UbiSoft’s favorite Software Company
Two days ago (at time of writing), the State of California filed a suite against Activision Blizzard for several counts of sexual harassment, abuse, and other related crimes. Since then I’ve ben soaking in it, so to speak, too stunned and bummed out to really write about it.
In a way this is surprising, seeing as I have seemingly written about it so many times. This is, by far, not the first time Blizzard has had this sort of scandal. The rot really does seem to reach back to the origins of the company, settled in around the roots. Time and time again they claim they’re turning around. Time and time again I have opined that maybe, just maybe, they’re turning a corner. And time and time again, they disappoint us.
First of all, I want to say, I believe these charges, I believe the women that have spoken up, and I believe the women that have subsequently joined in to confirm.
But I also have to say that simple belief, simple support, is not enough.
These women aren’t the source of the problem. It’s the men they work with. And if you are in the software industry, it’s you, as well. I’m not saying you’re guilty of harassment and assault. I’m saying that you may be letting little things slide that are Not Okay. When you hear someone disrespected, when you hear someone being abused, hell, if you hear someone BRAGGING about it – it’s your job, as an ally, if you are in fact an ally, to push back. To shut then down. To make them see the light.
Because that’s the source. People just “going along”. Refusing to “rock the boat”. Not “wanting to embarrass a friend.” I mean, seriously, what kind of friends you got if they’re rapist-adjacent?
As men it’s time we stood up against this shit whenever we can. I’m not talking full on drama queen here, but just against the little stuff. The stuff you can get away with without getting in trouble (though getting the rep as a troublemaker in this particular case isn’t a bad thing, IMO).
Let’s talk (my) history. (in no way exhaustive – I got too depressed to keep going)
- Blizz invites a known homophobe to sing with L90ETC
- He also has an in game character that they never took out even after “apologizing”
- Gamers are responsible for the behavior of gamers and the culture around the game.
- Gratuitous rape culture
- It’s a boys trip
- Geek is
Here’s the current scandal du jour.
- Blizz charged with allegations of sexual misconduct
- Here’s the actual legal filing
- Here’s their trained flying monkey, Fran Townsend (a known torture apologist for the Bush admin) refuting the original allegations.
- Here’s J Allen Brak being shocked – shocked! – at these allegations and promising to “take it seriously”.
- Also, here’s J. Allen Brak (also named in the allegations) not taking it seriously in 2010.
A lot of people have cancelled their subs. I’m not one of them. Why? Because I haven’t payed for a subscription in years, since the Token came out. I’ve been paying for my game time using auction sales. I am a burden to Blizzard. I will continue to do so until I run out of gold – which is at minimum 2 years from now.
Also, switching to another game is silly. If you think Blizz is alone in all this, you have paid zero attention to the news.
All I’m gonna say is Riot and Ubisoft are big fans of Blizzard right now.