This week, a suspected gamer claimed to have been banned from action RPG Way of exile for using a macro to make the game accessible. Other players and accessibility activists took up their cause. Now the whole thing seems like a troll. In my professional journalistic opinion: what the hell?
PC player has a detailed overview of the situation. In one now deleted post In response to legal advice from reddit, a user called poelegalthrowaway00 wrote that he had used a macro in due to an accident at work that affected the use of a hand and a few fingers Way of exile This allowed them to refresh several potion buffs, which they felt was a necessary part of the game. They wrote, “I was recently banned from doing this, I spent hundreds of dollars in the account and wondered if I even have a case as my disability means I have to use the macro to play the game … I don’t think this macro is cheating as it doesn’t give me any unfair advantage and I literally can’t physically play without it. “
Way of exile Gamers and advocates of gaming accessibility used social media to decipher the ban. Able Gamers COO Steven Spohn tweeted
Grinding Gear couldn’t find any evidence as the ban was apparently a hoax. In another now deleted post, poelegalthrowaway00 admitted that the situation had been made right. They wrote, “I am an educator and have done this as a demonstration to my class of how easy it is [is] manipulate public opinion and discourse on social media. “They stated that they had voted Way of exile for this demonstration, because gaming “is a relatively harmless area for this exercise, relative to something like politics”. Allow me to offer if you will this counterpoint.
“Use Way of exile also showed how easy it is to convince people that you are an expert in a field even if you have no experience, ”wrote poelegalthrowaway00. They concluded on a riff about the all too familiar feeling of apology when I hurt your feelings and wrote, “If you are being fooled by it or have feelings like outrage, etc., don’t feel bad. Everyone falls in love with these tricks. “
In one answer to another reddit user, poelegalthrowaway000 claimed the experiment passed their school’s ethics committee, which further justified their crappy actions by writing, “If any misinformation from a single person about something as small as a video game can have such an impact, imagine yourself.” the policy implications, climate change etc that are being carried out by thousands of people in different institutions. ” WHO
PC player writes that shortly after the explanatory post was published it was edited with the claim that someone posted it by hacking poelegalthrowaway00’s account, but who the hell knows what is true at this point. All posts are now deleted.
Whatever the truth, whether this was an educational thought exercise, whether it was a troll’s joke to begin with, or even the possibility that poelegalthrowaway00’s original question was real and that a troll hacked it to subvert it – the whole thing is disgusting. In one Twitter Faden sums up Spohn: “People are already skeptical of people who claim to be disabled … They have made the world more difficult for legally disabled people to attract the attention of developers.”
“There was a line trolls wouldn’t cross,” tweeted Spohn. “It was forbidden to pretend to be disabled and to ask a game for help. Even idiots knew this was too far. And although I knew the day would come when someone would finally cross the line, I cannot express how much disgust and anger I feel. “
“Honestly, I kind of feel sick about all of this,” said Wilson PC player. “It undermines the legitimacy of real-world problems, and the Twitter thread has done us pretty bad PR damage.”
It should be clear to everyone who reads KotakuIt is far from harmless to attract the wrath of gamers as death threats and harassment are rampant in our hobby when it comes to issues far less significant than accessibility. Gaming aside, it is disrespectful, cruel, and for people with disabilities who must often be f, disrespectful, cruel, and actively harmful to use false disability claims to either prove a point or just to laughight for access guaranteed to you by law. False claims give more ammunition to bad actors who would question the credibility of people who talk about their own needs and experiences, and who claim their right to partake in a world that is far too often designed only for certain types of bodies .
Nice job making things worse, poelegalthrowaway00 and helping to make the lives of millions of people difficult to get a few Reddit upvotes. If you are a real teacher, the best lesson your students can learn from not being like you.