- Online rumors have claimed President Donald Trump was going to ban Fortnite since last year
- The rumor started after Trump called out video game violence following the Parkland school shooting
- Prince Harry did state he wanted to ban Fortnite due to it being highly addictive
- Iraq banned Fortnite and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) for their addictive nature
- Divorce cases, Major League Baseball and National Hockey League have cited issues with Fortnite
- Last year a prank petition to ban Fortnite brought out thousands of genuine signatures on Change.org
For some time now Internet rumors have spread that President Donald Trump will be trying to ban the popular online game Fortnite? Is there any truth to this rumor?
On Saturday, a Facebook post from the satire page News Bot 1926 recycled the yearlong rumor that Trump is trying to ban the extremely popular online battle royale game. The post was clearly satirical and had an image of Trump and Pence with the words “Trump: Vote For Me And I Will Ban Fortnite.” The image stated the image was “LIVE FROM: Sri Lanka.” The post, while meant to be satirical, does surprisingly hold some truth to it, and also breathes new life into an online rumor that began following the Parkland school shooting on February 14, 2018.
Following the deadliest school shooting in five years at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that killed 17 people and wounded 17 more, Trump spoke out against video game violence as possibly being responsible for Nikolas Cruz’s actions. TIME reported that in March of last year Trump met with members of Congress, video game executives, conservative media watchdog Brent Bozell and a mother from the Parents Television Council to “discuss violent video-game exposure and the correlation to aggression and desensitization in children,” according to a statement from White House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters. A 2012 tweet from Trump stated that video game violence “is creating monsters.”
Fortnite was randomly thrown into the discussion of violent games. Parents were already frustrated with the free online game due to children spending countless hours playing it and at times using their money to buy upgrades. Good Morning America even took aim at Fortnite. However, even though GMA mentioned Trump addressing violent video games at the start of the segment, there was nothing to suggest Fortnite was one of the violent games Trump was targeting. The GMA segment actually focused on the amount of time kids are spending playing Fortnite.
The YouTube channel “Tommy” posted two videos adding to the Trump trying to ban Fortnite rumor. On April 10, 2018, Tommy posted a video titled “Donald Trump is Banning Fortnite…” which racked up an impressive 477,009 views. The title may have been misleading, as nothing in the video showed evidence of Trump targeting Fortnite. Following the success of the first video, on April 30, 2018, Tommy uploaded another video titled “Donald Trump CONFIRMS He’s Banning Fortnite…” which gained another 84,481 views. Once again, the video with the deceptive title provided nothing confirming Trump was targeting Fortnite in specific.
Prince Harry Calls To Ban Fortnite
While there is no apparent evidence that Trump is targeting Fortnite, Prince Harry did in fact did call for the game to be banned in April of this year while speaking at the YMCA in West London. However, Prince Harry was not calling for the game to be banned specifically for its violence. Instead, the British Royal said the game was “more addictive than drugs or alcohol.
The game shouldn’t be allowed. It’s created to addict. An addiction to keep you in front of a computer for as long as possible. It’s so irresponsible.Prince Harry On Fortnite
Iraq Banned Fortnite And PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG)
Also in April, Iraq banned Fortnite and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) for their “negative” influence on children. Moqtada al-Sadr spoke out against both games, like Prince Harry, claiming the game was too addictive for their youth. Al-Sadr also calimed the games provides no “intelligence” and does not teach “the correct way to fight.”
What will you gain if you killed one or two people in PUBG? It is not a game for intelligence or a military game that provides you with the correct way to fight.Moqtada al-Sadr
Fortnite Has Been Blamed In Divorce Cases
In September of last year, Divorce Online did an article on Fortnite’s impact on relationships. After doing some data mining, the company found that Fortnite and other online games had been mentioned as part of the reason someone wanted to file for divorce 200 times since January 1 of last year. The cases amounted to about five percent of the 4,665 petitions the company handled in that time period. The company is one of the largest filers of divorce petitions in the UK.
Major League Baseball Has Had Issues With Fortnite
In May of last year it was reported Major League Baseball players had been possibly excessively playing the online game. Many MLB players have flocked to the game due to their downtime and travel between games. Perhaps the most notable Fortnite related MLB incident was when Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price missed his start against the team’s hated rival the New York Yankees due to a case of mild carpal tunnel syndrome. After questions were raised over how often Price was playing Fortnite, the Red Sox pitcher made the decision to stop playing the game. At least around the ballpark. Ian Browne tweeted out the announcement that Price would no longer be playing the game.
The National Hockey League Also Claimed To have Issues With Fortnite
The National Hockey League has a mixed reaction to Fortnite. The Toronto Maple Leaves played the game together as a bonding exercise. The Carolina Hurricanes took a team visit to Epic Games, creator of Fortnite, to playtest the game last year. However, TVA’s Renaud Lavoie told Sportsnet 590 that an unnamed NHL general manager told him Fortnite was an issue, claiming instead of going to bars players were staying in their hotel rooms playing the game for hours. Correspondent for The Sports Network Rick Westland said players in the Ontario Hockey League were being told to remove social media references to Fortnite.
A Joke Petition To Ban Fortnite Received Thousands Of Genuine Signatures
As an online prank, a few people created a joke petition to ban Fortnite. After over 7,000 people signed the petition, many of which were genuine with their call to ban the game, the people behind the petition realized things may have gone a bit too far. “Hey all signers! i know all of you are hopeful this game goes down the drain and with all the attention it’s getting it seems possible. With over a million players worldwide, the most they could do would be putting restraints on It in some way, which I hope could still help all of you (and me) with your significant others and kids,” the original petition read. After the petition gained real support, an update was made to the petition informing people it was just a joke and hoping people were not too mad.
We never knew this would blow up so big. It was initially a joke but it seems to be a rising issue within families because everyone has been so addicted to it. The game has caused quite an uproar with a lot of women and I definitely see how.
We made this petition 2 months ago and totally forgot about it. I hope nobody gets too upset over this petition (we might leave it up because it got very noticed from many websites and news articles and It seems it’s actually a serious problem from when it was made 2 months prior).
This is my last edit of this petition. I hope you all aren’t too upset from what it was originally.Change.org Pettion