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The recent report from the Wall Street Journal covers a number of deeply disturbing stories concerning CEO Bobby Kotick and other higher ups at Activision. In September, Kotick was subpoenaed in a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into the cases of alleged misconduct throughout the history of the company. Ergo, the investigation is attempting to work out whether or not Kotick was aware of the goings-on and whether he told other employees, the board of directors and investors.
“Mr. Kotick would not have been informed of every report of misconduct at every Activision Blizzard company, nor would he reasonably be expected to have been updated on all personnel issues,” said spokesperson Helaine Klasky. However, to relay one of the claims in the report, women who worked in the esports part of the publisher sent an email to their management to say they had experienced “unwanted touching, demeaning comments, exclusion from important meetings, and unsolicited comments on their appearance.” Kotick was apparently aware of this email.
Once these stories surfaced, PlayStation boss Jim Ryan contacted Activision to understand what it was doing to combat the issues that have born this culture in its workplaces. “We outreached to Activision immediately after the article was published to express our deep concern and to ask how they plan to address the claims made in the article,” said Ryan in an email to PlayStation employees, according to Bloomberg.
“We do not believe their statements of response properly address the situation,” continued Ryan. On the other hand, Activision said it is “disappointed” in the Wall Street Journal report in a statement from November 17th, and added that it “presents a misleading view of Activision Blizzard and our CEO.”
When the report was published, Activision Blizzard stock price dipped from $72 to $66 over the course of three hours and has continued to decrease over the course of the week.
Featured Image Credit: Steven Simko via Wikipedia, Sony
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