A gaggle of die-hard Fallout 76 followers logged on at some point to seek out that their standard stomping grounds had been suspended from Facebook — again. It’s essential that communities constructed round on-line video games have a spot to assemble, manage, and coordinate outdoors of the sport itself, however the Free States Militia is discovering that’s more durable than they ever might have realized.

The Free States Militia is a well-liked and sociable group in Fallout 76, whose members participate within the sport’s grand role-play wars and social occasions. They’ve been faraway from Facebook twice by the platform’s moderation system. Without ample communication from Facebook, the Free States gamers have assumed that their latest suspension is tied to the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. Facebook didn’t reply to a request for remark.

The Free States are an precise faction in Fallout 76. After the nuclear battle and fall of American civilization, the Free States banded collectively to maintain an unbiased presence in Appalachia, freed from the tyranny of factions just like the Enclave or the Brotherhood of Steel.

The Big Boss of the Free States council, who performs beneath the deal with Non_Serviam79, spoke to Polygon over DMs concerning the distinctive downside the group faces.

Non_Serviam79, whose actual identify is Bobby, selected to remain on Facebook after the primary moderation concern in October of 2020. “Facebook is unfortunately the easiest platform to reach thousands of people at once, and we will no longer have that asset,” he notes. The Free States Militia was in the course of a big give-away with other role-play groups, and now they haven’t any technique to promote that.

Their Twitter web page, by comparability, has simply over 440 followers. “We will be moving to Discord, and our team is designing it as we speak,” says Bobby. While Discord is a wonderful chat shopper, it lacks promotional and networking options that role-play teams have come to depend on with Facebook.

The Free States Militia has not been given a full clarification for the suspension, nor have they been capable of communicate to a human being at Facebook about it. Bobby offered a screenshot of the shutdown, which reads: “You can’t comment until Feb 7. You have posted things that don’t follow our Community Standards more than once.”

Facebook has policies against “violence and criminal behavior,” which incorporates incitement, discussions of public hurt, and “organizations or individuals that proclaim a violent mission or are engaged in violence.” Bobby denies that the Free States Militia violated these insurance policies.

“The Facebook page is 100% Fallout related,” says Bobby. “I’d say 90% of the page is lore. We write our stories in line with 76’s Free States Militia faction. 5% is group events, and 5% are in-game photos. [We write] about our individual characters and their adventures in the wasteland.”

The Free States Militia has tried to maintain issues pleasant for Facebook. “At first we figured the word ‘militia’ was the issue,” Bobby says. The group tried scrambling the phrase with particular characters, with combos like m![[[email protected] The group additionally used a shorter phrase: simply Free States. On Twitter, they establish themselves because the FSM Playstation Video Game Club. But that didn’t shield them from Facebook’s algorithm. It’s been a irritating hurdle for avid gamers simply attempting to have enjoyable.

“Adult games have adult themes. There will be bleed over from reality into fiction as a result,” says Bobby. “Banning words such as ‘gun,’ ‘acid,’ or ‘militia’ only serves to make people feel as though they are helping. But in reality, they are only making things worse.”