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Activision Blizzard Halts New Sales in Russia

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President and COO Daniel Alegre informed the community that Activision Blizzard will halt new sales in Russia, rendering players unable to renew their subscriptions.

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Team -

Throughout the past week, we have watched the news from Ukraine and the worsening humanitarian crisis that is unfolding. Our company’s commitment is to help those impacted by this terrifying violence and to provide assistance in every way possible.

Today, we are announcing that Activision Blizzard will be suspending new sales of and in our games in Russia while this conflict continues. We will continue to look at ways to support the Ukrainian people. I want to reassure you that the safety of our employees is our leadership team’s top priority. We are doing everything possible to assist employees, and their families, who are being directly affected by this tragedy. If you or a colleague needs support, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your manager or local HR leaders. I’d also like to remind you that our Employee Assistance Program is available to those who need emotional support during this difficult time.

I also want to take a moment to recognize the incredible work of our teams to support the Ukrainian people. The company is matching employee donations 2:1 to organizations providing immediate relief in the region. Together we have raised over $300,000 in this effort. Next week we plan to add additional charities to choose from for consideration and also will raise the company matching limit from $1,000 to $10,000.

I’d also like to applaud the tremendous contributions from our colleagues in Poland, where people have volunteered their time to assist Ukrainian refugees and others in need. We continue to work with them to find ways we can further assist this effort. We stand with the Ukrainian people and will provide updates on any new actions we take as this crisis continues to unfold.

Daniel

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Stunning and brave for sure. Now that my day has been filled with inspiration next thing I'll do is watch TikTok with educational purposes.

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Dunno what's funnier.

The amount of countries that impacted, since it has way more to do with how volatile the ruble currently is and "public image" of Blizzard, rather than actually "supporting Ukraine" (beats me how this is going to achieve that).

...Or the fact that simply using VPN allows you to bypass it, the subscription cost will just be higher.

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1 hour ago, Calysia said:

Why punish ordinary Russians who are likely also against the war!?

Because cancel culture doesn't understands how economic sanctions are supposed to work.

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1 hour ago, Badadada said:

Because cancel culture doesn't understands how economic sanctions are supposed to work.

Even sanctions are called "cancel culture" now? Everything can be cancel culture! Also, it is not a thing.

They are joining over 50 companies who are doing this. So it is nothing special, perhaps they will forget about it within two weeks.

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9 minutes ago, Arcling said:

Even sanctions are called "cancel culture" now? Everything can be cancel culture! Also, it is not a thing.

They are joining over 50 companies who are doing this. So it is nothing special, perhaps they will forget about it within two weeks.

Sanctions are that which are imposed by governmental entities in order to target a specific sector. Unless there's a US gov. bill/act passed that says you cannot sell MMORPGs to Russia then we are not talking about any sanction in this case. More like flawed corporate PR-machines with a compulsion to conform towards the influencer-brigades.

Just to be clear: the current tech export-ban does not cover entertainment goods such as videogames. Free trade is still in place.

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Uncommon Patron

Seems Blizzard has also blocked Ukraine and other countries:

@BlizzardCSEU_RU

are you okay at all? We found out today that you banned payments NOT to Russian citizens, you banned payments to the cyrillic region, where citizens of UKRAINE play, and also Belarus, Kazakhstan and a number of other countries.

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7 hours ago, Calysia said:

Seems Blizzard has also blocked Ukraine and other countries:

@BlizzardCSEU_RU

are you okay at all? We found out today that you banned payments NOT to Russian citizens, you banned payments to the cyrillic region, where citizens of UKRAINE play, and also Belarus, Kazakhstan and a number of other countries.

Exactly.

If they really wanted to sanction Russian players (for whatever reason they think we deserved it), they could've just 'temporarily' suspend the accounts registered in Russia, like they did with Cremia back in the day.

Financial-related farce, masqueraded as 'supporting Ukraine' campaign, much like a few dozen other companies 'suspending activities' in Russia just because they risk income dealing in rubles now.

Revolting as a Russian, and I imagine equally as revolting for a Ukranian - all those high words of support they do not really mean, that are a covenient way to raise their public approval (and boy is Blizzard in dire need of it).

Edited by Teufel

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I don't understand this.

If Russian gamers are taking up arms and attacking Ukraine they aren't buying or playing videogames anyway are they? So why take away someone's toy when that someone isn't really hurting anyone?

Isn't supporting one side enough? Is it really necessary to go out of your way to punish the other?

Also, not trying to derail the discussion here but, what do you people reckon AB would do if China soon decides to absorb or reunify with (depends on which side you're on) Taiwan in the future. Yes it is an entirely different matter with a very different historical and/or political backstory but gamers and Twitter won't know the difference anyway.

