Ingress AMA Archive

Any clarifications regarding portal/wayspot criteria is outdated.
Please refer to the official Wayfarer criteria for all current criteria

November 13th 2017

Q1: Now we have some unexpected shards again, so we hope to receive some distinction for hunting them down. An Anomaly badge perhaps? This could be a logical and reasonable reward for the efforts.
A1: I'm not sure we know what these shards are definitively for yet. There is a lot of speculation, but to date, no targets have manifested as is traditional.
Q2: I've been thinking about some incentives/disincentives for portal submissions. It is frustrating to wait 2 weeks to submit more. If a portal gets approved, why not open up that slot at that time?
A2: I understand the frustration. I'm sure, in time, things will be tweaked.
Q3: Is data scraping a bannable offense?
A3: The TOS states that you agree to not, "extract, scrape, or index the Services or Content (including information about users or game play);"
Q4: Can we get a more helpful response when a portal submission is rejected? There is currently no way to know which criteria is causing the submission to be rejected.
A4: I've been told the language will be clarified soon.
Q5: Is it important to provide any details to prove spoofing, or Nia ops perform investigations on their own without following by evidences written by reporters?
A5: NIA OPS performs their own investigations. It doesn't matter what the source of the report is. Providing supporting evidence doesn't hurt. But it is not required. Think of the support system as a way to indicate that something should be looked into. Are they perfect? No. No system is.
Q6: Someone took dozens of limited free T-shirts in Seoul XMA, and then sold to others. What do you think of it.
A6: If someone took something that was free and re-sold them, that doesn't seem nice to me.
Q7: Are you familiar with Jeff from the overwatch team and his developer updates? Would you ever consider such an approach for Niantic/Ingress?
A7: I am and yes. We've talked about it. As well as doing dedicated AMA's on topic like OPR and with people like NIA OPS. More to come...
Q8: Is it true that all of the Exogenous Precursor Entities are named Steve?
A8: This is not true.
Q9: Have all actions been taken against agents that are to be taken as a result of the brokers guild revelations or are further actions upon agents, other than any eventual changes to the guardian badger, due?
A9: No, not all actions have been taken yet. More to come soon on this...
Q10: Are there any News about the Portal Submissions which are stuck in the OPR System?
A10: Not since the last time I asked about it. I think the developers are still working on a solution.
Q11: Noticed today that the circle K promotion had changed in their app. Now instead of getting code for an item, you get points for an item that you can then redeem for packs of codes or for $25 shop.ingress gift cards.
A11: As I understand it, this is a promotion that will run through the holidays. After that it will revert back to the normal promotion.
Q12: Fresh or canned tomatoes? #redsololasagna
A12: Canned.
Q13: Hi Andrew, on Sept. 25 it was said: "In recognition of vital past contributions, all accepted Portal Submissions made during the Phase 1 expansion (until 9/2/2015) will be honored towards the Seer medal retroactively in the coming months." What is the current state of that process?
A13: These will be processed very soon.
Q14: Seems like OPR is currently the thing to ask. Could you please encourage a coworker, which does OPR development to contribute in the AMA? :)
A14: We were actually thinking of doing a dedicated OPR AMA with them. Stay tuned...
Q15: Now that you have recovered from anomaly weekend, what are your thoughts on Malört now that you've had it?
A15: It is vile, terrible, rotten, disgusting stuff.
Q16: Hi Andrew any news you can give us on ingress 2.0 (end of 2017 is near ;) )
A16: It looks beautiful.
Q17: Will there be double ap the last 2 weeks of November?
A17: I think we'll find out shortly.
Q18: bout FS - will the FS continue to exist?
A18: Yes
Q19: Somebody once told me... 🎵
A19: The world is going to roll me.
Q20: Any ETA on the mail for shipping/refunding the swagpacks that got stuck at customs?
A20: The ones for Zagreb and Belfast are still in customs.
Q21: Is Niantic aware of the problem where people misuse OPR for their own faction's benefit and do not allow for the other faction to have Homeportals, for instance?
A21: Yes. Tweaks will occur.
Q22: Why we don't have badges for destroyed fields/links/mods?
A22: Good question. I don't know.
Q23: Hi, Andrew. We faced situation, when many agents received EXO-5 anomaly badge without visiting anomaly-site. We suspect account-sharing for registration portal hack and already found many badge-selling offers.
