Boston Uprising player Mouffin faces Sexual Misconduct Allegations
The Overwatch Boston Uprising player Walid “Mouffin” Bassal, has been accused of serious serious sexual misconduct this week. The allegations are damning for the player, but there are also suggestions that the team themselves were aware and did nothing to prevent these actions.
Mouffin has been accused of quite a few incidents of sexual misconduct, including harassment and soliciting photographers from minors. In light of these allegations, he has been benched from the team following further investigation. This isn’t the first misconduct scandal for Boston Uprising, and it might indicate a toxic culture at the team.
With this batch of allegations being made public, some are suggesting that the problem is shockingly prevalent. Victims not reporting or making their experience public, might be considerably more common we know. If this is to change, Boston Uprising and the Overwatch League community has to take these allegations seriously, and ensure that there will be protections for victims.
Mouffin Sexual Misconduct Allegations
A post from a twitter user sparked this issue and brought it into full light.
— Khaleesi (@KhaleesiBB) March 27, 2020
Here, Mouffin’s sexual misconduct allegations are explained in full. The player had been using his position and status to message girls asking for sexually explicit photos. He also sends nude photos of himself to these girls.
These are dms from a girl who was 17 at the time when Mouffin was sexually explicit to her, she wishes to remain anonymous, as do many of the girls. This person doesn't want attention, but she does want to be heard, and help others. Please help us stop this from happening again: pic.twitter.com/lapsLDbonT
— Khaleesi (@KhaleesiBB) March 28, 2020
The Twitch Streamer Khaleesi went on to share more examples of the behaviour. However, the identity of the victims has been left anonymous. Since this is important for protecting those at risk, this is good news. In a community with an active fan base like Overwatch, pressures from fans can complicate getting to the bottom of these issues. While there have been messages of support, there are already accusations and insults in the responses to those tweets.
If other abusers in the Overwatch competitive scene need to be brought to light as well, then managing protection of the victims of this is really important for encouraging them to come forward.
Boston Uprising’s Reaction
Before these allegations were made public, another user @itsFODDer suggested he knew this outing was coming, but also gave some more details.
These tweet specifies that the team knew about this. This is an extra allegation here and one that raises more serious issue for Boston Uprising. The team has currently benched Mouffin and is likely to let him go in the future, but it raises questions about the entire team’s culture.
Apparently there is another adult player in OWL preying on kids. Their team apparently knows about it. I'll let the person who said they were planning on leaking this say it first. If they don't say it within the next 24 hours and decide to go back on it, I'll publicize it.
— FODDER (@itsFODDER) March 27, 2020
Boston Uprising is now investigating the matter. However, this isn’t the first time the team has had a scandal about players. They previously had some controversy over player conditions. However, the implication that they knew about sexual misconduct and didn’t act on it doesn’t reflect well. With Mouffin offering cash to silence victims, this raises the questions of the team’s involvement.
— Boston Uprising (@BostonUprising) March 28, 2020
If the team was aware of these allegations (or any others) and chose not to act until it was necessary from a PR standpoint, this raises serious issues. Teams should not be in the business of ‘cleaning up’ after players. Those accused of such serious misconduct need to be dealt with, not protected. Otherwise, it will be impossible to cultivate a healthy and supportive community for fans of Esports teams.
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