Recent ban waves? I quit wow a long time ago. Right about the time that I realized that it was just repetition, nothing was "new". If I need an MMO fix I go play on a private server for 5 or 10 minutes.
About the influences. Tons of the quests in WoW are in reference to something. Anything from books (Dune) to video games (Zelda, Super Mario etc.). When I came across these, I felt ripped off that Blizzard couldn't come up with something on their own. There are too many similarities to be just passed off as influences.
Edit: I for one will probably never play SC2. When Starcraft was first released, I remember playing it every day on Battlenet for years. But now I am sick of the half assed cartoon graphics and elaborate advertising campaigns of games that do not deliver.
-Quest: Reunite the turtles Tort and Tooga (Tortuga from Pirates)
-NPC: Ernest Nesigway (he gives out the big game hunting quests)
-NPC: Daisy Duke or something like that in the Shimmering Flats race track. Even looks like her.
-Item: The racers in Shimmering flats looking almost exactly like a pod racer from SWep1
Those are just some that I can think of off the top of my head. Just a parady to me.