Activision Blizzard boss Bobby Kotick has said he would be open to quitting his role at the head of the company if the firm's ongoing issues cannot be solved "with speed".
Kotick's comments came during a meeting with Activision Blizzard executives late last week, the Wall St Journal reports. Kotick was involved with more than one management meeting last week and was told in no uncertain terms that some employees of the company would only be satisfied when he left. Last week saw walkouts at the firm.
Activision Blizzard is currently facing claims of sexual assault, harassment and misconduct, with more recent reports stating that Kotick himself was aware of the issues at the firm. You can read more about the claims here.
During a recent company-wide meeting, staff were informed that Activision Blizzard's new "zero-tolerance" policy to harassment didn't apply to Kotick – a statement which has predictably caused some degree of upset, as it has been claimed that Kotick himself threatened to kill an employee via a voicemail. However, incidents involving Kotick that happened over a decade ago could not be investigated, staff were informed.
Both Sony and Microsoft are reported to be re-evaluating their relationship with the Call of Duty publisher following the claims.
If Kotick does choose to walk, he could be the beneficiary of a substantial severance package.
lol either way he's laughing all the way to the bank!
How do you punish a guy who already has money and power, but isn't an attention-seeking narcissist? A tax audit, perhaps?
If it cannot be solved with speed, cocaine is another solid option, judging by his face.
So basically he is going nowhere.
He's probably drying his tears right now with some dollar bills
Sometimes you read stuff likes this and all you do is wonder: "What happened to justice?" Whenever somebody commits crimes, they simply get a slap on the wrist, have to say sorry and business continues as usual, it would seem. Sad times
This has to be a joke, right?
He's gone on the record admitting to workplace abuses. He's vehemently defended himself each and every time.
With a man like Kotick in charge, substantial change will never happen.
At this rate, the only way to make this nightmare end is to permanently shutter Activision/Blizzard. And quite frankly, that might just be what the games industry needs.
@Pillowpants what happened to justice is probably going to be people in the next 20 comments saying that he didn't do anything and deserves even less than a slap on the wrist, judging by the last article's comment section and its complaints of "cancel culture"
It seems this will just stay like that, unresolved.
Translation: "I'm going to take my golden parachute and go home!"
It's pointless to scrape away at the mold when we all know the rot it right there at the top.
You can't fix rot, you can only remove it.
Bye bye, Kotick.
So thats why he got that smile
Burn him! Burn him now! Let him buuuurrrrrrnnnn!!!
By the way... who is he?
I was coming here to say "yeah, he's happy to leave as long as he gets a massive payout" and lo and behold, that info has already been exposed and reported on.
It's a shame gamers don't have more of a moral spine and can't just stop buying acti products. It's hard to pay a CEO millions if you don't have the millions to pay them.
So according to the documentation it's cheaper to kill or maim him by about $40,000,000?
@Richnj I've seen a lot of people (too many, really) play the "I don't care about politics, just give me good games" card. As if workplace harassment isn't a civil rights issue that has trickle down effect on anyone who makes a paycheck in any/every industry. As if buying this year's $70 shooting game is somehow mandatory.
there should be a version of "dishonorable discharge" for people like this, where they still have to quit but they cant be rewarded millions for abusing people and covering for other abusers. maybe the company still pays it out but its taxed 99%.
In a perfect world, he would be driven out of the industry and barred from it.
But knowing filth like this, he will most likely fall upwards.
So basically he’s not going anywhere.
You would think that the people who wants him to leave would be happy to see that he might do so. If he leaves he leaves and the employees who wanted him gone gets him gone.
@CharlieGirl I'm with you 100%.
I recently "got told off" for calling out someone's BS about this. This other person said they were going to get the new COD for Xmas to "support the devs" and I non-diplomatically told them they weren't financially supporting the devs, they were financially supporting the abusive environments these devs have to work in.
This is the sort of stuff that sends me in to internally screaming mode.
PC cancel culture gone MAD
All it takes to tarnish this guys reputation and maybe get him to retire with a $100m+ golden parachute is 15 years of near constant criticism of working conditions, dozens of sexual harassment cases settled out of court, at least 2 rape allegations, several damning reports from various media outlets, dozens of staff resignations, years of publicly insulting his female workers and bragging about the "boy's club" at official media events and conventions, a walk out, and generally acting like a horrible human being any time he was on camera?
Let's just face it, the soy boy socialists have already won. No one is safe anymore.
@Richnj Why scream internally when you can do it on Twitter!?
