• Hi Guest
    Please take 5 minutes to complete this short survey about your experience on minr and how we can improve the server. Results will be published in the near future.
    Please feel free to share this link.
    Link to Survey

Discord & Privacy

Wipe the #zero channel periodically?

  • Yes

    Votes: 41 51.9%
  • No

    Votes: 33 41.8%
  • Yes - on the condition that ... (thread)

    Votes: 2 2.5%
  • No - unless ... (thread)

    Votes: 3 3.8%

  • Total voters
    79

rickyboy320

Penguin Master
Op
Board
Nov 18, 2013
2,053
1,287
Yesterday, in #staff-requests on discord, an idea was suggested to clear the #zero chat once in a while to prevent searching through the discord logs. This discussion was raised with the purpose of preventing potentially harmful information to be shared to anyone that wishes to search or scrape the entirety of the #zero history. The argument is that it is possible that a player posted potentially personal information in the chat, which does not disappear, undeletable by the player itself, and remains publicly available through the means of discord's history.

This sparked a small discussion with a few staff members, and also in #staff_requests, on what the pros and cons are to deleting this history. The summary is as follows:

Pros to keeping (full) history:
- It simply could be interesting to look back.
- It helps staff search through chat logs easier (in the context of a ban-appeal, or similar endeavours), as the search functionality is more readily accessible.

Cons to keeping (full) history:
- Anything you say on the MC server is publicly accessible and referenceable forever (as long as the discord server exists).

While opinions differ in terms of where values lie (e.g., the worth of staff convenience vs the benefit of removing the chat history), it has become apparent that not everyone is fully comfortable with a non-modifiable public record of what you said on the server. The discussion was not geared towards infringing messages, but rather to privacy and potential leakages of personal information.
In general, we do not recommend sharing any personal information on the internet, as it can be misused.
On many forums, Discord servers, chat groups, and Minecraft servers, and in general, the internet, what you publish is permanent. For most players, this should be obvious, but even still, a lot of information can be gathered from full chat logs. And as rightfully stated, if by accident you type something personal on the server, it will remain there indefinitely.

We therefore drafted a few approaches that we could take to combat this. Preferably, staff is still able to use the easy lookup provided by discord, as it significantly decreases the time that we require to handle ban appeals, and in some cases, green applications.

(1 - Questionable, significantly different): We disable 'view chat history' for non-staff members on the #zero channel, which means that you cannot see any history prior to your current discord session in the zero channel. What this entails is that as soon as you close your discord client or app, the history of the #zero channel is no longer accessible to you. (So you can only really see messages as they come, rather than look back in time). In a way, this provides on discord a similar experience as on the server, where on logging in you also cannot see the chat history.

(2 - Not preferable): We simply delete messages on discord after X amount of time. While this ensures deletion from the public discord channel, the drawback is that it also deletes access for staff, and is severely rate-limited by discord: bulk-deleting messages older than 2 weeks is disabled, so messages need to be deleted one-by-one (programmatically, but still, they have a limit to how fast this happens).

(3 - Preferable): We archive the #zero channel periodically, to where staff can access the channel still, but it is no longer publicly accessible. This means that every X amount of time, the #zero channel is moved out of view for the public, after which the history is no longer visible. The benefit here is that we do not need to remove the messages, and staff can still continue to make use of the discord search facilities.


A problem that we see with all these approaches (except theoretically 2, but that will be a too-large investment in our opinion) is that they are a blanket wipe: we need to remove the full history. This means that users who, for some reason, wish to keep their history around, will not be able to. Therefore we open up this thread for discussion to see everyone's viewpoints on it.

In the end, we think privacy is important, and as Chillers nicely said in the #staff-requests channel: it's your data, and you should be able to decide what happens with it.

Hence this thread. We preferably will work towards implementing (3), depending on the discussion and poll here. We do not want the convenience of one to impede the privacy of the other, so if we have a controversial outcome on the poll, we may need to come up with more elaborate strategies (e.g., per-player basis deletion), which may not be feasible short-term.

For full disclosure:
Since this discussion, we have already prevented any non-verified discord members from seeing the full chat history (they can see the history in their current session, but nothing before that).

