Online Idiots Affecting The Entire Industry?

The homophobes, racists and straight-up assholes you often run into on Xbox Live or other online gaming setups aren't just ruining your game, they're holding back the entire industry. So says former Microsoft game user research head Bill Fulton, speaking with Gamasutra:

...the online behaviour of our customers is dramatically reducing our sales, and continues to stunt the growth of our industry. Non-gamers simply don't love games enough to put up with the crap they get online. The reason they would consider playing online is to have fun with other people — and right now, playing games online with strangers rarely delivers that for anyone outside the hardcore demographic.

While he never directly mentions the 360, the fact he's ex-Microsoft and that the Wii and PS3 aren't exactly hotbeds of voice-chat multiplayer paints a clear enough picture as to where he's wagging most of his fingers, though I'm sure PC gamers aren't entirely without blame. Hit the link below for more from this great interview, as it's mostly about ensuring pleasant online experiences by means of game design. Interesting stuff.
Fixing Online Gaming Idiocy [Gamasutra][Pic]


    This just reminds me about what Wil Wheaton was saying in his keynote at PAX last year. There’s this entire new generation of gamers ages 10-18 that never had the experience of the 80's/early 90's arcade, and as such gaming sportsmanship etiquette. I believe the line went something along the lines of "If while during a game I were to turn to the opponent next to me and make a comment about their mothers sex life, and my personal role in it, I’d be on the floor bleeding".

    These jackasses don’t feel that there may be any re-percussions to their actions, and no one is taking any sort of serious action to correct their behaviour or educate them on how they may be harming the community on a whole. Theres a reason why when playing CoD 4 or Halo me and my mates all mute voice chat and use team speak instead, I'd rather not listen to some 14 year old punk telling me "You a f**king f****t *g*ymo I f**ked your mum". Grow up.

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