Trade Forum Code of Conduct - Updated 6-10-16

Discussion in 'Trading Post' started by Chris, Jun 10, 2016.

  1. Chris

    Chris Renaissance Staff
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    Trade Forum Code of Conduct - Updated 6-10-16

    When using the trade forums, unlike most other areas the creator of a thread dictates the rules for his post. Respect the requests of the thread creator along with following the below posted rules. When creating a thread make sure to be clear about the post, and expectations of posters.

    If you post a house for sale, and do not provide any details about it, You cannot report players for filling in those details.
    If you post a rare item for sale, you cannot report players for providing information about the item.

    General Suggestions
    When possible always select an icon for your post to help players identify the purpose of the post.
    Include a clear description of the purpose in the title of the post.
    When selling an item include all relevant expectations for posters, such as the following
    - Starting Bid
    - Auction/Direct Sale
    - Clear Duration
    - Bid Increments
    - Reserve
    - Buyout
    - Alternative items/currencies accepted and the value of such.
    - Extensive information on the item being sold.
    - Are private offers accepted.​
    When offering to buy an item, be clear about what you are looking to purchase and how much you are willing to pay, if applicable.
    When selling something include screenshots whenever possible.
    Post clear and concise rules for your thread if you are sensitive to the comments of other players. If you cannot tolerate the commentary related to your sale from other trade forum users. Then post clearly that you are only looking for bids on your items. If you fail to post guidelines for your trade post, the staff will only address violations as indicated below.

    Rules
    Follow the requests of the originator of the thread (within reason).
    If someone is selling a house for gold, you are welcome to make offers that do not include gold. It would be up to the seller to determine a value of your offer, or disregard the offer.
    Players are welcome to add clarification to posts that are lacking clarification.
    - Information relevant to the item being sold, or left out by the buyer/seller.
    - Links to the item database
    - Links to compendium articles related to the sale.
    - Links to related/past trade posts relevant to the current post.​
    Players are not welcome to post the following
    - Offers they cannot afford or have no intention of completing.
    - Inflammatory statements about their opinion of the buyer/seller.
    - Negative statements about the item being sold, for the sake of being negative.
    (To Clarify: If someone says they are selling the only ____ on the server, it is not negative to correct them on the amount of them that exist. It would be negative to call them a liar and a cheat.)
    - Ingame/External opinions of the buyer/seller or players bidding in the tread. ​
    Bumping threads is acceptable within reason​

    Explicitly Not Allowed
    Using alternate accounts to sell, buy or bid on items.
    Note: This is new change, as previously it was only disallowed when bidding on items. Per the new rules listed above players should not have to result to alternate accounts to buy/sell items because they fear negative commentary from other players. Alternate accounts are fine, however carrying out trade relationships using multiple accounts is resulting in a large amount of wasted staff time investigating reports.
    Post any bid or offer that you have no intention of following through with.
    Any attempt to scam or mislead players regarding the purpose of your post.
    ie: Luring someone ingame to steal the item, rather than buying it, elaborate scams involving house sales, etc
    Bidding for players other than yourself. ​

    If you are the creator of a post, and you want to report a post that you believe violates the above posted rules then use the report feature. Keep in mind, we will not remove questionable posts that are borderline from threads, when reported by someone other than than the thread creator. Unless that post violates the forum rules in general. (Hate speech, personal attack, etc). Thread creators are responsible for the content in their own threads, in regards to reporting off topic posts.

    Punishment
    Players will be warned privately regarding any conduct that violates the above posted rules. Multiple violations or ignoring warnings from the staff/moderators can result in your ability to post in the trade forum being removed.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2016
  2. shad

    shad Well-Known Member
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    Hail Chris,
    Can you also add a section about buyers?
    Examples: bids, retract...
    Thank you!
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  3. Caska VS Trees

    Caska VS Trees Well-Known Member

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    @shad I think this part in the "players are not welcome to:" probably qualifies:

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  4. Chris

    Chris Renaissance Staff
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    In the case of a buyer, posting an intent to buy an item there is some understanding that from the time the post is made, to the final trade details, finances, etc can change.

    However if a player made a post "Buying ____ for 500k" and then attempted to steal the item from you during the trade rather than buying it this would result in punishment.

    I made a small clarification regarding this
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  5. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    Just for clarity.... I created this character and forum profile to be a Merchant. This guy is strictly RP-based and has absolutely ZERO in-game viability in combat, hunting, farming, etc... His title is even "GM Merchant". As such I planned for him to be a facilitator/agent for those interested in selling high-end items who may have the above mentioned concerns about their reputation, attacks from others, or possibly those who just don't wish to go through the hassle of running an elaborate auction on the forums (who has the time, right?).

