Yesterday Blizzard Entertainment announced that it will be making some major changes to it’s forums in preparation for StarCraft II and World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. The biggest thing being changed is that “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.”
That’s right folks, anonymity on the Blizzard forums is going to die. According to the official posting, “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.”
It is important to note that these changes will only be applied to the new StarCraft II forums and the new WoW forums. “All posts here on the current World of Warcraft forums, or any of our classic Battle.net forums, will remain as-is. They won’t (and can’t) automatically switch to showing a real first and last name.”
As you would expect, much of the gaming community is up in arms about these changes. In order to quell some of the resistance, a Blizzard employee posted his full name on the forums. In a matter of minutes, all of his personal information was posted on the Blizzard forums.
While this new policy may stop flame wars, personally I think this is an awful idea. Just looking at all the info the nefarious people on the Internet were able to scrounge up on the Blizzard employee makes me sick. I honestly can’t believe that Blizzard didn’t expect this kind of reaction. I can tell you that I will not be posting on the Blizzard forum any time soon for fear of the nutcases out there.
What do you guys think? Will this new policy change your interactions on the Blizzard forums? Do you think Blizzard is out of line sharing this kind of information? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.