Dispute: Angela Stefanski - NES / FAMICOM / DISK - The Legend of Zelda - NTSC - Fastest Completion [1st Quest] - Player: Rodrigo Lopes - Score: 31:37.0

Is this a valid dispute?

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  1. 11-08-2019, 07:24 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Ninglendo View Post
    Over the past couple of days I keep seeing Jace post about how TG has to be extra thorough in case a person would want to lawyer up. I'm just wondering what kind of lawsuit a person could possibly present in a court of law that would even be a case a judge wouldn't laugh at. It's Jace's scoreboard and a scoreboard is pretty much just stats. Speedrun has had dozens upon dozens of times removed and people have been ousted as cheaters over there. Never has anyone even threatened to sue anybody. I guess Im just confused cause this whole "You removed my score so now I can sue you" thing is pretty silly sounding if you ask me.
    I agree with you in regard to lawsuits being an over the top approach to resolving a dispute about a player's video game performance's validity - but the fact of the matter is that some people always have a plan. ;)

    You can already count on the fact that someone somewhere is watching the DK legal stuff and waiting to see how that resolves, and the way it resolves may influence that person's decision to pursue a case of their own, whether they are in the speedrun community or anywhere else.

    Threats of lawsuits will occur as long there are people on this Earth and there will be all kinds of cases made, from alleging defamation all the way to discrimination. Rest assured its going to eventually happen within just about every gaming community there is (youtube creators have seen plenty) and while Twin Galaxies can't prevent them from occurring, it certainly should take as many precautions as possible in regard to its processes and determinations.
    Jace Hall
    Head Custodian
    www.TwinGalaxies.com
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  2. 11-08-2019, 08:22 PM
    as for the no-vid no did, and good scores i'd like to point out two closely related scores

    The 100s of removed scores all have one thing in common -- they were scores of Twin Galaxies referres
    No legitimate organziation lets referees double as players. Heck, you cant even enter a random sweepstakes if you're just family members of an employee

    so no i dont think all the old scores are bad, but i do think theres a problem with referee scores. I need to clarify not all refs were corrupt. Theres a few i have a lot of respect for, but fact of the matter is, its a conflict of interest. conflicts of interest dont mean corruption, it just means increased chance at corruption. and the many scores removed show that. also, what a coincidence, the score here is also a score of a former ref. Are we stating to see a pattern yet and why no credible organization lets referees compete as players?
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  3. 11-08-2019, 09:45 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Jace Hall View Post

    The list goes on and on, and there is not one simple answer - however one thing that I think gets overlooked when it comes to old scores that are challenged within the dispute system that may no longer have video evidence, is the fact that the dispute case data and any circumstantial evidence and discussion around the score's validity is permanently attributed to the score itself.

    So while the score may not get removed due to lack of definitive evidence, the score now carries its history and information about it's potential problems attached for all competitors to see and make their own determinations about.
    Honestly I doubt anyone sees it that way. The bad score is still #1, the cheater still get ESI from it, and it is still there on a leaderboard. If someone cares about that game they now have to beat a bogus, if not impossible score, to get 1st.
    Undisputed #1 Game Wave Family Entertainment Player
  4. 11-08-2019, 10:00 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by swaggers View Post
    Honestly I doubt anyone sees it that way. The bad score is still #1, the cheater still get ESI from it, and it is still there on a leaderboard. If someone cares about that game they now have to beat a bogus, if not impossible score, to get 1st.
    And that is the core issue... Just because there are questions about a score, does that instantly mean its fraudulent?

    If not, then where is the line? Shouldn't there be definitive proof that it is fraudulent?

