Now that we've all established definitively how terrible Ubisoft is to its employees, we were overdue for a reminder that they increasingly seem like the rule rather than the exception. Twitch, thanks to a new report by GamesIndustry.biz, is helpfully offering us that reminder, because they've brought to light a company culture that embraced racism, sexism, and the same "bro-ness" that once infected Riot Games before they got their teeth kicked in by lawsuits and protests.
After Twitch's CEO made some rather haughty claims about how "safe" and "open" their workspace was, 16 employees who have been around for the span of the streaming platform's history, came forward with anecdotes that told a very different story: that Twitch, as you might guess from the intro, was a nightmare for employees. Especially women and minorities.
"Twitch repeatedly swept accounts of harassment and abuse under the rug: sexual, verbal, physical abuse, and racism. And not just my own. It took place in the office. At events. In meetings and behind closed doors. It was rampant and unavoidable. We heard about it in the halls. We saw it at our desks. It was overt and part of the job."
The entire report is comprehensive and disturbing, and worth a read if you have the time for it. In response to these claims, Twitch has stepped forward with their own statement.
“We take any allegations of this nature extremely seriously, whether on our service or within our company, and work swiftly to investigate and address them as appropriate. Any suggestions to the contrary misrepresent our culture, leadership, and values. Many of these allegations are years old, and we’ve taken numerous steps to better protect and support our employees and community, and will continue to invest time and resources in this area.”
Cool, except for the report pretty directly says that Twitch talks a big game but never follows through, enabling abuse by willingly ignoring reports repeatedly.
Anyway. I really hope this isn't the last we hear of this.