ID:132380
 
I'm just wondering what this means.

"This post is hidden from the front page: The content of this post is iffy at best."

What is that supposed to mean?

http://www.byond.com/members/ OrangeWeapons?command=view_post&post=109754

I took the proper procedures needed to explain that what I was posting for educational purposes, and while you moderators and Byond may not feel it to be too moral, it IS in fact a common loophole in the world of the Internet. So, extrapolate, please.

Rewards1 is a legitimate website. Here is a screenshot of my recent activity on it:



Runescape is copyrighted, but so are many things discussed on the front page.

Everything that was explained was absolutely true, and was for the sole purpose of education.
OrangeWeapons wrote:
Everything that was explained was absolutely true, and was for the sole purpose of education.

So, according to your logic, if I was to post a description on how to get child pornography/illegal software without fear of being beaten down by federal police, provided I added a disclaimer that it was for educational purposes on how to remain anonymous online, I'd be in the clear?

Joking aside, I'm not sure the Rewards1 was really the problem. I'm fairly sure it was the bots section. Though I can't access moderator tools for the front page (seems the front page permissions aren't based on dev forum permissions any more). And there's been no mod discussion over it yet, I can only estimate.

[Edit] For the record: I do not condone or support cheating. This is for educational purposes only. ;) is a pretty lousy disclaimer. To the point that it's not a disclaimer at all. That whole winking smiley there, kinda defeats the point as you're clearly lying... Just sayin'.
In response to Tiberath (#1)
Yes, but, the point about the smiley face is that you are free to discern what it means as you wish. It holds no actual dictionary-reference-able slang to it.

As for the illegal software, yes, that would be perfectly legible. However, child pornography is illegal in a large amount of the world to a very high degree and would never be condoned to even discuss on a website such as Byond.
In response to OrangeWeapons (#2)
I would like to point out that the software is in no way illegal. They are the equivalent of a ridiculous string of macros for BYOND.
In response to Hiro the Dragon King (#3)
Hiro the Dragon King wrote:
I would like to point out that the software is in no way illegal. They are the equivalent of a ridiculous string of macros for BYOND.

It's not illegal but certainly frowned upon by anyone who wants a legitimate gaming experience. I doubt Runescape allows bots and bans users of them regularly. BYOND would probably do the same to anyone doing such malicious behavior on the BYOND network (not specifically cheating, but causing overall harm to the BYOND hub/etc).
I'm with the moderator who hid this. It's dodgy. If I need to tell you why it's dodgy, I worry for mankind's future.
In response to Slurm (#4)
Slurm wrote:
BYOND would probably do the same to anyone doing such malicious behavior on the BYOND network (not specifically cheating, but causing overall harm to the BYOND hub/etc).

Using bots is in no way malicious, nor would Byond staff have any reason to ban people for using bots on Byond. Though, the fact that you go so far as to say "causing overall harm to the BYOND hub/etc" makes me wonder if you were not referring to the botting, since that part would just be ridiculous to claim as a harm to Byond.
In response to Stephen001 (#5)
Stephen001 wrote:
I'm with the moderator who hid this. It's dodgy. If I need to tell you why it's dodgy, I worry for mankind's future.

Then I think you need to worry for mankind's future.

There are two different things in the post in question which seem to be debatable. If it was hidden because of the bot information, that's understandable. If it was hidden because of the rewards website, that would be understandable initially, until he can prove that the site is legit. If it was hidden because of both, then it is a combination of my previous two sentences.

While I completely and passionately disagree with Slurm, as Byond has no right to ban people because of bots - Tom has specifically stated that game matters are to be handled by the game's owners, and that's as it should be since there is nothing fundamentally wrong with bots (some games even allow them, and some go so far as to provide tools to aid players in doing so ex: Ragnarok), still, I would not fault a Byond moderator for merely hiding such a post from the front page for that. Heck, the post is not even deleted; it's just not on a pedestal.

But if some Byond mods do want to try to slightly diminish the publicity of botting materials in that way, I think it will not benefit them much. Making bots is extremely easy for simple, tile-based 2D games like what Byond usually offers. Even people who can't figure out how to make a game for Byond can probably still figure out the very simple languages for some of the tools often used to make primitive bots, and some of them simulate hardware input instead of Windows messages, making them very difficult to detect. This is why even commercial games have bot problems even though they try to throw money at making the "problem" go away.

Lastly, even though the botting material is arguable as to whether it should be front-paged, and as such it is hidable, my opinion is that general information on botting (not just links to premade bots, as was done in the blog post in question) is a good thing. Byond as a community tries to promote computer programming education, and writing tools to facilitate gaming is a good way to do that. I have spent more time writing programs that augment games I play, much more, than I have spent playing games, and I think it is just as fun and that I get more out of it, and it even teaches MORE about using your OS's API than game programming itself does, because you have to figure out not only how to interact with the user, but also how to hook into processes and graphical space owned by other processes and mine or manipulate their data; that is a great learning experience for novice programmers, especially if they do it with lower-level tools.

