Activision Blizzard agrees to pay $18 million to settle EEOC probe

Lakados

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Just giving up and not trying a defense does not mean much, it is the smart thing to do. I am not saying that nothing happened but some of the crazier allegations seem hard to believe.
That's the craziest part, but honestly those extreme allegations sort of make it easier to believe because some of them are so fucked up that I can't imagine somebody made them up. Like there are a million things in there about rude and inappropriate comments and the standard issues that you would expect that could be a matter of perspective and possibly up to debate on what the intent of the commenter as opposed to how the comments were received, but then there are those gems like the managers gifting female employees with dildos and buttplugs at staff Christmas parties that really make you go WTF!!!
 

Lakados

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Wonder how long until this thread gets locked or moved to the cesspit that is Soapshit.

From reading the article and some of the posts in this thread, it's unclear that humanity has a future.
Neckbeards gonna Neckbeard?
 

Lakados

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And seriously, if these guys have time to get drunk and trade bathroom photos of the women that work there, probably should do a staff reduction because it seems there is too much free time.
Probably why every project they have is behind schedule.... but seriously the Investors are livid right now here's their comment on the situation.

“In our view, Blizzard’s toxic workplace culture is ultimately a consequence of board failure: Either the board failed to put in place mechanisms to ensure that it would be aware of widespread abusive workplace practices, or it was aware of those widespread abuses and decided to tolerate and accept them. In either case, going forward Blizzard needs new board leadership.”

They are calling for the removal of the entire board over this.

Ultimately I think this is going to be good for Blizzard, they haven't put out anything that is actually good in a long while and a serious shake-up is needed. Just wish that shake-up came in a very different way.
 

Darunion

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Probably why every project they have is behind schedule.... but seriously the Investors are livid right now here's their comment on the situation.

“In our view, Blizzard’s toxic workplace culture is ultimately a consequence of board failure: Either the board failed to put in place mechanisms to ensure that it would be aware of widespread abusive workplace practices, or it was aware of those widespread abuses and decided to tolerate and accept them. In either case, going forward Blizzard needs new board leadership.”

They are calling for the removal of the entire board over this.

Ultimately I think this is going to be good for Blizzard, they haven't put out anything that is actually good in a long while and a serious shake-up is needed. Just wish that shake-up came in a very different way.
Very much agreed. It has felt like the heart and soul of the company has been missing a long time in their games. Instead of being something they really cared about, they felt like "meh good enough, release it".
 

Crotan

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I don't think anyone has suggested that flirting be off limits in all settings. Just maybe don't do it at work.

And totally agreed. The art of subtlety is unfortunately a lost one on many men.

In reality it's a long game of numbers. Be friendly, kind, smart, funny and interesting, (I know, a big ask for some people) and talk to many women. Don't try to make it about anything but a friendly chat, at least not until way down the line. Keep in mind that women and men are more alike than many guys seem to think. Just like men, women will innately find some guys attractive, and others not, and it is not a winning strategy to try to "convert" them. (I know, a lot of movies in our culture seem to push this, the "Say Anything" agenda, that a guy needs to be persistent and convert the girl that he wants, but that is just some unhelpful creepy stereotype that couldn't be further from the truth.)

Instead, play the numbers game, be ready to cut your losses quickly move on to those who are interested instead. If you are doing it right, you will wind up having the opposite problem. Sitting down at a bar and - in your mind - just having friendly small talk with your bar stool neighbors only to realize that you have to awkwardly turn them down because you hadn't intended it that way.




I tend to be one of the ones who agrees with the non-fraternization policies many organizations have. Not only can flirting at work make for an uncomfortable work environment, at least for about half the workforce, but I have seen what can happen when things go wrong, nascent relationships fall apart, colleagues pick sides and it turns ugly.

It really shouldn't be so hard to keep work professional. Heck, I don't even make friends at work. Work is work. That's where I make my living. It is essential so that I can eat and pay the mortgage. I don't want to do ANYTHING AT ALL that might jeopardize that. I keep my opinions (on non-work topics) to myself, I don't socialize with anyone at work outside of work, and I sure as hell don't flirt with anyone there. Topics like religion, money, politics. All of that stays at home.

