Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate

Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate

It’s been six weeks since the Gamergate campaign first started. Now, for the first time, thousands of people are uniting under a single banner to call for it to stop.

Since last night, the #StopGamerGate2014 hashtag has been trending in the United States on Twitter, accumulating thousands of tweets and attracting attention from high-profile game developers, writers, and even celebrities. Though the Gamergate campaign has seen a great deal of criticism since it first launched in late August, this is the first time we’ve seen sceptics and critics band together on another hashtag in a unified attempt to stop it.

Gamergate, first coined by actor Adam Baldwin, is an amorphous campaign that is ostensibly about ethics in video game journalism and defending the “gamer” identity but has come under fire for its links to a wave of harassment, particularly of women, in gaming.

The StopGamerGate2014 hashtag has seen a great deal of momentum on Twitter, with around 50,000 new tweets since last night according to analytics site Topsy. (#GamerGate has had over 100,000 tweets in the past day. Of course, due to the nature of Twitter hashtags, it’s unclear how many of these tweets are criticising either campaign and how many are supporting them.)

Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate

Freelance writer Veerender Jubbal started the hashtag at around 8.45pm ET (11.45am AEDT), and since then it’s gained enough momentum to be continually hovering on Twitter’s list of trending topics.

This isn’t a random occurrence — the popularity of this hashtag draws from a horrifying series of incidents that started with death threats levied at game developer and Gamergate critic Brianna Wu, who was driven from her home last Friday. In the days to follow, mainstream outlets and television networks took increased interest in Gamergate, many drawing links between the movement and harassment of women.

The connection is being drawn in part because of the intense animosity shown to Sarkeesian and other people in the gaming scene — predominantly prominent women — by apparent supporters of Gamergate on Gamergate-related forums and social media. The movement’s roots trace back to a blog-post character assassination of independent developer Zoe Quinn that led to Quinn fearing for her safety.

Some in Gamergate have condemned the harassment and complained of harassment themselves even as the attacks on these women continue, showing, at best, Gamergate as a community unable to stop it. This new hashtag is the culmination of what appears to be growing sentiment that Gamergate has, if nothing else, become too toxic to be productive in any way, and that any of the movement’s valid concerns have been drowned out long ago.

Last night, a threatening letter aimed at feminist critic Anita Sarkeesian — who has been the target of threats and harassment for two years now, since well before Gamergate — led her to cancel a planned lecture at Utah State University. Though this particular letter did not mention Gamergate, Sarkeesian added on Twitter that there had been multiple threats, one of which did claim to be affiliated with the hashtag. She went on to condemn Gamergate:

Sarkeesian’s tweets helped pour fuel on the #StopGamerGate2014 fire, and within the next few hours, the hashtag had exploded, with support from a number of high-profile writers, reporters and game developers from companies ranging from Naughty Dog to Ubisoft, from Atlus to Epic.

Celebrities like Patton Oswalt, Seth Rogen and former NFL kicker (and occasional Deadspin writer) Chris Kluwe have also spoken out against Gamergate.

Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate

It’s worth noting: not everyone contributing to #StopGamerGate2014 is standing behind the message. As with any other social media campaign, including Gamergate itself, anyone can add to the volume by publishing tweets with the hashtag, whether or not they support what it has to say.

Consequently, some Gamergate supporters have also used the hashtag to express disagreement and advocate for their campaign:

Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate
Thousands Rally Online Against Gamergate

For further reading about Gamergate, check out our previous coverage.


          • Best explanation I’ve heard of it so far.

            Essentially, “let’s make an issue out of something that shouldn’t be an issue because our working lives are too boring”.

        • A righteous crusade against people attempting to further their own selfish feminazi agenda whilst destroying the gaming industry… Or a bunch of mysoginists using the internet to harass women because they hate them and think they have no right to comment on the industry.

          Depends on who you ask.

        • I’m pretty sure its about some gamers who arrived at a locked door that needed a red key, and they couldn’t find it… or something.

        • According to wikipedia, it’s a worker ant that becomes the dominant breeding female in the absence of a queen ant.

        • I’d google it. But google something like “what was gamergate ORIGINALLY about” and see how it got twisted into something it is not for some others cause.

    • Do you really want to see them anyway? I knew what they were going to say and what agenda they were going to push without reading them.

  • So can we go back to the original point behind this and looking at whether games reviews are written from an impartial point of view or not? All it took (as usual) was a handful of idiots to take things to the extreme and the whole thing blew out of proportion.

    • As with all forms of politics the original point is moot. Now it’s just about rallying behind the mob of your choice. I choose Pikachu. Yes there’s always a pikachu mob. Don’t question the logic.

