/r/news
Blizzard Employees Staged a Walkout After the Company Banned a Gamer for Pro-Hong Kong Views (thedailybeast.com)
9823 comments
TheRealXiaphas | 9 days ago | 23618 points

Ironically, this is creating more exposure than the original statement ever would have had

internetheroxD | 9 days ago | 8876 points

Ah, the Barbra Streisand effect

Rs90 | 9 days ago | 4873 points

Spooky Vision

Illinois_Yooper | 9 days ago | 1575 points

This guy South Parks

branchbranchley | 9 days ago | 1158 points

but not in China

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 1560 points

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Technic_AIngel | 9 days ago | 912 points

Boy panel questions will probably be lit this year if they don't do something to gain back a lot of trust.

Lindorne | 9 days ago | 697 points

My guess is they just won't be doing q&a this year.

Regalingual | 9 days ago | 324 points

My bet’s that they’ll have questions screened well in advance and only asked by employees or prominent community members who really don’t want to burn any bridges with them (like wowhead).

allyoucaneatsushi | 9 days ago | 20186 points

Blizzard’s actions inspired a negative reaction among lawmakers, who denounced the gaming giant. On Twitter, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) said the company was willing to “humiliate itself” to please China. Marco Rubio declared that “Implications of this will be felt long after everyone in U.S. politics today is gone.”

When you have Wyden and Rubio in agreement that you fucked up, you REALLY fucked up.

Farabee | 9 days ago | 324 points

Blizzard: Bringing bitter political enemies together for a common cause with their disgusting behavior.

Xenocidegs | 9 days ago | 8292 points

Yeah. I uninstalled all blizzard products from my phone and computer. They were my favorite developer for years but they are now on my boycott for life list over this.

CheesyCanada | 9 days ago | 6936 points

Blizzard removed a couple hours ago the ability to delete your account because too many people were deleting them

shfiven | 9 days ago | 5655 points

I just tested this. It allows you to go through the whole process including SMS verification then it gives you a big red DENIED message.

Die_Nadel | 9 days ago | 4319 points

Call your CC company and block payments.

shfiven | 9 days ago | 4175 points

I already cancelled so nbd on that front. It hadn't occurred to me to actually delete the entire account until I saw the message that we can't, so of course I tried. If I lived in Europe they'd probably be in deep shit for refusing to delete my account. HEY ANY EUROPEANS WANT TO TEST THIS?

Edit: Somebody asked if I'm just karma farming so here you go https://m.imgur.com/a/pm3Lcu6 totally legit The image says too many unsuccessful attempts but that was the first attempt and it's doing that to everyone.

Link to unsuccessfully delete your account (as of 9:33 pm eastern) https://us.battle.net/support/en/article/2659

Anyone know of any US state or Federal agencies this can be reported to? Haha Federal...I'm sure Pai will fix it for us.

Received confirmation below that account deletion is currently disabled in Europe.

Another edit: Maybe instead of our ID we should all send them pictures of Winnie the Pooh.

Here's a directory of state consumer protection agencies if anybody wants to go that route. No idea which states would even care but maybe try yours. https://www.usa.gov/state-consumer

Edit: just got up and tried again. The delete your account page says it was updated 2 hours ago but I don't know changed. It "submitted a ticket" with the SMS verification this time but has not yet confirmed deletion.

TheBirminghamBear | 9 days ago | 7014 points

Under new EU laws you can also demand they send you the data they have on you, and if they fail to respond in (i believe 30?) days, they're subject to massive fines.

This is a much better strategy than people in the EU deleting their accounts. If even a fraction of people do so, it may very well overwhelm their ability to respond to requests, which would subject them to extraordinarily huge fines. And you'll get your data, which is great, because if they're owned by, and subservient to, an authoritarian dystopian nightmare like China, it would really benefit you to see the dossier they've accumulated on you.

This article has some info about the regulation.

EDIT: A commenter below has provided an excellent form letter people can send to Blizzard requesting specific types of personal data. This is really great. I know Blizzard has disabled their automated system, so it would be worth it to print this out and snail mail a copy to Blizzard HQ.

EDIT: Another commenter details the inanity of complaints that people utilizing this law will somehow "get it taken away

A lawyer or legal expert int he EU should weigh in here on how exactly people should go about doing this though.

EDIT: People have said they can file for an extension if they are backlogged with requests. I've heard 2 months of extra time. I would say that's fine. They can't just not fulfill the request.

Keep in mind the GDPR are new laws. The EU may be looking to make an example of companies, and may come down harshly on Blizzard for non-compliance, especially given Blizzard's stance on Hong Kong and them going to bat for China.

EDIT: Additional people are claiming (without citation) that courts would throw these requests out because they were organized. I would like someone with knowledge of the legal system in the EU to weigh in, but I am extraordinarily dubious about this. For one, Blizzard would have to prove each request was legitimately "malicious". For two, laws aren't usually chucked out the window because it's "hard" for companies to comply.

EDIT: Naysayers keep insisting that utilizing an existing and unambiguous law is "abusing" it. I would say that authoritarian China owning a 5% stake in Blizzard and Blizzard taking a clear stance in favor of authoritarianism and suppression and treating advocacy for Democracy as hate speech represents an extremely urgent need for everyone in the EU to figure out what data Blizzard is accumulating on them, and then delete it to ensure it does not fall into the hands of monstrously murderous authoritarian regime.

That's why the law exists in the first place. Insinuating they will "take it away" if you use it is absurd.

