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11-11-2009 @ 2:25PM
Have you tried getting in touch with Blizzard directly, Wow.com?
11-11-2009 @ 2:38PM
As a blog of journalistic bent, shouldn't you be doing the whole, er... journalism thing and contacting Blizzard directly? Even if they don't reply, you should include that information in the story. Let us know who you contacted and the reply from each. Otherwise this story is only half done.
11-11-2009 @ 4:19PM
Let me crack my editor fingers here for a minute and reply.Blizzard is pretty sparse with their replies -- they are a very busy organization and PR has their hands full with lots of different issues. Should they reply to such an inquiry? Sure, it'd be nice. Will they? I don't know. One thing that happens when we do ask about a story before we run it, is that we'd have to wait for a reply before being able to bring the issue to the attention of the community. That can mean sitting on things for a long time. And when their reply doesn't change the context of the story (in this case, the context is "people haven't gotten their prizes yet"), it's often better to run the story and seek out comment after the story is ran. If Blizzard is able to respond to us, we'll update this post and/or make a new story providing their take on the matter. Now with that said, we have asked them if they have any insight into the matter, and will take appropriate actions with any response they provide. But I also want to be clear about something:There is not an adversarial relationship between WoW.com and Blizzard, just as we're not in bed with them either. We're not going to go pounding on their door to get answers; we're going to do it the way Joystiq and the entire Weblogs family works -- with professionalism and maturity, and with the understanding that we're here to present the story to our readers first and foremost -- with or without comment from an organization.When people start emailing us and saying "Why don't you go yell at Blizzard! QQ!" and such things, we are never going to do that. We will take the appropriate professional steps, which as an editor for the site, I'm confident we have.Cheers all,Adam.
11-11-2009 @ 4:42PM
Adam: I know wow.com is just a blog and not a real journalistic entity, but as it is usually done the other party, blizzard in this case, is at least given an opportunity to respond before running the story, you then stating to have done so in the article itself if no reply was received.Apart from ruling out comments asking about this you might actually also get a response out of them by doing so and if not, having a remark that Blizzard did not feel obligated to reply to your requests for information might in the long run shame them into better press - I mean, blog relations.
11-11-2009 @ 4:47PM
I remember just last week people complaining cause the mining sites(eg mmo-champion) have info up first, claiming Wow.com was slow with the stories, and it was explained how Wow.com has to get and review that data to verify it as true. Now people want Wow.com to do days of research? Make up your minds.
11-11-2009 @ 4:59PM
@cremebrulee:I agree, we might get a response. Who knows, that's up to them. I want to avoid playing the "shame game" as many other sites do, it really sets up bad relationships with people; and this is just a game, so there's no reason for people to get upset. (People being industry folks, not nonsensical commenters, which I'm not saying you're a part of =) ).The primary reason we didn't contact Blizzard prior to the story running was, in this case, timing. We wanted to get this out there because it was an issue the community was seriously looking at right now. Blizzard is well aware of it, not only in emails sent by other people, but by the very nature of the article going up on WoW.com, which I know many of their folks read. If we were waiting for a Blizzard reply prior to running the story we could be waiting days, if not longer. That sets a bad president, as we don't want to hide issues from the community, nor allow breakdowns in communication to be an excuse for our lack of publishing.
11-11-2009 @ 5:16PM
I don't really think it's an issue of antagonising Blizzard, or even waiting for a reply from them. I just found it strange that you were reporting this story, and not saying you'd probed all sources. Your absence of Blizzard rep is conspicuously absent, which, as your comment states, is understandable - but isn't it normal journalistic practice to say that you'd been in touch, and are awaiting a reply? If you don't do that, then we can't take for granted that you have, no matter how inferred you make it. One extra line of text doesn't delay a story that long. I mean, the whole What, When, Where and "Why" thing, right? Blizzard aren't going to go into a huff if you criticise them, or investigate. You can act as a watchdog just as much as you can act as fans of their games. If Valve can invite L4D boy-cotters into their premises after how vocal they were, I'm sure Blizzard can maintain a relationship with WOW.com, probably the biggest WOW-focused news/feature site out there, even with the strain of having questions thrown at them. @Styvorama: I didn't complain about that. It seems to me you're tarring critics of WOW.com with the same brush - different people can have different issues. It's not just one mighty mass of "meh."
11-11-2009 @ 6:15PM
You're applying 'real' world journalistic standards to WoW reporting there Hammer. Don't get me wrong, I am not in any way saying that Wow.com staff aren't professionals, but I don't think the situation is as analagous as you're making it out to be. Blizzard is not a political body and does not have to answer in the same way. This changes the relation between it and the journalists who report on it.If an investigative reporter on a newspaper discovers some money promised to a hospital doesn't appear to have been delivered, he can phone up Town Hall and ask them what's going on, and expect those calls to be answered. If he doesn't get a reply, the newspaper can then run the story with a 'there was no comment from Town Hall as we went to press' sort of thing, and people can draw their own conclusions. As Adam explains above, Wow.com could've done something similar, but it wouldn't necessarily mean the same thing. Adding a similar 'Blizz refused to comment' line would've changed the tone of the whole story and made it seem much more sinister/corrupt/whatever without that necessarily being true. Like I say, Wow.com are professional, but they're not the New York Times, and BLizz aren't the White House.
11-11-2009 @ 6:32PM
@Wyred: Heh, I must admit you're probably right in that I am stretching the analogy, but it's not like I'm suggesting Blizzard be held up for scrutiny or whatever. It just seems to me that it's the sensible thing to do to either print a response, or say you're awaiting one. I've seen it done on gaming and entertainment sites plenty of times - www.eurogamer.net I know for a fact does it.(I should probably say that I'm not suspecting Blizzard are doing anything nasty behind the scenes. Never apply to maliciousness that which could easily be explained by negligence)((I should also probably shut up, before someone thinks I'm making mountains out of molehills! I'm not, honest! The only thing that irked me was the "All we can do is await a statement by Blizzard" line.))
11-11-2009 @ 11:48PM
@Hammer:I don't think you're making a mountain out of a molehill by any means. In fact, I think you started a very good discussion about how much pressure WoW.com can and should apply. I'm not saying that I agree with you on all points, and there's a certainly a fair amount about this subject that I cannot talk about in public, but in general I agree with you basic facts. From my perspective though, and here is where we'll just have to agree to disagree, this wasn't a situation where such pressure and tactics should have been applied.I've seen Eurogamer do some of that stuff too, and they certainly have been in the right to do. There are cases where we'd do the same; post a letter we send to Blizzard, more or less demand a response. I can think of situations that would warrant such an action, I'm sure everyone can. But when we do that -- there will be reactions equal to our bold action. And being that at the end of the day, Blizzard doesn't have to say anything to us at all, there'd need to be some REALLY terrible that would warrant the "nuclear option" on our relationship with them. Posting "hey this is a problem" is different than "Hey this is a problem and here are pitchforks and your marching orders in the form an email we sent to the evil Dr. Blizzard!" We have to measure our responses very carefully because if we were to post such a letter, it would be taken to extremes by immature folks.And because of all of this - the community outcry, the support WoW.com put behind it, and the maturity of the folks at the forefront (I give pixelatedGeek a lot of credit for setting the mature tone of this issue), the problem was solved today when Blizzard sent emails to the contest winners.All quiet on the Western Azeroth front. ;-)
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