Harassment in online games continues to worsen since last year, new ADL survey finds


Women and people of color appear to be experiencing the biggest increase in harassment since last year.


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Despite actions taken by some companies and individuals in an attempt to tackle toxicity in the online gaming community, a new survey released by the Anti-Defamation League this week has shown that harassment in online gaming continues to rise. ‘aggravate.


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This is the third year that ADL has conducted this survey, although it is the first year that they have also collected data from young players aged 13 to 17. Aggregate statistics show that five in six adults between the ages of 18 and 45 (or 83 percent) confirm they have experienced harassment in online multiplayer games. This would happen less among young audiences, with three in five (or 60%) young players confirming the experience of bullying.

After breaking down the types of harassment, the results are far from shocking. Eight percent of adults and ten percent of young players said they had been exposed to white supremacist ideology, particularly the belief that “whites are superior to people of other races and that whites should be at the forefront. orders”. Likewise, seven percent of adult online gamers have been exposed to Holocaust denial.

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The demographics of the most notable increases in harassment can be broken down as follows:

  • Adults who identify as women (49% in 2021, up from 41% in 2020)

  • Black or African-American (42% in 2021, compared to 31% in 2020)

  • Asian American (38% in 2021, compared to 26% in 2020)

ADL notes that harassment of LGBTQ + gamers has not increased noticeably, but the 38% it is in are still of concern.

While 59% of adult gamers believe laws need to be created to increase transparency about how video game companies deal with hate, harassment and extremism, we can take at least one bright spot from this study: 99% of gamers online have experienced one form or another. positive social interaction, too. So while it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the daunting statistics, we shouldn’t lose sight of the positive aspects of online gaming as well, as we continue to fight against the negativity.


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