INDUSTRY FORUM

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  • Cal

    RG CoFounder & Admin

    • 632

      RG Overall Ranking

    • $1M Prize Winner

    • x3

      2019 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    Matt Kalish, DK CoFounder and CRO, has agreed to do an interview with Dan next Friday at 2 ET. The interview will be focused entirely on Community Guidelines and Compliace: questions, clarifications, and discussing suggestions for improvement.

    I appreciate Matt’s willingness to do this. He won’t be able to comment on specific screen names or investigations. He will be able to clarify what is/is not allowed in general and discuss ideas for improvements.

    As the ChipotleAddict/Papagates issue continues to prove the community is divided, and often confused, this kind of transparency and face time should be incredibly helpful. DraftKings creating the Community Guidelines and their Compliance department was a huge first step in addressing various issues. I know they care greatly about these issues. I also understand these issues are very complex. Getting more involved with the DFS community on these matters will only make for better Guidelines and a more informed player base.

    Some Notes:
    1. Be constructive
    2. Either ask questions to clarify the current guidelines or suggest improvements to the guidelines. We’re hoping to keep this very focused.
    3. Remember that DK can’t address specific screen names. Ask questions about scenarios not tied to screen names or specific tournaments to get the information you want.

  • Cal

    RG CoFounder & Admin

    • 632

      RG Overall Ranking

    • $1M Prize Winner

    • x3

      2019 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    I’ll start with a couple things Dan and I were debating this week:

    -Is it allowed for two players to each enter 150 lineups into a 150 max entry tournament, not discuss lineups, and agree to an equity swap? Or would the two players need to make sure they stayed under the 150 entry limit combined and each enter 75 teams?
    -What exactly does “pooling entry fees” mean here?

  • kieff5280

    • Blogger of the Month

    So this sounds to me like chopping the pot? If Me and Cal are in an event with the Top Prize paying $50k and second place paying $30k. We could agree to each take $40k if we finished 1-2, provided we paid our own entry fees. I take it as meaning a situation like that?

  • awesemo

    • 1

      RG Overall Ranking

    • Ranked #1

      RG Tiered Ranking

    • x3

      2018 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    • 2017 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    I have a question regarding this example of an unacceptable behavior: “Example B: You and a group of friends collaborate in NFL contests to each draft different QBs and WRs, to guarantee you aren’t competing as directly with each other.” How will Draftkings distinguish between strategic choices intended to outsmart the whole field versus choices to avoid overlap with another player’s lineups?

  • jimmyrad

    There’s a well known team that only plays 1 account per site (and are thus limited to an individual players entry limits across all game types). I’m not sure of their exact reasoning but afaict they go out of their way to avoid even the slightest hint of impropriety. There’s several other well known teams that, lets just say don’t go out of their way to avoid shady optics.ex: It was reported here a couple years back that 4 bros (that were known to work together) had the same lineup in a high stakes 10 man NHL 50/50. I know all this stuff can be a slippery slope, but at what point is enough enough? 4/10 in a 50/50? If not, what if all the teams became 1 team, now you’ve got 20 entries of the same lineup in all high stakes cash games (not to mention the 3000 unique yet eerily similar GPP lineups?)

  • nvalencia30

    • x2

      2014 FAFC Finalist

    • 2015 FAWBC Finalist

    I read through the DK Terms of Use a couple of days ago as well as the Community Guidelines. I guess my first question is what’s the difference between the Community Guidelines and the Terms of Use? At the bottom of the guidelines, in fine print:

    “The above is merely a set of examples of the types of behavior that may tend to impact the integrity of the fantasy sports contests, and is not intended to be exhaustive. Nothing in the above shall be interpreted as limiting or restricting in any way DraftKings Terms of Use.”

    I take that to mean the Terms of Use holds more weight than the Guidelines. Speaking of the terms of use, this section is way too ambiguous:

    “In addition, conduct that would be deemed improper also includes, but is not limited to:


    Colluding with any other individual(s) or engaging in any type of syndicate play;
    …”

    Multiple users, creating the same exact cash game lineup as one another and both playing it in the same single entry double ups day after day sure seems like collusion to me. I believe there was an uproar about this exact scenario happening in a high-dollar contest a few months back. Anyway, more clarity about this would be appreciated. Thanks!

