Dead? No, You Cannot Kill Them, No

August 25, 2004 by at 3:36 am • Filed Under Star Wars Galaxies Journal 
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Sony, the vortex of evil among gaming companies, recently banned — dozens? hundreds? millions? who fucking knows because Sony never publishes figures — accounts for either actually duping game credits (money) or touching duped game credits.

Problem is, in Star Wars: Galaxies, players can be “tipped” credits against their will or even while offline. Tipping is a completely passive activity for the recipient. Hence, Sony’s encore appearance in the coveted “Asshats of the Week” sidebar.

But, there’s more!

SWG server Intrepid, naive Sony noobs that they are, decided to stage an ingame protest in Theed (major gathering area) to demand that Sony properly investigate the bannings and reinstate the innocent players. And by “properly investigate”, I mean investigate AT ALL, and use SOME EVIDENCE (as opposed to none) before assigning guilt.

The ingame protest begins to lag the server, CSRs arrive to tell the crowd to disperse, and, to quell the uprising (or maybe just to fuck with them), Team Sony begins randomly teleporting players around the galaxy and booting people from the server. (Class act, that Sony!)

Below is an excerpt from a chat log that one such player, Eloran, had with a few CSRs inquiring about the official banning policy. Rather than link to the board post (because I think we can all agree that post isn’t long for this world), I’m reproducing it here, for History’s sake. (My editoralization in red)

