I’m not scared of desperately uncool cultural reactionaries like Jack Thompson or anti-witchcraft Harry Potter burners. I’m scared of the people who do hold cultural power, who have the loud voice, who are, in fact, the cool kids, but think they’re embattled underdogs. I’m scared of the people who think that because disco was “taking over music” they had the right to “fight back” bullying and attacking disco performers and fans.
I’m scared of people who look at someone like Zoe Quinn, an individual who makes free indie games, or Anita Sarkeesian, an individual who makes free YouTube videos, and honestly think that these women are a powerful “corrupt” force taking away the freedom of the vast mob of angry young male gamers and the billion-dollar industry that endlessly caters to them, and that working to shut them up and drive them out somehow constitutes justice. The dominant demographic voice in some given fandom or scene feeling attacked by an influx of new, different fans and rallying the troops against “oppression” in reaction is not at all unique. It happens everywhere, all the time.
But let’s be honest: It’s usually guys doing it. Our various “culture wars” tend to boil down to one specific culture war, the one about men wanting to feel like Real Men and lashing out at the women who won’t let them. Whenever men feel like masculinity is under attack, men get dangerous. Because that’s exactly what masculinity teaches you to do, what masculinity is about. Defending yourself with disproportionate force against any loss of power? That’s what masculinity is.
Billed as “by survivors, for survivors,” Zoe Quinn and Alex Lifschitz have launched the Crash Override Network, which is also billed as an “online anti-harassment task force.”
Here’s the rundown from the site itself:
Who we are:
Crash Override is a support network and assistance group for victims and targets of unique forms of online harassment, composed entirely of experienced survivors. Our network includes experts in information security, white hat hacking, PR, law enforcement, legal, threat monitoring, and counseling. Most, if not all, of our agents are former clients. Prior to formal launch, our trial runs had great success in helping victims lock down their information, prevent SWATing attempts, and feel like they were back in control of their online life.
What we do:
Our network works preventatively and reactively, warning targets and working with them during episodes of harassment to keep them safe and provide them with the means to reduce harm and rebuild, as well as disempower their harassers. We understand that every cast of online harassment is unique in terms of its targets, aggressors, and circumstances, and that no one plan of survival is suitable for everyone. We instead work with clients to tailor a unique plans [sic] of action, informed by our own experience and prior success in the field.
This is an amazing and crucial development. Especially now that the GG trolls have escalated their game to increasingly dangerous levels, doxxing and swatting feminists. (Link TW for stalking, threat, harassment, misogyny - it is a depressing read but this is what’s happening in 2015).
Feminists in tech have to do all we can to protect women and anyone targeted by these misogynists.
Well surprise surprise Tom Preston’s retarded. Why you may ask? Well let’s break down his comic and artist’s description. first the comic itself.
1. He knows nothing about how and why Vivian James was created
A group called The fine Young Capitalists (TFYC) hosted a charity (for lack of a better term) where women would pitch their ideas for video games, those ideas would be drawn out by concept artists, and then voted on. The winner’s game would be made and the funds would be donated to charity with 8% going to the girl who pitched the winning idea as royalties.
Zoe Quinn (Yeah, we have to mention her again. Just think of her as the two bullets that started WWI) attempted to vilify the charity in a fit of persecution complex saying it was oppressive to have women give ideas for free.
Not mentioning that was the extent of their contribution, ideas, not art or coding but being the ideas guy but I digress. She used her connections in gaming journalism to shame TFYC and major gaming journalists sites blindly followed her lead.
When the Five Guys scandal started (this was before GamerGate was officially a thing), 4Chan’s /v/ caught on to this event when one of the “charity’s” prominent members wrote a comment on Reddit detailing what happened. You can read the comment here: http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/814/183/c06.png
The result is something magical. 4Chan has defeated feminists by being better feminists and thus ultimately discrediting feminists. They funded TFYC’s project and donated enough money that they were allowed to design a character that would appear in the winning game.
