US Congress Members are Petitioning Blizzard to Un-Ban Blitzchung

US Congress Members are Petitioning Blizzard to Un-Ban Blitzchung

US Congress Members are Petitioning Blizzard to Un-Ban Blitzchung

Earlier this month, Blizzard banned pro player Ng "Blitzchung" Wai Chung because of comments he made about the Hong Kong protests during a broadcast.

On October 18th, following weeks of generalized unrest against Blizzard, five members of the USA congress, across the hall, had issued a formal petition to Activision Blizzard's CEO Bobby Kotick to un-ban professional Hearthstone player Blitzchung and reinstate his prize money. Blitzchung now has a six-month suspension rather than a one-year ban, and he gets his reward money.

Five bipartisan members of the United States Congress have sent Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to reconsider the company's punishment of Ng Wai "Blitzchung" Chung for speaking out in support of the protests in Hong Kong. In the letter, lawmakers describe the decision to ban Blitzchung as "particularly concerning", citing China's growing tendency to pressure American companies to help stifle free speech.

Mike Gallagher (R-WI), and Tom Malinowski (D-NJ) have signed a joint letter addressed to Robert Kotick specifically regarding Blizzard's recent actions towards Chung. "As you and your company are no doubt aware, the Chinese government uses the size and strength of its economy to suppress opinions with which it disagrees". The letter also references Tencent's five percent stake in Blizzard. You have the opportunity to reverse course. The letter also makes reference to similar decisions by Apple and the National Basketball Association to shut down apps and public discussion of the Hong Kong protests under Chinese pressure (decisions that have drawn their own congressional letters in turn).

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The congressmen said that Blizzard claims to stand by "one's right to express individual thoughts and opinions", yet its actions say the complete opposite. "Your disappointing decision could have a chilling effect on gamers who seek to use their platform to promote human rights and basic freedoms", the letter states. We hotfoot you to take it.

As China steps up its campaign of intimidation, your company and yourself must decide if you need to look beyond the bottom line and promote American values - such as freedom of speech and of thought - or give in to Beijing's demands in order to preserve market access.

The protest will kick off on November 1 at 12PM, the very first day of BlizzCon 2019 - and will take place outside of the Anaheim Convention Center. Other protesters were banned for six months for supporting Hong Kong during an official match.

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