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What happened to TF2-T?


Gren

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Anybody know what happened/is going on with TF2-T?  I have most of my cash rep there, went to check on my rep thread a few days ago after not having checked for a couple of months and I get a database error for their entire forum.  Are they done?  Is the forum down for good?  If so, anyway to access old rep threads (I have 3 pages of rep there, dating back 2 years, would be a shame to lose that). 

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Mudguts happened

  

Feel free to explain

I heard from various sources that there was a falling out with admins and he just decided to close down. Can't say that's 100% what happened but it's what I've heard

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Yeah that's a shame, I think at this point it's best to be leaving rep on your profile as well or if possible on the steam forums. SOP ban users pretty easily so having rep there is a risk and any 3rd party website (tf2-t as an example) can fold at any time.

 

The TF2-T admins on the most part were decent people, Mudguts though being strict was a very generous person but I think a couple bad seeds ruined it for them.

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No one here should be trusting profile comments of any kind as a form of reputation, ever. It's a shame that so many sources for reputation threads are gone, and I'm sorry if you decide not to trust SourceOP - they've been around about as long as trading has existed in TF2 and have long been regarded as a premier source of reputation threads (perhaps because they're so strict and ban-happy) - but trusting profile comments is asking to get scammed.

 

See: http://forums.steamrep.com/threads/what-constitutes-reputation.12391/

 

Last I heard bazaar.tf was hosting reputation threads. Fortress of Gamers is also hosting reputation threads. I was never personally a fan of backpack.tf's automated +/- reputation system, as it seemed prone to abuse by farming from mass scammer alts, but that would still be several orders of magnitude better than trusting profile comments.

 

I hate to think of it in such callous terms, but we may be better off if dead websites fold like this; would be nice if they gave a notice or grace period, but if nobody maintains the website, then it stands to reason nobody is moderating reputation threads, and the board becomes a haven for fakerep. Yes, it stings to have years worth of reputation lost, but if kept up for another year than surely it wouldn't be worth anything with all the scammers linking their self-vouches on the same website to appear credible. In the future, it may be better to simply have reputation threads in multiple locations, so when one dies you don't lose everything.

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No one here should be trusting profile comments of any kind as a form of reputation, ever. It's a shame that so many sources for reputation threads are gone, and I'm sorry if you decide not to trust SourceOP - they've been around about as long as trading has existed in TF2 and have long been regarded as a premier source of reputation threads (perhaps because they're so strict and ban-happy) - but trusting profile comments is asking to get scammed.

 

See: http://forums.steamrep.com/threads/what-constitutes-reputation.12391/

 

Last I heard bazaar.tf was hosting reputation threads. I was never personally a fan of backpack.tf's automated +/- reputation system, as it seemed prone to abuse by farming from mass scammer alts, but that would still be several orders of magnitude better than trusting profile comments.

 

I hate to think of it in such callous terms, but we may be better off if dead websites fold like this; would be nice if they gave a notice or grace period, but if nobody maintains the website, then it stands to reason nobody is moderating reputation threads, and the board becomes a haven for fakerep. Yes, it stings to have years worth of reputation lost, but if kept up for another year than surely it wouldn't be worth anything with all the scammers linking their self-vouches on the same website to appear credible. In the future, it may be better to simply have reputation threads in multiple locations, so when one dies you don't lose everything.

Currently I'm running with my backpack.tf trust and an FoG rep thread. Backpack.tf is very swift and easy, but I find it useful for legitimate traders to exchange rep. If you're a legitimate trader, you can tell whether or not the person you're checking out has fake rep or not. Most of the time when you're scrolling through someone's trust ratings, you see familiar names, and people who also have trust. If someone has ratings from 10 people and none of them are very trustworthy, then it's safe to say that they have fake rep. While it is a bit of a more hands off approach, and we do remove fake rep and useless +trusts, I think it serves a very decent purpose. (I'm not being defensive, just adding to your point :P)

 

On a personal note, in many ways I prefer the backpack.tf trust system, because I can immediately check the rep of people who have left rep on someone else, so it's a fantastic way to figure out whether someone's rep is real or not. 

 

 

By the way, what really did happen to tf2-t? Did the site owner decide to quit paying the bills and folded up shop? Where did they go?

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Just to be clear, I'm not condemning it. I personally never liked the idea; if a scammer makes 10-15 alts, and each +reps one another, then when a single profile gets tagged the rest still have a net positive reputation after the penalty for +repping a scammer, and it will still display that trusted number on the backpack.tf profile.

