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#364536 - 19/08/2015 13:25 Gamergate
tonyc
carpal tunnel

Registered: 27/06/1999
Posts: 7058
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
Almost No One Sided with #GamerGate: A Research Paper on the Internetís Reaction to Last Yearís Mob

Over in the Best Videos thread, Dignan asked for some resources summarizing the online menace known as Gamergate. I found this report that came across my feeds today to be a very through treatment of the issue, and though the primary focus is about media coverage and public support for the movement, it does link to a fair number of "explainer" type articles that attempted to summarize the issue at a higher level, as well as some more detailed pieces analyzing specific aspects of the movement, insofar as it could be called a "movement" at all at this point.

One can nitpick specific aspects of the methodology used to estimate #GG's support, but it does seem that a vast majority of folks who paid any attention at all eventually figured out that it had very little to do with ethics in game journalism.
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#364537 - 19/08/2015 18:01 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
I have so much to say on the topic, but the silencing effects of those involved are damn effective. Quite honestly I'm still not prepared to talk about it publicly here. Some of I I never may, to also avoid victim tourism that has sprung up around the topic that many who are targeted continue to deal with.

I saw a lot of it unfold as it was happening and have some close connections to some people directly targeted. It showed the incredible darkness some people have in them, and the incredible resiliency others have when dealing with it.

And it was incredibly frustrating working at the time for a game studio that was too afraid to voice opposition to it. Not standing up at the right time leads to a lot of people suffering abuse unnecessarily. I give Blizzard a lot of kudos for being willing to stand up against it, even as one of their former all stars is now involved directly with GG. Tolerating the type of earlier behaviors that GG refined and weaponized is also a large part of the problems the game development world is facing these days.

Overall the events led me into some pretty deep self reflection and examination of others. I now see a lot of history differently as a result. I still have a pending reply I intend to post in the marriage equality thread, and how some of the GG situations led me to see that fight in a different way as well.
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#364538 - 19/08/2015 18:23 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
One thing I find scary about all of this, is how a small minority can use the internet as a tool for terrorism, enough to make any "movement" seem like a bigger deal than it deserves to be.

The internet enables the ability for one person (of any age) to make threats of violence anonymously against anyone. This is scary, and needs to be fixed, but I don't know how. I honestly believe that a large number of the people participating in these kinds of things are just bratty kids who think of this as entertainment, no different than griefing someone in an online game. Unfortunately, the anonimity prevents us from knowing for sure.

The internet allows minority groups to band together and mobilize, exerting levels of power which, as a culture, we're still learning how to come to grips with. When a "good" minority uses the internet in this way, it's a triumph, but when a "bad" minority does this, it's a problem. Another recent example of a non-violent kind of this sort of organization is the "Sad/Rabid Puppies" thing. No death threats there, just a small number of MRA's who thought the Hugo awards were getting too feminist, and who have basically ruined the awards this year by using small-scale crowdsourcing to wipe out all other nominations but theirs. I will find out this Saturday evening whether or not our savior (a relatively unknown guy named Noah Ward) can save the day.

The more I think about it, the more I think the terrorism metaphor is apt to describe events like this. Having ubiquitous internet is like dropping a giant box full of guns and masks in the middle of every town square. Most folks just avoid the box. Some use the contents of the box to help enact good social change. Some are genuinely evil and take advantage of these tools in bad ways. And others are just kids playing around, who stumble across the box accidentally.

I don't know what to do about it, because the box is also full of so much other awesome good stuff. I don't want to take away the box, and it's a really difficult box to regulate and control.
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Tony Fabris

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#364539 - 19/08/2015 19:20 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: tfabris
The internet enables the ability for one person (of any age) to make threats of violence anonymously against anyone. This is scary, and needs to be fixed, but I don't know how.

