Tag Archives: gamergate

My #Gamergate Is A Purple Unicorn

unicorn
Not purple but good enough.

Sometimes it’s hard to remember that this “war” between gamers, industry, bloggers, journalists, basically everyone, has lasted so long. From the sidelines it all looks like a giant cluster. I keep thinking the boil will burst and this will all subside but alas, it just keeps going.

For a brief moment it did feel like things would cool off: since I began drafting this post The Fine Young Capitalists managed to get fully funded. I decided some days ago to not contribute to their campaign but not because I wish them any ill will. My heart does want some good to emerge from all this mess, but I wasn’t convinced this group could handle/manage what they’re promising. As I’ve said before, whilst I understand the desire to respond in kind to hate, and the frustration of a seemingly media blackout, I feel that official channels should be kept as professional as possible. The lack of ability to maintain a business tone in the face of adversity does not bode well, in my humble opinion.

TFYC’s Matthew Rappard was interviewed by APGNation, which was…interesting. He named dropped two journalists that haven’t written about his organization despite speaking with him. Jason Schreier of Kotaku I don’t feel was a big deal, only because Schreier himself had stated he talked with Rappard. Schreier has since reveled why there is no article on Kotaku about TFYC and probably won’t be anytime soon. Freelancer Choli Rad is a different story. Unlike Schreier there had been no public statement prior about talking with Rappard, and undoubtably the interview led to hate-filled spew flung her way. Even so, she handled the situation professionally (there’s that word again!) and maturely. She, too, gave an explanation for the lack of coverage. Her explanation makes perfect sense: it was a bunch of he-said-she-said drama and she wanted nothing to do with it.

The problem is a number of sites did decided to document the drama, just without the TFYC angle. That was a mistake. The omission of the campaign by nearly all major gaming sites gave credence, false or not, to some of the gamergate claims about journalism ethics and integrity. By treating Rappard and the capitalists as persona non grata, the press created a “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” situation, thus TFYC’s strange allies/bedfellows.

It’s possible that if the gaming press had given TFYC enough rope they would have hanged themselves, but instead the press has created a rallying point for gamergate that is now a bit hard to dismantle, if not imposibble.

As far as the rest of gamergate, well, there really isn’t much to say. While sympathetic to the affront felt with all the “death to gamers!” posts going up, there is no denying I am a feminist, and on the left side of politics. As such, upon seeing the hashtag/movement/whatever become so… MRA, right-wing, and anti-feminist, I had no desire to be associated with it. I do agree there are issues with the gaming media, but these are probably growing pains. So yes, be critical of the press and force them to be more accountable and transparent when such things are needed, but this desire to remove all politics and social awareness is just backwards.

The Fine Young Capitalists and the Death of Gamers

The gaming press has been proclaiming from the hilltops these last few years how games and gaming studios need to be more diverse and inclusive. So I find it a bit surprising that an Indiegogo project aiming to do just that has received no press from any of the major gaming outlets. I’d wager most people were unaware of The Fine Young Capitalists until after the ridiculous drama/harassment kerfuffle that exploded across Reddit, Tumblr, Twitter, etc. these past weeks.

I had hoped now that the hatchet seems to be, at professionally, buried that maybe now those big name sites would say something, anything, about TFYC. It is not as if it is impossible to write about them without mentioning the unmentionable. If the fear is people talking about said issues in the comment sections, they are already, so you might as well do some good.

It irks me and feels two-faced: we want more women in gaming but we won’t mention a project designed to bring about such because of reasons.

As far as the other issue that has sprung up recently, the “death of gamers”, well that’s just silly. It seems to be two different camps proclaiming this: one is speaking of a specific demographic and the other of the term itself. The latter I can agree with, there really should be another term to distinguish between someone who plays a game, any game, and someone who is heavily invested/involved with the hobby/community/whatever. Unfortunately I can’t think of any better terms at the moment so I’ll keep calling myself a gamer, thanks.

The other argument, that what studios, media and the like often think of as a “gamer” is out of date…well, yes that is true and has been for awhile. And while I understand the idea is to separate games from the cesspool of the internet, I have never been a fan of hyperbole and that is what a number of these articles are starting to feel like. Lumping everyone together as such is akin to throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

I support feminism but I do not support saying internet trolls are worse than ISIS, and if we’re going to yell at people for slut shaming please stop hurling “virgin” like an insult. When you sink down to such a level you don’t make your opponent look like a bigger fool, you just make yourself as mud-covered as them.

The loud misogynistic trolls make me as angry as the next person, but getting into screaming matches with them isn’t helping anyone. It sucks being the bigger person but if you want to make someone appear childish the best thing to do is to act like an adult yourself. I feel like both sides of this “debate”, if you can even call it that, have behaved poorly.

Update 9/3/14: To date I have yet to actually donate money to TFYC myself, for wanting more information. So far there has been only one, rather slanted, article since my original posting. I also find the campaign’s response to this media blackout and now critique to be rather human and understandable, but not exactly professional. Not that there is a whole lot of professionalism going on in general these days, but it does give me pause. Still, I would like to see the gaming press actually do some reporting on this game jam, positive or negative.