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View Full Version : Suggestion to Prevent Misuse of Trial Accounts and Prevent Spamming


Quonset
02-17-2007, 07:40 PM
Periodically I get in-game mail or tells from people advertising for websites selling gold. Some days it has been very annoying. Since engaging in buying or selling gold or plat for real money is a violation of the ToS, you'd think that Sony would crack down it by deleting the characters and closing the accounts of the offenders. If it cost a company the price of the game every time they got caught advertising, it would likely be a money-losing proposition, because they have to advertise on each server separately, and the percentage of positive responses and the number of new customers won on a given server would probably be very small. Paying a game price of say $25 for getting one new customer who pays $25 once for some plat is not profitable. It didn't take long to occur to me that the accounts being used for advertising are probably free one-week trials which don't cost anything at all. Other than taking legal action against the websites doing the spamming, what can Sony do? Here's what: disable mail and most tells on trial accounts. That would instantly end the problem. Anybody doing a legitimate trial of the game to see if they want to play can make that decision based on the content and graphics, and still chat with their friends on TeamSpeak or Ventrillo if they just have to have somebody hold their hand. A basic help channel for newbies would also be left enabled. If any would-be advertisers wanted to do in-game advertising, they would be forced to pay for the game and register like everyone else, and as soon as they started with the advertising, Sony could delete their accounts with no refund.

Caliga
02-17-2007, 07:44 PM
Yeah, they thought of that.  And they implimented it, a long time ago.  The people spamming you aren't using free trial accounts.  You can't send tells to people who haven't added you to their friend's list when you are playing on a trial account.  What they are doing is using the 10 dollar basic accounts. 

Quonset
02-17-2007, 07:51 PM
Well, if that is true, then I hope that Sony immediately deletes not just the offending character but the entire account as soon as it is reported and investigated. If a credit card is required to register the game, and I think it is, even if you pay with game cards, then I hope the credit card number is blacklisted as well. Having to use a different credit card each time would be a real pain.

Mirander_1
02-17-2007, 09:01 PM
If a character is caught doing a ban-able offence (such as this) then, yes, the entire account is banned, not just a single character.  I don't know if they can ban credit card numbers, but if they can, then the gold-selling companies are probably acquiring new cards for this.

Chog
02-17-2007, 09:06 PM
Last I looked, credit cards where not required when setting up an account.

Caliga
02-17-2007, 09:18 PM
Well when you first sign up you get a free month.  You don't have to give them your credit card number until after that month is up.  They ask, but you can skip that screen.  So what happens is they spam lots of people, their account gets deleted, they pull out the next 10 dollar box, slap in the next code and continue.  You must realize they they are fighting a company, a business, not just some pimple faced teen in their mom's basement.  Plat selling ain't what it used to be.  I think SoE is really trying.  But its hard to stop plat sellers without infringing on players' privacy.

Caliga
02-17-2007, 09:20 PM
<cite>Mirander_1 wrote:</cite><blockquote>If a character is caught doing a ban-able offence (such as this) then, yes, the entire account is banned, not just a single character.  I don't know if they can ban credit card numbers, but if they can, then the gold-selling companies are probably acquiring new cards for this. </blockquote>You don't have to.  Visa and Mastercard will give you temporary numbers for online purchases.  So if they ever did ban a credit card number, you could generate a different number connecting to the same card or even use Visa Gift Cards, they work  too. 

Surething
02-17-2007, 10:14 PM
<p>Let's not get fancy; the problem is simple to solve, give players the option to set their email to receive</p><p>only messages from their guild and friends list</p>

Norrsken
02-17-2007, 10:17 PM
<cite>Surething wrote:</cite><blockquote><p>Let's not get fancy; the problem is simple to solve, give players the option to set their email to receive</p><p>only messages from their guild and friends list</p></blockquote>Or you know, just make or buy a mail spam filter program that can filter the mail and chat channels. No annoying messages arriving.

