Blizzard's President, J. Allen Brack has stepped down following bombshell sex discrimination and harassment allegations served to Activision Blizzard by the State of California. It is unclear whether Brack's resignation from Activision Blizzard is at all linked with the ongoing lawsuit.
Activision Blizzard has been in the wars lately, with the State of California suing them for alleged sex discrimination and harassment related to "frat-boy" culture at the company. The last two weeks have been messy, with the lawsuit leading to a major employee walkout and widespread public condemnation. Allen Brack's resignation is yet another blow to the embattled company.
Update: Since we wrote this piece multiple execs were subpoenaed, including the CEO Bobby Kotick. You can find the full details on these recent development beneath.
Read more about the Activision Blizzard Sex Discrimination and Harassment Lawsuit in this hub article:
J. Allen Brack Leaves Activision Blizzard
Brack is leaving Activision Blizzard "to pursue new opportunities", according to an Activision Investor press release. Brack was Blizzard's President, and will be replaced by Mike Ybarra, who previously headed Vicarious Visions, the developer behind Tony Hawk's Pro Skater and Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure on the 3DS. In response to his resignation, Brack said the following:
I am confident that Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will provide the leadership Blizzard needs to realize its full potential and will accelerate the pace of change. I anticipate they will do so with passion and enthusiasm and that they can be trusted to lead with the highest levels of integrity and commitment to the components of our culture that make Blizzard so special.
Brack was mentioned in the recent Activision Blizzard lawsuit, allegedly only giving a "slap on the wrist" to a now-former Creative Director at the company whom had received sexual harassment complaints. In response to the lawsuit, Brack had said that the behaviour alleged was "completely unacceptable".
It is uncertain at this time whether Brack's resignation is at all related to the ongoing lawsuit, or just an unfortunate coincidence. It is entirely possible that Brack had planned to move on from his roll at Blizzard before the allegations had surfaced. However, considering the criticism he has faced over the past few weeks regarding both his response to the lawsuit, and a damning BlizzCon video from 2010, it is possible that Brack's resignation had something to do with the lawsuit.
Update: September 21 - Bobby Kotich Subpoena
Bobby Kotich, the CEO of Activision Blizzard, has been officially subpoenaed for his handling of employee complaints since 2019:
The SEC is investigating Activision Blizzard over sexual misconduct allegations and improper disclosures, the WSJ reports. It has subpoenaed Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick among others https://t.co/HPZAV6G2ik pic.twitter.com/l7GxhC0jzj— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) September 20, 2021
Bobby was already a vilified figure and this will no doubt further harm his reputation. Whether he will stand down is yet unknown, but don't be surprised to see the news tomorrow morning...
This is, of course, an ongoing story. We will continue to update this article with new information as it surfaces, and will keep you up-to-date with everything going on at Activision Blizzard.
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