OPINION: GamerGate, and why I hate “Gamers”.

This sums up GamerGate pretty well

This sums up GamerGate pretty well

Arrr Gamergate. I might as well weigh in here as it seems as good a topic to have my first opinion piece on. So let’s go to the beginning and see what it is all about?

The cause

To simplify GamerGate, it seems that some Douchebag got offended that his girlfriend dumped him. He, like a total douchebag, wrote a blog about her, where he made a series of unfounded allegations, and acted like a spoilt child.

The effect

Douchebags on the internet took this as an attack on “their culture”, and thus a shit storm was born.

Games Journalism

In all of this, something was lost about Douchebags original post. He made some allegations that Developers/Pushishers, and the “Press” were too close. And you know what?

Reviewers are too close to publishers.

Magazines like Nintendo Power were criticised for being too close to the games, and as a result of this independent companies started publishing their own magazines.This was supposed to make it  independent, impartial and fair.

But the independent/impartial/fair, never happened. Instead we got magazines that give ridiculous scores to games, we got these independant companies jumping into bed with the game developers in the hope of higher profits.

Look at FIFA14, all the “reputable” magazines give it a score of 90-100%. All the “users” give it a 4.1. FIFA15 is no different, or any other Fifa game.

Destiny got 100% off “Official PlayStation Magazine”, what so this is a perfect game that will be played for all eternity? Well, the user reviews are giving it 6.4 as a score. And scores of players are leaving it after a few weeks.

Diablo 3 scores consistently in the high 90%, but has a 3.9 user rating. I played Diable 3 for a few months, and would give it a high 70’s, as it was never anywhere near as good as Diablo 2.

Aliens: Colonial Marines got 80% off the Guardian!!!, yet scores 3.4 from users.

Dead Island scores 80 from critics, while the users score it 6.8.

Call of Duty 4.2 got 94 overall from “official” magazines, which includes several 100%s. This is absolute bullshit, COD4.2 had alright multiplayer, but it is not a 100% game. It is an 80% at best. It gets a user score of 6.1!

All scores correct at time of writing. I selected these games because they are next to me in a pile.Except FIFA. Because FUCK FIFA.

Now I know reviews are based on opinion, so a score will vary. But what I find is AAA games ALWAYS score high 80s to low 90s. This isn’t because the game is good, it is due to larger magazines relying on publishers/developers for exclusives. Very rarely do magazines criticise games, except this…

BEST REVIEW EVER

BEST REVIEW EVER

I have spoken to reviewer friends in the UK, and they confirmed (anecdotally) that they have given positive reviews to games, because if they didn’t [INSERT PUBLISHER] wouldn’t work with them anymore. FOR FAIRNESS AND BALANCE, THIS ALSO HAPPENS IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY.

So, on the charge of developers and reviews being too close. I agree. Maybe GamerGate exposed an actual problem!

Feminism/Feminazi/ and Sexism rolled into one

This is where GamerGate becomes a despicable mess of hatred.

And, I hate almost everyone who got involved. This is a perfect example of why the internet isn’t allowed nice things. Here are people abusing Dara O’Briain on Twatter for supporting women developers. In case you didn’t know, Dara has basically spent the last 10 years as a darling of the U.K game community because he is witty/insightful, and makes very good, intelligent comments on gaming culture. Luckily for Dara though, he is a he. So the vitriol against him wasn’t as bad as say Anita Sarkeesian/Brianna Wu/Emma Watson

Now let’s be clear. I am a feminist. I am male, I am 30, I am straight. But none of that matters. I believe we are ALL equal, I believe that woman should be treated the same as men, I believe woman should be paid an equal wage for an equal job, that they should have the same access to the opportunities I am. I even made a video about it for work.


So do I believe equality has been achieved? Not really. There is a pay gap, this is a fact. We are still not equal. This is also a fact.

REFERENCE 1 http://www.theguardian.com/money/2013/nov/07/gender-pay-gap-official-figures-disparity

REFERENCE 2 http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-business/10513636/Gender-pay-gap-widens-with-women-earning-an-average-of-5000-less-reports-ONS.html

REFERENCE 3 http://www.tuc.org.uk/equality-issues/gender-equality/equal-pay/women-still-earn-%C2%A35000-year-less-men

REFERENCE 4 http://www.equalpayportal.co.uk/statistics/

My 4 sources are, a RIGHT-WING newspaper, a LIBERAL newspaper, a Union (so LEFT-WING), and a governmental report (claims impartiality). I could link to more, but I don’t need to. This is based on INDEPENDANT, IMPARTIAL statistics in the United Kingdom.

