The entity is The New Order. I'm not sure what to call them since The New Order is not a corporation and not an alliance. But The New Order's business is entertainment, at least according to the IPO thread I saw on the Eve Online forums. One investor summed up the expectations for investing in the venture:
"Pretty sure not a single investor here is expecting an ISK return. You're essentially paying James for a very entertaining service and receiving your investment back in the form of tears/hilarity."The James in question is James 315, the master of The New Order. Back in August he explained the need for more funds for his operation:
"Partly it's a matter of expansion. The New Order currently lays claim to two highsec systems, and we're looking to acquire the other thousand or so--wouldn't hurt to get some capital for that. As you say, this is an extremely profitable business, though the profit margin was inflated a touch in the last couple reports because of the billion odd share orders that were reclassified before I opened up the latest offering.I then went in search of answers to other questions. The first was whether The New Order had any staying power. Given that the IPO thread began in August 2012 and that The New Order's web home of MinerBumping.com boasts a greater number of blog posts than Jester's Trek during that time and one gets the impression the growing entertainment concern will last for some time. Add in an impressive 59.7 billion ISK in shares sold since August and James 315's child does not appear to lack for funds.
"The other part of the equation is demand. Every time I stop selling shares, I have people beating down my door hoping to get in on the action. At the end of the day, I can either refuse to give them a chance to invest, or I can let them in on the fun. Not surprisingly I opt for the fun option.
"As for the tears, you're right--but they'll be coming from AFK miners instead. My investors, on the other hand...I predict smiles and hi-fives all around. "
The second question was whether The New Order was just a bunch of role-players or if they showed some skill and solid tactics. I found some very sound practices in place.
The first is the avoidance of the "griefing" issue. In the past CCP has ruled gratuitous bumping a type of griefing. James 315 is clever and couldn't come right out and say he was being paid for entertainment because that could rebound adversely on his benefactors. So instead he role-plays a religious megalomaniac who also extorts money from licenses from miners for mining permits. Not only does that provide an additional revenue stream but adds spice to the entertainment he provides his monied following.
Next was a unique adaptation of the old ship bumping tactic. Usually used against large ships like titans and freighters to keep them from escaping, James 315 brought the tactic to the asteroid belts where alert miners were soon caught in a Catch-22. The best tactic for beating a gank is to stay aligned and warp out at the first sign of trouble. But staying aligned means flying in a straight line, making a mining barge an easy target for The New Order's bumping tactics. Attempting to move more erratically or just orbiting an asteroid can make a barge harder to bump but then makes the miner an easier target for a suicide gank.
James 315 also turns the war declaration system on its head in another innovative move that aids the showmanship of his performances. Normally New Eden only sees carebears who wish to avoid conflict abandon their corporation and then reform it in order to get out of war decs. But James 315 has made what many see as an exploit in the war declaration system into a positive for an aggressor in a high sec conflict. In order to maintain the image of strength required by the "Supreme Protector of Halaima" and "Saviour of Highsec" James 315 can't remain in an NPC corporation so he resides in the one man corp Experimental Fun Times Corp. However he can't afford for any of the carebears he faces to manage to acquire a kill mail so whenever he is war deced he disbands his corp and immediately recreates it. According to his listing on Eve Who James 315 has performed this trick 7 times since mid-September. Too bad he cannot post the 350 million ISK in tears he has gathered from carebears wanting to fight back but can't because it would tarnish the entertainment he is providing his sponsors.
So James 315 is a pretty savvy guy and The New Order is probably going to stick around for a few more months. How can someone make money off their antics. Simple, really. Just visit MinerBumping.com regularly and find out when the entertainment troupe will hit the road next. Then try to play the market for ice products. I hear that worked out well for Goons in the know when The Mittani announced the Gallente ice interdiction last year. With a little bit of effort the rest of us could cash in on The New Order's antics in high sec.