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 Post subject: Verified Accounts
Post #1 Posted: Wed Jan 04, 2012 3:10 pm 
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The idea is to use ''verified account'' badges, like on google+. There are many good reasons to implement such a feature:

-Some people prefer to know who they play with, some prefer to play with secret accounts. With such a feature, it would be possible to choose in the automatch to play only verified accounts or not.

-Multiple accounts are a problem for the rating system. To avoid people playing against themselves in order to get a high rank on a new account, we could force them to play their 10 first games against verified accounts. There could also be 2 rating systems : Verified Rating (games against verified accounts) and the normal rating (all games)

-Multiple accounts are also a problem for the Karma system, as it would be easy to give karma to yourself. Only verified accounts should be able to give karma, but everybody could receive karma.

How can one get a verified badge? There are many ways, but the easiest one is by making a money transaction. Many of us already made donations and confirmed their identity at the same time. For example, on KGS, one has to pay in order to have KGS+. If the name on the credit card matches the name in the profile, the player could automatically get his verified badge etc...

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #2 Posted: Wed Jan 04, 2012 3:28 pm 
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JeansebL wrote:
-Multiple accounts are a problem for the rating system. To avoid people playing against themselves in order to get a high rank on a new account, we could force them to play their 10 first games against verified accounts. There could also be 2 rating systems : Verified Rating (games against verified accounts) and the normal rating (all games)

-Multiple accounts are also a problem for the Karma system, as it would be easy to give karma to yourself. Only verified accounts should be able to give karma, but everybody could receive karma.



As far as I know, KGS deals with multiple accounts by simply keeping an eye on multiple connections from the same IP, or at least not something much more complicated than that. I've never seen anyone complain about this, save for it being too draconian when multiple players in one place play games. This makes the proposal seem unnecessarily complicated to me.

I'd be worried that it could actively not work unless significant numbers of people bother verifying. If they don't, it becomes a meaningless feature that adds complexity but not functionality.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #3 Posted: Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:31 pm 
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I'm not a fan of this idea. It sounds like it would become more difficult to get games as the pool of players gets smaller (those with verified account and those without one). Especially when the server is newly launched it won't have a huge player base.

I also feel that having two separate ratings would just make things more confusing.

You might be on to something with the karma system problem, but I believe that to be a minor point. And lastly, I would never make an online money transaction for such a thing as a verified account on a go server.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #4 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:41 am 
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Some people (me) like having multiple accounts; not to screw the system, but for the anonymizing effect or to try out something specific (blitz, weird openings etc.). I would not appreciate being restricted to one account.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #5 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 6:30 am 
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Seems confusing and unnecessary. People on L19 or senseis and people I know in the physical world know who I am. That's enough verification for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #6 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:23 am 
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Personally, at this stage, it's still unclear exactly how beneficial the idea of verified accounts is, but if implemented the right way, I do believe it's useful.

daal wrote:
Some people (me) like having multiple accounts; not to screw the system, but for the anonymizing effect or to try out something specific (blitz, weird openings etc.). I would not appreciate being restricted to one account.

Kaya is going to have distinct fast/slow game ranks (http://kaya.uservoice.com/forums/130479 ... rate-ranks), so part of the issue is solved. I completely agree with the other reasons.

walpurgis wrote:
I'm not a fan of this idea. It sounds like it would become more difficult to get games as the pool of players gets smaller (those with verified account and those without one). Especially when the server is newly launched it won't have a huge player base.

In case this idea is implemented, I'm sure it does not have to conflict with your experience as a new player. For instance, how about only requiring a certain (low) percentage of games to be played against verified accounts?

walpurgis wrote:
You might be on to something with the karma system problem, but I believe that to be a minor point. And lastly, I would never make an online money transaction for such a thing as a verified account on a go server.

If I recall correctly, a major Asian server used to require an ID scan to be played on - that's far more than a money transaction and was still accepted. However, no matter how you verify accounts, it requires trust from both sides. If you don't feel comfortable with exposing personal data, it's difficult.

However, at least in my country, there are ways to still confirm your account without exposing yourself too much. It's not free sadly, though.

JeansebL wrote:
-Multiple accounts are also a problem for the Karma system, as it would be easy to give karma to yourself. Only verified accounts should be able to give karma, but everybody could receive karma.

Personally, I believe that karma is an excellent feature if implemented right, and completely unique in the Go world as of yet. The slight exception being http://boardgames.stackexchange.com. Over there, they use relatively simple rules to avoid karma abuse, to my knowledge upvoting the same user a few times in a row triggers a check. Pretty simple and works amazingly well in practice.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #7 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:07 pm 
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It seems that a few things were not clear in my initial post:

-The ideas I gave are just suggestions of what we could do with verified accounts. It seems to me that the possibility alone of having a verified account is cool. Especially when famous players will play on the server.

