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EA exec says toxic environments are inevitable inside large publishers ‘but you have to take action’

IbizaPocholo

NeoGAFs Kent Brockman

Executive vice president for Positive Play, marketing and commercial Chris Bruzzo told GamesIndustry.biz that while EA doesn’t seem to be embroiled in the same harassment and discrimination allegations currently ongoing at Activision Blizzard and Ubisoft, the company isn’t quite perfect yet.

“We’re a community of over 10,000 employees,” Bruzzo explained. “Are we going to have issues? Are there going to be places where some bad actors or toxic environments exist inside the Electronic Arts employment culture? Of course. Once you get to that level, that size of a population, you almost can’t avoid it.

“[But] just like on the player toxicity side, you have to have a team that investigates complaints and takes action. So, yes, we have had to take some significant actions and dismiss employees etc. over the last several years.”

According to Bruzzo, EA employees are given regular surveys and training to make sure they’re aware of the company’s code of conduct, and also have an internal ‘raise a concern’ platform and an external hotline for staff who want advice from a third party.

Bruzzo also acknowledges that the issues these procedures are trying to prevent are partly due to the industry being “historically super over-represented by men […] with a lack of diversity in general”, and that the aim is to change this.

“It’s going to take a lot of work to change that over time,” he explains. “If we just talk about women, we have to hire women at every level of the company, in technical roles, in management roles, etc., and that takes a multi-year commitment to turning the shape of an employee population that has more than 10,000 people in it to something that is actually more diverse and representative. But we’re making really great progress.”

Bruzzo pointed out that 50% of the leaders who oversee EA’s studios are women, and that the number of Hispanic and Latinx employees has grown 35% in two years. Despite this, he makes it clear that issues could still happen in the future, and it’s how to deal with them that’s important.

“Is it possible that, two weeks from now, we’re going to hear that there was somebody who was behaving badly at EA for some period of time?” he asks. “I’m sure that’s going to come up again, just by virtue of the large numbers of the people that we employ.

“And our job will be to deal with it, to take action, and to keep making things better.”
 

Spukc

Member
EA employees are given regular surveys and training to make sure they’re aware of the company’s code of conduct, and also have an internal ‘raise a concern’ platform and an external hotline for staff who want advice from a third party.

Chat Infuriating GIF by AnimatedText
 

strange headache

Fluctuat nec mergitur
Thank god we have greedy multi-billion corporations to re-educate us filthy plebs into becoming good little worker drones. We really need EA to tell us how to be better humans since they are such role models.
In such desperate times, we need more predatory microtransactions, loot box gambling and 'surprise' mechanics.

Just look at this absolute paragon of virtue:


Man I'm just so glad that EA is so committed to these ethical concerns. Instead of white dudes, we're now going to have female disabled trans Latinx minorities reaching into our pockets and fleecing us with surprise mechanics.
 

jigglet

Member
You do not have a project worth hundreds of millions, tight, unmissable deadlines and have everything be sunshine and roses all the way till the end. Shit will hit the fan, people will get upset, friction will occur. Managing and diffusing this is important, but only a REEEEE member would claim it's anything but inevitable.

Let's not pretend like it's not a problem, but let's also not be fucking delusional and pretend like there's some golden solution to it. There's only two types of people that would claim this: SJW's that don't even work in the industry, or people who just graduated with zero experience and still live inside a text book, saying "well acccctuuuuuuallly, according to what my professor said, if you do it the *right* way then everything should operate smoothly"
 
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IbizaPocholo

NeoGAFs Kent Brockman

While not directly mentioning Activision Blizzard, which is currently facing multiple regulatory investigations over its handling of alleged sexual assaults and harassment of female employees, or its CEO Bobby Kotick, EA’s EVP and COO Laura Miele appeared to be pointing the finger in their direction during her speech on Wednesday, IGN reports.

“Let’s face it, there have been some rough headlines,” said Miele, who has been with EA for over 25 years and previously served as its chief studios officer. “Stories about negligence and lawsuits, all stemming from leaders who failed to uphold standards we’ve come to expect.”

She added: “Women have been harassed, bullied, marginalised, held back in their careers, paid less, and much, much less. These are real stories, real human beings, and this is going on in companies in our industry.”

Miele said that “leaders who fall short of basic standards must go.”
 

nush

Gold Member

While not directly mentioning Activision Blizzard, which is currently facing multiple regulatory investigations over its handling of alleged sexual assaults and harassment of female employees, or its CEO Bobby Kotick, EA’s EVP and COO Laura Miele appeared to be pointing the finger in their direction during her speech on Wednesday, IGN reports.

“Let’s face it, there have been some rough headlines,” said Miele, who has been with EA for over 25 years and previously served as its chief studios officer. “Stories about negligence and lawsuits, all stemming from leaders who failed to uphold standards we’ve come to expect.”

She added: “Women have been harassed, bullied, marginalised, held back in their careers, paid less, and much, much less. These are real stories, real human beings, and this is going on in companies in our industry.”

Miele said that “leaders who fall short of basic standards must go.”
So, nothing of substance at all then? No examples?
 

Drew1440

Member
Someone needs to make a bingo card with these corporate buzzwords, I feel all these PR statements come from the same person.
Toxic
Empowerment
Diversity
Marginalised
Systemic
Problematic
Misinformation
Platform
 

Majukun

Member
in a way, yes...when you have hundreds of people working under yu, the moral fiber of some f them might be rotten and a certain amount of people might do what they shouldn't.

this being said, i have nothing but good things to say for my period at ea in this regard, but it also was a pretty small team, so doesn't really gel with what said in the op
 

Fuz

Gold Member
Thank god we have greedy multi-billion corporations to re-educate us filthy plebs into becoming good little worker drones. We really need EA to tell us how to be better humans since they are such role models.
In such desperate times, we need more predatory microtransactions, loot box gambling and 'surprise' mechanics.

