Many are hyping up Harry Potter: Wizards Unite as the next big craze after Pokemon Go.
But the newest augmented reality game has hit an early stumbling block.
The app bans you from calling yourself ‘gay’. You can, however, call yourself the homophobic slur ‘fag’.
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite bans ‘gay’ as a name
Banned word lists are common in entry forms in apps, especially ones which are expected to be family friendly.
However, ‘gay’ is also a uncommon but still used surname – for example, the feminist writer Roxanne Gay.
@HPWizardsUnite @WBGamesSupport @NianticLabs @PortkeyGames @jk_rowling So I just downloaded the game Wizards Unite and it says that my last name is prohibited. My last name is legitimatly Gay WTF. I can’t even start the game. pic.twitter.com/edj3pVZgGE
— Trevor Gay (@Trevor_gay98) June 21, 2019
There are several homophobic and transphobic words banned in the game.
However, it appears ‘fag’ is an oversight.
Gay Star News has contacted Niantic Labs and is awaiting a response.
The game claims that names are not shared with other companies and are not stored. Character profiles are visible to other players.
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite asks players to traverse a virtual map overlaid on the real world. Players can collect magical artifacts familiar to them from the Harry Potter book and film series.
Coca-Cola apologized after they also banned ‘gay’
This isn’t the first time something similar has happened.
Coca-Cola apologized after fans were asked to create a virtual can of Coke personalized with a friend’s name or message.
But when it was discovered they had banned the word ‘gay’, it caused an outrage.
The soft drink giant removed the site and revised the digital tool.
They said: ‘As one of the world’s most inclusive brands, we value and celebrate diversity. We have long been a strong supporter of the LGBT community and have advocated for inclusion, equality and diversity through both our policies and practices.
‘We apologize for any offense this has caused.’