Sunday, April 30, 2017

(ARCHIVED) Discord's New Policies - How They Affect You

*Originally posted on the Aclevo Blog*

Just recently, Discord released new policies regarding text channels and personal messages. These changes include a new Report button, a new Community Guidelines policy, and restricting access to minors from using the service. The Privacy Policy and Terms Of Service were modified to reflect those changes. Here are five changes to expect with Discord.

1. Reporting Users Is Now Easier

Discord now provides a Report button to make it easier to report message that have offended you. The user you are reporting cannot be on your friends list, and you must unfriend them first by right clicking on their username and selecting "Remove Friend". To report a message, click on the hamburger icon next to the offensive message, and selecting "Report". From there, you will see this message:

Discord's New Report Screen, as posted here.
From here, you can select from several different reasons to be sent to the Discord abuse team for review. The following reasons are provided: Illegal Content, Harassment, Spam or Phishing Links, Self Harm, or NSFW (Not Safe For Work) content. More information on the following reasons can be found on this article about how to report a user, and this article about the recent changes.

2. NSFW Content Is Now Hidden

All content that is considered to be Not Safe For Work can now be put into a channel that requires verification. As part of the updates to their policies, Discord now requires that all NSFW content be placed into a marked channel so that users can opt-out ahead of time. This puts the user at ease so they won't get their co-workers and bosses upset. Here is an image that users see when they access a channel that is marked:

The new NSFW Channel Notice, found here.
From here, users may continue to see this content. Users may also click "Nope" as described above if they do not wish to see the content. They will be sent to the general chat room, whether or not modifications to that channel were made or not. This means that users may be sent back to the announcements or rules instead of the main chat if general was used for that purpose. Also note that according to the image above, users that are under the age of eighteen (18) will not be allowed to look at this content.

3. Discord New Age Requirement

Additions to the Privacy Policy require users to be thirteen (13) or older in order to be able to sign up for a Discord Account. In order to comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, otherwise known as "COPPA", Discord is not allowed to knowingly collect personal information on children under the age of thirteen (13). Parents who believe that their children may have exposed personal information may contact Discord staff by clicking here. It is unknown how this affects children who use Discord to this day. Discord recommends parents be aware of their child's use of the internet in order to keep them safe online.

4. Advertisement Data Collection

Users are entitled to stop having data collected from Discord's advertisements on other services. Updates to the Privacy Policy now entitle users to exercise opt-out programs administered by third-parties. Such parties include the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI), and the more common Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA).
The new Privacy Policy is scheduled to be enacted on May 1st, 2017. Users must read and accept it in order to use their services, as well as the Terms Of Service. The Privacy Policy can be found here. The Terms Of Service can be found here. The Support portal can be reached by clicking here.

5. New Community Guidelines

Discord now has a Community Guidelines page, just like YouTube does. The guidelines can be found here. These guidelines talk about the rules of Discord. They explain the consequences for violating such rules, which can include suspension of the service for a certain amount of time, and/or account deletion. They make it clear that misconduct is not tolerated, and that they will incite consequences for those who disobey.


How do you feel about these new policies? Perhaps the policies are too strict for you? Feel free to leave your thoughts down in the comments section below. If you would like to see more blog posts like this one, please subscribe so we can get the latest posts to you as soon as possible. Thank you for reading this article, and stay safe!

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