"1/ Generic Datacards
Purchasing a generic requires slots*5,000,000 credits and the total number of active members in your faction must exceed the total number of slots of all generics that your faction owns."
Albeit there should be a comma before the conjunction "and" to be proper, that's literally all the rules on Generic Datacards. You can't seriously believe it's intended to apply only for purchase, or what I said above would be perfectly fine! It cannot just be Active Members at One Time, and then let you drop down to minimum membership requirements and keep all the DCs, such that there's no rules for holding DCs, because then there's no Actual membership requirement for DCs at all - just Hire people to hop in for 5 minutes while you buy a dc.
Look, I honestly think all that'll happen from the ASIM side is they SIMNews and contact all the owners and say Here's the clarification, you have a week to ditch the extra DC Slots or get back up to the correct number of members ongoing basis, or we'll sell your DCs for you. They'll punish the few factions that have BLATANTLY abused by orders of magnitude, and just ask others to get into compliance ASAP.
@Kay: I just meant that it was intentionally implemented this way, knowing full well that it could be used/abused in such a manner.
So, to Tomas' question, which is it: normal use, or abuse?
If a faction gets a lot of members, purchases lots of generic DCs, then loses a lot of members, how would you prove that this was abuse as opposed to normal use? They could have had a good recruitment drive and then lost steam and members through no fault of their own.
In my opinion, with how it's currently implemented, to prove abuse you'd basically have to have logs of the faction leader(s) saying something like:
"Let's hire lots of sitters for the sole purpose of buying lots of DCs, and then fire them all."
"Let's move a bunch of members from our Gov and NATs into our production faction for the sole purpose of buying lots of DCs, and then move them back again."
It's abuse, lexor. The original intent of the DC system was to automatically handle dropping to too few of players. However, according to selatos, there was no easy way to implement this and we went with a faith based system instead. We trusted people to not abuse it.
Lexor is correct. Unless you can find definitive proof of such abuse its no way to prove. And if the powers that be punish them for it that would be purely because they want to and have the power to do so.
Having faith people wont abuse it is stupid and not likely to hold true
My point is there's no need to prove abuse. :p abuse literally is just dropping to too few of players. If you don't have enough players yet you keep the dcs, you're abusing the system. It's as simple as that. Edit: based off of the wording of the rule and the original idea behind implementation of the generic system.
Edited By: Ulrike Rayne Schultheiss on Year 18 Day 92 12:51 ____________
I can't believe the basis for anyone's argument is really that "this Combine feature was completely well-considered upon implementation and any subsequent uses that seem like abuse must have been thought of and accepted by the development team." :P
That's a gross misinterpretation. We were discussing what would consitute abuse. I had no idea that not fulfilling the minimum requitement after purchase was considered abuse. Thanks for the clarification. Factions will need to police themselves by relinquishing DCs according to member count.
“ I just meant that it was intentionally implemented this way, knowing full well that it could be used/abused in such a manner.”
It sounds like literally what you said, but whatever. I'm not saying it's abuse in the way it usually means "a bannable offense" but it's clearly of that category of thing that we didn't desire the system being used for and that we're going to have to make clear shouldn't be done.
I appreciate factions self-reporting and solving this issue, but I think Ulrike and Kay were on the right track regarding a system like the member dissolution timer, whereby factions are given a warning (probably with a 1 DC buffer, so you could always technically be 1 DC over even if that wasn't really ideal) with a 7-ish day countdown to remove datacards down to the limit, otherwise the ability to assign DCs or produce would be cut off.
The situation Tomas pointed out is abuse because it is an attempt at "gaming the system" in order to gain an advantage. It is abuse because the production faction does not naturally grow over time but has an unnatural influx of temporary members to gain access to all the generic datacards who then leave. There is a big difference between that and having your faction grow and lose members naturally over time.
If I remember correctly the MedNeb thing was people creating a medical faction, using the single MedNeb datacard, dissolving the faction and then creating a new one to do the same thing. It was an exploit in my opinion but the previous Combine leadership ruled it as fine because of the cost of creating/dissolving factions...not a good argument considering it could be sold for a much higher price. Of course, that is not the current Combine leadership who seem to enforce the rules more often and fairly.
“There is a big difference between that and having your faction grow and lose members naturally over time.”
Going to be honest, there's not really any difference :p If you keep the DCs from when you had a higher member count, regardless of how long it took for you to lose the member account, you're abusing the system. Once you lose members and no longer have enough players to maintain that DC count, you should get rid of the excess DCs per the rules (Kay quoted the specifics earlier). The rules apply to everyone, not just people who have "illegitimately grew" their member count.
If we didn't enforce them universally that way, then factions that did illegitimately get their DCs would have grounds for demanding no action be taken against them with the following claim: "Johnny McJohnston of Delfort Manufacturing didn't lose his DCs even though he has the same amount as me and the same number of active players as me!"
Again, this is up to the asims (and future coders if it gets implemented into code) to decide, but my opinion definitely is both situations are just as much abuse even if one was more legitimately obtained than the other.
I appreciate the reasoning behind the rules here, I really do. Larger companies/factions should have access to more DC's to produce more things and so on and so forth.
It doesn't really make a lot of sense for the DC's to be lost because people leave/go inactive/drop/whatever. Why would people quitting erase a company's knowledge of an item they'd been producing? Does Bob Vance's giving his two week's notice perform some sort of Harry Potter-style memory loss charm, eliminating the design from faction computers along the way?
I appreciate that there's no way to keep both sides happy because obviously hiring a ton of sitters and level 1's to bump up numbers to let you get more DC's is a golden rule no-no, but the opposite, having DC access fluctuate with member numbers, has its flaws as well.
One could assume that by losing members, ie. work force, the faction is no longer able to produce at a previous level, and has to scale back and focus on production on fewer products, most likely keeping the most profitable. Or any other number of reasonable explanations.
But they would likely have to do that anyway. If you drop from 45 to 20 actives, your ability to effectively produce, haul materials, start construction, and so on is lessened. Which in itself is a penalty for having fewer members. If I own a bakery that employs 20 people and I have the recipes to produce 4 different types of bread, my knowledge of making those types of bread isn't diminished by 15 of my employees running off to work elsewhere. It just makes my bakery only operate at about 1/4th of it's capacity.
DCs are akin to blue prints or trade marked entities. Not something that really ties to what a manufacturing company can produce. That would be like telling Ford they closed ten factories and fired hundreds of employees so they now have to give up their schematics and trademark for the Mustang.
I now realize that manufacturing companies have a tough road to hoe.
70 million minimum capital
70 million registration fee
to purchase a DC, member count equal to the party slot of total DCs
and DC 5 million per slot value.
Life is what you make it...don't stand by and let it make you.