U.K. newspaper Telegraph reports that a veteran graphics designer employed by the Xbox side of Microsoft's house has sued the company for £45,000.
Jamie Durrant, 38, claims in the suit that he was harassed for an extended period by coworkers who indulged in name calling and nasty notes. Durrant worked with Lionhead for more than a decade until MS acquired the Peter Molyneux studio in 2006. His design credits include AAA titles Fable, Black & White and The Movies.
The Telegraph also notes that Xbox has seemingly had difficulty coming to grips with Xbox Live users who self-identify as gay.
Of his situation, Durrant told the newspaper:
I have never hidden my sexuality from the office and I felt this could be targeted at myself. This was not the first time there was homophobic content in the office. Previously, I had tried to deal with it myself. This time, I did not feel that I could.
I was very surprised that Microsoft did not have any policies relating to this sexual orientation harassment... I feel like they're making out that I'm the one with the problem and not the homophobic aspects of the company.
Durrant's situation notwithstanding, Microsoft earned a perfect score from U.S.-based gays rights group the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in 2008.