I often see threads including links to unlisted giveaways that are only unlisted because targeted audience is people who passed an SGTools ruleset. The problem with these giveaways is you cannot browse and filter them easily (e.g. you still see posts with links to games you've hidden or if you're on Mac/Linux you need to open each game in the Steam store to see if it's supported, etc.). It's still cool these threads and giveaways exist but a better way would be nice, one that would let to create a public giveaway but guarded by a 3rd party gateway service. I can imagine other services using it for conditions that aren't covered by SGTools, e.g. to only allow people after they answered captcha challenge, or passed a trivia quiz, or people who watched an ad (bad example, I know), or are backers of some Kickstarter thing, or a viewers of some Twitch channel, or (as it is in my case) people who enter on Linux... and probably many more.

Can we, please, have an extra option in "Who Can Enter" part of the giveaway creation form that says something like "Conditions from 3rd party service" and takes an URL to a ruleset from SGTools and similar websites that implement it?

9 months ago*

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Would you use this feature?

View Results
Yes
No
I'm a teapot

No. Sgtools is bullshit on its own, no need to fully drag SG into it.

9 months ago
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Why bullshit, if you don't mind me asking?

9 months ago
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Well, if you meant it's sometimes not reliable because it depends on manual exceptions and can't check all activations (e.g. DLCs), etc., then yeah, it's a bullshit, but it can't really be done better. I thought about it, the only way to make it better would be to have the scanned user provide their API key and use it to ask Valve about licenses and activation dates. Won't happen.

9 months ago
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Can we, please

I don't like this idea. Lets see poll results xD

9 months ago
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I didn't mean it as a mandatory tool. Why don't you like it? And as a giveaway creator or a contestant? I'm just curious, ready for someone to change my mind.

9 months ago*
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You gonna create a topic on anything now that just is in your head?

9 months ago
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Hehehe, just the two things that bugged me for some time now. ;) edit: it makes my day each time I read it :D

9 months ago*
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Maybe I am an idiot, but I have no idea what you are even suggesting here.

9 months ago
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I think he's asking for the addition of SGTools in giveaway creation on SG under the "Who Can Enter" category. So he can create public giveaways with specific SGT requirements for entry.

9 months ago
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AH thanks, if that is what he means, I would love it!
Now the only thing against bot/leechers for public giveaways is make it a higher lvl and even though it works a bit, a better solution would be nice!

9 months ago
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Yeah, I would love that as well. I hate when people who didn't activate their games or who broke some other rules win my public giveaways and I can't reroll 90% of the time.

Either they should allow us to set up SGTools-like rules for our public giveaways or they need to be lot stricter with the rule breakers. If someone doesn't activate more than one game that should lead to permanent ban.

Then again SGTools for public would also allow us to filter out hardcore leechers. While I don't mind people who won 2, 3, maybe even 4 times as much as they gave, those who have over 100 won and less than 10 given are just... not the kind of people I'd want my games to go to.

9 months ago
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Well there can always be a reason why someone didn't manage to activate, but if it happens multiple times, it can be weird for sure, I always just hope they at least got punished for it, even though it's just a few days so some might not even care...

But the leechers, oh the leechers, I mean sure there are enough people that won more than gave, that's normal because there are also enough that gave more than won, but there is a huge different between gave like 5 and won like 100+, I would like my games to go to people that are at least trying and not the full leechers :(

9 months ago
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If they can't activate then they talk it out with the giveaway creator and either let the creator give them working key, delete the giveaway or they mark it as not received.

One of my winners had 7 not activated gifts and I couldn't even get him re-rolled because he was already "punished" for them. Now that really pissed me off. Rules are very clear, some people don't read them, fine. Give them a temporary ban the first time and a warning about rules, but if they do it again then they should be permanently banned and unbanning them should only be considered if they activate all games they won.

Those rule breakers are abusing this site for some kind of benefit. They either re-gift or sell/trade those keys and that's much worse than leeching which isn't even against the rules of the site. But of course, heavy leechers aren't really the kind of people I want my games to go to, at least not the good ones.

9 months ago
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7 times? damn! that is obvious a problem and I wouldn't even let him back on the website anymore if I would have had a saying in it.
Like I said it can happen, but that's way to many times for a simple 'it can happen' because that's just ridiculous.
Sadly the rules work that way and nothing we can do about it because nowhere in the rules is stated that frequent offenders can get perm banned or whatever and so all we can do is accept and move on, even when it sucks!!

9 months ago
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I once had someone who had 21 wins in 14 days and every single one unclaimed. I'm glad I got a re-roll for this one but I always worry about getting into a similar situation again. Although so far almost all of my winners have been exemplary in terms of activation. Knock on wood.

