Riot Games to settle gender discrimination class action

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Riot Games

Riot Games has agreed to a preliminary settlement pertaining to the class-action lawsuit filed against it last year alleging gender discrimination and harassment.

In a statement on its website, the League of Legends developer said: “We made a commitment to Rioters that we would be willing to take the steps necessary to build trust and to demonstrate that we’re serious about Riot evolving into an excellent place to work for all Rioters. Under these circumstances, we’ve had to look critically at our litigation approach to the class action lawsuit. While we believed that we had a strong position to litigate, we realized that in the long run, doing what is best for both Riot and Rioters was our ideal outcome.”

“Therefore, rather than entrench ourselves and continue to litigate, we chose to pivot and try to take an approach that we believe best demonstrates our commitment to owning our past, and to healing the company so that we can move forward together. As such, we’re pleased to announce that we’ve come to an agreement in principle to settle the class action lawsuit against Riot.”

In a joint press release accompanying the statement, Ryan Saba of Rosen Saba LLP, the lawyer representing the plaintiffs in the class-action lawsuit, said: “This is a very strong settlement agreement that provides meaningful and fair value to class members for their experiences at Riot Games. This is a clear indication that Riot is dedicated to making progress in evolving its culture and employment practices. A number of significant changes to the corporate culture have been made, including increased transparency and industry-leading diversity and inclusion programs. The many Riot employees who spoke up, including the plaintiffs, significantly helped to change the culture at Riot.”

Last year, following an expose by Kotaku which brought to light a seemingly institutionalised sexist culture at Riot Games, the class action was launched. Riot Games initially announced its intention to fight it, but embarked on a period of soul-searching and scrutinizing its company culture which led to the agreement to settle the lawsuit.

Riot GamesIn its statement, the company said: “We’ve taken these claims very seriously and have been working on many fronts to review and address the lawsuits and the concerns that were raised. We’ve done a deep dive into our past, our culture, and our systems and processes. Last August, we announced our First Steps Forward, and those steps continue today. We will continue to strive to be a great company and one that cares about its employees and its players. After extensively reviewing these issues, we can confidently state that gender discrimination (in pay or promotion), sexual harassment, and retaliation are not systemic issues at Riot.”

For more Riot Games news and information, keep an eye on the company’s website.

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Steve Boxer
Steve Boxer has been writing about videogames since the early 1990s. His first console was an Atari VCS, and he misspent most of his youth in the 1980s in the arcades. As well as for Green Man Gaming, he can be found writing for The Guardian, Empire, TechRadar and Pocket-Lint. He’s currently having trouble deciding whether his favourite console is his Xbox One X or his Switch, and plays a wide range of games, but especially RPGs (he loves a good JRPG) action-adventure titles, shooters of all descriptions and driving games. Follow him here.