Ubisoft employees have accused the company of avoiding its issues and of continuing to promote and protect offenders. Workers at the gaming studio say they want a "collective seat at the table" in order to help determine Ubisoft's future.
Why have Ubisoft employees accused the company of avoiding issues?
This news comes via an employee response to statements by both the company and its CEO, Yves Guillemot, in recent days (both of which are, in themselves, responses to an open letter signed by Ubisoft employees in solidarity with Activision Blizzard workers). In their statement, the studio's employees acknowledge the responses from both the company and Guillemot, but say that "the majority of [their] demands were sidelined" and that the points they made haven't been addressed. The employees accuse their employer of continuing to promote and protect known perpetrators of harassment and those who shield them. They also say that Guillemot and Ubisoft's upper management are avoiding this issue.
In their original open letter, employees say they've "had enough" with the company continuing to promote and inadequately punish offenders. Now, in this latest response, the employees set out their demands on the company, saying they look forward to "a full response". The demands include Ubisoft ceasing to promote offenders and move them between studios without repercussions. Employees also say they want a collective say in how the studio's future unfolds, as well as for Ubisoft to participate in "cross-industry collaboration" to create a standardized response to harassment in future.
What's the backdrop to this Ubisoft employee statement?
Last week, it emerged that Activision Blizzard is being sued by the State of California over a perceived toxic work culture. This development is the latest in a series of harassment and abuse allegations against key industry personnel and entities. As the Ubisoft employees point out in their original letter, it's been over a year since Ubisoft's own abuse scandal emerged, and there are also the allegations against Lab Zero's Mike Zaimont and League of Legends developer Riot Games, among others. In France, Ubisoft also faces legal action as French Union Solidaires Informatique over the previously mentioned abuse scandal and other workplace issues.
It seems like Ubisoft employees aren't going to tolerate what they see as Guillemot and the company's indifference to their demands. Although this exchange began as a declaration of support for Activision Blizzard employees, it's also a reminder that Ubisoft's issues haven't gone away. Despite Guillemot's assurances that much has changed, it seems that Le Télégramme's May report suggesting the opposite has been corroborated. We'll have to wait and see what happens next, but one thing's for sure: this issue is getting harder for major gaming execs to ignore.