Five Members Of Congress Ask Blizzard To "Reconsider" Hearthstone Player's Suspension

Jason Winter
By Jason Winter, News Editor October 18, 2019
Share:

"The suspension heard 'round the world" keeps generating news. One week after lightening the discipline handed down to Hearthstone pro Ng Wai "Blitzchung" Chung for his statements supporting the protests in Hong Kong, Blizzard is still being hammered on the PR front, and now Congress is getting in on the act. In a rare bipartisan move, five members of Congress have penned a letter addressed to Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick, calling for his company to "reconsider your decision with regards to Mr. Chung."

The letter comes from the office of Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and is co-signed by Senator Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Representatives Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., and Tom Malinowski, D-N.J. It calls Activision-Blizzard's decision "particularly concerning in light of the Chinese government's growing appetite for pressuring American businesses to help stifle free speech," and referenced other cases of the Chinese government intimidating American companies, such as Apple and the NBA, as part of China's "campaign of intimidation."

The letter goes on to call out how Blizzard's core value of "one's right to express individual thoughts and opinions" runs counter to the actions taken against Blitzchung. It references the one-year suspension handed out to Blitzchung, perhaps not being fully aware of the reduction in his sentence that was announced last Friday. Still, I'd wager that any capitulation is probably seen as too harsh to the letter's authors, who call Activision Blizzard "a pillar of the gaming community" whose actions "could have a chilling effect on gamers who seek to use their platform to promote human rights and basic freedom."

For all that, however, it's not as if Congress has any direct power to tell a business what to do ... not yet, at least. The same could have been said about loot boxes two years ago, and the uproar over them that was kicked off -- at least in American circles of government -- by a state representative from Hawaii, and we all know how that's been going.

Share:
Got a news tip? Contact us directly here!


About the Author

Jason Winter
Jason Winter, News Editor
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.

Discussion (0)


You May Enjoy

World Of Warships Debuts Faroe Islands Map In New Update, Brings Back Convoy Mode And Transformers Collab

World Of Warships Debuts Faroe Islands Map In New Update, Brings Back Convoy Mode And Transformers Collab

There's also some visual improvements for several U.S. destroyer models.

By Anthony Jones - 2 weeks ago
Watch Your Mouth: Valorant Will Begin To Record In-Game Voice Chat In July

Watch Your Mouth: Valorant Will Begin To Record In-Game Voice Chat In July

There will soon be consequences for toxic voice chat players.

By Aspen Pash - 4 days ago
Iron Gate AB Set To Launch Valheim On Microsoft Store And Xbox Platforms, Xbox Game Pass Starting Soon

Iron Gate AB Set To Launch Valheim On Microsoft Store And Xbox Platforms, Xbox Game Pass Starting Soon

It'll be even easier to play 2021's surprise title.

By Anthony Jones - 2 weeks ago
Nexon Drops Launch Trailer For Beat ‘Em Up DNF Duel

Nexon Drops Launch Trailer For Beat ‘Em Up DNF Duel

Soon, fans of Dungeon and Fighter can get their battle on.

By QuintLyn Bowers - 2 weeks ago
Fall Guys Is Finally Free, But It's Also Gone From Steam

Fall Guys Is Finally Free, But It's Also Gone From Steam

Yes. The change is going to affect Steam a bit.

By QuintLyn Bowers - 1 week ago
Leatherface Gets His Release In 2023! Multiplayer Horror Game The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Coming

Leatherface Gets His Release In 2023! Multiplayer Horror Game The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Coming

Did you like Friday the 13th? You'll probably like this, too!

By Anthony Jones - 2 weeks ago
See More
Live Giveaways