What Will It Take?
That’s the question that’s been on my mind the past few days. Specifically, as it relates to Blizzard, and the lawsuit the State of California has levelled against them upon concluding a two-year investigation into allegations of sexual harassment.
The detail of it is frankly horrific. The behaviours spanning decades.
Belghast’s discussion on the subject gets to the heart of it in the title, with the plea to please believe women. The potentially tragic results of choosing not to are unfortunately one of the key notes of this whole ordeal.
So yeah. What will it take? What will it take to convince people- no, convince me to put Blizzard behind me. Not just now, while I’m not interested in any of their games anyway. But always. Even when Diablo 4 comes out. To maintain the stance beyond the point of inconvenience or conflicting desire. Syp has already made this call. Stargrace has, too.
Can’t You Just “Seperate Art from the Artist”?
No. I’m sure some can and will. That’s their prerogative and I don’t think they should be attacked or shamed for it. But I can’t. I’ve never been comfortable with taking this position. Despite the fact there seems to be an opinion out there that to do so, to accept this separation, is to somehow take the moral high ground. That you are somehow lesser for not being able to.
“Separating Art from the Artist” doesn’t have roots in any ethical or moral structures though, it’s a creation of early 20th-century academia, as part of the “New Critics” movement. Their stance was radical at the time and was predicated on the belief in the intrinsic value in the art itself. Artists be damned, be they good or bad.
Whatever your personal stance on the matter — it doesn’t work for me. There is no shelter to be found here.
When a Corporation is Involved, It Isn’t That Simple Anyway
And the reason for that is simple: Money.
This isn’t just about whether or not there is value intrinsic to WoW. This is about whether I can be OK to continue transacting with Blizzard. To continue offering them monetary support, or not.
The Conclusion, and What Actually Matters
The answer is simple: No. I’m not. I’m just not going to.
But I’m also under no illusions as to the impact this will have. I understand this is a gesture. One that on its own isn’t going to change anything. Like Belghast said though, “If I stay silent, the abusers assume I stand with them, and the abused continue to feel isolated”.
Ultimately, that’s what matters. The abused, the harassed, the people who have been made to feel they don’t matter, or made to fear they wouldn’t be believed and so couldn’t speak up.
What will it take to put Blizzard, as it stands today, behind me?
Turns out, this will do it.