PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Forge Partnership For 'Shared Commitment to Safer Gaming'

PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Forge Partnership For 'Shared Commitment to Safer Gaming'

Richard Walker

PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo have announced that they're joining forces to create a safer gaming environments for gaming communities, be they playing on a Nintendo, Xbox, or PlayStation platform. “All players deserve to have fantastic social gaming experiences in settings where respect and safety are mutual,” said Corporate VP of Xbox Operations, David McCarthy in a post on the Xbox Wire.

“At Xbox, we are aligned with both Nintendo, on behalf of the community of Nintendo Switch players, and PlayStation in our belief that protecting players online requires a multidisciplinary approach – one that combines the benefits of advanced technology, a supportive community, and skilled human oversight,” McCarthy added.

“We can accomplish more when we work toward the same goal, and so we will each continue investing in, evolving, and amplifying our approaches to user safety,” he continued. “As we continue this work, we will prioritise protecting the safety of our players, especially those most vulnerable.” To that end, Xbox has outlined the following three principles that will guide its partnership with Sony and Nintendo:

Prevention: Empower players and parents to understand and control gaming experiences.

  • We provide controls that let players customise their gaming experience.  We support parents with the tools and information necessary to create appropriate gaming experiences for their children.
  • We recognise that for safety features to be useful, they must be easy to use. We will promote the availability of our safety tools through our platforms, support channels, services, on our websites and in retail stores to reach more players and parents.
  • We continually inform our parents and players through our codes of conduct, terms of use, and our enforcement practices.
  • We invest in technology to help thwart improper conduct and content before a player is subject to harm.

Partnership: We commit to partnering with the industry, regulators, law enforcement, and our communities to advance user safety.

  • The industry’s commitment to safety is central. We believe that we have an opportunity to collaborate for the benefit of the video game industry and all players to offer a safer gaming experience.
  • We work with industry trade organisations, industry members, regulators, law enforcement, and experts to develop and advance online safety initiatives.
  • We commit to conducting shared research for the benefit of the industry.
  • We believe that hate and harassment or exploitation of younger players in any way have no place in gaming. We partner with our community to promote safe gaming behaviour and encourage the use of reporting tools to call out bad actors.
  • We partner with ratings agencies such as the ESRB and PEGI to ensure that our games are rated for the appropriate audience.

Responsibility: We hold ourselves accountable for making our platforms as safe as possible for all players.

  • We make it easy for players to report violations of our code of conduct and, in addition to removing content, we take appropriate enforcement actions for violations, including restricting players from using our services for misconduct.
  • We comply with all local laws and will respond to all lawful requests from law enforcement. We promptly notify law enforcement if we observe unlawful conduct or where we believe a player is at risk of imminent harm.
  • We publish our rules and requirements and we ensure that players who have been reported understand the requirements for continued engagement with our platforms.

This all sounds like a very positive step in protecting players, which McCarthy acknowledges will be “challenging in a digitally and often instantaneously connected world.” He concluded by pledging a commitment to working with Sony and Nintendo to “improve player safety and ensure gaming remains truly for everyone,” adding that “no one company or industry will solve these challenges alone.”

  • Condoms for everyone!
  • What?
  • Ugh ...
    I welcome better parental control. But I doubt they'll do anything against the psychological exploitation that is modern monetisation (FOMO battle passes, loot boxes, ...).
    I also doubt there'll be more than lip service against the sad state that is "gamer" culture when it comes to insults, trash talking, and its general arsehole-y behaviour. At least as long as it's not aimed at self-victimizing snowflakes which always makes good PR.
  • the fastest and cheapest way to solve trash talking and online threats solve is to arrange bare hand fights between the players that are doing this. Probaly not ethical though
  • This is to pander to all the whiney btch$ out there. I've got 2 words for them, "GROW UP!"
  • Nintendo says "safety first", while they cancel digital Melee events on absolutely stupid grounds and force people to hold physical tournaments.

    Plus, the entire thing does not say anything meaningful. I truly admire this ability of these corporations where they write a lot of words but manage to say nothing.
  • How about starting with getting parents to understand and pay attention to ESRB ratings?
  • Sticks and stones will break your bones but words will never hurt you.

    These thin-skinned kids need to learn that trash talking is part of life.
  • @Tin/Cirative

    "Grow up", hah! People that trash-talk online are mentally weak and acting like children. It's undeniable fact that people with their shit together *never* (and I do mean never ever) use their precious time for it. It's beneath them.

    Holding people accountable for their actions is not a bad thing, and it's got nothing to do with protecting the weak, but punishing the weak for their cowardice.

    The ones that demand the world to change so that their feelings won't be hurt and the "gamers" that can't control their own bitch-ass behaviour are psychologically the same. Neither is capable of
    taking responsibility for their own feelings, so they push the responsibility onto someone else.
  • Nothing wrong with a bit of sledging in games, the ignore/block player option is there for a reason.
  • This sounds nice and all, but it’s just a bunch of words. Additionally, if the big 3 are trying to keep consumers safe, how about all 3 update their refund policies to be reasonable for the digital gaming era? Hell, I’d be fine if Xbox got Sony and Nintendo to at least adopt the Xbox refund policy model.

    Additional additionally, how about they first look into keeping their developers safe at their 1st party studios, and encourage other gaming publishers to do the same with their studios? I’m sure none of them want a gaming developer union (or general software developer union) to get created, but their actions as publishers are making a union creation an inevitability (which would probably be for the best for the gaming industry at this point).

    tl;dr: There are a lot of other, more important things in the gaming industry to work on that the big 3 could’ve partnered together to work on. But instead they chose the one issue that will never have an end goal to reach.
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