    Is this acceptable under the "no alternates" rule for buying/selling? I've already conducted a number of very successful auctions for high-end items that were actually the possessions of other characters whom I have no affiliation with, and the trades went off without a hitch. The buyer got their goods, and the seller got their money..... minus a small fee for services rendered, of course.

    I just want to make sure I'm not running afoul of the law by plying my trade as a broker/agent/facilitator/purveyor.

    Thanks.

    Dorian Andrael.
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  6. Artex

    Artex Well-Known Member
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    Dorian, Chris wrote explicitly not allowed in red above the section that states no alternates. There's no wiggle room! Sort of surprised at some of the prior laid back rules vs where Telamon came from *coughs $@*. Good to see the rules changing for the better. I'd rather a bid be binding. Either have the funds or you don't.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
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  7. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    That's kind of my point, though.... I'm not an "alternate" of any of the people who I have sold things for. They don't have access to my account and I don't have access to theirs. Instead it's like hiring an auctioneer or selling stuff through a consignment shop. People pay me a basic fee or a percentage, depending on the price the item fetches, and in turn I run the auction for them so they don't have to bother with it.... By hiring me they also get the benefit of my personality and personal flare for the dramatic, which has helped push some sales higher than they would have gone otherwise, not to be immodest or anything.

    I get the restriction of using alternate accounts, but does that extend to using a 3rd party broker is my question.... if so, I may shortly be out of what was becoming a lucrative and promising trade.

    It's also worth noting that so far the people I have brokered for have remained anonymous and will continue to remain so. If a seller wants their name kept completely out of it, then the buyer is never aware that I am not the sole owner of the property or item I'm selling. Part of the service offer is, after all, discretion....
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  8. Artex

    Artex Well-Known Member
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    Why would you need an alternate? Just be the real you.



    Thought you meant created an alternate forum account.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
  9. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    Perhaps I'm not explaining the system clearly.... Here's a scenario that actually happened a while back....


    Player X contacts me and says they have some merchandise to sell , in this case a 2nd year anniversary bag with jester suit and various items. They don't want the hassle of setting up an auction and replying to it, monitoring it, etc.

    I offer them a service contract. If the item sells for 0 to 500k I get a flat fee of 55k for my services. If it sells for 501k or above I get 10% of the sale price.
    (notice there's a sweet spot in there between 501-550k where the owner gets a better deal at my expense)

    Player X agrees, signs their name to a contract (two copies of a book with the details spelled out one written by me that they hold, one written by them that I hold) and I post the auction.

    I get full discretion in how to set up and run the auction to get the best price possible. Once the auction is done, I meet the buyer and transfer the goods, items, or whatever (in this case the 2nd anniv bag). The buyer pays me, and then I leave.

    I meet the original owner of the property and give them their money, minus my agreed upon fees, and the contract is satisfied.



    Does that make it a little more clear? Player X is a completely independent person. Not one of my alternate accounts or characters or whatever. And the buyer of the item only ever does business with me on the forums or in game. So would that be a violation? It's using a 3rd party, but not an alternate character or account of either of the primaries involved in the transaction.

    It's akin to taking a rare painting to Christie's Auction house in New York or something. The auction house isn't an alternate, they're just a broker for the deal. Same with me. I am simply a broker for the deal. So far I've done this a few times with no hitches or problems and with the buyer being none the wiser. I don't think it would be a violation of the letter of the law, so to speak, since as I said I'm not an "alternate" of any of the parties involved. I was more concerned with whether this would be violating the spirit of the rules.


    Oh, and for reference, the jester suit gift bag sold for 850k and I got a nice little commission off it, the buyers got the goods they wanted (2 people joined forces for the buyout), and the seller got a good chunk of change. Everyone ends up happy....
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
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  10. Jupiter

    Jupiter Well-Known Member

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    @Chris can you chime in on this?

    it impacts me because I would be one to use a service like Dorian is explaining. since i hate running my own auctions (my presence is much more expedient in the dungeons fighting off evil not making sure my trinkets sell)

    I do agree that the "challenge" is that if one loophole like this is found, then of course the rest of us honest folk pay the consequence for one dirtbag who could conduct scams using an alt account and then "claim" his seller was a different person to try and evade consequences.

