Brad Wardell's site for talking about the customization of Windows.
Published on January 12, 2015 By Frogboy In PC Gaming

Notice:

This article was written by Elizabeth Fogarty and originally published on Buzzfeed.  I have reposted it here with permission.

This post does not represent Stardock or its affiliates or its partners.

I will use the comments section to discuss what I agree/disagree with personally.  If you agree/disagree with what Ms. Fogarty has posted below, you are free to comment below. If you feel it is inaccurate, feel free to comment. We welcome all points of view here.  Please be aware that our forums are a diverse environment and we strictly enforce our policy of no personal attacks. We expect people to act like adults here. Our moderators are also very diverse so don’t expect any special treatment because you’re pro or anti something.

 

Gamergate: Through My Eyes

by Elizabeth Fogarty
January 2015

Corruption. Politics. Nepotism. Sex. Moral panic. Adam Baldwin. No, this isn't a Hollywood film. Rather, it is the very real saga that is the video game world's current controversy, known as Gamergate. While the consumer revolt has garnered a large amount of press between small game publications and mainstream media outlets, a majority of this coverage has failed to include a complete and honest picture of both sides of the controversy, rather selling conjecture as indisputable fact. My name is Elizabeth Fogarty, and for the past 4 months, I have actively fought for the key goals behind the Gamergate consumer revolt. And they are not what you think.

But Seriously, What IS Gamergate?

The Gamergate controversy is the result of a combination of separate, yet related, issues. Firstly it is a call for ethical reform in the games press, primarily in the form of disclosure of either personal or financial conflicts of interest between a journalist and a subject they are reviewing or reporting on. Secondly, it is a response to ideological manipulation of the gaming industry, and the censorship that has occurred as a result of this. These two things are, in fact, related, because we are seeing the praise of this manipulation by members of the gaming press, as well as praise of the censorship of discussion by members of the gaming press. This combination of the lack of objectivity and fact checking with the desire to adjust or omit truths in order to appeal to a particular "group" is in no way exclusive to games journalists, but rather is indicative of a larger, more universal issue in how we all receive news.

Ethics

You hear the phrases “right wing news” and “left wing news” quite a bit nowadays, yet the truth is, news should not have a wing because facts do not have a wing. Facts are facts. We do not expect journalists to be unbiased. Everyone has bias, we’re human beings who are designed to think and feel. However, when you are in position of power, such as in the case of a journalist with incredible reach, you should put your personal bias and politics aside in the interest of being honest, fair, and neutral. In gaming many articles, particularly reviews, are indeed a combination of fact and opinion. If a journalist knowingly agrees to write a review on a game or company that they have a personal or financial tie to, it is highly unlikely they would be able to position themselves neutrally enough to cover it fairly, and they should either recuse themselves or disclose the conflict.

One of the largest issues people take with Gamergate is the origin. Gamergate did in fact initially begin with the Zoe Post. A game developer’s ex boyfriend wrote a blog post detailing the end of his relationship, which had indications of being emotionally and mentally abusive. He outlined the alleged infidelity of his girlfriend throughout the course of their relationship. Several of the names included in the post drew attention to a potential conflict of interest in gaming journalism, most specifically Nathan Grayson of Kotaku (and formerly of Rock, Paper, Shotgun). Many people feel everything that has resulted was a reaction to a female developer having sex. In reality, the developer was a character backstory, and most of those involved in the discussion were interested in the plot of the film. The first use of the hashtag #Gamergate was by actor Adam Baldwin, who has actively spoken on the matter.

Stephen Totilo, Editor in Chief of Kotaku, claimed to have conducted an investigation, and stated that the relationship between Grayson and the developer, Zoe Quinn, began after he covered her game (an assertion that has since been disproven.)

When this potential conflict of interest was brought to light, two other undisclosed conflicts of interest were exposed at essentially the same time (Kotaku’s Patricia Hernandez and Polygon’s Ben Kuchera)

When we, as consumers, began questioning these conflicts, over a dozen articles declaring the “death of gamers” were published within a 48 hour period, from competing sites, some more vitriolic than others. It was later revealed that these journalists were part of a private email list, where discussions took place regarding what to report on, as well as attempted censorship of forum discussion of the topics surrounding the controversy. Ben Kuchera of Polygon is seen in leaked emails repeatedly chastising journalists from competing publications for allowing discussion of the topic on their forums.

