It seems the enormous nerds who compete in the obscure activity of real-life competitive Quidditch have decided to formally distance themselves from their TERF Queen mother J.K. Rowling by changing the name of their dork sport. It is now called: Quadball.
Please pause for a moment of Quidditch-induced silence.
The International Quidditch Association (IQA) made the name change announcement on Tuesday. The group says the decision was also influenced by the difficult financial nature of playing a geek sport whose trademark belongs to Warner Bros. Hard to sell T-shirts, etc. According to NPR, the sport is currently played in 40 countries by almost 600 teams.
"For me personally there is definitely some nostalgia to the original name,” Alex Benepe, the person who helped bring the sport from the pages of a nerd book to the reality of a nerd life at Middlebury College in Vermont in 2005, said in a statement. “But from a long term development perspective I feel confident this is a smart decision for the future that will allow the sport to grow without limits into its own unique space for many years to come.”
The rules of the sport will stay the same, thank goodness. The players will continue to run around a field with brooms, or just sticks, between their legs, thinking they’re in some kinda Harry Potter world, while they try to get a ball in a hoop and “evade Bludgers” and “catch the Golden Snitch.” (It is still to be determined whether they’ll have to think of new non-Harry Potter names for these game items; I am available for consulting on this matter but can give you a taste: the Fromden Monb … or maybe like, the Gilden Shick.)
In an interview with the New York Times, Jack McGovern, a spokesman for U.S. Quidditch and Major League Quidditch, said they “did not intend to give a value judgment” over whether the money thing or anti-trans thing was the bigger reason behind the name change. But he also noted the layer of TERF-ness that has coated everything under the Harry Potter umbrella was beginning to be an obstacle in recruiting new players. I would think the fact that you have to keep a big stick near your lower private area while running around a field would maybe also be an obstacle, but McGovern did not mention it.
So, good luck to the nerds with their new name. I hope this brings them peace. And of course, as Harry Potter always said: In Omnia Paratus!