Being smart, they designed a female character that would go against the feminist’s assumptions. Rather than a ditzy bimbo, they created just about the most average girl ever but still one that was easily recognizable: http://www.funnyjunk.com/vivian+james/funny-pictures/5269334
She was a girl. She was a gamer. But she wasn’t a gurl gamer. Her interests were video games. She hated video game journalists. Her shirt was green and purple representing 4chan’s color and she wore a 4 leaf clover on her headband to symbolize 4chan as well. Even her name was video game related. vivian James being a close approximation to vidya gaems, /v/’s terminology for video games. Save for the inevitable porn that was drawn of her later down the line, there was nothing inherently offensive about the character herself save for the people who made her.
TFYC accepted the character and she became the face of GamerGate, a rebellion of the consumer against the corrupt devs, journalists, and social justice warriors corrupting the industry: http://cdn.themis-media.com/media/global/images/library/deriv/801/801073.jpg
Of course feminists were still mad even though there was nothing offensive about Vivian’s design. They attempted to slam 4chan as pedophiles but that failed to catch wind. They attempted to contact and shame TFYC for accepting money from 4chan, ironic because it was feminists who attempted to destroy the “charity” in the first place. 4Chan funded a project to get women in gaming. Feminists are so hell bent on being victims that they actively attempted to oppress women from getting into gaming. Is there any finer argument that feminism is obsolete in the first world?
2. Take a look at Dobson’s depiction of her and then take a look at what 4Chan made: http://38.media.tumblr.com/0ba8ae1413ac3cf00a0bb47a7b87a444/tumblr_naqa31NRbj1tvej0ho1_1280.jpg
Dobson has made her shaplier, ditzier, wider eyed, and overall overly feminin. The very thing he criticizes artists hundreds of times better than he is of doing to women he did to a non-sexualized character for the purpose of making his side seem all the more valid. It was a deliberate choice on his part and he should be called out for such crude tactics. To put this in perspective, if 4chan had made a black character, Dobson would have drawn his lips bigger than the 4chan version. Apparently using stereotypical body types for women is only wrong if it’s not Dobson doing it.
3. GamerGate isn’t sexist.
In the very least, not in the way people are claiming it is. The members may not all live up to the standards set by First World Feminists and video game journalists but the movement is comprised of people from all walks of life. Outspoken feminists (including Christina Sommers, a Democrat labled as a conservative by journos) to Men Rights Activists. Various shades of philosophies about gender and gender identity can be found in the movement but the reason they all label it as sexist is because none of them subscribe to the extremists version that people like Tom Preston espouse.
This is largely a problem with a lot of things. People and movements are unfairly labeled as sexist or racist because they wish to argue the point or don’t go all the way with what certain people think should happen. It’s even worse when it comes to history where the most progressive of people would still be vilified as racists or sexists for the crime of being born too early and subscribing to the views of the era.
The point is when you hear something like a movement about video games being called sexist or misogynistic, take that with a grain of salt. Do your own research or the matter. Look at what they’re saying and maybe browse their forums and ask what it is that they’re against and why they might be called those things. Also look at who’s making the claim. How extreme are their views? dungeons and dragons was labeled as anti-Christian by radical Christians who see persecution everywhere. The film Drive was called anti-semetic…by a jewish man who sees anti semitism everywhere.
People with extremist philosophies are going to see more persecution of their ideas than people who don’t. That’s just a fact of life so again, I encourage you to do your own research when people start throwing around accusations about these things. Especially when you wouldn’t be able to confirm it yourself upon a quick glance.
4. Tom’s Joke was poorly worded. When I read “Occu-Lass Thrift, I immediately thought it was a pun on the Oculus Rift. A VR headset whose lead dev sold out to Facebook a few months ago. He really couldn’t figure out a better name to call her? Vivian Jame’s name works because it in of itself is a legitimate name but no one in their right mind would name their kid "Occu-Lass Thrift.” Again, Tom has no idea what Vivian James is and represents. If it weren’t for the girl’s comments, I think everyone would assume he was talking about the VR headset. Speaking of his comments. Let’s get right into that.
