LittleBigPlanet Moderation Sparks User Outcry

Media Molecule's LittleBigPlanet (PS3) is no stranger to moderation, censorship and outraged users, and now that user-created levels are starting to be removed by game moderators, the users are angry once again.

"So many cases have no questionable content in sight, even ones with humorous light hearted violence have been taken down, like the popular [God of War-referencing] Demon Skull level," wrote a player named Robbie to Kotaku.

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Said another user: "Some levels I've seen now unplayable due to moderation: Pacman, Batman, and Scrubs related level [sic]." Users are reporting that levels are being permanently deleted upon moderation, sparking forum members to advise one another to save copies of their work before submitting them to the online world.

The pattern among deleted levels appears to be references to various intellectual properties despite earlier reports of multitudes of levels with Sackboy-populated homages to games like Super Mario Bros. and Mirror's Edge. However, the deletion of levels based on the PlayStation 3 itself and one entitled "Failure to Launch"--which shares a name with a 2006 romantic comedy film--has raised eyebrows about the moderation system in place.

Media Molecule community manager Sam_Protagonist wrote on the PlayStation forums that the team is at work on a new moderation system:

We are working on a system whereby any level that is moderated will inform the creator of the level why the action was taken, as there could be unintentionally unsuitable content in the level, or a cultural offense which is harmless in one country and offensive in another - either way we want to ensure that creators' levels are only permanently removed if they warrant it. In most innocent cases a simple tweak to the level may be required and that's what we're working on communicating.