BlizzCon 2019 has come and gone but the stench of corporate hypocrisy still lingers in the vast halls of the Anaheim Convention Center.
If you thought that given all of the bad publicity surrounding Blizzard’s capitulation to the communist Chinese in the Free Hong Kong Hearthstone incident, that Blizzard would have immediately ceased all of its identity politics propaganda at BlizzCon 2019, you would be wrong.
If you thought that after all of the layoffs and fiscal restraint measures recently enacted at Activision/Blizzard that they would stop spending money on wasteful virtue signaling initiatives in their workplace, you would be wrong again.
No matter what disasters befall the Irvine video game studio, the religion of identity politics is alive, well and spreading like a California wildfire at Blizzard 2.0.
In predictable form, Blizzard President J. Allen Brack gave his opening speech wearing a Blizzard Pride pin. In today’s bizarre culture, wearing a Pride pin is like a talisman that wards off evil spirits and bestows to the wearer guaranteed immunity from the wrath of the Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD and other advocacy groups who prowl about on Twitter looking for corporations to bully and people to cancel.
As President of Blizzard, Brack represents ALL Blizzard players, not just the LGBTQ ones who represent a microscopic minority of the player base. As Netflix is beginning to learn, pandering to one particular group ends up alienating everyone else. If Brack wants to support various causes then he should do so on his own time and on his own dollar.
Blizzcon which is financed by revenues generated by players of all political persuasions should not be used by him or any other Blizzard employee as a forum to advance their personal causes. Blizzard staff should not be wearing any kind of political or ideological slogans at a public convention where they represent the studio.
The Revolution Eats its Own
In the world where I grew up, the left had noble goals: they cared about wages and working conditions for the common man. Now the left cares about make-believe problems like climate catastrophism, transgenderism, and the three-headed hydra of diversity/inclusion/representation in all forms of media and art.
Just this week famous author and leftist Stephen King faced the wrath of the perpetually outraged busybodies on Twitter for his common-sense views on diversity in art:
No one is safe from the revolution. As Jacques Mallet du Pan noted:
Like Saturn, the revolution devours its children.
Today’s modern leftists are no longer rebels without a cause but conformists without both a cause and authentic virtue. In the absence of a belief in God, they’ve created a counterfeit morality but they call it “values.” The wokest among them expends their spiritual energy chasing the dopamine drenched dragon of moral exhibitionism and virtue signaling.
Like vampires who thirst for fresh blood, they feed this addiction via the steady emancipation of victim groups and by labeling anyone that disagrees with them as bigots. If no victim groups exist, they create them. If no “hate” crimes exist, they manufacture them as did America’s greatest living thespian Jussie Smollett one Chicago winter’s evening.
The latest victim group that the left has co-opted are so-called transgenders.
Hearthstone Deep Dive Spectacle
Probably the most disturbing thing I saw at BlizzCon 2019 was the Hearthstone deep dive presentation that featured what appeared to be two symbols of Blizzard’s fixation on LGBTQ issues: a transgender woman and a lesbian.
Blizzard wanted to showcase how diverse and inclusive they are so they plumbed the depths of Blizz HQ to find two people who would go on stage and play the part. As the theatre of the awkward & absurd continued with a man pretending to be a woman and a woman pretending to be a man, the discomfort of the stunned audience was palpable. I really felt sorry for both of these individuals because Blizzard was using them as ideological props.
This bizarre fixation on the promotion of sexual identity and gender dysphoria as “normal” is deeply troubling and more evidence that Blizzard 2.0 has lost its way.
Gender dysphoria is a serious mental illness that has been elevated by the left into an identity that requires protection and naturally they’ve appointed themselves as the white knights that charge in to save them. Thankfully the left’s transgender house of cards is starting to crumble as more transgenders revert back to the gender of their birth and false claims of abnormally high transgender murders have been debunked.
Perhaps I’m mistaken, but I looked at all three of those images in the above tweet but could not find J. Allen Brack wearing his cherished Blizzard Pride pin.
Blizzard’s Inclusion Carnival Sideshow
Blizzard’s groovy Inclusion Nexus “safe space” sideshow was back this year. What better way for the new hires of Blizzard’s new department of diversity and inclusion to justify their employment and budget with this perverse shrine.
It’s interesting that none of these esteemed panels of deep erudition were streamed or available to Virtual Ticket holders.
Here’s a list of some of the talks that were given:
- Starting at Blizzard as a Female Manager
- How Blizzard embraces Self-Expression
- Navigating Unconscious Bias
- Grappling with Cultural Identity
- Blizzard’s Diversity & Inclusion Training
- A personal Journey to Leading Responsibly (that features empowerment for diversity and inclusion)
- Leveraging Experiences to Affect Change
This kind of cultural Marxism and postmodernism indoctrination yawnfest that has no place in the video game industry. Sadly, these talks are typical of the backroom panel fare that GDC and PAX use to pad their typically boring conferences.
Here are two sample videos that captured the essence of the talks. Again, I feel bad for the people who were forced to participate in this Kabuki theatre.
LGBTQ people don’t need a special safe space in BlizzCon. BlizzCon is for EVERYONE! In my experience, Blizzard fans are great people. It’s demeaning and insulting to single out people like this and offer them a safe space.
It would be understandable if they had an Alliance only or Horde only lounge which makes contextual sense for WoW fans.
Imagine the outcry that would ensue if Blizzard had a special lounge for white people or heterosexual people. Segregating people based on who they sleep with or the color of their skin is highly offensive and an odious practice that needs to stop.
This relentless promotion of diversity and inclusion propaganda is costing Blizzard a lot of money especially when you consider the salaries of diversity/inclusion staff they just hired and their steady stream of donations to various groups and causes. That’s money that could be better spent on improving the wages, benefits and working conditions of ALL Blizzard employees.
Video Game Media Silent as Usual
Blizzard’s ultra wokeness has largely been ignored by the corrupt and symbiotic video game media, e-celeb streamers and e-girls who are afraid of losing their access to Blizzard and incurring the wrath of the Alphabet People on social media. But the Tigerdroppings forum had some choice reflections on Blizzard’s descent into PC madness:
Every single person with any sort of game development talent has long since left that company. All the original founders are gone. All the people who created their flagship IP’s are gone. They’ve been coasting off inertia for a decade now.
