Blizzard entertainment, the video game company has reconsidered their penalties imposed on the esports player who expressed his support for Hong Kong protests. Following this, gamers from around the globe had asked for boycotting the company.
Ng “Blitzchung” Wai Chung, the Hearthstone player was disqualified for having said the protest slogan “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times”. The company said that his action violated the rules and damaged Blizzard’s image and will lead to the ban and loss of the prize money. However Ng’s suspension has been reduced from 1 year to six months and the prize money of $10,000 will be returned back to him.
Blizzard Entertainment’s president, J. Allen Brack said that they listened to their community and reflected on what could have been done in a better way. Since they felt their action was not adequate, they have reacted fast. In response to Blizzard’s decision Ng has said that he was grateful to the company for reconsidering his penalty. He said that 6 months was also a long time for him and being an esports player, it surely is a loss to him. Though he knew what he did was wrong, he wanted to bring the Hong Kong protest to light.
Protests in Hong Kong haveentered their fourth month. Businesses have been badly affected. Different gaming companies have expressed their views on this matter. Tim Sweeney, CEO of Fortnite maker Epic Games said that despite the fact that Chinese tech company Tencent has got nearly 40% stake in their company, he would allow his players to express their independent political views. Riot Games said that they would not have allowed for political statements on their broadcasts. Riot’s global head, John Needham said that religious and political topics often required deep understanding and could not be represented fairly in the forum provided by their broadcast. As a result they have asked their players to refrain themselves from having any such discussions on air.