Pinside account verification


By robin

10 months ago


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    There are 270 posts in topic. You are on page 1 of 6.
    53
    #1 10 months ago

    Pinside is a tight-knit community, and an important aspect of such a community is trust. Recent events, often caused by throwaway/fake accounts, have threatened the integrity of our site. Today we're announcing Pinside account verification, our answer to a growing number of incidents involving spammers or fake accounts.

    For starters, spammers. In recent months we have been fighting an ongoing battle with tenacious spammers who (after finding out that their forum spam postings were being removed incredibly quick by our fantastic moderator team) came up with new ways to spread their useless junk. They started targeting locations in our pinball map and even creating pinball events to try and spread their annoying messages.

    Secondly, we want to put a stop to fake account creation and the spreading of (Mis)information from anonymous sources without anyone to hold accountable for it. We also want to make sure that people take our rules seriously and by making it harder to create a second (verified) account, we hope to curb this.

    verified-badge (resized).png

    What is verified account status?
    Being verified means your account was checked against a third party system (or another Pinsider) to make sure you are a legit person and not someone using a duplicate or throwaway/fake/troll account. Getting verified is essentially anonymous, and user details (like your real name or location) will not be shared unless you decide to share them with others via your privacy settings.

    Do I need to have my account verified?
    Being verified is not mandatory. However, you need to be verified if you want to:
    - post to hot (flaming) threads
    - post to topics in certain sub-forums (e.g. the manufacturer or market sub-forums)
    - Make more than x posts per day, or more than x pm's per day (in other words, if you're a power user)
    - Place a marketplace ad
    - Adding or editing Pinside map locations
    - Adding events to our events calendar
    - Etc.

    Note: the above limitations were originally not put into effect at the time of this announcement to give people some time to verify their account. As of now, some of the limitations are currently in effect. Please see the follow-up update posts one and two for details.

    How do I become verified?
    First of all, the good news is that many of you will already be verified due to a donation (or marketplace fee payment) in the recent past.

    We currently have 4 ways to get verified.

    Method 1: Paypal verification mechanism via oAuth. This method is completely free and only requires a Paypal account. This process works the same as our Pinside Biz verification (which we introduced a while ago). In a nutshell, Paypal verification means logging in with Paypal and confirm that it's okay to share your name, address and account verified status with Pinside.com. Answer yes and you'll be brought back to Pinside and you're verified. It only takes a minute! We chose Paypal because most pinheads have a Paypal account and because their APIs allow us to perform this verification free of charge.

    Method 2a: Make a donation to Pinside. ($5 minimum) and get a free heart icon to boot. If you make a donation to Pinside (or made one in the past) our records will "know" your identity through the transaction details. In other words, if you have donated you will automatically be verified. A lot of you will therefore already be verified at this time.

    Method 2b: Pay $1 dollar through Paypal or Stripe (creditcard) and you'll get verified instantly. Our records will "know" your identity through the transaction details.

    Method 3: Have another verified Pinside account vouch for you. If the account that was vouched for turns out to be a fake account, those who vouched for you will be responsible and could get their own accounts closed if bad intensions are suspected (temp or perm), Pinside staff decides this on a case by case basis.

    You can start the verify process here. And if all is successful, you should see this in your my-account page:

    I don't want to verify. I want to remain anonymous!
    It's important to note that being verified only means identifying yourself to Pinside (yours truly). This information will not be visible to anyone else (unless you CHOOSE to share that information via the privacy settings in your profile).

    That said, of course you're free to remain anonymous. But it's also Pinside's right to impose certain limitations on unverified users. We want to stop spam, protect the integrity of our community and avoid unwarranted (reputation) damage to third parties, due to false rumors, misinformation, scams, etc. spread via Pinside

    10
    #2 10 months ago

    This sounds good to me. I also think you should put a 90 day time period for new pinside members before they can post a market place ad.

    Mike

    #3 10 months ago

    I'm not sure that I am real

    11
    #4 10 months ago

    I have always been certifiable,now its verified.

