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Buying points and having them randomly taken away.

Jarnhamar

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In another thread I seen a comment which started me thinking.  Someone got dinged for -700 points to their milpoint total because of a comment they made.  They called it being Milraped and commented how it's going to harm their Afgan ops gaming.
Anyone who plays AfghanOps knows how vital milpoints become.  You need them to play, up to and including being able to buy milpoints for $$$ in order to progress in the game.

I was thinking, is it fair that the army.ca community at large can take away points from someone if that person actually paid money for them?
Say I don't even play the game but you do. You spent $20 to get more milpoints in order to progress in the game.  You make a comment in army.ca that I don't like so I nail you for a point loss.  Even though I don't have anything to do with the game itself, my actions took real money out of your pocket and it becomes not just an "I don't like your post" but punishment.

Loosing milpoints doesn't really affect anyone unless they are an active member of Afghan Ops. 

Should milpoints that someone actually buys be separate and untouchable?

 

Michael OLeary

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Perhaps if someone cares so much about an online game that they spend real money to play it, then perhaps they would also be more careful about saying stupid or offensive things that might cost them those "points."  Each "player" gets to choose how they prioritize their participation.
 

Occam

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No, I think Grimaldus has a point here.  I think it unreasonable that purchased points can be taken away at the whim of people who could possibly have a grudge against the member.  There are no checks and balances into whether or not the points deduction is a valid one.  Yes, people make flippant or offensive comments, but previously the only outcome was a locked thread or the warning ladder - actions taken by moderators under a strict set of rules.  Now they're being hit in the wallet by other members.  I don't think that's right.
 

REDinstaller

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Not only that. The comment only has to offend one persons sensibilities and bang a big minus.
 

armyvern

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Tango18A said:
Not only that. The comment only has to offend one persons sensibilities and bang a big minus.

Or the opposite: the comment only has to please one person and then, bang ... a big bonus.
 

bdave

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I am a martyr, gentlemen.  ;D

edit: Why not make the milpoints that are purchased through Afghan Ops be added to Afghan Ops in a separate "pool".
So even if you have -2000 MP, you can still buy something in Afghan Ops, providing you bought some Afghan Ops MP.
 

brihard

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I completely agree with Grimaldus here. Respectfully, Michael, I strongly disagree with your post. The rest of the hypothetical situations are irrelevant; an individual can buy a bunch of points, and any one of us can dock them arbitrarily from this site, in effect punishing them monetarily. I don't care what the conventions are on this site; nothing extends to us the right to affect another person's pocket like that. It's wrong, and I don't think it should be trivialized or excused.

If the milpoints used in the game can be purchased, they'll need to be divorced from the ones used on this site. I would suggest that any milpoints gained on this site simply result in that same total being added to their Afghan Ops tally (along with any they buy), but comments made on this site should not affect their game, particularly now that a fiscal element is involved.
 

PuckChaser

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Michael O'Leary said:
Perhaps if someone cares so much about an online game that they spend real money to play it, then perhaps they would also be more careful about saying stupid or offensive things that might cost them those "points."  Each "player" gets to choose how they prioritize their participation.

I'll have to disagree here, Michael. That's going to make anyone new to the forums (or even older, established members) walk on eggshells because they may have a differing opinion. This pretty much puts the power to cost people real money in the hands of the few "veterans" here that spend hours a day posting and dissecting new people's posts. I thought the purpose of the game was to attract more young blood into the forums, and provide a way for you to make a little more cash to keep the doors open. If people start losing real dollars because they made one stupid comment, it's going to shut those taps down pretty quickly.

ArmyVern said:
Or the opposite: the comment only has to please one person and then, bang ... a big bonus.

I think if you look at how the milpoints are being awarded on the forums, its typical of the military, really. Its super hard to get acknowledged for good things, but as soon as you screw up you've got 6 people telling you how wrong you are in their humble opinion.
 

Michael OLeary

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Grimaldus said:
In another thread I seen a comment which started me thinking.  Someone got dinged for -700 points to their milpoint total because of a comment they made.  They called it being Milraped and commented how it's going to harm their Afgan ops gaming.
Anyone who plays AfghanOps knows how vital milpoints become.  You need them to play, up to and including being able to buy milpoints for $$$ in order to progress in the game.

Let's review the comment that led to this thread:

bdave said:
Tell them you eat babies.

Would anyone like to defend that this comment to a young soldier looking for advice on how to effectively describe his employment as a Reserve soldiers should have been overlooked just because he plays an online game and might be spending real money to do it?
 

bdave

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The game part was a joke. I thought that was obvious since there was a ";)".
Nor Am I spending real money on the game.

This thread isn't here to defend my lame attempt at humor, but to outline a problem concerning the ability for other members to effectively burn money other members have spent.
If you offer the ability to purchase milpoints through Aghan Operations, then they should not be able to be deducted by other members simply on the grounds of opinion.

