I agree with you. Free speech, basic rights, etc. has nothing to do with it. You are subject to the product's EULA which likely has a "code of conduct" section (as many do) covering offensive actions, harassment, racism, etc.
Personally, I have no problem seeing someone banned due to a violation of the rules whether that's for cheating or something like abusive, toxic behavior. I don't see that as any sort of violation of their "rights". You are bound by the agreement.
As for NWI or Focus Entertainment's ability to regulate this, that's another story. Typically there is some way to report behavior that violates the rules but then again, they usually have a way for players to block, mute, kick or otherwise handle offenders themselves.
I am all for users having a good time in-game but I feel they should be respectful and considerate of others when playing in public servers. Personally, if I'm playing a game and someone is swearing, being racist, toxic, etc - it doesn't generally bother me because I just ignore it. It can definitely be frustrating, but as long as there is a mute / block button, then I'm not too concerned. However, when it is a private owned server, you have to abide by the admin's rules. So if there is zero tolerance for swearing, then don't swear. It's their server, not yours. When it's a public server (such as match making), I think people should be considerate and know the limits. Where as in private servers, it's all subjective to the server rules. I also don't see anything wrong with appointing a few volunteer moderators to manage those private owned servers. The admin has the choice of selecting mods for their server if they wish to. However, those moderators wouldn't be NWI or FHI mods; they'd have to find their own people for that.
Mikee has talked about tools to kick toxic players in one of his streams. They're trying to evaluate whether or not they have an automated system, hire people to manage player reports or to just give the power to the players entirely. Last I heard, no decision has been made yet.
as long as there is a mute / block button, then I'm not too concerned
This is it chief. I don't see what the ruckus is about if this function is available. Any arguments about people not playing simply because they have to mute so many people are pretty fringe. Making NWI hire people to soft through reports just for these out-there scenarios seems ridiculous to me.
I get if its a private server, I don't think there's any ambiguity there.
31 other players
This is a slippery slope argument that isn't based on any kind of realistic appraisal. Having played Sandstorm for like 40 hrs now I have yet to hear anyone be racist or whatever. Even with mute broken and people knowing about it, I haven't personally found this to be any kind of widespread problem. Unless you have a whole bunch of troll friends squading up together into matches I doubt you'll ever need to mute more than one person.
What I am doing is asking where it becomes too much to mute. After we have done that, we can speculate if it is probable that that line might be crossed. We could speculate about what the profanity distribution would look like, but to evaluate that speculation we would then have to ask ourselves what too much is. Either way we have to ask ourselves what too much actually is.
Slippery slope arguments are not always informal logical fallacies if that is your point: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_slope
My experience is that I hear e.g. the n-word more and more. My personal experience is limited data of course, but the same goes for yours. Anecdotal evidence as it is called ;). That is why it makes sense to talk about it, like we do here and now. Collecting data so that (if it was up to us) we can make an evidence based decision.
31 other players
Again: don't argue with extreme examples, they are useless and don't lead to a good solution. It's pointless.
I am asking at what amount it becomes too much. The extreme value here is interesting, because if the maximum value is not too much, we know that no possible value is too much. If the maximum value is too much we know that the line is somewhere in the range of possible values, it is just a question about where it is.
(voice comms for casual is pointless anyways. nobody uses them seriously and it actually kills the immersion a lot)
In most games I agree, so I would not be surprised if I'll end up turning voice comms of entirely. Personally, the more stupid and annoying things I hear the faster it'll happen.
@marksmanmax lol it was you who attacked me, not the other way around
... Any arguments about people not playing simply because they have to mute so many people are pretty fringe. ...
I see that as just one aspect of the problem. For me there are three aspects I can think of right now. 1, it can give people a really bad first impression like "oh my this is one toxic community....", leading to bad press. Especially bad during e.g. a free weekend. Could easily hurt sales, the question is how much? 2, it could actually e.g. turn a black person off if he gets to hear indefensible slurs directed at him, to the extent that it would not be enjoyable to play the game. 3, it could lead to far too many turning off voice comms all together, reducing voice comms to just annoying yapping about nonsense. If you want to have a game where people communicate in public (which NWI obviously want since the feature is there), this would worsen the experience provided.
What I am doing is asking where it becomes too much to mute
I see what you're saying now. Personally, I don't think there's a limit, but that's just me, as you mentioned. I've never actually muted anyone, I usually just ignore people if they're being annoying. The only thing that actually pisses me off in game are tk-ers.
There are definitely people out there that will be muting a lot of people. I still don't think that's such a big price to pay and I doubt it will turn anyone off from the game. Muting is just such a quick and painless action. Any online chat which allows voice inevitably has racists and offending people on it and if people haven't gotten conditioned to that and are unable to handle it, then the internet in general isn't for them.
What if people plot an actual terrorist attack?
Yea this one actually cracked me up a bit. If you wanted to plan a terrorist attack you could literally do it anywhere. There's massively bloated government agencies devoted to this already and I wouldn't even dream this up as a possible concern for NWI.
@blue-ghost mute should just work.
As per more recent replies there is a code of conduct within the End User License Agreement.
If it was just someone spamming their voice over the voice chat or just being a nuisance in some other way, then I would mute them and I wouldn't even broach this topic on this board.
I don't care if you don't like specific people for whatever reason. That's your own business, and if you want to vent your spleen about people of a certain race or other social group, then go the appropriate forum, go get a permit from your local city hall and yell in the park, or whatever. But this is a game currently being provided by a company that's promised to try and keep a clean environment, and I don't care what the term is, don't use it in the game, or go start your own private server away from Steam or whatever other provider has a similar EULA.
I'll also state sadly that a portion of them are actors and/or servicemen. If you are one of those people, then if and when I submit a complaint to the Pentagon's Inspector General's office for misconduct while on active duty, then you can explain yourself before your CO or the screen actor's guild.
We all dislike someone or a group of people somewhere. But keep your prejudices to yourself.
I think it's time to close this topic. Everyone has said their views and at the end of the day, if there's a mute button, I don't believe there isn't a serious need to complain in the forums about it. Granted, the mute button is bugged at the moment and thus I can understand that. However, I feel it is best to lock the topic.