2017 RuneScape Pride Controversy

2017 RuneScape Pride Controversy

Part of a series on RuneScape. [View Related Entries]

Updated Nov 04, 2019 at 12:15PM EST by Matt.

Added Jun 07, 2017 at 03:49PM EDT by Bullets.

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Image of the in-game event location and player showcasing the scarf reward.

Overview

In June of 2017, the MMORPG Old School RuneScape (OSRS) announced an LGBT Pride celebration event, which was to be temporarily added in-game to promote LGBT acceptance and awareness. Upon announcement, the event was met with backlash and strongly polarised reactions from players, most notably on Reddit. Many felt that it should not be added as it was irrelevant to the game and because some use it as an escape from real world issues, whilst others praised it for promoting LGBT acceptance. Despite the backlash, Jagex confirmed that the event would still take place and remain in game for approximately two weeks. Additionally, they confirmed that it would be minimal and take up no more than seven tiles across the whole map.

Background

On June 5th 2017, Jagex employee Mod Wolf [1] tweeted about the upcoming Pride event which was designed with the intention of promoting LGBT acceptance within the community. The event was backed with support from some members of the Old School development team.


Mod Wolf @JagexWolf Follow It's an honour to announce a small holiday event of mine will be coming to @OldSchoolRS this Thursday to celebrate #Pride2017

Developments

Following the announcement, many players took to the OSRS subreddit [2] and game forums to voice their concerns about the event. Others created an in-game protest (as per RuneScape tradition for all controversial events), with protesters and counter-protesters gathered in the city of Falador. While many praised Jagex and the event for promoting the LGBT community, others argued that it was out of place in the game and too politically controversial to be added. Many clarified that they were not anti-LGBT, but simply against the addition of the event. Further to this, it was argued that the event should not be spontaneously added, as one of the core values of the Old School game was not upheld; that all new content is voted on before being added, rejected or modified. The event was not officially polled to players in game, which led to further controversy that the developers were ignoring players' wishes, to push their own agendas. Subsequent straw polls conducted by those on the subreddit seemed to show that the majority did not want it added. Ex-OSRS project manager, Mod Mat K, stated that he found the results difficult to believe, despite all parties – for, against, and ambivalent toward the event – having equal access to vote on the polls.


The event is highly controversial, and the majority of the people are against it. Why do you ignore the community Mat? permalink embed save parent report give gold reply ↑ [-] Mod Matk [S] 15 minutes ago I don't believe for one minute that the majority of people are against the event. Do you want a gay pride event in OSRS? 6,470 Votes No. 66% 2,276 Votes Dont care either way 23% 899 Votes Yes. 9% 95 Votes Other (comment). 1% 9,740 Votes Do you want a gay pride event in OSRS? No 13,649 Votes 66% Don't care either way 4,192 Votes 20%, 2,622 Votes 13% Yes. Other (comment) 159 Votes 196 20,622 votes 7 Comments Vote くShare

Online Relevance

News of the controversy quickly spread and was subsequently picked up by multiple online new sites. An article containing an interview with Wolf and Mat K was published by Motherboard[3] in which they discuss the event, their intentions and the controversy surrounding it. The event was also discussed on multiple 4chan boards including the /pol/ and /lgbt/ boards, the latter of which held mixed opinions. In addition to this, various YouTubers uploaded videos in which they give their opinions on the situation.

[Please note, first 25 seconds of left video are NSFW.]

/Pol/ Raid and Account Bans

The controversy was quickly picked up by the /pol/ board on 4chan where threads were created discussing the situation. In response to the proposed update, a number of /pol/ users attended an in-game protest dressed in equipment to make themselves appear as groups such as KKK Clansmen, Nazis or terrorists, whilst criticising the event. In response to this, Jagex Moderators took action against many accounts they believed to be causing offence, and muted or banned those responsible. However, some players were upset or furious that they had been falsely punished, claiming that they had not said nor done anything wrong and were penalised simply for attending the protest or unintentionally wearing similar equipment. Jagex later un-banned a number of accounts after they had checked and verified their innocence.

Follow thefuhrer Standing atthe concession! Plotting his oppression! 0 ldp pay ie al Lol the buckots of mi lk 88 is th

External References

[1] Mod Wolf Twitter – Mod Wolf

[2] Old School Subreddit – r/2007scape

[3] Motherboard Interview – Motherboard

Recent Videos 2 total

Recent Images 18 total


Top Comments

Nedhitis
Nedhitis

Unnecessary "pride event" (with an obvious intention to pander, too) and unnecessary overreaction over something mostly harmless. Hmm… yes, that more or less sums up this whole decade pretty well.

Well, at least /pol/ had fun, so someone got something out of it, I guess.

+123
Pearl: crystal gem
Pearl: crystal gem

They should have polled this, like literally every events before this one. Had they done this, none of this backlash would have happened.

It was implemented badly. And the way they tried to damage-control the backlash by banning peoples using the white robe was utterly retarded. But it doesn’t change the fac that peoples who seriously got butthurt over a minor event that doesn’t effect the game on a large scale are whiny children who should re-evaluate their priorities.

Both sides are stupid here. God, it feel like the elections all over again….

+56

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