Xbox chief Phil Spencer outlines plan to combat online toxicity

Phil Spencer, Microsoft Corp's Executive Vice President of Gaming, speaks at one of the company's Xbox events in this undated photo released from Microsoft Corporation in Redmond, Washington, U.S. on March 14, 2019. Courtesy Microsoft Corp./Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES.

LOS ANGELES: Head of Xbox Phil Spencer outlined new plans to combat toxicity and promote online safety in a post on the Microsoft Blog on May 20. 

Spencer believes in two fundamental truths about gaming, he said. One, that gaming is for everyone and, two, gaming must promote and protect everyone’s safety. 

“No one group ‘owns’ gaming,” Spencer said. “Instead, whether you’re new to gaming or are a diehard eSports fan, you are welcome to play and welcome to all the fun and skill-building that comes with gaming. In this way, when everyone can play, the entire world wins.” 

“If you imagine gamers as predominantly men and specifically teen boys, think again,” he added. “We are a 2.6 billion-person strong community of parents playing with our kids, adventurers exploring worlds together, teachers making math wondrous, grandmothers learning about their grandchildren through play, and soldiers connecting with their folks back home. Most gamers today are adults; nearly half are women.” 

Going forward, Spencer said Team Xbox will identify potentials for abuse and misuse on their platform and fix problem quickly. They also recently published a new version of the Xbox Community Standards, so players have a clear idea of what constitutes acceptable behaviour on Xbox Live. 

Later this summer, Xbox will give its official Club community managers moderation features to help create safe spaces for fans to discuss their favourite games, Spencer said. 

Finally, Xbox plans to openly share safety innovations similarly to how Microsoft has made its PhotoDNA technology available to everyone. – Variety/Reuters


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