In the last couple of days a lot of fuss has been raised over the fact that Blizzard had decided that in order to get a handle on all the negative impressions caused by trolls and the like in their gaming forums that everyone was going to have to start using their real names. Up until this point just about everyone used their character names that they had invested a lot of time and energy in developing.
Needless to say the resulting uproar was heard around the tech blogosphere and everyone and the imaginary bother beat up on Blizzard and telling anyone who would listen about how wrong this idea was. Of course from the gamer’s point of view this outrage was more than justified as these carefully crafted identities are an integral part of the gaming experience in games like World of Warcraft.
Well according to a post just out on Kotaku it seems that Blizzard has backed down on this “Real ID” being a default requirement for using their forums and will allow people to keep using their character names. Kotaku quotes Blizzard staffer Nethaera who posted on behalf of Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime:
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.
Personally I think the whole “Real ID” idea was stupid to begin with. Sure if this was a new company just starting out they could have gotten away with doing this. However as an established gaming company that has been around forever it seems it was a stupid idea t hat was almost guaranteed to backfire the way it and as it should have.