Gaming and Social Justice (The #Gamergate Thread)

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What is your stance on GamerGate?

  • I am with the pro-GamerGate crowd.

    Votes: 6 19.4%
  • I am with the anti-GamerGate crowd.

    Votes: 11 35.5%
  • I take no stance on this issue.

    Votes: 14 45.2%

  • Total voters
    31
414
United States
California
Very interesting video (at least for me):

(Edit: Woops, language warning)

I like how we get off saying that we shouldn't judge majority on the actions of the few, and then this guys just turns around and does just that. Seriously him throwing around "Bay Area Culture" so wantonly like that made me want to tear my hair out :mad:
 
1,678
Canada
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TheDrummingKING
Quoting TotalBiscuit:

While I appreciate the calm tones I feel that this video does not give an accurate assessment of the situation and furthermore continues to push a harmful narrative that really doesn't seem to have too much basis in reality.

So it's important to really know the history behind it. The catalyst was a long post by an ex of an indie developer called Zoe Quinn. In this post, it alleged a conflict of interest between a Kotaku journalist and the developer. [UPDATE: I WAS MISINFORMED. IN HIS POST, ZOES EX DID NOT IN FACT CLAIM THAT GRAYSON HAD REVIEWED HER GAME POSITIVELY. THIS CLAIM APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN MANUFACTURED SOMEWHERE DOWN THE LINE AND REPEATED ENOUGH TIMES THAT PEOPLE BELIEVE IT, HOWEVER AFTER READING THE SOURCE MATERIAL AND ARCHIVED TO ENSURE IT WASN'T EDITED AFTERWARDS, I FOUND NO MENTION OF THIS AT ALL] This information turned out to be inaccurate to a point, it alleged that the journalist (Nathan Grayson) had written a positive review of the game while in a romantic relationship with the developer. This is not true, however what is true is that Grayson wrote an article using Quinn as a source on March 31st of this year, regarding a game jam, in which he promoted her game. In "early April", the two began a romantic relationship. Editor in Chief at Kotaku Stephen Totilo claims he does not see a problem with this, since the romantic relationship began after the article was written, however many people including myself disagree, since it is unlikely that the relationship suddenly sprang out of nowhere and that a friendship was in place prior to this. I and many supporting Gamergate believe this should have been disclosed or that Grayson should have recused himself from writing this article. Kotaku disagrees. However, while this and many other examples of corruption and nepotism are core to what keeps Gamergate moving along, it wasn't even called Gamergate back then, it was called Quinnspiracy or later, Burgers and fries. These two names were abandoned because people wanted to disassociate with Zoe Quinn and any trolling and harassment that had gone on and focus on ethical issues. After 10+ articles were released in the course of one day, claiming "gamers are dead" and using hurtful and incendiary language to condemn the identity of many innocent people, #Gamergate exploded, after the term was coined by actor Adam Baldwin. It was a consumer backlash against anti-consumer articles. Many people felt angry and alienated by them and in my opinion rightfully so.

In the course of this, Anita Sarkeesian released her latest video and inserted herself into the discussion. She published alleged death threats from an anonymous internet troll and then decided to go on the offensive, repeatedly associating these threats with the entirity of those involved with Gamergate and getting directly involved in the hashtag by posting constantly negative attacks. She has nothing to do with journalistic ethics, however she inserted herself into the discussion. I personally have no doubt that she received these threats, death-threats are unfortunately very common online but I do doubt their credibility and who exactly sent them. We simply do not know. The problem with a hashtag is that there are no entry requirements. Anyone can post and claim to be associated with the movement, however it is leaderless and the actions of one person being tied to the entire movement seem fairly illogical and require some serious use of the guilt by association fallacy. In response to a one-sided narrative by the media, proclaiming all those involved to be misogynist, disgusting white male sexists, groups of those claiming to be part of Gamergate raised money for charity, hunted down and reported harassment efforts and even tracked down someone who had been sending Sarkeesian death-threats. Unfortunately Sarkeesian has refused to take this information and use it to press charges for some reason.

The idea that in order to discuss journalistic ethics you must disassociate yourself from harassment is a frustrating one. These people already tried that multiple times. They raised over $70,000 for a campaign by the Fine Young Capitalists to help women make videogames. Critics called it "weaponised charity". They raised money for anti-bullying causes after Gawker employee Sam Biddle, tweeted to his tens of thousands of followers that he endorsed the bullying of nerds. They changed hashtags twice to disassociate from harassment but what good does that do when the entire media is against them? Ashly, you say that we cannot talk about ethics until we stop harassing people. I say, we cannot talk about ethics because you won't stop talking about us allegedly harassing people. What is the first law of the internet? DON'T FEED THE TROLLS. By pushing this harassment narrative, you are giving these awful people victory and marginalizing the moderate majority who do want a serious conversation to happen about journalistic ethics. I would strongly urge you to come to the table and discuss ethical issues, freeze out those who would harass others, just as popular Gamergate forums like Kotakuinaction on Reddit have been doing for months. This industry has problems that need addressing but this is not the way to go about it. The longer the harassment narrative goes on, the worse this gets, the more frustrated alienated gamers of all races, genders, sexual orientations and creeds involved in this to improve their hobby and passion become.