I make my friends and do my dating (or at least did when I was single) on my own time.

As Tony Soprano famously said: "I don't shit where I eat".

When done right, work is a sterile environment where you keep everyone at arms length. Be friendly. Make meaningless chit chat about your weekend or your kids or whatever (just don't bring up anything potentially controversial) and then leave it at that. Make an appearance at the company holiday party. Don't be the guy who got drunk at the company holiday party. Make friendly chit chat and retire from the party early. Focus on getting your work done instead of making friends. Treat work like a delicate game of geopolitical negotiation. Know what to say, and what to keep to yourself and never cross that line.

If your colleagues at work are your drinking buddies, you are doing it wrong.

I want to start by saying everything about what was going on is/was disgusting. This was clearly well beyond flirting. What was going on was abhorrent. An employee committed suicide on a company trip for fucks sake. If that doesn't give the HR department a gut check, they should all be removed.

Then of course 18 million is a joke, and honestly offensive for a company this profitable. Especially when human life was lost because of the environment.

With all of that out of the way, I have to disagree about the whole flirting at work thing, this is America and in tech, many of these people will be working 80 hr work weeks at said company. They'll be spending more time with their coworkers than they would with their own children if they had any. So while it's easy to tell people to be corporate drones/cogs, to threat them as humans is to expect some emotional connections and of course the downsides of that you've pointed out.
 

Lakados

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I want to start by saying everything about what was going on is/was disgusting. This was clearly well beyond flirting. What was going on was abhorrent. An employee committed suicide on a company trip for fucks sake. If that doesn't give the HR department a gut check, they should all be removed.

Then of course 18 million is a joke, and honestly offensive for a company this profitable. Especially when human life was lost because of the environment.

With all of that out of the way, I have to disagree about the whole flirting at work thing, this is America and in tech, many of these people will be working 80 hr work weeks at said company. They'll be spending more time with their coworkers than they would with their own children if they had any. So while it's easy to tell people to be corporate drones/cogs, to threat them as humans is to expect some emotional connections and of course the downsides of that you've pointed out.
$18M is just what they are required to put aside to pay restitution damages, there hasn't been any mention of how much they are having to shell out to the EEOC.

"As part of the settlement, Activision Blizzard will create an $18 million fund to compensate employees who claim damages."

I am very curious to know what the rest of the settlement entales.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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I want to start by saying everything about what was going on is/was disgusting. This was clearly well beyond flirting. What was going on was abhorrent. An employee committed suicide on a company trip for fucks sake. If that doesn't give the HR department a gut check, they should all be removed.

Then of course 18 million is a joke, and honestly offensive for a company this profitable. Especially when human life was lost because of the environment.

With all of that out of the way, I have to disagree about the whole flirting at work thing, this is America and in tech, many of these people will be working 80 hr work weeks at said company. They'll be spending more time with their coworkers than they would with their own children if they had any. So while it's easy to tell people to be corporate drones/cogs, to threat them as humans is to expect some emotional connections and of course the downsides of that you've pointed out.

80 hour work week?

I work in product development, and there is no salary or experience in the world that would be enough to make me put up with that.

Don't get me wrong. I understand crunch times, and I'm willing to put in extra work short term, buy my expectation is that if I flex and put in some extra time at crunch times, the opposite should also be true, and that my long term average should be just about 40 hours a week.

Anything other than that, and I'm out the door faster than you can say "work life balance".

The rampant abuse of labor in some fields is not just wrong it ought to be illegal.

In fact, the intent of Congress when they passed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) into law in 1938 was for "exempt" status only to apply to executives and above, which is how the term "management" was used back then. Industry of course then turned around and classified everyone in non-union type hourly roles as Administrative/Management and the abuse continued.

Arguing that overworked tech workers should find romance at work because they don't have time outside of work is like suggesting it's fine, Amazon workers who don't get bathroom breaks can just shit on the floor. No problem.
 

