Activision Blizzard employees plan walkout following lawsuit

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Blizzard LogoSource: Blizzard Entertainment

Activision Blizzard employees are planning a walkout in protest to the company’s response to the ongoing lawsuit, per Bloomberg. This lawsuit followed a two-year investigation by the State of California, which alleges that Activision Blizzard has fostered a “frat boy” workplace environment, with multiple cases of sexist behavior towards women, alongside allegations of abuse.

The strike is planned for Wednesday outside of Blizzard’s office in Irvine, California. Striking employees are demanding new guidelines for recruiting, interviewing, hiring and promoting, alongside the ability to publicize salary information and a third-party audit of the company leadership and HR department.

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Activision Blizzard’s response to the lawsuit has proven mixed so far, with Blizzard president J. Allen Brack saying that “I feel angry, sad, and a host of other emotions, but I also feel grateful to work alongside a set of leaders and thousands of employees who join me in their commitment to continuous improvement.”

Meanwhile, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs Frances Townsend took a different tone, indicating that the lawsuit contained “distorted, and in many cases false, descriptions of Blizzard’s past.”

In response, over 800 Activision Blizzard employees signed an open letter calling for “immediate corrections” while also noting that “…our values as employees are not accurately reflected in the words and actions of our leadership.”

Activision Blizzard is a massive publisher responsible for large gaming franchises like Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Diablo and more. The company saw record Q4 2020 revenue of over $2.4 billion. Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick has not yet commented on the lawsuit.

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