Microsoft has announced that using bad language on their platforms could result in users’ accounts being closed down. On May 1 Microsoft is updating their terms of service to include new rules that prohibit the use of ‘offensive language’ on Skype, Xbox Live and Office 365 docs.
Yes, swearing will be banned on Xbox Live. No more f-bombs when playing games with your mates.
“By agreeing to these Terms, you’re agreeing that, when using the Services, you will follow these rules,” explains the new code of conduct. “Don’t publicly display or use the Services to share inappropriate content or material (involving, for example, nudity, bestiality, pornography, offensive language, graphic violence, or criminal activity).”
“If you violate these Terms, we may stop providing Services to you or we may close your Microsoft account.”
Lots of Microsoft’s games on Xbox Live feature graphic violence, so where do the rules sit with that, Microsoft? Xbox Live’s chat system is known for having lots of issues with online bullying and harassment, so in this case the new code of conduct will really improve the platform. For the offending users, Microsoft can get rid of Xbox Gold membership, delete store credits and even take away digital copies of games that you play on the platform.
Other services to mind your Ps and Qs on are: Skype, Windows Live Mail, Outlook, Office 365, Cortana and Bing (lol).
It’s not completely clear how the policing policy will work (this certainly opens up some questions about privacy issues), but it seems that Microsoft will react to complaints made about people’s conduct. So it won’t be as soon as you say one tiny swear word that Microsoft are going to lock you out of your accounts, but if a complaint is made, Microsoft may examine files and conversation histories.
Just no more flippin’ swearing, ok.