For more than six months CCP has been aware of, and has left unaddressed, a mechanism in the game where you could train Omega (paid) skills on an Alpha (free) account. I did it myself by accident back in February, logged a support ticket when I noticed, and had it summarily closed. It has been called Ghost Training. I ensured I didn’t use the mechanism again, but needless to say some people went out of their way to exploit the situation.
A week ago many people found their skill queues had stopped. It turned out to be caused by a script CCP had run in relation to this Ghost Training. I called it an awkward misstep, but in hindsight maybe it was indicative of the problem being hard to solve, hence why it had been left around for so long.
Then today I read this little article:
Ghost training is now considered an exploit, which should be fixed / stopped next week. If you knowingly use it between now and then, you will be accordingly punished as per the EULA.
I’m not sure why CCP has opened themselves to the obviously dangerous premise of deciding if a player is “knowingly” or “unknowingly” using it. It is an exploit that can easily be used unintentionally. After taking so long to address it, why hasn’t CCP just said nothing until it was fixed next week? They must have known there were risks with this approach being contentious, because they specifically mention involving the CSM in the decision. I wonder at the cost / benefit analysis which was done on this one.