 

When backpack.tf's reputation system first came out, I understood it to be almost entirely automated, and not moderated by design. If, as I understand it to be, reputation posts on backpack.tf are actively moderated, then it's just as useful as any other reputation source. For people who know what to look for, it's great. Putting a green "trusted" number up on the profile of those other 9 unmarked scammer alt profiles will probably snare a couple victims who aren't familiar with cash trading or reputation threads though.

 

Wasn't aware FoG had reputation threads so I'll edit my above post accordingly.

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By the way, what really did happen to tf2-t? Did the site owner decide to quit paying the bills and folded up shop? Where did they go?

 

That was a great server, mudguts was imo one of the most generous traders. He unboxed heaps and anything he unboxed he gave to someone cheap for keys and then continued to unbox.

 

imo most of the admin group were extremely trustworthy but there were some that were hired as an admin that were questionable and went on to commit scams, I forgot the name of the person but the other head admin aside from mudguts was banned for ripping off the owner and traders. He was doing most of the backend work and without him Mudguts (from what i know) didn't replace him and from there it slowly went into a decline. I think there new server also could of lost them users, it was massive for no reason, even if it was full it still looked empty.

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No one here should be trusting profile comments of any kind as a form of reputation, ever. It's a shame that so many sources for reputation threads are gone, and I'm sorry if you decide not to trust SourceOP - they've been around about as long as trading has existed in TF2 and have long been regarded as a premier source of reputation threads (perhaps because they're so strict and ban-happy) - but trusting profile comments is asking to get scammed.

 

We see this from different perspectives, my perspective is from the user, where yours is from a rules standpoint. As a user I trust them a lot and my best practices involves using them as a means of undeniable certainty of who the poster is which I can't always do with a forum post. 

 

My simplest & most evident check:

 

Is to go to their profile > do the standard quick checks > go to their first couple "+ rep" comment > look at when dated and consider that >  search those accounts in backpack.tf > Continue that cycle until i feel comfortable

 

It's quick, comes with 100% poster proof & and isn't at risk of being deleted.

 

The evidence of this check pointing the poster to the account is undeniable where with a forum post the same could not be said, this statement alone should highlight why profile rep is better than forum rep.

 

A good example of profile comment for me is a comment from toughsox, I have a ban on tf2outpost.com and he left a note saying that people can trade with me without having to worry about a ban. Some traders didn't want to run a risk and trade with me then get banned but pointing them to that message from toughsox sorts that concern out. If someone had a +Rep with detailed notes from a friend or yours or a very trusted trader then that should hold massive weight when weighing things up.

 

If I didn't have profile rep my trading would have been a lot harder and i'm sure it's the same with other affected users. If someone didn't have profile rep and had decided to delete all their comments at some point they could then even be considered a suspicious account to some.

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- snip -

 

 

- snip -

 

Thanks Milz for your input, I guess that basically explains what's going on:  sounds like TF2-T has essentially been abandoned.  

 

Sucks to be losing all that rep.  Ah well, at least I have a couple of pages of bp trust that should suffice for now.  

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Just to be clear, I'm not condemning it. I personally never liked the idea; if a scammer makes 10-15 alts, and each +reps one another, then when a single profile gets tagged the rest still have a net positive reputation after the penalty for +repping a scammer, and it will still display that trusted number on the backpack.tf profile.

 

When backpack.tf's reputation system first came out, I understood it to be almost entirely automated, and not moderated by design. If, as I understand it to be, reputation posts on backpack.tf are actively moderated, then it's just as useful as any other reputation source. For people who know what to look for, it's great. Putting a green "trusted" number up on the profile of those other 9 unmarked scammer alt profiles will probably snare a couple victims who aren't familiar with cash trading or reputation threads though.

 

Wasn't aware FoG had reputation threads so I'll edit my above post accordingly.

 

The trust system is moderated, but not heavily or "actively" - we deal with a fair number of reports on proofless or falsified trusts, but none of us have the time to be actively out looking for these things.

 

To all - users reporting them is extremely valuable and I'd encourage anyone who sees dodgy or irrelevant trust to report it. I am doing the majority of trust reports at present, and don't mind wasting a bit of time looking at unnecessary reports if it helps to clean up the trust system significantly and make it more useful and reliable for the userbase. If anyone is unsure of if they should report something or not, err on the side of doing it - I can always ignore it if it's invalid.

