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Quidditch Rebrands as Quadball to Distance Sport from J.K. Rowling’s “Anti-Trans” Beliefs

"LGBTQ+ advocacy groups like GLAAD and the Human Rights Campaign as well as the three lead actors in the Harry Potter film series have criticized her stances"

quidditch name change quadball jk rowling
J.K Rowling (photo by John Phillips/Getty Images) and Quadball (photo courtesy of Major League Quadball)
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    The fictional game turned real-life sport quidditch is now known as quadball in large part due to the “anti-trans positions” of its creator, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling. US Quadball (USQ) and Major League Quadball (MLQ) formally announced the name change on Tuesday, July 19th, with the International Quidditch Association (IQA) soon to follow suit.

    In their statements, the organizations named Rowling’s history of transphobic comments dating back to December 2019 as one of two primary reasons for the rebranding.

    “First, J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter book series, has increasingly come under scrutiny for her anti-trans positions,” the organizations wrote. “LGBTQ+ advocacy groups like GLAAD and the Human Rights Campaign as well as the three lead actors in the Harry Potter film series have criticized her stances.”

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    The name change will also give quadball the opportunity to grow into a “mainstay of organized sports,” unfettered by the trademark for “quidditch” being owned by Warner Bros. As a comparison, the organizations cited the rebranding of ultimate Frisbee to ultimate.

    “Bringing full creative control of the name of our sport to the vibrant community of players and fans that has grown and sustained it will allow our organizations to take the next step,” said MLQ Co-Commissioner Amanda Dallas. “We are now able to pursue the kinds of opportunities that our community has dreamed about for years.”

    In case you were wondering, quadball refers to both the number of balls and the number of positions in the sport. According to USQ and MLQ, the name received “strong support” from players and fans. The rules of the sport will remain the same.

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    USQ has adopted the name change immediately, with MLQ waiting until the conclusion of the 2022 MLQ Championship in August and IQA working on a timeline following the European Games.

     

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