Just look at this absolute paragon of virtue:


Man I'm just so glad that EA is so committed to these ethical concerns. Instead of white dudes, we're now going to have female disabled trans Latinx minorities reaching into our pockets and fleecing us with surprise mechanics.
Meme Reaction GIF by Robert E Blackmon
 

Razvedka

Member
Someone needs to make a bingo card with these corporate buzzwords, I feel all these PR statements come from the same person.
Toxic
Empowerment
Diversity
Marginalised
Systemic
Problematic
Misinformation
Platform
 

Chiggs

Gold Member
Bruzzo pointed out that 50% of the leaders who oversee EA’s studios are women, and that the number of Hispanic and Latinx employees has grown 35% in two years. Despite this, he makes it clear that issues could still happen in the future, and it’s how to deal with them that’s important.

I can't tell if this is just clunky writing, or if Bruzzo actually equates more women/Hispanic/Latinx in leadership positions to less toxicity overall. If it's the latter, holy moly...that's so ridiculously delusional or performative that words fail me.

Anyone with ANY shred of real world experience can tell you that women and Hispanics are just as capable as forming toxic cliques and chasing out good employees as the straightest white man to have ever been so unfortunate as to wind up in middle management.
 
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Hugare

Member
You guys instantly interpret the world "toxic" to "we need less white males and more trans people and minorities" or whatever?

English is not even my native language and I can interpret more from it

Some of you try so hard to make it about your agenda

"Toxic" may be that boss of yours that knows shit about how you do your work, have no sense of urgency, get in the way of your work and etc.

I have a boss that made 6 people from my team to quit the company. And all my team is currently looking for another job.
 

Sentenza

Member
What does "toxic" mean?
Normal humans interacting, for the most part.

Someone flirted with someone? Toxic.
Someone was in a bad mood and responded rudely to a minor annoyance? Toxic.
Your boss didn’t sugar-coated being unhappy with your results? Toxic.
Two guys during a coffee break made a joke about wives/girlfriends? TOXIC AND DEMEANING OF WOMEN DIGNITY.

And so on. You got the gist.
It’s not a coincidence that this witch hunt against toxicity is mostly led by social outcasts
 

Catphish

Gold Member
Thank god we have greedy multi-billion corporations to re-educate us filthy plebs into becoming good little worker drones. We really need EA to tell us how to be better humans since they are such role models.
In such desperate times, we need more predatory microtransactions, loot box gambling and 'surprise' mechanics.

Just look at this absolute paragon of virtue:


Man I'm just so glad that EA is so committed to these ethical concerns. Instead of white dudes, we're now going to have female disabled trans Latinx minorities reaching into our pockets and fleecing us with surprise mechanics.
I think I love this post.

❤️
 

Catphish

Gold Member
You guys instantly interpret the world "toxic" to "we need less white males and more trans people and minorities" or whatever?

English is not even my native language and I can interpret more from it

Some of you try so hard to make it about your agenda

"Toxic" may be that boss of yours that knows shit about how you do your work, have no sense of urgency, get in the way of your work and etc.

I have a boss that made 6 people from my team to quit the company. And all my team is currently looking for another job.
Well if English isn’t your native language, you might not be aware that, until about a decade ago, I hardly ever even heard the word ‘toxic’ used in common discourse, neither written nor spoken, except perhaps to describe the avenger, or how crayons aren’t.

I can’t go through a single fucking day now without hearing or seeing it. The word is absolutely overused, to the point where it has lost all inherent meaning, and its dilution is very much due to it being hyper-employed by thin-skinned people with obvious agendas.
 
Bruzzo also acknowledges that the issues these procedures are trying to prevent are partly due to the industry being “historically super over-represented by men […] with a lack of diversity in general”, and that the aim is to change this.

Bullshit.

As if toxicity and screwy office politics in the workplace are exclusive to male-dominated spaces. This guy has never worked in a female-dominated industry sector like advertising or fashion. It's fucking toxic as hell.

Shitty people are the reason for toxicity in the workplace. Not men and not women.

Gear your hiring practices around not hiring shitty people and promoting positive corporate cultural values and you'll have a healthy and inclusive workplace.
 

Sentenza

Member
“One day we were having a meeting about our next project, I threw in an idea, there were few seconds of awkward silence, one of my colleagues barely suffocated a laugh and another MANSPLAINED TO ME why it wouldn’t work.

That night I went home and I went directly to cry myself to sleep without even eating what my husband prepared for dinner. The patriarchy is ruining my life”.

There, here’s your average anecdote of “toxicity in the work environment” these days.
 
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Dr.Morris79

Member
Thank god we have greedy multi-billion corporations to re-educate us filthy plebs into becoming good little worker drones. We really need EA to tell us how to be better humans since they are such role models.
In such desperate times, we need more predatory microtransactions, loot box gambling and 'surprise' mechanics.

Just look at this absolute paragon of virtue:


Man I'm just so glad that EA is so committed to these ethical concerns. Instead of white dudes, we're now going to have female disabled trans Latinx minorities reaching into our pockets and fleecing us with surprise mechanics.
EA getting caught fleecing kids with 'loot boxes' =



EA after having a rethink, 'think of the children, we need to look good'





The Kids regardless =



As a species we're beyond saving.
 
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