 

 

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Russian here
Spoiler alert - it didn't work out in the end since:
1) Alot of people left the game when the subscription went up a few years earlier
2) Even more people left thanks to BFA and Shadowlands (well duh)
3) We have private servers which are even better than actual Classic ones.

So joke's on you ActiBlizz

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The Russian servers are still running. Russian players will not be informed by Blizzard about the war in Ukraine. Users who refer to the war in Ukraine on Twitch or Discord will be banned. Everything Blizzard has done so far is nothing effective. More than 11,000 refugees from Ukraine arrived in Berlin yesterday.

From Berlin, Germany

Wolfgang Tietze

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5 hours ago, Steveson said:

Russian here
Spoiler alert - it didn't work out in the end since:
1) Alot of people left the game when the subscription went up a few years earlier
2) Even more people left thanks to BFA and Shadowlands (well duh)
3) We have private servers which are even better than actual Classic ones.

So joke's on you ActiBlizz

Yeah, Microsoft is digging a deeper grave to WoW with this PR *filtered*, polarizing the playerbase and basically promoting private servers which have none of this cancel culture masquerade.

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5 hours ago, Steveson said:

Russian here
Spoiler alert - it didn't work out in the end since:
1) Alot of people left the game when the subscription went up a few years earlier
2) Even more people left thanks to BFA and Shadowlands (well duh)
3) We have private servers which are even better than actual Classic ones.

So joke's on you ActiBlizz

So .. how would it be any difference with sanction or not for these people??  They don't play at this time, so it's of no change to them at all. 
It also show that you have no concern of other peoples intellectual property .. don't care about anything else than yourself!
(I don't think all russians are as singleminded as you are, most common folks are more honest towards what's not theirs)

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On 3/7/2022 at 12:11 AM, MeOnIV said:

I don't understand this.

If Russian gamers are taking up arms and attacking Ukraine they aren't buying or playing videogames anyway are they? So why take away someone's toy when that someone isn't really hurting anyone?

Isn't supporting one side enough? Is it really necessary to go out of your way to punish the other?

Also, not trying to derail the discussion here but, what do you people reckon AB would do if China soon decides to absorb or reunify with (depends on which side you're on) Taiwan in the future. Yes it is an entirely different matter with a very different historical and/or political backstory but gamers and Twitter won't know the difference anyway.

 

 

The point, is forcing the world to hate the man in charge, even though they might already be against the war.

If you take literally everything away from them, they have no choice but to riot in the streets. If a whole population does this, and not just a few thousand, they wont be able to ignore it. 

Edited by Znifler

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20 minutes ago, Znifler said:

If you don't understand it by now, it's kinda interesting.

The whole point, is forcing the world to utterly hate the man in charge, even though they might already be against the war.

If you take literally everything away from them, they have no choice but to riot in the streets. If a whole population does this, and not just a few thousand, they wont be able to ignore it. A lot of Russians despise Western lands and ideologies too, so there's that.

Make sense?

When I said I don't understand I meant why video games. Why get involved at all. Many things can still function normally during a war.

"We want to get at their president (or government), so let's take entertainment away from their people." is what it looks like to me. It's pathetic. The first half is noble, the second half is PR virtual signalling BS than an actual moral decision. AB is indirectly targeting the Russian government by directly targeting Russian people. I guess treating an entire country the same as one person just rubs me the wrong way.

Again, I get that supporting Ukraine is good, because the resources (or most of it at least) will end up being used against the Russian military. But why get Russian civilians involved in this with the sale removal?

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15 hours ago, MeOnIV said:

Also, not trying to derail the discussion here but, what do you people reckon AB would do if China soon decides to absorb or reunify with (depends on which side you're on) Taiwan in the future. Yes it is an entirely different matter with a very different historical and/or political backstory but gamers and Twitter won't know the difference anyway.

Afaik, their situation with China is quite different. Unlike in other regions, their games are published through their partner. They even have a different client from Battlenet that we know. In this case they would have to cut doing any business with them. Otherwise they don't have direct control over sales there.

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1 hour ago, Znifler said:

If you don't understand it by now, it's kinda interesting.

The whole point, is forcing the world to utterly hate the man in charge, even though they might already be against the war.

If you take literally everything away from them, they have no choice but to riot in the streets. If a whole population does this, and not just a few thousand, they wont be able to ignore it. A lot of Russians despise Western lands and ideologies too, so there's that.

Make sense?

This is a very double-edged sword here in Russia, and that tactic might end up with stabbing oneself. 

Such scenario might as well end up in more Putin support than we have now, precisely because of the 'Western bias'. Biden and EU do claim the measures he takes are to ensure Putin feels them, while common Russian folk are the ones that actually suffer the consequences most, and they can't be that dumb not to know it. The collapse is inevitable now, and I don't see them sending humanitarian aid over when it happens.

