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Author Topic: Three perfectly good examples of how the trust system is flawed  (Read 1667 times)
KingOfSports
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January 09, 2015, 09:04:50 AM
Last edit: January 09, 2015, 09:17:05 AM by KingOfSports
 #1

Three accounts:
1) Charlie Shrem aka Yankee - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=21181

Scam Accusation: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=817069.0

He was the owner of bitinstant, so he got a lot of rep back then for running such a business. HOWEVER, he has disappeared and owes over 25 BTC and has for months now. Yet he's still in the green and what many would consider a trustworthy account from the outside. The only ones who have left negative feedback are those who are not on default trust list.

2) Coinhoarder - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=67959

Scam Accusation: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=817069.0

This one kills me. This guy bought a couple things from people trustworthy and instantly got green trust. He isn't even light green, hes a solid 7 green. He took two debts and has failed to fully pay them off (at least 1 of 5 BTC remaining). He offered a contest for 5 BTC and never paid the winner. Over a year ago. Only people who marked him of course were those who were untrusted.

CONCLUSION: The biggest flaw is that the trustworthy on this site are the old members and the old members don't spend as much time on here anymore. They also don't look for scammers or anything, the only one who does is Tomatocage. So many members USED TO BE trustworthy and gained an extensive amount of rep, however once they scam their account doesn't reach red unless they really piss off EVERYONE hence TF for example. The people who have the ability to mark someone a scammer do not participate in marking people who are proven scammers, as a scammer. Tomatocage's rep can only hurt someone who used to be trustworthy so much. Not enough people on the default trust care about correcting misgiven trust after someone turns out to be a scammer. These accounts left trustworthy are then abandoned, resold, and then used to scam further.

These two accounts are two perfectly good examples of accounts that should be in the red with the "trade with extreme caution" but are not.

Everyday almost for the past 2 months I have sent Tomatocage links to accounts that have been scamming to get them the red trust they deserve.

A third example, user Lazlo who created the thread RipDice. His site NEVER paid out. He bumped his thread for 3 months. Just recently, last week HE FINALLY was red trusted by Tomatocage after I messaged him to get it done. However, you look at the thread and so many people call him out as a scammer.

3) Lazlo - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=367551

RipDice Thread (read thru, you'll see the scam accusations): https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=834371.0

Not enough is done to combat the scammers around here. The small time lending criminals are gotten everytime but the real scams, the ones who can do real damage of 4 figures or higher are often left unnoticed or ignored completely and hence I'm almost positive if Charlie Shrem or CoinHoarder came on here they could scam easily with their accounts. Why? Cause no one has followed through with the maintaining of their trust. The trust system works two ways: 1) to add/remove trust to those that get or earn the positive or negative and 2) To maintain current trust levels of members on a regular basis, especially ones assumed to be trusted by the system.

I'm leaving bitcoin for good, but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.

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January 09, 2015, 09:13:11 AM
 #2

I'm leaving bitcoin, selling this account Saturday evening but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.
Buyer still wants the account after it's revealed to have changed ownership?

Good buyer.

KingOfSports
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January 09, 2015, 09:15:50 AM
 #3

I'm leaving bitcoin, selling this account Saturday evening but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.
Buyer still wants the account after it's revealed to have changed ownership?

Good buyer.
If you look at my trust its a useless account. They're going to use it for signature campaigning probably, or for what the buyer told me he said he's giving it to his friend cause he wants his friend to spend time here on the forum but his friend hates the newbie restrictions and such. You obviously haven't read much of the forum, cause I've been purposely saying I'm selling this account and offered a price for it which was offered to me in full today, for about a week now.

Anyways please stay on topic.

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January 09, 2015, 09:28:21 AM
 #4

I'm leaving bitcoin, selling this account Saturday evening but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.
Buyer still wants the account after it's revealed to have changed ownership?

Good buyer.
If you look at my trust its a useless account. They're going to use it for signature campaigning probably, or for what the buyer told me he said he's giving it to his friend cause he wants his friend to spend time here on the forum but his friend hates the newbie restrictions and such. You obviously haven't read much of the forum, cause I've been purposely saying I'm selling this account and offered a price for it which was offered to me in full today, for about a week now.

Anyways please stay on topic.

You're absolutely right I don't read too much of Digital goods (which is where I assume you've been posting in about selling this account?).