In addition to journalists halting, and attempting to halt, discussion of the topic on gaming publication forums, third party sites such as 4chan and Reddit began deleting threads which pointed to potential journalistic impropriety. This occurred to such an extent that even Wikileaks joined the fray.

Many of the journalists involved have installed the GG Autoblocker, which is a program for Twitter that immediately blocks anyone following two or more accounts which were classified as alleged "ringleaders" of the leaderless consumer revolt. This has limited the ability to engage in any productive conversation about the issues.

Although several publications willingly updated their ethics policies, many were resistant. Supporters of the revolt began organized email campaigns, contacting advertisers on the websites of the publications and providing evidence of wrongdoing. Multiple advertisers have pulled ads on the sites in question as a result.

It's unlikely that this call for disclosure and ethical reform appears extreme, or unreasonable, to many of you. Why then, has this become one of the greatest controversies within the industry?

When you accuse someone of doing something wrong, one of two things will happen. They will admit they were wrong, apologize, and change what they are doing. Or, they will accuse you of something much worse. That banal response is what we have seen with Gamergate. Instead of addressing the claims head on and responding to our evidence, the very press we were fighting against painted us as misogynist harassers, intent on keeping women out of the industry. And because they had not only pen and ink, but an audience, they were believed without question.

Ideology

In recent years, people have been more willing to view video games as a form of art. As a result, there has been an increase in critiques of games, most notably with the Feminist Frequency web series. This series has been accused of "cherry picking" examples, out of context, in order to argue a sexist epidemic in games and their portrayals of women. To be clear: They have every right to say what they are saying, whether I agree or not. However, those involved in the discussion of Gamergate, as well as neutral parties within the culture, have expressed concern over the amount of clout and influence the creators of this series have.

Since the series rose to fame, the industry has seen one title pulled from several stores in Australia for perceived sexism, and Sweden is currently discussing adding additional labeling to games which are found to be sexist, despite a rating system for games already existing. The standards by which this will be measured are currently unclear. Additionally, after Jonathan McIntosh, writer and producer of Feminist Frequency,  began publicly speaking out against the game, Hatred was temporarily pulled from Steam Greenlight (it was later reinstated, and shortly after was Greenlit).

There is a demand for the evolution of the industry to leave behind "offensive" tropes and characters completely. However, offense is taken, not given. Games are not sentient beings. They are incapable, on their own, of acting with volition or prejudice. This interpretation happens in the mind of the individual player. It is a widely held belief by those involved in the revolt that artistic and creative freedom should be protected without exception.

A majority of the "other side" of the discussion oppose the goals surrounding Gamergate from an ideological standpoint. Many disregard the call for ethics, some openly mocking it. It's easy for them to draw an incorrect conclusion because they don't care about games journalism, and can not fathom how, if they don't care, anyone else could. They focus on the ideological debate, which essentially boils down to those who support creative freedom, versus those who want specific universal representation of certain types of characters.

As a result of our push against the politicization of the industry, we were minimized to the singular demographic of "white cis male."

#NotYourShield is a “sister hashtag” to #Gamergate, and was started as a response to this characterization that all gamers were white nerdy man-children. Female and minority gamers spoke out in support of both ethics and creative freedom, while also largely condemning both artistic and spoken censorship. We were met with accusations of being fake, or of internalizing our own self hatred - be it "internalized misogyny" or "internalized racism." In addition, many of us have been called tokens, shields, gender traitors, and “uncle toms.”

In 1968, Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan II spoke on behalf of free speech: “One man’s vulgarity is another man’s lyric.” Works of art evoke diverse and deeply passionate responses in people, be it positive or negative, and as a result, have been the target of numerous censorship efforts throughout history.

Claims of the Harassment of Women

The primary assumption regarding those involved in the Gamergate revolt has been that we are a harassment movement intent on keeping women out of both gaming and the game industry, through threats and targeted harassment. I am not disputing that people have received threats and harassment, because that has happened - on both sides. I myself have received quite a few threats, regular harassment, and I’ve been doxed. Most recently, someone printed out my picture from Twitter, masturbated onto it, and tweeted an image of this publicly.