Lakados

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Arguing that overworked tech workers should find romance at work because they don't have time outside of work is like suggesting it's fine, Amazon workers who don't get bathroom breaks can just shit on the floor. No problem.
I need to find the article, but I recall reading that Amazon's own algorithm started recommending Adult Diapers to their employees when they were online shopping.
 

Crotan

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80 hour work week?

I work in product development, and there is no salary or experience in the world that would be enough to make me put up with that.

Don't get me wrong. I understand crunch times, and I'm willing to put in extra work short term, buy my expectation is that if I flex and put in some extra time at crunch times, the opposite should also be true, and that my long term average should be just about 40 hours a week.

Anything other than that, and I'm out the door faster than you can say "work life balance".

The rampant abuse of labor in some fields is not just wrong it ought to be illegal.

In fact, the intent of Congress when they passed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) into law in 1938 was for "exempt" status only to apply to executives and above, which is how the term "management" was used back then. Industry of course then turned around and classified everyone in non-union type hourly roles as Administrative/Management and the abuse continued.

Arguing that overworked tech workers should find romance at work because they don't have time outside of work is like suggesting it's fine, Amazon workers who don't get bathroom breaks can just shit on the floor. No problem.

I'm not saying they should, just that a lot of times we write about how we wish the world was. Not how it is. I wish all humans had the opportunity of work life balance, but that is seldom more than a motto in a pamphlet, seen alongside fast paced and high energy. I was just trying to express a little bit of empathy as a counterpoint to your human beings should be toiling away and nothing more in the workplace. And in no way, do I support the environment that activision blizzard allowed to fester.
 

sleepeeg3

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You can pretty much sum up this post as "I know absolutely nothing about the case and know little about sexual harassment as a whole, but I will presume to know more than the EEOC investigators, eyewitnesses and victims."

At BlizzCon, one of the main harassers (Alex Afrasiabi) had a suite that men nicknamed the "Cosby suite" — you know, after the self-admitted rapist and harasser. There are group photos in that suite around a portrait of Cosby. Numerous men at Blizzard knew what was going on; they either supported it or deliberately ignored it.

The problem isn't an attempt to 'divide' genders or criminalize flirting. It's that sexual harassment has either been encouraged, tolerated or swept under the rug, and people are just now hearing about unacceptable behavior that has gone on for years. People like you are the problem, not the women making complaints.
I think you pretty much proved the point that this is a divisive issue used to divide people. Nice work with the character attacks, too. You got me - I do Jell-O advertisements in my spare time!

The problem is you have these "chief people officers" whose sole role is to instill fear in employees.
Fear that every word or action between another employee (since genders no longer matter) could be used against them.
Fear that if you don't promote X% of women/race and pay them some unspecified amount, your company will be sued.
Now everyone is walking on eggshells, people get promoted that shouldn't and work becomes a humorless, soulless pit.
Forget shows like "The Office." We're all robots now.

If there is a point where things go too far, that needs to be clearly listed in a company's code of conduct.
Punish the people who break the company's code. Let work be fun within the company's and legal boundaries.
Then you can get back to letting a company composed primarily of men continue to make games primarily for men.
 
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Just giving up and not trying a defense does not mean much, it is the smart thing to do. I am not saying that nothing happened but some of the crazier allegations seem hard to believe.
Eh . . . you have to realize, a lot these guys are socially awkward dorks who probably couldn't get a girl to give them the time of day when they were coming of age. The whole "dude bro" accusation doesn't really fit, because the kind of people we think of as "dude bros" many women actually find attractive. Guys who grew up to become game devs? Not so much in most cases.

So these dorks never learned how to interact with women in any kind of normal way. All the stories I've heard about what happened sound like nerds unleashing their incel frustrations in both goofy and horrifying ways.
 

Aurelius

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I think you pretty much proved the point that this is a divisive issue used to divide people. Nice work with the character attacks, too. You got me - I do Jell-O advertisements in my spare time!

The problem is you have these "chief people officers" whose sole role is to instill fear in employees.
Fear that every word or action between another employee (since genders no longer matter) could be used against them.
Fear that if you don't promote X% of women/race and pay them some unspecified amount, your company will be sued.
Now everyone is walking on eggshells, people get promoted that shouldn't and work becomes a humorless, soulless pit.
Forget shows like "The Office." We're all robots now.

