In an noble effort to combat toxicity within gaming communities, major gaming companies like Riot, Blizzard, CCP, Epic, Twitch, Discord, and many others are teaming together through an organization named the Fair Play Alliance. Many of these companies are quite familiar with toxicity within their respective communities, and have taken measures in order to crack down on the problem.
For instance, Riot started establishing teams in order to combat toxic behavior back in 2013. Some companies have more recently set up their solutions to battling toxic behavior, like Blizzard, who announced at last year’s BlizzCon that they now have a team ready to handle toxicity for every single one of their games. But now, over 30 major companies within the gaming industry are teaming up to get a better grip on this problem. Their goal within this collaboration is to share research and practices in an attempt to understand why toxicity happens, how to deal with those who cause it, and ultimately how to eliminate toxic behavior all together.
Riot senior technical designer Kimberly Voll stated to Kotaku “A lot of these challenges today are super intimidating. These are big cultural shifts. As an industry and as a society online, we’re trying to find our way. Having to be a company that steps out and says ‘We’re gonna be the ones to do this’ is kinda scary. This is an opportunity for all of us to say ‘What if we walked together as an industry?'”
Voll was one of many designers who was part of a day-long summit at GDC this past week, which was hosted by the Fair Play Alliance. During the summit, these companies shared insight and research on the matter that has been done thus far. Although the immediate future plans of the Fair Play Alliance are currently unknown, Voll also told Kotaku that their longterm goals are to figure how to share resources amongst themselves, set up a course of action for developers to take when dealing with toxic activity, and to establish a standard set of rules and expectations that can be accepted and enforced across multiple gaming platforms.