The past few years have seen some startling revelations come out of big gaming companies, centered around toxic workplace culture and other major issues that have no place in the office. The likes of Riot Games and Activision Blizzard are prominent examples, and there has been a settlement reached in regards to the latter and the sexual harassment lawsuit that was brought against the company.
As reported by Kotaku, U.S. District Judge Dale Fischer has approved an $18 million relief settlement with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). However, this conclusion is not exactly what those suing are looking for, especially as it might not result in meaningful change in the culture of Activision Blizzard.
A back and forth between a lawyer acting on behalf of the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) and the presiding judge revolved around the nature of the proceedings, sudden change in directions, and ultimately, the possibility of taking the case to the ninth circuit court for an appeal against the settlement.
The fact that this outcome could prevent the DFEH from pursuing even more monetary damages against Activision Blizzard is the tipping point, as that could mean less compensation both for the sexual harassment victims and the DFEH’s own case against the corporation.
There are also worries that allegations of sexual harassment would be removed from the record of those who are looking to settle, money being funnelled back into Activision Blizzard, and perhaps more pertinently, that $18 million is hardly going to hurt the company to drive change.
While we wait to see what else unfolds from this current lawsuit, the DFEH’s own lawsuit against the publisher will begin on February 27, 2023.