Shacknews Person of the Year 2019 - Blitzchung (Chung Ng Wai)

There was one person who really captured the gaming world's attention this year with his brave call for Hong Kong's liberation. Blitzchung is our Shacknews Person of the Year 2019.

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On October 6, 2019 during a post-game interview after winning Hearthstone Grandmasters, blitzchung (Chung Ng Wai) called for the liberation of Hong Kong. His bravery in this moment set off a chain of events in the games industry that truly set him above every one else this year. Knowing he could face a ban, forfeiture of prize money, and political pressure, Blitzchung still had the guts to call out the oppressive Chinese government for what they are doing in Hong Kong. It wasn't apparent at the moment, but the ripples felt across the world have lead to Blitzchung receiving the honor of Shacknews Person of the year 2019.

"I put so much effort in that social movement in the past few months, that I sometimes couldn't focus on preparing my Grandmaster match," said Blitzchung. His comments in the post-game interview lead to an overreaction by Activision Blizzard in an attempt to keep themselves in a good relationship with the Chinese government. In a year with an ongoing trade war between the US and China dominating the headlines, Blitzchung shined a spotlight on how American companies are letting the Chinese government censor free speech. #BoycottBlizzard began trending the week of his ban and several members of Congress wrote to Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to admonish the company's decisions. Ultimately, the company backpeddaled a little, but much of the damage had been done. 

Blitzchung is set to return to Hearthstone next year, and we can't wait to see how he fares. The people of Hong Kong are still fighting against the oppressive Chinese communist government overseas, and while the anger towards Blizzard has died down, it is undeniable that Blitzchung's post-game interview set off a chain reaction that will only lead to more of a spotlight being shined on the Chinese government. American multinational companies with ties to China are going to be faced with a number of these issues down the road, and it will be interesting to see how often they choose corporate profits over the rights and values that are sometimes taken for granted here in the United States.

We salute Blitzchung for having the guts to do what he felt was right, throwing out any worries about financial penalties. Esports players are extremely dedicated to their craft, and to knowingly walk away from the top of your game is extremely admirable. Let's all try to be more like Blitzchung next year. For now, we stand by our Shacknews Person of the Year 2019. Liberate Hong Kong. Revolution of our age!

CEO

Asif Khan is the CEO and majority shareholder of Shacknews. He began his career in video game journalism as a freelancer in 2001 for Tendobox.com. Asif is a CPA and was formerly an investment adviser representative. After much success in his own personal investments, he retired from his day job in financial services and is currently focused on new private investments. His favorite PC game of all time is Duke Nukem 3D, and he is an unapologetic fan of most things Nintendo. Asif first frequented the Shack when it was sCary's Shugashack to find all things Quake. When he is not immersed in investments or gaming he is a purveyor of fine electronic music. Asif also has an irrational love of Cleveland sports.

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