    • That wasn’t the original point. It was a set up from the start. I would post a link to the proof but I’m unable to do so right now. Regardless, even if it was the original point, by now that has been tainted by the disgusting behavior of its supporters. If it was a legitimate concern then there were a million and one other ways that could have gone about addressing the issue that didn’t involve rape and death threats on women (who, by the way, mostly consisted of game developers, not games journalists, which probably would be the “better targets”) that drove then out of their own homes from fear for not only themselves but also their families. If it was about journalists ethics then where was the abuse on the journalist that apparently slept with Zoe Quinn? I didn’t see it. It was kinda hard to see anything else through the scum filter of misogyny

      • been tainted by the disgusting behavior of its supportersCorrection. Tainted by the actions of a minority of tits that you find in every corner of the Web and life in general. Why would you pay attention to these people instead of the ones with legitimate concerns? It’s not hard to find such people who are trying to have a discussion about the actual issues.

      • Like I said, the actions of a handful of people. Unfortunately as exampled in your post it has tarnished anyone who supports ‘gamergate’ which is why I won’t go any further with my point of view because all of a sudden I’ll be supporting rape and death threats because people can’t differentiate between one point of view and an extreme threat.

        There was a lot said about Kotaku US journalism though

        • I don’t see anything wrong with people being concerned about ethics in game journalism. That’s fine. What I’m saying is that the whole ethics thing was a front for people to discredit women developers and push their own agenda. The people who are being douche bags are using gamergate as a banner. So if you want to seriously discuss the issue of ethics in game journalism, it might be prudent to not use the gamergate banner. They may be a minority, but they are doing some really discussing things. Personally I wouldn’t want to be associated with that and would ditch the gamergate banner

          • Rubbish it was a “front”…. Did you even follow the hashtag? Sensible arguments mainly, the most derogatory were the “DERP NERDS GO OUTSIDE YOU LOSERS” which were fueled by stupid stereotyping articles like this.

            Additionally it was full of female, LGBT, multi-racial commenter too…

            In fact if you scroll through the tag all you ever find is the other side of the argument telling people “YOU ARE A MISOGYNIST”.

      • “Regardless, even if it was the original point, by now that has been tainted by the disgusting behavior of its supporters”

        Wrong… Oh so wrong… Cherry picking at it’s best. “All Muslims are terrorists!”

        Even Anita says “ONE” threat “CLAIMED” it came from the #gamergate tag. That’s exactly the kind of bullshit whitewashing broadbrush accusation the MAJORITY of people on #gamergate are annoyed at.

        Kotaku US has a major bee in it’s bonnet because they were embarrassed by the masses that railed against it’s piss poor click bait journalism (like this is) which was and still is stereotyping and derogatory to the average gamer.

        • Yeah OK i see your point about cherry picking. You’re right. We shouldn’t put them all together in one basket. That’s not cool. I do think however, that maybe because of all this you might want to reconsider using the gamergate banner if you want to have a serious discussion on the ethics in games journalism. These people who have done all these horrible things have pretty much made it impossible to have any actual discussion under that banner

          • Some people have… But this is pretty poor journalism (as expected from Kotaku US who are trying to put this behind them but have the last laugh on the way).

            “ONE” “CLAIMED” tweet that isn’t even put forward (I mean it wouldn’t have been hard…) But alas! It’s 100% undeniable truth that all 10 million odd #gamergate tweets are ALL attacking women.

            If I had the time or care and I would find more tweets under #gamergate stereotyping gamers than I would abusive of women.

        • “All Muslims are terrorists!”

          That’s a very interesting point. Muslims everywhere have been stereotyped as terrorists because of the actions of a tiny percentage of extremists. The vast majority of law-abiding, reasonable Muslims are expected to apologize for the behaviour of extremists (such as #notinmyname). Now gamers are being asked to stand up against the actions of extremists within the gaming community, but many people (such as yourself) are misinterpreting this as an attack on all gamers.

          • Or you could just stop stereotyping…

            Just like I don’t believe all Muslims are terrorists.

          • There wasn’t any stereotyping in my post. I clearly stated that Muslims had been stereotyped, and now gamers are being stereotyped (just like Muslims are) because of the actions of extremists in the community. I never once said all gamers are extremists. You’ve completely misread my post and you’ve completely misunderstood the issue.
            People like you are the problem with gaming today. With comments like “This woman is Toxic to all gamers”, you make the rest of us look like uninformed, ignorant, sexist idiots.

          • No I was pointing out that “standing up to defend and stand up to something” wouldn’t be required if general stereotyping wasn’t rampant in both scenarios.

            And honestly you can get fucked with the “People like you” bullshit too. Don’t paint me as sexist when I’ve said nothing of the damn sort.

          • Standing up to defend what, exactly? This false notion that somehow gamers are under attack? Do you honestly believe in that? And resorting to swearing? Are you unable to take criticism like an adult?

          • That wasn’t criticism @scruffy it was slander and untrue and got the correct response.

            Don’t make up lies to somehow form an argument. I never said anything against any woman let alone call one toxic.

          • @mypetmonkey
            Apologies for the misquote; i should have attributed that to another poster. My point still thoroughly stands; people like you are taking this as a personal attack, when it isn’t. And here’s something you did say:

            “Even Anita says “ONE” threat “CLAIMED” it came from the #gamergate tag. That’s exactly the kind of bullshit whitewashing broadbrush accusation the MAJORITY of people on #gamergate are annoyed at.”