The gender confused, purple haired, nose pierced brigade usually arrives right about the time a company starts going to shit and once they get their hooks in they destroy the culture.
These observations are a truth home run with the bases loaded. I could not have said it better myself.
The Girls Who Code Grift
Let’s take a slight detour from BlizzCon. Blizzard never misses an opportunity to demonstrate its wokeness. They are among an elect group that has donated between $250K-$499K to the Girls Who Code organization and they offer internships at Blizzard for their members.
Girls Who Code is a non-profit advocacy group founded by anti-Trump Democrat and leftist Reshma Saujani. It is unclear if Reshma knows how to code yet but nonetheless she’s on a crusade to convince more girls to be coders.
Imagine you are a female activist looking for a way to feel important and relevant. Maybe you don’t want to work at a real job, so you concoct a non-profit scheme where you can be the leader. Then a light bulb comes on. Eureka! You come up with the idea that more females should be coal miners but you’ve never been inside a coal mine nor have you any idea about what it’s like being a coal miner. You’re so self-absorbed in your fantasy that you don’t consider the men who work in the coal industry who might lose their jobs and may not be able to support their families because of your dream. You have no idea of the plague of opiate addiction that has decimated America’s heartland because of factory closures. But, you go ahead and start the organization anyways.
A normal person would laugh and ridicule someone like this. But not wokesters like Blizzard. They’d jump at the chance to get involved.
Here’s the mission statement of the Girls Who Code organization:
Girls Who Code is on a mission to close the gender gap in technology and to change the image of what a programmer looks like and does
Why does the gender gap need to be closed?
There are many professions that are favored by the participation of one gender over another. Daycare workers tend to be overwhelmingly female. Coal miners tend to be overwhelmingly male. Men and women are different biologically. They have different aspirations, risk levels, values, desires, needs, goals, duties, and responsibilities.
The Girls Who Code mission statement is based on a false premise that a gap in male vs. female coders is undesirable and deleterious. Just because there is a gap doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. A gap is not good nor is it bad, it just is.
There are many gender gaps. For example, there are far more men in prison than women. How should we eliminate that gap? Should we release men from prison so that the number of men that are incarcerated are at the same level as women? Or should we incarcerate more women to eliminate the gap?
Both solutions to reducing this “gap” are absurd and would cause mass unrest and endanger the lives of people in the USA if ever implemented.
The fact is that men commit more crimes than women because men and women and different. Another fact is that men get longer sentences than women for committing the same crime. Gaps exist for a reason and are not fixable by wishful thinking and good intentions.
Why does Girls Who Code want to change the image of what a coder looks like? Why should anyone care what a coder looks like? Didn’t Martin Luther King Jr. say that all that mattered about people was not how they looked but the content of their character?
Public perceptions of what a coder looks like are subject to change as time progresses as are all public perceptions. It is not up to an advocacy group, a video game studio or the state to determine what the zeitgeist should be or not be or the timetable on how this change should progress if at all. This is nothing more than social engineering disguised as benevolent advocacy.
Representation for Me but Not for Thee
The left’s recent push for representation is an ideological con game that only works one way. Everyone is equal but some are more equal than others.
Of course, leftists never want to eliminate gaps that benefit them and their chosen victim groups. The vast majority of players in the NFL (70%) and NBA (80.7%) are black despite blacks comprising only 14.6% of the American population. Clearly, the racial makeup of the NFL and the NBA does not represent the racial makeup up of the American sports audience that is overwhelmingly white. Using the same logic as the Girls Who Code organization, this gap is discriminatory and unacceptable in a diverse society.
Imagine what would happen if the NFL and NBA were required to staff their team rosters based on the percentage that each race comprised in the general population? The caliber of the teams would greatly suffer which would negatively impact the enjoyment of the audience. More on this later.
Imagine if every governmental agency, corporation, business, college, association, school and non-profit stopped hiring based on excellence and merit and instead were required to hire based on mirroring the exact racial representation in America?
There would be widespread chaos and pandemonium. The quality of medical surgery would suffer and people would needlessly die. Legal representation would suffer resulting in more injustice and incarcerations. Education would suffer. All aspects of business, technology, and research would suffer. The entire country would descend into an abyss of government-mandated mediocrity and decline.
Why then is it okay for advocacy groups to use the very same flawed logic to bolster the representation of certain minorities and victim groups in the tech and entertainment sectors?
It’s not right. It’s wrong. And it goes against everything that Western civilization stands for.
#Blizzlife: The Brutal Reality of Working Conditions in the Video Game Industry
Think being a coder is glamorous in the video game industry?
Ask girls and women how they would feel working for Blizzard during crunch time working 16 hours a day and working on weekends. Precious little time with their families or with their children. Work all day, eat in your cubicle, drive home to your crowded apartment, sleep, wake up, then drive to Blizzard HQ. Rinse repeat.
This is the kind of life that Blizzard vice-president Jeff Kaplan who earns a generous six-figure salary with his own private office, wants for female coders. Think about it. Would you want your wife, your daughter, your sister to work long hours in a sweatshop that happens to make video games?
Another caveat: coders make less money in the video game industry than other industries.
Adding insult to injury, according to reviews of Blizzard at Glassdoor, Blizzard pays lower than the industry standard and according to an ex-Blizzard employee still uses the draconian stack and rank system developed by GE’s Jack Welch in the 1980s that creates a cutthroat work environment where employees who are afraid of being fired turn on each other in order save their jobs. Anyone foolish enough to consider working for Blizzard should read the brutally honest reviews posted at Glassdoor to get an objective appraisal of what the studio is really like. Note: ignore the fake featured review.
I doubt that the Girls Who Code CEO Reshma Saujani would last one day in a typical death march crunch session at Blizzard.
Saujani’s family is from India where public open defecation is still a major health and safety crisis despite India having nuclear weapons. Instead of starting Girls Who Code, she should have started Girls Who Commode to help educate Indian women back home on proper sanitation.