Some of the good that came from the past year of craziness is organizations like OAPI. They seek to fix these issues, or at least equip the targets of this style of attack with good tools to defend themselves.
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#364540 - 20/08/2015 12:01 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
DWallach
carpal tunnel

Registered: 30/04/2000
Posts: 3690
Ignoring the "issues" of GamerGate and instead focusing on their tactical maneuvering, what we're seeing is an abuse of the Internet's ability to allow you to hide behind a pseudonym. In some countries, you can't get anywhere near an Internet connection without presenting your ID, such that any action taken by any IP address can be immediately traced by authorities to a specific person. This, naturally, creates a chilling effect on free speech.

(For now, I'm going to ignore Tor, VPNs, and other services that attempt to recreate anonymity as well as nation-state censorship that tries to block this.)

As much as we value the absence of that sort of chilling effect in Western Democracies, we how have people abusing their anonymity to create their own chilling effects, never mind doing awful things like calling in fake police reports that result in false deployments of SWAT teams.

Ultimately, free societies work when everybody opts into societal standards of behavior. When a few people defect from those standards, and can get away with it, then society will tolerate it for a while, but after that society will adjust to solve the problem, and that means less freedom. It's all just very sad.

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#364542 - 20/08/2015 14:16 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
tonyc
carpal tunnel

Registered: 27/06/1999
Posts: 7058
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
Having seen what vile things internet fuckwads will say under their real names via Facebook, Google+, etc., I'm entirely unconvinced that [ano|pseudo]-nyimty is a major driver of this behavior. It certainly doesn't help things, but I think it gets far more blame than it deserves.
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#364543 - 20/08/2015 14:27 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
It would be interesting to see the numbers on that. I don't think anyone has real numbers there, but it would be a fascinating study if someone were able to do it. Common sense logic tells me that people wouldn't issue death/rape threats or swat people under their real names. But you're right about there being a lot of bad stuff being posted under real-name accounts. So you've really got me thinking about that one, you could indeed be right.

Oh, and about the swatting thing: that one doesn't require the Internet, but I think the Internet helps by popularizing it and sometimes providing the target's address.
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Tony Fabris

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#364544 - 20/08/2015 15:23 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: tonyc
Having seen what vile things internet fuckwads will say under their real names via Facebook, Google+, etc., I'm entirely unconvinced that [ano|pseudo]-nyimty is a major driver of this behavior. It certainly doesn't help things, but I think it gets far more blame than it deserves.
Very much agreed. Some of the most vicious parts of Gamergate are the people unafraid of their name being attached to it. Such as a certain B rate actor who coined the term and doesn't deserve to be named.

I also disagree with Dan's point that fixing this issue will result in a loss of freedoms from where we are today. We as a society have already accepted harassment is not protected speech, and have laws reflecting this. Those who are targeted by this mob want enforcement of the current laws. And they want to stop victim blaming or old bad advice of "just don't go online" or "don't feed the trolls".

This situation for me exposed how badly behind the times our law enforcement is. Oakland PD for example had no clue what SWATting was while being a part of Silicon Valley. A target I know was saved from their door being broken down and possibly injured only because they called ahead of the threat being made.

Quite honestly one of the best ways to solve this issue is for people to stand up more. Any hints of harassment at work, at home, or in public must be addressed, even when it's subtle or possibly even unconscious. People have to want to fix this on their own and join others, instead of waiting for someone else to do something. The internet not policing it's own communities effectively (and I myself am guilty of this with the community here in the past) allows this behavior to fester and reach the toxicity it has.
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#364555 - 23/08/2015 14:48 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
tonyc
carpal tunnel

Registered: 27/06/1999
Posts: 7058
Loc: Pittsburgh, PA
In other "maybe the good guys are winning" news: "sad puppies" crash and burn at the Hugo awards. (Background.)
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#364557 - 24/08/2015 01:30 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
It was a very exciting night, for many reasons. It was really awesome to hear rousing cheers each time they read out the No Award result.

Also, today, at the business meeting, they passed E Pluribus Hugo so that this shit won't happen again, at least not the same way.

