writes: Quoted from Nintendo Directly:
Thank you for your support.
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.
We are very sorry for any inconvenience to the many consumers who have been using this service responsibly; however this decision was made considering the point that many minors also use this feature of Swapnote. Thank you for your understanding.
Nintendo will continue to work to ensure more consumers are aware of our Parental Control features, which allow parents to manage their children’s experience on our systems. For more information, please click here.
Service stop date: Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013, 7 p.m. PT
Service being stopped: Nintendo 3DS software Swapnote – Sending and receiving notes using SpotPass
Affected regions: All regions where the service was offered
Special Notes services are also stopped
Although I'm not a frequent submitter of stories, I did happen upon something that might be of interest to the /. community as a whole, and thought I'd share it here.
After getting off shift yesterday and firing up Pokemon Y on my 3DS while waiting for my ride, I notice a new message has popped up (See quote above)
It would seem that having a little program that can be used in a wide open way has been making some little ones cry, and their parents see red. All of this appears to be linked to the addition of being able to send photos that was added in April 2012. The service itself was launched in North America in January of that same year.
I guess it's one thing to send off crudely drawn notes of people with naughty language, but quite a different thing to send a 3D pic of actual people.
I have one of these systems, but have never used that feature myself, so I doubt I'll miss it, but surely others use it a lot more than they will likely admit.
Does anyone else have a 3DS, and use Swapnote? Have you (or anyone you know) been subjected to unwanted offensive material? What did you do about it?
What are the overall opinions of this move among the SlashDot community? Is it just blind censorship? Overreaction? Deliberate sabotage of what could otherwise be a "safe" introduction to social media in a closed digital environment?
Will they ever bring the service back, and what changes would have to be made to allow it? Will it even be usable?
The link provided below is word-for-word what showed up in the 3DS message and taken directly from Nintendo.