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Clear message

Robert's Rules of Order are a standard set of rules for running formal meetings. The ObscureOrganization uses them for all official proceedings. More on what they're really about later. What follows is a 2-minute review of Robert's Rules in Plain English, which is itself a significantly abridged version of the full Robert's Rules of Order. This is just intended as a refresher - it won't completely make sense on its own. Give Robert's Rules in Plain English at least one read-through, and then use this as a reminder of key points.

  1. Basics
  2. Motions
  3. Minutes


These are the things that everyone participating in a meeting should be aware of.



  1. One sentient being, one vote

  2. You need a quorum to make decisions

  3. Majority rules

  4. Silence = Consent

  5. You need 2/3 to undo decisions or change existing rules or rights (e.g fillibuster, amendment)

  6. You can't vote until the debate is over

  7. Once it's decided, it's decided

  8. Personal attacks never okay


  1. the presiding officer (chair) controls the discussion

  2. One question at a time, one speaker at a time

  3. actions may be taken by general consent, if no objection is voiced

  4. if any objection is made, a vote must be taken

  5. motions may be withdrawn


Types of motions

Note that all motions must be approved, and that secondary motions (such as amendment) are passed or defeated independently of the main motion. Subsidiary motions may be debated, but that debate may only address the desirability of that motion, and not the main motion.


  1. Member requests the floor

  2. the Chair recognizes the member, and grants them the floor

  3. member makes the motion. "I move that..."

  4. another member must second the motion for it to be considered

  5. the Chair restates the motion

  6. the fleets engage

  7. the Chair puts the question to a vote

  8. the Chair announces the results of the vote

Points of order

  1. Chair can request motion be submitted in writing

  2. maker of motion may speak first

  3. maker of motion may not speak against it, but may amend it

Motions may not

  1. conflict with bylaws

  2. be outside the scope of the organization

  3. conflict with adopted motions

  4. reiterate defeated motions

  5. duplicate or conflict with motions in committee

Incidental Motions - address procedural issues


The minutes should include:


Approval and Corrections:

- ColinMacDonald