Update - Added a clarification, your real name will not show up on old forum posts. It will only be displayed on the new forum system.

Oh and since a few people asked, now, I have absolutely no plan to do that on MMO-Champion forums. (And that's not sarcasm, I really don't like the idea of real names on a gaming forum)

Battle.net Update: Upcoming Changes to the Forums
Your real name will be displayed on the official forums now. You'd better think twice before you troll a bunch of angry ... trolls.
[blizzquote author=Nethaera source=http://blue.mmo-champion.com/t/25712374700/battle-net-update-upcoming-changes-to-forums/]Recently, we introduced our new Real ID feature - www.battle.net/realid/ , a new way to stay connected with your friends on the new Battle.net. Today, we wanted to give you a heads up about our plans for Real ID on our official forums, discuss the design philosophy behind the changes we’re making, and give you a first look at some of the new features we’re adding to the forums to help improve the quality of conversations and make the forums an even more enjoyable place for players to visit.

The first and most significant change is that in the near future, anyone posting or replying to a post on official Blizzard forums will be doing so using their Real ID -- that is, their real-life first and last name -- with the option to also display the name of their primary in-game character alongside it. These changes will go into effect on all StarCraft II forums with the launch of the new community site prior to the July 27 release of the game, with the World of Warcraft site and forums following suit near the launch of Cataclysm. Certain classic forums, including the classic Battle.net forums, will remain unchanged.

The official forums have always been a great place to discuss the latest info on our games, offer ideas and suggestions, and share experiences with other players -- however, the forums have also earned a reputation as a place where flame wars, trolling, and other unpleasantness run wild. Removing the veil of anonymity typical to online dialogue will contribute to a more positive forum environment, promote constructive conversations, and connect the Blizzard community in ways they haven’t been connected before. With this change, you’ll see blue posters (i.e. Blizzard employees) posting by their real first and last names on our forums as well.

We also plan to add a number of other features designed to make reading the forums more enjoyable and to empower players with tools to improve the quality of forum discussions. Players will have the ability to rate up or rate down posts so that great topics and replies stand out from the not-so-great; low-rated posts will appear dimmer to show that the community feels that they don’t contribute effectively to the conversation, and Blizzard’s community team will be able to quickly and easily locate highly rated posts to participate in or to highlight discussions that players find worthwhile.

In addition, individual topics will be threaded by context, meaning replies to specific posts will be grouped together, making it easier for players to keep track of multiple conversations within a thread. We’re also adding a way for Blizzard posters to “broadcast” important messages forums-wide , to help communicate breaking news to the community in a clear and timely fashion. Beyond that, we’re improving our forum search function to make locating interesting topics easier and help lower the number of redundant threads, and we have more planned as well.

With the launch of the new Battle.net, it’s important to us to create a new and different kind of online gaming environment -- one that’s highly social, and which provides an ideal place for gamers to form long-lasting, meaningful relationships. All of our design decisions surrounding Real ID -- including these forum changes -- have been made with this goal in mind.

We’ve given a great deal of consideration to the design of Real ID as a company, as gamers, and as enthusiastic users of the various online-gaming, communication, and social-networking services that have become available in recent years. As these services have become more and more popular, gamers have become part of an increasingly connected and intimate global community – friendships are much more easily forged across long distances, and at conventions like PAX or our own BlizzCon, we’ve seen first-hand how gamers who may have never actually met in person have formed meaningful real-life relationships across borders and oceans. As the way gamers interact with one another continues to evolve, our goal is to ensure Battle.net is equipped to handle the ever-changing social-gaming experience for years to come.

For more info on Real ID, check out our Real ID page and FAQ located at http://www.battle.net/realid/ . We look forward to answering your questions about these upcoming forum changes in the thread below. [/blizzquote]
[blizzquote author=Bashiok source=http://blue.mmo-champion.com/t/25712374700/battle-net-update-upcoming-changes-to-forums/]One important point which I don't believe has been relayed yet is that the switch to showing RealID on the forums will only happen with the new forum systems we're launching for StarCraft II shortly before its release, and a new forum system for World of Warcraft launching shortly before the release of Cataclysm.

All posts here on the current World of Warcraft forums, or any of our classic Battle.net forums, will remain as-is. They won't (and can't) automatically switch to showing a real first and last name.

All posts in the future on the new forum systems will be an opt-in choice and ample warning will be given that you're posting with your real first and last name. [/blizzquote]
This article was originally published in forum thread: Battle.net Update: Upcoming Changes to the Forums started by Boubouille View original post
Comments 2089 Comments
  1. Naquadah's Avatar
    About time. I like this change.
  1. Mairin's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Zakamutt View Post
    I guess all the trolls will migrate to mmo-champ and others now :f
    Maybe they're going for quality over quantity. Not saying it's a great idea but I think the pros outweigh the cons.
  1. Pikabanga's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by my ledge ends View Post
    Your name is not unique. You are not a special snowflake.
    Many people have unique combinations of first and last name, making it easily traceable.
  1. Smoopie's Avatar
    What private information? You can't do very much with a First and Last name.....tinfoil hat more please
  1. Wells's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Imaginary View Post
    Why do you consider your name to be private information?
    Because combined with an IP its not hard to get more information about someone.