            How do you know, without any shred of doubt, that it didn’t? Are you privy to information the rest of us are not? Can you honestly say that there are absolutely zero #gamergate followers who have sociopathic tendencies?
            There have been many critiques of sexism in film and television, but they don’t result in their authors receiving threats of rape and murder. No one deserves the sort of treatment Anita has received. Your hobby is not under attack. She has not insulted you personally. Deal with it like an adult.

          • @scruffy I’m not taking it personal, and I flew off the handle and apologise but that sort of stuff happens too often… I just find the article really lazy.

            The article doesn’t even show the offending tweet…. Neither did Brianna’s it was just a complete and utter dick on twitter but she then applied #gamergate to it. It’s just so wrong.

            If you have the time and patience to delve into the cesspool which is twitter and follow the #gamergate feed it is so blatantly obvious that it “isn’t all about hating women” it’s not even close. It’s true a lot don’t have much love for Kotaku US (of which I am the same).

            It’s just such a lazy article… They have a grudge against #gamergate and blame them as a whole for every foul deed.

          • Scruffy the problem though is that jihad and the act of terrorism is not condemned by Islam or the Quran. Terrorism is not a requisite of being a muslim but from a true muslim perspective, killing non-Islamic believers (infidels) is a perfectly acceptable and justifiable act.
            I would suggest a different example

    • “The original point” is moot anyway. All journalism – especially product review journalism gets biased due to “sponsorship” and “gifts” trust me, I work in marketing, if you want a good product review you don’t make a good product you buy a good review.

    • That was never the original point.

      It started with baseless allegations from a creepy ex-boyfriend’s blog post. They were debunked as swiftly as they were raised, but the issue had been co-opted by trolls who were already opposed to Quinn because of her views and the themes explored by her games. They stole and shared Quinn’s personal information, and sent rape and death threats sufficient to prompt Quinn to leave her house.

      Then Sarkeesian had to leave her house because they did the same thing to her.

      Then the games press picked up the story, critiquing the violent and misogynistic attitudes that produced the situation thus far. Only then does the astroturfing campaign start, as the trolls require both a general cover and a specific way to attack those who are criticising them.

      I’m sure there are some who genuinely believe the campaign is about journalistic ethics. But they didn’t start the campaign, they have never been and are not now in control of the direction of the campaign.

    • I’ve long had major issues with this “shock revelation” (that corruption or bias might exist in games journalism) because every piece of writing comes from a perspective, everyone has an opinion and everyone has some sort of agenda, it’s what makes us human. What I want, and this applies to journalism in general, not just games journalism, is a better attitude towards disclosure of personal views, payment received or personal involvement with the subject of the article. Then it’s up to the viewers to look at the article and decide for themselves whether it is worth taking on board or not.

  • we’ve seen sceptics and critics band togetherYes we have seen this, but they’ve all banded together under #GamerGate. Apparently being skeptical of and criticising ethics in journalism doesn’t count. Being skeptical of and criticising media making claims of sexism doesn’t count. You’re only considered skeptical and critical if you follow one particular agenda. Great way to redefine those words there. Before you know it when we say orange we’ll really mean limousine.

    • Multiple specific threats made stating intent to kill me & feminists at USU. For the record one threat did claim affiliation with #gamergateHoly crap! That definitely must mean that #GamerGate is full of misogynist terrorist rapists. We finally have solid evidence!
      At this point supporting #gamergate is implicitly supporting the harassment of women in the gaming industry.I assume because logic? I love when logic works out in my favour. Logic FTW.

      • Be prepared for the mass downvotes by those who will use a 12 foot wide roller to paint a pencil.

        Like Spanner

        • I’m actually okay with that because my post was aggressive and not particularly constructive anyway.

    • I’m safe. I will continue my work. I will continue speaking out. The whole game industry must stand up against the harassment of women.
      If only you would take up such an admirable cause like speaking out against the harassment of women. Maybe you know something about that topic – assuming you can distinguish between those trying to criticise you and those who are there to just troll and abuse you… which doesn’t seem to be the case. You and I could then join forces and do something positive.

      • She is speaking out against harassment of women. She had more videos than just those that analyse video games. There is also the idea that having so much harassment of women in video games filters down into how society views women. But that’s another topic. What you said “assuming you can distinguish between those trying to criticise you and those who are there to just troll and abuse you” is the same thing. If they were criticising HER WORK instead of HER, that would be different. They didn’t like what she said so they went after HER. Also, these people have stopped being just trolls and now have become actual criminals. This is concerning and not something that can be easily dismissed

        • If they were criticising HER WORK instead of HER, that would be different.There are multiple types of people who criticise her and one of those types is people criticising her work.