    #5 10 months ago
    Quoted from Grizlyrig:

    This sounds good to me. I also think you should put a 90 day time period for new pinside members before they can post a market place ad.
    Mike

    I thought this was a great idea on first read. But after thinking about it, I think this might just mean scammers create accounts and sit on them for a while before using them. No skin off their back. And this system would filter out legitimate sellers who are non collectors/pinsiders that found pinside while searching for an avenue to sell a game.

    Maybe verified users can access marketplace, and non-verified users must pay a $5 fee (or some nominal sum) for an ad?

    #6 10 months ago
    Quoted from EvanDickson:

    I thought this was a great idea on first read. But after thinking about it, I think this might just mean scammers create accounts and sit on them for a while before using them. No skin off their back. And this system would filter out legitimate sellers who are non collectors/pinsiders that found pinside while searching for an avenue to sell a game.
    Maybe verified users can access marketplace, and non-verified users must pay a $5 fee (or some nominal sum) for an ad?

    But do we want members who only see Pinside as cheep version of eBay?
    I rather people who contribute to the rich tapestry that is pinside

    #7 10 months ago

    Fast and easy via paypal.

    #8 10 months ago

    Me 2 Skypilot,verifiable!:)

    11
    #9 10 months ago

    69166012 (resized).jpg

    #10 10 months ago
    Quoted from EvanDickson:

    Maybe verified users can access marketplace, and non-verified users must pay a $5 fee (or some nominal sum) for an ad?

    The $5 would just be a donation, at which point, they would be verified via option #2.

    #11 10 months ago
    Quoted from Grizlyrig:

    This sounds good to me. I also think you should put a 90 day time period for new pinside members before they can post a market place ad.
    Mike

    It is a fair point, but I have seen firsthand on other forums that the more hurdles you put up in front of new members then the greater the probability that the forum becomes clique driven.

    Keep the barriers to entry and participation to as minimal as reasonably possible without compromising integrity is my view.

    #12 10 months ago

    Robins account doesnt have the checkmark next to it! we've been had!

    11
    #13 10 months ago

    I'm glad something is being done to stop some of this activity. I hope it works.

    #14 10 months ago

    What a mess

    #15 10 months ago
    Quoted from pinsanity:

    Keep the barriers to entry and participation to as minimal as reasonably possible without compromising integrity is my view.

    Exactly, we're trying to find a sweet spot here. That's why we aim to keep certain areas accessible to unverified users, especially the ones that are most interesting for new users, like the tech forums.

    #16 10 months ago
    Quoted from Grizlyrig:

    This sounds good to me. I also think you should put a 90 day time period for new pinside members before they can post a market place ad.
    Mike

    Good point, but what if it so happened that that new Pinsider just happened to have the Grail pin you have been looking for?

    Quoted from EvanDickson:

    I thought this was a great idea on first read. But after thinking about it, I think this might just mean scammers create accounts and sit on them for a while before using them. No skin off their back. And this system would filter out legitimate sellers who are non collectors/pinsiders that found pinside while searching for an avenue to sell a game.
    Maybe verified users can access marketplace, and non-verified users must pay a $5 fee (or some nominal sum) for an ad?

    OK, but what if you are a verified seller and that one prospective buyer (with money) who wants your pin---and does not want to verify---cannot contact you?

    Quoted from PopBumperPete:

    But do we want members who only see Pinside as cheep version of eBay?
    I rather people who contribute to the rich tapestry that is pinside

    Yeah, but how do you control the spammers that everyone hates without turning Pinside into a site for a bunch of inbreeds?

    #17 10 months ago

    I noticed that the "Activities" tab is missing from the forum page. Does this have something to do with this?

    #18 10 months ago
    Quoted from EvanDickson:

    I thought this was a great idea on first read. But after thinking about it, I think this might just mean scammers create accounts and sit on them

    My theory is it slows down those who have lots of money to burn and think they're gonna come on Pinside with some "LE" that is now jacked up in price. Let them sit on it for 90 days.. and put a stop to people trying to sell machines that are pre ordered and not even in their possession!

    Mike

    #19 10 months ago
    Quoted from pinsanity:

    Keep the barriers to entry and participation to as minimal as reasonably possible without compromising integrity is my view.

