Staff Quit After Board Game Site Refuses To Support Black Lives Matter

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Staff Quit After Board Game Site Refuses To Support Black Lives Matter

At least 17 staff (and counting) contributing to Everything Board Games have left the site after its current owner, Lake Leafty, not only refused to issue a statement in support of Black Lives Matter, but said such a statement would be “virtue signalling”.

In a statement released on June 17, staff say that in response to recent events in both the wider world and the board games community, they “asked directly when we could expect to see even a simple BLM statement from EBG”, and were reportedly told “This is everything board games, not everything politics”.

The full statement, signed by 17 staff at the mostly volunteer-run site, reads:

In response, Everything Board Games’ owner, Lake Leafty, issued a statement of his own, and it’s…something. Leafty calls their statement “false and defamatory”, despite the fact it’s merely calling for something that was never forthcoming, and calls their publishing of the above statement on Everything Board Games’ community page “a coordinated attack”.

He then says the lack of support for BLM on the site is because he wants to “refrain from getting involved or advocating certain positions in regard to politics”, before showing his true colours by calling any statement in support of BLM “virtue signalling”, which would require “the membership of our community to prove their moral and ideological purity, and all the other nonsense that comes with adopting that kind of mindset.”

Greetings everyone,

As you are probably aware, there are a number of false and defamatory statements that have recently cropped up. As such, we at Everything Board Games are prepared to stand our ground against lies and cyber bullying.

Recently, a few of our volunteer reviewers demanded that Everything Board Games craft an official political statement. We declined. Unfortunately a number of them have launched what appears to be a coordinated attack and decided to involve our community. We will not stand for that either. Facebook already has rules in place that prohibit hate speech, etc. We will continue to follow the standards Facebook has set in how we moderate. We will also be removing comments meant to incite — as well as those that authored them from our group on Facebook.

At Everything Board Games, we are committed to our core mission which is to help bring gamers and the games they’ll love together. To create a space and a community where we can hang out together and just have fun. We believe this is especially important right now as we live in a time of political and social unrest.

In order to make this happen, Everything Board Games has chosen to refrain from getting involved or advocating certain positions in regard to politics, religion, or any other hot topics.

This is why we have chosen not to make an official political statement.

The other reason why we will not make such a statement is because we believe in you — our community. To make the statement those reviewers demanded would be for us to assume that there are those in our community who are hateful racist bigots. This directly contradicts the experiences we’ve had within our community.

We at Everything Board Games are interested in just that — board games. We have no interest in virtue signalling, requiring the membership of our community to prove their moral and ideological purity, and all the other nonsense that comes with adopting that kind of mindset.

Instead, we choose to show what we stand for — what all of us stand for in the Everything Board Games community — by how we comport ourselves.

To those who who feel they cannot stay in a community that refuses to wade into politics and other social justice initiatives, we understand and we wish you the best.

To everyone else, we look forward to bigger and better things in the future to come.

I’m very excited to see what a website’s readership and community looks like after excluding anyone interested in *checks notes* basic human rights.

Comments

  • Don’t know this site but why should it be forced to make an official statement on BLM specifically? Of course to say black lives matter is an obvious, universally accepted and supported statement which I’m sure EBG would agree with. The problem lies with the fact that Black Lives Matter or BLM is a now akin to a political movement in the United States and stands for much, much more than this original statement. In fact, what the group demands and/or stands for seems to change fairly rapidly as they gain more and more power. The waters have become very murky indeed and I have no doubt that this is why EBM felt uncomfortable about issuing an official statement. Why shouldn’t an organisation be afforded the choice to stay out of the conversation?

    • Mostly because it’s pretty clear-cut good and evil. Staying out of it lends support and strength to the status quo of evil. It’s really that simple.

