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Sony and Insomniac Reportedly to Donate $50,000 Each to Abortion Fund

Sony and Insomniac Reportedly to Donate $50,000 Each to Abortion Fund - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 01 June 2022 / 2,266 Views

PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan in an email sent out to employees last week telling staff to "respect differences of opinion" when it comes to abortion rights and that PlayStation is a  "multi-faceted and diverse, holding many different points of view." He would later in the same email talk about his cats' birthdays for five paragraphs. 

There were employees at "several" first-party PlayStation studios that were upset with the tone of the email and felt their rights were "disrespected" or had been "trivialized." One employee said they had "never been so mad about a cat birthday before."

It is now being reported by The Washington Post following the email from Ryan, PlayStation first-party studio Insomniac Games plans to donate $50,000 to Women's Reproductive Rights Assistance Project (WRRAP). The site saw an internal email sent May 13 from Insomniac CEO Ted Price.

Sony plans to match the donation from Insomniac, as well as donations from Insomniac employees made using the PlayStation Cares program.

Sony and Insomniac Reportedly to Donate $50,000 Each to Abortion Fund

The tech giant now plans to provide financial assistance to employees who might need to a different state in the US to receive reproductive care. Insomniac will assist in working out this policy.

Sony and Insomniac have not made plans to make the donations public, and employees at Insomniac have been forbidden from mentioning Insomniac or Sony if they were to retweet any announcement made by the WRRAP. This is according to the email sent out by Price.

Price did mention the studio sent out a document that was nearly 60 pages to PlayStation Studios head Hermen Hulst that had messages from employees urging leadership to "do better by employees who are directly affected." 

The Insomniac CEO said the company is not allowed to make any statements about its donation or reproductive rights. He also doesn't think it is a good idea for the developer to go over Sony's head.

"There would be material repercussions for us as a wholly owned subsidiary," said Price in the internal email. "Among other things, any progress that we might make in helping change [Sony Interactive Entertainment’s] approach would be stopped dead in its tracks. We’d also probably be severely restricted from doing important public-facing work in the future."

Sony and Insomniac Reportedly to Donate $50,000 Each to Abortion Fund

Destiny developer Bungie in a statement last week said that the leaked draft "represents a blow to freedom in America and is a direct attack on human rights." Bungie says it is "committed to safeguarding the freedom and privacy of its employees and providing support to all employees affected by this decision."

Xbox first-party studio Double Fine has also come out in support of "essential healthcare rights for all" saying they "firmly believe that a decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade would deny people their human rights, and directly impact the lives, freedoms, and choices of everyone in this country."

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. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author on Twitter @TrunksWD.

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DonFerrari (on 17 May 2022)

So Sony do without telling, but journalists feel the need to disrespect that and tell =p
To keep the neutrality of the e-mail are they going to donor to "anti-abortion" as well?

  • +9
scrapking DonFerrari (on 17 May 2022)

Yeah, I share your distaste for journalists discussing this when it's not the company's wish, and it seems to serve no public good. It sounds like an internal issue within Sony.

Though I find it incredibly unlikely that they would donate to anti-abortion causes as well. Big companies may sometimes donate to a politician on that side of the fence, but very rarely right-wing charities/lobby groups in my experience.

But reading the article, did they really donate to a pro-abortion cause, or did they make a payment to facilitate access to health services for affected staff members? I got the impression it was the latter.

  • +3
mjk45 scrapking (on 18 May 2022)

I'm not 100% sure but it seemed to be using one of Sony's health care initiatives to help employees who may live in a state adversely affected by the pending Supreme Court decision, What the tone deaf cat /dog email did reveal is Jim mistakes continue to pile up and have reached a point where he is harming the brand just by being there.

  • 0
scrapking mjk45 (on 29 May 2022)

Yeah, it's a bit like when Don Mattrick was at Xbox. There was a point beyond which he was irredeemable in the eyes of fans, and even announcing free rainbows or unicorns for everyone wasn't going to make up for that.

I think that's the point that we're at with Jim. He's hated by many Sony fans, and laughed at by many fans of Sony's competitors, so he's likely irredeemable.

  • +1
DonFerrari scrapking (on 18 May 2022)

Sony have matched a donation from Insomniac itself as part of their program (the company I work for have similar program that when in several situations if employees donate for a cause the company will match that donation). And Sony also have pays to facilitate employees that live in a state where it is forbidden to travel to another one and have the procedures done there.
But yes I doubt Sony would donate to an anti-abortion NGO, but as you said it is quite possible that they donate to politicians that lobby against it. Most companies doesn't matter how much fluffy they talk end up donating to both sides to keep safe no matter who wins.

  • 0
yvanjean (on 16 May 2022)

I'm really surprise they would take a stance on this political issue.

  • +8
DonFerrari yvanjean (on 17 May 2022)

They didn't. CEO of Insomniac asked to keep all this internal and that all employees were forbidden to disclose or retweet the info, but well journalists have a need to talk.

  • +1
Qwark DonFerrari (on 17 May 2022)

Said employee should get fired. This time it's a donation but that same person might also leak something in the future which potentially damages the company.

