One of the UK's biggest esports names is in tatters after dozens of staff members asked to be released from its roster over sexual assault allegations were levelled at one of its longest-serving members. Method, home to arguably the most successful World of Warcraft raid team of all time, has been hemorrhaging staff over claims made against member MethodJosh (via PC Gamer).
When MethodJosh was banned from Twitch last year, the platform never announced the reason for its decision, but several fingers pointed towards a report from Kotaku detailing repeated interactions on social media with underage girls. According to a statement from CEO Scott McMillan, Method had been made aware of an allegation that MethodJosh had sent explicit pictures to a minor, and had also requested explicit pictures from her. The organisation was also made aware of a police investigation against MethodJosh. While that investigation was eventually dropped, the incident that it concerned was an allegation of rape made against MethodJosh by streamer poopernoodle last summer.
After poopernoodle and a number of other women came forward regarding MethodJosh last week, McMillan says "there was no longer room for doubt, we had had finally seen the full depth of his depravity; no excuses or justifications could be made for Josh’s behaviour and we terminated him within the hour". MethodJosh has made no public comment on the allegations.
Allegations have also been made against co-CEO Sascha Steffens, with former Method streamer AnnieFuschia, and another streamer, Swebliss, both accusing him of inappropriate behaviour, which Steffens denies.
In the past few days, the organisation's European WoW PvP team, its North American Mythic Dungeon team, and its Path of Exile team have all resigned. A Reddit thread lists a number of other streamers and advertisers that have cut ties with the company in recent days, with more than 50 entries at time of writing.
It's unclear what will now happen to the organisation, although an exodus of this magnitude makes it difficult to see a future for the company, which was founded in 2005. McMillan says that staff will "receive all the support that they need", and that he "understands and supports their decision to step aside". He also states that "personally, I’ll be taking some time away to contemplate my future, as well as Method’s".