The trust system here is unmoderated (though I'm sure you've heard that too many times). I see no problem with having old accounts that used to scam and are still in green as long as they don't continue scamming. If they do, then the green trust becomes a problem. I do however advocate that these accounts be neg-reped when they scam, immediately.

Since you find the current trust system inaccurate and, well, untrustworthy, what are your suggestions?

P.S. Have you seen the recent thread in Meta, Replacing DefaultTrust?


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January 09, 2015, 09:37:46 AM
 #5

Three accounts:
1) Charlie Shrem aka Yankee - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=21181

Scam Accusation: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=817069.0

He was the owner of bitinstant, so he got a lot of rep back then for running such a business. HOWEVER, he has disappeared and owes over 25 BTC and has for months now. Yet he's still in the green and what many would consider a trustworthy account from the outside. The only ones who have left negative feedback are those who are not on default trust list.

2) Coinhoarder - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=67959

Scam Accusation: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=817069.0

This one kills me. This guy bought a couple things from people trustworthy and instantly got green trust. He isn't even light green, hes a solid 7 green. He took two debts and has failed to fully pay them off (at least 1 of 5 BTC remaining). He offered a contest for 5 BTC and never paid the winner. Over a year ago. Only people who marked him of course were those who were untrusted.

CONCLUSION: The biggest flaw is that the trustworthy on this site are the old members and the old members don't spend as much time on here anymore. They also don't look for scammers or anything, the only one who does is Tomatocage. So many members USED TO BE trustworthy and gained an extensive amount of rep, however once they scam their account doesn't reach red unless they really piss off EVERYONE hence TF for example. The people who have the ability to mark someone a scammer do not participate in marking people who are proven scammers, as a scammer. Tomatocage's rep can only hurt someone who used to be trustworthy so much. Not enough people on the default trust care about correcting misgiven trust after someone turns out to be a scammer. These accounts left trustworthy are then abandoned, resold, and then used to scam further.

These two accounts are two perfectly good examples of accounts that should be in the red with the "trade with extreme caution" but are not.

Everyday almost for the past 2 months I have sent Tomatocage links to accounts that have been scamming to get them the red trust they deserve.

A third example, user Lazlo who created the thread RipDice. His site NEVER paid out. He bumped his thread for 3 months. Just recently, last week HE FINALLY was red trusted by Tomatocage after I messaged him to get it done. However, you look at the thread and so many people call him out as a scammer.

3) Lazlo - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?action=profile;u=367551

RipDice Thread (read thru, you'll see the scam accusations): https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=834371.0

Not enough is done to combat the scammers around here. The small time lending criminals are gotten everytime but the real scams, the ones who can do real damage of 4 figures or higher are often left unnoticed or ignored completely and hence I'm almost positive if Charlie Shrem or CoinHoarder came on here they could scam easily with their accounts. Why? Cause no one has followed through with the maintaining of their trust. The trust system works two ways: 1) to add/remove trust to those that get or earn the positive or negative and 2) To maintain current trust levels of members on a regular basis, especially ones assumed to be trusted by the system.

I'm leaving bitcoin for good, but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.

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KingOfSports
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January 09, 2015, 09:52:18 AM
 #6

I'm leaving bitcoin, selling this account Saturday evening but thought I would write this out as it has been one thing I have hated about this forum for awhile now.
Buyer still wants the account after it's revealed to have changed ownership?

Good buyer.
If you look at my trust its a useless account. They're going to use it for signature campaigning probably, or for what the buyer told me he said he's giving it to his friend cause he wants his friend to spend time here on the forum but his friend hates the newbie restrictions and such. You obviously haven't read much of the forum, cause I've been purposely saying I'm selling this account and offered a price for it which was offered to me in full today, for about a week now.

Anyways please stay on topic.

You're absolutely right I don't read too much of Digital goods (which is where I assume you've been posting in about selling this account?).

The trust system here is unmoderated (though I'm sure you've heard that too many times). I see no problem with having old accounts that used to scam and are still in green as long as they don't continue scamming. If they do, then the green trust becomes a problem. I do however advocate that these accounts be neg-reped when they scam, immediately.

Since you find the current trust system inaccurate and, well, untrustworthy, what are your suggestions?

P.S. Have you seen the recent thread in Meta, Replacing DefaultTrust?


