Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick Apologizes For ‘Tone Deaf’ Statement, Read Full Letter Here

Activision CEO Bobby Kotick has issued a letter to his workers following the news {that a} walkout is deliberate for tomorrow. The walkout is the latest step employees are taking to enhance work situations following particulars of a lawsuit in opposition to Activision Blizzard from the state of California over reported gender discrimination and sexual harassment within the office going public. 

Game Informer has obtained a copy of the letter from Kotick to the corporate as a complete, stating that it has “been a difficult and upsetting week.” The letter goes on to denounce the preliminary Activision Blizzard response, agreeing with the neighborhood that the messaging was “tone deaf” and that it’s “imperative” that the groups come collectively and “acknowledge all perspectives and experiences and respect the feelings of those who have been mistreated in any way.” He added, “I’m sorry that we did not provide the right empathy and understanding.”

The letter continues, saying:

Many of you may have informed us that energetic outreach comes from caring so deeply for the Company. That so many individuals have reached out and shared ideas, solutions, and highlighted alternatives for enchancment is a robust reflection of how you take care of our communities of colleagues and gamers – and for one another. Ensuring that now we have a protected and welcoming work atmosphere is my highest precedence. The management workforce has heard you loud and clear.

We are taking swift motion to be the compassionate, caring firm you got here to work for and to make sure a protected atmosphere. There is not any place anyplace at our Company for discrimination, harassment, or unequal remedy of any sort.

We will do every part doable to ensure that collectively, we enhance and construct the type of inclusive office that’s important to foster creativity and inspiration.

Kotick additionally particulars a direct plan of motion, with the primary mandate of enlisting the assistance of an exterior legislation agency known as WilmerHale. WilmerHale will examine present insurance policies inside the firm to “ensure that we have and maintain the best practices to promote a healthy and inclusive workplace.” Given the inflammatory and egregious nature of the allegations at hand, WilmerHale is more likely to face an particularly difficult job. 

The CEO additionally supplies contact info for Stephanie Avakian, who’s revealed to be most just lately the Director of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement. This contact info is for use by anybody that feels or has felt uncomfortable whereas working at Activision Blizzard at the side of the continuing investigation. 

As for what’s subsequent forward of the courtroom proceedings going ahead, Kotick has listed the beneath actionable gadgets in response to the aforementioned lawsuit: 

  1. Employee Support. We will proceed to research each declare and won’t hesitate to take decisive motion. To strengthen our capabilities on this space, we’re including further senior workers and different assets to each the Compliance workforce and the Employee Relations workforce.
  2. Listening Sessions. We know lots of you may have impressed concepts on easy methods to enhance our tradition. We will likely be creating protected areas moderated by third events so that you can converse out and share areas for enchancment.
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  3. Personnel Changes. We are instantly evaluating managers and leaders throughout the Company. Anyone discovered to have impeded the integrity of our processes for evaluating claims and imposing acceptable penalties will likely be terminated.
  4. Hiring Practices. Earlier this yr, I despatched an e mail requiring all hiring managers to make sure they’ve numerous candidate slates for all open positions. We will likely be including compliance assets to make sure that our hiring managers are, in actual fact, adhering to this directive.
  5. In-game Changes. We have heard the enter from worker and participant communities that a few of our in-game content material is inappropriate. We are eradicating that content material.

The message ends with a message of assist and a need to supply a “welcoming, comfortable, and safe” work tradition. To be taught extra concerning the harassment lawsuit, please check with our previous coverage here

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