No one here is defending me. They are defending the money they or others may lose just because someone doesn't agree with them.

 

Jarnhamar

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I still disagree Michael.
If his comment warrants punishment of some sort then it should be the army.ca warning ladder and not something that effects an online game accessed through facebook. Especially if a member uses real money to purchase milpoints to play the facebook game.  You're basically punishing someone twice, which only applies to a select few.

His comment is irrelevant because I can dock him Milpoints because he said something stupid OR because I feel like being a dick.  You could hammer my milpoints in this thread simply because you don't like my idea.  No one is defending his comment, this thread isn't about his comment specifically but the ability of me and you to possibly take money out of some kids wallet.

The only people that are really punished (or effected) by milpoint reductions are those that play afghanops.  Respectfully, does anyone who doesn't play really worry about how many milpoints they have? I never did. Now I do but only because I need them.

Bottom line. I love playing this game and think the people who made it did a badass job of it and I'm very appreciative. I just feel the current set up is somewhat flawed in that the average poster can possibly take money away from someone else. Take money away from someone and they won't continue to be a member here. They won't contribute to the board with posts, additional money and they'll probably give us very bad publicity.  "they should have known better" doesn't really cut it in my opinion.


There are two solutions I see.
1. Make milpoints that someone purchases "protected" so that even if there is a 10 man milpoint dogpile, his milpoints can't drop below the amount that he (may have) purchased.
You can still dock someone milpoints and really screw up their gaming experience (which I very much don't agree with,again it's like punishing someone twice) but you can't take what they purchased away from them.  That's fair enough if you think about it.


2. Redo the system and split it.  (long term)
Have a notoriety system and milpoint system.
The notoriety system works on the like/dislike principle. If you don't like someones post hit dislike and leave a comment (it'll look just like the milpoint set up where people can see the comments). have a rating system or scale system of some sort.  If someone gets more dislikes than likes they go into the negative and it displays on their profile.  Same if someone has a thousand likes/good posts. 
With this system you can still let the member (and others) know you either like what their saying or don't like it- you get your point across.

The milpoints system. Members get points for being online, making posts, starting threads etc.. and loose points for posts that get deleted by the mods.  Your milpoints reflect your contribution to the site and how active in the community you are. But in this case the select groupd that actually use milpoints aren't punished. No walking on egg shells.

This way if your a disruptive poster here your notoriety scale will show as much on your profile, everyone see's it- point made.
 

Jarnhamar

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ArmyVern said:
Or the opposite: the comment only has to please one person and then, bang ... a big bonus.

But, how often does that happen Vern? Your posts are phenominal, I always have time to listen to what you have to say. That said the last time someone gave you "a big bonus" was September 2nd.  The time before that August 8.  Michael's the same way. Awesome posts he's always helping people around here and patient, I went back 10 or 20 pages in his milpoints record, the last time someone gave him a big bonus was sometime in August.

It seems like people give out negitive points over positive ones at a 3:1 or 4:1 ratio (Which I am just as guilty of but trying to correct).
 

Blackadder1916

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Actually, in the thread in question bdave was assessed -1000 milpoints.  Seven hundred points was against his inital post that offended the sensibility of some members and -300 points was for the post "whining" about the -700.  I was the one who negatively assessed him for that.  I was originally going to ding the first post.  However that skirmish didn't cost him as much as most would think.  Other members, believing the post to be an appropriate jest (and probably thinking that those of us with an opposite opinion were old humourless farts) provided him with 950 milpoints.  I do not apologize for my assessment of the posts.  Whether or not he played Afghan Ops had no bearing in my thought process, however if he had purchased Milpoints (according to his history he has not) and had subsequently messaged me with an objection to the assessment, I most likely would have made a positive assessment the following day, along with a message to think before he posts like a "dick".  Unless someone can provide evidence that there has been deliberate "negative milpoint assessing*" of players of the game (and especially if it has an effect on potential cash flow keeping the doors open), it seems to me that Milpoints is working fine as designed.
*(edited to correctly remove reference to offensive word)

(In a spirit of sarcasm, I will give him 50 points so that it's a wash.)
(damn there is no 50 point level, so I had to give him 60.)

Didn't we already try a like/dislike index that had no connection to participation.  If I recall correctly, we moved on to the Milpoints because it better reflected participants' contributions in terms of quantity and quality.  IMO, this thread is an example of how well this forum self-polices itself within the current rules.  Yes, the Afghan Ops game and purchase of milpoints is a relatively new wrinkle, however I'm sure that if anyone was being screwed over (especially financially) there would quickly be a posse in pursuit of the offenders.
 

