A well-deserved victory for all the women affected.
Despite being one of the most successful video game companies in the world, Riot Games isn’t all that progressive when it comes to its treatment of its female employees. Back in August, we discovered that a gender discrimination lawsuit had been filed against them and looks like it has come to a proper conclusion.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Riot Games has agreed to pay out at least US$10 million to all the women who worked at the company in the last five years. The lawsuit began all the way back in November 2018 when two women who worked there sued the company for allegedly subjecting them to sexual harassment and gender discrimination.
There are approximately 1,000 female employees who have been working at Riot Games since November 2014 and each one of them is entitled to a payment from the multi-million dollar sum. The amount that each employee receives will be based on how long they have worked for Riot, with full employees receiving more than contractors.
“We’re pleased to have a proposed settlement to fully resolve the class action lawsuit. The settlement is another important step forward, and demonstrates our commitment to living up to our values and to making Riot an inclusive environment for the industry’s best talent.”
– Riot Games spokesperson, talking to the LA Times.
In the settlement filing, the company has also outlined several initiatives that it will be carrying out in order to improve its company culture especially on the front of improving sexual harassment and discrimination reporting. This also includes reviewing all pay, promotion, and hiring practices to ensure that a fairer and more transparent process is in place.
To give you a good idea of what the women in Riot Games went through, it’s stated in the lawsuit that there were allegations of inappropriate behaviour such as “crotch-grabbing, phantom humping, and sending unsolicited and unwelcome pictures of male genitalia” plus managers circulating a “hot girl list“. Pretty horrible stuff for such a big company.
Here’s hoping that Riot has finally learned their lesson and other giant companies in and outside of the video game industry will follow suit in ensuring that women are treated with respect at the workplace.