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Charles Hueter (Sarcastomatic)
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Sarcastomatic picture-taking libertarian free market anarchist beer snobbery on the gun range with an Android listening to power pop death metal jazz. Also, cats.
Sarcastomatic picture-taking libertarian free market anarchist beer snobbery on the gun range with an Android listening to power pop death metal jazz. Also, cats.

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I know spoofing in +Ingress​ presents both technological and social challenges, but +Niantic​ needs to do better. 
Shards need Referees

Oh Niantic, I was one of those people who celebrated and spread the word of the global shard game. I was so very excited to see you listen to your player base and change up the anomaly schedule to bring us a part of the game we had all been missing over the past 2 years. I proudly told my communities about how exciting and dynamic shards could be; how the true test of any team is can they truly come together to move shards through countries and over oceans. You see this part of the game is quite simply in my mind and the minds of others the truest form of teamwork, the most exciting and rewarding part of the game and the most incredible way to meet fellow players all over the world.

Your agents have done some amazing things to get ready for shards. We have seen real people become heroes via actions such as these:

Agents in Russia hiking through snow that is waist high to access a shard: Russian Shard Heroics https://goo.gl/photos/pU9uJzsyGYFjpvyx5

Agents in Perth taking a narrow, unpaved track (barely more than an animal track) road in the middle of the night to move a shard into a location that was considered secure and then spend 5 hours praying we didn’t have to contend with spoofers. Ben Linden https://youtu.be/6sdIVTJokYE

An agent who literally walked across ice in negative 7 temperatures and no sleep to recover a shard: Icewalk to Piirsaare https://goo.gl/GKwM30

Sure, I heard the negative comments about spoofing and cheating running rampant through the last round of shards but I figured by now you would have figured that out. How could the company which depends on a supportive player base for their bottom line not ensure that the game be played fairly? Given that spoofer and cheat detection appeared to have improved over the past few months I assumed that the introduction of the shard game meant you finally had a handle on the problem. Today, I have sadly been proven wrong and these heroic agents have been turned into victims by the very game they love so much.

I have spent every day watching shards be stolen by spoofing, watching targets go down to spoofing, seeing hard portals that real agents have risked everything to get disappear to a spoofer in the moments before a shard would be linked to them.

The team who spent an entire weekend capturing Big Bend at great expense to themselves to prepare it for shards only to see a spoofer run through twice and undo all of their work. The most depressing part was that instead of reverting the portals NIA chose to simply grey them out meaning to be able to use these portals the team would again have to take a weekend off and expend funds to recapture with no assurance of protection against another spoof. To make things even worse the the spoofer is now harassing a female agent who was present. Making a situation of cheating move into a question of safety for all women playing the game. We already are subjected to abuse and harassment within the game from real players but now we get to contend with the bots and people sitting at computers also.

The Enlightened and Resistance agents in Samara who engaged in an amazing battle for control of shard #44 who never gave up only to be stymied at the last moment by a blatant spoofer jumping in to move the shard out of battle to the disbelief of not just the agents on the ground but every agent watching the battle on intel. Over 50 agents on the ground in negative 12 celsius temperatures batted for this shard only for the actions of one to render them null.

The worst part is that YOUR player base assumes you do nothing and you are incapable of ensuring that a game based on location and intended to get us to “get out and move” actually ensures that players are doing just that. I am seeing players giving up because why bother going to that lighthouse when NIA won’t prevent it from being spoofed.

Quite simply, when a spoofer moves a shard illegally and all you do is ban the account you are still telling people that spoofing works. The spoofer still moved the shard to the location they wanted it in and you still are allowing the team that was the victim of the cheating to be victimized. Referees should act to ensure that insofar as is possible, the game works as intended. In this case, we had a link from shard to target. Logs showed link was up, and was the only P7 link, therefore, it should be on target QED.

If this ISN'T fixed, what stops it from happening again? Why would the spoofers stop?

The only compromise here would be a technical fix that says shards always go to targets -- but what about all those other long jumps?

I have to ask this question… Have you forsaken Ingress for Pokemon? How can you expect us to contribute to your bottom line and continue to financially support you when you can’t not ensure a secure and safe gaming experience? Console gaming has figured it out (not perfectly but it is there) and yet you are behind the times and allowing what could be a great game fall apart.

Your players love this game and all we want is to be able to play the game without the interference of cheating and bots. MAKE SHARDS GREAT AGAIN isn’t just a rally cry to bring them back but a rally cry to ensure we can play the game fairly. Making shards work requires referees. They don't have to be perfect, but unless niantic can revert the worst offenses of spoofers, you are disrespecting the hard work of your player base.

+John Hanke +Andrew Krug +NIA Ops +Ingress

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Imagez!
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Testing.

I hate voting days and the lead up to them. This one has been particularly awful.

There was no chance I'd vote for anyone anyway, I'm an anarchist. The state intervenes to an already insane degree in our lives, affirming the bedrock of the system is not going to change things. Therefore, my experience is that of someone who is hungry for a salad, but everywhere I turn the offerings vary from a chili bacon cheeseburger to poutine to menudo. Advertising, news reports, opinion journalism, cultural institutions, government officials, and the messy weight of mainstream respectability all think voting is awesome.

I think it encourages the liars, thieves, and murderers to keep it up. They certainly have since the beginning.

Watching good people agonize over their choice, hearing total strangers go full-hate on each other on the basis of party affiliation, and knowing horrifyingly real life-and-death coercive power will still be used against peaceful people minding their own business...this is my hell.

I sincerely hope voters today will get some satisfaction from their action and find a little peace, but I will have no part of it.

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This was a great medal idea. Get out of the house and explore! #vialuxadventure 
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10/13/16
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I know folks in Comal County. Please help if you can.
San Antonio and Corpus Christy Ingress community...please share this around. Daughter of a friend of mine has run away with this man. 
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Just so anyone who watched the Intel map the last few days knows.
Hopefully the Ingress 2.0 that +John Hanke talked about will do something about spoofers.

This field was put up using accounts that have been repeatedly reported for spoofing. There are both Green and Blue rail links put up to prepare for it.
We know who did it. We have reported him and every account we see. The sheer number accounts he uses is astounding. The freedom that +Ingress and +Niantic give him to do this is depressing.

Something needs to change!

#SpoofersHaveNoFaction

+Andrew Krug +Bill Kilday +Linda Besh +NIA Ops +Pooja Srinivas +Anne Beuttenmüller +Matilde Tusberti

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Be on the lookout.
Hey folks, my niece is gone missing, and I could use some help from the team with a million eyes. Her name is Haylee. She's a student in the Carrollton, TX area, and has been missing since about 3pm today. Police have been contacted. 
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Yahoo finally screwed up for the last time. I can't trust my old email account with them and have only stayed onboard this long because I have such a long history with that address and it was fun to watch people react when I said "Yes, it really is on Yahoo." Their insane process for changing passwords with those folks who happen to have had an AT&T account long ago sealed the deal. Hands washed, I'm done with this shit.

I'm going to slowly transition over to Gmail for my primary needs, so if you want the new address, send me a Hangout.

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Like I usually do, I set my Do Not Disturb before going to sleep last night. When I woke up, my phone had somehow restarted. No biggie, weirdness happens...oh, why can't I turn off DND? I've tried everything I can think of (including a restart) and the icon remains. I couldn't get any notification sounds until an hour ago when they magically returned.

Any suggestions? And yeah, I'll upgrade to 7 when I'm at my home wifi connection. 😉
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9/21/16
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