College Esports Team Banned By Blizzard For Supporting Hong Kong Protests

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The studio has once again banned players for showing support for the Hong Kong protests.
The studio has once again banned players for showing support for the Hong Kong protests. Blizzard

Blizzard has reportedly suspended three American University esports players after holding up a “Free Hong Kong, Boycott Blizz” sign. The event took place during a championship match, resulting in a suspension.

The decision will prevent these esports players from competing in either official or third-party events related to Blizzard. The three students were said to be acting in solidarity with a Hong Kong player whom Blizzard banned for showing support to the Hong Kong protests. He is none other than Ng "blitzchung" Wai Chung. Not only was Blitzchung banned for at least six months by the American video game company, but he was also deemed disqualified from the Hearthstone Grandmasters tournament.

The ban, however, was not taken lightly by the community. It was met with outrage from fans and players alike, many of whom have called for boycotts.

The college sophomores Casey Chambers, Corwin Dark and Torin Wright are all 19 years old and majoring in international studies. The trio decided to come up with a sign in an attempt to show their reaction to Ng's ban. They then showed the sign on a stream of their college game. A week after the game, Blizzard announced its decision to ban them.

Blizzard confirmed in a statement to CNN that it did ban the three students after they "knowingly broke" the rules. In a statement, a company’s representative explained: "We strongly encourage everyone in our community to share their viewpoints in the many places available to express themselves. However, our official broadcast needs to be about the game and the competition, and to be a place where all are welcome."

At first, many did not believe that the studio would really ban the three students. In fact, they were all expected to compete in their next match, but they forfeited since they felt "it was hypocritical for Blizzard to punish Blitzchung's pro-human rights statement but not our clearly anti-Blizzard protest." Chambers confirmed the statement in an interview. Blizzard, on the other hand, did not give out any explanation as to why it needed more time to give the ban to the students than it did to the Hong Kong pro player.

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