      • It’s not really that simple. Initially it was but it has evolved far from that since then. Wouldn’t it be nice if all choices were so easy and there was no need for nuance in the absence of moral ambiguity. The problem stems from the many other injustices that have occurred as a direct result of the movement. Some would argue that to fully support the BLM movement is to fully support everything that comes with it. To say that be to silent is to be complicit is unbelievably arrogant and short-sighted. We have effectively moved from encouraging open forum discussion to bullying people into agreeing with a certain point of view for fear that they may be branded a racist or worse. Surely we can do better.

        • Yes, because to say that black people shouldn’t be murdered by police is, of course, the exact same thing as fully supporting the BLM organisation and its supposed “radical left agenda”.

          • Can’t you see that that’s pretty much my point though? There’s no room for this kind of nuanced conversation or picking and choosing what you do/do not support about the BLM organisation. The idea that you propose is valid but can you imagine how the twitter mob will react when you present to them your thoughtful take that while you condemn the murder of black people by police, you cannot support the BLM organisation? I wonder how that would go down?

          • Considering BLM supports such things as: “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement..” which, as is evidently shown in America, has lead to the breakdown of the black community there.

            Yeah, I don’t support BLM.

            Some of their positions I definitely agree with, such as “We are guided by the fact that all Black lives matter”.

            But just like how one can be for equality and not be a feminist. One doesn’t have to support BLM, if they support the fact that all black lives matter. Simple as that

          • @nuffman Actually, no. One cannot be both for equality and not be a feminist. Equality is literally the definition of feminism.

            And you pick one random quote pulled from god knows where and present it as if it’s some core guiding principle of an entire movement of informal protesters with no formal leaders and no formal structure and just…. no.

          • @angorafish

            You’ve said a lot of dumb shit over the years, but this is right up there

            No. The definition of feminism is “advocacy for the rights of women based on equality of the sexes”

            Egalitarianism, on the other hand, “the doctrine that all people are equal and deserve equal rights and opportunities.” If it was about equality, they would have called themselves Egalitarians.

            Feminism =\= equality. By definition.

            Yes, I pick one (actually two) random quotes from “https://blacklivesmatter.com/what-we-believe/”

            The LITERAL website of BLM.

            I liked it better when you randomly downvoted instead of opening your mouth and showing your utter ignorance.

    • If I could upvote this I would.

      While BLM is very important, an organisation shouldn’t be forced to make a statement about it, or anything else for that matter. They’ll make a statement if they want to, but you shouldn’t be tying them down and forcing them to say something. They shouldn’t be derided for their choice of wanting to stay out of it and not bring politics into non-political forums.

      It’s a site about board games, and they want to stick to simply covering board games. Why is that a problem?

      • The organisation wasn’t ‘forced’ to do anything. They had a choice to either stand up for values that their employees felt were important or lose a bunch of their employees. The business had a choice, the employees had a choice, and both made their choice. What part of the word ‘forced’ don’t you understand?

        • Also, the customers of the business have a choice about whether or not to continue to support that business or go elsewhere.

        • Wow, the contradictions in this paragraph are mind-bending. Threatening an individual or organisation with something as a consequence only if they do/don’t do something else is a form of coercion. Look up the definition of coercion and then read over your post again.

          • we always knew angorafish was a bit of a mental case. but yeah the mental gymnastics required to justify trying to say they werent forced and in the same paragraph pointing out how they were forced… it boggles the mind.

          • They weren’t forced because they didn’t do it. Duh. What are you guys on, seriously?

        • LOL. I’ve worked it out. You’re using ‘forced’ in the same sense as you use it to describe how you’re forced to read articles like this on a website you hate by authors you hate, and how you’re constantly forced after being made to read such articles to post voluminously about how this signifies the decline of civilization as we know it.

          • Haha, your posts are quite funny. I get it now. Didn’t know you were just trolling with idiocy just to see if someone would bite.

  • // before showing his true colours by calling any statement in support of BLM “virtue signalling” //

    The author could also try being honest about reality for two whole seconds instead of living in a fantasy realm.

