Following a barrage of accusations of sexual misconduct against several of their most prominent members, the United Kingdom’s largest esports organization, Method has effectively collapsed.
As part of the massive June #MeToo Wave, several accusations were levied against prominent members of the Method community. Including one of the organization’s most prominent members, Josh. Who has previously been the subject of allegations earlier this year, after which Method put him under investigation.
Though the scope of the accusations did not encompass the entire organization, most of its members have renounced their ties with the organization, as reported by eSports News. Rather than face further association and damage to their reputations. There is no word whether any of the players will attempt to form a new organization, so for now, they remain free agents. Unlike the wave of #MeToo accusations that have hit the gaming industry, many of Method’s accusers have reportedly also gone to the police. Whether or not police investigations into the accusations prove or disprove them, it is unlikely the organization will be capable of recovering from the loss of both their reputation along with the bulk of their players and personnel.
Blizzard and Method have had an extensive working relationship with one another. Method has hosted Heroes of the Storm, Starcraft 2, and WoW tournaments in the United States, and Europe. They’ve also recently launched 3v3 WoW PvP competitions in both regions. Beyond business connections, Method has also hosted one of WoW’s most prominent guilds. Compounding the issue for Blizzard is their prior demonstrated willingness to intervene and police their community. Going so far as to suspend players, including Blizchung and fire staff over Free Hong Kong. That accusations have persisted against the organization going back to at least February of this year, eliminates any deniability of culpability on Blizzard’s part.
Rather than address the ensuing sexual misconduct controversy or even fix their game. Blizzard announced they were adjusting the pronouns of a character in Shadowlands alpha.
Fix Shadow Priest? No
Fix the core flaws of the game’s mechanics? No
Say something after your darling #1 guild disbanded due to a huge sex harassment scandal? No
Manufacture a narrative involving a datamined NPC’s pronouns as a means to virtue signal some woke PR? Yes pic.twitter.com/309A24Nc2S
— Kaleb (@KalebPrime) July 1, 2020
Now you might be thinking that is not comparable in scope, but on the progressives stack, women rank lower than the LGBT community. Thus to the audience Blizzard is courting, this more than makes up for potentially ignoring women being raped. It is a blatant PR strategy they’ve relied on every time they’ve had a significant PR issue.
No, it’s just an increasingly blatant PR strategy of theirs. It was a joke maybe back in 2017 when we all started to catch on, but now?
Now, you could cook eggs by it.
— Wolfman//Jack (@Jack_S_Wolfman) July 1, 2020
Look at this juncture if a company does something woke, consumers should look into who they’re trying to please or what they’ve just done. Socially conscious marketing exists to improve a company’s image to drive customers into engaging with their product.
This isn’t even relatively uncommon. Many of the companies who have joined the Traitors of America list outright profit from slave and child labor in China. Alternatively, the product they’re offering is flagrantly poor in quality, and they want to sell it on social proof or have a shield against criticism.
(Thanks for the tip Ennis85)