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Administrator
08-17-2020, 09:39 PM
Dear Community,

We deviate from our typical stance regarding the public disclosure of member bans (section 6.5) due to the extraordinary circumstances involving the aforementioned ex-member.

Rationale
In the interest of full transparency and to highlight this individual's actions within our community, we are providing a chronological account of our interaction history with 'LukaszM'.

'LukaszM' was banned in December 2018. In the ensuing months, 'LukaszM' registering multiple sockpuppets in Anthrogenica.
A summary of our administrative actions from the above date to April 2019 is presented below for your information.


1st infraction (30th Nov 2018) - Bumping same thread consecutively. Section 3.10 breach. As 1st infraction, received 1 week suspension and warning per Infraction Protocol.
2nd infraction (2nd Dec 2018) - Using another account to access the site during suspension ('vasyl'). Reason for use not accepted, story and evidence inconsistent. Section 2.5 breach. As 2nd infraction, was due for permanent ban per Infraction Protocol. Team agreed instead to grant 'LukaszM' some clemency with a lighter 3 month suspension.
3rd infraction (3rd Dec 2018) - Bribery attempt to rescind suspension. Section 2.10 breach. Permanent ban agreed by team.
Post-ban events:
1) Posing as an Indonesian individual through a previously authorized account ('physical-anthro')
2) Creating a sockpuppet ('PierreDhoa') with the intention of engaging in forum discussions and slandering a rival gene analysis service; anti-free market behavior
3) Creating a sockpuppet ('sven.larson') to engage in forum discussions

Additionally, 'LukaszM' was warned twice via email correspondence in 2019 regarding the potential consequences of any further sockpuppets in Anthrogenica.
These emails were prompted by 'LukaszM's complaint concerning another user's post. At this stage, some of our regulars raised concerns about potential 'LukaszM' sockpuppets.
The emails in question are shown below for the community's information and have only redacted the username of the other member.



Hello,

As a banned user, you shouldn't have access to the site. How you came across our moderator's comment is suspicious. Your history of creating sockpuppet accounts (PierreDhoa, sven.larson, posing as an Indonesian with physical-anthro in case you needed reminding), attempting to disrepute a competitor and using other members as messengers for your complaints regarding your ban have put you in permanent bad standing with our administration, so we won't assume better with you.

If you happen to have any more sockpuppet accounts on Anthrogenica, declare all of them now. If you don't have any more sockpuppet accounts, state this in your reply. We'll remove the unsubstantiated elements of that post after liaising with [user] if you fulfill either of those options.

As we warned you in the 'sven.larson' sockpuppet ban message, we will contact your ISP if we find any more sockpuppets. In the event we find any more of your sockpuppets, we'll also consider completely blacklisting your services on our site. Your unsatisfactory conduct won't be rewarded with free advertising.

Your reply and future conduct will determine what we'll do with [user]' comment and how much free publicity you'll get from our platform.

Regards,

We'll take your word that you haven't created any more sockpuppets in this instance. You have set a very bad precedent with us, so entertaining the possibility of more unscrupulous and self-serving persistence on your part is reasonable.

Regarding [user]' comment, we've discussed the matter with him, and he actually wasn't linking you with mytrueancestry. He was arguing the opposite (doubts you are involved because this service is supposedly free, and you typically charge for yours). Perhaps the translation you received wasn't perfect.

Given that [user] wasn't implying you are involved with one of these new upstarts with murky backgrounds, there isn't anything for us to act on here. We would have removed the comment if it did in fact allege you were involved with mytrueancestry, in keeping with our General Statement regarding newer services, and in spite of your prior undesirable conduct in our venue.

I remind you of our warning regarding the outcome if we discover future sockpuppets by you to close up this exchange.

Discovery
Beyond April 2019, we continued to receive numerous reports from members in our community of suspected 'LukaszM' sockpuppets.

Through a combination of both direct and circumstantial evidence (including IP data directly linking one sockpuppet with his original account), we can now publicly confirm that 'LukaszM' was behind several accounts that many of you had interacted with in good faith in recent months.