Having survived the smoke in Spokane (it was epic on Friday), thrown out my back during sound check and played a great concert anyway, and then got to be in the room as the Hugos made history, I think the weekend on balance came out pretty good.
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Tony Fabris

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#364558 - 24/08/2015 15:51 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
This seemed like a good longer form writeup to me as someone who hadn't followed the sad puppies story: http://www.wired.com/2015/08/won-science-fictions-hugo-awards-matters/
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#364559 - 24/08/2015 18:02 Re: Gamergate [Re: drakino]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
I liked that story, and even tweeted a link to it when I saw the story. You're right, it's a really good explanation of the situation, and why last Saturday was important, for those who might not have known about what was going on.

Some people rightfully took that particular story to task for misrepresenting the history of the Hugos and SF a little bit. In particular, it made it seem like SF was only ever made by old straight white guys until very recently. The truth is that women and minorities and LGBT folks have been in SF all along, their voices were just not heard as well until recently.

Despite that quibble, I think it was a well written story which makes this situation very clear to the layman, and it's particularly good at using direct quotes from the puppies themselves, something that a lot of other writeups aren't doing.

The morning after the awards, I did a google news search about the Hugos, to see what the coverage was like. The two top hits were that one, and the top blog post by one of the puppies crowing how they'd "won". smile

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#364561 - 25/08/2015 21:21 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: tfabris
Also, today, at the business meeting, they passed E Pluribus Hugo so that this shit won't happen again, at least not the same way.


Today I learned that the ratification process for the Hugo rules means that this won't take effect until the 2017 hugos.

Sigh.
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Tony Fabris

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#364572 - 27/08/2015 11:41 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
Excuse my ignorance, I don't seem able to find what I would call a decent and balanced summary from a news outlet I would normally pay attention to of what GamerGate actually is.

As a non-gamer I have seen this term banded about but have little understanding of what it is/was and which side of the argument I would fall.

I have 3 questions...

1 - Is "Gamergate" the good guy/girl or bad guy/girl ???

2 - Am I right to assume there are professional victims on both sides of this tail?

3 - Why should I care about this issue and take the time to find out more?

Cheers

Cris

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#364576 - 27/08/2015 13:49 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
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#364577 - 27/08/2015 13:51 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
(Edited: Sections edited and rewritten with stronger and more direct language instead of making implications. More text added, additional opinions added.)

Quote:
Excuse my ignorance, I don't seem able to find what I would call a decent and balanced summary from a news outlet I would normally pay attention to of what GamerGate actually is.


Understandable, since it's a hot-button issue that tends to be very polarizing. The article linked at the top of this thread makes it clear that the media has generally tended to side against gamergate, so most of the articles you see will be from that perspective. The current version of the Wikipedia article seems to have a lot of good information on what it's about, though who knows what the article will look like tomorrow. My guess is that those who are pro-gamergate would like to see the Wikipedia article rewritten to be more balanced towards their side, and I seem to recall there was initially a lot of back-and-forth editing on the article. I tend to think the media and Wikipedia are currently covering it pretty well, but if you asked anyone who sides with the movement, you'd get a different story.

The next question is: When does an issue genuinely deserve balanced coverage? If someone does something bad because they think they are righteous, does their side deserve to be covered in a "balanced" way? Or do we simply report that they did something bad, and this was their reasoning for doing it? Depends on whether you think their actions were wrong, and whether you think they were actually righteous or not. When you disagree with the actions and you do not believe the perpetrator was righteous, then there's no "issue" and there is no reason to be "balanced": You just report that a crime was committed and move on. I think that's what most of the media did, because that's the level of coverage it deserved.


Quote:
1 - Is "Gamergate" the good guy/girl or bad guy/girl ???


