The PR disaster that unfolded a few weeks back is reaching its penultimate stage (with the final stage being a dramatic showdown between the protestors and Blizzard authorities. Endgame what again?). When professional Hearthstone player ‘Blitzchung’ was banned for openly supporting the Hong Kong protestors, people on Reddit and other social media openly announced their disgust at the same and vowed to take action. Everyone (well almost everyone) proved to be a man of their word as protestors have been seen flooding the gates outside Blizzcon dressed in ‘Winnie the Pooh’ costumes.
— ToxicMaleClips ✂️ (@toxicmaleclips) November 1, 2019
People have been spotted using ‘Free Hong Kong’ placards outside, with ‘Free Hong Kong’ merchandise (including T-shirts) being sold outside.
— TheQuartering (@TheQuartering) November 1, 2019
Besides the official mask worn by the Hong Kong protestors, Overwatch hero Mei has joined the fold as a hero of the protests and a symbol of resistance.
— Zorine 'harli' Te (@Zorine) November 1, 2019
Many small YouTubers and streamers are seen supporting the movement on Twitter. Livestreams covering the protests outside Blizzcon with the tag line “Let’s raid Blizzcon, they can’t stop us all”. Looks like the Area 51 raid just got ‘remastered’. Even at the time of writing this, #FreeHongKong and #Blizzcon2019 were trending on Twitter, with a majority of the tweets being about the protests.
For the uninitiated, Blizzard banned a professional Hearthstone player Blitzchung for his interview with the casters after a match, when he donned the mask of the Hong Kong protestors and openly supported the protest. The two casters responsible for the disastrous interview were handed notices with the promise ‘never to work with them again’, even though they clearly did duck under the table during the interview when they saw Blitzchung wearing the mask. Reddit was up in arms following the issue, with people promising to leave Hearthstone and all of Blizzard’s games till they promise not to bend down to the whims of the Chinese government for tapping their market. Popular influencers like Brian Kibler had also opposed the ban on Blitzchung.