1. There is no such thing as a "pending" ban or Steam admin. Anyone threatening your account is a scammer trying to scare you. Read more.

Complaints about SteamRep appeals

Discussion in 'SteamRep General Discussion' started by vmartelle, Feb 20, 2016.

  1. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    I just found this thread, so I have a few concerns and questions.

    I talked to you on Reddit Mattie about my situation; I believe I was wrongly given a caution tag by Sourceop (you never got back to me >_>) - but with this thread, I have a few more questions:

    1) "Defunct communities without surviving evidence will have their community's CAUTION tags removed." Does this mean my caution tag can be removed now?

    2) What about those of us who were given a tag YEARS ago?

    3) I was given a caution tag for "stealing/keeping" a small amount of ref when I sold my backpack to someone via paypal, to which he charged me back later and put my items up for sale right away - a clear intent to scam. We were both given caution tags, how is this equivalent? Surely, stealing bread shouldn't be given the same sentence as a murderer.
  2. Lava

    Lava Public Relations SteamRep Admin

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    @vmartelle
    1. SourceOp is still active, so no. Your tag won't be affected by this because it's not from a defunct community. This applies to communities who no longer exist to handle your appeal.
    2. At this time, tags do not expire. There is no expiration date by design.
    3. A tag isn't about punishment, it's about warning the community about someone who is a risk to trade with. The admin who tagged you felt you were a risk to trade with based on evidence he had in your case, but not enough for a scammer tag. The way we see it, if you can't be trusted with a quarter, then you can't be trusted with a couple hundred dollars.
    I haven't reviewed your case, and as you know it's not a SteamRep tag, so I'm not familiar with your situation. If you were tagged without committing any fraud, you should appeal it if you haven't already.
  3. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    Thanks for the response, I don't necessarily want to talk about my situation here because this isn't the thread for it, but my situation is influencing my suggestions and arguments.

    1. That's unfortunate to hear, it seems Mattie's wording had me a bit confused.

    2. Can you elaborate, why wouldn't you put a timer on it? Some tags are super super old, surely they deserve another chance?

    3. I have to strongly disagree with everything you said here:

    "A tag isn't about punishment, it's about warning the community about someone who is a risk to trade with."
    -It's a punishment, I don't see how else you can argue it. The caution tag I received has ruined most of my trading, how is this not a punishment?

    "The admin who tagged you felt you were a risk to trade with based on evidence he had in your case, but not enough for a scammer tag."
    -I was going to add another suggestion in my above post but I didn't want to come off as smug, so I'll just say it now: Many mods in the community don't care, abusive, and illogical. I want to see a way for Steamrep to evaluate mods or have a few extra appeal systems to deter this...something has to be done. Steamrep can (and I believe is) ruin innocent people's trading ventures.

    "The way we see it, if you can't be trusted with a quarter, then you can't be trusted with a couple hundred dollars."
    -I wouldn't want you to be a law maker then. "He stole a piece of bread? Off with his head!"
  4. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    Just to add what I said about "Steamrep can (and I believe is) ruin innocent people's trading ventures"...

    You guys have a ton of power, you have the ability to break people's trading ability, and their reputation. I've been wronged by it, and I've seen people who've posted on the forums and Reddit who have also had very questionable tags. Again, something has to be done to account for this.
  5. Lava

    Lava Public Relations SteamRep Admin

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    I'd like to thank you for keeping your case specifics out of this thread, and not hijacking a sticky announcement with an appeal.

    For #2, scammers can appeal to have the tag downgraded or removed if they truly had a change of heart.

    On #3, I never said having a negative mark on your reputation was a pleasant experience, and I understand it often seems like you're being punished, but our goal is to make that information about your past transgression available to anyone who might trade with you, not to retaliate. We maintain a database of known scammers, not a protection racket. If you have a history of scamming, then the community - and anyone who might consider trusting you with a lot of money, or perhaps a mod/admin position on a server somewhere - has a right to know about it. Yes, it may seem like you're being punished for what you did at times, and the community at large does not like scammers, with a myriad of websites and servers using our database to try and keep their communities clean, but generally speaking if you do something sketchy then it will affect your reputation. For example, if you aggressively shark and prey on newbie traders, that can affect your reputation as well - even though it wouldn't affect your SteamRep status, communities often talk amongst one another and as word gets around you may find yourself banned in multiple locations and having other people who heard about your sketchy nature refuse to trade or deal with you. Things like that can give you a bad name, and people will be less likely to trust or respect you for it. Same thing with cheaters (you'll take some abuse if you have a VAC ban on your profile too), and sometimes certain types of griefers, and the same concept applies to SteamRep status. What you need to realize is we're just sharing that information about your past offense(s), and the community itself is acting accordingly.

