PokeMMO Support

How We Handle Rule-breaking in PokeMMO

PokeMMO’s Terms of Service and Code of Conduct dictate what you’re allowed to do when using the services we provide. These rules are enforced through a mixture of automated processes and manual reviews by Game Masters.

The guidelines below explain what’s expected of you, how we handle rule-breaking behavior, and what you can expect from other players of the game.

These rules apply to every service we provide, including all websites and the game itself.


Who enforces the rules?

Global Moderators and Game Masters are experienced members of the staff team who work within standardized procedures to handle rule-breaking behavior. The penalties they issue are overseen by Senior Game Masters and the Head Game Master of each region.

In addition to manual review, we also implement automated rule enforcement for certain types of offenses, such as to curb the effectiveness of botting.


How are penalties chosen?

Penalties for rule-breaking behavior are based on your behavior as a person, not by the service you use. For example, if you performed a severe offense on the Forums, you may also have your Game accounts closed.

While most penalties are standardized and will follow the procedures listed below, accounts which participate in egregious violations of the rules, repeat offenses, and those which appear to be made specifically to break the rules may be closed with no warning.

In severe instances, we may close your account even for behavior on other websites. We typically only do this when dealing with coordinated harassment campaigns or to dismantle groups participating in real money trading and cheating.


When are penalties enforced? Why was I banned for something I did weeks ago?

This depends on the type of penalty, what the offense is, and who is responsible for enforcing it. For example:

  • Chat-related and other behavioral offenses are usually enforced immediately
  • Cheating and Real Money Trading offenses may be enforced immediately after discovery or at a later date

When it comes to cheating and real money trading, we don't usually ban players immediately once we’ve found them. We batch together large groups of players we've identified as cheating, then ban them all at the same time at a later date.

This approach allows us to dismantle botnets and real money trading groups effectively and helps ensure the integrity of the game.


Types of penalties

Our responses to rule-breaking behavior vary depending on the severity of an offense. Depending on the player’s history and the nature of the offense, we may:

  • Issue an official Warning through in-game Mail or via a prompt you'll see when you login
  • Restrict your ability to chat with other players (Mute)
  • Restrict your ability to trade with other players (Trade Ban)
  • Restrict your ability to use a certain character name (Name Ban)
  • Restrict your ability to login to an account, or any accounts which you own (Account Ban)
  • Close your current accounts, restrict you from making new accounts, and ban any accounts you create later on with no warning

Appealing mutes and bans

If you believe we’ve made a mistake or that a warning, ban, or mute we issued was unfair, you may appeal the penalty via https://support.pokemmo.com/.

Please be patient while your penalty is being reviewed. We try to answer requests as quickly as possible, but typical times can range from a few days to a week after you submit your request for review.


What we enforce against

This is a list of rule violations which we commonly see and punish for. Neither this document nor the Code of Conduct are intended to be exhaustive. If a staff member directs you to stop doing something, you need to follow their instructions.

If you’re concerned whether your actions violate the Terms of Service, reconsider them. While we do issue warnings for minor offenses, some rule-breaking behavior, like cheating, always results in a permanent ban.


Minor Chat Offenses

This category includes minor annoyances and misusing public chat channels, specifically:

  • Using the wrong language tag when chatting
  • Using the wrong channel when chatting

Depending on the severity or repetitiveness of the offense, we may:

  • Change your language tag / chat channel for you
  • Issue you a warning
  • Issue a mute for a short period of time
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban for persistent violations

Inappropriate Chatting in Public

Publicly visible chat channels are more heavily moderated. This includes any setting where you don’t know the other players, such as in link matchmaking or whispers to strangers.

We believe players are responsible enough to moderate themselves in private settings where you know each other (such as teams, links between friends, and whispers between friends). Except in extreme circumstances, we don’t usually enforce these rules in private chat channels.

If you’re receiving unwanted messages from strangers, you should Block them using the in-game menu. You may also refuse to receive any whispers from other players using the in-game Settings menu. If you’re still receiving messages from them (such as by an alternate character of theirs), you can report them for harassment via https://support.pokemmo.com/.

We don't allow chatting or linking to content in public which is:

  • Sexually inappropriate, vulgar, pornographic, or obscene
  • Racist, Nationally, or Ethnically offensive (including slurs and symbols associated with hate)
  • Politically offensive or charged
  • Drug-related
  • In reference to sexual orientations or gender identities in a negative way (even when referring to yourself)
  • Comprised of gibberish, repeated, or off topic messages (aka spamming, flooding)
  • Defamatory towards other players

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue you a warning
  • Issue a mute for a short period of time
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban for persistent violations

Public Accusations of Rule-breaking Behavior

This category applies to public settings. It includes chatting or linking to content which accuses other players of theft, scamming, unfair market practices, or other rule-breaking behavior.

