Online dating (ODing) is the practice of searching for a romantic or sexual partner on the Internet. People who online date are known as online daters (ODers). Online dating is strongly discouraged by various Internet communities which do not intend to facilitate it, including Roblox. Online dating is against Roblox's rules of conduct, and anyone who participates in said activities risks punishment to their account (as stated by the Terms of Service). Despite this, ODing is still assumed to be widespread by the vast majority of users.
Throughout Roblox's development, multiple stereotypes have formed regarding online daters. Players often stereotype online daters as avatars whose characters dress as realistically as possible; certain packages, accessories, faces and clothing are stereotyped as "ODer items". Players who wear these items are often perceived as online daters, even if they are far from the actual definition. Some examples of the most commonly stereotyped items include Frost Guard General and Beautiful Hair for Beautiful People. Certain username styles such as ‘ii’, ‘xx’/‘xX/Xx’, 'Omq', 'itz' and substituting vowels with the letter 'x' (e.g. using 'hxtbxy8586' instead of 'hotboy8586') also tend to be stereotyped with online daters.
On Roblox, online dating is usually restricted to life-simulation roleplay games such as Raise a Family. It is quite harmless when the participating players use innocuous language, but issues can arise if this progresses to inappropriate or sexual talk (especially given that the vast majority of players are under the age of 18).
In some instances, personal information may also be exchanged. Roblox's filter is designed to prevent this by censoring most methods of sharing information that can be used to identify oneself, however, online daters may attempt to find ways around this by altering their words or by requesting that the other party communicates with them through an offsite venue.
Against online dating
Online dating, according to most people, is a problem on Roblox. It is unwanted by most in the community and encouraged by very few people:
- It is against Community Guidelines.
- Many players view it as two children of different ages who know nothing about, and there is the possibility of older people attempting to OD.
- Most of the community views being attracted to Roblox characters as bizarre and repulsive due to their blocky appearance.
Aside from not fitting in with the kid-friendly nature of Roblox, there are risks associated with online dating given the anonymity on the platform (for example, some online daters are actually people trying to catfish others or child predators that are looking to prey on children). Many YouTubers and prominent community members are against online dating.
Against vigilante approach to online daters
On the other hand, some players have criticized people who argue about this topic on the website. They believe that players who complain and conspire about online daters 'are beating a dead horse', and some also find that stereotyping innocent users with the term ‘ODer’ purely based on their avatar's appearance is immature and short-sighted.
Games stereotyped with Online Daters
Though Roblox's Rules of Conduct prohibit builders from creating games that are designed for players to get together romantically, there are some loopholes to this rule; though a game may not be intended to be used romantically. Such examples of common online dating hotspots include role-playing games, "Girls Only" games, and middle/high school/college games.
Places themed after clubs are also prone to online daters and players who wish to engage in lewd or otherwise lewd acts in-game. For games that might hint at online dating potential, game creators might often leave game names and descriptions vague in order to 'satisfy' Roblox's game creation policies. For instance, naming a place Create a Family could imply that some sexual acts could be performed in the game as a way to produce a child. This violates Roblox's place creation policies.
Naming a game Adopt a Baby would not imply any lewd content within the game and would be an allowed game. This allows games titled Adopt and Raise a Baby to be on the front page without being taken down immediately for mature content, even if players utilize that game to online date. However, some of these games may be put under review eventually, when enough players have reported the game.
Because of the issues with online dating within Roblox games, anti-online dating scripts have been created by game creators and scripters that reprimand users who post specific prohibited words. One of these users, Person299, a user famous for his admin scripts, has developed a script that kicks a player if they say a certain word twice.
The Termination of Tremity and Games_Page
On December 6, 2017, Tremity and his alt Games_Page were banned, a day later people who joined the Adopt and Raise A Cute Kid game were teleported to a copied version of the game. A few hours after that the original and copied versions of AaRaCK were shut down. The termination of Tremity received critical praise from both anti-ODers and other players, as they believe it could be a sign of Roblox taking action to prevent online dating.