ISML 2017 Charter

The Annual Charter complements the ISML Constitution in defining values, schedules, additional limitations, etc. that have not yet been addressed. This allows ISML to be slightly different each year (keeping things exciting) while also retaining consistent core values.

I. Voting Policies and Procedures
A. IP addresses of voters will be logged, in order to determine authenticity and uniqueness.
B. A voter may not circumvent the Policies stated in Article IV of the ISML Constitution by using multiple IP addresses to cast votes in the same round.
C. Voters found in violation of these procedures may have their IP addresses or subnets banned from voting in future ISML-hosted events for the remainder of the year. The length of ban is at the discretion of the Staff.
D. Voters may change their vote (if cast in error) by contacting the Staff by email at [email protected]. Vote change requests must include the IP address from which the vote was cast, the original incorrect vote, and the requested new vote.

II. Contestant Divisions
A. Female and male characters will compete in separate tournaments. They may face each other in exhibition arenas only.

III. Tournament of Champions
A. Past winners of the ISML Championship, together with the 2016 winners, will participate in a tournament in 2017 during the Main Tournament, named the Tournament of Champions.
B. Characters in the Tournament of Champions will not participate in the Main Tournament in 2017.
C. Characters who last won an ISML Championship more than eight (8) years ago, before the start of the Nomination Period for the Main Tournament will be removed from the Tournament of Champions, and be allowed to be nominated for the Main Tournament.

IV. Automatic Qualification
A. The top two (2) Contestants from each of the ISML 2016 Seasonal Tournaments are permitted automatic entry into ISML 2017 Main Tournament, without having to go through Nominations. This is a total of eight (8) entries.
B. 2016 Necklace and Pendant winners who did not win the Tiara nor the Scepter are permitted automatic entry into ISML 2017 Main Tournament, without having to go through Nominations. This is a total of twelve (12) entries.

V. Nomination Period
A. The Nomination Period lasts seven (7) days.
B. Character eligibility will be checked according to Article III of the ISML Constitution with the following additional conditions:
1. Character data occurring after 31 December 2016 will not be considered for the Main Tournament.
2. For entry into the Female Division, the character must be female, must possess a female form (in which case only the instances when the character is female shall be considered), or must regularly exhibit feminine qualities when the character's gender is unknown or cannot be determined.
3. The Male Division considers the same qualifications as above except with regards to male and masculine characters.
4. A character who qualifies as both male and female may enter one division only; the prevailing gender will take priority.
C. The same nomination form is used for both female characters and male characters.
1. Voters may nominate up to eighteen (18) characters.
2. Voters must nominate at least five (5) characters.
3. At least three (3) eligible anime franchises must be represented in the nomination ballot.
4. At least one (1) male and one (1) female character must be included in the nomination ballot.
5. All nominations have equal weight. There is no ranking of nominations.
D. Nominated characters must be unique.
E. Invalid nominations will be discarded individually and will not void the entire ballot unless the discards result in a violation of any of the subsections of Rule C, in that case the ballot will be discarded entirely.
F. At the end of the Nomination Period, characters with the most nominations in each Division will advance to the Main Tournament until the allotted slots are filled.
1. The number of allotted slots for each Division is one hundred and twenty (120) minus the number of automatic entries defined previously.
2. Staff will resolve any ties that occur in the last available slot(s). Priority consideration shall be given, if applicable, to those characters not selected for the previous year's Main Tournament.

VI. Seasonal Tournaments
A. Separate nominations will be held for Seasonal Tournaments
B. Seasonal Tournament selection will be made based on number of nominations and series representation.
C. No series will be allowed to have more than three (3) characters in the Seasonal Tournament.
D. A character cannot be in both Seasonal Tournament and Main Tournament.
E. Characters who did not get accepted into the Main Tournament, and appeared in an anime series after 31 December 2016 will be considered for the appropriate Seasonal Tournament.
F. For entry into Seasonal Tournaments, the character must be female, must possess a female form (in which case only the instances when the character is female shall be considered), or must regularly exhibit feminine qualities when the character's gender is unknown or cannot be determined.

