A dutch sim group based in Europe.
It all began in December 2003. Our current Commander in Chief, Thomas Wallace AKA Bobjuh AKA Ronald decided he wanted to join a Star Trek sim. He wanted to learn simming first in a Dutch sim since his English was not quite good. However at the moment there was only one Dutch sim, the USS Harachte was had been death for a couple of months due to lack of attention by the admins of the sim. So he decided to start up his own Dutch sim, the USS Waldorf, without any experience in simming. Together with one of the members of the USS Harachte he started a pilot on an Invisionfree board. After a successful pilot the USS Waldorf moved to a phpBB forum hosted by Ronald on the fifth of January 2004, which is now regarded as the starting date of Taskforce 254. In the second mission a couple of new members joined the sim.
In March 2004 the number of members doubled from 6 to 12. This sudden increase in membership created some problems. The sim started to become a bit chaotic. The CO and XO decided to stop the sim briefly and to discuss the problems. A new posting manner was agreed on. There was to be more interaction between the crew members instead of everyone doing what they liked and there had to be longer posts.
In May the USS Waldorf had quite some members and some complained they had little to do. In the mean time one of the USS Waldorf members (Dennis Ashmore) had started his own sim on another forum, the USS Evolution. Some members of the Evolution were also Waldorf members but some were not. Ronald asked Dennis Ashmore if he would be interested in having the Evolution on the Waldorf forum as an equal partner. Dennis agreed and the Evolution was moved to the Waldorf forum. Now having two sims, the forum was renamed “Taskforce 254”.
May also some problems aroused. Three members of Taskforce 254 (Julius Verne, Jimmy Hawkins and Kay Abershine) decided to start up their own sim, an almost exact copy of the USS Waldorf called USS Voyager. They stopped with simming on the Waldorf, but would come back to cause some trouble and disruptions on the forum.
In June there were talks between Taskforce 254 and a group called Starfire fleet for cooperation. Starfire fleet initially wanted Taskforce 254 to merge into their group, but the Taskforce 254 staff preferred a sharing of resources and cooperation. Most Starfire fleet admirals agreed to this, except the founder who wanted a complete merge and the cooperation did not go through.
In July the idea came to start up a third sim. Some members wanted more then to participate in one sim and the third sim was to be for members who wanted to create a second account and join another sim. Starbase 185 was created with as CO and XO two senior members from the Waldorf.
In August talks were going on between the sim of the three members who left Taskforce 254, the USS Voyager and Taskforce 254 about a possible cooperation. Selar had found the USS Voyager sim via via a Dutch member in the FSF and was one of the new admins of the sim. Selar and Julius Verne had the idea to merge the USS Voyager sim and Taskforce 254 to form the Dutch Sim Fleet. A draft charter and website were made. However during the talks a conflict arose on the USS Voyager sim between two of the three founding members, Julius Verne and Kay Abershine. Kay left the sim along with a couple of members and Julius had enough of it and quit. The other founding member (Jimmy) was on a long holiday and Selar was left in charge of the USS Voyager. Selar tried to solve the problems and to keep the sim running until Jimmy would return. He succeeded to keep the sim running and once Jimmy returned he quit the sim, he was tired of the conflicts and the sim had a low quality anyway. Too many members had left and it proved fatal for the USS Voyager sim which ceased to exist. Kay, the one who left, found a new sim, the USS White Widow.
Afterwards Selar and Ronald had a talk. Before the possible cooperation when there were tensions between Taskforce 254 and the USS Voyager Selar always maintained a good relationship with Ronald. Ronald said he wanted to start up another sim again in Taskforce 254. Selar gave him the idea of making it a chat sim, all current Dutch sims were Play By Board sims and they had never heard of a chat sim before so nobody had any experience in that. Because of this Ronald asked Selar to be the Commanding Officer of the new IRC sim, the USS Confucius. He accepted and the first sim was held on the 6th of September. During this time Taskforce 254 applied for full membership of the Simming League. Being a new group it was felt that Taskforce 254 could greatly benefit from the experience of groups in the SL and could establish itself in the international simming community.
In November there was a little dip for Taskforce 254. The USS Waldorf and had less activity and the Starbase 185 sim was almost death. It was agreed on to stop the SB 185 sim and to let some of the USS Evolution members have a second account on the Waldorf. This brought back the life and it would not take long before the Waldorf had new members and was back to the old level.
After a successful period again for Taskforce 254 a new sim was started in December, the NX-05 Saratoga. Due to the popularity of Enterprise in the Netherlands it was decided to make it an Enterprise era sim. On the fifth of January 2005 Taskforce 254’s one year anniversary was celebrated with an IRC party on Taskforce 254’s IRC server.
