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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old January 16 2013, 01:50 AM   #16
Trekker4747
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Re: Geordi's Authority

I doubt having a counselor on the bridge is very routine, but Picard liked having Troi around for her empathic abilities.
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Old January 16 2013, 02:04 AM   #17
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Nightdiamond wrote: View Post
It seems their rank was basically the same, except for Data's position. So it seems like Geordi didn't have to be formal with Data as far as rank.

Geordi never called Data "sir" but usually just Data, or in some cases "commander".
TNG was a little loose with military protocol. Also, Geordi and Data were friends and of the same rank, if not equal position from S3 on.

Everyone called Picard "Captain".
Picard and Troi called Riker "Will".
Picard called Crusher "Beverly" while everyone else refered to her as Doctor.
Everyone else seemed to be on a first name basis with each other, with Picard calling everyone Mr. Data, LaForge, or Worf, or "Counsellor".
Worf called everyone "sir", being just a lowly Lieutenant.

Nightdiamond wrote: View Post
In some cases Geordi gave Data orders in engineering and on the bridge.
I don't remember orders as in "Data, I order you to....", but I do remember suggestions as in "Hey, Data. Why don't you reroute this to that". There's a difference.

Nightdiamond wrote: View Post
And then, whenever the bridge is taken over or can't function, control and command of the entire ship is temporarily transferred to engineering.
In that case the senior officer would be commanding the ship in Enginnering (Picard in Brothers) while LaForge would still be in command of the room's staff.

Geordi and Data's professional relationship seemed to governed by their friendship rather than their position or rank.
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Old January 16 2013, 02:43 AM   #18
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Re: Geordi's Authority

The idea WAS that the military ranks were not much more than a traditional formality, the ranks being more ceremonial in most cases. That they WERE supposed to a group of people mostly on equally footing working together. When things got to the wall, sure, those ranks and positions came into play but for the most part and everyday stuff I suspect the ranks and positions were ignored in favor of just working together.
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Old January 16 2013, 04:02 AM   #19
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Squiggy wrote: View Post
I don't remember orders as in "Data, I order you to....", but I do remember suggestions as in "Hey, Data. Why don't you reroute this to that". There's a difference.
In Final Mission, while on the bridge, Geordi gets an order from Riker to increase the speed of something, and he relays one to Data;

Geordi: Data, monitor the shearing effect on the beam
And when he's with Data in engineering the demeanor is part friendly, part protocol sounding;

In Deja Q, when Geordi was with Data in engineering:
GEORDI: Data, you're my liaison to the bridge. I'll need you with me.
True, it's more like a request/order between friends, but also by same ranking officers.

From those interactions, it gives the impression that same ranking officers can give minor orders to one another.

Squiggy wrote: View Post
In that case the senior officer would be commanding the ship in Enginnering (Picard in Brothers) while LaForge would still be in command of the room's staff.
Up until Picard arrived, Geordi had control of helm, and if something happened to the senior staff, before they reached engineering he would have had total command of the entire ship at the point.

This happened in Powerplay, when there was a firefight on the bridge, and Riker transferred entire command to Engineering;

RIKER: Computer, transfer command to engineering... Full security alert!
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Old January 16 2013, 05:23 PM   #20
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
These answers are sort of contradictory. If Data's rank allows him to 'make the call' in crunch situations, then why didn't Logan's rank allow him to make the call when Picard and Riker were on the planet?
I should have said Data's position, as second officer. Data and Geordi are of course equal in rank from season three onwards.

Geordi's position was Picard left him in command, so essentially he was temporary Captain, at least this is how the show sold it.

When the show is as contradictory as it is, I'm just trying to join some dots!
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Old January 16 2013, 05:29 PM   #21
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Garrovick wrote: View Post
I believe that the practice of addressing the CO of any naval vessel, regardless of rank, as "Captain" is more of a naval tradition than an actual commissioned rank. For example, In WW2 CO's of US Navy submarines were Lieutenant Commanders by rank, but they were called "Captain" by their crews. John F. Kennedy was a Lieutenant when in command of PT-109 but he was referred to as the "captain" of the ship.
Indeed, however in Trek we see the Captains of everything down to piddly crews of 12 on the Lantree with four pips, indicating what the 19th Century RN would call a "post Captain". You could argue a prestige job, like for example Esteban in ST3 exploring political hot-potato Genesis, would require four pips even on a piddling science ship, but he still seems over-ranked for such a menial command.

Rank isn't the only thing that determines who is in charge of any given situation, it's also the position one is in. A Second Officer can't give the Chief Engineer an order, unless said Second Officer is acting as temporary Captain.
Quite, I assume you are referring to today's military here today as well. When HMS Conqueror sank the Belgrano, her Ex-O was a Lt. Cmdr and her engineering officer had a full three stripes, but the Ex-O through position was higher up the chain of command.
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Old January 17 2013, 12:06 AM   #22
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Re: Geordi's Authority

USS KG5 wrote: View Post
Captain McBain wrote: View Post
These answers are sort of contradictory. If Data's rank allows him to 'make the call' in crunch situations, then why didn't Logan's rank allow him to make the call when Picard and Riker were on the planet?
I should have said Data's position, as second officer. Data and Geordi are of course equal in rank from season three onwards.

