RWBY production company Rooster Teeth, part of AT&T’s WarnerMedia recently took to Twitter to declare that the company stands for “social justice” and told their customers to get lost if they weren’t with them, a contradiction to their previous statements made earlier in August.
Rooster Teeth wrote on Twitter, “This is your regular reminder that we happily and proudly stand for social justice.”
They added, “We have no tolerance for racism, sexism, or harassment of any kind.”
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Finally, they concluded, “If you’re not with us – this isn’t an airport, no need to announce your departure.”
This statement directly contradicts statements the company made earlier in August.
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As part of their announcement that they were removing a number of videos from their platform that they “no longer feel comfortable hosting on our platforms” they indicated that Rooster Teeth stated they want “to be more inclusive of all people.”
They announced the removal of the videos on Twitter. Their first tweet stated, “Today, as part of a larger content review process, we are removing some videos that we no longer feel comfortable hosting on our platforms.”
They continued, “We took an honest look at 17+ years of videos, many of them made live and uploaded on a daily basis, and concluded some do not fit the ethos of our company today and are counterproductive to the work we are striving to do to be more inclusive of all people. ”
You’ll note that their most recent statement is in direct contradiction to this previous one. Here, they note they want “to be more inclusive of all people.”
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However, now they are making it very clear they want nothing to do with inclusion writing, “If you’re not with us – this isn’t an airport, no need to announce your departure.”
Next, they stated, “We aspire to entertain our existing community while fostering connections with broader diverse audiences. Any content that doesn’t do that doesn’t belong on our platform.”
Rooster Teeth then detailed that not only would they begin removing videos from their platform, but they would also begin editing videos that are currently on their as well.
They stated, “This review is ongoing. Over time we will also edit videos, provide disclaimers where appropriate, and continue to remove content if we so choose.”
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They then asked for customers to hold them accountable, “This is an ongoing process and this is by no means our last update on this topic. Actions speak louder than words and we hope you see our actions clearly now and in the future. Don’t hesitate to hold us accountable and offer your feedback.”
Finally they referred to a community post on their website that details the changes that are being made are specifically part of their Black Lives Matter statement made in June.
The community post, it included everything in their tweets, but also included they created a Diversity, Equity & Inclusion role.
Rooster Teeth explained, “In June we stated #BlackLivesMatter and said we were working on a plan to ensure a more diverse, inclusive and equitable Rooster Teeth. We want to be transparent about what we’ve accomplished and what we’re still working on.”
“Laney Ingram, our Head of Legal & Business Affairs, has expanded her responsibilities to include Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI). She is partnering with Senior HR leader Stephanie O’Connor, who comes to us from Fullscreen,” they continued.
Rooster Teeth then added, “We have also hired an outside DEI consultant, Ingrid Hadley. Together, Laney, Stephanie and Ingrid are laying the groundwork for our DEI strategy and initiatives going forward.”
Maybe the most important part of this statement is that they intimated it appears to be a company-wide policy for WarnerMedia as Rooster Teeth writes, “We are also working closely with WarnerMedia on all of our DEI strategies and are thankful for their support and the opportunities they open up in this area.”
You can read the full statement below:
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An initial statement came in May on Twitter. It read, “There is no community without unity. We stand with our Black friends, family, coworkers, and community members against racial inequality and injustice. #BlackLivesMatter“
They would follow that up with a post encouraging their followers to support a number of different organizations.
They followed that up with a statement in June on their website.
It began, “The murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and countless others have caused all of us to look in the mirror and take stock of our roles as citizens. In that same regard we as a company have to take stock of our own action, or inaction, as well.”
The statement continued, “We’ve looked inward and recognized we need to take far greater actions—to support diverse storytelling, to improve representation on-screen and inside our company, to support our talent against hateful online comments, and to ensure our company values reflect these ideals.”
They then announced they were donating 40,000 to two organizations, The Loveland Foundation and the Austin Area Urban League and then told their customers and followers to educate themselves.
They wrote, “The biggest lesson we have learned from our past is that actions speak much louder than words. Today we are donating $10K to The Loveland Foundation and $30K to the Austin Area Urban League. We encourage you to educate yourselves about these groups, and others that commit themselves to racial equality and justice – and contribute what you can.”
They would then announce a live stream fundraiser, “In addition, please join us on June 12 for a 12+ hour stream where we will be fundraising for charities that support the Black community.”
“We are committed to equality. We realize that these donations and our livestream fundraiser are just one small step in the direction we need to take to improve. We have begun company-wide discussions to identify changes that we can make, actions we can take against intolerance, and the steps we can take to ensure lasting change,” Rooster Teeth then stated.
Finally, they concluded, “Tomorrow we take the next step. And every day we’ll keep taking steps until Rooster Teeth becomes the company we aspire to be. We look forward to sharing our action plan with you in the days ahead and hearing more of the community’s input as well.”
You can see that statement in full below:
What do you make of Rooster Teeth’s contradictory statements regarding their policies? Do they even know what they are doing over there? Is this a sign the company is on the path to failure?