World of Warcraft reviews Community Discord program following backlash over non-disparagement and tracking software clauses

Marching off to nowhere.

On May 5th, Blizzard introduced a new feature on the European community site, the Community Discord program for World of Warcraft. The idea seems both straightforward and positive: Since there is no shortage of communities around the game run primarily through Discord servers, Blizzard will have a program to help drive traffic and awareness to those communities. All the server owners have to do is apply for membership and follow a set of rules and conditions, which just include totally normal stuff like installing tracking bots into the Discord and never saying anything negative about Blizzard or its games ever, what the hell.

That’s not a joke. Here are the relevant excerpts from the agreement:

“To become a Program Member, and to maintain your status as a Program Member, you must: […] 14. install and maintain on the Server Clockwork Rocket or any other sentiment tracking software requested by Blizzard from time to time and grant Blizzard permissions (as instructed by Blizzard from time to time) to such software;”

“The Program Member represents and warrants that they: […] 6. the Program Member, as of the Effective Date, holds a positive opinion about Blizzard (including any affiliate) and its products and does not seek to become a Program Member for the purpose of harming Blizzard (including any affiliate) monetarily or reputationally, or for any other improper or misleading purpose; and 7. shall not make any disparaging or negative statements or representations, written or oral, about Blizzard (including any affiliate) or Blizzard (including any affiliate)’s products or services, and/or the services rendered by the Program Member hereunder, except as otherwise permitted by law. The foregoing shall not limit the Program Member’s ability to make truthful statements if compelled by court order, legal proceeding, or otherwise required by applicable law. This provision shall survive the
expiration or termination of this Agreement.”

Even for the the game’s most staunch supporters, this was about two hundred steps too far, and prominent creators immediately opted out. In response, Blizzard has stated that it is reviewing the terms of this agreement and that the company’s intention was never to control conversations, though of course that’s exactly what it said in the agreement – in perpetuity, even.

Previous articleThe Daily Grind: Which MMOs are more fun to watch than play?
Next articleStar Trek Online’s Unraveled is live for PC players with new episode and TFO

No posts to display

oldest most liked
Inline Feedback
View all comments