Rule Addition Regarding Hiding Identity from Staff

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Post Post #50  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:52 am

In post 48, Lady Lambdadelta wrote:the knowledge of who alts are is a powerful tool for someone who actually uses meta, yes.


and the use of an alt is a powerful tool for someone to escape meta.

it stands to reason if you're against mods playing with alts, you're against alts playing with regular users anchored to their playing history. both alts and mods have a theoretical advantage over another group of players. ultimately, it doesn't really matter though.

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Post Post #51  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:16 am

I haven't played mafia very much recently. But I remember when I both played more frequently and had more extensive knowledge of alts, I hated playing in games with them. It was a nightmare if I ever thought something because I knew who was behind the wheel. I suspect the mods will already be self selecting for it.
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Post Post #52  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:02 am

I'll put together a full write up on why I feel like this is unhealthy for the site in general.

I need to finish up my role PMs before class though so later.
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Post Post #53  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:06 am

Game mods are welcome to exclude staff members if they want to make absolutely sure those playing on secret alts won't be known to other users.

For what it's worth, Site Chat mods don't have the ability to tell alts.
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Post Post #54  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:23 am

I do feel the rule is a bit silly to have. If only because I don't think it will actually change anyone's behavior. The people breaking it will still be people that don't know better and people that are malicious. But the core idea is fine so~
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Post Post #55  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 11:57 am

The whole idea of this rule makes me uncomfortable. The stance that "anonymity is bad, people do bad things with anonymity and only bad people with something to hide need to be anonymous" is not really a stance I can agree with at all or support even if I personally don't try very hard to be anonymous and hide my real life identity. What does the site consider our identity to be anyways? Is it the email address used when creating our first accounts? The IP addresses we've logged in from? The identity/persona we created/claimed to be when the first account was created? Our real life identity?

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Post Post #56  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:20 pm

I don't think moderators playing mafia is a problem. I think the problem is most of the moderators don't play mafia.

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Post Post #57  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:20 pm

modding sucks and i think knowledge of everyone's alts is a decent compensation.
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Post Post #58  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:31 pm

In post 55, Rhinox wrote:The whole idea of this rule makes me uncomfortable. The stance that "anonymity is bad, people do bad things with anonymity and only bad people with something to hide need to be anonymous" is not really a stance I can agree with at all or support even if I personally don't try very hard to be anonymous and hide my real life identity. What does the site consider our identity to be anyways? Is it the email address used when creating our first accounts? The IP addresses we've logged in from? The identity/persona we created/claimed to be when the first account was created? Our real life identity?


I can't speak for the mods but I'm pretty sure all they care is that your accounts are linked so that they can ban you collectively if you break rules, and ensure game cheating isn't happening.

If you use different emails or hide your IP they explicitly said they don't care as long as accounts are linked. It's only when you do those things and don't link accounts that they care.
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Post Post #59  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:53 pm

Yeah, we're not interested in knowing who you REALLY are. I don't care that you're Sir Rhinox of Middleford the III in real life or whatever. All I want to do is link your accounts for official purposes. Primarily this is for enforcing bans and establishing a pattern of behavior from the same user. For example, compare three completely different people who post an abusive message toward a user vs. three alts from the same user posting abusive messages toward a user. The former might end up in warnings for those three people. The latter might warrant heavier action as it's a pattern of behavior.

There are some secondary benefits like making it easier to catch cheaters, making sure that those marked as newbies in newbie games aren't actually established users, and so forth.

The simple truth is that the change in rule may seem large, but it's pretty minor. Few people work to hide their identity in a way that is the primary driver, and almost all of them are banned users.
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Post Post #60  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:55 pm

In post 59, zoraster wrote:Yeah, we're not interested in knowing who you REALLY are. I don't care that you're Sir Rhinox of Middleford the III in real life or whatever. All I want to do is link your accounts for official purposes. Primarily this is for enforcing bans and establishing a pattern of behavior from the same user. For example, compare three completely different people who post an abusive message toward a user vs. three alts from the same user posting abusive messages toward a user. The former might end up in warnings for those three people. The latter might warrant heavier action as it's a pattern of behavior.

There are some secondary benefits like making it easier to catch cheaters, making sure that those marked as newbies in newbie games aren't actually established users, and so forth.

The simple truth is that the change in rule may seem large, but it's pretty minor. Few people work to hide their identity in a way that is the purpose of the rule, and almost all of them are banned users.

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Post Post #61  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:23 pm

In post 59, zoraster wrote:There are some secondary benefits like making it easier to catch cheaters, making sure that those marked as newbies in newbie games aren't actually established users, and so forth.


its about time. I know for a fact that there are users who pretend to be newbies and nothing ever happens to them. I thought you guys encouraged it in order to feed the illusion that the active membership base is larger than what it is. so I stopped caring.

but its good that you are finally doing something about it now, I guess.
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Post Post #62  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:41 pm

In post 61, pirate mollie wrote:
In post 59, zoraster wrote:There are some secondary benefits like making it easier to catch cheaters, making sure that those marked as newbies in newbie games aren't actually established users, and so forth.


its about time. I know for a fact that there are users who pretend to be newbies and nothing ever happens to them. I thought you guys encouraged it in order to feed the illusion that the active membership base is larger than what it is. so I stopped caring.

but its good that you are finally doing something about it now, I guess.


Mina has always screened newbies (And I assume previous newbie list mods do as well), but she's not omnipotent. If they hide their tracks well enough to get into a game she likely stops tracking their activity. If you see suspicious behaviour, report it.
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Post Post #63  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:27 pm

On the topic of alts, don't they get the same advantage that's in question here?