  • WatsonBankz

    @awesemo said...

    How will Draftkings distinguish between strategic choices intended to outsmart the whole field versus choices to avoid overlap with another player’s lineups?

    As more results become available for all users, you’d have to think the results of users implementing this strategy at detrimental rate to the community would be undeniable outliers

  • Stewburtx8

    • 2012 FanDuel WFBC Finalist

    Unacceptable Behavior: “Any pre-built lineups acquired from 3rd party websites or engaging in the distribution of such lineups.”

    Question: When several groups of users ultimately play the same cash game lineups every night, how is that any better or different than the above? Maybe they are working together to build that lineup or maybe one person is building lineups for one sport and another for a different sport and they share those lineups with each other and both enter them in cash games. Does that distinction matter or is this type of activity ultimately OK because it does not come from a “3rd party website?” How is this activity policed?

    Unacceptable behavior: “Team-building complementary lineups which serve to work together AND executing a strategy that may cause any unfair advantage over individual play.”

    Question: Can this rule only potentially be violated if you and 1 or more people enter more than the max entries allowed for one person? If yes, how is this policed?

    If no, for example, my friend builds 10 lineups and shows them to me. I build 10 lineups working off his lineups and try to grab some exposure to guys he has and guys he does not have as I see fit. We then say 20% if one of us finishes in the top 10. Is this type of activity amongst friends OK who may want to have some rooting interest outside the 10 lineups they can afford? Does the line get drawn when exceeding max entries or somewhere else?

  • tgowen

    • Blogger of the Month

    What exactly does collusion/syndicate play look like?

    If it is assumed that players selling shares of themselves and striking deals at a final is not a form of collusion, would two players entering a 3-man competition and then agreeing to split the winnings not be collusion (or basically any other form of agreeing to share winnings)?

    For the record, I’m not saying it is or isn’t because I honestly have no idea. Like most others I think clarity on this would be beneficial.

  • WatsonBankz

    @Cal said...

    I’ll start with a couple things Dan and I were debating this week:

    -Is it allowed for two players to each enter 150 lineups into a 150 max entry tournament, not discuss lineups, and agree to an equity swap? Or would the two players need to make sure they stayed under the 150 entry limit combined and each enter 75 teams?
    -What exactly does “pooling entry fees” mean here?

    I read this as two +EV players are allowed to come to a results only swap agreement to mitigate variance. In a perfect world: you’re good, I’m good, swap 10% this month, yuup. Do your thing glgl, you too get em! Never going to happen… Problem is, if we both can increase our ROI’s if we coordinate exposures, it’s probs gunna happen. I’m a “swap to the top” guy all the way (chill out guys.. in poker), but don’t know how to successfully implement it in DFS while not encouraging this type of strategy to take place. Perhaps if caught, not allowed to play in the same games would be the best solution?

  • WatsonBankz

    @tgowen said...

    What exactly does collusion/syndicate play look like?

    You and another person/group of friends would coordinate exposures to cover a larger amount of potential outcomes while simultaneously not competing as direct with one another. I wouldn’t recommend it, those alphabet boyz are watching hard!

  • Cal

    RG CoFounder & Admin

    • 632

      RG Overall Ranking

    • $1M Prize Winner

    • x3

      2019 DraftKings FFWC Finalist

    Lots of good questions in here already. I’m really looking forward to this.

    On the suggestions front, I’m a supporter of “keeping sharks out of the shallow end.” Profit motivated players in general cannot be expected to self regulate, and I don’t think others should put that expectation on them. I’d like to see the sites set some rules around this, though. The idea could be if you attain a certain new badge level you can no longer buy into games below $3. It should be done on a rolling basis so that if your circumstances change and you lose the badge you can start buying into $1 games again.

