Bungie declares zero-tolerance for toxic work culture

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Following a lawsuit that alleges a culture of sexual harassment and discrimination at Activision Blizzard, developer Bungie has released a statement that declares a “zero-tolerance policy” for “toxic culture” in its workplace. While the Destiny 2 developer is not implicated in the suit, it used to have a ten-year publishing contract with Activision Blizzard and likely seeks to distance itself from its former publisher.

Here’s Bungie’s statement in full:

“Bungie is built on empowering our people no matter who they are, where they are from, or how they identify. We have a responsibility to acknowledge, reflect, and do what we can to push back on a persistent culture of harassment, abuse, and inequality that exists in our industry.

“It’s our responsibility to ensure this type of behavior is not tolerated at Bungie at any level, and that we never excuse it or sweep it under the rug. While the accounts in this week’s news are difficult to read, we hope they will lead to justice, awareness, and accountability.

“We have a zero-tolerance policy at Bungie for environments that support this toxic culture, and we are committed to rooting them out to defend those who are at risk.

“Women, POC, and underrepresented communities have nothing to gain by reliving their trauma. We believe them when they come forward with reports of abuse or harassment.

“We don’t pretend that Bungie is perfect and that no one has experienced harassment while working here, but we will not tolerate it and will confront it head on. And we will continue to do the work every day to be better.

“Our goal is to continue to improve the experience for everyone working at Bungie and do our part to make the gaming industry as a whole to be more welcoming and inclusive.”

Bungie declares zero-tolerance

Bungie’s split from Activision in 2019 came as a surprise to most, as it was largely believed that the ten year publishing contract they signed meant that they and Destiny 2 would be locked in for at least another a year. Former Bungie audio director Martin O’Donnell spoke poorly of the relationship last year.

The allegations against Activison Blizzard are rather scandalous and fit into a larger pattern of toxicity and mismanagement within the company such as downsizing employees at a time of record profits, redundant bonuses to top executive Bobby Kotick and severe pay disparities between junior and senior employees.

As such, it’s understandable that Bungie would want to pre-emptively distinguish it from its old partner as it declares zero-tolerance. In the above statement, the studio admits it is not perfect while emphasizing the importance of doing better and listening to reports.