Geek Discussion: Hong Kong Protests, Blizzard Entertainment, & Cancel Culture

Geek Herring

Oct 18 2019 • 1 hr 27 mins


Geek Herring discusses a politically hot topic this week, giving an overview and our insights into Hearthstone streamer, Blitzchung's statement during the GrandMasters about the Hong Kong protests. Blizzard had made what seemed like a snap decision to delete the entire VOD of the stream, remove Blitzchung from the GrandMasters, revoke his prize money, and ban both him and the two casters from Blizzard eSports for a year. We're joined by Thom from Three Extra Lives (https://threeextralives.com) and Jonathan from all sorts of podcasts (https://frazley.com), two people we love and respect in the Blizzard content creation community. Together, we're taking an objective look at this whole situation - right from the start. What's actually happening in Hong Kong? What did Blitzchung actually say? Blizzard Entertainment did what!? The community backlash that shook the video game world What Blizzard did to remedy the situation How this relates to cancel culture And lots more! While we do go into what's going on in this situation in brief detail, this episode of Geek Herring mainly revolves around our thoughts, opinions, and how we can all move forward in this new era of partial censorship. You can find links to all sorts of news stories and coverage of this event: The Hong Kong protests explained in 100 and 500 words (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-49317695) Naming and shaming companies who kowtow to Chinese censorship requests (https://github.com/caffeine-overload/bandinchina) Blitzchung removed from Hearthstone Grandmasters for 'liberate Hong Kong' comments (https://www.pcgamer.com/blitzchung-removed-from-hearthstone-grandmasters-for-liberate-hong-kong-comments/) Hearthstone Grandmasters Asia-Pacific Ruling (https://playhearthstone.com/en-us/blog/23179289) American University Hearthstone team holds up "Free Hong Kong, boycott Blizzard" sign during Collegiate Hearthstone Championship. Blizzard quickly cuts their broadcast (https://streamable.com/vrlcc) Jason Schreier of Kotaku comments on BlizzCon (https://twitter.com/jasonschreier/status/1181930666969243649) Overwatch's Mei is being turned into a Hong Kong protest symbol (https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2019-10-09-overwatchs-mei-is-being-turned-into-a-hong-kong-protest-symbol) After Hearthstone player’s ban, Blizzard is in hot water with lawmakers (https://www.theverge.com/2019/10/8/20905181/blizzard-hearthstone-player-ban-marco-rubio-ron-wyden-china-hong-kong-protests-blitzchung) Blizzard employee(s) remark on their company's actions by covering up mission statements on the orc statue in front of the studio. (https://twitter.com/lackofrealism/status/1181639970332659712) Brian Kibler, a notable Hearthstone caster, releases statement on Blitzchung and steps down from casting Hearthstone (http://bmkgaming.com/statement-on-blitzchung/) Blizzard Employees Staged a Walkout to Protest Ban of Pro-Hong Kong Gamer (https://www.thedailybeast.com/blizzard-employees-staged-a-walkout-to-protest-banned-pro-hong-kong-gamer) Kripparrian, popular Hearthstone streamer, releases his statement in support of Hong Kong (https://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1sr1h75) People experiencing authentication issues when attempting to delete their Blizzard Accounts (https://twitter.com/Espsilverfire2/status/1182001007976423424) Mark Kern, the former lead for WoW, advocating for the boycott. (https://twitter.com/Grummz/status/1181757457527267328/photo/1) Fuel assistant coach Jayne condemns treatment of banned Hearthstone player, says he was directed to delete critical tweet (https://www.dallasnews.com/sports/dallas-fuel/2019/10/09/fuel-assistant-coach-jayne-condemns-punishment-levied-hong-kong-hearthstone-pro-voiced-support-anti-government-protest/) Tommy, Taiwanese Commentator Who Got Fired by Blizzard, Statement (https://www.reddit.com/r/hearthstone/comments/dft3r4/tommytaiwanese_commentator_who_got_fired_by/) Ex-Hearthstone Streamer DisguisedToast offers to return if Blizzard reconsiders their stance (https://i.redd.it/88tj2klxctr31.jpg) Hearthstone caster ThatsAdmirable steps down from Grandmasters Cast (https://twitter.com/ThatsAdmirable/status/1182429866576138240) Blizzard/TeSPA has decided not to penalize American University for holding up their sign and has scheduled their next match, but AU has decided to forfeit the match and the season, saying it is hypocritical for Blizzard to punish Blitzchung but not them (https://twitter.com/Slasher/status/1182409678371934212) Hearthstone pro Amnesiac criticizes Blizzard's decision (https://twitter.com/Amnesiac_HS/status/1182393382892642305?) Blizzard's Official Statement: REGARDING LAST WEEKEND’S HEARTHSTONE GRANDMASTERS TOURNAMENT (https://news.blizzard.com/en-us/blizzard/23185888/regarding-last-weekend-s-hearthstone-grandmasters-tournament) Contradictions: Blizzard: "We are not a platform for social or political views." Also Blizzard: (https://www.reddit.com/r/hearthstone/comments/dgrah1/blizzard_we_are_not_a_platform_for_social_or/) Blitzchung statement in response to Blizzard (https://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1sr1jn4) Protests Are Coming To BlizzCon In The Wake Of Blizzard's Hong Kong Fiasco (https://kotaku.com/protests-are-coming-to-blizzcon-in-the-wake-of-blizzard-1838983721) What do you think about everything that's going? Has this level of censorship and cancel culture gone to far? Let us know in the comments of wherever you see this episode! You can find more information about Thom and Three Extra Lives Online (https://threeextralives.com) | Twitter (https://www.twitter.com/threeextralives]) | Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/threeextralives) | Twitch (https://www.twitch.tv/threeextralives) You can find more information about Jonathan and All His Podcasts Online (https://frazley.com/) | Twitter (https://twitter.com/frazleytastic) | Twitter (https://twitter.com/jonathanbloom) | Twitch (https://www.twitch.tv/frazleys/) If you’ve enjoyed this episode, please check out some of our others! Geek Interview: Life as a Hearthstone Pro & Not Feeding the Trolls with Pathra Cadness (https://geekherring.com/interview-hearthstone-pathra-cadness/) Geek Interviews: Mental Health and Real Life Rep Grinding with Thyst (https://geekherring.com/interview-thyst-real-life-rep-grinding/) Geek Discussion: Rape, Steam, & Responsibility (https://geekherring.com/2019/03/15/episode-22-geek-discussion-rape-steam-responsibility/) Love Geek Herring, please hop over to Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/geek-herring/id1438271357?mt=2) and leave us a review! Geek out with Geek Herring Online (https://www.geekherring.com) / Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/geekherring) / Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/geekherring) / Twitter (https://www.twitter.com/geekherring) / Patreon (https://www.patreon.com/geekherring)! Geekily yours, Amanda & Monika Special Guests: Frazley and Thom Knight.