Award show whose advisory board includes Activision President will be silent.
As Activision has drawn the ire of numerous investors, video game companies, the public, employees, and more calling on Bobby Kotick’s resignation or simply condemning the company, one might wonder what Geoff Keighley’s plans are for the upcoming Game Awards. Will they stay silent, or join in on the chorus of voices demanding action be taken by Activision to remove CEO Bobby Kotick for his years of fostering, defending, and partaking in a culture of sexual abuse, harassment, and a generally toxic workplace. Like the time Bobby Kotick legitimately threatened to murder a female assistant.
But we learned this week from Geoff Keighley himself that The Game Awards will not weigh in on what virtually nobody else in the industry has stayed silent on. In an interview with the Washington Post, Keighley waffled on the question claiming that they don’t want to diminish developers’ opportunities to spotlight their games.
“We want to support employees and developers,” said Keighley, who added he supported people coming forward with their stories but also didn’t want to diminish developers’ opportunities to spotlight their games. “We have to think very carefully about how to proceed here.”
Now this might come off as offensive for Keighley to decide to turn a blind eye to sexual abuse at a company, considering the same man found it offensive enough just a few years ago that Konami would refuse to let Hideo Kojima appear at the Game Awards to accept an award, that he had no trouble bringing the show to a screeching halt in order to reveal such information and give the crowd time to get mad and boo. Kojima is currently a member of the advisory board for The Game Awards.
The simplest answer is that of course Keighley can’t go against Activision. The company pays good money to put their trailers up at the Game Awards, and making a statement would bring the story to a lot of eyes that don’t normally follow gaming news that could spiral into more mainstream media attention. Oh and they’d probably lose Activision’s money.
Another perspective comes in the form of who is advising The Game Awards, and literally the first person on the alphabetical list is Activision president Rob Kostich. Oh and The Game Awards is also being advised by Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot who has been directly implicated in fostering his own culture of sexual abuse and workplace toxicity. I’m going on a limb here and guessing the advisory board “advised” Keighley to keep his big yap shut.
So the best case scenario is that Geoff Keighley really loves money, and the worst case scenario is that he cares more about his best friend Hideo Kojima not being able to accept an award than he does numerous women he doesn’t know being sexually abused by their bosses.
Otherwise I have no opinion on the matter.