We’re All In This Together – Game Journalists Quit Over Abuse

By Sarah Ryan – 6th September 2014
We’re All In This Together – Game Journalists Quit Over Abuse

Gaming has been seething the past few weeks, as GamerGate has effectively demonstrated the very best and the very worst the industry has to offer. As collectives have formed around tags such as #NotYourShield, showing just how broad a spectrum gaming has developed, doors have equally been opened for non-stop channels of abuse and harassment to blight every view point, and stand in the way of all progress. This past Monday , the climate came to a head for one long-term industry writer, Jenn Frank, as she became the misinformed target of attack.

I have talked about my views on feminism and tolerance within the industry in the past, as well as how we can avoid potential conflict of interests, however the fundamental goal of the movement is to open channels of discussion, and rectify current accusations of dropped standards within games journalism.  While the primary focus is perfectly reasonable, and has a vast number of kind, caring and vastly diverse voices behind it, this has allowed a rampant and inexcusable undercurrent of vitriol to glide, predatory through the climate taking frenzied lunges at perceived targets. While this kind of behaviour can never be condoned, it is especially tragic when the circumstances play out the way Frank’s has.

At the centre of her story, Jenn Frank has received a massive backlash for an article published through The Guardian – “How to attack a woman who works in video gaming“. The article was sympathetic, and a call for a level-headed and reasonable approach to the abuse suffered by women such as Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn. Whether or not you agree with what she says here, the climate was an undeniably volatile place at the time of publishing and drew a massive and undeserved backlash almost immediately. The real issues arose from the ‘revelation’ that Frank had known and supported Zoe Quinn in some small way, which initially broke out through an image posted by InternetAristocrat. On top of this, it was suggested that she had ties to Anita Sarkeesian after the two met briefly some time ago.

Jenn Frank / The Guardian

The only problem is that people that work within the gaming industry, tend to cross paths with other people that work within the games industry. You don’t have to be in cahoots to have met somebody! Moreover, Frank actually did include a disclaimer in her original article, she had been completely transparent in this small connection to Quinn, and this had been the first article she had ever discussed her, or her work in. An editor at the Guardian actively removed her disclosure themselves, believing it redundant since the article (by their standards) did not breach publishing ethics. Following the incredible and honestly sickening abuse and harassment Frank has suffered in wake of the article, editors at The Guardian added this disclaimer below her work,

*The following footnote was appended on 5 September 2014: An earlier footnote, appended on 1 September, made clear that Jenn Frank had purchased and is a supporter of Zoë Quinn’s work, although this is the first article she has written on the developer and that Frank has also briefly met Anita Sarkeesian. These facts had been included as a footnote by Jenn Frank when she filed her copy before publication but removed by editors because they did not fulfil the criteria for a “significant connection” in line with the Guardian’s editorial guidelines. However, the Guardian wishes to make clear that it was an editorial decision originally to remove the original disclosure, not one made by the author, and we are happy to have restored it in the interests of full disclosure.

Jenn Frank has announced she will be leaving the industry for good, and one look at her Twitter mentions is enough to grasp the gravity of the abuse she has received. Unfortunately this is far from an isolated incident. Frank is not the first, and I am saddened by the suggestion that she may well not be the last.

I’m sure there will be a great deal of disagreement on this matter, as there are still those that believe Jenn Frank is not a victim of brutal injustice. I very strongly believe she is, and I have to question the intentions of those that do not sympathise with her case. I have to say that GamerGate has hundreds of fantastic voices behind it; amazingly well meaning individuals, that are bright and widely tolerant. It is by no means a whitewash of misogyny, almost every single GG supporter I have had the pleasure of  conversing with has been incredibly respectful and willing to hear out opposing views, most importantly that have been vigilant in their attempts to keep the tag abuse free. Through my own coverage of the shifting climate, I have been on the receiving end of abuse from both parties, and am qualified to indeed state that the shit talk from Gaters is in no way worse than from those opposing.

GamerGate is continually being defined by the abuse that is enacted beyond it, rather than by the voices that maintain it. When discussing the abuse of figures such as Jenn Frank, that has been attributed to the culture, as well as its self-policing attitude, one Gater at the heart of GG said this,

It’s not us, for the most part, but then again, that’s hardly something to be enthusiastic about. These are assholes taking advantage of the movement to stir shit, and even if they are not directly under us, we must take responsibility.

There comes a point when you have to address not the ‘intentions’ of GamerGate, but the actual, real consequences we have witnessed. The name both houses and facilitates abuse, which is simply unacceptable. The abuse of both prominent figures within the industry, as well as individuals gamers has to be the number one concern of anybody in any way invested in this situation, and stricter, more immediate measures must be taken to separate ourselves entirely from those individuals, show them we do not stand with them and shut them down. There may be an inherent divide between the two sides of this hostile culture, however we must be entirely unified in the abolition of abuse within it. At the end of the day, we are all in this industry for the same reason – this is self-destructive, we are simply attacking our own.

Sarah Ryan

Gaming culture and industry critic. A little sharp tongued, and a little short on patience. Follow me on Twitter at @Auseil, or [email protected] to contact me directly.

  • Patrick Toworfe

    If this were some other site, I’d be waiting for the ‘you only attacked her CAUSE SHE’S A WOMAN, WAH WAH’ line. But luckily, it never came 😛

    In all seriousness, I’ll be the first to admit that I was apathetic to the Frank situation. I didn’t know her, so I neither hated or liked her. Hearing her leave seems harsh yeah, but when I read the reasons/dirt on her, I thought it seems relevant. Perhaps I may have been caught in the hype (wouldn’t be the first time). If she was truly an honest person and was completely transparent, then this is unfortunate. Nobody really wants journalists to be run out of town or anything. The majority of gamergate supporters just wanted integrity, transparency, and maybe even apologies. I’ve noticed in the past 12 hours, most tweeters are beginning to publicly condemn harassment and doxxing, reprimanding anyone who hijacks the twitter hash tags for their nefarious reasons. I don’t want anymore other journalists to quit, I think they deserve to have a fair say. Unless it’s more ‘gamers are dead’ bs, haha

    • Nathan Merrill

      Well, honestly I’m fine with people who aren’t actually doing a good job of being journalists being run out of the industry and replaced with people with higher moral and ethical standards.

      I’d just it rather be for actual reasons. Frankly, I have limited sympathy for this woman because she wrote an ill-researched article and had a personal link to the subject; even WITH disclosure, she still would have been in trouble because it would STILL be an example of exactly what people were upset about.

