Unless you’ve been living under the proverbial MMO rock, you’re just now hearing about the RealID fiasco that Blizzard announced. It’s become big enough, and wide-spread enough, that I can’t really ignore it now (that’s blogger code for: “it’s an easy topic to write about”).
I don’t play WoW, but I did. I do play Blizzard games, and have put Starcraft 2 on pre-order. Now, even I, a person who knows how this plan is going to work, has mulled over the prospect of canceling said pre-order because of this. It’s a monumentally bad idea, despite what some say (“Hey guys, it’s all good. Ohhh….yeah, that’s my address. About that…”).
Particularly telling in all this is the rather rapid development and shift in proposed policy of the rule as it applies to Blizzard itself. No longer will THEIR names be displayed, despite previous sentiments (post 16) expressed otherwise. Poor Mr. Whipple, you served as an object lesson for Blizzard. I feel for the guy, I really do. He bore the brunt of the ire of the community of 11 million players. Of particular note, is the hypocrisy in a statement made by a Blizzard phone rep named Josh (who wisely withheld his last name) that employees “cannot risk having their personal lives compromised by in-game issues.”. But players? Ahhh who gives a crap!?
Privacy is a concern for many, many people. Obviously, I’m not overly concerned, I’ve chosen to put myself out there as a blogger. I know what my relative exposure is and am comfortable with it. The massive market and player base that Blizzard has is a level so vastly outside of what I have now as to be nigh unfathomable. I would never want to take shred any illusion of privacy that may remain in my life. Besides, do you really want an ex-guildie with a 4-ton jack bar showing up at your house?
Edit: I wanted to at least relay the information about who exactly is getting into bed with this whole deal. Michael Zimmer, founder of Facebook, is in agreement with Blizzard to create compatability across his social networking site, and this game. Michael Zimmer, who thinks that if you don’t behave, share, or act in the same way across all areas of your life, you have no integrity. I’m convinced this guys a nutter.