Bad news for cheaters on Typeracer – and other new improvements!

Posted on August 4, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Hi Typeracers!

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In the heat of mid-summer, what could be better than sitting in the air-conditioning and playing some Typeracer? That’s how I feel anyway. Regardless of whether you enjoy Typeracing in the summer, or actually going outside, today I’m pleased to announced some recent changes on Typeracer. First and foremost, we’re taking new steps toward resolving the single biggest complaint that we’ve heard from racers over the past few years: people with too much time on their hands, and no respect for fair competition, have been getting away with cheating on Typeracer. It caused legitimate typists to lose races they should have won, and filled up the high scores with users who didn’t deserve to be there. In our defense, we’ve always tried hard to fight them. Here’s what we did in recent years:

  • Captcha-based anti-cheat test when users reach super-high speeds
  • Removing guests from the high scores
  • Back-end tools for identifying cheaters
  • The “Report user” button
  • Temporary banning of users flagged by admins
  • Back-end account deletion

Unfortunately it was never enough! I swear these people are like flies, and by the time you kill one, it’s already spawned multiple replacements. Cheaters could create two new accounts in the time it took us to delete one; the process wasn’t efficient enough. To make it worse, due to our database infrastructure, a simple deletion of a user’s account could cause minor database corruption in other users’ data if a single server timeout happened while processing the deletion. So, over time, I’d say we’ve been losing the battle to cheaters.  But starting right now, we’re no longer going to lose this battle: cheaters will be hunted down. Here are the improvements that have been introduced:

New Features

Right click a user and click

Right click a user and click “Report user”, click the link, and fill out the form indicating why you are reporting him. Note that Aram90 isn’t actually a cheater 🙂

  • Improved report-user functionality, which now integrates into back-end admin tools, making it even easier to identify not only cheaters, but users reported for profanity, harassment, and other violations.
  • Cheaters/abusers can be banned in 20 seconds, after which they will be logged out, and never be able to login again
  • Cheaters/abusers will be removed from the high scores immediately, without risk of data loss.
  • Cheaters/abusers will be automatically banned after enough reputable users report them
  • We can un-ban people if we ever make a mistake or decide to give someone a second chance, and their data will not be lost.

We hope these changes can help clean up Typeracer. Please actively use the updated “Report user” functionality and help clean up Typeracer. That’s about it, but before I wrap it up, I want to point out that this recent release contains other improvements too. Alex fixed many known bugs found in the past year, improved the auto-updating of the high scores, and turned the traffic light sideways (while you’re waiting for a race to start). That last part might seem odd, but it will make sense in coming months as other related changes are made. So, stay tuned! Hope everyone is having a good summer, and until next time, happy racing, and see you on the track!

-David Pritts (valikor)

More Screenshots

Love it or hate it (yes, we know it occasionally yields false positives), the anti-cheat test has eliminated huge numbers of cheaters and helped keep your races clean and fun.

Love it or hate it (yes, we know it occasionally yields false positives), the anti-cheat test has eliminated huge numbers of cheaters and helped keep your races clean and fun.

This cheater was incredibly annoying and persistent! At least he was creative with his user names, though, unlike some other cheaters who created lovely display names such as

This cheater was incredibly annoying and persistent! At least he was creative with his user names, though, unlike some other cheaters who created lovely display names such as “LEARN TO CHEAT MOTH*** F****R”.

If admins were online at exactly the right times, we could clean up the high scores in real-time. Note #7 and #10 on the list :)

If admins were online at exactly the right times, though, we could clean up the high scores in real-time. Note #7 and #10 on the list 🙂

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44 Responses to “Bad news for cheaters on Typeracer – and other new improvements!”

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That is awesome! You guys just keep on upgrading a site that is already awesome! Dem cheaterz are goin’ down!

This is really great Typeracer, thanks for all the hard work, I have one more question (you can reply to it in PM on the site if you want), does the new traffic lights update fix the problem people used to have where if they were in a private racetrack and they got a highscore and had to do a captcha, sometimes the traffic light will block a lot of the captcha? Thanks! My username on Typeracer is wildlife.