    Punishment can be administered with a couple of goals in mind, and we're not looking to accomplish either of those. A parent may punish their children to teach them what is or isn't acceptable, and discourage unruly behavior to shape an overall better person, in what psychologists refer to as operant conditioning. In this context, it makes little sense to have a permanent tag, because a scammer would have no opportunity to "learn" from their "punishment". If we were trying to teach traders what is or is not acceptable, then tags would indeed be temporary, used as a sort of warning system. In a legal infrastructure, punishment is often issued as a way of avenging the victim with some form of retribution to make them feel better and maybe set an example. In that context, the punishment should fit the crime - smaller punishment for a smaller crime, so to speak. I think that's the perspective you're focusing on, especially with your comment about lawmakers and bread shoplifters, but SteamRep has never been about avenging victims. That's why a victim cannot remove a report, even if repaid. If you show you can't be trusted with a small value of money/items, that's a relevant and concerning factor for anyone who might consider trusting you with something of greater value. We care if you scammed, and whether you pose a risk of scamming again. If so, we keep a tag on you to warn the community you're not a safe person to trade with.

    The goal is to warn the community, making information about who has scammed (with details) readily available to anyone who takes the time to search someone's Steam ID in our database. It's not about scaring people into following our rules (which frankly would never work on the career scammers), teaching a lesson, or avenging victims, but about informing the community when someone poses a risk of scamming them. You can think of it more along the lines of a credit rating system, or perhaps a... reputation tracker. Potential traders check your reputation, among other factors, and decide whether or not to trust you accordingly. We don't have game servers of any kind, so there's nothing we can directly ban you on, but if you scam then we'll make it known to the world, and the communities who have grown to trust our judgement over the years will often ban accordingly, with individual members who also trust our judgement often holding you with distrust or disdain.
    I cannot comment on any specific cases, but it's generally speaking pretty uncommon to get an "unjust" tag. Usually when you find one, it's an older tag, from SteamRep's earlier years when evidence quality wasn't up to today's standards (which is part of why we didn't have such a report backlog in that time). A lot of research and work goes into applying a scammer tag, and while it definitely can happen, and it's tragic, it's pretty rare. That "power" in the trading community is a substantial trust that the trading community admins invest in our judgement. Staff from websites like TF2 Outpost have seen the research and investigation that goes into each tag firsthand, over the course of years, to the point where they will automatically ban anyone with a red tag on our website without question. This is from their own experience, in contrast to a time period long ago when they did not honor our reputation tags. As a SteamRep admin, I myself am not an administrator on these trading sites, so I have no "power" directly, but that just about every one of them will automatically ban whomever I tag without question suggests the level of trust they have invested in the work I do. It's not so much authority, but a community that does not like and does not want scammers around, and trust in a small group of people who have experience and credibility to state with an exhaustive level of research when someone is in fact a scammer.

    While we have high standards for tags, we are also only human. As much as we try to avoid them, mistakes can, and sadly do, happen from time to time. Anyone who feels they were tagged unfairly should appeal it, that's why we have an appeal process. Furthermore, what's not commonly known is we also pre-screen appeals just in case a terrible mistake was made, and if in a quick pre-assessment we find someone may be tagged improperly, their case is expedited and handled accordingly instead of being tossed into the queue. We also expedite and audit cases that are brought to our attention by other community admins for the same reason, and such community admins are free to question any of the tags we have issued, but by and large upon seeing the evidence they decide the tag was properly applied, and there are very few cases worth bringing up in this manner.

