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Valve Deleting Hate Groups From Steam

About time.

valve

WARNING: We do not tolerate bigotry and the like on Hey Poor Player, and posts in violation of our Comment Moderation Policy will be met with bans.  Think carefully before you post.

Looks like it’s finally happening: Valve, the company behind the digital gaming platform Steam, has been removing the hate groups plaguing its services over the past couple weeks. As documented on Motherboard and HuffPost, scores of groups advocating Nazism, racism, and even school shootings have been active on the platform for years, and despite being in direct violation of Steam’s Rules and Guidelines, hardly anything was done to curb their proliferation.

However, as noted by PCGames, all groups showcased in both articles have been removed. We don’t quite know what’s responsibe for Valve’s sudden turn-around, but perhaps their lax reputation finally caught up with them. Whatever the case, we applaud Valve for doing what the likes of Twitter, YouTube and Facebook won’t: take action against bigotry and, y’know: actually enforce their TOS.

How much safer do you feel knowing Valve has been kicking Neo-Nazi butt? Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

Anthony Pelone
Eating, breathing and living video games on a daily basis, Anthony is particularly fond of the Nintendo variety, but is by no means a console warrior. Somewhere in the midst of his obsession with cat pictures, he finds the time to pen about his favorite hobby. Having previously written for over three sites, Anthony remains dedicated to spreading the gospel of EarthBound.
  • J.j. Barrington

    Let’s not be silly here: this doesn’t make anyone safer, and anyone who FEELS safer is ignorant of the issues at hand.

    Not giving hate groups platforms on which to spew their hate is one of the first steps to eradicating such behavior. But as it doesn’t prevent people who subscribe to those beliefs from taking real action, it doesn’t increase anyone’s safety in the slightest. That said, it’s always smart to actually bother enforcing the TOS you set forth.

    • AnthonyP

      There’s far more damage hate groups can do than just hurting people, not the least of which is indoctrination. I know I don’t feel safe on Twitter knowing they refuse to enact on their policies while these goons populate their platform.

      • J.j. Barrington

        You’re getting next to no indoctrination in a limited setting like Twitter. Not only is there not enough space in Twitter’s limited format, but its generally open nature means whatever they do say can be easily refuted right there on the spot. The only way this DOESN’T happen is if it’s private; if that’s the case, then the indoctrination has already occurred.

        You can FEEL safe, but that’s not real. No one will be indoctrinated from a few comments on Twitter. It’s a different story if it’s a private facebook group, but someone who’s in one of those groups has already been indoctrinated.

        What other threats are there? What other damage can be done? Give me a compelling argument, not generalities.

        • AnthonyP

          Them being “refuted” is wishful thinking when they stand firm in clutching to their false arguments again and again in the face of blatant evidence providing (“argh nazism is socialism because john toland’s biography said so and those snopes articles proving them wrong are just radical socialist blogs!!1). This is an extremely common troll tactic and that you’d even suggest this displays proves that, at the very least, you have not engaged these monsters often.

          It doesn’t matter how “limited” Twitter is, nor any other platform: their mere presence runs the risk of normalization and that’s not even mentioning the endless harassment, doxxing, and death threats towards anyone from minorities to school shooting survivors, all of which has spills out into real-world. Your argument not only misses the fact Twitter features private messaging with unlimited length but that YouTube refuses to lift a finger to curb the threat of racist propaganda and Parkland conspiracy theories populating their platform, all of which can be shared without punishment on Twitter. So much for only Neo-Nazi Facebook groups being indoctrinated.

          For someone who thinks this is a good move, you don’t seem to have a problem with trivializing their online behavior (and quite frankly, having made the mistake of engaging in similar arguments for this article’s N4G post, I’m beyond exhausted in discussing this subject).

          • J.j. Barrington

            “Them being “refuted” is wishful thinking when they stand firm in clutching to their false arguments and doctored memes again and again in the face of blatant evidence proving them wrong”

            The goal isn’t to get them to change their mind, in this situation; it’s to prevent others from falling for the BS. Refuting them, if you can do it well, is all that’s needed. With them being trolls, you’re not going to get them to change, regardless; having that as an endgame is asinine.

            “It doesn’t matter how “limited” Twitter is, nor any other platform: their mere presence runs the risk of normalization and that’s not even mentioning the endless harassment, doxxing, and death threats towards anyone from minorities to school shooting survivors, all of which has spilled out into real-world.”

            That’s alarmist, at best. These folks have existed in some capacity or another since the internet’s inception, and their actions are no more nomalized now than before. They primarily remain in their little forums, happy in the security of their echo chambers; again, no one’s being indoctrinated if they’re going to such places, as they already are indoctrinated if they’re there. At the same time, the nature of places like Twitter absolutely DO hinder them from spreading. I’m not sure what part of the country you’re from, but it has never required the internet or social media services of any kind for racists to spew their hate, make threats, or make good on those threats. None of that was needed when the white residents of Forsyth County here in Georgia broke state and federal laws to drive 1100 of their black neighbors out of the area and usher in an era of “whites only” that lasted the better part of a century. It didn’t take facebook for me and my family to be refused service by a rebel flag-waving store owner in Lagrange, either. You can hush, thinking you know something about things spilling into the real world.

            “Your argument not only misses the fact Twitter features private messaging with unlimited length but that YouTube refuses to lift a finger to curb the threat of racist propaganda and Parkland conspiracy theories populating their platform, all of which can be shared without punishment on Twitter.”

            Your argument, such as it is, neglects the very common sense point I thought was evident: by providing fact-based counterarguments, you do all that is necessary to shut down the propagation of the beliefs. Fools who believe in conspiracy theories will do so because it suits them, and banning them for spreading those theories only reinforces their positions. What do you think is happening now?

