Home > Play-by-post discussion > Using OOC to instruct other members

Using OOC to instruct other members

Punch and Judy

Sometimes it’s time to put your characters down and speak as yourself

OOC is an acronym for “out of character”. It is usually used in a PBP or PBEM game to indicate that the following text is written by the author, and not intended as speech from the point of view of the writer’s character.

If you see this in a post, it usually means that the following paragraph has been written by the member as something intended to communicate to other members, like an instruction or comment. The member is making it clear that this is something they are saying, and not the character they are writing about.

When is it used?

Use an OOC comment at the start of your post, or at the end to either comment on the post, or at the end to give a suggestion or instruction about what the reader should do next.

For example:

<OOC – Sorry for such a long post, I just couldn’t stop writing! Could any character on the planet please come and help me out?>

The <>’s are used to further indicate that this section of text is different to the paragraphs above it. Different PBP games use different standards. This is the way I’ve seen most people use in my experience, and in my opinion it makes the sentence stand out as different.

A common use of OOC comments is to add a tag on the end of the post for another member. For example:

<OOC – Tag John!>

This is discussed more in the previous article about tagging at the end of posts.

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  1. JohnBromin
    July 13, 2010 at 2:12 am

    ooc is good for communicating ideas that you can’t really express in the normal course of your post, such as asking for help, or explanation something that the reader wouldn’t understand normally, it’s also good for expressing an opinion although I personally think it’s good not to do that to often, as to keep the focus on the story itself

    • David Ball
      July 13, 2010 at 6:28 am

      Agreed. Too much OOC can just distract from the story. You don’t read a novel and see authors notes all over the page! But communication with the other members is important. I’d you have a lot to say, send an email, chat on MSN, or create a forum thread especially for story discussion

  1. July 12, 2010 at 6:11 pm
  2. July 21, 2010 at 11:05 pm
  3. December 4, 2010 at 7:50 pm
  4. November 1, 2012 at 2:47 pm

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