Please reduce the timeout / disconnect / escaper clock from 5 minutes

I absolutely love this site and talk it up constantly any chance I get in other online communities.

However, there is, in my mind, one huge flaw, and it is the 5 minute disconnect timer.

It happens less as I have moved up the ranks, but when I was first starting out, playing games around 18k, people just left the game to leave you to wait out the “disconnect” clock CONSTANTLY.

It nearly made me stop playing, it happened so much and was so frustrating.

I think we need to make playing Go as painless as possible for beginners, or lots of them will just get frustrated and leave/never play again.

I understand it can be frustrating if you are playing a game and lose your connection, but that is comparitely rare and giving every player this loaded weapon to use at the end of the game against their opponent when they realize they’ve lost is a major overcompensation.

5 minutes is INSANE. On Lichess, I think it’s something like 30 seconds and it works great! People genuinely experiencing a disconnect is so, so rare, compared to how much people abuse this feature.

Please, please reduce this clock. I think something like 1 minute would be reasonable.


The regular game-clock continues to run during disconnect. If that expires first it’s game over.

You might find a different game-clock set up improves your experience in this regard.

If the “disconnect feature” were removed you would be waiting longer for a result against escapers.

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I’m not asking to remove it, I am asking to reduce it to 1 minute.

There is often several minutes left in a game when people leave, they don’t only leave at the very end of games, although that is common as well.


I think 5 minutes is perfect. 1 minute is definitely too little. If the computer crashes it may take 1-2 minutes to reopen the game. Or the player is in a train that passes through a long tunnel (30s + reconnect). Or maybe Mateusz Surma is playing. Or the laptop runs out of battery

Waiting is indeed annoying. But you can just play with 30s byo yomi, no main time. Main time is useless anyway. I think a better solution would be to simply not count the game as loss for player A if B disconnects, A leaves the game and B then comes back to play one move and finally A’s clock runs out.


Some historical perspective on this: When instituted, the time was 2 minutes. Many people complained and asked for it to be lengthened. 5 minutes was chosen, perhaps because that was (is?) the amount of time used on Tygem.

This occurs most, as the OP notes, in DDK games, many of which are 9x9. In my experience of moderating, I would estimate that at least half of escapes timeout before the five minutes, typically in about 2 minutes in 9x9 games.


You can always try hitting the “report” button as well. I know we don’t get there within 5 minutes always anyhow, but

a) It’s something to do while you wait :wink:
b) We want to know about escapers anyhow
c) We might just get there in time and catch the escaper in the act, which is better.

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How often does your computer crash during a game vs how often people leave you without the timer bc they lost?

In my experience, my computer has literally never crashed during a game (maybe one time my internet went out) vs I would say over 100 times I’ve been left to wait out a timer.

And again, idk your strength, but I can tell you that this happens constantly in ddk games, who are exactly the people we need to stick with the game.


Question: do you play on lichess at all? I know the games are different, but they have an option to “claim victory” after your opinion has left for (my estimation is) 30 seconds or so. It works great, IMO.

Considering how rare actual disconnections are, and how prevalent the abuse of this feature is in beginner games (who I believe it is important to cater to if we want to grow the popularity of this game). Would you consider changing the timeout clock to 1 minute just for DDK games?

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I do report them, but it just seems like changing this feature would work better for everyone and not waste your time?

I get that there has to be a clock, but 5 minutes just seems absurd to me.

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As i stated, my previous comment was for the purpose of historical perspective, something that I happen to value. At the time of the 2-min. controversy, I favored a compromise of 3 minutes. Legitimate disconnection is, I believe, more common than you suggest. I watch a lot of games and see a moderate number of connection problems, admittedly usually quite transitory. However, during a major online amateur tournament in the past year (U.S. versus Europe? I don’t remember), a high-level game was almost ruined because of a connection problem. The chess comparison may not be valid, because we have a large percentage of our players in Asian countries, where the servers are, at least reputedly, less reliable than in the West (or where the distance may create greater opportunities for interference).

Another important consideration is the motivation of escapers. There are two primary categories. Some are just thoughtless, inconsiderate people, while others are exacting revenge (the digital equivalent of spitting). The latter, being actively malicious, may change their tactic if they find their revenge blunted. They may simply hold the game open for a deliberate timeout, which could be much worse. We already have a small number who do this.

Then there are the players who play two or more games simultaneously using a single tab. This is the cause of quite a few transient disconnections and of a moderate number of inadvertent losses by disconnection. Shortening the clock might force some of them to think about what they are doing and start using two tabs, but I’ll bet there would more likely be a lot of howling. (Mind you, I think playing games simultaneously is silly, but my opinion in this regard is completely irrelevant.)

