What a doozy! Remember the proposed changes to Blizzard’s official forums where each poster’s first and last name would be revealed to the world? While the plan was only days old before it was scrapped, the Entertainment Software Ratings Board received hundreds of complaints from angry gamers that wanted no part in Blizzard’s internet accountability initiative. Unfortunately the email addresses of nearly 1,000 of those who complained were shared in a mistaken ‘reply all’ email.
The ESRB’s email:
“Thank you for contacting the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) regarding the policy recently announced by Blizzard Entertainment which would have required participants in its official forums to post comments using their real first and last names, and for expressing your concerns regarding potential privacy implications.
It is our understanding that Blizzard has provided an update announcing that it will not be implementing the above-referenced policy with respect to its forums, and users will not be required to post using their real names. You can read Blizzard’s announcement regarding this most recent development at http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=25968987278&sid=1&pageNo=1.
Separately, if you have questions regarding Blizzard’s implementation of its Real ID option — which by our understanding is unrelated to Blizzard’s plans for its forums — and/or the new capabilities this option offers, they will likely be answered by reviewing the information posted at http://www.battle.net/realid/.
ESRB, through its Privacy Online program, helps companies develop practices to safeguard users’ personal information online while still providing a safe and enjoyable video game experience for all. We appreciate your taking the time to contact us with your concerns, and please feel free to direct any future inquiries you may have regarding online privacy to our attention.
Entertainment Software Rating Board”
The cherry on top comes during the last paragraph that affirms the ESRB’s commitment to online privacy. Thankfully and luckily for the ESRB, it was only email addresses that were reveal to the almost 1,000 concerned gamers instead of Blizzard’s proposed first and last names. There’s just something rich about violating the privacy of the people who were the most concerned about maintaining said privacy.