Microsoft Tries to Mend Rift With "Gaymers"

Microsoft is looking to make amends with gamers whose gay-identified Xbox user names were banned by the company's stringent, and some say discriminatory, terms of use.

BY Bryan Ochalla

March 17 2009 12:00 AM ET

Actually, Toulouse and
his team have been working on a solution that would allow
gamers of all orientations to do just that since early last
year. That's when Toulouse says he came to the realization
"that while the policy [of suspending the accounts of gamers
expressing their sexual orientation] was fair -- meaning [it
was] equally applied to all types of sexual orientation -- it
was viewed by the community as unjust."

Although Toulouse says
input from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against
Defamation and Microsoft's LGBT employee group, GLEAM,
has been "extremely constructive," he can't say when his
work will be completed and Xbox Live users will be allowed to
come out of their virtual closets.

Transgender game
designer Jennifer Reitz hopes that day comes sooner rather than
later. After all, she said recently on GayGamer.net, as long as
Toulouse and his employer do nothing, they are "promoting a
de facto heteronormative agenda against LGBT people. If they
don't want the majority to rule, they need to make room, and
allowance, for minorities and support their right to exist
openly."

Tags: Business

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