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Homecoming Code of Conduct Update - May 13th, 2021


Jimmy
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6 hours ago, Mrwrk said:

I realize how late this is, and also how unlikely it is that this opinion will change anything.

 

This policy has severely impacted my playing with pick-up groups and with any sort of endgame content requiring leagues. Once I realized people were broadcasting play without getting consent, or at least informing those being broadcast, I basically stopped doing anything with anyone I didn’t know. Even on minor task forces I was being streamed without my consent and finding out after the fact.

 

People may think me over-reacting, but I basically don’t care. I think we should have a choice whether we are rebroadcast publicly, and it certainly shouldn’t be happening without our awareness. 

 

 

That doesn't exist for any multiplayer game that is being streamed by anyone.  Pretty sure this is a fairly rare take as well.  It's probably like people with phone cameras:  any time you are out in public places your consent is not needed to be recorded/streamed.

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6 hours ago, Glacier Peak said:

You're giving consent when you click 'I Agree' when you log in. 

I disagree.  I'm agreeing to Homecoming's terms of service.  I don't recall seeing where any other player was authorized to stream my character, my text, or my voice.  Of course, I may have missed it.  Can you show me where it says that I agree to other player's streaming me?

 

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5 hours ago, Seigmoraig said:

Wouldn't want those 5 people watching CoH twitch streams to copy your costumes. There's probably more people watching you through a video when you are going up the elevator to your office or appartment. It's not a big deal guys
image.png.d158bfc5e6c39d352f8feb0c0911f8ee.png

I'm sorry, but you don't get to tell me what is or isn't a "big deal" to me.  If it isn't a big deal to you, that's fine.

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1 hour ago, Bionic_Flea said:

I'm sorry, but you don't get to tell me what is or isn't a "big deal" to me.  If it isn't a big deal to you, that's fine.

On the one hand, you're right, of course. 

 

On the other hand, I do wonder what you and MrWrk are worried about.  I'm not saying there isn't something to be worried about, mind you.  I'm just wondering what the something could be.  🤔

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3 hours ago, Bionic_Flea said:

I disagree.  I'm agreeing to Homecoming's terms of service.  I don't recall seeing where any other player was authorized to stream my character, my text, or my voice.  Of course, I may have missed it.  Can you show me where it says that I agree to other player's streaming me?

You don't own anything in this game. So when you say 'my this' or 'my that' it's irrelevant. Everything is property of the respective copyright holder, which is Paragon Studios, Cryptic, and NcSoft. Their names may have changed since 2012, but that's what is described in the HC ToS.

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5 minutes ago, Glacier Peak said:

You don't own anything in this game. So when you say 'my this' or 'my that' it's irrelevant. Everything is property of the respective copyright holder, which is Paragon Studios, Cryptic, and NcSoft. Their names may have changed since 2012, but that's what is described in the HC ToS.

How about my voice?  My voice is their property?

Edited by Bionic_Flea
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2 minutes ago, Bionic_Flea said:

How about my voice?

Are you typing that question rhetorically? 

 

On the edit, if you could demonstrate how you exist in a digital world and are able to override the sequences and commands of the game's code, I'd say you should probably share this feat of discovery with the world. A real world Neo in the Matrix. That would certainly set off a great deal of metaphysical discussion to say the least.

 

If you're saying that a person playing a game in some how public guarantees any expectation of privacy, I'd say that is not accurate in the real world. 

Edited by Glacier Peak
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Except there's always been a pretty big gap in the Privacy Policies and Terms of Use here in regard to that, @Glacier Peak.  Even the original City of Heroes terms of licensing with the Legacy/Retail game never took proprietary ownership of the players' creations in the game.  The Players' Content.  At most, in Legacy/Retail, the Terms gave NC a limited license to use Player Content for advertising.  For Homecoming, players have been warned that Their Content (which, the language of the Terms of Agreement make it clear enough for a legal dispute, if someone tries to overstep their authority) can be used as part of an investigation to determine whether or not to terminate the player's access to these servers.

Which, emphasis here:  THESE servers.  The Privacy Policy does have a clause that basically stipulates that Homecoming LLC washes their hands of anything getting "loose," of course.  But players DO still own their own Content.  

So, can you please-and-kindly drop that one already.  Saying that players don't get to say "my this" or "my that" is not what the Terms of Use or Privacy Policy state.  Players retain their own rights.  Always have.  The players just have to take responsibility for their own content.  THAT is what the documents stipulate.

Homecoming has reasonably (in my opinion) avoided overstepping in that particular territory.  Unlike the vast majority of large scale commercial releases in the past decade+, I might add.  I certainly don't want to see them cross that line.

