What’s in a name? An awful lot according to Metaneira over at Empowered Fire, who’s been inspired to trawl through the WoW armory by some time on her hands and one too many offensive names in game. Her aim? To investigate just how many toons out there are in breach of Blizzard’s naming policy and, more importantly, social acceptance. And she’s found a lot of awful names.
Her findings aren’t exhaustive – going through all character names would need a lot of CDs to rip in the background - but in turning over some armory stones, Metaneira’s found a lot of disagreeable names. And she’s come up with some ideas on what to do about it.
My next course of action is to — *gulp* — post a suggestion on the Warcraft forums, addressing what can be done to improve this problem. I can overlook the dwarf warriors named Gimmlii, the blood elf females named Brittneyspeers, or even random players with dumb names like Vhell. But there is something distinctly unsettling about playing a fantasy game with a character called “Rapemachine”. And it seems like it’s a relatively easy problem to, if not fix, certainly reduce. A couple of ideas …
We’ve all seen characters with nitwibbling names, and we all react to different triggers. You’ve cringed at a name at some point, right? Maybe blocked or reported it, too. Metaneira’s right: rude names are an unplesant facet of the game and one to be dealt with, not just brushed off as a side-effect of playing a game or soemthing that only makes sensitive folk squirm.
What do you think – deal with the names, or just let it be? What crosses your “no, that’s just wrong, /report” line?
Empowered Fire’s homepage is here