I am probably late to the party, but it could also be that I should never have attented this one because of the possible reactions. Still, I am intrigued by this subject and feel I should give my summary and view on it. I say ‘my’ on purpose since #GamerGate is already really big and chaotic, and I probably missed some information. So I may not have included everything what GamerGate is all about now since the discussion takes place on the internet and we all know that those kinds of discussions go really quick. But first things first, what the fudge am I talking about?
Zoe Quinn, a name which you probably do not know but if you do you may only know it since August 2014. And even though this all has started a long time ago, it has a clear beginning, a blog from an angry ex boyfriend. In this piece of text the ex of Zoe Quinn claimed that she had slept with a couple of journalists to ‘promote’ her game. It turned out that she only had a relationship with a journalist of Kotaku, who didn’t even really said anything about the game. But the harm was already done.
That women in the game industrie have to deal with bullshit is nothing new, but this obviously is a scandal and that witch must burn!! I cannot imagine what kind of messages Zoe had to deal with and probably still has to.
The discussion is not about ‘the developer who slept with journalists to get attention’ anymore. A group of people have made it their goal to harras women in the game industrie. On the internet of course since that is so easy, and weak. On the other side you have the die hard feminists but unfortunately for them they have no idea who they are fighting against. Especially the prominant figures have to deal with a lot of crap since the wankers put their adresses and those of their families online. You understand, it is not only about Zoe Quinn anymore. This is the most disgusting thing of #GamerGate. Who are they, and with they I mean the fuck faces who hide behind their computer screen, to treat the women like that so that they do not feel safe anymore. The messages are not only about that the women are just stupid. No, they should quite their jobs, they have to be raped and eventually murdered. This only because their dicks are too small or because their mother did not gave them enough love.
Ever since #Gamergate is so much more than the beginning. There are two more things that have become important. The ethic that journalists should have and the role of women in games. because of Zoe Quinn and all the gossips people have become more sceptic towards the reviews of big websites. Of course you expect that they be objective in their judgement and that it does not matter of which franchise and/or publisher it is. Still a lot of people do not think that this truly happens. People noticed that some franchises and/or publishers tend to get really really high marks which differ a lot from other websites. Whether this is true or not I cannot say for sure but it would be absurd. It is not a secret that journalist get invites for press events to play the game, these events are often not plain and simple and often they leave with some really nice goodies. Still you can be assured that they be objective when judging a game. Journalists still are humans but they do have a formal code they have to mantain.
The group feminists, who are the direct opposite of the Zoe Quinn and co haters, question the role of women in games. Because why do women have to be saved all the time? Why do they still have the traditional role in gaming? That’s not just that, because some games really take it too far like rape or prostitution. Women in games are just lust objects and feminists want to see this changed. Of course, this is nothing new but it is a matter that is questioned again.
Disclaimer; I do not choose a side in this discussion or discussions. Not because I am affraid of the reactions but because I am not an extremist. Of course I think it is hidious that some prominant women in the game industry are harrased. I think it would be horrible to have to undergo all the comments and threats. Especially when the haters know your adress and even put it online so you have to leave your home.
That journalists should not be tampted by goodies, sex, trips and money, but this is so obvious in my eyes. I can imagine that it is hard sometimes to be frank about a game when you know the people behind the game. But it is work. And journalits do their work for the readers, not the developers or publishers.
I do not think that the role of women in gaming is really bad. Last couple of years there have been a couple of really strong feminine characters. However I do think it is repulsing when women can be or even have to be raped. But games ‘need’ to be realistic and should not avoid things like prostitution. But developers need to conider how women are treated in the games.
GamerGate is nothing new. The hashtag is now used to revive all kinds of discussion which are already alive and of course also to bitch on certain topic. A lot of this discussion happens on Twitter what forces people to send short messages so they cannpt explain their arguments. And internet tends to make messages/people less nuanced. GamerGate will eventually die when all the extremists will calm their titties and stop threatening each other.