Do we honestly believe this is an organized effort to drive women out of the industry? If that were true, why on earth would the targets be a controversial Youtube critic and two practically unknown indie developers? Wouldn't people be trying to drive out women of note in the industry who work at major studios and have real influence over the direction of games? If this is a harassment campaign aimed at driving women out of gaming, it is the single most unsuccessful one in the history of mankind.

Indeed, there is far more to this. Harassment has happened, I will not deny that, but it is not the responsibility of the moderate majority to apologise for the behavior of trolls. It is indeed partly the responsibility of the media for encouraging said trolls and rewarding their behavior.

Yes, we want to talk about ethics. There are plenty of examples that need resolving. This all started with Nathan Graysons relationship, Kotaku believes he did nothing wrong, some of us disagree. Patricia Hernandez of Kotaku wrote glowing articles about developers she was close friends with and in one case, even lived with as a roommate. No apologies were given, disclosure was given retroactively. Said journalist also wrote an article accusing a card game developer (nothing to do with videogames btw) of rape and after he defended himself, complained that he hadnt done enough to start a positive conversation about "rape culture". This is a man who had a potentially life-destroying allegation held over his head and Kotaku had no issue writing about it and presuming his guilt. Danielle of Polygon gave Gone Home, a game which her friend was the sound designer of, a 10/10 perfect score, she did not disclose her relationship with said person. Destructoid reviewed Borderlands 2 for which the brother of Ashley Burch was a writer and also an ex-staff member of Destructoid. This was only disclosed much later when they fell under scrutiny, they had not thought to disclose it prior. A group called GamejournoPros with a large number of "competiting" journalists allegedly colluded to blacklist a journalist called Alistair Pinsof and also discussed sending letters of support and gifts to Zoe Quinn, clearly not realising the wall that should exist between subject and journalist. Indeed one of them even referred to her as a colleague. The release of so many articles proclaiming gamers dead on the same day raised questions of collusion that have yet to be answered.

However, if you need real proof that this is about ethics, you need only look at the following. The Escapist, Polygon and Kotaku all revised their ethics policies soon after this began in direct response to it. IGN and various Youtubers have either published ethics codes or intend to do so. If this wasn't about ethics, why would you do that?
I call on everyone to reject harassment in all its forms, but simultaneously realise that the few do not represent the many. Do not engage in guilt by association and instead treat people as people, not some labeled box of sub-humans online for you to attack and dismiss. Gamers are very much alive and they are more diverse than ever. It disturbs me greatly that anyone would claim otherwise or even worse, attack their identity. Gamers deserve better media, everyone deserves better media. Let's discuss how to make that happen and let's not indulge the whims of trolls and bigots.
 

niky

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So, based on a false premise, still, on a misunderstanding of what denotes "promotion." Mentioning that Quinn is the developer of "Depression Quest" in an article is not undue promotion. It's like mentioning that Taylor Swift wrote that song in an article about her latest love affair. Yes, it does promote the material, but it is not, and never has been, considered verboten in actual journalism to attribute material or to give background information on people you're writing about.

A misunderstanding of what conflict of interest is, and that it is not retroactive. You don't get to go back in time and write a disclaimer on Orson Scott Card's Hugo-winning "Ender's Game" noting that the guy will eventually become a massive homophobic conspiracy nutjob.

A misunderstanding of what nepotism is. And the fact that none occurred, anyway.

And then an admission that the whole movement started as a targeted one centered on the developer in question and not the "Five Guys" (two of which were later proven to be incorrect).

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A revision of the ethics guideline is less an admission of guilt than protection from further criticism. These can be unwritten rules or understandings that are finally put into print for clarity. Lord knows I've had to do that in various jobs over the years.

Granted, there are issues. But entanglement is incredibly difficult to remove from such a close-knit industry. I have co-writers who once worked for car companies. And we have car company insiders who were once journalists. I have friends in the industry. It's difficult to not make friends if you're not an uptight monk who's sworn off friendship for life. Like I've said, the willingness to make friends helps you get inside scoops where others don't. It's a necessary skill for a journalist.

