unwritten rule

unwritten rule

A law, provision, or guideline that is generally accepted but not formally established or enforced. It's become something of an unwritten rule that people from different departments only sit together during lunch. It's just an unwritten rule that a new president will make his previous tax returns public—seems kind of suspicious if they don't. The unwritten rule for many years was that successful athletes were given free passes for bad behavior or poor grades, so long as they remained successful in their sport.
See also: rule, unwritten
References in periodicals archive ?
The Ireland head coach has always had an unwritten rule that players who move overseas will all but end their international careers - but he's also said that players could still be selected in an 'emergency'.
"Was there a bit of an unwritten rule that it wasn't discussed in the dressing room?" Sheringham says in his Utd Unscripted piece on the club's website.
R03: Is there a standard unwritten rule development process for hockey players?
It was, she insisted, an "unwritten rule" among colleagues.
As Levitsky and Ziblatt explain, it was adherence to this unwritten rule that allowed American democracy to prosper for much of the 20th century, while it was the breakdown of this very norm that led to Donald Trump and the increasing polarisation that makes up American democracy today.
Vaughan said Australia had broken an unwritten rule by taking an object onto the pitch to tamper with the ball even though he admitted many teams used"tricks"during matches.
I know you can't help who you fall in love with, but the unwritten rule has been broken - nothing should come between friendship.
"There is an unwritten rule and as long as that is maintained then fine, but I am not sure it has.
And afterwards String broke his own "unwritten rule" by getting up to perform after a daytime drinking session.
* Unwritten Rule #1 is that the target has to laugh along with the joker.
Jobs for the boys all round, and with the unwritten rule that the First Minister must speak Welsh.
Nocturnal predators are rousing from their slumbers, About to slay quarry in large numbers, Nature heartless and cruel, "Dog eat dog" the unwritten rule.
There is no rule against the full-court press, it's just an unwritten rule that most teams retreat to their own end of the floor to set up their half-court defense instead of immediately launching into a fast-paced defensive strategy.
According to former ambassador Ljupco Arsovski, on the other hand, this has nothing to do with the election campaign since it's an unwritten rule for Greek presidents to make such statements whenever they visit northern Greece.
Graham is a man of great integrity with a record of bringing black players through, but in my heart of hearts it wouldn't surprise me if a former England manager one day admits that, yes, there was this unwritten rule.