Blizzard CEO Mike Morhain talked to Polygon.com about his plans to battle chat harassment during streams.
A few days ago, Hearthstone pro TerrenceM faced heavy racial harassment on Twitch chat while playing the DreamHack Austin tournament. While he did very well and finished second place, the incidents happening in the comments on stream can not simply be forgotten. Of course Twitch-chat is not known as a place of intellectual discourse and good conversation. But this time it was not any kind of funny anymore, no silly jokes, it was just racism. If you want to, you can catch up the events in this article on pcgamer.com.
Polygon.com released a statement from Mike Morhain earlier this day, saying that Blizzard alongside other partners of the industry strives to battle chat harassments more effectively. Read the full statement below.
Mike Morhain’s statment on the battle against chat harassment:
“We’re extremely disappointed by the hateful, offensive language used by some of the online viewers during the DreamHack Austin event the weekend before last. One of our company values is “Play Nice; Play Fair”; we feel there’s no place for racism, sexism, harassment, or other discriminatory behavior, in or outside of the gaming community. This is obviously a larger, societal problem that affects us on many levels. We can only hope that when instances like this come to light it encourages people to be more thoughtful and positive, and to fully reject mean-spirited commentary, whether within themselves or from their fellow gamers.
To help combat this type of behavior during live events, we’ve reached out to players, streamers, and moderators, along with partners like Twitch, DreamHack, and others, to get consensus and collaborate on what to do differently moving forward. To that end, we’re investigating a pilot program that Twitch has in the works to streamline moderation and combat ban evasion. We’re also updating our esports tournament partner policies with a stronger system of checks, balances, and repercussions to provide a better chat experience around our content.
We believe these are important steps to take to help address the related issues, but we acknowledge that they only address part of the problem. This is ultimately an industry-wide issue, and it will take all of us to make a real impact.”