Gamergate is the name used by the group of people doing the harassing. I think that means they were the bad guys. Of course, if you asked the members of gamergate, they would say they were the good guys, because they think they are righteous. If history is written by the victors, then in this case, the victors (and in this case I'm defining victory as the general public and media opinion, cited in the article linked at the top of this thread) will tend to say that gamergate was the bad guys. And they do tend to be *guys* specifically, that's part of the nature of the movement, as the wikipedia article will clarify. Whether you agree that they're the bad guys depends on how you feel about the hot-button issues which are raised therein. If you believe that they were righteous to harass/dox/threaten these women, then you probably think they were the good guys, too.

There is the other issue, which is, any movement of any size will have factions. Some of the members of gamergate were denouncing the actions of some of the other members. Since, as a movement, it was very amorphous to begin with, it's hard to actually pin down who represents what. Did it start with someone raising issues calmly, and then get overtaken by zealots? Or did it start with the zealots, and are those calling for more reasonable discussion the outliers? Hard to tell. In general, though, the movement very quickly came to represent the harassment campaigns, quickly overshadowing anyone else who tried to make their points more calmly. The catch phrase for the movement, "actually, it's about ethics in games journalism", carries some irony with it, because the members of the movement in general were seen as doing quite unethical things, and were targeting people in such a way at to make it clear that it wasn't about games journalism at all, it was really about sexism and misogyny all along. If there was anyone in the movement actually trying to make games journalism more ethical, then, aligning themselves with the gamergate name was counterproductive.

I also have a personal belief (not supported by any evidence) that a lot of the gamergate movement was actually just a bunch of kids: internet trolls and griefers with nothing better to do, who just see this as a giant game they could play, something mischievous they could do without getting caught. Even if this is true, it doesn't make the situation any less serious. There were still plenty of non-anonymous adults standing up for the movement and rallying those troops.


Quote:
2 - Am I right to assume there are professional victims on both sides of this tail?


I don't know, I'm sure it depends on your definitions of "professional" and "victim", but from my point of view, the victims were the gaming industry professionals who were targeted for harassment, and as far as I know, the members of Gamergate, the ones who launched the organized campaign of harassment, were not professionals in the gaming industry.


Quote:
3 - Why should I care about this issue and take the time to find out more?


Because even if you're not a gamer, a massive number of humans are, and understanding that some of the people in the industry are being targeted for harassment is important, because this is an important social issue. This issue has farther-reaching implications than just gamers or games journalism. It shows how the internet can be used as a tool for doing hurtful things, and shows us the places where the internet can be improved for the better. It reminds us that the human race and its cultures are still deeply mired in sexism, misogyny, and other problems, which are hard to fix, but which nonetheless need addressing. It helps us improve the future of the human race by exposing our sometimes-hidden darker tendencies. It is an example we can use to teach our children important lessons. It shines a light: it helps us recognize when there are hurtful things happening around us, perhaps happening to our friends or perhaps perpetrated by our friends, which otherwise might have gone unnoticed, and gives us a chance to maybe do something about it.

Sexism, misogyny, bigotry, and intolerance are learned behaviors. So are respect and acceptance. If we can be shown situations where negative attitudes have specific negative consequences, it's worth looking at, because it helps influence us, as a species, to improve. Minds can be changed (sometimes), and our children can learn from our mistakes. I believe that, over time, humanity will improve to be better about these things, and recognizing the places where we can make improvements is a critical part of that. I believe that this improvement is happening all around us today, in clearly visible steps, and that we need to be attentive to it, and not get complacent about it. So we need to point out and pay attention to the places where we're losing ground on that progress.

The fact that, today, we can even talk about any of these things (gamergate, sexism, bigotry, etc.) as an "issue" that needs "balanced coverage" completely *horrifies* me. We need to aim for a future where these things are no longer in question, and are just accepted as wrong. We'll get there, as long as we don't ignore the bad stuff when it comes up.
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#364578 - 27/08/2015 14:57 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
Thanks for the info guys.

I started to read the Wiki page, which lead me to this video... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6p5AZp7r_Q

Within the first 5 minutes I started to think I was disagreeing with a lot she was saying. So I guess that puts me in the misogynistic sexist pig camp?

