Nintendo 3DS Allows Racist, Sexist And Vulgar Character Names

The 3DS's "StreetPass" function allows players to automatically trade Mii Avatars with whomever they pass on the street. But the streets are dangerous, and some 3DS owners are bound to be total dicks.

Offensive and Not Safe for Work language to follow.

"Dick" is actually a nickname that brings up a warning screen on the Japanese 3DS. So if your name is Richard, you better just stick to Rich. "COCK" is out, too, but "COCKSUCKER?" That's totally cool. The warning screen pops up whenever a nickname sets off the filtering software, informing players that the selected nickname could offend others and telling the 3DS owner to check his or her instruction booklet.

In the back of the booklet, there are the terms of use for the Nintendo Miis. Some of those terms of use include not using Miis in advertising (as they are property of Nintendo) as well as not using Miis to violate the privacy of others and not using the Miis to offend other gamers.

Unlike the terms of use for Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network, Nintendo Customer Support in Japan informed me that there is no box that 3DS users must check to confirm that they have read these terms and accept them.

Different words trigger the warning screen. I entered a slew of profane Japanese and English words into the nickname section. For some reason, there is an assumption among some in the West that there are no bad words in Japanese. There are tons of bad words in Japanese. Many of these words are banned from television, while others are allowed on TV, but are simply considered crass.

Political correctness does exist in Japan as evident by the changing of "kangofu" (看護婦) to "kangoshi" (看護師). Both words mean "nurse", but kangofu contains kanji (婦) that pertains to women. Not all nurses in Japan are women, hence the change. Even words like "half" (ハーフ) that refer to half-Japanese individuals are now seen as containing elements of racism and are not said on news broadcasts. Instead, the Japanese equivalent of, for example, "French-Japanese" is used, among other terms.

I entered in worse words than this. Some of the words, like "kuso" (shit) or "oppai" (boobs), aren't that bad. Some of the slurs towards disabled people or minorities are. While entering these words, I even changed the window that lists who created the Mii to "Fuck You". This did not bring up the warning screen, and neither did "Fuck You" for a Mii name (as seen in the video).

Here are the words that brought up the warning screen: chinko (penis), chinchin (penis), chinpo (penis), ochinpo (penis), chinpoko (penis), ochinpo (penis), penisu (penis), PENIS, seieki (semen), aieki (semen), seishi (semen), zaamen (semen), manko (vagina), omanko (vagina), omeko (vagina), PUSSY, yariman (slut), ANAL, sekkusu (sex), SEX, reipu (rape), RAPE, goukan (rape), onanii (masturbation), FUCK, fera (fellatio), unchi (poop), unko (poop), BITCH, SHIT, shine (die), bukkorosu (to beat to death), rorikon (Lolita Complex), kichigai (lunatic), tsunbo (deaf person), buraku (Buraku are an outcast group in Japan), shinjin (slur for Chinese), chankoro (slur for Chinese), kuronbo (dark person), niguro (negro), NEGRO, katawa (cripple), chinba (cripple), pikko (cripple), WHORE, SLUT, ASS, DICK, COCK, DAMN, TWAT, CUNT and TITS.

Here are the words that did not bring up the warning screen: ochinchin (penis), kintama (testicles), tamatama (testicles), fuguri (testicles), chinge (dick hair), nikubou (penis), mara (penis), speruma (sperm), manjiru ("cream pie"), yarichin (guy that beds lots of girls), omanman (vagina), mange (vagina hair), kurito (clit), oppai (boobs), anaru (anal), fakku (fuck), Hshitai (I want to screw), ferachio (fellatio), cunni (cunnilingus), COCKSUCKER, paizuri (titty-fuck), UNKO (poop), geri (diarrhea), taiben (shit), kuso (shit), makiguzo (shit), bicchi (bitch), rori (Lolita), oshikko (urine), kojiki (begger), dojin (native), burakumin (Burakumin are an outcast group in Japan), hinin (lowest rank of the Japanese feudal cast), eta (lowest rank of Japanese feudal cast), domori (stutter), ketou (hairy foreigner), nigaa (nigger), rosuke (Russian person - "Ruski"), Amekou (American person), JAP and choppari (Korean slur for "Japanese people").

Note that the words in caps were entered in English, and the English version of the 3DS is bound to be different. Though, if these words seem familiar, that's because many of them were denied and allowed in Pocket Monsters: Black and White, leading to assumptions that the Mii Studio software is using the same filter. Some words that were not allowed in Black and White, like "hinin", are oddly enough allowed in the Mii Studio. And some words that were allowed, like "bukkorosu", now bring up the warning screen.

The way that the words are filtered is sloppy. For example, "ANAL" brings up the warning screen. However, "anaru" (アナル), which means what you think it does in Japanese, does not. It makes no sense. What's more, "FUCK" brings up the warning screen, but "FUCK YOU" does not — nor does "ファック" ("fakku"). For those who do not believe that these English words are widely understood in Japan, Google image search away!

What makes the Miis so interesting is that players are now able to trade Miis with whomever they pass on the street. But that, it seems, might open up 3DS owners to trolling by Miis named "Fuck You-san" made by "Fuck You". According to Nintendo Customer Support, of course 3DS owners can change the settings on their 3DS to block this kind of Mii exchange. But when asked what Nintendo will do if, say, a seven or eight year old learns some new bad words via the Mii StreetPass, Japanese customer support said to erase the profane Miis and change the settings. Microsoft and Sony can follow up and investigate on issues that elude their filters. Kotaku is following up with Nintendo's spokesperson to determine what further steps players can take and if there is anything that can be done to stop spammers.

Of course, the 3DS can change the settings to avoid this issue altogether. But the issue here is that these words slipped through in Pokémon: Black And White, and they're still slipping through with the 3DS. There's little rhyme or reason to Nintendo's filtering. Why does "TITS" bring up a warning screen, but the Japanese equivalent of "titty-fuck" does not? It's sloppy in more ways than one.

Update: Nintendo of America commented on this issue, saying, "There will be a built-in filter that prevents obviously offensive words from being used as Mii nicknames. Additionally, there will be a function called "blocked-user setting" that enables Nintendo 3DS owners to reject the receipt of Mii characters and other content from a specific user. Specific details will be revealed closer to the launch date. Remember that no information will / can be shared until players choose to activate this feature. Parents can disable the StreetPass feature using Parental Controls."

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