Hearthstone Pro Blitzchung Says He'll Be More Careful About Expressing His Opinions On Hong Kong

Screenshot: blitzchung, Twitch

Late last week, Kotaku reported that Blizzard had reconsidered its decision to withhold Chung “Blitzchung” Ng Wai’s prize money and ban him for a year after he showed support for the Hong Kong protesters. Blizzard is allowing the Hearthstone pro to keep his prize money and has reduced his ban to six months.

In a post-match interview on an official Hearthstone stream, Blitzchung wore a gas mask similar to those donned by the Hong Kong protesters and said, “Liberate Hong Kong. The revolution of our age!”

But as Blizzard president J. Allen Brack pointed out, Blitzchung did not break any rules during play. “We now believe he should receive his prizing,” said Brack in a statement last week.

“We understand that for some this is not about the prize, and perhaps for others it is disrespectful to even discuss it. That is not our intention. But playing fair also includes appropriate pre-and post-match conduct, especially when a player accepts recognition for winning in a broadcast. When we think about the suspension, six months for Blitzchung is more appropriate, after which time he can compete in the Hearthstone pro circuit again if he so chooses.”

The Hearthstone pro has now issued his own statement about Blizzard’s revised ruling. He is grateful to the company for reconsidering its decision. However, he still thinks the six-month ban is too long and wishes the company would reconsider its firing of the two casters who hid under the desk when he voiced his support for the Hong Kong protesters.

Blitzchung’s statement is measured and polite. You can read it below:

Screenshot: blitzchungHS

Comments

    Dudes gonna be under a lot of pressure over next few months.

    They really do need to reinstate the commentators.

    Fuck Blizzard and Fuck the Chinese government. Shouldnt have to back down from your views because of either..

    They did sort of reinstate the casters. They reduced their outright ban to a 6 month suspension from casting.

    I hate to be the devils advocate here but, it's less about him expressing his opinions and how he did it. as far as I am aware he said it on blizzards own official stream. not his own stream it's different because anything seen and said on an official stream reflects on the business whereas on a personal platform it has no bearing. that said I don't believe Blizzard has policy regarding poltics for streaming. they probably will now though.

    Don't get me wrong. Blizzard is still scummy as hell but, in this case I think there's more to it than the kneejerk censorship reactions.

      The problem is not only that their reaction to it was grossly disproportionate to the infraction, but that the reason it was so extreme and so swift, was because of their relationship with the Chinese government. The problem is that they then lied about that being the reason for such an explosive, reckless, disproportionate and grossly unjust punishment.

      The rules that they cited themselves point to actions which cause 'damage to Blizzard's reputation.' But the only damage to their reputation from the player was in China. And to save that reputation in China specifically, they were so eager, so willing to rush into damaging their own reputation in the West.

      Their statement labeled a protest in support of human rights, free speech, liberty as 'offensive'. But those concepts are not offensive to anyone except the Chinese government. Again: Chinese influence, clear as mud, yet denied.

      They're willing to suppress entirely harmless speech that is not offensive to anyone except authoritarian human rights abusers, and they're willing to lie about why.

      As transient has explained.. its not the fact that Blizz banned him.. its the gross over reaction to the incident which everyone is up in arms about.

      I mean for craps sake cheaters and normal toxic behaviour get so much less than what Blizz did to blitzchung AND the casters/talent.

      And then they doubled down on the denial....

      Let me put it this way.

      Say you were speeding 10km over the limit. Instead of the cops just giving you a fine they instead pull you out of your car at gunpoint, Place you under arrest and put you in jail for a week.

      Thats what blizzard did here.

        Meanwhile, the guy caught driving without a licence and heavily drunk got a warning and told not to do it again.

        And the cops swear the punishment you received has nothing at all to do with the fact that you recorded and made public a video of police brutality.

    You could almost see Tencent reps behind him telling him what to write.

    Clearly the Chinese communist part is holding his family hostage.

    "He'll Be More Careful About Expressing His Opinions On Hong Kong"

    That is all anyone asks of you, Blitz. No one has ever said you can't express your views... Just that there is a time and a place for everything.

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