In post 16, Accountant wrote:Wouldn't it provide the mod an unfair advantage in meta terms? Say Bob makes an alt, Albert. Bob has a specific and distinctive tell that he only does as scum, but he doesn't mind doing it as Albert because nobody knows it's him. One day, a staff member discovers his identity as part of their duties and now knows Albert is Bob, which gives them a game advantage.


Bob has played with Charlie in many games. Charlie also has a tell, but isn't using an alt. Bob is playing as Albert this game. Now, Bob has the game advantage, as Bob knows Charlie, but Charlie does not know Albert.

Going a step further, Bob might know half of this game's player list. If Albert is truly secret, the purpose of this theoretical alt, now Bob has advantage on half the player list. If this is okay, then why isn't it okay for the moderation team to have all alts known just for official capacity?

I get that alts are used for different reasons, one of those being to avoid meta, but it confers it's own game advantages. For instance, if Thor665 made same strange, super noob mistake, someone would call him out on it. But what about Yarn97, Thorn's (made up just now) alt? Is Yarn new? He could certainly pretend to be, while he watches Titus and UTL play, knowing how they play. How is this not analagous to the subject at hand? If alts are okay, then this moderator duty tool FOR MODERATION should be a non-issue.

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Post Post #64  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:35 pm

Alts are cheating anyway
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Post Post #65  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:42 pm

I feel like things would be much simpler without alts. ;)

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Post Post #66  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:42 pm

Secret alts themselves are WAY bigger theoretical problem than forum mods having knowledge of secret alts.

People play differently when I'm in a game. If I wanted to gain an unfair advantage, I'd play under a secret alt and have a distinct advantage over players who don't know they have to play around Glork.

I sort of kind of get what LLD is saying, but I feel as though she's missing the forest for the trees if she wants to discuss the fairness of (secret) alts in mafia games.
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Post Post #67  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:46 pm

In post 66, Glork wrote:Secret alts themselves are WAY bigger theoretical problem than forum mods having knowledge of secret alts.

People play differently when I'm in a game. If I wanted to gain an unfair advantage, I'd play under a secret alt and have a distinct advantage over players who don't know they have to play around Glork.

I sort of kind of get what LLD is saying, but I feel as though she's missing the forest for the trees if she wants to discuss the fairness of (secret) alts in mafia games.


I'm not entirely sure I buy it?

Like yes, there are advantages to the loss of your burden of proficiency, but isn't losing that same fame isn't own disadvantage? New players are often disregarded, and secret alts have a stigma against them.

I don't think secret alts gain the advantage you're thinking of, because if general if someone is public about saying "I'm an alt but I won't tell you of who" then I just lynch them?

Also, shifting backwards a moment: If secret alts are such an issue, what about hydras with non labelled heads?
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Post Post #68  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:24 pm

I mean, I've done it before, and I can honestly say that it was a massive boon, but I stopped doing it because it felt like cheating.
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Post Post #69  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:50 pm

In post 67, Lady Lambdadelta wrote:
In post 66, Glork wrote:Secret alts themselves are WAY bigger theoretical problem than forum mods having knowledge of secret alts.

People play differently when I'm in a game. If I wanted to gain an unfair advantage, I'd play under a secret alt and have a distinct advantage over players who don't know they have to play around Glork.

I sort of kind of get what LLD is saying, but I feel as though she's missing the forest for the trees if she wants to discuss the fairness of (secret) alts in mafia games.


I'm not entirely sure I buy it?

Like yes, there are advantages to the loss of your burden of proficiency, but isn't losing that same fame isn't own disadvantage? New players are often disregarded, and secret alts have a stigma against them.

I don't think secret alts gain the advantage you're thinking of, because if general if someone is public about saying "I'm an alt but I won't tell you of who" then I just lynch them?

Also, shifting backwards a moment: If secret alts are such an issue, what about hydras with non labelled heads?



If secret alts don't have the advantage coming from people not knowing who it is, then how is it advantageous for a moderator to know the main? Either there is advantage to be had and the mod knowing negates that/provides advantage, or it's neutral. If you really have a tell that obvious, you should focus on improving, not hiding until people link the tell again. If you're alting because you want to try different playstyles, you shouldn't have too much of an issue. If you alt because people don't like you, the issue isn't what is being discussed here.

Also, general "you"s here.
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Post Post #70  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:59 pm

What I mean is, let's say Bob has his tell. Playing as "Bob" would be our set neutral or control.

Bob=0

If Bob plays as Albert, it gives him an advantage in the game because people won't know his tell.

Bob + Albert = 2

A mod who knows the alt will know that it's Bob.

Mod = (the advantage of)Albert

Bob + Albert - Mod = 0

So, since both Albert and Mod are greater than 0, each confers an advantage. If you think Albert doesn't give an advantage (or as much of one), Mod doesn't confer much advantage, because it is, in essence, a nullifier.
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Post Post #71  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:06 pm

In post 57, Nahdia wrote:modding sucks and i think knowledge of everyone's alts is a decent compensation.


Compensation? Isn't this a volunteer position?
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Post Post #72  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:07 pm

Also, if it sucks that badly, again, isn't this a volunteer position? They can just resign. It's happened before and can happen again.
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Post Post #73  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:38 pm

Everyone on the staff, including me, is on some sort of timeline to retiring. That's just the deal with a volunteer gig (also death comes for us all unless you're Yosarian2). People doing the job aren't "compensated" with the ability to tell alts. They wouldn't have the power to do so if I didn't think it was necessary for performing our duties. But it absolutely is, so they absolutely will retain the ability to do so.
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Post Post #74  (ISO)  » Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:22 pm

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