 

 

Sadly, I don't believe there's an easy solution here, though.  Ideally, streamers would be respectful of other players and give fair redress for players to opt out.  However, streaming software isn't robust enough to block out individual players' content, and putting that level of onus on the streamers is not really going to be fulfilled.  Even if streamers cared, the amount of work involved in that would severely limit them.

 

If Homecoming steps in again, they'll either need to explicitly make some declarations regarding player content licensing and/or ownership, which would be putting an entirely new target on their back that just isn't worth the pain and suffering (and chances are it would end up being incredibly unethical, if perfectly within their legal rights, but that would also be a VERY bad bit of optics).  Alternatively, if they restrict streaming again, we'd lose a potentially productive avenue for increased visibility. 

 

A couple of alternatives that are unlikely due to how fiddly they'd be would be:

Streaming restricted to specific Shards, 

or

Streaming restricted during specific times of day/days of the week.  

I don't imagine either of those would be opted for right now.

 

With a lot of things here, it's one of those "bad situations that could be worse."  And while I always try to make a call toward doing better, I can't really see a better solution than what we have right now in this scenario.  Of course, I may be missing an obvious solution, so I welcome and encourage others to continue discussing it!

 

Short version:  It sucks, but not nearly as bad as it could.

 

 

Where that leaves us, ultimately, is that individual players would need to try their luck at contacting individual streamers or streaming/video services, and asking their content to be removed from the stream.

And I would have to wish those players good luck on that, though, since I doubt many of those mega-corporations are going to care enough to entertain your claims, unless you know how to write a solid DMCA request. 

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@VileTerror Yeah, that's not up for me to decide or not. These are the rules everybody agrees to when they log in to the game. If they don't agree to them, they are not able to play. My opinion on the matter of "content" or "user generated" is just as moot as anyone else's opinion. I don't own the IP, and I don't believe you or anyone else here does either. Thanks for the response though. 

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1 minute ago, GraspingVileTerror said:

Player Content isn't categorized within the Intellectual Property Rights.

That's why other game companies realized they needed far more draconian T.o.U. 

That's a muddy cup of tea as I understand it. It certainly lacks clarity, that much we can agree on. 

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Hmm, muddy or not if @Bionic_Fleafor example is chatting with others via Discord/whatever, that's no part of their character or even a part of the game. So proving it's them? An issue but not one covered by any terms of use at all.

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1 minute ago, Darmian said:

Hmm, muddy or not if @Bionic_Fleafor example is chatting with others via Discord/whatever, that's no part of their character or even a part of the game. So proving it's them? An issue but not one covered by any terms of use at all.

I would say that falls under the Discord platform's Terms of Service then, but I'm not familiar enough with the platform to say that with any certainty. 

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Just now, Glacier Peak said:

I would say that falls under the Discord platform's Terms of Service then, but I'm not familiar enough with the platform to say that with any certainty. 

I suppose it does.  Or might do at least if it was something Discord even considered being a possible issue.

AE SFMA Arcs: The Meteors (Arc id 42079) Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part One. (Arc id 26756) X | Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part Two. (Arc id 26952) | Dark Deeds in Galaxy City: Part Three. (Arc id 27233) Darker Deeds: Part One (Arc id 28374) | Darker Deeds: Part Two. (Arc id 28536) | Darker Deeds: Part Three. (Arc id 29252) | Darkest Before Dawn: Part One (Arc id 29891) |

Darkest Before Dawn: Part Two (Arc id 30210) | Darkest Before Dawn: Part Three (Arc id 30560) |

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This "without consent" thing is pretty much how every multiplayer game that anyone can stream is going to have to put up with. Look at Dark Souls streams where people are invading others randomly. Not only do you have a streamer in your game showcasing their attempt to come find and kill your character, you're dealing with another player trying to prevent your progress in the area, which is something lots of people already hate about the game (yes, I'm aware there's plenty of ways to avoid being invaded; it's just an example). Look at the League of Legends/Dota Streams. Now it's not just your own team that is being recorded "without their consent," but the opposing team as well. Do you think whoever loses that game really wants that loss being shown to a bunch of people? Or if they had a bad game, or said something they shouldn't that gets used to get their account suspended later?

 

Of those examples, all of them incur penalties on the player who doesn't want to be part of it. Quitting out in Dark Souls (or dying) resets progress to the last bonfire you used. League/Dota will impart a queue penalty if you quit out of the game to avoid being streamed. City of Heroes doesn't really have an analog to this negative.