A vast majority of the threats and harassment on both sides have been the result of online trolls. They target both sides in order to further tension and get deranged laughs out of what is happening. And the truth is, this has happened to both men AND women. I would never claim that my harassment is because of my gender, rather as a result of both my stance on the Gamergate controversy and my involvement in the discussion. Should the threats be taken less seriously? Absolutely not. All threats should be assessed, reported, and monitored. But to place blame on an entire group with no evidence is not only dishonest and unfair, it's also potentially dangerous to the person who has received them.

People who actually care about the key goals of the Gamergate revolt often speak out against threats, harassment, and doxing. Yes, there are women involved of whom we are critical - Zoe Quinn, Anita Sarkeesian, Brianna Wu, and Leigh Alexander, for example. We criticize posts, we dispute and debate points that they make. Yes, this is happening. No one is denying that. However, I will deny until my last breath these two points: 1) that we are disputing what they are saying because they are women, and 2) we are only disputing the words and opinions of women. That is untrue. We have regularly criticized Jonathan McIntosh. We have regularly criticized Ben Kuchera of Polygon, and Stephen Totilo and Nathan Grayson of Kotaku, and Arthur Chu, who actually does not care about video games, as well as many more. The idea that we are simply “targeting women” for just being women is asinine and often dishonest. But if someone were to actually share all of this information, they’d have to leave the “they’re just woman-haters” narrative behind, and they aren’t willing to do that.

We have questioned the actions of many people, yet are widely portrayed as only criticizing women. The idea that women should be exempt from criticism is insulting and, frankly, meets the criteria for sexism.

In Summation

Ethics matter. If you believe in the right to trust the news you receive, regarding anything, then you must constantly demand more neutrality. Personal biases shaping the delivery of facts only serves to hinder  progress, not help it.

Creative Freedom matters. If you believe in the right to think, to feel, to discover, to play, and to create, then you must support and defend the right for others to be able to do the same.

The only proven fact of "offensive" material is whether you personally find it offensive or not. What offends you may not offend me, and vice versa. As long as we have options in games, you have the ability to participate in the hobby comfortably. Removing any of these options helps no one. When you allow things in life to be censored, censorship becomes life.

More diversity in games is a good thing. Developers should be open to this. They should not, however, be pressured into creating a checkbox character in an attempt to please people who will likely never be content.

There are real people on the other side of your computer screen. It is possible to treat others kindly while still asserting your stance.

To learn more about the Gamergate consumer revolt: Talk to some of us.

Note: This article was originally posted to Buzzfeed.com, at 7pm EST on January 11, 2015. It was removed at some point during the morning of January 12, 2015.

You can follow here at https://twitter.com/lizzyf620


Comments (Page 1)
on Jan 12, 2015

#WeaponizedDirtyLaundry

Disclaimer: I don't use Twitter, but I think that sums it up nicely?

Also, JJ Abrams will ruin Star Wars. (plz don't ban me, a personal attack that is a fact deserves some leeway on forum policy? )


Edit: So there is no confusion, and for convenience
Definition of DIRTY LAUNDRY. : private matters whose public exposure brings distress and embarrassment —also called dirty linen

on Jan 12, 2015

The journalists were on duty and the developers were on duty so this is work dirty linen, not private dirty laundry.

on Jan 12, 2015

Ayn Rand wrote many truths, that we can now see being played out in the current news events

 - evil wins only by default, when good does not fight anymore.  In the gamergate story it's good to see that some good people are fighting back.

- good are good and evil are evil, but the fence sitters are the worst, they are the transmitting tube where the blood of the good is transmitted to the evil zombies (evil has nothing to contribute, it only destroys, it survives by consuming the produce of the good). In any conflict between good and evil you always see the spectacle of the apologists for evil, usually cloaking their own fear of evil in pleas of moderation, cries not to retaliate to evil etc. Note that they are only protected as long as good is stronger than evil, as soon as evil gains the upper hand, the quislings are the first to be consumed.