    Reddit is not the place to get your tag removed, and posting there (where SteamRep staff aren't even active) isn't going to get it looked at any faster, but it sure is a great place to rile people up and stir up drama. Many of those people post from brand new sockpuppet accounts and do not provide a link to their profile, but simply provide their anecdotal story. Did you ever wonder why? Reddit is a place where it's notoriously easy to rile people up into lynch mobs with emotionally charged titles; you don't have to even provide evidence to back up your claims, but if you say something that sounds sinister, you can get people angry. It's compounded by Reddit's own comment rating system, where a party coming under fire will have to drop whatever they're doing to respond immediately if they want their side of the story visible, and even then comments are often downvoted out of visibility, especially if there's a group of people already working together to brigade votes. That's even easier on a non-trading subreddit where people by an large aren't involved in trading, and hence aren't familiar with the nuances of how it works. From the perspective of a non-trader, when hearing about someone receiving Draconian "punishment" for the rest of their life over something trivial, with little interest in researching or learning anything about how things work beyond a sensational title, the natural response is to get angry. If those types of threads wound up in a trading community, it wouldn't get removed or retaliated against by policy, but they'd get downvoted and torn apart in comments by non-staff who (by experience) will research whatever claims are made instead of taking them at face value, not to mention any scam reports against the poster. But it's way easier to convince a group of newer or aspiring traders that the website (run by mostly non-traders) is a big boogeyman trying to control the economy by fear and you should ignore any warnings that someone is a scammer because it's all a big conspiracy.

    Without singling anyone out, a lot of the repeat posters talking about SteamRep on Reddit are serial PayPal scammers and people who repeatedly impersonate admins or middlemen to steal items, frustrated with the impact their reputation has on their profit margins. A couple of the larger scale traders have a personal vendetta for one reason or another, and really just want SteamRep to shut down no matter what it takes or how it affects the community. That doesn't mean you shouldn't listen to anything they say (even scammers aren't banned from our forums or from submitting reports), but when someone spams Reddit day after day anonymously with allegations of corruption, you should know if they have a conflicting agenda. Sometimes anonymous comments on the internet are not entirely truthful, and you should consider the source and take what you read with a grain of salt. I'm sorry for the slight tangent there, but it's really heartbreaking to see the other side of that battle, where people from r/tf2 who buy into the propaganda and think we're corrupt wind up trusting a marked scammer and get scammed for it. It's kind of demoralizing to put in hours of my free time to try and warn someone of a serial scammer, but watch it all go to waste as someone buys into the spam on a non-trading subreddit.

    If you think someone's tag is bullshit, and you think they're more trustworthy than their reputation suggests, then by all means go ahead and trade with them. We don't tag for trading with scammers anymore, so as long as you aren't brokering or systematically working with them, your reputation status here won't be affected (disclaimer: some other communities may still ban you from their websites). We provide links to explanations behind scammer tags, so you can do with the information as you please.
    Roudydogg1 and You Are The One like this.
  6. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    Not like anywhere I can appeal it anyway but this outlines another problem with Steamrep: once you appeal and its denied, your screwed, even if you have good arguments against such a tag, and even if you've proved beyond a reasonable doubt that you are no longer a "scammer", you're still screwed.

    (see above)

    I see what you're saying, to which I say, Steamrep must change its entire position. Steamrep yields an immense amount of power (too much, honestly) because if you have a tag on you, websites and other traders will treat you like crap. You need to treat Steamrep as such, me thinks. So as I said before, getting rid of/reconsidering tags are many years old, having multiple appeals, etc, is a must.

    I literally jumped out of chair and facepalmed (I mean no disrespect by this), I'm sorry, you must understand my frustration right now because I feel wronged by Steamrep and it has nearly destroyed my reputation. From a *personal* experience, your statement is completely and utterly false - I'd be happy to PM you and prove you this using my own case, I won't do it here. Secondly, reading through different forums and Reddit and hearing about what has happened to others, I also must again question the validity of your statement.


    (see way above)


    I think on paper, most of what you said it spot on. However, as an avid Reddit addict and someone who relies on evidence for everything, I disagree strongly. Shitposts and things without evidence get downvoted to oblivion. There are many cases that have appeared on Reddit which raised a few questions about Steamrep which made quite a few number of valid points and cases, one of which was mine by the way, which is how Mattie got in contact with me but he never followed through.

