elon

Is this a poker site? Does it even really want to be one?

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I doubt anyone at GoP/Youda/Orange is old enough to remember the cheap gimmicky off-strip Vegas motels of the 60s/70s. I was only 5 years old myself when I visited one. (Don't ask how old the hooker was)

Back then, it was a common gimmick to spin for everything. There were banks of slots as you left the luggage area. Checking out of you motel? Eating at a nonfancy restaurant? Checking in at the airline ticket counter? It wasn't uncommon to spin for a prize (usu a small discount or upgrade). I don't know why they were everywhere. Maybe there were a lot of surplus mechanical slot machines that they couldn't use anymore. Maybe it was just a psychological marketing ploy. Maybe the casinos even supported it to get you in the gamboooool mood.

While I'm sure you have thought your plans through carefully to "maximize the return" of your reward dollar by encouraging wishful thinking vs. solid rewards, I feel obligated to remind you that you'll never limit the heedless all-inners [aka "bingo players") that you claim to be concerned about, when you steadily move EVERYTHING towards random luck. Ever since you introduced the slot machine last year, you've been trying to FORCE us to play slots and EMPHASIZED random luck. WE ARE POKER PLAYERS. Poker is a game of skill (with an element of luck).

When you login, you frequently are offered a free spin. To get bonus (x2) point time, you spin a slot every 4hrs. You can also do daily activities, but slots are on that list too. What do you win for Team challenges? Various types of spins!

Super Spins, Mega Spins, Ultra Spins, Bronze tickets, Silver tickets, Gold tickets, Diamond tickets, Ruby tickets -- if nothing else, it bespeaks a lack of imagination. Spins are easy.

Meanwhile, you've steadily stripped down the poker options due to "cheating". No more multitable tournaments. No more per hand-credit at single table tournaments. No more private/invitation rooms. I agree that there were cheaters, but these were among your most popular options, POKER options -- all now gone. What's been added? Variations on the same-old plus higher stakes. No other games but No Limit (Royal is just an easily implemented variant). Sure, programming Omaha might be a serious project, but Limit or Pot-LImit Hold'em should be easy to do. You already have the buttons: just remove "all in" and change or eliminate the slider. DRAW poker with require a little change in the mechanics, but you've had years to implement it, and never even considered any variants. Instead you added blackjack and slots. It's beginning to look like you aren't even thinking POKER at all

And now All-inners are THE SCOURGE (as cheaters once were), and you're changing the structure to fight them -- and once again throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Less poker, more random spins only encourages the "pray and play" you CLAIM to oppose.

If you want to run a slot parlor, just go out and do that. It's certainly 1000x easier to program a slot machine, and takes far less staff to run. But no, you probably shouldn't. About a million other sites have been doing this for decades, spending almost exclusively on marketing vs anything else.

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I don't want you to think I'm bashing GoP, Youda, Orange, etc. I'm trying to provide a viewpoint that seems to have been overlooked and make constructive suggestions to improve the POKER experience.

1) I suggested Limit and Pot Limit Hold'Em. I realize that these don't typically generate the chip flow/turnover of NLHE, but they could, if you only institute them at the higher venues (Vegas, The Strip -- maybe something modest in Gold Rocks as an intro). These betting forms are more resistant to all-in mania. DISCLOSURE: I don't personally play these forms, but many people find them less threatening and "dangerous" to their stacks. This lets them focus on their play.

2) Multi-Table Tournaments (MTTs) are probably the most popular form in live casinos/poker rooms. People will drive to a venue to play a tournament who wouldn't make a trip for a cash game. The WSOP and other major NLHE competitions are MTTs. I fully agree that cheating and chip dumping were real issues in the Big Win, and one that should concern every Big Win player, but for every cheater, there were 1000s who enjoyed them. It' a very different game. I feel that you could dissuade cheating by other means vs, simply shutting down all the MTTs.

