Variety: More Info on Why Activision Bailed from the ESA

Variety’s Ben Fritz serves up some new info on Activision’s recent departure from the ESA, although his interview with CEO Bobby Kotick raises as many questions as it answers.

While Kotick’s comments to Fritz seem to indicate that Activision’s departure from ESA is only temporary, actions always speak louder than words and the monolithic game publisher is apparently hiring its own exec to handle government relations. That would include things like lobbying and First Amendment issues. 

Here’s what Kotick told Fritz:

I said don’t view [pulling out of ESA] as anything but time off… With the combined companies [from the merger with Vivendi], the [ESA membership] dues went up enough that I said for it to make sense [to spend that money], we have to make a strategic plan. We don’t have that because nobody owns it for us right now.


We have our own issues that are not the industry’s issues. Our challenges are sufficiently different from other publishers’ issues that we need our own point person. We’ll have someone soon.

The Activision-specific issues reference by Kotick include Blizzard’s enormous WoW subscriptions as well as substantial dealings in China. So, will Activision ever return to the ESA fold? Kotick said:

We’ll consider it.


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  1. 0
    the1jeffy says:

    Again, ActiBlizz is part telco, IP owernship, MMO company with 10 million subsribers, and so on.  It stands to reason that they have need for their own lobbyist.

    As for the ESA, perhaps if they budget for it, they will rejoin.  Mergers are typically cash-tight environments, so they have to trim fat where they can find it.


    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  2. 0
    Anonymous says:

    You know, the more I read about the groups leaving the ESA, and saying somewhere in the release or questions after (paraphrased from the general idea) "We hope this is temporary. We may come back." I cannot help but wonder if it has something to do with the new(relativly at least) head of the ESA and his handling of situations, and the temporary part is a reference to how long it is he stays. Course, may be reading to much into it.

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