No response since May? Surely, you must have seen this thread. Are you just ignoring me? Has RGL given any thought to this? It would be pretty cool to have things like the spy cam for playoffs / grands. This rule just needlessly shuts down extra content.
Just because u make a long post doesn’t mean its of substance and admins need to reply. Your posts aren’t new ideas that nobody has ever argued before, and if you -really- cared about getting answers to your questions you would just talk to somebody in production instead of trying to gain traction by baiting outrage on the forums.
It has now been 26 days since my last post on this thread and well over a month since my original post, and I have not received a response from anyone at RGL, except for the one reply near the top that didn’t address the content of my post. It seems like I was correct in my last post.
Here are your justifications for the rule given in this article:
- To help mitigate possible DDoS attacks with STV information being leaked
– Anyone who is able to receive leaked STV info could also receive leaked server info, so this point is meaningless. It looks like you added this as the first bullet point for shock value.
How is this meaningless, wtf are you saying? Giving STV info to random community members = a higher chance of somebody giving that to the group of idiots who try to disrupt casted matches. At least when its only shared between production and server ops we know who to hold accountable for leaking. Give it to a bunch of “community content creators” though? not anymore lol
You have enough info to ddos a server with just the STV info, it makes complete sense that its not just out there for people to see. RGL doesn’t have the ESEA budget for ddos prevention measures on their tf2 servers (or the budget to even own servers lmao). Its just not realistic to expect open stv information for the casted RGL games, especially considering the HL community has a decently sized group of people who think its Really Funny to disrupt match casts in whatever way they possibly can.
- To avoid the server being affected performance-wise
– You could host matches that are being casted by RGL on servers with resources capable of supporting more viewers. I’m sure that this is unpopular with teams who own their servers and like to play matches on them, but it seems more desirable than banning other players for entering the STV. I’m sure other restrictions exist anyways to enforce that at least RGL can enter if they please, so extending that rule doesn’t seem too bad. Preferably, RGL can provide STV relay servers to third parties, or address the STV relay bug in one of several ways discussed earlier.
These are non-solutions.
Did you watch the video exa linked? STV relays with enough people connected are literally unwatchable. You just move the problem down another step when you make a relay in terms of making the decision about who gets access to it, because clearly not everyone can be in it.
You can’t seriously think saying “just buy a better server lol” or “just fix the bugs in STV relays” is productive in any real way right?
- To avoid an STV slot being taken away from the production team
– This is fundamentally the exact same issue as given above, listed a second time.
The problem is that you think making a relay will just fix everything. You seem to think ignoring the problem that STVs and Relay Servers fold under the pressure of enough spectators will just magically make it go away. It doesn’t. Plus it gets even worse because the game server itself can also take a hit, which directly effects the match.
Given that relays aren’t a viable option (pretending they are doesn’t make it true), this is a valid concern.
- Promoting coverage of more invite matches happening during the same day and time rather than multiple coverages of the same game
– Different casts provide different experiences and perspectives. For example, I have been casting exclusively from the spy POVs each match, which is entirely different content than a traditional cast of the match itself. The promotion of diverse coverage does not necessitate match exclusivity. There is very often only one interesting game per week, and having different angles of the top matches is a net positive.
The league does not suffer because randoms can’t couch-cast a match. The league does suffer if its official cast is disrupted. There is a small benefit to allowing randoms to couch-cast (arguably the biggest benefit is placating angry forum posts and nothing to do with increased viewership of the matches lmao). Conversely, there is a clear demerit to not enforcing cast exclusivity (considering previous disrupted casts).
- RGL is in talks with different sponsors and selling the brand is difficult when the official RGL stream has low viewer counts
– Twitch viewership is not a zero sum game. Given any two streams, a viewer might watch both, one, or neither. A viewer of one stream may choose to not watch at all rather than watch the other stream. Since every other reason given is bogus, this seems like the only real reason for this rule, and it puts the interests of the league above the interests of the community. At what point do the upsides of a sponsorship get outweighed by the downsides it pressures onto the community? Would you drop HL if a potential sponsor would consider a league that only supports 6s? Or if that potential sponsor demanded a certain whitelist, or wanted to put in place some other ridiculous rule banning players for something stupid? If you truly are in talks with a sponsor that refuses to support your brand unless you ban anyone in the same STV as you, then you should drop that sponsor and look elsewhere.