    TommyG has been outspoken on this subject. He is self excluding from forum posting so asked him for his thoughts in a text. Here’s his response, which surprisingly only contains only 16 words in all caps:

    I think the sites need to stop big players from playing sub $5 games first. So that would be the first step. Anyone with over $500 of daily volume on average or over maybe $100,000 in career winnings should be badged and banned from those games. I personally do not go down to that level even though I know it is the easiest money, because we all need to STOP solely focusing on our ROI and focus on growing the industry. A person with a $50 a day bankroll can fill their WHOLE NUT with games under $5 so they don’t need to go above that level, just like veterans don’t need to go below it. I think these same badges veterans should also be banned from single entry and 3 entry max GPPs below that level too so the small bankroll GPP guys can play against eachother. I understand that we need to allow 150 entry veterans in the HUGE LARGE FIELD gpps in order for them to fill, even at low levels, and I’m fine with that as long as there are enough options for the small players to fill their $20-$50 a day bankroll without having to get eaten by these clowns who are bullying them and destroying the industry. It’s bad for new players, it’s bad for the industry and the worst part is when CONTENT PROVIDERS WHO RUN SITES are claiming they are “for the industry growth” yet THEY THEMSELVES are bum hunting. F THAT!

  • jimmyrad

    I couldn’t agree more with what Tommy had to say +1000, especially the last couple sentences +10,000!

  • crazypaul

    I think there are a few major areas the sites need to improve on and fast.

    1) Teaming – I wont go much into it because there are numerous threads about it, but there are known groups of people who always have the same cash game lineups. If a group gets reported to a site, the site should look at their cash lineups over a set period (say 30 days) and if the lineups match over 75% of the time the users should get a temporary ban of at least 7 days.

    GPP Teaming to exceed entry limits and avoid overlap should also be investigated, but as I have said before, this would be much harder to prove. The sites need a better way to prevent this, but I honestly dont know where they would begin.

    2) Low Stakes – I believe Tommy & Cal are spot on here. High volume players are hurting the low dollar ecosytem, especially in Double Ups & 50/50’s. During NBA, I would often see dozens of “known players” in my cash games & GPP’s. I believe a solution would be excluding players with a 30-day rolling AVG entry of over $10 from the $5 & below games, especially the Single Entry/3-max Gpp’s & cash games.

    3) Lineup Sellers – This is probably the biggest issue for me. Lineup sellers are DESTROYING the DFS ecosystem and it seems the sites DO NOT CARE. There are dozens & dozens of twitter accounts that blatantly sell lineups. They even make it easy for the sites to identify them by posting screens shots with their username and the sites do not ban these “providers”.

    One of the most popular Ive seen is RotoRadar. If I’m wrong please correct me, but I am almost 100% sure they sell access to a lineup on Fanduel. In NBA 100-man 50/50’s, I would constantly see 3-5 Rotoradar screen names with avatars using the same cash game every night. Here is a screen shot of their MLB package stating they provide a lineup:

    Sites need to throw the hammer down on any lineup seller and force tout sites to have the user manually input at least 2 players in every optimizer. There needs to be more skill in making a lineup, and an optimizer without forcing the user to think is not skill.

  • fishcakeking

    FCK

    My feeling is you start with the goals and work back to rules that get you there. For me it boils down to 3 main goals.

    1) A healthy ecosystem.
    2) Making sure the time and money gap that need to be invested by a recreational player vs a pro isnt too vast.
    3) Keeping DFS from becoming a game of battling algorithms.

    1- Fixing the ecosystem will hurt pros the most as there are 2 buckets for where money goes – winning players and rake. We know the sites arent lowering rake so they have to lower the outflow to players. IM a big fan of the RG weight class system as it has more nuance than a flat $ system and allows people to go up and down as their games change.

    The biggest issue here is that its short term vs long term. No one making the money right now is going to give it up with the idea of long term health of DFS. I dont pretend to know the exact financial situation of DK and FD but I think its fair to say they are much more focused on the immediate bottom line then they have ever been.

    2- If the average guy cant come home from work and feel like he has a decent shot putting in 30 -60 minutes a day in research he wont play. This is much less an issue in week long sports like NFL and PGA.

    3- Here is the rub as number 2 and 3 contradict each other. DFS tools have come a long way, but they take a lot of the fun out of lineup construction. This has been natural progression, but the sites have to figure out a method to walk this back. For me personally the tool advancement has been the biggest turn off of the last few years. Its no longer a puzzle to be figured out in my mind,but a hedge fund algorithm that optimizes inefficiencies in the marketplace.

    Now how do you create rules that fix these problems. You have to start with how each of these areas are being exploited by the professional players.

