Following Activision's statement of solidarity, and Infinity Ward's plan to crack down on racist hate speech in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone, the company has made further steps to help make their games welcoming environments for black players.
The new addition is a simple but powerful message that all players see when the game starts up, and every time they load into a match. It proclaims that black lives matter and continues to say that "our community is hurting". It reiterates that the publisher and developer "stand for equality and inclusion" and that until there is change, the playerbase will "never be the community we strive to be".
Following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, killed by a police officer, a previously unseen flood of statements of solidarity came from companies throughout many industries, including the gaming industry. Corporations who remained silent after the murder of countless other innocent black people - no matter how publicized - released statements condemning racism.
Fans rightly expected Activision to put their money where their mouth is. The rampant levels of racist hate-speech and racially charged verbal abuse in multiplayer gaming spaces is well known and well documented, and Call of Duty: Warzone was no exception. Players were abusing the barely restricted nickname system to display racist slurs.
This new Black Lives Matter message added to the game comes after Infinity Ward announced their new commitment to reduce the amount of racist language people encounter when playing Modern Warfare and Warzone with additional restrictions, more ways to report players with direct indication if your report resulted in a ban and more.
Hopefully this won't be the full extent of Activision and Infinity Ward's actions, and that they alongside other gaming companies will continue efforts to make this hobby more welcoming to black players.