 

It's just a "necessary evil" in the modern streamer climate. When your game is open for streaming, this aspect comes with it. The best you can hope for is the person streaming to either announce that they're streaming so you can leave, or be a well-known persona so you can just assume they're streaming when you see them online. I personally don't think it's worth getting worked up over, but I can see how others wouldn't have that same opinion.

 

It's just the "gaming culture" of today. Not much can be done about it that wouldn't just outright inhibit the ability for streaming to function at all for multiplayer games.

exChampion and exInfinity player (Champion primarily).

 

Current resident of the Everlasting shard.

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7 hours ago, Bionic_Flea said:

I disagree.  I'm agreeing to Homecoming's terms of service.  I don't recall seeing where any other player was authorized to stream my character, my text, or my voice.  Of course, I may have missed it.  Can you show me where it says that I agree to other player's streaming me?

 

Is there something in the terms of service that do not allow a person to stream another player?

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I think @Bionic_Flea's point was that the Homecoming Terms of Use do not expressly give permission to streamers to record other players without their consent, since the post from Glacier that Flea was quoting implied they did.

 

The Terms of Use may -imply- that, sure, from some points of view.

But they don't expressly state it.

 

And, as I stated in my lengthy reply above, I don't suspect the Homecoming Team will make an explicit clause giving streamers unlimited authority to document other players.  After all, the Privacy Policy already has coverage that is sufficient in the form of the admission to Homecoming not having a guarantee of being secure against that sort of thing.

 

 

Not justifying it, mind you.  Just giving a breakdown of what my reading of the two documents mean in this situation.

And harassment is still harassment, of course.  Whether it's a streamer stalking a player to record their activities, or a player trying to sabotage the streamer's video, either situation could be viewed as harassment, and the victimized party in each case could put a petition in to the GMs to have it addressed.

And as usual, the GM would operate with personal discretion on the matter, which may or may not be considered reasonable by others (potentially even other GMs).

 

Basically . . . Homecoming probably just wants us to play nicely with one another, and respecting the wishes of players who express those wishes is a great first step to avoiding any form of escalation.

 

We could probably use the word of @Jimmy, @Cipher, and/or @GM Widower on this, though.  I admit that I may have misjudged the situation.

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  • Lead Game Master

"...the GM would operate with personal discretion..."

 

To clarify, GMs on Homecoming never act with "Personal Discretion".

 

We have an extensive training program for GMs, all GM actions are subject to review by Lead GMs, Lead GM actions are subject to review by other Lead GM and top Homecoming LLC staff.

Edited by GM Kal
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It may be totally legal for someone to Stream other players without their consent.  Just like it's totally legal for someone to follow you around in public and take your picture.  But "being legal" doesn't mean that I have to like it and it doesn't mean that it isn't rude.

 

All I'm asking for is for players who are streaming to make that known so that I or anyone else can decide if I want to participate in that stream.  From what I have seen, many already do that.  If so few people are streaming, then maybe everyone who is streaming is giving the heads up.  And if that's the case, then there's no problem.

 

My only problem lies with someone streaming who doesn't let his teammates know that he is doing so.

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Hmm.... Just an idea out of left field here, but how about another "toggle title" type of thing for Streamers, sort of like the "Roleplaying" one we already have in-game?

 

Toggle the brightly colored "Streaming" title over your character's head when you start your stream and everyone who can see you will know they're on Candid Camera. Turn it back off when you're done and that's that. 

 

Granted that would rely on streamers being polite enough to actually remember they have it and then USE the thing, but it might be better than nothing, and certainly easier for them than having to tell every single team they run with over the course of that session that the stream is Live. 

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5 minutes ago, Coyotedancer said:

Hmm.... Just an idea out of left field here, but how about another "toggle title" type of thing for Streamers, sort of like the "Roleplaying" one we already have in-game?

 

Toggle the brightly colored "Streaming" title over your character's head when you start your stream and everyone who can see you will know they're on Candid Camera. Turn it back off when you're done and that's that. 

 

Granted that would rely on streamers being polite enough to actually remember they have it and then USE the thing, but it might be better than nothing, and certainly easier for them than having to tell every single team they run with over the course of that session that the stream is Live. 

This sounds like a nice gesture. I am curious if the opposite approach could be undertaken as well - perhaps individuals could self-identify as not willing to be viewed or recorded in a public place where that expectation doesn't exist, but instead of having a RP-like labeled above their name, they could have a different label that reflects their personal beliefs. Of course, getting in to the labelling game is a can of worms. And for all I know, there could be a handful of people who would use such a label - just as there could be a handful of streamers who would be interested in using what you're suggesting.

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