SOE says no private info was included in EQ2 research logs

Sony Online Entertainment released a statement today concerning the buzz surrounding their database research for EverQuest 2. Apparently this information is not entirely true, according to SOE, as the personal information in these logs was not included. What does this mean for those concerned players out there? It means you have nothing to worry about.

According to the official statement, which can be found after the jump below, none of the information in these logs was connected to any real names or what's known as Personally Identifiable Information (PII). In addition, no player chat logs were shared with the researchers. Even in the situation where players voluntarily participated in a blind survey, the private information of those volunteers was kept confidential as well. Follow along below for the complete official statement from SOE.

The information Sony Online Entertainment provided for the research project was scrubbed of all PII (Personally Identifiable Information) prior to being provided to the researchers. For example, no content of any player chat logs were shared with the researchers. The information shared consisted of data such as which in-game characters chatted with each other and the volume and frequency of the contacts. None of this information was connected to, or linked with, the real names or other PII, of any players. Basically, the researchers looked at the connections between players and how their online networks were built and used, not the content of any actual conversations that these players may have had with one another (that content was not made available to the researchers).

Additionally, some EQ2 players voluntarily participated in a blind survey concerning their playing habits and demographic backgrounds. This information was anonymously gathered and shared between SOE and the researchers.

Finally, corporations such as SOE and the researchers' universities have controls and safeguards in place to help to protect the privacy of individuals who voluntarily participate in surveys for research projects such as this one.