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Censoring language doesn’t solve anything

Chiu on This
A short and regular opinion blast from Stephen Chiu

Gamers and the online community have always used questionable terms. Some have been racist, homophobic, xenophobic, etc. I’ve been playing online games for over a decade now and while some certainly are some or all of those things, I don’t think it’s any more than the normal populace of people. It’s just how this specific subculture has evolved. It’s impossible to judge a whole subset of people as making these transgressions as they all mean something different depending on the context.

Only recently has there been campaigns to censor people for the language to use (whether in game, Twitch chat or on social media). I don’t care either way as terms evolve and they’ll find other ways to accidentally insult a group of people, but the people that are censoring seem to think this is the answer to the problem.

It’s not. It’s just stuffing the problem in a closet and then yelling profanities at it every time it bursts open. And a lot of the terms used are argument ending terms (racist, homophobic). A kind of a term that ends all discussion and paints them as evil. This isn’t solving anything, it’s just creating a larger divide of understanding and eventually people lash out (Just look at Brexit and the current USA election cycle to understand how). All it does is give the accuser and the public the self-satisfaction of being “morally superior” when it looks like they’re doing the exact same practices they are accusing the other party of doing.

So when someone proposes to censor a word, ask yourself if it’s actually solving anything.


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