  • Patrick Toworfe

    And to get real for a second, this whole thing got me thinking:

    We here on GH are an uncanny sort; thrown together by chance and contributing on the fly. If we ever became successful on this site and one day someone looked back on our exchanges on the site and Twitter and cried ‘collusion’, just cause we knew each other, I’d be distressed. And consider doxxing: it’s a terrifying thing. It goes far beyond normal ad hominems and crosses over into perverse territory.

    No one wants their livelihood on display just because of things they wrote online. Sure, some things are more belligerent than others, but if someone’s genuinely done nothing wrong, then they don’t deserve this stuff. I know I’d hate to be in a position like that. So whether it’s Anita Sarkeesian, Zoe Quinn, Phil Fish or whoever; people can say and do some vile stuff, though they don’t deserve personal attacks (even if they personally attack someone). But after my venting, ranting and activism, I’ve learned that in the end the best thing to do is be a force for positive change. Lead by example and extend a helping hand to the opposition.

    We can only win through intellectual wars, not personal ones. For the longest time I’d forgotten that. I was so mad because the prevailing narrative was tilting in favor of ‘SJW’s so to speak. Now I know I’m not alone in my thoughts and that I don’t have to agree with someone to co-exist with them. It sucks that Frank left and I don’t believe anyone deserves to be doxxed or harassed during this.

    Obviously, we can’t stop trolls, haters and bigots, but we can do our part to call it out when we see it and not do it ourselves. That way, we can know in good conscience that we don’t become the monsters we’ve so rigorously criticized. That’s all I gotta say.

    • Nathan Merrill

      I don’t really understand why people are so terrified of doxxing; with the power of Google, if I have at least one of your name, address, and phone number, I can likely acquire the other two. Your house is on Google Maps, and your telephone number and address are likely associated with your name SOMEWHERE on the internet.

  • Emms

    You reap what you sow……so many feminists have sent death threats to people over this and yet they still cry they are under attack? You are no better than them. As for who they’ve sent threats to? I’m sure many, but verified ones include Milo Yiannopoulos and a 13 year old little boy who went by the twitter name sensedog.

    • In what way am I no better than them? This article isn’t even about feminism, so I’m really not sure where you’ve pulled this from.

      • Don’t Taze Me Bro

        I think you presented a much more unbiased view hence I bother to respond where I disagree but I’m not going attack(by attack, I don’t mean harass) you for anything because you presented just that -> a somewhat unbiased view even if it isn’t in my favor.

        • Maharaja Crawford

          Really? Read the same as the other articles to me…. harassment harassment gamer gamer, some blogger who got fired. where were the threats and harassment from the other side. i didn’t see em? was farazi saying isis was better than gamers in here i didn’t see it. ect, ect, ect, ect. balanced?

          • Don’t Taze Me Bro

            As I say, the article is not in “my” favor but I think she presented the individual parts a lot more balanced where as in the guardian article, it’s a defensive post of her two friends.

            Here is just an example of the introduction on this article:

            “Gaming has been seething the past few weeks, as GamerGate has effectively demonstrated the very best and the very worst the industry has to offer.”

            and lets compare that to the Guardian:

            “There’s a hot trend among a vocal minority of gamers right now: the harassment of women developers and critics. Of course, this sort of thing is not new in tech.”

            Really? You think that the way it’s presented is the same? There is no difference? You don’t see the underlying misandric hate for various tech cultures of males inspired by years of following marxist feminists like a little puppy?

          • Maharaja Crawford

            Dude after reading 20 articles deriding me. A small concession of phrasing in the first paragraph is not balanced sorry. all I got from this is more customer blaming. After the blitz krieg media offensive launched against readers, I don’t think many people are wanting to hear more of the journalists side of bullshit at all. I came back to this site to show support for the other article I read on here about this! Instead I get poor jurno that got fired for stupid breach of ethics but really because her friends and her started a shit storm for her employer. soooo evenhanded thank you may i have another!

          • Don’t Taze Me Bro

            Oh for f0cks sake, Would you like me to sit down and hold your hand while we analyze both articles?

          • Michael Conway

            Take a breath. Read Sarah’s other articles. Maybe try rereading this one without the preconception that she’s out to get you personally because she is writing on a game website.

      • Emms

        Sorry if I was unclear, but I didn’t mean to direct the “you are no better” towards you, the author, but towards the feminists who are attacking people online.

        And the feminist part is important because the whole scandal is feminists claiming women are under attack unfairly when EVERYONE is being attacked over the internet, and many by feminists, so it’s silly to try to play the victim card.

        The hilarious thing is when confronted with evidence of this, I’ve seen many feminists respond “It’s one or two idiots sending the death threats, not inclusive of all feminists”……and yet somehow this doesn’t hold true for the 1 or 2 gamers sending death threats?

      • Maharaja Crawford

        Sara please listen to my point of view. I first heard about all of this a week ago, when totillo wrote about Zoe…. I thought who the fuck cares, this girl is a bad person so what, Im hardly worried about who a game journalist is fucking what games their promoting or any other journo integrity in gaming bullshit…. Im a realist, I look at these sites and I understand that its fucking games I know that there salary is paid by distributors and big industry, so what if they promote a game they are tied to in some way and it sucks if I buy it by some miracle I’ll get over it. . BUT
        A short time after reading about Zoe, I saw an article. It was a lot like yours, it was death to gamer or some other shit title you guys used. It was unbelievably insulting. Not just for being a hit piece on gamers. But for being intellectually dishonest, biased in the extreme, and it was so obviously pushing an agenda. I felt compelled to see what was going on. I then went from kotaku to gameasutra to paperrockblah to vice. I thought; why was no one sticking up for gamers on any gaming site? I just wanted one of these game sites to stick up for gamers after all we are their product/customer.
        No one stood up for us. You were pushing your articles as far as you could and censoring us every where.
        I was bullied horribly as a child most gamers share that experience. So your tactics were rubbing a raw nerve on gamers everywhere. Your (gaming media) tactic to cover up bullshit corruption that I don’t care about was to attack and silence everyone, doing that pulled me and 25 thousands like me into this. Then we find out about the real corruption. the shit I do care about. It looks like gaming media is tied together in a kind of klick spread across different gaming blogs, PR sites, games conferences and so on, you guys have been shown to use your power of press as a weapon against individuals, so much so in fact that you thought you could band together and bully all gamers into to falling in line. I am now 100% committed to destroying gaming bloggers position of power, exposing their dirty tactics and exposing every abuse of power you directed toward any individual. I didn’t fucking care at all before the (gaming media) attacks.

        Every day now I spend hour on top of hour digging up stuff and contacting people about it. Do you think I’m the only one? Do you think we are still going to fall in line? Im not. Im effectively disabled so all I can do is lay here and work on this computer.

