The Pokémon Company has launched official forums on its website. While it seems only natural to have an official place for your community to gather, I am praying for the moderation team’s good health because they have their work cut out for them.
The forums launched on Monday, July 3, and while a lot of us were getting ready for a day off the following day, the Pokémon community was hard at work posting some of the most cursed discussion topics you could fathom from the series’ 27-year history. At this point, a lot of them have been wiped by the mods, but that didn’t stop the internet from screencapping some of the topics. This particular screencap by @UltimaShadowX on Twitter is a pretty good encapsulation of the problem.
On top of the cursed posts, there were also some topics surrounding queer character headcanons, such as Penny from Scarlet and Violet being trans, but searching for those posts now, they have also been wiped from the forums.
While the removal of some of these is self-explanatory, it’s unclear where something like a discussion about a character’s identity falls in the community rules & guidelines. There are some good guidelines here, such as telling people not to share personal information about themselves and using foul language, especially when a Pokémon forum would naturally draw in young readers. Also, interestingly enough, the forums prohibit discussion of non-official Pokémon products, likely to avoid discussions of fan games and the like. But really, the final rule in its guidelines states that these rules are not all-encompassing, and that posts can be removed at the mods discretion. This means something like talking about possible queer undertones can be removed just because.
But nevertheless, they were not fast enough to stop the onslaught of Gardevoir thirst, references to that horrible NSFW Vaporeon copypasta (click at your own risk), and people discussing which Pokémon would make the best meal. There has also been some good shitposting wiped from the forums, like a post asking which Pokémon would be best at operating a Hyundai 25L-7 forklift. It’s Machamp, of course.
Between Serebii, Smogon, and plenty of other corners of the internet, there are already subsections of the Pokémon community that are already pretty embedded in their own outlets. But those are beyond the company’s jurisdiction, so it makes sense that it would want some kind of alternative. But even so, whoever is running moderation over there is gonna be busy.