A red-faced Microsoft is rushing to apologize for mistakenly banning an Xbox Live gamer who listed his West Virginia home town as Fort Gay.
“At first I thought, ‘Wow, somebody’s thinking I live in the gayest town in West Virginia or something.’ I was mad…It makes me feel like they hate gay people,” 26-year-old Josh Moore told the Associated Press.
“I’m not even gay, and it makes me feel like they were discriminating. I figured, I’ll explain [it] to [Microsoft]. ‘Look in my account. Fort Gay is a real place.’ I told [them], Google it – 25514!”
Moore even enlisted the help of Fort Gay mayor David Thompson, who attempted to intervene on the despondent gamer’s behalf.
Surprisingly, Thompson was told that Xbox Live considered the term “gay” absolutely inappropriate in any context.
But Stephen Toulouse, director of policy and enforcement for Xbox Live, insists that the exchange between the customer rep and Moore had been clearly plagued by miscommunication.
“That is absolutely incorrect…Someone took the phrase ‘fort gay WV’ and believed that the individual who had that was trying to offend, or trying to use it in a pejorative manner.
“Unfortunately, one of my people agreed with that…When it was brought to my attention, we did revoke the suspension. [Yes], absolutely, a mistake was made here, and we’re going to make it right.”