American Corporations Are Deciding Whether They Should Boycott Activision Blizzard Or Not

Kellogg’s is the first company to announce it is no longer sponsoring an Activision Blizzard esports league.
A lawsuit filed by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) alleging that the company has a “frat boy culture” where female employees face gender discrimination and sexual harassment led the company to announce recently that it was withdrawing from the Overwatch League.
Several current and former employees have been speaking to the media about the hazing and sexual harassment that female employees had to endure at Blizzard, including loose locker room banter, gender discrimination, sexual assault, and pay disparities.
In 2019, Kellogg’s and the Overwatch League signed a multi-year partnership deal, which included Cheez-It Grooves and Pringles Wavy. The OWL website removed both brands from the sponsorship page on Friday.
In an announcement to Polygon, the company informed them that it would no longer sponsor the league:
A Kellogg spokesperson, Kris Bahner, told Polygon that the allegations are troubling and contradict the company’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion. “Activision Blizzard has announced plans to address the challenges it faces, but we will not launch any new programs this year, but we will keep track of their progress.”
Several companies, including Coca-Cola, State Farm, and T-Mobile, maintain their relationships with Activision Blizzard but have asked the company to temporarily remove its branding from competitions.
Coca-Cola and State Farm withdrew from Activision Blizzard’s esports leagues after the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing sued the company for workplace harassment and discrimination.
Despite the lawsuit and subsequent allegations of “frat boy” culture and woman abuse, fallout continues this week, with former Blizzard presenter J. Allen Brack resigning and T-Mobile hiding its logo during Call of Duty League broadcasts.
State Farm told WAPO that it will “reevaluate our limited marketing relationship with the Overwatch League” and has asked the league not to run any State Farm-related content or ads this weekend. Coca-Cola told the publication it is aware of the situation at Activision Blizzard and it is stepping back from the relationship to reevaluate future programs and plans related to ABE.
The future of key CDL and OWL sponsors and partners remains unclear, but no one has explicitly stated that they have severed all ties with ABE.

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