        The funny thing is, the online community is so afraid of being called harassers, that they are being overly nice to everyone. You guys might actually be responsible for positive change. lmao!!! All it took was acting like the bullys and trolls you are accusing us of being…. and collectively falling on your sword.. Should sword be plural there? anyways best of luck with your war against gamers…

        • Maharaja Crawford

          I would ;i to clarify when i say your im refering to the game jurnos in collusion

  • Don’t Taze Me Bro

    Ah lets get this straight, the disclaimer was added 4 days after the article was published (the same day she withdrawed) and she was getting flak for corruption since she was financially tied to the people in question through patreon. Yes she wanted a disclaimer accordingly to the new footnote on the article but how can we not attack her when it’s a clear connection (not saying it was significant) and there isn’t a disclaimer, when we are campaigning against corruption?

    This is an excellent example of what we are against, the misuse of misogyny to indirectly attack gamers while protecting your friends. I’m not going to say that she got what she deserved because no she didn’t, she got a LOT more but that being said, she did create the framework in which she could be attacked by creating a somewhat biased article in regards to defending her friends, which yes I think she is doing in that article and I still think just that. The footnote changed absolutely nothing in that regard.

    • Don’t Taze Me Bro

      After thinking more about it, even if the disclaimer had been there, I would still have been attacking her integrity for the article. I find it extremely one-sided and fear-mongering what she did in that article. It was yet another outcry of how gamers are misogynist and nothing else. It’s exactly what I’m against, at some point you just get enough and I have reached that point.

      Edit -> I ‘d like to point out that I have been sitting for years on VG sites and been watching how my slightly less liberal progressive views has been censored, banned and molested in the name of progression. VG journalism has become extreme and that is a huge factor in all of this.

      • Nathan Merrill

        They aren’t liberals, they’re leftists. Liberals are anti-censorship; these folks are pro-censorship. Just because many liberals also happen to be leftists does not mean that all leftists are liberals; the SJW types tend towards more towards authoritarianism than liberalism.

        • David Gray

          The left has always been *extremely* anti censorship.
          Authoritarian is what you’re after.
          That can be leftwing, but it’s mostly rightwing 😛
          The fact it is authoritarians that identify as leftwing does not change definitions or history.

          • Nathan Merrill

            The left has not always been extremely anti-censorship; all you have to do is look at Europe or Communist nations to see that being leftist and being liberal don’t actually have all that much to do with each other. Communism is leftist authoritarianism, and the left in much of Europe is very much for restricting hate speech, overbroad libel laws, and even restrictions on journalism (the “right to privacy” for example). Even in the US, there were politicians on the left who were for restrictions on video games and other forms of free speech.

            While liberalism and leftism have been commonly seen as being hand in hand in the US, it is not necessarily the case. Libertarians are, in some cases, both on the right and liberal; indeed, the reason why liberal, libertarian, and liberty all look so similar is because they come from the same root word. All three are pro-civil rights.

            And indeed, it is worth noting that in Europe, the word liberal is often used to describe groups on the right who are for economic liberalism – that is to say, fewer restrictions on trade and business.

            Thus people talk about economic liberalism and social liberalism, and the two often don’t go hand in hand – someone can be one or the other, both, or neither.

          • David Gray

            Indeed. But “the left” gets thrown under the bus a lot, when the right has JUST as much a history of censorship and restriction of liberty (I’d argue more, but I am a lefty, so I admit a bias :P)
            Liberalism is certainly not lefty, agreed. It is centre, and can arguably fall a little on either wing.
            I term myself a liberal socialist, and more the latter than the former at that. Pragmatic socialism might perhaps be a better description.
            I see areas where restriction of liberties make sense, but I am not for censorship in terms of content. Only context.
            Preach what you like, but not in a public place that people unable to simply leave (public transport, for instance)

          • Nathan Merrill

            Well, the thing is that there are relatively few right-wing liberals because libertarianism (what that is frequently called) doesn’t actually work in the real world. The Founding Fathers of the United States were actually very libertarian, and the original setup of the United States under the Articles of Confederation was a very libertarian government.

            It failed utterly. The problem is that as it turns out the lack of a strong centralized government makes it impossible for the country to act as a coherent unit, with different areas pulling in different, self-serving, detrimental-to-the-whole ways, and persistent underfunding of necessary government programs and services (such as, say, the military). And over time it has actually only gotten worse because the amount of possible infrastructure has only increased, and the cost of military hardware has only gone up – back in the day, people with guns really were the rule of the day, with the odd cannon (which wasn’t that horrifically expensive); only ships – naval power – was insanely expensive and out of the reach of the common man. Nowadays, everything is; all military hardware is millions of dollars, with even the cheapest stuff often costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. Men with guns are no match for drones, cruise missiles, jet fighters, nuclear weapons, spy satellites, tanks and the like. And that’s just military hardware, ignoring the greater need for infrastructure and the greater ability to do all sorts of things which need to be done for an advanced modern society to function – water treatment, food safety, health care, ect.

            Libertarians still exist – the objectivists are still around, for instance – but there are very few people on the far right and who are very liberal. There are people on the right who are liberal, more business sorts, but they aren’t that far to the right and frequently are in favor of many big government projects, much as they love to complain about taxes.

          • Nathan Merrill

            Communism is extremely leftist, and communist nations were very authoritarian.

          • David Gray

            And Fascism is extremely right wing and extremely authoritarian.
            Anarchism is also left wing.
            Traditionalism is right wing, and traditionalism is usually tied to obedience to some kind of authority (how often to Republicans publicly fellate the founders or Reagan?

            Only certain regimes the claimed to be left wing were authoritarian, and that thinking came from trying to impose a Utopian ideal. (a stateless society of coops)
            The authoritarian angle was a means to an end. The fact it perpetuated itself speaks to the corruption of power.
            On the right we have pretty much every regime where might made right and the powerful siezed rule with no stated intention of ending its monopoly.

            ie: the right wing historically has embraced authority as a concept.
            The left has rejected it, but used it to further an end (if you read Animal Farm, it shows the opinion socialists had of the USSR; a well intentioned revolution that ended up resembling the thing it was fighting, and often being more repressive, oppressive and fair. (you see, lefty’s actually admit that soviet russia and other communist regimes are worse than the rampant capitalism we also fight. Because intellectual honesty is important to real lefties)

          • Nathan Merrill

            It is more complicated than that. The founding fathers of the United States were, in many cases, quite right wing, but very liberal – they were very much against taxes and central authority, and were very much for liberal economic policies.

            The thing is, the founding fathers TRIED to found a right-wing, liberal country. That was the Articles of Confederation.