Lewis, the only thing you need to know about the new traffic lights is that: the previous ones used to give racers positive lag starts depending on their internet connections at and how fast they start – at times more than doupling and tripling the start speeds. I’m sure everyone of us in the megaracer category has experienced that… some (*cough* *cough* Shazzy *cough*) more than others. But what the current lag start does is that it not only takes away the lag starts (which is a good thing) but it has replaced the start with a low wpm no matter how fast you start – odds are that it’s going to show you anything between 50 wpm and 100 wpm. This should not be the case at all – it is a problem and needs to be fixed. The most noticeable difference is on the leaderboard where all the fast typists who used to do 200 wpm plus on the leaderboard from time to time are usually on there with a lower wpms nowadays.

It’s cool that you noticed the difference! We put in a lot of effort when redesigning the traffic lights to ensure that the clocks of all the racers are perfectly synchronized with the server, which means that now everyone starts at exactly the right time, whereas in the past there would have been give or take +/- 500 milliseconds of deviation in the browser from the server’s start time. I think the low starting WPM that you’ve noticed is probably just a result of the more accurate time-keeping that we’re doing at the beginning of the race. I think it makes sense that the initial WPM you’re seeing right now is lower than before (when you might have been able to “jump the gun”), because everyone’s reaction time to type the first word is slower than for the rest of the words (as the data we’ve collected demonstrates). Either way, the WPM estimate that you’re shown while the race is in progress is actually your WPM from several hundred milliseconds in the past (depending on your internet connection latency), and the exact WPM can only be calculated at the end of the race.

Alex, maximumchris here, I’m the anonymous guest you replied to. I have no idea, where you collected the data from but the assumption that start wpms are lower than the wpms you achieve mid-race is COMPLETELY wrong. When you are completely familiar with the texts (esp. as there are a limited number of texts here on typeracer), you are bound to start the races as fast as you possibly can and since it is the start you are less prone to mistakes and the speeds shown there should technically be higher than the speeds that you achieve anywhere mid-race except on your best di-grams of tri-grams that you encounter in it. Once again, I re-iterate, this fact is amply demonstrated on any other typing softwares encoded with java/flash etc. that you may come across in the internet. Also take into account the fact that you have to type a word such as “thing” at the start of a sentence. How fast can you type that? Well, put it in a custom typing software and type it and it’ll show 300 wpm as your speed or more. This is because it is easier to type a single word when your focus is certainly on it. The same goes for the starts on texts, unless the starts themselves are made of hard words, there’s no reason why the starts should have lower wpms. Also, the most difficult thing about the current system is that, although the slow start issue evens out for longer texts, it has technically become impossible to type higher wpms on shorter texts when they should be the ones yielding the highest wpms for fast typists on this site. You’d think people running a typing website should at least be competent enough to know the abcd’s of typing without it being explained to them.

That’s a great good news you got there, Typeracer. And by the way, thanks with the news. Sure all cheaters on this site will be banned when they got caught. I like the changes so much and you’ve done pretty well. But I’ve got one suggestion with the anti-cheat test. Can you make the test harder? The hardest test will be great. I’m suggesting MAKING A SENTENCE OUT OF THE GIVEN LETTERS BELOW, like that. With a timer, of course. If it’s okay. Just reply to my account here in Typeracer, if my suggestion is an OKAY. By the way, my username is alexdc13.

“the amount of races that I quit to keep my average up” made me laugh. You actually deserve the ban, sir. :]

This is beyond ridiculous now. There are multiple cheaters STILL on the all-time leaderboard. And there are cheaters that still come and cheat and reporting them do no good. And as a last strike you have banned my account “maximumchris”. I mean are you guys crazy? Not a single one of the 11 thousand races that I did were cheats. Why the hell did you go and do that for? Watch my typing video of me typing 177 wpm on a text, you wouldn’t even dream about typing a 160 on in your wildest dreams, you incompetent mofos. http://goo.gl/ZTfXJy. Jesus Christ, do you even research? Know what fast typing is like? You can’t run this site with your eyes with both your eyes closed. I’m writing this in disbelief and utter annoyance. A blog post which is a complete fail and the moderators are absolutely inept.

