A Player's Request

We received a request to ask for your help for one of our longtime players, Catherine.

"My father was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. His final wish is to go to Disney Land, but with all his special medical care needs, we can't do it alone. My sister has created a "fundme.com" thing and I know that a lot of HLers are good people at heart and I was hoping to maybe get the chance to put the link here. If, that is, allowed.

http://www.gofundme.com/8rb35h78z4

That's the link. Even if you can't donate, could you consider spreading it out a bit for us? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time."

Thank you for any help you can give!


Internet Safety/Online RelationshipsInternet Safety/Online Relationships


We have a few rules here on HL that are there to protect our younger players from being preyed upon by our older ones. However, it really is up to YOU as a player to ensure that you stay safe and free from harm.

Personal Info. PLEASE do not give out your personal info such as home address, home OR cell phone number, email address or even a messenger contact info(AIM, YIM, MSN) UNLESS you really, truly know the person. Even giving out your real name can be dangerous, so please limit that to ONLY your first name if you feel the need to share that information. Ask Danilo about how even just a name can lead to someone finding out where you live, if you don't believe me.

Online Relationships. I realize that meeting new people and making new friends is what attracts most people to the net. I too think it's great that we are able to meet so many different people from all around the world. But with that said, not everyone has the same intentions and/or feelings. There are many people out there who, to put it bluntly, just like to rack up the score with how many people they can...er..score with.

It is VERY easy to lie online and to be lied to. Finding love online is not as easy as some may think. Although it IS possible to find that love of your life (Edmund and Serenity ;)), not everyone is actually looking. As I said, it is up to YOU to protect yourself. Someone claiming that they love you after chatting a few times, or telling you that you are the only one, is probably really not true. Please don't get caught up too much in the fantasy part of many sites.

The LAW.Anyone 18 years old and older is considered an adult and it is illegal for them to "be with" anyone under the age of 18. Even though nothing sexual is supposed to be happening on the site anyway, we realize that we really have no way to stop it when it's done in private, i.e. OWLS. HOWEVER, we CAN and DO monitor owls so be warned.

ANYONE over the age of 18 that is caught doing ANYTHING inappropriate with a minor WILL be permanently banned. Not only that, but Danilo can and will contact your ISP to let them know what you do online so they can alert the proper authorities. Even using this site as a fishing hole and taking it off-site can be cause for a ban if we hear about it.

Again, please use common sense when forming online relationships and in your interactions with other people. Not just here but any site you visit.

Thank you.


House Tree Contest

As I'm sure you all have noticed by now, there is a Holiday Tree in each House's Common Room. Players can go to their Common Room and help decorate it by using forest fights, gold and/or gems. You can check to see who has the biggest, sparkliest, twinkliest tree in every village, right above the chat. The House with the best tree at the end of the year will earn the House buff for the entire month of January. The winning House will be announced sometime after midnight (as soon as we can).

Good luck!

Congratulations to Slytherin for winning the Holiday Tree Contest! They will enjoy the House Buff for the whole month of January!


No One is Hacking Accounts & Account Sharing

There is no one hacking HL accounts or your IP addresses despite what a player trying to cause panic may be telling you. Their situation was caused by account sharing.

I'd like to take this time to remind you of the risks of sharing accounts with other players.
-When you share your password with another player, they can share it with anyone they want to.
-They can change your password and account information.
-They can access personal information you may have sent to someone else in owls.
-If the person logging into your account has four accounts, and logs into yours making it 5, if yours is the highest VE count on their IP it will be locked.
-If they are muted and get on your account to chat, your account will be muted.
-If they get banned and you are on their IP address, your account will be banned also.
-If they are a banned player, and log into your account to evade their ban, your account will be banned.

We will not help you recover a lost account due to sharing your information. This information should be kept private. I'd advise anyone who has been sharing accounts to change their passwords so they do not end up in the same situation as others before have.

Not everyone online is as trustworthy as you may think, they can tell you anything they want without you knowing if it is true or not. I would not trust anyone with your password.


If You Can Help

Thank you to everyone who was kind enough to spare some money for Elijah's family in their time of need!


Referrals

I'd like to remind everyone, you can refer friends to Hogwarts Live using your referral link in Prefects Lounge.

http://www.hogwartslive.com/r/YourUsername

For everyone you refer who makes it to level 10, you will gain 50 donator points!

