May 18, 2018

Top Videogame Company Steam Removing Sexually Graphic Content

According to Gadgets 360, Steam, one of the largest distributors of online games, has contacted several videogame developers asking them to remove sexually graphic content in their games on Steam or face delisting.

This sudden action by Steam, owned by Valve, comes after a two year campaign by the National Center on Sexual Exploitation which included naming the company was named to the Dirty Dozen List, and most recently a heightened week-long grassroots campaign, which began on May 10th, where individuals from around the country requested Steam to remove sexually exploitive content.

“We are grateful to Steam® for taking a socially responsible stand against sexually exploitive videogames,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “Steam hosts approximately 35 million users who are children and teenagers, yet it also has hosted videogames that promote themes of sexual violence, exhibitionism, and rape, often depicting child-like characters in sexual scenes. It’s about time that the videogame community is responding to this #MeToo moment, and is distancing itself from gamified sexual violence.”

Thank you @steam_games for removing sexually graphic scenes in games. This is a win for #parents and #children who want #onlinesafety while buying your #videogames! Click To Tweet

“Some game developers are claiming that Valve is “censoring” them, but Valve is a private company that can—and should—make decisions based on creating a safe and user-friendly environment for its users,” Hawkins continued.

“When videogames include sexually graphic and degrading themes the user is not only a voyeur but an active participant in staging the scene. As our society suffers from the consequences of campus sexual assault, military sexual assault, and rising child-on-child sexual abuse, we see that normalizing the sexual use (and often abuse) of others in videogames is irresponsible on the corporate and social level.”

“We thank Steam for its decision, and encourage other gaming sites and stores to follow their lead.”

Take Action and Thank Steam By Signing the Below Petition!

Haley Halverson

Vice President of Advocacy and Outreach

Haley Halverson is the Vice President of Advocacy and Outreach at the National Center on Sexual Exploitation where she develops and executes national campaigns to change policies and raise awareness. Most notably, she promotes corporate social responsibility by constructing annual activism campaigns like the Dirty Dozen List, which names 12 mainstream private companies that facilitate sexual exploitation. Her advocacy work has contributed to instigating policy improvements in the native online advertising, retail, and hotel industries.

Haley regularly speaks and writes on topics including child sexual abuse, sex trafficking, prostitution, sexual objectification, the exploitation of males, and more. She has presented before officials at the United Nations, as well as at several national symposia before influencers from the Department of Justice, Department of Health and Human Services, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Croatian government officials. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts at Johns Hopkins University.

Previously, Haley served for two years as Director of Communications for the National Center on Sexual Exploitation where she oversaw strategic messaging development, press outreach, email marketing, and social media marketing.

Prior to working at NCOSE, Haley wrote for Media Research Center. Haley graduated from Hillsdale College (summa cum laude) with a double major, and conducted a senior thesis on the abolitionist argument regarding prostitution. During her studies, she studied abroad at Oxford University and established a background in policy research through several internships in the DC area.

Haley has appeared on, or been quoted in, several outlets including the New York Times, NBC’s The Today Show, BBC News, New York Post, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Fox News, the Washington Post, Yahoo News, Voice of America, Dr. Drew Midday Live, The DeMaio Report, the New York Daily News, the Washington Examiner, USA Radio Network, the Washington Times, CBC News, The Rod Arquette Show, The Detroit News, Lifezette, The Christian Post, Lifeline with Neil Boron, EWTN News Nightly, KCBS San Francisco Radio, LifeSiteNews, The Drew Mariano Show on Relevant Radio, News Talk KGVO, and American Family News.

She has written op-eds for the Washington Post, the Huffington Post, FoxNews.com, Townhall.com, Darling Magazine, the Daytona-Beach News Journal, and has published a paper in the journal Dignity: A Journal on Sexual Exploitation and Violence.

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