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XBox (Games) Games Your Rights Online

Xbox Live Enforcement — No Swastika Logo 473

Posted by Soulskill
from the pursuing-the-rare-double-godwin dept.
itwbennett writes "It's one of those questions that really should never come up, but as blogger Peter Smith points out, Stephen Toulouse, the head of Xbox Live enforcement, is used to fielding all sorts of strange questions. Recently, one of those questions was apparently 'Can I use a Swastika as my logo in Call of Duty: Black Ops?' When Toulouse responded with the obvious answer ('No, of course you can't, we'll ban you.') he was met with some pushback by people he refers to as 'contrarians' and 'internet pundits' who decided to educate him on the long and storied history of the swastika as a symbol of good fortune and how just because the Nazis used it, it doesn't make the symbol itself a bad thing. Toulouse covers the topic on his blog in a post titled Context and it's an interesting read if for no other reason than to get a peek inside the day-to-day issues the Xbox Live Enforcement team deals with."
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Xbox Live Enforcement — No Swastika Logo

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  • by metrix007 (200091) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:01AM (#34328596)

    The guys tone seems to be that he knows best and that his view is commonly held, and that the people arguing are only doing so for the sole purpose of arguing.

    I don't think that's true at all, and while a company certainly has no obligation to assure free speech to all customers of its service, I would expect it to at least be considered, especially when the arguments have a lot of merit.

    I mean, if his point is that they won't allow things commonly found horribly offensive then he should have simply stated that, without diminishing the people making the argument. All in all, he comes across like a tool.

    • by Malc (1751) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:11AM (#34328652)

      Believe it not (and apparently you don't), his view is normal and commonly held. People arguing in this way for something like the use of swastikas tend to be immature or lying about their motives. There's nothing cool about swastikas, even for Hindus (it's a sacred symbol after all).

      • by MacGyver2210 (1053110) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @09:41AM (#34330294)

        Actually, there is a lot that is cool about the (original, actual) Swastika symbol.

        There is a relevant point people are missing: the Nazi Swastika is not an actual, official Swastika. It is a bastardized perturbation of an ancient eastern religious symbol. The original has the 'tines' of the symbol pointing to the left (clockwise spiral) and is axis-aligned when displayed. It often comes with a paired 'mirror image' version which spirals in the opposite direction, but is also axis-aligned (not tilted).

        The Nazi symbol is different. It is a single symbol, tilted 45degrees off-axis to make a sort of diamond shape, and uses the counter-clockwise spiral exclusively. It is also relevant to note the colors and context of the symbol in its surroundings to determine which it is being used as. In countries from China to India to Thailand to Japan, that symbol is all over the place. Wherever you see certain temples, they will denote it with a simple swastika. It's commonplace.

        It is unfortunate that the Nazis chose to pollute such a peaceful and historical symbol. The swastika is NOT an 'evil' symbol, and it has a long and interesting history. It is - in fact - quite 'cool'.

        Believe it or not? I'm going to choose 'not'.

        There are billions of people in the Indo-Asia area which believe strongly that this is a valid, and respected religious symbol. To me, that does not equal his belief being 'normal and commonly held'. Maybe among ignorant fools.

        Because this guy is uneducated on this fact, and seems to think all swastika symbols are Nazi-related regardless of how they are shown, he is imposing his personal opinion on everyone using this service and device under the guise of 'moderation' and his own misguided belief about history instead of fact.

        Tack on the fact that seeing and knowing about the symbols doesn't necessarily mean you are PROMOTING the ideas of those that previously used the symbol, and this guy is - in fact - removing a source of exposure and education of history from their service by doing this.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Rallion (711805)

          Everything you said is true (except for the last part about a simple in-game picture being a potential source of education and meaningful exposure--I don't learn all about the history of Christianity by seeing an image of a cross)

          None of it changes the fact that the people in question are probably unaware of these facts, and almost certainly using the symbol in a hateful way.

