Roblox is suffering from experiences that aim to recreate mass shootings, with more and more being made over time.
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This was reported by The Verge, who spoke to Anti-Defamation League researcher Daniel Kelley, who says he found mass shooting recreations on three separate occasions. On August 13 Kelley found such a recreation when looking into ways to report offending content.
“Each game on Roblox is potentially a social platform in and of itself,” Kelley told The Verge, “and can potentially give refuge to players of all ages who are flirting with or fully engaged with hateful ideologies online. Every space that allows for the veneration of hateful ideologies […] contributes to the normalization of these ideologies and their spread.”
Both Kelley and The Verge confirm that at time of publication (August 17), they could find experiences based off of the Christchurch mosque shooting from 2019. Kelley said in a tweet, “I swear to God, I would like one time to search for “Christchurch” on Roblox and not find a new recreation of the 2019 Christchurch mosque shooting on a game platform aimed at very young children.”
I swear to God, I would like one time to search for "Christchurch" on Roblox and not find a new recreation of the 2019 Christchurch mosque shooting on a game platform aimed at very young children. https://t.co/SovJq00knY pic.twitter.com/0BvRtGYZHE
— Daniel Kelley (@danieljkelley) August 13, 2021
A Roblox Corporation representative responded to a request for comment from The Verge, and said that the company “promptly removed this experience from Roblox after it was brought to our attention,” and that the user was also suspended.
“We do not tolerate racism, discriminatory speech, or content related to tragic events. We have a stringent safety and monitoring system that is continuously active and that we rigorously and proactively enforce,” they added.
Specifically restricting references to Christchurch in particular is apparently quite difficult, as blocking it would also block any reference to the city itself. The sheer size of Roblox as a platform is also a contributing factor.