 

If evil is appeased, then good is restrained by law, while evil will not require licenses for firearms in gun-free zones.

 

We do not expect journalists to be unbiased. Everyone has bias, we’re human beings who are designed to think and feel. However, when you are in position of power, such as in the case of a journalist with incredible reach, you should put your personal bias and politics aside in the interest of being honest, fair, and neutral.

As written by Frank Herbert in "The Dosadi Experiment", there is bias and prejudgement. Bias is – if you can vote a certain way, most things being equal, you do. Prejudgement is – no matter what Obamacare does to them, Harvard professors will vote for Obama's party.

You cannot escape bias. In gamergate though(and most issues like Climate Change nee Global Warming) you see constant prejudgement by Liberals.

 

ps – me is biased against Liberals, so leave us not prejudge me.

on Jan 12, 2015


In 1968, Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan II spoke on behalf of free speech: “One man’s vulgarity is another man’s lyric.” Works of art evoke diverse and deeply passionate responses in people, be it positive or negative, and as a result, have been the target of numerous censorship efforts throughout history.

I haven't followed Gamersgate much, I read the news but only one or twice has it reached the news sources I follow, but this really reminds me of the the whole free speech debate going on after the Charlie Hebdo shooting. On one hand you have people trying to censor society to remove and snuff out things that they find "offensive" and on the other end people like me who are deeply disturbed by the idea of free speech being stiffed by political correctness. Political correctness does not follow logical rules, it's 100% subjective. There is no right not to be offended. Having studied the philosophical origins of Human Rights I have never heard of such a right, mostly because it's so obviously insane. 

For all the people and heads of state gathering in the streets to support "free speech" these days I don't think 90% of them even have a basic understanding of what it actually means.

on Jan 12, 2015

DsRaider:

I haven't followed Gamersgate much, I read the news but only one or twice has it reached the news sources I follow, but this really reminds me of the the whole free speech debate going on after the Charlie Hebdo shooting

Indeed. And you will be unsurprised to learn that, on the whole, GamerGate supporters have come out on the side supporting Charlie Hebdo's freedom of speech, and Anti-GamerGate has mostly come out on the side mitigating the actions of the terrorists, saying that Charlie Hebdo brought it on themselves, and saying they should've been censored.

on Jan 12, 2015

Gamersgate = online retailer, not involved

Gamergate = this whole thing

For those wanting to stay up-to-date I'd suggest http://www.reddit.com/r/KotakuInAction and https://8chan.co/gamergate/ (8chan sometimes NSFW as tumblr-users and others sometimes posts child porn to try to shut the site down).

on Jan 12, 2015

I've never really put my full thoughts to this on paper.   I have friends who are heavily pro and anti, and I've tried to stay away from too much discussion of this on Twitter, because their rabidness on the issue will led to stuff I don't want to see.

 

Both sides have points that are legitimate and need to be addressed, at least from the moderates on each side.   There are also radical nutjobs on each side as well.  The antis are right on these points

 

1) Misogyny is a big problem in gaming, particularly in some circles

2) Online harassment needs to stop

3) SJW's aren't a huge threat in terms of ethics- it's hard to bribe folks when you live on ramen noodles.  The real problem is AAA companies.

 

The pro side has some legit points as well

1) SJWs are just as capable of harassment and loathesome behavior as anyone else.

2) There is a bias with some gaming journalists, and a hivemind.  I've seen it affect even good game journalists.

3) The best way to make things better is to concentrate more on opening new paths instead of worrying about the existing ones (to a degree, see point 1 above

 

The reason this blew up so hard is because both sides felt like the victims, and both sides had plenty of folks who were willing to fling poo and ignore any rules of civilized discourse.

 

I'm really tired of this crap, but it's not going to go away , especially since there are pockets of society in which there is male privilege, and pockets with female privilege.  Overall male > female, but it depends on where you are.

on Jan 12, 2015

I'll re-post what I said on original BuzzFeed posting:


People want to discuss online harassment that happens to gamers for discussing ‪#‎GamerGate‬ scandal? Fine, lets chat about it.