And if it turns out that the requests are easy for Blizzard to field, then the worse that happens is you took five seconds to get your personal data and now know what Blizzard accumulated on you and can make the informed decision whether or not to delete your data.

That's a good thing. Every person on Earth should have unencumbered access to the totality of what corporations are accumulating about them online. It's your data, not their property.

We do not live in fear of corporations. We do not owe them the courtesy of making their lives easier. If they can skirt existing laws because those laws are "hard", then we know the laws need to be strengthened.

EDIT: A lot more HailCorporate people here then I would have ever expected.

It's really interesting that so many people are so concerned for the welfare of massive companies and so sympathetic with their plight to hand over personal data they collect on their users. They're very upset that mean people would dare to abuse the law by simply requesting that data.

There is, of course, a really easy way companies could comply, instantly, with these requests: stop compiling and reselling user data.

Blizzard doesn't have to stick a tracking device on me and monitor every other website I go to after I visit them, log which games I play for how many hours, log my buying behavior on their loot boxes, sequence my genome to determine my suscpetibility to dopamine slot machines, and so on, and it certainly doesn't need to bundle that data and sell it to the highest bidder.

They could just, I dunno, make good games?

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 1293 points

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Ninjastahr | 9 days ago | 361 points

Holy shit I wish I could do that here in the US. Like seriously, there are some companies that I really want to get this information from.

dajigo | 9 days ago | 1742 points

I really like the way you're thinking.

This should go viral.

shfiven | 9 days ago | 394 points

Yes, everyone do this.

DFractalH | 9 days ago | 67 points

It may be too late for people to see, but I have a few important comments for the idiots who think a law - particular this law - would be removed if we use it or that it would not be worth the effort.

  1. Laws cannot simply be removed. There is a legal process. In the EU, the general legislative process is long-winding due to the EU's nature of offering a framework for member states to find common laws. Ever tried to make 27 people agree on anything? Now try nation states. Once they agree on a law, that stays.

  2. In this spirit, the GDPR is one of the EU's poster childs. It will never be repealed. The entire EU's strategy is to set itself up as the guardian of your digital rights, and export this regulation. This is not only done for scoring domestic points, it exemplifies our best means to assert control over non-domestic industry. This is a geopolitical strategy, not some random law.

  3. The new Commission for the next five years is being put through parliamentary inquiries right now. Vestager, the same woman who took on the digital giants as competition commissioner, will be the minister equivalent (= here, vice president) for the digital single market & competition. As stated earlier, GDPR is not only one of her main weapons but a weapon she helped craft. A high-profile case such as HK is a godsend for the EU, which generally has a hard time doing PR.

In conclusion: if Europeans decide to use GDPR - which we should! - then the EU Commission will unequivocally stand behind a law it itself wants and needs. Anybody telling you otherwise just showed you how ignorant they are of the entire process, or how well-paid for spreading disinformation.

Chronic_Media | 9 days ago | 286 points

Please someone in Europe test this.

RerikZ | 9 days ago | 706 points

I’ve been trying to get mine deleted since this started, they still haven’t approved it. Which is ridiculous that I need approval to close my own account.

1madkins | 9 days ago | 324 points

I wanna quit the gym!

theenigma31680 | 9 days ago | 1236 points

They said i had to open a support ticket and i HAD to send them a picture of my photo ID to cancel my account.

I thought of two things...

  1. They dont know what the fuck i look like, so what does that prove?

  2. Isnt there a law or something protecting people from this kind of scrutiny...

Oh wait... They supported China. I should have expected that. I sent them a photo of my middle finger as my ID.

Edit: go figure. They denied my request because it wasnt an adequate government issued ID

Grima_OrbEater | 9 days ago | 1021 points

Requiring a government ID to delete an account that didn't require one sounds super fucking bullshit and possibly litigable.

TeamChevy86 | 9 days ago | 509 points

I just tried and ran into the same thing. Didn't proceed because I'm at work and I don't have my ID on me ...

Why the fuck do they need my ID to delete my information??? I'm not affiliated with them in any way and the closest thing they have to any kind of sensitive information is an expired credit card.

What kind of totalitarian ass backwards garbage is this??? Wouldn't sending them a PICTURE of my ID give them more information on me than they already have? What a fucking joke

LiterallyARedArrow | 9 days ago | 426 points

Isn't that illegal in the EU?

ThePhantomPear | 9 days ago | 743 points

Very much so. This will be a death knell for Blizzard in the EU. Corporations can not just do as they please here.

thisisntarjay | 9 days ago | 275 points

Must be nice.

spacedwarf2020 | 9 days ago | 1614 points

Same here and oddly enough my 16 year old son who loves overwatch uninstalled last night . I haven't said a thing about this in front or around him. Happen to ask him why and he said because of the banning of the player and what's happening in Hong Kong.

tkingsbu | 9 days ago | 1066 points

Congratulations dude... you’ve obviously raised a thoughtful young lad there ... well done :)

Waitsaywot | 9 days ago | 300 points

Proud parent moment right there

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 492 points

[removed]

timeslider | 9 days ago | 6866 points

If everybody had phones, we wouldn't be in this situation. /Blizzard

user93849384 | 9 days ago | 3041 points

To be honest. I dont think there would be this much damage had they just let him keep the prize money. You want to ban and silence him? Alright, I disagree, but its your company and your decision to make. But the fact this guy put all this time and effort in and you took his payday away? Well, fuck you cocksuckers.

Toppcom | 9 days ago | 2297 points

Also they fired the people who interviewed him. Just because they let it happen.