Apologies for the redundancy and the typos, I can’t believe this and the ridiculousness, is out of this world. Just a simple googling of a username to see whether that user has videos, would be enough to prove authenticity. It’s not really that difficult is it?.
I mean it’s easy to imagine you doing this, since you still have cheaters like lambomurgicelago and Alan SZ on the leaderboard while banning legit people like Zevus on there. RIP typeracer. I hope all fast typists ditch this site.

The hours and the dedication that I put into that account and the amount of races that I quit to keep my average up means a LOT to me, Mr. David Pritts and Mr. Alex. I hope you’re not going to take that away from me, just because a no-life, jealous loser reported my account. If you want I can make a hundred thousand more videos of 170 wpm plus typing to convince you.

I have to back Chris up on the part about cheaters. There are still too many cheaters appearing in the top 10 and the Fastest Typists tab (Seriously, what is Chanman still doing on the rankings…). I don’t know why Chris was banned, but I am as close to 100% certain as I can be that he is not a cheater and has not cheated in the past. Perhaps it was for behavior, and in that case I apologize for talking about things out of my view, though I think there are a few others here who should have been banned before he was if that was the case.

David, I understand you are probably busy with other more important things, but this site lacks a lot of credibility with obvious cheaters still appearing in the top 10 lists (scores of 300+ are all over the place), and several cheaters still appearing in the Fastest Typists tab. I chat with typists in racetracks on this site, and there has always been a sense of paranoia surrounding fast typists because of the lack of action regarding cheating on this site. After reading this blog post, I assumed immediate action would take place, but it has been nearly two weeks now, and not much has changed. If cheaters like screamingspacebar and Chanman could be “banned in 20 seconds,” why are they still here? There are users who pay money for premium accounts on this site, and while I understand a great deal (maybe all) of that money probably goes to hosting this site and keeping the servers up, these users should not pay for a service that will allow cheaters to take away accomplishments of legitimate users and stain the credibility of the site they use.

-Michael DeRoche

Hi Michael,

Thanks for your honest feedback and I’m sorry you feel our action is not immediate enough. Since the blog post, 59 users have been banned (including 1 of the 2 users you mentioned above, who was banned today). You’re right that there are still many more that need to be dealt with, so I’d encourage everyone to use the Report User functionality to help us identify them all over time.

If a user isn’t banned, it’s either because we don’t have a strong enough reason to believe that user is breaking any rules, or we are unaware of him or her.

Thanks!

David Pritts
Typeracer

It’s been 3 days now and I am yet to hear the reason for my ban. I have spoken to my friends in the typing community a couple of whom have addressed you over mail and Michael Deroche has even written a comment on here supporting me which you are yet to approve. You (moderators/David Pritts/Alex) just keep ignorning everything. All of this for what? My rant on the lower wpms affecting our scores and saying the moderators need to be taught the “abcd of typing”? If that’s the case it is extremely petty of you to ban a person’s hard work and efforts spanning a period of more than a year and a half just for saying something you disagree with, albeit I do admit I could have voiced my opinions in a calmer tone. I would really like my account unbanned and stop being unfairly treated like this. Thank you very much.

It’s been four days now. Everyday I come back from work and check this place for an update which is never coming.
No reply to my mails, my private messages, the mails from my friends in the typing community you….. and you are not approving comments from others supporting me here.
What I said earlier in my blog comment wasn’t meant to be disrespectful but rather strongly worded, after the years of inaction I have been subject to on this site. Perhaps it came across as such, but it was not my intention. I have apologized before and do again. Once again, I beg you to not intermingle the two (my comments on the blog post and my race history account on which I have worked so hard on), I would really like to have my race account back, I’ve spent far too much time with it and am highly attached to it. Thanks a lot!

