Content of the article: "/PS4’s PSA about a certain subreddit, hate culture and meaningful discourse online"
This post is supposed to a PSA for you, the subscribers of this subreddit, and not a statement of any political convictions or believes.
In the wake of recent events, we decided to address one thing here publicly and welcome you to join the discussion about this.
As we are concerned, thelastofus is still the main TLOU sub for a balanced discussion of the IP that now entails two full games and one (standalone) DLC.
However, with the way subreddit naming works (a name cannot be changed after the sub has been created) and the immense influx of new, and often young, users daily, weekly and monthly, since Reddit decided a couple of years ago to ditch their business model of being a message forum and gravitates more to becoming another form of social media, we've been noticing a trend in comment sections of threads in PS4, that a lot of users mistake the subreddit thelastofus2 to be the de facto subreddit dedicated to the game and franchise.
This is in our opinion not true, and if you're inclined to find out why we think that way, please read on.
It was during the leaks in late April 2020, that the limited moderation team of thelastofus became overwhelmed with the number of people disappointed with the direction the game appeared to go to. But not only genuinely upset subscribers, but rather trolls and griefers targeted the sub with posts, that the mods there made the decision to temporarily close the sub down, which unfortunately led to a mass migration by those very trolls to other subs, like thelastofus2, lastofuspart2, and many other variations.
Ironically, only the one with the most accurate name reflecting the game's actual title, thelastofuspart2, decided to become private, to not allow themselves to become a platform for these trolls.
We're gonna focus on thelastofus2 in this, as it has become the biggest, with a subscriber base of >33.000 as of the writing of this post.
This existent, but non-active subreddit grew from <200 subscribers from mainly controversial instances:
- The releases of the "lesbian kiss" E3 gameplay trailer
but in disproportionately larger parts from
2) The cutscene leaks of April 2020
3) A steady rise since the game's release on June 19th, 2020. Source: https://redditmetrics.com/r/TheLastOfUs2
Which, one could argue, shows that people flocking to the sub in all instances were either enjoying the drama and conflict potential, or sincerely upset, both a breeding ground for hatefulness and trolling behaviour. Misinformation, like the exaggerated or in parts completely untrue story synopsis that went beyond what was shown in the cutscenes, originating from 4chan was passed around there as fact.
The sole mod of TheLastofUs2 was happy that their sub finally gathered traction, and allowed the trolls to stay, adding some of them as the new moderation team. You can hover over any of the moderators name's to see when they were added here: https://www.reddit.com/r/TheLastOfUs2/about/moderators
This subreddit has since then become an anger-fueled circlejerk sub, but the name still confuses people relatively new to Reddit and how the subreddit naming system works that this somehow is a genuine fan-run subreddit. As the most recent example, which prompted us to now to finally adress the inherent issue we take with the sub, is that the userbase has in large parts expressed enjoyment and empathy for the numerous death threats being sent to key people involved in the development process of the game, something we deeply condemn here on PS4.
Furthermore, their subreddit tries to elude a complete admin ban by proclaiming that they follow the Reddit site-wide rules, which were designed to combat hateful echo chamber subreddits, in their subreddit rules, but a quick glance at the sub should show anyone that these are not actively enforced. Rampant antisemitism, misogyny and transphobia are just some of the qualities that get posts upvoted regularly there.
It has now, almost a month after the release of the game, peaked in new user influx. And as most of their more offensive "jokes" have been run in the ground, they are now branching out in different, but equally dangerous directions, as most circlejerk groups do when there's a drought on new topics to hate on. One example of that is the often-repeated claim of misinformation, that TheLastOfUs is silencing voices critical of the game, and only allows positive outputs. Nothing could be further from the truth. The mods over there, like we here on PS4, only moderate content that does go against civil codes of conducts, such as hate speech.
While we do not always agree with every view expressed on PS4, we do protect the right of people to express their views and encourage actual conversations according to the rules of our subreddit. Please use your best judgment in discussing such matters in whichever subreddit you choose.
If you are looking for low effort memes, zero spoiler warnings, circlejerks, blatant racism and delusions of grandeur, where they fantasize about how their "activism" will bring down NaughtyDog/Neil Druckmann, it is worth checking out.
If you want a civil, open discussion about The Last of Us, we recommend checking out TheLastOfUs.
In closing, be the voice of meaningful discourse that you'd want to see yourself when logging in online. Don't spread hate, try to empathize, not reject, when confronted with a view that differs from your own, but most importantly, find the appropriate ways to express yourself.
Look for the light,
The PS4 mods
- Mod Discussion Mondays (Week 120) – Best Mods for Education
- Mod Discussion Mondays (Week 121) – Best Mods for Flight
- Mod Discussion Mondays (Week 124) – Best Mods for Authors
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