Major Video Game Publishers Face Pressure from Congress to Fight Harassment and Extremism

The United States appears to be taking online gaming seriously, as top game developers have been questioned about their efforts to make online gaming a welcoming space where everyone can enjoy themselves without fear of harassment or abuse.

The top gaming companies in the US have been asked to respond to a letter (published by Axios) from US lawmakers about their efforts to prevent online extremism. Despite the apparent increase in the popularity of the online gaming industry, harassment and extremism remain a problem in the community. The recent inquiry from members of Congress may, however, prompt major companies like Activision Blizzard, Epic, Sony, Ubisoft, Microsoft, and others to introduce more comprehensive protective measures.

Even though lawmakers acknowledge that the vast majority of gamers don’t have an issue playing online, they have expressed concern that video games are facilitating the spread of “hate, harassment, and extremism.” Particularly alarming to them is information that white supremacist speech in video games has increased by 100% since last year. By January 9, 2023, the companies are required to present a plan for tackling this.

We are writing to better understand the processes you have in place to handle player reports of harassment and extremism encounters in your online games. Authorities around the world like the United States’ Department of Homeland Security and the EU’s Radicalisation Awareness Network are taking notice and launching investigations into how extremists use online gaming spaces to radicalize young people.”

Even though there have been previous attempts made to address this problem, it will be interesting to see how these companies will deal with it in the future. One more thing to keep in mind is that the letter wasn’t addressed to the companies that had the most scale but rather the companies that had the games that had the most users, so it went to the companies that had the most popular games. Share with us what you think about the measure that the authorities have taken in this regard.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Farhan Ali


Farhan is a passionate writer with an undying love for games, PC hardware, and technology. With nearly 5 years of experience in blogging and over 14 years of experience in gaming, this is what he loves and does best.
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