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Forums - Gaming Discussion - Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick facilitated and threatened accusers of abuse at the company for years|Will not face repercussions

Activision CEO Bobby Kotick Protected Abusers, Made Death Threats Against Employee, New Report Claims

Amidst a lawsuit alleging prolonged and persistent patterns of abuse and harassment, a lawsuit by investors for failing to disclose those issues, an investigation by the SEC for the same, and more, Activision Blizzard has been unravelling these last few months. It seems, however, that the reports up until now haven’t revealed the full extent of the systemic issues plaguing the company from within, which, given the severity of problems there, sadly doesn’t come as a surprise. As a new report published by The Wall Street Journal claims, the problems, unsurprisingly, go all the way to the top, with Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick himself being involved in a number of shocking instances over the years.

The report in question alleges the company’s chief executive officer of not only being aware of the persistent patterns of sexual harassment, discrimination, and abuse against employees within the company, but also having protected abusers, and in some cases even withholding knowledge of the same from the company’s board. WSJ’s report claims the evidence – including internal company documents as well as interviews with former employees – suggest the same.

One instance concerned the alleged rape of an employee at Sledgehammer Games by a superior in 2016 and a case of sexual harassment in 2017, with Javier Panameno being accused as the perpetrator in both instances. WSJ’s report claims that Kotick, who was aware of both instances, did not disclose the matter to the board, and no action was taken against Panameno until the threat of legal action led to the matters being settled out of court.

Fellow Call of Duty studio Treyarch also had similar issues, where studio head Dan Bunting was accused and sexual harassment in 2017. Activision Blizzard’s HR department investigated the matter, upon which it recommended that Bunting be fired. Kotick allegedly stepped in and blocked Bunting’s firing, instead opting to penalize him. Bunting stepped down from his position and left the company two months ago, which is when WSJ began investigating the matter.

The report also goes on to describe incidents over the years where Kotick himself has mistreated women and employees. One incident in 2006 saw Kotick harassing one of his assistants, and even leaving her a voicemail in which he threatened to have her killed. An Activision spokesperson said about the incident: “Mr. Kotick quickly apologized 16 years ago for the obviously hyperbolic and inappropriate voice mail, and he deeply regrets the exaggeration and tone in his voice mail to this day.”

Meanwhile, in 2007, Kotick threatened to “destroy” a woman who was suing him, alleging sexual harassment against the pilot of a private jet co-owned by Kotick.

Additionally, the report also brings up an email that was sent out under Activision Blizzard Chief Compliance Officer Fran Townsend shortly after California sued the company in July. The email, widely criticized as being dismissive, was blasted by thousands of company employees as “abhorrent and insulting”, while Kotick himself later apologized for it as well, calling it “tone deaf”. As it turns out, WSJ’s report claims that it was Kotick himself who drafted the email and had it sent out under Townsend’s name, due to the optics of a senior female company employee defending its internal conduct and practices. An Activision spokesperson has said about the issue that Kotick “takes responsibility for the incident and regrets it”, and that Townsend “should not be blamed for this mistake.”

In a statement released following the publishing of WSJ’s report, Activision’s Board of Directors defended Kotick, saying: “The Activision Blizzard Board remains committed to the goal of making Activision Blizzard the most welcoming and inclusive company in the industry. Under Bobby Kotick’s leadership the Company is already implementing industry leading changes including a zero tolerance harassment policy, a dedication to achieving significant increases to the percentages of women and non-binary people in our workforce and significant internal and external investments to accelerate opportunities for diverse talent. The Board remains confident that Bobby Kotick appropriately addressed workplace issues brought to his attention.

“The goals we have set for ourselves are both critical and ambitious. The Board remains confident in Bobby Kotick’s leadership, commitment and ability to achieve these goals.”

