Photo by Johnson Ng on Instagram
Have you ever been shouted at constantly while gaming online or got bullied in a new game which caused you to eventually hate the game instead of the bullies? Or are you the one who trash talks other players until they end up quitting the game?
We can all agree that toxicity in the gaming community has been a problem for a long time. However, what people don’t realise is that they are in the cycle of toxicity too, whether they want to be in it or not.
What does ‘Toxicity’ mean in the gaming community?
A toxic player is someone who causes abusive behaviour and does not contribute to the gameplay. As a result, they create a bad atmosphere either to the match or to the players.
Toxicity does not only mean talking with other players in an abusive way. Trolling other players, cheating or hacking in the game, and having the intent to ruin the game for other players also falls under the category.
Why is there toxicity in the gaming culture?
There are many reasons why someone would be toxic towards others, but based on the research by Haewoon Kwak from Qatar Computing Research Institute, the main reasons for toxicity in gaming culture is the competitive environment and anonymity on the Internet.
You can’t deny that sometimes you want to win the game so bad, you end up shouting at your teammate, or just quit the match out of rage. This is because most of the games nowadays affect us with its own competitive environment. For example, the ranked matches make us think that ‘gaming without winning is no fun’.
Being anonymous on the Internet can bring out the feeling of freedom to do anything. Therefore, some players might just “grief” or disrupt other players just because they don’t have to take responsibility for it.
Besides that, one can also be affected by toxic players and continue the cycle. For example, if new players get bullied by toxic players, they might think that it’s a part of the gaming culture. Thus, they will treat new players with the same attitude as well.
Basic Etiquette of Gaming Culture
There are many etiquettes in console and computer platforms, as well as in different types of games. However, to avoid becoming a part of the toxic communities, you should follow a certain etiquette when gaming online.
Toxicity does not only affect one’s game, but it could affect their lives and emotions too. Let’s create a good community for each other and for the next generation as well.
By: Johnson Ng