The first, 'JohnBobo', had 42 posts on this site and were all in relation to G25 custom calculator results. The majority of those calculators can be found in this Vahaduo site (*********************************/). A WHOIS search revealed that the owner of this Vahaduo derivative is none other than 'LukaszM' (https://www.whois.com/whois/genetics.ovh).

The next account, 'polishguy', penned a single thread (https://anthrogenica.com/showthread.php?20714-ADMIXTOOLS-directly-from-R-bodkan-admixr&highlight=polishguy)and was banned due to it being identified as a sockpuppet.

Through another recent sockpuppet, 'ataturk', numerous posts were made which promoted 'LukaszM's Vahaduo platform several times explicitly (example (https://anthrogenica.com/showthread.php?21035-MyHeritage-V2-G25-(SCALED)&p=684134#post684134)).
Furthermore, through 'ataturk', 'LukaszM' compiled a thread linking to all of the custom G25 calculators that users (both in AG and beyond) had created, which were then ported over to his platform (link (https://anthrogenica.com/showthread.php?18565-Thread-with-all-G25-custom-calculators-(links)&p=608436#post608436)). In addition, all of 'ataturk's started threads involved custom G25 calculators hosted on 'LukaszM's site.
Within the past few days, following the reopening of the forum, this sockpuppet, 'ataturk', has continued to post threads promoting 'LukaszM's Vahaduo derivative.

Finally, 'LukaszM' has also registered with the account 'Railguner', which has so far mostly posted in threads relating to custom G25 calculators.


In summary, since April 2019, 'LukaszM' had created at least four more sockpuppet accounts in Anthrogenica and misled the community through his appropriation of different ethno-cultural identities to achieve his objectives. Specifically, two of these sockpuppets were explicitly used to promote his Vahaduo derivative, with another apparently being used to bump threads involving custom G25 calculators*.

*To clarify, 'LukaszM's G25 custom calculators (*********************************/) and Gedmatch calculators (*******************************) sites, despite containing the 'Vahaduo' name, have no direct link to the genuine Vahaduo URL (https://vahaduo.github.io/vahaduo/), which is not owned by 'LukaszM'.

Uncertainty
Through his recent sockpuppets, 'LukaszM' posted calculator results that were in accordance with the identities stated in those accounts.

The AG administration is not in a position to ascertain whether 'LukaszM' had self-generated these component scores through his own imagination, or whether they were sourced from actual user coordinates.

Further, if the latter was the case, we are not in a position to ascertain whether 'LukaszM' received explicit consent from those individuals to use their data for his covert actions on this site. Nor would it be apparent to us regarding the means through which he may have acquired such data.

Finally, it is also unclear why 'LukaszM' has been promoting his Vahaduo derivative site with such persistence in Anthrogenica.

Our Response
In addition to this public declaration, in view of 'LukaszM's extraordinary behavior in relation to our community, and in keeping with our two warnings last year:


All of his recent sockpuppet accounts have been deleted.
All of the posts and threads made by these sockpuppet accounts will also be deleted three days from the time at which this message has been posted. Please take this time to retrieve any information you may desire to keep from the posts in those threads before they are removed. We have locked all of the implicated threads for the time being.
We will automatically ban any future 'LukaszM' sockpuppets and erase all trace of his activity here without warning.
We will blacklist all key terms relating to any of 'LukaszM's outputs, services or websites on this platform (i.e. those terms, links, etc. will not appear in any posts on this forum) after the three day milestone has been reached.
We reserve the right to delete any future threads or posts found to advertise on this individual's behalf.


Further action against 'LukaszM' may be taken at our discretion and following future review.

Summary
Through his seven sockpuppets, 'LukaszM' has posed as multiple individuals since his initial ban in Anthrogenica. In recent months, he has made hundreds of posts through four sockpuppet accounts in threads concerning the custom G25 calculators that he hosts on his platforms.

We have provided you, the community, with this information to inform you of this individual's actions towards both you and the platform itself.

