Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Various things about Spring that do not fit in any of the other forums listed below, including forum rules.

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==Troy==
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Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by ==Troy== » 23 Apr 2009, 21:16

Well, where to start, I am coming from Quake3/mods community, and I had a good experience with the administrative system for that game (and I wrote parts of it for some mods).

There are several differences between the ideology in quake3 and spring. But I would want to bring one of the main issues in my opinion :


(shorter version in the end of the post)

At the moment the lobby server is being managed by the devs/forum moderators. They are the only people who can make proper (without exploits) IP bans, and they are the ones who decide whether player can or cannot play spring AT ALL.

In my opinion this method has some flaws, and the main one being that its HOST's decision whether player can or cannot play the spring mod on his server. Its up to the HOST to police and monitor the players, ban, kick or mute them, and torture them morally.

If a player has been banned from the spring for griefing, it becomes hard to define what griefing is, maybe for one host its going to be just reclaiming friendlie's lab, for another, putting his start marker onto someone else's place, and for the final one, even dgunning ally is not griefing at all.

All of this leads to an alternative way of doing this :
* Allow HOSTs to see player's IP when he is in a battleroom
* Disallow moderators/devs from banning players globally (if player has been banned globally, he is only banned from the IRC channels, not from being able to join a host)
* As an option, global banlist can still stay, but every host can decide whether to use it or not.


This gives a lot more power to the hosts (which is imo, needed, since host lends his computer for other players to play on), and removes the burned from moderators to take care of the numerous hosts and players.


As for administrative tools, these are things that I have not yet seen in autohosts, but they have existed for a long time in q3 shrubbot :

!ban <ip/name> <time>
!subnet ban <ip/netmask> <time>
!mute <name/ip> <time>
!kick (autobans for XXX minutes)
votekick autobans player as well.

Administrator levels, level 1 can only kick (thats why you need an automatic ban created) level 2 can kick, change player's teams, mute and rest, level 3 has it all. And also <time> limitation per admin level (i.e. level 2 can only mute for 1 day). But this is a bit irrelevant from the main topic, so I will have to stop here.


====================================================

In short :

* Global mods/devs do not ban people from spring, but only ban them from IRC/channels
* If global dev/mod bans someone, they can still connect and join a battle.
* Host can see player's IP in battleroom and can ban by IP
* As an option, global banlist still exists, but host can decide if he wants to use it.
* We need more admin tools.
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Super Mario
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Super Mario » 23 Apr 2009, 22:58

I think this is a great idea, because that way people won't call me a smurf by accident.
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aegis
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by aegis » 23 Apr 2009, 23:16

==Troy== wrote:* Global mods/devs do not ban people from spring, but only ban them from IRC/channels
* Host can see player's IP in battleroom and can ban by IP
eh
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==Troy==
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by ==Troy== » 24 Apr 2009, 01:01

Funny enough. If you are so worried about unbanning players, then just set it so that by default host uses the global banlist as well as local one.

To be honest, I dont care who you hate, and whom you love, I want everyone to be able to connect to my host, and it will be up to me to clean it from griefers, spammers and rest.
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Pressure Line
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Pressure Line » 24 Apr 2009, 01:02

==Troy== wrote:* Global mods/devs do not ban people from spring, but only ban them from IRC/channels
* If global dev/mod bans someone, they can still connect and join a battle.
And thus people who get banned for being utter douchebags ingame are not punished?

FAIL.
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Peet
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Peet » 24 Apr 2009, 01:03

I don't think these ideas would be a suitable solution for ....really anything.
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==Troy==
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by ==Troy== » 24 Apr 2009, 01:07

Peet wrote:I don't think these ideas would be a suitable solution for ....really anything.

Then tell me, how come those ideas worked for a long while before spring even started? I am not suggesting something I just came up in 5 minutes while drinking coffee, its is a system which has been employed for a long while and has proven to work.

