The Armory, the public page of World of Warcraft characters, recently updated to include the new achievements that went live with the expansion.
While there’s no personal information on the page, the new achievement let you track what someone’s online activity with a pretty reasonable precision. For example, let’s take a look at the updated page of Supernovan, aka Kevin Werbach, co-leader of the FCC review team, since he’s the only public figure whose WoW character I happen to know.
Werbach logged in on 11/23 to pick up that baby bear that Blizzard was giving away. That’s the first day the bear was available, so he’s clearly still keeping abreast of WoW news.
He doesn’t seem to be doing much these days with his character, probably since he’s busy with his new responsibilities. He did log on for a run at the Headless Horseman during the Halloween event, but since he’s missing the easier seasonal achievements like getting a paper mask, he probably was just on and off real quick.
If you look at his “Feats of Strength” awards, though, you can see he has the Senior Sergeant rank from the now-obsolete PVP system from before 2007. That’s no small feat, since even earning your way up the lower ranks of the old system made you grind out hours of play over a minimum of several weeks. Dude was a fiend!
Also, he’s got Mr. Pinchy! At a 1 in 500 chance to fish up from an already uncommon school of fish, he’s either really lucky or he’s got an astounding resistance to tedium.
That’s just an example. So, should you be worried about someone following your Armory page? Or in local-news-ese, ARE YOUR CHILDREN IN DANGER FROM CYBERSTALKERS IN VIOLENT VIDEO GAMES?
Probably not. This stuff is pretty tame, even if it’s a little weird to know that strangers can tell when you’re logging on and how you’re spending your time.
Plus, if MySpace and Facebook prove anything, it’s that people will already share reams of embarrassing information about themselves to Internet strangers with no incentive other than the possibility that someone might pay attention to them. Someone looking at your virtual pet count is probably not as important as your boss looking up photos of that bender you were at over the weekend.
You might want to take those down, by the way.