End of Kongregate Tip System

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From a Kongregate newsletter:

Dear [username],

On January 1, 2013 Kongregate will be ending the Kreds tipping program. This change was necessitated due to the low volume of tips given by users, high cost of maintaining the system, and high levels of tipping fraud.

As a replacement we will allow publishers to provide a PayPal link to receive tips directly from users. This method will not be subject to Kongregate’s minimum payment amounts. So long as no in-game benefit is provided to users for tipping, Kongregate will allow PayPal as an external payment system to receive tips.

Some important dates:

The tipping tool will be removed from game pages on December 1, 2012. To be paid for any existing tip balance you will have until December 31, 2012 to submit valid payment and tax information. Developers who have not submitted tax or payment information by December 31, 2012 will have their player accounts credited with the full Kred balance of their tips.

If you have any questions please direct them to developer_support@kongregate.com

Thank you for your understanding,

Kongregate

 
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Loverly. I think part of the problem was that you could buy kreds for cheaper than you could get them paid out. Plenty of people probably tried to exploit that.

 
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“This change was necessitated due to the low volume of tips given by users” Gotta love that. So they went out of their way to hide the tip jar as much as they could, and then they remove it because almost nobody uses it.

 
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Originally posted by UnknownGuardian:

Loverly. I think part of the problem was that you could buy kreds for cheaper than you could get them paid out. Plenty of people probably tried to exploit that.

Buy bulk kerd is not cheating as Kong gives you extra kerd for free, since bigger payment = lower average payment cost to payment providers. [also found on lots of other places]

Most payment has a base rate, so you pay the same base rate for $5 or $50.

Stolen credit cards might be a bigger problems…

 
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When I asked Kongregate about it, they acknowledged it and said they watched for users that did it. Kongregate loses money each time a dev would buy bulk kreds and donate to themselves. It was just an extra hassle to monitor the system.

Not to mention that there are no profits for the system, so it was essentially losing money for them. (besides providing an excuse for some players to purchase kreds)

 
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Originally posted by UnknownGuardian:

When I asked Kongregate about it, they acknowledged it and said they watched for users that did it. Kongregate loses money each time a dev would buy bulk kreds and donate to themselves. It was just an extra hassle to monitor the system.

Not to mention that there are no profits for the system, so it was essentially losing money for them. (besides providing an excuse for some players to purchase kreds)

I don’t actually see anything fraudulent about that, although I definitely see why Kong would want to avoid it. However, if I remember correctly, the value of a kred was equal to the price paid for one kred in the very best deal with “free” kreds.

 
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One of the holiday specials had it for a bit less I think. I distinctly remember PMing an admin about it and getting the response.

 
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That’s stupid. I’m sorry- but how about you just LOWER the payout? BOOM! Problem solved. How about you make the Tip-Jar more apparent- instead of hiding it. BOOM! Problem solved! And seriously- they are pulling an excuse saying “high upkeep costs”? Yeah- because that costs SO much to upkeep.

 
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I’m not sad to see it go, honestly. The entire concept when it came out made me shake my head.

 
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@RTL

How would lowering payout fix the issue?

How would making tip-jar more visible fix the issue?

There is an incredible amount of people banned for Kred Fraud that you haven’t heard of.

It does cost a lot to upkeep, especially if they aren’t making money on any of the donations.

 
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Originally posted by UnknownGuardian:

@RTL

How would lowering payout fix the issue?

How would making tip-jar more visible fix the issue?

There is an incredible amount of people banned for Kred Fraud that you haven’t heard of.

It does cost a lot to upkeep, especially if they aren’t making money on any of the donations.

1. If you buy 5 kreds for say, 5.00 and it payouts to 4.00, then Kongregate still makes money, it can go towards upkeep, and the dev still gets money.

 
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Originally posted by RTL_Shadow:

That’s stupid. I’m sorry- but how about you just LOWER the payout? BOOM! Problem solved. How about you make the Tip-Jar more apparent- instead of hiding it. BOOM! Problem solved! And seriously- they are pulling an excuse saying “high upkeep costs”? Yeah- because that costs SO much to upkeep.

Most players don’t donate to developers. Of the ones that do, the usual tip about is one or two Kreds. A few players might tip 10 Kreds at a time. Hardly anyone tips more than that.

I don’t think making the tip jar more apparent would change anything – there are already giant buttons your can put in your game to try to encourage people to tip you. People simply don’t tip, for the same reason that you don’t tip, and the same reason that I don’t tip.

The upkeep costs would be from maintaining the integrity of the system.

 
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People simply don’t tip

The only reason to tip people for their games is if the game is good which, ironically, is the exact set of games that don’t need tips.

 
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Originally posted by Draco18s:

People simply don’t tip

The only reason to tip people for their games is if the game is good which, ironically, is the exact set of games that don’t need tips.

Yeah – plus the fact that for most people, there’s no reason to pay for a free game in the first place, even if it is a good game,

 
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People pay for free things all the time. Sure, it’s rare, but it happens.

I, personally, have paid…$175 I think, for Dwarf Fortress. Over the course of three donations (I can find my records for $25 and $100, with evidence pointing at a third, but I don’t have the receipt for that one handy—different email?)

But you’re right. Devs on Kongregate are already reimbursed when you play the game (due to ads) so many people who’d donate don’t (because of that) or donate less.