    Here are some suggestions

    a) use weight class system to determine entry of all but a handful of gpps.
    b) end syndicate play – do this with strict enforceable rules that make people guilty till proven innocent.
    c) end export of salary data from sites to 3rd parties and enforce this. In a sense ending all lineup builders. Anyone caught scraping this data would get a 1 year ban.
    d) test new game types (fanduel has been dabbling and I think that’s great)
    e) make public those who have broken the rules and their punishment. I mean has anyone ever been banned for anything other than double dipping the affiliate programs?

    I have to admit that I have a different viewpoint than most. I think that the pros should have no voice in these rules. Pros arent the ones who fund DFS. Winning players only pay theoretical rake. Fresh money keeps winning players and the sites afloat. For a long time investment capital kept this fact from being pronounced, that money is gone and isnt coming back.

    Fantasy sports betting is coming soon and I think this has the potential to injure DFS as we know it. Move swiftly DK and FD. Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid.

    FCK

  • Hkhotsskhotb

    The fantasy sports industry has become massive but dfs hasn’t, why is that. The appeal is there but in the quest for quick cash, huge prize pools etc the spirit of fantasy sports through dfs is being crushed. In seasonal leagues players have mostly equal playing fields and skill separates the players. Why hasn’t the seasonal player fully embraced dfs and the growth of the industry followed to that height. In many cases they tried and found it futile to compete against many of the problems we try to fix. Why can’t you convince your seasonal league mates to hop in? Many wouldn’t even try with the bad publicity over the last year or two.

    I’ve said it before but when college dfs was killed we lost a truly good ecosystem. Not massive prize pools but anyone could profit if they worked hard. Shahill dominated but didn’t crush your will to play. Information, good luck finding an algo, optimizer, lineup sellers, sydicate teams etc. Good luck finding much in the way of content. But that emphasized the SKILL of the game. Do your own research work. Probably can’t go back in time but go back and see why the ecosystem was successful.

    Fix the system and the new players come not for an advertising blitz but because they love fantasy sports and want a chance to play on somewhat of a level field.

    Last point rankings would work well, protecting the ecosystem if done right. The weight system on RG is pretty good. But be careful of blanket career earnings things like that. How much of those earnings are profit 10% 20%.

  • Cooper08

    • Blogger of the Month

    Many people within the industry do not think highly of your game integrity group. What info can you divulge to the industry which would show your game integrity is in fact working? Looking for specific info, not vague, names do not need to be mentioned.

    Why is it so difficult to remove lineup sellers and the people who use them from the industry? You know who these people are and were to find them.

  • tmarohl

    I am an OK GPP player. I only play cash games probably 6 or 7 times a year because I learned fast that you get gobbled up by the sharks. What kind of protections can be put in place to keep the sharks from gobbling up new players? Could high ranked players be banned from playing cash games below a certain dollar level, such at $10?

    Would it be possible to have more larger dollar single-five entry GPP’s? My thought would be maybe to have these contests open for three or more days, or offer satelites to them so they would have time to fill. Even if there was only one or two per week those would be appealing to guys like me who don’t want to get trampled by the max entry guys, but still play for a decent prize pool.

  • 1greatbuyz

    • x3

      2014 FanDuel WFFC Finalist

    • 2014 FanDuel WFBC Finalist

    @fishcakeking said...

    For me personally the tool advancement has been the biggest turn off of the last few years. Its no longer a puzzle to be figured out in my mind,but a hedge fund algorithm that optimizes inefficiencies in the marketplace.

    This is pretty much it for me as well. Letting a Randomizing Optimizer flip in 150 lineups at click of a button has seemed to cause a lot of problems.

  • thedude404

    • 2015 FanDuel NBA Playboy Mansion Finalist

    When making decisions whether to ban people for breaking TOS (in this case collusion, but also in the past, for say using automated processes when that was against TOS), does the volume they play ever come into play in that decision making? Has Draftkings in the past known people to break the TOS but done nothing or little in the way of punishment (vs the enormity of the breach) in response because they are high volume players, thus allowing said players to win millions from unsuspecting customers? Would you consider collusion or using automated processes (when it was against TOS) a breach of TOS worthy of being banned? If not, why? Hypothetically, would Draftkings answer those questions under oath in a court of law and provide all information regarding this subject, if prompted, through discovery, or, if necessary, via motion to compel?

  • thedude404

    • 2015 FanDuel NBA Playboy Mansion Finalist

    @Cal said...

    Lots of good questions in here already. I’m really looking forward to this.

