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Banned From WoW For WINE & Programmable Keyboard

CmdrTaco posted more than 8 years ago | from the they-hates-them-the-emulation dept.

701

An anonymous reader writes "Player gets banned for playing World of Warcraft under WINE and using a Logitech Gaming keyboard. "I am an experienced network engineer for an ISP and I am often running World of Warcraft on Linux through the use of WINE..."" Although the e-mails exchanged are unclear my guess is that the programmable keyboard was more the problem then WINE. Not that you'd ever know that given that Blizzard communicates with their users seemingly almost exclusively with form letters.

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Anonymous? (5, Interesting)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923631)

Slashdot profile [slashdot.org]

The keyboard he is using sounds quite cool though :)
I shall have to look into getting one.

Re:Anonymous? (1)

Lester67 (218549) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923744)

It's very cool. I got my step-daughter one for Christmas... sadly... to play WoW. She's playing under Windows, so maybe it won't be an issue (besides... she's 14. I'd be surprised if she's even figured out how to program macros.)

Re:Anonymous? (4, Interesting)

n00tz (926304) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923902)

Around Christmas I bought me and my brother both a Logitech G15. They are really nice keyboards, with a lot of versitility. G15forums.com [g15forums.com] has a lot of different ways to use the display it comes with.

Unfortunetely, for the keyboard to be effective in WoW, Blizzard is going to have to support it and program some hooks into the game for it to be supported. Even if there was a 3rd party program (or even a UI mod) that would take care of the hooks for WoW it would be against the ToS, and my account would be banned for it.

As much as I like the game, I have found blizzard themselves to be fairly nazi about what can do what and who can do it. CmdrTaco had an instance with Blizzard Nazism not too long ago. [slashdot.org]

Re:Anonymous? (1)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923957)

Logitech G15. I have one. I got it mainly for the illuminated keyboard since my keyboard is in a poorly lit area. The macros are nice but only if the program you are using isn't too gui dependent.

Simple (1, Funny)

nexcomlink (930801) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923633)

Don't drink and play!

-WoW Overlords

Favor (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923639)

He should consider it a favor. Now he can go back to living his life.

Re:Favor (2, Insightful)

cablepokerface (718716) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923937)

Too bad you are being modded a troll anonymous coward. Playing WoW extensively I can say you're comment is most insightful.

Getting banned from recreational sites (4, Interesting)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923641)

I just got out of a pink page of death ban myself here at Slashdot. Somehow they mistook my frequent reloading of pages and multiple-thread bouncing as some sort of bot or malicious bandwidth-stealing script. It was neither.

So I sit out a couple days trying to get the techs behind banned@slashdot.org to notice my emails. Finally, after a long negotiation with these guys and promising that I will turn off all my Firefox extensions when accessing the site, I get let back on.

And this is what I come back to. A story about someone getting banned.

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (5, Funny)

Otter (3800) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923696)

I suppose it's a bad sign when BadAnalogyGuy beats me to exactly the analogy I was going to make...

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923907)

No, it just means that the analogy you were going to make wasn't very well thought out. : p

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (2, Funny)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923698)

That's a mediocre irony, not a bad analogy.

Come on, get with your own program or we'll get you banned you for handle fraud. I mean really, what the hell to do you thing we put up with you for anyway?

KFG

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (4, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923718)

Karma...getting...low... Need..to..get..back..over...Positive!

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (1)

Symp0sium (961148) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923757)

"I mean really, what the hell to do you thing we put up with you for anyway?"

What the hell does that mean?

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923786)

It means I committed a dyslexic double typo.

So sue me.

KFG

Re:Getting banned from recreational sites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923799)

Sometimes I think it would be much easier if slashdot banned me. I mean geez!!!!111

Hell I dare them to come over yank out my broadband conne(@#*&$(^*(&!(*@#$_!@#* [NO CARRIER]

"Grammer" lesson (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923645)

my guess is that the programmable keyboard was more the problem then WINE

"First we had lunch, THEN we went for a walk".
"One is bigger THAN the other".

How hard can it be people? English isn't even my first language.

KEK (-1, Offtopic)

brxndxn (461473) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923647)

KEK!!!

He's better off. (5, Insightful)

GundamFan (848341) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923651)

It stings to get banned... but realy any MMO is a waste of time, WoW being one of the worst in my opinion.

if this is Blizzards new attitiude towards it's customers, maybe I can get all of my friends to stop playing WoW and spend some time in the real world interacting with people in person.

Mod me a troll if you want it won't change the fact that I am siclk of Fantasy MMOs.