          They didn’t like what she said so they went after HER.So, everyone criticising her work just took a sharp turn in attitude and went after her? That’s funny, because most of the people I’ve seen criticise her work only at the very worst have questioned her honesty. None of them have had such a change of heart that sees them suddenly start threatening her. Are all these critic bipolar or something?

          these people have stopped being just trolls and now have become actual criminalsWhich “people” exactly have stopped being trolls and turned to criminal activity? Are these people in any way representative of people as a whole who play games? Criminals need to be reported and dealt with as the mentally unhinged and dangerous people they are. They are not to be labelled as gamers and used as an excuse to stifle criticism.

      • Really don’t want to this should not even be a thing.

        I have been gaming all my life, it’s what I enjoy. Out of no where this woman comes in and starts to cause all this controversy dividing gamers and ruining the industry, soon everyone will have to watch how they word and say things as it might come off as misogynistic somehow, new regulations and political correctness will come into play when developing games, causing massive strains and restrictions on developers.

        Will I have to start referring to myself a cis gender male gamer in the near future?

        She is ruining Gaming, look at what she is doing now. Some of the points she makes are somewhat valid but she is going about this all the wrong way, she is purposely trying to cause a ruckus and she just adds fuel to the fire as time goes on,

        • She isn’t ruining gaming. I don’t recall her every once saying anything along the lines of “Games are terrible, stop playing them, you’re a misogynist arse hole if you like them.” All she had done is analyse then. All art forms go through this. It isn’t an attack on gamers. It’s just someone going through and pointing out a problem that she sees. “I believe there is misogyny in games.” “How so?” “For these reasons.” “Oh OK, i can see why you may find this offensive. Maybe we should try to not do that? Coz games are awesome and we want all kinds of people playing them. Let’s try to make them more welcoming for all.” “That would be really cool, thanks.” That’s all that needs to happen. The fact that people are getting upset over it is because they don’t this to happen. Maybe you can share the reason why.

        • me, me, me that is all I am hearing. She is just ONE commenter that had some ideas that challenged the mainstream. She ddnt ask us to agree with her 100%, she was saying how she saw things and asking us to at least question how we saw things. At no point did she start a revolution but heres the thing all these idiot gamegate people did was prove her point for her.

          thats is what is sadly hilarious. I didnt agree with her video, I like some of it hated other bits but I finished it thinking “nah shes wrong” cut now to months later and extremists called in a terrorist threat to stop her speaking and fools like yourself justifies these threats. All any of that does is proves, that though she may not be completely right, she was certainly close. Never been more ashamed to be a gamer and a male.

          It isnt her that is ruining gaming but these vile supporters of hate.

          • I totally agree with you. I like her videos and agree with a lot of what she says, but i also respect your decision to disagree.

          • fools like yourself justifies these threats

            Don’t categorize me with the rest, I don’t even follow any of this to be completely honest.

            – I have not seen any of her vids
            – this is the only article I have actually read regarding this
            – I don’t care about Gamergate or any other cause related to this
            – I’m not going to obsess about this like everyone else
            – I’m just a gamer that enjoys gaming, pure and simple.
            – both sides are stupid in there own way

            All I stated was that ever since this woman came into the picture things have been getting hectic within the gaming world, I feel it’s not needed.

            I’m pretty much on cemented on the fence about all of this with the exception that I don’t like the way she is adding to the fire, it’s not good for anyone.

            . yay down votes

          • She isn’t adding to the fire. I understand that you haven’t seen her videos and that’s fine. All her videos have done is point of where there is some misogyny in games in a totally analytical fashion. That’s it. The fuss has come out of people taking issue to what she had said and instead ofvoicing the concerns they have with her work in a respectable fashion, they have attacked her. Which proceeds to point out that there really is an issue with misogyny in the gaming scene. Which makes bigger issues like women’s rights come to the foreground.

          • Yeah, I don’t agree with how people are making threats etc against her, it’s silly.
            being a similar situation a few years ago (not as big as this), If the same thing happened to me again I’d just stay low until things have calmed down.

          • People like you are the problem.

            All she has done is provide a critique of the portrayal of women in gaming. People have gotten upset over their favourite hobby seemingly being “under attack” and have responded with threats of violence and death. You haven’t bothered to watch the videos, or try to understand what the issue is; you’ve just come in and passed judgement without any knowledge of the situation.

            “All I stated was that ever since this woman came into the picture things have been getting hectic within the gaming world, I feel it’s not needed.”

            That’s like saying “Ever since Martin Luther King Jr came into the picture things have been getting hectic, and i feel it’s not needed.” Don’t criticize someone when you haven’t even taken the time to hear the point they’re trying to make.

          • How am I the problem when I’m not actively doing anything regarding this?

            I’m just a bystander really, this is the only post I have ever made about this issue and will probably be the last.

          • This woman is Toxic to all gamers.
            I don’t even follow any of this to be completely honest.

            Get out and don’t come back until you grow a brain

          • lol hypocrite. I’m just voicing my opinion mate, I’m sorry if I had offended your so called damsel in distress.

          • Nope, I’m fully supporting Scorpio in this. If you haven’t got an interest in the issue you do not have the right to have an opinion as strongly worded as “This woman is toxic to all gamers.”

        • It’s attitudes like yours which really shine a light on this whole situation.

