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Japanese Man Arrested for Stalking in FFXIV

The man, accused of stalking in FFXIV and on social media, has been arrested in Tokyo.

A Japanese resident has been arrested after he was accused of stalking a 28-year-old woman in Final Fantasy XIV, according to Kobe News, which was translated by Siliconera and then confirmed by IGN

The alleged stalking and threatening behavior took place on several social media sites, including Twitter/X and Line, in addition to sending threatening messages in Final Fantasy XIV. The man is accused of following the victim around while he sent the messages. This behavior allegedly continued even after the victim blocked him. 

The man is accused of sending 22 threatening messages, including trying to blackmail the woman into talking to him or he would tell her family about their private conversations. This led to his arrest for violating Japan's Anti-Stalking Control Law. At the time of writing, it is unclear whether the harassment originated in the video game or if it started on social media. The man has denied some of the charges and insists he had no romantic feelings towards his victim.

The blacklist and ability to block players is a constant gripe among FFXIV players. While players can block a harasser's character, more characters can be created to use as a tool to aggravate their victims due to the blacklist's per-character function instead of being account-wide. 

Blocked characters are unable to send messages to their intended victims, but it doesn't stop them from following them around and using emotes to pester them. There is currently no tool within the confines of the game to make harassers disappear from a players' screen. Many victims turn to third-party tools in order to get relief from their tormentor. 

Square Enix has been hesitant to address issues with the blacklist, citing security and system design limitations, and while there will always be outside channels where harassers will continue stalking their victims, the in-game tools would likely prevent many instances of harassment were they improved upon.

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About the Author

Jessica Scharnagle

Starting as an esports journalist in 2018, Jessica has been writing for a little over five years now. She is a big Final Fantasy XIV nerd who has been playing since 2021 and has put a more than 5,000 hours in it since then. She also teaches journalism at Rowan University.