    You're going to hate me for saying this, but I agree with Reddit. Corruption happens, including on Steamrep. I don't think its rampant in any sense, you guys work hard and 99% of the things you do are just. Nonetheless, there are still questionable things you do and mods would are really iffy (in my opinion).

    If their tag is bullshit, it shouldn't be there in the first place. I'm also glad you don't tag for trading with scammers anymore, I got into an argument with a few of the mods and admins on FOG about it and they seemed stubborn, really frustrating!
  7. Lava

    Lava Public Relations SteamRep Admin

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    I'm sorry for the late reply, was busy with my real life job.
    Relevant: http://forums.steamrep.com/threads/appeal-tips.66354/ Point #11

    You could make an argument for why we'd need second-second chance appeals for a change of heart some number of years later, but at this time it's not practical. We have hundreds of open appeals right now, without a lot of staff to handle them. Of the staff we do have, many are not qualified to work in appeals; it's a lot more complicated than reports, and requires a greater level of expertise. When/If that backlog is caught up, the idea of entertaining re-appeals may be revisited, but for now it's just not realistic. Especially since change of heart appeals are among the most tricky and time consuming, with only an assessment of character and circumstances, instead of hard evidence in dispute, to make a black and white decision. Another reason we only allow one appeal is because sometimes case-sensitive information is brought up. Part of the appeal objectives involve an assessment of character, which includes gauging for honesty. If someone is found to be lying during their appeal, such as about their alts, then we've established they are still not trustworthy. Once called out on it, they know we already know the truth, and will say whatever they think we want them to say in order to get unmarked. Many scammers re-appeal again and again and again from all their marked alts, all the while making new alts (which get marked), and trying to probe for information about how we're finding their alts in those appeals.

    It's not well known, but if your appeal was mishandled, or you have extenuating circumstances, you can request permission for a 2nd appeal, which will be handled by a different admin. This is seldom granted, since it's usually just people unhappy with the outcome and trying to appeal repeatedly until they get the answer they want, but per our FAQ, you are allowed to have your appeal reviewed by another admin to decide if you deserve a second appeal. SteamRep will not handle appeals for partner community tags (except sometimes "not my alt" appeals), but you can still request an appeal review if your appeal was denied by a partner community and you have overwhelming evidence of abuse, mishandling, or other extenuating circumstances. To do so, you must choose one of these reasons (giving this as general information, please don't further derail this thread with your case specifics):
    1. New evidence not produced in your original appeal.
    2. Unfair appeal. Note: A different appeal admin will review your original appeal and decide if their is enough to grant you a new appeal.
    3. Other extenuating circumstance at admin's discretion.
    Example of new evidence: Reporter was banned for submitting fake reports/screenshots to maliciously harm people's reputation, supporting your claim to innocence.
    Example of unfair appeal: Appeals admin had a conflict of interest, or mishandled your case (e.g. rejected by same admin who accepted report).
    This is not SteamRep's position, and we can't force anyone to use our API (much of the CSGO community does not). This is the community's position, and the community does not like scammers. There was a time when TF2 Outpost did not ban marked scammers, and the place was an absolute s✿✿✿ hole with users getting scammed left and right. One day, they started using their API to clean up their site. I wasn't in the trading community at the time, so I can't speak to any more specifics of that past, but we've seen the same with other communities since then. CSGO Lounge and DOTA2 Lounge took, and still today take, a lot of flak for rampant scammers. They now ban marked scammers automatically to try and keep their site clean.

    Now when you suggest removing tags, you have to understand this from our perspective, as a warning system dedicated to preventing fraud. We are providing information to the community so they can make an informed decision about who to trade with, we're not here to "punish" people. If this were about punishment, then I could definitely understand having the tag removed after a while, and it probably would be. It's there as a permanent record though (hence "reputation"). If someone decides they want to trade with you, it's their choice, but I'm sorry to say this, you're going to have to live with people knowing about what you did, or being able to find out. We're not going to hide that information from the public because it inconveniences the person who committed fraud; that, we feel, would be a disservice to the community who trusts and relies on us to provide said information.
    See above about feeling "wronged". My statement was a summary of our position regarding the purpose of tags. Nothing in that statement is untrue, that's what we tag for.

