Is the "undo" button fair play?

I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings but I will start by suggesting that for instances other than a mistaken mouse click, I feel it is unfair to use the undo button in timed games. This is my reasoning:

In a timed game, when a person makes a move, their opponent immediately begins to analyze the position for their next move. Any discussion or consideration of whether or not to accept the undo request is chewing into one’s clock while making the decision. This, instead of actually getting to consider one’s next move. For me, personally, my vision is poor, so all of this seems to be a particularly unreasonable burden on the player to which the request is being made.

Truly, it’s not a move if one can undo it. It is a provisional move.

I’ve had such trouble with this over the last week, I nearly stopped playing yesterday, at least on OGS (I have started playing correspondence games which might be better). I’ve been called names this week by one player and accused of unsportsmanlike behavior by another for not allowing an undo. The second was by someone who was higher rated and was winning. While most OGS players seem friendly and reasonable, I wonder whether an option for playing without the undo button could be made available? Barring that, what do folks think of the fairness of its use?


Typo in the topic title: pllay > play.

You don’t have to accept a undo. If you decide that before the game starts, you don’t have to lose time.

For misclick an undo is acceptable, but for the rest not in my honest opinion.

That is not acceptable. Report the player to the moderators.


Thanks for your thoughts. Perhaps I should report the individuals. I only became a supporter today, after playing for three months. I decided to try and be part of the community, rather than just quitting. How does one report something like name-calling to the moderators? I wouldn’t do it for revenge, but I know there are people here who could be genuinely injured emotionally by name calling/bullying. To be honest, even at my age, I was hurt a bit myself. I think it would be a good idea for a neutral party to point such a thing out to people who are being hurtful or mean.


Revenge does not come into it really. I mean, someone might feel vindicated if a troll is banned, but that is not necessary for reporting disrespectful behavior.

Mostly, the reason for reporting such behavior is to keep the community healthy. Ideally, people should feel safe coming here to play, without having to worry about being harassed.


Click in the game on your opponent’s name; the next window appears.

Scherm­afbeelding 2023-04-19 om 21.30.18

Select Report.

Then click on Harassment.


Reporting bullies makes the community better, you do not need to feel hesitant to report bad behavior.


I very rarely ask for undos, and I usually give them when asked. I find it the polite thing to do, but I also understand someone being strict about them, it’s a reasonable stance.

It absolutely does not call for any type of harassment if you don’t give undos.

Please report such behavior.


Many thanks. I will report the more brutal of the two folks I was concerned about.


Granting undos is purely optional. It’s okay for someone to just generally be opposed to granting any undos, without any further reason than that. No one should harass another user about undos. Please report such behavior (as others have already suggested).

Undos are an available option, since some players might wish to grant them. In some situations, like an obvious misclick, a player might feel unsporting if they did not grant one. However, it is completely up to each individual player’s judgement and preferences as to whether they exercise that option.


The imposition on the opponent of needing to consider the undo request on their turn with their clock ticking is yet another reason I wish OGS would, like every other go server, let you request an undo on YOUR move, not just on your opponent’s move.

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I think it would be better if undo undid the timer as well, though that may not always be best in all time systems.


Undo is a useful feature for teaching games, so it shouldn’t be abolished across the board. However, it could certainly be turned into an option that might be disabled in the game specifications. That way, the large number of players who never allow undo could disable it in the games they create.

FTR, I allow undos (even though I would never request one myself), because I would hate to win by a misclick.


Not sure whether it also does in real time games, but undo undoes the timer in correspondence games as far as I have noticed. :slight_smile:

I do not think undo winds back the timer per se. I think what is going on is that it treats undo as if it were a move.

I just tested this. If you use Byo-yomi and undo during the main time, the clock just keeps running down from whatever time you had left. If you use Fischer instead, the clock awards you the increment time when you hit the “accept undo” button.

Given that the overwhelming majority of correspondence games are played with Fischer timing, this might have given the impression that the timer was rewinded to its previous state. However, this is not the case.

Arguably, it might be better as it is now. I wonder how this affects Canadian byo-yomi though.

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