Modern Warfare Map Removed After Complaints From Muslim Gamers

Over the weekend, those playing Modern Warfare 2 began to notice that one of the series' most popular multiplayer maps, Favela, had disappeared.

Why? Publishers Activision and developers Infinity Ward took the map off rotation after receiving complaints from Muslim gamers, who had discovered offensive imagery contained within a room of the stage.

In a single room on the map, two paintings had been hung whose frames contained a decorative representation of a quote (pictured above), which reads "Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty". Those paintings were hung in a bathroom, one right above a toilet, and didn't appear to be found anywhere else on the map.

You can see the paintings in this video, dated October 2.

It can be offensive to those of Islamic faith - like those in the aforementioned video - to see holy teachings written on or in a bathroom, and with the paintings having been brought to Activision and Infinity Ward's attention, the map has been removed until it can be edited.

An Activision representative tells Kotaku:

We apologise to anyone who found this image offensive. Please be assured we were unaware of this issue and that there was no intent to offend. We are working as quickly as possible to remove this image and any other similar ones we may find from our various game libraries.

We are urgently working to release a Title Update to remove the texture from Modern Warfare 3. We are also working to remove the texture from Modern Warfare 2 through a separate Title Update. Until the TU is ready, we have removed the Favella multiplayer map from online rotation.

Activision and our development studios are respectful of diverse cultures and religious beliefs, and sensitive to concerns raised by its loyal game players. We thank our fans for bringing this to our attention.


    This is Activision a) Jumping at shadows and 2) wringing that last bit of publicity for a three year old game

    I'm ashamed to be a member of this community right now. Cultural misunderstandings happen from time to time and if you have accidentally offended one or more people, are you not entitled to apologise and correct your mistake.

    It's nothing more or less than that. It seems a number of you have fallen victim to believing the the medias portrayal of Muslims rather than actually getting to know any!

    Like many rational Aussies know that it's a small minority of Muslims that have given them a bad name, hopefully any Muslims reading this understand that the above comments do not reflect the views of all Australians.

      Be an apologist all you want. But I will NEVER respect or tolerate a culture that demands the death of my family members for being gay. NEVER. Tradition and upbringing are no excuse for subscribing to such beliefs. Anyone who holds such views is neither deserving of my respect or tolerance.

        Please don't take this the wrong way because I have nothing but respect for you and this is in no way suggesting I have any problem with homosexuals,but as a direct reply to your message...

        The concern I have with your reply is that you are implying that the Muslim 'culture' wants to kill you. Would you view this and suggest every single Christian wants that also,

        Or do you instead consider this to be a small portion of the population are just dickheads, regardless of their beliefs, and its just the beliefs that are used to justify hatred?

        Mate I'm not in your position so I can't speak for you and am not in a place to argue so I'm not trying to be silly, just want to try reminding people that there are many many Muslims in the world and many of them are lovely people, just like the rest of us. That's been forgotten over the past 10 or so years. Yours was one of the better responses actually because at least you clearly explained why you felt this way and with good reason, many replies on here are just straight out hatred and that makes me sad for our future.

        As a side note I don't subscribe to any religion for this exact reason. So much hatred and blindly following without reason. And flat out agree the church's view on homosexuality is pretty disgusting!

          Oh dont get me wrong, Christianity is not exempt from my list. Neither is certain sections of the Budhist community. The difference however is that they are easier to ignore. There are far fewer Christian "true believers" willing to kill for their beliefs these days because of the enlightenment and social progress. Until the Islamic world as a whole experiences a societal shift in how they deal with the clergy, I will always be wary.

            I don't mean to lecture you (though I kinda am) but perhaps you should judge people based upon who they are as individuals instead of their religion. It is also worth noting that you'll find plenty of extremist Christians (I used the term loosely) in certain parts of America.

              This. In saying, dogcat, that you don't want homosexuals judged and prejudiced against solely on their sexual orientation, you're judging and prejudicing against Muslims solely on their religious affiliation. The hypocrisy in your stance is astounding.

      I understand why you think it's important to be culturally sensitive, but I think you are missing an important piece of the puzzle, that being that there have been very real and recent murders committed by Muslims specifically fuelled by their religion. If a Muslim makes a demand to have something changed because it offends them, there is an implicit threat of violence, whether or not it was intended by the person making the request. Any Muslim who makes a demand like that, whether or not they personally would condone that violence, must be aware of that implication.

      If I ask you for some money, you have the right to say no, and no harm has been done. But if I ask you for some money, and you are aware that every single person who has refused requests for money from my family in the past has been murdered, then it is a different story.

      Of course the majority of Muslims are good people like you and me. But the very fact that you may possibly be murdered by a minority if you transgress their rules, rules which conflict with some of the underlying assumptions of a free society, turns this from a simple "cultural misunderstanding" into a bigger issue.

      I personally would like to live in a world where I could paint a picture of Muhammad and only fear being attacked verbally for my insensitivity or artistic shortcomings. I think you should stop simplifying the issue and believing that everybody who wants to stand up to religious demands is a racist. I believe that cultural and religious traditions are very important and should be preserved and respected by all people who share those values, but that they cannot and should not be enforced upon people outside of that culture.

    why not remove the painting instead of remove the whole map?

      They intend to do that but have removed the map for now.

    Sad pathetic little fuckers. Ostensibly this is religious vilification. Which is illegal. it is denigrating a religion. The act of reproduction of sacred text is in itself an act of incitement and putting it in a toilet jst inflamed the situation.hate all religions. But by fuck you guys are ignorant abhorrent pieces of idiocy. If the placement of this text had ANY thematic, intellectual or literary intent then YES stand up for what you guys(a capitalist multinational distributor of violent games) intended. But there is no artistic or intellectual reasoning behind its placement. So its removal has nothing to do with pseudo intellectual mutterings of freedom of speech.

      In fact your replies are pathetic. I hate religion BUT I hate your replies even more. No mention of Philosophers like John Stuart Mill or intellectual debate. Just blah blah blah Muslims blah blah blah daddy buys my games.

    If I go to Singapore or other Asian cultures I'd exchange money with two hands, if I go to Finland I take off my shoes before entering a house and if I had Religious text I wouldn't place it in a bathroom. It's about cultural sensitivity and respect for other people. That's not out of fear but respect for other cultures and I'd like to think that as Aussies we travel a fair bit we'd understand that.

      Not all Australians travel, some aren't culturally sensitive. The majority are, but it's wishful thinking to say that Australians as a whole are culturally sensitive. It is also worth noting that Islam is more irrationally feared than other religious views.

      "That's not out of fear but respect for other cultures..." - In the first two examples you've given that's true. If you transgress those traditions in Singapore and Finland it would embarrass you, and you wouldn't need to fear physical violence. But I would strongly advise you against posting a drawing of Muhammad and allowing yourself to be identified, and not because it would reflect poorly upon your cultural sensitivity.

      Last edited 10/10/12 2:10 pm

    Kinda makes me feel bad about having Jesus-print toilet paper...

    I like most of what this video says:
    As "LeftyOX" says, the backlash against Muslims was kinda predictable.

    Edit: found a good troll vid too

    Last edited 09/10/12 9:50 pm

    I dunno about this, I think this whole censorship thing when its comes to culture and religion is getting out of hand. I think people just need to accept that they will find things from time to time that may be directly or indirectly offensive in some way.

    Tolerance these days is very lacking.. all we seem to be doing to kicking up dirt in everyone's face whenever we see something we don't like.

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