Among such changes:

  • make them a once-a-day (or less) event  with a single buy-in (no rebuys)  vs the old back-to-back (often nearly continuous) separate BigWins at each level with unlimited re-buys
  • flatten the payout structure so the Top Winners don't collect such giant payouts but more people get a reward worth pursuing,
  • create several smaller tournaments (e.g. named after Texas cities) rather than one giant tournament and only allow players to play ONE of them on any given day, creating smaller tournaments/reward pools and makinging any cheating "local" vs. "global".
  • Change the form of rewards, as well as the reward structure; e.g. instead of big cash rewards, top winners could win trophies which they could display OR cash for chips. Most would keep them for bragging rights, which would actually deflate the outstanding chip pool.

I wouldn't, of course, suggest doing all of these at once. These are just a few ideas from a few minutes' thought. I'm sure you could come up with many others. Each of these should be implementable by extending/"rebranding" features already in the software.

3) You have Heads-Up poker, but it is exiled to its own little ghetto. It's not readily visible to most players browsing the tables unless they (know to/think to) go looking for it. Instead of having a chip buy-in, it requires gold coins. You could do something more withthe existing heads-up software instead of exiling it to the hnterlands like blackjack (which doesn't belong in a poker room, IMHO). Consider how prominently you are pushing slots (another non-poker game), making them impossible to ignore, and essentially REQUIRED to spin. Doesn't Heads-up Hold Em, a legitimate form of POKER that you have ALREADY IMPLEMENTED, deserve better than that? With a few changes in game structure (e.g. not just the existing HU Challenge), rewards and placement, HU could have a real place in the GoP poker ecosystem.

Edited by elon
typos

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I'm just so sick of the all in players.  And even if I wait till I'm dealt a descent hand, pair of As for example it's just a crap shoot not cards.   A few games like this in a row and I just log off and do something else.   AGAIN and AGAIN.

Why don't you try a few tables with betting limits.  Only way you can end up the winner is to actually play and win enough till others are eliminated.  Not everyone will play there but for those of us who are sick of a big dice game, I sure would like it.    Sit and go style, but a top bet limit.

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It;'s not the players, ARTMAKERJEN, haven't you figured that out already? The game is programmed that way, that is to favor allin-going players. Can't you see the pattern, ALREADY? How many  0,666%  chance river cards losses will it take for you to finally accept this as an auction platform, and behave accordingly?? Haven't you noticed that the actual number of your folded hands that would have won the pot is RIDICULOUSLY  high? Can't you see that cards are PREDETERMINED, PREFLOP, so as to make up for "interesting" hands? Haven't you observed the exclamation mark in daily activity, how it flashes BEFORE the hand is over, say in blackjack?

Even your average thanker has figured that out by now.. (greetings to ALL of them btw, and of course their sweet mothers <3 )

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What I can't figure out is why would they do this?  If you play free, even for just a week, it's obvious just with the ticket spins and the daily free spins that you NEVER win the really big ones, but the little ones are consistent.  That is not a "random" chance thing, it's a poorly coded algorithm.   They would make more money with a fair game than with this.  I sure won't pay for this.  If I pay for a poker game, it will be with real cards, real people, and for real prizes.  I play here for free and just for fun and even that, when as you say, you lose "Interesting hands" over and over for some all in player with a crap hand, I don't even stick around for free.  If this is their plan, it's a bad one. 

Now they do have some things right.  I enjoy the silly hats.  And all the free junk as soon as I log in.  At least I can play some.  But lose over and over to the all inners, I get fed up and walk.  So this is something they might need to address.   And the only reason I keep posting.    Honest, lose lose lose.... I really didn't lose anything.  When it gets old I go do something else.  

 

I wonder if anyone tracks just when a person leaves.  I know I have that kind of tracking on my own site.  I know how long people stay and what page they leave from.  So perhaps losing over and over then leaving might mean something to someone in programing. 

Or not.  Don't really care.

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It's called capitalism. Apparently, the number of players that enjoys being humiliated like that, and comes back for more is larger than those quitting.

