Blizzard decide to give out subscribers’ real names

News from Matt – Wednesday, 07 July 2010 @ 9:17am

Whenever a “blue” (admin) posts on the World of Warcraft forums they explode with speculation and abuse, and this morning’s post is no different. Well, actually it’s different in two ways. First of all no one approves, and secondly, the haters are right.

To give some actual information, an administrator named Nethaera has posted a long article stating that the forum in future will require Blizzard’s RealID system to allow posting. This “RealID” is maybe a bit too real. It is the poster’s IRL first and last name.

The WoW (and Starcraft II) community has cried WTF so loudly that if you log onto the forum right now you can still hear “eff… eff… efff…” echoing. It’s currently sitting at the top of social news website Reddit.

The reasons this is a bad idea are myriad but essentially come down to this: never share your real life information on the internet.

As a game where I’ve had people literally threaten to come over and physically kill me several times (I was trolling Dalaran, people are stupid) I find the thought of Blizzard giving out my IRL name a little concerning. Female players are especially concerned. Already the unwelcome recipients of constant requests for cyber and general hitting on, this would expose both their identity AND their gender to the entire internet. The potential for everything from stalking to IRL attacks is obvious.

Even aside from that, this concept links your real life identity and your online gaming far too close together for my liking. The combination of this RealID and Google provides far too much information to potential employers, dates, business partners, etc.

I only hope they listen, not to me, but to the 80+ pages of outrage and shock. This is an awful, awful, awful policy from Blizzard, and really needs to be scrapped.

Blizzard Forum

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Coz @ 11:44am 10 Jul
[url=http://www.australiangamer.com/news/3245_blizzard_back_down_on_realid.html]NEWS [ Blizzard back down on RealID ][/url]

Phew!

Rodregeus @ 11:43am 10 Jul
You know what Fury? I don’t even care any more. You’re not getting it. That’s fine.

LiveWire @ 9:59am 10 Jul
And what if the gassed room is somewhere I frequent? My home? My workplace? My favourite pub? This is the blizzard forums for a lot of people. Sure you don’t have to go in to your home/work/pub. You can choose not to, but it comes at a very significant cost. It’s a false choice.

Fury @ 8:52am 10 Jul

If you gas the room, I am not losing the ability to breath either. I AM however losing the ability to breath without inhaling toxic gas.

Except that you’re not required to walk into the gassed room, it’s a choice you make.
St Eligius @ 4:04am 10 Jul
[url=”http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=25968987278&sid=1″]Aaaaaand relax![/url]

(Except the 3rd paragraph, that is)