That isn't what #GamerGate is about though. Liz does an excellent job of describing what the scandal is mainly about in this article - gamers trying to address corruption in the gaming industry. Enough with those trying to make the scandal predominantly about outrage culture, it's important people address the real issues at hand. FTC is already changing its guidelines thanks to gamers emailing them about undisclosed affiliate links in game articles.

We can get things done. We ARE getting things done. Consumers are more powerful than they're given credit for. Mainstream media knows this but chooses to focus on what gets them clicks - trying to make the scandal about online harassment of women. Drama sells.


Warm Regards,
@JennOfHardwire

on Jan 12, 2015

1) Misogyny is a big problem in gaming, particularly in some circles

2) Online harassment needs to stop

3) SJW's aren't a huge threat in terms of ethics- it's hard to bribe folks when you live on ramen noodles.  The real problem is AAA companies.

 

Misogyny is a problem in our culture in general.  Gaming is probably more inclusive than other hobbies.  The tech industry is predominately male but that's not a problem of misogyny.  This is endemic to our culture.  STEM majors are overwhelmingly male.  These things need to change before various industries become more inclusive.  How can we encourage our daughters and sisters to pursure STEM majors?  My first thought would be to stop calling STEM majors misogynistic and women haters but you're not gonna get that message to the SJW crowd.

 

Online harassment does need to stop.  How can we stop it?  Anonymity gives the most detestable of us a safe location to spout vile.  Anonymity is crucial to the internet.  As long as anonymity exists we will continue to see harassment online.  Peaceful rallies turn into riots because one individual decides to throw a glass bottle.  That one individual can't always turn an internet crowd into a mob but that one person can chuck those glass bottles to his or her heart's content without repercussion or perhaps negative repercussions to themselves.

 

SJW's got GTAV taken off shelves in Australia.  SJW's have the entire media narrative saying gamers are dead, gamers are misogynistic neckbeadrs, gamers deserve to be bullied, etc.  This is the result of SJW influence.  Also SJW's predominately come from upper middle class if not upper class families.  Brianna Wu was given a quarter of a million from her parents to develop a game (it failed).  Anita Sarkeesian and McCintosh both come from wealthy families, not to mention have dollars just rolling in from Feminist Frequency despite FemFreq being 2-3 years late on its delivery.  SJW's, at least the ones with the loudest voiceboxes, predominately live in San Francisco which is one of the most expensive places to live in the country.  SJW's are a farcry from living off of ramen noodles.  

 

The reason this blew up so hard is because both sides felt like the victims, and both sides had plenty of folks who were willing to fling poo and ignore any rules of civilized discourse.

 

I would say it blew up because of the Streissand effect.  It's hard to say what would've happened had the censorship not started.  The internet is fickle and may not have given a shit.  As soon as forums and threads and websites started censoring the topic people wanted to know more.  Once people knew more, people started getting pissed they were being silenced.  

 

I'm really tired of this crap, but it's not going to go away , especially since there are pockets of society in which there is male privilege, and pockets with female privilege.  Overall male > female, but it depends on where you are.

 

You have no obligation to care about the issue.  That should be up to you.  Whether you think the anti's or pro's have stronger points or whether the whole thing is a clusterfuck that doesn't deserve your attention.  Overall men do have an advantage in life over women.  The new wave of feminism promotes coddling women though which doesn't seem to equate things so much as try and treat all women as infallible princesses.  

 

I don't want this to come across as an attack on you Alstein.  I was just hoping to maybe inform and promote discussion.

 

I'm glad you posted this article Brad.  Buzzfeed put the original back up as well.  I enjoyed the article because it felt like it covered the story of gamergate from the gamer perspective without flinging vitriol one way or the other as well as being very level-headed.

on Jan 12, 2015

Alstein

The reason this blew up so hard is because both sides felt like the victims, and both sides had plenty of folks who were willing to fling poo and ignore any rules of civilized discourse.

There's certainly some truth here.  There's a lot of emotions running high on both sides right now, causing some people to overreact to some pretty trivial stuff.  And it doesn't help that some seem intent on stirring the pot.

Funny thing though, is that this has always been the case to some degree.  Blizzard makes a minor change in WoW, or a feature is changed in the new Call of Duty, there will be the majority that will be rational about it, with a smaller percentage threatening to quit or never play said game again, then a very vocal, tiny minority that'll threaten to burn Blizzard down, or any other number of creative threats.

