This thread mainly stems from this discussion thread: Businesses, and realistic role-play etiquette.
I'll keep the introduction relatively short and sweet since there's a decent chunk to read. This thread is "Part II" of the business update, and tackles some of the more prominent issues with businesses that are not script-related like negative actions/activities and/or any negative stigma surrounding business role-play. In an effort to try and improve immersion, and allow businesses to flourish without being unfairly harassed or disrupted — these rules will be inserted under a new section "14. Business Rules" under the in-game section of the Server Rules found right here.
I have already made strides to open business availability to official factions and prominent unofficial factions as per this thread: New Essential Businesses & Faction Businesses and that offer still stands to anyone who wishes to reach out and contact me. The lease re-vamp, as I have said, is well underway and should be out before the end of the month which will bring a lot more business availability to general players or small groups who aren't necessarily factions.
We will be implementing three new rules, as well as making an official statement about some common issues. As mentioned previously, we will continue to look at improving the business scene (both script-wise, and non script-wise) but these were the two updates to tackle both sides of businesses and business role-play right now.
These rules additions will be active from the 20th of March, 2017.
RULE CHANGES AFFECTING BUSINESS CUSTOMERS
1. Business robberies — if you want to commit an armed robbery of an open business, you require admin permission.
- This is being implemented because businesses, especially those located in the county, are frequently harassed by criminal role-players who just roam from business to business committing robberies with complete disregard to the risks involved, the quality of role-play or how it affects other players. It cripples the role-play being done inside by customers and proves to be a very disruptive activity for those involved as people can generally visit businesses in real life without falling victim to back-to-back armed robberies. If it is a necessity to rob a business, however, there is still the option of discussing your plan with an administrator and gaining permission over /re.
- A theme for some people wanting to hunt down and kill a target is to do it when they know the target is visiting an open business. Realistically, you would not murder someone around a large quantity of witnesses in a public space. This, again, is extremely disruptive and is usually an end to the night for the business when the aftermath has to be sorted out, and all role-play going on has to be dismissed when people are forced to vacate the premises. However, we understand that sometimes there may be extenuating circumstances that mean it has to be done — in that case you can request admin permission over /re and explain why you need to do it to obtain permission. This is the best course of action for shootings in open businesses because the damage is already done once an admin has to intervene in a silly shooting, and it's best to moderate it before it happens.
RULE CHANGES AFFECTING BUSINESS OWNERS
3. Realistic/sensible advertising — You may no longer advertise "free drinks" as a selling point for your business and raffles/giveaways should not be done frequently. Casinos are excluded from the "raffles/giveaway" ruling.
- We understand that businesses often try to get the "edge" over competition, but it crosses the line when it becomes immersion-breaking and unrealistic. Bars, clubs, etc exist to make money, and offering people "free drinks all night" is not a realistic business strategy, nor is it immersive role-play. Businesses are no longer permitted to simply say "free drinks" in all of their advertisements and must find other means to make their business appealing as it does not set a good atmosphere for the server. This includes the continuous usage of "vehicle raffles" and "giveaways" to entice customers to visit random businesses. Attracting customers is definitely easier to do nowadays due to the business update that brought in customisable interiors, and other features for businesses that makes them stand out and be unique. This is not an issue that can just be tackled IC and it disrupts the role-play atmosphere of the server - it needs to be moderated at this level.
GENERAL AWARENESS / GUIDELINES (Not rule additions)
1. Law Enforcement — Police/Sheriffs should not enter establishment businesses (bars, clubs, non fast-food restaurants) unless they have a very viable reason to be inside, i.e. emergency 911 call, or the clear consent of the business owner. Warrants should not be executed inside of a heavily populated business (i.e. nightclub, strip club, bar) that is open to the public.
- This is a notice/reminder and not a rule addition to combat the excessive presence of Law Enforcement in areas or businesses that would be unrealistic. Police/Sheriffs do not frequent the interior of clubs or bars in real life as a casual activity. This rule means that Police/Sheriffs should stay away from open "nightlife" businesses unless there is a confirmed emergency inside, or they have the consent of the business owner. If you are turned away at the door, then you should not force entry unless the above criteria are met. Arrest warrants should not be executed inside open, crowded businesses due to the risks involved — common sense, but it has been done in the past. This will primarily be tackled internal to the factions by approaching the High Command teams as necessary to ensure the message is clear.It should go without saying but there have been repeated instances where Peace Officers force entry and arrest everyone and the damage is, at that stage, already done. We will roll with proper internal awareness and moderation, and look at a server rule addition if the issue does not improve.
- This is a notice/reminder and not a rule addition. Some players often engage in conflict when they go to a business, and find little-to-no-reason to start a fist-fight or armed melee conflict inside of an open business which disrupts the experience for everyone else when it is such a common occurrence. Conflict like this should truly be avoided and people should refrain from doing it around so many witnesses. If it justified and being role-played properly then there is no major issue, but random and impulsive "left click/enter spam" fights should be avoided unless direly necessary - this already usually ends in kicks or admin-jails, so more awareness is being brought to the issue via this notice. Please make sensible choices and offer role-played interactions, not mindless click spam.