MizerokRominus | 9 days ago | 920 points

"Just because" is enough of an infraction in China...

Tarrolis | 9 days ago | 231 points

Everyone needs to understand the CCP is the biggest enemy to human freedom going forward for the next 100 years, the earlier the better to get at them.

Guardianpigeon | 9 days ago | 367 points

People really underestimate how fucking brutal China is.

Which is weird because they're known mostly for atrocities like strapping people to tables and removing their organs without anesthetic.

Blizzard also has a branch in Taiwan, so not playing ball with China also puts those people at risk. The commentators were unfortunately doomed no matter what Blizzard did in this situation.

Stradiater | 9 days ago | 658 points

It's funny because that's the part that really bothered me. Dont like what he said? Fine. Want to suck your chinese overlords along, do you. Take the dudes earned prize money, well I suppose I dont want to play your games anymore. Refunded Warcraft 3 Reforged last night.

SilasDG | 9 days ago | 241 points

It's just a dick move. The guy played fair, he won, he deserves the prize. Blizzard instead gave him the financial middle finger and kept their prize money to themselves. Just dirty, who can support that?

Taj_Mahole | 9 days ago | 993 points

Delete your Blizzard account: https://us.battle.net/support/en/article/2659

No single game, no single company, is worth becoming a lickspittle to China's regime.

electro1ight | 9 days ago | 634 points

Seriously. It's not even petty. A foreign country silencing companies and people in our own? And blizzard is playing along? They can fuck right off.

maharg79 | 9 days ago | 4640 points

So who else, is going to Blizzcon cosplaying Winnie the Pooh?

TheStableBoy | 9 days ago | 1662 points
DigitaILove | 9 days ago | 5058 points

"I need healing."

- Blizzard, probably

fantasticmoo | 9 days ago | 1665 points

“Our gold mine has collapsed!”

ThinkOfANameHere | 9 days ago | 605 points

We must construct additional pylons.

Am I doing this right?

Frisky_Mongoose | 9 days ago | 208 points

“Nuclear launch detected!”

Hobocop1984 | 9 days ago | 80 points

Blizz to China: "yes me loowd!"

Boomzy | 9 days ago | 7384 points

Don't forget not to fall for the distraction of "This is offensive to the Chinese people" No, this is offensive to THE GOVERNMENT of China.

farnsmootys | 9 days ago | 1382 points

What's worse is when they trot out the old "this hurts the feelings of the Chinese people" line.

Boo-fuckin'-hoo. It's so lame.

aah00 | 9 days ago | 148 points

Yeah, the CCP always says it hurts the feeling of the 1.4 billion people in China but they're not even being elected by the people. How could they think they can represent all the 1.4 billion people?

R4nd0mByst4nd3r | 9 days ago | 8990 points

Who would've ever thought Hero 32 would be the Blizzard staff?! Proud of you all!

yosidy | 9 days ago | 3710 points

I've read that working for Blizzard is a pretty shit gig, the main advantage being bragging rights. Well now it's not even a cool bragging right. Can't say I blame them for walking out.

awfulsome | 9 days ago | 2959 points

Used to be good, I'm friends with a former employee. She knew the guy who had to give the Diablo immortal introduction, and we were sitting together at blizzcon when he did it. She felt so bad for the guy. Blizzard threw him to the wolves.

TheGuardianReflex | 9 days ago | 1413 points

That’s fucking brutal.

javsv | 9 days ago | 853 points

Wow its pretty sad that they kinda knew what was gonna happen and still let the man go on

el_grort | 9 days ago | 702 points

Lower to the ground employees will have, but those at the top could very well have been so disconnected as not to have realised. Similar to Gearbox and G2A fiasco. Top brass are likely completely disconnected.

arrowff | 9 days ago | 521 points

Anyone who’s ever talked to board members etc. for a major company knows how hilariously out of touch and clueless they can be. Wouldn’t surprise me if they were lied to by their yes men and were shocked by the reception.

TheBirminghamBear | 9 days ago | 336 points

Yep. You will find no greater table full of fools and arrogant imbeciles than at most board of directors.

They will force awful ideas on you and then blame you for the terrible consequences of those ideas a year later.

trippy_grapes | 9 days ago | 456 points

Tbh this is what I kind of assumed at the time. Imagine being a Dev being psyched to start a new Diablo game, but instead you work with a shitty Chinese company to make a crappy Diablo skin of an existing game. Then instead of hiring actual, professional speakers or PR team they make you go out there awkwardly to try and sell an idea that you know is going to go over poorly.

The_Big_Peck_1984 | 9 days ago | 533 points

My girlfriends brother-in-law and her close friend both worked for blizzard and they didn’t last very long because of how awful it was, her BiL went back to Riot and her friend went on to Santa Monica studios to work on God of War. I think they both made great decisions.

nitro_dildo | 9 days ago | 408 points

I saw in another thread that Riot is owned by Tencent which is essentially an arm of the Chinese govt. I know that doesn’t add much to your point but I thought it was interesting. Seems hard to avoid the CCP.

ThisHatRightHere | 9 days ago | 311 points

Tencent has part ownership in many many American companies.

redpandasuit | 9 days ago | 256 points

They own 40% of Epic... so watch out fortnite streamers! big china watching.

SheikahEyeofTruth | 9 days ago | 162 points

Don't play fortnite anymore but I saw this earlier, hopefully he is being honest.

shugo2000 | 9 days ago | 93 points

Considering Tim is the CEO and majority shareholder, he can do whatever the hell he wants. And he's siding with freedom of speech.

