Activision Blizzard enjoyed a net corporate tax rebate of $228 million in 2018, amounting to an effective tax rate of -51%. Blizzard netted the rebate after pulling in $447 million in income.
Blizzard is one of 60 Fortune 500 companies reported on by the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy in April 2019.
Other notable examples include Amazon, which made $10.8 billion in income and claimed a federal income tax rebate of $129 million using stock options, and Netflix, which used the same tax loophole to reduce its total tax burden by $191 million.
Video game company Blizzard (they make World of Warcraft, Starcraft, Hearthstone, etc) claimed an effective tax rate of -51% (negative fifty one percent) in 2018.
That means US citizens paid Blizzard $228 million for simply existing.
This is unjustifiable. pic.twitter.com/yjyfogPUz4
— Chris Vickery (@VickerySec) December 16, 2019
Blizzard has previously come under fire for supporting the Communist Party of China and the People’s Republic of China amidst tensions in Hong Kong between protestors and the Chinese government.
National File reported on other strange cases of apparent political activism by Blizzard higher-ups in October:
Blizzard have forced a guild in their popular MMORPG game, World of Warcraft, to change their name from “Make Azeroth Great Again” as it is “inappropriate.”
Earlier this week, GameByte published an article about a World of Warcraft, or WoW, guild called “GAY BOYS” was forced to change its name by Blizzard after users reported it. This is despite the fact that all of the players in the guild, were themselves gay. A guild, for those who don’t know, is simply a group of players in the game.
A user known as Cogblast approached GameByte, and revealed that his guild, known as “Make Azeroth Great Again,” a tongue in cheek to reference to President Trump’s campaign slogan, were also targeted. Cogblast inititally received a message that the name of his guild was “inappropriate,” and was removed. This decision was reversed by a representative from Blizzard, who confirmed that the name did not break their Terms of Service, but was then reinstated only 12 hours later.
Blizzard has built up a reputation for getting streamers and gamers deplatformed over political differences.