If World of Warcraft Classic’s aim was to bring the player experience back to what it was like in the early days of the MMO, Blizzard is pulling out all the stops to achieve that dream. Ars Technica reported today that Blizzard forced a “Gay Boys” guild this week to change its name in a move that echoed a 2006 crackdown on the attempts of one player to set up a “LGB compliant” game guild.
Blizzard changed the name of the guild from Gay Boys to Guild ZFXPK on Wednesday, with a Blizzard Customer Service email explaining that the change was made because “your fellow players recorded your in-game name as unacceptable multiple times.” A provisional account ban was also given to the founder of the guild, though it was reversed.
Gay Boys founder Ahmil Jilani said to Ars Technica, “If you checked my chat logs, you’d see multiple messages from individuals via my recruitment process to get us to where we are now, with individuals messaging’ Fuck the gays, recorded,’ among other incredibly offensive and discriminatory remarks… These are the people who find our title unacceptable.
This is not the only response from Blizzard to player behaviour this week that raises eyebrows. After a Grandmasters tournament win, the organization also suspended a Hearthstone player for expressing support for Hong Kong protesters.
The corporation said players are not allowed to “engage in any behaviour that, under Blizzard’s sole discretion, puts you into general disrepute, offends a section or group of the public, or otherwise hurts Blizzard’s reputation.” Blizzard’s image has since taken on a number of hits as advertisers, celebrities, and even U.S. lawmakers have criticized the prohibition. A spokesperson for Blizzard has since clarified the lack of response of the organization, saying it is now “assessing the situation.”
Our request for comment was not answered by a Blizzard official as of publication