Since July, 37 Activision Blizzard employees have been fired or forced out, and another 44 have been disciplined as the company tries to address allegations of harassment and misconduct, a spokesman said. Wall Street Journal. In October, the company said more than 20 people had traveled and at least 20 others had been disciplined.
According to the report, the game publisher was to share a summary of this information publicly before the holiday. However, the hard-hitting CEO Bobby Kotick is said to have pulled the plug on the fact that due to concerns it would make Activision's problems seem even worse.
The spokesman rejected "Mr. Kotick's allegation," as well as allegations that employees had filed about 700 reports of fraud and other problems since July, when Activision was sued by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). The agency claimed that the company promoted a "frat boy" culture where discrimination and sexual harassment were widespread.
Former Blizzard President J. Allen Brack, who in the DFEH case was accused of taking "no effective remedial action" to alleviate sexual harassment, left the company shortly after filing. Activision Blizzard's chief HR officer Jesse Meschuk has left, and so has Diablo 4 game director Luis Barriga, chief designer Jesse McCree (after whom one Overwatch character was previously named) and World of Warcraft designer Jonathan LeCraft.
In November became WSJ reported that Kotick had known about many of the worst cases of abuse for years and that he may have protected some employees who were accused of harassment. Many Activision Blizzard employees staged a work stoppage in the wake of the report and about 2,000 signed a petition urging him to resign. The Activision Board of Directors has issued a statement of support to Kotick.
Along with employees, the treasurer and investors (the share price has fallen by almost 30% since July) have expressed concern about the current issues. Several Activision Blizzard partners have condemned the company or even reassessed their relationship with it.
PlayStation, Xbox and Nintendo executives criticized the company in notes to their employees. Xbox CEO Phil Spencer said last week that Microsoft has "changed the way we do certain things with" Activision, but did not share details. Also this month, Lego postponed one Overwatch 2 set to arrive in February while evaluating its partnership with Activision Blizzard.
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