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25-07 Official policy about dupers
Author: sbanks
Last updated: Never
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Views: 757
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Version: 2.7
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Official (leaked) document about how to catch dupers and what to do with them.
statements
Hello all,

There are a few changes on when to punish/akill. I talked to the most of you already to explain, if not, here's the text, feel free to contact me ingame, on irc or by mail if things are not clear.
The following text is written by Oyaji.

[quote]
It is more important NOT to punish/kill innocent players than it is to punish/kill ALL cheaters.
This means that if we aren't extremely sure that someone actually cheats we don't act at all, or give a warning at most.

Duping:
Duping cases can be very hard. The most basic sign of a potential dupe is 2 or more accounts on 1 IP. These could also be regular players that just happen to play in the same house/school/cafe etc. We outlined some rules about playing on the same IP in the player FAQ. These rules are there to help genuine players prevent being detected as a dupe, NOT to give us carte blanche to kill/punish everyone breaking these rules. The irony is that real dupers will often observe the rules better than genuine players on 1 IP. On another note: if we wanted everyone breaking the FAQ rules killed/punished we could simply code a script for it and wouldn't need dupehunting in the crew.

How should we handle potential dupe cases?:
There is a lot of information on the Admin Panel (though never enough). The crewmember(s) involved should use all available information to answer one question:
'Am I looking at 2 seperate players or 1 player with 2 accounts?'
It's impossible to give a step by step guide on how to answer this question; every dupe case is different. Every crewmember will know the signs to look for on the AP:
similar email addresses
shared IP (or a lot of shared IP's)
transfers on shared IP's
mutual testaments
similar login times

Just noticing any of these factors being present does not answer the question though. Some other things to keep in mind:
I have never ever seen 2 'dupes' that both have high ranks unless they were ranked up using a script. Duping is simply not a very effective way to get ahead in the game, and ranking 2 accounts up to Bruglione by yourself is a gargantuan task. So, if 2 highranked players are spotted on the same IP with transfers to eachother and mutual testaments this does not mean it is 1 player duping. The opposite is more likely.
Dupes are usually 2 low ranked accounts, or a high one with a lower one. The dupe is usually created with a specific goal in mind: anonymous hitlisting/messaging/forumposting, bullet auctions on obay, testament for the higher account, other benefits that require an account with a specific rank (to get a mini dc for example). The money traffic will usually be one-way as well.
Other reasons for a dupe might be: to prevent others from using a certain nickname, to look around during a war (but later ditched for an account with a less obvious startdate), or for rip posts after said war. A thing to keep in mind there is to not act on the higher account for having an ES dupe that never ranked. It is against the rules to have 2 accounts, but no harm has been done and, more importantly, the other account did not benefit in any way. The players should be warned not to do this of course and could be punished if they repeatedly ignore our warnings.
Keep in mind that everything above is a generalisation as well; every case is different like I said, so there are exceptions to the above as well.

How do we handle dupe cases if we can't set guidelines in stone?
We look at the evidence and our gut feeling will tell us if we are looking at cheaters or genuine players. The more cases a crewmember handles, the more this gut feeling will improve. It is also of extreme importance to ALWAYS consult other crewmembers. Crewmembers at the level of light moderator should always be involved whenever possible so they can learn the tricks of the trade. Other than that, the level of a crewmember does not matter. More time spent in the crew and a higher crew level mean more experience, and there will be more cases that are instantly obvious, but even admins and light admins should make it a habit to consult others on every case, especially if it does lead to a kill or punishment. Not only will this ensure fair judgement and proper training for all levels of crew, it will also make sure cases are handled in a more uniform way. The more we work together and share ideas, the more we are 'the crew' instead of 'good crewmembers' and 'bad crewmembers'.
We should also never be afraid to reverse our decisions. We are human and make mistakes. If players come complain about their punishments and have a sensible story that puts things in a different light we should simply correct the mistake. Again, consult other crewmembers (and always consult the one that made the kill or punish)
[end quote]

If a dupe is a very obvious dupe, say, similar email/similar nick/ip/loip/pass we just kill/punish as we always did, there is no need in consulting another crewmember in those cases. That doesn't change.

Changing the way when to punish/kill doesn't mean players can violate the rules more easy now, we warn them if they violate the rules, and if they continues we will punish/akill them.

Take care,
Bramblerose