-Having a verified account does not mean you can't have several anonymous accounts.

-I do not see why having 2 ratings (verified and normal) would make things complicated. It's just 1 more info in the profile. Even better, you could decide whether you want to see/show it or not....

-I'm not saying people should do money transactions in order to get a verified account, I'm saying it's an easy way.

Finally, remember that Kaya is the social go server. Verified accounts are a good way to make the server more social without relying on social networks.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #8 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:09 pm 
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amnal wrote:
deals with multiple accounts by simply keeping an eye on multiple connections from the same IP

This is the same method used by many online poker sites. Nothing makes less sense than that.

There can theoretically be tens of thousands of clients/users with the same visible IP (e.g. a large corporate network), or there can be several different IPs from the same computer/user (a couple of virtual machines with e.g. VPN connections)

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #9 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:12 pm 
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hyuuki wrote:
walpurgis wrote:
You might be on to something with the karma system problem, but I believe that to be a minor point. And lastly, I would never make an online money transaction for such a thing as a verified account on a go server.

If I recall correctly, a major Asian server used to require an ID scan to be played on - that's far more than a money transaction and was still accepted. However, no matter how you verify accounts, it requires trust from both sides. If you don't feel comfortable with exposing personal data, it's difficult.

However, at least in my country, there are ways to still confirm your account without exposing yourself too much. It's not free sadly, though.


I note that this is a pretty common practice in Korea (and maybe other Asian countries) when it comes to online services. There is a cultural difference.

I'd like to register my staunch opposition toward any kind of identification required in any way to use the server (notwithstanding Paypal or a CCN, to pay for a premium account or the like.) I will not use my real name on my account. I will not associate it with an email address that identifies me in an obvious way. I will not link it to a Facebook account or a Google account or a phone number, and I will definitely not send a picture of my ID.

If doing some of these things provides special features or a special badge, that's OK, but I won't have that badge, and if I'm not happy with my badgeless experience (e.g. if I couldn't find games with strong players, or if I couldn't access useful features) then I will just leave. I feel very strongly about the virtues of privacy and of the ability to remain pseudonymous or anonymous online. Just my 2 cents.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #10 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:19 pm 
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tj86430 wrote:
amnal wrote:
deals with multiple accounts by simply keeping an eye on multiple connections from the same IP

This is the same method used by many online poker sites. Nothing makes less sense than that.

There can theoretically be tens of thousands of clients/users with the same visible IP (e.g. a large corporate network), or there can be several different IPs from the same computer/user (a couple of virtual machines with e.g. VPN connections)


Okay, so a determined individual could bypass this simple measure. But somehow life goes on and KGS has a good reliable rating system that doesn't seem to be complained about much. I'm not saying KGS has the most super accurate and powerful way of doing things, but that a simple method like this can clearly work fine without the need for something more complex like different weightings of games with different classes of people. Perhaps there is a better way to do things, but I do not think KGS is doing anything wrong, and doing it via verified accounts seems like a dubious method.

Edit: And if this is really what online poker sites do, then the fact that they're still in business seems to support it as sufficient.

I suppose there is a potential problem if the world moves more towards large networks with many people sharing an IP, but that doesn't seem likely in the short term.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #11 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:29 pm 
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cata wrote:
I feel very strongly about the virtues of privacy and of the ability to remain pseudonymous or anonymous online. Just my 2 cents.


Verified accounts would of course be optional. They would be great for those who use them, and they would change nothing for those who don't.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #12 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:32 pm 
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JeansebL wrote:
cata wrote:
I feel very strongly about the virtues of privacy and of the ability to remain pseudonymous or anonymous online. Just my 2 cents.


Verified accounts would of course be optional. They would be great for those who use them, and they would change nothing for those who don't.


In your original post, you suggested things like making a separate rating system for verified accounts; if most players were verified, that might be the de facto accurate rating system, and players wouldn't care to play serious ranked unverified games since it wouldn't affect their "real" rating. You suggested that unverified users can't give karma, which I don't actually care very much about, but which certainly changes something.

So I would love it if verified accounts were optional and change nothing for me, but the fact remains, they could change something for me, depending on how they worked.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #13 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:43 pm 
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It seems I'm not expressing my ideas correctly, and I'm sorry about that:

I'm suggesting 2 simultaneous ratings systems, not separate. Every game you play counts for the normal rating system. If your opponent has a verified account, then that game also counts for the verified rating. In other words, everybody would have both ratings.

The same thing could be done with karma.

Although this seems complicated, it is not. It's just 1 more info in your profile, and one could decide to hide it, just like it's possible to hide your rank on kgs....