    Your tag was issued by SourceOP. It's outside my authority to intervene.
    It seems to have become a custom for people to cry out to the non-trading TF2 subreddit any time SteamRep makes a decision you disagree with. This trend largely took off when we tagged one of the richest TF2 traders in the community (contrary to the whole "SR only picks on little guys" myth) who felt he was "too big to fall"; he spammed Reddit in a deliberate smear campaign in retaliation, and had a lot of his fans who admire his wealth and his methods of treading along the line, vote brigading with him.

    Due to the number of marked scammers on r/tf2, anything critical of SteamRep gets upvoted whether or not it has merit (similar to how shitty YouTube music videos get upvoted just for the presence of My Little Ponies) with people adding vague comments like "everyone knows SteamRep is corrupt". That's not to say everything negative about us on Reddit is wrong, but anything negative will be upvoted by masses whether or not it's true or has anything to back the claims up. All you have to do is throw in a couple links that have nothing to do with your arguments, which nobody who matters on r/tf2 is going to read, and call them "proof". People will upvote it, and downvote anyone defending SteamRep because they disagree. It's also kind of like how sensational headlines get people's attention; there's a saying in the media industry if it bleeds, it leads.

    Reddit is also an inherently biased platform in that the first people to post, which aren't necessarily the ones being attacked, are the ones most noticed. If you're a few hours late to the party, whether you're busy writing up a response, or you were at your workplace with Reddit blocked, you might be able to reply but nobody is going to notice it. All people will remember is that clickbait "SteamRep is corrupt" title with 80 upvotes and no official response from the trading-Mafia. We tried to reply to valid concerns for a while, dropping whatever we were actively working on to answer with point-by-point rebuttals quickly so Redditors would get a chance to see it, but usually the same people, or brand new accounts, would just repost the same talking points into a new thread the next day at a random hour.
    If there is one thing we're really serious about avoiding, and careful to prevent, or quickly snuff it out when happening, it's corruption. I have never seen the level of self-policing and internal policy that SteamRep has in any other organization I've been a part of. The care we take in who has privileged access here is one of the main reasons we're so short on staff, and why staff applications take so long (yet another thing Reddit is criticizing us for). Yes, any place can have corruption, but that doesn't mean they do. There has been, in the history of SteamRep, one case of a SteamRep middleman going corrupt, one case of a partner community middleman brokering for scammers, and one case of a partner community admin abusing their access to the backend database in 2012. The scamming middleman (who r/tf2 keeps trying to hold against us as an example of how all of SteamRep is corrupt) was tagged within hours of being reported, and as an additional precaution we removed all SteamRep middleman tags and decreed there will never be another SteamRep middleman again. The partner admin who abused his ability to issue tags (happened in 2012, and he wasn't SR staff) caused some trouble for an individual for a little while - specifically built an unusual sharking tool and then retaliated with a scammer tag when someone spoke out about it - but the tag was removed, admin tags stripped from all their staff, and their community was promptly removed as a partner, never to rejoin. That community is now dead. The partner middleman, Samalex, was tagged as a scammer for brokering for scammers, using his role as middleman to assert them as safe to trade with despite the tag, but the rule about trading with scammers has changed so he has a pending appeal. I cannot comment on his case or any possible outcome/assessment because he has a pending appeal, and as an appeals admin I might end up working it. I will say that these known cases show little evidence of corruption within the organization, but rather demonstrate that we take cases of corruption very seriously and there will be consequences when it happens.

    If you actually have an example of corruption, and not just Reddit shitposting, please PM it to an admin that isn't involved (check if they're active). You can send it to me if you wish, unless you think I'm the corrupt admin for some reason, in which case send it to someone else. Such cases are rare, but taken very seriously.