In the beginning of February Taskforce 254’s CinC took over a Dutch/English sim group called Doroch Moon Station. At one time it flourished, having multiple sims. It had been inactive now for a couple of months but still had 10 times more page views then Taskforce 254 being an established name. The DMS mail sim was moved to a new forum and started up again being an English sim.
At the end of February it was decided to again start a new sim. The Saratoga was now running steadily, the Waldorf and Evolution had great activity and the Confucius simmed every week, only having to do offsims a couple of times. The new sim was called the USS Artemis and command was given to the Executive Officer of the Evolution. In the mean time also Taskforce 254’s message board flourished. Many members took the time to chat with each other in the Mess Hall.
The last couple of months there has been one problem. Because of Taskforce 254’s success some people thought they could do the same and started up their own sim. At one time there were as many as 4 groups coming from Taskforce 254 members and they would recruit in Taskforce 254. The Executive Staff acted strictly issuing warnings to these members to make clear that this is not wanted. Many of these groups have disappeared now.
Current Intergroup relationships
At this moment Taskforce 254 holds good relationships with most groups. The Taskforce 254 senator is the Vice President of the Simming League and we have one magistrate in the Simming League. We hold close relationships with Dagobah Fleet, a Star Wars sim group set up by the former CO of Starbase 185 and talks about a possible cooperation are going on. We had a small conflict with a group called Utopia Prime after our CinC offered his opinion about their command structure. He was proven right however and there is a peaceful relationship now. We hold reasonable relationships with the surviving groups from our members, Starbase 9, the United Order of Starfleet and the United Federation of Ships.
There is however at the moment one group which we do not have peaceful relationships with and this is the White Widow. Taskforce 254’s relationship with the White Widow has varied in the past. It started off bad with them using (rank) images from our webspace and copying things. When confronted with this the WW CO did not acted kindly, a quote being (translated) “I do not at all have the intention of being kind to you since I want to have to do as little as possible with you”. Relationships varied in the time to come, they increased to a reasonable level with sometimes a small dip. Recently relations dropped. When being asked by a Taskforce 254 member what the real name of the WW CO was our CinC answered with his real name which can also be found in the topic on our forum where the WW CO introduced himself. The WW CO for some reason did not like this and began to shout against our CinC on MSN that he had to keep his mouth shut etc. When our CinC told him that his name could be found on our forums in his introductory post he started to really call names, quotations being: (our CinC is homosexual) “yeah, it would have to be dirty, filthy fucking homo” “it would not surprise me if you had AIDS” “I want nothing to do with a filthy pedophile who plays Star Trek games on the internet at your age” We have a list with the diplomatic relations we have with other groups and the White Widow is considered “hostile”. Most are at “peace”, one is “neutral” and the Simming League groups and 2 other groups are “allied”.
At the moment we have 5 active sims. The USS Waldorf, USS Evolution and USS Artemis are pre nemesis, post voyager Play by Board sims. The USS Confucius is a pre nemesis post voyager IRC sim and the USS Saratoga is an Enterprise Era Play by Board sim. Taskforce 254 is affiliated with Doroch Moon Station which is an English playing Play by Board sim. Our Commander in Chief is Thomas Wallace, our Deputy Commander in Chief is Jonathan E. Harkins, our Chief of Fleet Operations is Selar and our Chief of Staff is Darren Reynolds. Those four make up the Executive Staff which runs the day by day operations. All CO’s and XO’s together make up the Host Council which makes the important decisions and can be compared with FSF’s Fleet Command. At the moment we have 38 active members of whom 13 have a second character which makes in total 51 characters. We have 56 registered accounts on our forum with 21031 posts in total which is an average of 45.55 posts per day. We hold Star Trek Trivia every Wednesday at 8 o’clock CET on our IRC server.
Taskforce 254 considers certain values to be quite important. We want to have a community where everyone feels at home with friendship and mutual respect. Taskforce 254 believes peaceful cooperation is the basis for continuing growth and development of a simming group. Taskforce 254 does not believe in unnecessary complications as displayed by some sim groups. For example when there are 2 Fleet Admirals, 3 other Admirals and some Commodores for a sim group of only 20 members and when the groups have extensive bureaucracy and staff positions which are not needed.
At this moment Taskforce 254 is drafting a charter based on the draft Dutch Sim Fleet charter. It is to contain Taskforce 254’s values, clear rules and the Taskforce 254 organizational structure. There are talks going on about a possible cooperation between Taskforce 254 and Dagobah Fleet, a Star Wars sim group founded by one of our members. Also there are talks going on between Taskforce 254 and a Dutch Harry Potter site, www.hpsite.nl about creating a Dutch Harry Potter sim.
At our one year anniversary the goal was set to double the number of sims and members from 4 sims and 30 members while still having a fun and stable group. Now at one third of the year with 5 sims, Doroch Moon Station and 38 members with 51 characters we are well on our way to achieving that goal.