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Reader Comments (15)

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 5:17PM JuliusSeizure said

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The lesson here, I think, is not to allow teens into kid-friendly games. Teens can play most standard MMOs as it is, and tend to find stuff aimed at kids stifling and patronising. It's no wonder they act out.

It's only actual kids and mature adults, either with their own kids or having relearned to appreciate wonder and whimsy, who will be drawn to the content itself of kid games. Teens won't bother unless they don't have more exciting options.

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 6:12PM (Unverified) said

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"I want to stick my long-necked giraffe up your fluffy white bunny" .. thats kinda funny.. lol ... ahhh.. kids :)

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 6:24PM DeadlyAccurate said

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I remember in Wizard 101 trying to tell someone who'd asked what level I was and being unable to do so. It was quite frustrating. I wish chat restrictions could be left up to the parents/players, with unrestricted or very minimally-restricted chat being one of the possibilities. Parents who allow unrestricted chat for their children (and it should be opt-in, not opt-out), should be aware of the risks involved, of course.

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 7:00PM Fakeassname said

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why is this topic limited to just kid-mmos?

I can probably pull a half page list of games off the top of my head that follow the same "black list" word filters, all of them are so ass backwards that communication in game is virtually impossible without bypassing the filter using a combination of l33t speak and gibberish.

none of them are kid friendly.

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 7:18PM Yoh said

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I think if your going to make a kid-mmo, it's not your responsibility to wrap the kids in bubble wrap and protect them from the world, and it's not feasible.
It's up to the parents to actually do their job, and teach their kids how to deal with reality on realities terms.

What you can do as a developer is to give the parents the tools to monitor the kids activities within your mmo.
Such as accessible chat logs, so parents can see who said what to who and when.

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 8:34PM Rengar said

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Educating you kids about what is appropriate to communicate online is still the best solution. Companies will look for better ways to assistance parents with this, and that's a very good thing. The only true way for you kids to be safe online however is to ensure they never give out any personal information online through education and of course punishment for breaking that rule if they do it despite understanding the dangers.

As for unwanted attention from others, show them the ignore feature and encourage them to use it very liberally. (If only we could get adults to do that too!)

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 9:06PM (Unverified) said

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Chat filters are ultimately useless. People are extremely creative. They will always be able to find some way to convey their ideas to one another whatever they make be. The only way to prevent that is to make chatting so restrictive, it is frustrating and perhaps unusable to legitimate chatting.

As far as "safe chat" goes for children in an MMO, children shouldn't be playing one by themselves any more than letting a child play at a playground with no supervision. If you want to let your child play on the computer without watching them, let them play an offline game. Otherwise, someone will no doubt start talking about their long-necked giraffe.

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 9:08PM DairamX2 said

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Back when Superhero Squad Online had chat, I told my son that "If anyone start chatting with you or if you want to chat with anyone me or mommy has to be there"

Parental Supervision is key

Posted: Feb 8th 2012 9:46PM Laephis said

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So let me get this straight:

We invent language/words in order to communicate with each other.
Then we invent ways to block that communication because some words are "bad".
Then we find ways around the blocking in order to communicate with each other again.

Aren't humans amazing? :)

Posted: Feb 9th 2012 5:50AM pid said

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@Laephis No. These are different humans. Different people with different goals. What is amazing about that?
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Posted: Feb 9th 2012 8:06PM Laephis said

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@pid

And then there are humans who lack an ability to get the point.

Well played, Internet Stranger.
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Posted: Feb 8th 2012 11:26PM (Unverified) said

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Even the drop down menus aren't fool proof. I had someone "cyber" with me in ToonTown with strategic choices from the list.

ex:
"I like your pants"
"I think you should choose drop"
etc

Posted: Feb 9th 2012 3:07AM Space Cobra said

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Re : Title pic

Sigh...If only we could tell Bill Roper to "Please Go Away!"

>.>

Posted: Feb 9th 2012 9:54AM Dunraven said

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@Space Cobra No Bill is where he should be making browser based games that actual gamers will never play.
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Posted: Feb 9th 2012 2:31PM nimzy said

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You should have seen the chat filter in Lego Universe.

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