Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis has banned over 1,600 accounts for hateful behavior

    
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The devs of Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis are letting players know that hateful or discriminatory behavior in the game will not fly. A tweeted image touches on the subject, mentioning that over 1,600 accounts have already faced discipline for engaging in such behavior while also admitting that more will be done to continue to combat toxicity in its game. This includes stiffer penalties like account suspension and improving the processes which identify toxic player behavior.

In other PSO2:NGS news, the Sonic collaboration event page got a small tweak, noting that requirements needed to get rewards for its group-centric task were updated due to an error. The requirement of spending money to get certain cosmetics, however, hasn’t changed.

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CasterDPS
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CasterDPS

Considering I’ve seen multiple people just post straight up porn in the main city, I’m glad they’re doing something about it.

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Dankey Kang

PSO servers are pretty much the wild west with f2p and global being a thing. I know the game has had a lot of issues with racism, hardcore porn spam and other types of despicable behaviour so it’s good to see that Sega are actively doing something about it.

ozarubaba
Reader
ozarubaba

I absolutely support making the online gaming environment a safe environment for everyone to feel comfortable in.

Particularly if you consider that even if many adults play video games, “probably” (I have no evidence to support that “claim”) many more kids do.

That said. Once you get rid of the hate speech, and the truly offensive and toxic behaviour, what then?

I ask this, because in my experience, whatever the online game, what happens next is that the “moderating machine” (which includes a large portion of the community actively fighting toxicity) doesn’t stop. It keeps tightening. It becomes more and more strict and severe.

What was previously regarded as perfectly acceptable gaming behaviour (such as taunting) becomes “toxic”.

Is that a bad thing though? I think so, without writing a wall of text about it, think of all the societies and communities (fictional, virtual or real) in which an excessive rule of law or discipline is enforced… what first comes to mind? The Taliban? Authoritarian regimes? Demolition Man?

So if I basically answered my own question, I would like to ask one for which I do not have the answer :

If going to far when attempting to control toxicity is “bad”, how to “control” the “control” so that it doesn’t go to far?

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Bruno Brito

Are you really comparing online moderation on a f2p game rampant with racism, homophobia and overall sociopathic behavior with real life censorship by the Taliban?

Really?

Reeeeally?

Everything stops somewhere. Jesus Christ.

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Castagere Shaikura

Bro culture stikes again.

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Dankey Kang

Is Bro culture the new bogieman?

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Rndomuser

Is Bro culture the new bogieman?

Nah, it’s not, its just a local troll trying to add some fuel into the fire by using false gender stereotypes. Just ignore it.

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Utakata

It really has nothing to do with gender stereotypes…rather about clique of peeps not necessarily all men who giving a bad rep to males in general. The troll in the narrative instead are the ones who bring up the misandry about it, perceived, false or otherwise. Just saying.

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Rndomuser

rather about clique of peeps not necessarily all men

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bro_culture
https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Bro%20Culture

Stop trying to constantly defend something that is indefensible (you’re not doing it first time), such as troll behavior by people who use false generalizations for personal amusement. Just saying.

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Bruno Brito

In a age where Blizzard, Ubisoft and Riot have all been caught breaking the law and harassing their employees to death because of bro culture, we’re still pretending that “not all men” is a good defense?

Holy shit. It’s amazing how people point at the moon and idiots focus on the finger.

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Utakata

@ Rndomuser:

Defend what? Both links use subculture in their definitions…to which clearly means not all men.

And what are you going to do if I keep “defending”, come over to my place and make me stop? I’m just pointing out your Men’s Rights narrative has no real traction here. And will continue to do so for the ages if need be. /shrug

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Dug From The Earth

Banned for how long?

Week long bans dont stop people from behaving in a hateful manner.

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Bluxwave

For a game that has around 10k players… Maybe banning 2000 of them isnt a good thing??

Im seeing the same all over the game and MMO industry. These are paying customers usually and could lead to more game closures.