          1) She’s one person who simply set out to analyse games. She never aimed to cause controversy – she didn’t do it, the idiots sending her threats have done that. What she says isn’t controversial. She’s not saying that people who play games are misogynist, only that she sees some level of misogyny in games. Thats it. If you don’t agree with what she says, you’re free to ignore her.

          2) You seem to have glossed over the main issue here, and that is that people’s lives have been seriously negatively impacted. Think about it – people are leaving their homes, uprooting their families, all because of video games?!? Well more accurately, because a small population of people online perceive that those who hold opinions that are different to their own are threatening their territory, and that they hold a sense of entitlement over that space which legitimises (in their view) their attacks on other people.

          3) By reframing the situation to focus more on how bad Ms Sarkeesian is, you’ve highlighted your own leanings toward supporting those who would attack her, who would cause such massive disruption to other people’s lives. The issue that we should be talking about here isn’t how dissenting voices are impacting your hobby, but those who also ascribe to your hobby are behaving in ways that are abhorent and disgusting.

          • I don’t associate with those who would threaten others over trivial bs on the internet.

            It’s like 6 am here, I was bored so thought I’d just chime in on this topic never knew I would be the target of all this white knight crap.
            I’ll let you guys continue harping on this stupid topic (and I’m talking about the whole situation) both sides are fucking stupid.

            have fun debating on this ever so important topic.

            Catch ya, i’m going to go have a coffee :).

    • Correction: only to those too stupid to understand one simple concept, you dont have to like or agree with every single word or idea someone has, that doesnt mean you cant respect their view.

      there is nothing toxic about her ideas but the toxicity of people who think that justifies threats of any level, is beyond words.

  • Oh, a HASH TAG campaign will definitely stop 4chan! Yup, dragging issues out online is definitely the way to handle them.

  • Seriously?! Is this still a “thing”? Why can’t we just move on and get on with whats important: the GAMES.

      • No one is dying.
        I dont know how many time’s ive had people on the internet being dicks to me, but its just people on the internet. I dont go throwing the term “death threat” around.

        I wouldnt be surprised if any “threats” were blown out of proportion just for a way to push the agenda more.

        • They may just be threats. But a some of these people have have found out where these women live, like they actual address, and send them rape and death threats. That’s terrifying. These poor people are scared to be in their own home. These trolls are no longer trolls. They have become criminals.

          “I wouldnt be surprised if any “threats” were blown out of proportion just for a way to push the agenda more.” Dude that’s seriously uncool. Don’t be that guy.

          • yeah I have to agree. Once random faceless internet people find my real home and put real threats in my mailbox that’s when it becomes unnerving. The fact they found your house, where you sleep that you did not give them and are willing to go their is VERY twisted and frankly is the kind of threat that would get you sent to gaol as it proved intent regardless of whether the perp was bluffing or not.
            I do appreciate what riavan is saying too though. The online crap he is referring to you just ignore. He is being general. I am sure he was not aware of the threats getting to her house and even if he was I don’t think he is talking about that. I read it as someone saying i’ll kill you online being a empty threat by a coward.

        • There’s a difference between a stupid internet comment and legitimate threats. Anita was recieving death threats on the internet ever since she announced her kickstarter. She didn’t make anything of it then and doesn’t make anything of it now.

          But then she recieved legitimate death threats. Whether or not they were serious is still up in the air, but they were still death threats. Someone told her to stay away or he’ll shoot up a school in a state that allowed civilians to carry weapons. How exactly should someone respond to that?

      • Not saying that at all. Just this stupid gender bullshit. Just forget it and get on with it. WTF is wrong with people? Who actually feels like they stand to lose anything important or even tangible by what some person has to say?

        “Oh no! Some feminist just bagged my favourite game. I’d better threaten her, her family and be an absolute dick to everyone who agrees with her JUST IN CASE they take my games away from me.”

    • WE WANT TO. That was the whole point of Sarkeesian’s videos: to make games better by being more inclusive of all types of games. That’s it. No hidden agendas. But now we all have to worry about people getting killed and raped.

        • Seriously. This is why this whole thing is so STUPID. People analyse things, point out their flaws, to make them BETTER. If we have less violence against women in games, how is this a bad thing? How is being more inclusive of others in video games bad? My brain hurts also

          • There’s nothing wrong with violence against women in video games. There is nothing wrong with violence against men in video games. Violence is Violence. Women in video games should not be magically shielded from harm. Guys get hurt in video games, girls can be too.

          • There is something wrong with violence against women if it’s only being used so the man can be the hero and save her. If you’re going to use violence against women in a narrative then give it the proper respect it deserves. It’s a deep, personal and painful thing. Turning it into a plot device to make a man look better is not acceptable

    • The steady flow of rape threats, death threats and now massacre threats pretty much ensure it’s going to remain a ‘thing’.

  • *looks up from Borderlands* Huh? Another controversy? No thanks. I’ll just continue my favourite pass time and skip the politics.

    • There was an article linked on Kotaku which talked about this the other day.

      The choice of ignoring what’s happening is a political choice.

