Military Protocol

Military Protocol and Customs

A. Addressing

1. The use of "sir" will always be used with an OFFICER of higher rank. It is a plain show of respect for rank, even if he/she is "outranked" in terms of position. Enlisted personnel are never addressed as "sir" unless they are a Warrant Officer. Warrant Officers are considered enlisted personnel with commissions as officers in their specific specialty fields.

2. The use of "ma'am" in Starfleet is used only if it is the known personal preference of the female officer — "sir" is used for all genders and all races in Starfleet out of respect to asexual races (not all races have just male or female genders).

3. The commanding officer of a starship is referred to as "captain," as he/she is the captain of the ship, regardless of rank.

4. When asked a question by a superior officer, the proper response is "yes sir" or "no sir" (substitution of their rank in place of "sir" is also approporiate)

5. When given an order, the response is "aye aye sir." ("aye aye" stands for "I understand and will obey")

6. In addressing personnel by rank, it is not necessary to call them by their full rank. In other words, you do not walk down a corridor and say "Good morning, Lieutenant Commander," or "Hello, Petty Officer First Class." Therefore, the following are abbreviated addresses for both officers and enlisted:

Starfleet Starfleet Marine Corps
CR, CA, CN "Crewman" REC "Recruit"
PO3, PO2, PO1 "Petty Officer" PVT, PFC "Private"
CPO "Chief" CPL "Corporal"
SCPO "Senior Chief" or just "Senior" (if familiar) SGT, SSGT "Sergeant"
MCPO "Master Chief" GSGT "Gunnery Sergeant" or "Gunny" (if familiar)
WO "Warrant Officer" or "Warrant" (if familiar) MSGT "Master Sergeant"
CWO, CWO2, CWO3 "Chief Warrant Officer" or "Chief Warrant" (if familiar) MGSGT "Master Gunnery Sergeant" or "Master Gunny" (if familiar)
ENS "Ensign" SGTMAJ "Sergeant Major"
LTJG, LT "Lieutenant" WO "Warrant Officer" or "Warrant" (if familiar)
LCDR, CDR "Commander" CWO, CWO2, CWO3 "Chief Warrant Officer" or "Chief Warrant" (if familiar)
CAPT "Captain" 2LT, 1LT "Lieutenant"
CMDR "Commodore" CAPT "Captain"
RADM, VADM, ADM "Admiral" MAJ "Major"
FADM "Fleet Admiral" LTC, COL "Colonel"
FMAR "Fleet Marshall"

B. CO / Flag Officers Entering Spaces

1. When the COMMANDING OFFICER or the rank of COMMODORE OR ABOVE enters a space where junior personnel are present, the senior officer/crewman present yells "Attention on Deck!" At that point, all personnel stand at attention until the superior officer states "as you were," "at ease," or "carry on."

a. The exception to this rule is when the superior enters the bridge/CIC of a base or vessel. The senior person present then says "_ on the bridge!" or "____ in Combat!", where the blank is to be replaced by the rank of the superior. Personnel do NOT stand at attention, as that would disrupt the watch standers on duty. Instead, the senior officer on the deck is the only one that acknowledges.

b. For example, if the commander of a naval vessel enters the bridge, and he/she is the rank of commodore, the senior crewman/officer calls "commodore on the bridge!" to let all watch standers know that the commodore has entered.

C. Customs

1. CHANGE OF COMMAND CEREMONIES: When the commanding officer of any space worthy vessel boards his command for the first time, it is customary that all senior staff stand at attention, in formation, at the airlock entrance. Note that, when the CO is taking command for the first time, he/she will use an AIRLOCK to board, not a transporter. When the CO boards the ship, the XO stands in the middle of the two flanking files and comes to attention as a boswin or boswin's mate (enlisted) blows the pitch pipe, signaling that the CO has arrived. The CO then says "permission to come aboard." And the XO's reply is "permission granted." At that time, the CO will usually read his/her standing orders to take command of the vessel. After that, the staff is usually dismissed. Depending on the preference of the CO or XO, dress uniforms may or may not be worn.

2. When an Admiral or political figure comes aboard the ship, it is customary to hold a reception and/or banquet for that individual as a welcome. Dress uniforms are appropriate at that time.

3. When the Commanding Officer, Flag Officer or civilian political dignitary boards or disembarks the ship, he/she is "piped" aboard / ashore. Generally, senior officers will be present, in ranks, and an enlisted Operations Specialist will blow the traditional sounding pipe that has been a Naval tradition for centuries, signaling the officer's departure.

D. Military no-no's

The following are military offences that all personnel should be aware of. Breaking any one of the below mentioned could result in disciplinary action, possibly court martial.

1. disobeying an order
2. disobeying a direct order (this is more serious than #1)
3. passing information to the enemy
4. capital crimes (murder, rape, etc)
5. Treason
6. Insubordination
7. Derelict of Duty (levels of seriousness ranging from not reporting for duty on time to not reporting at all)
Unless in extreme cases, the commanding officer of the offender will be the ruling court martial officer.

E. Punishments

The following are ranked in severity from least to greatest.

1. EMI : Extra Military Instruction. Personnel in question are re-trained in their off-duty time, extending their working hours until re-qualified.

2. DRB : Disciplinary Review Board. A number of senior personnel, depending on the seniority of the person in question, sit on a board of inquiry. Liberty may be secured, EMI given.

3. XOI : Executive Officer's Inquiry. XO interviews the accused. Brig-time may be given, liberty may be secured, EMI given.

4. Captain's Mast : Also called NJP (non-judicial punishment). Person in question goes before the captain him/herself. Demotion in rank may be given, brig-time, liberty secured, EMI.

5. Court Martial : A full military judicial court is convened with the commanding officer as the presiding official. Could be discharged from Starfleet service, if severe enough.

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