9 months ago
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Woah, 21 wins in 14 days, that's crazy luck. I wonder is that person still active.

9 months ago
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Last I checked they got a perm ban, so that's one less worry and one more confirm to reporting shenanigans XD

9 months ago
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SGtools is like jigidi or ITH and can be combined. External security measures added after a Private ("invite only") gib is created.
Public listing of Private gibs is not gonna happen; same for listing which groups you need to join.

9 months ago
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But you wouldn't have to use it. You can keep creating private GAs and posting SGTools URLs that guard them to the forums if you want, that's not what I mean. I mean people now do it because they have no choice but I think there are creators among us who would love greater audience for their giveaways and there's no point in secrecy, there is however point in keeping trolls and bots out of your GAs.

9 months ago*
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nobody is forced to use externals, integrating them is not going to happen, exclusion is a form of secrecy, and I'm not replying further.

9 months ago
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exclusion is a form of secrecy

I'm pretty sure you've got that dynamic backwards.

9 months ago
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I like SGtools, but integration with third-party tool is a bad suggestion in most cases, and this is not exception. I would like if SGTools features were fully integrated to this site, it would be very useful and powerful tool, but I really doubt cg would consider doing this. So, my opinion is - it's bad with external sgtools, and it's not going to happen with native sgtools.

9 months ago
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It can be an universal API-like feature, a very easy one - redirect on click and only display the "enter" button if the user came back with a valid token. Doesn't need to be SGTools specific. I can imagine other services using it for conditions that aren't covered by SGTools, e.g. to only allow people who passed a trivia quiz or people who watched an ad (bad one, I know) or are backers of some Kickstarter thing or a viewers of some Twitch channel or, as is in case of many giveaways typical for my OS, people who enter on Linux... and many more.

9 months ago*
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Well, all I can think of is some kind of "password-protected giveaway with custom link attached". So that you can visit attached link to get password. But I really doubt cg would want to implement it, and honestly, I can't even blame him for that. Making it mandatory to visit third-party site is a way to annoy people, and opens the way to abuse. I don't want SG to become just another clone of gleam.io.

9 months ago
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Yeah, I ended up with pretty much same reasoning. I'll open a separate thread asking for a very specific condition I want (even though I don't expect it to be implemented or pick up any interest at all because it's very specific) to be built in and that's it. There's no point in 3rd party or generalization here.

Not that it matters any more but to add to the list of examples that come to mind... well, captcha would be one.

9 months ago*
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You are despicable.

9 months ago
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What did I do? :O

9 months ago
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You seriously considered captcha as acceptable example. This alone makes your proposal of using third-party tools unacceptable, because there is a chance that someone can really do this. Only a misanthrope could seriously suggest captcha.

9 months ago
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Really? It's such a trouble to slide a button or select an image that shows a bridge? :D Well, in such case I agree, I am a despicable misanthrope. It is the very first thing that comes to mind if you want to stop bots, though.

9 months ago
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For a sane person this is the last what comes to mind if you want to stop bots. Because stopping bots by making humans feel uncomfortable is counter-productive. There is a ton of methods against bots, and only those how don't care about people use captcha. Captcha is humiliation of human dignity, becuase it requires human to proof he is not a bot TO A BOT, thus making human obey some stupid piece of code. Human can create bot, so human should be always ABOVE bot, if you think obeying to bot is normal - you are less than bot that is less than human, that's why you are despicable.
I hate and despise you.

9 months ago
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Easy, man. There's no reason to get that winded up. First of all, all automated methods against bots are called captcha so saying there are tons of methods against bots and only captcha is bad makes no sense unless... You mean some kind of manual process? This is off-topic but you seem to associate word "captcha" with some specific test in mind, one that annoys you, and I get it. In reality not much can be done to prevent bots designed to pretend humans to access content designed for humans but there are more and less obtrusive ways. The challenge really doesn't have to be annoying. Second, I don't agree with captcha being demeaning for human. It's at most a mild inconvenience. We have to slow down to the lowest denominator every day, not only when it comes to the Internet and on-line security but because a percentage of every society gains from abuse of whatever they can. That's why we invented laws, locks, passwords, even safety labels. It's not different on-line. Obviously each of us would love to trade some safety measures for convenience and comfort but I can't see how it's possible in one field without compromising the other. I don't think it's demeaning, I think it's very human.

9 months ago
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all automated methods against bots are called captcha

wrong. Read the definition.

