Trusted Reviews have posted a public apology to Take-Two Games for publishing a Red Dead Redemption 2 leak in February 2018. The apology further states that the website will donate one million dollars to charities chosen by the company.
"We should have known this information was confidential and should not have published it. We unreservedly apologise to Take-Two Games and we have undertaken not to repeat such actions again", the apology reads. Apparently, Trusted Reviews sourced their article from a "confidential corporate document".
The article in question talked about Red Dead Redemption 2's features, mentioning that Rockstar will be adding a battle royale as well. It has since been taken down and replaced with the aforementioned apology.
When asked to comment the move, Take-Two responded by saying, "Take-Two takes security seriously and will take legal action against people or publications who leak confidential information [...] Because this situation involved information about ‘Red Dead Redemption 2,’ Rockstar Games directed the settlement funds to these three great charities: the American Indian College Fund, the American Prairie Reserve, and the First Nations Development Institute.”
All things considered, the punishment seems quite heavy for the publication, especially now that Red Dead Redemption 2's launch is a finished affair. It's unclear why this exact piece of info made Take-Two and Rockstar take action but at least it didn't end up in court for Trusted Reviews.
Now leaks have become somewhat of a tool in the industry, with plenty of companies using it to test the waters or supplement their hype machines. Rockstar, however, keep a pretty closed lid on things and their human resources department only recently lifted the ban on discussing working conditions on social media .
In the meantime, Red Dead Redemption 2 is killing it, having set the record for the most lucrative opening weekend of any entertainment product ever, beating Avengers: Infinity Wars in the process. The fact that GTA VI launched on a Tuesday helped RDR2 a bit in this respect but the former still holds the record for the best three-day opening - $1 billion.
You can find Trusted Review's apology here .