Microsoft will soon begin warning Xbox One users if their online reputation falls below a certain threshold. The reputation system is broken into three categories: good, needs work, and avoid me. Microsoft says the vast majority of Xbox One gamers have a "good" ranking, since they rarely (if ever) receive any feedback from other users. But starting this month, the company plans to send out notifications to players who slip into the "needs work" zone.
"The purpose of these communications is to remind players about their effect on the community and encourage them to have more positive interactions," said Micheal Dunn, a program manager at Xbox Live. Users risk falling to lower ranking levels if they frequently receive negative feedback from other gamers.
Those warnings are important, since dropping to "avoid me" — the lowest level of Xbox One's ranking system — can result in legitimate repercussions. Matchmaking in multiplayer games may prove more difficult, and Microsoft says it also reserves the right to cut off access to community-based features like Twitch broadcasting.
The ranking system was designed "so it won’t penalize you for bad reports over a few weeks of play," says Microsoft, meaning your reputation will only crash and burn after a prolonged period of abusive behavior on Xbox Live. The company's internal algorithms also account for so-called "griefing," so your reputation won't drop if someone vengefully sends you negative feedback just because you won the last Titanfall match. "At the end of the day, our goal is to match you with other gamers you’ll enjoy, and create the best gaming community online," Dunn said.