Fuck “Gamers”

This post is 15,000 words long, which I’m pretty sure is a record for the site. For those of you who are fans of my longer work, consider this a partial apology for being whisked away for so long. For those of you that prefer the shorter stuff… apparently I hate you and wish you pain. I’m sorry, but the voices make me make you suffer so.

Milo Yiannopoulos, The Andrew Breitbart is Still Dead Necropolis:
Feminist Bullies are Tearing the Video Game Industry Apart*


You, see, with luck, you’re sitting there completely ignorant of the amount of stupid I’m going to have to explain today with this… everything and thus you are safe and secure, shrouded in blissful ignorance of just how entitled, disconnected from reality, and just utterly dumb today’s subject is and the “movement” he comes from.

Cause make no mistake, what we’re having to cover today, the depths of research I had to pull just to understand the full scope of batshit conspiracy theory level bullshit that underlies the event this fuck is talking about and more importantly, the fact that I’ve already learned of most of it, just because of the interests I have and the circles I run in… It’s just so… DUUUUUUUMMMMMBBBBB. Mind-numbingly so.

Cause see, today’s bullshit is regarding harassment of women in gaming.

And we’re diving straight into the horse’s anus to see what poisoned oats have been sampled to allow a bunch of whining pathetic man-children seem like the victims of the horrific unbelievable oppression that is DUN DUN DUNNNNNN women fucking existing in the treehouse they thought they had properly sterilized as their he-man woman-hater’s club and it’s time to pitch an epic level hissy fit. That’s right:

Shorter (or the last port before Jungle):

  • AAAIIIEEEE our targets for online harassment actually recognizing it for what it is and not being super happy about being driven out of their homes and having their friends and family stalked, harassed, driven out of their jobs, and put in fear for their lives because a bunch of sad losers think that endless terrorism will somehow make all the women disappear forever and allow pathetic men to pretend sitting on a couch and playing Call of Duty makes one a super manly man whose manparts are extra manly and irresistible to fake anime girls IS THE REAL OPPRESSION FROM VILE HARASSING VILLAINS WHO WANT TO DRIVE PEOPLE OUT OF GAMING! It is! You can’t take away our toys by… enjoying and creating more of them, while being women and/or queer! You can’t! Also, this suicidal attempt at driving out the majority of people who’d be interested in gaming won’t at all backfire by creating a situation where companies are less and less likely to churn out giant artistic megaprojects for the douchebro gamers given that their audience is a dwindling audience of manchildren who think not getting exactly their way is something that should be reacted to with death threats and endless harassment.


Okay, I need to get something off my chest (no, not my boobs. Pervert.) before I dive into this mess of… ugh.

It’s a little story of young Cerberus and teh vidjeo games (yes, yes, I know, more personal crap, don’t worry, you can just skip ahead to the first blockquote if you want to escape it). Cause see, games have long been a special part of my life experiences growing up. The first video games I ever played were on my mom’s old atari, which she dug up and set up just so I could experience some of the wonder she experienced first playing games like Centipede and Space Invaders.

My uncle also was part of my games education. See, he’s a computer engineer with all the unfortunate social detritus that comes with (as I’ve sadly discovered recently), but one of the ways he knew how to connect with me as a spawnling was through the medium of games. So he showed me some simple adventure games and helped me play them. When I got older, he let me play some of his old Rogue-like games like Zork and more risque offerings like Monkey Island. It was his way of connecting his past with my present.

Indeed, as much as my relationship with my family may be as poisoned as a mercury bog full of arsenic, what connected me to certain family members growing up was video games. Indeed, my mom was my biggest educator into the wonder games can bring. When I was growing up, the way we’d bond was playing horror games and adventure games together. Working our way through Myst or 7th Guest was something that brought us together and gave us something that was “ours” for lack of a better word. And not the game itself, but the memory of a relationship before it became poisoned and the way it opened connecting together with other geek ephemera like Whedon shows and anime.

It also played important parts in my education. My first lessons in math were from a weird game where you had to stop a mad scientist by solving addition and subtraction problems. Before kindergarten, I would play Nintendo at a friend’s house and his mom would often have him solve math problems during our hangout time, so solving the problems with him was a way to entertain myself and get us back to the Mario. A lot of my earliest clues that there was a wider world to history than what my white-bred school was teaching me also came in games like Age of Empires or Museum Madness and my fascination with biology was born out of a throwaway line in a little-known game called Parasite Eve.

