The developer of the popular League of Legends has been facing accusations and lawsuits for what is said to be a toxic work culture, which culminated in a massive strike when the company tried to force two women to arbitrate instead of having your day in court. But now it seems that the state of California has also been quietly investigating the developer of the game, and that Riot has not been playing ball.
The California Department of Fair Housing and Employment has just announced (through Kotaku ) that it is trying to legally force Riot to discard employee payment data so that it can see if Riot It pays women less than men, because Riot has refused to provide that information voluntarily.
The surprising part, of course, is that we had no idea that Riot was under official investigation until now. In total, the agency says it is investigating "alleged unequal salaries, sexual harassment, sexual assault, retaliation and gender discrimination in the selection and promotion."
"DFEH has broad authority to investigate possible violations of California civil rights laws similar to grand jury proceedings," reads part of a statement from DFEH Director Kevin Kish. "When Companies Do not Cooperate voluntarily with our investigations, even with our investigative discovery, DFEH will exercise its right to request assistance from the courts, in doing so, it ensures that our investigations are informed by relevant evidence and are completed without unnecessary delay. "
"We have been in active discussions with the DFEH since it began its investigation, investigations like this may arise when there have been allegations of disparity in the workplace and we have been cooperating in good faith with the DFEH to address their concerns", says a representative of Riot The Verge in a statement. "During this time, we have responded quickly to requests from the DFEH and have produced more than 2,500 pages of documents and several thousand lines of payment data so far. We have also made several recent requests for the DFEH to participate in a call with us to meet your requests. To date, these requests have not received a response, so we are frankly disappointed to see that the DFEH issues a press release stating that we have not cooperated. We are confident that we have made substantial progress in the diversity, inclusion and culture of the company, and look forward to continuing to demonstrate this to the DFEH. "
At the end of May, after the strike at Riot Games, the organizers told The Verge that continued to press the issue into the company in other ways, including internal petitions.The company hired a new principal diversity officer in March, before the strike.
June 12 Update, 10 pm ET: Additional Statement by Riot Games.