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i just had like ten trusts removed from my bp.tf profile which is BS since I only ever get them after doing a cash deal. Blaming this on you guys  :angry:

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I was never personally a fan of backpack.tf's automated +/- reputation system, as it seemed prone to abuse by farming from mass scammer alts, but that would still be several orders of magnitude better than trusting profile comments.

You have to have had a backpack.tf account for 6 months before you can leave rep, I don't see how it's anymore prone to false rep than any other source.  In my opinion it's the best rep thread available right now.  It's also safe since backpack.tf isn't going to fall as a website anytime soon (unlike TF2-T).  bp.tf also moderates the rep threads, likely equal or better than most other rep threads moderate.

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i just had like ten trusts removed from my bp.tf profile which is BS since I only ever get them after doing a cash deal. Blaming this on you guys  :angry:

Heh, they were probably like "+rep bought items, would trade again"

 

We encourage you to inform the person leaving a trust on you to that their trust should include: The method of payment, general item/items traded, value of trade. That makes the trust useful to people checking your rep, and it wont get removed :P

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i just had like ten trusts removed from my bp.tf profile which is BS since I only ever get them after doing a cash deal. Blaming this on you guys  :angry:

 

The majority that were removed were invalid for the reason angelmander explained above, but some were just completely irrelevant... most recent one was "Because of his suggestions!" :P

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We see this from different perspectives, my perspective is from the user, where yours is from a rules standpoint. As a user I trust them a lot and my best practices involves using them as a means of undeniable certainty of who the poster is which I can't always do with a forum post.

 

This has nothing to do with rules. There is no rule governing profile comments on SteamRep. You personally feel comfortable with trusting profile comments? If you think you can trust them then go for it. Nobody is going to ban you for it, and from what I understand you're well off enough to either see a scam coming from other red flags or to survive a single or occasional PayPal scammer. That's your business. But please, please do not tell other traders to do the same. I spend quite enough time explaining the importance of not trusting profile comments to scam victims, and don't need you or other high profile traders telling people otherwise. I get that you're upset about your SOP thread. You, like many of the other innocent traders perpetuating this "+rep" thing want an easy way to work yourself back up to the point you spent years climbing towards. Profile comments are not the answer though, and many of the people you convince to trust this kind of "reputation" will end up scammed because of it.

 

What's important to understand about profile comments is they're inherently biased because the only one moderating them is the owner of that profile. They're going to run around soliciting fake reputation on it, and anything negative like the fact that they asked for fake reputation can be deleted. Nobody verifies anything posted, and scammers largely fake it. Nobody moderates them for posting from alt accounts.

 

As an admin, I see a lot of scammers pushing the trust and legitimacy of profile comments on victims, and a lot of other people pushing them because they want an easy way to be "trusted". Sadly there are a lot of people misplacing trust in these comments, which leads to a lot of people getting scammed "because he had more rep than me". It's extremely common and almost routine for scammers to +rep themselves from alt accounts, or join "rep for rep" or scamming groups where they band together and +rep eachother - sometimes spread out over time - to try and appear legitimate or trustworthy. Some also pay scrap/refined metal for fake reputation comments from people. Just this month one we stumbled upon a scamming group of 700-800 users (which grew to this point in less than 2 weeks) dedicated to fake reputation (with made up details about items and prices) and exchange of scamming methods, which we reported to Valve and had closed down. I usually tell people that if someone asserts their profile comments as a reason they should be trusted, to either refuse the trade or tell the buyer to buy keys with their money. In the vast majority of cases where people come to me in this kind of situation, the "buyer" refuses to pay with anything other than cash and the victim either backs away or gets scammed. Our flood of incoming reports that we struggle to keep up with are mostly split between "he had more profile rep / Lounge rep / Steam level than me so I went first" cases and impersonation scams, with some game scams and reports from users who don't understand what we investigate or what constitutes a scam. Further spread of this belief in profile comments as a form of reputation will only help the scammers.

 

Yes, it's a slow and painful process to build back your reputation. I'm sorry it's like that. I would respectfully suggest diversifying your sources. Get a few reputation vouches in backpack.tf, a few in FoG, a few in Bazaar, a few in SteamTrades, and a few in whatever other communities out there are hosting reputation threads. If one of them goes down, you don't have all your eggs in one basket and you won't get burned so badly. It may be slower this way, but it's more sustainable in the long term.

 

The trust system is moderated, but not heavily or "actively" - we deal with a fair number of reports on proofless or falsified trusts, but none of us have the time to be actively out looking for these things.