And for years people for the most part have known that this minority doesn't represent the whole, and have had pieces of sage advice to "not feed the trolls." 

 

But then you take that phenomenon, add someone like Sarkeesian misrepresenting games and gamers as misogynist, you see the same thing...the majority responding rationally (whether they agree or disagree) with a minority that overreact.  The trouble is that Sarkeesian completely ignores all rational criticism, or any kind of debate on her stances, and instead highlight the minority overreaction, and claim that as representative of everyone.

 

So it creates this vicious cycle.  Someone will insult the entire group, wait for the increasing amount of overreactions to the insults, then point those out to claim "See?  My insults were correct!"  And thus it continues.

 

So, as someone who has been hoping for some rationality to start prevailing (and preaching that we should be excellent to each other),  I think this piece Lizzy wrote is pretty awesome; and equally awesome of Brad to give it an outlet when Buzzfeed was dropping the ball.  It's such a sensible piece that shows what GamerGate is really about, and hopefully it can be used as a launching point to let some people cool down a bit.

on Jan 12, 2015

Alstein
3) SJW's aren't a huge threat in terms of ethics- it's hard to bribe folks when you live on ramen noodles. The real problem is AAA companies.
There's more ways to corrupt journalists than money. And no I don't mean sex.

I think that SJW bribe people by saying that "if you support us we'll let you be part of our club", that's surprisingly effective, especially if most of the people in your social circle are already part of the club.

Is it more effective than AAA companies with their piles of cash. Most probably not, but it's effective enough to justify being worried about it, especially since it's insidious. Everyone can agree that a briefcase full of money is unethical. Bribing people with social acceptance still introduces bias but it's harder to notice or challenge.

on Jan 12, 2015

I'm one of those guys that doesn't actually care about this, I'm on the side of gamergate, but I can't work up the motivation to pay it much attention.  I wrote off games journalism almost 15 years ago, so the current trend has been an irrelevant paragraph in a string of corruption and incompetence going back further than I'd bother to look, and altogether would still be inconsequential nonsense as journalism as a whole suffers the same problem on far more substantive issues.  Black crime for instance, now that's an issue the media whitewashes as fast as they can dump the stories, and has oh so serious consequences for the ten thousand or so blacks that are murdered every year by other blacks.

 

I am however a long time gamer and have seen my share of tools on the internet.  Misogyny isn't a big problem in gaming, nor is online harassment something unusual.  When I see this stuff going around, it's as if no one went to high school.

 

If I were a chick playing shooters, guys would be making vagina comments all day long, etc.  I'd probably be terribly offended, because women tend not to like hordes of slavering trolls drooling on their pelvis all day.  Somewhere out there is this crazy girl that would just go banana's for that kind of treatment, but she wont be the norm.  Just think about the reverse though, If a guy were playing shooters, and throngs of women spent all day talking about how they wanted to bang his brains out, he'd be... terrorized?  When I think back to high school, which is what most of this behavior is from, immature little shits that ride the bus every day, all I can figure is most of my peers would have rapidly developed a god complex if throngs of women threw themselves at them day after day.  Perhaps it really would be traumatizing to be pursued by throngs of horny women after a while, but you'd have to ask a rock star to find out.

 

A lot of the guys in these games spend all day trash talking each other, with a variety of vulgar, sexually derogatory insults flying back and forth.  They teabag their kill, tell the guy they just popped that he's just been fucked, etc.  You got raped and similar epithets were heard every few minutes back when I was playing Counter-Strike.  We were all running under the assumption that everyone was a guy, there wasn't a single "outed" female player on any of the servers I frequented.

 

When a woman does drop into an environment like this, she's not being sexually harassed just because the same language prevails with her, she's being treated equally.  It's egalitarian, not misogynistic.  If she were to respond with the same treatment, odds are most of the targets of her ire would want to marry her before an hour had passed.  That most women take it so badly, while men find the whole ordeal a rousing bit of competition, having as much fun with the insults as they are the game itself, is because most women are different.

