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July 13, 2016 3:52 am

Users of Popular Gaming App ‘Clash Royale’ Call for Burning of Jews

avatar by Lea Speyer

Popular gaming app "Clash Royale" is strife with antisemitic and racist activity. Photo: Supercell.

Popular gaming app “Clash Royale” is strife with antisemitic and racist activity. Photo: Supercell.

A popular mobile gaming app has become a hotbed of antisemitic and racist activity, VICE Gaming reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, the “Clash Royale” freemium strategy game has become an attractive portal for racist, antisemitic, neo-Nazi and white supremacist users to unite in online hatred.

Launched in January 2016, the game has quickly gained in popularity, pulling in more than $250,000 in revenue each day in the US alone for its maker, Supercell. Clash Royale allows friends and strangers to play against one another in a virtual arena, based on card-directed combat. Users have the option of forming clans, which are private groups that allow members to play regularly with one another and monitor the game’s progress.

An anonymous source from the gaming development world reached out to VICE, seeking to expose how numerous clans are engaging in antisemitic “speech” through the game’s new Tournament feature.

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“As a fan of the game, I was keen to use the new feature, so I clicked on the first tournament available on Monday morning. I was shocked to see it was being hosted by a clan called ‘BadNewsForJews.’ When I clicked through to find out more, I saw that their clan description is ‘The furnace is open; all Shmuels welcome for burning’. A quick search turned up nearly 60 examples of extreme, antisemitic clan names published in Supercell’s game, presumably many long established,” the source revealed.

The descriptions of two separate clans with the same name — “Jews” — state, “Hhiittler (sic) didn’t do anything wrong,” and “We will recreate the holla cost.” Another clan — “Burn Blacks” — seemingly advocates for the deaths of African Americans.

Supercell told VICE that it “take[s] the issue of offensive and abusive language very seriously.”

“We maintain and constantly update a ‘blacklist’ of such words and phrases that are automatically deleted when entered into any of our games,” the company said in a statement. “Sometimes offensive terms can make it through this filter when spellings are changed. For these incidents, we have prominent in-game tools that allow players to report these terms to us; the offensive terms are then deleted, added to the ‘blacklist’ and the players responsible are banned. This has now happened for the incidents highlighted in the article and we will continue to do so in future.”

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