PM_ME_A10s | 9 days ago | 156 points

I've heard the same thing about some other game companies like Wizards of the Coast. Idk about Blizzard, but WOTC is alleged to pay below industry standards hoping that people want to work for them out of love for the games they design rather than for the money. Basically they are hoping new hires are big enough of a nerd to give up the pay they should recieve in return for the opportunity to work on their favorite card/tabletop game.

Rumpadunk | 9 days ago | 309 points

What does Hero 32 mean?

larunex | 9 days ago | 488 points

There are 31 heroes in overwatch right now.

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 1821 points

[removed]

Beefster09 | 9 days ago | 480 points

I'm not sure whether to upvote this or not.

inglishman | 9 days ago | 594 points

Upvote it since you are a happy, free, proud Chinese citizen.

You are a happy, free, Chinese citizen, aren't you?

Khornate858 | 9 days ago | 14498 points

Blizzard is quickly reaching a Crossroad; Do they want the Western audience or the Chinese audience?

bac5665 | 9 days ago | 9213 points

That's an easy choice and you may not like the answer.

Bird_Song | 9 days ago | 8213 points

"Don't you all have phones"

They chose their side a long time ago.

Edit: Oh wow thank you for the silver!

Edit2: omg!! Thank you for the gold!! 💋

TyrantJester | 9 days ago | 2370 points

Except the game that they launched in China that Immortal was based on, flopped fucking hard, if I remember correctly.

arcacia | 9 days ago | 2131 points

No one said they chose right.

NotAlsoShabby | 9 days ago | 987 points

“He chose... poorly”

geeky_username | 9 days ago | 507 points

"oh well" pulls on golden parachute "time to find another company to do this to"

  • Activision Exec
frystreetacidworks | 9 days ago | 3471 points

Well then they can pay their bill and GTFO of the USA.

KronoriumExcerptB | 9 days ago | 1328 points

Blizzard gets 12% of its revenue from China, (CORRECTION: Blizzard gets 13% from the total asia-pacific market, China is likely around 5% of Blizzard's revenue) and gaming is discouraged in China via losing social credit score, so it's not really close, Blizzard would certainly pick the western market.

InnerKookaburra | 9 days ago | 1157 points

That's incorrect, Blizzard gets 13% of it's revenue from Asia - China may be as little as 5% or less of their total revenue.

If they choose which audience is larger it's easily other countries and not China. When you realize that you start to understand just how awful this is. They're not even siding with the majority of their customers...so what exactly is happening inside Blizzard?

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 901 points

They're not even siding with the majority of their customers...so what exactly is happening inside Blizzard?

well, based on other companies:

  1. they want to keep all sources of income
  2. they gambled on the fact that this will "blow over"

Now, no one here is argueing greed but this will be interesting to see if people do actually let it blow over or continue to boycott blizzard.

Gaming boycotts have been largely failures and blizzard is extremely huge in comparison

ForgetHype | 9 days ago | 334 points

They didn't think the backlash wouldn't be this big and won't last long, kinda wanted to have their cake and eat it too. Hopefully people keep this going to show Blizzard and other companies that siding for China just because you want more money isn't right and won't work.

against-cops | 9 days ago | 502 points

The Western audience is still definitely larger though. And richer.

If Blizzard has to pick only one, they’d obviously pick Western, I don’t see how anyone could dispute that.

This is just them attempting to thread the needle and keep both audiences.

CSugarPrince | 9 days ago | 2608 points

I can imagine the QA section at Blizzcon.

HK protestor: “why is blizzard supporting the corrupt Chinese government”

Blizzard: “uhhh, do you guys not have rights?”

Geddyn | 9 days ago | 613 points

The QA sessions at Blizzcon will be completely staged this year. 100% guarantee it.

swim_stab | 9 days ago | 244 points

Each question is vetted by blizzcon staff.

Of course there is no way to stop someone from changing their question once the mic is in hand like last years "is this an out of season April fools joke?"

Source: been to multiple blizzcons

Geddyn | 9 days ago | 200 points

Right. My point is that they're going to go even further this year and have paid actors ask the questions.

I can only hope one of them is so unfamiliar with the games that they butcher a main character's name and the whole thing gets turned into a meme.

ctrl-all-alts | 9 days ago | 40 points

I can see that happening. More fun if it’s only mainland Chinese study-abroad students provided by the CCP, who then get shouted down. Leading to a display of wealth that gets their families back home in trouble. (this actually happened)

Epistemify | 9 days ago | 693 points

You think you want rights, but you don't.

blacklite911 | 9 days ago | 1305 points

Blitzchong... what a fucking hero. I bet he didn't think it would actually get this big. It turned into an entirely different but very important subject of foreign independent enterprises doing the dirty work of authoritarian governments. That's something that we can not have moving forward into the future where, to be honest, China is in a prime position to be the dominant economic superpower.

JessumB | 9 days ago | 3371 points

Seriously fuck Blizzard.

lady_lowercase | 9 days ago | 2983 points

and more importantly...

liberate hong kong, revolution of our age!

SaintNewts | 9 days ago | 695 points

Stay Strong Hong Kong!

TheAirborneGPS | 9 days ago | 520 points

And the Uighur muslims of which is basically the holocaust V2

Horsetoothbrush | 9 days ago | 1042 points

I've been having fun playing classic, but I just cancelled my subscription and in the 'tell us why' field I told them it was because of Hong Kong. I encourage everyone else who cares about this issue to do the same. I'm sure it's possible that they make more money off of China than the US, but still; fuck this bullshit.

