Ubisoft’s newest attempt to persuade staff that NFTs are beneficial, fails miserably
NFTs and blockchain technologies appear to be losing traction among game developers. Following an early wave of enthusiasm, independent studios and large publishers are cautiously approaching NFTs or avoiding them altogether. The one exception would be Ubisoft, which appears to be adamant about moving through with the technology despite unfavorable feedback from gamers and workers.
According to a recent Bloomberg article, tensions between Ubisoft management and staff escalated on Thursday when the business released another message outlining its blockchain plan on its internal message board. According to the research, the letter elicited hundreds of unfavorable responses from employees.
Ubisoft and employees: Harassment behind the game industry?
One employee described working at Ubisoft as a “deeply embarrassing day,” while another wondered if management was “competing with EA for the title of ‘Most hated game studio by the public.'” The company’s handling of extensive workplace misbehavior charges was also discussed: “The handling of harassment claims already shook our confidence in management, and now this?” one employee wondered.
The messaging itself appears to be a problem: The tone of the last update from management was “condescending as fuck” and featured no new information, according to one anonymous employee, which is a huge part of why the staff is so unhappy about it.
Ubisoft’s stance: Innovation is necessary and beneficial. People don’t know what they need.
A Ubisoft spokesman told PC Gamer that the company’s Strategic Innovation Lab has “received a lot of feedback” on the subject, both positive and negative, and that “we take the encouragement as well as the concerns to heart.”
“How players can benefit is and always will be at the core of our thinking,” the representative commented. “At Ubisoft, we value these internal exchanges and think they help make our games and our company stronger. However, sharing confidential information, including from internal forums, is a violation of our employment agreement and, more importantly, a violation of the trust that team members place in each other to freely express themselves and have candid, productive discussions. In light of that, we won’t comment further.”
It’s a legitimate assertion: technology is a means, not an end, and obtaining the desired result might often necessitate lengthy unpleasant discussions. Ubisoft’s largest issue thus far has been its inability to describe what the “end” in this situation is. The French trade union Solidaires Informatique condemned blockchain technology in December 2021, calling it “useless, costly, [and] ecologically mortifying” and claiming that it “brings no improvements or benefits to our games.”