|Troupe||Blood and Chrome|
A citizen's Bright status is determined by having a Sponsor. A Sponsor (usually a corporation or the adult family member of a minor, sometimes a powerful individual) is legally responsible for both supplying the citizen's standard of living and the citizen's lawfulness. A Sponsor may choose, at will, to withdraw sponsorship of a particular citizen, and at that point the citizen must find a new Sponsor or relinquish her Bright status and become Dark (sometimes called 'Going Grey', see below). Most citizens will go to great lengths to keep their Sponsor happy, but Dark-ness sets the bar pretty low, and many Bright citizens are treated as little more than slaves by their employers. Still, that's better than being Dark and potentially eaten by some inhuman freak.
Rights of a CitizenEdit
- Right to security. This includes physical security and housing, usually provided by corporate security forces and corporate housing. (MetSec usually has bigger fish to fry in the form of organized crime, terrorists, and O47 violators.)
- Right to health. This includes food, water, clothing, and basic medical care.
The reality of this is that these obligations can be met in a wide variety of ways, and the quality of security and health provided to a citizen is directly related to how useful the citizen is to her sponsor (in game terms, a character's Resources background).
Corporations will frequently poach talented individuals from each other, so someone whose most useful skill is being able to stand and pull a lever for twelve hours a day will probably warrant the bare minimum in food and shelter (Resources 0), while someone with unique skills or knowledge will be a very hot commodity and will be offered increasingly luxurious lifestyles and perks by competing sponsors (Resources 4-5). Still, someone with the right connections (i.e., wife of the CEO, illegal 'extra-curricular' sources of income, etc.) might have a Resources rating all out of relation with her skills.
Often, a corporate sponsor will simply increase a citizen's salary enough that the citizen can meet her own security and health needs. This is usually the preferred arrangement, because it gives the citizen the freedom of choice (or the illusion of it) and frees the corporation of the cost of arranging and managing these requirements.
A citizen who loses (or relinquishes) her sponsor loses all rights and privileges of Bright citizenship but still has an SSN and is still 'in the system', which grants certain advantages and disadvantages compared to being born Dark. On the downside, a 'Grey' individual doesn't enjoy the freedom of complete anonymity that Darks have. On the upside, as long as the Grey is careful, stays alive, and doesn't break any laws, it's not unheard of to obtain a new Sponsor and regain Bright status. Note that legally there is no difference between Grey and Dark.