Two in-game podcasts in Watch Dogs: Legion that function British journalist Helen Lewis will likely be eliminated on account of “controversial” statements she’s made previously. Ubisoft stated that it was not made conscious of Lewis’ earlier statements till after improvement of the sport was full.
“Neither Ubisoft nor the sport replicate this journalist’s viewpoints,” Ubisoft stated in an announcement. “The event staff labored with an exterior producer to pick out speaker profiles for these podcasts and weren’t conscious of the controversy on the time of reserving or recording.
“Whereas the in-game podcasters are following a pre-approved script and are usually not talking in their very own title or with their very own opinions, we perceive this collaboration itself could also be seen as offensive and we deeply remorse any damage this has brought about. In response, we will likely be changing these two podcast episodes in an upcoming replace and can reinforce our background checks for companions sooner or later.”
Ubisoft did not specify which of Lewis’ feedback it considers “controversial,” however Jezebel (through Kotaku) famous final 12 months that she has expressed views in opposition of expanded rights for trans individuals. In a 2017 opinion piece criticizing adjustments to UK legislation geared toward simplifying the method of fixing one’s legally acknowledged gender, as an illustration, she wrote, “Being a lady or a person is now completely in your head. On this local weather, who would problem somebody with a beard exposing their penis in a girls’s altering room?”
The assertion echoes a daily speaking level amongst trans rights opponents: That males will declare to be girls for the only objective of getting access to girls’s altering rooms and loos.
Because the US Nationwide Middle for Transgender Equality points out, this hypothetical worry is predicated on nothing. “A whole lot of cities, college districts, and 18 states already shield transgender individuals’s proper to make use of restrooms,” writes the org, “and none have seen an increase in incidents of individuals attacking anybody or of individuals pretending to be transgender with the intention to get entry to restrooms.”
Lewis has stated previously that she believes “trans girls are girls, and trans males are males,” however has maintained what she described as “issues about self-ID and its affect on single-sex areas.”
These are contradictory positions, stated Jezebel. “Whereas Lewis recurrently complains that she will get lumped in with TERFs [trans-exclusionary radical feminists] regardless of her self-professed help for trans rights, there’s a motive,” wrote the site. “Her pondering is basically in step with and provides ideological cowl to concepts which were used to restrict the rights of trans individuals.”
The fast response comes amidst a self-declared effort at Ubisoft to vary its company tradition, which has confronted fierce criticism this 12 months over allegations of widespread sexual misconduct and abusive conduct. Ubisoft didn’t say when Lewis’ removing from Watch Canine: Legion will happen.