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Old 03-17-2011, 11:57 AM
ledow ledow is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 80

Put it this way:

I backup my ban lists. And I have still files going back to programs I wrote when I was in the first year of secondary school (now called Year 7). Hell, I still have BASIC and Z80 assembly lying around from my ZX Spectrum before that.

I'm honestly flattered that you're so affected by being banned from my servers (2 out of, what, 140-ish worldwide?) - and equally concerned that that is ALL you seem to worry about - that you take the time to hang around and discuss it like I switched off your Internet connection, or beat up your granny or something. I don't really see the point. In fact, all you're really doing is propagating the knowledge that my server is well-regulated. Thanks for that, but it's getting a little old.

Greater than 99.9% of the people who still play on my server have no problem with that policy, and as Kyxoan says, he bans 2-3 people a month himself which isn't much less than me. The difference is he unbans them (so they can potentially cause trouble again) whereas I don't bother because there's never a shortage of people who want to play on there, and I won't subject myself or my regulars to a repeat experience. Ban, kick or warn. Unban means that, as an admin, you got the decision wrong in the first place.

To answer your question, my servers probably won't be around in 20 years time. Altitude is a good game but even Counter-strike is only 10-or-so years old and I ran servers for that for about 7-8 years before the community started to die (bloody CS:Source and Warcraft mods!). Altitude is good, but it's not even in the same class as CS when it comes to user-minutes.

Think of it this way: I like my daughter to play on a bouncy castle and she likes it too. So I bought her a bouncy castle of her own at my expense. We stuck it in my backyard and she can play on it all day without me having to pay or worry about her. Playing on a bouncy castle on your own is boring after a while, so I let her bring her friends and schoolfriends to play on it and even the little boy we don't know who keeps watching us from the end of the road. By owning the bouncy castle, I don't need to worry about pushy kids shoving her off, rude parents, etc. and living by others rules (i.e. if I want to let them on it with soft-shoes, I can, if I want to let them on it when it's windy, or raining, I can, if she wants to go on it at three in the morning, she can - if I let her) because if they're a problem, I just stop them playing on my bouncy castle with my daughter and her friends. There's nothing to stop them playing on ANY other bouncy castle in the world or even, as one disgruntled "banned" person did from my server, buying their own.

The fact that others benefit from having a "free bouncy castle" is secondary and dependent on their behaviour and, to an extent, my whim. If I decide to deflate the castle one day, they get zero say in it, only an opinion. If I decide to paint the castle blue, or only let kids without shoes on it, that's what they have to either a) agree with or b) accept and stop playing there. If a kid walks past that I just don't like the look of, I can choose not to let them on, or tell them it's only for my daughter and her friends.

The prime purpose, of course, is not for other strangers - it's so that I can provide a service to myself, my friends and family that's under our control. If I want the castle for a birthday party then, no, I won't let anyone else on that day, etc. And the first little git that punctures it deliberately won't be getting back on.

That's a better analogy than you think because my brother, his step-daughter, and other friends and family are on my servers all the time (with admin privileges that have never been exercised, because they just tell me about incidents instead). If you upset them, or interfere with their game, they won't take kindly to it either, and neither will I. And the server isn't there for YOU to play on. It's there for US to play on. And more specifically for ME to play on. Password-protecting it wouldn't be as much fun, so it's left open on the assumption that the vast, vast majority of people just want to play - which happens to be true.

I provide a service for me for entirely selfish reasons. Secondarily, other people can benefit at no expense to themselves. Whether or not I'm implementing "It's my ball, we play my way" rules or not, it's as childish to whinge about such things. I'm much more concerned (on a personal level) about what you do in your free time, and why a particular Altitude server ban policy is so important to you, than I am about getting a reputation as a "Ban Master". In fact, the latter helps and my regulars actually find it quite amusing because most of them have never seen a ban.

To give you a sample of what I have to deal with when all I want to do is play a game of Altitude with people who want to pick the ball up, pass and put it into a goal while talking in a friendly way, here's a couple of log snippets, just before I banned the people involved:

"I might have you know that I come in here and harass your players a lot"
"in the hope that this abomination of a server might shut down anytime soon"
"banning me won't have any use either I got a gazillion accounts"

2) Player joins with nick of "F*** all N*gg*rs" (without the censorship).
Me: "Change your nick" (I don't NEED to put please on that - it's not a request)
Them: "F*** you".

3) This thread being derailed on a regular basis for little or no reason. If the purpose is publicity: I BANNED THESE PEOPLE FOR THE REASONS THEY STATED (and sometimes a little more!). There. Sorted. Can we move on now?

For some of those things, I wouldn't tolerate that sort of abuse in a Post Office if I was working behind the counter. I wouldn't tolerate in the job I do, even from kids who have problems. I wouldn't tolerate it directed at me even in my local garage. In fact, you're quite likely to get arrested if you spoke to a police officer like that. How bad do you think I feel about banning such people from my own "private property" just so I can play a game in peace?

Out of 16 private message on this forum, 3 were related to requests for admin rights (all politely declined, but appreciated), 1 was from lamster asking for help to solve a server problem I had that he'd never seen before, 3 were to report someone who was spoiling other's enjoyment of the server (and 2 cases resulted in a ban because the logs backed it up, the other because I trusted the person), and 9 were from one person who was banned and sent me a message every day until I blocked them on the forum (and I was asked by the forum moderators to report that person but chose not to). And then people wonder why I don't respond to "friend" requests, or answer their private messages - I just don't bother to check them because I want to avoid having to deal with that sort of spam.

However, the hassle and abuse associated with the above is infinitely *less* than what would happen on my server if I just let those people do what they like. And, to be honest, I'm pretty expert at ignoring it by now after 20+ years on the Internet.

The current situation *will not change*. I'm sorry that your lives are so boring and unimaginative (and actually so easy) that you feel hard-done-by because of a server ban on a video game. I find it quite sad that such a pathetic thing is so important to you. But I'm not a psychologist, nor an entertainer. I'm a player who just wants to play a game. Nobody is forcing you to play with my football.
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