When Magic: The Gathering professional player Lee Shi Tian expressed his support for the Hong Kong protesters following his emotional win against Carlos Romao at the Mythic Championship V this past Saturday, fans on Twitch.tv/Magic supported the MTG Hall of Famer with messages like "Free Hong Kong", and Wizards of the Coast didn't censor it.
Tian showed his support at the Mythic Championship V by wearing a red balaclava over his face and covered one eye upon entering the main stage. His mask was a reference to the Hong Kong protesters who wear masks in an effort to protect their identity from Chinese surveillance in Hong Kong. It also showed support for the volunteer nurse who was recently shot in the eye with a beanbag round during protests in Kowloon.
During his post-match interview, Tian went on to express his support, saying, "Life has been very tough in my hometown of Hong Kong...It feel so good to play [Magic] as a free man."
Several commenters on Twitch.tv/magic cheered for Tian, and shared their cries of "Free Hong Kong" when he showed off his support, and it turns out that the moderators of the Twitch chat for Mythic Championship V were even told by WIzards to "allow and not touch" any statements supporting Hong Kong.
Some inside baseball re chat: mods actually had instructions to *allow and not touch* any and all of those kinds of mentions of HK.— Ian D (@dixonij) October 20, 2019
WotC didn't take the same path that Blizzard took when they banned Hong Kong-based Hearthstone pro Ng Wai "Blitzchung" Chung from tournament earlier this month after he expressed his support during a post-match interview. Blizzard even extended the censorship to fans participating in the company's livestreams. Blizzard issued a statement on Oct. 12 saying, “we want to keep the official channels focused on the game.” Fans who violated the request from Blizzard by typing in any form of support for Hong Kong via Twitch chat at Hearthstone's Masters Tour had their accounts suspended for 24-hours.
Although Tian didn't ultimately win the Mythic Championship V, it's inspiring to see him make Top 8 as a "free man" who was able to express his support for Hong Kong's freedom without any censorship from Wizards of the Coast.