Staff is not willing to give up on our private logs (which contains, alongside your messages, your logins, past/current ip-addresses, and some other information that we can use to track your in-game player), since we need these tools to ensure run legitimacy, provide moderation and combat alternate accounts (as forbidden by our rules). This way of storage is not particular to our server: most of this information (such as your ip-address logins) are generated by the Minecraft server client.

You are allowed to request account deletions / forum account deletions, but we need to keep the information that we require to moderate the server as described above (i.e. you cannot delete your account in order to be unbanned), and technologically it is infeasible to erase your actions / chat messages from our server logs.
 

MeisterXehanort

The best user.
Greenie
Oct 27, 2013
1,044
478
I want to add here that Discord is known for keeping backups of chat files regardless of whether you actually deleted them or not (for moderating purposes, apparently). I don’t know for how long they do save them, though.
 

picklesthecheeta

Rarely in a pickle!
Greenie
Board
Oct 7, 2016
467
189
I will quite often go back on chat logs to see conversations I've had a long time ago, and would be saddened if this feature was deleted.
 

pieterjan_1998

Active Player
Greenie
Jan 30, 2014
11
11
Is it a possibility that you would allow a player to request that their chat logs are removed from the discord server history? I don't know how difficult that is though
 

Pixiface

Active Player
Greenie
Feb 12, 2017
16
48
I think I may have been a part of when this discussion first sparked, upon someone searching my name and it coming up with 137k results!! I know for a fact I have upon occasion revealed something personal about myself, which at the time I feel comfortable doing because of the people who are in-game with me/ im talking to on discord. However, I hate the idea that ANY random player, if they wanted to, could piece together a shit tonne of information about me if they tried hard enough. Legit after sososo many years on the server u don't realise the things u say in the spur of a moment... like there's no problem at all with staff having all these records, but I feel extremely uncomfortable at how easy it could be for someone to find out heaps about me, and I do regret at times stuff I have revealed by accident or carelessly. But idk thats just meee personally

Edit: I also wanted to add that I had no idea until git showed me the other night that the messages lasted FOREVER on the discord, and were accessible by EVERYONE. I assumed they would disappear from public eye after a certain amount of time which in hindsight was not a great assumption to make

sorry to edit again, but I just wanna quote an example where last night git literally searched 'Pixiface: birthday' and 'HC12345: birthday' and within about five seconds found out this info from convos from years and years ago. Like as a player who lovesss chatting to people in-game it was actually super scary to me.
 
Last edited:

git_merge

git happens
Greenie
Sep 28, 2017
63
23
Thank you for setting this thread up Ricky. I must say that I agree to what Pixi has said above.

I think a lot of people don't realise how much they are revealing about themselves. Yes, they could and maybe should expect data to be public upon saying something in an online game. But I think we should keep the bigger picture in mind here. Sharing individual pieces of personal data might seem unharmful, but the bigger profile you might unintentionally construct of yourself over time can be seriously concerning. What if someone with bad intentions decides to look up everything you said and use that against you? What if someone scrapes all logs and uses it for activities you never wanted to be involved in? These are just examples.

Unfortunatly I don't have time now to write a full-fledged reply to this thread. If anyone wants to read up on what lead to the creation of this thread, you could check out the points I made in the #staff-requests channel yesterday.

When voting on this poll I would recommend you to think of this whole thing as a risk vs reward situation. How often have you really used the (3+ months old) #zero logs? Does the benefit of keeping these old logs outweigh the inherent privacy risks? Also, you might not care about privacy (which is a sin IMO), but keep in mind others are seriously concerned about theirs.
 
Last edited:

AK1089

New Fish
Greenie
Jun 7, 2020
5
1
Just pointing out that it is possible for the bot to delete only chat messages sent by a specific user, and it is in fact very easy to do so.
I don't know what language the minr discord bot is coded in, but here's a quick script that would accomplish the logic of this task:

for m in messages {
if m.startswith(username + ":") {
delete(m)
}}

This means a user who is concerned about personal information can choose to have ONLY THEIR logs wiped.
 

ezzaezza

Active Player
Greenie
Feb 27, 2016
69
69
Ill add a quick little comment here -
I have no concern about my logs being kept in discord, however, some people want them removed due to personal information they have posted, which is completely fair. Is there a way an individual can request certain messages to be removed from the discord logs, therefore keeping all the logs, however removing the specific messages they do not want shown/kept.
 