  • +14
DonFerrari Qwark (on 17 May 2022)

Well some of these employees also leaked the e-mail in the first place and others even gone to journalist to complain about it.

  • +4
yvanjean DonFerrari (on 19 May 2022)

Well there the Jim Ryan e-mail on abortion. It's not like Jim Ryan went rogue this message is coming from Sony Interactive Entertainment and as the CEO represent the Corporation views. This is controversial issue and there was no way it wouldn't get out. Now you have employees and fans questioning the moral integrity of supporting Sony. Hence, why as an entertainment company they should stay away from divisional political issues.

  • -4
mjk45 yvanjean (on 19 May 2022)

The email didn't take a side and most likely was made in response to Sony donating money through one of it's health programs aimed at ensuring equal access for their employees who may be in states impacted by any potential Supreme court decision, most of the controversy stemmed from the cat /dog part of the email seemingly trivialising the emails initial message of mutual respect

  • +4
DonFerrari yvanjean (on 20 May 2022)

Of course he wasn't going rogue and that is the view of Sony. Multicultural, multiethinic, multireligious, etc corporation asking for mutual respect. This is only controversial to people who can't respect other people opinion.

  • 0
Dimsum42 (on 16 May 2022)

Way to go sony, this news is awesome

  • +4
SegaHeart Dimsum42 (on 16 May 2022)

Yes, Great news.

  • -5
Tridrakious (on 16 May 2022)

Well, I gotta say that I'm glad to see this happening and hopefully there is more on the way. Removing the protections from safe abortions, will not stop abortions. The process should be funded and made sure that everyone has the resources to handle it properly.

  • +4
SurprisedPika (on 17 May 2022)

one of the main reasons why anti-abortion has moved so much is due to many reasons

many but mostly males are no longer having children and the worlds [not just usa] population is rapidly decreasing [one of the most popular areas is japan thanks to herbivore men which is about 60% of males]

in the future most "males" will choose not to have human children with human women and will prefer to have AI children which possibly means the end for humanity

  • -3
KLAMarine (on 16 May 2022)

I do wonder how pro-life PS fans feel about this...

  • -10
smroadkill15 KLAMarine (on 17 May 2022)

But nothing will/has changed if someone is pro-life. They can still have a child if they decide to. It's the women/couple who want to have a choice in the matter who are being affected by this.

  • -5

That is disregarding the opposite viewpoint. And I think this disregard stems from the name "pro-choice". It should be called "pro-abortion". Because nobody is arguing about that one side of the choice (keeping the baby). The argument is about abortion and nothing else. So honestly and directly it should be called that: "pro-abortion". "Pro-choice" is one of the most politically effective euphemisms I have ever seen.
And - to what you were saying - a lot has changed if you are willing to regard the situation for one second from the oppositions viewpoint. If you belive that abortion is killing a baby than sony is funding murder. There are more babies killed with these 100.000 $.
I won't pretend to care that much and have perfect pure morality. I will still buy god of war ragnarok and spiderman 2. Sony probably does not care anyways. But I am certainly not a fan of that move.

  • +3
the-pi-guy JuliusHackebeil (on 17 May 2022)

"keeping the baby"

No one is arguing about that part of the choice, because that choice is never in contention. Pro lifers and pro choicers both tend to like babies, or at the very least think it's okay for people to have babies. That's why it's not talked about, because there's no argument to be had.

Arguing that the reason it's not brought up is because people don't like that option is ridiculously dishonest.

" oppositions viewpoint"

You aren't in the position to tell someone to look at things from the opposition's viewpoint when you have so utterly failed to understand the opposing viewpoints yourself.

  • +2
JuliusHackebeil the-pi-guy (on 17 May 2022)

I belive you have misunderstood me. My argument is not at all that pro-choice-people hate babies. My argument is that the name "pro-choice" vales the contentious issue. "Pro-choice" could actually mean anything. But more to the point:
I really think you are arguing for my point, when you say: "That's why it is not talked about. Because there is no argument to be had" with it beeing okay to keep the baby. -Yes, I agree. Than let's not call the movement "either keeping the baby or killing it". Let's call it "yes to murder". I mean, I get why a euphemism is quite useful here.
The name "pro-life" is much more honest. It is for life and against killing. Very clear. The name "pro choice" is for killing, or (very redundantly) for not killing [gasp]. That is my point.

But the even bigger thing I had problems within the comment I responded to was the clearly, objectifly wrong assertion of smroadkill15 that nothing changed. His stance seemed to be: "So what, 100.000 $ for abortion. Where is the problem. Just let people be free to do what they choose. Why is this your problem?" -I merely pointed out that pro-life-people would have a problem with this because to them sony funds murder. The more money goes towards murder, the more murder is going to be commited.

And a quote from you: "You aren't in the position to tell someone to look at things from the opposition's viewpoint when you have so utterly failed to understand the opposing viewpoints yourself." Why is this a precondition? Why must I get side 1 before I can tell someone else that they don't get side 2? And if it is seemingly so clear to you: what is it I don't get? And could you perhaps explain?

