More than just Activision Blizzard employees took part in the #ActiBlizzWalkout on Wednesday
Employees from across the gaming industry showed their support for the Activision Blizzard staff walkout with their own walkouts or protests on Wednesday. Staff from big game companies Bungie Studios and ArenaNet participated in their own walkouts to show solidarity with Activision Blizzard employees. The harassment, abuse, and discrimination talked about in the California DFEH lawsuit isn’t limited to just Activision Blizzard — Riot is also being sued by DFEH over sexual discrimination, and other gaming companies are having similar worker revolts. As such, workers industry-wide are calling for it to end.
Today me and many of my coworkers at @Bungie are joining the walkout to support the workers at Activision Blizzard to demand better working conditions & to protest that company's dismissive response to sexual harassment and discrimination lawsuit. #ActiBlizzWalkout
— Amber Alexander (@amber_ui) July 28, 2021
— tom is focusing on the braves. blm. (@tomabernathy) July 28, 2021
Ubisoft employees also have started signing an open letter similar to the one being signed by Activision Blizzard employees. They’re hoping to spur on industry-wide change in how employees are treated, and how reports of sexual harassment and discrimination are handled by HR departments.
Nearly 500 current and former Ubisoft workers from 32 studios have signed an open letter in solidarity with Activision Blizzard workers — and calling out Ubisoft management for its handling of its misconduct scandals over the past year. https://t.co/ZfwV239chc
— Stephen Totilo (@stephentotilo) July 28, 2021
The Activision Blizzard employee walkout was a well-attended affair. Just from photos of the event, you can see hundreds of current and former Activision Blizzard employees who attended to show their displeasure with the corporate response to the California DEFH lawsuit. Workers are demanding an end to forced arbitration, an overhaul to the hiring policies to ensure more diverse voices are hired, increased transparency in salaries and compensation, and a third-party audit of the company to help ensure that the systems in place that are designed to stop harassment and discrimination actually work.
We also saw World of Warcraft players get in on the action by staging a mass log-out from Oribos to coincide with the start of the employee walkout. A veritable forest of players riding their Wandering Ancient mounts all logged out together from the portal platform of Oribos, while others chose not to log into any Blizzard games at all. This has extended all the way from average players and streamers to esports organizations like Wisdom Media, the parent organization behind the HeroesHearth CCL. In addition to not streaming any Blizzard properties, they were donating any community support from their upcoming CCL Awards show to Girls Who Code.
You can also show your support for women in gaming and other marginalized groups by donating to any of the charities on this list recommended by the Blizzard employees organizing the walkout. You won’t be alone, as we’ve already seen a very generous outpouring of support from the community, with tens of thousands of dollars raised for great causes.
- Black Girls Code
- Futures without Violence
- Girls Who Code
- Women In Animation
- Women in Games International
Walkouts like these are hard for everyone involved. My fondest hope is that the gaming industry can collectively use this as a starting point to help come together and make it so that everyone is treated equally and can go to work without fear of harassment.
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