Blizzard and Twitch address harassment defiling game event streams

    
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This game really provides no shortage of illustrations we need for this.

In case you had forgotten since yesterday’s news that RuneScape had to ban players for running around in-game wearing KKK costumes and shrieking racial slurs, some gamers are still racist idiots. The topic is getting attention from Blizzard now too, as horrific racially motivated harassment toward Terrence Miller, an African-American player, engulfed the live chat panel of the Twitch stream of his Dreamhack Austin Hearthstone matches earlier this month.

Polygon reported at the time that the moderators working during the stream said they were completely unprepared for the deluge of nastiness; though they brought on more in a hurry, some of them were part of the problem themselves.

Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime issued a press statement yesterday, suggesting that the company, alongside Twitch, plans to adapt to make sure garbage like this doesn’t happen again at gaming events with his games’ name attached to them. He put it more politely, of course:

“We’re extremely disappointed by the hateful, offensive language used by some of the online viewers during the DreamHack Austin event the weekend before last. One of our company values is ‘Play Nice; Play Fair’; we feel there’s no place for racism, sexism, harassment, or other discriminatory behavior, in or outside of the gaming community. This is obviously a larger, societal problem that affects us on many levels. We can only hope that when instances like this come to light it encourages people to be more thoughtful and positive, and to fully reject mean-spirited commentary, whether within themselves or from their fellow gamers.

“To help combat this type of behavior during live events, we’ve reached out to players, streamers, and moderators, along with partners like Twitch, DreamHack, and others, to get consensus and collaborate on what to do differently moving forward. To that end, we’re investigating a pilot program that Twitch has in the works to streamline moderation and combat ban evasion. We’re also updating our esports tournament partner policies with a stronger system of checks, balances, and repercussions to provide a better chat experience around our content.

“We believe these are important steps to take to help address the related issues, but we acknowledge that they only address part of the problem. This is ultimately an industry-wide issue, and it will take all of us to make a real impact.”

Twitch issued its own statement to PC Gamer a week ago:

“We currently approach chat behavior by providing broadcasters tools, education and autonomy to police their own channel. While in this instance the broadcaster was unable to fully prevent the described behavior, Twitch has a responsibility to broadcasters and players to provide a welcoming environment. As such, we are exploring new tools and processes to increase awareness and mitigation of these issues, and will continue to take action against chatters who committed reported violations.”
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Iczen
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Iczen

Sorry to say it, but I really don’t think we are going to be able to clean up the communities very much until we have a return to live moderation in some of these games.  I remember years ago in EvE there was a newbie friendly help channel that I really enjoyed because it always had a live moderator that would kick/ban people from the channel for bad/toxic behavior and remind people to stay on topic.  Surely people can cite cases where power was abused, but in the long run I believe it was more of a positive than a negative.  Seriously, how many times have we all wished the ban hammer would come down on some idiot in WoW trade chat only to see them spew their vitriol for hours or days on end?

I would also like to see them help in the area of gold seller/scammer spam.  The lengths some games are going to combat RMT these days are downright silly and are mostly hurting their loyal customers by disabling very basic game functions like player trading.  (Black Desert Online)

SwobyJ
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SwobyJ

Midgetsnowman Estranged Awesome pope. Claims I’m intrinsically disordered. Awesome pope.

BigMikeyOcho
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BigMikeyOcho

JimGriffiths justaguy2003 SoMuchMass And just because there are a lot of racist people out there, that doesn’t make it suddenly okay to be one yourself. If people start looting stores around you, is it suddenly okay to join them? The whole point of humanity is to rise above our baser instincts and behavior, not doing so just makes us nothing more than animals.

JimGriffiths
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JimGriffiths

Greaterdivinity deleted_81212333_deleted_81212333_deleted_81212333 Which phone? My personal cell’s? My business phones? my home phone? My government issued phone? I have 8 total phones. I post using my real name which is my Facebook. However I would never willingly share vital information with the general public. There is a fine line between anonymity and ignorance. I am willing to let people know who I am but not give them info that could let them have control of aspects of my life.

JimGriffiths
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JimGriffiths

breetoplay deleted_81212333_deleted_81212333_deleted_81212333 Yeah I know your name. LOL And you know mine. However my name is shared by many people so which one am I? LOL

JimGriffiths
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JimGriffiths

Husvik But MJ’s a racist. Her favorite races are Gnomes, Rats, Faries, & Bunnies. She don’t care for the others. LOL

JimGriffiths
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JimGriffiths

breetoplay Greaterdivinity Ceder Not entirely true. You should read Imp general chat on the Harbinger server of SWTOR sometime.

JimGriffiths
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JimGriffiths

justaguy2003 SoMuchMass Well guess what the world is 100% racist. There is no debating that. So welcome to the world. Everybody has something they hate about someone else. Just that the minority group has the guts to speak out about it. Why do you think Trump is so popular? Because he has the guts to say what others are thinking. The fact is racism/sexism will always be an issue in society there is no fixing that.

justaguy2003
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justaguy2003

SoMuchMass justaguy2003 I think people are responsible for the way they act and the things they say.

Yes, a person can be a complete racist and not show it, but when they do show it through the words or actions they use (even if they rationalize it as just being a troll), they have to take responsibility for those words/actions – in other words, acting like a racist makes someone a racist.

SoMuchMass
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SoMuchMass

justaguy2003 SoMuchMass I really don’t agree with your last statement.  You can be a complete racist but not show it in action.  Although I do agree, that it is unacceptable to say, but I really think people say it to troll more than the fact they are racist.  But I could be wrong.