Blizzard/Activation being hit by the Perfect Storm. Will they survive?

Wiz33

Gawd
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
750
Well, What with the big disappointment over patch 9.1, all the recent WOW streamer/player jumping ship and now they're being sued by the State of California over widespread harassment of women and a large wave of ex-employees coming out saying that they have witness all the actions stated in the suit. How can they save the ship?
 
Last edited:

Derangel

Fully [H]
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
19,748
Sadly, the lawsuit will probably not result in anything damaging to Acti. They make billions of dollars per year just in loot box garbage, they pay $0 in tax, in fact they get refunds from the government every year. Even if a judge fined Acti 10 billion dollars (which will never happen) it wouldn't sink them. They'd recover it within a year.
 

Wiz33

Gawd
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
750
Well, Asmongold can be extreme at times but I actually thought this video was done pretty well. Yes, I know stuff like this is probably happening across the industry but hopefully this will serve as a warning.

 
Last edited:

LukeTbk

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Sep 10, 2020
Messages
1,497
They make billions of dollars per year just in loot box garbage, they pay $0 in tax, in fact they get refunds from the government every year. Even if a judge fined Acti 10 billion dollars (which will never happen) it wouldn't sink them. They'd recover it within a year.
If I read their 10-K They paid from income tax alone 483 millions in 2019 and 516 millions in 2020, that not the billion paid in 2017 (which sound way to high and I guess got correct the year after), 10 billions is more than 115% of a complete year of revenues and around 4 year's of raw operating income of a perfect year (6-7 of a normal), soundlike like it would be a giant blow.
 

Wiz33

Gawd
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
750
Even if they survive the suit. They will probably need to find a few top female execs willing to take over as CEO and other important positions to save the name.
 

Derangel

Fully [H]
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
19,748
If I read their 10-K They paid from income tax alone 483 millions in 2019 and 516 millions in 2020, that not the billion paid in 2017 (which sound way to high and I guess got correct the year after), 10 billions is more than 115% of a complete year of revenues and around 4 year's of raw operating income of a perfect year (6-7 of a normal), soundlike like it would be a giant blow.

Well, okay, maybe 10b was a bit hyperbolic.
 

blackmomba

Gawd
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
577
Hahaha the way it's described you'd think this was the same place where the wolf of wall street worked

Kicking women out of lactation rooms to have meetings hahahhaa
 

Shoganai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
1,180
Good on California for bringing on this lawsuit, it is really unfair to expect women to put in the same amount of time in the office as men for the same pay.
That has literally nothing to do with what's going on.
 

Zangmonkey

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
4,154
I'll out myself as a former Blizzard engineering leader.
I was there from 2013 until I left this year.

I loved my time there. We had lots of frustrations and problems for sure. I do not know any of the specific people or allegations in this suit but I believe *much* of it.
"Bro culture" is a thing, and it surely affects women and marginalized people disproportionately... But you need to recognize Blizzard as a reflection of the broader gaming industry. It's a problem endemic to gaming and also many tech companies. As such blizzard has the cost and opportunity of being at the vanguard of change and consequence.

I honestly believe that JAB (and Mike before him) wanted to fix and work toward fixing these problems but clearly didn't address it sufficiently.

I 100% believe that women received unwanted and unwarranted attention. This is how neckbeards behave, and we need to get better as a society. I 100% believe that women often feel undervalued and subject to shit like this.

I 100% do not believe that men were deliberately underpaying women, kicking them out of lactation rooms, and playing games while delegating work to them.
Pretty much everybody at Blizzard is paid low. Gaming pays below general tech, and blizzard pays below other large gaming competitors. Playing games at the office is very common, for better or worse. I don't buy that work was disproportionately delegated to women except that it's a reflection of the disparity in gender representation in management roles.

It's also true that many of these allegations refer to very old behavior which has been changed. For example, drinking has been curtailed for years. Same with staff wrap parties. The last wrap party was company paid trip to Vegas after overwatch launched.


The company has been going through major leadership changeover in the last 3-4 years, in part because of a desire to change this culture. Mike even called it out directly at BlizzCon. So people calling for heads to roll are right, but most of those heads have already rolled. This lawsuit probably has merit but is late.

You will find that Blizzard will demonstrate they've made many changes over the last few years (sure not enough). The turnover that has been ongoing for years will continue and things will stabilize, but it's going to hurt.

Happy to answer any questions I can.
 
