Tuesday, October 14, 2014

#StopGamerGate2014: Threat of Terrorist Massacre Against Anita Sarkeesian, or This "GamerGate" Thing Has Gone Too Far

The article: "'Massacre' threat forces Anita Sarkeesian to cancel university talk" (The Verge)

Related post: "Anita Sarkeesian Cancels Talk at Utah State After Receiving Threat of Another “Montreal Massacre.” (We Hunted The Mammoth)

Right-wing videogamers connected with the so-called "Men's Rights Movement" (sic; they really mean "Man's Right") or MRM have been on a campaign to purge female developers and players from videogames. Yes, I mean "purge" in the Stalinist sense. Particular targets include Anita Sarkeesian, who has a series of videos on YouTube called "Tropes vs. Women" about sexist and misogynist tropes in popular media with an emphasis on videogames, and Zoe Quinn, an indie game developer most famous for a largely autobiographical interactive fiction called Depression Quest. They called this "#GamerGate.

But then the death threats began. Now a right-wing extremist, likely a militia type and probably a "Men's Rights Activist" or MRA, is threatening actual terrorism because Sarkeesian was going to hold a talk at Utah State University. She had to cancel because Utah is such an "open carry" gun-rights state that not even universities can prevent people from openly carrying entire arsenals, much less ban guns from campus.

Hence I broke my silence and posted the following tweet:
Re last RT: This is enough. I can't keep quiet about it anymore. #StopGamerGate2014 because "GamerGate" is now officially a terrorist jihad.
This GamerGate thing has become so offensive, and so potentially violent, that enough people are now tweeting against it to trend #StopGamerGate2014.

Here's the political background on this: The American right wing have suffered a crushing defeat in its attempt to stop same-sex marriage from being made fully legal nationwide. Their response, as always, is to double down; but since they can no longer criminalize homosexuality, they've escalated the War on Women to increasingly hysterical extremes. Meanwhile, some of the most malicious trolls on 4chan, many or most of them belonging or connected to the MRM, got mortally offended as only wingnuts do over their favorite games (the military FPSes and gangland "murder simulators") being called out for misogynist tropes on "Tropes vs. Women", and then by the release of Depression Quest, which apparently embodies everything the Right hates in "political correctness". The MRM term for feminists is "SJWs", for "Social Justice Warriors", after their left-wing nemeses on sites like Tumblr and Reddit.

Thus plotted, the harassment campaign began, like a right-wing version of Anonymous, which also began at 4chan. GamerGate has since gotten so vicious that the Gaters (or "Gits") even got themselves banned from 4chan. Naturally, they founded their own "chan", 8chan, specifically as a home for GamerGate and other causes dear to the Internet's extreme right.

Now it has gone all the way to terrorism. As I tweeted, it is now officially a terrorist jihad. And I am now openly against not only GamerGate but the entire MRM. As a matter of fact, I've been working this opposition into my still incomplete novel Chaos Angel Spanner, even before I heard of the MRM. Oh, and that blog post I linked to at the top, from the anti-MRM blog We Hunted The Mammoth? I'm commenting there.

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