    Sure ‘any’ or ‘all’ statements is an exaggeration, but statements from companies especially are mostly virtue signalling and nothing more. The majority of companies don’t give a shit about anything but the appearance of caring so they don’t get ‘cancelled’ and so people still give them money.

    In this particular situation? Anyone who would even accept a statement of support that they had to beat out of an organisation is someone who clearly cares less about the cause, and far more about exerting power over and bringing others to heel.

    • If you could even call it “virtue signalling”, which I doubt, there is still value in a company staking out a position and adding to the perception that certain actions and positions aren’t acceptable, especially when making such a position clear risks angering people and possibly costing them sales. It adds weight to a zeitgeist, and this is why so many horrible people with unacceptable views started bawling about “virtue signalling” in the first place – to attempt to shame people and companies from stating what they see as virtuous.

    • In all fairness, a significant group of employees who requested this did care for it and was so not just “virtue signaling” that they were ready to put their jobs on the line. That means that if the boss had agreed to that simple request, (even if he himself disagreed), the statement would have come from a genuine place of support.

  • I mean to a degree the site has a point, a lot of companies has declared their support for the movement (or racial equality in general) but what have they actually done?

    usually the answer is “nothing”. releasing a statement is one thing, doing something tangible like making donations is another

    • But they also haven’t put out posts claiming that there isn’t racism in the gaming community, which is what Everything Board Games have now done.

  • when will this end? they are businesses. they do not need to take a political stance. the employees of said businesses as individuals should be allowed to express their political opinions as long as its not through branded channels. but the business itself does not need to.
    not to mention that BLM in its current form is essentially a terrorist organisation. you only need to look at whats happening in america atm and to a lesser still relevant extent many other western countries around the world. but yet anyone that believes that all lives matter as opposed to taking violent action in the name of BLM is labelled a racist. any company putting out a tweet in support of BLM is literally only virtue signalling as this guy said.
    its just forcing people to take a side at this point, no neutral allowed. i dont support the actions of those specific police officers, i also dont support the actions of BLM, but because im not supporting the vocal ones, i may as well have killed george floyd myself.

    • Out of curiosity, what exactly has occurred here that needs to “end”? Has Leafty or the website been prosecuted by the government? Has his website been subjected to DDoS attacks? He he been doxxed or violence threatened against his family? No?

      Or have a number of his staff just asked him to take a position on something and he, as is his right, declined? I’m really not seeing why some commenters here have got so outraged over this story.

      • what needs to end is the constant need for every man and his dog (is that inappropriate? should it be every woman and her gender non conforming pet?) to come out and make a stance on a political issue. as i said in my previous comment, they are businesses, this is not needed. its the whole, youre with us or youre against us mentality. it helps no one.

        • What literally helps no one is refusing to take a position on an important matter of human rights.

          • youve never made much sense. but you really think that every business out there needs to come out publicly and state a position? no, businesses should just keep doing their business. anyone thats actually politically affiliated, you know, such as politicians, should have a stance. and then us as the public can vote on them. it is still a democracy right? we havent already shifted over to your communist party?

          • this is forcing a dumb and unnecessary ultimatum. the inevitable result of that ultimatum is that people work out what the “correct” response is, employ some public-relations type to publish a statement supporting the respective stance and then go on about their day. dumb

  • Im glad they took this stance. those employees that heard only what they wanted to hear and quit – I hope those thin-skinned employees struggle to find employment and suffer financial difficulties for the rest of their days.

  • Sure are a lot of bigots in here patting each other on the back about how people pointing out bigotry are mentally defective.

      • Go on then. Am I racist or do I call people mentally defective?

        I’m going to assume you’re going to lead with “but people who don’t like free speech are the real racists” but that’s a bad argument for several reasons so I advise against it.

        • Bigot (noun): a person intolerant towards those holding different opinions.

          You’re literally no better, or different, than anyone you decide to call a “bigot”. Just look at that last paragraph of yours.

          You’ve called people many things, for no other reason than they disagree with you and your unfounded sense of moral superiority.

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