I grew up with video games, cause introvert, middle-class suburbia, that was the thing to do and it often became a refuge for my sanity and a means of expressing myself even if I didn’t know it yet. Being able to disappear into a fantasy world of intrigue and mystery when trying not to focus on the way my nascent depression was choosing to handle issues like violent endless homophobic bullying or dysphoria or a mental health condition that I had to solve by myself without outside aid was critical to my survival. Additionally, games were where I found resonance even if I didn’t realize it. My real name is literally born out of what I used to call myself on profiles when I wanted a girl name. And the characters that most resonated with me, most called to me where the one’s where there is a heroine and she wasn’t a sex object or obsessed with sexually pleasing all those around her.

Fictional heroines like Aya Brea, Jade, or Samus Aran were something I as a young trans* ace kid could see myself in, even if I didn’t realize the full importance of it then.

And beyond that, tabletop games and video games were how I connected with friends, holding that connecting thread to the world through some shit I didn’t even have the language to understand was going on. It’s still something I’ll turn to in the ever vanishing moments where I have free time in order to have a small smattering of self care. And I have been delighted to seek out in indie games to find new resonance in works like Gone Home, The Path, Mainichi, or Depression Quest.

I have been a gamer all my life, raised by gamers, befriended by gamers, and who may even owe my life to the games industry.

I want you to understand this, for you to understand the full extent of what I mean when I say:


It’s easy to mock video gamers as dorky loners in yellowing underpants. Indeed, in previous columns, I’ve done it myself. Occasionally at length.

Hurr, nerds!

But, the more you learn about the latest scandal in the games industry, the more you start to sympathise with the frustrated male stereotype.

You know, I used to think you were losers I should shove into the locker and tease for being a fag, but now that you’ve revealed yourselves to be the type of perpetually aggrieved angry men who define their self worth by their violent resistance to anything deemed woman or feminine, I really find you a kindred spirit and agree completely that a bunch of fucking pixels is the most precious resource on our fucking planet and must be protected against an imaginary horde of strawfeminists come to take it all away.

…ugh, if there’s anything worse than whiny gamers thinking women existing next to their video games will suddenly make them grow a vagina and run away like all the women they stalk, it’s gotta be douchebro professional misogynists who only started liking said reprobates when they started terrorizing women full time. It’s like saying, gosh, I didn’t know about this Stalin guy, but once I heard about his penchant for disappearing those he imagines have slighted him in minor ways, I realized he’s someone who deserves my full support.

Because an army of sociopathic feminist programmers and campaigners, abetted by achingly politically correct American tech bloggers,

My Bob, that squadron of strawwomen and high-decibel dog-whistles sounds absolutely fucking terrifying.

What nefarious na’erdowellisms are they getting up to atop their Doom Fortress of Evil?

are terrorising the entire community

Those fiends!

My word, I must hear more! Quick, speak of their horrors so I may gasp in shock and retire to the fainting couch as befits a woman of my station!

lying, bullying and manipulating their way around the internet

It’s worse than I could have ever ima-

for profit and attention.

Wait. What?

Um, not to derail the IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION train or nuthin’ but this isn’t really sounding quite the doom hammer you seem to think it does. I mean, really “attention”. Oh noes, people may notice them. Oooh, scarrrry. What? Game developers wanting to earn money for their work and to have people who would be interested find their work. What horror. Clearly the poor gamers have been done wrong.

I mean, not to spoiler things here, but the victim blaming that ol’ Milo here is warming up is defending and justifying harassment campaigns that have continuously terrorized multiple women in the industry, deluging them with rape and death threats and the two main women he’ll cite as the evil force that will steal the bleepity bloopity toys away have recently been driven from their homes by perpetually aggrieved man-children who think it’s okay to dox people, harass them constantly, and send death threats to them, their friends and family. The women targeted have had their friends and family targeted and harassed and have even sent death threats to people even just commenting that the shit is fucked up, even if they are titans of the gaming industry like Tim Schafer or geek icons like Joss Whedon or Will Wheaton.