A23: I don't think there is a 100% secure method. However, sharing accounts is dangerous as one could get busted for having multiple accounts.
Q24: So let's talk about cheese- are you a ricotta/parmesan/mozzarella traditionalist or do you verge into the nasty cottage cheese territory? What's on your lasagna, man?!
A24: My go to right now is a Dubliner Cheddar for snacking. On my lasagna? I will not tell.
Q25: What do you think of Hank being in charge of NIA?
A25: Hanks has a set of skill and fortitude to be able to handle it if he chooses too.
Q26: I have question regardin rare and wery rare packs for EXo5 Berlin Anomaly . I paid tickets, did not get any pack becouse of Nia problem with custom and from that time not get any info or explanation what will be next step from Nia . I check my email and spam folder and not any message so far
A26: The packs for Berlin finally cleared customs. I imagine the email to Agents will happen soon.
Q27: How did the recharge tech beta test go for the November series?
A27: It was a success. I see no reason why we can't bring medals for RR back.
Q28: Hello Andrew. Sojourner 1000 days are getting closer. Player that get to 1000 mark will get any special code?
A28: I wasn't tracking this. Let me see ask. Thanks for the heads up.
Q29: When will NIA annouce characters for the anomalies in December?
A29: In the next week or so.
Q30: How much wine can you drink before getting drunk?
A30: Send some. Let's find out.
Q31: Hi Andrew, First Saturday’s are held every month here but it seems that agents are participating less and less in the event. Just an idea, maybe some kind of in-game reward for the winner of the event, or dare I say a badge of participation in FS might improve the event. What do you think?
A31: Refocusing on IFS and supporting them better in 2018 is a goal. More to come on this hopefully.
Q32: the central point of the ingress story is XM. So in my opinion there should be a badge for collected XM. What do you think about this?
A32: I think that is a great idea and a good point.
Q33: Are there any plans to improve state of the support system? My communication with Ingress support left me with negative feelings, as i have been left with a copy-pasted response, and my further attempts to contact anyone have always been met with lack of any response (with support requests being silently closed), which as you probably understand is quite frustrating.
A33: The short answer is, yes.
Q34: Hi Andrew, How come players don't have much say in where an anomaly gets set?
A34: Everyone wants an Anomaly in their city. There isn't an equitable way to par down the list without someone making the decision of where to go.
Q35: what do you think of the Essex RPE group starting live streams on twitch of their weekend sessions?
A35: I think it is a great idea. I'm a big fan of these RPE sessions.
Q36: Afternoon Andrew, could we get a comment on how many actual support staff Niantic has that answer the support tickets that are submitted?
A36: I don't know.
Q37: I remember hearing that next year Camp Navarro will be the site again for the Portal Luminescence Projects (Magnus events). Do you have any information to share about next year's event?
A37: I have not heard this.
Q38: Is it harassment if I touch your beard next month?
A38: Only if you don't ask first.
Q39: Hi, Andrew! Is there a way to report Missions that are no longer able to be completed because they include portals that were taken down? I know that the author would be the logical way to report, but I have found a few in my community from an agent that no longer plays. We haven’t been able to contact him. Any work around?
A39: Great question. I'll have to ask and get some followup.
Q40: I was wondering which do you prefer Mc Donalds or Burger King?
A40: My way is the only way.
Q41: Niantic removed players in prominent volunteer roles based on screenshot evidence of current wrongdoing. But what assurances can you give players joining player involvement schemes like Vanguards or trusted reporter that the company will protect them from targeted attacks by social media campaigns (which could extend as far as personal abuse and doxxing) particularly in the scenario that they had broken tos years previously?
A41: It's more complicated than a simply a screenshot. This is trivializing the situation.
Q42: What is that status of the 2nd Chance program?
A42: Still in development.
Q43: Tell me, is it true that the chance of dropping more keys from the portal depends on its level?
A43: This is a myth.
Q44: I often see is "Andrew never replied to me when I DM'd him." I'm wondering if you would share what an average day is like time-wise as GCM to better help people realise the communications you do each day.
