Indie studio warns other developers after being unable to claim its own name on Discord

discord on xbox
(Image credit: Discord)

Indie studio Rusty Lake is responsible for puzzle adventures like Rusty Lake Hotel, The White Door, and the Cube Escape series. Like everyone else on Discord, the studio needs to choose a new username as part of the shift Discord is currently rolling out, eliminating the old system where everyone had a four-digit number called a discriminator attached to the end of their name. Rusty Lake was lucky enough to be offered the chance to reserve a username relatively early in the process, but, wouldn't you know it, somebody else got there first. 

In a warning to other indie developers posted to Twitter, Rusty Lake wrote, "We just received an email that we, as Verified Owners, could finally submit a new username and wow... 'rustylake' is already taken! If we as a server owner with 240K+ members can't even claim it…"

As Rusty Lake went on to explain, this is an issue because "Now we have a risk of impersonation + extra legal costs to file a possible trademark infringement." The studio reached out to Discord support to ask for help dealing with the situation, and received "an automatic response email to this issue and the follow up is directing us to another helpdesk."

Back when Discord announced that everyone would need to choose a new username, it explained the reason behind the change: nearly half of all friend requests on the platform fail to connect with the proper user. That's a serious problem, and yet it hasn't stopped Discord from building a userbase of almost 200 million. No, I don't understand why it's so popular either.

This isn't the first time someone has squatted on a Discord username. The names of several popular streamers like "pewdiepie" and "ksi" were taken earlier in the process, though Discord has since reverted them and reserved the usernames for their rightful owners. Meanwhile, a petition started by Discord users who want the platform to keep the numerical discriminators has over 15,000 signatures.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.