Xbox's Sarah Bond addresses supporters of the Activision merger
Sarah Bond, VP of Game Creator Experience Ecosystem at Xbox Corporate, has taken the unusual step of reaching out to Xbox fans who have supported them...
Sarah Bond, VP of Game Creator Experience Ecosystem at Xbox Corporate, has taken the unusual step of reaching out to Xbox fans who have supported them in the Microsoft Activision deal over the past few months.
Sarah shared the news covered by Techraptor on Twitter:
'The outpouring of support from the Xbox community for the ABK acquisition has been epic. We may not always agree on the outcome - but we are encouraged that nearly 40 countries have ratified and are continuing a constructive dialogue to move forward.
Being positive and respectful to all involved is key to realizing our vision of bringing all those who love games together. Thanks. '
Let's take a few minutes to analyze this message. That first sentence was Sarah's only expression of gratitude.
The second sentence may seem confusing, since Sarah no longer refers to fans, as they are not people who "do not always agree with the outcome". In fact, they have been convincing these countries to accept the deal.
Sarah points out that 40 countries have now approved the deal with Microsoft Activision, many of which haven't even added any conditions to that approval.
Much of the attention has reportedly been focused on three regulators, which Microsoft sees as the biggest hurdle to their push for a deal. That would be the FTC in the US, the relatively new CMA in the UK and the EU Competition Commission.
However, there has been some confusion about how important these regulators are to the Microsoft deal and how much influence they can actually have.
As we now know, the FTC suing Microsoft to block the deal wasn't actually enough to actually stop it. On a procedural level, Microsoft and the FTC can argue for years, but they don't have to wait for the outcome of the case to seal the deal.
In contrast, the European Commission was one of 40 countries and territories to approve the deal. They also approved the decision without conditions, indicating that they agree with Microsoft's arguments and suggested remedies.
Finally, the CMA came into the spotlight. While there is also a point where people think the CMA can effectively stop it because of how its competition rules work, we now know that those rules are not final.
The CMA's decision is now facing intense scrutiny from MPs such as Bim Afolami, and has already been appealed at the Competition Appeal Tribunal.
To be clear, the CMA does have the independence to make its own decisions. However, this particular decision is bound to hurt the UK in real life, not only in the eyes of other companies but also in the eyes of other countries. As far as we know, the CAT will use their procedures to force the CMA to make a decision to allow the transaction to go through.
Sarah's final words, though, are what fans really need to hear. In the end, Xbox doesn't want their own fans to compromise amid the console war noise that's been reported around this story for the past few months. As Sarah said, stay positive and respectful, because Microsoft is perfectly capable of closing deals as it wishes.