But never fear, Blizzard VP Jeff Kaplan is a true believer in the Girls Who Code movement. Blizzard’s recently released a cringey propaganda video for Girls Who Code. (Note: Blizzard believes in this program so much that the comments have been turned off possibly due to dislikes outweighing likes on YouTube.)
Jeff Kaplan: If you limit the pool of thinking to only half of the minds out there, you’re going to miss out on so many brilliant ideas. Programs like Girls Who Code start to open up that pool lets us have a 100% of brilliant minds advancing humanity and advancing technology.
Jeff Kaplan: Why are we limiting ourselves to only half the people on the planet?
Want to know why Jeff?
Because in a gender blind system that puts merit over gender, the best coders will rise to the top. Good ideas have no gender.
Males dominate the coding world because more males than females want to code for a living. I hate to break it to you Jeff but females are a tiny minority in the coding world because most females are simply not interested in coding. Males and females are different. Neither you, Blizzard or Girls Who Code will ever change that basic biological reality of humanity.
Trying to encourage women to abandon traditional female roles of motherhood and send them into the workplace is social engineering. No state, corporation or institution should be telling anyone what kind of career is *best* for them. In a free society, individuals decide what is best for them, not an out of touch, elitist, woke Blizzard executive.
In the past 60 years, many women were seduced by the lies of equality, and feminism and like lemmings obediently marched into the workplace to become corporate slaves. Decades later, many of these same “emancipated” women are now entering middle-age and are overweight, unhealthy, bitter, angry and resentful and looking for someone to blame. Being childless, with no husband living in a house full of cats will do that to you.
And another thing Jeff: coding is coding; ideas are ideas. You are comparing apples to oranges.
If you really cared about advancing humanity Jeff, you’d be using your clout as a Blizzard VP to stop Blizzard doing business with the brutal communist regime of China that interns millions of people in concentration camps, harvests organs from prisoners, murders dissidents, censors free speech and new ideas (except for the ones they steal) and the Internet and tracks all of their citizens electronically.
If you really cared about advancing humanity and making the world a better place, you’d stop the Orwellian practice of proactively monitoring their player’s non-Blizzard social media accounts for the purposes of banning “toxic” Overwatch users. Banned for something they might do. No trial, no appeal.
Newsflash: Designers get the community they deserve. If Overwatch is besieged by “toxic” players then that’s because the design of the game encourages it and discourages social interaction and cooperative gameplay. This is video game design 101 Jeff and you should know better given your pedigree.
Nothing is stopping females from being interested in coding. I’ve worked with female coders/designers/producers since the mid-2000s. They’ve always been welcome in this industry.
Jeff, you can virtue signal all you want to try to feel good about yourself but no one is stopping women from promoting their ideas. This is not communist China where the state decides your life. Here, women can write books, essays, and research papers. No one is stopping women from doing anything in America.
I suspect what is really going on here is that Blizzard hopes women will by their sheer numbers covertly import feminist ideology that they were taught in school directly into Blizzard. Make no mistake, that is the real goal of Gamers Who Code and the radical leftist and feminist activists who run advocacy organizations like these. This is a sneaky backdoor for the dissemination of leftist political indoctrination into the workforce and then into the products they create to influence the general population.
And another thing: a company like Blizzard can only hire so many coders. If they impose gender equality hiring quotas instead of finding the best coders regardless of gender, they will be doing their company a disservice because the very best coders will not be hired. The end result will be poorer quality video games that take longer to produce.
And did I mention that Girls Who Code is sexist and will not allow boys to join?
Naturally, they will claim that this is done to right some historical wrong and systemic sexism in our culture. But, if sexism is okay for the greater good, is racism okay for the greater good?
Would Blizzard support Black People Who Code? Of course, they would.
Would Blizzard support White People Who Code? You know the answer.
Where are the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department and the ACLU when you need them. Nowhere to be found.
Blizzard and other organizations have no business being involved in social engineering. People should be free to choose their careers free from public pressure and free from the coercion of corporate and non-profit bullies.
Let’s not forget that if Jeff Kaplan of 2000 applied to Blizzard 2.0 today, most likely he would not be hired. He would most likely be passed over for a transgender woman or a lesbian.
It’s common knowledge that Jeff got his job partly because of cronyism — he knew someone with power at Blizzard named Rob Pardo. Rob actually wrote the job description that included requirements that were tailored made to fit Jeff’s education and resume.
Do as I say, but not as I do.
The War on Boys and Men
So, Jeff, what will happen to the males that are qualified to be coders at Blizzard but will be rejected if Blizzard takes the next step and demands that 50% of their coders are female?
Where will the men go who used to be hired at Blizzard and other woke tech companies? They will be discarded, marginalized and disenfranchised. In this brave new world of identity politics, they can compete with illegal aliens and new immigrants and drive for UBER/Lyft and deliver food for DoorDash which would be a good use of their talents and their expensive education. Or maybe they can move to Irvine, live on the streets, set up a tent camp outside the Blizz HQ, become homeless and beg for a living.
For thousands of years, men were the providers, the protectors, and the head of the family unit. Thanks to the incremental feminization of our society those days are over.
The Wall Street Journal has just reported that in 2020, women now have the majority of jobs in the American workplace. This is not good news for men or our civilization.
These days, women are less likely to mate, marry and stay married to men that earn less then they do which means more men are being cast aside, not getting married and starting families which means our nation is producing fewer children. Combine that with astronomical abortion rates due to female sexual liberation and our nation will be more reliant on immigrants to work, pay taxes and take care of an aging population. These are just more examples of the unintended consequence of the feminization of our culture.
Today there is a war on men. Not so much a declared war but a hidden war of indifference and neglect. The very same men that our society may someday need to fight a war are treated like dirt. Men are disposable. Men die sooner. Males have far higher suicide rates, homelessness and drug use than females. Men are systematically discriminated against in divorce cases and custody battles.
Men are routinely mocked in popular culture and now directly in TV commercials:
Men no longer feel welcome in many professions because females are taking their jobs thanks to quotas and diversity/inclusion/equality policies and relentless propaganda that spread anti-male falsehoods like rape culture and toxic masculinity.