In the event that you wish to continue supporting 'LukaszM', despite his apparent disregard for said community and the potential uncertainty regarding data privacy through his actions here, we recommend doing so in another venue.

We thank the numerous members who diligently reported potential 'LukaszM' sockpuppets to us, several of which proved to eventually be correct.

We also thank you for your attention and will leave the comments section open for further questions, in addition to giving you the opportunity to express yourselves regarding the manner in which you have been misled by this person.

AG Team

rothaer
08-18-2020, 11:07 AM
Wow, ok.

"In the event that you wish to continue supporting 'LukaszM', despite his apparent disregard for said community and the potential uncertainty regarding data privacy through his actions here, we recommend doing so in another venue.":

Im not here so support or not support any individual. Im interested in facts related to what the forum deals with. Actually the K36 correlation map - the other things imo are of minor importance - by LukaszM functionally is a world top product. Will it be forbidden to discuss that, because it is regarded as "support" for LukaszM? If so this seems to me not factually. I dont care about LukaszM. But I care about science, facts and tools. Banning discussions about a top tool would be unique and an end of free scientific exchange.
The measurement is obviouisly announced in emails to LukaszM and intended to punish him. But imo it does punish/hit the community. All that information that will be deleted in the threads where members have posted...
Correlation map links to google that were provided initially by LukaszM are not longer available. This means the correlation maps posted in the main thread to this subject often are the only remaining exemplar. Not all members will be here within 3 days and read this unusual announcement. And what shall an interested member exactly do, shall he try to store that 500 pages of the main thread?

Maybe there can be found a more member-friendly solution?

passenger
08-18-2020, 04:54 PM
Not all members will be here within 3 days and read this unusual announcement. And what shall an interested member exactly do, shall he try to store that 500 pages of the main thread?

Maybe there can be found a more member-friendly solution?

Thank you for your feedback. I won't reply to everything you said right now, since I don't intend to represent the AG team here, but just wanted to clarify that there are no "500 page" threads that have been marked for removal. The only threads subject to removal at this point are the ones created by the recent sockpuppet accounts "JohnBobo", "ataturk" and "Railguner", which consist mainly of (relatively short) threads dedicated to posting results from the abovementioned Vahaduo shell site.

rothaer
08-18-2020, 11:06 PM
Thank you for your feedback. I won't reply to everything you said right now, since I don't intend to represent the AG team here, but just wanted to clarify that there are no "500 page" threads that have been marked for removal. The only threads subject to removal at this point are the ones created by the recent sockpuppet accounts "JohnBobo", "ataturk" and "Railguner", which consist mainly of (relatively short) threads dedicated to posting results from the abovementioned Vahaduo shell site.

Thanks. Then the thread "K36 Eurogenes (Unofficial) Oracle and other ancestry tools" started by lukaszM with now 540 pages is not aimed at.

passenger
08-19-2020, 01:48 AM
Thanks. Then the thread "K36 Eurogenes (Unofficial) Oracle and other ancestry tools" started by lukaszM with now 540 pages is not aimed at.

Correct.

MatAust21
08-21-2020, 01:56 AM
I don't know how complex and stressful being a moderator is, but this whole situation seems a bit too severe to me.

I mean, should we really erase from history someone whose ''crime'' was bumping one or a few threads, then not being patient enough to wait out his original punishment? As far as I remember, he wasn't an agressive or disruptive user.

Besides, can we really consider his advertisement of the Vahaduo calculators as something wrong? As far as I know, there is nothing monetized about those pages, nor are they linked to his business site.

I feel like the community as a whole has been worse off with the exclusion of an important member. If we gave him another chance, I suppose there would be no need for his fake accounts, right?

It is true that he could have been more patient after the initial punishment, but everything that followed has been too strict in my opinion.

Just my two cents.

rothaer
08-21-2020, 07:29 AM
I don't know how complex and stressful being a moderator is, but this whole situation seems a bit too severe to me.

I mean, should we really erase from history someone whose ''crime'' was bumping one or a few threads, then not being patient enough to wait out his original punishment? As far as I remember, he wasn't an agressive or disruptive user.

