This is how the games industry excludes women: By pretending we don't exist and having dev parties with strippers. pic.twitter.com/9GsYyEAQOo— Jennifer Scheurle (@Gaohmee) March 18, 2016
tl;dr This week was the 2016 Game Developers Conference, Microsoft attends and always has a panel on women in gaming. The Microsoft afterparty had go go dancers on platforms. After getting called out by both male and female attendees, as well as fellow employees of Xbox over Twitter, head of Xbox Phil Spencer issued a public apology:
"At Xbox-hosted events at GDC this past week, we represented Xbox and Microsoft in a way that was not consistent or aligned to our values. It was unequivocally wrong and will not be tolerated. I know we disappointed many people and I'm personally committed to holding ourselves to higher standards. We must ensure that diversity and inclusion are central to our everyday business and core values. We will do better in the future."
He also posted an e-mail he sent to Xbox staff about the issue:
"How we show up as an organization is incredibly important to me. We want to build and reflect the culture of TEAM XBOX – internally and externally – a culture that each one of us can represent with pride. An inclusive culture has a direct impact on the products and services we deliver and the perception consumers have of the Xbox brand and our company, as a whole.
It has come to my attention that at Xbox-hosted events at GDC this past week, we represented Xbox and Microsoft in a way that was absolutely not consistent or aligned to our values. That was unequivocally wrong and will not be tolerated. This matter is being handled internally, but let me be very clear – how we represent ourselves as individuals, who we hire and partner with and how we engage with others is a direct reflection of our brand and what we stand for. When we do the opposite, and create an environment that alienates or offends any group, we justly deserve the criticism.
It’s unfortunate that such events could take place in a week where we worked so hard to engage the many different gaming communities in the exact opposite way. I am personally committed to ensuring that diversity and inclusion is central to our everyday business and our core values as a team – inside and outside the company. We need to hold ourselves to higher standards and we will do better in the future."
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