Men are blamed for all of the problems in the world. Recently, even leftist Monty Python alumni Terry Gilliam stated he’s sick of white men being blamed for everything.
And to top it all off, it that wasn’t bad enough, white men are routinely accused of having the original sin of “white privilege.” More on this nonsense from Prager University:
Another ideological sleight of hand is the discredited “unconscious or implicit bias” theory. This theory and the notion of implicit bias training was invented by Indian born Harvard Professor Dr. Mahzarin Banaji. Sending people to implicit bias training session is reminiscent of re-education camps in Maoist China. It is wrong and a sign that our culture is entering into a soft form of groupthink and incremental totalitarianism where people are not allowed to think their own thoughts and must instead think correct™ thoughts.
This bogus concept, hatched in the bowels of academia, is sweeping across corporate America and promoted by progressive activist groups like CEO Action run by globalist giant Price Waterhouse Coopers. More on them later.
Apparently, all white people are secretly racist and biased. So much so, that they don’t even know it. Now that overt racism is practically non-existent (unless you are non-white, then you can be as racist against whites and everyone will look the other way) the left needed to find another way to keep the racial grievance industry afloat: the diversity consultants, the seminars, the conferences, the training, etc. So the specious notion of unconscious bias was invented.
But it’s never enough for the malcontents and misandrists on the left. Male-dominated hobbies like video games, comics, board games are being taken over and annihilated by the introduction of radical feminism and identity politics into their respective industries. Most visual mediums like film and TV have already been ravaged by this trend.
Instead of engaging in shallow virtue signaling and moral posturing, I challenge Jeff Kaplan to lead by example and resign his lofty position at Blizzard immediately so a female can take it.
All of the initiatives by Blizzard to social engineer their existing staff with sensitivity and bias training and hire “diverse” staff will ultimately manifest in Blizzard’s video games. It’s starting already.
What’s Wrong with This Picture?
The representation con game has been going on for a while. But now, it’s in overdrive.
In most primetime American network TV fare, it is very common to have strong female Mary Sue leads and with a supporting cast of black, Asian, Muslim, East Indian and LGBTQ characters. White males are often relegated to being depicted as evil corporate CEOs, corrupt Republican politicians, gungho military personnel, low-life criminals, wife beaters, deadbeat dads, white supremacists, token gay friends or skinny, bespectacled computer nerds.
In recent years, the left who seemingly is enraged by cultural appropriation does it anyways in the name of diversity/inclusion/representation and has the audacity to replace iconic white European characters with Africans.
The Witcher TV series on Netflix which is supposedly based on Polish and indo-European mythology cast an Anna Chalotra an actress of East Indian descent and lots of Asian and African extras. Here’s a still of a mob of unruly Polish villagers from The Witcher TV series. What’s wrong with this picture?
There are approximately 23 people in this scene which is supposed to represent medieval Poland. I know full well what Polish people look like. There are least 8 — if not more — non-Polish, people in this picture who are situated center stage. How is this possible as there were no Africans, Asians and East Indians in a typical ancient Polish city?
Imagine the outcry that would occur if a beloved African mythological tale about Africans had white and Asian actors replacing a certain percentage of the African characters?
Imagine the outrage that would ensue if Bollywood implemented started replacing beloved Indian actors with non-Indian actors?
Most TV series are playing the representation game. NBC’s FBI TV series is one example. The new Star Trek: Discovery TV show is yet another atrocity. The new FOX show Deputy is full of woke themes and unwatchable. Most new TV offerings now laden with feminist and LGBTQ propaganda, political correctness and over-representation of various minorities.
No genre is immune from the madness of servitude to diversity, inclusion and representation. These days even action films routinely have badass, superhero female leads who demolish every obstacle that is put in front of them. Yawn.
Token Representation Comes to World of Warcraft
In recent years, Blizzard, just like Hollywood, is doing all it can to showcase female heroes and villains in their grand story arcs. Each time they try it, the movie flops. Get woke, go broke.
In the new WoW Shadowlands trailer, Sylvanas shows off her Marvel/DC Comics Girl Powers™ and easily subdues and defeats the new Lich King. In the Diablo 4 trailer, the main character is a dark-skinned man with African features.
Even the current Blizzard Entertainment graphic — which tells you all you need to know about the current direction of the studio — showcases their famous female characters front and center. You have the annoying perma-smirking Peter Pan clone “lesbian” Tracer leading the pack with the forever dour leather-clad Sylvannas beside her. It’s just a matter of time before they retcon her into an edgy BDSM lesbian.
Even the venerable World of Warcraft will soon be besieged by token representation. At BlizzCon 2019, WoW Game Director Ion Hazzikostas announced that Blizzard will be creating African and Asian character customization options for those players who wish to create humans who want to “see themselves” in WoW.
My advice, if you really want to see yourself, buy a mirror or take a selfie. Video games do not exist to pander to you or to validate your identity or to build up your self-esteem.
After this was announced by Ion at BlizzCon, to no one’s surprise, the camera predictably focused on an Asian male attendee in the audience.
I have played WoW hardcore off and on since the Friends and Family Alpha. There are no African or Asian humanoids in Azeroth lore. Even the venerable Red Shirt guy knows this. From a lore perspective, there is absolutely no possible way they can justify this.
Expect Blizzard to woo Chris Metzen back from early retirement so he can retcon the lore to justify the inclusion of African and Asian humans. Perhaps two new islands will materialize out of the mists of Azeroth that showcase the ancestral homes of African and Asian humanoids. Naturally, both races will be far more advanced than their white counterparts. Wakanda or bust. I would not put it past Blizzard to attempt a travesty like this.
Get ready for a plague of players calling themselves Jackiechans, Brucelees, Ojaysimpsons, Tupacs, Biggiesmalls, Trayvons, Buckwheats, and other assorted variants to tarnish the Azeroth countryside with their immersion-breaking disruptions after this becomes available.
