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The Scum are any role in a Mafia game whose Victory Condition is mutually exclusive with the town's. In other words, the Scum can only win if the town loses, and vice versa.

Some common scum roles include:

Roles whose Victory Condition is not mutually exclusive with the town's, such as a Survivor, are generally not considered scum.

The basic definition of the Town's Victory Condition is that all scum must be eliminated (through either executions, nightkills, or other, less common means).

Debate over Definition

While the definition presented above is the most common definition of this term, there is still a wide debate about what "scum" means precisely, especially in relation to third parties. Are survivors scum? How about jesters? And so forth.

Ecco's definition of scum: anyone whose victory condition either excludes the town from winning, or in some significant way debilitates them. For instance, the mafia win condition and the town win condition are mutually exclusive; mafia are scum. Conversely the survivor win condition is not mutually exclusive with the town win condition; they are not scum. But Jesters, in order to win, cause the town to waste their biggest tool against the mafia -- the public execution. Ecco considers them scum.

Scum is also frequently used as an adjective to describe players who are suspicious, as well as to express the opinion that a player is likely scum (e.g. "Windshipper is scummy for switching his vote so much," "Xythar is the scummiest player in the thread," "TLB is a Scummy McScumerson")