Major video game modding websites Nexus Mods and ModDB have taken a public stance against anti-LGBTQ+ content, after a Spider-Man PC mod aimed to remove every Pride flag in the game.
Nexus Mods, a website in which users can share their custom content for PC games, initiated the movement after an established user created a new account (branded a sock puppet) to upload the anti LGBTQ+ content, which swapped out the rainbow Pride flag for the American flag. The mod was subsequently removed.
The user, who Nexus Mods called a “coward”, had both their new and old account banned, with the creation of the sock puppet account making it “a very easy decision”.
A blog post on Nexus Mods said: “The fact the user needed to make a sock puppet like a coward to upload the mod showed their intent to troll and that they knew it would not be allowed. Had they not been a coward and had they used their main account instead, we would have simply removed the mod and told them that we did not want to host it, only banning them if they reuploaded it again after being fairly warned.”
The website also made clear that it will take similar action against any similar cases in the future, stating that “we are for inclusivity, we are for diversity” and, as a private business, “we have a right to choose what content we do and do not want to host on our platform.”
Nexus Mods added: “We don’t want to and won’t argue this with you. We’ve now explained our stance and we won’t be providing a platform for you to distort our position in order to feed an irrational and paranoid You can do that elsewhere, where we won’t care enough to read it.
“If this policy upsets you, if we’ve broken some moral code of conduct as a business that you can’t accept, then please, delete your account and move on, as we will.”
Hi! We’ve removed the content and banned the users. ModDB is an inclusive environment for all and we do not permit targeting marginalized groups. Our content moderation is largely automated but when identified, we have a zero tolerance policy for this kind of content. https://t.co/0leqjUxqJD
— ModDB (@ModDB) August 17, 2022
As reported by PC Gamer, ModDB followed suit and removed the same Spider-Man mod and banned the users behind it. “ModDB is an inclusive environment for all and we do not permit targeting marginalized groups,” the website said on Twitter (above). “Our content moderation is largely automated but when identified, we have a zero tolerance policy for this kind of content.”
The porting of PlayStation Studios’ Spider-Man to PC earlier in August has seen a number of mods added to the game including one that turns Spidey into Stan Lee. Users have also been digging through the game files, discovering what appears to be a scrapped multiplayer mode and mentions of a potential PlayStation PC launcher.
Ryan Dinsdale is an IGN freelancer. He’ll talk about The Witcher all day.