Soon after, expect some articles from Kotaku and Polygon. Here are a few you might see:
The Plague of Racism Infects the World of Warcraft as Players Mock Black Celebrities
Video Game Expert Anita Sarkeesian Speaks out about the Ugly Stain of White Supremacy in WoW
Jessie Jackson Holds Rally Outside Blizzard Entertainment HQ to Protest Racial Injustice in the Fictional World of Azeroth
I guarantee you, some identity politics fanatic will create an African human on a PVP server only to be killed by a white human because — wait for it — the color of their skin. Yes, expect social justice grifters and hucksters to flood social media with false charges of “racism” in WoW.
We know that Blizzard allows LGBTQ guilds to flourish, but bans harmless Make Azeroth Great Again guilds, I wonder if they will allow all African, all Asian and all-white guilds to exist once the new racial options are in?
Will Blizzard have the guts to make African and Asian as NPCs for players to kill? You already know the answer.
By purposely introducing humans with racial characteristics that represent specific geographical areas in the real world, Blizzard is setting a dangerous precedent that has far more downside than any perceived upside.
Roleplay 101 For Dummies
I want to briefly interrupt this article by providing a counterpoint argument to the insanity of representation in a virtual world based on role-playing.
Every club, association, and organization has rules and a code of conduct that all members must abide by. Each member must bring something of value to the club. Virtual worlds are no different.
When I log on to my favorite MMORPG, I am in their universe. It’s their lore, their land, their races, etc. I accept the limitations that come with having the privilege to be there. In an MMORPG, how you conduct yourself affects the experience and immersion of others. If players are going to benefit from the escapism of being in a virtual world, then have a collective responsibility to play or at least try to play their race, gender, class, and profession in character.
The fundamental nature of role-playing is that you are NOT PLAYING YOURSELF, YOU ARE PLAYING A ROLE.
People who insist on playing their real-life personas in a fantasy MMORPG are selfish, lazy, ignorant, irresponsible and disruptive parasites who contribute nothing of value and ultimately destroy immersion for others. People who refuse to roleplay and instead pollute the world with the dandruff of their real-life selves is like someone dressing up like a gangsta rapper and playing rap music at a renaissance fair. It’s inappropriate.
I lay all of this as the feet of Blizzard who for years has not shown an iota of concern for role-players in Azeroth outside of creating a few RP servers where most of the perverts congregate to dance semi-naked in the Goldshire Inn brothel. You get the community you deserve Blizzard. This is all on you and your negligence.
The Endless Rabbit Hole of Representation
Imagine the outcry from J.R.R. Tolkien enthusiasts if Lord of the Rings Online allowed elves to be Africanized with token representation? Tolkien’s lore is sacred.
It’s really too bad that Blizzard’s WoW lore is so easily trumped by the fad of political correctness. Where are people at Blizzard who should know better, like writer Christie Golden and official Blizzard loremaster Sean Copeland in all of this? Why are they allowing this travesty to go unchallenged?
Speaking for myself, I love to roleplay in MMORPGs where the RPG stands for “role-playing game”. In real life, I’m a big guy, so I usually play dwarves, not humans. For me, it’s all about escapism. For the brief hour or so that I inhabit a virtual world, I don’t want to be me, I want to be someone else. This is the magic and unique value proposition of fantasy virtual worlds. Anyone can create your own unique persona, and shape your virtual destiny. I believe others too want to escape. Playing themselves is the last thing they want to do.
Where is the evidence and data that proves players really want to play WoW as themselves?
Is racial representation really a burning concern in the WoW community?
Of course, it’s not. This is just more wokeness and posturing dictated on high from Blizzard executive team who want to feel good about themselves.
Currently, players who wish to play humans can create their characters with European facial options and can choose from a wide variety of skin tones from very light to very dark. That’s how humans have always looked in the Warcraft universe. It’s canon.
What changed that players now think they have the expectation and the right to change the lore and DNA of humanoids and interject their real-life personas into a fantasy virtual world?
Will they allow other races like dwarves, night elves, gnomes, blood-elves, orcs, Tauren, trolls, Draenei and Pandaren to be Africanized and Asianized too? If not, why not?
Will other real-world races for WoW humanoid customization be available such as Arabs, Persians, East Indians, pygmies, Native American Indians? If not, why not?
But why stop there.
What about disabled people? Will Blizzard create wheelchairs, walkers, and crutches for them so they can accurately play themselves in Azeroth?
What about amputees? Will Blizzard allow amputees to create amputee versions of their characters so they can represent themselves accurately in WoW?
In the real world, lots of people have odd body types and diverse body shapes. There are currently no options for thin, fat, short, tall or non-muscular body types in WoW. This disgraceful and shocking oversight could be very damaging to the fragile self-esteem of some activist WoW players.
When will this be addressed Blizzard?
How about character voices? Maybe I want someone that sounds like me and not a professional voice actor. Anything less is an insult Blizzard and completely unacceptable!!!
You may be asking: where does this all end?!?
It Gets Worse…
When it comes to corporate virtue signaling, Blizzard are mere amateurs who need to step up their game.
Nothing epitomizes the deviancy and depraved nature of corporate virtue signaling than the Sprite Pride commercial where the actual product is not mentioned or seen even once. Nothing is sacred to the modern left. Like the nihilists they are, they want to destroy every aspect of life and remake it in their own twisted demonic image.
Another example is from REI — a company that sells products for people who love the outdoors. Watch this dumpster fire of wokeness and weep for what is left of Western civilization.
The Ivory Tower of L. Ron Kaplan
Something happens to people after they’ve worked for Blizzard for a long time. They either quit and go to a new studio or drink the Koolaid and keep climbing the ivory tower.
I’ve always admired Jeff Kaplan for his contribution to fantasy virtual worlds from his rants against Sony Online Entertainment as EverQuest Legacy of Steel guild GM, to his brilliant BlizzCon 2005 panel speeches. I used to play on his old EverQuest server The Nameless and spoke with him in-game on at least one occasion.
I liked the younger “old” Jeff better back in the early 2000s when he was on the WoW quest team and cared more about making amazing MMOs than disseminating socialist propaganda. Somewhere on his journey, poor Jeff got woke.
