Extremists are using mainstream video games and gaming chat platforms to spread hate, BBC Click has found.
Mainstream video games and chat platforms are experiencing increasing hate speech and radical narratives propagation.
Platforms like DLive and Odysee, where the gaming community stream and chats about games like COD and Minecraft, have seen extremist behavior from users.
Both platforms contain extremists that are spreading hate, anti-Semitism, homophobia, racism and violent behavior against minorities.
According to researchers, such behavior can lead to a radical mindset in the long run. Radical conversations and ideas then move from gaming community platforms to private spaces like Telegram channels.
Joe Mulhall of Hope Not Hate, an anti-fascist organization, said, “Once you’re in that world, then the radicalization starts to happen.
“That’s when you start to go to other meetings, to smaller groups that aren’t necessarily playing games, talking about politics more explicitly.”
However, some rules and regulations prevent any extremist chat or idea to float on the platform. Telegram, in this context, said that it uses “a combination of proactive monitoring of public spaces and user reports” to remove offensive content that breaks its TOS. The same is the case with DLive and Odysee but still, such extremism exists on both platforms.
Besides platforms, games too aren’t safe from the menace of extremism. Games that let users create and share their games contain extremist and racist elements. Games like Minecraft and Roblox are prime examples. Users have replicated the environment of Nazi concentration camps as well Uyghur detainment camps in the game.
Another such game can be found in Roblox where the game invites you to become racist and kill characters of color by running them over by a car. Such games stimulate and inculcate the idea of killing ethnic minorities.
Roblox commented on the situation and said, “We work relentlessly to ensure our platform remains a safe and civil space, and with a combination of machine learning and a team of over 2,000 moderators, we monitor for safety 24-7 to detect and swiftly act on any inappropriate content or behaviour.”
Nevertheless, extremists have resorted to video games and platforms associated with video games to propagate their radical ideas after strict censorship on social media. Government is in talks with the gaming industry and related bodies to ensure the safety and protection of players.