Game Companies Delay Events, Tweet #BlackLivesMatter Amid Police Brutality Protests

PlayStation, Xbox, Riot Games, Naughty Dog, Warner Bros., Insomniac Games, Harmonix, and Bethesda Softworks have tweeted using the # Black Lives Matter hashtag. They supported people of colour in an unspecific and unclear way. 

During these mass American protests over the weekend where social media was used to broadcast live reports from the location where the protests were held, Sony has chosen to indefinitely delay its reveal of major PlayStation 5 games that was originally set for June 4. As of press time, Sony Interactive Entertainment hasn’t announced a replacement date or time for the event that has been delayed. 

Sony tweeted “But actions always speak louder than words. And we’re working hard to make sure we at Sony are doing more than just stating we are allies.” They again tweeted “Right now, we want to use our platform to spread information & support. Please send links, resources, or other helpful information our way, and we’ll share them… When we all know more, we can do more.” Sony also tweeted:

“Now is not the time,” publisher Activision says of delayed Call of Duty content. 

He wrote on twitter: “While we all look forward to playing the new seasons of Modern Warfare, Warzone and Call of Duty: Mobile, now is not the time.

We are moving the launches of Modern Warfare Season 4 and Call of Duty: Mobile Season 7 to later dates. 

Right now it’s time for those speaking up for equality, justice and change to be seen and heard. We stand alongside you.” 

Activision’s delay came just hours after Sony delayed a planned press event to promote the PlayStation 5, saying that “we do not feel that right now is a time for celebration, for now, we want to stand back and allow more important voices to be heard.” And earlier on Monday, EA Sports delayed a planned online “celebration” of the upcoming Madden NFL 21, “because this is bigger than a game, bigger than sports, and needs all of us to stand together and commit to change.” 

This tweet was retweeted by Sony.

The International Game Developers Association (IGDA) issued a statement Monday highlighting protests that “Stem from frustration over failure in the United States to reform practices and policies that hurt black communities there. These situations compel all of us to have a level of self-examination; What is the role of the game industry during this time? What is the role of game developers? Are we making art that reflects the times? Is that our responsibility? Is the problem an issue of perspective, education, or empathy? These are the questions that we need to ask and to have answered.”

The IGDA’s Blacks in Gaming Special Interest Group plans to host a live-streamed panel to discuss the current situation, concerns of the black game development community and the ways to support progress and combat prejudice. The panel will be live-streamed on the organization’s Twitch channel on Thursday, June 4 2 pm EST. 

Esports outfits including Cloud9 and Team SoloMid have also tweeted out similar statements about Black Lives Matter .

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