Re:He's better off. (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923730)

It stings to get banned... but realy any MMO is a waste of time, WoW being one of the worst in my opinion.

Whatever. But this way isn't very likely to work. It reminds me of some of the russian detox centers where they just pick you off the street, lock you to a bed and let you go cold turkey, even though you're not really ready or motivated for it at all.

On one hand this is a good example of what can happen when you "invest" in a digital world - but there's really no such thing as an offline MMORPG is there?

Re:He's better off. (4, Insightful)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923780)

but there's really no such thing as an offline MMORPG is there?

Yes there is. It's called business.

Re:He's better off. (5, Funny)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923925)

Good analogy. Business has lots of grinding, low level mobs, and elitist guilds.

Re:He's better off. (1)

netkid91 (915818) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923754)

Even though I am guilty of playing EQ nonstop(but currently, of course, VIA's integrated GFX DirectX drivers are freaking out so I can't, but that's beside the point) I agree, people who spend all their time on a MMO(except us geeks who live for the net, by the net, and only about the net) should take a break and go outside. (Offtopic, who plays WoW anyways, it feels like a 12 y/o made it for all his freinds, it's like, kiddie MMO [crack])

Not a Suprise (5, Insightful)

Herkum01 (592704) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923657)

In any situation which one party has vastly superior authority and little chance of penalized. Don't expect them to act in a reasonable manner.

Re:Not a Suprise (4, Interesting)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923767)

In any situation which one party has vastly superior authority and little chance of penalized. Don't expect them to act in a reasonable manner.

I guess it depends upon your definition of reasonable.

In this case they actively pissed off a customer, terminating the account of a paying subscriber, because they felt that his actions were detrimental to the rest of the community. His actions had nothing to do with Linux, but rather were the result of what appeared to be automated activity (which could have been that a user saw him there stat padding for hours, complained, and then an admin trying conversing with him to find the character just mechanically repeating the same steps). Reading his account, it sounds like he configured a variety of complex activities as macros on his keyboard, and just sat there repeating them ad nauseam for hours while he did other things (fun!), doing this largely automated activity for his own gain. Given that MMMORPGs are somewhat of a zero sum affair, this means that it's at the cost of other players.

I'm actually amazed that the company acted so responsibly. It would have been easy to just backtrack and forgive and forget, but they forged ahead, making an enemy and losing a customer, to try to maintain the "rules of the land". Good for them.

I should also say that the individual in question might want to learn why "the right to silence" can be an important trait. He completely indicted himself in his emails ("so I was sitting her occasionally triggering macros while I watched TV...").

Re:Not a Suprise (5, Insightful)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923973)

I'm actually amazed that the company acted so responsibly. It would have been easy to just backtrack and forgive and forget, but they forged ahead, making an enemy and losing a customer, to try to maintain the "rules of the land". Good for them.

You have a funny definition of "responsible". If you read TFA, he went through great lengths to attempt to resolve the issue with Blizzard, keeping his emails polite at all times. He pointed out that both Logitech and Blizzard had advertised the keyboard as being good for WoW, and even offered to accept a temporary ban to make up for any accidental infractions.

Blizzard ignored all his correspondance, and went for a permanent ban, apparently in direct violation of their own terms of service. [blizzard.com]

Blizzard was WRONG, and paid no attention to a reasonable customer. I find it perfectly acceptable if he was currently considering either legal or grass roots responses to their gross negligence in the matter. If that is the best they can do for loyal customers who attempted civil resolutions, then they deserve to end up in a media circus of bad press and class action suits.

It's the keyboard, stupid. (4, Informative)

JasonUCF (601670) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923659)

They have stated repeatedly that programmable keyboards like the Logitech one violate the EULA for WoW. While the current iteration of hacks -- sending the keyboard the mana/HP, are benign, the possibilty exists for there to be future mods that become harmful to the game or allow for some form of hacking.

Source:
http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.aspx?fn=w ow-interface-customization&t=330798&tmp=1#post3307 98 [worldofwarcraft.com]

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (1)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923734)

"Now it is quite well possible that during that time people contacted me in-game without me replying." (from TFA)

This probably didn't help either. I'd think he was a bot.

I wonder how they determine if the player is using a programmable keyboard? As popular as WoW is, I can imagine that some prog. keyboard manufacturers will find a way to avoid detection. Maybe a random pause between key presses?

