The past, present and the future of #GamerGate
It feels somewhat unreal that it´s been a year since #GamerGate first started (Adam Baldwin tweeted out InternetAristocrat’s Quinnspiracy Theory videos with the hashtag “#GamerGate”, on the 27th of August 2014). It´s true though. As it was GG´s 1 year anniversary yesterday, and that´s also why I decided to write a personal article about it. As we have been writing about #GamerGate since the very start pretty much. And during these 12 months, GG has offered more action, incidents and drama than anything else which I have ever covered in my whole life. In fact, there has been so much stuff going down in GG since August last year. That it´s been hard for us keep up with everything from time to time. I should also point out that all of this has been a learning process for me as well, because I was not quite sure what to think or believe when I first heard about GG last summer. It was not entirely my fault though, since it was rather hard to get an “honest” view of what GG was all about (as media only showed one side of the story). So in my case I started to understand that there was something fishy going on around September last year.
As I found out about Gamasutra´s “‘Gamers’ don’t have to be your audience. ‘Gamers’ are over.” article (written by Leigh Alexander), the GameJournoPros Google group (mail list) incident, and the “5 Guys Burgers and Fries” scandal. Let´s just say that I found out that the media did not tell the whole story, nor the truth for that matter. Just take ABC News “What it feels like to be a Gamergate target” video, The law and order SVU episode, or recent events such as the E3 2015 Anita Sarkeesian poster incident and Arthur Chu´threats against #GGinDC for example.
Not to mention all the events which the media has either ignored or just showed one side of the story. Like the #GamerGate industry blacklists, American McGee gets death threats, how #GamerGate has changed the games industry, that there indeed are women in #GamerGate or the Intel and Feminist Frequency incident (the list is never-ending). Yes, there have been quite a lot of events such as this since last summer. However, these are my top picks of GG highlights since August 2014 uptil now:
– Arthur Chu made threats against #GGinDC
– The corrupt gamejournos list
– Tim Schafer and the GDC 2015 Sockpuppet scandal
– Mercedes Carrera Vs Chris Kluwe – Racist slurs and douchery
– Player Attack attacks innocent Gamers
– #GamerGate analysis by Women, Action, and the Media
– Ian Miles Cheong apologises to #GamerGate and Gamers
– #GamerGate has tweeted out 7.5 million tweets in less than a year
– When something goes wrong blame GamerGate
#GamerGate´s 1 year anniversary
And even though media, anti-GamerGate and the SJW movement have tried very hard for over a year to make it seem (and sound) like #GamerGate has achieved nothing (nor done any good). It’s actually the right opposite to that, because between 2014-08-27 to now. #GamerGate has donated money to charity, (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and PACER Center National Bullying Prevention for example), and has made several big games news sites to update their ethics policies (IGN, PC Gamer and Eurogamer to name a few). Not only that, GG also stod by the female indie dev Jennifer D’aww when the SJWs tried to boycott her game “SeedScape” on Steam Greenlight in November last year (however, “SeedScape” got greenlit despite their boycott attempts). There are of course much more achievements to be listed and mentioned. So if you´re interested in reading more about #GamerGate´s achievements, then I would recommend you to check out wiki.gamergate.me. On a personal level, I think that the single best #GamerGate achievement (so far), would be their fight against corruption and bad ethics in the video game industry (thus the deepfreeze homepage).
As far as I know, I/we have received zero threats, mean or evil comments from #GamerGate since the movement started last summer. Sadly enough though, as of lately I have been receiving quite a lot of harsh comments on Youtube and via our homepage (I have removed the comments). I´m not trying to fish for sympathies, as I know that people hate that sort of thing. I just wanted to get this of my chest, and that´s the reason why I have felt a bit down for the last couple of days. Basically, I’ve been told that everything I do is shit, I am shit etc. (it all started when I uploaded our “Sexism and sexist game design (female edition) – Topic of the week” video). I guess that I need to get myself some thicker skin, so that I can handle stuff like this better.
Anyhow, my point would be this. #GamerGate has been nicer to me (us) then any other side. In fact, some of the nicest people I´ve talked to are #GamerGate supporters (on one level or another). So I don´t see #GamerGate as a hate or terrorist group (whom also hate women). Funny enough, while I was writing this article, there have been new events going down that concerns GG. So I will go through most of them shortly. However, I´m going to start with GGinMiami (#SPJAirplay). As that event was a huge victory for #GamerGate in terms of reaching out to Gamers, journalists and media about ethics and what GG is all about.
The GGinMiami event
Ah yes, SPJAirplay in Miami. I actually watched the whole thing unfold live via Youtube and Twitter. And I honestly thought that there would be no “GGinDC” part II in Miami, but I was wrong. I mean, the original idea was that there would be a debate between the Anti and Pro sides of #GamerGate, but no one from the Anti side showed up. Instead someone started to dox people on the #GamerGate panel, then came the bomb threats shortly after that (for more exact details of the events, visit hotair). Which forced everyone to leave the SPJAirplay event.
However, things worked out rather well despite the bomb threats (which were said to be ten to the count). As the #GamerGate side of SPJAirplay started to talk to journalists, Gamers, developers (and even people who train journalists) on the streets of Miami, people such as:
Lib Walsh (Ethics committee)
Ren LaForme (journalism trainer, Poynter institute)
Cathy Young (Newsday, representating Pro-GamerGate even though she´s not a Gamer)
Mark Ceb (Action points)
Oliver Cambell (one of the big voices for GamerGate, former game journalist)
Ashton Schow (writer for Washington Examiner, Gamer)
Derek Smart (software developer)
Milo Yiannopoulos (Breitbart)
Christina Hoff Sommers (AEI)
And they talked about everything from#GamerGate, journalism, ethics, corruption in the video game industry to how journalists should approach #GamerGate (and vice versa).