Zoe Quinn’s jilted ex-boyfriend decided to post a rant about her online, accusing her of sleeping with journalists to get good praise on her free web game (accusations that were later found to be untrue).
The Zoe Post (what Tom’s talking about) was written by Zoe Quinn’s ex boyfriend detailing her abusive and manipulative activities. The post in question left out a lot of information that was later found out by outside research but the gist is that she slept with journalists and game devs in order to promote her game Depression Quest. One of the people she slept with was her boss and another was the judge of an indie game contest that she contended.
At this point it doesn’t even matter if they had their dicks in her at all. It was found that she has clear undeniable connections to these people and that they have promoted her and her game. This is a prime example of corruption in the video game industry where close ties kills objectivity and these journos report false information to the consumer in order to appease their friends and get more personal benefits from those they promote.
The #GamerGate movement was then started with the intention of pointing out issues with “gaming journalism ethics,” but thus far has only really been good at harassing women in the games industry and forcing them (and anyone who supports them) to leave.
Apparently no one has told Tom Preston about the campaign to e-mail the sponsors of these journos and get them to back out.
Nor has anyone told Tom Preston about #NotYourShield, a Twitter campaign encouraging people from all walks of life be it religious, gender based, race based, where you’re from, etc to come out and say they do not approve of these journalists and social justice warriors speaking on their behalf.
And who would have thought that not one single person has mentioned GamerGate’s constant state of self regulation. You reading me type Zoe Quinn is the most you’ll get with that name because people in an attempt to separate themselves from her but still be able to comment on what’s important (her connections), have begun calling her “Literally Who.” In response to this Zoe has changed her Twitter name to Dr. Literally Who so it seems she’s loving the hate.
Actually now that I think about it, I’m sure the critics Tom hasn’t blocked have relayed this info to him. I’m willing to bet he just deliberately ignored to so he can make history fit his ideals. Go back to the Ministry of Truth, Dobson. you’re a shit artist and a worse human being.
When people started to question #GamerGate’s seemingly dubious motives, some 4-channers decided to make a “gamer girl” mascot called Vivian James to prove they weren’t sexist.
See: Everything I have said previous to this and do refer to the links. The first two are screen caps going over exactly how and why vivian was made. Tom Preston is dead fucking wrong. Objectively wrong. If being wrong could hurt, Tom Preston would have died before he finished that sentence.
After all… she’s a girl! Girls can’t be sexist, right? So if you’re wondering why there are so many icons of that girl on twitter or DA or whatever… that’s why.
Tom, I took this up with some psychologists and they have all declared you as a pathological liar. Short of the long. Vivian James is the face of the movement along with /V/’s board-tan (the simplistic angry looking bald guy you may see in GG images), real people like Milo, Internet Aristocrat (using his Youtube avatar), JonTron, Christina Sommers, etc.
Sadly I have a feeling too many people will be coming here, arguing about #GamerGate’s true intentions, bemoaning “Not ALL GamerGate harassed women!” and completely ignoring my brilliant pun for the Occupy Wall Street girl. Bah.
Just do what you always do. block them like a little bitch. It can’t be that what you said was wrong. It can’t be that you’re deliberately misrepresenting the movement. It can’t be that you’re outing yourself once again as a white knight ass who knows absolutely nothing about what he’s talking about but somehow think his farts don’t stink.
And fuck your little pun. Obviously people are going to ignore your shitty pun because that’s not what this comic is about you shit. Your entire description was about how sexist GG and vivian James are. Your first panel is a complete strawman of the movement. If I drew a picture of pig shitting on Muhammad followed by a second panel with a drawing of a chicken crossing the street, I’d have no right to say “and people are harping on my drawing of Muhammad and completely ignoring my brilliant why did the chicken cross the road joke. Bah.”
fuck you, Dobson. You’re objectively wrong.