And as I said before, if you are scared of all of those douchebags, then just make your host use a global banlist made by the devs/mods. On the other hand if one of those douchebags is your friend, just ignore global and play with him as you wish.
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Peet
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Peet » 24 Apr 2009, 01:10

There are several types of misbehavers who should not be allowed to connect to the server in the first place. Your suggestion opens up several more avenues of attack for various forms of trolling, ultimately making the job of the moderators more difficult.
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==Troy==
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by ==Troy== » 24 Apr 2009, 01:14

1) Host can still use global banlist = those players cannot connect to it
2) The unban thing is only about 20% of the topic
3) Its up to host to decide, if the host doesnt care, then why should you? just dont play on that host
4) I, personally, have adminned a server with far worse community that spring, and I have to say one thing, I want to have an option to turn of the "babysiter" options and deal with those cases myself, no matter how good and diligent the mods are.
5) The system has worked. In Quake3, In Q3 mods, Tribes, Tribes2, and many other online games.
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Peet
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Peet » 24 Apr 2009, 01:22

I agree that hosts should be able to control their own battles, but exposing players IPs to hosts for clientside bans is probably the least effective and efficient method for doing this. Uberserver (which will eventually replace the current server software) already has this fully implemented as a serverside battle ban.

As someone who was a lobby administrator and someone who has spent a large amount of time dealing with misbehaving people, I assure you that taking the power to globally ban a client away from moderators is a very bad idea.

Allowing griefers to join games that opt out of a global ban list is already perfectly possible - join or host another server. Any form of communication, up to and including an accepted login from a banned user, can and will be used to cause trouble.
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BaNa
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by BaNa » 24 Apr 2009, 01:31

I dont see how this would be better than a working ip ban from battles. IMO people who get banned from spring globally usually get it for a reason. The spring community is mighty small compared to the fps communities, decentralizing admin powers doesnt seem to be a good idea. Most games nowdays are on autohosts anyway.
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zwzsg
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by zwzsg » 24 Apr 2009, 02:16

On Steam, when you are banned from one game, you lose the ability to play all your games, forever. And I'm talking about collections of 50Ôé¼ games, not freebies like Spring.

Valve is much more successul and liked by players than ID Sofwtare, nowadays.

So I suggest we turn Spring Lobby, Spring Downloader, and etc... into one giant monster handling half of open source games, and ban people from all of them at once.
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BaNa
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by BaNa » 24 Apr 2009, 02:27

I suggest we take your suggestion and run with it. lets ban people from the internet.
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Peet
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Peet » 24 Apr 2009, 02:28

BaNa wrote:I suggest we take your suggestion and run with it. lets ban people from the internet.
Weak. We'll hire hitmen.
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YHCIR
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by YHCIR » 24 Apr 2009, 09:35

At the moment I believe if you use Gargamel mode to host, it sends the client IP to the hosting player, so springie/SPADS could probably be used to IP ban people.

Removing IP bans from lobby mods and giving to hosts is not a good idea.
1. Most hosts are autohosts i.e. bans are gonna be voted for
2. Clans/groups of people could 'ban' people for no real reason (from other peoples bots)
3. Sometimes people don't bother voting, look how long it takes to change map/force etc.


The best idea would be to integrate !smurfs into lobby clients, or just make a simple web interface to springies smurfs database (because !smurfs still causes excess flood on some springies bots).
Then people can properly ban from their hosts.
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Neddie
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Neddie » 24 Apr 2009, 10:26

Interesting suggestions, all of which I have considered at one point or another in the past.

I admit there are a number of flaws to the current approach, more often than not due to the wide number of contributors to the system who do not function in sync with one another. However, as guardians and cultivators of the Spring project, the lobby moderators and their supervisory administrators will not cede any of their present responsibilities or powers to hosts, for numerous reasons. We may consider offering additional abilities to hosts in order to empower them locally; I agree with Peet in this regard.

The host makes his or her decisions and is responsible for the mods or games which are played on their hosting, but the administration is responsible for the lobby server, communication protocol and community. This model is not analogous to that of the commercial first-person shooter. We are not offering a product, we are offering a cooperative experience, and we will regulate that experience when necessary. It is our responsibility, we are in part legally and pragmatically liable for activities conducted through our infrastructure - this is something which many hosting and matchmaking services ignore for the sake of maintenance cost. Just because it is the standard, however, does not make it correct or safe.