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. - And he was BOTTING (5, Informative)

JasonUCF (601670) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923739)

OMG! I wanted to get the link in, but I read through the rest of the email:

At the time of the suspension I was playing WoW on Linux. I was training my weapon skills because I recently turned to level 60. I had programmed the switching of weapons (I use Wardrobe for that) to my programmable keyboard and was fighting a low-level healing mob to upgrade all my weapon skills to 300. As you might very well know, this takes hours, and while I was training my different weapon skills by pressing the macro keys and healing myself every now and then, I watched some movies on my TV, because fighting a level 25 healing mob doesn't require much attention if you're a level 60 priest.
It's not a matter of WINE, he was fucking botting! He took his programmable keyboard and built macros for fighting mobs and then left it unattendend.

When you a grinding, if a GM suspects botting they will whisper you looking for you to respond. If you don't respond within a reasonable amount of time you get nailed for botting.

Yawn..

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. - And he was BOTTING (3, Funny)

FireIron (838223) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923802)

When you a grinding, if a GM suspects botting they will whisper you looking for you to respond. If you don't respond within a reasonable amount of time you get nailed for botting.

IOW -- "Human fails Turing Test. Film at Eleven."

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. - And he was BOTTING (2, Interesting)

Danse (1026) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923932)

When you a grinding, if a GM suspects botting they will whisper you looking for you to respond. If you don't respond within a reasonable amount of time you get nailed for botting.

Same thing that admins would do back in the BBS days. A friend of mine and I used to write scripts for Telix to grind for us in a couple of MUDs. We ended up having to make the script give some kind of generic reply anytime someone talked to us and then start beeping to notify us that we were being watched. Worked really well. We never got caught.

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (2, Informative)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923753)

There is a link in TFA, allegedly to a post on the European forums where a Blizzard rep (I think) says explicitly that programmable keyboards are allowed.

This is the link, however it's giving me a "service unavailable" message. I'm not sure if that's because I'm not authorized, or because I'm in the US and trying to get to the European forums, or what. If anyone can access it and quote their answer, I'd be very interested.

Besides, Blizzard employees have stated in a blue post on the EU forums:

"We have looked into this matter and haven't found reasonable cause to disallow usage of its functions for use in world of Warcraft. We do, however, reserve the right to come back to this statement at a later point, at which we will inform our players."

The link to this post is http://forums-en.wow-europe.com/thread.aspx?FN=wow -general-en&T=705675&P=5 [wow-europe.com]

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (1)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923775)

This is the link, however it's giving me a "service unavailable" message. I'm not sure if that's because I'm not authorized, or because I'm in the US and trying to get to the European forums, or what. If anyone can access it and quote their answer, I'd be very interested.

Wednesday is maintenance day for WoW in Europe. This typically means something significant is broken for a large part of the day after maintenance finishes. Today it's the forums, so we're going to have to wait a while.

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (2, Insightful)

I_Strahd (791299) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923758)

I agree, I think this has no real tie to Linux is a bit over dramatized. It is the keyboard. If someone tried to contact the player in game and he didn't respond (listed as dnd), yet he was still playing. What are the admins supposed to think?

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (2, Informative)

mazariyn (525556) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923782)

That thread relates to the use of software to display in-game information (e.g. hps, mana, level, etc.) on the LCD screen of the Logitech G15 keyboard, not the use of the keyboard itself.

But that is not the point (5, Insightful)

geddes (533463) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923823)

1. He wasn't using the LCD functioning of his programmable keyboard, he was using macros, it is far less clear if that is against the WoW tos, since programmable macro-keys do not involve "intercepting data" being sent from the WoW application.

2. But you are right, it was the Keyboard that brought this on. He was wathing movies and just casually pressing his macro key every now and then. Since he wasn't paying attention and doing the same thing over and over again, it looked like he was botting. Blizzard may have been right to ban him. Though I tend to think that since they have no clear programmable keyboard policy, they should have warned him.

3. Nonetheless, after reading his website, I have sympathy for the guy. Blizzard's communication with him really sucked. Getting sent those form letters must have been so frustrating. He asked specific questions to his accuser and they were replied to by generic form letters. He went into great detail explaining what his (somewhat unique) situation was. Even if Blizzard had replied and said "We have no problem with your running Wine, but using those programmable keyboards are against our ToS." Then that would be fine. But Blizzard was vague in their responses, which is unfair, and if they were a government (which they sort of are in this online world) for a developed, democratic, nation, this guy would have the right to at least SEE the evidence against him. It sounds like here somebody reported him as not responding to messages. They should tell him WHEN and WHERE it happened. Explain what showed up in their logs for them to conclude that he was botting.

The true problem here isn't lack of Wine support or Programmable Keyboards. The problem is that Blizzard makes decisions behind a closed curtain and doesn't tell you what evidence they used to support their decision.