If there is a point where things go too far, that needs to be clearly listed in a company's code of conduct.
Punish the people who break the company's code. Let work be fun within the company's and legal boundaries.
Then you can get back to letting a company composed primarily of men continue to make games primarily for men.
You explicitly stated you knew nothing about the case, but then proceeded to make pronouncements as if you were an expert on the situation. That's not a character attack — that's pointing out that you were speaking from a position of willful ignorance. You want me to change my tune on that? Read up on the case and the extensive evidence behind it.

And while I'm not giving carte blanche to companies, if you live in "fear..." you're probably the kind of person who needed a check on their behavior. It's really, really easy to not flirt or harass people at work, you know that, right? You can be friendly to someone else without commenting on how attractive they are, without hinting you'd like to sleep with them, without slipping in innuendo. And believe it or not, it's possible to be funny and full of character without telling dirty jokes or otherwise making coworkers uncomfortable. You should give it a try.

Also, your sexism aside, had it ever occurred to you that those primarily male teams skewed that way in part because they make women uncomfortable? Blizzard, Riot, Ubisoft and others have had glaring problems with sexual harassment that went unchecked for years. Yeah, if I was a woman I wouldn't stay long in an environment like that. (Side note: just under half of World of Warcraft players aren't men, and Overwatch has twice as many women players as other shooters... another instance where your ignorance is biting you in the ass.)
 
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Arcygenical

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I think you pretty much proved the point that this is a divisive issue used to divide people. Nice work with the character attacks, too. You got me - I do Jell-O advertisements in my spare time!

The problem is you have these "chief people officers" whose sole role is to instill fear in employees.
Fear that every word or action between another employee (since genders no longer matter) could be used against them.
Fear that if you don't promote X% of women/race and pay them some unspecified amount, your company will be sued.
Now everyone is walking on eggshells, people get promoted that shouldn't and work becomes a humorless, soulless pit.
Forget shows like "The Office." We're all robots now.

If there is a point where things go too far, that needs to be clearly listed in a company's code of conduct.
Punish the people who break the company's code. Let work be fun within the company's and legal boundaries.
Then you can get back to letting a company composed primarily of men continue to make games primarily for men.
A woman was sexually assaulted, and then she committed suicide. But you're right. They should let the men get back to making games, and stop "instilling fear" (read: repercussions) for travesties of human abuse.
 

Armenius

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The two leading lawyers prosecuting Activision-Blizzard in the Department for Employment and Housing are facing severe ethics violations regarding conflicts of interest in the suit brought forward leading to the $18 million settlement. Sounds like these guys had a vendetta against the publisher. Oops...

Hard to take any of these types of litigious actions against publishers seriously when there have been aggressive political ops hunting for their "MeToo" case in the video game industry for so long, including lawyers and "news" outlets like Kotaku.

California DFEH accused of ethics violations in Activision Blizzard lawsuit​

https://www.gamesindustry.biz/artic...ics-violations-in-activision-blizzard-lawsuit
 

GotNoRice

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Hard to take any of these types of litigious actions against publishers seriously when there have been aggressive political ops hunting for their "MeToo" case in the video game industry for so long, including lawyers and "news" outlets like Kotaku.

Yeah, meanwhile the losers are people who just enjoy playing games. In World of Warcraft they are now removing random emotes that have been in the game for 10-15+ years because all of a sudden they "don't align with our company's values" or other such nonsense.
 

LodeRunner

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The two leading lawyers prosecuting Activision-Blizzard in the Department for Employment and Housing are facing severe ethics violations regarding conflicts of interest in the suit brought forward leading to the $18 million settlement. Sounds like these guys had a vendetta against the publisher. Oops...

Hard to take any of these types of litigious actions against publishers seriously when there have been aggressive political ops hunting for their "MeToo" case in the video game industry for so long, including lawyers and "news" outlets like Kotaku.

