According to a report on Gameblog.fr, Amazon’s French site listed Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 briefly this week. The listing was quickly pulled down, with a listing for the more generic Call of Duty 9 put up in its place — even though the announcement of a Black Ops 2 would surprise absolutely nobody.
The really interesting point to this story is that Gameblog is now asserting that Activision has been in contact with them and demanded that they remove the story about the revoked listing. Gameblog has refused to do so, although other sites who picked it up quickly have apparently taken their stories down.
Gameblog further seems to be alleging that Activision has uninvited them from a Transformers event they were scheduled to attend next week, declined to provide any further review code and backed out of existing advertising deals — as well as cease any negotiation for future ad deals.
Obviously, Activision’s side of the story has not been heard but it is certainly true that other french sites have removed the story, it’s not unreasonable to presume that was at the request of Activision. Google’s caching shows that Jeuxvideo and JVN both used to have the story, then didn’t.
My personal thoughts on this matter are that it would be silly (and incredibly heavy handed) if Activision had collected their various PR and Ad buying departments together in some sort of blacklisting of Gameblog over something so widely expected. It also raises the question of why they would do this to a smaller European site like Gameblog but when Kotaku leaked the entire plot and many intricate details of the gameplay of Modern Warfare 3, they suffered apparently no repercussions.