UPDATE 1/4/2019: New evidence suggests that Overwatch Ellie may actually be a "social experiment" by other players. The original story follows.
21. December, a professional Overwatch team competed in Overwatch Contenders (mainly the minors for the Overwatch League), Second Wind, a player known as Ellie. The announcement was immediately followed by an online harassment campaign aimed at Ellie, with the final result when the newly signed professional player joined his team.
Online harassment directed at Ellie stemmed from a conspiracy theory that Ellie was not real, and was instead a male professional Overwatch player posing as a woman. It seems that this conspiracy theory started mainly because Ellie chose not to use her legal name after signing to Second Wind, while the other members of her team did, and that her Twitter account was brand new.
Just one day after Ellie was signed to Second Wind, she sent screenshots of a Discord conversation where people discussed plans to do her. Doxxing, for uninitiated, is where people get personal information about someone and then put it online. Haunt, the Forbidden Overwatch player who calls for the doxxing attempt, says in Discord that it is "not for malicious purposes", but only to find out Ellie's true identity.
This guy is a fucking psychopath pic.twitter.com/xWf3Jy4aLS
̵1; ellie (@ellie_ow) December 23, 2018
Perhaps in an attempt to prove conspiracy theorists Error , Ellie did a stream where she played with some other professionals Overwatch players, including someone she was accused of being, the Punisher. Despite this, some were still unconvinced, and the online harassment against Ellie continued.
Even a professional Overwatch League player who has currently been signed to a pro team has driven the conspiracy theory. Atlanta reigns DPS player Daniel "Dafran" Francesca has suggested that Ellie only gave the voice to the stream, while someone else played with her account. The Dafran, which is worth pointing out, was previously suspended from the Overwatch League to convince its fans to throw competing games, griefing players and posting pornographic images in his streams.
Despite the fact that Ellie completed Second Wind, online harassment against her seems to have continued. According to co-player Overwatch player, anytime they play a game with Ellie, "people just flame and leave the game."
It is unfortunate what Ellie has had to deal with since he signed with Second Wind, especially since there is currently no concrete evidence to support the conspiracy theory. Hopefully, online harassment stops at Ellie, but it seems to be continuing.
Overwatch is out now for PC, PS4 and Xbox One.
Source: Game Informer