A report from Swedish outlet Breakit (via GamesIndustry.biz) revealed a company culture of bullying and silence at Paradox Interactive as an employee survey conducted by union groups shows. The survey also put a spotlight on the gender discrimination at play at the company.
Two unions - Unionen and Sveriges Ingenjörer - conducted a survey of corporate practices, and the results showed that almost half of the employees who took part commented on how they experienced some kind of mistreatment. Even more revealing is the nearly 70% of women surveyed reporting abuse, suggesting that much of the abuse is directed at them.
The survey also pointed to a company that’s uninterested in taking reports of abuse seriously and not dishing out appropriate consequences to those behaving offensively, creating a “culture of silence” around the company.
For its part, Paradox is responding to this report by conducting its own investigation utilizing “an external, neutral third party”.
This report comes soon after the resignation of Paradox CEO Ebba Ljungerud, though new CEO Fredrik Wester claims there’s no connection between the two events. Ljungerud left the company due to “differing views on company strategy”, though what that exactly means is left unclear.
Reports of abuse at developers are becoming more and more commonplace, as the State of California is currently suing Activision Blizzard for sexual harassment and bullying, and another suit was filed against Riot for similar allegations prior to this. Even without these high-profile lawsuits, though, it’s clear that abuse like we see at these companies is a lot more commonplace than many would like to admit. It’s proven to be a systemic issue with the games industry, and we are far from done reckoning with it.