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Syndies, PDAs & Security



Recently, I was playing a game of Security during which the usual Syndie shenanigans of blowing up the station occurred. So I decided I should check their PDA because the station was exploding. An ahelp staff then approached me saying you don't "Have an IC reason to search their PDA". Which didn't really make sense to me, but I listened and haven't done so again but no one is giving me a clear answer and even people in the community don't know the answer to this question.

I doesn't make sense to me why there is even a feature to "set your ringtone" if its against the rules to check if they have a ringtone, you can change it so you don't get caught. Is it against the rules to check earpieces for chips? Is it against the rules to assume Syndies with red suits are syndies? With Energy Swords? Fireaxes? What amount of "meta knowledge" is okay, what isn't? More over why do you even have a feature to hide the fact that they have a Syndicate PDA if we are not allowed to check it?


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There is currently no reason for security to use the ringtone feature other than to attempt to unlock an uplink. In attempting to unlock an uplink with the PDA ringtone, security is acting as if they believe syndicate agents are on the station as crewmembers, uplinks exist, and uplinks are unlocked with PDA ringtones. If security can provide an IC reason for these beliefs based on information learned in the round, then they can perform "non-standard" or unusual checks like checking PDA ringtones. An example of when this would be acceptable is if someone claimed they got items from their PDA. "Standard" checks, such as checking if someone's ID matches their name, can always be performed as part of a legal search.

The same principals apply to headsets. If security has a reasonable IC suspicion that people are using channels they aren't authorized to, for example, because headset keys have been stolen, headsets can be checked as part of a search. Security shouldn't be searching every single item on a player without a proportional level of suspicion to justify that level of search. Security is free to search headsets more thoroughly if someone is arrested, but should not delay their release or extend their brig time to enable excessive searching.

Confirmed possession of an uplink or any other syndicate contraband would allow someone to consider someone as a syndicate agent. Syndicate contraband includes all items typically only or primarily obtainable through an uplink. Syndicate EVA suits, syndicate hardsuits, energy swords, and fire fire axes are all examples of syndicate contraband.


Due to the large amount of contextual and situational information that may be relevant, the rule clarifications section is not for reviewing past ahelps or situations. Concerns about past admin actions should be brought to the head admin. No part of this answer should be interpreted as a review of any past ahelp or situation.

SS14 is under development and this question is in relation to a relatively new feature. This answer is being given at a time where PDA ringtones serve no purpose other than to unlock an uplink, so an update may be needed should that change.


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