Owned By: Discord, Inc.
Category: Social Networking
Operating System: IOS, Android
Available for download: Yes
Desktop version: Yes
Approximate release date: 2015
Age Rating*: Rated 17+ for the following:
- 17+Infrequent/Mild Realistic Violence
- Frequent/Intense Mature/Suggestive Themes
- Infrequent/Mild Simulated Gambling
- Infrequent/Mild Sexual Content and Nudity
- Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy Violence
- Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humor
- Infrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References
- Infrequent/Mild Medical/Treatment Information
Brief Description*: Discord is where you can make a home for your communities and friends. Where you can stay close and have fun over text, voice, and video. Whether you’re part of a school club, a gaming group, a worldwide art community, or just a handful of friends that want to spend time together, Discord makes it easy to talk every day and hang out more often.
*Information from the App Store
Users can video chat.Access to camera (device camera)
Users can connect with “friends” individually or in groups.Connect with strangers (ability to)
Similar to other social networking apps, cyberbullying is plausible.Cyberbullying opportunities
Discord is not for businesses.Business accounts
Users have the ability to text, screenshare, and video chat, which means inappropriate images could be sent.Ability to send inappropriate images
Discord may collect data that is linked to your identity including purchases, user content, identifiers, diagnostics, contact information, search history, and usage data.Collects user’s information
Reviewed By: Ryan
I hear a lot about Discord from students when it comes to communicating with others. Often this relates to chatting with someone while playing video games. However, that's not it’s only function. In 2020, Discord was rebranded with the tagline, “Your place to talk,” and 70% of users are using the platform for non-gaming purposes. I am not professing to know much about Discord, but I wanted to provide resources if you are thinking about letting your child use it.
This article tells you a lot about the various functions of Discord related to gaming and outside of gaming. From the article: “A Discord server can be anything you want it to be — from a virtual classroom to a place to swap art and music ideas — and getting started on the platform is a breeze.” I would read this first as it helps you understand Discord overall.
There is a concern about predators using Discord. In an article by the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, they describe how Discord can and has been used to groom youth. They cite numerous examples of youth being taken advantage of through this platform, such as sexual exploitation, abuse, and sharing nonconsensual pornography. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation also named Discord among their “Dirty dozen 2021:” a list of platforms failing to address sexual abuse online. You may be surprised by some of the others that made the list.
If you decide Discord is appropriate for your family, you should also be aware of the parental controls and how to set them. Here is an article that will walk you through that.
Finally, make sure to click on the Youth Thoughts tab to read what recent high school graduate John Kashmerr says about the platform from a youth perspective.
With any piece of technology, you should have a Technology Contract in place before they use it.
I would not recommend Discord for anyone under 18 years old.