Wow, fuck Bobby KOCKdick. Absolute piece of shit (who knew a total slimeball CEO would also be a trash human being?) and it doesn't surprise me in the slightest HACKtivi$ion won't be firing him for what he both did and let happen. Say what you will about EA (and there's a LOT to say about them), at least they don't coddle abusers at their company and let them off with a slap on the wrist. In fact, they recently fired one of their ex-employees for making disgusting comments about Total Biscuit's passing on social media (David Crooks).

Like I needed any more reason to hate Activision. 



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There really is no justice in this modern world. -_-



Bobby Kotick Admits To Writing Female Executives Terrible Email

One incident in 2006 saw Kotick harassing one of his assistants, and even leaving her a voicemail in which he threatened to have her killed. An Activision spokesperson said about the incident: “Mr. Kotick quickly apologized 16 years ago for the obviously hyperbolic and inappropriate voice mail, and he deeply regrets the exaggeration and tone in his voice mail to this day.”

Meanwhile, in 2007, Kotick threatened to “destroy” a woman who was suing him, alleging sexual harassment against the pilot of a private jet co-owned by Kotick.

Activision Boss Loses Legal Battle Over Sexual Harassment Case

Bobby Kotick Wants to Take the Fun Out of Making Games 

Activision CEO Says He Would Raise Prices Even Higher

+ All the times he has pocketed massive bonuses whilst doing mass layoffs.

It ain't exactly a shock that he's a piece of shit, I've always thought him as one, a lot of this stuff has been known for a while, I have absolutely zero doubt he knew about these harassment cases and did nothing about them until shit hit the fan, the dude is a peak corporate suit who doesn't give a shit about his employees, the sooner Activision-Blizzard rids him, the better (for the employees and gamers), unfortunately he does make Activision-Blizzard a ton of money and seems like the board is up his ass so I don't see it happening.

Side-note, he absolutely did not take that pay-cut a few weeks ago out of any good intentions, it was almost certainly just for marketing and cause CoD sales are down a lot, it's sad to see what has happened to Activision with almost every studio being turned into a CoD studio and then the current mess Blizzard is in.

Agreed with the OP too, I was always baffled whenever EA was voted as the worst company, though they have their problems with how much shit they f*ck up, Lol. From everything I've heard though they tend to treat employees pretty good and when studios are closed they try their best to place them elsewhere within EA.

1,600 Activision Blizzard Employees Sign Petition Demanding Bobby Kotick's Removal

Last edited by Ryuu96 - 6 days ago

Ryuu96 said:

Bobby Kotick Admits To Writing Female Executives Terrible Email

One incident in 2006 saw Kotick harassing one of his assistants, and even leaving her a voicemail in which he threatened to have her killed. An Activision spokesperson said about the incident: “Mr. Kotick quickly apologized 16 years ago for the obviously hyperbolic and inappropriate voice mail, and he deeply regrets the exaggeration and tone in his voice mail to this day.”

Meanwhile, in 2007, Kotick threatened to “destroy” a woman who was suing him, alleging sexual harassment against the pilot of a private jet co-owned by Kotick.

Activision Boss Loses Legal Battle Over Sexual Harassment Case

Bobby Kotick Wants to Take the Fun Out of Making Games 

Activision CEO Says He Would Raise Prices Even Higher

+ All the times he has pocketed massive bonuses whilst doing mass layoffs.

It ain't exactly a shock that he's a piece of shit, I've always thought him as one, a lot of this stuff has been known for a while, I have absolutely zero doubt he knew about these harassment cases and did nothing about them until shit hit the fan, the dude is a peak corporate suit who doesn't give a shit about his employees, the sooner Activision-Blizzard rids him, the better (for the employees and gamers), unfortunately he does make Activision-Blizzard a ton of money and seems like the board is up his ass so I don't see it happening.

Side-note, he absolutely did not take that pay-cut a few weeks ago out of any good intentions, it was almost certainly just for marketing and cause CoD sales are down a lot, it's sad to see what has happened to Activision with almost every studio being turned into a CoD studio and then the current mess Blizzard is in.

Agreed with the OP too, I was always baffled whenever EA was voted as the worst company, though they have their problems with how much shit they f*ck up, Lol. From everything I've heard though they tend to treat employees pretty good and when studios are closed they try their best to place them elsewhere within EA.