        • by prelelat (201821) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @12:23PM (#34332818)

          I think your missing the point of the guys argument. He's not saying it's always bad to use the swastika as a symbole. He's suggesting that without the context of why that person is using that symbole they won't understand it. You are obviously educated heck a lot of people around here are smart enough to know that the Swastika wasn't always used for that. I think a large number of those educated people would also be smart enough to realize that the large demographic for these games even if it is rated M for mature aren't mature/educated enough to distinguish the difference between the two symboles. Taken in the wrong context the Swastika is very offensive especially if it was a symbole of someone who murdered your grandparents and everyone they knew, it spews hate. It's unfortunate that such a peacful symbole would be basterdized into that but that's what happend. To advoid that sort of hate and misunderstanding at this point I think the XBOX live team is right to ban it. If the main meaning in the western population were to change out of respect for those who use it as a peaceful sign then I'm sure they would change their minds.

          In the middle of a game with no context is no way to change that opinion, it can spread more hate especially in a war game. So yeah they might not be promoting the ideas of Nazi's but 90% of the people they play with probably wouldn't even have an idea it was used for something good and most of those that did wouldn't see that in that context.

    • by Dexter Herbivore (1322345) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:23AM (#34328702) Journal
      To quote Stephen's blog in response: "They’ve read an article that’s contrarian to some position widely held, or they’ve found some obscure fact that contradicts common interpretation. Some of them claim to have known it as innate fact, others claim it to be widespread common knowledge taught to every single person in elementary school.Of course, usually neither is true at all. Most of them are just contrarians." I find that a perfectly reasonable argument to make. I've heard and indeed stated myself that the swastika by itself is meaningless, however I know that the context that almost any reasonable person would take it in is as a Nazi symbol. He appears to have considered the argument on it's merits as you've asked, so where's the problem?
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by DavoMan (759653)
        its a game where people are shooting each other in the face. if someone is going around shooting people in the face and then sees a swastika on their back, and thinks 'that is SO wrong!' then I think they have their head in their ass.

        somebody has to be the bad guy. its a war game. hell, what about wolfenstein enemy territory? its always axis versus allies.

        the only person to cause any kind of conflict is the admin who is being pedantic about a logo on the player model of someone who is there to be shot
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          Did you read TFA? His issue is not with a swastika appearing in the game itself, it's with the swastika appearing in a publicly accessible Xbox Live profile. Without any context whatsoever.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by metrix007 (200091)

        The problem is his dismissive attitude of the other side as simply being contrarians.

    • by guyminuslife (1349809) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:44AM (#34328850)

      His view is commonly held. The people who are arguing, most likely, are only doing so for the sole purpose of arguing. I can't say whether he "knows best" as a general principle, but it's a good call. And an obvious one.

      When's the last time you heard the word "swastika" and didn't immediately think about its role in Nazi Germany? Here's my stream-of-consciousness: "NAZIS! HITLER! WORLD WAR II! DEATH CAMPS!" and then, if I think about it a little longer, I might think, "Hindu mythology? Wait, was that Hindu or something else? Maybe Sikh? I don't think that's really a Sikh thing...they've got the turbans but I'm not sure what else...what other religions are there in India? Jainism? No, that's not right...it's not the Buddhists, I don't think...must be Hindu. Doesn't it point the other way, though? Do they do it both ways? I should check out the Wikipedia article. Maybe I should look up Sikhism, too."

      When's the last time you saw a swastika in a movie or a flier or a tattoo or a T-shirt, and it wasn't this bad boy [wikispaces.com] or a reference to it?

      These people live in the same universe as we do; it's merely a matter of being contrarian, and a video game (correction: this video game, I won't speak for all possible video games) is not really an appropriate platform for reclaiming the symbol.

      • by Zarel (900479) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @07:08AM (#34329312)

        When's the last time you saw a swastika in a movie or a flier or a tattoo or a T-shirt, and it wasn't this bad boy or a reference to it?

