Sections forum posts to require users’ real names

Tuesday, 6th July 2010 19:32 GMT By Stephany Nunneley


This will not go over well.

Blizzard has posted over on that starting this month, users commenting on official forums will do so using their real names.

Here’s a blurb:

” … in the near future, anyone posting or replying to a post on official Blizzard forums will be doing so using their Real ID — that is, their real-life first and last name — with the option to also display the name of their primary in-game character alongside it. These changes will go into effect on all StarCraft II forums with the launch of the new community site prior to the July 27 release of the game, with the World of Warcraft site and forums following suit near the launch of Cataclysm. Certain classic forums, including the classic forums, will remain unchanged”.

Blizzard feels the forums are a great place to discuss WoW and the like, but its also gaining the reputation of  “a place where flame wars, trolling, and other unpleasantness” seem to “run wild”.

“Removing the veil of anonymity typical to online dialogue will contribute to a more positive forum environment, promote constructive conversations, and connect the Blizzard community in ways they haven’t been connected before,” wrote US community manager Nethaera.

“With this change, you’ll see blue posters (i.e. Blizzard employees) posting by their real first and last names on our forums as well”.

The post goes on to say the use of Real ID will give the forums and more “social-networking” appeal, while giving users a way to “interact with one another” through the “ever-changing social-gaming experience for years to come”.

Thanks, RPS.



  1. The_Red

    Reign of Chaos indeed.

    #1 5 years ago
  2. Freek

    And what’s stopping you from registering with a fake name?

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Phoenixblight


    You can’t that Real ID is linked to the name on the credit card you are using.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Howie Feltersnatch

    What’s the problem…? lol

    #4 5 years ago
  5. No_PUDding

    If anything this is a step towards an internet revolution, where there is more responsibility.

    Well played Blizzard.

    #5 5 years ago
  6. Freek

    @3, wait, what? For a Battlenet account? Does that mean I’ll need to give Blizzard my creditcard information in order to play SC2?

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Erthazus

    @6 Thats not true.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. Callum

    I don’t get it? Who uses something other than their real name to comment on forums? Kids these days, I can’t keep up with them.

    #8 5 years ago
  9. Phoenixblight


    My bad no but if you make a troll account you have to make a new email account, not use at all to buy stuff like the maps for Star Craft 2 because if the account doesn’t match the CC it won’t work. A lot of work to be a troll or to be anonymous

    #9 5 years ago
  10. Freek

    So that then also means you can register with a fake name?

    edit, doesn’t sound like allot of work. Just an account you don’t use to play thier games, and linked to a spam e-mail acount.

    #10 5 years ago
  11. Callum

    What’s to stop someone registering with my name and pretending to be me? It will be twitter all over again!!!

    #11 5 years ago
  12. shamblemonkee

    how many of you who play Wow, for example, post on their official forums? why not?

    Exactly. I think this can only be a good thing.

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Robo_1

    Interesting idea. I wonder how it’d go down here. lol

    #13 5 years ago
  14. Aimless

    Good thing I was christened XxSNiPER-ASSASSiNxX.

    It’ll be interesting to see what other restrictions are put in place. Personally I think it would be better if said forums were, for instance, only accessible by registered users, and only those over 18.

    It’s a worthy experiment if nothing else.

    #14 5 years ago
  15. Gheritt White

    Now *this* is Internet 2.0. Well played, Blizzard.

    #15 5 years ago
  16. OlderGamer

    So I guess it is out of the bag now. My secret ID will be known for all to see. My name is Someone Somewhere, oh the shame!

    Really tho this is a bad idea. Just what I need some loony that I schooled googling me and my family, then properly stalking.

    Just think what they can do if they get a hold of your Facebook/Twitter etc. I can see wifes wondering who that bitch is that claims she has your baby on facebook!

    I understand that people are asses on the net. And that goofy ass names are used to hide behind, just look at this site. But I don’t want it any other way to be honest.

    Forum posting volume will drop through the floor.

    #16 5 years ago
  17. Gekidami

    Some countries actually want to pass laws to get rid of net anonymity as a whole. Which is a bad idea imo, sure it’ll scare away the trolls and alike but not everyone hides their name on the internet just to act like dicks. Some peoples opinions might clash with whatever their job or role in society is. Last thing they need is their real, very easy to track real names being splashed about.

    #17 5 years ago
  18. Callum

    Good points being made here, I just googled my name and found out an awfull lot about myself! Isnt there a film / game of some sort based around the fact that knowing someones name gives you incredible power over them? Cant quite remember…

    #18 5 years ago
  19. Grimrita

    This is a surprise. Blizzard missing the point completely. WoW is all about Alias and being a totally different character.

