect you. Should you wish to join congress, apply for membership of a recognised eUK party and discuss this with your PP.
Thanks for reading