Of the viewerbase who know they want to watch a casted match, the fact that random community member X isn’t allowed to cast it won’t stop them from watching it. Of the potential viewerbase reachable, the official cast provides so much more outreach than our communities independent sources that they border on negligible.
RGL doesn’t really lose anything by restricting other streams, and they prevent a LOT of headache for themselves. It is a willful denial of facts to pretend like open access to STVs hasn’t and doesn’t cause problems.
– Why then are players in the very same match allowed to stream their own POV? Why are other matches allowed to be casted at the same time? Do these things not take viewers away from the official cast? You claim to want coverage of more invite matches, but here claim that you want more viewers, at least somewhat acknowledging that less important matches are less desirable to viewers.
Players streaming their POV doesn’t create an issue for the production team, so its not a problem and not restricted. Similar logic for casts of other matches.
Conversely, community members competing for STV slots with the official production (or other listed reasons) is an issue, so its restricted.
The one response to this was a sentence stating that STV relays in TF2 have a bug. That seems like an RGL problem that should take precedence to be addressed above plenty of other things that RGL is doing, and certainly above banning players for streaming matches or sitting in STV. The way these issues have been presented and feedback has been ignored comes across as extremely scummy. You clearly think that RGL has made the right choice if you will go so far as to ban players over this, but I hope that I have demonstrated by now a certain level of investment in this issue to warrant a good response.
Did you really just say “this is a problem that should take precedence above plenty of other things RGL is doing” as if this specific issue is at all related to what any staff members ACTUALLY DO. Random Staff Members #1-100 don’t know anything about fixing bugs in the source engine. Like seriously wtf are you even trying to get at? That RGL Staff should just freeze other activity until they fix an irrelevant bug of unidentified source?
It’s a bad response because it’s just a deflection of the issue. “Sorry, there is a bug that lowers STV relay quality, so instead we will ban you for casting our matches.” Is this bug well-known? Does it occur 100% of the time, or are there preventative measures that could be taken? Is it possible to build a workaround? Why not have the official casters in the STV while providing the relay server to third parties? Instead of putting any thought into solutions at all, RGL instead decides to offload this problem onto the community and ban anyone entering STV.
If the problem really is about issues that arise with too many people in STV, which never really seemed to be a problem until a few seasons ago (but I’ll believe you), then why not just have a measure for dealing with this when it happens, instead of blanket banning in all cases? Why not host RGL casted matches on servers with more resources? Why are “casting organizations” allowed to broadcast the same match? Why does this rule only exist for the official RGL casted matches if it affects the playability of the server regardless? The DDoS line is asinine, because anyone using STV info for an attack can get the server IP the same way. The first of the secondary considerations is narrow minded, because different streams provide different content regardless of which match is played.
“Official Casting Organizations” are allowed to cast the same matches as RGL because they are trusted to not create massive headaches for the official production team. Staff members use whatever criteria they have for determining who is an “official casting organization” they can trust to not cause headaches, but its not reasonable to extend that trust to the community at large. Call it favoritism if you want (it kinda is if you squint), but it should at least show you that RGL isn’t trying to be scummy and squash “competition” to their stream, they just want official productions to proceed smoothly.
A practical solution for you is:
Have a brand, make your casts something consistent with a high production value and sense of professionalism.
After demonstrating that you are serious by running like this for a while, contact dolphin/current head of production and appeal to be considered an official casting organization.
If this is an issue that you take a stance on more generally (i.e. you believe community couch casts are important), you should find the solutions yourself (and maybe volunteer to staff to help implement them). Purchase the stronger server for RGL casts, wrangle the angry teams who Refuse To Play On Your Dogshit Server (aka: its not our server so we hate it), bugtest and figure out how (if even possible) to make relays stable for more spectators, and make a system that allows for you to give spectating information out without increasing the chance the resident dumbasses in HL use it to disrupt casts.
Its really easy to just say “do more work” when you aren’t the person who has to do the work, and apparently its also easy to convince yourself that RGL staff are a bunch of powertripping incompetents trying to Silence The Demands Of The Community because they made a decision that you didn’t like. I guarantee you its not that dramatic. All it takes is one disrupted cast for production to be fed up and put a stop to whatever caused it (and thats probably what happened).
(This isn’t a staff response bc im not involved with RGL but its hopefully its better than nothing for you)