Yesterday, members of the official Star Wars: The Old Republic forum asked developer BioWare to "rethink" its policy on filtering the words "gay" and "lesbian" from posts. The official response was not elegant.
Star Wars: The Old Republic community manager Sean Dahlberg quieted talk of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender themes in the MMO by writing that "As I have stated before, these are terms that do not exist in Star Wars" and locking the discussion thread. That lead to further allegations of GLBT "discrimination," with knowledgeable fans pointing out instances of same sex relationships in the extended Star Wars universe.
Today, BioWare reps have decided to unfilter homosexual discussion, reopening the discussion thread and issuing a mea culpa.
Star Wars: The Old Republic community manager Sean Dahlberg issued the following apology and explanation:
I would like to personally apologise to "Elikal" and anyone I may have offended. My intention was not to demean anyone but simply to help promote a community that could discuss topics in a mature fashion. When I first built the word filter list, I added a variety of terms to the word filter that have been used numerous times in derogatory messaging. There were some words added to the filter that should not have been – we corrected this today.
I apologise for the confusion that this has created but I would like to be clear that there was never any intent to limit discussion. That said, I have overstepped my boundaries in my original statement and I sincerely apologise for doing so.