Topics for tonight will be tomorrow’s dawn which will see the start of the Republican-controlled 114th Congress, the racial politicization of Sunday Brunch, and a whole host of other political, cultural, and entertainment topics!
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.
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→
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?”
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!?”
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.
A firestorm has erupted in the video game community this past week, and before I get started on talking about that, let me offer this blanket warning that all the links and videos in this post may contain strong language and thus are probably NSFW.
The controversy centers on independent game developer Zoe Quinn, and it began with her submission of her game, Depression Quest, to the Steam Greenlight program that allows the Steam community to select games for distribution on that service. Since Depression Quest is a simple text-based game designed to get players to understand depression, it was widely panned by that community.
Last week Epic Games announced they are making another Unreal Tournament (UT) game. Unreal Tournament is a first-person shooter franchise that helped define my college experience, with the first game providing comfort on many a lonely eve my freshman year and its successor Unreal Tournament 2004 being a go-to game for the cadre of friends I amassed over my tenure there. Years later I’d buy a brand new PC just to play Unreal Tournament 3, and though UT3 turned out to be a disappointing entry in the franchise, the idea of a new UT game is still pretty exciting. What’s especially interesting about this one is the business model Epic has put forward: Continue reading Godlike! Epic Games & Free Markets→
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