Is there a word to define the act of changing the rules of some situation frequently until one party gets what they want?

  • Are you thinking of "moving the goalposts"? Commented Dec 5, 2019 at 15:13
  • I guess that is it! It didn't come to me at first.
    – Mojo
    Commented Dec 5, 2019 at 15:14

1 Answer 1


It’s likely that you’re thinking of “moving the goalposts”:

Moving the goalposts (or shifting the goalposts) is a metaphor, derived from goal-based sports, that means to change the criterion (goal) of a process or competition while it is still in progress, in such a way that the new goal offers one side an intentional advantage or disadvantage.

(quoted from Wikipedia, at link)

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