            It failed utterly. And so they founded the United States, which is a very strange country. The fact that it was founded by right-wing liberals is part of why the country is the way that it is – they decentralized power as much as possible, and they tried to remove direct power from the citizenry as much as possible while maintaining responsibility to the populace by the government.

            The fact of the matter is that there’s no particular reason why leftism and liberalism would go together – they just happen to do so in much of the developed world these days. But there was a time when many on the left were very authoritarian. The communist countries really were communist – but they were also very authoritarian, in part by necessity because in the end communism is not a very just system, and in part because a lot of the people involved just weren’t very nice to begin with.

          • Dm Gray

            The problem is you are applying a very narrow definition of the left and limiting it to basically communism, but applying a VERY modern definition of the American right and applying it to the founders.
            I’ve stated that both sides of the political spectrum do it, but that when you get down to brass tacks of what the ideologies of left and right are meant to DO you CAN NOT suggest that authoritarianism is inherent to the left, but it IS inherent to the right (because conservatism is founded in tradition, and tradition is an authority that is relied upon; it really is this simple)

          • Nathan Merrill

            When I’m talking about “the right”, I’m talking about economic liberalism. When I’m talking about “the left”, I’m talking about socialism. Communism is a form of socialism, but is hardly the only form it can take.

            The problem is that you’re associating economic liberalism improperly with authoritarianism; the two do not go hand in hand, and frequently throughout history have not gone hand in hand.

        • Don’t Taze Me Bro

          I’m not going to argue over definition, I know that many of em consider themselves progressive liberals so I thought it would be logical to assume that it was but anything is fine with me.

          • Nathan Merrill

            The actual cause for this is the fact that they don’t understand what the word “liberal” means, and thus incorrectly apply it to themselves. In all fairness, the confusion isn’t terribly surprising. It just bothers me, personally, because I get annoyed when people who are authoritarian claim to be liberals, because it is entirely the opposite of what the word means.

            If you compare the ACLU (which is probably the archetypical liberal organization) to these guys, the difference is night and day.

    • Laurence Tureaud

      but how can we not attack her when it’s a clear connection

      There’s a difference between holding someone accountable and harassing them. The former was justified in her case, not the latter.

      • Don’t Taze Me Bro

        I attacked her integrity on the forefront, I believe that I mentioned that somewhere else in these comments or maybe not, I did and I’m happy that I did, I feel absolutely no guilt over it, I may be a horrible person for that, I consider her worse for throwing shit out on the Guardian like that particular article. It was spineless, fearmongering and pure corruption even with a disclaimer, puffpiece on her friends nothing else.

        I’m not sorry that her friends feelings has been hurt and I’m not willing to stand by while she throws dirt on me and gaming which I hold dear but I’m not fond of the idea that she is withdrawing either, that was never the intention and clearly she has been become collateral damage.

  • tetrisdork

    Full disclosure: I did actually want Nathan Grayson blacklisted for being a catalyst of all this. Even tweeted that to him. Only one other person I wanted fired was Faraci for his terrorist comments/being a freaking troll. The abuse towards Jenn Frank is wrong. She did do the right thing and disclosed information about her connection to Quinn.
    In all honesty, we should blame the bloody Guardian for thinking that removing the disclosure was no big deal.

  • Horatio1981

    I’m just spitballing here, but maybe people were upset by all the journalists flocking to defend an objectively horrible person on the grounds that she shared their agenda? Anyone who read thezoepost with an open mind quickly recognized all the tell-tale signs of an abusive, manipulative, destructive person. Erin wasn’t a sour jilted ex; he was a victim. But the genders didn’t line up with the overriding narrative, so the facts were ignored as the social justice brigade closed ranks around one of their own, evidence be damned. Jenn was one such hypocrit, and while she didn’t deserve abuse or threats, she absolutely deserved powerful criticism, derision, and loss of credibility.

    • Criticism does not constitute abuse on a scale that drives somebody to quit the industry. You have to consider that the general focus point of GamerGate is to deal with sub-par standards regarding disclosure. This was one singular article written by a woman that included her disclosure, small though it was, and that was edited out by her superiors. She is not a part of the problem, but she’s been driven out all the same.

      • Skiddywinks

        I agree with you here, but I disagree that she was part of the problem. Her article made out that there was no explanation for the reaction from gamers (i.e. inexplicable), when it was anything but.

        The reaction that she has garnered is without a doubt unacceptable in terms of personal attacks and abuse. But this is par for the course, unfortunately, regardless of gender.

  • Laurence Tureaud

    You’re glossing over the fact that she still posted an article filled with misinformation rooted in sexism and bigotry. She defends the work of Zoe and Anita and completely ignores the death threats sent by SJWs (including to this website) despite the entire article being about online abuse. It’s a “call for a level-headed and reasonable approach to the abuse”, really? The article was indistinguishable from all the other hit pieces the gaming media and beyond posted about us so far. I don’t understand why you’re ignoring all these glaring problems given the previous articles you’ve written about gamergate.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      because everyone knows gamers make 173 death threats a day online

      • Nathan Merrill

        It probably isn’t a good thing that we have gotten to the point where “Death threat on the internet? It must be Tuesday” is a thing, but, well, death threats on the internet are basically Tuesday these days. People who freak out over them are really being dumb.

        Unless it is being made by either someone you know, someone who makes a very specific threat, or someone who is a part of a military, paramillitary, or terrorist organization (the IDF, Hamas, or Al Qaeda), you can probably disregard it as people being stupid.

        “I’m going to kill you” isn’t really a death threat so much as it is an expression of impotent rage.

        “You really should get that light fixed in the back of the parking lot; someone might sneak up on you” is probably something you should take more seriously if there is indeed a light out in the back of the parking lot.

        • Maharaja Crawford

          Her’s my take it mostly smoke. Have you been to avice comment section or cnn or FOXNEWS? I truly believe there is no comparison between those sites and gaming. When is the last time you saw one of their journalists write an article telling their readers that they were misogynist, racist scom that could fuck off? And alot of their readers really are! lets be realistic here.

      • NeuroSnake

        I want to know how many of those death threats are actually real… I
        mean, are people even calling the authorities when they receive such

        The fact that police involvement hasn’t been reported by
        any gaming blog should be enough to know that most people involved
        don’t take it seriously (that FBI thing was lip service that read
        like a “grow up, we hunt terrorists and hackers, not trolls). You need a
        thick skin: It’s the internet, not your sophomore gender studies class.

        Daily reminder that some of the parties involved have profited
        enormously from getting those death threats. Forging threats and
        harassment? Has happened before.

        • Maharaja Crawford

          haha every time I think about this I start having conflicting feelings! on the 1 hand anita is scamming a super annoying demographic of people and im like thats what you get for posesing 0 critical thinking skills. On the other hand I Really cant stand manipulative fucks especially ones making videogames look worse to people who don’t know any better… I hate that I have to hide the fact that I play videogames from some people because of the stigmas heaped on them.