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Today, ONCE AGAIN this stupid game will NOT remember my settings.  I have the news on while playing and kept getting cheers and clapping... then I realized it's this stupid game.  Checked settings, sound, music EVERYTHING IS OFF!!!!! Thankfully I was only in a spin and play, and as USUAL all in all in all in all in all in all in..... So damn dumb.  Not a card ever hit the table.  The way to handle this is fold fold fold fold fold... wait till I get something promising and hopefully (more often than not) must just be the game's way of evening things out but I have beat more all in players than I can count.  Not always, sometimes I get a pair of As and lose to someone with crap.  But more often than not the fold fold thing works.

not today and the annoying sound on top of it, once again, I'm out. 

Daughter installed an old game I haven't played in years.    I'll do that.   Waiting for my car to get fixed and I'll be at the beach instead of this puter.

This game is rapidly getting old.  I looked forward to opening my chests but I can't even get out of silver lately.   Screwit

 

BTW... your right about the capitalism.  BUT... there is good management and then there is not so good.  Businesses that thrive and those that struggle and possibly fail.  Sending ANYONE away annoyed is not at all something a game site would want.  Some people like the all in play.  Clearly a lot do not.  Now this could be fixed easy enough, set up tables with a betting limit.  Forces people to actually play cards not dice. Only a true player will win.   And if you don't like betting limits you don't have to play there.  The good thing about this site is all the variety of tables.   So fix the thing so many complain about.

Or not.   Send people packin. 

Edited by ArtmakerJen

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Today someone in our team, good player, up and quit.   SEVERAL others are griping about how this game has changed.  It's not poker anymore. 

I just played the vegas sit and go.  ALL BUT TWO HANDS I get low ball cards.  2/3, 2/5  Made it to third place just by folding and letting the all in players kill each other off.   But actual hands?   NOTHING.

 

This challenge I think I'll just log in, collect free crap, spin the wheel, cash in my tickets ALWAYS FOR LOW BALL PRIZES TOO!!!!!

How is it a diamond ticket doesn't pay anything more than the bronze? 

This is like a rigged carnival game.  No way to actually win anything. 

Please put this game back to how it was BEFORE Ruby came out.   Even that wasn't entirely fair. Better than it is now though.

So... pogo bookmarked, pokerstars, vegas world, big fish games.   Haven't played any of them since I joined this.   Maybe it's time to revisit some other sites.

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Actually, my point was that there are numerous (subtle?) structural reasons why GoP is STRUCTURED to ENCOURAGE bingo players and all-in, and to suggest ways to transition to more reasonable poker, which will inevitably become necessary.

Don't bother threatening them with "everyone leaving". If you check the Steam traffic charts (I assume the Steam client is reasonably representative of the other clients, like Facebook and the GoP HTML server), looking at June (to control a large number of other variables, such as vacations, academic year, outside weather/activities and holidays) you'll see this pattern in the number of players:

June 2016: avg 159; peak 285

June 2017: avg 195;  peak 363

June 2018: avg 328; peak 637

June 2019: avg 493.5; peak 990

I'm sure that the management is acutely aware of their usage figures. Ranting based on your personal wishes and subjective experience isn't going to be productive. I lead a successful, often Top-50, team myself, and though half my loyal longterm player-friends have quit recently (and a similar fraction at a few major changes in the past), I don't expect my team's experiences to matter much compared to overall game traffic.

I assume that, with all the money and staff paychecks on the line, they have had at least a couple of genuine experts designing the pay of the game. There are HUGE structural factors encouraging bingo/all-inners, and they are clearly designed that way. They are designed for fantasy play, NOT based on the corresponding rules/rates at real cash sites or poker rooms, where they would never be tolerated by people who feel a real pinch in their wallets (C'mon, where on earth do BEGINNERS play thousands or more per bet? For example: the initial SB+BB/Stack ratios at S'n'G start you relatively short-stacked and get rapidly worse at higher levels. The bet time limit leaves barely sufficient time to think AND use the slider to precisely craft a bet with the clunky slider (under optimal local conditions, ideal player device interface precision [touchscreens don't qualify], and all players at ideal physical ability), FORCING players to use the pre-set buttons, which essentially turn the game into "Pot Limit Hold'Em plus an All-In option". Given that, it's no surprise that "all-in" becomes the "nuclear option" for many. It's inevitable.