And to make the preceding even dumber, the two women targeted who supposedly are nefariously stealing precious attention from sempai-kun and evil capitalistic profit (remember, it’s only bad if someone other than a white straight man earns money) are a game developer who makes free games and only set up a donation on their most successful game because she wanted to have people have a way to donate to services that help treat depression and a YouTube culture critic who raised money for a video series that she then went on to produce, expand, improve the quality of, and add educational materials to and has since released said work for free on the internet.

What greedy fiends.

It’s a fact of life that the video games industry is awash with marginalised, troubled people who have found it difficult to manage their lives in mainstream society.

I’m honestly kind of impressed at this turn of rhetoric here. I mean, it’s simultaneously the myth of the bullied nerd gamer, the loser who got teased by the jocks for his yoshi t-shirt and who had to hide his hobbies from the world because people just like him claimed they were Satanic and caused school shootings as well as a “ugh, of course our industry is overrun with those ‘others’ who keep pretending like they’re people” dismissal.

Hey, with shit this deep, you got to find your kernels to hold onto where they fall.

It’s particularly the case when you look at independent or “indie” video game developers, a remarkable proportion of whom suffer from depression or anxiety disorders. Many of these people end up as enthusiastic campaigners for one or more causes they feel deserve wider attention.

Oh no, the younger and more artistically-minded members of an art form turn out to have personal causes they feel are important, want to talk about things outside the dominant narrative, and may even have lives different from the dominant group member identity.

This is completely unprecedented! No other art form ever has this kind of thing happen in its more independent and non-mainstream corridors. Oh hey, does anyone want tickets to the new experimental queer movie at Sundance this year?

The journalists who cover games and gamers are subject to similar peculiarities and challenges, which perhaps explains widespread frustration from players that every blog out there seems more concerned with policing misogyny and “transphobia” than reviewing the latest game releases.

Gosh, that is terrible. It’s almost as if there were a lot of major issues with misogyny and transphobia (in addition to racism and homophobia) in the gamer community that might necessitate said journalists breaking away from the standard grind of pimping the latest toy and putting numbers next to it for people to fight and argue over. Nahhhh, must be the fault of those uppity journalists who are too busy suffering from their depression and anxiety like a bunch of fags deciding to waste time that could be spent on an eight-millionth post on screenshots of the next Blah de Blah big budget, big-studio yearly iteration on a brand on having to address made-up-bullshit. Like anyone actually cares about the fact that a critical mass of people in the industry are harassing developers and journalists of the toys they love, threatening them with death and trying to drive them to suicide or just drive them out of the medium they love for the crime of not being straight and cis and/or being a woman.

… I think what gets to me the most is the utter passive voice. Oh, these journalists just suddenly decided to waste time talking about misogyny and transphobia all out of the blue unexpectedly which shocked the poor dears who were just hoping to be advertised to about the latest product they should buy to keep up their “identity”. Not like said gamers necessitated said conversation by dishing out a level of raw misogyny and hate that made it impossible to ignore.

Hey, dipshits, don’t want to be inundated with articles expressing shame at sharing a community with you or articles covering your harassment and assholitude? Maybe stop being harassing assholes!

Fuck, I gotta say, if there’s one tactic the right-wing has fallen in love with that drives me up the wall the most, it’s got to be this victim blaming temporal revisionism where they try and pretend that their victim’s human response to their assholic ways is what the initial salvo of unforgivable vileness was really responding to in the first place. It’s just that unholy combination of victim blaming and insulting one’s intelligence that makes one’s brains dribble out one’s ears.

As a result, gaming sites and their readers have drifted apart in recent years. Journalists have sided with activists to pen soporific op-eds about the need for “equality” in video games, while the people who actually play games just want to know if the latest instalment is good value for money.


1) It’s always fascinating to watch a right-winger try and grasp the concept that they aren’t actually the fucking center of the universe and that people who aren’t them might care about the same thing they do. Oh, what, you want to know if your toy is a good value/presents something you might want to spend money on? Gosh… do you think that women and queer people might want the same damn thing and would like to know whether or not that $60! is going to go to a game they’ll enjoy or which will center around people committing constant violence against people like them or trading in cheap jokes at their expense?

Yeah, I think that might be fucking relevant to the decision to buy a fucking game. Certainly of greater import than telling the dudebros whether or not the game’s graphics have been muddied to the correct shade of brown for the fiftieth time. Especially considering that adult women are the largest block of consumers for video games and have been so for quite some time, especially when compared to the male teenager demographic block.