Re:But that is not the point (2, Insightful)

drzhivago (310144) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923895)

Why would you have sympathy? He configured his keyboard to run repeatable tasks, then walked away from the game. In all the MMOGs I've played, that's botting and is an easy and clear way to get suspended or banned.

Maybe Blizzard could handle it with more tact, but the end result would still be the same. He botted, he got caught, he got banned.

Re:It's the keyboard, stupid. (1)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923838)

Then Blizzard needs to learn to differentiate between useful tools, macros, and hacks rather than banning the keyboards.

Just from RTFA, I'd have to say this guy takes the game too seriously and could use a break anyway...but then I think that about most people who play MMORPGs.

Solution! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923662)

Use Windows, problem solved.

Re:Solution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923863)

If the post (and solution) was "Use Linux, problems solved", this would be a +5

CmdrTaco and his Hypocrisy (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923668)

Not that you'd ever know that given that Blizzard communicates with their users seemingly almost exclusively with form letters.

Gotta love the hypocrisy from Taco complaining about unresponsive, noncommunicative companies.

Anybody else unfortunate enough to email the editors about an issue? Whether it is abusive moderation, story dupe/inaccurate/inflammatory, or posting bans, almost all the editors respond with one-line dismissals or direction to read their outdated FAQ which hasn't been updated in years.

Taco really has balls so whine about Blizzard, especially the last time he bitched on the front page about his screen name being changed.

It's really funny when the shoe is on the other foot.

Could it be... (-1, Flamebait)

DaHat (247651) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923670)

That Blizzard is saying that only hackers and cheaters use Linux? This could be interesting.

Re:Could it be... (1)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923701)

It looks to me that they're saying that people who appear to be performing repetative, scripted actions in non-standard game environments appear to be cheaters. Rather a different statement.

Re:Could it be... (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923792)

No the problem is with the programmable keyboard and macros he was using, not that he was running WINE.

In fact, as far as I know, I don't think that they can tell whether you're using WINE or a legitimate Windows version, it ought to look exactly the same to them from the server-side.

Before I got a Mac that could handle the requirements, I used to play WoW using Cedega, and once I tweaked it enough to get it working, never experienced any problems. But then again by WoW standards I'm a very "casual player."

Re:Could it be... (1)

Usekh (557680) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923874)

..that you didn't read the article properly?

Re:Could it be... (1)

filesiteguy (695431) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923998)

No, we - um, they - use Windows, too.

Of course, I can't understand all the commotion about a fscking game. In my opinion - and I've never played this or any other MMORPG - if the person wants to cheat, that's all part of the game. Seems silly for the operators to ban someone for creative use of technology.

Didn't Captain Kirk do something like that on a simulation?

Oooh exciting! (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923673)

"Man suspended from game for breaking rules of game"

I can't wait for slashdot to report on every ejection and game misconduct in this years NHL and MLB seasons. That'll be thrilling.

Um. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923678)

I'm a little ignorant about this, but why would a mage need to train weapon skills in the first place? Aren't wands superior?

Re:Um. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923830)

I'm a little ignorant about this, but why would a mage need to train weapon skills in the first place? Aren't wands superior?

Yes, you're ignorant because you didn't RTFA.

Uhm, no. (5, Insightful)

Syberghost (10557) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923679)

Banned for violating the rules with his programmable keyboard. They outright told him that; he was interacting with his environment in an unattended manner. That's a violation of the TOS for every MMORPG I've ever read the TOS for, which admittedly isn't many.

However, it is telling that he knows that bot programs won't work on Wine under Linux; I'm not buying the story that he tested them all subsequently.

Summation: Cheated. Got caught. Got banned. Whined and told his buddies an "edited" version of the story, so they all rallied behind him. Tough noogies.

Re:Uhm, no. (5, Insightful)

EddieBurkett (614927) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923751)

Banned for violating the rules with his programmable keyboard. They outright told him that; he was interacting with his environment in an unattended manner. That's a violation of the TOS for every MMORPG I've ever read the TOS for, which admittedly isn't many.
The best part is that the guy wraps himself in the I'm-being-persecuted-for-running-Linux flag, which he knows will raise the ire of many the WoW player. If he was playing the game unattended and got caught, he deserves to be banned, and if he finds fighting low level mobs to raise his skills so boring, maybe he should find another way to spend his time.

Its been a while since I've played WoW. Can Trolls be Priests?

Re:Uhm, no. (1)

amrust (686727) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923762)

Agreed. He was playing unattended.

Don't do the bot, if you can't do the ban.

