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Riot Games has announced the resignation of former Head of Global Product Ron Johnson. The employee was under investigation following a social media post he shared revolving around George Floyd’s death and questioning his character. A Riot Games spokesperson stated the company vows to do its part, which includes parting ways with Johnson.
“The sentiment expressed in the (posted) image in question is abhorrent,” said a Riot spokesperson, “and runs directly counter to our values and our belief that addressing systemic racism requires immediate societal change.” Johnson’s social media post quickly went viral and was deemed offensive by Riot fans. The post in question included a photo of Floyd, with a list of his criminal history overlaying the photo. As social media users became aware of the post, they quickly called out to Riot for action against him.
according to a report by @emanuelmaiberg and @xoxogossipgita, Riot Games executive Ron Johnson made a facebook post blaming George Floyd's murder on his 'lifestyle' and Riot is now investigating https://t.co/x6CJfkyxAw pic.twitter.com/UP2yuPt7VK
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) June 10, 2020
Against Riot Games’ values
Not too long ago, the company shared its social impact plan following the global protests against police brutality. Part of the plan includes a $10 million contribution to black organizations, as well as creating opportunities for minorities in the industry. “As we shared last week, Riot is taking thoughtful and deliberate action to help combat racism and injustice in the communities where we work and live,” said the Riot spokesperson. Additionally, the company states regardless of their action now, there is still much work to be done.
Per an ESPN report, Riot Games CEO Nicolo Laurent sent a memo to employees, detailing the end result of the situation. In the memo, Laurent stated, “I won’t comment on Ron’s intentions in posting that particular message, or on any of his political opinions that have been shared in the media or otherwise,” but he added, “I believe Ron exercised really poor judgment here. It resulted in a post that was harmful to many of us and our broader community. It was insensitive and in this moment, it undermines the commitment we’ve made to stand against all acts of injustice, racism, prejudice, and hate.”
Johnson resigned because he understood following this incident that he would be an ineffective leader at Riot Games.
No other comment has been made by Riot Games at the moment. Stick with Daily Esports for more esports news and updates.