League of Legends

Riot Games co-founder under fire for deleted tweet to LoL streamer IWillDominate

by Calum Patterson

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Riot Games co-founder and co-creator of League of Legends, Marc Merril, has come under fire after a sending a now-deleted tweet to streamer and ex-pro player Christian ‘IWillDominate’ Rivera.

IWillDominate, a professional League of Legends player from 2010-2016, and now a popular streamer, started the conversation by responding to an August 26 tweet from Merril, which stated: "Never stop being a good person because of bad people."

"Yeah just sucks when the bad people work for the company that your career is based off of," Rivera said. 

A day later, Merrill replied: "Grats on having a career revolving around the free game we made."

Screenshot via @Thooorin
Screenshot via @Thooorin
The now-deleted tweets from Merrill sparked a debate.

Merrill deleted his response soon after sending it, prompting Dominate to call him out once more.

"Really wish Marc Merrill manned up and didn't delete his tweet to me. Why are you embarrassed by what you tweeted?" the streamer asked.

Rivera continued, "The fact you made a free to play game that ended up being lucrative and had people base their careers off it DOES NOT devalue them as people as much as you'd like to believe it does."

Rivera then referenced Riot's recent legal troubles, which saw the company settle a class action lawsuit over "alleged claims of gender discrimination in pay and promotion, sexual harassment, and retaliation against women working at Riot offices in California."

"You just settled a multimillion dollar sexism lawsuit against your company," Dominate tweeted, "Open your fucking eyes and get off your high horse."

IWillDominate addressed the situation during his August 29 Twitch broadcast, stating "Pretty much (Merrill's) tweet is like 'I made you bitch, you'd be nothing without me.' I guess that's an insult to me, but it's also an insult to everyone else. He's basically just insulting everyone who bases a career off League of Legends.

"So he's insulting all the pros," Dominate continued, "and this just gives you their fucking mindset, right, it's like 'bitch, you wouldn't be anything without me.'"

Esports journalist and analyst Duncan 'Thorin' Shields also highlighted Riot's recent controversies in his own response, suggesting that the company had a mentality that employees owed their careers to the company and its free-to-play League of Legends title.

IWillDominate is best known for his time as a jungler and a coach for Team Liquid. He had a tumultuous start to his career, banned from League of Legends and LCS competition for a year in 2012 due to "toxic behavior".

The year off allowed him time to reform from the behavior which earned him a ban, and he went on to have a successful LCS career with Liquid until his retirement in 2016.

He is now one of the most popular Twitch streamers for League of Legends, boasting over 700,000 followers on the platform.