There’s bad news, there’s good news, and then sometimes there’s news that makes the bad news just feel a little bit better.
In this case, the bad news is that Blizzard did a very bad recently and banned a professional Hearthstone player, Chung “Blitzchung” Ng Wai, for daring to express his opinion that Hong Kong should be free from a tyrannical Chinese rule. They also banned two nearby commentators because… reasons.
And the news that makes it just a little bit better is that people have been very, very unhappy about this little development. The Blizzard Subreddit shut down from so many people complaining, which caused most people to transition to the Hearthstone subreddit. Imgur, the most popular image hosting site on the internet, is swarmed with anti-Blizzard memes – more than even when Diablo Immortal was announced, which is refreshing to see.
And it didn’t stop there. During another professional Hearthstone broadcast, at the American Collegiate hearthstone championship, some absolute units on the American University team held up a banner that read “FREE HONG KONG BOYCOTT BLIZZ” during the tail end of their game. The camera on them quickly switched views, but it was still visible for a few beautiful, amazing seconds.
The best part? It’s not limited to irate fans. Even individual developers within the company have expressed deep dissatisfaction with the decision. Outside Blizzard HQ, there exists a statue with a compass that points to the company’s core values: this morning, two of those values, “Every Voice Matters” and “Think Globally”, was ‘censored’ by pieces of paper taped down by irate employees, as one fellow employee tweeted out.
And, of course, with Blizzcon coming up, you’d better believe that people will be preparing their chants and their poser boards to protest there.
I’m glad to see people getting angry about this. They really should be. And they should stay angry for as long as it takes.