    Examples of corruption:
    • Taking bribes for favorable outcomes in reports or appeals, or even bribery to add/remove tags without open reports/appeals.
    • Nepotism or favoritism - we have a strict policy of not performing any moderation or judgement in reports or appeals where you have any kind of vested or perceived interest in a particular outcome.
    • Using admin position to coerce, extort, or intimidate; for example, threatening someone with a tag if they don't hand over their items or make a trade you want to happen.
    • Tagging users who committed no fraud in retaliation for something personal.
    • Admin or middleman is committing fraud or otherwise scamming (note uneven deals aren't considered scamming, but a lot of them can warrant an investigation for admins in extreme circumstances).
    Examples of things that aren't corruption:
    • You disagree with a tag - just because you don't see evidence, doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Most people who end up tagged, do not like it, and will naturally say/do anything to get it removed or convince people that it's unfair or applied by a corrupt admin. Just because the person is soapboxing on r/tf2 doesn't mean everything they say is true. People who frequent r/tf2 have started trusting marked scammers, some more than unmarked users thinking that SteamRep is some kind of corrupt protection racket. They end up scammed, and the scammer profits from it, so it's become sort of customary to periodically spam the subreddit to spread that idea to as many unsuspecting traders as possible from brand new accounts. If you're a scammer, and you want to scam some more but can't get people to trust you anymore, that plan makes perfect sense.
    • Your report or appeal is not handled in a timely manner - being short on staff naturally means we cannot handle reports or appeals in a timely manner. As of a year ago, we publicly admit that we make no commitment to handle all reports submitted to us, and in fact require victims to check a box acknowledging this fact before they can fill out a report.
    • Admin was rude to you or said/did something mean - most of us do try to remain professional, and there are rules about not trolling other communities, but when you've been in this kind of position for years, spending every day getting lied to, abused, and dealing with scum, all while constantly slandered from Reddit, with people stalking and harassing you over it, things kind of wear on you over time. Some of us are more professional, polite, tactful, or overall patient than others, but we're still human beings. I've seen some rude things in rejected appeals, which had private notes with pretty damning evidence.
    • Honest mistake - As stated in above point, we're human beings. This is more common for moderators, who are essentially "admins in training", with the role essentially being an apprenticeship towards admin. Admins can make mistakes too, but it's less common. Scam reports can be tricky, and it really is a lot more complicated than most people think. I have seen a fair share of mistakes from newer moderators, but with as few trustworthy/reputable applicants as we get, and as few staff we have available to train the moderators, we have to strike a balance with what level of experience we can hire someone at. If an admin tags you by mistake, then you should fill out an appeal; believe it or not, the appeal gets prescreened before going to the longer queue, just in case of such mistakes. Innocent people getting marked is terrible either way, but there's a big difference between the admin making an honest mistake (they're only human), and the admin abusing their position. A corrupt admin, intentionally acting maliciously, will do a lot more damage than someone who wasn't paying attention.
    • Admin banned you from a server, closed your trade/thread/listing/whatever, or whatever other thing that happened in a specific community. Some staff here are also staff at partner communities, and those communities will have a different set of standards for staff behavior and bans/appeals. Different communities have different rules, and some are more liberal than others for banning users. Our policy here is to not police other communities bans, so long as it's not placed in our database; if another community wishes to ban you for your name, for being a girl, or for being a brony, it's their server, so it's well within their right.
    You're right, bullshit tags shouldn't be there. No system can ever be 100% perfect, here or anywhere else in life. That's why we have appeals. If you still decide you trust the person with a tag though, feel free to trade with them. Not our fault if you get scammed because you ignored the warnings.
    Roudydogg1 likes this.
  8. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    Sounds like you are saying Steamrep cannot adequately address and handle tags.

    But you still gladly display the tags, shouldn't steamrep be looking into the tags that they display on their own website?

    I'll look into this, IDK if I have already exhausted my appeals or what, so yeah


    Steamrep can hold that position all they want, but Steamrep is used quite differently by almost all communities. I would think Steamrep should act accordingly to the communities use and demands.


    So I'll probably always forever have an unfair tag, wonderful.

    Where else do you expect them to go? If you are issuing unfair tags and denying appeals, then what?


    As I said, people actually look at the links if someone finds bullshit, they'll call it out and OPs post will be downvoted to oblivion.