Don't get me wrong. The game IS beatable though the well-disciplined application of some modest skill (bingo players are bad players) but who plays to exercise their discipline? I do, but I don't blame anyone who doesn't find that fun. The fact is: I'm not a particularly good TXHE player(indeed, far from the best on my own team) but I've managed to climb steadily to the VIP+ Billion chip level. I'm sure MANY of you are better than me. Yet though my chip accumulation is increasing, the game isn't as fun for me as it was. It will always be more fun for those who don't know (or care) any better. When I leave GoP (despite the convenience of online play which hasn't been legal for cash play in my US state for over a decade) GoP won't care. I'll be playing at local cardrooms and a casino that just opened nearby. It won't be a big jump for me: 15 years ago, I played Omaha High profitably at the many online sites that once served the US. Back then I played Omaha because I sucked at Texas Hold'em. GoP 1-3 helped me learn TXHE -- so thanks for that.

But if there's one thing I've learned from many years of entrepreneurial ventures and startups, it's that the causes of eventual failure are generally discernible from first PRINCIPLES --but invisible to the PRINCIPALS (sorry for the pun) involved in daily operations and planning, until it is too late. The seeds of destruction are taking root even while success seems burgeoning. Ultimately, you rarely have years to fix things. Things go south fast. That's why most start-ups, even successful ones that garner !00Ms, usually fail suddenly and HOPE to be bought/dismantled/shut down.

GoP taught me TXHE. I hope to return that favor. I doubt they'll listen. Any student of startups has seen it 1000 times. It's the stuff of business school case studies at Wharton and Harvard. But that's my intent. I have nothing to whinge about.

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Elon

im lost in your logic. On the one hand you state that traffic is up. On the other hand you predict that unless changes are made - it will be inevitable the gop will crash and burn. This is puzzling?

Im not sure where exactly GOP makes most of its $ from?  Is it the new player who joins and spends $25 or $50 and than quits? Or is repeat customers?

Or is it the billionaires who went bust?

I would think that this is the main factor in terms of what drives gop?

Traffic on its own is not that important..

Ironically - even though i sort of am confused by your logic - non the less i agree with you. I believe (reading between the lines) that you sense a definite lack of direction from gop and when a business flounders all over the place its usually a very bad sign.

tc

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I'm happy to clarify:

Traffic is indeed up. My point is that, with startups, the changes that lead to their demise oftem begin when things are good, and seem to be getting better. Then when the bottom line is impacted, there' precious little to no time to make adjustments, and it is often not clear what changes to make. Having made a series of choices that led to the crisis, it's easy to feel committed to a given direction, when you need to not just roll back the last change, but several changes before it, as well.That seems like too much, but by that time, there's no time to experiment.

That's just something for GoP to consider. I admit it is difficult to wrestle with. Few startups manage to do it successfully. While Youda/Orange undoubtedly considers itself a going concern (with good reason), rather than a startup, GoP as a game (and many online ventures) are vulnerable to online challengers and changes.

I have no direct knowledge of GoP's revenue stream, but reasoning from general business principles, the revenue stream is ALMOST CERTAINLY from repeat chip buyers. It's axiomatic that acquiring new customers is much more difficult/expensive than retaining existing customers, and one longterm buyer results in multiple, generally larger purchases, where most new customers [harder/expensive to acquire] will only generate one or two, generally small, purchases.