I appreciate the time you are taking to talk about this issue with me. I do agree that there may be some different tactics used (just letting the game legitimately time out, etc) and I had not considered that. I do think 3 minutes would be much more reasonable (was the timer for accepting score recently lowered to 3 minutes?)

I am wondering if you would seriously consider my suggestion of lowering the clock to one minute just for DDK games. Or just what your opinion would be on that generally.

As I’ve said a few times now, my big concern is really that this feature may turn away new players, as I was a new player a couple years ago and I nearly stopped playing bc it was happening so often.


Even though I’m content with the current 5min setting, I think you make a good case for lowering it to prevent new users of the site from becoming discouraged. I could live with 3min but for 1min I would like to see the system then offer the remaining player various options. eg:

  1. Claim victory by disconnection
  2. Continue waiting with clocks running
  3. Pause game (This is already an option that overrides disconnection but it is a bit hidden).
  4. Annul game.

I really like the idea of having those options. A 1 minute timer if either or both of the players are DDK with these options I think would be a great system.

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Hello o/
I might have misunderstood something in the tread but here goes…

I think I would be quite stressed if OGS were to lower the disconnection time to 1 minute.

Example (with long talk):
While my computer don’t tend to crash, it does have a bad relation with my wi-fi (wi-fi is really unpredictable). One minute I can do anything on the internet without problem. Next, I’m disconnected and it’s not a nice feeling when it happens, especially in a live game.

I have had a couple, if not multiple, live games where my computer suddenly loses it’s connection to the wi-fi (unrelated to OGS, the computer even loses connection when I’m just watching youtube or other websites). That’s one of the reasons why I don’t like playing live games when I play (I am aware that I’m not the most active go player around here but still) … Point is, if I play a live game I’d like to not stress unnecessary. I will hurry to connect again but I don’t want to stress.

I’m like the 5 minutes, but are ok with 3 minutes. 1 minute just seems stressful.

Sorry for the long post. Just wanted to say I’m one of those who disconnect to be cruel, it’s because the wi-fi hates me at times


I understand new players, us dreaded TPKs, are flaky, but I prefer erring on the side of not-being-so-judgemental in my life and I appreciate when others do the same for me. I think 1 minute is too soon, life happens.


I don’t want to be judgmental either - when someone “disconnects” you can check their profile to see if they have now started to play a new game, which they often have, or click to message them and see if their indicator is green meaning they are still on the site. 9 out of 10 times they are.

But it is immediately obvious when someone disconnects after the turning point in the game when they have obviously just realized they will definitely lose. Especially if it was because of a blunder on their part.


I understand what you are saying, it sounds frustrating.

I suppose my point is, it sounds like you are in a somewhat rare situation where it’s probably hard to do just about anything online. To help this somewhat rare situation, on OGS we have implemented a feature that gets abused constantly and has ended up being a bigger problem for more people, than the problem is was intended to fix.

That being said, would you feel ok with a 2 minute timer?

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For anyone on here saying they don’t think this is a big deal, you should try making a new account and playing with 20k - 15k players for a week.

Even for the moderators, please understand that the vast majority of these disconnections to not get reported bc they are new players trying to figure out how to use the site.

The issue mostly disappears after ~15k. I am not making this thread bc it is an issue I still experience regularly.

I am making this thread bc I believe we are turning away new players from the game by having rampant abuse of this well-intentioned feature at those levels.

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As someone who remembers being DDK on OGS for a year or so, I agree entirely with what DS138 has said. Yes, escapers abuse the 5min disconnect timer out of spite. Yes, this is very common in the DDK ranks, and yes I think this is discouraging beginners from playing here or playing Go in general. I’ve always had the opinion that 5 mins is too long. I think a 1 min disconnect timer would be long enough – as WeiqiGO0 knows, players with poor internet can cope by pre-arranging games as we do on OSR and playing with opponents who understand the situation and will pause the game. I don’t think we need any special options for the disconnect timer as players who want to pause the game already have that option. Sorry for the lack of paragraphs, I typed this on a phone.


I am still a TPK and honestly I don’t even see a clear description of the problem. Clear for me, the TPK who doesn’t approach Go “seriously” and won’t be a SDK in a year, with experience in 3 other servers.

I see this attitude a lot, experienced players on their high horses basically berating new players under the guise of “we just want to protect the newcomers” but not trying enough to ensure the information about proper etiquette is readily available and communicated early enough.

Especially for children, teens and probably other categories of the diverse (I guess) user base.

I have no idea how it should be, but a popup, an automated mail, a “strike” counter seem much better preventive/ helpful measures before changing for the worse a function that, according to mods and users, exists for a reason.

Personal annoyance is not a legitimate statistical excuse, I’d say.