This has become a popular topic in many circles, probably because it is both important and prevalent. Online, we see a lot of jerky behavior. What is up with these people? Online trolls, online bullies, and just plain nastiness. It is not just annoying – it ruins the user experience for everyone else. This can have serious business implications as well as the more public consequences of bullies and trolls.
Anyone who has ever played a game online with strangers knows how toxic it can get: there are players who seem to enjoy being jerks more than the game itself. Racist, sexist, and homophobic slurs are the norm on Xbox Live and in-game chat. But it turns out that those extreme cases, the players who just love to be mean, only account for a very small percentage of the negative behavior, according to Jeffrey Lin, the lead designer of social systems at League of Legends developer Riot Games. More than 90 percent of the vitriol comes from normal players who occasionally act out while playing, and it’s Lin’s job to figure out how to stop those incidents from happening.