There's a reason why Fiddler's Edge isn't a podcast.
I am dependent upon the written page in order to self-edit. In real time my thoughts don't get the aggressive revisions they need in order to be drawn up into some sort of coherent order. I'll be talking my way down one line of thought when a couple of other ideas flit by. And ol' brain wanders off after them like a cat distracted by a flight of birds, leaving me behind, stuck in mid-sentence and delivering exceptionally clever witticisms like 'uuuuuuh", or 'ahhhhhhh'.
That, my friends, is the sound of too many synapses firing at once. I tell you, it ain't pretty.
Thanks to Jayne over at Lost In Eve, you'll have a chance to hear it for yourself. Jayne was kind enough to invite me to participate in a round-table podcast along with Chad from Fly Reckless and the lads from Eve Commune. We held forth on RMT, the Dominion sovereignty changes, Pandemic Legion, IT Alliance and made our predictions of what's in store for 2011. Good fun in good company.
One thought I've been mulling in my head for a while and finally gave voice to during the round-table was how CCP might enforce RMT and botting violations in nullsec. At the moment, all CCP does is confiscate the offender's virtual possessions and ban him from owning an Eve account for life.
That might get some marginal violators but, thanks to the anonymity of the internet, a determined RM trader or botter will soon be back in business. In short, the current RMT deterrents do not deter. The risk of getting caught and the punishment that follows are far outweighed by the benefits of botting and RM selling.
So here's a modest proposal: Punish nullsec alliances for botting activity that occur in their space. Let's face it, at present botters are pretty much ignored (if not encouraged) by most alliances. Not their business. Let CCP worry about it. If anything it's extra ISK in the alliance pocket, so why worry. No skin off the alliance's nose.
But lets say for a moment that, if a consistent pattern of botting in a given alliance's space continues despite CCP's usual measures, CCP punishes said alliance. Not without warning of course.
Sort of: "Oh, by the way lads we couldn't help but notice that the botting patterns we discovered in your Arglebargle systems have continued despite our prior notifications. By way of friendly reminder to properly police you sovereign space, we'll be removing these systems from your sovereignty."
Something like that. Of course continued misbehavior can draw escalating punishments - fines to the alliance, alliance leadership, and alliance corporation directors. Confiscation of capital and Supercapital ships. And, of course disbanding.
In essence; If it's your space, help CCP keep it botter free. Alliances and corporations should have some skin in the game if some of their merry band are breaking the rules - particularly if the member organization benefits from the rule breaking.
Of course there are workarounds. There always are. We Eve players are a clever lot. However, the goal isn't to stop botting and RMT altogether - but to make it less convenient and make those that do answerable to their fellow capsuleers as well as CCP.
Another random synapse firing. Just a thought.