Microsoft apologizes for 'sexist' Xbox One promo

"We meant no offense" says rep after publishing fictional letter between husband and wife

Microsoft has issued an apology for - and slightly altered the content of - an Xbox One promo for which it came under fire on Wednesday.

The promo, which has been accused of being 'sexist', is pitched as a letter Microsoft has written for those who want to buy Xbox One to give to their significant others to convince them the purchase is worthwhile.


The letter encourages users to edit certain phrases within it to their liking. However, the default settings for one phrase read, "Not sure if you've heard, but Xbox One is now available. That means we can start playing games like Dead Rising 3. I know, I know. You'd rather knit than watch me slay zombies, but hear me out on this. Xbox One is actually for both of us. Seriously."

The promo material was accused of being 'sexist' by commenters via Twitter, with Thomas Was Alone developer Mike Bithell and The Drowning developer Ben Cousins among the most notable critics.

Microsoft has responded with a statement of apology. "The letter is customizable and we meant no offense, but understand how the defaults could be perceived," a spokesperson told CVG.

"We're making changes to the letter defaults and apologize for the oversight," they added.

Said changes have seemingly been made, as the promo now reads, "I know. You'd rather do your taxes early than watch me slay zombies." Knitting is not among the selectable options.

Xbox One launched in 13 markets - including US, Europe and Australia - on November 22. Read our full Xbox One launch unit verdict here.