Tag Archives: GamerGate

#TFH on #VLR 5/4: #ROL15, #GGinDC, Plenty More!

UPDATE: REPLAY ADDED! Their Finest Hour is LIVE tonight on Vigilant Liberty Radio at 10pm Eastern, 7pm Pacific. I’ve got lots to talk about, including:

The “GamerGate in DC” meet-up that I attended Friday night, which resulted in the event being soft-SWATted by the anti-GG/SJW crowd, we presume.

Americans for Prosperity’s RightOnline conference was Friday and Saturday, and I was in attendance. There was a kick-ass speech given by Breitbart’s Sonnie Johnson (@SonnieJohnson) that we’ll replay.

Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron hit the big screen…and negative commentary directed at director/writer Joss Whedon drove him off Twitter.

Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson declared for President today, Mike Huckabee launches his campaign tomorrow. Are all three of them no-chancers, or who’ll stop one of their juggernauts?

Plus open phones!

Joining me this evening will be Chris T. Rex (@CrankyTRex). Come join us in the VLR chatroom, listen via one of our other show players embedded on the website, or direct over on Spreaker!

10E/9C/8M/7P!

Show replay! As always, you can click the show title in the player to hit Spreaker up for the MP3 download!

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#GGinDC: the Soft-SWATting of #GamerGate

If you’re not familiar with what “GamerGate” entails, check out Chris T. Rex’s (@CrankyTRex) great post “Here’s #GamerGate in 5 Easy Bites“. Last night in Washington, DC, about three hundred (my estimate) #GamerGate supporters got together for camraderie and adult beverages at a great establishment called Local 16. Continue reading #GGinDC: the Soft-SWATting of #GamerGate

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#GamerGate: The Last Stand of Individualism

Their goals and their demands vary.  Their movement requires almost nothing of its members to join, and so their diversity of both personalities and physical traits is astounding.  They’re also the last people one might expect to get into a culture war.  “They” are the supporters of #GamerGate, and they have been confounding people for almost a half a year now.

Even after all that time, it’s still a Herculean task to convince people of the significance of #GamerGate, with all “the happenings” as the gamers would call them making it nigh-impossible to wrap it up in a  neat little bow for people to understand (though I did take a stab at that.)  Those who do take an interest are often stymied by the chaotic nature of a leaderless Internet subculture.  David Pakman, for example, spent many of his initial interviews grappling with the notion that a movement with such a low barrier to entry can simultaneously be so certain of the content of its members’ characters.

After all, how can any participant state with authority “it’s not about harassment; it’s about ethics in journalism” when nobody is an authority?  The opposition wields that apparent contradiction like a hammer, bashing #GamerGate as incapable of shaking off the stink of its supposed connection to harassment.  They argue that anyone truly interested in ethics would undoubtedly abandon that permanently tainted hashtag and move on to something else.

Naturally the self-appointed arbiters of equality and progress neglect to mention that any new endeavor would immediately be considered the fruit of a poisonous tree because they have little interest in either ethics, equality, or progress.  In reality, that which currently masquerades as “social justice” and “feminism” is merely just another form of collectivism, the age old desire of human beings to stuff people into arbitrary groups in order to exercise control over everyone.  Most of the time that desire is even well intentioned.

Under the banner of helping the previously disenfranchised the social justice army has marched through every aspect of our culture, grinding any meager opposition between manufactured outrage and guilt by association until they simply give up.  Even in sports we now have debates over how offensive a team name might be to a particular group that didn’t seem to care much before.  Given that, one might expect that a newly popular hobby like video games would be an easy target.

Instead the PC police found a resistance for which they were entirely unprepared.  Frustrated by gamers’ unresponsiveness to their normal proselytizing and thinking they had an opportunity to exploit the Zoe Quinn situation, they dropped all pretense to throw a haymaker with their “Gamers are Dead” campaign.  Rather than falling to the ground to beg and plead for forgiveness like every other group before them, #GamerGate simply stood there, wiping a trickle of blood from its lips and grinning like some demon within had awakened.  Then the gamers had the unmitigated gall to hit back.

