Today’s WTF: Blizzard Divulges Your Secret Identity

forum rageAnonymity on the internet is an important tool, even if it allows every single user on YouTube to type out the stupidest crap known to man without fear of repercussion. While we all get upset from time to time at the vitriol spouted from the internet, it’s mostly harmless and said by those who don’t really know better. However, most of us are rational people who can shrug off a random troll’s abuse. As with all segments of the population, there are those who can’t be responsible with information and use the internet as a vessel to play out their sadistic tendencies.

This is why protecting your identity is vital, because we live in an age of information where everything from your favorite band to your bank account can be accessed by someone with the inclination and the right know-how. Since we’re all pretty guarded against identity theft and stalking, Blizzard’s latest move has caused quite a furor on their forums. Just to bring you up to speed, the renown MMO/RTS developer has stated that, come StarCraft 2, forum posts will require users to submit their real name via the “RealID” system. Naturally, Blizzard’s users crawled out of the woodwork to protest this change, and some of the points they make are valid. Several female users expressed their concern for cyber stalking, and a lot of people voiced their opinion on the stigma associated with playing World of Warcraft and what would happen if their employers found out.

To placate the masses, Blizzard employee Bashiok decided to tell people his real name and within minutes all his personal information spilled onto the internet like tauntaun guts. While this act is mostly out of ire, it shows just what people are capable of with such little information. What do you guys think of this move by Blizzard? I’m sure it was put forward with the best of intentions but it seems to have backfired. Should you force users to give up their real names if they’re already paying you for your services?

Update: Looks like this idea got scrapped. Chalk up a win for for the forum goers. I guess Blizz should get some kudos for actually listening to fan feedback. Now, if we could only get LAN support.

Source: Kotaku

Written by

mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

9 thoughts on “Today’s WTF: Blizzard Divulges Your Secret Identity”

  1. Hmph, I feel bad for the women with that stalking. Hope that gets resolved.

    Oh, and for the record my name is Terrance Fartbubbler. Seriously; it’s the internet, I wouldn’t lie.

    =D

  2. I think Blizzard just forgot the reason for why there is anonymity on the internet in the first place. Seriously, Blizzard is making some really stupid decisions with Starcraft 2. Good thing I don’t like ’em.

  3. I think if enough people complain they will change it, Blizzard is usually really good about listening to there community.

  4. This video says all my opinions about this policy
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FBwTpHNZDpQ

    The major thing that I am worried about is that it sounds that the real ID goes beyond just the forums. I heard that just playing the multiplayer you need to submit the real ID information, which would also too much for me.

    I also disliked Blizzard for some reason.

  5. While I don’t think it’s cool to suddenly spring this on users who signed up for your service with their anonymity intact, I do wish more of the web was less anonymous. As someone that’s had to deal with vile strings of comments at times, I think people would be less inclined to act so ridiculous at times. This isn’t the way to do it, though, I don’t think.

  6. Meh, unless you’re a criminal, there shouldn’t be anything to hide. I still don’t agree, though.

    My real name is julez (julien) and if you click my avatar, it brings you to my website, which if you can read, you’ll find my real name in there somewhere.

    I have nothing to hide and don’t get hackers mad at me =).

Comments are closed.