Jarnhamar

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Blackadder1916 said:
Didn't we already try a like/dislike index that had no connection to participation.  If I recall correctly, we moved on to the Milpoints because it better reflected participants contributions in terms of quantity and quality.  IMO, this thread is an example of how well this forum self-polices itself within the current rules.  Yes, the Afghan Ops game and purchase of milpoints is a relatively new wrinkle, however I'm sure that if anyone was being screwed over (especially financially) there would quickly be a posse in pursuit of the offenders.
I think the issue was, if I remember correctly,  that you could like/dislike someone anonymously which lead to abuse?  I don't like you so anytime you post I hit dislike, over and over and you might be suspicious but couldn't prove it was me following you around the board.  This is fixed by removing the anonymous aspect of the function.

 

Fishbone Jones

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If I question anything in this thread, it's the term 'milraped'. I'm far from jaded, nor have I led any sort of sheltered life, but I find the word offensive. No matter what it's intended connotation is.
 

Mike Bobbitt

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Thanks for the input guys, I think it's a valid concern. Nobody wants to pay for something and then have an arbitrary, anonymous Internet user yank it away from them. When faced with a situation like this, I always like to take the emotion out of it, and look at the situation 'by the numbers':

MilPoints Awarded: 168,820
MilPoints.png
(47%)
MilPoints Deducted: 190,560
MilPoints.png
(53%)
Difference: -21,740
MilPoints.png


So as you can see, there are more MilPoints deducted for 'bad' posts than awarded for good posts. I don't believe that's an accurate representation of overall the quality of our posts here... but then again, points are only awarded or deducted for "exceptional" posts, either good or bad. Some more numbers:

Total times MilPoints have been awarded: 1,291
Total times MilPoints have been deducted: 1,079
Average award: 131
MilPoints.png

Average deduction: 177
MilPoints.png

Total messages on Army.ca: 927,086
% of messages assessed: 0.26%

Interestingly, more people award points than deduct them, yet more points have been deducted overall. This is because the average deduction is larger than the average award. This implies several things. The amount you can award or deduct is based on your MilPoints balance. The higher your balance, the more you can giveth or taketh away. As the deductions are 26% higher than awards, we can assume that members with a higher MilPoints balance are more apt to fire a shot than give out praise. Generally a user's MilPoints balance is a reflection of their time spent here, and the overall level of respect they have earned. In other words, it's somewhat a representation of your seniority here. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say what everyone is thinking:

I have just scientifically proven that senior members of Army.ca are crusty. ;)

I'll end with just a few more stats:

Total MilPoints earned by all users, via all means: 7,005,166
MilPoints.png

Total MilPoint events: 419,478
% of events that are user assessments: 0.56%
% of MilPoints earned by assessment: 2.4%
% of MilPoints lost by assessment: 2.7%

This also means a few things... it means that while the assessment system can have a huge impact for a user, it's not tipping the balance of the system as a whole. However, since 0.56% of events can control over 5% of the balance, it also means that assessments probably carry too much punch. In fact, if you strictly believe the numbers, maybe assessments are 10 times too powerful. Maybe they should range from 5
MilPoints.png
to 30
MilPoints.png
instead of 25
MilPoints.png
to 300
MilPoints.png
.

So when all is said and done, I think the points made on both sides are valid: let's discuss some options that are fair but still encourage positive participation and "think, then post" behaviour on the site. I like the notion of "protected" points... it's going to take some effort to flesh that idea out and see if it's feasible... then to implement it if that makes sense, so please be patient and keep the ideas coming.


Thanks
Mike

Edited to fix a simple math error. :)
 

Jarnhamar

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recceguy said:
If I question anything in this thread, it's the term 'milraped'. I'm far from jaded, nor have I led any sort of sheltered life, but I find the word offensive. No matter what it's intended connotation is.

Quite true Recceguy. I was quoting from another post but in hindsight I should have thought of a better word, at the very least used a different one in the thread title.  I've since edited it and removed the term. 
 

NavyShooter

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Interesting....I admit, I found a use for Milpoints today in Afghan ops....I bought 420 Double-Double's, and earned my 'Gear-slut" medal for 500....now I have 65 available mil points.  I'm wishing I'd claimed my "refill" medal after I'd realized I could up my level to 65 CR's.

Is there a way to get more CR's using Mil-points?

NS
 

Mike Bobbitt

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Not yet... but I think the idea has some merit. I'll add that to the 'to do' list.
 

crooks.a

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Michael O'Leary said:
Perhaps if someone cares so much about an online game that they spend real money to play it, then perhaps they would also be more careful about saying stupid or offensive things that might cost them those "points."  Each "player" gets to choose how they prioritize their participation.
Imagine somebody taking $20 out of your wallet because you said something they didn't like. This is essentially the same thing.

I, personally, haven't purchased points yet, but if I had made a purchase and then lost all of it because I said something I shouldn't have, then I would naturally be angry. Also, I don't think the situation evens out with points awarded. Think of this:

How many people have gone to jail for bad things.

How many people have been awarded the Order of Canada for good things.

The people going to prison severely outweighs the people getting the Order of Canada, but I'd guess that the number of good people in Canada severely outweighs the number of bad people.
 
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