Is currently “reviewing partnership” with company.
Lego has announced it is indefinitely suspending the release of its Overwatch 2 Titan set, initially scheduled to launch on 1st February, in light of ongoing concerns related to Activision Blizzard’s workplace culture – which was described as a “breeding ground for harassment and discrimination against women” in a California State lawsuit launched last July.
The controversy surrounding Activision Blizzard has only deepened since then; November saw the release of a damning Wall Street Journal report detailing further alleged sexual harassment, assault, and inappropriate behaviour at the company – with the publication levying particular criticism at CEO Bobby Kotick, claiming he’d been aware of the allegations of sexual misconduct and mistreatment of female employees across the company “for years”.
Despite swift industry condemnation – Xbox, Nintendo, and PlayStation all made statements condemning Activision Blizzard – and a petition signed by more than 1,800 company employees demanding Kotick step down, Activision’s board of directors all rallied around the CEO, saying it “remains confident” in Kotick’s “leadership, commitment and ability”.
Since then, Activision Blizzard has remained mired in controversy, dogged by ongoing strike action and calls for unionisation – which the company tried to stem in an email send to all employees at the end of last year.
It’s in this climate that Lego has now (thanks, TheBrickFan) opted to suspend the release of its Overwatch 2 Titan set, saying it’s currently in the process of reviewing its partnership with Activision Blizzard “given concerns about the progress being made to address continuing allegations regarding workplace culture, especially the treatment of female colleagues and creating a diverse and inclusive environment”.
Lego says the Overwatch 2 Titan set’s release will remain paused indefinitely until it has completed its review.
The move is perhaps the most decisive public action we’ve yet seen from a major company since allegations of Activision Blizzard’s toxic work culture first surfaced last year. So far, only Xbox has publicly addressed its shifting relationship with Activision, albeit obliquely, with Xbox head Phil Spencer recently telling the New York Times it had “changed how we do certain things with them, and they’re aware of that.”