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    What is a MOTD?

    MOTD stands for “message of the day.” The MOTD is a special announcement or information displayed to users when they log in or connect to a game, chatroom server, or similar platform.

    The content of an MOTD usually includes updates, rules, events, or greetings and is set by the server administrators or game moderators. It serves as a way to communicate important information quickly and efficiently to all users at the start of their session.

    The concept of MOTD originated from early networked computing systems and has since been adopted widely in online gaming and chat environments.

    It was initially used in bulletin board systems (BBS) and later in internet relay chat (IRC) servers, where it became a standard feature for community management and communication.


    Are MOTDs only used in games?

    No, MOTDs can be found across a wide variety of platforms, from online productivity apps to communication tools.

    How often is the MOTD updated?

    The frequency of MOTD updates varies depending on the platform and the administrators’ preferences. Some servers update their MOTD daily, while others might do so only for special occasions or significant updates.

    How long is the MOTD?

    The length of the MOTD can depend on the game or platform, message being communicated, and the preferences of the administrator who sets the message. MOTDs can be as short as a few words or as long as several paragraphs.

    Is the MOTD visible to all users?

    Yes, the MOTD is visible to all users who log in or connect to the server. It is designed to be a universal message that communicates important information or updates to everyone.

    Can regular users modify the MOTD?

    Typically, only server administrators, moderators, or individuals with specific permissions can modify the MOTD. Regular users do not have the authority to change this message.

    However, in some games, a clan or faction might have its own additional MOTD, which is appended to the gamewide MOTD. In these cases, players with the appropriate permissions (such as a clan leader) can update the clan MOTD.

    What happens if I miss the MOTD?

    If you miss the MOTD upon login, some platforms may allow you to view it again through specific commands or options in the user interface. However, this feature varies by platform.

    In a multiplayer text game, for example, it might be as simple as typing “motd” or “help motd” into the game client.

    Myths about MOTDs

    One common myth about the MOTD is that it is only used for greeting and welcome messages. While greetings are a popular use, MOTD can also convey a wide range of information, including rules, updates, and event announcements.

    Another misconception is that MOTD is an outdated feature only found in older systems. In reality, the concept of the MOTD is still widely used in modern gaming and online communication platforms for its effectiveness in mass communication. Modern MOTDs may make use of images, artwork, transition effects, or multiple fonts to make them more eye-catching.

    MOTD examples

    • “Welcome to Fantasy Quest Server! Reminder: The grand tournament begins this Saturday at 8 PM EST. Be there!”
    • “Server Maintenance: The system will be down for updates on 4/21 from 3 AM to 6 AM UTC. Plan accordingly.”
    • “Happy Holidays from the Mod Team! Check out the special holiday event and earn exclusive rewards until 1/2.”
    • “Please remember to respect all community members and follow the chat rules. Visit our website for the full guidelines.”

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    About the author

    Andruid is a writer, roleplayer, storyteller, and nerd who tries to live by Bill and Ted wisdom, i.e. "Be excellent to each other."