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Malcolm Swoboda

Not a good thing – a great thing.

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Brinto Sfj

Ohh yes, ban about half the player population for silly crude humor, that will do great for a game that already looks like dying. It is indeed great!

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Malcolm Swoboda

Where did they say ‘silly crude humor’? They said hateful behavior and toxicity. Do you have provable examples otherwise?

And where did you get ‘half the player population’? Steamcharts? Steam is a small part of the playerbase since the game is on several platforms/stores.

And if half the playerbase is engaging in hateful behavior and toxicity, they should be banned from any game or otherwise left in an offline mode.

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Brinto Sfj

I can literally log in and see how very very small the playerbase is, even during peak hours. I only mentioned steam charts because that shows more numbers than what I assumed.

And “toxic and hateful behavior” always turns out this way. Someone made some silly jokes that offended some overly sensitive moron and pop goes the weasel. This is not the first time and this is also not going to be the last time.

There are already many people who had been banned for doing nothing other than play the game. People who don’t even chat or even interact with players other than group content got banned for being “toxic and hateful”.

Someone even shared video of himself getting banned while recording for his youtube channel, he does not even chat in game and his english sucks ballz in his bad vidoes. They banned this kind of people for being “toxic and hateful”…. yeah… you make perfect sense man.

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Malcolm Swoboda

“I can literally log in and see how very very small the playerbase is, even during peak hours.” Not proof.

“Someone made some silly jokes that offended some overly sensitive moron” Like what?

“There are already many people who had been banned for doing nothing other than play the game.” No proof provided.

“Someone even shared video of himself getting banned while recording for his youtube channel” Who?

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Kickstarter Donor
Greaterdivinity

ASKING FOR EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT CLAIMS?! I hear that’s harassment.

(/s)

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Malcolm Swoboda

(/serious) It can be!

But I’m being polite and asking in good faith, albeit in argumentation.

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Andrew Clear

@Malcom Swoboda

You are asking him to present proof, while not asking SEGA to present proof of the actions that lead to them banning 1600 accounts. I tend to agree with you, that if someone makes a claim they should provide some evidence, but that should go both ways.

I personally tend to not see an epidemic of toxicity in the MMOs I play, but I don’t play New Genesis, so I can’t comment of that. I do play FFXIV, WoW, GW2, Neverwinter, DCUO, and SWToR. The most toxicity I see would be from WoW and FFXIV (probably due to their high populations, which would lead to larger numbers of toxic trolls). But, the toxicity I see isn’t based on gender / lifestyle choices / race, but usually just people being dicks to other people due to how other people are playing the game. We seem to have a lack of respect issue in society these days, and the mantra of, “treat others as you would like to be treated” is definitely not being adhered to, because a lot of these people would not want to be treated the way they treat people.

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Rndomuser

Someone even shared video of himself getting banned while recording for his youtube channel, he does not even chat in game and his english sucks ballz in his bad vidoes.

Imagine being so irrational and think that such person couldn’t be banned for things this person said before recording the video.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

“And ‘toxic and hateful behavior’ always turns out this way. Someone made some silly jokes that offended some overly sensitive moron and pop goes the weasel. This is not the first time and this is also not going to be the last time. There are already many people who had been banned for doing nothing other than play the game.”

If I had a dollar for every time someone who did something toxic in our comments came back after being booted and claimed they were innocent, we could fund the site forever. Either they’re lying liars, or they have such a warped understanding of how to conduct themselves in civil society that they honestly don’t think their behavior is toxic. For example, insisting that 1600 banned people are merely being persecuted by “overly sensitive morons” for their “silly jokes”? That’s toxic.

P.S. The idea that game studios sit around gleefully banning innocent players as a matter of course is patently ridiculous. Nobody cares that much. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

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Schmidt.Capela

P.S. The idea that game studios sit around gleefully banning innocent players as a matter of course is patently ridiculous. Nobody cares that much. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

As far as I can tell, for the most part studios only ban players if they figured not banning those players would result in even larger player loses due to toxicity.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Yep. And every once in a while we do get a story where a studio figured out it banned too many people or its algorithm went overboard. But it’s like a once a year thing, it’s never an act of malice, and it usually does get corrected. They’re generally loath to turn away customers.