    And the circle goes 'round and 'round....
    Jace Hall
    Head Custodian
    www.TwinGalaxies.com
  5. 11-08-2019, 10:38 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Desidious View Post
    But what about those that aren't around anymore because they have moved on, passed away, refuse to participate, or are unreachable?
    Yes, good point. If such an system were implemented it would mainly apply to those people who were still active with available contact information. Also, thank you to Jace for clarifying the possibility of trolls taking advantage of such a system to perpetuate grudges, personal feelings. etc. However, think of the following compromise. I don't think an accused player should have to necessarily provide any evidence once an initial dispute is launched. A great example is this very dispute. Honestly, I did not think this was a valid dispute when it first opened with all due respect to the reasons Angela Stefansky listed. My guess is that the player in question did not think that either. However, once I decided to release the information about the enemy spawns and others took it from there I changed my mind and a snowball turned into a boulder rolling down the hill. Now, this is to the point where the dispute is "valid" and TG has had to step in. In my opinion, this is when a player should be required to present at least some evidence. If they want to play a disappearing act at the beginning or initial launch of a dispute then fine but once a dispute is voted into "valid" and TG has to come in and then if that player is reachable and/or still active they should have to present something. So hopefully, even if there was a troll who wanted to attack every record of someone they disliked very few if any of the disputes would make it to the "accepted" phase where TG would have to step in. In fact the very player in this dispute also has other disputes opened for "A Link to the Past" and "Four Swords Adventures" but none of those have made it anywhere near the level this one has. Hopefully, a system like this would be more in line with what Jace was saying. I hate to keep bringing up the 3 big cases before this one and I won't mention the names again, but one of the main reason they took so long was the lack of participation of those being accused even AFTER the dispute had been voted "valid" and TG had stepped in.

    I also agree with what Jace was saying about the dispute system needing to be a flexible system that takes into account the different TG era's and technological limitations that players were forced to deal with at that time. If you are disputing a a score from the 80's then you have to realize that the chances of success will probably be small if your goal is score removal or banning of the player than they would be if you were disputing a score in the TGSAP era. Once again that would be due to the difficulty of obtaining video evidence due to the technological limitations of the time rather than the player in question not wanting the video evidence to be presented. It's as Jace said "the no video,no score" works in the present and "going forward" but not so good in "going in reverse." So, how does this apply to this dispute? When you look at the the history of speedrunning it really took off around the 2012-2013 era with the advent of Justin.tv and finally twitch.tv as players were able to live stream themselves to the point where a niche hobby became a main source of income for some people. It was from this era going forward that video evidence was required as various communities formed and many inaugural "world records" were set on titles. However, there was en era from about 2003-2010 where many high quality speedruns were performed prior to the advent of modern speedruns where the video evidence was either lost to time, partially recorded, or never recorded to begin with since most people then took it as a "fun hobby." The run in this particular dispute falls into this category. As a result the "no video, no existence" idea of the modern community may not necessarily apply to this submission.

    With that being said why have we not seen anything from the player in question even after this has been voted "valid" with good evidence and the intervention of TG? In response to thegamer1185, yes the player in question could be "sandbagging" or holding back an unlikely, legit run in the hope that TG jumps the gun and removes the time so that the player can then upload the supposed, legit run and then call us all a bunch of fools and force us to apologize. However, I think that is unlikely because it would require careful planning and right now there is no guarantee that TG will in fact remove the score. Alternatively, here are 3 reasons why I think we haven't seen the submission despite the player in question claiming to have it:

    1). The submission, as the evidence suggests, is indeed a fraud and even seeing 2 minutes of it would prove that. In the event of it being proven a hoax phase 1 of Jace's plan would go into effect leading to the removal of all non-TGSAP scores and possibly all scores and a yet-to-be determined length ban. This particular player has scores dating back to the 90's and currently ranks #1 on "top expert skill index" and "most world records" so they have a huge a reason to keep this hidden if this is the case.

    2). The player in question made a promise to themselves once this dispute started that they would not be revealing any part of the submission,whether it is real or fradulent, no matter how far the dispute got or how good the evidence is. This particular player has used this stance in the past dating back to 2009 with posts on SDA.

    3). The player has reached out to an outside counsel of some sort, most likely a lawyer, and that particular person has told the player in dispute not to release anything and most likely to ignore anything and everything until a decision has been made after which they would then decide what to do. As Jace astutely noted earlier, "as long as humans are on earth" this could be a possibility and may even be following the precedent of another famous recent dispute.

    In closing, at the very least if the dispute ends in a stalemate at least this body of evidence will be kept intact and the submission may remain but will forever be linked to the empirical and circumstantial evidence.
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  6. 11-09-2019, 03:07 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by RTM View Post
    Has anyone asked Dave or Jace if TG ever acquired the cache of tapes that I had sent to the Shawn Cram (via Brian Kuh) back in Nov/07 ? That would handily answer all questions as the VHS tape would be part of that cache.

