Critical Role recently released a statement addressing recent allegations about unpaid labor and harassment within their community.
Yesterday, Critical Role released a statement updating their community about the results of a recent investigation. The investigation in question kicked off June 26th after a former community member who had been in close contact with a Critical Role employee “made statements online claiming that he had provided work for Critical Role without payment.”
An update from our recent investigation: pic.twitter.com/o6VrXRklku
— Critical Role (@CriticalRole) July 6, 2020
Critical Role’s statement is as follows:
“A couple weeks ago, an individual made statements online claiming that he provided work for Critical Role without payment. Critical Role took these allegations seriously and immediately sought to investigate the situation. After an extensive investigation directed by outside counsel, it has been concluded that Critical Role never established, or intended to establish, any employment, independent contractor relationship, consulting arrangement or any other type of work-related contract with that member of the community.
This individual voluntarily reached out to Critical Role with concerns around his own experience with online bullying. Critical Role does not condone online bullying or harassment of any kind, and an employee within the company listened with the sole purpose of being an understanding ear. The correspondences on Discord reflect an empathetic dialogue with a concerned member of the community and not the providing of any professional services to Critical Role by this individual. Nothing in the communications established any professional, employment, or contractual relationship with Critical Role. After months of casual interaction, the individual made an inquiry to the Critical Role employee about possibly being engaged by Critical Role as a consultant to the company. Upon receiving this request, the Critical Role employee immediately and clearly declined the request.
The importance of helping cultivate and encourage positive and inclusive spaces for Critters has always been a huge priority for us well before this interaction. Although we understand that there is only so much we can control within unofficial online communities and platforms, Critical Role has been working on new policies to ensure that we’re clear with you about what we stand for, and more importantly, what we do not stand for. You’ll hear more about this in the coming months.
Thank you for your ongoing support. Harassment of any kind is unacceptable, so please be kind, and don’t forget to love each other.
The “online statements” in question come from the account of someone who had been experiencing abuse and harassment from the Critical Role community. According to their statement, the individual approached them with concerns after experiencing harassment in the Critical Role fandom, and suggestions on how to take steps to that. In the individual’s own words:
“The personal abuse of myself and a handful of others would not have been so brutal and irreversible if there was a practice in place to protect victims of community-based bullying, particularly victims who are already marginalized.”
This isn’t the first time the CR community has come under fire with allegations of harassment and toxicity. For context, one can find examples of bullying in the replies on Critical Role’s statement:
You can also find the community calling on itself to stop harassment. As Critical Role moves forward, the relevant part of their statement seems to be:
Although we understand that there is only so much we can control within unofficial online communities and platforms, Critical Role has been working on new policies to ensure that we’re clear with you about what we stand for, and more importantly, what we do not stand for. You’ll hear more about this in the coming months.
We’ll keep you updated on what their new policies are as the story develops.
What do you think of the controversy? What policies would you encourage CR to adopt? Let us know in the comments!