Unity closes two offices after receiving death threats [UPDATED]

The company also canceled a planned town hall with CEO John Riccitiello.


Updated on September 15, 2023, at 9:27 a.m. PT: In a statement provided to Polygon, San Francisco police confirmed that the death threat was made by a Unity employee.

It’s been a whirlwind of a week for Unity, as the company came under heavy fire from seemingly every corner of the games industry after announcing new fees for developers using its engine. It was enough pressure that Unity was actually planning to hold an internal town hall meeting with CEO John Riccitiello today. However, that meeting has been canceled and two Unity offices have been closed after the company received death threats.

The news comes from a recently published Bloomberg report. Details are sparse, but Unity apparently received death threats earlier today. Believing them to be credible, the company took action and closed two of its physical offices for the day and scrapped the town hall with its CEO. Additional information was shared in a statement from a spokesperson to Bloomberg.

The Unity name and logo in white text on a black background.

Source: Unity

Unity took decisive action in order to “ensure the safety of our employees.” The company has also said that the death threats have been reported to police, and that it is “fully cooperating with law enforcement.”

While Unity doesn’t confirm so in their statement, it’s likely these threats came on the heels of the new Runtime Fees, which were announced earlier this week. Set to go into effect on January 1, 2024, these fees will be applied to developers with games built in the Unity Engine after they cross specific install and revenue thresholds. It was met with intense backlash from developers across the industry including Innersloth, Aggro Crab, and Massive Monster.

While the frustrations over Unity’s recent policy changes are understandable, threatening human lives is not. With offices closed for the day, here’s hoping that nobody is in any serious danger. We’ll keep a close eye on the situation and will update this article if new information comes forward.

News Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Scream nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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