Last edited:

Jonnycat99

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 9, 2006
Messages
290
playing games while delegating work to them
That's the thing I don't understand people complaining about. What a supervisor does with his or her time, whether it is playing games, taking a long lunch, or taking the rest of the day off should have absolutely no bearing on the work he or she assigned to another worker.

As far as playing games in the office, again, I don't see any problem with that. I have actually read that for certain positions, being able to take a mental break from work leads to more productivity at the workplace, and it would seem to be appropriate for a company that produces vidya. Perhaps it would even serve as a bonding experience with co-workers.
 

Colonel Sanders

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Sep 26, 2001
Messages
4,883
That's the thing I don't understand people complaining about. What a supervisor does with his or her time, whether it is playing games, taking a long lunch, or taking the rest of the day off should have absolutely no bearing on the work he or she assigned to another worker.

As far as playing games in the office, again, I don't see any problem with that. I have actually read that for certain positions, being able to take a mental break from work leads to more productivity at the workplace, and it would seem to be appropriate for a company that produces vidya. Perhaps it would even serve as a bonding experience with co-workers.
they should have one juror decide this case, you. you clearly have your finger on the pulse of the inner workings of the corporate gaming industry.
 

Zangmonkey

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
4,154
That's the thing I don't understand people complaining about. What a supervisor does with his or her time, whether it is playing games, taking a long lunch, or taking the rest of the day off should have absolutely no bearing on the work he or she assigned to another worker.

As far as playing games in the office, again, I don't see any problem with that. I have actually read that for certain positions, being able to take a mental break from work leads to more productivity at the workplace, and it would seem to be appropriate for a company that produces vidya. Perhaps it would even serve as a bonding experience with co-workers.

A supervisor (or anybody) that's delegating their work for personal reasons *at least* has a conflict of interest because they play a role in performance review for their teams that they ask to pick up their slack.

I'm sure that some shitty supervisors do this at blizzard, just like I'm sure that bad bosses exist the world over. It's more a question of whether it's discriminatory practice.
 

MrGuvernment

Fully [H]
Joined
Aug 3, 2004
Messages
20,251
Even if they survive the suit. They will probably need to find a few top female execs willing to take over as CEO and other important positions to save the name.

To be honest people will forget all about this in a few weeks cause some celebrity will do something stupid, or the 12 year old with mommies credit card dont even care, and the how many WoW players probably wished they could of worked at a place like that and get away with that crap.

Blizzard moves head quaters to some other country and keep pushing out games and still making mad profits in the years to come..

Sad, but likely true..
 

Jonnycat99

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 9, 2006
Messages
290
A supervisor (or anybody) that's delegating their work for personal reasons *at least* has a conflict of interest because they play a role in performance review for their teams that they ask to pick up their slack.

I'm sure that some shitty supervisors do this at blizzard, just like I'm sure that bad bosses exist the world over. It's more a question of whether it's discriminatory practice.
But that's what a supervisor (or manager) does, manage employees, and this includes assigning work and evaluating performance. Are you suggesting that whenever a supervisor delegates work that the supervisor needs to stay in the office and be seen to work diligently until the employee finishes the assigned task? That's just silly.
 

Derangel

Fully [H]
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
19,748
But that's what a supervisor (or manager) does, manage employees, and this includes assigning work and evaluating performance. Are you suggesting that whenever a supervisor delegates work that the supervisor needs to stay in the office and be seen to work diligently until the employee finishes the assigned task? That's just silly.

Supervisors should step in and help employees when it’s needed and should handle their own tasks instead of being lazy and playing video games all day. If you think being a supervisor is all about making everyone else do your work you’d make a shit supervisor.
 

Jonnycat99

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 9, 2006
Messages
290
Supervisors should step in and help employees when it’s needed and should handle their own tasks instead of being lazy and playing video games all day. If you think being a supervisor is all about making everyone else do your work you’d make a shit supervisor.

