A new letter signed by past and present employees says the company’s apparent response to sexual harassment is “abhorrent and insulting.” This new letter is the framework for the Activision Blizzard lawsuit that’s heading its way.
If you have over 2,000 employees all sign a letter condemning the place they work’s take on sexual conduct, I think you’ve got a problem. That’s exactly what happened at Activision Blizzard.
The company has been criticized over and over again for a toxic “bro culture” and continual sexual misconduct of women. Sadly, this seems to be an apparent trend in the gaming industry as a whole. Have you seen how women get treated in online games?
The petition came after Blizzard developers took to social media to criticize reported statements issued on recent company allegations.
Of course, Activision Blizzard has denied the accusations, saying the claims were false or distorted.
Here’s the email from the company’s vice president of corporate affairs, Fran Townsend:
A recently-filed lawsuit presented a distorted and untrue picture of our company, including factually incorrect, old, and out of context stories – some from more than a decade ago,” Townsend reportedly said in the email.”
“We work at a company that truly values equality and fairness,” she added.
“Rest assured that leadership is committed to continuing to maintain a safe, fair, and inclusive workplace. We cannot let egregious actions of others, and a truly meritless and irresponsible lawsuit, damage our culture of respect and equal opportunity for all employees.”
The company’s statements in response to the lawsuit “are abhorrent and insulting to all that we believe our company should stand for,” the petition said.
“To put it clearly and unequivocally, our values as employees are not accurately reflected in the words and actions of our leadership.”
The petition has called for resignation for Townsend in her position of executive sponsor in the women’s network. People want these allegations to be taken seriously and want the company to demonstrate compassion for harassment and assault that the company has undoubtedly been a part of.
So far, Townsend has remained silent on the issue.
Even more company employees are taking a stand on social media and coming out with their personal stories. The company’s social media accounts haven’t tweeted in the last week.
Let’s see how the company responds. It’s time for this horrific environment to go away. The Activision Blizzard lawsuit will be no joke. If this changes the industry for the better, then it’s a good thing.