      • It is in the same way that my choice of coffee this morning was a political choice, or my political choice not to enter the Pokemon X vs Pokemon Y debate.

        This shit is irrelevant to everything. It has zero baring on the day-to-day lives of people with enough interesting things to do to ignore it.

        It has very little to do with gaming. It’s a bunch of grown men and women who should know better starting an argument with a bunch of poorly balanced, antisocial juveniles and then everybody being up-in-arms because the standard of debate isn’t particularly impressive.

        • Thank you for saying what I could no longer be bothered to. It’s very refreshing to have someone see a side to it that people try to tell me doesn’t exist. I’ve had a bit of faith restored in this hobby now.

          Honestly if this kept up I might have skipped over to model trains. More safe from criticism about your actions as an individual with a life to be concerned about

    • *looks up from book* Huh? A black woman is being beaten for wanting to sit up the front of the bus? No thanks. I’ll just continue my favourite pastime and skip the politics.

      There is no such thing as “apolitical.” Ignoring problems that are right in front of you is just a political act in support of the status quo.

      • You have to pick and choose your causes though. The old “the standard you walk past is the standard you accept” is fine with a major human rights issue like the one you’ve listed but really…. Nobody should be expected to engage in this issue unless it’s their job to beat this stuff up (ie. you work at Kotaku).

        If people stop paying attention from the sidelines then this issue has approximately 0% impact on the lives of anyone who doesn’t want to jump in to be a victim or an attacker. If anything this whole debate has slowed change in the gaming industry and should be seen as much as a failure of those who want reform as it is proof that there are a significant portion of people on this planet who are both assholes AND gamers.

        • A major human rights issue like, say… constant threats of sexual violence in order to stifle debate?

          Would that one count?

          • It’s not a major human rights issue. It’s a handful of individuals who have (wrongly) found themselves targets of a very vocal but global minority of shitbags.

            Like I said below, if tried to “save” the music business from One Direction by pointing out that their music was shallow, derivative and just generally awful it wouldn’t make a difference to the music industry in any way shape or form but you can bet your ass I’d be shouted down, abused and threatened by a large (but insignificant) fan base of hormonally unbalanced teenagers.

            You have to pick and choose your causes, but you also have to pick your methods too. If you want to affect actual change it’s not enough to win the argument, you need to change people’s attitudes and behaviours.

            IMO necessary change has been slowly occurring within the games industry and within the fan base. I think that while well intentioned the handful of people who have tried to push for change have done it in a fashion that’s made issues worse and slowed the progress that was being made.

            I know they aren’t the same as far as the potential level of harm, but the way to diminish One Direction within the music industry would have been to buy other kinds of music, to try to ignore the crap and if possible, to create the kinds of music that I would like to hear.

            Holding a seminar to explain how One Direction suck and their fans are morons will win over an army of reasonable people who already agreed with you and inflame a militant fanbase into behaving exactly how you said they would.
            They won’t go away though, you win the argument but nothing actually changes. You’ve started a war with random individuals whose only common link is that they’re turds, speak English, live on earth and own a computer….. how do you expect to root that kind of behaviour out?

            If women receive specific threats then they should call the police immediately, but otherwise my advice would be to accept that change is slow and that unfortunately (like the rest of us) we play games as a global community and that part of that means dealing with anti-social little shits.

            Buy the games you like, make the games you want and encourage other women to do the same. At the end of the day we get to play the games that make the big companies money. No amount of seminars on how toxic the community is will make any difference if the financial incentives for change aren’t there.

          • Jesus man… start your argument with some ridiculous false equivalence and the rest is kind of not worth writing.

            It is a constant, ongoing problem that women are being harrassed, threatened, and otherwise made to feel generally unsafe and unwanted in one of the largest modern international subcultures. The perpetrators of these threats and intimidation attempts are by and large men who show flagrant disregard for women as human beings.

            Let me TL;DR this for you: Constant, public, largely socially accepted threats of rape and murder.

            That’s a pretty fucking big social problem. If you say otherwise, you are a piece of shit.

          • ‘Gamers’ isn’t really a subculture anymore. It’s like people who like sport or people who watch movies- if you live in a Western country, are under 40 there’s a good chance you play games.

            Like I said, people who receive serious, targeted complaints should take their issues directly to the police. Otherwise I can’t remember a time recently when I was online and heard a female who was just going about her day playing games be legitimately threatened with anything above and beyond childish crap that most of us have to put up with.

            There aren’t ‘constant, public, largely socially accepted threats of rape and murder’ there are a HANDFUL of people on this planet who, in attempting to force change (and one at least who has accidently been drawn into this kind of behavior) have drawn the ire of a global audience of which a very small percentage are ratbags but who can all target those individuals. Those people HAVE received threats and they should report them to police.

            There are cultural issues within the gaming community for sure, but they aren’t a major human rights issue . Prominent people who push contentious causes ALWAYS draw the ire of nutjobs and this is no different.
            I’ve worked for senior, state politicians in both contentious and non-contentious portfolios and trust me they receive threatening mail all the time. Is that a “human rights issue”? Nope, it’s a policing issue and an unfortunate consequence of presenting your ideas to a large audience.