Besides, can we really consider his advertisement of the Vahaduo calculators as something wrong? As far as I know, there is nothing monetized about those pages, nor are they linked to his business site.

I feel like the community as a whole has been worse off with the exclusion of an important member. If we gave him another chance, I suppose there would be no need for his fake accounts, right?

It is true that he could have been more patient after the initial punishment, but everything that followed has been too strict in my opinion.

Just my two cents.

I fully agree. I just presupposed this thing is now that inflammatory so there is no way back, and focussed on the most valuable contents imo. Actually these Vahaduo or Vahaduo-derived calculators is no commercial stuff of lukaszM, but rather of Davidski (Eurogenes). He is the sole one selling the needed G25 coordinates for money (not lukaszM).

I dont know if the administration is aware of that -?

rothaer
08-21-2020, 08:08 AM
I know some people will consider this biased and not correct, but I remark it anyway, because imo its relevat here: Poles are known throughout history to be obstreperous, at least notably over average. I think this statement is also not rejected by most Poles. Ive the impression there have been bannings of Poles more than one time ultimately because they have been obstreperous when it comes to exact application of rules. As a wild guess I guess this is was also the case when Tomenable (he was not rude in expressions afaik) was banned. This is somewhat a pity. I appreciated very much the substantial contributions of both lukaszM and Tomenable.

Id promote applyling some kind of a (restricted) "Pole-excuse" for obstreperousity when it comes to perfectly obeying rules. This would maybe help to avoid not really necessary losses of good contributions to this forum. :-)

Bart
08-21-2020, 10:16 AM
Fully support the Admins & Moderators & applaud their approach. A difficult & very time consuming role, I've done it myself on totally unconnected forums on other hobbies. They've shown tolerance, flexibility and always have the best intentions for the community as a whole. Thanks guys, keep up the good work.

I think it's important for members to refrain from making wild accusations against others without proper evidence to back it up.

There's a huge difference between the individual this thread relates to you, who spammed everywhere solely with the intent to make money from members, however useful that output was, and the other person named just recently in this thread who, in my opinion has given so much of his time for free to developing our shared understanding and enjoyment from genetics/dna analysis and only recently started to make a nominal charge for G25 co-ords in order to help cover his expenses, but doesn't spam everywhere or shout about it.

A small charge for a service is justified in my opinion given the exponential increase in popularity of this hobby of ours & drain on time/server/resources. Market forces will ultimately drive the price and people can choose to take it or leave it. The admin post purely relates to the unacceptable attempts to disrupt a whole forum/community solely to make personal gain. There's a big difference.

Intent and context is everything, hats off to admins/mods for getting it spot on once again.

Dorkymon
08-21-2020, 10:23 AM
Besides, can we really consider his advertisement of the Vahaduo calculators as something wrong? As far as I know, there is nothing monetized about those pages, nor are they linked to his business site.



Vahaduo is literally open-source on GitHub. Anyone can fork and play with it. I for example have my own custom version that allows me to insert more pops in "Source".

Adamm
08-21-2020, 12:11 PM
I know some people will consider this biased and not correct, but I remark it anyway, because imo its relevat here: Poles are known throughout history to be obstreperous, at least notably over average. I think this statement is also not rejected by most Poles. Ive the impression there have been bannings of Poles more than one time ultimately because they have been obstreperous when it comes to exact application of rules. As a wild guess I guess this is was also the case when Tomenable (he was not rude in expressions afaik) was banned. This is somewhat a pity. I appreciated very much the substantial contributions of both lukaszM and Tomenable.

Id promote applyling some kind of a (restricted) "Pole-excuse" for obstreperousity when it comes to perfectly obeying rules. This would maybe help to avoid not really necessary losses of good contributions to this forum. :-)

The contributions of Lukasz to the 'genetics/DNA' community are great and a lot, he's putting a lot of effort in this. I think a reconciliation would be a great thing where everyone gets together and make the necessarily excuses and go back to normal.

