Instead of a coupon give a prize (hec you could even call it a coupon again) For ALL games, ALL submissions to LT's, ALL things that deserve a reward.
THen, set up a system where these coupons can be exchanged for different prizes (like at Chuckie Cheese's). Ie: three tickets(or whatever) will get you a pink plastic prize token (dont give these out as prizes anymore) 10 tickets will get you a color string (allowing one of your personalized eq's to be in color ONCE) 20 tickets, playerhousing. etc... a whole system could be set up (please append ideas for rewards on this post) You then say, if you give everyone the right to change the way their eq looks then it might become offensive!! Oh please, people can make their look descriptions as offensive as they want as it stands now. It is not like what they would be stringing is public, no one is exposed to it against their own will... and that is the key... If they look at that person and are offended...a) they just dont look again and they wont ever be exposed to it again b) it tells ALOT about what kind of person is behind the character...gives some insight. I really dont think offensive strung eq is a big deal, its a very localized thing.. not on chat or a board ...etc.
One last thing, money should also be worked intot he system of rewards somehow like oh... 100000 coins gets you one ticket. A way to balance the economy quickly would be to start everyone off at 0 again... this would keep old players from buying up tickets quick...although one could argue that their hard work should not be snuffed off, but duly rewarded..etc
Another idea is offer +6 overall stat eq for like 40 tickets or so.. think of how lively games on Legend will be! NO boredom.. and the system of rewards could constantly be added to so as to always provide further incentive.
Coupons are supposed to be rare, as it stands now, they're not. Money is too easily obtainable currently, which would mean buying these tickets would be pretty easy.
There's no way in hell we'll have an out of spec item as any prize Not gonna happen, sorry.
As for offensive strings, they're illegal. So are offensive descs.
Out of spec eq is really unnecessary, as you can get pretty much any decent stat combo with inspec, or even less than spec eq.. and even getting like a silly 3 100 stat combo doesnt require using all +5 eq.
Coupons are way too common these days, maybe because ppl play longer, there are more immorts, or whatever, but 2 years ago i barely saw anyone with 21 coupons (granted i spent most of my time sleeping for mv then), whereas now, i see quite a few ppl with even 21 color coupons, multi-colors, etc.
Also, with the advent of more balanced combat system, it's not as common to see two chars with highly similar eq sets, so with only one or two, even none, you can easily distinguish your char from the rest.
But as far as restringing goes, i think it should be automated, as:
1. the desc has already been approved
2. after implementing, it should reduce imm-work
3. not everyone can carry the spare eq around, especially if it's a weapon, horn, whatever.
4. even if pr imms are on, restringing seems to be not too high on their priority list.
5. since 4 seems to be the case, imms obviously have better things to do than restring player's eq :P
There's no end. The rareness of a string makes us think carefully about what we string, rather than string whatever comes to mind. Apart from (ooc) server considerations, this also (ic) makes RP difficult for other players, who now have to change their view of you every time you change your RP, which just doesn't normally happen in RL, or even fantasy.
About needing strung eq to look like what you RP, I can quite comfortably say that I do not normally look at characters to determine their RP. If I get a message 'A barbarian from the northern wastelands has arrived from the east', then ok.. I see a barbarian. I don't look at him and say 'You're not a barbarian, you're carrying a shining blue carbuncle, you pansy.. or even worse, your're wearing little girlie anklets.'. (although personally - anklets are a little embarrassing, and I'd string those into .. anything more masculine) I do look at people, but the number of strung items he or she has tells me how imaginative the person is, not how seriously he/she takes his/her roleplay. Coupons are a bonus to our MUDding, not an integral part of it. And I honestly don't find them impossible to obtain, if only you log on frequently enough, which I'm sure you do if this subject REALLY affects you so much.
Just my unstrung two cents,