And it has stirred up a LOT of opinion on the matter, but these are just a few things I’ve read:
- Big Oprah Bear Butt chimed in with his thoughts and also offers up a different spin on the situation.
- Dechion wonders “what is Bliz smoking?” (while bringing us kittehz) and sees four solutions.
- Aislinana is hurt by the decision.
- Gnomer flat-out quit the game.
- Rohan thinks we should maybe wait and see before we react so harshly.
- Lodur tries to look at the good and the bad.
- Fuu offers up some suggestions for Real ID.
- Pacheco thinks Bliz could allocate their resources elsewhere.
Anyway, this isn’t supposed to be a “blogs I read” summary. I actually have my own thoughts on this, too…
I’ll start off with how I feel about it: I don’t like the idea of it.
Providing personal information on the internet should be strictly a personal decision. One could say, “Well, you can choose to not post on the forums.” And they would be correct – I can make the decision whether to post or not. And I do choose to not post on the forums and never have done so. (Which is all before this Real ID nonsense was ever conceived). But I don’t like “not posting” being the means of how I have to choose to not display my personal information. Because of the upcoming Real ID/Forum changes, I have to maintain my privacy and anonyminity through silence.
With that said, I understand what Blizzard is trying to do. They’re trying to clean up the forums. Like Pacheco said, the offical forums have a [deserved] reputation for being complete garbage. Yes, there are a few cases where people are actually nice and/or helpful. But for the most part, it is only a source of pointless, albeit comical, e-peenery and rudeness. Now, while Pach remains doubtful that displaying real names won’t deter the trolls, I tend to disagree. I think there were be a severe reduction in forum trolling. And like several others, I also think there will be a severe reduction in forum posting in general.
That’s where a lot of folk seem to think this Real ID is Real STupid.
Again, I disagree – I don’t think the kids at Blizzard are stupid. I think that this could be a calculated decision and that Blizzard actually want the forums to die. Of course I can’t say for certain, but they surely know the reputation of their forums. (Hell, they have to moderate the trash that’s written on there.) They also surely suspect that many people will not want to post on the forums with their real name listed. So, once this goes live, the maintenance of their forums drops drastically.
To quote [the always lovely] Pacheco, “…has anyone actually found out anything useful on the WoW Forums?” Again, there may be a few gems in the rough. But as a general rule, there is very little useful information on the WoW forums. Almost everyone I know has found their specs, rotations, tips, hints, gear guides, etc. from somewhere independent of the official website. Ironically, you will learn how to play WoW better by not going to an official WoW site. As such, the official WoW forums, for all intents and purposes, are redundant.
So why do the work when other people are doing it for you – and for free!
This is why I’m left to wonder: Maybe, juuuuust maybe, everything is working as intended.
(Even if their methods are questionable.)