    • I don’t think I’ve glossed over that, I would say that she presented her own view of the situation, regardless of whether or not it would be widely agreed with. Just like in my article here, I wouldn’t describe it as misinformation, I have present facts and then my opinion – but a hostile environment arises when that opinion does not align entirely with what other people see.

      I would like to believe my articles somewhat inform on each other, and this piece can be far more easily digested having read my previous reports on GamerGate – which I still entirely stand by.This isn’t an alteration or betrayal of my views, but the situation is incredibly multifaceted and therefore so is my view of it.

      If you feel as though I haven’t directly represented facts as they ought to be, then I am more than happy to add some clearly marked edits where necessary. But I very much do not believe that an vulnerability to criticism is a justification for the kind of abuse I have witnessed Frank receiving. It’s not an excuse for anybody to be hounded – and I am clear that that abuse does not only come from one side of the fence. I’m in no way “blaming gamers” or blindly pointing fingers.

      My previous articles still accurate sum up how I feel about the situation as a whole, but this time, I just felt it was beyond all reason.

      • Laurence Tureaud

        She presented her own view of the situation and her view of the situation was severely misinformed, just like all the other anti-gamergate authors. The fact that it was her personal view and not an attempt at objective reporting does not excuse it. People are still going to consider what she wrote and take the claims she made as fact despite it being an op-ed.

        Criticizing Jenn’s work doesn’t mean you’re condoning the harassment. If someone’s article is problematic then it needs to be called out, regardless of how others may choose to address it. It’s not disingenuous to criticize someone while also defending them from harassment.

        My only suggestion for an edit would be to change the parts where you defend her article (and the accompanying beliefs about Zoe, etc). I don’t take issue with your stance against her harassment.

        • Okay, I will bare that in mind and review my article.

          I don’t defend her work, and of course it is definitely not beyond criticism. I’d like to think the fact I have faced my own feedback and criticism head on in all of my articles demonstrates how important I believe constructive criticism is to anybody in this industry, and not that I think any work ought to be exempt from it. More importantly, I definitely don’t believe criticising an article like Jenn’s means you, by default, condone harassment. By the same token, my defending her article doesn’t mean I, by default, agree with everything she says.

          • Laurence Tureaud

            Thank you, I appreciate your open-mindedness.

  • Nathan Merrill

    Man, The Guardian really screwed the pooch on that one. I would probably feel a lot sorrier for her if she had written a better article, and not used words like “inexplicable” when a quick look on Google would explain exactly why people were upset over it. It does still kind of suck for her, though, as she actually did do the right thing and now this is going to be Googlable for her forever.

    Protip to journalists and editors: when you are writing an article about industry corruption, full disclosure is at its most important. This was 100% her editor’s fault; she likely would have caught some flak for using the word “inexplicably” when, well, it wasn’t inexplicable, but really, her editor probably shouldn’t have had her write the article at all without disclosure, and possibly shouldn’t have had her do it at all – buying someone’s game is one thing, and honestly doesn’t need to be disclosed under normal circumstances. Supporting someone on Patreon or similarly, however, is an ongoing business relationship with the subject, however marginal it may seem to be – that’s the sort of thing which can create a conflict of interest, or at least the strong appearance of a conflict of interest, and the fact that she came out so strongly for Quinn and against her detractors meant that it was a very dangerous line she was crossing.

    Coming out in support of your business partners is alright, but when you’re a journalist you’re expected to be detached and neutral, which always makes reporting on business relationships which you or your associates or your company are involved in a bit tricky.

  • I find it highly ironic that Gamer Gate is about the personalities of journalists rather then the games themselves. It speaks volumes. I can’t wait for Anita Sarkeesian’s next video where she describes how Destiny is misogynist because green eggs and apple sauce.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      not going to happen they paid her to come show her videos to the art directors. she has the tweet on her page in support of her from one of them. Part of her hustle pay me and i wont mess with you

      • Ah! Thanks for info. So, she isn’t just a ignorant blabber mouth but a corrupt one as well. No wonder so many are pissed off.

  • Maharaja Crawford

    Are my comments being held for review because i used the f word? Do you guys really moderate that hard here?? Don’t answer that! I know with gamergate every comment section is so toxic and soul crushingly harassing. That is one of the most irritating lies I have been seeing from you jurnos, I have never in my life seen video game comment sections be as cordial and as united as they are now, across the board! Heck the video game boards are better now than comment boards on any site i have seen period,

    Sarah do me a favor go to any major news site and go to a section reporting on isis then go to the comment section. Then never call video gamers a toxic community again. You guys really need some perspective. Seriously.

    • Disqus automatically moderates comments, but I will get it out!

      I haven’t called gamers toxic at all, in fact in my article I’ve made a very apparent distinction between those hurling abuse and those within GamerGate that are good people. Abusers are abusers, they don’t need any other overarching title.

      • Maharaja Crawford

        here is my problem with that everytime harassment is brought up it is put at our feet. There have been women and men harassed on both sides. But there is no coverage yet for the ppl on our side of the fence (jadefox) if harassment is brought up but only covering people on one side is suspect. Every time a dialog is struck a journo throws out an indignant statement about harassment. Can we agree that all reasonable people are against harassment and if i was an unreasonable person telling me to stop the harassment is not going to help stop anything. our words have been devalued enough by continually calling us harassers. And journalists continue to say it in every way possible way to us. Is there some secret way we should know of stopping it for the first time in the internets history? okay Im done and Im waiting for your response of but people have been harassed or about the severity of the harassment or thats all the examples I can think of right now

        • I have personally been harassed by those siding with GG, and with those that are against it. I have had some incredible threats in the past few days, and it can be scary and draining. As I said, I don’t believe all of the abuse is coming from one side because I PERSONALLY have been attacked by both sides. There are very good people on both sides, and I’m sorry if you think I’m tarring gamers with my article. I am defending Jenn Frank, but I can do that without taking an extreme side against gamers.

          I am a gamer, I don’t hate gamers. I have spent the past week or two speaking in defence of gamers. You might be interested in reading this article I wrote about GamerGate itself.

          • Maharaja Crawford

            You seem reasonable and I am sorry I was over critical of your article, you are on the inside of all this. Maybe you can help me understand the things going down better. I have a few questions.
            How did 10 almost Identical articles so controversial in nature get put out with in 5 hours of each other? Why would ALL the sites editors allow them put up articles that could cause them such huge backlash? Lastly can you help me understand the journalists thinking for putting out the inflammatory articles, I can’t figure it out. The articles seemed almost to be designed to incite a riot of backlash.

