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Bungie speaks out against toxic studio cultures following Activision lawsuit

Destiny studio admits some staff have experienced harassment but says "we never excuse it or sweep it under the rug"

Bungie has made a statement, emphasising its zero tolerance policy on harassment and abuse, as its former publisher Activision Blizzard faces a lawsuit over its treatment of women.

The studio behind Destiny does not appear to have been mentioned in the lawsuit, but the Twitter thread it posted last night suggests the company is keen to distance itself from its former partner.

Activision Blizzard served as the publisher for Bungie's Destiny series until 2019 when the two parties ended the partnership. The companies began working with each other in 2010.

"Bungie is built on empowering our people no matter who they are, where they are from, or how they identify," the company wrote via Twitter. "We have a responsibility to acknowledge, reflect and do what we can to push back on a persistent culture of harassment, abuse, and inequality that exists in our industry.

"It's our responsibility to ensure this type of behaviour is not tolerated at Bungie at any level, and that we never excuse it or sweep it under the rug. While the accounts in this week's news are difficult to read, we hope they will lead to justice, awareness and accountability.

"We have a zero tolerance policy at Bungie for environments that support this toxic culture, and we are committed to rooting them out to defend those who are at risk. Women, PC and underrepresented communities have nothing to gain by reliving their trauma. We believe them when they come forward with reports of abuse or harassment.

"We don't pretend that Bungie is perfect and that no one has experienced harassment while working here, but we will not tolerate it and will confront it head on. And we will continue to do the work every day to be better.

"Our goal is to continue to improve the experience for everyone working at Bungie and do our part to make the gaming industry as a whole to be more welcoming and inclusive."

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard for "violations of the state's civil rights and equal pay laws." It follows a two-year investigation into the company, which found it to be a "breeding ground for harassment and discrimination against women."

Activision Blizzard has denied all accusations.

Bungie's statement also follows an exposé into the toxic culture at Ubisoft Singapore -- the latest studio owned by the Assassin's Creed publisher to be at the centre of such a report.