The makers of chat-and-other-stuff software Discord announced a new feature today called Verified Servers, which as the name suggests gives developers and publishers their very own official Discord servers. Verified servers will be run entirely by game companies, and are meant to give players a place to "get official news and updates, engage with devs, and connect with other likeminded fans."
Developers and publishers with verified servers will have access to "perks" including a vanity URL, a customizable splash page, and a "verified" badge next to their server name, much like the blue checkmark on Twitter. More than 100 companies, ranging from Supercell to Microsoft and PUBG Corp, are currently taking part in the program.
There are some specific, and rather stringent, requirements for running a verified server. "You’ll need to have a team of moderators to assist in keeping the server a fun and appropriate place," according to the server requirements page, and you'll also have to set the Moderation Level to a minimum of "Medium," meaning that "users must have had their account for more than five minutes in order to participate in the server."
There's also an Explicit Content Filter that must be set to scan all messages, "to prevent anything unsightly." Each channel on the server must have permissions set appropriately, and notifications have to be restricted to "only @mentions."
One other restriction is probably the most immediately relevant one of all for fans: Verified servers will only be granted to official outlets. Community servers can take part in the Discord Partners program, but "we won't be verifying community-led servers," Discord said. Nor will they be given to non-gaming operations, a rep added, although "Discord is always open to discussions with other companies."
Gaming is Discord's bread and butter, of course, and it's both a very good platform (we called it "the best VoIP service available" to gamers last year) and a a tremendously popular one: The company said it currently boasts more than 45 million monthly users. We've even got one of our own, available to members of the PC Gamer Club, which—in case hanging out with us isn't enough incentive—will also get you ad-free access to the site, a free game every month, a digital mag subscription, and (wowzah!) a hi-res Tub Geralt wallpaper.
Details about the new Verified Servers, and a link to apply for one if you meet the requirements, are up at discordapp.com.