A44: That's really hard for me to quantify. Each day is different. There are of course the standard business meetings that occur throughout the day. There is planning social media campaigns, writing the content, and creating the images for the posts. There are generally two Anomaly Slacks (Q3 and Q4 at the moment) that require attention. We now have the Vanguards as well that I interact with daily. In addition to managing things like the embedded reporter process (and communication thereof) and working with Anomaly POCs about medals. Naturally there are business reports, presentations, emails, and other things to write and review ranging across many different topics. These AMAs usually take a good two hours. Lastly, there are the hundreds of messages I receive daily. Basically, I do a a ton of communicating. That's a high level view.
Q45: With the announcement of the tour with +November Lima​​ that you'll be on during Q1 2018, what are you most looking forward to seeing/experiencing in Australia, New Zealand & Japan?
A45: I love people and cultures. I'm excited about and looking forward to experiencing what the different cultures have to offer. And... petting a koala.
Q46: Andrew, Hello. I expect to hear that you are coming to Japan. Lasagna also exists in Japan. But what else do you expect from your stay in Japan? I hope I can meet you.
A46: I love seafood. I can't wait to see what Japan has to offer in terms of food.
Q47: I've submitted a bunch of portals, a lot of which went through OPR a month ago. But none have gone live OR been rejected. Do I wait? Do I resubmit?
A47: Wait for now.
Q48: Will you be taking the servers offline and closing shop before or after the Harry Potter game is released?
A48: Nope!
Q49: Do you think Niantic should make decisions about anomalies or badges or bans based on Enlightened Social Media Campaigns?
A49: No. Nor should we based on Resistance campaigns either.
Q50: Hey Andrew, hope you are doing well. I think it was asked earlier, but any word on if a Navarro type event might take place? The art was fantastic last year, and it would be fantastic this year to have a little longer to build so were a little less stressed. Thanks.
A50: It is being discussed. Stay tuned.
Q51: Can you comment on the relation of Vanguards, and player BANS?
A51: There is no relation and thus nothing to comment on. The boogeyman isn't real. Having a key to a portal doesn't increase the drop of another key. ENL don't get more ADAs from hacks than RES.
Q52: Do you have any suggestions or tips on how to avoid denial based on proximity? We'd like to have our fantastic candidates be reviewed and approved based on their quality and not denied due to an unknown proximity rule.
A52: Today, to provide the best game experience possible, the distance varies from approximately 20 to 30 meters. We encourage you to continue submitting all unique portals as upcoming functionality will allow you to help select the best portals in a given area.
Q53: Was that Gray in your beard last time I saw you?
A53: Most likely not. Been an interesting month or two.
Q54: Could we get more game-mechanic incentives for walking, and less for staying in one place?
A54: Yes.
Q55: Is there an industry scale for player toxicity? If so, how does Ingress rate on the scale against other games?
A55: Just like in life, there are good and there are bad people. On the Internet, the bad people tend to be the loudest voices. If you look at the number of people who troll, bully, or are bad actors hiding behind fake names and profiles it amounts to less than 1% of the player base. There is far more good than bad. If you are unable to filter out the noise, you will surely only see the bad.
Q56: One more question - per the Houston Anomaly and Funds Raised to help Houston recover with the Hurricane Harvey Relief Funds. Were there any numbers that came out from the OCF event, that Goruck and Niantic can share on how much money was raised and sent for Hurricane Harvey Relief?
A56: Great question. I am currently crafting a post and gathering these details actually. More to come on this hopefully soon.
Q57: Given that +Fev Games​​​ handles FS and embedded reporters, OPR and Vangaurds are volunteers, can we expect Niantic to continue decentralizing thier functions to a free labor force model of thier fans?
A57: As long as there are passionate people who share our vision for what Ingress can truly be and want to volunteer their time then these things will continue. It would be a travesty if no one cared and didn't want to help. I think it speaks volumes about the community, in a positive way, that people dedicate their free time to supporting and growing Ingress. Why would we not tap in to passion and dedication like that?
Q58: Can you elaborate on the fact that you already knew about scrapers, as i personally guided you through both side's tools?
A58: Providing a screenshots, and not access, is not the same things a guided tour. To the best of my recollection, very little if any actual tangible proof was ever provided and why nothing actionable manifested. The refusal to provide the code to your own tools and instead threatening to release things to a wide audience was a bad choice. If you would like to provide the code to your tools or the source to anything you have access to, you know how to contact me.
Q59: Is there an anomaly series planned for Q1 2018?
A59: Yes.