Sexual misconduct allegations, left and right. People resigning after an allegation has emerged. Companies pulling their games from a tournament because of the same thing. This has been happening in the past month and has been increasing in frequency as the days pass by. This is the video games industry’s #MeToo movement.
The #MeToo Movement
What is the #MeToo movement? If you’re not caught up, the #MeToo movement is a movement against sexual harassment and abuse. This movement was originally directed to prominent males, but has since lost that connotation. Nowadays, it’s directed to anybody.
The #MeToo movement in the games industry isn’t something new; it has happened before. And when you’re always monitoring the news (like we do), it gets overwhelming when every other post you see is someone sharing their experiences with a person in the industry. Just last month, we had the creative director of Ubisoft leave because of a tweet that exposed him. Ubisoft has released a statement about this and took it very seriously, with policy revisions and investigations about allegations towards their employees, executive or not.
Just recently, EA has also released a statement regarding the same thing. Esports pros have been sharing their experiences as well; the Smash Bros. pros have been vocal about it. Which makes you wonder, just what the hell is happening?
It was just waiting to happen
Yup, this explosion of the #MeToo movement was just waiting to happen. You can only hold so much in a bottle before it explodes, and that’s exactly what’s happening today. These employees and players sharing their experiences have been bottling these things for so long that they just had to share it. This in turn has triggered a domino effect where people with similar experiences in the industry have decided to open up.
It’s not yet over
I think this recent #MeToo movement in the games industry is just starting to unfold. But with this comes danger in a person’s statement. What I mean is that almost anyone can now post something which can damage a person—innocent or not. I don’t want to be that skeptical guy, but there exists people who want to fabricate something just to damage a person. This is why I’d ask people to wait for official statements from the company themselves before forming your own opinion about the matter.
What’s gonna happen next?
This is just my speculation, but I think there’ll be more of them coming out with their experiences. If you’re overwhelmed with what’s happening, it might be smart to take a break from social media… Twitter to be exact, as it’s somehow the most preferred outlet. But it might be wise to follow what’s happening. Not everything is dark and gloomy in situations like this. Changes are happening left and right to companies and associations that are involved. This is not a “sad time” for gaming; this is the time for the video games industry to change.