PS: Your girl looks worse than the one Reddit designed for TFYC!
EDIT: Maybe he’s just mad that this isn’t how she’s usually depicted: http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2014/237/4/c/five_hundred_plus_strawpolls_by_seigaseigas-d7wif0r.png
I went to the EDF and found that they thought the same thing about Dobson’s girl’s name.
On the left we have
Naoko Mizuno, creator of Hyperdimension Neptunia series which is quite beloved all over the world among gamers. Media pay no attention to her although they whine that female video games creators are ignored and she doesn’t have a Wikipedia entry.
On the right we have
Zoe Quinn, creator of Depression Quest
which is glorified only by hipsters, white knights and social justice warriors. Media talk about her all the time because of her internet drama she created and lies about it and she has her own Wikipedia entry.
By the way here is a list with women that really contributed to the video games industry (both japanese and western). Please send me a private message to add more famous talents to the list.
How Zoe Quinn, darling of SJWs that sparked GamerGate, tried to harass and troll an African American female anti-bullying expert and it back fired to reveal she is the biggest harassing troll and conartist of them all.
One of the biggest issues in the news this week has been the ongoing rampant misogyny and outright terrorism in gamer culture, specifically the attacks on Depression Quest developer Zoe Quinn and feminist media commentator Anita Sarkeesian — both of whom have suffered exceedingly personal attacks and threats on their lives (including the horrible one in the graphic above, which was sent to Sarkeesian via Twitter). The former for merely talking sexual agency as an independent, adult woman, and the latter for criticizing the industry’s treatment of women in its games. What do these issues have to do with the rest of geek culture? Well …. everything. Misogyny in gamer culture is a symptom of a larger, systemic issue. And something needs to be done about it. Now.
I am not steeped in gamer culture, but I can tell you that what I’ve learned over the last week about the treatment of Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn has horrified me (you can read a great primer here from Andrew Todd at Badass Digest). This isn’t casual sexism — these are women who are being tormented and terrorized because they are women. And the men who are responsible for crusading against them are fighting against people they’ve labeled “Social Justice Warriors” — a derogatory term they’ve coined to insinuate that anyone who supports social justice and equality is limiting them and holding them down. These are men who were born with every right handed to them; the only struggle is the one they’re imposing upon themselves by fighting to repress women.
I know I’ll get a massive amount of hate for this and loose quite a lot of followers. But you know what, fuck it! While women in the video game industry get death threats and really hateful misogynist messages all over the place, these guys say things like that. Aleks says she’s doing it for attention, because for sure a woman who gets death threats daily wants this kind of attention and I mean he must think that as soon as a woman speaks up, she’s just an attention whore. And do I really need to comment on Dexter’s tweets, if you think this is just a joke you aren’t reading right. I’m a man and to me this is highly unnacceptable. If you wondered why I left this fandom, you have your answer. Even if they don’t say anything, Kootra and Danz, as leaders of the group, indulge these opinions and are therefore accepting them as the general opinion of the group. Well good for them, but I won’t support a group that accepts misogyny, even if it’s only by a lack of reaction to the opinions of their members.
My ask is closed, so don’t bother. If you have something constructive to add, feel free to reblog and write what you wanna say!
I was at a bar with friends when I first caught a whiff of the impending shitstorm. We were having birthday drinks when someone reached out to tell me that my ex had written a screed about our relationship that had been posted to a forum I belong to. Slowly, horrifically, we discovered that he had posted it to several other popular forums (that had immediately nuked it) and created a Wordpress blog that was literally nothing but his 10,000-word rant about our failed relationship. Shortly after that, we found Wikipedia edits on my page that had altered my date of death to coincide with planned public appearances (or, in one case, simply “soon”).