A lawsuit against Jagex for muting a player is thrown out in five days

This feels like a useful reminder

    
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THAT'S NOW HOW LAWS WORK

Let’s tell a story about one Amro Elansari, a player of RuneScape who was muted for undisclosed reasons (so almost certainly involving his being toxic to other players). Mr. Elansari filed a suit against the Chinese-owned UK company Jagex for this action in Pennsylvania court, arguing that the actions in question violated his constitutional right to free speech. And now, after five days, the suit has been summarily dismissed because that’s not what free speech means.

The full legal documentation, of course, does not simply state “that’s not what free speech means,” instead outlining that the constitutional assurances of free speech refer to governmental entities and not private parties, which are under no obligation to continue providing a platform. It thus dismisses the case without allowing for the possibility of amendments to the complaint, although the filing is able to be brought up again in state court if there’s a more substantive claim to be added. Thus do we have a nice reminder about the fact that no, getting banned is not a violation of your free speech.

Source: MMO Fallout

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Grave Knight

Free speech protects you against the government not from the community managers of Jagex. Why do so many people think first amendment means you can say whatever dumb shit you want without consequences?

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draugris

Well, that´s what a lot of players and content creators on youtube and twitch don´t understand. Maybe they should book a holiday, 4 weeks in lovely North Korea, maybe then they get a feeling for free speech.

IqNon
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IqNon

I love how literally all of you defend the right to be banned for any reason and completely forget that people may have invested alot of time, and money into accounts, and as a player you defend paying and profiting a party without any gaurentee of anything.
I mean if that’s what you really believe why even invest your time in any license. Since it’s worth absolutely nothing

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draugris

And I love how anything you bring up has absolutely nothing to do with the case, which is about freedom of speech. I suggest you read the article another time.

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Neurotic

There’s a measure of common sense involved too. If you invest tons of time, money and effort into something, you shouldn’t jeopardise that investment and your ability to continue making it, with rude, obnoxious or bad behaviour, or any actions that are likely to conflict with the rules of whatever it is you’re doing.

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Adam Russell

Next he should sue his lawyer for malpractice.

Godnaz
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Godnaz

Google this guys name. They refer back to his case and education. He’s no stranger to legal challenges with the law, the universities he’s attended and others.. He’s got videos on YouTube. Not going to say he’s right or wrong but he comes off as the outspoken epitome of the entitled generation.

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Bryan Correll

Not going to say he’s right or wrong

Oh, I think you can say it.

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Jeremy Barnes

He’s a boomer?

Mewmew
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Mewmew

Hmm this article doesn’t really explain the situation correctly. He wasn’t saying he should be able to say whatever he wanted. He was saying he was muted and not told why, and that they should have to tell him why he was muted so he can see if it’s something he could appeal or what have you.

They refused to tell him why he was muted and that was the issue, not that he wanted to be able to say anything in their game and call it free speech (though that did come up as well over the course of the 5 days, that wasn’t the main thing that the case was brought up for).

Being that they’re a private entity and you are agreeing to their Terms of Service to play, it turns out they can mute you and don’t have to tell you why. To me that is a bit scary, if you get muted and you don’t know why you should be able to be told the reason you’re being punished so you can either correct the issue in case it is in error or correct your own speech to learn for the future.

We have no rights in their games at all except for what they give us and we need to remember that when we choose where to spend our time and money.

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Utakata

No, he’s still claiming he’s allow to say anything he wants in complaining he’s being muted. Therefor, it’s directly implied.

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NecroFox4

It doesn’t really matter at all what the reasoning behind his complaint was. The fact remains that the First Amendment provides absolutely no right to a platform from private entities, plain and simple. He could have the most convincing argument, or Jagex could be completely in the wrong here, having muted him for absolutely nothing whatsoever, and this case would still be dead on arrival.

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The Deplorable Beast

I disagree with this article, banning is the primary way free speech is hindered in online games. We don’t know what happened here but the general narrative of this article seems to be “if you got banned you deserve it”. and that logic is obviously flawed.

That said my experience with RS Staff has always been good, they have always been respectful in regards to human rights and free speech. Ironic considering Jagex’s ties to china.

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Bryan Correll

‘Free Speech’ in the US constitution is a restriction on the government. It has nothing to to do with what a company does on their private platforms.

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Syran

This article consists of six sentences. It really doesn’t take that much time to read them all before writing a comment.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

Actually if you read just this article, you don’t really see what was going on. I believe that not only did he read this article, but he read the articles this links to. When you read what this links to you find out the real issue of what was going on.

It wasn’t that a player wanted to say whatever he wanted and call it free speech, it was that the player was muted and they refused to tell him why or let him appeal. If the commenter had read the articles this links to, what he is saying makes sense.

The article is assuming the person was being toxic but we don’t know and the person who filed the case claims he doesn’t even know, he wanted them to tell him what he did to get muted and they refused to tell him or let him appeal. That was the issue, it wasn’t someone being toxic and wanting to say whatever they wanted and say it was free speech. Free speech did come up during the hearing but that wasn’t what it was about to begin with.

So yeah, realistically I think he read more than you did :P

Mewmew
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Mewmew

But games don’t have free speech. You’re not guaranteed it in online games, in fact just the opposite – you agree to their terms and agree to forgo using certain speech.

Obviously false bans happen all the time, but he wasn’t even banned. He was muted.

You are right in some ways because this article doesn’t really state what was really going on. Jagex refused to give him a reason why he was muted. He wasn’t saying he should be able to say whatever he wanted, he was saying he deserved to know why he was muted and be able to appeal the mute.

And you are right in that we shouldn’t just assume he was certainly being toxic and that’s why he was muted. We don’t know and even he doesn’t know. it could have been in error. It could have been someone found some light casual thing he said to be offensive. We shouldn’t just assume that he was almost certainly being toxic without knowing.

The ruling is that it’s their world, their rules, if they think they have found a reason to mute him, they can basically mute him without giving him a reason why.

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Bruno Brito

As Mewmew pointed out, there seems to be more to the story than the article gives out.

That being said, Free Speech is a protective measure against governamental retribution, it has NOTHING against private companies platforms.

If you’re being a KKK jackoff in a Starbucks, they have the complete right to ask you to fuck off their store.

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kgptzac

banning is the primary way free speech is hindered in online games

the general narrative of this article seems to be “if you got banned you deserve it”. and that logic is obviously flawe

Online games are not obligated to give you a platform for “free speech”, and this article is less about whether the guy deserved the chat ban but more about him having no legal recourse.

Frivolous lawsuits deserves to be thrown out by the judges, though.

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Toy Clown

I laughed. Hard. haha And I want to add this bit because of free speech and all: Dickhead.

Aldristavan
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Aldristavan

BUT MUH RAGHTS.

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Wilhelm Arcturus

Let me tell you about the EVE Online player who felt that the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights specifically forbade CCP from banning him for TOS/EULA violations. (He wasn’t from the US, so had to find something other than the first amendment to hang his hat on.)

Alyn
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Alyn

comment image

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McGuffn

Sure Mulder. You believe in vast alien conspiracies but think its impossible that EVE online could be committing human rights abuses. The Truth is Out There.

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Darthbawl

if he decides to bring the lawsuit back on state charges in state court, he absolutely may do so.

Yeah… Let’s see if this person does that.

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Bryan Correll

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