2) Yeah, that last point? It’s kind of what this is about. The same as how all the draconian racist Arizona bullshit came about because a new study was showing the number of latin@ constituents was about to become a bigger and more important block than scared white retiree racists.

And it’s rather transparently obvious in how fearful it is of the notion of not being the most important and having the power that default dominant group status brings.

Which is ludicrous because minority groups historically, no matter the level of suffering and oppression, nearly never have responded to power by immediately limiting the power of the former dominant group. When black people got the right to vote, when women got the right to vote, there were endless terrified screeds at what horrors would be unleashed. Horrors that well… didn’t. Didn’t even come close. Queers get married and instead of all straight people being forced to perform pedicures for gay people’s dogs, queers are getting married.

But it’s not really about the loss of power. It’s about the loss of universality. The loss of being every hero in every story. The loss of having all the news media and products of your chosen interest be about you as if you really were the only person to have that interest.

And these articles directly threaten that. If women and queers play video games, if some games have women and queer characters or are made by women or queer people to reflect their life experiences, then it signals the end of having white straight men aged 13-25 assumed to be the only people who have ever played games ever. It means maybe having to choose a gender before playing a game or seeing a fully human queer or female character in a game here or there or having a product that isn’t looking to sell to them.

And as terrifying as this is not, this shift represents something that genuinely terrifies them. That people other than them might like this thing they assumed was all male and that means those who cling to toxic masculinity, trying to meet the qualification of manly by eschewing anything even remotely tainted with being appealing to women, might have to burn this interest in the name of protecting that fragile stupid idea.

And I say this jovially, but I’m not fucking kidding. Especially in geek circles, this bullshit toxic masculinity has led to backlashes against once properly “manly” forms of entertainment simply because women ended up liking it in equal numbers. The way anime has been de-emphasized in nerd festivals because women were starting to enjoy it in equal numbers. Or the way that a number of gaming genres have been declared dead and “teh casual” that all “tru gamers” should steer clear of simply because women started to dig it. Puzzle games, simulation games, adventure games, Japanese RPGs. Men obsessed with this idiotic definition of what it means to be manly** have run screaming once it became unavoidable to pretend that no woman ever could have been interested in it.

And this leads to the violent angry backlash whenever that illusion is shattered. As if one must “defend” this bastion of toxic masculinity lest they be forced by their own stupidity to move to a new toy to pretend makes the act of sitting in a chair playing with an entertainment device something akin to fighting in a real war.

Meanwhile, there have been grumbles that journalists are getting too close to their subjects, and that they speak ever more insultingly about their bread and butter customers – that is, their predominantly male readers – the longer they spend in the company of feminist activists and other agitators.

You might think it cruel to delve too deeply into the private lives of damaged people. But when, say, a video game developer and activist with a history of outrageous dishonesty, whose games aren’t up to much but nonetheless always seem to get glowing reviews, gets accused of exchanging sex for positive coverage and other benefits, the public interest is overwhelmingly clear.

Ungh. Okay okay, I’ve delayed explaining this bullshit long enough.

So, the storm in a teacup that Dumbass here is building up isn’t actually a stirring support for those struggling with mental health issues and proving that one can be successful, productive, and wonderfully introspective and creative despite struggling with a beast that wants one dead. Nor is it a genuine concern about the fact that gaming “journalism” sites have often been straight up bought as vehicles of advertising for big studios, often bullied and threatened with lawsuits if they try and actually mention concerns about the company’s ability to actually deliver what they are pitching. Nor is it about genuine breaches in ethics, where game “journalists” and reviewers have had their work rewritten and given higher scores or hidden critiques of a game because a developer who is a major advertiser felt an honest review would hurt their bottom line. Nor is it about the fact that what gamers often call journalism is about as hallow as what supposed print and television “journalists” call journalism. Basically repeating advertising pitches, being a vehicle for teaser trailers and carefully doctored screenshots, and so on.

Nope, it’s about trying to invent a justification for harassing a small time indie game developer.

See, there is this game developer called Zoe Quinn. She’s a pansexual games developer who makes games for free distribution on her website and they are often quirky or personal works (she’s currently got one that’s a gamification of Waiting for Godot, so yeah, artiste).