California DFEH accused of ethics violations in Activision Blizzard lawsuit​

https://www.gamesindustry.biz/artic...ics-violations-in-activision-blizzard-lawsuit
Well that's not good; sounds like the sort of thing that can endanger the outcome for the victims. The number of reports against Activision-Blizzard push it into the "yeah, they're probably guilty" range for me because consistent testimony from a large number of people is really hard to keep straight if you're lying. The speed with which they moved to settle rather than face a trial also weighs against them in my mind. They certainly have the resources to have fought this and appeal as necessary if they could mount an effective defense.
 

Armenius

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Well that's not good; sounds like the sort of thing that can endanger the outcome for the victims. The number of reports against Activision-Blizzard push it into the "yeah, they're probably guilty" range for me because consistent testimony from a large number of people is really hard to keep straight if you're lying. The speed with which they moved to settle rather than face a trial also weighs against them in my mind. They certainly have the resources to have fought this and appeal as necessary if they could mount an effective defense.
They should have gone after specific people instead of trying to bring the whole company down. But then nobody could virtue signal.
 

t1337duder

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Well that's not good; sounds like the sort of thing that can endanger the outcome for the victims. The number of reports against Activision-Blizzard push it into the "yeah, they're probably guilty" range for me because consistent testimony from a large number of people is really hard to keep straight if you're lying. The speed with which they moved to settle rather than face a trial also weighs against them in my mind. They certainly have the resources to have fought this and appeal as necessary if they could mount an effective defense.
The point of settling is to avoid any focus on a trial. Has nothing to do with guilt. Fighting the trial would be a losing stance even if what was alleged didn't happen, because it creates this premise that Blizzard is putting a lot of money into fighting a legal battle against "victimized" people, which the media will further twist against Blizzard and will inevitably affect the outcome of the trial. "If Blizzard were actually in the right, why are they opposing victims and victim blaming?"

Once again, this isn't about right and wrong or proving innocence or guilt. It's about money & power, and the "oppressed" are going to use the law to take it from you using any means sanctioned by the elites in this country. Then they will make it illegal and "low status" for you or I to talk about it bluntly and honestly.
 

Eulogy

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The point of settling is to avoid any focus on a trial. Has nothing to do with guilt.
That's... not true at all - in this case, or in many other cases that are settled outside the court.

Fighting the trial would be a losing stance even if what was alleged didn't happen, because it creates this premise that Blizzard is putting a lot of money into fighting a legal battle against "victimized" people,
Because that's exactly what they'd be doing in this case? Just based on public information alone, even if you decide you only believe 10% of it, fighting it would certainly be a pretty bad stance to take. Discovery on the case would be a huge mess...

which the media will further twist against Blizzard and will inevitably affect the outcome of the trial. "If Blizzard were actually in the right, why are they opposing victims and victim blaming?"
A good question to ask!

Once again, this isn't about right and wrong or proving innocence or guilt.
It absolutely IS about right or wrong. What many employees of Activation/Blizzard did is documented, demonstrably, wrong. Full stop. They way the company handled it when it was brought to attention - numerous times - was even worse.

It's about money & power, and the "oppressed" are going to use the law to take it from you using any means sanctioned by the elites in this country. Then they will make it illegal and "low status" for you or I to talk about it bluntly and honestly.
I don't see anyone at all making discussion about this (or any other case) illegal. I do alter my opinion of people based on their actions and words, and commentary about a case like this often shows those people for who they are (at least, in part).
 

LodeRunner

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The point of settling is to avoid any focus on a trial. Has nothing to do with guilt. Fighting the trial would be a losing stance even if what was alleged didn't happen, because it creates this premise that Blizzard is putting a lot of money into fighting a legal battle against "victimized" people, which the media will further twist against Blizzard and will inevitably affect the outcome of the trial. "If Blizzard were actually in the right, why are they opposing victims and victim blaming?"

Once again, this isn't about right and wrong or proving innocence or guilt. It's about money & power, and the "oppressed" are going to use the law to take it from you using any means sanctioned by the elites in this country. Then they will make it illegal and "low status" for you or I to talk about it bluntly and honestly.
As an average, you tend to only see settlements *this* quickly if they don't think they can mount a credible defense. If this was defensible, they'd fight it in order to get a verdict at trial and possibly countersue if only to get retractions.
 