It really shouldn’t have come as such as surprise to all of us.  Video games are the last bastion for people who seek to rise and fall on the merit of their actions and the content of their character.  There’s no Patriarchy to blame for failing to complete a quest, and scoreboards have no concern for gender, race, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status.  The rules of the game don’t change because somebody was offended by the results of a match, and those who break the rules face ridicule and scorn because cheating renders the results meaningless.  So it’s no wonder so many members of #GamerGate’s opposition admit they don’t like video games very much, at least not in their current form.

Meanwhile, whether imbued from playing games or having attracted them to the medium, the #GamerGate supporters all have a deep affinity for the individualism video games promote.  It’s a nearly extinct philosophy that at best gets paid lip service nowadays, but gamers feel it in their bones.  The freedom to pursue their own happiness is integral to their worldview, and they accept that their pursuit may come with unpleasant consequences like criticism, derision, and failure. They seek open and honest debate, and they prefer to let the market dictate the fate of ideas and products.

They also realize none of that can happen without a strong ethical foundation, particularly among the press, which is why the ethical breaches they have witnessed have struck such a chord in their community.  Prior to the media turning on them, it could be written off with some grumbling as isolated incidents, but when even the freest parts of the Internet suddenly went censorship happy, it became impossible to ignore.

That part gets left out of the media narrative all the time, by the way.  The real catalyst for the gamer revolt was not the sex scandal; it was normally open spaces closing their doors to the kind of unfiltered discussion that’s a hallmark of gamer culture.  Had that not occurred, the gamers would’ve stopped grumbling in a matter of hours and #GamerGate would’ve never happened.

Instead the censorship made it quite clear the problem goes beyond merely a few dishonest video game reviews, and the only way to stop this encroachment upon the safe haven gamers built for themselves was for them to go on offense to smash this collectivist nonsense wherever they find it.  So now when feminists try to destroy a brilliant scientist because of his choice of apparel, #GamerGate is there to defend him.

And they don’t need a ruling council or a party platform to tell them what to do or what they stand for.  After all, it’s actually not that nobody in #GamerGate is an authority; it’s that everyone is.  They rest their moral certainty on the notion that the only person for whom they must speak is themselves. Others can choose to follow if they like.  Good ideas will rise from the cacophony of voices, bad ones will fall, and anyone can contribute, whether they’re an outspoken female porn star or a male firebrand Breitbart reporter.

So here we are, witnessing an unprecedented and wonderful event.  All of the people we expected to prevent tyranny from sneaking up on us in the night have fallen to its lure, and in their place stands a ragtag bunch of nobodies who have spent much of their lives being shunned for enjoying the very virtual worlds which have awakened within them the courage and principles necessary to take up arms and slay the dragon in our midst.  It’s almost like the plot of a video game…

The artwork for this post was created by Sarjex.  Check out her store!
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#TFH Live December 29: Approaching the “Edge”

Amanda McCallister (Twitter)

UPDATE: REPLAY ADDED!! Their Finest Hour returns live to Vigilant Liberty Radio at 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific on Monday, December 29th to help wind down 2014! I’ve got a great show planned. First up tonight will be the lovely and fun Amanda McCallister (@RightInPlanning) who – as we’re very excited to say – will be premiering her own VLR program, The Edge of Anarchy, next Monday (January 5) at 9pm Eastern as a live lead-in to TFH! Joining us also will be Chris T. Rex (@CrankyTRex). Since Chris is along, the #GamerGate controversy will certainly be on the agenda, plus I’ve been subjected to the Sony PlayStation outage and may need to rant a bit. We’ll try and keep it light and fun, and please come join us in VLR’s new and improved chat room for the program! If you don’t want to join us in chat, you can listen using the show player at right or direct on Spreaker (or one of their mobile apps).

10E/9C/8M/7P, talk to you then!

Replay of tonight’s show! Click the show title in the player to be taken to the location for downloading for off-line listening!

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Here’s #GamerGate In 5 Easy Bites

Many people have noticed the #GamerGate hashtag floating around but still don’t know what it’s all about, so I’m going to try and distill it down to the very basics.

enter 1. What is #GamerGate?