git_merge

git happens
Greenie
Sep 28, 2017
63
23
@AK1089

Keep in mind there is a HUGE amount of messages to loop through. Years and years of minr chat history. It could be that, because of that, this may not be a feasible solution.
 

rickyboy320

Penguin Master
Op
Board
Nov 18, 2013
2,053
1,287
@AK1089

Keep in mind there is a HUGE amount of messages to loop through. Years and years of minr chat history. It could be that, because of that, this may not be a feasible solution.
This. Considering one player already has, in some cases, 100k+ messages, and Discord provides no bulk deletion for messages older than 2 weeks, we need to send 100k+ deletion requests to discords servers. That, plus even identifying the messages to delete is not a small-data task that a simple for loop will solve. We will get severely rate-limited, and the task may take multiple days. So based on this, I prefer not to pursue this as the main option (but if all fails, it may be the backup solution).

Thanks for thinking along though.
 

djnysted

DJ of Cheese
Greenie
Board
Mar 11, 2018
118
123
I've definitely said things in chat I probably shouldn't have, and having that public isn't so much a voluntary choice as a spur of the moment decision. However, I backsearching to try to get archives of information as well (when I completed certain maps, when people finished HC, when I had a conversation), so I'm pretty torn here. I feel the best option would be to give people a choice, but as you said it's not exactly viable.
 

HC12345

Cultured One
Op
Oct 26, 2013
438
373
I find it slightly bewildering how many people are voting against a periodic Discord wipe, just because it's "fun to look back at". It's sort of similar to the whole thing with TikTok and how some people are okay with exposing all their personal information to a Chinese firm, with relations to an authoritarian government, just because "looking at TikToks are good fun so it's worth it".

I personally don't have much to hide from my chat history as I'm very mindful of what I say online. I'm okay with sharing certain personal details about myself (first name, hometown, birthday, etc.) but I make sure I never cross a fine line I set for myself (for example, I would never drop my social media handle in public chat). That being said, not everyone is this aware of what they say online - not saying they don't care about their privacy, but maybe for some reason they just forget.

Look at it this way - we've all without a doubt said dumb shit within our lifetime, that we look back at from time to time and think "Why the hell did I say that?" This is the same to me, except we have the opportunity to remove that kind of negative experience from someone.

In terms of investigating chat offenses/other reasons that require looking into chat history, I believe it's still possible for staff to still check the then-deleted logs from Discord if needed, and even if not then we still have logs to accomplish this if the former is unable to be implemented. This might be controversial to say, but I think it's incredibly short-sighted for people to vote no in the reason of "good fun" at the expense of the people who may potentially benefit from enacting something like this proposed here.
 

yeroc424

Scrum Master
Op
Oct 26, 2013
643
509
Should the staff end up with the zero logs, and a player wants to find some information posted long ago, then I think it should be possible for greens to fetch information, providing it makes it through the filter of the retrieving staff. For instance, someone looking up old event logs sounds reasonable, but someone looking for my last name should outright be turned down.

If push comes to shove and I have to vote an unconditional yes or no, I vote yes to wipe #zero. I don't want to play on a server where I and everyone else must be perfect when it comes to chat. If we're a friendly community, we should be saying "no hard feelings" or "no big deal, we won't use this" to players that slip up but don't maintain their mistaken behavior beyond a moment or two. Somebody collecting ideally-forgotten info on players does not sound like the community-oriented person I wish to be with on the server. But if we say that they aren't doing anything wrong, then it's up to me to leave... and it still doesn't undo the access that I've mistakenly given them.
 

We$01

New Fish
Greenie
Apr 19, 2020
11
5
I feel like it is common sense to not put personal information up. It is the players' responsibility to be safe online. Nothing on the server forces you to type in your personal information in chat. In addition, this server has such a good community because of the more strict rules and mods/admins can ban people easily by checking the logs which gives proof more easily. I said no to wiping all of zero channel periodically, however, I think deleting specific comments is a better solution.


edit: from all the arguments that I have seen, I am changing sides.
 
Last edited:

Bailey06

The Anti-Navigationalist
Op
Board
Oct 29, 2017
274
283
The issue with expecting players to be safe online is that there are many people who don't know better or are too young to understand the implications of sharing personal information on something as seemingly harmless as a Minecraft server. I know there is information of mine on the server that, in retrospect, I never would have posted. However, this was years ago, and before I knew that we even had a Discord server in which those messages would be available forever. I don't think we should be punishing people for their ignorance, but rather protecting the people who don't know the proper measures to take to protect themselves (including some of us when we were younger and less wise about internet privacy).