I posted in goods and it got moved to digital goods which hardly anyone looks at.

I would argue you guys need to find out who is always on the forums, who is always calling people out in the lending or commenting in the scam accusations section and who appears to be trustworthy. The people deemed default trusted are the big companies, the big users, the members who DONT have time to be reading into scam accusations that don't pertain to them. Thus, scammers are slow to be negative repped (Tomatocage can only do so much). You need more people who can do or almost offer a bounty, like who reports the most proven scammers or who can do what Tomatocage does with him. User KWH has done some in the past but he stopped.

Vod is too critical with his judgements and mocks users. He isn't the example you want to follow. Tomatocage is, he leaves negative feedback (hell one of my negative feedback is from him) however I have sent him at least 50 users, links and the scam accusations against them for him to review because I always was on the forum and always wanted scammers quickly to be "red flagged". Its hard to say but honestly some sort of motivation might figure into how scammers can be seen and negative repped by the default trusted.

I also would suggest time be a small factor in the trust system and the overall rating. That way if someone scams recent but a year ago was the most trustworthy person ever, it doesn't take a ton of time for that person to show up as red overall.

I'll check this thread tomorrow. For now, time to sleep.

.







.
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January 09, 2015, 05:13:14 PM
 #7

The trust system isn't necessarily flawed, it just requires people who are trusted to be diligent and many are just busy or lazy. I have been following that Yankee thread for awhile and have actually been meaning to leave him negative feedback until he sorts things out since it appears he has no real intention of repaying his debt. I should have done it before, but just never got around to it.

Really, if I were barack I would send a quick PM to each of the trusted people who gave Charlie positive feedback and ask them to remove it until the issue is cleared up.

The other cases I haven't read into, so I can't comment on.
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January 09, 2015, 05:21:18 PM
 #8

You're saying the system is flawed because people got a lot of rep and scammed (or scammed and weren't instantly marked red).

Well, unfortunately...that's a problem with all reputation systems. It's up to the speediness of the community to respond, and the prevalence of scam accusations. Charlie Shrem was probably an exception to that, but that's probably because it seemed like it was being paid off so no-one wanted to leave him negative trust just yet.

I've left them all negative trust. Talking about it does wonders to fix these "flaws", they help the community to know when some bad people are getting around uncaught!

On the note of scam catching, I've got a lot more free time now and plan to get back into Bitcointalk properly. So I'll try and help out with that.

I'm dabbling in Bitcointalk again - I won't be making trades with people. If I try to trade with you, ask for a signature from my address 171717... which I have had control of since about 2015. If I can't provide it, I might have been hacked.
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January 09, 2015, 06:12:03 PM
 #9

It was necessary for KingOfSports to sell his account.  Come February, it would be proven his "guarantee" and word are worth nothing.

Good riddance to bad scum.

I'm into creating universes, smiting people, writing holy books and listening to Prayer Messages (PMs).
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January 09, 2015, 06:46:07 PM
 #10

The trust system here is flawed and mods knows it. So now, Theymos is suggesting a new system. There will never be a perfect system and the biggest problem here is trusted members not periodically reviewing the trust they gave out.
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January 09, 2015, 07:08:50 PM
 #11

Trust is opinionated.  Do you expect everyone to agree with you?  It's problematic enough that a sizable number of people believe trust only applies to business transactions whereas others believe the trust system applies more generally.

Unless you're the type of person who is willing to trust a person *solely* because of what others think, then I don't see what harm comes from the trust system. 

Let me ask you this:  If the trust system were completely removed right now, do to think it would be easier or harder (or the same) to trust someone? Is the information yielded by the trust system useful, wasteful, or a hindrance?

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January 11, 2015, 05:47:44 PM
 #12

The trust system here is flawed and mods knows it. So now, Theymos is suggesting a new system. There will never be a perfect system and the biggest problem here is trusted members not periodically reviewing the trust they gave out.

maybe we can read something about theymos new trust system algo?

i have searched in
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?board=167.0
"new forum sftware"
but i found nothing!

 Huh Huh Huh Huh Huh
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January 12, 2015, 12:42:36 AM
 #13

It's difficult to find people who meet all the following criteria.

  • Can be trusted to make the right decision
  • Care enough to do it
  • Have the time to look into these cases


Lots of people meet one or two, rarely all three.

