The FTC stated that they had nothing to do with yesterday's massive leak.
Image Credit: Microsoft
According to a recent report, it appears that the Microsoft-related leaks we covered yesterday, encompassing details about the next-generation Xbox, the proposed launch of a new console in 2028, potential acquisitions of Nintendo or Valve, and remasters for The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3, were actually the result of Microsoft's own error. Allegedly, the company itself disclosed confidential information about its video game operations on a federal court website, with no involvement from the FTC.
As reported by Bloomberg, the documents disclosed by Microsoft were originally submitted as exhibits in the FTC's antitrust case aimed at preventing Microsoft's $69 billion acquisition of gaming giant Activision Blizzard. The judge overseeing the case was informed that these exhibits contained non-public information, and in a Tuesday order, it was stated that they had been removed from the court website.
Following the "leak", the FTC's Director of Public Affairs, Douglas Farrar, took to Twitter to clarify that the FTC was not responsible for posting Microsoft's plans for its games and consoles on the court website. He provided a judge's order confirming that it was, in fact, Microsoft that had provided the link on September 14, which was subsequently shared on the Internet.
The Director of Xbox, Phil Spencer, also addressed the situation, acknowledging that while the unintentional disclosure of these documents was unfortunate, it's not a major issue, given that most of the documents are dated well over a year ago, and the company's plans have evolved significantly since then.
In addition, Spencer sent an internal memo to Xbox employees, commenting on the situation and revealing that "there's still so much more to be excited about". Below is the complete text of the memo acquired by The Verge:
Today, several documents submitted in the court proceedings related to our proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard were unintentionally disclosed. I know this is disappointing, even if many of the documents are well over a year old and our plans have evolved.
I also know we all take the confidentiality of our plans and our partners' information very seriously. This leak obviously is not us living up to that expectation. We will learn from what happened and be better going forward. We all put incredible amounts of passion and energy into our work, and this is never how we want that hard work to be shared with the community. That said, there's so much more to be excited about, and when we're ready, we'll share the real plans with our players.
In closing, I appreciate all of the work that you pour into Team Xbox to surprise and delight our players. In the days and weeks ahead, let's stay focused on what we can control: continuing the amazing success of Starfield, the upcoming launch of the incredible and accessible Forza Motorsport, and continuing to build games, services and devices that millions of players can enjoy.
Image Credit: Xbox
In other Xbox-related news, earlier it was revealed by Craig McNary, Xbox's Senior Director for Platform and Brand Marketing, that the Xbox Game Pass subscription service surpassed 25 million subscribers. You can learn more here.