        The last time I saw a swastika, it looked something like this: http://www.religionfacts.com/buddhism/images/symbols/swastika-chinese-amulet-cc-rubicon-200.jpg [religionfacts.com]

        Let me try to list all the recent times I've seen swastikas:

        - once, in a screenshot of 4chan trying to be funny
        - three times, in a world history textbook, talking about the Third Reich
        - at least fifty times, at the local Buddhist temple
        - at least thirty times, in various good-luck charms sold at local flea markets
        - once before every important exam I take in school, in a good-luck charm passed down to me from my mother (it looks a lot like the one I linked to)
        - at least twice, in friends' houses, where they are said to bring good luck

        Perhaps, wherever you live, swastikas aren't commonly used, and perhaps you have no interest in other cultures. There's nothing wrong with that. But to assume that your experience holds true for the entire world - and that the swastika universally no longer holds any meaning besides that which was ascribed to it by Nazi Germany - is laughable.

        In Western Europe and North America, the swastika didn't have very much meaning before World War II, so after World War II, it became strongly associated with Nazism. But in Southeast Asia, the swastika has been a symbol of good fortune for thousands of years, and a fleeting decade-long regime in some far-off country did very little to change that.

        Even in the West, such as in the United States, there are many immigrants from Asian countries. I am one of those people, and if someone showed me a swastika (and it wasn't enclosed in a white circle on a background of red), I would think "good luck" before I thought "Nazis", and I bet a significant number of other people in Western countries would, as well.

        I'm not saying that banning swastikas in Xbox Live was a bad decision. It was probably the correct decision, especially if the majority of the Xbox Live users in question are American - though I agree with metrix007 that this guy could have had a better tone about it. I am, however, saying that the association between the swastika and nothing but Nazi Germany is far from universal.

        • by guyminuslife (1349809) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @07:40AM (#34329476)

          Well said, but the issue really is context. If this game were being marketed primarily in Asia, it wouldn't be a big deal. It's not. It doesn't seem appropriate for a Westerner to scream, "Oh my God, Nazis!" if they see it used in Brahmin texts. It doesn't seem appropriate for an Easterner (or immigrant) to take umbrage that the swastika has a very specific and very odious meaning in the West.

          Mind you, I would love to see the symbol reclaimed and enjoy the status in the Western world that it has in the East (and even, formerly and to a lesser extent, in the West). There are many avenues and platforms that one might use to that effect. It should be evident that XBLA is not that platform.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Zarel (900479)

            Yes, I agree with everything you said, and with your original post as well. I just wanted to reply because you asked "When's the last time you saw a swastika?" and the last time I had seen a swastika, it had nothing to do with Nazi Germany.

            And also because I, too, would love to see the swastika reclaimed to its original meaning of good fortune in the West, and educating users on Slashdot is certainly a valid avenue. :D

      • by Chrisq (894406) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @07:13AM (#34329336)

        When's the last time you heard the word "swastika" and didn't immediately think about its role in Nazi Germany?

        When I did my puja this morning, Ganesha is adorned with a swastika on his palm. Next time will probably be when I do my evening puja.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by dasunt (249686)

          When I did my puja this morning, Ganesha is adorned with a swastika on his palm. Next time will probably be when I do my evening puja.

          Better than me.

          I keep thinking "ramens". The brand of instant noodle I keep at work for a quick meal if I'm working late has a swastika on the package. This discussion is making me hungry. ;)

    • None of the articles seem to mention that the swastika is banned in Germany. As a result, model aircraft manufacturers (Airfix, Revell, etc) don't include swastikas in their decal sheet so they can sell to the international market.
      • None of the articles seem to mention that the swastika is banned in Germany. As a result, model aircraft manufacturers (Airfix, Revell, etc) don't include swastikas in their decal sheet so they can sell to the international market.

        Exactly, that's another thing which has to be considered here. The xbox live service is available in Germany, too - and so the company could (potentially) get into trouble. Most likely not (the game has already been rated etc. after all), but I am sure it's one of the reasons why game companies make sure those symbols are not used by players.

    • by michelcolman (1208008) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:55AM (#34328928)

      'No educated person on the planet looks at the swastika symbol (...) and says "oh, that symbol has nothing at all in any way to do with global genocide of an entire race"'.

      Well, no educated person except a couple of billion buddhists and hinduists. But I suppose they're not educated, since they don't believe in our God.

      When you get a city map in Japan, it's often littered with swastikas for all the buddhist temples. I'm pretty sure those have nothing at all in any way to do with global genocide of an entire race.

