Posts Tagged ‘anonymity’

Mike Morhaime Says Blizzard Will Not Require Real Life Names on Forums

9 July 2010 | 12 Comments » | pixiestixy

Apparently Blizzard has been listening to the huge amount of backlash regarding the announcement that posters to the official forums soon would be posting via their real life names. A post by Blizzard founder and CEO Mike Morhaime today reverses that decision.

While other features of the new forum system such as threading and rating will remain in place, the name issue is no longer. Said Morhaime, “We’ve decided at this time that real names will not be required for posting on official Blizzard forums.”

See the full post, with some of his important points marked in bold:

Mike Morhaime on the Official Blizzard Forums

Hello everyone,

I’d like to take some time to speak with all of you regarding our desire to make the Blizzard forums a better place for players to discuss our games. We’ve been constantly monitoring the feedback you’ve given us, as well as internally discussing your concerns about the use of real names on our forums. As a result of those discussions, we’ve decided at this time that real names will not be required for posting on official Blizzard forums.
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RealID: Think of the Consequences Before Posting with Your Real Name — Especially Women

8 July 2010 | 22 Comments » | pixiestixy

You don't stalk the Mistress of Pain; the Mistress of Pain stalks YOU.

Girl Gamers. Some (uninformed) people still don’t believe that we exist. And others jump all over us when they find out that we do.

The newly announced, incoming RealID changes that eliminate anonymity on the official forums have the potential to not only reveal that we actually do exist (quite plentifully,too), but also to put our names on the line and potentially expose us to in-game or IRL harassment, stalking or worse.

Well, those are the worst case scenarios. Most of us probably will see little, if any difference in how we’re treated based on putting our IRL names out there. But there is that potential.

Since the announcement came, I’ve been trudging through the forums and other areas of the interwebs looking for legitimate possible concerns for women. And there are quite a few. I’ve heard horror stories of a past female WoW player whose IRL identity was exposed, and some jerk decided to spam post her phone number in trade chat. I’ve heard tales of female gamers getting stalked after they decided to put their IRL name out there.

Now, how many of these are true, and how many are overblown? I’m not trying to be alarmist, but it is a serious enough subject that everyone — not only women, but everyone — should make some real considerations before deciding whether to post on the forums after the changes.

Before you make your decision, let’s look at a few of the arguments being made around the web concerning women and privacy issues.

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RealID on the Forums: Counterpoint

7 July 2010 | 43 Comments » | Heartbourne

Everyone is talking about the new RealID changes. The latest “offense” by Blizzard is the new requirement that the official forums for their products will require you to use RealID publicly, thereby displaying your real full name. While this has undeniable implications, all the tin-foil hat players and bloggers should really take a chill pill.

There are a few important caveats that you need to realize:

  1. This only applies to new forum posts and only to the forums. Blizzard is not giving out your name, or any personal information, against your will. If you want to make a forum post in the official forums, you will have to use your real name; so if you don’t want to reveal your name in an online setting, don’t use the official forums.
  2. You can disable RealID. You will lose some functionality, like the new ability to add RealID friends or post in the forums, but you can still play the game the same way you’ve played it for years.
  3. If you are unsatisfied with the game, you can quit. Blizzard is not giving out any of your information against your will regardless, but if you have doubts, walk away and quit complaining. It’s a game, not an oppressive government.

Lets talk about the motivation for this change a bit and the implications of revealing your name online.
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Real ID, Trollsbane

6 July 2010 | 97 Comments » | Mordil

As Blizzard announced back at BlizzCon ’09, Battle.net is seeing updates as it moves to Battle.net 2.0.

Patch 3.3.5 brought us Real ID, the new way to connect with close friends in-game.

And now, Blizzard just announced new changes that will do away with anonymity on the official forums as Battle.net 2.0 closes in on its launch. Highlights are posted in bold.

Battle.net Update: Upcoming Changes to the Forums

Recently, we introduced our new Real ID feature – http://www.battle.net/realid/ , a new way to stay connected with your friends on the new Battle.net. Today, we wanted to give you a heads up about our plans for Real ID on our official forums, discuss the design philosophy behind the changes we’re making, and give you a first look at some of the new features we’re adding to the forums to help improve the quality of conversations and make the forums an even more enjoyable place for players to visit.

The first and most significant change is that in the near future, anyone posting or replying to a post on official Blizzard forums will be doing so using their Real ID — that is, their real-life first and last name — with the option to also display the name of their primary in-game character alongside it. These changes will go into effect on all StarCraft II forums with the launch of the new community site prior to the July 27 release of the game, with the World of Warcraft site and forums following suit near the launch of Cataclysm. Certain classic forums, including the classic Battle.net forums, will remain unchanged.

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