    I personally hope that a compromise could be made, perhaps a list of authorized brokers? Such a thing was almost a mandatory requirement for such on Voldeshard, but only because you could not conduct high end transactions there without significant chance of being scammed by absolutely everyone.
  11. Pirul

    Pirul Well-Known Member

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    I am a big advocate of brokers. I support Dorian's case 100% as legal in the trade forum.
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  12. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    An added benefit is that it protects newer players who may not....and indeed often DO not..... recognize the value of something they have. For instance, I have seen people take advantage of obviously newer players by drastically under bidding for items they know should sell for far more. This happens a lot when newer players post a "first or best offer" type thing not realizing just how valuable what they have may be.

    I can also say that I've seen this done by people who should and do know better about the value of what they're "paying" for.

    As to Jupiter's point, I would be all for a system of "approved" or "board certified" brokers. To date my services have been available to anyone via word of mouth. I never advertise services as a rule. That way my business depends upon my reputation.

    I could write up a guide to outline some of the benefits and pitfalls of such a system.....
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  13. Erlkonig

    Erlkonig Well-Known Member
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    "Using alternate accounts to sell, buy or bid on items."
    - Refers to using 2+ forum accounts to sell / buy. You guys are fine contracting your wares out to other merchants on consignment or w/e terms you wish. The only downside to consignment is the increased bidding power you placed in someones hands. If they receive 10% they can tell a friend to bid an item up 5% above market, receive their 10% fee, and get the item cheaper than market prices. Turn around and resell at market price. Alt. scenario somebody else joins the picture and bids more than w/e % point where losses would occur under that system and you still get your 10%.


    If you have alt forum accounts... Use your main for Trade and your alt for everything else, problem solved.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
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  14. Pirul

    Pirul Well-Known Member

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    No.

    Your post seems contradictory. He should only use ONE account for everything. He is being used as a broker because people believe in his integrity. If he purposely did shoddy things like that, then his reputation would be down the gutter and no one would continue to use him.

    He would need to behave beyond reproach to keep his reputation. And having Alt forum accounts, for whatever, would trump that integrity.
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  15. Erlkonig

    Erlkonig Well-Known Member
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    That's like saying everyone should post all of their character names.

    A good player can also be an evil player. On the trade forum everyone should only use one identity because of the shady shit that inevitably happens.; such as upping bids with no intent to purchase. If he wants to be a noble merchant that is fine but would you restrict him from having fun doing "evil" things in the game? Think of this as if the scope is just not him but everyone.
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  16. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    Nefarious deeds??? Me?? Never....


    *tries to look innocent*


    Okay, so there was that one time I stole a deck of cards from a Balron..... but he wasn't using them, I swear.
  17. Pirul

    Pirul Well-Known Member

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    No one ever brought in game deeds into this?

    One forum account. He can have murdered/thief/scamming alts in game, and that's fine. As long as he doesn't have alt forum accounts.
  18. Dorian Andrael

    Dorian Andrael Active Member

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    One thing that I keep coming back to... If the goal of this is to make the trade forums somehow "scam proof" that will never happen. The bottom line with trade forums, and with trades between players in the game itself is that there is ALWAYS a level of risk involved. I have been scammed before, thought admittedly less often here than on other shards I've played (the origin shards back in the day were the WORST for it....). But whenever you decide to conduct a business transaction with another player directly, you're taking a risk of being scammed, thiefed, or whatever. That's just how UO has always been, and as long as we're being honest, it's how UO will always be if it's worth playing. Just like the random roving bands of pk's are part of what makes the game exciting. You take the bad with the good, just like real life.

    I like the idea and the push to make things as above board as possible, but unless you're going to police the IP address of every single forum tag that's used here (and there are WAAAAYYYY more forum tags than actual players on the shard) it's a losing battle from the beginning. People who are going to do dirty, shady, underhanded stuff are going to find a way to do it whether you allow "alternate" personas or not. The hope is that those people will do these things enough and get called out and shamed publicly enough that others will be wary of doing business with them in the future. Of course, part of that involves the person who has been swindled being willing to go public and admit they were scammed so others will know who not to deal with in the future, and at times it can be difficult to swallow your pride like that.

    That's why reputation is such an important part of the trade forums to begin with. All it takes is one or two shady dealings for people to get wind that you're not a person to deal with at all. And it's why I've gone to great lengths to keep this particular persona and character as tarnish free as possible. If anything, I think a good broker in a situation like this could make things MORE above board, not less. Because whether or not people trust the original owner of the goods I'm selling, they KNOW they can trust me. My word and my reputation are solid because I won't cheat people, I won't scam people, etc etc etc. The broker offers a buffer between otherwise questionable sellers and understandably skittish buyers.

    Just my 2 cents..... not like I have a livelihood to protect or anything....

    *wink wink*
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