4 US Congress Members Condemn Activision Blizzard’s Blitzchung Punishment
Four U.S. congress members have sent a bipartisan letter to Activision Blizzard CEO condemning the punishment given to Blitzchung: Ron Wyden (Oregon-Dem), Marco Rubio (Florida-Rep), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-Dem), and Mike Gallagher (Winsconsin-Rep).
The U.S. Congress members have asked Activision Blizzard to completely reverse the prize forfeit, and ban decision.
So far Blizzard Entertainment cut in half the ban period from one year to 6-months (Update: The prize was returned to Blitzchung).
Personally, Blitzchung deserved an appropriate slap in the hand for using Blizzard’s platform, probably a behind-the-camera talk to remind him about the rules; but the punishment given to him was too extreme. After all, as a studios settled in, and an event organized in the United States, everyone should enjoy their Constitutional freedom of speech.
On the other hand, politics have to place in an eSports event. We all know that. This was, however, a special case that went beyond politics, as Blitzchung’s comment was more about a Civil Rights matter.
The punishment was too excesive. What Blizzard should do, now that the U.S. Senate has weighed in is to restore the prize, lower the 6-month ban; and from this moment forward not make live interviews.
By making delayed broadcasts of about 2 minutes before they go live, it gives the video production team time to beep foul language, or edit out inappropriate content that violates the eSports event rules — without actually affecting the players and the tournament in general.