Day 5. Still haven’t heard from you. All those races and hours of grinding are probably down the drain forever. But you know what? I don’t even care anymore now. You can just take the account away, but not the memories. It even makes perfect sense. Cheaters still there and legit typists banned from the high score list. Typeracer wouldn’t be complete without it. I just went over the all-time leaderboards again and they’re filled with so many cheaters, it’s not even funny. And my account, after all the time I invested into it – was nowhere to be found. I felt it had come full circle.
Good luck with continuing your Hilteresque treatment with others as well. I hope you continue with your inaction on this site and go on banning everybody else who doesn’t agree with you to keep their mouths shut. Yeah, good luck with that. This site never meant anything more than a cheaters paradise anyway. Typists should take the stats here with a pinch of salt – high scores on almost every text infested with cheaters. It’s funny, looking back at the times I spent here, always trying to suggest something that would benefit typeracer, that I am befallen with this fate. Even looking at the screenshot in the blog you pasted, I was #10 there with the capitalized words “DAVID PRITTS, DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE CHEATERS”. Always vigilante, trying to keep typeracer as clean as possible. One more voice has been silenced. Congratulations, Pritts and Alex.

David, I was perhaps too quick to make a comment. Thank you for the work you have done to remove cheaters from the high scores. It’s great seeing legitimate scores across the board now. I like the new traffic lights too – after recording some races and timing them, I can see that Typeracer is now very accurate with WPM. Keep up the good work!

This is nice, but it’s going to be really hard in some cases to detect when someone is cheating. I can’t think of a really good way to prevent false positives, but perhaps asking the user suspected of cheating to record a video of their hands while typing might work, as it’s hard to fake something like that. However, that has the obvious problem of being at the very least annoying for the user. It’s a hard job, but I’m glad you guys are taking the first steps to stop this problem on your site.

Can you guys update the websites UI? It looks very outdated

Nice. It is indeed bad news for cheaters like Maximumchris.

Hi shazzy,
nice to see you still holding a grudge 😀
And bad news for you: i got unbanned cause I never cheated 🙂

My account maximumchris got unbanned and maximumchris got banned afterwards. Is this a joke? It’s a premium account! I paid for it and have never cheated on it!

maxchris and maximumchris2 both are banned now? WOW I don’t understand this. Please somebody help me! Combined total of 30,000 races on those accounts and many of those races were leaderboard topping scores on many texts, I have videos on youtube of my typing (a total of 5 now, I could make a dozen more if you want). I almost exclusively raced on private tracks for a majority of my 19 K races on maxchris2 account with kevinski1, kellysgreens, deroche1, pzula and others who could verify my authenticity. I have never cheated on even a single race of those combined 30 thousand races. I don’t understand why you’re doing this to me again and again. You do understand a person wouldn’t pay for a premium on this site and have that many races (let alone 19 thousand in a year itself if he weren’t THAT attached to typing) and you just ban me again and again for no reason. I do not understand this! I need justice, Someone please help.

Maximumchris,

Hello. The multiple reasons for your ban have been communicated to you via email, as well as steps you can take to potentially be unbanned. Please stop spamming on this blog, or else you won’t be allowed to post further comments here.

Thanks,

David Pritts
Typeracer

You got banned because you were cheating. Play fair.

Marosa, I would recommend you watch this video of me typing 177 wpm on a really difficult text which is the 167th best score anyone has ever managed to get in that text (as per Seanwrona’s website) all-time since typeracer site started in 2008 (in a list filled with cheaters like Chanman and fast typists like Sean appearing more than once on the high score), every night before going to sleep.

Maybe that will stop you from making baseless accusations. Have a good day, sir.

Oops… forgot the link… here it is:

That video is meaningless unless you show your hands. One could easily edit that video and enter the sound of typing.

Let me guess, you’re quite an average typist yourself aren’t you? It would explain the jealousy and the trolling.
I would rather take the word of Sean Wrona or some typist who actually types that fast over someone like you, on whether my video is real or edited.
Oh, btw, here is a video of me typing 230 wpm on captcha after multiple attempts (which having typed in the high 260s range before, is rather substandard for me – I’m thinking of recording a new one soon). Don’t say that this is faked too, cause if it is, then I would be better off working in a Hollywood Animation Studio over playing typeracer – something which I would even prefer.

