Activision blocks damning numbers on workplace misconduct – report

Activision Blizzard has fired or fined a number of employees since misconduct allegations came to light in July, the number of which will be made public, but was ultimately blocked by CEO Bobby Kotick.

According to from Wall Street Journal, which has fired three dozen employees and disciplined about 40 others since allegations of misconduct and sexual harassment came to light following a California lawsuit against the company.

Activision plans to release news of its actions against employees before the winter break, but CEO Bobby Kotick believes the information will make the company’s problems appear bigger than those already public.

The WSJ report also noted that employees filed about 700 complaints with Activision Blizzard. The complaints concern misconduct and other issues, as well as a separate report covering the July revelations. Activision is said to have reviewed more than 90 percent of 700 employee reports, up from 500 reports of workplace misconduct compiled in November, which Activision spokeswoman Helaine Klasky condemned.

In a statement to The Wall Street Journal, Kraski did confirm that 37 people left the company, 44 of whom were disciplined, as part of an ongoing investigation. Klasky believes the 700 figure is inaccurate, and the questions posed to the company range from milder workplace issues to “a handful” of more serious issues that have been investigated. Klasky also said allegations that Kotick withheld information about the number of disciplinary actions from the public were “untrue” because the company’s focus was on ensuring it had “accurate data and analysis to share.”

Today’s announcement that Microsoft has acquired Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion is a bit odd to some considering all the trouble the latter is still going through, especially after Microsoft said it was evaluating its relationship with the company before allegations. We believe that outright acquisitions of companies are a way of evaluating relationships.