Discord, a chat platform for gamers, has teamed up with a number of e-sports teams to expand its verified servers program. In other words, now users will be able to tell right away if they’re communicating with an official e-sports team: there will be a gray badge at the top left saying, “Verified.”
Discord has verified 20 new servers from pro teams that compete in games like Dota, League of Legends, CS:GO, and Overwatch. Some of these teams include the Overwatch League teams, as well as prominent competitive gaming sides like Team Liquid, Cloud 9, Echo Fox, Team Envyus, and 100 Thieves. The verified servers program hasn’t expanded to individual players and their Discord servers, however, probably because Discord offers a Partners program for community-led groups and streamers.
The verification program was previously open to music artists, game studios, and publishers, but it still doesn’t support community-run servers. To qualify to apply and become a verified server, a server must have, among other things, a team of moderators, two-factor authentication in place for security, and explicit content filtering.
Discord’s expansion of the program is another step to indicate that the platform is growing up from its original beta days and its poor track record of dealing with toxic communities, such as alt-right trolls. Other social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube already have verified accounts features. While it’s by no means a counter to abuse, verification can help at least sort out the legitimacy of who’s saying what.
Fake accounts are a problem on Discord, especially as anyone who signs up can list themselves under whatever name they want. Since I’ve logged in from my home computer, work computer, web browser, and app, I’ve unwittingly ended up with duplicate accounts of the same name. Although Discord’s community guidelines state “Do not create spam accounts…Do not disguise yourself in attempt to contact someone who has blocked you,” the site only lists account deletion as the punishment for worst-case scenarios.