ADL & Fair Play Alliance announce partnership to fight hate in video games

Both organizations collaborate to release new framework for addressing the harms in gaming.

An attendant demonstrates an online baccarat game on a smartphone at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) Asia in Macau, China (photo credit: BOBBY YIP/ REUTERS)
An attendant demonstrates an online baccarat game on a smartphone at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) Asia in Macau, China
(photo credit: BOBBY YIP/ REUTERS)
The Fair Play Alliance have teamed up with the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Center for Technology and Society to release the Disruption and Harms in Online Gaming Framework, a comprehensive catalogue of the types, causes, and impacts of antisocial behavior and harassment in gaming.
“Video games are an important part of how hundreds of millions of people today socialize, connect, and spend time together,” said Dr. Kimberly Voll, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the FPA.
“But that comes with a responsibility on all of us to ensure these spaces are respectful, inclusive, and safe. The Framework helps us do our part as developers by providing a detailed foundation to better understand behavior patterns, and take a more intentional approach to crafting spaces that promote healthier coexistence and player well-being in the first place.”
The Framework is designed to assist developers and professionals to address and identify problems quickly and effectively while taking a more informed and proactive approach to creating healthier multiplayer experiences that are less susceptible to these issues.
One of the main goals of the Framework is to also encourage developers in promoting shared communication that better distinguishes the full spectrum of social and behavioral issues in gaming. The FPA also brings resources to the industry with a new series of recommended developer best practices, pulling from leading gaming experts across the industry who specialize in multiplayer design and social connection.
Jonathan A. Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League Center states that “[their] surveys have shown that harassment is already rampant in 2020, 81% of adult players in the US experienced harassment in online games. Adopting this framework would be an important step for the industry—and we hope the first of many.”
The hope is that the Framework will allow the gaming industry to unlock further opportunities for collaboration with the benefit of a shared, industry-wide language, as the FPA points to ADL's work, which through its Hate, Harassment, and Positive Social Experiences in Online Games survey, continues to help establish a more collective understanding of what patterns exist in gaming.  
Several companies such as Riot Games, Twitch, Supercell, Amazon Games, Electronic Arts, and Stadia have pledged to use the Framework as a resource alongside their efforts to foster healthy gaming spaces, as Angela Hession, VP of Global Trust and Safety at Twitch, states that “Twitch is proud to support the Fair Play Alliance’s mission to combat disruption and harm in gaming.  We recently launched our new hateful conduct and harassment policies and will continue to listen to our community and improve our community guidelines to make Twitch, and the broader gaming ecosystem, safer and inclusive for everyone."
Another gaming company, Electronic Arts, also made a statement in response, as their SVP Rachel Franklin stated that they are “committed to making communities, games and experiences feel inclusive, safe, balanced and fair, and applaud the Fair Play Alliance for bringing the gaming industry together to create better, more inclusive and positive experiences for players everywhere and for partnering with the Anti-Defamation League on the development of the Disruption and Harms in Gaming Framework.”
The FPA will host a convening in summer 2021 to discuss Framework outcomes and impact so far with the goal to share those learnings across the industry.
The Fair Play Alliance was founded in 2017 and is a cross-industry initiative of nearly 200 gaming companies working together to encourage healthy communities and player interactions. Together the Fair Play Alliance provides research, resources, and consulting by game developers for game developers to help games and gaming spaces be more inclusive by design.
ADL is a leading anti-hate organization. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education and fighting hate online, ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.