    And for everyone making a Facebook comparison, people don't add random strangers to their profile.
  1. Solfire's Avatar
    They need to allow us to have a nickname or something. I tell NO ONE my real name. I enjoy giving feedback on the class mechanics of priests and trying to help the priest community. Plus bumping guild recruitment threads or just chatting. No trolling or flaming, but I won't be able to post anything if my real name is on it.

    In fact aren't blizzard GM's required to not tell anyone their real job? I recall reading a post by Ghostcrawler joking about his identity, and about how even his guild didn't know who he was. Now that him, and every other GM will be posting with their real name, they'll be easier to find.
  1. Gunmist's Avatar
    Trolls will always be trolls.
  1. jd5's Avatar
    Yikes, incoming s-storm...

    Talk about throwing the baby out with the bath water, sure you will stop some trolls, but you will also stop helpful posters who (for whatever their own personal reason) don't want their real name known.

    I didn't mind realid having my name shown as it only goes to my friends in game, but this will stop all my posting on the wow forums. We have a troll of epic proportions on my main server that has managed to keep playing past several bans (buying new accounts, moving characters, re-rolling, etc.). This is the kind of loser that has tried to track people down before he had access to peoples proper names, don't want to see what will happen once realid names are out.

    Blizz needs to rethink and add in nicknames even if only for the forums. It should be up to them (Blizz) to police us, not each other. They already know our accounts and names, they can stop trolls by simply monitoring and banning any idiots.

    PS - For those who say "it's only a name, what can they do with that"... a lot. Your facebook page, little comments here and there about where you live or location in the city you live, etc. If you are clever enough you can track down people with only a little bit of starter info.
  1. cyloria's Avatar
    I am female, and i do worry about so many people having my real name. I like the less annomity, but i feel weird with strangers all having my name. A few years back i was stalked. I actually moved from the area. Which is why i don't like this idea. Sure there are probably a ton of people with my name in the world, but the paranoid side of me does not like it.
  1. Dewote's Avatar
    Well, I don't like this either.
    Showing first name is ok but last name too.. :/
  1. DiscostewSM's Avatar
    The first and most significant change is that in the near future, anyone posting or replying to a post on official Blizzard forums will be doing so using their Real ID -- that is, their real-life first and last name -- with the option to also display the name of their primary in-game character alongside it.
    Um...the purpose of RealID in the first place was for friends and relations to stay in contact with you when playing the same or different Blizzard games. Since when did total strangers get added to the list?

    In one aspect, people won't be posting on their lvl 2 alts they made specifically for the forums, as their name will always be displayed, but what about the good people of the community that don't want their name shown to the world? Why must they get forced into something that isn't needed?
  1. darkfenix_rizen's Avatar
    Too bad they will be forcing off a lot of non-trolls who just don't want people to know their real names. Myself included.
  1. Cilraaz's Avatar
    I'm usually one who argues the pro-Blizzard side of arguments, to the point of being called a sympathist or fanboy. I think this change is absolutely insane, though. If your name is John Smith, you may not care. Personally, I have a (literally) unique name. I am one of 4 living males with my last name. It would not be difficult for a job recruiter, for instance, to look me up and see my interest in WoW. While I don't really care who knows that I play WoW, I'd rather not be turned away for a job because a recruiter has a wild hair up their ass.

    On top of that, Blizzard has said all along that Real ID was optional, and if you didn't want someone to have your full name, just don't add them as a Real ID friend. This kinda defeats that. You want a more pleasant official forum? Create a dropdown box under the person posting with a list of each of their characters on the account (or a link to go to a page to see all of the characters). Right there, unless someone's willing to pay $15 a month to troll the forums on a separate account, the problem is solved.
  1. Gilles's Avatar
    Guess I won't be posting on the official forums anymore
  1. Irony's Avatar
    Not a huge fan of this change.
  1. Alana's Avatar
    I do not like. I don't want people to know my name. That's an invasion of privacy. I don't troll the forums, but I don't think I'll ever visit them again when this goes into effect.
  1. Tickles's Avatar
  1. Lardacus's Avatar
    I wonder if Blizzard somehow forgot that account phishing/hacking was already a huge problem, all this is going to do is make it even easier.
  1. Achillia's Avatar
    I was ok with ingame Real ID.
    You accept people you trust, and people that most likley already know your IRL name. But the forums? I dont know.
    As a female player I rather not go out with my name, and rather not always reveal that I am female in the first place unless I want to. There are still people to take the oppinions diffrently if you are of a diffrent gender. And I rather dont want new "omg-girl" stalkers ingame.

    I wouldnt mind some kind of nickname that is connected to all characters I post to. So people would know that this lvl 80 dude and this lvl 1 dude is the same person.
  1. Soyuz's Avatar
    I'm sure that 80% of the winers about privacy also has a facebook account where their friends post the most embarassing info.

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