Infinity Ward quietly removed the OK hand gesture on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone.
Eurogamer provides the analysis as to why the OK sign was removed. In September 2019, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) added the OK sign in a list of hate symbols. The ADL found out that some use the gesture as a “sincere expression of white supremacy.” In the past, 4Chan trolls pretended the sign had a hidden meaning to create controversy. However, this all ended when the OK sign was indeed used by movements, hence changing meaning.
Eurogamer and Activision did not give any comments about this.
The OK sign was launched in early 2020. Some used it as a trick shot. The player’s character will do the OK sign with their left hand while firing the gun on their other hand.
The sign became famous, with fans and players alike uploading videos where their characters do the OJ sign as they end a multiplayer match or go for a final kill.
Infinity Ward replaced this gesture with “crush.” There is no change in the official patch notes. But players have sharp eyes, and it did not take long for them to see the gesture’s absence.
Players theorized that the removal of the OK gesture is due to the ongoing #BlackLivesMatter movement. Just a few weeks ago, the developer pledged to crackdown racism in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. They also inserted a message supporting Black Lives Matter into the game.
Activision and Infinity Ward are not the first to do this. In April 2019, Blizzard told a fan in the Overwatch League Arena that the OK sign is not allowed.