The developer of the popular League of Legends game has been facing accusation and legal action over what’s a toxic workplace culture, resulting in a mass walkout when the company tried to compel two women into compromise instead of having their day in court. However, it now seems that the State of California has been secretly examining the game developer as well — and that Riot hasn’t agreed to help.
The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing just declared (via Kotaku) that it’s trying to legally force Riot to divulge employee pay data so it can see whether Riot is paying women less than men, because Riot has declined to provide that data willingly.
The unexpected part, of course, is that they had no idea Riot was under officially under probe till now. In total, the agency stated its probing “alleged unequal pay, sexual harassment, sexual assault, retaliation, and gender discrimination in selection and promotion.”
A statement from DFEH director Kevin Kish mentioned that DFEH has extensive authority to consider potential breaches of California’s civil rights laws almost identical to grand jury proceedings. He further stated when companies fail to assist voluntarily with the examination, including with our investigative discovery, DFEH would be using its right to seek help from the courts. Doing so would make certain that their investigations are informed by appropriate evidence and concluded without unnecessary delay.
In late May, after the walkout at Riot Games, organizers told that they were continuing to pushing the issue at the company through other ways, including internal petitions. The company hired a new chief diversity officer back in March, before the walkout.