As a Minneapolis-based business in the nightlife industry, it’s hard to see a dominant player in the Minneapolis nightlife scene be struck with the terror of an active shooter inside their venue. It’s the third incident of a shooting inside a Minneapolis venue since we first started talking about this back in 2018. In the days since this incident, we’ve been spending our time thinking about those involved — the victims, the staff, the owners, the guests — which has refueled the fire inside of us to do our part to help keep nightlife venues across the country a fun, safe place for everyone to be.

It’s a mission that’s driven us from the beginning. We believe the best security is being able to stop an incident before it happens. That community-wide communication and collaboration makes an area stronger. That with more data comes more knowledge. And that knowledge is what drives not only one business, but an entire community forward.

Usually data is used for positive proactive reasons — to collect insight on what drives a business, to get a deeper understanding on valuable customer habits, and to bridge the gap between a venue and its consumer to drive loyalty and experience.

But data can also be used when the unexpected happens. When information from IDs is tracked, logged and timestamped, it’s able to act as the puzzle piece to help authorities track down the suspect of a crime. It empowers a venue to place a restriction on that person so they’re not allowed back inside. It alerts other venues in the community that the person was banned for a specific reason should that person try to go into their establishment. It’s this type of network effect that helps band a community together for the greater good of public safety.

Data and ID Scanning, of course, is not the only answer; but it is a step toward being able to take an action in the wake of an incident. There’s still work that needs to be done to continue to build safe environments for all. We stand behind our industry peers in Minneapolis and across the nation. We believe in the longevity of the nightlife industry and will continue to push ourselves to build tools and systems that help our customers. And we’ll continue to pursue partnerships with the police and city officials to build a network of information that works to keep venues, staff, and their patrons safe.