Then I remembered where I had heard about this stuff in the past, on this guys channel...

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmb8hO2ilV9vRa8cilis88A

So I went to watch a couple of videos there. Then I decided this issue seems to be one of those classic internet discussions that just wouldn't happen face to face and decided to leave it there.

I guess by professional victim I mean anyone who profits financially from putting themselves in a position deliberately opposed in order to gain. Which I can already see is the case on YouTube (the assumption being both sets of videos I have watched today ran ads before I could view).

Cheers

Cris

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#364579 - 27/08/2015 14:58 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
Originally Posted By: tfabris
Edit: Withdrawing my reply for now, until I can rewrite it in stronger language. Some of the points I made were meant to be inferred, and they should be stated strongly instead of inferred.


Ahhh, ok. Well it was useful when I read it as was.

Cheers

Cris

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#364580 - 27/08/2015 17:18 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: Cris
I started to read the Wiki page, which lead me to this video... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6p5AZp7r_Q

Within the first 5 minutes I started to think I was disagreeing with a lot she was saying. So I guess that puts me in the misogynistic sexist pig camp?

Disagreeing with Anita doesn't make one sexist, it makes them a person with a differing opinion of a critic, or someone who doesn't believe the facts she presents in her series alongside her critiques. However Gamergate didn't start with Anita. It was started by Zoe's ex. Many in Gamergate have tried to distance themselves from the origin of this situation, knowing how it paints them in a deserved bad light. And others expanded their harassment to Anita after starting with Zoe, merging with some who were already harassing Anita when Zoe's situation exploded.

What Anita is discussing has nothing to do with Gamergate, so beyond that I won't comment on her work in this thread.

The video series here explores how Gamergate latched onto people like yourself who disagree with Anita and turned them into part of the harassment crowd: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJA_jUddXvY62dhVThbeegLPpvQlR4CjF (The video I dropped in the best videos of 2015).

And that above part is why you should care. To be more aware of how someone with a hidden agenda (Zoe's ex) can spin a fantastical tale that launches a harassment campaign you might not even realize you are a part of. Being more aware of these tactics has me viewing some other situations in a different light now.

Originally Posted By: Cris
I guess by professional victim I mean anyone who profits financially from putting themselves in a position deliberately opposed in order to gain. Which I can already see is the case on YouTube (the assumption being both sets of videos I have watched today ran ads before I could view).

Zoe definitely didn't have a breakup with her ex to make money off the situation. Anita did not produce her series and position herself as a critic to profit off her harassment.
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#364581 - 27/08/2015 17:55 Re: Gamergate [Re: tonyc]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
I can't really figure out this harassment has taken place. It's such a muddy pool !!!

Cheers

Cris

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#364582 - 27/08/2015 19:13 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: Cris
I can't really figure out this harassment has taken place. It's such a muddy pool !!!


That particular part is well-documented and not muddy at all. I have a couple of examples after 2.5 seconds of searching, and there are more, but I've got stuff to do.

http://kotaku.com/another-woman-in-gaming-flees-home-following-death-thre-1645280338
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-29626809
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Tony Fabris

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#364583 - 27/08/2015 19:19 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Chris, what would it take to convince you it happened? An outright denial here is starting to make me view you as one of the "Angry Jack" people in the video series I linked. I still encourage you to watch it in it's entirety.

I know (or at least I hope) it's unintentional, but your behavior in this thread is eerily mirroring intentional tactics used by Gamergate.

And I will say this as far as the harassment. It was absolutely 100% real. It wasn't just "one of those classic internet discussions that just wouldn't happen face to face" I know this because I witnessed a small percentage of it. None of it was ever aimed directly at me, but due to my associations and career in games, I saw a lot up close.

I'm still not sure if I'm comfortable talking about specifics here though. I may be willing to do so privately if you want Chris. I'll only be willing to invest such time though if I can see some assurances you are sincere in your curiosity and open minded. It's a very sensitive subject for me.
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Tom

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#364584 - 27/08/2015 19:25 Re: Gamergate [Re: drakino]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: drakino
I know (or at least I hope) it's unintentional, but your behavior in this thread is eerily mirroring intentional tactics used by Gamergate.