      He could have made his point with a little more respect. I can understand you don't want swastikas on an online video game service that's used by a lot of people from western societies, but he's pushing it a little bit too far when he's talking about contrarians arguing about some innate facts.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by 91degrees (207121)
        Do you really think that Buddhists and hindus aren't aware that a variant of that symbol was used as the symbol for the Nazi party, and that the Nazis were responsible for attempted genocide?
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by michelcolman (1208008)

          They're probably aware of it, but that does not keep them from continuing to use it like they did before, without even remotely thinking about nazis.

          Are you aware that the Clu Clux Clan uses the Christian cross as a symbol? As an educated person, I suppose you must be. But do you think about the Clan every time you see a church?

          I wonder what would have happened if the article had been about a muslim symbol. There would probably be a couple of embassies on fire by now.

    • by Blakey Rat (99501) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @12:11PM (#34332600)

      Please. Everything he says is spot-on. The only reason this article is even up here is to give Slashdotters a chance to point and say "huur huuur Microsoft is eviiil!" once more.

  • The reality (Score:4, Funny)

    by Y-Crate (540566) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:03AM (#34328612)

    "This isn't gonna stop until Pictionary bans the word 'windmill.' "

  • Context and intent (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Arancaytar (966377) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:04AM (#34328622) Homepage

    While the symbol (and the name) are older, there are many ways to draw the original symbol that barely or superficially resemble the Nazi emblem: From orientation (right or left-facing; the Nazi flag always faced right) to the rotation (the Nazi flag stands on end at a 45% angle) to the color (the Nazi flag is red-white-black).

    That implies a hazy line, but it redefines the offense as one of intent, context and of what a reasonable observer would see.

    If you draw something like this [wikipedia.org], you can use the "traditional symbol of luck" defense; if you draw this [wikipedia.org], then it's a fairly obvious lie.

    • by wvmarle (1070040)

      The left-facing swastika is a very common symbol in various Buddhist related religions. There are many temples around Asia that are completely covered in them.

      Actually I once heard the tale that the swastika comes in two types: left and right facing. The left facing shows good luck, the right facing bad luck. The tale didn't elaborate on why the Nazis chose the right-facing one... it didn't help them much at least.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by qc_dk (734452)

      You can draw something very close to the second and still claim the defense. It was after all a common symbol in Scandinavia. Carlsberg, the Danish beer company, used it as their logo until the symbol became too tied with thoughts of a rather aggressive southern neighbour. The Finnish air force had it as their symbol, and recently, at their anniversary, you could buy swastika rings. A Swedish noble family has it as their coat of arms. Incidentally that is where the nazis got their inspiration.

      The fact is th

  • by BadAnalogyGuy (945258) <BadAnalogyGuy@gmail.com> on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:06AM (#34328624)

    No one is playing the "Super Hindus" when they use the swastika. It is an inflammatory icon with specific anti-Semitic meaning.

    Its use ought to be banned, just as if a group called themselves the "Jew gassers" and tried to claim it was a tribute to a wacky Israeli troupe.

    Should anything offensive be banned? Well, MS has decided that they will cater to the lowest common denominator, so that means nothing offensive. These rules are indicated up front, so you don't really have a case that you didn't know about the rules.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Chrisq (894406)

      No one is playing the "Super Hindus" when they use the swastika.

      I play the great warrior Arjun [wikipedia.org] you insensitive clod

    • by Chrisq (894406)

      No one is playing the "Super Hindus" when they use the swastika. It is an inflammatory icon with specific anti-Semitic meaning.

      Its use ought to be banned, just as if a group called themselves the "Jew gassers" and tried to claim it was a tribute to a wacky Israeli troupe.

      Should anything offensive be banned? Well, MS has decided that they will cater to the lowest common denominator, so that means nothing offensive. These rules are indicated up front, so you don't really have a case that you didn't know about the rules.

