Home Gaming Riot Games is being sued for gender discrimination

Riot Games is being sued for gender discrimination

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In August this year, Kotaku did a deep dive into the pervasive culture of misogyny at League of Legends developer Riot Games. The report detailed the internal company structure that alienated people who weren’t straight white men. Riot Games has since not only acknowledged the issues but promised to fix them.

“We will weave this change into our cultural DNA and leave no room for sexism or misogyny,” the company said. “Inclusivity, diversity, respect, and equality are all non-negotiable. While there is much to improve, there is a tremendous amount of good at Riot that will drive this change. This is our top priority until we get it right.”

Now, they’re being sued by one former employee and one current one for workplace gender discrimination.

The suit says that Riot Games is guilty of “endemic gender-based discrimination and fostering a “men-first” environment.

The class-action suit says that “like many of Riot Games’ female employees, Plaintiffs have been denied equal pay and found their careers stifled because they are women. Moreover, Plaintiffs have also seen their working conditions negatively impacted because of the ongoing sexual harassment, misconduct, and bias which predominate the sexually-hostile working environment of Riot Games.”

The real kicker though – and what may see Riot in fair legal trouble, is that the company apparently “violated California’s Equal Pay Act and law against gender-based discrimination at the workplace.”

The employees involved are looking for “compensation on unpaid wages, damages, and other penalties, with an exact amount to be determined at trial.”

You can read Kotaku’s report for specific examples of sexism and misogyny. Meanwhile, riot has responded to the lawsuit.

“While we do not discuss the details of ongoing litigation, we can say that we take every allegation of this nature seriously and investigate them thoroughly. We remain committed to a deep and comprehensive evolution of our culture to ensure Riot is a place where all Rioters thrive.”

Last Updated: November 7, 2018

16 Comments

  1. Pixelated Gambit

    November 7, 2018 at 10:00

  2. For the Emperor!

    November 7, 2018 at 10:12

    Look, I do not get paid the same as my colleagues. Some get more, some get less. It is a fact of life that some people negotiate harder than others for initial pay when joining a company, and for increases. It is also a fact that many companies will try to get away with paying people as little as possible until they might lose them to a competitor and only then fork out the monies someone was worth for a long time.

    However, if there is provable effort to pay people less based on gender or race, I say go for the suit! If there is no provable effort, then it might just be that you are either not valuable enough to the company, or that you are a bad negotiator. And using the courts to try to get “equality” when your work might not be equal, or to negotiate on your behalf, is just you feeling entitled based on your gender/race.

    Reply

    • Original Heretic

      November 7, 2018 at 10:29

      This. Totally this.

      The job I just left, I have subsequently discovered that someone who has started at the same company, in a lower position, is being paid more (starting off!) than I was being paid after being there for 3 years.
      Yet when I told them I was job searching… “We can’t pay you more.”

      Reply

      • Guz

        November 7, 2018 at 10:33

        Im currently getting under paid at my current job, but the problem is jobs in my town/area are very scarce and the employers know it, So they basically say they cant pay more and if you dont like it leave. My only other option is to move but that is also a nerve racking as you never know whats gonna happen. #SAjobmarketsucks

        Reply

        • Original Heretic

          November 7, 2018 at 10:39

          Oof, rough one. Hang in there, mate.

          Reply

        • For the Emperor!

          November 7, 2018 at 10:42

          Same company I mention in another comment, make use of that tactic with some positions because they KNOW the employees have very few other options! I am lucky enough that I am in an industry where I can still move around.

          PS: I made a move to a different town this year. It was a big step, but my life is so much better at the moment!

          Reply

        • HvR

          November 7, 2018 at 10:55

          Well that is the double edge sword of a free market.

          What does grind my gears is that companies via recruitment companies create artificial pay brackets for certain jobs and block employees from talking talking to one another about pay etc. Also non-competes. That kind of shit needs to stop, since the employers like to use free market to their advantage the free market should be kept open to the employees as well.

          Reply

      • For the Emperor!

        November 7, 2018 at 10:39

        A colleague at my previous job recently left. They wanted to offer someone who would be reporting to him MORE than him! So he realised what he was worth and got a better job. That same company also has the “We can’t pay you more” mantra until you get a better offer. Twice I quit and got more money. Third time I said “I would rather be jobless than work here” and did not allow counter offers.

        Reply

      • Admiral Chief

        November 7, 2018 at 10:50

        You are better off dude

        Reply

  3. Admiral Chief

    November 7, 2018 at 10:12

    “men-first” will result in an unhappy sex life

    Reply

    • Skittle

      November 7, 2018 at 14:53

      Unless it is between two men, win-win situation

      Reply

  4. HvR

    November 7, 2018 at 11:00

    Probably going to end up in an settlement with NDA very quickly.

    Reply

  5. SagatatiaRZA

    November 8, 2018 at 07:33

    I’m commenting less on this but more of the broader topic and specifically Kotaku. I’m pretty centrist politically (with regards to our friends in the west in the war between skinheads vs. blue-pixiecuts) but Kotaku is so obviously pandering that it hurts my nipples (ask a scientist idk). I remember I used to have Kotaku as my homepage back in the day for gaming news and stuff on releases. Now it is so absolutely thick with regressive, anti-cis/white garbage. It’s more Jezebel now than Jezebel itself. I just wanna see games, man!

    Reply

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