No Harassment or No Service as Nintendo Japan Puts Trolls on Notice

In a move that may set a new standard for how customer support services deal with trolling and harassment, Nintendo Japan is taking a firm stance that explicitly states that enough is enough.

Kyodo News has picked up on a change to the company’s support policy that was made in October which outlines the new approach, which states that any threat, trolling or harassment may result in denial or cancelation of a support call or product repair job… or worse. Per the updated policy:

“When making an enquiry about a repaired product, please refrain from using any actions … that go beyond what is socially acceptable as a means of fulfilling your request.

“If we deem that any of these actions have taken place, we may refuse to replace or repair the product. Furthermore, if the Company deems the conduct to be malicious, it will contact the police, a lawyer, etc. and take the appropriate action.”

A spokesperson for Nintendo has since confirmed the legitimacy of the change, explaining that “We made the decision after concluding our customers would understand because of the reputation we have built of faithfully responding to them.” And even though there are no specific Japanese laws on trolling and harassment that explicitly apply here, Nintendo’s new, no-nonsense approach specifically blacklists a vast number of common problems, including the following:

  • intimidation or threats
  • insulting or denigrating remarks
  • invasion of privacy
  • excessive demands, such as for a free repair when the warranty has expired
  • demanding an apology from Nintendo or its staff without reasonable cause
  • excessively repeating the same request or complained
  • defamatory comments  on social networks or websites

It is not clear at this time as to whether or not this rule change will be extended to other markets, but it’s certainly one that is headed in the right direction.