Re:Uhm, no. (1)

WebScud (662900) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923766)

Agreed. Obvisouly if he's able to watch a movie the game is playing itself unattended wether or not you're sitting at the computer or not. Duh. Is that hard to understand? The game is unattended, not your computer and that is the TOS violation. And he's a moron for saying that to Blizzard thinking that he's defending himself. "My macro works so well I can just let it do its thing while I watch a movie." Plus, saying that you've researched bot programs and wether or not the run on Linux cannot possibly help yourself. Bilzzard is right in this case. Sorry dude.

Re:Uhm, no. (1)

ivoras (455934) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923820)

What's the problem with using programmable keyboards? AFAIK, the only thing you might do in WoW with those is to record macros of often-used key sequences. What's the problem with that? If the server validly accepts fast keypresses, why should it matter if they were generated with a keyboard macro or a human hand?

Also, how did they detect it was a programmable keyboard on the client side and not a very repetitive human?

Re:Uhm, no. (1)

TrappedByMyself (861094) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923911)

What's the problem with using programmable keyboards? AFAIK, the only thing you might do in WoW with those is to record macros of often-used key sequences. What's the problem with that? If the server validly accepts fast keypresses, why should it matter if they were generated with a keyboard macro or a human hand? Also, how did they detect it was a programmable keyboard on the client side and not a very repetitive human?

You're missing the point of this thread. It appears that he's not giving the full story and that he was using his keyboard and/or other software to cheat in the game.

Also in games of this type, especially WoW, fairness is HUGE. People cry if they think one class has even the slightest advantage over another. If Blizzard doesn't crack down on people using automated resources to gain an advantage, it will kill the game.

Re:Uhm, no. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923879)

Banned for violating the rules with his programmable keyboard. They outright told him that; he was interacting with his environment in an unattended manner.

WoW runs windowed mode and has an auto-run key for a reason. Lots of people background WoW while they "play," especially high-level people. There is just too much downtime.

A programmable keyboard isn't a bot. It doesn't read gamestate anywhere... you still have to press the button or nothing will happen. And there are completely legal UI modifications in-game which will, for example, switch your armor and weapon set to a fishing set at the touch of a button. The distinction between that and what this guy is doing seems pretty slim.

Rights and software? (2, Insightful)

globalar (669767) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923680)

I don't think you have any rights related to software you can't completely control yourself. Please, someone correct me if I'm wrong here. That said, my experience with most RPG's is that they involve a lot of repetition (which is why the guy programmed some macros). Apparently this is part of the official, mandatory WoW experience. That would explain why goldfarming (or whatever it's called in the game) is so popular. Someone at Blizzard must have taken econ101 somewhere along the line?

The fact that Blizzard needs to know if you're sitting at your computer or not is a bit disturbing, however. Like a parent.

Re:Rights and software? (1)

Perseid (660451) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923722)

Apparently, for WoS, they're going to require a webcam, and if they find out that your character is moving and you're not in frame, they send a zergling rush to your house.

Re:Rights and software? (1)

Hoi Polloi (522990) | more than 8 years ago | (#14924001)

God help them when they see what their customers look like and that they usually play naked.

all that time leveling lost because of a keyboard? (4, Insightful)

Neologic (48268) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923690)

Incidents like this remind me that when you play WoW or other mmorpg's, you don't own your character, despite the often thousand of man-hours people put into them. It seems to me that if there was a similar real-world analogue, the account holder would be able to get some sort of redress to his losses in a court of law, or at least reinstatement. In these virtual worlds, the game company is able to rule by diktat and is able to twist the TOS to suit their needs. Indeed, they can change the TOS at will and if you don't agree to the new terms, then you forfeit your right to your account. Eventually, the legalities of virtual worlds will need to be addressed.

Re:all that time leveling lost because of a keyboa (1)

The Only Druid (587299) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923747)

They -are- addressed, you just don't like the result.

You enter a contract where you're paying ONLY for access to their world (with the related assurance that they'll protect you against TOS violators generally). The fact that your access allows you to alter some of their data - your avatar - does nothing to change the fact that your contract is explicitly not about 'owning' anything.

Want something different? Hit up SecondLife, where you own everything legitimately. The market provides us with what we ask for, if enough of us want it: if enough people wanted to own these properties enough, they'd refuse to play games that didn't allow that ownership. The fact that people keep playing WoW and other MMORPGs with this limitation indicates that most people don't agree with you.

Re:all that time leveling lost because of a keyboa (1)

Neologic (48268) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923965)

I think that its more a case of ignorance than a deliberate choice. I have only heard of Second Life spoken of like its more of a mmorpg version of The Sims for example. I bet most WoW players haven't ever heard of it.