      I think some cultural imperialism is present here. I suspect that if someone wanted the cross banned because of the Nazi's use of the Iron cross, or the crusades they would not have much luck

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ArsenneLupin (766289)

      if a group called themselves the "Jew gassers"

      In Luxembourg, there is a small village which has a road called "Judde Gas" (Jew Gas). Of course, in Luxembourgish, "Gas" also means "small road", but after WWII, it's still a bizarre name. Strangely enough, the name hasn't been changed...

  • Not played it (yet), but considering it's a game about running around and shooting each other...
    Doesn't seem out of context if one side, being the bad-guys, is wearing the attire of those bad-guys does it? Or is the enemy shown just as amorphous gray blobs?
    If this particular game doesn't have Nazis in, then fair enough, please ignore THIS post. I'll post it again when there is a recognisable enemy! But when CoD had WWII as the theme, did the enemy not have any markings showing which side they were on?

    • by pookemon (909195)
      Aside from within Zombies the game does not have Nazi's in it (it's based around the Bay of pigs/Viet nam). The symbol is not on the players, it's something they can include in their Tags (Though you might be able to etch it on your weapons - haven't tried). The symbol has no context with respect to this game beyond some people thinking that Nazi symbolism is "cool".
  • This is really nothing new, most places that have any kind of moderation will instantly assume that anything that looks even remotely like a swastica is bad or intended to cause offense.
    A few years ago, I had made a map for C&C: Red Alert 2. Part of the map design, by coincidence, had an area that looked a tad like a swastica on the minimap (it was basically an "X" shape with a few lines coming off of it) in one small corner. I'd had a screenshot of it on photobucket and that was removed because it was

  • Wellcome to the Wallet Garden, ... or maybe you was born there, so you don't know what you miss.

    Freedom is something you learn.

  • I bought the game when it came out because I'm unemployed, living in my mother's basement, have nothing else to do, and haven't bought a game in a year or so (besides Civ 5 but that's different).

    I love the fact that you can customize your logo. Other than unlocking better weapons, it would be difficult for me to care less about customizing the appearance of the weapons (which you can do) or your character model (which you can do to a limited extent). But somehow, designing your own little logo really appeals to me.

    I'm obviously not the only one who feels that way, because there are a lot of really intricately designed logos that people have made. I am always sure to look at everyone's logo when we're sitting in the lobby between rounds to look for interesting ones. You see them each time you kill someone or they kill you, too, so you can keep track of players you're playing with by their logo. Of course, there are a lot of typical design styles that you might expect, like skulls and penises and what not. Even with those, though, it's often amazing the creativity that went into them (using the set of graphics available, it's amazing the different ways people have come up with to illustrate ejaculating penises).

    However, for the first several days, there was almost always at least one person with a swastika. Not a hindu or buddhist one - a red, white, and black, rotated 45 degrees, unmistakeably Nazi one. I was in one lobby where no less than three people had them. It's kind of funny actually because, since there's no pre-set swastika symbol, they had to be just as creative when designing their swastika as other people are designing other things.

    Now personally, I believe fully in the freedom of expression, and all that. I am not offended by swastikas, even Nazi ones, by themselves. It depends entirely on the context. Here, it's mostly teenage boys donning them. They're ignorant of history and what the Nazi swastika represents, and the crap that spews out of their mouths if they have a microphone only confirms their ignorance. It really does become offensive. And, I don't need my parents (or anyone else) seeing me interacting with a bunch of idiots with swastika logos - the type of person you'd avoid at all costs in any other context, but who are difficult to avoid on xbox live (or playstation online in my case).

    I believe they must be doing something about it on the PS3 too, because for the past few days I can't recall seeing any swastikas, and I've been playing quite a bit. From a purely business standpoint, it definitely makes sense to ban things like swastikas. To their credit, that's probably the only thing they're going to care about. There certainly hasn't been a decline in the number of ejaculating penis logos.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ShakaUVM (157947)

      >>Here, it's mostly teenage boys donning them. They're ignorant of history and what the Nazi swastika represents

      Pfft. Nazis and their swastikas are pretty much the most recognizable figures out of history to the modern teenager.

      If for no other reason than that all the early Call of Duty games featured Nazis.

      While I understand banning the swastikas, it seems rather fucking hypocritical from a series that has made billions of dollars off WWII.