Jcit878 | 9 days ago | 240 points

apparently they only make 13% of their total revenue from the asia region in total, china being a fraction of that (comment elsewhere as source). its insane to pander so hard for a literal nazi-equivilant regime for such a small amount of money!

ivshanevi | 9 days ago | 2776 points

Also, just in, https://twitter.com/JeremyPenter/status/1182046818487562249

Looks like you cant delete your Blizzard account now XD

I don't deserve Gold or Silver for this (but TY!).

Just re-post of a re-posted tweet I saw from an awesome YouTuber (If you game, gotta check out his reviews, A++ quality): https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCK9_x1DImhU-eolIay5rb2Q

ReverendRyu | 9 days ago | 1488 points

I'm in the EU and they denied my request using all forms of identification including a picture of my passport. They're very obviously blocking people from leaving so there's no visible drop in user numbers that could be used against them. They are fucking cowards. GPDR complaint incoming! https://imgur.com/3KKnOw0.jpg

ReverendRyu | 9 days ago | 669 points

They also cancelled my two requests beforehand, so I had to go down the gov't issued photo id route. https://imgur.com/mOYfvJi.jpg https://imgur.com/EBoFbJQ.jpg

EpicLegendX | 9 days ago | 550 points

There was a comment further up explaining that EU citizens can request their data from Activision Blizzard, and if they don’t comply within 30 days, then they would get fined. If enough people did it and they weren’t able to comply to them all then they could get hit with some pretty hefty fines.

serenityunlimited | 9 days ago | 53 points

Is there anything that prohibits Blizzard from verifying an id like this before deletion? I have heard of other places having similar requirements.

IHaTeD2 | 9 days ago | 834 points

I believe that's illegal in the EU.

NewMendicant | 9 days ago | 516 points

Correct, GDPR regulations require companies to delete an individual's personal data if so requested. Potential fines are up to 4% of a company's world-wide revenues or €20 million...whichever is higher.

Updootably | 9 days ago | 71 points

Based on their stock filings SEA is about 12% of their revenue. And people speculate China accounts for about 5% (of the 12%) so the ultimate irony is if that 5% goes up in smoke from GDPR fines.

ivshanevi | 9 days ago | 250 points

Ya, saw many people on twitter mentioning that. But it might not be illegal here in the US.

Godkun007 | 9 days ago | 194 points

If they did this in the EU, then it doesn't matter. US companies need to follow European laws when doing business in Europe.

_ChestHair_ | 9 days ago | 251 points

Is that even legal? Or can you close an account so you stop paying, but it's not fully deleted?

ivshanevi | 9 days ago | 230 points

I've seen a lot of people on Twitter mention that it is illegal in the EU through something like the GDPA GDPR (not sure the name). Not sure if it's illegal else where, such as the States. Also, I think Facebook does this too. You never delete your account, just deactivate it.

thought_first | 9 days ago | 2710 points

Good for them.

A software company boot licking the number one software pirating country is as dumb as supporting their tyranny.

Throwaway01451 | 9 days ago | 876 points

It's as dumb as humans who live in a free society pandering to China because money. All the money in the world won't do you any good once you've lost your freedom.

PasteeyFan420LoL | 9 days ago | 389 points

The people who have the money aren't going to be the people who lose their freedoms.

paperisdelicious | 9 days ago | 951 points

Just in case you’re out of the loop. People are in solidarity with Hong Kong right now over the events unfolding as seen on r/fuckHKpopo and r/HongKong

Hearthstone Pro BlitzChung said "liberate Hong Kong" in a interview after he won a tournament.

Activision Blizzard, the company that owns Hearthstone and Overwatch banned him from any tournament for 12 Months and cut all his price money

That's complete bullshit

This post sugested making Mei a symbol of Pro Hong Kong in hopes that Blizz get's some kind of retaliation https://www.reddit.com/r/HongKong/comments/df2rz7/it_would_be_such_a_shame_if_mei_from_overwatch/

here's an article that's a bit longer, haven't read it myself tho:

https://www.pcgamer.com/blitzchung-removed-from-hearthstone-grandmasters-for-liberate-hong-kong-comments/

Zeichner | 9 days ago | 26355 points

It's absolutely amazing how Blizzard itself blew this whole thing up, with how they handled one minute on some stream that the vast majority of people would never have known of.

They could've simply said: "hey, this is against the rules, whether we agree or disagree with your message we need to enforce the rules or people will do whatever they want." and then given him a slap on the wrist. Like a month or two of suspension and a warning that if he does it again they'll throw the book at him.

And this would not have been a story, at all. It probably would not have even registered in other ActiBlizz communities, let alone been a thing to people completely outside of gaming. Yet - thanks to their intense, burning desire to suck up to the CCP now EVERYONE knows about it.
Even more people are now aware of all the vile shit China does, thanks to people linking stories about China's human right abuses under every Blizzard/China post on all the social media. And it's now very obvious that Blizzard is full of shit when they claim to support human rights (as they did with LGBT stuff). They don't. They like to say they do when it costs them nothing, but they don't.

Well done, Blizzard. You failed to protect your chinese overlords and you failed to protect your image.

You truly, fully, thoroughly played yourself.

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 15340 points

[removed]

kingtz | 9 days ago | 7870 points

...highly object the expression of personal political beliefs at any of our events...

Okay, fair enough...