On a connected note, having considered moderation and organization at length, I do not believe a host-oriented moderation structure functions any better than a service-oriented moderation structure - indeed, based on my experience and research I would say it seldom functions as well. While the latter may produce unsatisfactory blanket bans, the former is rife with petty, illogical and opaque local bans. While the latter sometimes is sluggish to remove an intentionally harmful element, the former can never fully cleanse itself, losing statistically significant numbers of potential players simply because they encounter such. Etcetera. The best approach is clearly an ambidexterous one.
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SwiftSpear
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by SwiftSpear » 24 Apr 2009, 11:35

Simply put, the issue isn't lack of awareness, it's lack of dev time. We're MORE than aware of issues with the current system.

In short order, game hosts will be getting the ability to ban users by IP as soon as possible.

Global moderators will NOT be losing the ability to have the server ignore requests by certain IPs (it will be phased out of use as a punishment in policy for most cases as it becomes less fundamentally necessary though, it will be retained as a defense tactic). We've had people attempt to DOSA us.

A steam system isn't feasible because we don't want player to pay to register our game or any other (steam bans work because of they attach accounts to stuff with monetary value). We're exploring many other and similar options though.
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==Troy==
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by ==Troy== » 24 Apr 2009, 15:19

Well, I am glad I finally got some fair responses.

SwiftSpear, DOS attacks, and rest of global misbehaivour is not a question of course. Even commercial lobbies ban attacker's IP, and noone complains. Problem is that what I heard was that mods/devs can ban people for griefing or misbehaviour on hosts, which I find partially wrong. If I want a host with my rules, which can go against the rules of the mods (in the gameplay, not in lobby attacks of course), I will be forced to create my own lobby server, and promote it, basically resulting in a fork of the spring project. Global banlist for griefers can still be there, but let the host decide if he wants to use it or not.

Speaking of steam, they do not ban for griefing or poor play, or not being able to understand the server's rules. The main bans are for proven cheating, which, in spring (although easy to do) at the moment is not a problem.


There is a game, called freeallegiance, which employs very similar system to spring's one, but a lot "deeper" into it. In short, you cannot even host your own game there, you "make" a game on one of their servers, and you have little to no powers to moderate the playerbase on that server. Only community moderators have powers to punish players, and anti-cheat system which uses hardware to ban, makes those bans quite accurate. The problem is, I had to leave that community, when I saw one of the players being banned for a personal reason by the moderator.

As a result, having global mods is good as long as they are good. Spring is an open project, which will leave for years, and many devs and team members will change, which can result in change of global politics, and current system gives too much power to be able to screw up the whole community.

As for the local bans, newbies are facing it now anyway. Rank-limited autohosts do not allow them to play at all, and some even kick for newbie rank. Maybe for some its allright, but mostly people will prefer to give it a try in-game, not just watching someone else play. Banning is possible, not by IP, but by name, for an experienced player its completely fine, he can just get a new one, but for a newbie it will have exactly the same effect as an IP ban.


Well, but in general, since IP bans are going to be available, I would say that I rest my case. Taking away the powers to ban from lobby mods is just a possible suggestion, in comparacent to other communities.
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aegis
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by aegis » 24 Apr 2009, 17:07

==Troy== wrote:As a result, having global mods is good as long as they are good. Spring is an open project, which will leave for years, and many devs and team members will change, which can result in change of global politics, and current system gives too much power to be able to screw up the whole community.
anyone can poke any of the higher admins to hear them out if they think they have been banned unfairly.
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Hoi
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Re: Lobby server, IP bans, and general player management.

Post by Hoi » 24 Apr 2009, 23:13

O really? do you seriously think people are banned per server on Q3 stuff? No. I will tell you how it works, most server admins (read: 99% ) are a member of some admin alliance, they have a ban list, and if there's proof that x cheats he gets ip banned. On all those servers.

And lol, admins ban if they want to ban, if banned people want to play they should start their own server...
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