#ActiBlizzWalkout

More Prominent Figures Leave Activision Blizzard. CEO Bobby Kotick Has Been Subpoenaed. Let’s Keep This Energy Going.

Yes. Good.

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According to Bloomberg, Overwatch executive producer Chacko Sonny will be leaving the company this Friday. “Sonny didn’t say why he was leaving but wrote in a note to colleagues that working at Blizzard ‘has been an absolute privilege and one of the best experiences of my career.'”

Sonny was also involved in the development of Overwatch 2.

This news comes after the departure of Claire Hart, Blizzard Entertainment’s chief legal officer. Hart announced the news in a LinkedIn post and her last day at the company was on September 17th.

After more than three years at Blizzard Entertainment, I have decided to move on to my next adventure. Friday was my last day.

The past three years have been full of unexpected twists and turns, but I feel honored to have worked with and met so many great people at Blizzard and across the Activision Blizzard businesses.

I’ll be taking a short break before making my next move. Stay tuned!

While neither stated a reason for leaving the company, it’s impossible to not look at everything that’s happening with Activision Blizzard and point to that as the reason for these departures. What started as a stomach-churning sexual harassment/discrimination lawsuit has trickled down into a lawsuit over labor violations. Those labor violations accuse the company of intimidating workers in an effort to prevent them from organizing.

Gee, I wonder why they wouldn’t want their employees coming together to work toward better workplace conditions right now.

Not only is Activision Blizzard facing multiple lawsuits, the company is now being investigated by the U.S. Government. According to Kotaku, it was The Wall Street Journal who first broke news of this latest development in the ongoing argument to just let Activision Blizzard burn to ash.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has reportedly launched a wide-reaching investigation into Activision Blizzard, with the government agency looking into how the embattled publisher handled the multiple allegations of sexual harassment, abuse, and toxic behavior that became public following a California Department of Fair Employment and Housing lawsuit filed in July. The SEC has subpoenaed Activision and several of its high-ranking execs, including CEO Bobby Kotick.

The SEC is asking Activision Blizzard for various documents, including, “the personnel files of six previous employees and records of CEO Kotick’s communications with executives relating to the numerous complaints of sexual harassment and discrimination levied against Activision Blizzard staff.” An Activision spokesperson, Helaine Klasky, confirmed that the SEC has, indeed, begun to investigate the company. Klasky also confirmed that the company is cooperating with the SEC

The SEC isn’t exactly investigating in an attempt to seek justice for the victims, but rather, is investigating for the sake of Activision Blizzard’s investors.

The investigation is not necessarily about finding justice for the victims of the horrible abuse, but instead about looking out for the company’s investors who probably aren’t happy about its recent cycle of bad news. The WSJ explains that the SEC is investigating to figure out whether Activision and its executives correctly and adequately disclosed allegations of workplace harassment and gender-pay issues to investors and other related individuals and if these disclosures happened quickly enough, according to the documents seen by the outlet.

So where does that put us? Well, hopefully it puts us in a place where all of these investigations lead to the company having to pay the consequences for everything they’re being accused of. All of these departures and lawsuits won’t mean much of anything if Activision Blizzard is still able to run things the way they have been running them.

I hope the people who made “making women feel uncomfortable” as part of their job description are held accountable, and I hope this whole thing sends a message that this kind of discrimination toward women will no longer be tolerated.

(Image: DAVID MCNEW/AFP via Getty Images)

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Briana Lawrence
Briana (she/her - bisexual) is trying her best to cosplay as a responsible adult. Her writing tends to focus on the importance of representation, whether it’s through her multiple book series or the pieces she writes. After de-transforming from her magical girl state, she indulges in an ever-growing pile of manga, marathons too much anime, and dedicates an embarrassing amount of time to her Animal Crossing pumpkin patch (it's Halloween forever, deal with it Nook)