Referring your own accounts is not allowed, it is considered cheating and will get your account locked. Any account on your IP is considered your account, it does not matter if it is your cousin's sister-in-law twice removed second aunt, it will be treated as your account. Referring an alternate characters of existing players is also cheating and in bad taste. Both accounts may be locked and punished if this happens.


Server Change

Hogwarts Live has changed servers. The previous server was old and
recently has been resulting in lag. You may experience weird things
happening while it sorts out. We have reports of people jumping servers
to the old version of the site and back to the new one. As a result
any game process gained on the old server will be lost. Sorry for the
inconvenience.



The direct link to the new server is http://padfoot.wizards.pro


Happy Birthday Harry Potter (and J. K. Rowling)!

Today we say Happy Birthday to Harry Potter (for those of you who don't live in England it's already July 31st there).

In addition to this wonderful event I'd like to mention that earlier this year was Hogwarts Live's ten year (yes, that's right TEN YEARS!) anniversary.

As a special treat to all of you we are releasing some changes to the site. If that wasn't already enough we're doing a Double Donation Day and multiple candy raffles!

Double Donation Day means you get double the points when you donate to HL and the candy raffles are really great. Go check them out! ^^

I'd like to specifically call out Juan, Pam, all our staff and testers for helping get these changes done and ready for live.

Some of these new changes to the site are:
EIGHT new specialties, all based on the Harry Potter universe.
Knight Bus, which is located under Travel, for a few gems allows you to travel without being getting stopped by pesky waylays, but you might get a negative buff.
Honeydukes, where you can buy a delicious treat, but be careful you might not like what you eat!

Various modules were also fixed.

Please petition any bugs found, anyone caught abusing these will be punished.


Families, Family Discussions, and Godric's Hollow


Several years ago, our chats were being inundated with "will someone adopt me??????" posts, older players jumping all over new firstyears with questions like, "Do you have a mom or dad yet???" or "Do you want to be adopted????" and pages and pages of players discussing who they were related to, how they were related , when they became related, etc. Most of these discussions would take place multiple times every day with (frequently) the same participants.

When it wasn't a family trying to figure out all the snarls and twists and turns in their family tree, it was a family arguing over some family issue. Not just members of a family RPing together, and not even a real RP to be honest since it was more of a discussion than "acting," but people arguing over why they wouldn't recognize a certain family member or some other sort of drama that was strictly family-related.

These discussions and arguments would disrupt RPs already taking place and/or conversations taking place with players just chatting.

To help keep chats a bit more tidy, we installed Godric's Hollow with the intent of that being the "family village" (see original post here http://www.hogwartslive.com/blog/post/469/godrics-hollow ). All requests for adoptions, whether it be someone looking for a family or someone looking for a new member to their existing one, would take place here, as well as all discussions of family trees, family arguments that were about family-related topics, and anything else that came up within a family.

In the time since installing Godric's, this has worked well as most players have moved their conversation to Godric's or owls or to a dwelling when asked by staff. It has only been recently that players have been ignoring multiple requests and warnings by staff, hence the
NOTICE that was posted on every page (until this blog post).

This does not mean that players cannot address a family member in chat by their title, i.e.
"Hi mom!" or "WitchyWoman waves to her sister." It does not mean that players cannot refer to being related to another player in cases like, "Oh you know SamSpit? He's my brother." It does not mean that you cannot ask someone if they are related to someone else, as long as you're not asking for that person's entire pedigree. "Hi, SaraSugar. Are you SallyMay's sister?" It does not mean that family members cannot RP together.

All we are asking is that if you are going to start a discussion about who your relatives are or have an issue with your family about your family, please do it either in owls, a dwelling, or in Godric's Hollow. If you are looking to be adopted or see someone that you would like to adopt, post in Godric's or owl them. And if a simple comment about a family member unintentionally turns into a discussion about your family and a staffer asks you to move it out of chat, MOVE it. Simple.

In cases where players ignore a staffer's request to move out of regular chat or players that keep having to be asked (as in multiple instances), staff can and will mute.

Thank you.


Special Valentine's Day Raffle

Today's candy raffle is very special. If you win it you and your in-game spouse get 10,000 donator points each!

I normally don't raffle off donator points so be sure to jump on this rare opportunity.

To participate just exchange the beans you find in the forest at the Candy Raffle located on the bottom left hand side of the site under Global. As a special treat all raffle tickets cost only 5 beans.

Also, if you'd like to do something extra nice for that special someone you can always donate on their behalf by clicking the PayPal Contribute button on their bio page.

May you all be blessed with hugs, kisses, and yummy chocolates! :)