Xbox Head Phil Spencer Announces Microsoft Is “Evaluating” Its Relationship With Activision Blizzard, Oneal Wasn't Offered Equal Pay Until Resigning

The Xbox leadership is reportedly “disturbed and deeply troubled by the horrific events and actions”.

QuintLyn Bowers
By QuintLyn Bowers, News Editor November 18, 2021
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Xbox Activision Blizzard

Note: Activision Blizzard is still under investigation by the state of California for serious harassment charges. CEO Bobby Kotick is alleged to have known about such actions within his company – and performed some himself – and shielded the perpetrators from consequences.

Things are almost starting to look grim for the higher-ups at Activision Blizzard as, in light of the most recent reports on Bobby Kotick, the people they do business with are starting to rethink those partnerships. Yesterday, PlayStation chief Jim Ryan stated that he’d reached out to Activision asking how they plan to address the situation and noted that they don’t believe that they’ve done so properly so far. Today, news broke that Xbox’s Phil Spencer informed staff that he was “evaluating” the company’s relationship with Activision Blizzard and would be making “proactive adjustments”. This announcement was distributed in a staff email that later made its way to Bloomberg.

Spencer is the first to indicate that they will take any form of action regarding their relationship with Activision Blizzard if the company doesn’t properly address the situation. Although, it doesn’t seem like the World of Warcraft publisher is taking things too seriously just yet, as they’ve simply noted that they “respect all feedback” from their partners and are “engaging with them further”. They also brought up the changes they’ve made thus far – most of which didn’t fully address the concerns of staff before the Kotick news broke.

In fact, in another report on IGN, Jennifer Oneal, the co-leader that recently announced she was leaving the company, was denied pay equal to the other co-leader Mike Ybarra and only offered it after she put in her resignation. The report goes on to state that both she and Ybarra asked Blizzard together to be paid equally. However, there is a discrepancy in their statements as to why that didn’t happen.

According to Ybarra, they were effectively tied into contracts for their roles before taking on the positions of co-leaders and he’d already been making more than her. He also added that when the contracts were up, they were offered new contracts that were going to pay them equally. Oneal, for her part, notes that the company rejected their requests to adjust the pay several times. They had told her they were working on a new proposal, one that she states was only made after she resigned.

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About the Author

QuintLyn Bowers
QuintLyn Bowers, News Editor
QuintLyn is a long-time lover of all things video game related will happily talk about them to anyone that will listen. She began writing about games for various hobby sites a little over ten years ago and has taken on various roles in the games community.

Discussion (1)

Flintstone 6 months ago
In this situation they should divide every game to fresh companies,
I"m not on about hiding. Its not the games fault.
If it were done, the games can keep their awesome reputations by moving forward.
Instead players now going "hmm... dunno about that company"


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