The vast, decentralized social platform that is Discord posts quarterly security reports, and tallying up this year’s ban numbers yields a dizzying figure. Discord disabled 55,573,411 accounts and removed 68,379 servers from January to June of 2022. The banned accounts, which Discord calls “disabled,” were overwhelmingly for “spamming or spam-related offenses.”
Looking at offenses other than spam, the figure for accounts drops to 1,821,721. There is no matching figure for servers, as those cannot be spammers under Discord’s rules—spam server behavior would presumably fall under more specific silos such as unsolicited content, platform manipulation, or illegal activities.
The non-spam server and account bans are broadly categorized, but most of them are for Child Safety reasons, followed by Exploitative and Unsolicited Content. If you’re confused about how this works in the seemingly private world of Discord, we have an article on that: How private is your private Discord server? (opens in a new tab) TL;DR: Discord has rules and moderators, but they don’t watch your streams and read your chat 24/7.
Research into extremist and illegal activity on Discord has been high in recent years, with child-harmful content and hateful content in the spotlight. Earlier this year the New York State Attorney General announced an investigation into platforms used to spread hate, including Discord, in the wake of a mass shooting.
By Discord’s reckoning, its bans are targeting the right people, as a very small percentage of appealed account bans are reinstated. Only 2% of appeals in Q1 and 0.6% in Q2. That means that of the 235,945 people who appealed a ban, only 3,098 got their accounts back.
Of secondary interest are Discord’s statistics on the violation reports that people submit. They acted on 24% of reports from January to March and 22% from April to June.
Those report action stats don’t include Discord’s one-click spam reports—we’ve written about Discord’s never-ending cat-and-mouse game with spammers before. (opens in a new tab) Looking at Discord’s spam statistics is fascinating: The majority of banned spammers aren’t even reported by users. Only 7,785,111 of the 27,733,948 accounts banned for spamming in Q2 were reported by users – about 25% – so it appears that Discord is removing most of the spam before users even report it.
You can read Discord’s transparency (opens in a new tab)s dating back to 2019 on their website.