Yeah I spent a year at a place like that once in my life, it was called pre-school and we had snacks and story time and a nap every day in the afternoon. It was awesome. Then at some point I grew up, became something that resembled an adult, and learned that you don't get far in life when you expect to get codddled and treated like a precious little princess at work. And yes, even the best of bosses seem like complete dicks when you neither share the perspectives and responsibilities that they have in their job, nor are the one delegating the jobs to be done, because nobody likes being told what to do and when to do it. Nobody.
 

jerry8169

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 1, 2020
Messages
247
Yeah I spent a year at a place like that once in my life, it was called pre-school and we had snacks and story time and a nap every day in the afternoon. It was awesome. Then at some point I grew up, became something that resembled an adult, and learned that you don't get far in life when you expect to get codddled and treated like a precious little princess at work. And yes, even the best of bosses seem like complete dicks when you neither share the perspectives and responsibilities that they have in their job, nor are the one delegating the jobs to be done, because nobody likes being told what to do and when to do it. Nobody.
I miss snack and nap times :(
 

Zangmonkey

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
4,154
Yeah I spent a year at a place like that once in my life, it was called pre-school and we had snacks and story time and a nap every day in the afternoon. It was awesome. Then at some point I grew up, became something that resembled an adult, and learned that you don't get far in life when you expect to get codddled and treated like a precious little princess at work. And yes, even the best of bosses seem like complete dicks when you neither share the perspectives and responsibilities that they have in their job, nor are the one delegating the jobs to be done, because nobody likes being told what to do and when to do it. Nobody.
I get what you're saying, but that's not the issue on this particular legal complaint. This complaint includes things like supervisors groping female subordinates and commenting on their bodies.

There's no place for that.
 

Derangel

Fully [H]
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
19,748
Yeah I spent a year at a place like that once in my life, it was called pre-school and we had snacks and story time and a nap every day in the afternoon. It was awesome. Then at some point I grew up, became something that resembled an adult, and learned that you don't get far in life when you expect to get codddled and treated like a precious little princess at work. And yes, even the best of bosses seem like complete dicks when you neither share the perspectives and responsibilities that they have in their job, nor are the one delegating the jobs to be done, because nobody likes being told what to do and when to do it. Nobody.

You’re kind of a jackass, aren’t you?
 

Shoganai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Dec 5, 2018
Messages
1,180
Yeah I spent a year at a place like that once in my life, it was called pre-school and we had snacks and story time and a nap every day in the afternoon. It was awesome. Then at some point I grew up, became something that resembled an adult, and learned that you don't get far in life when you expect to get codddled and treated like a precious little princess at work. And yes, even the best of bosses seem like complete dicks when you neither share the perspectives and responsibilities that they have in their job, nor are the one delegating the jobs to be done, because nobody likes being told what to do and when to do it. Nobody.
You'd fit right in at Blizzard. I don't think you know what an "adult" is though.
 

Jonnycat99

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 9, 2006
Messages
290
I get what you're saying, but that's not the issue on this particular legal complaint. This complaint includes things like supervisors groping female subordinates and commenting on their bodies.

There's no place for that.

Yes, you have no argument with me there, but we were talking about the specific point in the article which stated, "The agency alleges male employees play video games during the workday while delegating responsibilities to female employees..."
 

Zangmonkey

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
4,154
Yes, you have no argument with me there, but we were talking about the specific point in the article which stated, "The agency alleges male employees play video games during the workday while delegating responsibilities to female employees..."

Sure. I guess what I can say, as a manager that occasionally played games during the workday, it's not the delegating in itself that's the problem. It is a leadership problem if your team perceives systemic inequities in task allocation.

I have a hard time believing that male leaders deliberately disproportionately delegated to female employees... But even if I'm right a good leader needs to confront *the perception* in addition to the reality.
 

Wiz33

Gawd
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
750
Yes, you have no argument with me there, but we were talking about the specific point in the article which stated, "The agency alleges male employees play video games during the workday while delegating responsibilities to female employees..."

I own my high tech business and although I have a full gaming PC setup at the office, I don't play game in the presence of my employees or at times when they may need to drop by my office. I only play in the mid-late afternoon after all the stuff for the days have been settled.
 

Zangmonkey

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
4,154
Looks like a handful of currently employees are publicly speaking out against ActiBliz's statements.

https://www.pcgamer.com/amp/activis...so-easily-silenced/?__twitter_impression=true
Everybody I know at Blizzard facepalm'd at the initial official response. Whoever drafted that shit really stepped in it. However, I also know that most people in blizzard corporate communications that I knew and respected left Blizzard in 2020. Nearly the entire group turned over.
Similarly, nearly the entire legal team turned over in 2020.
 

M76

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
12,278
What I don't understand is why bring one such massive lawsuit. They should just cite them on the most serious things, and pursue the rest as separate cases. I think making it into one giant lawsuit will not just drag out the case for years delaying any compensation of victims, but also makes it less solid and harder to win.

It seems to me that a lot of false allegations are being piggybacked on this case by opportunists that will ultimately hurt the real victims of harassment.
 
Top