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Schmidt.Capela

Also, overly aggressive bans are almost always related to cheating or something of the kind, where something innocuous on the player’s PC was wrongly detected as a threat to the game’s integrity.

I’ve never heard of excessive bans related to toxicity.

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Utakata

“If I had a dollar for every time someone who did something toxic in our comments came back after being booted and claimed they were innocent, we could fund the site forever. “

Maybe you should, Ms. Bree! Then MOP would be less reliant on the advertising dollars to run it…

…although the blurb about this site being sponsored by such clueless individuals who didn’t get it would be priceless. <3

ozarubaba
Reader
ozarubaba

That’s toxic.

The definition of the term “toxic” changes over time. What is toxic now was not toxic a couple years ago.

It’s a made up word, a slang, so there is no dictionary definition of it.

If you are interested you’ll find one in most game’s (or online community) TOS, that’s my reference for saying that the definition changes over time.

EDIT (sorry forgot to mention) -> Speaking of which, I had a look at your TOS and funnily enough, it makes no mention of the word “toxic”. Something which, in my opinion, is a good sign.

What’s more, other than the variations from one community to the other, “toxic” is usually (I can’t say always but I think it’s always) defined in broad terms, which leave the moderation team with very strong discretionary power. For example, toxic behaviour is commonly described (amongst many other things) as “what harms a game”.

In short, whether someone’s behaviour or communications are toxic or not has become a matter of opinion more than anything else.

So when you say “that’s toxic”. That is simply your opinion.

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Bruno Brito

Those people are a plague upon gaming and only cause more damage as time goes by. Taking them away from the game is actually a great business move.

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Rndomuser

Not a good thing – a great thing.

It is. A lot of simple-minded people fail to comprehend the fact that other players who type racist/homophobic/hateful things in chat are very likely to drive away many other players who play the game. Including driving away people who are considering to give this game a try but who may read in forums or on Reddit about toxic behavior of other players and may stop considering giving this game a try.

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Brinto Sfj

According to steam charts, they have around 4100 concurrent players. Now they are banning 2K of them and will ban even more. Now also add the fact that they have not released any new content in NGS ever since the release and you can guess where the game is going.

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Schmidt.Capela

For subscription games the actual number of players tend to be roughly 10x more than the max concurrent players. For F2P games, like PSO2, that number tends to be even higher, so I guess it should have some 100K players on Steam alone, perhaps even more.

Besides, the game is also available on two other PC storefronts and on the XBox.

So, my guess is that those punished amount to 1% or less of the player base. Pretty manageable.

Lastly, the original message doesn’t use the word “ban”, but instead talks about accounts being “suspended or otherwise severely punished”, so I guess most of those got away with temporary bans and a warning that worse punishment awaits them down the line if they insist on being toxic.

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Doiley101

Concurrent players is not their total number of players. It is but a percentage because the same players don’t log on 24 hours a day nor do they log in everyday. Many other players log in from different time zones and at different intervals and frequencies. Adding the fact that this game has more than one platform that 2k is a very small number of their total player base.

On Steam alone the figure is anything from 4100 X by 7-10 , which takes into account all the different time zones and frequencies of log in.

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wjowski

It’s been statistically shown that ‘bad’ customers can actually hurt a business.

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Schmidt.Capela

One of my favorite anecdotes in the MMO industry is how UO only started punishing griefers because a dev reworked the internal company description for “griefers”: players who, by driving away other players through negative social interactions, cause the company to lose more revenue than the griefers bring.

Reframing like this, it became painfully obvious for upper management that money spent policing the game and punishing griefers wasn’t wasted; instead, it was an investment in defending a revenue stream.