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The families of the Uvalde school shooting victims have filed a lawsuit against Activision

This is a screenshot from Call of Duty Black Ops III

On May 24th, 2022, 21 people, including 19 students and two teachers, were shot and killed in the Robb Elementary School building in Uvalde, Texas, by 18-year-old Salvador Ramos before law enforcement came in and fatally shot Ramos.

On Friday, two years to the day of that shooting, the families of the Uvalde school shooting victims filed lawsuits against Activision, Meta, and Daniel Defense. The lawsuit alleges those companies influenced Ramos to commit the shootings.

In the lawsuit (via The Verge), the families claim Ramos played Activision's Call of Duty first-person shooter games "obsessively" and that the games have included the AR-15 rifle that Ramos used in the shooting. The lawsuit also claims Meta's Instagram social network posted "hundreds of images depicting and venerating the thrill of combat" that also influenced Ramos. The same families also filed a lawsuit against Daniel Defense, who made the actual AR-15 rifle that Ramos used.

Meta and Daniel Defense have yet to comment on the lawsuit. IGN did receive a statement from an Activision spokesperson:

The Uvalde shooting was horrendous and heartbreaking in every way, and we express our deepest sympathies to the families and communities who remain impacted by this senseless act of violence. Millions of people around the world enjoy video games without turning to horrific acts.

IGN also received a statement from the Entertainment Software Association video game trade group, which said that " . . . we discourage baseless accusations linking these tragedies to video gameplay." It added, "Many other countries have similar rates of video gameplay to the United States, yet do not see similar rates of gun violence."

The lawsuit comes just after Activision, now owned by Microsoft, started its marketing campaign for the next game in the Call of Duty series, Black Ops 6, with a full reveal coming on June 9.

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