Add to it stunt such as Blizzard's, who are on the hype PR train, and about a few dozen other companies who are doing it, spin the business hypocrisy refusing to openly admit they're only doing it because of money, rather than politics, with well-honed Russian machine of propaganda, and the image of 'we are not your enemies' starts crumbling to dust.

I hope that won't be the outcome, but it is a very valid development.

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22 hours ago, Badadada said:

Sanctions are that which are imposed by governmental entities in order to target a specific sector. Unless there's a US gov. bill/act passed that says you cannot sell MMORPGs to Russia then we are not talking about any sanction in this case. More like flawed corporate PR-machines with a compulsion to conform towards the influencer-brigades.

Just to be clear: the current tech export-ban does not cover entertainment goods such as videogames. Free trade is still in place.

Hence the "two weeks", many publishers might forget about it sooner or later.

Some sanctions are already in place. Russians are being cut off from SWIFT, which makes it difficult to profit from sales. For example, western publishers won't be able to transfer money to Russian developers. 

Edited by Arcling

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4 hours ago, Shaddiz said:

It also show that you have no concern of other peoples intellectual property .. don't care about anything else than yourself!

So?

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On 3/7/2022 at 7:21 AM, Steveson said:

Russian here
Spoiler alert - it didn't work out in the end since:
1) Alot of people left the game when the subscription went up a few years earlier
2) Even more people left thanks to BFA and Shadowlands (well duh)
3) We have private servers which are even better than actual Classic ones.

So joke's on you ActiBlizz

Very good, if it's so fun then get out and never come back again. We will not miss you or the thousands of those who do not understand that their indifference is contributing to the death of thousands of innocent Ukrainian people. Boil your own hell, good luck. (BTW Polish here)

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Uncommon Patron

Abject stupidity by woke imbeciles. All this accomplishes is punishing people who have literally nothing to do with Russia invading Ukraine. Way to signal your virtues  stupidity, morons. You know they assembled a team of execs and this is the best those clowns could come up with in a transparent attempt to appear virtuous. How embarrassing...

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Russia Ukraine Brazil Germany China or any of these other countries are not in charge so what gives no one is in charge of the other so what makes you think that Russia is omnipowered to me that's b******* if anything but we felt realize human lives are going away because of this war and in turn I honestly think it's this new world order bias BS that has taken the world by storm and US call me people don't even know about it so before you tell me that Russia is in charge take a look at the person to your left take a look to the person to your right no one is your friend no one ever has he has your honestly think about your own well-being and self-interest because let's say no I don't know you need a new automobile and a friend was willing to give you his old one for say no I don't know how they're Russia or Ukraine currency works but say 50,000 and you bring the money forward then get told oh sorry it's not worth that much or let me rephrase it's worth more than that psychologically this war is pathetic all prune wants to do is reevent and recalibrate the Soviet Union and I personally in the US will not stand by it I refuse to have the Soviet Union come back now for the war Ukraine is not part of Russia and Russia should keep their grubby little hands off of what's not theirs world war 3 is coming and I'm sorry to you folks in Russia who stand opposed to this war but unfortunately world war 3 is coming and is going to get ugly if the US gets involved it really will

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On 3/13/2022 at 3:29 PM, Zegrin said:

Russia Ukraine Brazil Germany China or any of these other countries are not in charge so what gives no one is in charge of the other so what makes you think that Russia is omnipowered to me that's b******* if anything but we felt realize human lives are going away because of this war and in turn I honestly think it's this new world order bias BS that has taken the world by storm and US call me people don't even know about it so before you tell me that Russia is in charge take a look at the person to your left take a look to the person to your right no one is your friend no one ever has he has your honestly think about your own well-being and self-interest because let's say no I don't know you need a new automobile and a friend was willing to give you his old one for say no I don't know how they're Russia or Ukraine currency works but say 50,000 and you bring the money forward then get told oh sorry it's not worth that much or let me rephrase it's worth more than that psychologically this war is pathetic all prune wants to do is reevent and recalibrate the Soviet Union and I personally in the US will not stand by it I refuse to have the Soviet Union come back now for the war Ukraine is not part of Russia and Russia should keep their grubby little hands off of what's not theirs world war 3 is coming and I'm sorry to you folks in Russia who stand opposed to this war but unfortunately world war 3 is coming and is going to get ugly if the US gets involved it really will

Jesus *filtered* Christ, if you want to make a valid Statement (of any kind or any topic) and contribute to this topic as a whole, USE punctuation and grammar, USE IT...

*filtered* me...I just had to tell a person to properly express themselves, I'm getting old...

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