The CEO of American game producer Activision Blizzard, Bobby Kotick, says measures will be taken against discrimination and sexual misconduct in the workplace. In a letter, more than 2,600 employees condemned the board’s initial response to a lawsuit in California.
A California government agency is suing the company behind the hit series ‘Call of Duty’ because of a culture of bullying in the workplace. These include sexual harassment, overt discrimination and unequal pay for women. The charge was preceded by two years of investigation.
In an initial response, the board denied the allegations, calling the lawsuit “irresponsible behaviour by state bureaucrats.” However, many employees did not receive that reaction, who expressed their displeasure in a letter signed by more than 2,600 of the 9,500 employees. They also planned a work stoppage.
In a letter to the staff, CEO Bobby Kotick is now going through the dust. “Honestly, our initial reactions to the issues we face together, and to your concerns, were tone-deaf,” he writes. “I’m sorry we haven’t shown appropriate empathy and understanding.”
Executives will be immediately evaluated, and their contract will be terminated if they have not adequately responded to complaints. Kotick also wants to intervene in the games that the company publishes. “We’ve heard input from employees and players that some content in our games is inappropriate. So we’re removing that content.”