 

To all - users reporting them is extremely valuable and I'd encourage anyone who sees dodgy or irrelevant trust to report it. I am doing the majority of trust reports at present, and don't mind wasting a bit of time looking at unnecessary reports if it helps to clean up the trust system significantly and make it more useful and reliable for the userbase. If anyone is unsure of if they should report something or not, err on the side of doing it - I can always ignore it if it's invalid.

You have to have had a backpack.tf account for 6 months before you can leave rep, I don't see how it's anymore prone to false rep than any other source.  In my opinion it's the best rep thread available right now.  It's also safe since backpack.tf isn't going to fall as a website anytime soon (unlike TF2-T).  bp.tf also moderates the rep threads, likely equal or better than most other rep threads moderate.

 

Sounds like there is some moderation and oversight of this, which is different from my first impression and understanding. It's not always possible to oversee and verify each and every single trade that took place, although some communities have tried. A few others I've run across rely more on the community's input through reports before investigating individual comments, and it seems to work well for them. In this case, I would highly recommend backpack.tf reputation over profile comments. See my notes above.

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SNIP

 

What I am saying is that from a individual user perspective it makes a lot of sense to ask for traders to post detailed rep on your profile as it safe guards you from website closure, admins deleting them for personal reasons, unseen hacking or other variables.

 

The safer your rep from being deleted the more valuable it is.

 

Now I understand that people could just leave random + Reps on profiles in attempts to build fake rep but from individual users perspective that are managing their own profile rep and are not looking for fake rep then this does not matter. They could ask the person leaving the + Rep to leave detailed notes and if that + Rep is coming from a trusty sauce then it is extremely valuable and not as risk of being deleted.

This is what I mean by an individual user perspective. If you are managing your own rep and asking people to leave detailed notes then your profile rep is much better and safer than forum rep, it's also a lot quicker for people to verify this rep is posted from the said user than if they had to go though the forum post.

 

If a user is only seeking legit rep on their process and is asking for detailed notes and have evidence of their transactions then other people attempting to get "fake" rep on their profile is of no concern to them regarding their own reputation and will not affect them. Once again I am saying this from a individual users perspective on safe guarding their own legit reputation and not as a "best practices" on how to avoid falling for fake rep.

 

Owning your own reputation on your profile > Than someone else owning your reputation.

 

Especially when you consider that one of the largest rep holders have already disappeared - TF2-T & the largest rep thread holders have previously removed all rep and have publicly said they don't care about bullshit trading threads or rep (refer to my below post)

 

Take my case as an example. I have purchased a Clean Burning Team Captain for pure PayPal and I had went with SR suggestions and not asked for this rep to be posted on my profile but had asked for it to be posted on SOP. This rep is now deleted, I will still have this rep if I had asked for it to be placed on my profile. I would have been able to point people to this today if it was on my profile, that rep would link directly to the unboxers profile and I could then show users the item history of the item to prove that it was unboxed by the said user. That 1 + Rep is worth hundreds of + Reps but because I trusted someone else to maintain my rep instead of using the platform I had control over, my rep was held hostage and I was taunted about it being deleted before it then got deleted.

 

With that in mind, it can't be argued that my rep from my perspective was better left on my profile, anyone that had a TF2-T rep thread would have been better off having that rep on their profile and anyone with a SOP rep thread with their history (refer to post below) should think twice about how long they leave their rep there for.

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No one here should be trusting profile comments of any kind as a form of reputation, ever. It's a shame that so many sources for reputation threads are gone, and I'm sorry if you decide not to trust SourceOP - they've been around about as long as trading has existed in TF2 and have long been regarded as a premier source of reputation threads (perhaps because they're so strict and ban-happy) - but trusting profile comments is asking to get scammed.

 

 

On this note, i'm not sure how long you've been around but SOP don't overly care about maintaining peoples rep and have clearly said so in the past when they removed everyone's rep but due to public outcry brought them back.

 

This is their comment (assuming from YOTO, but since i'm banned I can't confirm)

 

"So basically yeah, I really can't bring myself to care about your bullshit trading threads or "rep." you suggest we burden ourselves further simply because you didnt pay attention? go cry on reddit about it or something I see your point for an archive but it would be a waste (for the site to keep it) and counter productive to keep traders around here."

 

https://www.reddit.com/r/tf2/comments/1w5xcs/sourceop_has_removed_all_tradingrelated_sections/

 

Have a read through the comments, see how it all went down and tell me why they should be trusted to maintain rep.

 

What I am saying is the community and individual users should look to protect their reputation where you are saying they should leave them in the hands of individuals they don't know, even with the evident history of many people already losing their built reputation.

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