I hope it's unintentional too. Trolling can be very subtle at times.
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Tony Fabris

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#364585 - 27/08/2015 21:51 Re: Gamergate [Re: drakino]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
Originally Posted By: drakino
I know (or at least I hope) it's unintentional, but your behavior in this thread is eerily mirroring intentional tactics used by Gamergate.


Unintentional.

It worries me you would just to such conclusions so quickly.

My interest in this topic is not great enough that I want to understand every detail. I have nothing but a mild curiosity, and I was hoping I could ask questions freely amongst people I have met face to face and known for many years without having my character brought into question.

At no point did I deny anything had happened, I just asked a question about what is supposed to have happened.

I can see this is opening a can of worms here. I don't think I want to open that can thanks.

Cheers

Cris

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#364586 - 27/08/2015 22:06 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
Cris
pooh-bah

Registered: 06/02/2002
Posts: 1896
Loc: Leeds, UK
Originally Posted By: tfabris
Trolling can be very subtle at times.


Wow! Stunned!

At this point I think I need to ask myself what has the internet done to us all ???

You have met me Tony, long ago I guess, but we have met. We probably shared a beer. I've have been a member here for over a decade. I met my WIFE at an empeg meet but yet you rather believe the worst in me rather than what you should already know.

Your reply should have said "Yeah, I know Cris, totally unintentional I'm sure". It saddens me that it didn't.

If this is what this particular issue brings out in people then count me out!

One final point is, to an outsider the water is pretty muddy. I also spent about 10 seconds Googling too, and whilst my search did throw up similar articles to the ones you link it also threw up stuff like this...

http://www.usu.edu/today/index.cfm?id=54179

Unless that is a fake website it appears to be legitimate? And paints a slightly different picture to even the BBC article on the exact same topic. So I call that a muddy puddle.

Cheers

Cris

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#364587 - 27/08/2015 22:31 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: Cris
Unintentional.
This is great to hear, and I do believe it.

Originally Posted By: Cris
It worries me you would just to such conclusions so quickly.
I appreciate the concern. Due to the proximity to what happened and some other life crisis situations over the past 2 years, I get defensive much quicker then normal. It's an unfortunate side effect that I'm working on correcting in myself. And it's part of why I'm handing control over the boards to someone else.

Originally Posted By: Cris
My interest in this topic is not great enough that I want to understand every detail. I have nothing but a mild curiosity, and I was hoping I could ask questions freely amongst people I have met face to face and known for many years without having my character brought into question.
I want to apologize for the attack on your character. I would still encourage you to watch the series above still, as beyond the scope of Gamergate, it talks about some interesting aspects of human psychology. Gamergate was just one named incident of many that are happening out there. Tony here has some exposure to a fork of it that also went after science fiction writers. The internet does enable these situations to happen easier, due to the ease of communication it enables. It's something that we all will have to grapple with somehow as our world continues to join together more as a community.

Originally Posted By: Cris
At no point did I deny anything had happened, I just asked a question about what is supposed to have happened.
Your statement earlier of "I can't really figure out this harassment has taken place." came across as a denial to me. Gaslighting was a common tactic by those in Gamergate to cover up their abuse. Their denial of such harassment while engaging in it would then lead those not participating in the harassment while still remaining allied with GG to unintentionally help cover it up.

A slang term of Sea-Lioning came to be used during the Gamergate controversy. The goal behind this was to make it appear Gamergate supporters were more rational and civil then they really were to the wider audience, and attempting to get the wider audience to ignore the people under attack as "uncivilized and unwilling to engage in honest debate". Sea-Lioning has parallels with "just asking questions".

