Monday, October 20, 2014

Link Round-Up: Gamergate

Source: Spectralninja

Interview: Reddit is hosting an AMA with a female game developer who's giving some very well-grounded answers about her own feelings on Gamergate.

BioWare developer Damion Schubert has posted an enlightening survey of the major gaming news outlets and where they’ve stood on Gamegate. 

Damion Schubert has been busily collecting the stories from women from all “sides” of Gamergate, proponents as well as targets and others completely uninvolved, who nonetheless have been subject to harassment, doxxing and other attacks.

Erik Kain and Nathan Grayson have both written articles about the Shadows of Mordor fiasco.

At First Person Scholar, Katherine Cross examines how the Gamergate groups differ from the typical radical extremism in that they view themselves as an apolitical "consumer movement."

A Former FBI Agent On Why It’s So Hard to Prosecute Gamergate Trolls. "The light penalties attached to many of these online crimes also deter officials from taking them seriously, because the punishment doesn’t justify the resources required to investigate and prosecute them. “It will never work if it feels like a catch and release program,” Ryan says. “Spending a month getting subpoenas and doing wiretaps for a case where the sentence is six months of probation just doesn’t make sense.""

Gamergate reached the front page of The New York Times this week, due largely to a school shooting threat called in over a scheduled appearance by Anita Sarkeesian. With the NYT coverage, many game news outlets have come forward officially denouncing Gamergate. However, just ahead of this development, Jetta Rae DoubleCakes published this strongly-worded editorial at Ravishly which urges news writers to properly frame their Gamergate coverage.

GaymerX has effectively repudiated #Gamergate after initially attempting to carve out a more nuanced stance on the matter.

If you’re interested in falling down the rabbit hole, Deadspin has a decent primer on Gamergate: "Cluelessness about institutional inequality isn’t a crime, but it’s a major contributing factor to the grand nerd myth of the internet as a perfect meritocracy in which everyone is equal and the worst crime is special pleading."

In the wake of Anita Sarkeesian’s cancellation of a talk in Utah due to threats of gun violence (and due in part to security’s inexplicable—or perhaps all-too-predictable—reluctance to filter out attendees with concealed firearms), we’d like to direct your attention to Deadspin’s feature on Gamergate, which discusses what it is (for the unacquainted), and why it’s idiotic.

Jon Stone explains to those just tuning in Why bother with #gamergate?

Katherine Cross penned this robust piece on the political underpinnings of Gamergate as a movement filled with internal contradiction: "From the beginning it was a concatenation of ironies. They declaimed unethical games journalism with the aid of an unethical journalist; they claimed women and minorities were #notyourshield while using them as a shield against criticism of GamerGate."

Know Your Meme — #GamerGate: On August 27, actor Adam Baldwin posted a tweet linking to Internet Aristocrat videos along with the hashtag #GamerGate." In the first week, the hashtag was tweeted over 244,000 times according to the Twitter analytics site Topsy.

Many women (and a few younger girls) have been writing about their own brushes with cyberbullies, both in the course of #gamergate and earlier, including: Adria Richards, Anita Sarkeesian, @CPIKathy Sierra, @kav_p, and Liana Kerzner.  Of course, there's also Zoe Quinn’s account of events.

The Only Guide to GamerGate You'll Ever Need to Read

Patrick Miller offers a list of things we can all do to curb the damage done by Gamergate.

Peter Frase discusses the Gamergate groups in a larger context of how right-wing reactionaries tend to function. Not only does he provide a useful description of what Gamergate is ideologically, but he makes interesting points about how Gamergate reflects the larger industry.

RationalWiki’s coverage of Gamergate is worth a look.

Secret Gamer Girl has also collected the experiences women targeted by the movement.

Social researcher Jennifer Allaway examines the ways in which #GamerGate functions as a hate group, using a 2004 study by Linda Woolf and Michale Hulsizer called Hate Groups for Dummies: How to Build a Successful Hate Group as her framework. In it, she identifies four essential elements to any hate group: 
  • the leadership which originally inspired the movement,
  • the recruitment strategy it uses to appeal to insecure and impressionable gamers,
  • the social-psychological techniques by which it spreads its message and enflames its members' beliefs,
  • and, finally, the process by which it dehumanizes its victims, and turns them into targets whose attacking earns group praise.
The Verge writes a hard damnation of the Gamergate groups, emphasizing their role in the waves of abuse and harassment during the past two months.

We cannot let this become gaming culture!  Organised abuse and threats of mass murder: this is the legacy of GamerGate.

What Is GamerGate, and Why Is Intel so Afraid of It?: “Gaming journalism has reached a low point over the last five years,” YouTuber InternetAristocrat says in the video. “It started with pieces that had nothing to do with gaming or game reviews, nothing to do with software or hardware, nothing to do with events or expos. It started to travel off into the areas of social justice and feminism and opinion pieces and op-eds that had nothing to do with gaming.”

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