          • Think of it this way, you could say the exact same about articles like my own. I have written heavily in favour of ‘gamers’ and the good people I have met within GG. That could have caused a severe backlash from the opposing side. There is a severe knee-jerk reaction that is found when you defend people that have suffered abuse in this situation – regardless of whether the people suffering are from GG or from the opposing side.

            You CANNOT refuse to let people who oppose you publish their ideas, is that not what you are against when you support GG? At GH I am able to discuss my views fairly openly, on Twitter I am able to be completely open. I am thankful for that, but it is not the norm. The fact that so few Zoe Quinn articles were published to begin with was because it was a piece heavily set in the violated personal life of a developer – REGARDLESS of her wrong doings, or your opinion on her, it is wrong for a gaming news site to carry a story so heavily founded in somebody’s personal life. It was wrong when it happened to Max Tempkin, and it was wrong when it happened to Quinn. So unfortunately, subsequent articles tracking the lifespan of GG became caught under that umbrella. I don’t condone that.

            You just have to remember that suffering abuse really sucks. You mentioned you were bullied really bad as a kid? A lot of us went through that buddy, and we came out the other side. And you, and me, and every one of us came out of the other side and we’re doing good now right? Try to use how you felt then to sympathise with the people going through that right now in the public eye, because everybody sees what’s happening to them. The reason tempers are running so high is because of how bad we can see that getting. I KNOW there are a lot of good people on both sides of this fight, but if you were bullied, you know nobody deserves to go through that. And nobody should ever turn a blind eye to it.

          • Maharaja Crawford

            okay I am still fuzzy on the exact dynamics of this. As I said before my main dog in this fight is the insulting articles that keep coming. I understand ppl were messed with pretty bad but the counter punch from the gaming polarized this and dragged a ton of apathetic bystanders like me right into the fray. Anyways thank you for taking the time to respond and giving your perspective.

      • Don’t Taze Me Bro

        Exactly, you’re awesome in your work, I have absolutely no complaints despite being on the other side of the fence and look at how you aren’t being attacked by anyone, there aren’t a flowchart regarding your patreon nor anything else because you’re being somewhat objective. Nobody cares if you have a connection when you do a good job.

  • Cadmus14

    Thank you for writing this, Sarah. Frank tried to do the right thing and disclose her ties, and The Guardian decided “Naw, that’s not noteworthy. Journalism ethics have no bearing on this affair.” Then she is thrown under the bus. This is on The Guardian’s head.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      thats the side you are all on tick tock. tired of justifications. YOU HARASSED YOUR CUSTOMERS IN THE EXTREME X1000 I HAVE NEVER SEEN THIS IN MY LIFE!!!!!!!! YOU ALL SHOULD BE FIRED!!!!!

      • JohnnyAppleseed

        Take a deep breathe and focus on what you are trying to say. You have spammed this entire comments section with what I can only describe as hateful near incomprehensible rantings.

        • Maharaja Crawford

          fair enough, you’re right. My aspergers must have been kicking in yesterday.

  • ray

    Man, this is a hell of a shit sandwich.

  • David Gray

    I cant believe the Guardian could be so dense on this issue.
    “normal standards” don’t apply when the figures mentioned are SO divisive. It is sad they “real” journalists failed in their duty to their audience and to Frank.

    Absolutely unacceptable that she got abuse, even if I think it is valid to have pursued the connection when the footnote was not included (the scrutiny gaming media is under atm is entirely their own fault)
    Her opinion is wrong.
    Not subjectively, objectively. She was partisan, but trying to appear neutral. That annoys people more than wearing your bias on your sleeve, and when added with the removal of the disclosure it was like throwing chum in the water.

    I personally call out abuse from “my side” constantly, mention “abuse and threats are unacceptable” in almost every post I make and am still routinely called a misogynist.
    One of the more annoying things about this discussion is how often the “reasonable” voices will say “every side has bad apples” but then focus almost exclusively on how “Quinn’s side” are the victims.
    Poor behaviour from journalists (calling every critic of them and Quinn “straight white, middle aged manchildren; Forbes linked that claim as “empathetic” to gamers. That’s how bad things were) is rarely mentioned, glossed over or completely excused (“it’s an opinion” “emotions are high”) when such allowances are NEVER made for us misogynerd gamers.

    I’m just glad for voices like yours Sarah. Even if you felt this case was extremely important to highlight you at least credit her opponents with the same humanity you afford her, and THAT is the difference.

  • NextGame

    Journalists posting on the “gamers are evil” side of things, quite frankly by and large need to go. It is time for a cleaning of house as it is reasonable to expect a journalist not to be innately against the industry they operate in.

    Was Jenn Frank someone who particularly needed to go? Certainly wasn’t an A-lister in this debacle, but nevertheless I have no sympathy for anyone picking that side, which going by her article: – she did. My only disappointment is that those at the root of the issue are holding on.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      exactly my sentiment, Their next move is to trot out an open ethics letter that all journalists will sigh and say see all better now

  • Billy the Squid

    Did she deserve the criticism and attacks directed at her? Absolutely, she deserved the flak she got; you can’t release an article like that when you are financially funding the media company Silver String which Quinn is linked to and be funded by the person who runs it, Maya Kraymer, Tell people that they’re attacking someone because unjustly and call them sexist and not expect to be hounded out the industry is naive and hypocritical, which is what has made so many people angry.

    Knowing someone is different from financially supporting them, or being financially supported by the media grp they’re linked to, something you seem to have skipped over.

    Now, did she deserve death threats and threatened to be doxx’d, or be doxx’d? No, I don’t think so, it’s generally counter productive and does very little. But as usual there’s always some arse who likes to stir things by doing it. But, honestly why is it that the likes of these people seem to immediately publicise it?

    The advice from the police is not to respond and contact them, and yet, here we are again. Ala Quinn and Sarkeesian, throwing their hands up and screaming to the top of their lungs.

    A lot of people have had death threats, I have, I replied that I’d be waiting for them with a cup of tea. A lot of men have too, and women, yet not one says a word. It’s all trash talk and we know it.

    Some people are more than likely going to be fired over this, she’s one, there have been a couple of others. I think it’s naive that you expect there to be an open discussion and not expect heads to roll to appease the people or extricate themselves from the mess, I think it’s a sanguine lesson that the publications need to learn.

    • Skiddywinks

      How can you condone personal attacks on anybody? She without a doubt deserves all the criticisms she gets for a poor article, but the disclosure is not her fault and any attacks are personal, irrelevant, and only give the SJWs more ammo.