VII. Group Stages
A. Characters participating in the Main Tournament are referred to as Contestants.
B. Each Division consists of one hundred and twenty (120) Contestants.
1. The Main Tournament's format and schedule are identical to all Divisions.
2. Additional Competitors will be present, in form of participation in Exhibition Matches occurring alongside the primary matches but having no bearing on Main Tournament results.
3. Contestants are seeded based on results from the Nomination Period.
C. The Group Stages consist of seven (7) Periods in the following order: Aquamarine, Topaz, Amethyst, Sapphire, Emerald, Ruby and Diamond. Each Period consists of 5 matches for all characters. Depending on the number of groups, number of rounds in a period may vary.
1. Number of matches in a given round may vary depending on number of groups in each period.
2. Each Contestant has exactly one (1) opponent per Round.
3. Exhibition Matches will be featured during the Round.
4. Each Round will last twenty-four (24) hours.
5. Round results will be available on the Website no sooner than twelve (12) hours after the Round's scheduled end.
D. At the end of each Round, the Contestant who receives the greater number of valid votes in his/her Match will be declared the winner; the opponent will be declared the loser. If the Contestants have an equal number of valid votes, the match will be declared a draw; both Contestants will record a tie in their statistics, and no overtime match will occur.
E. Each Period will consist of varying number of Groups of six (6) Contestants from the Female Division, and the same number of Contestants from the Male Division. Each Group will compete in a round-robin format, with each Contestant competing against all other Contestants in the same Group exactly once.
F. A ranking system for each Group will be utilized to record the Contestants' results in each of the seven Periods.
1. The primary index for rankings will be League Points. Contestants are awarded League Points following each Round depending on the result:
a) A win awards three (3) points.
b) A tie awards one (1) point.
c) A loss awards fractional points calculated as (Votes For / Votes Against).
G. Contestants in the same Group may not have the same rank at any point in the tournament. If Contestants have the same amount of League Points after a given Round, tiebreaker procedures will be applied in the following order:
1. Greater number of wins
2. Winner of the tied Contestants' head-to-head match, if applicable
3. Greater number of Votes For (VF)
4. Greater Vote Differential (VD)
5. Selection by Staff
H. At the end of each Period with all tiebreakers have been applied, the four (4) Contestants in each Group with the most League Points will advance to the next Stage. Additional contestants will be selected to advance to the next Stage by wild-card matches during necklace match days
I. The Aquamarine, Topaz, Amethyst and Sapphire Periods will be the Stage of one hundred and twenty (120), ninety-six (96), seventy-two (72), and sixty (60). The Emerald and Ruby Periods will be the Stage of forty-eight (48) and thirty-six (36) . The Diamond Period will be the Stage of twenty-four (24).
1. After each Stage, all advanced Contestants will be re-seeded according to their results in prior Stages before being allocated to their respective Groups.
J. Other statistical values may be posted and kept for study and analysis.
K. Every ballot submission will be recorded in a database. At the end of each Round, the Staff will validate and verify each submission before calculating totals.
L. All Voter Policies and Procedures stated in Article IV of the Constitution apply with the following additions:
1. Voters may abstain from any match in a given Round, but a ballot must have a minimum number of votes to be considered valid. This value differs depending on the Round and will be specified on each voting ballot.
2. Voters may make changes to their submitted ballot in the allotted time by contacting the Staff with their IP address and change request.
3. Votes submitted from a proxy IP are not allowed and are liable grounds for banning.

VIII. Necklace and Pendant Showdown
A. At the end of each period, there will be a Necklace Showdown voting round which will determine the winner of the necklace for the period in the Female Division. This round is known as the Pendant Showdown for the Male Division.
B. There will be only one Necklace/Pendant awarded per Period.
C. Only Contestants who have not already won a Necklace/Pendant this year are eligible to participate.
D. A total of eight (8) Contestants from each Division will participate in the Necklace/Pendant Showdown based on their performance during the Period. Eligible Contestants will be chosen according to the following tiebreaker procedures:
1. Higher Ranking in Group
2. Greater number of Points
3. Greater number of Wins
4. Greater number of Votes For (VF)
5. Greater Vote Differential (VD)
6. Selection by Staff
E. The voting round will last twenty-four (24) hours.
1. Voters may Rank up to eight (8) Contestant among the finalists on their ballots.
2. Exhibition matches will be scheduled alongside the Necklace and Pendant Showdown.
3. Results of exhibition matches will not impact the rankings or point totals of Contestants.
F. At the end of the round, the One Contestant is awarded the Necklace/Pendant by Instant-Runoff Voting method. Ties are resolved using the same procedure in Main Tournament rounds.
G. Round results will be available on the Website no sooner than twelve (12) hours after the Round's scheduled end.
H. Posters for the Necklace/Pendant will be available on the Website no later than one (1) week after the Round's results are released.

