Over the past few months, Poland-based game selling site GOG posted a number of tweets which stirred up controversies. Sean Halliday, the CD Projekt employee behind some of the tweets, was fired after the GOG Twitter account shared a tweet considered insensitive to the trans community. Speaking with EuroGamer, Halliday explains the chain of unfortunately-worded tweets and events which led to him being fired.
On July 17th, 2018, the Paradise Lost expansion for Postal 2 had just launched, and Sean Halliday was searching the trailer for safe for work material to share in a tweet. After some time, the GOG twitter account posted a gif of the Postal 2 character urinating on a gravestone of “Games Journalism” with the inscription “Committed Suicide Aug 28, 2014.” This event occurred during the whole GamerGate fiasco, and two days after the tweet was posted, GOG was hit with immense backlash. The original tweet was deleted, and an apology was issued.
About a month later on August 20th, a tweet from the Cyberbunk 2077 twitter account enraged fans after it referenced a meme about gender recognition. Halliday, who wasn’t the person behind this tweet, explains that CD Projekt Red’s social media team was responsible. The tweet was deleted, and the account posted an apology saying that, “Harming anyone was never our intention.”
Sorry to all those offended by one of the responses sent out from our account earlier. Harming anyone was never our intention.
— Cyberpunk 2077 (@CyberpunkGame) August 21, 2018
Moving on to the most devastating tweet for Halliday, the “#WontBeErased” tweet was live for 20 seconds before a user messaged the GOG account, informing them about their horrendous mistake. The tweet was quickly deleted, and Halliday drafted an apology, but he never got to post it. Instead, GOG posted a tweet saying that they “should focus only on games.”
Yesterday, we posted a tweet containing a trending hashtag as a pun. The tweet was neither intended as a malicious attack, nor as a comment to the ongoing social debate.
GOG should focus only on games. We acknowledge that and we commit to it.
— GOG.COM (@GOGcom) October 23, 2018
Later on, Halliday’s manager fired him, saying, “We’re parting ways with you. It’s gotten too much.” Sean Halliday joined GOG in early 2018, and was sacked before the year was out. Check out EuroGamer’s discussion with the employee to learn more about the entire experience.