THQ Nordic holds AMA on 8chan, a forum Google banned for child abuse content

UPDATE: THQ Nordic‘s PR & Marketing Director Philipp Brock has responded to the criticisms regarding the 8chan AMA, tweeting that he does not “condone child pornography, white supremacy, or racism in any shape or form.”

“I personally agreed to this AMA without doing my proper due diligence to understand the history and the controversy of the site,” Brock wrote, after holding the AMA on a page that linked out to a board featuring “Lolis with a few extra inches.”

“I am terribly sorry for the short-sightedness of my (!) decision, and promise to be far more vigorous in my assessment of these activities in the future,” he continued. “This was not about being edgy, this blew up and I very much regret to have done it in the first place.”

 

ORIGINAL STORY: THQ Nordic has conducted an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on 8chan, an image board that was previously blacklisted by Google for suspected child abuse content. 8chan, known on the internet for being an even more extreme version of 4chan, currently hosts boards that encourage political extremism with users posting hate speech against minorities, and previously came under fire for boards advocating pedophilia. Now THQ Nordic, a publisher which owns properties such as Darksiders and Timesplitters, has decided to host a Q&A session on the site.

The AMA was announced on THQ Nordic’s Twitter, with it not taking 8chan users long to behave as expected. In one comment, a user posted an image of an underage anime character alongside the caption: “Welcome to h8chan and Heil Hitler bruders. Is there any chance you can add lolis as playable characters to any of your games? Can never have enough lolis in vidya.”

“Loli” is a Japanese slang term used to refer to a girl who is not of the age of sexual consent, or a young female character who dresses “cute.” In one comment, a user posted an image of two female anime characters and a male figure cupping their breasts, alongside the message: “Where the big tiddie lolis at?”

The THQ Nordic account replied: “you got them already we’d say.”

Another user wrote: “Please don’t censor any games nor appeal to the SocJus crowd, you guys are doing fine as is,” to which the THQ account replied: “thanks! we’ll try to stay that way.”

8chan was blacklisted in 2015 by Google for containing suspected child abuse content, with the site no longer appearing in search results. The message board was also forced to change it domain name in the same year, after multiple individuals filed reports to its registrar complaining that it hosted child abuse content.

The site has also been heavily involved in modern far-right wing politics. As such, as it has been referred to an alt-right website by the media. A cursory glance across its boards reveals a hive of racism, anti-Semitism, and bigotry. In one response to THQ’s post, a user wrote: “F*** JEWS,” “F*** N*****S,” and “HEIL HITLER.”

After receiving criticism for hosting the AMA session on 8chan, the THQ Nordic account tweeted: “the opportunity was here and we took it, we got apporached in a very friendly and polite manner and were assured, said person (shoutout to Mark) will take care of the nasty stuff. so, here we are.”

We’ve reached out to THQ Nordic and will update this story if we receive a response.