The Activision Blizzard sexual harassments and discrimination allegations from this past Summer rocked the video game industry and the video game community to its very core. While there was more information trickling out from that point on, a major bombshell has just dropped from The Wall Street Journal, which was also followed up by Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier. According to both sources, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick was completely aware of the aforementioned allegations, and also attempted to minimize the totality and severity of the situation for both the employees and the board of directors. Due to these new revelations, roughly hundreds of employees from Activision Blizzard announced that they will stage a walkout, which they did for the duration of the day, and demanded that Bobby Kotick resign from his position immediately.
We have instituted our own Zero Tolerance Policy. We will not be silenced until Bobby Kotick has been replaced as CEO, and continue to hold our original demand for Third-Party review by an employee-chosen source. We are staging a Walkout today. We welcome you to join us.
— ABetterABK 💙 ABK Workers Alliance (@ABetterABK) November 16, 2021
In a special message video message that was put as a transcript on the company’s actual website, Kotick denounced the Wall Street Journal report, and stated that the situation remains very important and very serious to him. “Anyone who doubts my conviction to be the most welcoming, inclusive workplace doesn’t really appreciate how important this is to me.” This along with the initial report further fueled the decision for the employees to stage a walkout, but an additional tidbit that was revealed later in the day that more than likely cemented the choice to walkout. According to Schreier, the Activision Blizzard board of directors announced that they were standing by Kotick and are apparently confident in his leadership, before, now, and for the future.
In response to an explosive story reporting that Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick knew about various sexual misconduct and harassment allegations and was himself a perpetrator, and an employee walkout today demanding Kotick’s resignation, the board says it is standing by him pic.twitter.com/29q5M2VxIH
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) November 16, 2021
As we mentioned earlier, the Activision Blizzard sexual harassment and discrimination allegations that were brought to light this past Summer unleashed a wave of backlash against the company and a slew of legal actions. It began when the state of California filed a lawsuit against the company for the unacceptable workplace environment, which was then followed by the first employee walkout the same month. The very next month, Blizzard President J. Allen Brack resigned from his post, but this was only the beginning for the company. In September alone, Blizzard employees filed their own lawsuit for unfair labor practice, they were subpoenaed by the SEC, and they paid an $18 million settlement for alleged gender discrimination. Then in October, another motion was filed to the EEOC by the Communications Workers of America.
With today’s new enlightening information, and with so many damning allegations already in place, it’s hard to say what Bobby Kotick and Activision Blizzard will do next. Either way, they currently face the wrath of not just their employees, but essentially the entire video game community.