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70 percent of gamers avoid certain games because of 'toxic communities', study finds

Kate Harrold

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70 percent of gamers avoid certain games because of 'toxic communities', study finds

Featured Image Credit: Valve, Xbox Game Studios

A new study has revealed that seven out of 10 players avoid playing certain games because of the ‘toxic communities’ associated with those franchises.

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The study was conducted by Dr. Rachel Kowert, research director of mental health organisation Take This. The aim of the study was to raise awareness surrounding mental health in the gaming industry - particularly focusing on how toxic communities impact a game’s commercial and financial success as well as the mental health of fans and players. As reported by eXputer, Dr Kowert confessed, rather unsurprisingly, that “toxic gaming communities are not only bad for the health of the community, they are [also] bad for the bottom line” of the video game.

It was further assessed that 60% of players said they had quit a session or match simply because they were subjected to hate or harassment by fellow players - a staggering majority. A further 70% of players said they’d avoid certain games due to this very reason. For gamers between the ages of 13 and 25, the study found that players spent 54% more in a month on games deemed as ‘non toxic’ than those classed as ‘toxic’.

Dr. Kowert added that these games are benefiting financially by fostering safe and positive communities. A further statistic revealed that six in 10 players reported that they’d chosen not to spend any money on a game specifically due to its toxicity. Interestingly, male players were found to report a change in spending due to toxic communities more so than female players, despite female players being found to experience the most toxic abuse.

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Issues that had driven players away from certain games included racism, misogyny, anti-semtiism, threats of violence and sexual violence, and death threats.

Topics: PC, Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch

Kate Harrold
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