JMcB
08-21-2020, 02:25 PM
Personally, I think the moderators have shown a lot of restraint in this case and have acted appropriately. Routing unknowing people to your own website while impersonating Vahaduo, is in my opinion deceptive and unethical. And frankly, a disservice to Vahaduo. Who has been incredibly generous in suppling of all his tools for free. One can only wonder why Lukasz was doing it. Sneaking onto anthrogenica to spread unfounded rumors about one of your financial competitors, while impersonating a supposedly uninterested person, is also in my opinion unethical. I’m sorry, I have nothing against Lukasz but in my opinion, he’s had plenty of chances already.

Administrator
08-22-2020, 12:46 AM
[ADMIN]

Several replies to specific points raised in the member-based discussion we've observed so far in this thread.

As a reminder: This thread was primarily created to publicly disclose the multiple instances of communicative and behavioral subversion that this ex-member had undertaken to the community at large. In addition, we highlighted the rationale for our actions and the predominantly reactive nature of said actions.

We have not created this thread to solicit community feedback as to the future of this ex-member on our platform. The totality of their misdeeds on this site (at least 7 sockpuppets, recent self-beneficial behavior of unknown direction, complete failure of accountability on said user's part) has sealed their fate.

We also remind the community that public criticism of administrative actions are against our Terms of Service (section 6.7) (https://anthrogenica.com/faq.php).
Those of you intending to lobby on this individual's behalf are advised to heed this reminder.
In this particular instance, we've agreed to view those sentences treading close to breaching 6.7 in good faith.

Finally, we remind users to interpret our decisions based on the revealed facts about this individual's peri- and post-ban misconduct and not his activity up to the initial ban.
One's 2018 memory of their activity (or the perceived, historical informativeness of their activity) does not override the slew of bad faith actions they've undertaken since.



I mean, should we really erase from history someone whose ''crime'' was bumping one or a few threads, then not being patient enough to wait out his original punishment? As far as I remember, he wasn't an agressive or disruptive user.


Please re-read the original post. Your implied summary is incorrect.
His initial ban is summarized at the top of the original post and was in full accordance with our Terms of Service (as are all bans).
This ex-user's post history will remain completely intact, as our Mod 'passenger' summarized.
It is those recent sockpuppets of his that specifically promoted his Vahaduo based-site that have been completely pruned from the forum.
This public disclosure and the downstream proactive measures we've taken are the result of over 1.5 years-worth of bad faith behavior.

Since the initial ban, the user you're passively defending created at least 7 sockpuppets within our community, committed anti-free market rhetoric against a competitor through at least one, posed as different ethnic groups, and interacted with many of you under false pretenses.

Their initial tenure on this site was both reasonable and productive.
However, as should be clear from our summary of events, this individual broke numerous Terms of Service sections in rapid succession leading to their initial ban, with a slew of further breaches since. This is disruptive behavior.



Besides, can we really consider his advertisement of the Vahaduo calculators as something wrong? As far as I know, there is nothing monetized about those pages, nor are they linked to his business site.


We are not in a position to explain or speculate as to why 'LukaszM' was promoting his Vahaduo related sites with such dedication through his multiple (usually Turkish-posing) sockpuppets.



I feel like the community as a whole has been worse off with the exclusion of an important member. If we gave him another chance, I suppose there would be no need for his fake accounts, right?

It is true that he could have been more patient after the initial punishment, but everything that followed has been too strict in my opinion.


Please re-read the original post.
'LukaszM' had already received significant leeway prior to the commencement of his initial ban.
We had granted him clemency through a three month suspension instead of a permaban.
Further, we even hinted at reversing the decision if he provided us with compelling evidence that his initial justification was substantiated. This second instance was not cited in the original message, but the relevant extract from our email communication to him (dated Dec 6th 2018) is attached in the 'Spoilers' below.
Instead of accepting these opportunities, this user escalated matters further without any apologies.

