In an opening statement to investors, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick addressed the company’s ongoing sexual harassment lawsuit and action surrounding further allegations.
Speaking to investors during a second-quarter 2021 financial results call yesterday (August 3), Kotick has stated “people will be held accountable for their actions” regarding allegations of sexual harassment and a “frat boy culture” at Activision Blizzard.
Regarding recent commitments to change, Kotick said:
“That commitment means that we will not just terminate employees where appropriate, but will also terminate any manager or leader found to have impeded the integrity of our processes for evaluating claims and imposing appropriate consequences.” (thanks, PC Gamer)
In a press release following the call, Activision Blizzard also laid out plans for changes within their workplace. This includes using a law firm “to ensure we have and maintain best practices to promote a respectful and inclusive workplace”.
The company has also committed to providing more resources to its Compliance and Employee Relations team, “strengthening our capabilities in investigation employee concerns.”
today in the Q2 earnings call, executives said "…we are taking actions to address the concerns of employees…" which is weird, because thus far, none of the employee demands have been ACKNOWLEDGED, let alone met. #ABetterABK pic.twitter.com/uoGu0dGB94
— Nikki 'Gazelle' Crenshaw 💙 (@Gaiazelle) August 3, 2021
The press release also notes “we will be evaluating managers and leaders across the company with respect to their compliance with our processes for evaluating claims and imposing appropriate consequences.”
As part of a company outlook segment, Activision Blizzard also claims:
“If we experience prolonged periods of adverse publicity, significantly reduced productivity or other negative consequences relating to this matter, our business likely would be adversely impacted.”
This follows Blizzard Entertainment president J. Allen Brack leaving the company after being named in the lawsuit against Activision Blizzard. Brack has been replaced by Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra.
The only other person named in the lawsuit, Alex Afrasiabi, was fired from his role as Creative Director for World Of Warcraft due to misconduct in 2020.
Activision Blizzard has been criticized for its actions following the lawsuit, including hiring a union-busting law firm and an initial response that did not “accurately reflect” the values of Activision Blizzard employees.