Nothing ruins a quest to smite the dreaded Talon Lord of Sethekk Halls like seeing an troll and an orc simulating childbirth and peeing on each other. No, really - this is a problem. At least for Blizzard Entertainment, who must arbitrate over such unusual circumstances in the astoundingly popular massive multiplayer role …
I mean, sure, if they were bumping and grinding and... giving birth(?) in yells or in the City general channels, sure. But I would've thought they'd be smart enough to restrict their "roleplay" to guild, partychat and whispers.
Inappropriateness all around?
1) The guild can't verify ages, but WoW (sort of) can. As I understand it, sexual activity isn't that uncommon of an occurance in WoW, so why don't they just split the game, or make some over-18 zones? That wouldn't solve some of the more creepy issues here, but it would at least break out the issues of real underage players from adults acting out fantasies.
2) "Those who were part of the offending guild should not post information sent to you on this forum or any other, as it is prohibited by our forum rules to discuss such matters."
That doesn't sound like a good idea to me. At all. Technically, it's their playground (server equipment, whatever), but it's still a serious restriction of free speech. I hope it bites them in the ass.
3) "Specifically, we've got a few 6 and 7 year old characters of both genders running around and no grown-ups or other children to play with them."
Ewww! And they wonder why they are being purged from a TEEN RATED game. Really, this is the bit that makes it the hardest for me (and, I guess, many others) to blame Blizzard, heavy handedness on #2 or not.
Blizzard is right this time
What's wrong with doing this in Second Life instead of WoW? SL is DESIGNED to allow this sort of behaviour; WoW is designed for kids.
Now I'm an absolute opponent of censorship, but I do believe in restriction to appropriate audiences IN CERTAIN ARENAS. Just as someone would rightfully object to people posting smut in Disney or Nickelodeon forums, similarly these deviates don't have to practice their sexual permutations in WoW when they've got a perfectly good 3D universe in SL.
SL is a place for adults to play in, and rightfully there are sections there where kids are not welcome. WoW is a place for kids to play in, and similarly sexual deviates are not welcome there.
There's times and places for everything. While I would be the first on the soapbox evangelising freedom of speech if the "think of the children" crowd wanted to censor Second Life, they ARE entitled to a place where they know their kids can play safely. WoW is that place, and in this case I agree with Blizzard that these deviates don't belong there.
The online content may vary
When you go online, you have to work bloody hard to find a guild that can role play to a high degree. The above Guild(s) are taking the easy option in that they don't really need to take into account any historical or current geo-political storylines into account.
I just hope they realise they're having virtual sex with 30+ year old single guys (still living with their parents) who have to muffle themselves so their parents can't hear them from their basement apartment.
How does a flatsharing 31 year old stand? noise or muffler? Who knows?
This has no place in WoW
The rpg servers can get pretty immersed but this is just wrong . Sorry but if they really want to do this then take it into IRC or onto Second Life . Its irresponsible when they have no way to verify the ages of the players . If they want to do it in WoW then go host your own server . I hope Blizz keep at it and disband them whenever they find another guild formed by them . I help run a family guild with family and friends and we wont allow swearing in Gc let alone anything like this as we do have younger players .
Wrong just wrong .......
This is bad but
Again this comes down to the perversion of what is acceptable
Simulating sexual acts via chat(and some form of bumping into each other) is wrong but there is nothing wrong with the following statements
- Lets go kill more creatures
- A guy from school I don't like plays that character lets PVP him
- I need some help to kill this guy cause he killed a mob that I hit first
Violence = Good
Sexual activity = Bad
You've got to be kidding me
This is the saddest thing ever. I mean. WoW is sad, but ageplaying, humping, childbirthing avatars? That makes comic book guy look like James Bond.
Weird kinks and fuzzy labels
The "ageplay" label, like the "child porn" label that can scare a visually oriented venue, has gotten stretched beyond all sense. I suspect we all recall being teenagers, 16 and 17 years old, fascinated by sex and doing things that, had they been photographed, would fall under current definitions of child porn. And if you want to roleplay that sort of teen, you might think of it as "ageplay".
And then you see people roleplaying the 6-year-olds, often creepily dolled-up in a way resembling the whole juvenile beauty-pageant business, and doing so with overtly sexual motives.
We've allowed the language to be spoilt, so that we can't draw a distinction between evil and foolishness. I'm not sure I would want to invoke the full weight of the law on the apparent evil here, but I do wonder what some of the people doing this are capable of.
And, with the stigma attached to child porn, when should you start to wreck somebody's life?
@WoW is designed for kids.
This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. WoW isn't for kids. The storyline in the game is complicated enough to blow their brain-fuse.
Toontown? Yes, that's for kids. Maple Story? sure. City of Heroes? Maybe. Lineage II or WoW? I'd think twice about leaving a kid alone with them games, let alone let him/her play it.
Back to an idea that was first put to Sony Online Entertainment re: Everquest back in the day (though for slightly different reasons): Have an 18+ Server.