A CAPTCHA (/kæp.tʃə/, an acronym for "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart") is a type of challenge–response test used in computing to determine whether or not the user is human.[1]

All other methods don't suggest challenge-response test

. In reality not much can be done to prevent bots

And wrong again. Read about subject before arguing. I can name at least honeypots and behavior analysis (timings), but there are more.

I think it's very human.

That's why I hate and despise you. What next, you will suggest slavery because every employment is a form of slavery, and it is very human? Pfft.

9 months ago
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Ok, too far. I'm off. :D It was fun.

9 months ago
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External sites that provide access to SG giveaways should manage those links themselves in my view (otherwise you could also argue we could have an option to select "Puzzlers" as "Who can enter" for something like itstoohard or jidigi -- or other websites that offer some gateway function..) (I wouldn't mind a GA link behind an captcha gateway) That being said, I understand the desire. Perhaps SGTools can make an overview themselves for it.. When people add a giveaway there they could have an option box they could tick with 'Show in public giveaway overview' orso.. But that would be something you should pitch to knsys. :)

9 months ago
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Well, I argue this could be universal enough that any website, including a one that just displays captcha, could implement it. I'll edit the 1st post to reflect it.

9 months ago
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we all know what happens when steam servers fails, it will be the same with another 3rd party site.
we can't rely on other sites to make sg work properly.

9 months ago
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Well, yeah, that is a valid argument, although, it'd be the decision of a gib creator to use it for a given giveaway or not. It's not like all the gibs would stop working. Or like people don't create SGTools guarded giveaways already. The only change would be the exposure of these giveaways (if the creator wants them exposed, that is).

9 months ago*
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Yes, but when someone would make short giveaway (let's say 1 - 2h) and SGtools (or other external site) would be down, then no one would be able to enter. Or only few people would enter in public GAs. In case of less entrants than copies in GA it's not possible to request new winner, so cases would need to be forwarded to super moderator giving them more work.

Also SGtools is managed by only one user, and without their input games are not added to whitelist for example. So in case knsys would be away for longer, a lot of people could be excluded from giveaways. Just because some games are wrongly reported by Steam and they weren't added to exceptions yet - like games that were banned on Steam. They are listed on people profiles as won, but aren't on their Steam games list. So people are wrongly marked as having inactivated wins. That's also reason why support check every case personally, and there is no automatic tool to suspend people.

9 months ago
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I agree about short GAs. How about allowing this but only for 48h+ giveaways? Would that be more acceptable?

I didn't know banned games are removed from Seam listings when queried via API... but it's kind of unrelated unless what you mean is you already have this problem? But you're worried the scale would be bigger? Is that it? People already use SGTools to guard their gibs, so making it possible to use SGTools for public gibs wouldn't change a bit about how good or bad SGTools works. It would just increase the exposure of a giveaway (if the creator chooses for giveaway to be public and not private, of course).

9 months ago*
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With time restriction we'd limit users to "if you want to use this condition to make GA, your GA can't be shorter than x". And it was already discussed, didn't result in any site change - here.

Well right now it's not "our" (as SG support) problem. But SGtools problem. Support is not connected with knsys project and don't help manage it. If you'd integrate SGtools that way with SG, it'd start to be SG problem. Integral part of the site no one from support staff could help with. And it's something that should never happen. Sure, we do have problems with wonky Steam API from time to time, but it's something we need to function. And SG doen't need to be dependent on SGtools. Sure, some of it's functions would be nice to use, but it's in cg hands to decide if it's necessary, and then put it in the site as it's basic function. Not external tool.

SGtools problems are not SG problems, the same way problems with jigidi or itstoohard servers are not SG problems. Or more precisely it's problem of users that choose to use certain tool as a gate for their GAs.

And to be clear - I don't write this as "official support statement", it's my opinion that's a bit based on fact I know what SG support can and can not solve.

9 months ago
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Actually, this convinced me. Thanks for the thread, I didn't manage to find it when I was researching the subject. And yes, it makes much more sense to have features integrated without any 3rd party dependencies, it's a trade-off though - reliability for flexibility.

To be fair, I made this thread for more general case because I hoped to get some functionality "for free". Now I see why it makes no sense. I'll make a separate thread for what I really want, although, my guess is it's too specific to pickup any interest (because Linux).

Anyways, thank you - inside opinion is always valuable and usually game changing, even not official one. Cheers!

9 months ago
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9 months ago
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I think it would be fine to rules-locked public giveaways, but any giveaways that used an external site to gate people would need said site to be pre-approved for such purposes (such as itstoohard or jigidi) so as to avoid abuse ( people trying to make money from entries in some way, or spread viruses ). Honestly it just sounds like too much work given the limited staff sg has.