We don't allow players to publicly accuse others of rule-breaking. To report a player for breaking the rules, use the support panel at https://support.pokemmo.com/. If you’re the victim of a scam or theft, you can ask us to reverse a trade at the same time as your report.

Depending on how the player makes the accusations, we may:

  • Issue a warning
  • Issue a mute for a short period of time
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban

Severe Chat Offenses

This category applies to all chat channels, both public or private. This category includes content, messages, or links to material which:

  • Harasses another person (e.g. distributing someone's personally identifiable information ("doxxing"), using alternate characters to send unwanted messages (block evasion), or coordinating with other players to harass others)
  • Promotes violation of, or does violate, any other rules
  • Advertises any service or business which is unrelated to PokeMMO
  • Threatens legal action against another player or PokeMMO
  • Is predatory behavior (such as asking children to contact you over 3rd-party messaging services instead of through the game)
  • Is illegal (piracy, illegal pornography, coordinating crime, etc.)
  • Is malicious (malware, phishing, etc.)

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue a warning
  • Issue a mute for a short period of time
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban
  • Close all of your accounts and forbid you from playing on any new accounts
  • In cases of illegal content or predatory behavior, report your activities to legal authorities in your country

If you're aware of illegal content being distributed through the game, you may report it using the support panel or via email to [email protected].


Impersonation

This category includes chatting or naming your character with intent to:

  • Impersonate another player
  • Impersonate a staff member

How we respond to this offense depends on whether there's another offense involved, such as faking being a staff member in order to scam other players or pretending to be another player in order to defame them.

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Force you to change your character name
  • Issue a mute for a short period of time
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban

Inappropriate Character Names and Team Names

This category includes naming your character or team in a way which violates our naming policy. While this isn't an exhaustive list, you may not choose a name which:

  • Is intended to impersonate another user or staff member
  • Includes bigotry or offensive speech, such as to insult racial, ethnic, national, or religious groups
  • Has negative cultural connotations
  • Is sexually suggestive, pornographic, or which makes inappropriate reference to bodily functions, genitals, or other anatomy
  • References illegal drugs or other illegal activity
  • Is comprised of gibberish
  • Encourages violations of the rules

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Force you to change your character name or team name
  • If you repeatedly make characters or teams with inappropriate names, we may temporarily or permanently ban your account or disband your team

Malicious Player Reports, Support Panel Abuse, Staff Abuse

This category includes:

  • Reporting players to Game Masters with falsified evidence
  • Verbally abusing the staff
  • Abusing the support panel (e.g. through flooding, repetitive tickets)

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban

Cheating

This category includes:

  • Using any software, hardware, or combination thereof which allows automated control of the game (aka “scripts”, “bots”, “macros”, or “autoclickers”)
  • Hacking, tampering, or bypassing restrictions we place on the game client
  • Using the game client inside of virtualization software (aka “virtual machines”, “sandboxes”, “cloud gaming”, etc.) or alongside any other software which is intended to prevent the client from identifying the host machine or monitoring for known cheating software
  • Reverse engineering of the game client
  • Any other tool, software, or hardware which gives you an unfair advantage or is detrimental to other players’ experience

We don't offer leniency for cheating or using hack tools.

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue a permanent account ban
  • In severe or repeat instances, close all of your accounts and forbid you from playing on any new accounts

Real Money Trading

This category includes:

  • Trading any asset, resource, or service related to the game for something outside of the game

We don't offer leniency for real money trading purchasers or sellers, no matter what you bought or sold.

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue a permanent account ban
  • In severe or repeat instances, close all of your accounts and forbid you from playing on any new accounts

Scamming, Theft

This category applies to common trading activity in the game. It includes:

  • Stealing, scamming, or defrauding other players of assets or services to be provided
  • Intentionally excessively overcharging other players

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Revert any trades performed
  • Issue a temporary or permanent trade ban on your account(s)
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban

If you're the victim of a scam or theft, you may petition us to reverse a trade through the support panel, https://support.pokemmo.com/. If a rule violation has been found, we'll attempt to compensate you through either a replacement item or an equivalent value of in-game currency.

While we don’t usually interfere with the game’s marketplace, we may forcibly halt any game activity we deem to be unfair, deceptive, or disruptive to the game’s economy.


Other Trading Rules

We do not allow you to trade anything except in-game assets and services pertaining to the game. This means you may never:

  • Trade accounts
  • Trade character names or team names

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Issue a permanent account ban

Official Rankings, Match Manipulation

This category includes:

  • Match fixing / manipulation in laddered PvP games and events which have leaderboards (e.g. seasonal coop events)
  • Performing any action which violates the integrity of official rankings, e.g. threatening another participant

Depending on the severity of the offense, we may:

  • Remove any rewards you’ve acquired
  • Prevent you from participating in ranked gameplay
  • Issue a temporary or permanent account ban

Author: Administrators
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