Skip to Content
7-07-2010 @ 8:03AM
Actually, it's just illegal. http://www.wow-europe.com/realmstatus/index.html?locale=en_gb
7-07-2010 @ 8:04AM
Wrong link, I apologise.http://forums.wow-europe.com/thread.html?topicId=13816898877&sid=1
7-07-2010 @ 8:13AM
It's illegal in the country that poster resides in, yes.But in many countries (example, the US. I live there), it's legal. Also, they have said the real name display will be opt-in. As in, you can turn it off.
My immediate thoughts upon reading that is that she is quoting Dutch laws, and Blizzard is an American company, and thus not subject to Dutch laws. However, there could be equivalent laws in America.Such an oversight is rather sad coming from a person who claims to be a "Dutch Law Student." You'd think she'd be aware that laws in the Netherlands do not apply to other countries.
7-07-2010 @ 8:19AM
Illegal or not, I subscribed 4 years ago to a game, not to a bloody social networking service.
7-07-2010 @ 8:20AM
thepiratebay hosts the search function for Torrents, and since the copyrights they are breaking are not bound to law in their country, they can legally do so.Dutch law helps the dutch, not north americans.
7-07-2010 @ 8:21AM
To Kevin:My understanding is that the system will be "opt in" because you can choose not to post on the forums. IF you post on the forums, your full name will be displayed. No ifs, ands or buts.
7-07-2010 @ 8:22AM
Responding to the OP: The linked legal laws regard "Collection of personal information". In general, full name is not, in and of itself, considered personal information. This is definitely true in the US, and is also true in any other country where I've researched it. (This is more than one, because I had to deal with similar claims when I was answering abuse requests for a popular website.) I doubt this applies.Kevin: When WoW operates in Dutch territory/with Dutch citizens, they have to respect Dutch laws. This is why there are forum competitions that can't take place in many countries (Also RAF): Because they can't meet the requirements of the laws in those places. I'm not going to claim to be a lawyer here who understands the full extent of the law, but I expect that if it was actually illegal to do this, they would no longer be able to operate the forums for Dutch users. (Or Dutch users would need to get their own forums.)Also, they've said that real name display is optional: that is, you can not post in the forums, and your name won't be displayed. Regarding using parental controls, they mentioned that it will be possible to prevent minors from posting entirely, but not turn off names.
7-07-2010 @ 8:24AM
Kevin, the only "opt-in" choice is whether you post or not in the forums. If you choose to post your real name will be shown no mater what. There is no way to turn it off.
7-07-2010 @ 8:28AM
I'm not american and it's also illegal in my country. And everyone's concern is for himself. And I can't see blizzard even considering the situations in which this it will break the law.
7-07-2010 @ 8:34AM
7-07-2010 @ 8:35AM
In the UK it's illegal and I and many have contacted the UK data protection commison and their are investigating this.
7-07-2010 @ 8:38AM
@crschmidIt is not only the law regarding collecting but also storing and using personal data. Any data provided by me for the sole purpose of making a binding agreement (read: create an account) is considered personal and private. Blizzard may collect and use this data for their own purposes, currently amongst other things for instance internal evaluation for demographics. I consented to that and have absolutely no issue with that. Sharing private data without my consent is something I do have an issue with.
7-07-2010 @ 8:45AM
Hitler doesn't like the idea: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiauaGbxipA
7-07-2010 @ 8:53AM
Your first and last name are definitely considered personal data, at least in Germany...have been dealing with privacy policies as of lately, so I am absolutely sure about this. Also the fact that Blizzard is an American company does not matter at all imho, because, as stated above, they agree to abide all applicable law (why do you think every exporting company has to deal with so many different laws?) and their headquarters for EUROPE are actually based in Paris (afaik), where EU law is automatically applied to all inhabitants, visitors and, of course, companies. Even when ordering things from America or any other continent/country the buyer's laws apply in the necessary respects. Otherwise everybody would be importing drugs as they please, because hey it's legal where we produce it...0o...
7-07-2010 @ 9:10AM
I was temp banned from the official forums for pointing out that in China it will soon be mandatory to link your real name to forum posts.http://blog.internetgovernance.org/blog/_archives/2010/6/5/4545674.htmlApparently, this post was trolling and is a great example of why everyone in the world would need to know (forever) who I am and what I was doing at 2:21 pm on July 6, 2010
7-07-2010 @ 9:13AM
the entire phrase 'opt-in', i think, is being misunderstood here. you opt in to blizzard's use of your personal data when you sign up for a battle.net account, and when you play their games. (_three_ EULAs to accept every patch day!?!?)that right grants the entity blizzard, or activision blizzard to process your data in the same geographical region. There is no problem from a legal standpoint in Europe as long as personal information isn't being transmitted outside of the region (e.g. from Europe to Americas), or isn't being passed on to third parties without your specific and explicit consent.it sucks, but legally there's little you can do here. However, I think blizzard should act on more good faith with it's [so far] loyal customer base. Best case here is that people simply stop using the forums.. we lose the one valid way we have of providing feedback on the game we all love. Worse case is people simply cancel their subscriptions, insist on proof of removal of personal details, and move on to a game publisher who isn't going to skirt along boundaries of the law.
7-07-2010 @ 9:28AM
Although i am quite sure that they will bypass legal issues with something sounding like:"Also, by posting in the forums of Worldofwarcraft.com you allow blizzard to post the information you are delivering under your legal name as provided by you in your account details"hidden somewhere between the lines in the EULA.I forsee that the only option to avoid allowing blizz to display your real name would be to give up on buying cataclysm.
7-07-2010 @ 9:33AM
I don’t understand why the forums are considered an “optional” segment of what I’m paying for every month. I love the forums and frequent them everyday. To me, they’re one of the core features of my monthly experience. I imagine most of the people who frequent the forums feel this same way. This change hardly affects the core game, but it does essentially hinder and in many cases remove an experience people have come to know and love.
7-07-2010 @ 9:44AM
I have gone through this on other websites regarding copyright laws from various countries. Unfortunately, the laws of the country where the company's servers reside are what would apply to Blizzard. That, is to the best of my knowledge, the US. With that being said I wouldn't let this deter anyone from approaching their legal entities to gather information on the protections of personal privacy. The more information players gather the better the resolution we may achieve.
First time? A confirmation email will be sent to you after submitting.
Members enter your username and password.
Enter your AOL or AIM screenname and password.
Please keep your comments relevant to this blog entry. Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments.
When you enter your name and email address, you'll be sent a link to confirm your comment, and a password. To leave another comment, just use that password.
To create a live link, simply type the URL (including http://) or email address and we will make it a live link for you. You can put up to 3 URLs in your comments. Line breaks and paragraphs are automatically converted — no need to use <p> or <br /> tags.