      • Yes, you're right. But it's entirely a context thing. If I'm playing a WW2 game, I expect to see a lot of swastikas. I expect to see them on my character if I'm playing as the Germans, which you can do in any WW2 game with multiplayer.

        However, here it has nothing to do with the context of the game. It's being used to be provocative - and you would only do this using a swastika if you're a neo-nazi (which probably some of these people are), or if you're ignorant as I suggested. Every teenage boy recognizes the Nazis, yes, but it's ridiculous to suggest that they all *truly* understand the implications of donning the swastika - primarily, they don't understand that it makes them look like an idiot, and it doesn't make them look cool. Especially once you've played this game online with them and you've heard what they have to say - they're ignorant.

    • And, I don't need my parents (or anyone else) seeing me interacting with a bunch of idiots with swastika logos ...
      To their credit, that's probably the only thing they're going to care about. There certainly hasn't been a decline in the number of ejaculating penis logos.

      But you're good with your parents seeing you interacting with a bunch of cum-spewing dicks?
      I guess you gotta draw the line somewhere...

  • I'm all for freedom of speech and expression, but why can't people accept "No, you can't. Some people may find it deeply offensive." as an answer? I think we can all agree that it is reasonable to not want people running around on XBL with swastikas plastered everywhere.

    Yes, the symbol in question has many other meanings, but in an online community where users dedicate no small percentage of their time to finding new ways to spell fa**ot and ni**er to get around content filters, you can bet your ass they p

    • by Ziekheid (1427027)

      You should never keep your mouth shut just because someone might find what you're saying offensive. But now I'm talking about real life, a blog/forum post, etc. You can add context then and that's exactly the point of this guy, eventhough I don't like the cocky way he presents his opinion.
      I do have a major problem with developers having to censor out swastikas in games that are supposed to be in the time of WW2 though. Eventhough games are usually not 100% historically correct I feel like you're censoring h

    • Cause the next thing is "no you can't use that pair of boobs as logo"
      Then it is "no you can't use this skull as logo"
      Then it is "no you can't use something resembling a competing brand name as logo"
      Then it is "no you can't use the apple fruit as logo"

      Computers make this kind of stuff extremely easy.

      So complaining at the first stage makes sense.

  • javascript (Score:5, Insightful)

    by forwardhairbrush (714823) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:32AM (#34328774)

    What the hell? I really can't scroll down on your site without javascript enabled?

    I'm sure your content was compelling though.

  • Isn't it interesting (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Chrisq (894406) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:41AM (#34328830)
    Isn't it interesting that Slashdot edits out svastik characters. There is a line of them below
    • by antifoidulus (807088) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @06:14AM (#34329028) Homepage Journal
      No, it's sad that slashdot edits out almost all non-roman characters. You cannot even type cyrillic, greek, chinese etc. I guess they do this to try to keep people from spamming in different languages, but it can be annoying.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @07:52AM (#34329558)

        I guess they do this to try to keep people from spamming in different languages, but it can be annoying.

        It is.

        The reason, BTW, is that when Slashdot allowed all Unicode characters, trolls started using RtL markers to mess with the site's layout, so the admins

        a) created a whitelist of allowed characters to prevent not just current but also future control characters from hitting the site (good)
        b) made it so that pretty much no characters other than the Latin1 ones were on that list (bad)
        c) never updated the list again (worse).

  • by Chrisq (894406) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:51AM (#34328896)
    This is the famous picture [wordpress.com] of Jackie Bouvier (later Jackie Kennedy/Onassis) wearing a Native American costume as a child, complete with swastika. The Swastika is a sacred symbol [western-hindu.org] to many cultures.
    • by Haedrian (1676506) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @06:07AM (#34328984)
      Which is why I should totally use it while I'm running around calling people "Noobs" and blowing their heads off with automatic weapons, then teabagging them.

      If in some other game, you're roleplaying a buddhist monk who has it around his neck as a good-luck symbol, its all good and dandy.

      Context people, Context.
  • by mozumder (178398) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @05:51AM (#34328900)

    Like, you made a whole video game to accurately recreate the violent deaths of people for sport, right?

