OPINION: The Dangers and Advantages of Discord


Classified U.S. documents were recently leaked on the popular chat site, Discord. The user going by, “OG” leaked these documents to approximately 24 people on the private server. 

A Discord server is a collection of text and voice chats (which users can join at any time without starting a traditional call). Servers can be run in many different ways depending on the server’s intention.

The leaker, a member of the Air National Guard, leaked many classified documents to the server. According to FOX News, he only started sending pictures after he was tired of writing out the classified intelligence word for word.

According to the same report, the leaker only did this to inform his friends and keep them “in the loop”.

This raises serious concerns among parents and national security officials over the safety of Discord. Many users are questioning the longevity of their platform. 

Many different types of people use Discord. It was designed mostly for gaming but is used for other things, such as workplace chats with activism groups. 

Some servers are moderated entirely by a specific team, some are democratic, and some are not managed as the members are just a group of friends. 

While all this is great, Discord has had its share of issues. It turns out that allowing anyone to create and govern a community can be dangerous. 

Since most moderation on the platform is left to the server owners themselves, Discord has become a cesspool of extremist groups, scammers, pedophiles, etc. 

While Discord does have terms of service that outright disallow a lot of the issues it struggles with, without outside intervention it is rare that sever owners enforce everything listed in the terms.

Many Discord servers are well moderated, especially official Discord servers belonging to video game studios, such as Minecraft, Halo, Rocket League, etc. However unofficial servers run by communities struggle with profanity moderation and other terms of service violations.

“Discord has a surprising amount of people who believe in certain crimes as a part of a socially accepted culture within their servers,” says junior Joel Lippolis, a frequent Discord user.

Discord is full of poorly moderated servers that serve as hunting grounds for pedophiles, scammers, etc. as the audience on these servers can be very young.

However, despite Discord’s struggles, it is a great community platform for anyone looking to find a community of people who share interests.

“Discord has a lot of educational servers, there’s a lot of ones whose members can teach you their native language,” said Lippolis.

Discord has made efforts to stop scammers and help out overwhelmed server owners, however many of these efforts have been in vain as wrongdoers find ways around Discord’s regulations.

As a community chat platform, Discord is about as good as you can get, however, it has its issues. For the past few years, Discord has walked the fine line between overregulation and under regulation, as many users complain when Discord’s moderation is too overbearing.

“It’s extremely convenient, I use it every day to talk to my friends without any problems, it has a lot of fun features, you can use it as a tool for formal settings, there’s a lot of organization,” said Lippolis