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Community outrage and protests against Activision Blizzard in wake of lawsuit

Following the shocking revelations on Tuesday protest and outrage against Activision Blizzard has spread throughout the internet with Blizzard's gaming communities no exception from the widespread condemnation.

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Yesterday the word got out that Activision Blizzard faces a lawsuit from the California Department of Fair Employment following a two year investigation. Among the allegations are routine sexism and discrimination towards women within the company. The community in many Blizzard games reacted with protests and disbelief to the scale of the scandal.

Virtual sit-in in World of Warcraft

Maybe the most iconic response to the news is the protest in World of Warcraft many players participated in. As per Polygon, players gathered at the Idyllia Steps in Oribos to join the fundraising campaign for the non-profit organization Black Girls CODE. This organization is dedicated to teaching young girls about computer programming.

“We as customers and members of this community protest the unethical treatment of employees at Activision-Blizzard, and demand that they make transparent lasting change to their company and associated IPs,” event organizer Fence Macabre wrote. “We stand with the victims and survivors of Blizzard’s racism and abuse.”

Statement Reddit moderators

Following the big news, moderators from the various subreddits of Activision Blizzard’s games came out with a statement. This includes the subreddits of Overwatch, World of Warcraft, Starcraft, Diablo and many more.

The statement says they ‘vehemently condemn the sexual harassment and hostile working environment alleged in the recent lawsuit between Activision Blizzard and the state of California.’ Furthermore they emphasize they won’t be censoring this topic on their subreddits. Of course discussions still need to be held withing the rules of the subreddits.

To conclude, the moderators state: “We call for these issues to be addressed by Activision Blizzard appropriately and exhaustively. As a group of moderators, we are deeply saddened about these events and the hostile work environment created by them. We strive to make our communities inclusive and safe for all, and urge Activision Blizzard to take steps to demonstrate that they are doing the same.”

Alliestrasza delays card reveal

The well-known Hearthstone content creator Alexandra “Alliestrasza” Macpherson also took her stance following the news yesterday. She postponed the card reveal of a card that was given to her by Activision Blizzard, as a part of the 135 cards of the United in Stormwind expansion.

In a short 2-minute video on Twitter she explains a bit more. “My card reveals are always fun and cringy and celebrate the best of Blizzard’s creativity. And today is just not the day for that, in light of recent events.” She also encourages people to speak up for ‘what is right’ and take responsibility in certain situations, regarding sexual harrassment or misconduct. “My heart goes out to anyone who has been affected.”

Asmongold responds visibly upset

Big Twitch-personality Asmongold has also spoken out regarding the news about the lawsuit. And it’s save to say, he wasn’t holding back an inch, which is probably also fueled by the tense relationship between him and the video game company.

On Twitter Asmongold already called Activision Blizzard ‘shameful’. In his livestream he talked about the case and was visibly upset. As a part of his emotional monologue he also showed tweets about the case and the statement of Activision Blizzard, which followed quickly after the news got out.

What the future brings

The expectation is that protests like these will continue within the community, since the lawsuit is currently in progress. We can only guess what the consequences will be for Activision Blizzard, but one thing assured: this whole situation will be remembered as one of the biggest happenings in gaming history, in a negative way.

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