Billionaires are a non-issue.  MOST Billionaires don't buy chips. They don't need to. As far as GoP is concerned, they have one effect (and it's good for GoP):they sequester billions of chips that would otherwise be circulating among the other players. Billionaires don't play all their chips, they only play the top of their stacks. I estimate that there are 2500-3000 billionaires, sequestering 4-5 TRILLION chips. I can't accurately estimate the overall pool of GoP chips in circulation. Meanwhile most new players aren't as good at GoP (which is not the same as being good at poker). Substantial play adjustments are needed to consistently win at GoP, due to this game's structural elements, which I may describe in a separate thread. Consider: most chip purchases are comparable to the cost of going to a movie (US prices) maybe taking a date or family -- well within most monthly entertainment budgets. The dirty secret is that GoP profits from bingo play. It stirs the pot, encourages chasing, fuels big loss streaks that consume weeks/months of steady gains, and runs chips through the rake attrition (every time 100 chips are played, 5-6 disappear to rake; after a 100 chips is played about a dozen times, it's ony ~50 chips, whether you won or lost. It's just so slow that you don't notice)

I have known a FEW Billionaires who secretly purchased large amounts out of ego, as their game declined, they went on tilt, etc. (IMHO, this hastened their spiral) I even know of individuals who negotiated special prices for larger purchases than generally offered. But such individuals are rare, compared to the 10,000s of reasonably regular players. They do not contribute a large percentage of revenue, and are likely to eventually tap out. They also don't harm other players [except through annoying wild play] because they are buying because they are LOSING. The chips they buy end up in their opponents' stacks. , that applies to everyone. Even when a high VIP/VIP+ player goes slot-crazy and spins away all their chips, it's only reflected as a decrease in the overall chip pool, not in company revenue. (I have seen this at least 3 times on my team -- the first time, which was shortly after the slots were introduced, involved a player who spun away 13 Billion, chasing a large early loss and spurred on by occasional but insufficient huge wins. Slots are pernicious,)

But there's a peril in being the largest, most convenient place to PLAY -- but not to win. I won't go through the plethora of possible legal/technical changes and possible competing strategies. I'll just say: people abandon a bad poker room QUICKLY when a better one opens. Especially on the Internet, where The Newest Hotness is just a click away.

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Look.... this is a game site designed to be entertaining.  It's NOT real poker.  (no money, not even legal to do so in the states.) Not to mention the fact that it is impossible for any computer to actually "randomize" anything.  So again, NOT real cards.   Still plenty entertaining... and as such a business IN business to be entertaining would WANT their players to stick around long enough to WANT to maybe buy more chips.  So ticking people off is not the way to do this.  I see plenty of complaining, the few posts this fairly unused forum sees, and from my some in my team who have been at this game a lot longer than me. 

 

Open a movie theater and charge too much, have broken seats, a tear in the screen, you won't be in business long.  This sort of business NEEDS repeat customers.  Sure you may get lots of new ones, how many try it, get frustrated or see that it's rigged, and leave?  This is not good.

 

So... once again, the great thing I found about this game are all the types of tables from 2 player, sit and gos (my fav.) spin and play, beginner all the way up.  THIS is great!!!!   So why not deal with the biggest complaint about the all in players and set up a table with a bet limit?  Fix that one drain hole in the system.

 

Meanwhile, I just won three sit and goes and all three had all in players.  Today my strategy of fold fold fold fold until I'm dealt a good hand then call worked.  Doesn't always, but all in with every bet?  They aren't all good hands.  Today I got lucky.  My pocket 3s won me two games.  Still... it got old anyway.  I'd rather play cards than dice.   So my limit of "fun" is expired after just a few games.  And so far I see absolutely NO reason to ever spend money on this.  Maybe some day, not today.  Too much wrong with how it works. 

(Again why can I spin ticket after ticket and NEVER win a big prize... How is that possible if it were "random."

It's not.  Won't be buying anything because of it.)

 

Enjoy.

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elon

For the most part i agree with you. i found it particularly interesting that somebody was able to negotiate a deal with gop to buy alot of chips. It simply never dawned on me.  I do think that busted billionaires buy more than you think.

btw - gop has roughly 4100 vip +. I know this because im standing at 990m and am at 4140 or so.

The overall consensus on my team is that ruby isnt worth the effort. The question is will they play for diamond or will they just quit altogether?