    I feel for all those gamers out there who are men and have female toons! LOL ….and Kotick wants more dollar from the PC gamer? Oh well…

    I foresee alot of users getting prepay credit card with Mickey Mouse as their name! lol

    #19 5 years ago
  20. hitnrun

    5, 12: “If anything this is a step towards an internet revolution, where there is more responsibility.”

    One problem: Blizzard isn’t a message board moderator, at least not professionally. It’s a company that makes online videogames. And, whether they like it or not, their primary customers are quite frankly assholes.

    Nobody likes screaming, whining, trolling Blizzard fans, but refusing to acknowledge the economic reality of one’s clientele is a profoundly stupid thing to do, regardless of the circumstances.

    Not to mention that Blizzard’s RealID in general is a disaster in the making.

    #20 5 years ago
  21. Phoenixblight


    Its a feature that you can choose to use. You aren’t supposed to put any random person on that Real ID but people you actually trust. Your point is moot. Its just like Facebook in that sense where my sister or friends friends can see me.

    Now about the forum thing I disagree with its like using Napalm to get rid of weeds.

    #21 5 years ago
  22. hitnrun


    “You aren’t supposed to put any random person on that Real ID but people you actually trust.”

    Yeah, that’s what they said last week. It was dubious then. If you’ve spent a month in WoW you know how that’s going to end up: most guilds and groups will be requiring RealID disclosure by Christmas.

    This week they’re saying that, starting with Cataclysm, your most trusted friends include anyone with access to WoW’s message board.

    EDIT: One thing to remember is that the WoW boards don’t just include the General and various gameplay boards, with abstract discussions like the one we’re having now. They also include the Realm boards for each of WoW’s hundreds of servers, where friends and foes discuss “real” issues and legitimate grievances are – or were – often aired. That’s unlikely to be a safe or comfortable proposition now.

    #22 5 years ago
  23. Phoenixblight

    Actually its begins prior to SC2 release. Again I think this will backfire on blizzard if you go to all the Blizzard fan sites or any MMO community site this article are seeing a shitload of posts about this even more than the Real ID on WoW. On the last I checked which was a hour ago this topic had 500 posts which is rare especially on that site.

    #23 5 years ago
  24. hitnrun

    I agree. They’re nakedly trying to cash in on the Facebook business model, but I think they would have been better off just making “Orcbook” and letting customers so inclined opt in.

    They’re trying to channel Facebook, but Facebook is for people who know each other in real life. Imagine if FB or MySpace required users to have their Blood Elf paladin handle displayed next to their name.

    #24 5 years ago
  25. Phoenixblight

    I agree. The forum thing is dumb, why I had used my analogy with Napalm and weeds. The forums will end up being nothing but crickets and tumbleweeds.

    Can you imagine next they put in WoW, us having to tend to a farm? =P

    #25 5 years ago
  26. MushroomStamp

    People don’t have to use the Forums, it’s a choice. I think it’s a good thing. I agree it will cut down on the nastiness. I think it would be a good idea for here since they won’t give us an ignore button. Best forums I have seen are BGR. Where each post can be ranked. After so monay negative ranks, the post is then hidden, but still viewable if you force the view. It’s a great way to tame all the jackass’s that like to start flame wars and personal attacks.

    #26 5 years ago
  27. Phoenixblight


    It is a choice but most of their great ideas for content, classes and such is through the forums. If they release this, those ideas will diminish by half. I would easily prefer the BGR system you mentioned.

    #27 5 years ago
  28. Freek

    And it’s already gone wrong. That diden’t take very long.

    #28 5 years ago
  29. Callum

    Lol Freek, that was an incredible read! I can’t believe how much information he got from just a name…it’s really scary.

    #29 5 years ago
  30. Kerplunk

    The way all those trolls are blaming the one guy for *their* behaviour is just shameful.

    It’s convenient that every single one of them is hiding behind a fake name whilst ripping this guy apart. The double-standards on display are simply staggering.

    #30 5 years ago
  31. OlderGamer

    Exactly what I was worried about Freek.

    Some of the reasons I don’t do social networking to begin with.

    A Great read.


    But you can’t get pissed at the bear for mauling the tourists. This is the way the internet works. There are trolls, by the millions. That is what they do, your not going to change it. But what Blizz is doing is giving them your real ID.

    #31 5 years ago
  32. Kerplunk

    Acceptance is apathy. Apathy is not and never will be reasonable justification for unreasonable behaviour.

    Sure. Let the trolls troll. But let’s see how they go about it if they couldn’t hide behind anonymity.

    #32 5 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.