After an issue that allowed for endless dungeon respawns in World of Warcraft: Classic to be exploited by players, Blizzard made plans to punish the players who were taking advantage of the issue. Due to player feedback, Blizzard had to even clarify this in a new post on the WoW forums.
When exploits get, well...exploited, most game companies are going to bring the banhammer down on those players for gaming the system. However, when that happens many players spring to the defense of the exploiters, claiming that it's not their fault for taking advantage of something present in the system, or that the punishment for taking advantage of a bug doesn't match the punishment handed down when exploits are involved.
Blizzard has clarified its policy, as well as explain why the punishment meted out might be different depending on what caused the offense. The way the team looks at the situation comes down to the intent of the player it seems, which sounds pretty reasonable.
The key factor here is intent. Did the player do something with the specific intention of causing a glitch to occur, and did they do it order to exploit said glitch for their own benefit?
This recent glitch makes a pretty clean example. The players who were abusing it had to do some Very Weird Stuff to cause it to occur, and then did so repeatedly. No reasonable person would expect that this behavior was intended, and the players involved had to go out of their way to cause it. It’s obviously unintended, it’s obviously a glitch, and the people who abused it were obviously exploiting said glitch for their own benefit. That’s pretty open and shut.
You can read the whole post on Billzard's official World of Warcraft: Classic forum. What are your thoughts around the situation? Definitely let us know in the comments below.