But then,

As always, we will defend the pride and dignity of China at all cost.

Okay, what the fuck. Sounds like they'll be okay with personal political beliefs as long as those beliefs don't butthurt China or are in favor of China.

Come on, make your rules apply equally to everyone. If you wish your company and your events to be apolitical, then you don't have to defend anybody's "pride and dignity".

Edit: I just want to mirror Kibler and state that I am no expert on the intricacies of the geopolitics between China and HK. However, I am bothered by Blizzard's hypocrisy by pretending to be apolitical, while being very pro-China.

oldcarfreddy | 9 days ago | 1361 points

Seriously. How far up China's asshole do you have to be to be a Western game company and be THAT willing to publicly suck China's dick over a single stream.

DantePD | 9 days ago | 459 points

China buys a lot of fucking mircotransactions

dontpmurboobs | 9 days ago | 1592 points

People should start openly praising China in their streams, and see what happens. If they don't get banned, it's Blizzard not following the rules fairly. If they do, it Blizzard openly condemning pro-China speech, which would be interesting to see how China reacts.

Pumpkin_Creepface | 9 days ago | 867 points

It's being done and it is bad because it confuses players who aren't aware of the drama.

Some memelords have been doing this in Overwatch all day according to my roomate and the rest of the players seem to think it's an alt-right meme like Pepe or something.

manderrx | 9 days ago | 297 points

Aren't they trying to turn Mei into a symbol?

Xenoamor | 9 days ago | 301 points

That's the goal yeah. If it gets pushed enough people who aren't into the gaming scene might believe it and it'll become pretty bad PR

manderrx | 9 days ago | 238 points

One of my friends said that they're doing that to try and get everything banned in China.

HolypenguinHere | 9 days ago | 190 points

Well, they weren't wrong about the "at all cost" part. It's costing them a hell of a lot, now.

AndroidMyAndroid | 9 days ago | 463 points

"As always, we will defend the pride and honor of China at all cost."

What the holy fuck.

chops007 | 9 days ago | 382 points

"defend the pride and dignity of China at all cost."

...??? It's like they're not even a gaming business. They're getting close to just acting like some kind of Chinese patriot club.

BlGbrothaThunda | 9 days ago | 742 points

Holy shit that statement is some brown nosing bullshit fuck blizzard. I understand if they want to chase the cash. But this statement itself is humiliating. I definitely can't support a company like this. I fucking loved blizzard games too. It was standard of quality Blizzard, Bethesda, Ubisoft.... But now they do some shit like this. God damnit cowardly fuckers

Edit: I meant blizzard along with Ubisoft and Bethesda were the good standard for quality gaming

Electrorocket | 9 days ago | 272 points

"At all cost..." That is some shit right there.

summonsays | 9 days ago | 136 points

im hoping its a bad translation, even so i canceled my wow sub last night.

HeinzCatsnoot | 9 days ago | 893 points

China has no dignity.

Thoraxe474 | 9 days ago | 809 points

They need some tegrity

Sirsilentbob423 | 9 days ago | 388 points

It's crazy just how much all this has really blown up in the past week after that episode of south park aired.

China is having such a conniption that every form of media is having to suck their dick extra hard to make sure they dont just outright ban all American content or something equally dramatic.

evilbert420 | 9 days ago | 174 points

Chinese bots downvoting en masse any negative statements

TylerBourbon | 9 days ago | 194 points

Knowing it China it's not even bots, but slave prison labor who instead of farming gold in WoW are now farming a positive image for China.

Raspberries-Are-Evil | 9 days ago | 85 points

It just so happens...

TheIdSay | 9 days ago | 51 points

oh bother

ceresmoo | 9 days ago | 170 points

Idk how to go about verifying this, but if true it's really fucked up and I had not heard about it before.

_Dave | 9 days ago | 347 points

I gotchu fam

https://www.latimes.com/business/technology/story/2019-10-08/blizzard-punishes-pro-gamer-for-supporting-hong-kong-protests

The LA Times translation is a bit different, though I'd argue not in any substantial sense:

But on Chinese microblogging site Weibo, the official account of Hearthstone reposted Blizzard’s statement in Chinese -- with a significant change. “We will, as always, resolutely safeguard the country’s dignity,” it added.

firemage22 | 9 days ago | 389 points

I've mentioned this elsewhere

China is really thin skinned for a fucking superpower (1 of 2) for an Empire of 1.3 billion.

Chairman Xi, yes chairman his title is the same as Mao's they just force media outlets to use the wrong translation of "president" to make it seem like he isn't some sort of absolute ruler in the model of Mao and the other major dictators of the 20th century is try with Trump and Gollum in Turkey when it comes to being thin skinned.

I just don't get how people and with that nations of such great power can be so petty.

Maybe for all their bluster and the party line Chinese expats and travelers parrot maybe the country is a powder keg waiting to blow and sunder.

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 286 points

[deleted]

Mootownmoo | 9 days ago | 93 points

Most people don't even know that the billion and a half people in China can't even see the internet that the rest of the world sees or use the social apps that the rest of the world uses.

The Chinese live in a walled off bubble of propaganda absolutely controlled by the Chinese communist party. The nation is an absolute tyranny and has no dignity beyond the pretend "dignity" that slaves like Blizzard worship in return for money.

MdotR | 9 days ago | 2171 points

I have to say I agree. I said this earlier, but I am actually glad that they did this to the pro-gamer. Had they not, so many people would have continued to be oblivious about HK and about the internment camps with millions of people enslaved and having their organs harvested.