It's surprising how little information can piece together your identity. Though an attack like that or any major exploitation of our data is pretty unlikely, many small businesses and social media platforms thought the same thing, didn't take the proper precautions and were eventually targeted (there are a lot of examples of this in modern court cases). I know that I wouldn't want to feel responsible for someone's info being jeopardized just because we failed to do what we could to keep their data safe (which is why people are starting to favor apps that promise end-to-end encryption and other data protection policies).

Deleting specific comments is not the most feasible thing. As Rick said, Discord supports a limited amount of bulk deletions and it would be extremely tedious to only erase/archive the messages of specific people. Going off that, if we did take that route, that would leave the chat history fragmented and incomplete, and probably nonsensical at times. I feel like that would defeat the purpose of keeping the chat in the first place.

I agree with HC in that I don't think amusement or curiosity is more important than the possible benefits we may get from taking preemptive measures with our info. I feel that keeping a year of information or so that is cyclicly archived is more than enough time to look back on anything of immediate relevance. If someone really wanted to find information they feel is important to them that goes beyond a wipe, I'm sure we could get it for them. Though a lot of us may feel pretty secure about what people could find in zero, many don't. I would rather sacrifice a bit of convenience than do nothing at the expense of those people, though that's just my view of things.
 
Last edited:

_sPolendina_

Resident Sleeper
Greenie
Board
Apr 30, 2017
388
298
Even if a few people express grievances over things they may or may not have said in the past (as multiple people have), that in itself is enough reason I believe to wipe the chat logs. As has been pointed out, wiping individual player messages is unfeasible, and those players don't deserve to have any private info or shameful messages hanging over their heads. I think those of you voting no because it's a nice feature to have need to reconsider the downsides to having logs completely open to anyone. I know I wasn't mature or conscious enough when I was younger to consider what I was saying on Minecraft, let alone mature enough to consider that what I said would be made public and available for anyone who cares to look. If even a few people have a problem with the logs because it potentially reveals personal information that they don't wish to be public, then that is more important than people who want them to be available because it's a neat feature to have. I personally feel the downsides to keeping the logs public far outweigh the upsides.
 

GrammasFavorite

New Fish
Greenie
Apr 15, 2020
5
11
I totally get that you should be ultra cautious with what you share on the internet, and I don't put anything online that I'm not comfortable with people knowing, but I've came and went from this server since 2016 and I had no idea there was a discord until a couple of months ago let alone that it was saving game chat in perpetuity. I would venture to guess that most of the people joining this server have no idea that the things they say can be looked up by nearly anyone with access to the discord for the rest of time. Periodic archiving and wiping of the chat seems like the best solution to me, but if you're going to keep the logs then I think it needs to be plainly apparent in-server how easily accessible the chat logs are.
 

Pixiface

Active Player
Greenie
Feb 12, 2017
16
48
I want to say I agree with Bailey wholeheartedly, for some of my time on minr i didn't even know what discord was, and would be typing messages with 1-2 other people online. I take repsonsibility for those things I say, as they will live forever in the chat logs of those people's .minecraft file, but I just don't feel comfortable with ANYONE being able to see every single message over three years later on discord... I feel like the players who are voting no are probably all newer players who don't chat much, and to them I would say, maybe havae a bit of empathy for the older players who are concerned? Like does your fun little gimmick of searching past conversations really mean more to you than the players surrounding you with privacy concerns?
 

Dobby728

Hi
Greenie
May 29, 2020
12
5
I don't have much to add that hasn't already been said, but I definitely believe the privacy concerns outweigh the convenience of being able to look back at old messages, particularly when there is no clear warning on the server about this logging. Of course the chat is public, and people should try to be aware of the things they say, but it's very easy to slip up and I don't think it's unreasonable not to think all the messages are being stored in a discord channel that anyone can look all the way back through. I think this periodic wiping solution works, as staff can still have access to the quick search feature if need be (and I'm sure could assist people if they had something specific they wanted to look up?), and 3 months of chat are still stored so recent conversations, times etc can still be looked at. When members of the community have raised genuine privacy concerns, I don't see how leaving the situation as it currently is is an option.
 
Top