Now, people will point out the outdated figures, so…

This report is once a year , and takes place at the END of the year. So the figures for 2014 will come out in December.

In 2013, the gap grew for the first time in 5 years. According to the 4 sources (all rivals with differing agendas) the gap is about £5000. So, in the U.K there IS a pay gap.

If you can provided and facts/figures that prove otherwise I will recant this. Individuals being paid more, doesn’t prove it.

Feminazis

THEY EXIST! It is true, I am not going to defend somebody who hates men, and want men to be punished for being men. But what I do want is for men and woman to be treated equally. I hate feminazis as much as I hate trolls, and the LAD Bible.

They are a separate entity, and not relevant to the argument.

Trolls

The vitriol that ensued as a result of Douchebags blog post, led to rape threats, death threats, and bomb threats. All because a woman had an opinion/made a game.

So wait… “Woman are equal, we don’t need feminism? “ well it seems to me from the backlash that ensued, that we really do NEED FEMINISM equality

I am not especially a fan of Anita Sarkeesian, but she makes very good points in the Tropes vs Woman in Video Games series. Female characters ARE underrepresented, or badly portrayed.

On a side note, I hate GTA and have done since after San Andreas, but I don’t consider GTA to be sexist, or particularly misogynistic. I also think these themes HAVE a place in gaming,

The usual counter argument to this is “But Lara Croft/Female Sheppard/Faith from Mirror’s Edge” are good example, and THEY ARE. They are well written, balanced characters. However, having a few decent characters doesn’t makes it better? It is like arguing Micheal Bay isn’t a terrible director because he made a good film once.

Exceptions to the rule DO NOT DISPROVE THE RULE. They are exceptions, and in those games, the developers should be celebrated.

Boobs are too hard to render

Boobs are too hard to render

#NotYourShield

Ok, so I sort of agreed on this for about 5 minutes. The misogynistic elements of the debate did detract from the original claims of Douchebag. Once this was pointed out though, NotYourShield became sinister.

The fact that woman received death threats for speaking out about sexism in games PROVES the case, and why people need to speak out. Calling in a bomb threat to prevent somebody talking about sexism proves this, sending a girl into hiding because Douchebag wrote a rambly blog proves this, the comments on Dara O’Briain’s twitter prove this.

The problem with #NotYourShield is that it was the same racist/homophobic/sexist ass clowns that were posting abuse about GamerGate, they were using NotYourShield as THEIR SHIELD. That again, proves that we need feminism/equality, and that sexism and misogyny exist in gaming. Again, this means people need to speak out.

Double Standards

On a side note:
Why was the original game developer the target of abuse? Why didn’t the bloke she slept with have a hate campaign? After all, he “wrote” the favourable reviews. Technically HE is the one that wrong our precious community?

Girl Gamers

Now we have all been in a game lobby with a girl, and the second they talk, the chat room fills with “tits or GTFO”, “rape threats”, “sex talk”, “Girls should play Candy Crush Saga”, well to that last comment, here is a quote from Charlie Brooker.

I wouldn’t blame women for voluntarily choosing to play something soothing and non-threatening in their free time, since they spend so much of the rest of their time being forced to play a terrifying survival horror MMORPG colloquially known as “The Internet”. Women are the hardest hardcore gamers there are, by miles.

Charlie Brooker 

I loved my days in a WoW guild that was run by TWO WOMAN, I love that chats I have with my FEMALE friends about Final Fantasy, particularly the fights we get into which is best FFVI or FFVII. Your sex, or sexuality makes no difference to your gaming ability, or knowledge, or ability to talk about a subject, or even WORK in that area.

Yes, more woman play Candy Crush, than men, that’s irrelevant. It is a pointless, non-argument. If that is your argument, please leave your opinion in my inbox. (It isn’t really an inbox, it’s a shredder.

Please put your message here.

Please put your message here.

Coming full circle

The fact is, women make up around 48-50% of the gamerbase (Wikipedia). Why is it that the people can’t accept that maybe woman should be allowed to make games? Maybe if the developers percentage split was closer to 50% we wouldn’t have to put up with Call of Duty 19, GTA 12, FIFA39. Maybe the AAA games would be better?

Maybe the issue of game journalists giving favourable reviews to terrible games would solve itself, because MAYBE involving different people in the game making process would actually IMPROVE games? It couldn’t hurt right? I mean a WOMAN made the first decent Tomb Raider game in about nearly 20 years, so anything is possible.

Overall. It isn’t Banter, you’re just a prick

The internet is a wonderful place, games are a wonderful thing. But a select vocal few are intent on ruining it for us all. That is why we need feminism, that is why we need equality, that is why we need more woman in gaming in developer or publishing roles. And this is especially why, we need people to speak out about it.

