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Sony has released a statement following the UK regulators, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), recently published report on Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard acquisition that contained Sony Interactive Entertainment’s response that had multiple redactions.
Sony says Microsoft’s offer for future Call of Duty releases on PlayStation was reacted and claims the offer would “irreparably harm competition” in the video game industry, as well as hurt innovation.
“Redacted versions of the observations filed by SIE and Microsoft on the CMA’s remedies notice were made public this week,” said Sony in a statement sent to GamesIndustry.
“Information regarding the terms of an offer made by Microsoft to provide future Call of Duty releases on PlayStation was redacted at the request of Microsoft. We believe their current offer will irreparably harm competition and innovation in the industry.”
Sony in the published report stated Microsoft’s proposal of a 10 year legally binding deal to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation is not enough to protect PlayStation’s access to the Call of Duty franchise.
“In the intervening period, Microsoft has not shown any real commitment to reaching a negotiated outcome,” reads Sony’s response in the report. “They have dragged their feet, engaged only when they sensed the regulatory outlook darkening, and favored negotiating with the media over engaging SIE (Sony).”
Sony in the report also claimed that Microsoft’s proposal does not offer a commitment to parity that is legally enforceable.
“Microsoft’s proposal does not offer a clear commitment to parity that is legally hard-edged and enforceable, despite its repeated public utterances to the contrary,” said Sony. “Under its proposal, Microsoft is obliged to use [redacted] parity between PlayStation and Xbox and their respective MGS (Microsoft Game Studios) services. This is a vague and weak commitment that does not give SIE the assurance that Call of Duty will remain on PlayStation on terms that would maintain PlayStation’s competitiveness.”
Sony has also claimed Microsoft has multiple ways it “could withhold or degrade access [which] would be extremely difficult to monitor and police.”
“If Microsoft failed to comply with its commitment, it would likely only risk paying a fine (possibly many years later),” said Sony. “But rivals’ access to Call of Duty would be immediately foreclosed, irreparably damaging their ability to compete and ultimately harming consumers.”
A life-long and avid gamer, William D’Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012 and taking over the hardware estimates in 2017. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel. You can contact the author on Twitter @TrunksWD.