HerGalaxy criticized for disqualifying Apex Legends team with trans player
HerGalaxy disqualified Team VEXXX, which included a trans player based on false accusations from a transphobic opponent. The org has since announced a change in its decision
HerGalaxy, an org known for supporting women in the esports scene found itself at the center of a controversy recently. The org disqualified Team VEXXX which had made it to the Winners' bracket. The reason for doing so was one of their team members is transgender despite the players already passing verification before the event.
The Team VEXXX players took to social media claiming HerGalaxy acted on false accusations by a transphobic opponent. HerGalaxy is currently organizing a $100,000 women-only Apex Legends tournament.
The controversy centered around Gabrielluminate, a trans woman playing for Team VEXXX. After HerGalaxy disqualified them from the tournament, Gab's teammate Rk9 took to Twitter to explain the situation. According to her thread, Gab passed verification alongside her teammates, and they had clearly explained her identity to the organizers. They even participated in all scrims and qualifiers and performed well enough through the group stages to qualify for the winner's bracket.
Galaxy Racer's Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, Megan Holgate had spoken to esports.gg shortly after announcing the tournament. Holgate told us HerGalaxy and Galaxy Racer were focused on inclusivity. "The thing that I love about Galaxy Racer is that it's always been a gender-balanced org. I think (HerGalaxy) might still be the only global org to be gender-balanced.", she claimed.
False accusations against Gab, a trans player
RK9's thread insinuates that another participant in the tournament made false accusations against gabrielluminate to get team VEXXX disqualified. While her thread didn't reveal who this complainant was, another player outed wondernikki as the accuser. Apex Legends player and Twitter user @loserira shared clips of the accuser being transphobic towards team VEXXX during the tournament. During these clips, one can hear wondernikki misgendering Gab and referring to VEXXX as "a three-man guy team". RK9's thread mentions the official EA and Apex Legends accounts as well as HerGalaxy demanding an explanation.
HerGalaxy reinstates Team VEXXX and disqualifies COMM5
The issue picked up steam on Social Media with a lot of pro players and well-known personalities demanding answers from HerGalaxy. Wondernikki faced plenty of scrutiny for her transphobic rant from players like Xeratricky. HerGalaxy eventually issued a statement on Twitter stating they've reinstated team VEXXX.
Additionally, they also revealed that they've disqualified a team that indulged in "discourse that violates their code of conduct". It appears this team is COMM5 which comprises Wondernikki and her teammates, Rose and NATI.
HerGalaxy is "focused on Inclusivity"
In addition to HerGalaxy's motivation, Apex Legends itself is among the most inclusive esports games out there. It features a diverse roster of characters across the LGBTQIA+ community as well as BIPOC spaces. While the community appreciated HerGalaxy's attempt at reparation, many others called into question the org's decision to disqualify a trans-inclusive team without a proper investigation in the first place.
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