There are many adult players who would prefer to avoid a lot of the childishness and have a less restricted playing environment (no naughty words filter, etc...) where they can game without worrying about the sensibilities of minors and enjoy a more grown-up experience. It would seem to me that this would at least give the ERP'ers somewhere to go away from the possibility of kids seeing it.
With WoW being as big as it is, I'm sure there'd be sufficient uptake to make it economically viable.
In EQ2 after a good PvP fight against some cheating rivals, we'd often give their corpses a quick tea bagging... was very funny :)
WoW is not designed for kids - it's designed for credit card bearing adults.
Nowhere to play
Oh well, now that they have nowhere to play make believe they will have to go out and find some real kiddies to play with. :-0
Someone tell the Mail!
/e grabs torch and pitchfork
Now, say it with me. "It is just a game"
Sorry, but I cannot agree
Free speech is NOT the right to do or say anything in public in front of anyone. With that kind of argument, there is no reason to keep people from shagging like rabbits in public places, malls, or on the sidewalk during rush hour.
Free speech does not mean you can insult someone or talk rubbish to anyone who can hear you.
Free speech is meant to defend the right to think differently and talk about it in places and times where that discussion is needed.
Therefor, I agree that these pervs should have kept their grinding and pseudo-erotic key-banging to their own Guild house and their own forum.
I have no problem with what they are doing, I much prefer that they do it virtually rather than go rape a kid, but I do believe they should use restraint when they are not between themselves.
And I really don't get why they don't go to Second Life. Technically, SL is ideally suited for exactly what they want, WoW is most certainly not where they can get their kicks.
Finally, I'm sorry but Blizzard has no obligation to defend free speech on their own servers - it's a game environment, not a political forum. As such, Blizzard is totally within its rights to censor anything they so choose. They are not restricting your right to free speech, since you can go and spout your nonsense in many other places. They are, however, keeping their forums centered on their games, and that is perfectly legal AND desirable.
Censorship is something to rant against when it is done by the government, not when a game company tries to keep people on the game.
I think I'm in the minority here,
because I support the guild members. I'm big on free speech and the idea of 'safe, sane and consentual'.
On the one hand, I respect Blizzard's point of view. If it was taken in the wrong context, the ageplay could be considered underage pornography. But, and I repeat, but, this is completely simulated. There are no seven year olds getting diddled.
I respect the fact there's no way to verify age, but surely it's a teen game anyway? Isn't there any kind of age verification when you join? (I don't know, I don't play WoW).
I'm going to disagree on this one - if they say when you join the guild "We like to talk about pooing on each other whilst pretending to be an elf" or some such disclaimer, then let them. Who really cares?
OK, so the outside of the box says it's teen rated but the box also says it needs a recurring subscription. Generally that means a credit card which you cannot acquire until 18 here in the UK. So which is it? Adult game (18+ for subscription) or teen game (as per rating). I think Blizzard and the other MMOG companies are being deceptive by describing it as a teen game, you can't play unless you're an adult. If you're younger than 18 then you presumably have your parent's permission, they pay your subscription and thus they carry responsibility if you see something upsetting in an adult game.
However, it must be said that Blizzard are entirely right in cracking down on this stuff. Freaks and weirdos have credit cards too and some activities are unsuitable anywhere. All Blizzard need to do is make it unacceptable behaviour in the acceptable usage terms and then get busy with the banstick if it gets flouted.
Finally, this is not a free-speech issue at all. These are privately owned game and forums which you pay to use. Blizzard can censor as much as it likes.
Is this an English or American site?
You're right, but america is allways coming across that way, GTA is a great example, it got in trouble for that hot-choc mod, which as far as i could see was a couple of blurry pixels, whereas no-one batted an eyelid at killing random pedestrians.
It's like the age of consent over there, you can go to war/drive/own guns, before you are allowed to have sex legally, and as far as i know, safe sex between 2 consenting people is highly unlikely to hurt anyone.
Must be some religious thing.. i hope it makes sense to someone, i think it should be the exact opposite way round myself, sex = good, violence = bad, but not in yank-land.
Free speech is one thing, subjecting regular users to this type of behaviour is not right.
Public decency should stretch to include digital realms especially in a large MMO like WOW where a vast percentage of its population are pre-adults.
This can be applied to almost any game which is online.
A quick and dirty method would have been to add a functionality for a guild age limit which can be auto-verified with the account age info.
You are x+? You get to be invited. Else GTFO.
re: Teen rated?
With regards to the recuring subscription to WoW, two things are worth noting:
1) they also accept debit cards (including visa-electron and solo)
2) payment can be via a "game-card" which can be obtained from game/game-station for cash.
Thus effectivly removing the age restrictions by payment type.
In the UK, WoW has a rating of 12+
You can pay by credit card (which you have to be 18+) OR you can buy game cards which I presume you can buy at any age.
So, I'm guessing there are a lot of players under the age of 12 (either that or there are a lot of adults acting like children).
Game play may change during online play.
Maybe I'm being hopelessly naive here, but wtf is 'childbirth'? Is it a euphemism for something else, or is it actual role-play of actual childbirth? And since when was that a recognized kink? Oh how I long for the good old days of old-fashioned whips and chains.
