Riot Games is Being Sued for Gender Discrimination by Former and Current Employees

Riot Games is Being Sued for Gender Discrimination by Former and Current Employees

The plaintiffs are seeking damages for their time at Riot.

One current and one former employee of Riot Games filed a class action lawsuit against the company responsible for developing League of Legends. The suit is seeking compensation for gender-based discrimination and follows an extensive report into Riot's sexist work culture.

The lawsuit claims Riot violated California's Equal Pay Act as well as laws against gender-based discrimination. The suit alleges that the 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 plaintiffs are asking for compensation for unpaid wages, damages, and other penalties. They also say they want to end Riot's reported practice of devaluing women employees when it comes to the workplace.

Source: Riot Games

The lawsuit follows a report from Kotaku which dove into the sexism at Riot's workplace. Instances of a male dominated culture, public derogatory remarks, and a dogmatic obsession with culture fit for new hires that often were at the expense of women were all detailed in the initial story.

Kotaku also followed-up with Jessica Negron and Melanie McCracken, the former and current Riot employees respectively filing the class-action lawsuit for additional details. Negron says that after she was hired she was asked to perform the job duties of her manager without fair compensation or an official job change. She then saw three men hired into the role and was later asked to fulfill the position's duties again without a proper promotion.

The suit also shared additional details including one Riot supervisor's remarks that "diversity should not be a focal point of the design of Riot Games' products because gaming culture is the last remaining safe haven for white teen boys."

Following the August report Riot publicly apologized and promised to make changes in how it handles diversity, gender-discrimination, and its work culture. Riot also hired the outside firm of SeyFarth Shaw to investigate Riot, but Shaw has a history of union-busting as well.

Riot employees claim that a series of firings have purged Riot of employees accused of toxic behavior, though senior members like COO Scott Gelb, who also accused of such behavior, remains at the company.

We've reached out to Riot Games for comment.

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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