Shorts in the dining room,no reserving chairs at poolside, no kids in the hot tubs, no kids in the casino, no reserving seats in the theatre,disembark only when your colored tag is called , etc etc.
Cruiselines like most other businesses walk a fine line between rules that help to maintain the atmosphere that the majority of their patrons desire, the orderly running of the ship and having confrontations with the minority who insist upon breaking the rules.( that may in and of themselves be more disruptive than the rule that was broken) The passengers' arguement almost always being "I'm paying for this vacation and I don't have to obey your silly rules".
Luckily most people obey rules and so we generally live in an orderly society. The problem with cruise ship "rules" is that there can rarely be much consequence to the rules and the passengers know it. What are they going to do, throw you off the ship because your kid hogged the hot tub all afternoon or have six bus boys drag you kicking and screaming from the dining room because you are not wearing a jacket? We all know they aren't going to do that , so a certain percentage of us do whatever they please.
When the rules are enforced you might then read a comment in this section from the outraged and aggreived passenger who will "never sail with THEM again".
The unfortunate thing is when someone does finally push enough buttons and break enough rules or picks the wrong one to break. What happens then is , yes, the passenger is put off the ship.. Just ask the passengers who didn't quite believe that Carnival's non smoking ship is absolutely non smoking.
I would guess that the same people who break these rules can be found at home parked in the handicapped spaces or stopped in the fire lane, or double parked while they just run inside to get a pack of cigarettes.
I think todays cruise lines are scrambling to fill cabins and repeat customers fill cabins. The rule breakers are not coming back if you bust their chops about everything. On the other hand I wonder if the cruise lines think about those passengers who conduct themselves gracefully in life and are the minor victoms of the "rule breakers".
If they see enough of it, maybe they, very quietly, won't come back!!!
Happy cruising, I have to go now and put a towel and a book on two poolside chairs, after all I'll be needing to sit on them next May when I cruise again and I want to make sure I have a good seat.