Free speech does not apply here
The game world is provided by a company which has the right to limit the activities and behavior of its users. There is no "free speech" issue here. Any company can limit the behavior of its subscribers.
re suggestion for over 18's server
what's really needed is an over 30 server.
People complain about young teenagers and the language they use, but go on something like WOW at 2am on a Fri/Sat night and the chat channels are full of immature sexual/swearing garbage from the reams of 18+ year olds who are, in my opinion, far worse than the average 15 year old.
This has to be the weirdest thing I've heard of in a game. Sure in IRC channels or that Second Life sadfest, but in a game?
WoW is for Kids? Actually it is - and it's for adults, and teenagers and anything in between.
The only thing about this that has me disturbed is the actively seeking players to act as pedophiles or the victims of pedophiles.
I doubt there's anything illegal role playing even the most perverse fantasy, but why on earth would Blizzard want to be associated with that?
As it's obvious they don't, I have to side with them. It's their game, they decide what's acceptable or not. There is no "free speech" issue, Blizzard are not the government. Free Speech laws only prevent your government from stopping you saying what you believe, they have nothing to do with the private sector.
If you decide you want to ban the word "fuck" from your house, you are perfectly entitled to do so. If Blizzard want to ban perverse sexual roleplaying from their game space, they are perfectly entitled to do so. They have every right to protect their image. So what if these so-called guilds have their own servers? The gameplay doesn't use any outside servers, in fact it's against the terms and conditions to try to use them. Their vent accounts are a completely separate item from the game itself, and will continue to function without it. Vent has nothing to do with WoW.
In fact none of their private equipment is in any way connected or reliant on WoW.
If they don't like it, they can write their own game and play as weirdo pedophiles in that.
You need to stop somewhere
Credit card or no credit card, there are plenty
of kids who play that game.
Now, there's always been people taking their clothes off
(underwear are always on) and starting to dance in the
middle of a city, and this is not something that needs
censorship (you see more at the beach).
And there is probably nothing wrong about doing something
which is illegal in real life as lond as you do it QUIETLY.
I think this is the message that was sent to that guild, and
if they go on discreetly in private chat, I see no reason why
they should be banned again. Let's face it, if a kid wants
to cybersex, he will (I put on my robe and wizard hat... :D )
Yes but what's wrong is wrong
contact local law enforcement!
Ever since I started playing WoW I've been watching the evolution of "ERP". It's amazing what some of these people get upto! Regularly I'd go out and around the starting areas looking for people to prey on and such. My favourite of them all has to be this gem: http://source-dq.com/sick_cyber.jpg
Needless to say it found its way onto the Earthen Ring realm forum in no time, shortly after I received some very angry whispers from a very troubled person: http://source-dq.com/khilandraa_strikes_back.jpg
It was worth it though. ;)
A pedo by any other name...
Ok, I play Wow, I run a guild.
Anyone claiming that having to have a credit card to play is just plain wrong, you can buy game cards with no restriction (like mobile phone topup cards). Anyone who has played will know there are literally hundreds of kids who play, and day to day you cannot differentiate them from any other character unless they are particularly childish, that in itself isn't a measure though due to most 20-30's being twice as immature.
The game is rated teen, and Blizzard has reacted correctly in keeping some semblance of decency, seriously how can anyone morally defend *anyone* wanting to role play kiddie fiddling. Free speach or not its just plain wrong and absolutely should be stomped out. There are a mountain of 18+ guilds out there who do use swearing and such and often may contain sexual conversations but they don't cross that line these do.
Seriously, if this guild didn't announce they support pedophilia, they would still have a guild now. If Blizzard don't act now and repeatedly disband the guild how many real pedo's will be realm tranfering to join them or thinking they have a haven once more. Extreme, but I bet these people look for any port in a storm to 'extend their network' :[
No getting away from the fact that whether it's mindless violence, harmless fun, sexual depravation, organised incitement to smite or whatever the game world allows you to do, you're still playing WoW. There are so many better things to do such as appreciate a rose, hold your new born baby, buy that big fridge you've always wanted, you know the one with the ice maker on the front. It's ironic that people who choose to live in an MMO can call anyone else sad or attempt to control how other players act. Gotta love the outraged majority.
Blizzard's first rule
Blizzard doesn't care what people do with their software. They care that the maximum number of people buy it. If the majority of potential buyers might be discouraged from purchasing their software because they might accidentally run into some seriously perverse people, then its in their best interest and well within their rights to limit such activity.
I'm a 29 year old gamer, but not into WoW...No freakin' way am I putting money into a game if there's even a small chance I'm going to be exposed to wackos like those folks. Blizzard did a good job looking out for its own interests, which is just what I would expect any company to do.
Many people support freedom of speech so much that they completely ignore its counterpart...Freedom FROM speech. If I find your particular brand of expression revolting, I should not be constitutionally bound to be subjected to it. Keep it secret, keep it safe, keep it out of my friggin' living room.