This article highlights the happier side of things, but it appears
that Lin's approach also involved completely removing bad actors:
"Some players have also asked why we've taken such an aggressive
stance when we've been focused on reform; well, the key here is that
for most players, reform approaches are quite effective. But, for a
number of players, reform attempts have been very unsuccessful which
forces us to remove some of these players from League entirely."[0]

A little context about League of Legends (I haven't played in a couple
years, so my apologies if anything I say is out of date):
* In an average game you are thrust onto a team with 4 complete
strangers you will probably never meet again, and must work together
to defeat the other team.
* Individual player mistakes hurt the team, often a lot.  Think making
an error at the World Series in baseball.
* A typical game lasts 20-50 minutes.  If you leave the game before it
finishes, you will be punished. (After 20 minutes your team can
surrender if 4 of your players agree to do so.)
* Some games affect your global ranking relative to all other players.

These game mechanics promote a form of tension which is part of the
excitement of the game but which is also sometimes stressful (if, say,
you're doing really badly and your team doesn't want to quit).  By and
large, Wikipedia's mechanics seem very different from this, there are
a few areas where users are pushed into a more hostile role with one
another.  In those narrow cases, like the village pump, I could maybe
see benefits from trying to re-engineer interactions, but I'm
skeptical that this will somehow engineer a cultural shift.

P.S. As Rupert noted, over 90% of LoL players are male (how much over
90%?).[1] It would be interesting to know whether this percentage has
changed along with the improvements described in the article.

P.P.S. In League you have to pay if you want to transfer your account
from one region to another.  I'm sure we could resolve all ENGVAR
disputes once and for all by adding some region locking. :-)


On Fri, Nov 13, 2015 at 5:12 PM, Denny Vrandečić <> wrote:
> Very interesting read (via Brandon Harris):
> "the vast majority of negative behavior ... did not originate from the
> persistently negative online citizens; in fact, 87 percent of online
> toxicity came from the neutral and positive citizens just having a bad day
> here or there."
> "... incidences of homophobia, sexism and racism ... have fallen to a
> combined 2 percent of all games. Verbal abuse has dropped by more than 40
> percent, and 91.6 percent of negative players change their act and never
> commit another offense after just one reported penalty."
> I have plenty of ideas how to apply this to Wikipedia, but I am sure Dario
> and his team as well :) - and some opportunity for the communities to use
> such results.
> Cheers,
> Denny
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: 
> Unsubscribe:, 
> <>

Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:

Reply via email to