After initially removing the emote on the 2.5.2 Phase 2 Burning Crusade Classic PTR, players were wondering if this change would reach the Shadowlands version of World of Warcraft, and now that the 9.1.5 PTR is live, there is confirmation that the emote has been reworked to match the BC version.
Players will no longer be able to /spit on other players, instead, the chat will read <player> spits on the ground.
These changes come as an attempt for Blizzard to clean up the toxicity in the World of Warcraft community among other changes like in-game chat reporting improvements also coming in 9.1.5.
World Of Warcraft: The Spit Emote No Longer Works On Other Players In Shadowlands Patch 9.1.5
Initially, players were quick to assume that this change was a way to protect Blizzard's sales, as there are many addons created to spit on anyone using a store mount.
It is no surprise that there is a high level of toxicity in World of Warcraft, and these changes are definitely a step in the right direction whether you are for or against Blizzard's decision.
Similar changes were made in Battle for Azeroth, where the whistle emote was changed to be less of a "catcalling" sound to again prevent the emote from being used in a toxic way.
This change was also implemented into The Burning Crusade Classic with the most recent update.
While this is not game-changing, Blizzard needs to ensure that they enforce their new chat reporting changes if they really want to change player behavior in World of Warcraft.