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Activision's new diversity tool for Overwatch & CoD characters isn't the answer

Activision Blizzard King has just announced they're using a new diversity ranking system for characters and it's not it.

  • Posted on 13th May, 2022 21:40 PM
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Activision Blizzard King has unveiled a new tool to rank characters across the network based on diversity, from Overwatch to Call of Duty, but its reveal sparks more questions than answers. 

Sophia makes a good point, too. It’s not easy to keep everybody happy when working towards diversity in any industry, though – in the spirit of transparency – it may have been better to reveal the diversity tool to a live audience on stream for questioning. That way, people from all different backgrounds could have their say and Activision bosses could respond. That would be a much more open form of communication, rather than a press release for websites to cover the “progress” they’ve made.

Let’s be clear, the intentions behind the creation of the tool are absolutely right. The entire industry needs to be more diverse, from the media to the games we cover each day. Not to meet quotas, but because a wide range of ideas and different perspectives is always better than an echo chamber.

This is not a case against the objectives of Activision’s diversity tool, though more details are needed about its execution.

Until then, it shouldn’t be promoted as a solution to improve diversity in “wider entertainment verticals including TV, film, and literature” – until it’s been reviewed over a long period of time by a diverse team of people. More inclusive dev studios will be better than any model, that’s for sure.

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