#GamerGate is the hashtag around which video game consumers have rallied to:

  • Demand an end to unethical behavior, corruption, and overt politicization in the video game industry, particularly among video game journalists
  • Boycott outlets that have attacked gamers with accusations of misogyny and sexism in response to the above demand
  • Share research  on and evidence of corruption in the industry
  • Support websites/causes that support gamers and inclusivity in the industry
  • Support each other against accusations of misogyny, racism, homophobia, etc.

While the tag was coined by Adam Baldwin to reflect the Watergate scandal, it has since become synonymous with a gaming consumer revolt, as “supporters” of #GamerGate see themselves as a barrier to the corruption in the industry. It even has an unofficial mascot called Vivian James. Continue reading Here’s #GamerGate In 5 Easy Bites

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TFH Live, October 20: #GamerGate

UPDATE: REPLAY ADDED!! Their Finest Hour returns live to Vigilant Liberty Radio tonight at 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific! Please come join us in VLR’s registration-free chat room for the show, just refresh the page at showtime to get the live stream!

Our topic for tonight will be the “Gamer Gate” controversy which bridges the narratives of media bias, political correctness, and the role culture plays in politics.

Just one hour tonight (and maybe some bonus minutes) so don’t forget to tune in! In addition to the chatroom, you can also listen using the player at right (again, refresh at showtime), direct on Spreaker, or using one of Spreaker’s mobile device apps!

And here’s tonight’s replay, for those who missed the program live! Remember, you can always click “Spreaker” in the player to download a copy for offline listening.

Thanks all for your listenership, and please remember to keep up with all things TFH and VLR by following @allanbourdius, @TFHBlogAndShow, and @VigilantLiberty on Twitter!

10E/9C/8M/7P!

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What Now, #GamerGate?

Well it’s been over a month now since the rise of #GamerGate, and if you’ve still not heard of it, I recommend scrolling back through my previous work to read this post, this post, and this one to get you started. Or for those TL;DR folks, #GamerGate is a consumer revolt by gamers who have gotten fed up with the corruption in the video game industry and the utter lack of journalistic ethics in a gaming media that seems hell bent on pushing a progressive sociopolitical narrative into gaming.

I sat down to write this post in the midst of the natural lull one might expect in an Internet-driven conflict lasting this long. People had begun to wonder if this whole thing were coming to an end, with both sides staking claim to victory. Gamers noted the decline in readership of prominent sites, the rise of alternatives like TechRaptor and 8chan, and the tag itself reaching the milestone of 1 million uses suggested the certain demise of the opposition; journowarriors pointed to the lull and general lack of interest on the part of bigger media sites as evidence the tempest in a teapot would soon peter out.  The question on everyone’s mind seemed to be “what’s next?”

Continue reading What Now, #GamerGate?

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Why #GamerGate Matters

Little Mac Punches Glass Joe in Wii Punch Out!!
Punching Glass Joe has come a long way. (Image via IGN)

A common refrain in response to discussions of #GamerGate goes something like this: “ISIS is overrunning Iraq, Russia has invaded Ukraine, there’s rioting in Ferguson, the economy still sucks, there are scandals all over the place, and you want to talk about a bunch of man-children who are angry that girls are getting to play with their toys?  Who cares!?”

Continue reading Why #GamerGate Matters

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Cataclysmic Clash: Gamers vs. Journalists

Little Mac punches Glass Joe in Punch Out!
Glass Joe never was a match for Little Mac. (Image: Charles Williams (CC))

A ton of things have happened since my last post on what is now known as Gamer Gate.  Some hours after it went live several gaming websites, who won’t be named and won’t be linked because they don’t deserve the traffic, posted articles all containing the same theme: “Gamers” are dead, they don’t have to be our audience, and this controversy is little more than the death rattle of a white male misogynistic culture.  One of these articles even went so far as to decry “fun” being the primary criteria by which we determine how good a game is.

Continue reading Cataclysmic Clash: Gamers vs. Journalists

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