    Additionally, as I wrote several hundred WR-related articles for TG, has anyone checked the old TG archives yet for the article that I wrote ? For Zelda runs I had a very specific format for the original Zelda and aLttP which I adhered to for all reported and verified submissions that passed by me. It might at least shed some light on matters.
    In a last-ditch effort to acquire some video footage has the above quote been fully investigated? I know that in post #56 Lexmark said that Jace and Dave did not receive this cache of tapes and I believe Jace also confirmed that a tape is not in TG's possession at the moment in one of his posts. RTM has not posted anything in a while so would it be worth it to reach out to him again just to make sure that he has not found any new tapes that might not have been sent out in that cache? Additionally, does anyone have any contact information for Shawn Cram or Brian Kuh and if so would it be worth trying to reach out to one of them or have all avenues been exhausted on this front?
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  7. 11-09-2019, 04:33 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by mrturk View Post
    It's really the same with this now. Starcytras, Tompa, myself and others have put in months on this and we are up against a guy who says: "I'm just going to sit here. I can't do anything." I understand the "burden of proof" should on those issuing the dispute but when you get no cooperation from the person being accused in cases where there is little to no evidence to begin with it makes nearly any score dispute impossible.
    Just want to add in that I've done nothing for this dispute really... I'm mostly an observer. Though when someone around is refusing to show evidence, that to me instantly makes the run invalid. Like if the conductor asks for you train ticket, but you get mad at him and says you don't have time to look in your pocket for the ticket, expecting the conductor to believe you have it and leave. "If you've got nothing to hide, you've got nothing to fear". If you have a ticket, show it, or you don't have one. If the run is real, show it, or it isn't real. And the general reaction and attitude from @Siliconian , via the "Letter for Matthew Felix", also shows behavious that makes him untrustworthy and an unrespectful member. Both from the past in his SDA posts, until today.

    I didn't think this specific record was cheated, I've only had suspicion about his FSA run, that's also under dispute atm, because the final time is not logical when you compare to the individual level table at the time. Other records of his became untrustworthy when Rodrigo showed what kind of character he is.
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  8. 11-09-2019, 09:05 AM
    Here's a message from TLoZ community member sully51#8973 (Discord name):

    "Jace said: I wish it were as easy as Twin Galaxies reaching out to everyone who has a score in the database and requiring them to re-provide a video and if they dont then their score is deleted. Unfortunately, that was not the expectation set when the player initially submitted their score in the 80's or 90's. A submitter's expectation was that a referee reviewed and approved their performance and their score was recorded as valid for all time.

    In response - I'm not a top runner by any stretch of the imagination. I just want to throw my 2 cents in here, as a runner that is on the official Zelda 1 board.

    I understand the need for a flexible system of dispute when you have different eras of submission guidelines. It is understandable that there won't be video records of every submission from the "referee" era. HOWEVER, that just isn't relevant in THIS specific case. The runner says video IS available. He says he has it, and just doesn't want to show it. Regardless of what the submission guidelines were at the time, in this dispute, the evidence says it is almost assuredly a cheated run. The runner refuses to provide the evidence he says exists to prove it otherwise. That is all that should matter in THIS case. Flexibility in the dispute system should allow for a run to be dismissed if the runner claims to have proof but refuses to provide it. Period.

    TL;DR - It doesn't matter what the expectations were at the time. it doesn't matter that other disputes may not have video available. it ONLY matters that in THIS CASE, the video is supposedly still available. If the runner refuses to provide it, he obviously doesn't care enough about the submission to warrant keeping it there when the evidence against keeping it is so strong."
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  9. 11-09-2019, 01:27 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Tompa View Post
    Just want to add in that I've done nothing for this dispute really... I'm mostly an observer. Though when someone around is refusing to show evidence, that to me instantly makes the run invalid. Like if the conductor asks for you train ticket, but you get mad at him and says you don't have time to look in your pocket for the ticket, expecting the conductor to believe you have it and leave. "If you've got nothing to hide, you've got nothing to fear". If you have a ticket, show it, or you don't have one. If the run is real, show it, or it isn't real. And the general reaction and attitude from @Siliconian , via the "Letter for Matthew Felix", also shows behavious that makes him untrustworthy and an unrespectful member. Both from the past in his SDA posts, until today.

