According to a recent report, over 50% of gamers worldwide have engaged in at least one form of cyberbullying or online harassment. There are currently just under three billion active gamers out of a global population of almost eight billion, which means that around 20% of people have participated in these harmful activities at some point in their lives.
“With the growth of online gaming communities, there has also been an increase in racism and hate speech on online gaming platforms,” the study points out. Regarding the methodology, the group that published the report, Preply, surveyed a population of “1,400 gamers to learn about their exposure to hate speech on gaming platforms as well as their own use of language and their experience on these platforms”. The population included “58 perfect respondents who identified as male and 42% who identified as female. The average age was 36 years old. 71% identified as heterosexual, 21% as bisexual, 6% as homosexual and 2% as other. Both committed and casual gamblers were represented in the survey.
“More than half of those surveyed admitted to bullying others while playing video games,” the report said before adding that “of those who did, 85% were blocked, muted, reported or banished for it”. Bullies have often used racism, doxxing and swatting to attack their victims. These victims were most often targeted because of their gender, gender identity or religion. »
The study found that bullies are often bullied themselves. “Interestingly, 92% of those who admit to being bullied were bullied by others,” the study notes. “90% say bullying has a mental impact.”
Gamers seem to be particularly bad at certain game genres. The report summarizes that “if this sounds like an environment you would like to avoid, avoid shooters and multiplayer online battle arena games. According to our survey, bullies occupy 52% and 45% of these hostile realms respectively. »
Some of the other key findings of the study are that “90% of respondents had experienced or witnessed emotional abuse or bullying while playing video games” and that “nearly seven in ten people had considered quitting because of what they have witnessed”. The survey also notes that “more than two in five have experienced racism and more than one in four have experienced hate speech on gaming platforms.” The most worrying finding would be that “nearly one in five has experienced extremist content on gaming platforms”.
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