            99% of female gamers, like 99% of male gamers, go through life playing and enjoying games and NEVER receive that kind of targeted abuse. Life for that 99% was improving consistently over time as more and more females start playing games and the market naturally shifts to meet their wants.

    • Jayne from Firefly and that alien dude from the X-files. he is not related to Alec Baldwin or his family

      • No but I had to Google and check lol. My response “oh him lol, yeah I love the X-File and Firefly”.
        Imagine if it was one of the Baldwin brothers?

  • This is pretty heavy, but luckily so far it hasn’t effected my Shadow of Mordor playthrough… #remembervideogames?

  • This on both sides has become utterly ridiculous. People have clearly chosen a side and don’t give a shit about having reasonable discussion.

  • If you feel that you have a strong vested interest in this issue and you aren’t getting paid for it, you’re a massive loser who needs to grow up, get a life, gain some perspective ect.

    That’s my two cents on this whole topic.

    Honestly I’m happy for this to go on and on for all eternity. The games industry is FAR bigger than a handful of loudmouth children behaving obnoxiously towards a (much smaller) handful of people who want broad demographic reform within the gaming industry. Neither side is ACTUALLY relevant to anything, the gaming community is full of childish turds and the people who complain just inflame said turds into behaving exactly how they’re expected to.

    The bottom line is any time you open a server with 30 people on it you’ll have 28-29 people playing their games and having fun and 1-2 shit humans being shit humans. You CAN’T stop that, the internet transcends laws, cultures, countries….. there isn’t a grand overseerer of all of gaming who can ban people from being near electronic devices because they’re anti-social twats.

    Realistically the people complaining about gamer behaviour have three options.
    1. Start some kind of global 1984 style Government that goes into little shits houses and beats them to death for being anti-social on the internet.
    2. Accept that some people are shits and move on.
    3. Whinge publically and make yourself a target for said little shits. Go on a never ending, unwinnable crusade to rid the world of mean people and spend your entire life being threatened and abused.

      • I agree with you. I AM victim blaming.

        Because you can have the best intentions in the world, but if your plan for “fixing” the problem does more harm than good then you ARE to blame regardless of if you were right in the first place.

        I’d ask you this; Have the recent efforts of certain people to engage with the gaming community to promote more tolerant standards had a positive or a negative impact on the community for minority players?

        I’d say it’s been overwhelmingly negative, if only for the coverage it gives to a minority of assholes.
        You hold these conferences and you point out how sexist gaming is, you can show examples of obnoxious behaviour from across the globe (pro tip: there’s lots of people and some of them are assholes) and at best you convince every single person in the room that gaming culture IS horrible and misogynist.

        Then what? Does some magical arbiter of gaming come down from the sky and remove all the assholes from the world who also play games?
        All you’ve done is perhaps mildly offended the vast majority of very reasonable people who play games but more than that you’ve inflamed and mobilised and army of d*ckheads who are now hell bent on harassing women in the gaming industry.
        If I was a woman sitting on the sidelines watching this I’d be less interested in getting involved in gaming than ever, if I was a company making games I’d be less interested in catering to a female demographic for exactly the same reason.

        You want change in the industry? Make games that women will like, buy games you would like as a woman and, sadly, accept that as in any global hobby there’s people who are assholes and who are always going to be assholes.
        Calling gamers out as a group does about as much good as I would “saving” the music industry from One Direction by pointing out publically that they suck. The people who like their music will continue to buy it, reasonable fans will ignore me and I’ll open myself up to abuse from a global audience of hormonally dysfunctional nutjobs who’ll get all the coverage when they threaten to kill me.

        • I’d ask you this; Have the recent efforts of certain people to engage with the gaming community to promote more tolerant standards had a positive or a negative impact on the community for minority players?
          That’s an important question you raise. There are two answers and one question I’ll put forth in response.

          In the short term, while there is still a ridiculous storm going on in which minorities are already targeted, the actions of people to promote tolerant standards are most likely having a neutral impact. The abuse currently exists, it has and is being inflamed, but it’s important to remember that this type of abuse is not new, and it’s really just being brought out into the public where more people are seeing it. One could argue that currently there is definitely a positive or negative impact and successfully get nowhere with either point. It is only after a resolution that we will see the impact.

          Which leads us into the long term. The promotion of tolerant standards involves more people saying no to harassment and abuse. In the absence of a supportive or tacit culture of abuse, abuse will become more difficult to successfully perpetrate. This should not be misconstrued as “sacrifice a few people for a positive result”, instead, an accurate interpretation would be “promote a positive result out of the abuse that currently exists”.

          Do you think it is reasonable for people who witness harassment and abuse to stand back and claim that it’s not their problem so why should they try to help?

