Apex Legends developer Respawn Entertainment has spoken out about what it calls a recent increase in “harassment towards members of our development team”, warning officials that it “will take appropriate action to to assure [team members’] health and security”.
“Recently, we have seen increased harassment from our development team,” the studio wrote in a statement shared on Twitter. “We welcome community feedback, however, the line between constructive feedback and harassment of our development team cannot be crossed.”
“We want to remind our players that we have a zero tolerance policy for threats and harassment from our developers,” the statement continued. “We will take appropriate measures to ensure the health and safety of our team.”
“We love to hear feedback,” Respawn concluded, “and we will continue to work alongside our community to foster a respectful and collaborative environment and maintain the competitive integrity of our game.”
Responding to Respawn’s tweet, the Destiny Bungie developer – who himself was forced to take legal action because he had community members doxxing, threatening and abusing his staff – offered solidaritysaying, “To combat toxicity and harassment, we all need to work together to build healthier communities. We are with you in this effort.
Respawn’s statement follows a similar move by God of War developer Santa Monica Studio in July, when – in light of online abuse targeting team members after the rumored failure of the Ragnarök release date hasn’t materialized – he reminded players: “Our fans inspire us, and we understand the passion and the desire for more information. But that passion doesn’t have to be toxic or to the detriment of the dignity of any human being.
This all comes in a year where developers have increasingly spoken out about online abuse received from so-called fans. Notably, July saw the likes of The Last of Us creator Neil Druckmann (himself no stranger to online abuse), and God of War director Cory Barlog speaking out after the Monkey creator Island, Ron Gilbert, has temporarily shut down his longtime blog following a torrent of toxic responses to the latest game’s art style. As Barlog succinctly put it to the community, “Show some fucking respect.”