“We, the undersigned, no longer have confidence in the leadership of Bobby Kotick as the CEO of Activision Blizzard. The information that has come to light about his behaviors and practices in the running of our companies runs counter to the culture and integrity we require of our leadership—and directly conflicts with the initiatives started by our peers. We ask that Bobby Kotick remove himself as CEO of Activision Blizzard, and that shareholders be allowed to select the new CEO without the input of Bobby, who we are aware owns a substantial portion of the voting rights of the shareholders.”
As of now, over 1000 voices are screaming that message. Each one of them has been impacted in some way by the ongoing controversies plaguing Activision Blizzard, and hope beyond hope that they’ll be listened to.
Typically, when an employee of the games industry speaks out against their company, they do so anonymously – fearing retaliation and being blacklisted from a job they’ve come to love. This petition isn’t a typical outcry. It lists names, departments, and titles of those chanting in unison. Perhaps emboldened by the state of California getting involved, bringing the hammer down and releasing an avalanche of information that the company has yet to fully recover from, these workers feel justified in putting a name to their claims. This tide in particular comes just after some information about Kotick’s involvement with several claims of sexual harassment, either enabling or participating in a toxic workplace culture.
As of right now, Kotick seems to have the backing of Activision Blizzard’s board of directors, as well as several major shareholders. Despite their numbers, the employees still face an uphill battle if they want a change like this to happen. But if these changing tides are any indication, it’s a fight they could very well win.