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From The Socialist newspaper, 9 September 2020

Video game developer attacks Black Lives Matter


Ubisoft,   (Click to enlarge)

Isaac Maskill-Watts, Derby Socialist Party

Just two months ago, French video game giant Ubisoft joined the hollow chorus of corporations exclaiming that black lives matter. But its latest mobile game under a flagship franchise, Tom Clancy's Elite Squad, features a thinly veiled attack on the Black Lives Matter movement.

In the introduction to the game, we are greeted with a scene stating that an organisation called Umbra "has emerged to take advantage of escalating civil unrest," promoting an "egalitarian utopia." This is cover for its desire to build a "new world order" using terrorist attacks to generate more chaos, and "weaken governments" by hacking social media to discredit world leaders.

Just in these few snippets, we can see Ubisoft making a clear and distinct link between recent protests and terrorist actions, and even linking it to (mostly right-wing) conspiracy theories.

However, this did not link them clearly enough for Ubisoft! The logo of the villainous organisation is the black solidarity fist used by the workers' movement and black liberation groups.

The player's mission is to operate an elite squad of assassins, authorised by world leaders to work outside the law, to "put an end to Umbra's campaign of chaos."

Since its release, Elite Squad has faced a significant backlash online. Ubisoft has agreed to remove the solidarity fist from the introduction of the game. But this still leaves the rest of the parallels drawn between anti-racist and anti-capitalist protests, and shady terrorist groups.

The major players in the industry feel they can publish games like this with little to no accountability to the world outside of the gaming sphere. We've known for a long time, for example, that these companies overwork their staff, sometimes with 100-hour work weeks before a game is due to launch, referred to as 'crunch'.

Staff are underpaid for their time, while chief executives are among some of the highest-paid. Mobile games in particular use underhanded tactics, including gambling mechanisms, to squeeze ever more money from vulnerable players, sometimes even children.

Capitalism is prepared to use every means to undermine opposition to the profit system. This includes the exploitative, multibillion-dollar video game industry.

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In The Socialist 9 September 2020:

Coronavirus news

Fight the schools Covid crisis

Safety overridden in drive to bolster the economy

Caerphilly lockdown puts profits before safety

Under the microscope

Campaigns and party news

Jobs, training, pay, we want a future!

Dover: Solidarity with refugees - applause and cheers for socialist ideas to unite working class

BLM: Socialist alternative to racist capitalism

Big push to hit finance target


15% now - unions must fight for NHS pay rise

Callous Tories threaten not to uprate the minimum wage

XR blockade: Don't let the Tories criminalise protest

Grenfell fire inquiry stops victims attending

Video game developer attacks Black Lives Matter

What we think

U-turn Tories' splits are growing

Workplace news

Fight Amazon's anti-union spies

NSSN rally: Workers must not pay the price of Covid

Nottingham City Council: The (mis)adventures of Robin Hood Energy

Covid-19 pandemic increases financial pressures on Welsh local government

Ireland: Debenham's workers occupy stores

Hull: Defend Tony Smith!

Reinstate Richie Venton


A critical election for Unison general secretary


Back at work! TUSC to stand in elections again against pro-austerity politicians

International news

Belarus: Mass opposition continues to defy repression by Lukashenko's regime

Strike wave marks new stage in revival of Iranian workers' movement


Home   |   The Socialist 9 September 2020   |   Join the Socialist Party

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Related links:

Black Lives Matter:

triangleBLM: Socialist alternative to racist capitalism

triangleFight racism, Trump and capitalism

triangleBlack Lives Matter: Fighting injustice, fighting for our rights

triangleSocialism on the rise

triangleBlack Lives Matter: this generation is willing to stand up and fight


triangleNon-fiction: 'Why I no longer talk to white people about race'

triangleUS: Police escape justice over Breonna Taylor killing

triangleNo to polluting incinerator, dumped in working-class Edmonton

triangleAfter Scottish government U-turn, Young Socialists fight for a future on A-Level results day


triangleExciting Cuban spy thriller exposes US-sponsored terrorism

triangleStreatham attack: Johnson's bill can't stop terror

triangleNew Zealand mosque terror atrocity


triangleSolidarity not charity

triangleGrimsby Socialist Party: Solidarity with refugees - Oppose racism

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