From Games to Power: The Dark Side of Tencent's Success

Behind the screens of some of the most popular games and social media platforms lies a giant of the tech world: Tencent. Despite its size and influence, Tencent remains largely unknown to the public, but its story is one that deserves attention.

From Games to Power: The Dark Side of Tencent's Success

Have you ever played League of Legends or Fortnite? Chances are, you have and didn't even realize what hides under these companies. Behind the scenes of these popular games lies a giant of the tech world: Tencent.

This Chinese tech giant is the 10th largest company in the world. Its reach extends well beyond the gaming industry. Yet, despite its size and influence, Tencent is unknown to the public. In this article, we delve into the story of Tencent's rise to the top. Introducing the controversy surrounding the company.

In recent years, Tencent has emerged as a major player in the technology industry. Becoming the 10th largest company in the world. With a current value of over $442 billion and $949 billion at its peak in January 2021. The company's reach is vast, spanning the internet and the gaming industry. Investments in tech companies like Tesla, Riot, Epic Games, Supercell, Reddit, and Discord only add to its strength.

But Tencent's path to success has not been without controversy. Critics accuse the company of using unethical tactics such as anticompetitive and human rights violations to get to the top. There are also concerns about the company's close ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

In fact, many voices warn that Tencent is a “weapon of the Chinese government.” The company's board is said to be littered with CCP officials, and the two are so intertwined that some see Tencent as an extension of the CCP itself.

This concern only grows when looking at Tencent's investment in the gaming industry. The company acquired Riot Games in 2011. It also bought stakes in companies like Epic Games and Blizzard. And these were not only good investments, they were politically motivated. These moves gave Tencent, and by extension the CCP, significant power and influence over Western societies.

Its influence was fully demonstrated in the 2019 Hearthstone tournament. When competitor Blitzchung was banned and his award revoked for openly supporting Hong Kong's freedom fighters. The incident highlights the dangers of Tencent's control over information. And its ability to censor overseas.

Concerns about Tencent's authority extend to Reddit's ownership. Tencent invested $150 million in the platform in 2019. Tencent is also involved in the creation and the funding of Discord. In 2016 Tencent fueled Discord for $20 million round.

Amnesty International gave Tencent a score of zero out of 100 for the company's treatment of data. Raising questions about the potential misuse of user information.

The impact of social media on public opinion is well known. And Tencent's ownership of platforms such as his Discord and Reddit only adds concerns. As the technology industry continues to grow, so will Tencent's reach and influence. A company to watch, but also a company to watch out for.

The gaming industry is expected to be worth 321 billion in 2026. It is more than the movie and music industry combined. Initially created for entertainment purposes, games are now weaponized and engaged in politics. The rapidly growing field of gaming is deeply tied to our modern culture. Knowing what lies behind this gigantic movement is now a matter of survival.