CSR Josh K.: Hello Eloran, Thank you for contacting Sony Online Entertainment. One moment please, while I read your question. Thank You! (poor Josh)
Eloran Starlighter: Okay, CSR JoshK
CSR Josh K.: How may I help you today Eloran?
Eloran Starlighter: I’m sure you are aware of the recent credit duping ban spree. I have NOT been banned, but I do have a question
Eloran Starlighter: What will happen if I am tipped malicious credits? I do not dupe, but the economy should not screech to a halt (what will happen? Your ass is banned too. Any other ?s)
Eloran Starlighter: If you do not answer, I want to speak to your supervisor. If you ignore me, I will report you. I hate to threaten, but I will not be taken lightly.
Eloran Starlighter: ….Josh?
CSR Josh K.: Did you contacted a in game CSR? (wtf, Josh = Apu in Delhi?)
Eloran Starlighter: This is NOT an in game issue, they have not helped me. I want information. If you will not give it, please give me your supervisor. This circular “Talk to this guy” “talk to that guy” “send an e-mail there” ruse is annoying. Please give me information or a higher-up.
CSR Josh K.: One moment please, while I transfer you to another CSR who has the ability to assist you further with your issue. You will be returned to the queue and a CSR will assist you immediately. Thank You, and have a nice day. (argg, Josh used the hand-off hotkey)
Eloran Starlighter: If I am tipped malicious credits…what will happen? What if I sell my acklay bones and get paid with duped creds? I didn’t do anything wrong. Why should I be banned?
CSR Josh K. has left the session.
Please wait while we find an agent from the SOE HELP STAR WARS GALAXIES department to assist you.
You have been connected to CSR Ken V..
Eloran Starlighter: Thank you. =)
CSR Ken V. has left the session. (pussy)
Please wait while we find an agent from the SOE HELP STAR WARS GALAXIES department to assist you.
You have been connected to CSR Shane S..
CSR Shane S. has left the session. (pussy)
Please wait while we find an agent from the SOE HELP STAR WARS GALAXIES department to assist you.
You have been connected to CSR Ethan H..
CSR Ethan H. has left the session. (pussy)
Please wait while we find an agent from the SOE HELP STAR WARS GALAXIES department to assist you.
You have been connected to CSR Chris R..
CSR Chris R.: Hello Eloran, Thank you for contacting Sony Online Entertainment. One moment please, while I read your question. Thank You!
Eloran Starlighter: Are you CSR JoshK’s supervisor
Eloran Starlighter: ?*
CSR Chris R.: I am tier 2 support (wfe, does that mean paid more and actually in the USA?)
Eloran Starlighter: I assume that means you are higher up. Great.
CSR Chris R.: Is there something I can assist you with?
CSR Chris R.: Yes that is correct
Eloran Starlighter: Yes. I require information.
CSR Chris R.: Okay
Eloran Starlighter: This is not an in-game issue, so an in-game CSR is out of the question
Eloran Starlighter: I’m sure you are aware of the recent ban-spree due to credit duping. What will occur if I sell an item, and am paid with duped credits? What if I am maliciously tipped? Why should I be flagged and banned? Should the economy screech to a halt?
CSR Chris R.: Yes I am aware
Eloran Starlighter: if you cannot assist me, please send me to tier 3, to your supervisor, or to someone else. If you do not, I will gladly report you. I do not want to threaten, as you seem to be nice. But I shall not be taken lightly on this issue.
CSR Chris R.: Unfortunately there is no on e in this department that can assist you with this matter. All banned and suspended account must go thru swgsupport@soe.sony.com. That is who you will need to contact. (argg, the attempted hand off)
Eloran Starlighter: I am not banned nor suspended.
Eloran Starlighter: I said I wanted information.
Eloran Starlighter: I do not want an auto-response letter. Especially since I am not even banned.
CSR Chris R.: What information are you requesting? (scroll up, asshat)
Eloran Starlighter: What will occur if I sell an item, and am paid with duped credits? What if I am maliciously tipped? Why should I be flagged and banned? Should the economy screech to a halt?
CSR Chris R.: You will be banned (at least he’s honest)
CSR Chris R.: I would advise you not to do anything that would put your account at risk (like participating in the player economy in any way)
Eloran Starlighter: And how does one get unbanned? Pray to the mighty auto-response from swgsupport@soe.sony.com? =P
Eloran Starlighter: So I should stay logged out and let the people who hate my bank tip me? I should stop selling items? I should sit in the middle of Endor
Eloran Starlighter: ?*
CSR Chris R.: You do not
CSR Chris R.: Once an account is banned, it is gone forever (lie)
Eloran Starlighter: ….
Eloran Starlighter: Ouch
Eloran Starlighter: So you reccomend staying logged out? (Yes)
Eloran Starlighter: I mean, there seems no safe way. You can get bank tipped while offline
CSR Chris R.: To be perfectly honest with you. If you did receive any duped credit’s or purchased anything with duped credits, I would advise you to contact a CSR immediately. (and, err, how will she know that?)
CSR Chris R.: That is a in game support CSR (attempted hand-off)
Eloran Starlighter: I have not recieved anything. But I’m just saying, how can I possibly avoid it?
CSR Chris R.: If someone tips you a large amount of credits contact a in game support CSR (again, do not participate in the player economy)
Eloran Starlighter: All right. But…one other question
Eloran Starlighter: Let’s say I kill an acklay. I get some cool bones. I go and I sell it…a big-name weaponsmith purchases it. Now, he didn’t dupe…he’s too honest for that. But a few hours ago, someone bought his 3 mil weapon with some duped creds. He pays me for the bones with his money. What happens? (as if Chris R knows what an acklay bone is.)
CSR Chris R.: Now if something like that were to happen in game support could look at the logs and see that you were not in violation of the End User’s License Agreement. (WOOT! he used the EULA as a shield!)
Eloran Starlighter: But if I were already banned, my account would already be lost forever, wouldn’t it? Or can they unban it if I am proven innocent? (the phrase “proven innocent” just seems so wrong)
CSR Chris R.: They can do an investigation and unban an account
Eloran Starlighter: And if I am tipped big credits, I should immedietly call a CSR? And hold onto the money so he can remove it from the game? (it’s the players’ job to police game mechanics?)
CSR Chris R.: Yes that is correct, were talking millions of credits
Eloran Starlighter: So if I only recieve like 800K or something for my acklay bones, I should be safe..and if not…they can unban me, right? (800k, safe from SOE Gestapo; million(s), not safe)
CSR Chris R.: Yes
CSR Chris R.: That is correct
Eloran Starlighter: Thank you very much, CSR Chris R. You have been, by far, one of the most helpful CSRs I have ever met. I hope they give you a raise or a bonus or something. =) Please submit this log if it will help you recieve such a thing.
Eloran Starlighter: Have a wonderful day

Sony. They’re the fucking Nazgul.



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