A player bashes me for unfair play and I have no idea why

Playing a game today (13k vs 14k), I killed off my opponent’s invasion into the corner. Then, as a friendly sign, I shared a variation that could allow him to save the corner earlier, just for learning purposes.

Suddenly, to my huge surprise, the player starts bashing me for unfair play, demanding an apology and calling a moderator, and I have no idea what he’s talking about. I try to figure out and explain, and he resigns — see the game comments. I try discussing this in personal chat but he basically repeats the same statements and acts as if I’m a jerk regardless of any of my explanations.

Seriously WTF. Can anyone explain to me what happened? I’m asking just because I want to understand if I really did anything wrong, to avoid situations like this in future.

Your opponent’s behavior was inappropriate. If you encounter any similar users in the future, use the call mod button to report them. It’s more efficient than posting the issue on the forums.

As for your offer of advice, I understand you were just trying to be helpful. However, it’s good to be aware that people don’t always appreciate unsolicited advice in the midst of a game, especially from someone of the same rank. It would be more tactful to offer your advice after the game is over, if your opponent is interested in reviewing. That would also help prevent misunderstandings like the one that occurred in the game.


Yea your opponent acted a bit strange. I can imagine though your oppnent was rather annoyed that his/her group died, and maybe interpreted your advise as gloating rather than a friendly sign.

I think the last problem could somehow be avoided a bit by instead of just saying “alive”, but maybe pose it as a question, “maybe this is alive?” as if you are offering a discussion.


I do not understand the situation completely, but I have formed an opinion:

What you did (share the variation) did not deserve the reaction it received. However, your sharing the variation could be perceived as rude. See discussion on Sensei’s library. I would, as a courtesy to my opponent, hold any comments on her/his moves (unless it is specified as a teaching game) until the game was over. If you are making notes to yourself, use Malkovich log.

Imagine this: She/he just lost a corner (which is very emotional) and you are bragging how you could have saved it. Rude.
On the other hand, the reaction was angry and inappropriate.
I don’t see how a moderator could have changed anything.


If you take a look at his other games, you would see other aggressive comments, so I think it’s more likely not your fault :wink:

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Thanks a lot for the valuable advice everyone! From now on I’ll avoid commenting on moves until the game has finished, and only post variations in the Malkovich log unless it’s explicitly a teaching game. “Do not feed the trolls”


Ha, you’re right! Just looked through the games. He bashes the opponent in pretty much every game he loses, lol.

He did the same thing to me not to this extreme but he did get very agitated after losing a group. https://online-go.com/game/2154626

Still, you attack his group hoping he messes up on a reading mistake, which at the 13k level is highly probable, so you take advantage of this and say it is a learning opportunity. His reaction was unwarranted, however you are lacking in the “grace” department and what you did was rude and very arrogant. And now you post it on a forum for everyone to see, which only brings more shame to your opponent as you try to make yourself feel a little better.

As an analogy, I am a rock climber. When you climb, you follow a specific route and routes are like problems for the climbers to solve and require a specific sequence of the hands/feet/body position, this sequence is called a beta. It is considered very rude to give away the beta to someone who did not ask for it. So when I see a fellow climber struggling to solve the problem, I ask him/her, “would you like to see the beta?” instead of just jumping on the rock and cruising through a problem they were putting in a lot of effort to solve. Most times, they say “yes, I would love to see the beta” but there are many out there who find the most entertaining challenge of climbing to be trying to solve it by themselves.

Point it, be respectful and use discretion and don’t assume all of your opponents are of the same mindset as you.


I see, thanks! I’ll keep this in mind.

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A rather belated reply, I know, but I wanted to mention that I played this same exact opponent and had almost the exact same situation arise. I made a brief comment regarding a failed attempt to kill my corner (specifically, why it couldn’t be killed) and pretty soon all heck broke loose. Anyway, just my two cents. Lesson learned, I guess… Some people don’t appreciate the help. In the future I intend not to offer such help, unfortunately for those who might actually care for it. I suppose the best approach is to ask permission before offering it in the first place.

I try to save any criticism for the review (if there is one). I may offer a compliment on their reading if they kill something of mine (particularly if I mis-read the position).

If I have the time after a game is over, I will offer to review it. However, I play mainly correspondence, so I am frequently not present at the actual end of the game.


i have see your reading .and i want to say yes i am upset sometimes of losing stupidily .but in this game ,i know what happen i know i have to put a stone to protect myself .but i dont understand the word VARIATION ALIVE as already group was dead .and i used to play with 7,9 years kid we used to say NO USE TO GO HERE the group is alive or dead .but why after killing this group say VARIATION ALIVE as it was .i was quiet disturbing even take a rude way.does he joke tease on me ? or what ?
as some people except you know the player you don’t do comments during the game .this is education even in another sport.


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Hi, stmm888.

Have you clicked the blue text “Variation: Alive”? The word “Variation” is automatically generated by the system when a player shares a variation of the game. Why should it be to tease you? Your opponent tried to show you where you could have played. Your opponent did not know that you would not appreciate it.

It is not a general rule that you are not supposed to comment during a game. Maybe you want to suggest a feature that makes it possible to turn off comments during a game?

You cannot expect others to follow your etiquette. However, you could block their chat during the game and unblock it after the game if it bothers you.

@Wulfenia, it is common etiquette NOT to comment the opponent’s move during the game, especially not bragging (nothing else it is) about how you would have saved a group that the opponent was not able to save. Very, very, very bad style, that.

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no i even dont know this feature is automatically set up

tks a lot

It is kind of rude to tell someone how to keep their group alive right after killing it.

Just play the game. You’re like 13k, you shouldn’t be trying to teach someone of your own rank. It’s insulting to say the least, I wouldn’t appreciate it.

Giving advice to a player should never be considered rude, although the advice may be unwanted. The person giving the advice isn’t being rude how is he suppose to know that the player he is facing doesn’t like taking HELPFUL advice from others.

Although he could of placed it in malkovich log or when/if he reviewed the game for himself. He could of added in that with this variation of play the group lives. Since when I review my games I also review my opponents moves as well.
However I don’t think he was wrong to leave advice.

That doesn’t really matter in this scenario though, I simply think the player Stmm888 gets agitated and lashes out at his opponent when one of his groups dies. Mourner giving him advice had nothing to do with it, as you can see with the game I posted he “Lashed out” at me as well after I had killed one of his groups.

trohde, this thread proves that it is not common etiquette, because if it were common etiquette people would not emphasize in every other post that a perfectly correct comment is only rude because of the relative rank of the commenter. It is this recurring point that makes me doubt that this is really about the unsolicited advice per se.

And no, I certainly don’t give unsolicited advice during my games, but I don’t appreciate posts that implicitly say that unsolicited advice during a game is rude, but rudeness is fine if it is from a stronger player towards a weaker player. Also, there is a lot of behaviour I don’t appreciate, for example, in a recent game, my “Hi gg” was answered with “I will win” which I personally consider way ruder than advice that could be bragging but could also be a well-meant but very ill-timed comment. My advice to block the chat in these cases was based on events like this which are common enough.

IMNSHO it’s this easy:

  • Comments during a teaching game: not rude, of course!
  • Comments in a normal game:
  • During the game: rude (with the probable exclusion of a game between friends, of course)
  • After the game: depends on how, and the opponent always has the liberty to leave.