This was just posted a little while ago:

From: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=25968987278&sid=1

Hello everyone,

I’d like to take some time to speak with all of you regarding our desire to make the Blizzard forums a better place for players to discuss our games. We’ve been constantly monitoring the feedback you’ve given us, as well as internally discussing your concerns about the use of real names on our forums. As a result of those discussions, we’ve decided at this time that real names will not be required for posting on official Blizzard forums.

It’s important to note that we still remain committed to improving our forums. Our efforts are driven 100% by the desire to find ways to make our community areas more welcoming for players and encourage more constructive conversations about our games. We will still move forward with new forum features such as conversation threading, the ability to rate posts up or down, improved search functionality, and more. However, when we launch the new StarCraft II forums that include these new features, you will be posting by your StarCraft II Battle.net character name + character code, not your real name. The upgraded World of Warcraft forums with these new features will launch close to the release of Cataclysm, and also will not require your real name.

I want to make sure it’s clear that our plans for the forums are completely separate from our plans for the optional in-game Real ID system now live with World of Warcraft and launching soon with StarCraft II. We believe that the powerful communications functionality enabled by Real ID, such as cross-game and cross-realm chat, make Battle.net a great place for players to stay connected to real-life friends and family while playing Blizzard games. And of course, you’ll still be able to keep your relationships at the anonymous, character level if you so choose when you communicate with other players in game. Over time, we will continue to evolve Real ID on Battle.net to add new and exciting functionality within our games for players who decide to use the feature.

In closing, I want to point out that our connection with our community has always been and will always be extremely important to us. We strongly believe that Every Voice Matters, ( http://us.blizzard.com/en-us/company/about/mission.html ) and we feel fortunate to have a community that cares so passionately about our games. We will always appreciate the feedback and support of our players, which has been a key to Blizzard’s success from the beginning.

Mike Morhaime
CEO & Cofounder
Blizzard Entertainment

I am so impressed with the vigilance the WoW community has shown in these past few days. This revolt was massive and I am glad Blizzard has finally seen the way.

Now, this being said, is there hope that they will cancel the plans to interface with Facebook and not  jump head first into the shallow end of the social networking pool? Perhaps, but who can tell at this point. Activsion loves the idea of having their names blasted all over the social networking community and with as many players as Blizzard has in every game, why do they think this is not occuring now? Just because we are gamers, on the internet and interacting with the world does not mean we are avid social networkers or want to have our die hard WoW addictions blasted all over Facebook.

What happens when I come into work looking tired from a late night raid, do I really want my boss to look at my Facebook account and see “Sarindre has defeated the Lich King!” being posted there by Blizzards intertwining of the game and Facebook? Or do I really want my mom to know that instead of talking with her on the phone last night, I was really healing my face off in RS? (Boy she would yell at me for that!) Now, I am really hoping this will not happen and with like most apps you could just not allow posts, but it seems to be a terrible nightmare of mine ever since the mention of social networking was mentioned.

For now lets celebrate this victory with something all WoW players love….Free Cookies with a dash of privacy! =D

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