Saturday, May 21, 2011

Activision was "lucky" that last weeks data leak was close to the official launch

Yesterday, the video game database website GiantBomb, claimed that it had acquired an internal memo sent to Activision employees. In the memo, Activision Publishing CEO Eric Hirshberg remarked that the company was extremely lucky that this month's data leak concerning MW3 had occurred so closely to the official launch date. Hirshberg said:

We had a number of assets that had not yet been released, but were ready to go... When it came to light that we had suffered a significant security breach, it became clear that a leak of this size had the potential to throw our launch off of its schedule, or worse, blunt its momentum... As a company, we needed to look both backwards and forwards simultaneously. Of course we needed to immediately begin finding the source of the leak. But we also needed to deal with the fact that, like it or not, our launch had just begun...

Earlier this week, Hirshberg stated in an interview that Activision had been able to leverage the unforeseen data leak into a marketing opportunity. According to Hirshberg, there are ways to respond to such a leak and turn lemons into lemonade. Activision's response to the leak was to jump on board the excitement of its fans and release a series of Modern Warfare 3 teaser videos on the exact same day. In 48 hours, those four teaser videos accumulated over 4 millions views on Youtube.