      • Billy the Squid

        Calling someone a bitch, because she acted like one by putting out a hit job article, is not the most nuanced response, but it’s not a personal attack. It lands squarely in the realms of conclusion drawn from her actions.

        You act like an arse, someone is going to call you out on it. I may not agree with it, but as Voltaire said, I will fight to defend your right to say it.

        That’s different from doxxing and sending death threats.

        The disclosure of what? That she’s being funded by the Silver String media company that supports/ is associated with Quinn and is involved with Sarkeesian, then puts out a crap article.

        She is linked financially to the subject she is writing on, she knew exactly what she was doing and got crucified for it, rightly so. It also doesn’t give the SJW’s that much more ammo given that every time they do bring it up, they highlight the the corruption and nepotism given the links between the parties being criticised.

        Notice how Kotaku, Escapist, RPS and Destructoid haven’t touched this yet? It’s a political tar baby, using it as an example of harassment forces them to highlight the corruption or if they ignore it they get attacked by everyone and their reputation gets further damage.

        Force the publications to capitulate and the SJWs lose. So far the media won’t dare touch this given their shattered reputation.

      • Ajt

        She essentially verbally attacked a whole population on the Internet. And then reacts in outrage when the population she staged a deliberate hit job on, and for the first time escalated it to the mainstream press with, was mean to her on the Internet? While I do not approve harassment in any form, I also understand the reasons for strongly worded verbal pushback. Those she slandered do not have the luxury of column space at The Guardian. All they have is their language. They have been denied the places of reasonable conversation.

        And for the record, harassment by gamers is not the reason Ms. Franks left the industry. She left embarrassed when she turned on her television, and saw her self same hit piece article held up on a news channel ( a liberal one at that) as the example of “corruption in games journalism.” ) she wasn’t harassed out by gamers. She was shamed out by actual journalists.

  • verytirednerd

    She wrote a biased, ill-informed article and got what she deserved. The Editor at The Guardian deserves the same.
    So does Nathan Grayson, Jason Schrier, Luke Plunkett and a tons of others at different sites. All of them play at being journalists, like children putting on their parents too-big clothes, shoes and jewellery, and expect us to treat them like they can do no wrong, even as they put out article after article decrying us as monsters while they perpetuate the same words and actions.

    It has nothing to do with gender!

    This is about the merit and the content of people!

    It’s why Anita’s videos are so terrible, not because she’s a woman, but because she makes horrifyingly bad arguments and completely shuts down any criticism or debate by screaming ‘MISOGYNY!!!!’.
    It’s why Zoe and the five men she slept with is Cronyism and deserving of criticism, which is devoid of any sense of meritocracy, not because she’s a woman!
    It’s why people are pissed off regarding the IGF awards panel, all of whom are a clique and only awarded games due to personal involvement and preference, not because of merit (where entrants must pay $95 and stand no chance of winning)!
    This shit needs to cease, and not because women are icky and aren’t allowed in our clubhouse, it’s because these men and women are children who act like they’re still in high school!
    Jenn Frank would have gotten the same exact shit if she were male, and that is fucking equality!

    Feminists can feel free to get into the industry and make their own games, just keep your hateful ideology out of my games and let developers make the games they want to make, instead of railroading them with negative publicity and financial blackmail.

    Oh, and #notyourshield proves it’s not just straight white men who think the same.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      thank you for writing my feelings down better than I could have myself lol

    • Skiddywinks

      I don’t think anyone writing a trash article deserves to be harassed, threatened or doxxed. If its trash, all that should be needed is calm and intelligent criticism.

      I agree with all the points you made, and also find this whole mess absurdly illogical on the part of SJWs, but when you have a line like “got what she deserved” you are doing nothing to help anyone. SJWs will latch on to that one line and focus on how that makes you a dickhead and a misogynist.

      If we’re meant to be taking the high ground we should actually try and act like it. The article is crap, so destruct the article. Break it down and rebut her arguments. That’s all that is needed. It’s not even her fault that the disclosure wasn’t there. There is absolutely no excuse for personal attacks or harassment, and by condoning it you give SJWs something to personally attack YOU with.

      • verytirednerd

        I should have clarified; I meant she deserved to be fired (even though these people aren’t truly employed in such a way), which is why I went on to mention the Editor at Guardian, as well as several Kotaku writers and others from different sites. I wasn’t condoning harrassment, threats and doxxing, not intentionally.

        • Skiddywinks

          That’s good to know, but I’d be more careful in future because a SJW would interpret that sentence as fanning the flames.

          • verytirednerd

            Yeah I should have proof-read my comment a little more. So thanks for the heads up.

        • Maharaja Crawford

          thats the problem here, the medias tactic to scream harassment in your face forces everyone to put a paragraph about not condoning harassment! Its nonsense no one condones harassment fuck!

          • verytirednerd

            This. Of course they signed the petition for less harassment, nobody is going to oppose that! Otherwise you’d have everyone screaming ‘misogynist!!’ at you. And that’s the problem. No one is allowed to hold an opposing opinion anymore, because these social justice terrorists descend upon anything they disagree with and create a culture of fear and censorship. It doesn’t help that developers can’t fight back, because these people are the media and will blacklist anything they disagree with and cause the dreaded ‘negative publicity’ that publishers fear more than anything, due to potential lost sales.
            It’s disgusting. These people are IngSoc.

  • Unbeliever

    The blame is mostly on The Guardian .
    I wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to capitalize on the controversy.

    • Maharaja Crawford

      if they do Ill go there and hope they start a trend

  • android138

    if you cant beat em’ join em. start your own site and blogs. or support the mass amounts of gaming enthusiest that support similiar thinking. in all reality, some gamers are activly already supporting the ideals of #gamergate #notyourshield.all this bickering wont get us any where. but im glad to know we can stand together as gamers. thats awesome.

  • DB

    Couldn’t agree more Sarah. A well written article.

  • ruleofthebrave

    I guess people are forgetting how this all started and why some gamers are angry (including me).

    It it not the fact that some writers for these sites are unethical because I do not believe they are. It is more than obvious that a world as small as the one of gaming journalism will of course have people helping each other out. It happens in other media, like music and film journalism.

    What does bother me immensely is the ideology: the actual content of the articles. The level of arrogance that is required to point out moral faults in the gaming community is insane. When you have articles that claim games are “rape simulators” or “misogynistic”, articles that are published every other week, you know that your ideology has been dragged a little to far. Moreover, not a single author has ever stepped up and said that they might have incurred in a little hyperbole when describing gamers. Not a single a apology to the gamers (40 something % of which are female) when the writers make sweeping and unfair generalizations. There has always been some backlash to these positions, but then Quinn lit a spark.

