Back in 2015 a friend in the UK suggested I download a new application called Discord so that we could chat during our games.

Since then Discord has become the defacto communication tool for my friends, myself and 100 million other monthly active users.

But Discord wants more people to use its service, and to do that it needs to more inclusive, according to the company’s founder and chief executive officer, Jason Citron.

“In asking you what you want Discord to be, we heard that you want Discord to be more welcoming, more inclusive, and more trustworthy so more kinds of communities can find a home here. Many of you told us that the biggest misconception you hear about Discord is that it’s ‘only for gaming,’ but you feel Discord’s for ‘literally everyone’ and ‘for anyone who likes to talk,'” wrote Citron.

And bringing more users onboard is something that we’re sure Discord is thinking about considering it just drew in additional funding of $100 million which brings its valuation to $3.5 billion.

Not bad for a little app that took on the likes of Skype and Teamspeak.

With this in mind Discord is changing its messaging and looking at its website, you’d wonder if Discord was ever about videogames.

Discord wants to be “your place to talk” so the visual aspect and language used is but one part of the puzzle. The firm says its user onboarding process has been streamlined and server templates make it easy to set up a server for you and your mates.

As for recent reports that white supremacists found a home in Discord, that won’t be happening again.

“We’re also always working on keeping Discord safe and making it hostile to hate,” said Citron.

“We recently launched a Safety Center so everyone can understand our rules, know what behavior is acceptable or not on Discord, and the tools at your disposal to protect yourself from content or interactions you don’t want. We will continue to take decisive action against white supremacists, racists, and others who seek to use Discord for evil,” the CEO added.

This has to be the best move we’ve seen from Discord.

The company’s tech is brilliant, so much so that we opt to use Discord for interviews and recording our Africast where possible over and above other options.

The trouble is that the moment folks see anything associated with videogames, that thing isn’t really taken seriously. Sure that is changing, but perceptions matter and Discord seemingly understands that.

We don’t want to seem like evangelists for Discord but we also don’t mind if that is how it comes across.

Discord is free to use and you don’t even need to download an app, you can launch it right from your browser.

[Source – Discord]
Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.