As some of you may already know, we recently banned multiple players who were already given many chances and unbans due to rampant metagaming & toxicity with other members. Following this ban, a massive wave of doxxing, insults, death threats to multiple administrators of my team and myself happened, including regular players who used to be friends of this group. To show you how mentally ill they are, underaged women have been doxxed and their picture photoshoped with cum by these people.
My own information are public, it is a risk I've always taken when running this community as we unfortunately always have to deal with players who are coming from everywhere in the world, every cultures, every issues. Some of you have difficult lives and GTAW is an escape of joy, some of you live in countries where paying games is considered a luxury and enjoy playing with us free of charge, some of you just enjoy playing GTAW and live a balanced life outside GTAW. Unfortunately, in the hundreds of thousands of different players we see each years, we always attract a few that are driven by hate, toxicity, anger & focus all their life on GTAW due to most likely their own real life problem, which leads to them doing their best to make others suffer through online communities they're part of.
Having public information with these people is always a risk, as at any moment they can flip and release their massive anger at me or any other members of the community, leading to doxxing or worse. I have accepted the risk, my family has accepted the risk, but I do not allow my administrators or any other players to accept that risk by playing on GTAW.
There is a red line that is never to be drawn for us and it's doxxing, doing so will obviously lead to a permanent ban without any chance to appeal.
However, there are various red flags that leads to these mental breakdowns, and it's also our duty to make sure we can identify these red flags. I have personally failed multiple times in identifying these flags, as I always had faith that any player could change and grow up.
I gave these players a second, a third chance thinking they would become better. Everytime I was betrayed and backstabbed, and I consider this my own failure to the members who were doxxed the past days.
On GTAW, we never cared about reaching the highest amount of players, but I always did care about every single players and small issues, hence why my Discord Messages have been opened the past 4 years, despite 200+ messages per day, a kid, an IRL job, a wife, I am still here answering them everyday along with developping and doing my forum answers. I never had time to play on the server I created and I regret it very often.
Since we never cared about reaching the highest amount of players, it also means that we're not affraid of banning content creators or players who own discords with 500+ members. We knew that when banning this group they would use their 500+ players discord to massively attack, spam and trashtalk us, and that it would result in a loss of players. But quality & making sure everyone in the community doesn't have to face toxic players matters more than everything else.
We have banned more than 15 players part of that doxxing group the past days, and they all moved to communities which welcome'd them with open arms, let them massively attack everyone of GTAW and did not ban them when they shared doxxing pictures as many of you witnessed. These communities should be ashamed of themselves, but they have been running on our banned garden for years now while remaining non-launched failures & donation scams running from the hate of GTAW. I am personally honored to know that other servers focus more about GTAW than their own development as it shows how much our work the past 4 years led us to being the only community everyone speaks about.
Starting from today, we'll now be applying a 0 tolerance policy on toxicity. It is a rampant issue that all games are facing, but I cannot accept it on our gaming community. GTAW is a niche made of passionate players who love a kind of roleplay that is extremely rare nowadays, and who value quality & immersion. This should all bring us together toward more positivity, and not negativity & toxicity.
Ingame, forum, discord insults & harassment will now lead to quick permanent bans and I invite everyone to report toxic players using our common courtesy rule. All administrators will make sure that the toxic players are not welcome'd here anymore.
This is not my job, this is not any administrator's job, and we do not need to come back home to toxicity or even worse. We may take a toll in our amount of players by being stricter with toxic players who do not necessarely break roleplay rules, but I dream of coming back everyday after work to a positive server where all players actually play together instead of playing against each others.
And most days my dream is already fullfiled, thanks to the many supporting and thank you messages I & administrators receive, or just by seeing you all play and enjoying the server. But this is not enough, I did not do enough. This situation a wake-up call for me.
After this message, we will be closing this chapter and we will not be mentioning these people ever again, nor the community hosting them. All of them deserve to be forgotten and will be forgotten very soon. Any players supporting their actions are free to leave immediately.