Oh, and I don’t hate real gamers. Just those that lurk in chat rooms, or those on League of Legends.

Remember, this is what you need to do with your opinion.

Remember, this is what you need to do with your opinion.

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6 thoughts on “OPINION: GamerGate, and why I hate “Gamers”.

  1. Your understanding of the cause is based on the narrative that was spun by gaming media.

    I was on the forums where all these outrage began and it was never about women. It was sparked by specific actions taken by one individual. It’s unfortunate that Zoe’s whole mess with Ejoni was the spark that ignited the already explosive situation. It became such an easy thing to mis-direct the mass from the actual problem.

    This is how I understand the start of this whole mess:

    A lot of gamers on various forums been suspicious of certain gaming sites in the past couple of years. They’ve been putting out clickbait stories that demonize their own core readership. There was a feeling that there’s a broad push to politize games. At the same time, there’s a rise of articles full of praise of independent developers. Some gamers felt a few of those articles were total BS. This two things effectivly is what pushed Zoe into the limelight.

    Somewhere around August, the whole drama (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1d6Q3VpqXyk) around what The Fine Young Capitalist was doing came around. None of these gaming sites would touch that topic. The fact that Zoe attacked that effort and labled it all kinds of horrible things that it wasn’t. All in the name of promoting her own game jam.

    And you know what the internet hate the most? Insincerity and hyprocrites. If Zoe is for having more women developers, why is she attacking a project that is trying to help (albeit a different approach than her own)? The gamers of 4chan’s /v/ board decided to make a response by supporting TFYC with their money and more drama insues. There were mass banning on other forums; emotions escalates.

    The whole online gaming forums were already fuming when Ejoni’s blog post came out. Right in the middle of that explosive environment… That was when all kinds of vitriol (some mis-directed, some very extreme and hateful) came out. The gamers who felt they’ve been unfairly stereotyped and demonized for years revolted. The anger is understandable but not an excuse to go all out hateful. It doesn’t help resolve the problem only fuel the response. And what do you expect the very same gaming sites who have been demonizing gamers would do when they’re caught red-handed and being critized by gamers? That’s when when whole gamers are anti-women narrative came to full swing. It was their way to deflect the valid criticism and change the topic.

    It wasn’t about women. It was specifically about Zoe’s actions. Her friends (Brianna is one) tried to defend her and got swept up in the same torrent of anger. The game media took advantage of that and turned it into this gamer are anti-women thing.

    I’ll leave you with some readings and videos:
    http://adland.tv/adnews/gamergate-moral-panic-resembles-90s-which-directly-affects-womens-career-choices/1629488701

    Like

    • This article is based on my opinion. This is based on 1) who I am as a person, and 2) the various articles from both sides of the debate.

      I am critical of gaming press, and I point out that the initial issue raised was the closeness of the two.

      However, the vitirol that ensued can’t be ignored and needs to be addressed..

      Like

      • Hello there, he didn’t seem to say you were “wrong”, or what have you, for having an opinion, he said you were misled. I can agree with that statement, I think you bought into the narrative being spun and went with it. He was just presenting things from a gamer’s perspective on the whole thing. I think he just wanted to put information out there about gamergate so you could at least see both sides. I appreciate that you acknowledge that the closeness between game journalists and the subjects of their writing is a problem, especially when most people put their hands over their ears and cry misogyny to deflect that. I was going to write a comment about gamergate and present some points but Anju has already done so, and it HAS been three or so months so who knows if your opinion is the same after all this time.

        Liked by 1 person

      • He says I bought into an idea. I didn’t I made my own mind up from what I saw of it. I din’t read mainstream articles on it, I looked at other peoples blogs, I followed the hashtag, I waited a good 6 weeks until after the event, as I did want to see if my views would change on it.

        I am a gamer, so it is a gaming perspective, and my view hasn’t really changed.

        GamerGate was hijacked by a group of misogynists, there is a problem with misogyny in gaming. And the hashtag did overshadow the problem of gaming journalism.

        I don’t agree with people like Anita Sarkeesian, as I do think she is a Social Justice Warrior looking for an issue in everything, games can cover themes and narratives, and in most cases this is appropriate to the game. Plus, these games are usually 15+ age restrictions. If you want a safe, sensible game with no violence or gore, there are plenty of games that cater to your needs.

        Having said that, it doesn’t mean there isn’t misogyny in gaming.

        Like

  2. Pingback: Dead Rising. Capcom (2006) XBox 360 | Videogames Revisited

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