Launched in 2015, Discord started off as a chat site for video gamers to use while playing, using video, audio and text. In March 2020, the company pivoted towards the social space, embracing community building for people isolated during lockdowns by appealing to users that aren’t only gamers but have other hobbies and want to connect over anything from crypto, to music, dance groups to camping.
As the latest data from Statista’s Global Consumer Survey shows, Discord has taken off with 18-29 year olds around the world. While the survey does not include people under the age of 18, it is likely that they too use the platform regularly, since the registration age is between 13-16, depending on the country.
France shows the highest share of Discord users of the selected countries, with 31 percent of 18-29 year olds saying they used the platform. This is followed by Germany (29 percent), the U.S. (25 percent) and the UK (20 percent). In the U.S., the platform ranks ninth for the most used messenger service, with Facebook Messenger topping the list. By comparison, Discord ranks sixth in Brazil, according to the Global Consumer Survey brand report. China has banned Discord from public use and so it does not appear on the chart. Instead, the most popular sites there are WeChat, DingTalk, and Tencent QQ.
As with all social media and communication platforms, questions surrounding privacy and censorship continue to be at the forefront of discussions for Discord. The company was mired in bad press after it emerged that white supremacy groups had used the platform to organize a violent right wing rally in Charlottesville, Va. in 2017. Discord has since tightened its restrictions and set up a Trust & Safety Team that responds to user reports and bans groups and individuals engaging in harmful activities, such as the spread of hate speech.