Cyber Culture: A whole new world of pain for online-game 'griefers'

 

You'll probably still be unhappy with your download speeds – but at least you'll be reassured that you're not the only one.

I'm not a gaming enthusiast, as such; I possess no multi-function gaming mouse or chunky headset, and I'm ferociously unfamiliar with the intricacies of Mass Effect 3. But I'm fascinated by the way humans interact online and particularly the trolling that occurs when playing games online in co-operative or multiplayer modes.

When you're engaged in quests or battles with people you might not give the time of day to under normal circumstances, it's a distinct possibility that you'll end up experiencing irritating death at the hands of a spotty adolescent who then proceeds to make expletive-filled judgements about your genitals. This kind of harassment (or "griefing") is the scourge of online gaming and generally leads people to restrict their gaming networks to trusted friends rather than extend it to strangers who might turn out to be racist, sexist or both.

Microsoft has decided to do something about this with a new "Reputation System" it's planning to bring to Xbox Live on XBox one (controller pictured), replacing the current five-star rating that's largely ignored by users. Still in the planning stages, the system aims to encourage good behaviour with rewards and punishments – which you might say is treating us like children, but hey... it's people behaving like children who've caused them to implement it.

If you persist in engaging in antisocial behaviour, if you're repeatedly blocked or it becomes clear that people don't enjoy playing with you, your reputation will take a hit.

Eventually, the only people willing to play with "griefers" will be other "griefers", creating the gaming equivalent of an infernal pit that you'll only be able to haul yourself out of by being incessantly nice.

The potential problems with this are many and various: how to stop people maliciously damaging your reputation out of spite, whether repeatedly beating other people at a game would be enough for them to block you, and so on. But if it works, the idea of a well-behaved corner of the internet that's free of people being unspeakably irritating, well, that's almost too extraordinary to comprehend.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: PHP Developer

    £25000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: With extensive experience and a...

    Recruitment Genius: HTML5 Games Developer

    £34000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: With extensive experience and a...

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Support Engineer

    £20000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Looking for an excellent opport...

    Recruitment Genius: Field Service Engineer - Basingstoke / Reading Area

    £16000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This established name in IT Ser...

    Day In a Page

    Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

    Making of a killer

    What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
    UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

    Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

    Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
    Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

    The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

    Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
    Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

    Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

    Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
    Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

    No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

    Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
    Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

    Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

    The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
    Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

    Something wicked?

    Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
    10 best sun creams for body

    10 best sun creams for body

    Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
    Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

    Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

    Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
    Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

    There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

    The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
    How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

    How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

    Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
    Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

    One day to find €1.6bn

    Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
    New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

    'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

    Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
    Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

    Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

    The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
    Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

    Historians map out untold LGBT histories

    Public are being asked to help improve the map