Before you say it, yes, we know we've used this terminology in the past. GTA Online's hacker problem has always been at the forefront of game discussion, with the increases and decreases in hacker numbers, ban waves and new kinds of hacks constantly making headlines.
However this issue regarding what we're going to call the hackers didn't really have much importance until very recently. After our article warning players about the new and particularly dangerous insurance fraud hack got some pretty serious traction on the biggest subreddit dedicated to GTA V, it became clear that the wrong groups were being associated with the wrong behavior.
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Let's get this straight: a modder is someone with skills in the field of programming, 3D art or any other area of expertise related to game design who creates content to add to and expand the single player experience of GTA V for PC. Rockstar themselves appreciate this modding community. Modders add to the game, they add to the fun factor and overall enjoyability, all while staying well within the bounds of the rules.
Those guys using paid third party scripts to mess your GTA Online experience? Those insufferable trolls who invade lobbies only to screw everyone out of their fun? Those actual - literal - criminals who now have the ability to steal in-game currency you potentially paid actual cash for?
Hackers. Cheaters. Script-kiddies. Not modders.
You might think this is a simple technicality, a simple out-of-context use of a word as slang with no real meaning. However, if we look at the roots of this label in relation to the current situation, the issue should become clear.
Calling the cheaters in GTA Online "modders" comes from way back when GTA V was only available on PS3 and the Xbox 360. Now, cheating was already an issue back then, however in order to facilitate cheating on those consoles, the hardware needed to be physically "modded" with third party boards and extensions.
It wasn't until the PC release of GTA V that the legitimate version of modding became associated with the game and by that time the name for the hackers stuck. Thing is, currently the hacker issue is most prominent on PC, with that being the only platform at risk from the insurance fraud hack.
Now, modding on PC has a completely different concept linked to it than on consoles. Modding PC has always been about adding new, fun content to the game. This is why it is imperative that the GTA V community get its terminology straight.
With the GTA Online hacker issue getting out of hand, do you too think it is time to sort out the difference between them and modders?