PlanetSide 2 developer Sony Online Entertainment’s director of global community relations Linda Carlson has laid out the company’s hard stance on trolling, bullying and other toxic behaviour both in and out of its games. Twitter harassment – it seems – can also see you banned from play.
Speaking with GI.biz, Carlson stressed, “Not only will we ban your forum account, but if it’s serious enough we’ll call up customer service and have you banned from all of our games. We do not need those individuals as customers. A very influential player, high up in a huge guild – we’ll still ban them… In our games, if you are an exploiter we don’t care who you are, how big your guild is, how many people you threaten to take with you when you go.
“We can control anybody who’s playing our games…[but] if we know who you are and you’re abusing somebody on Twitter, we will ban your game account and we will not accept you as a customer ever again. It’s not always possible to identify people [in that way], but we take that seriously.”
Later she added, “I don’t believe anybody needs to put up with that stuff. You cannot deal with it online because there are no repercussions for that sort of bad behaviour. I think what developers do need to do is understand human nature. They need to understand that this is normal. You may not like it, but knowing that is normal will help you deal with it. It’s not just you – it’s everybody, and, yes, they are jerks, but that’s normal.
“I don’t necessarily like humanity, or the fact that human nature so often trends towards the negative – just because that’s how we’re wired – but understanding that makes this whole field of study very fascinating to me, and I do consider community management to be a field of study. It’s constantly changing, because our online communities are changing.”
Do you feel that gamers deserve to be culled from online titles if their behaviour disrupts fans beyond their borders? What is the best remedy for such activity? Let us know below.