I’m gonna try and keep this to the point as much as possible and based on some of the responses I’ve seen on this site this is probably gonna be a very unpopular opinion.
A couple days ago an article was posted about a gamer that lost access to all his games on psn for making extremely racist comments while playing an online game. They banned him for a month I think for hate speech. To be honest I was completely dumbfounded as to how many people actually cheered this and thought this was a good thing. When exactly did we get to this stage? Firstly let me make this completely clear, in no way, form or fashion do I support nor am I excusing what this guy did. I completely agree with there being some form of penalty and punishment for this behaviour. I myself have been on the receiving end of numerous racist slurs and have also witnessed it being done in the opposite direction (surprisingly you never see people complaining about that). So I am fully in support of this guy being banned from playing online for a month. However, I cannot and will not agree with him loosing access to all his games.
Why, why would anyone think this is a good thing? Listen, no company, not Sony, Microsoft nor Nintendo should have the right to stop someone from accessing what they paid hard earned money for over something like hate speech. Remove access to online play, sure but not access to their library. What is the big issue you may ask? It’s pretty simple, what the hell is hate speech?
Think about this. The term hate speech is such a broad term that is being weaponized right now by some very unscrupulous people, do you really want a company having the power to block you or perma-ban you from thousands of dollars that you invested due to something as vague as hate speech? There are places now where you can be arrested for calling a guy with a wig on his head a man, that’s considered hate speech. Imagine you’re playing online and you’re having a discussion with someone and you say “well, it’s my opinion that there are only two genders”. This is now considered hate speech and people have been banned from twitter and Facebook for making comments like that. Are we really going to say a guy should lose his entire library for this? Again, understand that my issue is not that he was punished, it’s the severity of the punishment for something like hate speech.
Yes he should have received punishment for his racist comments but not losing access to his entire library. A punishment that severe should only happen if you are found to be doing illegal activities on the network, not for freaking hate speech. This is wrong and to be honest it pains me that I have to be defending a bloody racist in this situation. I will not support someone who calls me the ‘n word' being banned from accessing their library. No gamer should. Ask yourself what simple, non-offensive comment you can make today that may be considered hate speech tomorrow. Would you like losing access to your account for making that comment? Blocking someone from accessing their library should only be done in the most extreme situations.
If we champion this decision now then we are going down a slippery slope that will take us into a gaming nightmare that we will all regret.