IX. Elimination Stage
A. Sixteen (16) Contestants from each Division are seeded according to their performances in the prior Stages. The 1st round will feature the following matchups based on seed: 1st vs 16th, 8th vs 9th, 4th vs 13th, 5th vs 12th, 2nd vs 15th, 7th vs 10th, 3rd vs 14th, and 6th vs 11th.
1. Contestants advance through the bracket according to traditional single-elimination rules.
2. If Contestants have the same number of votes at the end of an Elimination round, the Contestant who won the previous head-to-head match during the Main Tournament will be declared the winner. If that match was also a draw, or did not occur, the higher-seeded Contestant according to Initial Elimination Stage seedings will be declared the winner.
B. Eliminated Contestants will be seeded into the Consolation Brackets, a series of single-elimination tournaments that will determine the final rankings from third place to sixteenth place. These matches will take place during the Elimination rounds at the earliest possible opportunity.
C. The winner of the Female Division will be awarded the Heavenly Tiara while the winner of the Male Division will be awarded the Champion's Scepter.

X. Exhibition Matches
A. Exhibition Matches are official ISML-hosted events designed to raise awareness of anime series and Japanese media characters who are not currently participating in the current year's contest. The matches may focus on anime series airing after ISML had begun or on other outlets possibly previously unknown to members of the Community.
B. Exhibition Matches have no effect on the Main Tournament.
C. At least one Exhibition Match will be scheduled during each round of the Main Tournament.
D. Exhibition Matches may be scheduled during Necklace/Pendant Showdown.
E. Several Exhibition Matches will be scheduled during the Elimination Stage voting rounds.
F. Voting or abstaining in an Exhibition Match carries no benefit or penalty.

XI. Schedule
A. All dates in this section will be published on the Website for easy access by the Community.
B. All dates are subject to change. ISML may change the schedule without updating this section of the document; however, any and all changes must be published on the Website as early as possible.
C. All tournament matches will last for twenty-four (24) hours. Staff may extend the time period if system errors prevent votes from being submitted during this period. All extensions will be reported on the Website.
D. The Nomination Period is scheduled from 0000 GMT, 1 March 2017, to 2359 GMT, 7 March 2017.
1. This period will be extended if system errors prevent nomination submissions for more than twenty-four (24) cumulative hours.
E. The Main Tournament is scheduled from 1 April 2017 to 4 December 2017.
1. All matches in this period are scheduled to start at 1500 GMT.
2. Aquamarine Period will take place from 1 Apr to 22 May.
3. Topaz Period will take place from 26 May to 5 Jul.
4. Amethyst Period will take place from 10 Jul to 9 Aug.
5. Sapphire Period will take place from 14 Aug to 8 Sep.
6. Emerald Period will take place from 13 Sep to 4 Oct.
7. Ruby Period will take place from 9 Oct to 25 Oct.
8. Diamond Period will take place from 30 Oct to 13 Nov.
9. Elimination Stage will take place from 17 Nov to 4 Dec.

XII. Legal
A. The information presented on the website, including but not limited to biography information, statistical history, and copyright information, is not guaranteed to be completely accurate. ISML, including its staff and owners, cannot be held legally liable for any harm caused by the use or misuse of information contained within the pages located on the domain.
B. The names of all characters and Japanese productions featured on the Website do not in any way belong to ISML. All copyrights and intellectual property belong to their respective owners. Images are used for identification purposes only.
C. During vote-checking, Staff shall not show any favoritism to any Contestant during the validation process. Once voting results are released for a match, a member of the Community may appeal the results within twenty-four (24) hours. Once an appeal is accepted by the ISML Commissioner, the Staff will repeat the validation procedures and make any appropriate adjustments. After twenty-four (24) hours have passed, the result is final and cannot be changed.
D. While the Staff will attempt to enforce the Voter Policies as strictly as possible, situations may occur where not all votes in violation of the Policies will be detected or where voters banned for Policy violations discover alternate methods to submit votes. The Staff will work to the best of their ability to minimize the occurrence of these situations.
E. All scheduled dates and times are subject to change without prior notice. However once changed, the Community will be notified on the Website.
F. Each year, ISML and the Staff attempt to present a fair system of matches. The Staff will ensure their best, honest, and virtuous effort to arrange a respectively even schedule for all Contestants without bias or favoritism or discrimination.
G. The Staff is authorized to delay the start of the voting session should any problems arise due to technical issues or other areas of concern. In such cases, the Staff are allowed to delay the end of the voting session and the release of results.

XIII. Amendments
A. Once approved and published, the contents of this document shall not be altered. It may only be amended, in which amendments may update or supersede the statements in this document.
B. Amendments may be suggested by any member of the Community and are subject to approval by the Staff and Commissioner at any time during the course of the tournament.
C. Approved Amendments must be reported on the Website.
D. [8 July 2017] Section VI. F. has been added to clarify that only female characters are allowed in Seasonal Tournaments.