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A photo illustration of Riot Games' League of Legends logo seen displayed on a smartphone. Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Riot Games is slamming California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing, calling the agency’s most recent court filing “a waste of judicial resources and legal expenses filed by a rogue, press-hungry agency.”

Why it matters: The mega-studio behind “League of Legends” is in an ongoing dispute regarding issues of widespread sexism at the company that it tried to settle in 2019.

  • The DFEH objected to that settlement and in February of this year said it was pursuing relief for women who worked at Riot.

Between the lines: This week, the DFEH asked a judge in Los Angeles Superior Court to press Riot to move faster in sending former employees notes acknowledging they can speak to the department about workplace misconduct without fear of reprisal.

  • Riot says that pressure, and a request for relief, is unnecessary overreach.
  • The game company says it is providing the needed contact information for employees by the end of the week.
  • It also denies that its settlement and severance agreements stop workers from speaking. “To be clear: the Court’s order requiring the issuance of the corrective notice reinforces only what Riot has already stated to its workforce — that employees may speak to DFEH,” Riot says in its new filing.

The big picture: The DFEH is making no friends among the leadership of some of California’s biggest gaming companies as it ramps up investigations of those companies.

  • Last month, Activision Blizzard called a part of the DFEH’s anti-discrimination lawsuit against the company “irresponsible behavior from unaccountable state bureaucrats.”

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Oct 16, 2021 - Technology

Fixing the pipeline won't solve tech's race problem

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The tech industry likes to cast its failure to include enough people of color and other underrepresented groups as a "pipeline problem" — one that would vanish if only more such people studied tech skills and entered the field.

But there's another reason U.S. tech companies struggle to diversify: work environments that critics say are rife with harassment and discrimination even as companies paint themselves as champions for diversity.

Trump blasts “wacky” GOP Sen. Cassidy after “Axios on HBO” interview

Former President Trump on Monday blasted Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) after he told "Axios on HBO" that he is not sure Trump could win the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.

Driving the news: When told that Trump could be expected to win the nomination, Cassidy jumped in saying: "I don't know that."

Ben Geman, author of Generate
3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden's carbon emissions-cutting pledge faces tough climb

Image from the Rhodium Group study "Pathways to Paris." Courtesy of the Rhodium Group.

The verdict is in: President Biden's U.S. emissions-cutting pledge isn't a fantasy, but the path to meeting it is very difficult and relies on forces outside of White House control.

Driving the news: The Rhodium Group just released an analysis of policy combinations that could close the gap between the current U.S. trajectory and Biden's vow under the Paris Agreement to cut emissions in half by 2030.