Yesterday, Valve Corporation released an official announcement on stating that from September 25th onwards, it would begin moderating comments users make in Steam games forums. Valve has stated that threads can be reported by users, and will then be reviewed by a dedicated moderation team.
In the post on its Steamworks Development group, Valve iterated that only reported threads would be moderated. “We won’t be actively perusing your community discussions or posting in threads – you have your own voice and your own style of communication with players about your game,” The statement read. “We’ll only be communicating with players if it’s necessary when issuing a warning or ban for reported content.”
Valve expressed that the move was made due to various publishers requesting more involvement from Steam in regards to forum management; not every developer has the staff or time to curate their own Steam forum effectively. Valve also mentioned that it was going to look into moderating screenshots, artwork, guides, user profiles, community groups, and user reviews more as well. Developers not desiring the service are free to opt themselves out.
Whilst this news will likely be welcomed by beleaguered developers, the news may be met by mixed reactions from the larger public who would like the company to be as pro-active on other, long-term issues. For many years, critics such as Jim Sterling have requested the company curate their content at a basic level, to ensure that asset flips, knock-offs, copyright infringers and other regurgitations do not find their way to the user and take up valuable storefront. And whilst some action has been taken to reduce the flow, the issue is still very much ongoing.