          You want change in the industry?
          This is what people who want change have been doing for years. Abuse and harassment has followed them the entire way. I dont’ think people want to sadly accept that arseholes are going to be arseholes because it’s a defeatist and pathetic notion that supports their abusers. There will always be arseholes, but to tolerate their shit with that notion is a nonsense rationalisation.

          Thank you for proposing interesting questions in a respectful manner. I think your perspective is quite interesting, even if I do disagree with elements. It’s nice to have a civil conversation.

    • That’s a lot of strongly-held words for someone who thinks that anyone engaging with this issue is a loser.

  • I know pretty appalling things have happened (death threats and private info being hacked/revealed), but is this whole ‘movement’ mostly just people tweeting stuff? -_-“

  • I for some reason have this vision in my head that the guys making the threats are your “typical” virgin nerd like gamers that are now vengefully lashing out on woman because they haven’t got laid and probably never will. Is this common or is it just me??? I really feel like there is just some stupid lil twerp who needs his mum to come in pull the power plug slap him in the head and tell him to go outside… maybe that’s just me.

    • It’s a bunch of upset boys (petulant children really) who feel like, because Anita et al have pointed out tired old tropes so far as the portrayal of women goes; that there is some kind of personal attack against them and their ‘manhood’ (or lack thereof).

      This isn’t “all women should be put on a pedestal and men are awful” so much as “women are consistently portrayed as the second class citizen,” – that’s all there is to it, really. It’s happened in print. It’s happened in cinema. It’s happened in TV. And it’s happening now in video games; and it has to.

      There’s still a lot of inherent and unwitting sexism in the media; unintentional sexism is still sexism; however, this mostly occurs in male-target-audience programs.

      I think one of the biggest issues is that there really is no alternative representation of video games; women are the motivation; the prize; the damsel in distress; very rarely are they ever capable or well-written characters.

  • Come on guys, can’t we all just get along, Eat some porridge and see eye to eye with everyone’s views/opinions

  • Yesterday I sat down and read through the Twitter history of #StopGamerGate2014’s creator from the point that the tag was created. The outpouring of emotion and relief was tremendous. People who had been undergoing and witnessing abuse from a hate movement for 2 whole months were crying because the community was finally rallying with them to denounce abuse and hatred. They were relieved that so many people actually cared about them and that so many people were simply saying “No, this abuse is unacceptable”. The creator of the tag was so ecstatic and proud that they could positively impact so many friends and so many strangers.

    The creation of this Twitter tag shouldn’t have been necessary. A clear campaign of hate and abuse should have been denounced from the outset.

    To reiterate:
    Harassment of anyone re: the current situation needs to stop. Anyone for whom gamergate is a pedestal from which to express their views needs to discreetly step down for just a second, look around themselves and recognise that they’re engaging in a tumult of negativity and absurdity.

    I recognise that there are people who have joined the movement with constructive intentions. Now is the time to realise that nothing will be lost if you step away from a movement that is actively co-opted by people whose only wish is to cause as much harm as anonymity will afford. Make note of your concerns, bring them up once all of this disgusting crap has faded away, be patient and bring them up at a time when your words will carry greater legitimacy.

    Most importantly, if you are one of the people claiming to want mature discourse, step out from under a banner that has been used from its inception to wage a campaign of sustained and systematic abuse against female developers, female writers, and anyone who is deemed pejoratively to be an SJW. Condemn that behaviour because it’s not what you stand for, condemn it because tolerating two months of raging abuse is an untenable position for anyone to defend.

  • If you’re saying to me “don’t support gamergate because there’s bad people in the movement”, all I can say in response is there’s bad people in every movement. I’m 99% certain there’s child molesters who vote for every political party, for example. To say that you shouldn’t support a movement because it has a nasty minority is idiotic, just as idiotic as not supporting feminism because of hardline feminazis.

  • Truth is, this entire ”conflict” can’t have a good ending. Both sides are taking it far to far, but the fact death threats have been brought into it is disgusting. Corruption in the industry is disgusting, but since its birth it’s been twisted to fit the agenda of whoever is abusing it. Now both sides are refusing to give up and the situation is worsening. Both sides have committed shocking acts, such as lots of Anti GG users doxxing GG supporters and throwing around words like terrorists and rapists around, yet many Pro GG users have been using GG to push other agendas and send death threats. both sides have lost their innocence and neither is willing to give up now. It’s evil vs evil now.

  • this is just pathetic, men have been abused and harassed in their positions for years, don’t hear them turning this into a sexist thing.

    I see whole companies that produce bad games eg watch_dogs get abused for the performance issues on PC, and I am one of them, I don’t care if they are men or women they are scum that released a game on pc that is broken and they are not even going to bother to fix it.

    how else can I as a consumer tell these liars im unhappy and I expect and answer as a paying customer. these women( or I could be men I really don’t care as sex has NOTHING to do with it) are nothing but scum looking for a spotlight. simple as that.

    and that girl that made that horrible depression game, seriously what did you expect releasing that? grow up girl and stop crying foul. maybe your depression has not helped in you dealing with this as a normal rational human being. go get help and GTFO unless you want to act like a normal person and take responsibility for your actions. simple as that

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