Activision has quietly removed an emote from the latest installment in the Call of Duty franchise, with both Modern Warfare and Warzone players discovering that the in-game gesture for ‘Okay’ has been removed without any explanation.
In Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and its free-to-play battle royale mode, Warzone, gestures are available to unlock and use during multiplayer matches, allowing players to non-verbally communicate with (or taunt) other players.
One such gesture featured within the game was the ‘okay’ hand symbol, which found popularity among players for its ability to be made with the player character’s left hand while simultaneously firing their weapon with their right, serving as a sort of ‘skillful display’ for certain players.
The gesture was also routinely used by players as a victory celebration at the end of winning matches.
However, the symbol was recently removed from the game by Activision.
This change was not announced in anyway, as the latest patch notes make no mention of the removal.
Players instead found that ‘Okay’ had been suddenly replaced by a new gesture called ‘Crush.’
Activision has yet to publicly comment on the gesture’s removal. Video game news outlet Eurogamer attempted to reach out directly to the company for comment, but as of writing, has not received any response.
The most likely reason behind the removal is due to a troll campaign launched on 4Chan that caused a number of mainstream media outlets to associate the hand symbol with white supremacy.
TheScore Esports’ Daniel Rosen was one of those. Following reports that Blizzard banned the symbol from the Overwatch League Arena, Rosen declared, “Let’s be real here. The ‘Okay’ hand gesture is a f****** white supremacist thing now. Don’t be mad at Blizzard for banning it.”
Rosen added, “Be mad at white supremacists for taking an innocent thing and ruining it.”
The symbol has been removed from other games like Mortal Kombat 11 and was even reportedly banned from the Overwatch League Arena after a fan flashed it on live TV.
Former Fox News reporter David Mac Dougall even tried to threaten a man’s career for using the sign.
The Anti-Defamation League describes the symbol as “a nearly universal hand gesture and most usage of it is completely innocuous.”
What do you make of Activision and Infinity Ward silently removing the okay emote from their games?