Petition Closed
Petitioning Channel 4 News

End your tyrant raid of Habbo Hotel





Dear Channel Four News,

What it all comes down to is that, you are wrong. Yes, there, I have said it. Not only have I said it for myself, but I have said it for the MILLIONS of PEOPLE (not only the teenagers who play Habbo) who think your “news channel” is completely imprudent, absurd and downright narrow minded. Your “News Team” has ONLY, and I repeat, ONLY tried to show the “bad” side of Habbo Hotel. Not ONCE have you mentioned ALL of the good the site does. Let’s start stating the “facts”, shall we? Now, I will do this correctly, unlike your dishonorable “news channel”. Let’s begin.

Habbo Hotel is a virtual world and social networking site aimed at teenagers ages 13 and up. There is the first problem. The site CLEARLY states the age limits of which you are LEGALLY supposed to be on the site. When creating a Habbo, if you are NOT above the age of 13 and you enter your birthday, Habbo AUTOMATICALLY bans you from creating a character from that computer. Now, who’s to say that the child gets ANOTHER computer and creates a character with a FAKE birthday in order to access the site. Habbo has exceedingly made it clear about the age limits, but they can take NO FAULT if users are dishonest and enter fake birthdays. And, if I am not mistaken, it seems that your news team was also one of these people who claimed to be 11. Well, that’s against the “Habbo Way” already, so thank you for breaking that and setting a great example by showing children they can lie about their birthdays and get on a site when they are not old enough. While we are on the topic, let’s review the ‘Habbo Way’, shall we?

"The Habbo Way is a simple set of rules for all players to follow in the Habbo:

* Do not bully, harass or abuse other players; avoid violent or aggressive behavior.

* Do not steal or scam passwords, credits or furniture from other players.

* Keep your password and personal details secret and never try to gain this information from other players.

* You may not give away, sell or trade your Habbo account or seek to sell virtual items from Habbo for cash.

* Do not take part in sexual activities, make sexual proposals or respond to them.

* Do not use any scripts or third party software to enter, disrupt or modify Habbo.

Treat other players as you would wish to be treated! And remember that a crime in a virtual world is as serious as in the real world."

Now, let’s look at the 5th bullet there: “Do not take part in sexual activities, make sexual proposals OR RESPOND TO THEM. Now, correct me if I am wrong, but when your “News Channel” were conducting their silly little “investigation”, if you would even call it that, I believe that I remember watching a video of you RESPONDING to the certain ’sexual activities’ that you encountered. You therefore, again, broke the ‘Habbo Way’ and it then became your OWN fault for getting yourself in that particular situation. Therefore Habbo Hotel is not responsible for your own stupidity after they have warned you.

As for the situation regarding “pedophiles’. Fine, go ahead and shut down Habbo for having pedophiles on their site. OH! And while you are at it, PLEASE shut down Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, Bebo, MyYearbook, LinkedIn, Orkut, Friendster, Ning, MeetUp, eHarmoney, and Christian Mingle. You know what? Just go ahead and shut down the internet! Problem solved? Nope, guess the pedophiles will just have to go back to snatching children from the streets again more frequently. The FACT of the matter is, PEDOPHILES WILL NOT GO AWAY. No matter how “smart” you think you may be Channel 4 by targeting one of the SAFEST and largest Virtual Worlds for teenagers out there. If you should succeed in shutting Habbo down, that will NOT stop this arising issue. Pedophiles WILL (and that’s a FACT) go and move on to a different site. It is a never ending cycle that cannot be stopped. The ONLY way to ensure that YOUR OWN CHILDREN are safe is to TEACH THEM ABOUT THE DANGERS OF THE OUTSIDE WORLD. Parents need to STEP IT UP. That is the ONLY way to make sure your child is KNOWLEDGABLE about the dangers they can encounter while online or out in the outside world. It is NOT Habbo’s fault. They have gone to EXTREME circumstances to help educate Habbo Users about the dangers they may encounter, not only on their site, but on ANY site they will EVER go on. They provide GREAT tips on how to STAY SAFE! Think of it this way, if pedophiles come up and approch your children in the park, you arnt going to blame the park are you?! "The park should make sure that there are NO pedophiles there at ALL times!" No. I didnt think so. And if so, please shut down all parks as well. Just lock us all inside our houses and not let us out.

