There is one primary topic for this tidy up, but one that we thought was very important on many levels.
If you haven’t already – please consider not sending any money to Blizzard.
In addition to their general awful representation (and claiming cookies for improvement while getting worse), in the past few weeks Blizzard has:
- Announced they are deny a Hearthstone tournament winner his prize, and ban him from play for twelve months, based off him supporting the (non-violent) Hong Kong liberation movement
- Also suspended the broadcaster crew filming interview for no apparent reason other something happened while they were doing their job.
- Announced they understood people were upset, so they’d halve the suspension times (and pay the prize to the winner) – while stressing that they absolutely were not doing this to support China
- Told China, at the exact same time, they were doing this to show there would be zero tolerance to criticism of China’s policies
- Did I mention that original “it’s not China” announcement looked suspiciously like it was written by someone in China?
- Banned accounts on their forums for 1000 years for mentioning support of Hong Kong
- Scrambled the name of the “Gay Boys” guild (is this a bad time to point out in 2015 they wanted to participate in Pride despite having zero LGBT characters and a long history of homophobia and transphobia)
At this point, it’s pretty safe to say that Blizzard is not only comfortable with supporting authoritarian regimes, but actively courting them in the hopes of increasing revenues… basically they’re the bad guys in all their properties.
But, to ensure that this isn’t completely a downer we do also want to draw attention to:
- The artists who have transformed (clearly against Blizzard’s will) Mei into a symbol of Hong Kong’s liberation.
- The Blizzard staff members who staged a walk out and publicly stood up to their employers despite the obvious risks to their careers.
- Chung “blitzchung” Ng Wai, who stood up tall when suspended and having gone through all of this has taken the time to express that Blizzard should lift the suspension on the broadcasters.
- The courageous protesters in Hong Kong who are asserting their rights and demanding accountability from their government.
Please consider letting this inspire you to be more politically aware and active in your life. Starting by declining to spend in a manner that leads to that money going to Blizzard.
(And of course, since there’s capital G gamers involved: please do double check any commentary you see on this that seems suspicious. Particularly if it is targeting the workers at Blizzard rather than the company’s controllers)
– wincenworks, ~Ozzie & -Icy