You (and other users) may like the immediate gratification afforded by this user's variant of activity in the broader community.
However, we cannot consider said gratification as a basis to give extraordinary leeway to individuals that willfully breach our Terms of Service.
This is particularly acute in 'LukaszM''s case, as we never received an apology for any of his actions. Instead, further escalation on his part.

Our faithful application of our Terms of Service is precisely what separates our community from other, less orderly and more dysfunctional, communities.
By granting any serial offender with extraordinary leeway, particularly one with a self-demonstrated attribute as a bad faith actor, we (the administration) fail you (the community).



I dont know if the administration is aware of that -?


We are aware.



Id promote applyling some kind of a (restricted) "Pole-excuse" for obstreperousity when it comes to perfectly obeying rules.


Unclear as to whether this is an earnest suggestion or not.

We will not apply any bigotry of low expectations on any particular subgroup of our community under any circumstances.

Further, this apparent stereotype (be it justified or otherwise) does not explain the other self-evident issues with this user (subversive interactions and behavior, failure of personal accountability, willful disregard for the community and administration they're interacting with).



As a wild guess I guess this is was also the case when Tomenable (he was not rude in expressions afaik) was banned. This is somewhat a pity. I appreciated very much the substantial contributions of both lukaszM and Tomenable.


Tomenable was suspended and not banned.
Please PM us for specific details regarding his suspension.
I confirm Tomenable will be returning to Anthrogenica within the next few weeks and the community will likely welcome his return.



The contributions of Lukasz to the 'genetics/DNA' community are great and a lot, he's putting a lot of effort in this. I think a reconciliation would be a great thing where everyone gets together and make the necessarily excuses and go back to normal.


Please refer to the disclaimer at the top of this post and the response to 'MatAust21'.

We hope that clarifies the situation further and rectifies some of the misconceptions following the original post.

Thanks all for your attention,




Dec 6th 2018
[Admin note: Following his attempt to rescind his suspension with a cash payment, we received accusations of bias and subversive behavior from 'LukaszM' towards us. Factor this in when noting the rather direct communication we sent him in the correspondence below.]
...
We granted you some leeway by suspending you for three months rather than proceeding with a straight ban. Most members don't get such favoritism. Your accusation of bias against you is both unsubstantiated and is easily refuted on that basis. It doesn't look like you understand you got yourself banned permanently here.

You're again demonstrating your ignorance of our Terms of Service - Members asking about your ban will be fully informed in private about it (including your missteps). They will not be banned for it (unless they break our other Terms).

Don't message us again unless you can provide evidence substantiating the improbable scenario you purported several messages ago ("vasyl", the account you denied any knowledge of, ended up being a colleague?). We might be able to work something out there
...

Erikl86
08-23-2020, 02:00 PM
I know some people will consider this biased and not correct, but I remark it anyway, because imo its relevat here: Poles are known throughout history to be obstreperous, at least notably over average. I think this statement is also not rejected by most Poles. Ive the impression there have been bannings of Poles more than one time ultimately because they have been obstreperous when it comes to exact application of rules. As a wild guess I guess this is was also the case when Tomenable (he was not rude in expressions afaik) was banned. This is somewhat a pity. I appreciated very much the substantial contributions of both lukaszM and Tomenable.

Id promote applyling some kind of a (restricted) "Pole-excuse" for obstreperousity when it comes to perfectly obeying rules. This would maybe help to avoid not really necessary losses of good contributions to this forum. :-)

I will go off topic here and say that, despite being an extremely sarcastic person myself, and have absolutely no regard to modern political correctness or moral lecturing, I think that as a person of German ethnicity and from Germany, you should think twice before stereotyping against Poles of all people, considering the relatively recent atrocities your country and your people have inflicted upon the Polish nation. Also, I allow myself to raise history in that context as you yourself use the Imperial German flag rather than the modern German flag - while from a different era than when said atrocities occurred of course, still shows me you are no stranger to history.

Administrator
08-23-2020, 02:33 PM
ADMIN

This thread has served it's purpose and will be closed shortly.

Any members wishing to receive additional info about this subject - Please PM one of us and we'll gladly oblige per our TOS.

Thanks all for your input and consideration.