By all accounts, Jeff is a kind, decent, talented and likable person. He’s very well respected and liked by Blizzard employees and the Overwatch community.
But Jeff as a game developer has changed from the Jeff we used to know when WoW vanilla launched. Here’s a video of the BlizzCon 2005 WoW raid panel for evidence of the genius of Jeff 1.0:
Even before Jeff left the WoW team and transferred to the Titan team there was a hint that he is susceptible to fads in game design.
During the WoW: Wrath of the Lich King expansion in 2007, Kaplan was responsible for introducing achievements as a feature. Most achievements in WoW really aren’t achievements at all and are often just acknowledgments of the player performing a task for the first time or doing something mundane as catching 25 fish.
At the time, I remember that achievements in WoW felt crude, out of place and lacked cohesion. The addition of achievements didn’t really work from a lore and a role-play perspective. I believe that even Kaplan admitted that he copied the idea of achievements from the Xbox gaming console. Achievements were a precursor to the gamification craze that started around 2007.
One of the main design philosophies of Wrath of the Lich King was to make WoW more accessible in order to broaden its subscription base. Perhaps the gratuitous reward system of achievements was one way to connect to younger potential subscribers.
The Fall of the Titans
As to how and why Jeff 1.0 became the woke Jeff 2.0, we may never know the truth. But we can speculate.
I think the failure of Titan combined with a good amount of hubris for pulling the Overwatch rabbit out of the hat of defeat is the culprit. Something strange happened to Blizzard during the 8 years that Titan failed and then transformed itself into Overwatch. The following video gives us insight:
Failure changes people. It makes you vulnerable and susceptible to things that you would normally dismiss. I believe this is when Kaplan and his comrades made the fatal decision to leverage the diversity and inclusion angle as the philosophical underpinning of the Overwatch team and the franchise.
Virtue signaling is a powerful drug that allows lazy people who possess no authentic virtue, to feel good about themselves. Virtue signaling is moral and spiritual junk food.
It’s obvious that the ragtag cast of Overwatch playable characters has been purposely designed to be compatible with the official victim groups in the real world such as gays, feminists, nerds, geeks, body-positive fashionistas, tattooed hipsters and more. Once this was task was achieved, Kaplan and the Overwatch team had a noble crusade they could peddle as a marketing strategy both in-game and out of the game.
If Overwatch ever fails and that may indeed happen, I doubt that Jeff and his team could emotionally weather the storm of another failure. What then?
I think Jeff is in over his head. He is not a philosopher, nor is he a guru, nor is he a spiritual leader — he’s a game dev; nothing less, nothing more. He should start acting like one.
These days, it seems that every CEO and VP is desperately trying to appear enlightened and mercurial like Apple’s Steve Jobs or his less talented replacement Tim Cook. Somehow it’s not enough to make great products. Now corporations must show that they “care” about any number of real or imagined problems that are afflicting the world.
I don’t think that most gamers care that they “care”, all they want is to play a simple video game without being indoctrinated.
People like tech CEOS, film directors and A-list celebrities often make the mistake of thinking that just because they are successful in one area of endeavor that they are somehow equally competent in other areas. This is a variant of the Argumentum Ad Verecundiam logical fallacy.
Jeff, take some advice from Ricky Gervais: stop behaving like a know-it-all-celebrity. Stay in your lane. With all due respect, stop sermonizing and get back to making amazing video games.
Another reason for this strange behavior is that Jeff has languished in a protective bubble for almost 20 years at Blizzard. The unparalleled success of WoW has shielded him from reality and scrutiny. He hides unchallenged behind the protective force field of forum moderators, pre-selected questions at BlizzCon and fawning sycophants at GDC.
Maybe the answer lies in that perennially instructive maxim about the relationship between power and corruption that Lord Action so eloquently stated:
Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely.
The Real Reason Diversity and Inclusion Con Game Exists
The entire progressive movement ideological house of cards is based on the ancient lie of equality. True equality only exists in the realm of mathematics. The quest for equality can never be achieved as no two things in this world are equal. Races are not equal, they are different. Men and women are not equal, they are different. Systems of government are different. Cultures are different. Religions are different.
Looking at the world through the false prism of equality is a dead-end that leads to envy, unhappiness, misery, and death. Just ask the families of the 100 million people who were murdered by variants of the equality ideology in the last century.
The second lie is that diversity is the solution to the false problem inequality. So you have a lie based on a lie which are circular falsehoods that depend on each other. There is no evidence to suggest that diversity is a good thing for society. It’s an unsubstantiated and unproven claim. Yet, there is ample evidence to suggest that diversity is a bad thing.
Esteemed Harvard professor and social scientist Robert D. Putnam has published research that shows that diversity has negative effects on society.
In an article for Boston.com, Michael Jones summarizes Putnam’s findings:
Robert Putnam — famous for “Bowling Alone,” his 2000 book on declining civic engagement — has found that the greater the diversity in a community, the fewer people vote and the less they volunteer, the less they give to charity and work on community projects. In the most diverse communities, neighbors trust one another about half as much as they do in the most homogenous settings. The study, the largest ever on civic engagement in America, found that virtually all measures of civic health are lower in more diverse settings.
Higher diversity meant lower social capital. In his findings, Putnam writes that those in more diverse communities tend to “distrust their neighbors, regardless of the color of their skin, to withdraw even from close friends, to expect the worst from their community and its leaders, to volunteer less, give less to charity and work on community projects less often, to register to vote less, to agitate for social reform more but have less faith that they can actually make a difference, and to huddle unhappily in front of the television.”
“People living in ethnically diverse settings appear to ‘hunker down’ — that is, to pull in like a turtle,” Putnam writes.
While doing research for this article, I have come across many organizations that are promoting diversity and inclusion. All of them include the same tiresome doublespeak. Most of the rationale and arguments employ the fallacy of circular reasoning. It usually goes like this:
We need diverse talent because it helps us create a more inclusive culture.
We need an inclusive culture to help us attract more diverse talent.
Why do the Global Elites Love Diversity and Inclusion?