Further, I bet most people either don't understand the TOS or ignore the finer grained differences between paying to have exclusive access to a set of data and actually owning the data. From an economic view, your ideas about markets makes sense, however, since both humans and organizations are not fully rational, we can't expect a perfectly responsive market.

Re:all that time leveling lost because of a keyboa (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923845)

Eventually, the legalities of virtual worlds will need to be addressed.

Digital application for residence permit? Permanent residence? Citizenship? Digital fines? Digital jail? Digital deportation? Oh please. It's a game world, run by them. Consider it an online version of a theme park. They can refuse entry or throw you out if you violate the terms. You're not going to see official regulation of this is hell so freezes over.

Re:all that time leveling lost because of a keyboa (1)

dougmc (70836) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923945)

Digital jail? Digital deportation?
Already here, apparantly.

Digital jail [kotaku.com] .
Digital deportation [slashdot.org] (or exile.)

Re:all that time leveling lost because of a keyboa (1)

Usekh (557680) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923936)

He lost all that time because he was cheating.

good (1)

cyclomedia (882859) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923697)

read TFA and looks like he wasn't playing WOW properly at all, may not have been using a "bot" but was upgrading his skills by using a macro to fight, heal, fight, etc. which did require the repeated pressing of a button but hey, if that's ok then where does it stop?

morale: play properly, or not at all.

Re:good (1)

Hubbell (850646) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923789)

He had a weapon switch macro, that's it. He was pressing the attack/heal keys the entire time.

Re:good (2, Funny)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923901)

haven't you ever played an ORPG? Repeatedly pressing a single button tends to be the whole of it.

Definitely the keyboard (5, Informative)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923699)

It seems like it was definitely the programmable keyboard and not WINE that set off their bot detectors.

Apparently the macros on the keyboard were making him do repeated actions, and somehow this was interpreted by Blizzard as "unattended" operation. (Why they think it was unattended I don't know, TFA doesn't say exactly ... why didn't they just message him when they saw the odd behavior? Or do something else to verify it's a human on the other end?)

Anyway, a quote from TFA:
"So it seems that if I use a programmable keyboard I am botting. However I suspect their 3rd party detection software saw a very strange enviroinment in which WoW was running; that combined with the repetitive task of healing myself, switching weapons, and casting Hex of Weakness programmed in my keyboard, I am viewed as a bot."

So it seems other people using WoW under WINE are safe, you'd just better not get too trigger-happy with the keyboard macros.

What's really the problem here is that there seems to be a huge disconnect between official Blizzard policy (programmable keyboards are okay, this has been explicitly said by one of their reps in the forums, according to the article) and what the GMs did. And after the guy got banned, they seem to just be just stonewalling him and hoping he'll go away, giving him a lot of "the matter is closed" crap. I have to salute his perserverence, though, in spite of this.

Rather a disappointing showing from Blizzard.

Re:Definitely the keyboard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923763)

Anyway, a quote from TFA:
"So it seems that if I use a programmable keyboard I am botting. However I suspect their 3rd party detection software saw a very strange enviroinment in which WoW was running; that combined with the repetitive task of healing myself, switching weapons, and casting Hex of Weakness programmed in my keyboard, I am viewed as a bot."


That IS a bot. His character was doing stuff without much interaction by itself. If he had used the macro interface, it wouldn't have been a problem.

Re:Definitely the keyboard (1)

Kaychsea (930330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923805)

Reading through it, it looks like a number of things, "odd" environment, repetitive and unresponsive behaviour and the keyboard. Looks like the keyboard gave them the room for the ban, but if his character was approached while he wasn't paying attention it will look, smell and walk like a bot.

Re:Definitely the keyboard (1)

Professor_UNIX (867045) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923918)

So it seems other people using WoW under WINE are safe, you'd just better not get too trigger-happy with the keyboard macros.

Is there anything that stops him from setting up a keyboard macro to repeat indefinitely until he pressed another key? I don't know anything about the specific keyboard he uses, but I bet that something like that was taking place. They probably have alerts that go off if some repeated sequence of events happens at regular exact intervals that couldn't possibly be a human doing it.

Re:Definitely the keyboard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14924000)

The Logitech G15 webpage even specifically mentions how useful it's macro keys are for World of Warcraft, which I can't imagine they would be allowed to explicitly mention without ok from Blizzard, so it's very odd to me that they would then ban someone for using the keyboard...

boo fucking hoo (-1, Troll)

Onymous Hero (910664) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923700)

Seriously, take this up with the WoW people...we don't care!