Just came back on Typeracer after a few months out.
The new traffic light system has a serious functionality issue as the signal for being able to start the race is the green light, but at some point between the amber light and the green light, the whole traffic light bar starts to fade out! So when the green light comes, it is indistinct!
Surely the whole traffic light bar should remain at full opaqueness until *after* the green light has come on and the race has started?
I find it difficult to gauge exactly when to start, and I DO like to start at the ‘B’ of the ‘Bang’ if possible (as I’m sure most others do! 🙂 ).

I’d also recommend that the green light for starting the race comes on at the same moment the timer counts down to zero, as then people could either watch the lights or the timer as the prefer.

Atleast cheat in some game you can actually have fun or gain something..instead of cheating on a typing website lol

Maximumchris IS a cheater with a big mouth. Not much more to say about that. Stop cheating and you won’t get banned. It’s that simple, dude.

I don’t really understand why maximum’s accounts were banned. From watching his typing videos it’s pretty evident that he’s not cheating.

Thanks for this mate.
To be honest, as i already “spammed” a lot on this blog, I’ll clear this up for people still wondering: I did get unbanned eventually following a series of dogged unrelenting emails to the admins of this site. Apparently, the reason I got banned in the first place was for creating a multitude of troll accounts in the past which were all registered with my mail id which basically violated almost every rule typeracer had (I admit, I had a lot of free hand on my hands back when I was new here, but I had my reasons too, but that’s a story for another day) and nothing whatsoever to do with the legitimacy of my two accounts, maximumchris and maximumchris2. I re-iterate that not even a single race on my maximumchris and maximumchris2 accounts were cheat and that is pretty self-evident from the videos that I have.
I wish David had informed me of the reasons of my ban earlier, would have saved a lot of ranting here, instead of going round and round about it.
Anyway, long story short, I apologized multiple times for my wrongdoing and I did get one of my accounts unbanned, while the other is still pending review or something.
Anyway, thanks for this, it’s a welcome relief to see your support – what with all the hate in this blog directed at me (yeah, I know people are jealous and just love to hate successful people in whatever fields.. kind of. reminds me of those nerds sitting in their homes and screaming “steroids” at those people who have a body to die for, instead of doing the hard work necessary to go and get the same for themselves, whenever I frequent a fitness channel on youtube).
Oh well, whatever, I’m ranting again. I’ll stop. Bye. C’ya on the tracks!

I’m number #7 😉
Thanks for doing something, that dude and all other cheaters are annoying.

haha, # 7 is ME!!!!!

Hi I play typeracer it is soo doul make it more cool like there are things where you can skip words but you have to earn them like you can call them blasters just some advice

That’s wonderful! I, myself, don’t like cheaters and would get rid of them immediately if I could. I appreciate all of your hard work, guys! But I wonder why these people cheat on a typing website! It’s not like a Minecraft game or something or other. I agree, Mads Anderson, that those cheaters ain’t gonna stand a chance!

this website is OK, i mean it’s pretty easy to win a race if you can type fast.

Can you please add a feature where we can change the color of the highlighted words on typeracer? It’s very bad for people with color blindness and it’s overall really hard to read on the white background. I would be more than willing to pay for a premium membership for that option.

well it’s OK, but dis cheating, and please change the background from white to any other color apart from black i can say Dylan is right. If you can type fast this website is good. THANKS .

the typeracer is great,,,plzzz make it available for “”asees””

Why doesn’t this game allow typos? It limits the actual typing speed of many players in that they have to press backspace over and over again instead of ignoring the typo and moving on. This game should accept typos and just knock points off the accuracy.

There is something strange in my profile when I go to Avast safe zone browser and type as Bible type racer and login then my profile shows my correct high score as 89 WPM but when I login through google browser with no bible topic then it shows my old high score as 82 WPM and also the Avast browser shows that I have completed 261 races while google browser shows that I have completed 414 races. I also save screen shots of these 2 browser behaviours and my high score which is not updated. Where can I post them?

Sweep away the cheaters!


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