Let’s touch the subject of Moderation. Habbo’s parent company Sulake employs more than 225 moderators, tracking some 70 million lines of conversation globally every day, blocking inappropriate users and filtering links to black-listed sites. Sulake also works with child safety organizations and local police forces to address inappropriate behavior. Habbo’s moderation and safety systems were recognized as making the service one of the safest social networks in a 2011 European Commission report. Last year Habbo was also awarded the commendation of ‘Safer by Design’ from the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP). Sulake encourages users to take responsibility for reporting any abuses on the site, providing education and rapid-response support to users who may experience uncomfortable conversations. As well as working within the Habbo online community, Sulake actively contributes to campaigns like Insafe and Safer Internet Day on relevant user safety issues and collaborates in more than 30 charitable partnerships around the world to educate teens about a wide range of topics including safe internet use, the dangers of drugs, bullying etc. Partners include NSPCC (ChildLine), Unicef, the Red Cross, Frank, Child Right, Power Child as well as many other market specific organizations. Automatic moderation exists in Habbo's language filter, the "Bobba Filter", which replaces offensive text with the simple word "bobba". Replacement applies to anything from mild to highly offensive words, phrases, and websites. A feature added on February 27, 2008, enables users to turn the Bobba Filter on and off. In December 2010, the word 'bobba' was replaced with the more internationally recognized '*****'.
As a Habbo user myself since 2004 (When it opened in USA), I have NEVER had as many “sexual encounters” as you did in one day, than me being a member of the Habbo Community for 8 years. I can’t even remember having ONE! The FACT of it is that you INTENTIONALY went forth SEEKING for these sexual raids. So OBVIOUSLY you are going to find them. BUT if you are an ACTUAL member, create an account, obey the ‘Habbo Way’ (unlike you did), go build rooms, make friends, and most importantly have FUN then you will barely, if NEVER, encounter any of these so called “explicit sexual encounters”. Habbo has a GREAT team of Moderators, but what it comes down to is that YOU MUST ALSO MONERATE YOUR OWN HABBO. Use your brain, also known as common sense (something else parents should be teaching their kids). Don’t put yourself into situations that you don’t need to be in. If YOU are careful with the way you interact, not just in Habbo, but in the REAL WORLD then you should be completely fine.

Now, to the concerned parents of teenagers that have had their feathers ruffled because of the unscrupulous way ‘news’ was reported in the recent weeks, honestly, you have no reason to be alarmed. Habbo Hotel is a completely safe, fun, and enjoyable site that your children have grown to love and become a valued member of the community as well. Just do your duties as a parent and monitor them like you all should be doing already, as well as teaching them about the dangers of being on ANY online site. And remember, the news always just needs a good juicy story…

Jerrad Vunovich (JERRADV on Habbo)







Regarding Habbo Hotel muting all of us, lets not attack Sulake themselves, they are only following procedure and are doing their absolute best to control the situation. We SHOULD be mad at the biased opinion and the slandering of Habbo Hotel being stated by Channel 4 News. Therefore, let us stop complaining to Habbo about "UNMUTE US!" Yes, I know, it is VERY frustrating and I wish we were not muted either, but things happen, like this. All cause by illegitimate claims. Let’s be mature and take this unlawful act in stride. We are Habbos, together, WE CAN DO THIS.



Petition too... mean?:

Answering to the few suggestions that I have recieved about this petition being worded to where it sounds a bit harsh, angry, etc. No, I believe this petition ccould have been A LOT more 'angry'. I also believe us Habbos have a RIGHT to express our discontent with Channel 4 News, but we should do it in a more civilized why, with facts and key points rather than shouting "F**k Channel 4!" Which is just uncalled for. So no, I believe this petition is just fine with how it is worded.

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