If it walks like a duck... (4, Informative)

Tominva1045 (587712) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923706)



On this point (botting) the EULA has been clear since the release of the game. If one knows something he is doing could be percieved as botting (at the discretion of the owner of the content) then why tempt fate by using it and then admit to using it?

They made a judegement call with their corporate reputation as the foundation upon which they stood to defend this principle. That didn't leave them any backing-down room. When you admitted to the programmable keyboard that gave them what they needed to completely defend their position.

Step 1: ditch programmable keyboard.
Step 2: obtain new credit card.
Step 3: Hellooooo Level 1.

good luck - EULAs can be tough.

geez that guy's a trooper (4, Funny)

WormholeFiend (674934) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923711)

The way Blizzard replies to the guy's emails, if I had been him, I would have emailed them a large high rez uncompressed photo of my middle finger with the caption "this is the finger I used to press my final macro key in WoW".

experienced network engineer fired for playing WoW (1)

Johnny Mozzarella (655181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923719)

I'm sure your luck is bound to change.

Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923727)

I for one, welcomes our new...programmable-keyboard-overlords?
Haven't played the game myself much, but is programmable keyboards really such an advantage?

BFD (1)

squidguy (846256) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923737)

1. It's a game. Go on with your life and stop whining. 2. Suspect there is more to this story that we're being fed. The most interesting and enlightening component is the apparent successful use of WINE for a graphically-intensive app. 3. Blizzard isn't clean here, but they've undoubtedly been tricked before by various nefarious actors and so one can see how they might be just a little bit suspicious of this activity. 4. Sounds like he's quibbling about the TOS -- one can see how Blizzard would interpret 'botism' to include use of recurring macros whilst the character is flagged as do-not-disturb, and repetitively hits the same mob(s). In his defense, one could argue that Blizzard should increase the randomization, and perhaps randomly in-game nuke (or whatever happens in WoW) characters engaged as such. 5. Maybe he should claim membership in the GLBT guild, and cry discrimination. 6. It's a game. 7. See #6.

anyone spot his first mistake? (2, Funny)

know1 (854868) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923740)

Please do not reply to this email as you will receive an automated response.

Regards,

English Game Master Team
Blizzard Europe

-----
and he wonders why he git shitty responses. maybe he should have tried a different email route first I replied them with the following e-mail:

Sad (1)

Silicon Mike (611992) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923745)

I'm sad that this made the front page here... He shouldn't be made a martyr. He was using a method of automating the game for personal gain, which everyone and their brother knows is against Blizzards rules. If the guy wasn't running under wine, nobody would here would care. He got caught, he got banned. He even admitted that he was watching tv while using his macro keyboard! Comon guy.. Go buy yourself a new account and start over.. And if your gonna cheat, don't get caught, and dont cry Linux.

0yiuo Fail It!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923746)

He Had It Coming (3, Insightful)

Kylow (581998) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923761)

Any dunderhead should realize that automating levelling of skills is and SHOULD BE against the rules of an MMORPG. He got what he deserved. He was also deceptive early in the correspondence, trying to convince them he was only using his macro keyboard to change armor sets. Whether weapon skills are important to a priest or not, he gained levels in those skills with this macroing. This also has very little, if anything, to do with WINE. I think that played no part in the expulsion.

Why I don't play Blizzard games anymore... (1)

Codename46 (889058) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923765)

Wow, so not only do Blizzard games involve the most number of hackers in online play, but their staff act like pricks as well? Part of it is Logitech's fault for not ensuring that the programmable "G" keys on the G15 keyboard won't conflict with things such as bot detectors and such. The rest of it is Blizzard for being such a pain in the rear towards this dude. I mean, he isn't hacking, and he paid for the game. Why ban him?

It Makes Sense (1)

those.numbers (960432) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923776)

Just look at WOW's EULA and it makes sense. A programmable keyboard will let a user do essentially what several third-party programs would do. I don't see how they could possibly ban one and not the other. Looks like fans of the customizable keyboard are just gonna have to bite the bullet on this one.

he macro'd - nothign to do with linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923779)

change the headline to 'Banned from macroing' like it should be and any MMPORG player would say, 'um...ya...'

WoW is actually very easy to level up weapon skills, and you can get in a group and kill stuff your level it'll go up quick - or solo stuff a few levels down

this guy was setting his keyboard to do a bunch of commands, left the room for a while and would come back with his skills maxed - that's against the rules and if a player was near him and tried talking to him and he never responded, that player probably reported the actions...

this isnt even a story :p

let me get this straight (4, Insightful)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923794)

First off, I've never played WoW (nor any other MMORPG). Now, let me get this straight. The entire WINE aspect seems incidental, so we'll ignore that. Otherwise, he set up some macros on his Logitech keyboard to perform some repetitive tasks. He set those in motion, put up a 'Do Not Disturb' message, and then proceeded to go off and do something else (which admittedly was watching the movie on the other monitor). While this is not a bot program, per se, how is this not running a bot? It's unattended automated actions performed repeatedly. To the best of my knowledge, that's what a bot is. In which case, a banning is what you get.

