×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Overwatch’ Contenders Team Loses Female Player After Community Harassment

A female “Overwatch” Contenders player stepped down from North American team Second Wind just weeks after signing, following harassment and doxxing threats from some members of the game’s community.

Ellie first signed to the team of aspiring pro-players on Dec. 21, 2018, according to an announcement on the team’s official Twitter account. “We’re happy to announce @ellie_ow will be the newest addition to our roster for this season of Contenders!” reads the tweet.

One day later, Ellie tweeted screenshots of a Discord chat where one user suggests doxxing her — or revealing personal information including an address and phone number which is often used for harassment. “It’s doxxing time,” reads the chat message, “not for malicious intent[. J]ust to figure shit out.”

Ellie first became a target for commenters following her quick rise to a top 10 rank position for damage per second in the game. Suspicious users pointed to her account’s single bronze star to suggest the account holder is smurfing or using a boosted account. Others have noted that Ellie is the only player on the Second Wind player roster to not have her legal name listed on the official “Overwatch” Contenders website, leading some to believe she is being dishonest about her identity.

The news of her departure was announced in a statement on the official Second Wind Twitter account. “Unfortunately, due to some unforeseen reactions, Ellie has opted to step down from the team,” the tweet reads. “We hope you continue to support her in her ventures in “Overwatch” as we will.”

Popular on Variety

Second Wind team owner Justin Hughes also made his thoughts known over Twitter. While Hughes offers no specific account for what led to Ellie’s departure, he says that threats from some in the “Overwatch” community played a role.

“When we brought her onto the team, people acted like we had brought on a symbol of empowerment,” writes Hughes. “I get that people meant well, but on one side, we had people questioning her legitimacy, issuing threats, etc. while on the other hand, we had people acting like they had found their Messiah. Between needing a player to live up to huge expectations and having to question their own safety, it seems that the OW community isn’t ready to just view a player as just a player. We wanted a player, but it seemed like the public wanted something else. Sorry about my pronoun usage. However, the message remains the same.”

Variety reached out to Ellie and Second Wind for comment.

More Gaming

  • Green Day Beat Saber music pack

    Beat Saber Gets Green Day Music Pack, 360-Degree Levels

    Coinciding with Green Day’s performance at the Game Awards, Facebook announced late Thursday that the popular virtual reality game Beat Saber is getting a Green Day music pack. The 6-song pack is slated to go live at midnight, and players will simultaneously get access to Beat Saber’s long-awaited 360-degree gameplay. The Green Day music pack [...]

  • Ghost of Tsushima Trailer

    'Ghost of Tsushima' New Trailer Drops at The Game Awards

    A new full trailer for developer Sucker Punch’s “Ghost of Tsushima” is finally here. The latest substantial footage of the samurai game dropped at The Game Awards Thursday night, marking the first real look at the PS4 exclusive since Sony released a short teaser during its State of Play earlier this week. “Ghost of Tsushima” [...]

  • Ultimate Rivals The Rink - Apple

    Apple Arcade Launches NHL Game That Lets You Put Athletes From Other Sports on the Ice

    Now you can see NBA superstar LeBron James facing off against NHL great Wayne Gretzky in a fast-paced hockey game. In an innovative fantasy mashup for sports gaming fans, Apple Arcade is launching “Ultimate Rivals: The Rink,” a hockey game that lets you pit NHL players against athletes from other sports. The game is available [...]

  • Xbox Series X: Next-Gen Console Revealed

    Microsoft Reveals Next-Gen Console, Xbox Series X, at The Game Awards

    The next-generation Xbox console is officially called the Xbox Series X, and will be released over next year’s holiday season, Microsoft revealed during Thursday night’s The Game Awards. Head of Xbox Phil Spencer took the stage at Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater to make the big reveal about the project previously known as Project Scarlett, and [...]

  • The Game Awards

    How to Watch the 2019 Game Awards

    The Game Awards will be taking place on Thursday night and, fittingly, there are plenty of ways to stream the event online. The whole show will be streaming live starting at 5:30 p.m. PT/8:30 p.m. ET from Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater on The Game Awards’ YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Twitch pages. Additionally, for the first [...]

  • Riot Games

    Riot Games to Pay $10 Million to Settle Gender-Discrimination Lawsuit

    Riot Games, developer of “League of Legends,” will fork over at least $10 million to settle a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of women employees alleging the company’s “bro culture” resulted in systemic gender discrimination. Terms of the settlement in the case, reached in August, were revealed in court documents filed last week in California [...]

  • Dreamscape_Dragon vr

    Dreamscape Gets ‘DreamWorks Dragons Flight Academy’ VR Experience (EXCLUSIVE)

    Location-based virtual reality (VR) startup Dreamscape has teamed up with DreamWorks Animation to launch a new “How to Train Your Dragons” experience at its flagship Westfield Century City VR center in Los Angeles later this month. The 11-minute “DreamWorks Dragons Flight Academy” experience allows up to 8 participants to hone their dragon-flying skills together, and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content