Discord bans misgendering and deadnaming in update to hateful conduct policy

Discord app

Social media app Discord has explicitly banned the misgendering and deadnaming of trans and non-binary users on its platform, following a hate-policy update. 

The platform, popular among gamers and Twitch streamers, has updated its hateful conduct policy to not only ban misgendering and deadnaming, but also implement a warning system to help enforce these policies.  

The company writes on its page: “You may not post, share or engage in repeatedly using slurs to degrade and demean individuals or groups. This includes deadnaming or misgendering a transgender person.”

The company told PinkNews that it internally updated its hate-speech policy in 2022, before going public with the changes this month. 

“As part of our ongoing efforts to ensure Discord remains a safe and fun place for people to hang out with friends, we continually evaluate potential harms and update our policies,” a Discord spokesperson said.

“We often work with organisations and subject matter experts to ensure our policies accurately encompass a holistic view of how these issues manifest across the internet and society.”

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LGBTQ+ charity GLAAD welcomed the changes, saying that malicious misgendering and deadnaming isn’t about “accidentally getting someone’s pronouns wrong or mistakenly mentioning their old name” but is “hate speech – pure and simple”.

Discord has also implemented a warning system for users who break the rules, which is reportedly aimed at educating users and allowing them to change their behaviour. 

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A poll in July found that 44 per cent of millennials in the US believe intentionally misgendering someone should be a criminal offence, and many social media platforms, including Facebook and Instagram owners Meta, now ban misgendering and deadnaming .

Twitter, however, has chosen to roll back similar policies since Elon Musk took over, prompting GLAAD to say that the move was “out-of-step” with leading social media platforms.

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