Former Achievement Hunter member Kdin Jenzen opened up today about her time at Rooster Teeth, describing the toxic culture of the company.
In a TwitLonger post, she describes a terrible working culture and financial exploitation by the company- who allegedly reneged on payment due to her from her time as a contract employee before going full-time.
“From February 2013 until November 2013, I went entirely unpaid for all of my contract work. I was never given the payment promised for anything I did. When I was hired full time and I brought that up, I was told that “it’s been so long already, it’s not really a big deal is it?” And then the subject was never brought up again”, she says.
These payment disputes didn’t stop at her contract work, either: further down the post, Kdin describes that VO work done on Rooster Teeth shows like RWBY were unpaid- despite not being part of her job description.
“It’s also worth mentioning that for every bit of VO I did before I left Rooster Teeth, I wasn’t actually paid for any of it under the idea that “I was an employee, so I don’t need to be paid for VO”, she says.
Harassment, Slurs And Inaction
She also described something that’s been echoed in the past about the company- a culture that was actively hostile to anyone not within the in-group.
For years, she’d been referred to by a nickname, with talents referring to the nickname even during videos.
However, today she revealed that the nickname was actually a cleaned-up version of the slur for queer people- the uncensored version of which she was called off-camera.
“Every day I came into work I was called “F*gg*t” – but they could not use that name in content so when anyone was recording I was called “Fugz” instead”, she says. “I couldn’t say anything about it, I had reported the use of that nickname for years to HR, and nothing was ever done about it and the videos that use that nickname for me are still up”.
“Any time I brought up mistreatment or that “making fun of people in content only encourages the community to hate us” – I was waved away saying “IT’S JUST A JOKE! Ignore the comments!” “, she says.
“This “ignore the comments” mantra was a way to excuse their own behavior. Anyone who was not “important” was constantly made fun of with no way to defend themselves or be part of the content in a way to defend themself even jokingly so. We were silenced at every turn”.
According to Kdin, after unproductive meetings with her manager she’d even gone up to one of the founding members of Rooster Teeth, who told her to just quit.
“I then went to one of the founding fathers of the company to express my concerns, and was told that I was “too nice to work at Rooster Teeth” and that I should “just quit and find somewhere else to work” – I was horrified”, she says. “At the moment I couldn’t do anything but feel horrified and powerless. I was an out trans woman in Texas in 2018 and was told “just quit and find work elsewhere in Texas” a state that actively finds ways to keep our rights from us.”
These allegations aren’t out of nowhere either- Rooster Teeth has been in the public spotlight multiple times over harassment allegations, particularly for their habit of doing nothing to protect their talents.
Several other former employees had also come out in support of her, sharing words of support.
“The people speaking up about their horrific treatment at RT isn’t news. Seeing n***** written on a whiteboard wasn’t even close to my worst experience there”, writes Mica Burton, another former employee who was open about harassment at the company.
At the time of writing, Rooster Teeth has not formally acknowledged the tweet or the allegations or released an official statement on it.