    We want new members to be legit and be welcomed. I will not welcome a money bags trying to make money off of us and never to be seen again. They are not hobbyist,they are scandilist.

    Mike

    #20 10 months ago
    Quoted from Lovef2k:

    I noticed that the "Activities" tab is missing from the forum page. Does this have something to do with this?

    The change was announced in a separate thread: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/pinside-forum-quality-update

    #21 10 months ago
    Quoted from InfiniteLives:

    Robins account doesnt have the checkmark next to it! we've been had!

    Also Martijn! Who are these guys!

    #22 10 months ago

    Verification submitted

    New-14 (resized).jpg

    #24 10 months ago

    Oh boy.

    #25 10 months ago

    Thank you!

    #26 10 months ago

    Seems like a positive move to me!

    Fewer sock puppets and Kaneda alts.

    29
    #27 10 months ago

    Maybe for verification, instead of showing a 'Pinside Member' with checkbox....

    skb01 (resized).png

    It should just say "Not Kaneda"...

    skb02 (resized).png

    I only kid Love the new changes.

    #28 10 months ago

    I just received one of these in the mail

    pinside - confirm user (resized).jpg

    #29 10 months ago

    This is a good idea for the forum. I always like the guy who has 2 posts, a day one account, and he's calling out people as if he knows them as well as any other old timer...

    #30 10 months ago
    Quoted from j_m_:

    I just received one of these in the mail

    Don't think I'll get one of those
    Everyone I know is a dodgy p***

    #31 10 months ago
    Quoted from PopBumperPete:

    Don't I'll get one of those
    Everyone I know is a dodgy p***

    I can't for the life of me decipher what a "p***" might be. Pimp?

    #32 10 months ago
    Quoted from Cornelius:

    I can't for the life of me decipher what a "p***" might be. Pimp?

    Prik...

    #33 10 months ago

    I'm glad this has been put in place. This is by far the best forum that I've been apart of and the decision making is point on.

    #34 10 months ago
    Quoted from robin:

    We currently have 4 ways to get verified.
    Method 1: Paypal verification mechanism via oAuth. This method is completely free and only requires a Paypal account. This process works the same as our Pinside Biz verification (which we introduced a while ago). In a nutshell, Paypal verification means logging in at Paypal and Paypal will ask if it's okay to share your name and account verified status with Pinside.com. Answer yes and you'll be brought back to Pinside and you're verified. It only takes a minute! We chose Paypal because most pinheads have a Paypal account and because their APIs allow us to perform this verification free of charge.
    Method 2: Make a donation to Pinside. ($5 minimum, $35 for a Pinside + account). If you make a donation to Pinside (or made one in the past) our records will "know" your identity through the transaction details. In other words, if you have donated you will automatically be verified. A lot of you will therefore already be verified at this time.
    Method 3: Have another verified Pinside account vouch for you. If the account that was vouched for turns out to be a fake account, those who vouched for you will be responsible and could get their own accounts closed if bad intensions are suspected (temp or perm), Pinside staff decides this on a case by case basis.
    Method 4: Contact a member of staff and convince them you are real. Either at a show or by opening a moderator feedback thread. To improve your changes of getting verified this way, it helps if your account is not registered with a generic (gmail, hotmail, yahoo etc.) e-mail address.

    I applaud the effort! It does seem a bit daunting tho to track duplicate/sock puppets in this manner tho. It increases the minimum needed to verify an account, but I don't how much in terms of avoiding duplicates because most of the info needed here can be easily created without requiring something unique. For paypal, are you only accepting 'verified' accounts I assume? Somethings to check to make sure that helps with actual duplication checking.. you can register up to 8 emails with a single paypal account. I don't know if the info you get back is enough to flush dupes out, or I believe two accounts can use the same bank details. Something you can use as test cases to check (Edit: looking at the info paypal shares... hopefully the verification process is enough to snuff out most lazy attempts!)

    Same thing with mods validating people... it may be easy to say 'Hey, its me flynnibus from pinside! see I'm real!' but how do you know I didn't go over to some other mod and say "hey, its me skankhunt42 from pinside! see I'm real!'? You should get some sort of unique tracking for verified people too.

