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Google pulls Hong Kong protester game from store while Activision Blizzard removes pro-protest gamer from international tournament

Author: BBC (UK), Published on: 14 October 2019

“Google pulls Hong Kong protestor game from store”, 11 Oct 2019

Google has removed from its app store a mobile game that lets people role play as a Hong Kong protester.

The tech giant says the app violated a policy against cashing in on conflicts, and the decision was not the result of a request to take it down…

The choice-based game, Revolution of Our Times, allowed users to play the part of a Hong Kong protestor.

Like real protestors, players could buy protective gear and weapons, but they could also be arrested and even extradited to China…

In a statement, Google said the game was removed because it violated Google Play's policies.

"We have a longstanding policy prohibiting developers from capitalising on sensitive events such as attempting to make money from serious ongoing conflicts or tragedies through a game," Google said.

Google noted it had pulled apps previously for attempting to profit from other high-profile events such as earthquakes, crises, suicides and conflicts.

The move comes just days after an online gamer from Hong Kong was removed from an international tournament for the game Hearthstone because he expressed support for the protestors during a livestream.

Activision Blizzard said the gamer, identified as "Blitzchung", had violated rules and would not be allowed to play in any Hearthstone e-sports games for the next 12 months.

The company said the competition rules banned any behaviour that might cause public disrepute or offend a portion or group of the public.

The official Chinese publication the Global Times said Chinese social media users thought Activision Blizzard's move was an example of "how to be responsible in the Chinese market," but move has drawn protest on social media elsewhere, with many gamers calling for a boycott of Blizzard…

Chinese tech company Tencent owns a stake in Activision Blizzard…

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Related companies: Blizzard Entertainment Google (part of Alphabet) Tencent