    I didn't think this specific record was cheated, I've only had suspicion about his FSA run, that's also under dispute atm, because the final time is not logical when you compare to the individual level table at the time. Other records of his became untrustworthy when Rodrigo showed what kind of character he is.
    1) Provided TSA's spliced run to thread
    2) Proved that questions over the authenticity of the disputed player's submission has gone on for more than a decade
    3) Served as a mediator between this thread and an outside speedrun community

    Done quite a bit IMO.
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  10. 11-10-2019, 02:20 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by Tompa View Post
    Here's a message from TLoZ community member sully51#8973 (Discord name):

    "Jace said: I wish it were as easy as Twin Galaxies reaching out to everyone who has a score in the database and requiring them to re-provide a video and if they dont then their score is deleted. Unfortunately, that was not the expectation set when the player initially submitted their score in the 80's or 90's. A submitter's expectation was that a referee reviewed and approved their performance and their score was recorded as valid for all time.

    In response - I'm not a top runner by any stretch of the imagination. I just want to throw my 2 cents in here, as a runner that is on the official Zelda 1 board.

    I understand the need for a flexible system of dispute when you have different eras of submission guidelines. It is understandable that there won't be video records of every submission from the "referee" era. HOWEVER, that just isn't relevant in THIS specific case. The runner says video IS available. He says he has it, and just doesn't want to show it. Regardless of what the submission guidelines were at the time, in this dispute, the evidence says it is almost assuredly a cheated run. The runner refuses to provide the evidence he says exists to prove it otherwise. That is all that should matter in THIS case. Flexibility in the dispute system should allow for a run to be dismissed if the runner claims to have proof but refuses to provide it. Period.

    TL;DR - It doesn't matter what the expectations were at the time. it doesn't matter that other disputes may not have video available. it ONLY matters that in THIS CASE, the video is supposedly still available. If the runner refuses to provide it, he obviously doesn't care enough about the submission to warrant keeping it there when the evidence against keeping it is so strong."

    Very nicely stated by sully51. This is a unique dispute as Jace also mentioned in his first post in which the video evidence is "in theory" available but is simply being held back by the player in question. I found something else last night that might pertain in particular to the handling of this submission, but not necessarily what's on the actual video but that I think still warrants discussion in this thread. As has been discussed in this thread, the traditional method of verification during the time period of this submission was a lone referee. However, there were some titles in particular that involved more than a single referee verification. Games which were considered "popular" and/or "highly competitive" in nature fell into this category. I have found evidence that the original Legend of Zelda fell under this category: http://tasvideos.org/forum/viewtopic...r=asc&start=25. This is an old speedrun topic on tasvideos.org from 2005-2006. If you look at the post about half way down the page by "Sleepz" (real name Richard Ureta), the current #2 on the leaderboard on this site for Legend of Zelda, he says "Triple verification will be done any day now" on 6/25/05. If you scroll down the page to the very bottom on 7/6/2005 Sleepz says "Regarding the time, Mr. Kelley has verified it to be 32:56, and now just waiting on the other 2 judges." I assume the "judge" he is referring to is Kelly Flewin as well as 2 other unnamed referees. The 32:56 is referring to a time that Ureta sent to TG around this time period for verification so there is no doubt when he uses the term "judges" that he is referring to TG referees.

    So how does this apply to this submission? If you click the bottom link in post #39 by Matthew Felix in the case of this disputed submission it appears that there was only 1 referee and it was @RTM. It begs the question: Why was one player subjected to a triple verification while the player in question only subjected to a single verification on the same track for the same title? If @RTM was the player in question's referee of choice then fine, but why was this submission not sent to at least 2 other different referees which was the standard for this game at the time? Going back to post #18 in this thread on 7/29/19 by @RTM he says " I sent my cache of tapes that I had to Shawn Cram (via Brian Kuh) back in Nov. 07." I think this would prove the tape never went to a second or a third referee for verification. So, this leads to the following question: If the submission did not meet the minimum requirements for verification established for this title then how could it have ever been entered into the database at all? In other words is this submission even valid at all considering the way it was handled according to the standards that were in place at the time? If someone can provide evidence or a document that the triple verification was no longer required or had been amended for this game between the time that Sleepz made his initial post on 7/6/05 and the date the player in question's submission was verified on 9/7/2006 then I will drop this argument entirely. It would be great if @RTM could come in and maybe offer some insight on this. So @RTM it would be great if you could answer the following 2 questions: 1). Can you definitively say that you were the ONLY referee who reviewed this submission with the submission having been sent to you directly from the player in question and 2) if so, how was this submission allowed to be entered into the database if it did not meet the minimum triple verification required for this title at the time? Thank you for reading.
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