Twitch CEO Vows Investigation Into Sexual Harassment Claims
Twitch CEO Emmett Shear announced the company would investigate a series of sexual misconduct claims in the Twitch community involving “partners, affiliates, business partners, and others.”
“I want to assure you all that we are looking into the incidents and will be taking action and cooperating with law enforcement,” he said in the letter Tuesday.
Shear addressed what he called “systemic sexism, racism, and abuse that rewards certain people and disadvantages — even harms — others,” and he said that he always wanted to “build an experience that is community-centered, safe and positive for all.”
Repercussions for those found to be involved in the incidents could include “banning, removing partnership, or removing people from promotional opportunities and activations,” Shear said.
Twitch has been dealing with these allegations for a few days now.
Popular Destiny streamer Lono ‘SayNoToRage’ was accused by multiple women of harassment last week and other personalities, like YouTuber Tom ‘ProSyndicate’ Cassell and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive streamer Henry ‘HenryG’ Greer, were also named in allegations.
On June 21, the official Twitch account released a statement saying, “We take accusations of sexual harassment and misconduct extremely seriously,” and “we are committed to working to make the streaming community safe for everyone.”
Music streamer YourStarling tweeted soon after that she was “sick of being quiet,” and that Shear was asked in an all-hands meeting at Twitch about abuse against women, specifically with her case as an example, and that he laughed said, “Wow, the things that go on on our platform, can’t really comment.”
“This was a recorded meeting A YEAR AGO. He KNEW that there was a partner abuse problem at Twitch. He was given information about partners weaponizing their platforms. He didn’t follow up, he didn’t address it. This is Twitch culture. Sweep the ugly stuff under the rug for profit,” Starling said.
Digital Trends asked Twitch to comment on the allegations that Shear had prior knowledge of the issues in the company. We will update this story when we hear back.
In his letter to employees, Shear also said that he has “spoken several times on these topics at Twitch, both at length and in passing, and I want to be clear that I do care, deeply, about Twitch being a place where people can create together without fear of harassment, abuse, or retaliation.”
In May, Twitch launched an eight-person safety advisory council made up of safety experts and streamers to “guide decisions made at Twitch by contributing their experience, expertise, and belief in Twitch’s mission of empowering communities to create together.”