Riot Games CEO under investigation over sexual harassment and gender discrimination allegations

Riot Games, the developers behind League of Legends, and Valorant, and its CEO Nicolo Laurent, are currently being investigated for allegations of gender discrimination and sexual harassment.

The allegations were filed as part of a labor lawsuit by a former Riot Games employee. On January 7th, Sharon O’Donnell filed a labor lawsuit case at Los Angeles' Stanley Mosk Courthouse, with Riot Games and Nicolo Laurent as the defendants.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time Riot Games has faced such allegations.

The allegations against Riot Games and Nicolo Laurent

Sharon O’Donnel was an executive assistant at Riot Games from 2017, until July of 2020. She filed a labor lawsuit against the company for lost wages, medical expenses, and general damages related to her employment, outlined in the suit.

According to her, she worked 10 hour days with multiple overtime and weekend hauls during her tenure at Riot Games. Furthermore, the lawsuit claims “wrongful termination” of O’Donnell, after she declined sexual advances by Nicolo Laurent.

Riot Games announced that an outside firm handled by a special committee by the Board of Directors will investigate the allegations. Nicolo Laurent has pledged his full cooperation and support during the investigation. Riot Games is committed to ensuring that all claims are properly explored and that appropriate action is taken

One claim that Riot Games addressed immediately is the allegation of wrongful termination of Sharon O’Donnell. According to Riot Games, the termination of O’Donnell is based on multiple well-documented complaints from a variety of people.

This isn’t the first time Riot Games has been accused of “a culture of sexism.” A Kotaku Investigation in 2018 uncovered several workplace controversies. Back in May 2019, over a hundred employees walked out in protest of the company. In December 2019, 1000 female employees settled a gender discrimination lawsuit. Riot Games paid $10 million to the female employees and promised to create a more inclusive environment.

It is unfortunate that such acts of discrimination exist in today’s world. Hopefully, the investigation can uncover the truth and proper action be taken.

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Edited by Nikhil Vinod
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