COMMENTARY | Further proving that you can’t always trust the community, the latest update to PC game Minecraft greets Afrikaans players with the greeting “You are a (expletive).”
Mojang, the developers behind the indie mega-hit PC game Minecraft, decided to leave some of the language translations to the Minecraft community, who up until now have been doing a wonderful job of translating up to 56 languages. All things considered, there’s not that much text in the game. But there is enough to allow problems like this to slip in.
It would seem the culprit responsible for the racism is a known trouble-maker in the community, judging from a tweet from lead developer Jens Bergensten. “Sorry about that,” he tweeted to two Twitter users who informed him about the racist text, “I thought I had banned that user.”
To see the racist greeting you have to switch the default language of English over to Afakaans, the language spoken in Namibia and South Africa. The text which usually reads “Single Player” will then display “You are a (expletive),” with the word in all caps.
While it isn’t directly Mojang’s fault, it’s easy for community members offended to point the blame at them for not catching the mistake and allowing this to be put into the game. Parents without a great understanding of how such a thing could happen are likely going to blame Mojang regardless.
To be honest, if you are going to allow a video game community to take part into any from game development without a screening process, it’s really your fault if problems such as this arise. Especially if you don’t take the time to check over their work.
In a move likely to make players forget about this ordeal, the forum topic on the subject is no longer available for viewing.
With over 20 million registered users and over 80,000 registations every 24 hours, it’s safe to assume more than few players are going to be offended by this unfortunate mishap. Let’s hope proper steps are being taken to make sure this never happens again.
The racist greeting will be removed when the next patch is released.