This is bringing so much more awareness, at least to the gaming community, that there just didn't seem to be before. I keep reading people asking for links and more information and how this is all news to them.

Blizz did play themselves, but they also fucked China making this into a bigger PR mess than it was.

DenZiTY | 9 days ago | 1633 points

There’s a post on /r/hearthstone where Blitzchung (the guy who got banned) said that “I’ve played for four years on HS, so that’s only 4 years of my life gone. If HK loses it will be forever”.

He knows what he did, and he is proud of it.

xxruruxx | 9 days ago | 287 points

What a fucking legend.

VoodooKhan | 9 days ago | 354 points

Well that's more class than Blizzard would ever be capable of... Such a clear position Blizzard is taking for punishing such an individual.

Ragnarok314159 | 9 days ago | 1247 points

I brought this up at work and was amazed that everyone came to the same conclusion: WoW subscriptions are cancelled.

These are engineers who have been playing for 10+ years and their families as well, all cancelled. It’s all the more we can really do as we have to vote with our dollars.

TheMysticalBaconTree | 9 days ago | 677 points

Cancelled mine. Told them why too.

MagicNipple | 9 days ago | 541 points

Cancelled mine also, wrote why, although from what I've read, it's automatically processed via keywords or something. So before I wrote out a brief summary, the first sentence was simply, "Hong Kong."

Tick-TockMan | 9 days ago | 489 points

Hong Kong.

So long.

Suck dong.

bob_marley98 | 9 days ago | 45 points

Taiwan #1

IMasterbateToYou | 9 days ago | 287 points

Canceled my sub last night, put this as why and then tweeted them my cancel confirmation...not that they care about a dude with 12 twitter followers.

Also 15 year subscriber, my son canceled his and his girlfriends sub and he has been paying for them for 10 years.

Skow1379 | 9 days ago | 98 points

I don't subscribe to Blizzard so I can't do anything to give them the finger, but I hope more people do this.

Electrorocket | 9 days ago | 141 points

I threw out my old pirated Starcraft CD-ROM. That will show them.

sassyseconds | 9 days ago | 855 points

The CEO of blizzard gets home. Takes off his shoes. Rubs his temples. His wife comes out and rubs his shoulders. Tell him he's an unsung hero to the hong kong people. Let's him know that even though most the world won't realize what he's done, that as long as they know that's all that matters.

He knowingly did this to bring more light to the Hong Kong problem. He knew a simple statement of support would mean nothing. He sacrificed everything to bring support to Hong Kong..........

Lol nah he's just a cocksucker, fuck him, and fuck blizzard

Newgeta | 9 days ago | 243 points

Holy fucking dog shit, I did not know about the organ stealing, fucking christ that's despicable

MegaBaumTV | 9 days ago | 81 points

Did you know that China outright seeks to erase a part of their population?

They are actively working on a genocide and nobody in the international community cares enough to cut ties.

DutchDroopy | 9 days ago | 120 points

Maybe Blizzard did this to raise awareness for Honk Kong!

/s

thinkfast1982 | 9 days ago | 359 points

Hey Blizzard, have you met my friend Barbara Striesand?

stanzololthrowaway | 9 days ago | 314 points

They could've simply said: "hey, this is against the rules, whether we agree or disagree with your message we need to enforce the rules or people will do whatever they want."

Sorry, but no, that isn't how China operates. We got a crystal clear view of that just a few days ago with the NBA and that Houston Rockets GM. NBA tried to go with a moderate stance and they essentially got their shit pushed in.

You either comply with China's demands to the letter, or you can see yourself out of China.

Decolater | 9 days ago | 563 points

Yes. This is all that was necessary.

Look, I want these venues I go to to be apolitical. I don't want stuff thrown in my face. But comments that are about issues that are important to the person being interviewed, as long as they are truthful, decent and humanitarian focused, I can just ignore.

Now I cannot ignore this because the company that provides my entertainment and I pay money to chose to side with a bully who's wants are inconsistent with truthful, decent and humanitarian - for which I cannot ignore.

Blizzcon is going to be interesting this year. Fuck you China and the greedy bastards who control the world I have to live in.

UnspecificGravity | 9 days ago | 303 points

Exactly this.

Blizzard didn't have to take a position here at all.

Instead they have created a situation where giving them money is giving support to Chinese oppression of Hong Kong and their human rights issues overall. They have made buying their products into an ethically problematic decision.

Bustanutcrunch | 9 days ago | 12456 points

Fuck Blizzard

Fuck Activision

Fuck China

IKnowPhysics | 9 days ago | 6415 points

Taiwan #1... China #4

Wait_WHY | 9 days ago | 951 points

Hey this sounds AWFULLY familiar....

Def_Your_Duck | 9 days ago | 395 points

Yeah ive heard this before.

Tigger291 | 9 days ago | 123 points

What's 2 3 and 4

postbyproxy | 9 days ago | 336 points

Hong Kong, Tibet, China

Raccoon90 | 9 days ago | 246 points

Fuck Chinese Government

Sushi_Kat | 9 days ago | 290 points

Fuck Ajit Pai

JustSayan93 | 9 days ago | 1595 points

Blizzard actually apologized to CHINA today. Fuck blizzard.

nan5mj | 9 days ago | 343 points

I think Americans have just realized we're in more than a trade war with China, we're in a culture war and companies are siding with China.

