Some of the big names in gaming have formed an alliance to make gaming safer. Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo jointly announced today their shared commitment to ensure safety for the players, especially the younger ones.

As part of their commitment, the gaming giants have released a set of principles that will guide their efforts. These principles are designed to combat harassment and hate, among other forms of abuses, by offering customization options, safety tools, codes of conduct, and systems that prevent abusive behavior before it occurs. For parents, the companies will provide tools and information to help them control the gaming experiences of their children.

In addition to these prevention measures, the alliance is also intended to initiate collaboration with industry partners, government agencies, and law enforcement to advance the players' safety. The companies are also working with ratings agencies such as the ESRB and PEGI to ensure that games are filtered and visible only to their appropriate audiences.

Finally, the companies vow to provide an easier method for players to report abuse and to respond to all “lawful requests” from law enforcement agencies. These principles by no means introduce drastic changes to the companies concerned, but they could help improve online gaming in the long run.