Shortly after the Wall Street Journal reported last week that Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick was protecting abusers from harm and abusing women themselves, PlayStation and Xbox bosses came out to the publisher and his lack of response to criticize the allegations. Following internal emails from Jim Ryan and Phil Spencer to their respective companies, Fanbyte reports that Nintendo of America President Doug Bowser will announce that on Friday the 19th
Bowser’s email has reportedly been sent to every employee at every level of Nintendo of America, including the in-house development studios. Bowser says he was “following the latest developments at Activision Blizzard and ongoing reports of sexual harassment and toxicity across the company.” Not only does he refer to the reports as “troubling and troubling” but also says that they are “contrary to my values and Nintendo’s beliefs, values and guidelines.” Bowser expects the game industry and all Nintendo partners to adhere to a high standard of an open and inclusive workplace.
In addition, Bowser claims Nintendo was “in contact with Activision” and says that they “have taken action and are evaluating others”. Fanbyte notes that the email does not provide details of the actions taken or considered. Bowser’s email also mentions working with E3 organizers, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), to “strengthen attitudes towards harassment and abuse in the workplace.” Activision Blizzard and Nintendo are both members of ESA – along with a number of other prominent publishers – and Bowser says they “need to keep their members at the highest level”.
A report over the weekend said that Kotick is considering stepping back if the change in Activision Blizzard’s culture doesn’t come fast enough, though that report smells like irony as many calls for a culture correction start with Kotick’s removal anyway . At this point, Activision Blizzard’s board of directors has given up its official position and endorsed Kotick’s continued leadership despite the reports.[Source: Fanbyte]