During BlizzCon 2014's opening ceremonies, Blizzard president and co-founder Mike Morhaime asked attendees to "take a stand" against hate and harassment, notably in regards to larger problems within the gaming industry over the course of the last few months.
Amidst his opening speech, Morhaime said he wanted to take time to "talk about something serious."
"Over the past couple of months, there's been a small group of people who have been doing really awful things," Morhaime said. "They have been making some people's lives miserable, and they are tarnishing our reputation as gamers. It's not right."
The GamerGate movement and Twitter hashtag is a social campaign defined by most supporters as a call to effect change in video game journalism and to defend the "gamer" identity. The movement is difficult to define because what it has come to represent has no central leadership or agreed-upon manifesto. The hashtag was first used by actor Adam Baldwin in August after intimate details of a personal relationship between a video game developer and a video game journalist were made public and led some to allege cronyism between press and developers. The campaign is now also linked to ongoing and well-established harassment of women in video games, including Depression Quest creator Zoe Quinn, Feminist Frequency creator Anita Sarkeesian and Giant Spacekat head Brianna Wu, though many of GamerGate's supporters deny the campaign should be blamed for harassment.
Morhaime called BlizzCon a "great example of how positive and uplifting gaming" and its community can be.
"Let's carry the good vibes from this weekend out into the world all year round," he said. "There is another person on the other end of the chat screen. They're our friends. Our brothers and sisters. Our sons and daughters. Let's take a stand to reject hate and harassment. And let's redouble our efforts to be kind and respectful for one another, and let's remind the world what the game community is really all about."