• Albert Fox Cahn
  • Evan Enzer


publication cover image with arcadeOnline video games are social networks, afflicted with the same speech moderation questions as other social media platforms, like Meta and Twitter, including rampant abuse, harassment, and misinformation. Without effective self-regulation, the United States and other countries have sought to regulate gaming’s messages, content, and user experience. However, video games are not passive media players consume. They are an interactive medium steered by users’ participation and speech. Video games are much more like interactive worlds, like virtual reality platforms, seeking to bring work, parties, dating, play, and everyday life online. If governments choose to regulate video games, they must balance legitimate content moderation needs with the rights of Free Speech, Free Expression, and Free Association. Governments should enact legislation that empowers users’ freedom, like strong privacy and anti-government surveillance laws, instead of restrictive laws to prohibit categories of speech in video games. 


Albert Fox Cahn and Evan Enzer. 2/16/2024. “Game Over: The Unintended Consequences of Video Game Moderation”. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Kennedy School.