  • +1
the-pi-guy JuliusHackebeil (on 17 May 2022)

"The name "pro-life" is much more honest"

It really isn't. Not when pro-lifers are advocating to illegalize a procedure that saves women. (Because an abortion isn't just about "killing", it also includes when the baby isn't viable, and is risking the mother's life.)

This was the case that broke Ireland:

The term pro-birth is a lot more honest.

"The name "pro choice" is for killing, or (very redundantly) for not killing [gasp]"

It's about being able to choose how you control your body. It has nothing to do with how that's done. They're advocating for abortion to be an option, despite that a lot of pro-choicers don't like abortion, they view it as a necessarily evil.

"Why is this a precondition? "

Holding someone else to a higher standard than you hold yourself is called hypocrisy.

"what is it I don't get"

Probably quite a few things.

Sometimes it's a necessary procedure to save a life.

Banning it doesn't reduce the number of abortions, it kills women. Because people don't get abortions for the fun of it. They get them because they're desperate, and desperate people do things that most people otherwise would never do. Even if that means taking it into their own hands.

It's generally not possible to tell the difference between an abortion and a miscarriage, and if you're trying to penalize people for abortions, you're going to also end up penalizing people for miscarriages.

  • -1
JuliusHackebeil the-pi-guy (on 18 May 2022)

Thank you for the reply. I am glad this is becoming a nice conversation.

"Ireland and the mothers health"

I get that women have abortions out of concern for their own health. And good for them as far as I am concerned. But this is a fleetingly small number. Here are numbers from guttmacher institute "The reasons most frequently cited were that having a child would interfere with a woman's education, work or ability to care for dependents (74%); that she could not afford a baby now (73%); and that she did not want to be a single mother or was having relationship problems (48%). Nearly four in 10 women said they had completed their childbearing, and almost one-third were not ready to have a child. Fewer than 1% said their parents' or partners' desire was the reason." Health concerns are not even listed even though it goes as low as 1 %.
And according to planned parenthood there were 1.1 million abortions carried out (I guess in the US) and 0.3 % lead to serious complications. Thats 3300 women, most of whom would probably not have had "health complications" beforehand. I think it is unfair to base your argument on extreme fringe cases.

"It's about being able to choose how you control your body. It has nothing to do with how that's done."

The only contentious issue with "pro-choice" is abortion. Not using the word abortion in their name is a boone the their cause. Nobody argues however else you would want to "control your body", it is just about abortion.
Additionally I think it is rather clear that it is not just about the woman and her body, but also about the child and its body. Also a convenient euphemism: my body, my choice. -That is disregarding basic biology. There is another body, plain and simple. (Please note that I do not advocate right now for it not being the womans responability to best decide what happens with that body, just that it is a different, second body.)

"Holding someone else to a higher standard than you hold yourself is called hypocrisy."

I am not a hypocrite. I have never said I have all the answers and I actively asked for explanation in my post. I merely noticed a bad argument and pointed it out. I did not claim to be exempt from making a bad argument myself. Here is another definition of hypocricy: the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one's own behavior does not conform; pretense.

"Abortion bans do not lead to fewer abortions"

This highly depends on the restrictiveness of the ban, and the moral views held by a given society. Also: you would still try to keep murder illegal, even if it at first would not reduce the homocide rate in a society that deems it normal.

"No difference between abortion and miscarriage."

There is one. The outcome might be the same, but the intention and methode is different. If I poison person A and person B poisons himself both are dead. But I think you can still tell the difference. You have the right to take your own life. Not somebody elses.

  • -1
the-pi-guy JuliusHackebeil (on 18 May 2022)

"Health concerns are not even listed even though it goes as low as 1 %."

If you read a little bit further on that page, you would find that's not true:

"Women also cited possible problems affecting the health of the fetus or concerns about their own health (13% and 12%, respectively"

"Not using the word abortion in their name is a boone the their cause"

It's the same with pro-lifers, the name is a boone to their cause.

Everyone picks the name that they think best describes their position in a positive light because they chose their position because they think their position is the most moral one.

Many pro-choicers would argue that pro-lifers aren't actually pro-life because the same people never support people after they are born.

Programs like welfare are in place because they save lives. People would like single payer healthcare in place because it would save lives. Yet pro-lifers seem to be opposed to anything that actually saves lives after they're born.

"This highly depends on the restrictiveness of the ban, and the moral views held by a given society"

It does not. Countries where abortion is illegal have similar rates to countries where abortion is legal.

"No difference between abortion and miscarriage."

That's strange, this isn't even close to anything I've said.

"You have the right to take your own life. Not somebody elses."

In every other circumstance, you have the right to not provide for another body. You don't have to give blood, or donate an organ even to a child, even if your blood/organ is the only thing that will save that child. Society gives that autonomy even to dead people.

  • +1
JuliusHackebeil KLAMarine (on 17 May 2022)

Not good. Jim's mail was tone deaf with the cats talk. But I prefer tone deaf neutrality and respecting everyones views over taking one side against the other in this highly controversial topic.

  • +2
narfwack (on 16 May 2022)
  • -15
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