Popular World of Warcraft streamer Asmongold called out the WoW team's response to the recent gender discrimination lawsuit. On Tuesday, the WoW team issued a statement saying that "in order to build trust, we must earn it with our actions in the weeks, and months to come", while vowing to remove "references that are not appropriate for our world".
Among said references to be removed are likely those relating to Alex Afrasiabi, a former Senior Creative Designer for World of Warcraft, who left the company in June 2020. Afrasiabi was named in the lawsuit as someone who allegedly knew and encouraged the "frat culture" within Blizzard to the point his office was dubbed the "Cosby suite" in reference to Bill Cosby.
For Asmongold, these actions are far from enough and done only because the topic has become a point of huge public scrutiny.
"Wow, congratulations. You're removing an NPC. Why don't you remove the people? You had the NPC in the game for at least a year when you knew he [Afrasiabi] left, you knew he did this bad stuff, and you kept it in the game," Asmongold says. "You only care now because people are talking about it. What a bunch of horsesh*t."
"They deleted Swifty's character faster than this [...] and they only knew about that for one day," Asmongold continues, referencing John Swifty, an Alliance NPC that used to spawn randomly in the game, named after John "Swifty" Pyle, a popular WoW streamer and player. The NPC was removed last June after allegations of sexual misconduct against Swifty (denied by the player) were made public.
Activision Blizzard has been under heavy criticism (to say the least) from fans and current and former employees while the lawsuit story's developing. Today, Blizzard employees will walk out in protest, while fans and content creators have stated they will not play Blizzard games until a change has been made. The company's leadership meanwhile has been making statements, with CEO Bobby Kotick the latest to issue one, admitting that initial responses have been "tone deaf".
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