    How can a person so morally bankrupt (let’s face it, there is too much evidence now to deny that fact), be defended by the same people that have called us out (white, black, chinese, female, asian, and gay gamers) as misogynistic and sexist? This whole scandal could have been avoided if the gaming press admitted that Ms. Quinn had been in the wrong and had put her aside and condemned her. I have stopped talking to friends that have cheated on their girlfriend or boyfriends, because I find that morally reprehensible, and that is what they should have done to her. By supporting her, the gaming press is saying: “yeah…we know we keep making moral judgements about gamer’s lives but we are going to open an exception for this one person who has cheated and lied, because she is one of ours”

    The are not corrupt per se. They are morally corrupt.

    • ruleofthebrave

      Good piece by the way Sarah

  • EdgyDude

    This whole fiasco has come to a horrible boiling point where journalist and industry members that don’t follow Quinn’s or Sarkeesian’s ideology are getting harassed too and while I admit it’s bad, one does have to wonder: why does that happen? why are people reacting like that?

    Because those being targeted and victimized at no point prior to this situation tried to listen or at least offer any kind of bona fide gesture to those offering counter-arguments or reasonable debate. Instead the only thing those people got in exchange was the dismissal of their POV, the usual name calling (mysognist, sexist, yada yada), shady and very moraly questionable tactics and a whole bunch of attempted (and failed) shaming tactics.

    Now people are tired of this, they have realized that reasoning with these individuals is useless. They don’t want a debate, they don’t want a discussion, they want their will obeyed, their opinion unquestioned and anything less than that is unacceptable. Any kind of gesture to defend Sarkeesian, Quinn and any of those involved in all this will be perceived as siding with them and dealt in a way no different that the one used again them.

    It’s sad that it has come to this, but after years of good will and attempts to reason being trashed, is it really any wonder that people react this way?.

  • zillk242

    Honestly after being censored, told I am a “weaponized minority”, a misogynist and all this other crap I am ready for some people to just leave the industry. I won’t call them SJW because that implies some level of nobility, it implies that on some level they ever actually cared about the people they are now degrading. They are just a clique that needs to be broken up. I don’t support abuse, but I am happy there is another party revealing the self-interested nature of the clique and stopping people from being fooled into thinking they operate altruistically.

  • Real Human Bean

    There’s been a rhetoric that some fringe people are pushing within GG and against it that’s actively amping up hostilities. I’m not one to use a tin-foil hat in relationships to what more or less amounts to people inconsequentially yelling on the internet, but even as far back as Zoe Quinn and The Fine Young Capitalists getting hacked, there’s no evidence to support either tried to victimize themselves, or on the other hand, that anyone involved with 4chan hacked the site. Looking back over the posted pages, it was very clear that their messages were written in such a way that people from 4chan would know they were implicated falsely.

    Even as far as the IRC logs go, I decided to ignore Zoe Quinn’s selected snippets and go directly to the IRC logs themselves, which the channel made publicly available. While there were some ruminations over whether or not some legally questionable snooping should be done, there was never a real indictment that any sort of defacement or physical harm would’ve come from any of it. Most of it was based around looking for Patreon traces, ties with Silverstring media, etc. While I certainly don’t condone or endorse breaking privacy laws to do this sort of snooping, I would hardly call it assault or anything of the sort.

    Involving the individual people, there has absolutely been some disgusting behavior. Behavior that I consider to be personally objectionable and completely antithetical to what the relative majority of GG has been trying to accomplish. Even on 4chan, any poster even trying to appear like Zoe Quinn immediate gets told to fuck off, because no one there wants her to have the validation of making this entire fiasco about her.

    The problem with Gamergate is that it is an apolitical movement trying to stay apolitical, and fighting for the medium to stay apolitical as well. As a writer (speaking directly to @auseil:disqus , I think your political bias compared to most other websites could be seen easily as moderately leftist, and in that I’m convinced that our political ideals wouldn’t be far apart at all. However, in the past four or so years, underneath the mounting evidence of most gaming press websites being nothing but glorified PR (Gerstmann-gate, Doritogate, Gamergate, too many damn gates to be honest), this has compounded an already jaded viewer base after being assaulted by people who aren’t even remotely trying to hide their clearly leftist bias. Many people say that games cannot be apolitical, and as a music journalist of over a decade (with quite a compendium of death threats leaving me weary of using my real name online), I think it’s precisely this idea that the music industry fought tooth and nail to defend against in the early 90’s. The racist, unfounded and frankly unfounded idea that gangster hip-hop and death metal would turn our youth into murders and general hooligans. For the past long while, gamers have been at the behest of websites often vehemently proclaiming their stance to the point of excluding everyone who was remotely critical on their heavily political messages, just look at #notyourshield for a list of women and POC frankly sick of being told they don’t exist.

    The idea that there is sexism in the industry is one hundred per cent real, but now you have people who claim to fight it while actively torpedoing the The Fine Young Capitalists, a project aimed completely at putting women into the game industry, without being part of the proven king-making ground that is Kotaku, Polygon, the Escapist, and RPS. @TFYCapitalists have talked about this at length. The few (comparatively) bad apples of the GG collective cannot offset how completely dishonest this is, especially after having been told for years that *WE* were the problem.

    Unfortunately, the point we’re at is that #GamerGate is a runaway train due to the nature of its mostly anonymous upbringing. I think it started in earnest as a way to finally make a difference by people who felt that they were tired of being bullied by harsh rhetoric and outright censorship, but wound up getting co-opted by people with a personal or political bone to pick with a person or group. We’re deep in now with multiple hit-pieces on the gaming community that is further and further distancing itself from the gaming press, the most questionable hackings I’ve ever seen, vitriolic harassment coming from every angle, and no unified voice to consolidate it. The stories that the entirety of Gamergate inculcates is reaching Greek epic levels due to the sheer volume of information to consider, and it’s largely in the hands of people that are first finding common ground with each other spontaneously and combating people who might be able to address their criticisms if they weren’t battered with harassment. Everyone is yelling, but no one is getting heard.

    Good article, sorry for the tl;dr and the absolutely ridiculous way people have been behaving with regards to both the situation and someone who’s mostly been fair towards GG.

  • EqualityEd

    When will we see journalist abolish the abuse of their readers? They take no responsibility for their misandry, male bashing, or general lack of respect for gamers. It’s as if the people were meant to be hated by the journalist who were supposed to be serving them. This nonsense has to stop and if the industry can’t purge a pack of self serving journalist with the agenda of manipulating the public to advance their personal agendas then it doesn’t deserve to thrive. Those on top are the problem not the people. Those who get the bully pulpit are using it to malign, silence, and abuse the gamers rising up to challenge their corrupt abuse of power. We need accountability NOW!