No matter where you go or what you do you are bound to find cheaters. Whether it's the con man who scams people out of their money, the guy counting cards in Vegas, Barry Bonds cr eaming and clearing, or your little sister sneaking money out of the bank when you are playing monopoly. WINNING becomes so ingrained in some, that cheating is just a means to an end. Cheaters feel no guilt because they don't think they've done anything to feel guilty for. Their objective is to win, they won. Damn anything else in between. Some would call that ambition.
Is it an obsession to win that causes this behavior? I don't think so. At least not that the "win" itself is gratifying. Afterall, if you cheated to win then how can you feel good about yourself for winning? No, it's the adulation you hope to receive from being a winner. For the older folks here, think Milli Vanilli. They certainly didn't obtain any gratification from what they created as they created nothing. The adulation had to be intoxicating, though. The money, the girls, the lifestyle. Their entire existence was a scam. Duping people out of their money. Were they sorry? Sure seemed remorseful AFTER THEY GOT CAUGHT.
I guess my point is cheating takes on many forms and many situations.
What does this have to do with Fan Nation? Well, anyone who frequents throwdowns already knows where I'm going with this.
Cheating on TD's has always existed in various forms. Some of them are technically legitimate but the average person would consider them otherwise. There is a fine line between staying within the rules while still doing things you KNOW are going to give you an unfair advantage and cheating. A very fine line. Whatever helps you sleep at night, I guess.
Multiple accounts have long been abused on Fan Nation. Some claim they do it for the greater good, such as the so-called "TD Ninjas" who accept what THEY perceived to be a stupid TD then forfeit. Sorry guys, you aren't even good vigilantes. It isn't up to YOU to decide what should or shouldn't be a legit topic. Certainly there are some stupid ones out there, but I've seen plenty of legit ones killed as well. Yeah, you guys are cheaters. The rule on the site is one person, one account. If you want to play those games with your main account, I have no problem with it. When you start an ILLEGAL second account to play God, that's where you become a cheater.
Others start multis just to mess with people. They think it makes them cool to fool people into believing they are someone they aren't. Or worse, they start an account with the express pupose of targeting someone. Still others start them to get back at someone who they feel wronged them but don't want to challenge publicly from their main account. Yeah, all cheaters.
We have the casual cheater. This person just fanmails everyone they know individually knowing the vast majority who respond will vote for them. It's human nature. If someone asks you to look at something they are involved in, you naturally go into it with an eye toward the person who asked. Particularly if you don't know their opponent. Even if they don't agree with you, they are likely to vote for you because the KNOW you and YOU asked them to check it out. This kind of cheater is brilliant because they aren't technically cheating. Not breaking any rules at all.
Next we have the blatent cheater. This is a guy who cheats, he knows you know he cheats and he not only doesn't care, he laughs at you. Why? Because even once he's caught, he's just going to create more new accounts and do it all over again. To this guy YOU are the fool for NOT cheating.
And, of course, there is the "hope I don't get caught" cheater. This fool actually proves he is something less than a great writer just before he comes up with an argument that looks like it came straight out of Sport Illustrated. Well, it probably did. This guy always gets caught, though. When someone who doesn't seem capable of putting together a coherent sentence suddenly pops off with a well written and researched rebuttal even the most naive of readers see the red flags. Then the race is on. No, not on who will win the TD. On who will be the first to prove this fool is cheating.
Finally we have the most nefarious cheater of all. This person creates multiple accounts and assigns a different personality to each. He doesn't necessarily vote with all of his accounts, he just uses the multiples to convince people of one thing or another. On the lower levels of this cheater we have the people who get a kick out of messing with people but don't want to use their main account to do so. On the higher levels of this cheater you have the most dangerous cheater of them all. He can be your best friend on one account and worst enemy on another. He can get you to reveal things you'd NEVER reveal to most people simply by playing one persona against another. This person isn't cheating to win a TD, they are cheating to win your unfettered confidence. Far worse than the outcome of any TD if you allow it to happen.
Cheaters are as close as the inbox of your fan mail account. People you'd NEVER suspect are in fact guilty. If I named names just of those I know about, it would be a virtual who's who of Fan Nation. They always have a justification for their actions. Yet you are left to wonder whether they are trying to convince you, or themselves..Simple solution. Don't cheat or do anything that even suggests you might and you'll be fine.
I missed a category or two of cheaters initially.
There is the group of "friends" who all join at or around the same time. This can be real life friends where one discovers the site and gets his buds to join all at once, or it can be at the office where one guy/gal gets all of his/her co-workers to join. This is another nefarious group as none of them have any real investment in Fan Nation, they only care about each other. Think Gruden and his "co-workers" or, more currently, the havertown gang. Again, they aren't technically cheating, but what they do is akin to it.
There is also what I call bloc voting. This is where a group of people, usually within a private group, discuss intentionally voting for or against a particular TDer and follow through in a completely biased manner. Yes, this is rampant on Fan Nation and Yes every group where it occurs will deny it. I've been IN groups that were doing it while simultaneously denying it was happening. I'm no longer in those groups. Again, not technically cheating, but also not exactly a fair playing field. These are vigilantes out to "teach them a lesson" and couldn't care less about arguments.
And we have the Husband/Wife/Child/Roomate. So, when Dawgee votes for Detroit Steel and vice versa is it cheating? Not technically, I suppose. Two accounts, same household. Does anyone believe there isn't a bias, though? Come on. I can see it now:
Dawgee: "I'm voting against you, you were way out argued"
Steel: "You're sleeping on the couch for the next week"
Dawgee: "After careful reconsideration, your arguments were obviously far superior. What was I thinking?...baby?...can I at least get a pillow?"
Would it be OK if I get my wife, both my daughters, my mother, brother, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law to all join FN and send them all of my TD's to vote on? I mean all of them are sports fans to an extent. If I tack on friends and more distant relatives like 2nd cousins, of which I have 23, I'd never lose a TD...