Ron Johnson, global head of consumer products for Riot Games, resigned from his position following an investigation resulting from a tone-deaf post about George Floyd’s death.
In a Facebook post that many said minimized the tragic killing of Floyd by a Minnesota police officer who has since been fired, Johnson condemns the use of force, but includes an image of Floyd that features text questioning Floyd’s character. The post swiftly spurred an investigation.
“Ron Johnson is no longer employed at Riot Games,” a spokesperson from Riot Games confirmed to Digital Trends. The developer says that the social media post runs counter to the anti-racist and inclusive values it holds. The spokesperson added that “systemic racism requires immediate societal change, something that we’re committed to working toward.”
“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,” the spokesperson said. “To start, we’re committing $1 million to areas where we know we can make an impact, including justice reform, long-term solutions to address racial bias, and support for local Black-owned businesses.”
Riot Games said it will also invest “$10 million in founders underrepresented in the games industry and [to help] create a future pipeline of underrepresented talent for the gaming and tech world.”
In an internal email obtained by ESPN, Nicolo Laurent, CEO of Riot Games, commented that while everyone is entitled to their personal views, “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. It also hinders our ability to create an inclusive environment for our entire community: Rioters, players, and partners alike.”
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