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January 12, 2015, 12:52:19 AM
 #14

It's difficult to find people who meet all the following criteria.

  • Can be trusted to make the right decision
  • Care enough to do it
  • Have the time to look into these cases


Lots of people meet one or two, rarely all three.
Since moderators are already being paid for mod work, which is traditionally volunteer-based only, maybe award some of the ad coins to trust maintainers.

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January 12, 2015, 05:06:36 PM
 #15

It's difficult to find people who meet all the following criteria.

  • Can be trusted to make the right decision
  • Care enough to do it
  • Have the time to look into these cases


Lots of people meet one or two, rarely all three.

I think there are a lot of members who can meet those criteriae. The problem is they don't do any trades so they do not have the opportunity to gain green trust in the first place. There are those who have green trust and meet none of the above criteriae. Sadly, there is no simple solution.
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January 12, 2015, 05:18:21 PM
 #16

It's difficult to find people who meet all the following criteria.

  • Can be trusted to make the right decision
  • Care enough to do it
  • Have the time to look into these cases


Lots of people meet one or two, rarely all three.
Since moderators are already being paid for mod work, which is traditionally volunteer-based only, maybe award some of the ad coins to trust maintainers.

People will still complain that the trust system is being moderated especially after a decision doesn't go their way. Also, what happens when/if staff get it wrong?

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January 12, 2015, 06:18:02 PM
 #17

I don't blame theymos for keeping Depth 1 i.e. those directly trusted by DefaultTrust to quite a small list of users. It's very easily abused and grants someone quite a lot of power to manipulate the trust system to their advantage. Perhaps he could use a script to quickly list those with a large trust list and a good trust rating, and then review them in order to see whether the person manages their trust list well? Just a thought.

I'm dabbling in Bitcointalk again - I won't be making trades with people. If I try to trade with you, ask for a signature from my address 171717... which I have had control of since about 2015. If I can't provide it, I might have been hacked.
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January 12, 2015, 06:52:10 PM
 #18

One thing that will never be able to be prevented is the long con, people build up valuable trust, and then for one reason or another, they throw out their trust for a one time payment. I dont know, I have varying opinions of the Charlie Shrem scam accusation. On one hand, its understandable on both sides, how the payment schedule wasn't locked in and is open to interpretation, and also Charlie's current situation may leave him far more important things to do rather than sell coins to settle the debt. But, then again as a businessman he probably should have taken a better path on settling the debt.

Is coinhoarder on default trust, or did he just get positive feedback from trusted members? Those are two completely different things. I've dealt with scammers and left them positive feedback before, however I would always use escrow in that case, and make sure that is shown in my feedback ex. Risked BTC 0 comment: Did a 2 BTC trade with this person, used X as escrow, everything went well. At that point, if people just look at the green +1 rather than the comment, theres nothing to be done about that.

And I have no idea about the Lazlo case, so no input on that.

If the point of this thread is to point out that the current trust system is suseptible to long cons, there is no prevention system for that. If its about getting people to maintain their trust better, I'm in agreement with you. There were a lot of designs set up in the current trust system that involved individuals taking options available and using them differently, but a lot of people just stick with the defaults. Hopefully something is changed in the new system that sort of pushes people towards customizing their lists and maintaining them on occasion.

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dogie
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January 13, 2015, 01:33:31 AM
 #19

It's difficult to find people who meet all the following criteria.

  • Can be trusted to make the right decision
  • Care enough to do it
  • Have the time to look into these cases


Lots of people meet one or two, rarely all three.
Since moderators are already being paid for mod work, which is traditionally volunteer-based only, maybe award some of the ad coins to trust maintainers.

People will still complain that the trust system is being moderated especially after a decision doesn't go their way. Also, what happens when/if staff get it wrong?

If there was a tribunal of 3-7, including senior members, I don't see it being a problem. People complain that the legal system is corrupt etc etc, there will always be accusations.

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January 13, 2015, 03:47:33 AM
 #20

CoinHoarder
   -89: -5 / +12(12)
Warning: Trade with extreme caution!



Lazlo
   -11: -2 / +0(0)
Warning: Trade with extreme caution!



Yankee (BitInstant)
-51: -5 / +22(22)
Warning: Trade with extreme caution!


So why dont you start by setting your Trust Settings to max depth at 4 first and then try to run your mouth ? or fingers ..

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