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #14 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:11 pm 
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I think it is quite risky for a new go server to try something like you describe. They need a large user base first and foremost and I doubt putting extra requirements (verification) or splitting the userbase is the way to go about it. :)

I like what you are saying and I prefer matches with people that won't hide behind anonymity but I would prefer Kaya to be successful.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #15 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:19 pm 
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JeansebL wrote:
Although this seems complicated, it is not.


Complicated or not, what bugs me is that (for now) it's not clear what would be the "main" value to look at. With 2 simultaneous ratings systems there would already be 4 different rating for each verified account:

Normal - slow
Normal - blitz

Verified - slow
Verified - blitz

And also normal and verified karma :shock:

Let me clarify, however, that despite opposing these kinds of differentiating factors between normal and verified accounts, I'm not inherently against the general idea. That is, having the option of having an account that can be connected to a real person. What I don't like is separating the features between the two types of accounts. This whole thing somehow feels that those with verified accounts would be the "exclusive club" and those without the "lesser accounts" if everything in this thread was implemented.

But anyway, all this is still just speculation on a suggestion, I better keep that in mind :cool:

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #16 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 1:32 pm 
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JeansebL wrote:
I'm suggesting 2 simultaneous ratings systems, not separate. Every game you play counts for the normal rating system. If your opponent has a verified account, then that game also counts for the verified rating. In other words, everybody would have both ratings.


This doesn't really make sense. Everybody has both ratings? So even unverified people have a "verified" rating? This sounds bizarre, so I'm guessing you don't mean this. Can you clarify in this matrix below?

V=Verified, U=Unverified, VR=Verified Rating, NR=Normal rating

V vs V - VR/NR affected for both players
V vs U - NR affected for both players. But what about VR?
U vs U - NR affected for both players. VR unaffected for both players?

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #17 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:19 pm 
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quantumf wrote:
This doesn't really make sense. Everybody has both ratings? So even unverified people have a "verified" rating? This sounds bizarre, so I'm guessing you don't mean this. Can you clarify in this matrix below?

V=Verified, U=Unverified, VR=Verified Rating, NR=Normal rating

V vs V - VR/NR affected for both players
V vs U - NR affected for both players. But what about VR?
U vs U - NR affected for both players. VR unaffected for both players?


Yes, unverified people would also have verified ratings. Your matrix would read as follows:

V vs V - VR affected for both players
V vs U - VR affected only for U
U vs U - VR unaffected for both players
(with NR always affected for both)

This sounds perfectly normal to me. Can you elaborate on why it doesn't make sense ?

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #18 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:37 pm 
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The thing is, what are we gonna do with ? If most players are verified (unlikely), then the normal rating is just a useless dangler. If few players are verified, the verified rating is often going to be noisy. If a player is 9 dan (NR) and has no verified games, that's a red flag.

But what if he's 9 dan (NR), has two games against verified accounts, both wins, that put him at 5 dan? Wellll...beats me what I should think. To make any sense of what that means, I'd have to start using Bayes' rule and that chat room gets filled with arguments about verified ranks and normal ranks and what's a real rank and "kill3r72 doesn't have a verified rank u MRONO!" and now I need to go have a drink just from imagining it.

Keep things simple.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #19 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:04 pm 
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Hey guys.

I have answered Jean before in the Feedback section. The concrete suggestions he has made regarding the "verified accounts" are a bit sketchy, but besides that there is a good question. What is the value of an account associated with a real life identity?.

KGS actually kind-of does this with professional accounts. It takes days, even weeks, for them to give one to someone, probably because they get phony requests. But overall i have never seen anyone there with a pro account, that wasnt there with the pro permission or just wasnt a pro.

And we trust that "[p]" there, so there is something to it. Separating rating systems, or the other suggestions are very artificial, they would be measures to motivate users to verify the account, but first we should try to establish the benefits of it.

In the long term, i would Kaya to provide means for players to subsist or work by providing go entertainment/services. Artem, for example, draws many players, and having HIS account verified could be very important for his own karma, reputation, etc. So in the lines of the previous thing, i think verified accounts are an easy fit for people that would like to have high profiles.

Now for the "commoner", that is, any player, i don't know how valuable it is for the server or to himself to have had corroborated his identity. This is partly why the facebook log-in is a little debatible.

Anonymity is a shield from pressure from people watching you play, and that pressure is never good in any part of the spectrum of strength.

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 Post subject: Re: Verified Accounts
Post #20 Posted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 8:01 pm 
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Having two different rating system is a turn off for people new to the server and new to the game. It just gets too complicated when the most important thing on their mind is how to play the game. The more hoops you try to get newcomers to jump through before they can enjoy the game, the more they will likely be turned off from playing it on that particular server in the first place. Kaya.gs is not the only place to play go so anything which discourages people with complication will only be a detriment to the popularity of such a new server.

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