Activision CEO Bobby Kotick has reportedly told the company’s executives that he will consider stepping down if he cannot quickly resolve the ongoing issues at the publisher.
In a newly published report by Wall Street JournalSources familiar with Kotick said the Activision CEO made comments during a meeting with executives on Friday that left open the possibility of his resignation if existing malpractice issues within the company were not “quickly” resolved.
Heightened pressure on Kotick comes after a previous Wall Street Journal report alleged that the CEO knew of alleged sexual assault and harassment allegations within the company but did not divulge the information to the company’s board of directors. The report itself, centered around Kotick, said internal documents and sources known to the publisher showed that the CEO was aware of many of the reported abuse cases within the company.
Kotick has since published a public message, following the publication of the Wall Street Journal’s first report, describing it as “inaccurate and misleading”. Despite Kotick’s comments, a number of people – including the ABK Workers Alliance, over 1,000 Activision Blizzard employees and various shareholders – have called for the CEO to step down.
We have introduced our own Zero Tolerance Policy. We will not be silenced until Bobby Kotick is replaced as CEO, and we continue to adhere to our original request for third-party verification by an employee-selected source. We’re having a walkout today. We warmly welcome you to join us.
– ABetterABK 💙 ABK Workers Alliance (@ABetterABK) November 16, 2021
In addition to the increased pressure on Kotick and the publisher from its employees, a number of other well-known industry giants have commented on the ongoing problems at Activision Blizzard. Last week, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan criticized Activision’s response to allegations in the original WSJ report. Ryan emailed PlayStation employees saying that Sony leadership was “discouraged and frankly stunned to read” that Activision “has not done enough to address a deeply ingrained culture of discrimination and harassment”.
Similar views were voiced by Xbox CEO Phil Spencer, who told his team last week that the company is evaluating “all aspects of” [its] Relationship with Activision Blizzard and making ongoing proactive adjustments, “following the latest reports from the publisher.
Last week’s Wall Street Journal reports continued a long-running Activision Blizzard scandal that began earlier this year following a lawsuit filed by the State of California against the company. To find out more, please visit our timeline as well as our in-depth report on the subject.
Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him Twitter.