- Nov 2, 2017
The gaming platform Steam has cracked down on over 100 profiles memorializing the suspected shooter behind today’s tragic mosque shooting in New Zealand, which claimed the lives of 49 people.
Until shortly before this article’s publication, dozens of users of the PC gaming service were blatantly offering tribute to the alleged writer behind a white supremacist manifesto that takes responsibility for the New Zealand shooting. These profiles tended to appropriate the suspected killer’s name and image, the most common of which appears to be a screenshot from a Facebook livestream of the shooting. One profile displays a GIF of the attack while others offer praise for his actions or refer to him as “Kebab Remover” or a “saint” or “hero.”
Wow, the Steam community really is a cesspool.In addition to nearly 100 pages that referred to or venerated the suspected New Zealand shooter, hundreds of pages continue to nod toward past mass shooters including perpetrators of massacres in Charleston, Isla Vista and Parkland and of the 2011 mass killing in Norway. These profiles also appropriate these terrorists’ names and images, sometimes their mugshots or press images from their trial. Many have been live for months or years. 45 profiles referencing the Charleston shooter’s name remain live, including four created near the date of the 2015 attack.
For years, hate groups fostering Nazis and white supremacists have thrived on Steam, VICE Motherboard reported in 2017. Just one year later, The Center for Investigative Reporting revealed that Steam acted as home for 173 groups “that blatantly venerate past school shooters,” including some described as “A group for all my fellow shooters” and “School Shooters are Heroes.”