Delameko Stone
02-18-2007, 11:24 AM
<cite>Quonset wrote:</cite><blockquote>Well, if that is true, then I hope that Sony immediately deletes not just the offending character but the entire account as soon as it is reported and investigated. If a credit card is required to register the game, and I think it is, even if you pay with game cards, then I hope the credit card number is blacklisted as well. Having to use a different credit card each time would be a real pain. </blockquote> Mail and tells are disabled on Trial accounts (which incidently was incredibly annoying when I did a Fae trial), the problem is that they can buy the EQ2 Classic packs for $9.99, which includes a legit key + a buddy key.  They then only have to get one sale to make that $9.99 back. At the end of the day, if people didn't buy gold, then they would sell it...

Owilliams
02-18-2007, 01:23 PM
<p>Simply letting a small utility monitor the amount of chat data being output from players in the newbie areas and flagging sudden bursts for immediate live attention would quickly put a severe hurt on sellers involved in this.  It is not a big deal to have software watch for new toons in those areas that are suddenly bursting out long streams of repetitive chat data. Then they simply have an op take a look to verify the content and insta-boot the account. They could even have software handle that part if they chose.</p><p>We all know these sellers are spewing the exact same text to huge numbers of players in a very short period of time.  Something easily detected at the server end.</p><p>Do it SOE... git-r-dun.</p><p>Happy Gaming,</p><p>--Orv</p>

Boethius_Permafrost
02-18-2007, 03:32 PM
It would not be difficult to restrict the volume of different people, or tells, that a player can send in a given time frame.  Just as an example, I think that I, personally, could live with the ability to send one tell per second, and only be able to contact 50 different people in a ten minute span.  And I am a level 70 player, who might be involved in some sort of raid. There is no legitimate reason for any account to send two tells to EVERY PLAYER ON THE SERVER in 90 seconds. <img src="/smilies/3b63d1616c5dfcf29f8a7a031aaa7cad.gif" border="0" alt="SMILEY" />

sayitaintso
02-18-2007, 03:42 PM
<cite>Quonset wrote:</cite><blockquote>Periodically I get in-game mail or tells from people advertising for websites selling gold. Some days it has been very annoying. Since engaging in buying or selling gold or plat for real money is a violation of the ToS, you'd think <span style="color: #cc0033">that Sony would crack down it by deleting the characters and closing the accounts of the offenders. If it cost a company the price of the game every time they got caught advertising, it would likely be a money-losing proposition, </span>because they have to advertise on each server separately, and the percentage of positive responses and the number of new customers won on a given server would probably be very small. Paying a game price of say $25 for getting one new customer who pays $25 once for some plat is not profitable. It didn't take long to occur to me that the accounts being used for advertising are probably free one-week trials which don't cost anything at all. Other than taking legal action against the websites doing the spamming, what can Sony do? Here's what: disable mail and most tells on trial accounts. That would instantly end the problem. Anybody doing a legitimate trial of the game to see if they want to play can make that decision based on the content and graphics, and still chat with their friends on TeamSpeak or Ventrillo if they just have to have somebody hold their hand. A basic help channel for newbies would also be left enabled. If any would-be advertisers wanted to do in-game advertising, they would be forced to pay for the game and register like everyone else, and as soon as they started with the advertising, Sony could delete their accounts with no refund. </blockquote>A basic EQ2 account can be downloaded for $20. It will allow you 6 character slots, therefore they can advertise on 6 servers until the account gets banned. SO...if chances are very good they will make enough money not only to pay for the account, but to make a profit as well. SOE is making money on the sale of these accounts....There are enough people buying plat in the game to allow this to go on for a long time.....So why would they stop them?

Caliga
02-18-2007, 03:44 PM
<cite>Norrsken wrote:</cite><blockquote><cite>Surething wrote:</cite><blockquote><p>Let's not get fancy; the problem is simple to solve, give players the option to set their email to receive</p><p>only messages from their guild and friends list</p></blockquote>Or you know, just make or buy a mail spam filter program that can filter the mail and chat channels. No annoying messages arriving. </blockquote>The big problem with this is if my new gear gets accidently filtered I'm gonna have to break heads.  Filters aren't perfect and sometimes important stuff gets lost too.