Following Blitzchung’s ban by Blizzard, many players are doing violative actions to raise voice against Blizzard and their conduct.
After the major controversy regarding the ban of Blitzchung from official Hearthstone tournaments placed by Blizzard a lot has been happening. Blizzard’s reply about how they are not in support of China and how they are not being hypocritical on their message about freedom of expression and one’s right to fight for justice. A lot of players and general people from the community rose to support Blitzchung and his message for liberation and justice for Hong Kong.
Usually, precedents are the pathway for people to walk and to learn what they should be expecting after certain actions. But after lots of oppression and tolerance, the gaming community isn’t afraid to follow the paths of players who go out of line to fight for justice. The actions of Blitzchung inspired a lot of players to fight for the cause. A similar instance we again got to see on an official tournament stream.
Why Another Ban ?
Last week a player from American University’s collegiate Hearthstone team displayed another action against Blizz and in the wake of the Hong Kong protests. He displayed a banner upon which a message was written saying “Free Hong Kong, Boycott Blizz”. This was another move against the company that has been claimed to money-hungry and ignorant of the best interest of freedom and humans.
The problem here was this particular went by the looks of Blizzard where they didn’t place a ban on the AU player thus resulting in an unfair treatment towards Chung. After a while, a six-month ban was placed on the player about which the player Casey “Xcelsior” Chambers himself tweeted attaching the screenshots of the mail “Happy to announce the AU Hearthstone team received a six-month ban from competition. While delayed I appreciate all players being treated equally and no one being above the rules”.
“During week 4 of the Fall 2019 Hearthstone Collegiate Championships, players GiantDwarf, TJammer and Xcelsior were in violation of section 7.1.B for engaging in behavior disruptive to the official esports broadcast Hearthstone Collegiate Championship Rules,” the formal ruling states.
“The players are disqualified from the ongoing tournament and will be ineligible to participate in Hearthstone esports for 6 months, beginning from October 8th, 2019 and extending to April 8th, 2020. Following the 6 months suspension, the players may, at their discretion, continue to participate in Hearthstone esports.”
“We strongly encourage everyone in our community to share their viewpoints in the many places available to express themselves. However, our official broadcast needs to be about the game and the competition, and to be a place where all are welcome,” Blizzard said making a statement about the event.
“If we allow the introduction of personal views about sensitive issues into the channel, it ceases to be what it’s meant for—esports. We have rules in place to support this, to which these competitors, as well as others at all levels, have agreed. They knowingly broke those rules and we’ve suspended them from Hearthstone esports for six months.”
Casey “Xcelsior” Chambers, one of the players who received suspensions said how they knew this action would put them in trouble but they didn’t care for it and have no regrets regarding the same “This one was pretty cut and dry. We knew what we were doing and expected the punishment,” he wrote. “The problem was Blizzard ignoring our protest for PR reasons but going after Blitzchung.”
Opinion about the ban
This event plus all the events that have been happening worldwide in protest of the multi-million dollar company goes on to show how people are growing intolerant of injustice. They are not afraid to voice their opinions even if it means letting go of something they truly cherish.
These events happening in the e-sports sector show that sportsmanship not only exists in the real world physical sports but also within the hearts of the people sitting behind a keyboard. Many people have decided to boycott the company and stop playing their games, while others decided to crash the Blizzcon event with stuff related to the controversy.
From my perspective this is important, people should voice their opinions any time they want to fight for a cause but from the company’s standpoint money is important for them. Its a huge battle between correctness, immorality, and situations.
Such instances only leave us wondering that what will happen in the coming time in the field of e-sports, normally we would see people running away from situations that endanger them but in the light of recent events it is crystal clear that gamers are not those typical keyboard warriors but they have the guts and courage to stand up for social causes as well. While the hate against Blizzard grows exponentially one can only wonder how they will get hit again by another action of its community and player base.