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shikamaru317 said:

For it objectively speaking. Looking at other acquisitions the regulators have allowed, and comparing it to the Xbox-Activision deal, there is just no sound reason to block it. It gives Xbox a much smaller gaming marketshare than some of these other acquisitions that have gone through, such as Disney-Fox and Penguin-Random House. On top of that, the majority of employees at both companies support it from what I've heard, and the largest union in the US, AFL-CIO, supports it. Has been approved by 3 regulators so far with no concessions required. FTC's case seems to largely be built on false premise. Xbox seems to plan to keep their largest franchises multiplat the remainder of this generation and probably at least part of next gen, like CoD, Overwatch, and Diablo, so at least for the foreseeable future the only exclusives they may get out of it are going to be in smaller franchises like Crash, Spyro, and Tony Hawk, series which won't have a significant impact on Xbox hardware sales most likely.

Subjectively though, I'm more neutral. I don't personally care that much about ABK's games, there are other publishers I would have much rather seen them acquire, such as Sega. A part of me hopes it gets blocked so that Xbox can focus on other, smaller publishers that will be easier to get past regulators and more independent studio acquisitions. I also fear that if the ABK deal does go through, regulators will greatly limit how much else they can acquire afterward, so if it's a choice between only ABK, or no ABK but a smaller publisher like Sega and several more lone studios getting acquired, I will take the latter scenario for sure, as it will put more games I personally play onto Xbox and Gamepass. 

I agree that big scandalous mergers have been allowed in the past. For example, I think it's crazy that a company like Meta bought out Instagram, Whatsapp and promised regulators to not use WhatsApp user information to further progress their dirty data mining schemes just to do so years later. The examples are countless, I will not pretend that MS is NOT being singled out here, but I also don't think it's right to argue that a broken system should stay broken just to even the score. Especially that Microsoft is already one of the biggest companies in the world and will not go anywhere no matter how badly they butch Windows releases or whatever mistakes they make, they will not be harmed if this buyout is blocked (it's not just a thing I say, I believe it 100%, money where my mouth is, I own a lot of MS stock, I believe blindly in their financial stability). 

I think if we agree that the system has been broken, we can agree that 3 regulators approval doesn't mean much and doesn't support the argument for the acquisition. Tech companies are an open book about how much money they spend annually to influence policy makers and lobby to get favourable decisions, it's not a conspiracy, they openly admit they do this. 

Last edited by LurkerJ - on 15 December 2022