The organization called CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion ™ is one among many groups pushing the questionable diversity/inclusion agenda. Their members look like a who’s who of corporate America. Their goal is to get CEOs of major corporations to make a pledge. Here’s a typical pledge video from a CEO:
Here’s just a portion of the pledge:
The persistent inequities across our country underscore our urgent, national need to address and alleviate racial, ethnic and other tensions and to promote diversity within our communities. As leaders of some of America’s largest corporations, we manage thousands of employees and play a critical role in ensuring that inclusion is core to our workplace culture and that our businesses are representative of the communities we serve. Moreover, we know that diversity is good for the economy; it improves corporate performance, drives growth and enhances employee engagement.
Simply put, organizations with diverse teams perform better.
These are broad assumptions and unproven assertions about the benefits of diversity, inclusion, and representation to address various forms of inequality that have been part of the human experience from the dawn of history. There is no evidence that inclusion is the backbone of optimum corporation culture. There is no evidence that diversity hiring will solve inequality. There is no evidence that diversity is good for the economy and all of the other things that they claim. It is pure ideology and wishful thinking.
In this pledge, CEO Action implies that the problems that minorities face would be solved if white CEOS would just hire more of them and let’s not forget that when more minorities are hired fewer whites are hired. This also implies that the current system of hiring is somehow racist and that all of us need to attend “unconscious bias training” to correct our thinking. This implies that white people with power are the problem in our society. This kind of myopic thinking completely absolves minorities from any responsibility in ensuring their own success via hard work and merit.
CEOs are supposed to be intelligent people who are in charge of their companies. They should know better than to give credence to a pack of dangerous and discredited lies disguised as social science that furthers the public interest.
But let’s be honest here, this has nothing to do with truth or reality. The diversity/inclusion/representation manta are articles of faith in the left’s new catechism. These CEOs just want to survive and align themselves with the global elites — the world-wide organized crime syndicate of our age. They see which way the wind is blowing and they are jumping on the bandwagon. Don’t kid yourself, this is all about self-preservation and keeping power.
Finally, the push for a diverse workforce allows big corporations and tech firms to justify and lobby for the importation of millions of foreign workers who will work for less than their American counterparts. They could care less about the plight of Americans or national culture and societal cohesion.
In the end, it’s always about money.
Debunking the Panacea of Representation
As I have already examined the flaws diversity and inclusion let me briefly deal with the fallacy of representation.
Jason Riley, a black American columnist for the Wall Street Journal and The Manhattan Institute has shown when black people voted for black politicians to “represent” them instead of non-whites, they were not served well and in fact, it harmed their development. Jason also notes, that according to black intellectual Thomas Sowell, the same is true of the Irish immigrants although very successfully politically, were the slowest rising of all ethnic groups in America.
If representation is a virtue that helps corporations succeed, let’s examine the businesses of the NFL and the NBA and see if the doctrine of representation would be beneficial. Both are professional sports leagues that employ predominantly black athletes because of their merit. As I have shown earlier, black athletes disproportionately comprise 70% and 80% of the athlete population in the NFL and NBA respectively despite being 14.6% of the American population.
Therefore, non-blacks who constitute 85.4% of the population are not being adequately represented in the NFL. Given the logic of CEO Action, in order for both of these leagues to IMPROVE their businesses, they would have to fire the majority of black athletes on their teams to ensure that their players are representing their non-black audience and to mitigate racial, ethnic and other tensions (their exact words).
How about ethnic restaurants? Should Chinese food restaurants fire their employees of Chinese origin and replace them with non-Chinese employees in order to mirror the ethnicity of their patrons?
By replacing the time-tested principle of hiring by merit, skill and excellence with diversity, inclusion, and representation would have the unintended consequences of deteriorating if not destroying both of these sports leagues. Sports fans are a discerning bunch. They would not pay good money to watch people play football and basketball who are hired because of their skin color instead of their skill.
Strangely enough, the NBA has joined with CEO Action to promote D & I. Will the NBA ensuring that their teams start accurately representing the non-black Americans in their audience? I wouldn’t count on it.
Given what would happen to the NFL and the NBA, imagine the catastrophic result if every company in America were to replace merit hiring with diversity hiring?
Representation in films is already backfiring in a big way. Audiences in China are rejecting token Chinese actors in American films. Say it with me again: Get woke, go broke.
Eventually, if you peel away the layers of virtue signaling, you’ll find the truth about why they are doing this. It’s about the bottom line.
(Note: the emphasis in the following quote is mine.)
This progression acknowledges CEO feedback as well as the strong demand by investors and stakeholders for boards and management to work together to prioritize and drive accountability around the D&I of an organization as a critical business differentiator. Given their responsibility for driving strategies that help companies thrive, boards play an important role, alongside CEOs, in driving action to cultivate strong, inclusive cultures and the ability to attract and develop talent. We also believe that a strategic D&I plan will help accelerate the other CEO Action commitments.
So it *is* all about money after all:
- critical business differentiator – this means that having your company adopt diversity and inclusion (D&I) ideology is really just a cynical marketing strategy for businesses to stand out to potential customers
- the ability to attract and develop talent – they are claiming that adopting a public campaign that stresses diversity and inclusion will help you attract better-qualified people. I am skeptical about this. Where is the evidence? As a devout Christian, I would never work for a company that promotes homosexuality and Pride month.
Not only is it about money, having a diversity and inclusion strategy is like having an insurance policy that allows corporations to pay lip service to this concept and allows them to fight off potential discrimination lawsuits and ward off extortion from rapacious race hustlers.
It is very telling that the diversity, inclusion, and representation industry is something that exists only in Western nations. It does not exist in any non-white nation and would be promptly rejected if attempted.
Want to know many companies in Japan have signed up for this? Zero. How about Chinese firms? Zero. How many Indian firms? Zero. Maybe because Japan, India, and China realize that embracing diversity would ultimately end up destroying their unique culture and civilization.
Notice too that there is no mention of any of the proven downsides about diversity/inclusion/representation. When something is too good to be true, it probably is.
The Mother of all Conclusions
I apologize for the length of this article but as Tolkien once remarked, the tale grew in the telling. The more I looked into this, the scarier it got. Somebody has to speak out and say something to counter the madness out there.
