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Activision Blizzard Is Being Sued Yet Again

Activision Blizzard just received a new lawsuit from a current employee. She didn't name herself publicly, and the original report from Bloomberg calls her "Jane Doe." In her lawsuit, she describes a company rife with sexual harassment and discrimination that stunted her professional development.

Doe spoke publicly about her experience during a press conference last year, but is only suing the company now. Her attorney, Lisa Bloom, posted an announcement about her press conference on Twitter to ask for support as early as last year. "I represent a Blizzard employee who alleges she's a victim of sexual harassment," Bloom wrote in December 2021. "Our press release for our press conference tomorrow at the Irvine headquarters where we will demand accountability for the victims who have been subjected to harassment at the video game company." The accompanying press release cited the "rampant sexism" her client experienced while working at Activision Blizzard and its "alcohol-soaked culture of sexual harassment."

According to Bloomberg, Doe was pressured into drinking shots of tequila and told that she needed to share "an embarrassing secret" with everyone during an initiation lunch. She also complained about constant pressure to drink at work events and participate in "cube crawls" where women were sexually commented on and groped. This lines up with another cube crawl complaint from the allegations Activision Blizzard faced in a 2021 suit.

Unfortunately, that's not the worst of it. Doe claims that the company held back her professional life, too. 

Bad job, bad news

Doe's lawsuit described inappropriate advances from supervisors and how her concerns were minimized to "just her leadership being nice and trying to be friends with her." She also claimed that she was told to dress more conservatively in order to avoid sexual harassment and keep her complaints to herself because they could be "damaging" to the company.

She couldn't even escape, either. Every attempt to apply for open roles outside of the IT department where she worked were met with rejection. She only received an offer after writing a formal complaint to the then-president Allen J. Brack about her situation. Even though the new position paid her significantly less than her old one, she took it anyway. After speaking out at the conference, Doe was also denied an open executive position. 

Activision Blizzard has faced numerous lawsuits since the allegations from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing last July. The original report that started the chain reaction cited stories from former and current employees about a "pervasive frat-boy culture." The Wall Street Journal then published an investigative report about the company and CEO Bobby Kotick's efforts to hide its problematic work environment.

Doe's lawsuit asks Activision to implement a rotating HR department, retain a neutral investigation firm, and fire Bobby Kotick.