And I learned a great deal about journalism just by listening to Lib Walsh, Ren LaForme and Oliver Cambell. As for my thoughts on the “SPJAirplay Miami” event as a whole, I think that #GamerGate won a lot of points and sympathies with the media during the GGinMiami event. And everyone (#GamerGate, none #GamerGate and everyone in-between) could agree on that no one should take Gawker Media seriously. So that´s a great victory with no doubt, at least in my book.
Techcrunch Games after GamerGate Aka “Gamers are dead: Part II” article
Most of you probably still remember Gamasutra´s “‘Gamers’ don’t have to be your audience. ‘Gamers’ are over.” article. Well, Techcrunch pretty much made a sequel to that article, with their “Games after GamerGate” post. That´s at least what I felt when I read it. You don´t have to take my word for it though, as you can read the whole thing for yourself´s down below (via the links):
#Gamergate? Adults shouldn’t be playing video games anyway
Then we got Gavin McInnes (his a British-born Canadian writer, creative director, actor, and co-founder of Vice Media.) who starred in Rebel Media´s “#Gamergate? Adults shouldn’t be playing video games anyway” video on the 19th of August. Well, it´s hard to tell if Gavin is just trolling, or if he was dead serious in that video. Nevertheless, I don´t agree with anything of the stuff that he said. And what did Gavin say exactly? Well, take a look for yourselves:
“While it’s noble for Nero and Christina Hoff Sommers to be fighting political correctness and Gamergate, I have to take a step back and say, “Why the hell are grown men playing video games?” Talk about Gamers is about as ridiculous as talking about TVWatchers. It’s not a movement, it’s an indulgence.More importantly, it’s an indulgence for kids. The fact that the politics of how adults play video games is such a big part of the public discourse shows how incredibly infantilized our culture has become. Shooting monsters is for little kids. Grow up.” – Gavin McInnes, Rebel Media
Nothing of what Gavin said makes sense, as most developers, retailers, publishers and Gamers are adults. So it didn´t take long before Gavin started to receive comments such as this:
“Ffs dude, your a funny guy with a lot of wisdom to share but THIS was embarassing. Video games are the same as movies, books and tv. It’s entertainment and it can be extremely well made in terms of being artistic. My mother plays games, doesn’t change the fact that she’s in her 50’s, works, brought up 3 children and now looks after a grandchild. She’s in no way immature, babyish or whatever. You are running on a stereotype that was stamped out a decade ago. So please good sir, YOU grow the fuck up because you are set in your ways man. – RatchildUK
“Gamergate was about journalistic integrity. Video games create jobs, so people can buy a home, car etc and be productive members of society. This video rubbish mate. and less of the bullshit stereotypes.” – David Winters
“Essentially Gavin has become the old out of touch man yelling at kids to get off his lawn while swinging his cane at them. Or maybe he will complain about them whipper snappers and their ROCK MUSIC next. Dear lord dude. Games have not been for kids since SNES days. As those kids grew up they wanted more mature subject matter to engage with. And got it in spades in the PlayStation gen and on. Just how movies grew out and matured. Games have been for adults for about 25 years now.” – Brad DL
Sorry Gavin McInnes, but you´re dead wrong mate.
Camel city dispatch´s pins down the shooting of Adam Ward and Alison Parker on GamerGate
It´s quite obvious that #GamerGate isn´t “just” about games and ethics any more (thus the fight against Vox Media and Gawker Media). No, GG has taken on mainstream media as well (it probably started with ABC news “What it feels like to be a Gamergate target” video, which was uploaded on Youtube in January this year. And by the way, that video has +54,000 dislikes at this moment). And it seems like GG is ready to rumble with yet another news outlet, this time it´s Camel city dispatch that has caught GG´attention. And rightfully so, since Camel city dispatch used the very tragic shooting of Adam Ward and Alison Parker (as pictured above), and pinned it down on #GamerGate (as seen in the pictures down below).
I´m speachless really, and I feel very sorry for Adam Ward and Alison Parker, their friends and family. As for Camel city dispatch, sham on you!
Ice-T and #GamerGate
I have known for a very long time that Ice-T is a dedicated Gamer (COD, Gears of War, the GTA series with many more. That’s nothing new beneath the sun. So when I saw his tweets about Gamers and the press (as seen in the picture down below), I didn´t think all that much about it. However, at first I thought that he was standing with #GamerGate. But then I saw his “What is #GamerGate?” tweet. And that tweet started a whole chain of tweets. As people immediately started to ask Ice-T if he didn´t know what #GamerGate was when he played his part in the “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Intimidation Game” episode (which was based on #GamerGate) last year. Well, it seems like Ice-T is leaning more to GG then anything else. That´s at least the vibes that I felt from Ice-T´s most-recent tweets.
So Ice-T´s “Gamers VS the press” rants is going to be the topic of this week for sure. I´m still a fan of his though, and it feels like his “Freedom Of Speech” (Body Count, 1992) song is more suiting now, then it was 23 years ago. With that said, I hope that you enjoyed my article. And feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comment section.
This is a personal opinion of the writer, and it doesn’t necessarily represent the other writers (nor The Gaming Ground´s) opinions.
Robin “V-Act” Ek
The Gaming Ground
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