9 months ago
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So "yes" for extra rules checking but "no" for the checking being 3rd party?

9 months ago
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Yep.

9 months ago
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No. Giveaways on forum are for people who actually join community, post topics, comment etc, not for leechers, who only press ENTER times at day

9 months ago
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I partially agree... i.e. when this is the gibs creator original intention, yeah. I know from real life it isn't always a case. Also, not everyone who doesn't involve themselves in the community is a leecher. Some people give back. ;)

9 months ago
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The site guidelines specifically prohibit the use of a third party gateway: "You cannot ask users to perform any special action in order for their entry to be considered valid, such as liking a Facebook page, or following a Twitter account."

9 months ago
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I don't think this applies to websites like SGTools?

9 months ago
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It has been clarified that that line applies after the fact, not before it (as it's the entry itself that is being considered valid, and the entry doesn't exist prior to, y'know, entering). In other words, if someone wins, you can't withhold their win for any reason. Passive (or mostly passive) filtering has likewise been clarified as being acceptable and, moreover, it's perfectly fine to lock your content behind actively participating in a youtube channel, blog, or any other thing you wish (basically, the site is fully fine with acting as a platform for you to make giveaways for whatever service you'd like to offer giveaways for).

Giveaways are, however, considered content, so this would be the guideline relevant to the topic:

When posting links or content, that content should not force users, encourage users through reward, or primarily exist as a traffic source for users to perform an action for promotional, commercial, or monetary benefit. Such actions include but are not limited to clicking a referral link, liking a Facebook page, following a Twitter account, joining a Steam group, completing a survey, or making a donation.

Thus, while you can gateway content or post content exclusive to your sites, you can't promote any kind of giveaway (SG or otherwise) that requires special actions that provide a benefit to the poster. In fact, if you wanted to put an invite-only giveaway behind a gleam-type lock, you could completely be fine doing that.. just so long as you don't advertise the promotion on SG.

In short, the two guidelines in question sum up to:

  • If someone wins you're giveaway, then they've fully won it.
    Give them their game, you can't ask them to do anything extra to "earn" it.
  • You can't advertise on SG, except for a handful of specific things in very specific places.
9 months ago
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So, you can create private giveaways that use a third party gateway, but in some cases, you can't mention them on SG (super secret private giveaways that have to be advertised elsewhere).

9 months ago
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If I understand what you're asking for, I don't think this would work with the current way SGtools is set up - it performs the tests the moment you hit the button, not constantly. It doesn't have a pre-approved "list" of who can enter a givewaway that it could send to Steamgifts, and it's not necessarily capable of telling Steamgifts where it should show you 50 different giveaways all at once in a timely fashion when you log in and there's 50 new SGtools-protected giveaways to consider.

(Remember, it would have to resolve the rules for every one of those giveaways and tell Steamgifts whether you can see them before Steamgifts can finish loading the list of giveaways. It could calculate them in advance, but then it has to do it for every single user, so you're just moving the massive amount of additional processing elsewhere.)

Implementing this would require a fairly drastic change to how SGtools works, in other words. It would have to perform a bunch more "checks" in order to tell Steamgifts whether to show you a giveaway or not. It's definitely not impossible - you could just add a delay of a few minutes every time a new giveaway or user is added to SGtools while SGtools does all the relevant checks, then it could quickly respond to Steamgifts about what to show - but I could imagine it seriously complicating SGtools' architecture.

Especially if you care about rules whose qualifications could change suddenly, now that I think about it. If you pre-process people, you won't reflect their most up-to-date information. But at least right now, SGtools takes a few moments to process each rule, so processing all of them, for every active SGtools protected giveaway, every time you load the page, does not seem feasible.

9 months ago*
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No, that's not what I tried to propose. My approach was to let people create public giveaways that upon entering would redirect to SGTools (or similar conditions checking website) where a state of approval would be determined in runtime and after the user would be redirected back to SG with a token saying either "yes, you might enter" or "no, you cannot enter". The practical aspect of this change would be to allow for giveaway creators to add public 3rd party guarded giveaways (instead of what they do now, i.e. private 3rd party guarded giveaways that are publicly posted on the forums) if so they desire. Public giveaways can be searched for, filtered and gain greater audience in general. Also 3rd party guarding services could be more flexible than what SGTools provides, e.g. I'd create one that additionally checks an operating system the given user enters on.

Above said, I retired that idea as I got convinced the dependency on 3rd party services should be avoided wherever possible.

9 months ago
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