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GDC "Severely Condemns" Drink Spiking, Encourages Victims To Contact Police




GDC has spoken out after attendees reported instances of abuse and drink spiking, condemning the acts and encouraging victims to come forward. It adds that organisers take "everyone's safety very seriously" and try to "provide a secure environment wherever possible.

This comes as many attendees complained of abuse over the weekend, with multiple women said to have had their drinks spiked at after-parties. Reports such as this have followed events during GDC for years, with seemingly no improvement despite increased awareness.

Related: Report: The Game Industry's Relationship With Alcohol

"We are very upset to hear that some people, especially women, reported concerning experiences during the GDC week at off-site events, including assault and drink spiking," reads a statement from GDC, sent to TheGamer. "This is outrageous and unacceptable; everyone has a right to feel safe."


The statement continues: "We severely condemn any such behavior and support the victims; we encourage reporting to the police and hope the perPetrators will be found."

At the time of writing, it's not known if these incidents were reported to authorities.


GDC goes on to explain that it takes everyone's safety "very seriously", and tries to "provide a secure environment on site." It also adds that, "the GDC team is available to help participants contact venue security or local law enforcement, to provide escorts, or to otherwise assist those experiencing unacceptable behavior."

Despite this, it isn't the first year that the GDC event has ended in allegations of abuse. Last year, an Activision Blizzard-sponsored Women in Games International event was said to have become a "men's preying ground", with multiple "predatory" attendees.

According to many attendees, this year was no different. "Women at GDC this year have been belittled and undermined in their roles, been hit on relentlessly, and had their drinks spiked by predatory men," said Game dev and GDC attendee Leena van Deventer. "Two women were even lured up to a hotel room by a man in a position of power for a 'pitch', where he then assaulted them."

As a result of this, the Games and Online Harassment Hotline has opened its services to those affected by abuse during GDC.

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