@Richnj I think people don't realize that when a game is released from a major publisher, the dev team already got paid. The publisher commissioned/tasked the dev team with making a game, paid them for it, and that's that. Any profit after that goes right to the AAA publisher. I think people either don't know that, or don't care.
@HeadPirate if this gets deleted i'm going to be so sad
@HeadPirate You had me in the first half, I'm not gonna lie.
@PosterBoy I only use twitter to harass Randy Pitchford.
I really don't care about stories like this. Let me know if something HAPPENS. Otherwise, it's just gossip. And gossip gets in the way of using this medium to have fun, escape, enjoy, feel, be safe, sing, run, dance .... etc.
So, to recap, news: good, happenings: good, gossip: bad.
@Severian That's how they got Al Capone - tax evasion.
Whilst it's true that the development staff tend to not see any further income from a shipped product, what they can expect it to be hired to do more work if that shipped product met or exceeded expectations.
So, it can still support the developers if you buy their products.
@Pillowpants I've been thinking about this for a while. Looks like the default checklist, in this case, is to tweet a statement/apology, step back from your job (sometimes with a check on your pocket), keep a low profile while the storm calms down, meanwhile, your buddies get you another job and that's it. No repercussions, and a new job where they can behave like that again.
They know how to play with the justice system in their favor.
Hmph. Turn on the light and watch the roaches scatter.
@Pillowpants Sadly, justice is seldom just. Its always been that way.
@RupeeClock That's an overly optimistic outlook in an industry where the likes of Activision, EA, and Ubisoft have shuttered entire studios because their games made $9 million instead of $10 million.
@gcunit some vg company bigwig who allowed his company to commit rampant sexual harassment, employee abuse, and destroyed evidence when being investigated.
Sadly too true, an industry that will withhold bonuses because a game got a metacritic score of 84 short of an agreed 85.
Smaller publishers are usually kinder to their developers, but it generally remains that developers whose games sell will be rewarded by their publishers.
If he stays, he'll make bank. If he leaves, he'll make more bank.
And if he leaves, he'll find another place that'll pay him even MORE than Activision, and the cycle continues.
@CharlieGirl Kotick being where he is isn't a political issue, though. He wasn't voted in as part of the country's political process.
Can we stop going after the people and go for the company? We all know that Activsion is terrible and have known this for a very long time, but still are going after individuals rather than the whole company. Because to change Activision you would have to get rid of all of the upper level staff so why not just get rid of the company?
people like kotick, bezos, gates, musk, all have body guards who were probably ex special forces or something. Being hated by the public at large comes with the billionaire club membership regardless of whether you're a decent human being or scum like kotick.
Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft and Steam etc should get together and set some kinda rules that you treat your staff with basic human rights and dignity standard or your games get pulled from our stores.
Too much bad practices from likes of crunch to horrible things like in this case
Wanting to "fix" this kind of problem "with speed" is apparently what got him in hot water to begin with.
He might want to adopt a more open and flexible approach if he really wants to stick around.
They need to get him out of there and give him nothing. They need to screw him over like he has done to so many other people.
@Pod Exactly... these kind of problems don't just get corrected overnight. You need to solve these issues with time and proper management. Being expeditious about this just results in the problem repeating itself.
I'll translate that from CEO PR peak to ordinary human speak:
"I'm willing to ditch the company and stop slowly sucking it dry if I can pay myself a bonus of 5 ordinary human lifetime incomes in one day, even if that kills the company, and instantly become CEO of another multi billion company. Repeat. Success."
People complain about inflation but these kind of stupid big numbers are the main reason for all price skyrocketing. Money looses its value when idiots get overpaid.
Hell no. He doesn't deserve to be rewarded for leaving. Fire his ass now.
Everyone's a victim these days. We've all had jerk bosses and coworkers. We normally just carry on and do our jobs.
@Kevember a jerk boss gives you deadlines that they know you can’t make, this guy fostered a culture of “constant sexual harassment” and discrimination.
I don't know what's worse, the billionaire making money off other people's work or the puppets who have been conditioned to think that there's nothing wrong with that.
Because that will show him. As long as he is wealthy, he will ALWAYS win
Lmao either way he wins. It’s pretty much if he decides to retire early or not.
@Roibeard64 Steam doesnt have to worry since Activision stopped putting their games their long ago (except for Spyro but still)
This is what happens in a masagony society where no punishment or stripped of benefits will never stop this good boys club that rewards one of their own. He helped get those boardmembers they also need a house cleaning and stripped of everything.
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