According to a survey, developers are finding themselves increasingly exposed to the toxic effects of part of the gaming community. For many it is a “serious” or “very serious” problem.
From a survey launched by the Game Developers Conference and its affiliated publication Game Developer, it is clearthat toxic player behavior is a “serious” or “very serious” problem for 75 percent of developers.
The vast majority of the approximately 2,300 respondents, at least 91 percent, consider player harassment and toxic behavior towards developers to be a problem in the games industry. Only four percent of participants believe it is not a problem, while five percent were undecided.
About four in ten respondents reported that they had been harassed themselves or that someone on their team had had an unpleasant experience of this kind.
Community management, marketing and PR particularly affected
It has also been found that those working in roles such as community management, marketing or public relations are more likely to experience or witness harassment than those in other positions.
Women and non-binary people are more likely than men to experience or witness harassment, according to the survey. The same applies to people who identified themselves as part of the LGBTQ+ community.
Approximately two-thirds of respondents said their companies have taken appropriate action against any harassment they have experienced or witnessed. A fifth of participants said they did not, while 11 percent were unsure.
As one of the survey participants pointed out, “I think setting clear and public boundaries and calling on the community itself to help can be effective. Big companies seem to worry that their toxic players are their fanbase, unaware that by doing so they are affecting a much larger number of their actual fanbase.”
“I’m a community manager, so unfortunately that’s part of my job,” said another participant. “We need to recognize this behavior when it’s happening, address it, and set the expectation that we won’t allow it.” We also need to stop inviting the community to become part of the family. You’re part of the conversation, you can voice your opinion, but you can’t demand that things go the way you want them to.”
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In fact, game developers and employees have even had to deal with death threats in recent years, as a small part of the Internet community seems to have forgotten all the rules of a socialized society. Death threats can be cited as a well-known example, directed against CD Projekt in 2020.
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