Found one of my rewards too,

Written by Three Toe

kkkk,.,.“,.”“.”,@@@@@

Rain beat down on the heartless jungle. The dwarven spearmen trudged
through puddles of mud in disintegrating boots. The war with the
kobolds had been a long one. Dozens of dwarves had died for a patch
of stinking swamp, and these battles had happened again and again for
five long years. The enemy was tenacious. They would not surrender.
They could not surrender. The dwarves steeled themselves for what
could only be a war of extermination.

“There are ‘bolds ahead,” said Aliz, adjusting the sights on his crossbow.

Marksdwarf Aliz had seen action in every war since the Age of Titans.
The others depended on his skills as a tracker, and his dead aim with
a crossbow. As if on cue, the first kobold appeared, a short,
bug-eyed creature, carrying a short bow, armed with deadly poisoned
arrows. Another kobold appeared. Aliz held up a hand. The kobolds
came closer. “Don’t fire till you see their yellow eyes,” whispered
the marksdwarf. After a long second, Aliz clamped his hand into a
fist. Two dozen dwarves pelted the area with spears and crossbow
bolts.

“Is it always like this?” asked recruit Mavin,

Aliz sank his dagger into a wounded kobold. “Stay close,” he said.
“You’ll make it. You have the look of a survivor.”

“Sergeant Aliz,” came a voice from above.

It was lieutenant Cremish, a dumpy dwarf, as ambitious as he was
incompetent. Aliz shook his head. This dwarf could barely keep
himself alive, let alone the squad.

“I have orders for you,” said the Lt. “There is a kobold leader
camped somewhere in the area. You are to divide the squad and search
for him.”

Aliz just looked at him.

The Lt. blinked, then continued. “You are to take the subject alive
for questioning.”

Madness, thought Aliz, feeling a familiar itch in his trigger finger.

 
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Originally posted by Draco18s:

People pay for free things all the time. Sure, it’s rare, but it happens.

A few people do. A few people tip on Kong, too, though – it’s not a completely unused feature. Perhaps if every Flash game was a complex and had as dedicated a fanbase as DF, more people would pay for them, but realistically you’re talking about statistical anomalies.

 
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Originally posted by saybox:

Perhaps if every Flash game was a complex as DF

;)

 
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Not sure why there is rage about this. Good to see this broken system replaced with a much smoother one!

 
This post has been removed by an administrator or moderator
 
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Originally posted by UnknownGuardian:

@RTL

How would lowering payout fix the issue?

How would making tip-jar more visible fix the issue?

There is an incredible amount of people banned for Kred Fraud that you haven’t heard of.

It does cost a lot to upkeep, especially if they aren’t making money on any of the donations.

I think most people banned for kred fraud are for different reasons than tipping themselves with exorbitant amounts of kreds. I know many times if you request a refund Kong will give it to you but permaban your account. Not entirely sure though.

Obviously making the tip jar more obvious might help the issue, as more people would be likely to use it. Lowering payout to 90% might help kong make up some of the costs and prevent people from using it for infinite money loops.

Not saying this makes the thing worth keeping, just saying those changes may have helped. I mean, overall, what tricky said – ‘But at some point, it’s only logical to look at each other and say, “Why are we reinventing the wheel? Paypal already does this perfectly well!”’ does make sense. Only problem is that it makes developers have to deal with paypal and their shenanigans.

 
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It’s correct that most people seem to tip 1 to 10 kreds, and so very few devs were reaching the minimum payout, and the ones that were make far, far more in advertising and/or item sales. At one point we changed the amounts we showed in the tip jar hoping people would increase their tip sizes if that was the default but it didn’t make much difference; only about 0.1% (yes, that’s 1/10th of 1%) of kreds bought each month are tipped.

Since most developers choose to be paid via Paypal, and Paypal is our #2 payment method after credit cards it definitely started to feel like we were getting in the way. Given that and the substantial hassle/complexity of fraud issues trickyrodent mentioned we made the decision to end it and concentrate on growing the other sources of revenue for developers. And here’s hoping tipping works better directly!

 
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Since most developers choose to be paid via Paypal, and Paypal is our #2 payment method after credit cards it definitely started to feel like we were getting in the way. Given that and the substantial hassle/complexity of fraud issues trickyrodent mentioned we made the decision to end it and concentrate on growing the other sources of revenue for developers. And here’s hoping tipping works better directly!

But I don’t know how Paypal payment work directly in Flash games…someone can give some hints?

 
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Originally posted by Kannushi_Link:

Since most developers choose to be paid via Paypal, and Paypal is our #2 payment method after credit cards it definitely started to feel like we were getting in the way. Given that and the substantial hassle/complexity of fraud issues trickyrodent mentioned we made the decision to end it and concentrate on growing the other sources of revenue for developers. And here’s hoping tipping works better directly!

But I don’t know how Paypal payment work directly in Flash games…someone can give some hints?

There won’t be any need to have paypal payments directly from flash games. If I understand correctly, on the upload form, Kongregate will provide a field where you can enter your paypal address. They will then include a paypal donate button for users to give money to you directly.

 
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Originally posted by BobTheCoolGuy:

But I don’t know how Paypal payment work directly in Flash games…someone can give some hints?

There won’t be any need to have paypal payments directly from flash games. If I understand correctly, on the upload form, Kongregate will provide a field where you can enter your paypal address. They will then include a paypal donate button for users to give money to you directly.

If it’s the case then I’ll be OUT, as personal payment is disable in Taiwan!

 
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I have never been tipped. Any of you been tipped? How much the the feature affect your revenue?