Lakados

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As an average, you tend to only see settlements *this* quickly if they don't think they can mount a credible defense. If this was defensible, they'd fight it in order to get a verdict at trial and possibly countersue if only to get retractions.
And now that this lawsuit they can move onto the investor lawsuit over their “ongoing problems with sexual harassment and discrimination”. In which the Investors are calling out CEO Bobby Kotick, CFO Dennis Durkin, and former CFO Spencer Neumann for filing false reports on their handling of the internal problems, And their failure to mention any of this on their 2016 SOX reports, which has now gotten the SEC involved and they are also suing.
 

Aurelius

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They should have gone after specific people instead of trying to bring the whole company down. But then nobody could virtue signal.
As Lakados just pointed out, chief executives filed false reports on their handling of these problems. Blizzard's president was aware of and did little to stop harassment perpetrated by some of the studio's most prominent senior developers. This was not just a handful of rogues; this was institutional rot that went to the very top of the company. That needs to be addressed if you're going to stop behavior like this.

And no, this is not taking the "whole company down." It's a recognition that firing the direct offenders doesn't matter if the leadership will turn a blind eye the next time a sexual harasser shows up. That means holding the company accountable and hitting management where it hurts.
 

LukeTbk

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At BlizzCon, one of the main harassers (Alex Afrasiabi) had a suite that men nicknamed the "Cosby suite" — you know, after the self-admitted rapist and harasser. There are group photos in that suite around a portrait of Cosby. Numerous men at Blizzard knew what was going on; they either supported it or deliberately ignored it.
A Cosby room in 2013 is quite ahead of the curve (I think it was a 2014 that it became national news) and :
Afrasiabi’s BlizzCon 2013 hotel room, and seemingly a reference to the name of previously convicted rapist Bill Cosby.

Was he really convicted before 2013 ? The article respond later on 2018 that in 2013 it was a list of allegations, a bit like calling something a Weinstein room in 2013 would have been quite different than say in 2016, the first wording seem quite misleading.

I am not sure how well known the sexual predator past of Cosby was at the time, outside the very humor geek connected, making the testimony of many involved that they were not aware of the connotation somewhat possible (I know I personnaly did not knew aobut it at the time).
 

Aurelius

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A Cosby room in 2013 is quite ahead of the curve (I think it was a 2014 that it became national news) and :
Afrasiabi’s BlizzCon 2013 hotel room, and seemingly a reference to the name of previously convicted rapist Bill Cosby.

Was he really convicted before 2013 ? The article respond later on 2018 that in 2013 it was a list of allegations, a bit like calling something a Weinstein room in 2013 would have been quite different than say in 2016, the first wording seem quite misleading.

I am not sure how well known the sexual predator past of Cosby was at the time, outside the very humor geek connected, making the testimony of many involved that they were not aware of the connotation somewhat possible (I know I personnaly did not knew aobut it at the time).
Cosby wasn't charged or convicted in 2013, but by that point the accusations were extensive; Hannibal Buress' 2014 show merely highlighted what had been circulating for a long time. And let's not forget that Cosby admitted — admitted — that he gave quaaludes to women in a deposition in 2005. If you nicknamed a hotel room the "Cosby Room" in 2013, it was because you expected sexual harassment (if not rape) and treated it like a joke. That's not acceptable no matter how well-known he allegations against Cosby were at the time.
 

LukeTbk

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Cosby wasn't charged or convicted in 2013, but by that point the accusations were extensive; Hannibal Buress' 2014 show merely highlighted what had been circulating for a long time. And let's not forget that Cosby admitted — admitted — that he gave quaaludes to women in a deposition in 2005. If you nicknamed a hotel room the "Cosby Room" in 2013, it was because you expected sexual harassment (if not rape) and treated it like a joke. That's not acceptable no matter how well-known he allegations against Cosby were at the time.
Been circulated in the humor circle a bit more but like for Louis CK or Spacey, lot of people heard the allegation about those, lot of people did not and was something they learn when it became a big deal (a bit like Weinstein before 2015, a lot of the general public could laugh about it and people did in a lot of award show, because the general aura was more womanizers'-casting couch in people mind and not actual rape), did you knew yourself in 2013 and would have not laugh at a joke about it at that point in time ?

