Interdepartmental Communications Experiment

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Name of Event: Interdepartmental Communications Experiment

One Sentence Description: Everyone shares one radio channel, no department radios for the shift

Map Changes: No

Code Changes: No

Suggested Number of Players: Any

Full Description of Event: In order to test how it affects interdepartmental communication, CentComm is experimenting this shift by disabling all unique departmental radio channels. Everyone must use the general radio channel for all their radio communication, from Service and Cargo all the way up to Command. Everyone must still follow SoP and Spacelaw, and do their jobs, but does it make their jobs easier or harder if everyone can hear everything Security or Command has to say? Can the crew keep things together with fully open communication, or will it just cause more chaos? CentComm may also disable the messaging server to force even more open communication!

This is likely to be a minor boon to antags, but it may also mean they have limited options for secret communication, and means their moves may be telegraphed to the whole station.


The only negatives I can see in this is a possibility that this may promote valid hunting, though those who want to valid hunt already have a lot of chances, so I see that as a minor issue at worst.


I don't know TCOMMS that well, so if disabling all the channels but the main one is too hard, an alternative version of this could be CentComm giving everyone repurposed Syndicate Encryption Keys, so the channels stay, but everyone can hear on them and talk on them.

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whats to stop you tuning your headset to a certain frequency?

i don't think this would work.

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Posted (edited)

This gives fun flashbacks to what radio usage is, I would predict (lots of) chaos. Social experiment event, possibly, indeed! Commenting here in which form the suggestion would be possible:

How telecomms work would most probably hinder this from taking place with the intention "whole shift only general comms." There is the telecomms equipment pre-setted at the telecomms satellite. The departmental channels are hosted there, and could be altered or destroyed for this desired effect. However, few things are on way of permanently disabling the channels:

  • able Engineering and RND could remake telecomms so, that the headsets work again for the departmental channels.
  • the telecomms setup or its failure either enable or disable the headsets - but nevertheless, you could still use station bounced radios and intercoms (in the same z-level, which is practically as with the headsets with the roundstart telecomms setup).
  • Namely SBRs and intercoms get the access (automatically) to the departmental channels in terms of both their frequency and encryption according to the access of the ID user wears. No user config required. Think of SBRs+intercoms and headsets as two different frequency band radio networks chained to each other. If an encryption at the headset ('subspace' or that is the in-which the telecomms machines and headsets operate) network is borked, SBRs will be affected of that too, but only as long as there is telecomms setup active with the screwed encryption, because of SBR-intercom and headset 'subspace' networks are independent but automatically chained together, if a telecomms setup just was active. Disabling the encryption (or an entire channel/s) at the telecomms setup would, then, stop that kind of problem for the SBRs, as the chain would not be active anymore.
  • This makes some sense, though the bad thing is that you can't disable the "SBR-intercom" network by any mean, but locally by EMPing the local machines, and due to their automatical ID granted access to departmental comms - think of they would be field radios, powerful enough to their signal to go back and forth on an entire zlevel with no black areas whatsoever, and automatically configuring themselves to the user - they're kind of too easy to use, for the event to happen in full scale intented.


  • Due to this, in case of all but general comms down, the security for example would (mostly) grab SBRs and keep using their own channel, running around with either their SBR mics on, or the phones in their hand. Poor detective, though, would suffer of this, as their access lacks the access which determines the ability to talk on sec comms via these - but otherwise it would not be a nuisance worse than that.
  • The most of department crew willing to work effectively, I'd guess, would grab the SBRs too, due that the general chat would get really messy if only it was enabled on the headsets
  • So summa, this kind of event would not be a complete only-general-chat, but more of a minor nuisance -  a case for Engineering and Sci to setup the comms on their own.

Tuning headsets would not work, afaik, as they require encryption/decryption as well as sending/receiving to be hosted by a telecomms machinery setup, which in case of this event, would be executed, are more or less disabled... I guess, should check that out, not really good in those machines.

There is this comms blackout random event (ionospheric anomalities), which is similar, but not similar, as all the comms go down for a period, instead of what suggested here.


Edited by Regular Joe

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I guess it would make more sense and be easier then to just do the "everyone gets syndie encryption key" as a CentComm experiment in how it affects communication! Still get that "everyone can hear what everyone says over radio" and can throw actual traitors off a bit (though the agent communication channel would maybe be trollable as it's anonymous)

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