Redditor DamonPei recently discovered a list of banned words in the online portion of Grand Theft Auto V. If a user attempts to send a message containing any of the words, even if it’s a word inside a word, the game will reject the message and say “FORBIDDEN TEXT.” If a word is banned from a mature rated title that simulates mass murder, torture, and prostitution, then it must be really offensive, right?
If you find words like “Jerry” and “Nintendo” offensive, then yes. The banned word list for GTAO is quite long and undeniably hypocritical. In what appears to be an attempt at stopping trolls and spam, Rockstar has banned words such as “Rockstar,” “Playstation,” and “Xbox.” This is understandable in terms of stopping those running scams over the online network, but the list doesn’t end there. Nearly every incarnate of swear word is banned, and its various misspellings, including slang words for hate speech.
The irony is strong. GTAV is notorious for its foul language, racism, and misogyny, albeit while operating under the guise of satire. Certain politically correct words such as “gay,” “bisexual,” and “muslim” fell victim to the ban hammer as well. Rockstar has effectively banned any word that could be taken offense to.
What does Rockstar find offensive? “Abortion,” “Ferguson,” “vtech,” “sandyhk,” and “alqaeda.” Also prohibited are any references to torrents and places like Pirate Bay. Although this is probably all due to legal red tape, the amount of censorship is striking. Pedestrians in the online free roam shout expletives all the time. It’s nearly 75 percent of their vocabulary, but according to the list there are many more words they could be saying.
The list itself is worth a read just for some of the hilarious expletives that they needed to come up with. You can read the entire list here.
Has Rockstar gone too far? Does the list need refined or is it good as currently implemented? Let us know in the comments!
Freelance writer and screenwriter living in Pittsburgh. Film buff, video game buff, and music buff, but not actually buff.