1) Our GMs are going to be doing a lot more broadcasting when they are on servers to make sure people know they are there and dealing with the hackers.
2) We will be implementing and TESTING a "batphone" system for larger outfits to call and report large scale issues. Who's going to have that #? Not a ton of people. It will be people we trust and have gotten it right in the past. We'll expand it if this works.
3) In the very near future (the second I get the final report) we will be announcing banned numbers.
4) We are going to be working on increasing the quality of our reporting system in game and specifically to make sure the right reports float to the top. This is going to take a bit of time but it's being moved up the list immediately (we already had a task for this but we're moving it near the top).
■we have plenty of active GMs in this game. They respond to the normal queue system. We have a separate system to look at the /reports. They become visible when they need to otherwise they simply take the reports and compare to our logs and deal appropriately.
I believe what you are talking about is being super public about it when they deal with a hacker. We don't do that. Because very frequently the /reports are straight up wrong and it wouldn't be right to make an example out of sometime that isn't cheating.
■because there are two ways we go. We either prove or disprove someone is a hacker. Until we prove it we don't take stuff away. Sometimes we catch them on other stuff and suspend them while we check other things but it wouldn't be fair to remove anything from them until we prove what we believe. Then we ban
■I mentioned this in response to another post - because no matter how good other players are we can't give them the internal tools we have to prove 100% that someone is a hacker. We can't give people the power to boot someone just because they believe they are a cheater. We need proof.
■that is someone who was straight up wrong. I don't give a shit if someone's paying. If they are cheating and we catch them and they've spent $10,000.. they're still gone. I've posted publicly about some of these bigger spenders we've banned.
■we have weighed the pros and cons of publicly listing who we ban. We've decided against it because we don't ever want to be wrong and have publicly called someone a cheater when they aren't. Too many people use the same character names in other games. If we call them a cheater and they aren't their reputation could be hurt unfairly. Sometimes we will do it if it's a big deal, like a person involved in creating the hacking tools.
■I respect and understand your frustration. I'm not going to pretend we don't miss people. But even if people we respect submit reports it comes down to us needing to verify to our level of certainty that someone is in fact cheating. flying tanks doesn't prove anything because lag can and does cause things like that. Flying tanks are also incredibly easy for us to catch if it's because someone is actually hacking.
How do we deal with reports? Well, we actually do look at the source of the reports. We also look at the # of reports. But we always cross check that against our internal tools. Are they perfect? Certainly not. I'm not going to lie and say they catch people 100% But they are evolving very quickly and we are focused on improving them to the point they can catch most activity automatically without a human even needing to be involved.
In terms of perception this is an area I think we do need to improve. We are actively discussing the idea of having the "batphone" for larger outfit leaders and other key members of the community. Is that going to piss off a lot of people that consider themselves important and yet don't have that phone #? Sure it is. But if you want us to improve things I'm asking that you understand this is a marathon and not a sprint. When you don't see GMs its because they are busy answering petitions and reports and doing their jobs. We have 7/24/365 coverage with GMs.
You did not come across even slightly abrasive. I consider a post like this exactly the kind of thing I want to hear and respond to.