I think for some that thought it was ironic and not aware it could be true and for those who knews it could have been there would be a lot of drinking and sex here joke, not implying sexual harassments.

Regardless you could be fully right, the wording in the article still sound misleading, saying: Afrasiabi’s BlizzCon 2013 hotel room, and seemingly a reference to the name of previously convicted rapist Bill Cosby. Make it sound like they more than all knew about the allegation but that they have done that when a giant list of people did went public about it
 

Lakados

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They should have gone after specific people instead of trying to bring the whole company down. But then nobody could virtue signal.
Targeting specific people isn't the job of the government body, they sanction the company as a whole as that company is an individual entity. The board of directors and investors are then responsible for handling individual lawsuits on the internal employees who were responsible, and they are. The investors are calling for the whole board to be fired for their gross negligence in either failing to notice the problems or their active role in covering it up, and they have already served notice to key named employees that they are being sued for their roles in the problems. Blizzard itself is taking on 3 or 4 lawsuits, but key staff members (current and former) are also each taking 3-4 personal ones as well, from the board, investors, the SEC, and later depending on the results of those suits they could be opened up to individual staff members who feel they were personally harassed.

This is going to get bloody and take years to straighten out and by the time it is done Blizz will likely have undergone a complete management change over to the point where the name will be the only thing remaining, that is assuming Activision doesn't rebrand.
 

Aurelius

2[H]4U
Joined
Mar 22, 2003
Messages
3,538
Been circulated in the humor circle a bit more but like for Louis CK or Spacey, lot of people heard the allegation about those, lot of people did not and was something they learn when it became a big deal (a bit like Weinstein before 2015, a lot of the general public could laugh about it and people did in a lot of award show, because the general aura was more womanizers'-casting couch in people mind and not actual rape), did you knew yourself in 2013 and would have not laugh at a joke about it at that point in time ?

I think for some that thought it was ironic and not aware it could be true and for those who knews it could have been there would be a lot of drinking and sex here joke, not implying sexual harassments.

Regardless you could be fully right, the wording in the article still sound misleading, saying: Afrasiabi’s BlizzCon 2013 hotel room, and seemingly a reference to the name of previously convicted rapist Bill Cosby. Make it sound like they more than all knew about the allegation but that they have done that when a giant list of people did went public about it
I didn't really know much in 2013, but... no, I wouldn't have made a joke about it. I can't recall ever considering sexual harassment funny.

And you're glossing over an important point. Whether or not you believed the claims were true at the time, whether they were widely known or just circulating, they explicitly centered on sexual harassment and rape, not generic party animal behavior. If a Blizzard staffer knew about that room and condoned it, they knew and condoned the darker implications.
 

LukeTbk

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Sep 10, 2020
Messages
1,610
I didn't really know much in 2013, but... no, I wouldn't have made a joke about it. I can't recall ever considering sexual harassment funny.

And you're glossing over an important point. Whether or not you believed the claims were true at the time, whether they were widely known or just circulating, they explicitly centered on sexual harassment and rape, not generic party animal behavior. If a Blizzard staffer knew about that room and condoned it, they knew and condoned the darker implications.
Or the staffer was used to see strange humor and did not get it, if one did not knew about the claims and knew about the room, there was no condoning of anything going on (i.e. some who claim did not got the reference, it is possible), which was the implication behind my point, specially the way it is worded remove that possibility in the mind of the reader.
 

Lakados

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Feb 3, 2014
Messages
4,705
WOW so Kotick drafts an email, signs it as Frances Townsend, then speaks out against that "tone deaf" email and sparks cries for Townsend to resign, and now that's he's caught red-handed he just shrugs it off and says he regrets his participation and Ms. Townsend should not be blamed for "this" mistake....

They can't even get him to own up to blunders of this nature how can they expect him to own up to anything...
 
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