A new report reveals more about the culture and abuses of the “frat boy” on Activision Blizzard

A new report reveals more about the culture and abuses of the “frat boy” on activision blizzard

A new one Bloomberg The report has revealed more details about the alleged culture of the "frat boy" in Activision Blizzard, including a 2018 incident in which Derrick Ingalls, then head of Blizzard information, addressed questions about the departure of the boss of technology Ben Kilgore with a dirty joke about having sex. with subordinates.

"Don't sleep with your assistant," Ingalls said of Kilgore's sudden departure in 2018. "But if you're going to sleep with your assistant, don't stop."

Blizzard had a “rock star mentality,” according to a former employee, who was enabled by senior management, who hired mostly men and would ignore inappropriate behavior. “These developers were untouchable,” they said. "Not only could they tell you how to do your job, but they had so much power, they could do whatever they wanted with their other powerful friends."

According to the report, the success of World of Warcraft was a major contributor to this culture: another former employee related a conversation in which a senior Blizzard executive told his staff that fans and colleagues considered them superstars in the industry and suggested that they could benefit sexually from this worship. Men also outnumbered women in the company, with a 4: 1 ratio according to a 2017 internal report, which only made things worse.

“Because there were few women, the women had to compete to stand out with their peers,” said another former employee. "It created a really toxic competitive environment, not just between the men and women of Blizzard, but the women themselves."

Instead of serving as an adult in the room, Activision, which merged with Blizzard in 2008, only made matters worse: current and former employees said Activision's oversight came with deadlines. difficult and reduced resources, which led to an increase in workload and stress, and "exhaustion, anxiety, depression and more."

At the same time, Blizzard’s reputation as an essential studio fell by the wayside, through blunders, layoffs, fake sports passes and unexpectedly disappointing game releases: the long-awaited Warcraft 3: Reforged was a major death blow to the launch due to "mismanagement and reduction of costs, "and World of Warcraft has also stumbled badly.

Despite outrage over its entrenched toxicity, the price of Activision Blizzard shares has begun to rebound after strong financial results in the second quarter of 2021. But it is still under significant pressure: in addition to demand for discrimination and sexual harassment filed against the California Department of Employment and Fair Housing company in July, shareholders filed a class action lawsuit accusing Activision Blizzard of covering up the investigation that led to it, while employees have continued to backtrack. force against CEO Bobby Kotick’s promises of reform. The Overwatch League is also losing corporate sponsors: yesterday, Coca-Cola and State Farm said they were re-evaluating their ties to the league, and the Cheez-It and Pringles logos have also been removed from the Overwatch League website.

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