Geordi's position was Picard left him in command, so essentially he was temporary Captain, at least this is how the show sold it.

When the show is as contradictory as it is, I'm just trying to join some dots!
But Geordi had the position of Chief Engineer. Does that not trump Data's position of Second Officer?
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Old January 17 2013, 12:11 AM   #23
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
USS KG5 wrote: View Post
Captain McBain wrote: View Post
These answers are sort of contradictory. If Data's rank allows him to 'make the call' in crunch situations, then why didn't Logan's rank allow him to make the call when Picard and Riker were on the planet?
I should have said Data's position, as second officer. Data and Geordi are of course equal in rank from season three onwards.

Geordi's position was Picard left him in command, so essentially he was temporary Captain, at least this is how the show sold it.

When the show is as contradictory as it is, I'm just trying to join some dots!
But Geordi had the position of Chief Engineer. Does that not trump Data's position of Second Officer?
Nope. A Second Officer is third in command of the entire ship.
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Old January 17 2013, 05:03 AM   #24
Captain McBain
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Captain McBain wrote: View Post
USS KG5 wrote: View Post

I should have said Data's position, as second officer. Data and Geordi are of course equal in rank from season three onwards.

Geordi's position was Picard left him in command, so essentially he was temporary Captain, at least this is how the show sold it.

When the show is as contradictory as it is, I'm just trying to join some dots!
But Geordi had the position of Chief Engineer. Does that not trump Data's position of Second Officer?
Nope. A Second Officer is third in command of the entire ship.
Then why is Geordi in charge of Engineering when Data is also present ("Deja Q," for example)?
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Old January 17 2013, 05:10 AM   #25
Nerys Myk
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Captain McBain wrote: View Post
Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Captain McBain wrote: View Post

But Geordi had the position of Chief Engineer. Does that not trump Data's position of Second Officer?
Nope. A Second Officer is third in command of the entire ship.
Then why is Geordi in charge of Engineering when Data is also present ("Deja Q," for example)?
Because that's his job. He's in charge when Picard is present, too. Just as Crusher is in charge of Sickbay, even if Picard, Riker or Data are present.
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Old January 17 2013, 08:02 AM   #26
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Re: Geordi's Authority

It's very possible that Data serves extra shifts in Engineering when he's not on duty as Second Officer/Operations. In this second job, he's under the command of the Chief Engineer. In his first job, the opposite is true.

It's not that dissimilar to Spock doing double duty as both XO and Science Officer, and would occur for the same reasons: a more-than-human character who takes on a second job because he can handle it and because they can really use him.

Normally this would lead to some conflict, but the characters can get around that because they're friends. If it was Data and Logan, for example, it probably wouldn't work.
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Old January 17 2013, 08:37 PM   #27
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Re: Geordi's Authority

I actually think that in addition to his duties as second officer and chief operations officer, Data was the de facto chief sciences officer (more often not, he was reporting and analyzing things the sensors were detecting).

Given the nature of Starfleet vessels to encounter "strange stuff," it's not too surprising that Data and Geordi often worked together on various projects of either a scientific or engineering nature, IMO.
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Old January 17 2013, 10:29 PM   #28
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Captain McBain wrote: View Post
But Geordi had the position of Chief Engineer. Does that not trump Data's position of Second Officer?
Nope. A Second Officer is third in command of the entire ship.
There's a grey area there IMHO. In TOS Scotty was often in charge of the ship when Kirk and Spock were on landing parties. I know it's heavily implied that Scotty was simply both Chief Engineer and Second Officer of the original Enterprise, but surely that's not terribly efficient? Second Officer should be somebody who is regularly stationed on the bridge (which Scotty nominally shouldn't have been). Sulu or Uhura, maybe. So, there's definitely reason to assume that the Chief Engineer is very high up the ol' pecking order.

Admittedly, the structure of rank seen aboard the NCC 1701-D differed considerably from that seen on the original NCC 1701.
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Old January 18 2013, 10:33 AM   #29
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Re: Geordi's Authority

In TNG we often see a weird pecking order. For example, when Data is in command of the Enterprise in Gambit, Worf rather than Geordi serves as his First Officer, presumably because Worf was more easily replaceable in his normal position than Geordi.

Normally I'd rate it: -

Picard
Riker
Data
Geordi
Worf

in the direct command line - but we also have the bridge qualified Crusher and from season seven, Troi to consider.
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Old January 18 2013, 02:22 PM   #30
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Re: Geordi's Authority

Second officer probably isn't a formal position and simply refers to whoever is next in line for command after the XO. There's no reason they need to be regularly on the bridge, especially since they have other duties they need to take care of as a department head. Data being a sleepless android just means he can spend an extra shift on the bridge (with the unfortunate side-effect of reducing the experience gained by whatever lieutenants would normally be officer of the deck while the senior staff are off-duty).
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