Blizzard has made little secret of the fact that their tolerance for toxic players on Overwatch is very thin. In recent months a significant crackdown has seen a number of such players temporary banned or in some extreme cases permanently.
In a report via Polygon, Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan has said that overall, the toxic behavior is down. Beware, however, they are still on the hunt.
Jeff Kaplan has said that due to the games initiative to reduce (and hopefully remove) toxic behavior, in-game reports have played a significant role. It is reported that such behavior has reduced in competitive games by up to 17%.
He does, however, want to make the fans aware that Blizzard themselves are also taking a proactive role in this. Part of this role is the monitoring of YouTube videos in an attempt to identify players.
In a developers update (the full video below) Jeff Kaplan has said: “We now proactively seek out social media sites like YouTube, for example, and look for incidents of very toxic behavior and track down the accounts that are participating in those and action them, often times before anybody’s even reported them or they’ve shown up in any other place. That’s just one example of us being proactive that I think is going to make a big difference over time.”
He added that this ‘behind the curtains’ activity has seen very positive results so far.
Will the YouTube monitoring work?
Yes and likely very well. It’s absolute concrete evidence and some of these toxic players just can’t help themselves. The report will, at the very least, make people who engage in this behavior think twice before posting their videos.
The bottom line is that any success depends on how vigilantly Blizzard monitors this. Given that they are making such a big deal of this, and even blaming such activity for the lack of more regular content, the chances are good that Blizzard is watching.
What do you think? Is it good that Blizzard is so proactive in this regard? Is monitoring YouTube a good idea or a step too far? – Let us know in the comments!