Sack the Slacker (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14923803)

No wonder the support at my ISP sucks - they're all playing WoW in WINE!

It was most likely Wine (3, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923822)

Search google for "wow warden client" and read a few things. In a nutshell: Blizzard most likely checked if their watchdog program was running (which should make sure that you only run "good" programs and makes sure that you're a "good" player) and didn't find it in the process list.

Result: You must've been hacking your way to 60.

Dunno, as much as I hate cheaters, but some companies go a tad bit far for my taste.

please (1)

k-sound (718684) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923877)

Even though you work for an ISP, you should realize it's a game not real life, get over it. Working for an ISP I'm sure you have more important thing to do beside playing games.

P.S. did I mention you played games and work for an ISP.

If you read the article... (1)

Jaeph (710098) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923884)

...you see this has nothing to do with WINE. The man used his keyboard to skill-up his weapon skills while he watched a movie on another screen. By his own admission, his character was mostly unattended. This is against the rules.

Note, I'm not judging the person or the rules, just pointing out that what he did was clearly against the rules.

-Jeff

Why is this considered news? (1)

CockMonster (886033) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923910)

Seriously!? Priests and wands etc, jesus christ

Why was it WINE or keyboard? (4, Insightful)

fleck_99_99 (223900) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923915)

From reading the linked explanation, it sounds to me like the playing really WAS essentially unattended. If a GM sent a tell while this guy was watching TV, and he didn't answer, but his character kept performing actions -- well, if it looks like a bot and quacks like a bot...

He was cheating.. (2, Informative)

saboola (655522) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923919)

Before you all come down on him with the "OMGFTW He gotz banned for the WINE iN lInux0rz" it had nothing to do with that from TFA. He was using his programmable keyboard to fight a group unattended, which in my book is considered a macro cheat. He should have been banned, and was.

Re:He was cheating.. (1)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923943)

He should have been reduced to a suspension upon review of the case and his reasonable explanation, with the warning that any such behavior being observed in the future would result in a permanent ban.

Why start every letter with (1)

u16084 (832406) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923933)

I work at an ISP?
So F-ing What?
Maybe you should of tried "Hello, My Name Is Roofus.. And I work at the corner McDonalds... Ive spent over 300 (insert currency) here. As you can see, That is double my monthly wage... Please dont cancel my account.

Uh oh (0, Offtopic)

hkb (777908) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923934)

Uh oh! Time to get a girlfriend!

Oh wait. Mine's addicted to WoW, too.

He _could_ sue Logitech (1)

geddes (533463) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923952)

He makes a good point in his letter:
your TOS does not say anything about using such keyboards. Even manufacturers say that their keyboards are usable for World of Warcraft; see the Logitech page for their G15 keyboard for example ( http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/products/details /US/EN,CRID=2166,CONTENTID=10717 [logitech.com] ). However, I have not even gotten an explanation for why I have been banned. All it says is "Witnessed and confirmed use of third party software".
Logitech does advertise that their keyboard works with WoW. If Blizzard is banning its use, than Logitech made false claims about its product.

If the author wants to know... (4, Insightful)

mmalove (919245) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923976)

This is why you got banned:

"At the time of the ban I had configured my keyboard to switch weapons, cast hex of weakness and renew myself, all with the press of a button."

There exists a global cooldown of one second between most gameplay affecting actions in WoW, most certainly for casting these two spells hex of weakness and renew.

Therefore the only way you could have cast both with one button, is if the keyboard is interjecting a wait period, and issueing a keystroke to the game that you are not pressing after this wait period. Now in this case, that keystroke may only be a second after you pushed the button. But the issue is that you have, at this point, just barely crossed the line into botting. It has to be drawn somewhere, and to me this is where it makes the most sense: If you allow the keyboard to issue commands while you are not interacting with the hardware in anyway, you are botting.

Not saying this to be an ass, just to let you know what most likely Blizzard took issue with.

Unattended leveling (1)

HeavyMS (820705) | more than 8 years ago | (#14923989)

Leveling in WOW req about 0.00001% of the 10% of your brain you use. And all i do i unattended leveling i do watch the screen but i'm more in a sleepwalking state then paying attension. Playing snes games on ones pocket pc is a good way to kill leveling time to.
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