    I've already said why your appeal system needs a lot of work.
  9. Lava

    Lava Public Relations SteamRep Admin

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    Since you're kind of derailing this announcement to complain about your own partner tag, I'm splitting your posts into a new topic.
  10. vmartelle

    vmartelle Caution on SteamRep

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    I don't see how I derailed it - I have to mention my own case when I argue my points...but k..
  11. Lava

    Lava Public Relations SteamRep Admin

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    10 posts, back and forth, with little if anything to do with the stickied topic at hand. It's not about SOP appeals, it's not about SteamRep corruption, and it's not about Reddit, so I had to split your posts into a separate thread. Nothing is removed from public view, and honestly I think it's better for you to have your own thread instead of your discussion being buried in other comments on an unrelated topic.
    No one ever argued otherwise. If you have a solution other than "shut your website down", feel free to present it. There aren't enough staff to handle them in a timely manner, and we don't get enough qualified applicants to address the staffing issue.
    Those are tags issued by partner communities, with their name clearly listed as the tagging entity so their reputation is behind it. The idea is that SteamRep is not the sole entity marking scammers, but other communities who have been thoroughly vetted can do the same, with their own report/appeal system and direct access to our database, but only for their own community's tags. Our API and plugin allow differentiation between which communities' tags you wish to honor, so if someone decides they want to ban anyone reported by Reddit, but they don't trust any tags from SourceOP for example, they can configure the plugin to ignore that community (honor BANNED BY REDDIT, BANNED BY R-TF2TRADE, BANNED BY R-D2TRADE, BANNED BY R-SGS, and BANNED BY R-GOTRADE, but exclude BANNED BY SOP), or code their API implementation accordingly.

    That said, there are evidence standards for partner communities, which are similar to those for SteamRep's own tags but some different rules apply (e.g. situations we don't investigate can still be handled by partners). If they abuse it, they will lose access.
    It looks like you have a denied SOP appeal, so yes, you have exhausted your appeals. Appeal reviews are not appeals, and definitely not a second chance.
    The community has a right to know. If they rely on us to keep their website clean, then we're not going to start removing tags just because the backlash is inconvenient for scammers. That would be a disservice to the communities depending on us to keep that information available.
    If you want to call it that, looks like it. If you truly have evidence of mishandling, which I suspect you don't, then you can request the case be reviewed for proper handling (again, not an appeal). It's pretty rare for a partner tag to be overturned.
    Speaking to SteamRep's own tags,
    With partner tags, we aren't the ones denying those appeals, but we will review if there's evidence the tag is truly abusive. We cannot properly review the evidence for partner tags, because they're only available to staff in those respective communities. As such, you need to take it up with those admins. For example, most evidence for tags issued by Reddit is in modmail, meaning unless you're a Reddit mod for the tagging subreddit (I'm not), you cannot see it. Other communities such as Fortress of Gamers have private forums of their own, or private notes, which are private even from SteamRep admins. We can request information for specific cases, if we have a reason to, but there is no way we can do this for everyone. If we did it for you, without a solid reason for it, then to be fair we'd have to provide the same treatment for everyone else, or else it's favoritism. If their tags had to go through SteamRep admins for review, like you're suggesting, then that super fast reporting system everyone loves from partner communities like FoG would not be possible.

    SourceOP is a little strange in that appeals are handled here on our forums, but they are still handled exclusively by SOP admins, who have access to evidence on SourceOP forums that SteamRep admins do not have.
    Some maybe, but most do not. Especially in a non-trading subreddit. If this were posted in r/tf2trade, that would be more true. Otherwise, it's a bunch of non-traders who don't even understand how the system works, a bunch of marked scammers with agendas banned from r/tf2trade, and people who buy into sensational titles without fact checking. That last one isn't even specific to r/tf2, but it's common throughout Reddit. Every day, you can find clickbait titles on the front page of Reddit because of people upvoting what looks interesting. I'm not necessarily saying it's a terrible place, but you need to recognize inherent biases in the platform and community; just because you see a bunch of threads with the title "corrupt steamrep" doesn't mean there's a big conspiracy here.
    As I said above, nobody said it doesn't. It's being worked on. Right now our biggest priority is defunct community tags, which there isn't a place to appeal for. After those, we have people who have been waiting quite a while for their appeals here at SR. There's a lot of them, they each take a long time to research, and there aren't a lot of admins capable of doing that work, so we need to keep it at one per person. If you have a solution to that problem, let's hear it.
    Brownn and Roudydogg1 like this.