I have even worked for the industry, writing advertorials and hosting sponsored events. What matters is that we disclose that these things are advertorials, or sponsored, or whatnot. Then again... I've done all these things for several competing players, so I'm relatively insulated from accusations of bias.

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Yes, there are problems. And yes, people need to be called out on conflict of interest. But the movement needs an entirely new tag.

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One thing is true. The trolls and the media hysteria accompanying them have taken over the dialogue... which is why GamerGate has to die. Completely. Before something else can take its place. As I've said, with foundations built on the shakiest of premises, under false pretenses and with very little discrimination or investigation by its followers, there's no way it can ever be taken seriously by the other side, at this point.

Heck, you've shown the "Five Guys" video several times, already... even though we know, by this point, its main premise is false. To keep going back to that does a disservice to your argument.
 

Joel

Premium
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Noob616
I just can't get past that people are continually using "Five Guys" unironically in that context. And then saying this all has nothing to do with sexism and slut shaming but we'll keep talking about her sex life.
 

TenEightyOne

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Granted, there are issues. But entanglement is incredibly difficult to remove from such a close-knit industry. I have co-writers who once worked for car companies. And we have car company insiders who were once journalists. I have friends in the industry. It's difficult to not make friends if you're not an uptight monk who's sworn off friendship for life. Like I've said, the willingness to make friends helps you get inside scoops where others don't. It's a necessary skill for a journalist.

I don't think many gamer-gaters are old enough or experienced enough to understand that normal adult networking works just as you describe.

And those that do are tremendously jealous of the extra spell/pull/fire points that a vagina gives one. In my opinion the core of GG is a mysogynist singularity that resents women (possibly) using their sexuality as part of their professional persona and thereby gaining some kind of advantage that a neckbeard simply won't produce.
 

niky

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I don't think many gamer-gaters are old enough or experienced enough to understand that normal adult networking works just as you describe.

And those that do are tremendously jealous of the extra spell/pull/fire points that a vagina gives one. In my opinion the core of GG is a mysogynist singularity that resents women (possibly) using their sexuality as part of their professional persona and thereby gaining some kind of advantage that a neckbeard simply won't produce.

Don't scoff my neck-beard! :lol: Actually... those itch. A neat little soul patch is so much better. :D

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It doesn't even have to be sexuality so much as plain attractiveness and/or an outgoing personality. Being a full-on nerd helps you make a great product, but it's still the sociable types who are better connected to insider information. I've had to go from being the one to learning how to be the other just to get to where I am, and I must confess, I still don't have nearly enough skill as an operator to do the job some of the higher-ranked editors do.

That's why women are steadily starting to penetrate even the typically male, hidebound automotive journalism industry. Because women. do. socializing. And they do it well.

And if those women happen to like writing about women issues, sorry, you'll just have to bear with it. Just like you had to bear with guys at the magazines writing about picking up chicks and driving twice the speed limit for all these years... :lol:
 

RACECAR

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Hate to break it to you, but you are three years late on that issue (probably more after that stunt someone pulled with GT5 and Forza Poll Years ago). Does the ISR-iRacing partnership ring a bell? Hardly warrants posting that article here.

Also, what does that have to do with this?

You may have recognized names like Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn lately. You may have noticed that, in major gaming press and forums, social justice warriors (SJWs), mainly feminists, have received flak for things they do to video gaming industry and journalism. :irked:

GTPlanet, what is your stance on this? Please discuss this very seriously and with maximum civility.
 
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Hate to break it to you, but you are three years late on that issue (probably more after that stunt someone pulled with GT5 and Forza Poll Years ago). Does the ISR-iRacing partnership ring a bell? Hardly warrants posting that article here.

The author explicitly said GamerGate in it, and I posted it here because the pro-GG side state about "corruption in gaming journalism" and this kind of prove it.

ISR/iRacing link might be an old news, but the linked post does mention about other site(s) such as VirtualR posting primarily about pCARS (and the author of the blog has grudge against it). ;)
 

Johnnypenso

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Johnnypenso
The author explicitly said GamerGate in it, and I posted it here because the pro-GG side state about "corruption in gaming journalism" and this kind of prove it.

ISR/iRacing link might be an old news, but the linked post does mention about other site(s) such as VirtualR posting primarily about pCARS (and the author of the blog has grudge against it). ;)
It's only corruption if you have any expectation of impartiality in internet or any other journalism for that matter. When there are people involved there will always be bias to some degree because everyone has likes and dislikes. When there is money involved, and people aren't uber wealthy and need to earn a living, money will usually sway opinions one way or the other. Since most websites involve both people and money, expecting impartiality and being disappointed when you don't get it is a bit of a stretch IMO. You have to read and watch everything with a grain of salt and learn how to decipher the sales pitch from the factual information.