A foul wind of depravity rustles through the plains of Westfall — I mean Western civilization. In his 2002 masterpiece The Death of the West, Pat Buchanan warned us what was coming:
In half a lifetime, many Americans have seen their God dethroned, their heroes defiled, their culture polluted, their values assaulted, their country invaded, and themselves demonized as extremists and bigots for holding on to beliefs Americans have held for generations.
In the past 20 years, Blizzard and the giants who control the tech sector have followed a similar depressing trajectory. Eventually, they came for one of the last oases of sanity for males left in this world — the video game genre. In recent years we’ve been attacked relentlessly by the stormtroopers of this new religion: the social justice warriors. Like the Hobbits in Tolkien’s The Shire, we were blissfully enjoying our escapist video games unaware and free from the taint of politics and ideology until Saruman and his henchmen arrived to destroy our beloved Shire.
Video game CEOs like Blizzard’s Mike Morhaime and others allowed this to happen on their watch. It was their sacred duty to stand up for their gamers and defend escapist entertainment. Instead of doing so, they capitulated to leftist agitators and invited the cultists of social justice to scale the walls and infiltrate our hobby while we slept.
Garbage in, garbage out. That apt maxim from the computer world is one of my favorite sayings. Look at a company photo of Blizzard in the early 2000s and compare it to one of today. That’s all you need to know about the direction of Blizzard 2.0.
When all the talented males have left for greener and saner pastures, and you replace them with woke pink haired lesbians and humorless non-binary humanoids with nose-rings and tattoos, you can be quite certain that the content of your product will be influenced by their worldview as it already had done at ultra woke studios like EA and Bioware.
Over the years, I have warned people about Blizzard Entertainment’s suicidal journey down the identity politics rabbit hole. I don’t see any hope for Blizzard putting the brakes on any of this dangerous nonsense. The only thing that can stop this madness is when people have finally had enough and stop paying for their games. Ultimately, no one escapes the brutal and swift justice of the marketplace.
What do I want and what do most people that I know in the real world want from video game studios?
All we want is for them to respect us enough to keep their politics and ideology out of our video games. That’s it. Nothing more.
You want to save the world from climate change and campaign for Bernie to defeat the bad orange man? Great! Do it on your own time — after your 16-hour crunch shift. When you come to work, check your activism at the studio door. It’s called being a professional. If you can’t respect the gamers that buy and play your video games enough to do that, then find another line of work or write intersectional queer feminist slam poetry for Vox, Kotaku or Polygon.
If it was not for the existence of WoW Classic, I would not even bother caring about Blizzard Entertainment. My love of the fantasy MMORPG genre is the only thing keeping me interested.
The Blizzard of today is not the Blizzard we once knew and loved. They have been radically transformed into a soulless entertainment company that parrots all the same shopworn cliches and “values” as their competitors. Most of their current staff and executives are not original Blizzard people. There is very little unique and special about them now. They are trading on the past glory of the Blizzard name. They are just another domino that has fallen into the rotting garbage heap of what remains of our once-great culture.
While part of me believes that wokesters at Blizzard actually believe this social justice claptrap, another part of me hopes it’s all a clever wokescreen to deflection attention away from their ongoing business dealings with the communist Chinese regime. While one hand appears to be virtuous, the other hand is up to no good.
Consider this article a message in a bottle and an S.O.S. from a shipwrecked gamer cast out by his own culture. The late Brad McQuaid was right about MMORPG gamers being orphaned. His observation can be transposed to a bigger arena:
Gamers have been orphaned by their own industry.
I and many others feel like strangers in a strange land. Instead, we are in our own land, abandoned and forgotten. As America lurches toward a dystopian woke future, it’s hard watching everything you grew up with wither and die before your eyes.
I hate playing the identity politics game but unilateral disarmament is not a wise strategy. It’s time to fight fire with fire. I am a white, male, heterosexual, faithful Christian American who believes in traditional American values who loves to play video games. It’s people like me who’ve been supporting video game studios for decades, not the regressive left who hates video games and wants to destroy the genre. My loyalty and the loyalty of millions of normal gamers should count for something.
My values are in direct conflict with Blizzard’s publicly stated pro-LGBTQ, pro-diversity/inclusion/representation values. I am not alone. I don’t care about what Blizzard management and employees do in their spare time and what causes they support and what creed they profess, but I do care that the money I send Blizzard is being used to support ideologies that run counter to my faith and my beliefs. All of these conflicts could be easily avoided if Blizzard had the common sense and basic decency become ideologically neutral as they once were.
Video games should be free from the intrusion of real-world politics and ideology. Regrettably, Blizzard 2.0 does not believe this and instead believes that their values are superior to mine. The imposition of this ideological supremacy demonstrates their utter contempt for their customers.
When I first started playing WoW in 2004, the only “values” Blizzard espoused were ones that mattered to gamers:
Easy to learn, hard to master.
We will not release a video game until it’s ready.
When Blizzard lived by these two values, they ruled the world and they were universally adored by millions of gamers.
On a personal note, I really do not relish having to write articles like this. While there is some sense of catharsis in writing down what you are feeling, taking stock of the cultural carnage is a painful process. Watching Blizzard deteriorate before your eyes is like watching a good friend use an addictive drug like Meth. You feel helpless as the person you love slowly turns into a toothless ghoul. Blizzard has embarked on a similar trajectory and like the Meth addict, no amount of reason and logic is able to penetrate their enslaved brains to coax them out of their destructive habit.
I didn’t want to leave this article on a negative note. It’s very easy to feel despondent about the deteriorating state of our culture if you watch TV or spend any time on social media. Those eternal truths that were bequeathed to us by our ancestors have been discarded as today’s ungrateful society foolishly dances on the quicksand of a culture created by the false prophets of academia and the media.
Remember that you are not alone. There are millions of people who think like you and me but have been ignored by the establishment elites and the progressive intelligentsia who control the reigns of power. It is we who make the world go around, not them! We are the silent majority, they are the shrill minority. We need to start acting like the majority and take our power back.