Burton Johnsey's Portfolio

A sample of some of the projects Burton has worked on over his decade-long career at Valve.

Moderator Days
  • In February, hosted 28 of our volunteer moderators from 12 different countries. People flew in from as close as California and as far as Australia and Corsica, with ages ranging from 18 to 60. Goals included rewarding volunteers for their service, strengthening relationships among all involved parties, and having high bandwidth discussions optimal for getting everyone on the same page.
  • Conceived and planned the entirety of the event, managing a small team that executed on booking flights, hotel rooms, and dining venues.
  • Organized and ran Virtual Reality demos using the HTC Vive for the 28 volunteers and their guests.
  • Presented two talks ("The History and Future of Steam Support" and "Moderation Trends") and helped design a third talk ("Steam Platform Update and Future Moderation Tools").
Feb 2016
Steam Guard
Co-creator of Steam Guard, Valve's take on two-factor authentication.
Shipped 2013
vBulletin Steam Integration
Integrated Steam into vBulletin powered forum. Leverage OpenID, ISteamUser/GetPlayerBans API, and memcache.
Shipped 2011
Writer, Steam Sales

Wrote original content for Summer Camp Sale (2011) and Holiday Sale (2011), collaborating with Valve's extraordinary writing team and the Steam business team to engage and entertain customers.

In addition to shipping new content for each day of the sale, role-played as key figures from the fiction to further immerse customers while also answering questions about the sale and moderating chat room behavior.

Summer 2011, Holiday 2011
Auto-Generated FAQs

Integrated Steam Store API into FAQs. Instead of creating an FAQ for each game, the FAQs are generated on demand when a user hits the page. When a user navigates to a game FAQ, we cURL the store API to get the necessary information, caching the API results for 24hrs in memcache.

This also allowed for more features in the FAQ (system requirements, supported languages, Early Access messaging, etc.) that get updated automatically as the game's publisher updates it via our partner tools.

Developer Flagged Review Moderation Pilot Program
  • Leading pilot program with external vendor to clear backlog of reported Steam Reviews. Steam reviews are shown prominently throughout the Steam store and can greatly impact the sales of a given title. Developers have the ability to flag reviews which they feel violate Steam's community rules and guidelines. These flagged reviews are then reviewed by Valve staff or Steam's volunteer moderators and are either banned or have the flag cleared.
  • Created written guidelines for handling flagged reviews and ran calibration meetings to ensure the guidelines were being interpreted correctly by the vendor.
Winter 2016
Verify Login Location

Concieved and implemented webpage designed to reduce successful phishing attempts by making it clear to users that the login attempt is from an attacker.

A/B Testing: Duplicate Ticket Experiment

Ran experiement to determine impact of UI changes on duplicate ticket creation rates.

Final UI reduced duplicate ticket creation by 65%.

Shipped 2015
Offensive Content Moderation
  • Working with Valve's legal team, lead effort to improve responsiveness to reported offensive user generated content (avatars, usernames, screenshots, etc.).
  • Adding notification system to close feedback loop to users who report offensive content, ensuring they know that Valve does review and action the reports.
  • Automate report handling of clear cut abuse, leveraging user report reputation system and Google's Vision API (used to detect pornography).
  • Reports that cannot be handled automatically are manually reviewed by external vendor and/or escalated to Valve staff.