Again I understand your responses were just coincidentally mirroring some of these tactics. I raise them here not as an attack on you, instead to help you and others here understand the reactions some many have.
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Tom

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#364588 - 27/08/2015 22:42 Re: Gamergate [Re: Cris]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
Sorry, Cris. Didn't mean to offend. You are right, we have met before, and I certainly don't take you as that type of person. I think it says more about the way that certain trolls do their business than it does about you or me or Tom.

Basically, sometimes trolls will phrase a question online in such a way as to sound innocent, but which they know will provoke a polarized response. It's hard to tell the difference between that, and honest curiosity. I believe you when you say it's honest curiosity about a topic you didn't undertstand.

It is an interesting point that you make, that the USU site claims there was no danger on the day Anita canceled her appearance. I remember that announcement on that day, and I see why the two reports might seem to differ, to you, when you are reading them after the fact.

But let me clarify the perceived discrepancy. I don't think there is a discrepancy here, I think that what Anita (and that BBC news article) reported on that day, and what USU is saying, are actually the same thing.

Anita clearly said that she canceled because USU wouldn't (or perhaps couldn't?) beef up their security after receiving the threat. The threat was made, and there is no muddiness about that point. The USU article itself even states, clearly:
Quote:
"A number of people at USU received an email regarding the scheduled presentation by Sarkeesian Wednesday at USU's Taggart Student Center. The email contained threats to Sarkeesian and those who attended her presentation."


This isn't muddy at all to me. It's a clear admission by USU that they received threats and chose to do nothing about them. And I think Anita made the right call by canceling the appearance when USU wouldn't beef up the security. This is pretty clear to me, and I don't see any muddiness in the reporting of the incident here.

There have been too many cases in our country about situations where someone carried out on precisely those kinds of threats. This happens regularly in this country, and it's very sad that it does. The news is currently plastered here with another highly public mass shooting which occurred this week. That's why the gamergate people know that they can make the threats and cause distress by making them. The problem is that there is no way to tell whether the threat will be carried out. USU decided to make a gamble that the threat would not be carried out, and Anita rightfully chose not to make that same gamble.
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Tony Fabris

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#364589 - 27/08/2015 23:26 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
(Clarifying: In the wake of a threat like that, simply prohibiting backpacks at the event is the same as doing nothing at all. For those kinds of threats you need something a little stronger: Pat downs and metal detectors.)
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Tony Fabris

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#364590 - 27/08/2015 23:34 Re: Gamergate [Re: tfabris]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
The BBC article quoted Anita on why she didn't attend the event, and I'll expand a bit.
Originally Posted By: Anita
Requested pat downs or metal detectors after mass shooting threat but because of Utah's open carry laws police wouldnít do firearm searches.
Originally Posted By: tfabris
It's a clear admission by USU that they received threats and chose to do nothing about them.

The threats made against her were ones of violence by firearm. The school she was going to speak at was a public one, so it falls under laws that govern Utah. Those laws allow guns on public school campuses, and allow people with permits to conceal firearms on their person. They didn't choose to do nothing about it, they were bound by law to not do more as Anita asked.

Had someone with a valid permit attended, they would have been legally allowed to carry their weapon concealed and ready to fire into the venue where she was speaking.

Utah also allows open carry of firearms without a permit, and the police would not have been legally allowed to stop someone from entering with a visible weapon on them. The open carry law requires the ammunition to be two steps away from being ready to fire. With a modern handgun, this is literally less then a seconds worth of time to do.

The concealed permit side was a concern for Anita due to Utah being a "shall issue" state. This means that unless someone already has certain criminal convictions, the state has to grant a permit to anyone who asks. They also recognize any permit from any other state in the US, some of them have even less restrictions then the already lax ones in Utah.
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Tom

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#364591 - 28/08/2015 00:10 Re: Gamergate [Re: drakino]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 30897
Loc: Seattle, WA
Wow, I didn't know about that aspect of it. All I'd heard was that they wouldn't/couldn't do enough, I didn't realize that they were legally bound to do nothing. That's crazy.
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Tony Fabris

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