 

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It was nice reading to all of your feedbacks Governors 🤠. As you may already know, our main purpose is to offer the best poker experience. Your in-depth considerations will sure be useful to take inspiration from for future re-balancings 👍.

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On 6/30/2019 at 3:54 PM, ArtmakerJen said:

What I can't figure out is why would they do this?  If you play free, even for just a week, it's obvious just with the ticket spins and the daily free spins that you NEVER win the really big ones, but the little ones are consistent.

Not true. On PokerStars they tell you the break down of the likelihood of winning a top prize on their spin tickets; you have a 33.33% chance of winning the bottom tier prize, and the top prize is something ridiculous like 0.00001%. 

So, given I imagine the statistical odds of winning a prize is programmed similarly on GOP3 then you will rarely actually get the top prize but it does not mean that NEVER happens. I won $5m on the Mega Spin a couple of days ago, the top prize. I've also gotten top prizes on the gold ticket before. It does happen, but it's rare.

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Yea but why make it look like a random spinning thing?   If you put all those prizes on a spinning wheel, each space would have the same odds of being the one picked.   Clearly this is not the case.  So why not make more like a scratch and win card.  33% chance of winning puny prizes, one in a million you'll hit it big. That at least would be more up front.

 

So if the spinning thing is set to hardly EVER give a winning number, perhaps so is the card game?    I've sure played against enough all inners. That spin and play especially.  And I've done it myself.  There is a prize for winning a certain number of times, it's simply faster to go all in.  I pick the cheapest game and do the all in thing.   However... when I have time, if I'm up against an all in player and really want to win, if I keep folding, six or more hands in a row, it SEEMS the odds of my winning rise.  It's almost as if the game knows who won so many hands in a row and tries to level the field.   It shouldn't.   If this were real cards your odds would be the same every time. 

 

What ever.  Lately I've been collecting what little free chips I can.  Maybe the NEXT round I can compete.  Or not.  Don't care.

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"Random" does not mean what you think it does. It does not mean that every displayed possibility is equally likely. It means that a) no player is favored over another; b) the selection of any given outcome is independent of anything the player does; c) other biases are eliminated.

Read the Gaming Commission rules for slots in the most highly regulated Cash jurisdictions, like Las Vegas. I specify slots because essentially all slots today are digital, and only well-vetted software/algorithms are permitted by the Gaming Commission. Individual machines are routinely removed from service by the GC, which then analyzes the software it is actually runnng. Sometimes discrepancies are found, but those are heavily penalized AND result in more slots being removed/analyzed/penalized from that venue, which is seriously unprofitable for the casino.

Every regulated jurisdiction in the US (I haven't read foreign laws) says the same thing: 1) it is completely permissible for different outcomes to have different probabilities (if you doubt that, quit playing because you're going to wrongly think that you SURELY came close to winning the MAIN JACKPOT in every long day of play, but you probably never came close once. Just look at how often ANY player (out of millions playing thousands of slots) ever wins a Main Jackpot. Or how often you have. Or anyone you know); and 2) once an outcome is generated by the random number generator, it may be DISPLAYED as any sequence of symbols that has that value. Sure, a casino could display every lost spin on a five-reel machine as three middle-fingers, an ass-mooning, and  a giant EFF YOU, but where's the profit in that? They keep more players  playing longer by displaying three cherries, a MEGAWIN, and a OHMYGAWD YOU NOW OWN LAS VEGAS AND ALL PROPERTIES?HUMANS THEREIN. Total cash value:0 -- because you don't have any 5-in-a-row matches.

In other words, the law says 1) You're completely allowed to make the $1,000,000 jackpot  1,000,000x as rare as a $1 payout (or !00,000,000x as rare or 5,000,000,000,000x as rare) or even make a $1 payout 10x as rare as a total losing $0 payout -- as long as the odds are the same for everyone; and 2) Any displayed outcome that is worth $0 (or $1 or $10 or $1,000,000) is interchangeable with any other result of the same value, so you can display whichever of those equivalent outcomes you chose: 4 GIGAWINS and a fart = two lemons, two cherries and an angel.

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