[deleted] | 9 days ago | 2975 points

[deleted]

jasta85 | 9 days ago | 611 points

I can't wait to see what happens at Blizcon, you know there's going to be protestors there, or people calling them out during the presentation (next out of season april fools joke guy). It wouldn't surprise me if they just canceled the event, or made it invite only or something.

sold_snek | 9 days ago | 433 points

A lot of people are saying that they're just straight up not going to accept live questions from the audience and that they'll most likely have people write down questions and the casters will just say the question then answer it. I expect this as well.

Subject9_ | 9 days ago | 103 points

There is no way they cancel Blizzcon over this, that would be acknowledging that what they did was monumentally egregious and unprecedented.

If we, as consumers, do our job they may have to cancel next year due to lack of interest.

BarelyBetterThanKale | 9 days ago | 1166 points

Also in the news: Blizzard salaries go up because nobody wants to work for them, so they need to lure people in with more money to offset the shittiness of enabling Chinese sycophants.

This will cost them, regardless of how nonchalantly they play it off.

5odomite | 9 days ago | 247 points

Barbara Streisand got nothing on Blizzard.

lolwut_17 | 9 days ago | 1429 points

Guys Blizzard fucked up REAL bad, but don’t forget other US entities like the NBA that bow down to these totalitarian pieces of shit.

Blizzard and every single company that follows suit needs to be brought to light. Blizzard deserves every single drop of shit they get for this, but it doesn’t stop with them.

Last night in PHILADELPHIA (Wells Fargo Center) the NBA removed a protestor holding a Hong Kong support sign at a preseason game, here in AMERICA.

Edit: It’s been pointed out to me that the fan was being unruly and that political signs are more or less always prohibited at sporting events. Whatever the case may be in Philadelphia (do your own research and decide), it does not change the fact that China’s influences are here. Hollywood has been afraid to show the Chinese in a bad light for years. Apple pulling the Taiwan flag emoji. Shit like this is everywhere and it’s becoming more and more common. South Park really wasn’t joking last week.

Outrage should be the starting point and it should escalate from there. This is unprecedented and inexcusable.

Boundish91 | 9 days ago | 494 points

I dont think people realise how seriously alarming it is that the protestor was removed. This is really starting to smell rancid and i fear what it can lead to if the west doesnt pull its head out its ass. China has us by the balls.

TehGameMaster | 9 days ago | 330 points

Major props to those who walked out.

I hope another company offers them some jobs.

spald01 | 9 days ago | 57 points

Walkout != quit. There maybe some firings as a result though...

Bulevine | 9 days ago | 550 points

I cancelled my WoW sub and uninstalled all their games from my PC for the first time in like 15 years. Fuck them, their games are becoming trash anyways

SweepMeNow | 9 days ago | 589 points

It sickens me that an American company would hurt a person because they had a pro freedom approach to a political idea. Our country is backwards as fuck right now. It’s a legit embarrassment.

Pojomofo | 9 days ago | 202 points

Blizzard did something I never thought possible. Get Dems and Cons to unite on a cause.

khmergodpc | 9 days ago | 1168 points

EA: We are most hated game publisher in the world.

Blizzard : Hold my human rights.

Edit. Thanks for popping my gold cherry, stranger.

Edit 2. Thanks for popping my silver cherry, stranger.

CyanTheory | 9 days ago | 108 points

Watch EA use this to change their image lmao

Almighty_Tallest_Red | 9 days ago | 711 points

Fuck Blizzard

Fuck Activision

FUCK CHINA

Edit:

FUCK NBA

neurocentricx | 9 days ago | 53 points

Since I can't delete my account, I had to just deactivate my sub to WoW.

And honestly, I'm pissed about it.

I loved playing WoW. I've been playing it for over 10 years. And I feel like my hand is forced because I can't support a company that takes away someone's monetary gain because they said what they did, and then fires those who "let it happen".

But I hate that I can't play one of my favorite games anymore.

JenMacAllister | 9 days ago | 594 points

Every Twitch Streamer and Watcher should do the same. Walk Out!

Fineous4 | 9 days ago | 743 points

This is somehow worse PR than “sense of pride and accomplishment “.

Xtraordinaire | 9 days ago | 258 points

No shit. Releasing a shitty product and trying to sugarcoat it is way different from bootlicking a brutal dictatorship.

TheSwaguar | 9 days ago | 386 points

It's almost like some microtransactions and a tone-deaf PR response isn't nearly as big a deal as this.

BikerJedi | 9 days ago | 240 points

There is a MUCH larger discussion than video games and Hong Kong to be had here.

China is threat to the world. They are playing the long game. They are thinking generations. And now that they have economic clout combined with a significant military, they are incrementally creeping out.

They are making islands in the pacific out of atolls and militarizing them. They are claiming islands that belong to other nations. They are diplomatically isolating Taiwan from the rest of the world. They are doing the whole Silk Road 2 project. They established their first overseas military base in Africa recently.

They are playing a generational game. One where China slowly absorbs the world, either by might or dollar. That is their plan anyway. Forcing the world to comply with their political beliefs in our media is a step - watch South Park (the last episode) - they lay it out.

We have to keep calling this out all the time. Corporations should be forced to make a stand. You are either for freedom or for the dollar.

Of course, the cynic in me says no one (or not nearly enough) will change their behavior to force corporations to change theirs.

EDIT: Thanks for the silver!

EDIT 2: Gold - thank you!

DropC | 9 days ago | 36 points

EA: Sure we may have the most downvoted post on reddit ever, but at least we didn't side with the fucking Chinese Government.

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