    On the suggestions front, I’m a supporter of “keeping sharks out of the shallow end.” Profit motivated players in general cannot be expected to self regulate, and I don’t think others should put that expectation on them. I’d like to see the sites set some rules around this, though. The idea could be if you attain a certain new badge level you can no longer buy into games below $3. It should be done on a rolling basis so that if your circumstances change and you lose the badge you can start buying into $1 games again.

    TommyG has been outspoken on this subject. He is self excluding from forum posting so asked him for his thoughts in a text. Here’s his response, which surprisingly only contains only 16 words in all caps:

    I think the sites need to stop big players from playing sub $5 games first. So that would be the first step. Anyone with over $500 of daily volume on average or over maybe $100,000 in career winnings should be badged and banned from those games. I personally do not go down to that level even though I know it is the easiest money, because we all need to STOP solely focusing on our ROI and focus on growing the industry. A person with a $50 a day bankroll can fill their WHOLE NUT with games under $5 so they don’t need to go above that level, just like veterans don’t need to go below it. I think these same badges veterans should also be banned from single entry and 3 entry max GPPs below that level too so the small bankroll GPP guys can play against eachother. I understand that we need to allow 150 entry veterans in the HUGE LARGE FIELD gpps in order for them to fill, even at low levels, and I’m fine with that as long as there are enough options for the small players to fill their $20-$50 a day bankroll without having to get eaten by these clowns who are bullying them and destroying the industry. It’s bad for new players, it’s bad for the industry and the worst part is when CONTENT PROVIDERS WHO RUN SITES are claiming they are “for the industry growth” yet THEY THEMSELVES are bum hunting. F THAT!

    I agree with just about everything Tommy said here and I applaud him for removing himself from the low buy in contests. One change I would make to his suggestions is instead of basing a badge based on career earnings, it should be based on only a daily average amount in play like he is suggesting and it be a rolling average, say monthly. Or, as a compromise, how about an overall earnings badge that would roll over on a monthly, bi-annual, or annual rate? As it stands now, nobody knows what anyone else’s net career earnings are and that number in the overall scheme of things isnt that important imo. For example what if someone plays $5 and under contests, binks a $100k win, and takes 99% of that money out of the DFS economy and thus his DFS bankroll remains at $1000? Because of that win, he’s not going to start upping his daily volume, nor could he if he follows proper bankroll management. A high dollar badge for that type of player would actually be detrimental to them.

    I think throwing ideas out there like TommyG did is a good starting point for conversation to get some system in place that works and where most people are in agreement with. This is actually a fairly complex problem that I think needs input from a wide variety of viewpoints to come up with the best solution.

    It is amazing how far we have come on this subject. A few years ago, I was LAUGHED at by one particular high profile player for even suggesting such things. My predictions regarding the sharks and the DFS economy I made years ago have all come true though. I am glad we are now able to talk about this subject without fear of ridicule from high profile players, and, in fact, high profile/dollar players like TommyG are coming out in support of some type of realistic badging system that would help the overall DFS economy.

  • Bay101

    Get rid of optimizers and lineup builders and DFS will grow

  • WatsonBankz

    Please start a “we hate optimizers” thread, let’s keep this one focused on the main issue

  • Epignosis

    • 527

      RG Overall Ranking

    • Ranked #84

      RG Tiered Ranking

    My inexperienced wife would like to play. To what extent can I help her build her lineups?

  • budaman3915

    I got in a 10 dollar double up 11 people,5 people all known to be involved with each other had same exact lineup except 1 had 1 different player.on 1 hand it didn’t bother me as I still pick my lineup and all I gota do is beat that lineup to cash. but these guys are pros.all ranked top 25 nba.so you know how it most likely was gona end up.well it did, so these top big money players, are down in a small 10 dollar double up trying to more less steal us small players money,im sure they was in 5 and dollar ones too. I filed a complaint and was told they did nothing wrong. ok so in my opinion there is no community guidelines,wth id like to see the list of and who has had violations,they should be posted for all of us to see if there is any

  • WatsonBankz

    @Epignosis said...

    My inexperienced wife would like to play. To what extent can I help her build her lineups?

    This is a great question. To take it a little further; I’m swapping action with a few players, at what point does a strategic conversation cross the line into “collusion/soft play?”

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