    And you have problems with people expressing their preference for a group that violently killed lots of people?

    MORAL DILEMMA!

  • Clearly Microsoft / Treyarch / Activision are free to set their own terms and conditions on the service, which might include banning logos which are obscene, offensive etc. So if you do a swastika and they say its banned then you're best to take them at their word. I don't own COD: Black Ops so I don't know how you customize your logo. But assuming you can draw pretty much anything you like, you only have to look at various ways neo nazis get around this ban to think this is all a futile effort. They subst
  • ...not someone's personal religious blogspot page. If you haven't been on xbox live, let me fill you in. It is not filled with nice people that have a fun game, then talk about their cultural differences in a calm manner over tea. When you turn on your headset, you hear screaming 9 year olds telling their mothers to fuck off when asked to do homework, then tell you how they are going to teabag your corpse. Then they blast gangster rap in your ears over the mic and make it so your team can't talk to each ot
  • I 100% agree with everything that guy posted in his blog.

    Yes, the swastika symbol does not always stand for nazi Germany, but in our western culture, pretty much EVERYBODY will think of that meaning first - especially if the symbol is drawn in exactly the way used back then (same orientation, same colours). All the "but it has a different meaning in certain religions" arguments are just crap. If you'd ask those people to explain in more detail what they know about the symbol, why it is designed that way and

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Chrisq (894406)

      If you'd ask those people to explain in more detail what they know about the symbol, why it is designed that way and why exactly their 20 people clan so badly wants that symbol as their logo, they would not be able to explain it (or you'd just get a copy of the wikipedia article) - because in reality they actually want the swastika symbol BECAUSE they want to offend people and all tht online game, the game company CAN state that they will ban you for it (free speech does not apply there, same as it does not apply on a private message board).

      Absolute fucking cobblers. In nearly every city in Britain and probably America you will find a Mandir and every one will have swastikas. There have been 3,000 people at ours at Deepawali and other similar occasions (not your group of 20), and nobody is shocked, or wants to shock people. Your assertion that a handfull of people want to use the swastika to shock people is absolute crap, a large number of people use it regularly as a religious symbol.

      • by Golden_Rider (137548) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @06:55AM (#34329226)

        Absolute fucking cobblers. In nearly every city in Britain and probably America you will find a Mandir and every one will have swastikas. There have been 3,000 people at ours at Deepawali and other similar occasions (not your group of 20), and nobody is shocked, or wants to shock people. Your assertion that a handfull of people want to use the swastika to shock people is absolute crap, a large number of people use it regularly as a religious symbol.

        That may be, but we are talking about an ONLINE SHOOTER here. The only reason anybody would want to use a swastika in a xbox live shooter (with mostly male teenage players) is not religion, it's the link to nazi Germany.

    • We're playing nazi vs usa games since computer games exists, but the nazi ones can't wear the logo. Makes no sense to me to be honest.

      I'm pretty sure it actually shocks some people that you can usually play the nazi side. Actually, it's called Axis instead, much more politically correct.

      Yes sure the ones wearing it want to be "the axis side" - it doesn't mean they are nazi, it's a war game where you KILL people after all.
      If the axis had won the war, we'd probably be arguing about not being able to use the a

  • It's kind of funny that there's a discussion about certain symbols being evil, in a game where you're running around shooting people's heads.

  • by RichiH (749257) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @09:32AM (#34330230) Homepage

    Yes, swastikas have a long history of meaning good luck and prosperity all across the world. Yes, I would have preferred the nazis to use the goatse man instead of the swastika, but unless you are in the most remote regions of the Andes, a swastika means nazis.

    The twin towers had a different meaning before 9/11, Tiananmen Square used to have a different meaning and so did a lot of other symbols/places/buildings.

    And about the trolls who argue otherwise: They don't want to use the swastika cause they are deeply rooted in one of various old cultures or religions. It's because they want to shock people or they actually condone the actions of the nazis.

    Long story short: Fuck them. Optionally with a large swastika. Those are cool, after all.

"The pyramid is opening!" "Which one?" "The one with the ever-widening hole in it!" -- The Firesign Theatre

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