    Certainly should help with the 'hit and run' accounts.. hopefully a balance is there for snuffing the dup accounts too.

    now I'm off to find the verification links

    #35 10 months ago

    MARTIJN & ROBIN, awesome to see this !

    -5
    #36 10 months ago

    Have you considered automatically verifying or grandfathering existing pinside accounts that were created prior to Jan 1, 2016?

    #37 10 months ago
    Quoted from pinsanity:

    It is a fair point, but I have seen firsthand on other forums that the more hurdles you put up in front of new members then the greater the probability that the forum becomes clique driven.
    Keep the barriers to entry and participation to as minimal as reasonably possible without compromising integrity is my view.

    I thought about suggesting that unverified members could not create new topics but you're post made me rethink that suggestion. If there were so many restrictions when I first came here I may not have stuck around.

    Maybe another way to be verified would be to have so many years of membership. 2 years seems like a good number.

    #38 10 months ago
    Quoted from robin:

    It's important to note that being verified only means identifying yourself to Pinside administrators (meaning yours truly).

    If you get hacked is there any way our PayPal info won't get taken?

    #39 10 months ago
    Quoted from Cornelius:

    I can't for the life of me decipher what a "p***" might be. Pimp?

    He doesn't want to say poop.

    #40 10 months ago

    I am confident that moderator TigerLaw will do a good job of verifying Pinsiders that he actually knows, and not verifying Pinsiders that he is not sure about who they really are on Pinside.

    #41 10 months ago

    legitness (resized).jpg

    #42 10 months ago

    I'm not upset that you lied to me. I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.

    #43 10 months ago

    Since Robin and Martijn don't have Pinside verified checkmarks, I'll go ahead and verify that they are real people and that I saw them in Texas in March at TPF-2016, and saw them in Louisiana, and can verify that they survived canoeing & kayaking in alligator infested swamps of south LA.
    Robin-Martijn-paddling-LA_swamps_w_alligators-Mar2016 (resized).jpg
    .
    ...or were those two guys just imposters posing as Pinside Founders? Hmmm.

    #44 10 months ago

    lol .. well thread is now flaming so it appears we wont be hearing any more complains from non verified people

    #45 10 months ago
    Quoted from gtxjoe:

    Have you considered automatically verifying or grandfathering existing pinside accounts that were created prior to Jan 1, 2016?

    We have considered this, but decided against it because most of these users are either grandfathered in because of a earlier donation or sales fee and if not will mostly have no trouble convincing a mod or other Pinsider to vouch for them because of their status.

    Quoted from dmbjunky:

    I thought about suggesting that unverified members could not create new topics but you're post made me rethink that suggestion. If there were so many restrictions when I first came here I may not have stuck around.

    We are trying to find a sweet sport between usability and security. So new users can keep making topics in sub forums that are relevant to them (like tech), but not in the ones they shouldn't be too interested in at that point (like manufacturers).

    Quoted from MustangPaul:

    If you get hacked is there any way our PayPal info won't get taken?

    Note that we don't get to see your login credentials. Before entering these you get navigated away from Pinside and to PayPal (it's the same procedure called oAuth that Facebook is using for "log in with Facebook"). All we get back is some personal data (like your name, email address, address) so we can make sure your account is unique.

    Quoted from Pinball-is-great:

    ...or were those two guys just imposters posing as Pinside Founders? Hmmm.

    Wait, these guys were trying to convince you that they are us? No way, I am positive that slightly balding head can't be mine!

    #46 10 months ago

    Check out m' green tick muthaf@#&ers, yeah!
    Tiny Rick!

    images (8) (resized).jpg

    #47 10 months ago
    Quoted from dmbjunky:

    Maybe another way to be verified would be to have so many years of membership. 2 years seems like a good number.

    Agreed. Perhaps a distinction needs to be drawn between new users of say one to three months duration (which should be ample time to ascertain any poster's intentions) and long term members who simply opt to remain "unverified".

    #48 10 months ago

    I am not a robot!

    #49 10 months ago

    Can't pinside just be configured to call the other modem back?

    -SysOp

    #50 10 months ago

    Good idea. Thanks Robin.

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