Discord pulls partnered status from servers hosting porn | PCGamesN

Discord pulls partnered status from servers hosting porn

Discord has begun taking action against partnered servers hosting not safe for work content or, more specifically, porn. The chat host has recently updated its requirements regarding NSFW content on partnered servers, and is removing partnered status from servers that don’t comply – and in some cases points to regular use of slurs as a reason to make those decisions permanent.

Partnered servers get access to a handful of additional features over standard Discord servers, and the status is typically reserved for large communities or individuals and organizations with big social media presences. Discord points to Twitch channels over 10,000 followers, or YouTube subs over 100,000 as examples.

One community that received partnered status was the Final Fantasy XIV subreddit – at least, it had that status until yesterday. Admin Eanae received an email from Discord which asked for the removal of content a channel called, ahem, #nsfw-so-many-anime-girls-doing-lewd-things. Specifically, Discord asked for the removal of “illustrated or digitally altered pornography which depicts minors (such as lolicon or shotacon),” or it would delete the server.

On Reddit, Eanae says that the content was removed, and was already against the server’s rules. But in further communication, Discord says that the decision to remove partner status remains permanent because of other content on the server. “Searching up the word ‘retard’ brings up a staggering 4,869 results at the time of sending in this ticket,” pointing to some of Eanae’s own messages in the report, “and there are also a large amount of strong racial slurs which we won’t be mentioning here.

“By being a Partnered server, we hold your community to a higher standard and trust that your server is one that anyone can enjoy without worry. Unfortunately, you and your server’s behaviors and actions have not fostered a welcoming home. If anything, it’s become a server that has gotten bad enough for users to write into our team directly about.”

In a reply on Reddit, a Discord representative says “NSFW content (such as pornography) is not allowed in partnered servers. When we introduced NSFW channels a while back this was made clear to all our existing partners (since our partner policy previous to this feature was not clear). That said we’ve definitely failed to properly document and communicate this rule, both for new partners and existing partners who have forgotten/missed our previous clarifications.”

Those clarifications come in the form of an update to the partnership requirements page. “Do keep in mind that being a Discord partner means exhibiting the best behavior, as well as always upholding our community guidelines. Because of this, Partnered servers should never contain pornographic content, but you are welcome to use the NSFW age gate for something such as a channel discussing spoilers.” (Non-partnered servers, it seems, are free to post all the ‘anime girls doing lewd things’ channels they can handle.)

Though that much clarification is appreciated, there’s still some uncertainty in where Discord is heading here. The initial email threatened total deletion – understandably – over pornographic content depicting minors. Then partnered status was removed altogether for hosting a porn channel at all. Finally, unmoderated slurs were pointed to as the reason for the partnership removal to be permanent.

As Eanae notes, quite a few major partnered channels have a whole host of unmoderated slurs just a search away. Discord’s well within its rights to expect a certain standard of moderation for the servers it highlights, whether that’s cutting slurs or not hosting porn, though greater clarity and consistency on which rule is being enforced – and when – would go a long way.