 

Online harassment in general?  I am incapable of comprehending this nonsense trend.  I was "bullied" occasionally, primarily because I was a short kid, and a royal prick.  I earned quite a bit of it, but mostly it was irrelevant because I'm not psychologically damaged.  I didn't start thinking about killing myself if someone called me ugly or told me I'm a loser, my response was retaliation, well in excess of the affront.  Did I mention I was a prick?

 

If you do suffer harm from such trivial things, you need help, serious help.  This isn't a rag, it's not emotionally healthy to get worked up over some minor little detail like a tool on the internet insulting you.  These people need help, and instead of addressing the problem of mentally unstable people that are unable to cope with life, we're pretending that activities falling well short of what is already criminal activity, such as death threats, need to be stamped out to protect society.

 

People occasionally die during hazing activities, the odd news story will pop up about a sorority gang rape that went public, and we're supposed to get excited over online harassment?  We'd be better off going after harassment in college campuses, sports franchises, or the military.  The typical high school was a far more brutal environment than the typical internet forum these days, and they've gotten a lot worse over the last fifteen years.

 

It's true that criminal behavior like death threats happens, but I would have loved to have some guy tell me he's going to kill me on the internet, instead of digging my soggy shoes out the garbage after gym class.  The rest of the day is a lot more comfortable, for one thing.  Only celebrities get the horror story treatment, no one else has to worry much at all about anything some freak says on the internet, and internet celebrities hardly match up with their offline peers.  If there is a celebrity out there that wouldn't trade their creepy stalkers and terrifying fan mail they pull from their own mailbox, for what people like Wardell get on the internet, my bet is that they share my outlook on life and their only concern regarding an attack by one of those creepy stalkers is how best to clean the blood up after the police finish taking out the garbage.

 

If you've become an internet celebrity, and that's what these people are, you're stuck with the same kind of trashing real life celebrities deal with, but it's still not an online harassment problem.  It's a relatively safe form of the real deal, creepy ass stalkers and other psychotic attachments formed with people you don't even know.  You're much better off with the internet version which is extremely unlikely to amount to anything, let alone a visit.

 

If you've become an internet celebrity because you wrote some stupid opinion and your internet experience suddenly becomes scary, well...  Life sucks, and then you die?

on Jan 12, 2015

I've managed to avoid this Gamergate nonsense thus far, but I'm surprised that people are still clinging to the name despite how toxic it has become. I don't really care which reviewers are boinking developers; reviews are subjective, ad revenue is king, and none of this is likely to change in my opinion.

Nepotism is the norm everywhere, at least in my experience. The gaming press is not remotely unique in that regard. Maybe the energy behind Gamergate would be better spent setting up a new review site and enforcing strict disclosure rules instead of complaining about how everyone else does it.

on Jan 12, 2015

This stuff is so blown out of proportions, and we across the pond can't believe nor understand what the crack is going on over there across the water. I mean what the... But we never forget to bring the popcorn. 

And the overblown rhetorics, Good, Evil, Universe, Womanity, Equality, Liberte, it looks like a crossover between Marvel Comics cosplay, a Robin Hood movie, Mario Brawl,  some bizarre sci-fi from 80s about female supremacy galactic empire, with really heavy dose of Monty Python sprinkled over everything.

on Jan 12, 2015

It's amusing that anyone could actually entertain the notion that journalism was ever balanced/fair/unbiased.

That is a fantasy promoted by Journalists to [attempt to] demonstrate [their] moral superiority....aka to justify their existence.

Always assume there's something-in-it-for-him when a journalist opens his mouth on ANY subject.

To be heard...and to be seen to be heard...a journalist will tick boxes with his intended audience... either to support...or to confront/antagonize ....it makes little difference as the end-result is the same...promoting his/her self-interest.

Whom-ever coined 'Gamergate' as a catch-all for this is quaintly deluded and has an unnaturally inflated opinion of its importance.

There is altogether too much value attributed to this 'right of free speech' [there is no such right ... you are NOT born with it tattooed on your head]. A group of people getting together and penning some rules does not make a 'right'.

 No, I don't have a high regard for 'the Fourth Estate' .... It's actually not too dissimilar to 'the oldest profession' ...