            Fringes on the right view the attacks as proof positive that the rest are actively trying to do what they claim: wipe out white people. You won’t eliminate thinking like that by banishing its proponents to darker and more remote recesses of the internet; that hasn’t stamped out the KKK or Neo Nazis, has it? No, they still exist, and they’re even harder to root out now.

            “For someone who thinks this is a good move, you don’t seem to have a problem with trivializing their online behavior”

            Yes, I DO think it’s a good move, eliminating groups that promote hate. However, I think banning the individuals is a mistake for the reasons previously stated. Let them show themselves to be fools, and help them along with that, and their arguments and movements fall apart on their own.

            “(and quite frankly, having made the mistake of engaging in similar arguments for this article’s N4G post, I’m beyond exhausted in discussing this subject)”

            That was your choice, and it should have been expected the moment you created such an article. When you put forth such an opinion for public consumption, and do so in a way in which people can weigh in, you invite exhaustion, if you’re not prepared.

          • AnthonyP

            You’re seriously suggesting that banning individuals who blatantly violate the TOS of social media platforms in committing death threats, doxxing and inciting violence doesn’t matter because they’re going to do it anyway despite their presence on said platforms normalizes said behavior and is also wrong because we need to think about their poor feelings about being marginalized, especially since an event from 100 years totally proves we shouldn’t anything to curb this

            Forget you putting words in my mouth (at what point did I ever say the internet was “required” to act upon these beliefs or that banning these individuals will make them stop being bigots?), contradicting your own arguments (“it’s asinine to think we can change their minds, but gosh we need to provide fact-based arguments to help them along!”) and being intentionally obtuse/ignorant on the effects of social media refusing to enact their TOS and the proliferation of these individuals on their platforms making it all the easier for them to band together in an age of white supremacy (not to mention conveniently forgetting the presence of online-based hate movements; I mean, GamerGate? Hello?), you are being an apologist for those who spread hate and we do not allow that here. Either knock it off or get a ban.

          • J.j. Barrington

            “You’re seriously suggesting that banning individuals who blatantly violate the TOS of social media platforms in committing death threats, doxxing and inciting violence doesn’t matter because they’re going to do it anyway despite their presence on said platforms normalizes said behavior and is also wrong because we need to think about their poor feelings about being marginalized, especially since an event from 100 years totally proves we shouldn’t anything to curb this”

            That’s one long, rambling run-on sentence, and it’s best addressed by your very next remark.

            “Forget you putting words in my mouth”

            Your ignorance on the subject is astounding. No, it’s not ignorance. You know better, but you seem to be viewing every remark through a bizarrely skewed lens that results in you not having a good grasp on the subject you’re talking about, or what people are saying to you about said subject.

            A ban from this site means nothing to me. It’s clear you have an opinion that people have to agree with, but that’s not how I roll. Why would I, a black man who’s been subjected to racism, be an apologist for people who try to spread hate?

            Oh: I wouldn’t. And your pitiful attempt to paint anything I’ve said as supporting people who spread hate is pathetic. If you can’t be bothered to actually discus what people are saying, why would anyone want to visit your site?

          • AnthonyP

            (For whatever reason, my reply here was deleted during an attempted edit informing our modding decision, so I’ll just revise it here).

            As far as I’m concerned, that you dismiss what’s obviously a sarcastic takedown of your main argument as “rambling” and don’t even attempt to address my other counter-points — instead, choosing to label my general one as “ignorance” — is not just an admission of your flawed argument but projection of your naivete regarding online harassment and whatnot. This is a subject anyone can look up the consequences of — from suicide to PTSD — in maybe five seconds, and you know it.

            We *do* allow spirited discussion on here, but while we provide stories since it’s the right thing to do, it’s not exactly, uh, anything that warrants a response other than “good”; heck, the actual story wasn’t the problem but one line I wrote at the end, and even then you’ve changed stances numerous times (“this is a good first step to erasing such behavior” — “actually you can’t change them” — “or maybe you can I dunno”).

            And yes, believe it or not, people can, and do, take positions and support movements that actively go against their interests; in this case, you’re going to bat for racists and harassers that frequently attempt to harm and suppress your own race by saying they shouldn’t be banned online because we need to guide them on the right path despite them violating the TOS of social media platforms and other private internet sites. Or not because it’s stupid to think they can be changed. Or whatever. (But hey, hate groups? That’s a step too far even though they’re made by those same exact individuals and, according to you, only stay in their own bubbles.)

            After discussing among ourselves, you won’t take the ban since you didn’t devolve into actual hate speech, but at the same time we ask you to please consider your battles more carefully in the future *and* provide something resembling a sensible, consistent argument.

            In the meantime, are we done here? You’ve spent this entire argument being nothing but intentionally obtuse and unusually combative over a topic that shouldn’t be divisive/offensive to anyone but the alt-right. Feel free to respond, I guess, but I won’t bother reading nor responding; I’ve wasted enough time here as it is. See ya.

          • J.j. Barrington

            It was nothing but a waste of time, as you know full well that you never intended to accept anything but your own view as being valid. You’re right on that, at least.

            Everything else, you’ve gotten wrong. The worst part is that you’re secure in the “fact” that your opinion is infallible. Talk about staying in your own bubble.

          • Spibbus Maximus

            I like how your whole argument was essentially “you can’t change things/people on the internet so you shouldn’t even try” and then in the end you cry about how this guy wouldn’t change his opinion on the internet no matter how hard you tried. Classic.

          • J.j. Barrington

            Wow. That’s what you read? I see comprehension isn’t your strong suit, either.

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