In a letter from Microsoft’s Marc Whitten to the Xbox LIVE community, the executive pointed out that Microsoft will now allow consumers to post identifying information regarding race, ethnicity, religious background, and even sexual orientation in their Gamertag profiles.
Previously, Microsoft banned the inclusion of such identifying terminology, as they feared the inclusion of the information would lead to rampant misuse and offensive behavior.
While the sentiment was appreciated by most Xbox LIVE users, it was also seen as a flawed policy because people overwhelming want to express themselves via their Avatar and Gamertag in all relevant ways.
Below you’ll find the entire letter that was published today, March 5, 2010. Pay special attention to the last two paragraphs.
Letter from Marc Whitten:
Dear Xbox LIVE members,
Since the beginning, Microsoft has made an investment in the security and safety of Xbox LIVE and created tools and monitoring practices to ensure it is a fun and welcoming entertainment experience for people of all races, nationalities, religions and sexual orientations. And thanks to this investment and the enthusiasm of community members like you, we’re proud to be the strongest and most diverse online community of its kind at 23 million.
I truly believe that our diversity is what makes us strong: diversity in gaming and entertainment options, and diversity in the people that make up this amazing community. I look forward to seeing you on LIVE soon.