I'm not accusing anyone of overmoderating, but I just want to put my two cents in and make sure that this does not lead to overmoderation in the future, as Slurm's post scared me. If Byond started hindering any of the behaviors I mentioned here, I would put up a strong fight against such actions, and if Tom gave the go-ahead to actually ban people for it, I would quit instantly and try to take people with me as I left. It might be frowned upon by some people to make liberal use of downloadable bots, but it is even more frowned upon (that's an understatement) by the advanced users to be barred from modding things as they see fit. This is why many of us boycott Apple and Sony products; their crap really pisses people off, including me.

I see a rant starting and I feel a tangent coming on, so I'll put a hard-stop on my post here.
In response to Loduwijk (#7)
I always enjoy how these things become moral battles. The post was deemed a bit dodgy, all of the moderative types who've posted so far as agreed, and it was hidden. This is not the slippery slope to authoritarian dictatorship, so chill out. Even if it was, you'd just leave and go to another website, and BYOND would be all forever alone.
In response to Stephen001 (#8)
I still haven't discovered a valid point as to why my post was hidden after reading a page which got slightly off topic.
In response to Stephen001 (#8)
Explain why it's "dodgy" and I may be able to shift my point of view.
In response to OrangeWeapons (#10)
OrangeWeapons wrote:
Explain why it's "dodgy"

Any website claiming something can be "free" when it's typically paid for is normally very dodgy. The internet is rife with scams and sites devoted to giving the naive viruses, trojans, adware, and malware.
In response to Loduwijk (#6)
Loduwijk wrote:
Using bots is in no way malicious, nor would Byond staff have any reason to ban people for using bots on Byond. Though, the fact that you go so far as to say "causing overall harm to the BYOND hub/etc" makes me wonder if you were not referring to the botting, since that part would just be ridiculous to claim as a harm to Byond.

Malicious bots in the context of BYOND is not the same as malicious bots in the context of Runescape, which is why I genericized my statement. Bots that automate gameplay in a game are most certainly malicious.
In response to OrangeWeapons (#10)
Your post goes against the principles of fair play and common decency regarding this bot business. You know this, as well, hence you decided to provide a covering line at the end of your post.

There was no serious "research" value in that section, any value you did offer to greatness of humankind's learning there was overshadowed by the more practical matter of cheating other players out of a fair gaming experience.

Did you show me some technical details regarding how these bots worked for Runescape? No. The process I might go about for constructing a bot of my own for Runescape or any other similar game? No. The interesting algorithms and internal mechanics of these bots? No. What could I have learned from this?

As is often the case in moderation, you handle things on a matter of intent. What do you need to do is prove your intent was as you are making out, as the cross-verification of decision by other moderators here has taken the burden of proof off the moderator in question.

Personally what I think you should do is take this polite and private slap on the wrist as just that, a slap on the wrist. The moderator didn't accuse you of being a terrorist, they didn't oppress any inalienable right on this website, they didn't publicly shame or insult you.

Asking for some further explanation of these things is fine, and any decent moderator would be okay with you doing so. You're welcome to pursue this further in the support form if you feel so wronged and have a complaint, but I've got a pretty good idea about what the outcome will be, as the moderator did no wrong here.
In response to Stephen001 (#8)
Stephen001 wrote:
The post was deemed a bit dodgy, all of the moderative types who've posted so far as agreed, and it was hidden.

This is fine. Nobody has said anything negative about that yet. All that the original poster asked for was an explanation. You said an explanation was not required as it should be obvious. I'm just another person roaming the forum and stumbling across this issue, but I disagreed so I said so. It was not obvious, as there were at least two different things which could have been an issue.

I did not complain about the decision, and I even joined in with saying that there was likely no problem in hiding it.

This is not the slippery slope to authoritarian dictatorship, so chill out.

I'm not saying it is, and there is no chilling out needing to be done. I do not think that Tom would ban anyone for any kind of botting, and if any other moderators tried to I think Tom would back up the idea that it's not the business of Byond staff, as that is in line with previous statements he has made concerning different issues.

I'm not saying or thinking that there will be any dictatorship. I'm just bringing up the possibility to ensure that it's not in the back of any of the moderators' minds. It's best to bring things up when you don't think it's an issue, even if you think that the likelihood is low of it ever becoming an issue, rather than wait until it is an issue and say "I didn't think that would happen." and try to undo it. A stitch in time saves nine.

Even if it was, you'd just leave and go to another website, and BYOND would be all forever alone.

That's not necessary here.

Me saying "If X happened I would be upset and do Y" is not a threat; out of our 4000 or whatever users here, 3900 of them would not even notice if I left. But if someone says "That's bad. I won't be using your services anymore." then that means there might be an issue (or in this case, speaking of hypothetical things that may or may not happen in the future, it means there may or may not be an issue in the future depending on it).

Not caring about someones concerns and instead saying "Don't let the door hit you in the butt on the way out." is just rude and uncalled for, especially when I was only being constructive.