1,600 Activision Blizzard Employees Sign Petition Demanding Bobby Kotick's Removal

He doesn't deserve just being removed, he deserves bankruptcy, and jail time. It'd serve him right for being an abusive piece of shit who primarily made his fortune by ripping off his employees and coddling rapists.



CaptainExplosion said:
Ryuu96 said:

Bobby Kotick Admits To Writing Female Executives Terrible Email

One incident in 2006 saw Kotick harassing one of his assistants, and even leaving her a voicemail in which he threatened to have her killed. An Activision spokesperson said about the incident: “Mr. Kotick quickly apologized 16 years ago for the obviously hyperbolic and inappropriate voice mail, and he deeply regrets the exaggeration and tone in his voice mail to this day.”

Meanwhile, in 2007, Kotick threatened to “destroy” a woman who was suing him, alleging sexual harassment against the pilot of a private jet co-owned by Kotick.

Activision Boss Loses Legal Battle Over Sexual Harassment Case

Bobby Kotick Wants to Take the Fun Out of Making Games 

Activision CEO Says He Would Raise Prices Even Higher

+ All the times he has pocketed massive bonuses whilst doing mass layoffs.

It ain't exactly a shock that he's a piece of shit, I've always thought him as one, a lot of this stuff has been known for a while, I have absolutely zero doubt he knew about these harassment cases and did nothing about them until shit hit the fan, the dude is a peak corporate suit who doesn't give a shit about his employees, the sooner Activision-Blizzard rids him, the better (for the employees and gamers), unfortunately he does make Activision-Blizzard a ton of money and seems like the board is up his ass so I don't see it happening.

Side-note, he absolutely did not take that pay-cut a few weeks ago out of any good intentions, it was almost certainly just for marketing and cause CoD sales are down a lot, it's sad to see what has happened to Activision with almost every studio being turned into a CoD studio and then the current mess Blizzard is in.

Agreed with the OP too, I was always baffled whenever EA was voted as the worst company, though they have their problems with how much shit they f*ck up, Lol. From everything I've heard though they tend to treat employees pretty good and when studios are closed they try their best to place them elsewhere within EA.

1,600 Activision Blizzard Employees Sign Petition Demanding Bobby Kotick's Removal

He doesn't deserve just being removed, he deserves bankruptcy, and jail time. It'd serve him right for being an abusive piece of shit who primarily made his fortune by ripping off his employees and coddling rapists.

You're both right, and make no mistake: EA aren't saints, either, far from it, but at least they don't coddle rapists/abusers at their company and let em off with a slap on the wrist when caught.

Daily reminder that they fired an ex-employee for saying stupid/offensive things, yet Bobby Kotick said, did and let horrible things happen to his employees (to the point one of them committed suicide {!}) and he still has a job:



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KManX89 said:
CaptainExplosion said:

He doesn't deserve just being removed, he deserves bankruptcy, and jail time. It'd serve him right for being an abusive piece of shit who primarily made his fortune by ripping off his employees and coddling rapists.

You're both right, and make no mistake: EA aren't saints, either, far from it, but at least they don't coddle rapists/abusers at their company and let em off with a slap on the wrist when caught.

Daily reminder that they fired an ex-employee for saying stupid/offensive things, yet Bobby Kotick said, did and let horrible things happen to his employees (to the point one of them committed suicide {!}) and he still has a job:

Seriously?! Forget jail time, he deserves a death sentence for causing one of his employees to commit suicide.



Sounds like a first class d-bag. I hope he gets what he deserves and I'm sure that David Crane would agree.



Piece of shit deserves to be pushed of a cliff. The reports are getting worse and worse. How far can it go?



How is this going to affect their games? Of all these misconducts, we have enjoyed their games.



Check this Animation about a Police Officer     Police Checkpoint

If you buy Activision games it means you support Bobby and his shit ways.



Bite my shiny metal cockpit!