Although the 3DS has been thriving for Nintendo and provided a healthy community of players and a wide install base, yesterday it seems Nintendo had to pull the plug on one of the 3DS’s messaging apps after learning of its improper usage.
Nintendo released a statement on the news portion of its official website that as of 10/31 at 7pm PT, the company has halted service of the “SwapNote” app for 3DS due to players abusing the service and using it to share offensive and inappropriate material and messages through SpotPass. Specifically, Nintendo mentioned in the statement:
“Nintendo has learned that some consumers, including minors, have been exchanging their friend codes on Internet bulletin boards and then using Swapnote (known as Nintendo Letter Box in other regions) to exchange offensive material. Nintendo has been investigating ways of preventing this and determined it is best to stop the SpotPass feature of Swapnote because it allows direct exchange of photos and was actively misused.
Nintendo always wants to provide a positive experience for all consumers and limit the risk of any inappropriate activity or misuse of a service. We feel it is important on this occasion to take this action.”
While it may be unfortunate that the feature is now suspended and no longer available, it’s nevertheless a good call for Nintendo to take this action before something worse may happen, especially for its many younger gamers.