For the fair and inclusive future of gaming
AnyKey is an advocacy organization dedicated to supporting diverse participation in esports. With the hope to foster welcoming spaces and positive opportunities for competitive players of all kinds.
Their current research and initiatives are focused on women in esports — from providing competitive gamers with resources, support, and opportunities, to collaborating with women in the industry, from sectors like game development and broadcasting, to build better gaming spaces. Women have long played an important role in competitive gaming and we are excited to promote, build on, and grow their involvement in the scene.
But AnyKey is committed to a long-term vision of a gaming community that is welcoming to all players, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, disability, religious belief, background, or physical appearance. We believe it is possible to be fiercely competitive and embrace positive play at the same time. Their hope is to pursue research and initiatives that will help to build a gaming culture in which players are noted for their skills, not personal traits.
AnyKey relaunched of the “Good Luck, Have Fun” (GLHF) Pledge to help make gaming more inclusive for everyone. Along with this renewed pledge, AnyKey will activate an exclusive global chat Twitch badge for users to display on their accounts.
“There is increasing awareness around the cultural patterns of toxicity and harassment in gaming that disproportionately impact marginalized players,” said Morgan Romine, Director of Initiatives, AnyKey. “Many individuals wonder what they can do to help. The GLHF Pledge gives people a way to show their support for inclusion and helps to kick start conversations about how anyone can work to create change at the grassroots level.”
With a goal to collect 1 million signatures by the end of 2020, the GLHF Pledge is aimed at creating a gaming ecosystem that welcomes everyone and includes all, regardless of their shape, size, color, gender, background, disability, or beliefs. By taking the GLHF Pledge, which is available in multiple languages, gamers promise to:
- Be a good sport whether they win or lose
- Know that people online are real people and their words have real impact
- Set a positive example with their behavior
- Speak up against discrimination, hate speech, harassment, and abuse
- Show integrity by honoring the rules, their opponents, and their teammates
- Stop, listen, and reassess if they’re told that their words or actions are harmful
- Respect others, even if their sincere opinions are different from their own
“As a global leader in esports, we take our responsibility seriously to promote gaming communities that are welcoming of all and the GLHF Pledge renewal is an important tool to allow fans, players, and influencers a way to signal their support to eliminate toxicity in all forms,” said Yvette Martinez-Rea, CEO of North America, ESL. “There is so much positive power in the strength and passion of esports communities, and we believe, now, more than ever, is the time for us to stand together to move our industry forward towards a more inclusive future for competitors of all kinds.”
AnyKey will also introduce a new leaderboard function to highlight champions of diversity and inclusion in gaming. Upon signing the pledge, gamers will receive a unique referral code that they can share with others in their community to contribute to their position on the leaderboard. This will feature individuals that are committed to creating positive change and encouraging more people to take the pledge. Gamers, streamers, and professional esports athletes who take the pledge will also have the option to equip a global chat badge to show off on their Twitch accounts. By displaying the badge on Twitch, users will commit to upholding these principles and to being a positive and inclusive citizen in gaming spaces.
“As a woman active in the esports community, I know that empathy among players will create a more supportive environment for everyone,” said Sue ‘Smix’ Lee, Strategic Account Manager Partnerships, Twitch. “With initiatives like the GLHF Pledge and Twitch badges, gamers are able to more easily build and identify safe spaces. And with the commitment to collect over 1 million signatures, the GLHF Pledge will have a meaningful and effective impact.”
Founded in 2015 through a partnership with ESL, the world’s largest esports company, and Intel, AnyKey leads the movement for greater diversity, inclusion, and fairness in gaming by increasing representation, improving participation, and fostering more positivity for all gamers. AnyKey initially launched the GLHF Pledge in 2017 and had more than 200,000 players show support for inclusion by pledging to be a good sport in competition -- win or lose -- to opponents and teammates alike.
To help create fair and inclusive spaces in esports for marginalized members of the gaming community. They pledge to: Provide competitive gamers with resources, support, and opportunities. Highlight positive role-models. Create knowledge and tools to help create more diverse communities and supportive networks.