She was targeted for some vile harassment about a year ago when she first released her critically acclaimed work Depression Quest (a hauntingly beautiful free work you can play on any computer that perfectly captures what it’s like to be suffering from clinical depression) on Steam. She released the game on Steam because Steam is the main platform for indie gaming and she wanted as many people to have access to the game as possible as it had potential to help those struggling with depression, either through the game itself or through donations to a charity focused on depression issues which she had in lieu of a tip jar.

Anyways, the first round of harassment claimed they were targeting her for repeated sexual harassment and calls for her to kill herself because women couldn’t possibly understand depression. No, really:

All females are sluts and have no right to be depressed. They can just go onto the street, lie down with their hole open and have a man come and solve all of their problems. But they would still be depressed because they’re all just stupid whores.

She is the one responsible. Of course a woman would never relate to anyone here. She would never be with a truly depressed person. Can someone mail her a rant or a link to this thread? God I hate that ****

More to the point of why she was targeted probably most had to do with her being a woman in gaming who made a work which received genuine interest and praise from gamers (which thus must be fake or undeserved because every misogynist knows no one likes women in gaming, especially not women who dare to be more successful than cheeto-stained basement dwellers) and she seemed like a ripe target for harassment because she admitted to suffering from depression so the bigots were hoping they could force a suicide or something and feel a little more powerful in their empty meaningless lives.

Anyways, that’s just the backstory. See, she pulled the game from Steam the first time owing to this harassment, so recently, she’s reviewed her decision and put it back up. This has led to a not at all red flagy abusive ex to seek out the exact people who tried to harass her towards suicide in the first place and spin a story of “that durn whore totally cheated on me with everyone even though I’m the type of nice guy****** that leaks nude photos of my ex, seeks out misogynists to harass her, and is still trying to control her life after she escaped me”. Now, if it sounds like I’m harsh, it’s only because the ex sounds like a piece of work and in every interview he’s given, he’s tried to present like he’s remorseful for the backlash, while still selling the mythology that’s driving it, even though he’s later admitted that all of his “accusations of infidelity” were actually completely made up and weren’t what he claimed and in fact where rather impossible to have been true.

Well, this was apparently just enough excuse needed for another round of harassment, only this time more violent and disastrous as the infamous shitlords of the Men’s Rights movement, Reddit, and 4chan were all recruited to hate on this random woman for the crime of being a woman who is sexual, but not with them.

To disguise this, they’ve decided to latch onto the falsehood about her cheating on her ex and have particularly focused on one particular man who she later ended up in a relationship with (because it turns out people who share the same interests and hang out in the same spaces sometimes make friendships or more based on their shared interests, oooh scandalous) even though he was a DUN DUN DUNNNN games journalist!

This apparently was enough to fuel a fantastic tale where Zoe Quinn was personally sleeping with every game journalist in the world in order to give her game (which must be shit, because it was created by a woman tainted by woman parts) a pretty decent reception among the indie circuit. And is furthermore proof that all women in gaming only have what success they have because they slept with someone. Because apparently these guys come from the school of thought where women are some sort of brainless ambulatory vaginas, who couldn’t possibly create or accomplish anything on their own.

To make a dumb story even dumber, the guy she so scandalously dated broke his journalistic ethics and pimped her game far and wide by… not actually writing any review for her game and not even giving her game any real press of any kind.


Oh, and let’s add to that the fact that she’s by far gotten the most press for her work thanks to her harassers. I know I found Depression Quest because of the first round of harassment she got and I doubt I was the only one. And right now, all of gaming press is having to talk about Zoe Quinn and the games she has made in order to explain the deep conspiracy that said harassing assholes want everyone to expose.***

Yeah, and it just gets dumber from there with idiots trying to argue that this non-breach of non-ethics for non-sins of SHE IS A WOMAN WHO HAS SEX, STONE HER is the single greatest ethics breach ever in the history of gaming and is personally responsible for everything bad in gaming ever (no seriously, just read her twitter feed to see the depth of dumb that gets plumbed to argue this).

And not only has it targeted her, but everyone who speaks in her favor or defends her or is simply a friend of hers. Hell, journalist Leigh Alexander got targeted simply for expressing frustration at the level of harassment women in gaming were getting.

And it has spilled over in predictable ways into other forms of horrible. Racist attacks on non-white members of the supposed “conspiracy”. Transphobic attacks on trans* friends of hers, including doxxing their real life identities and trying to out them as trans* to their employers (which is unmistakably about hoping that the high rates of discrimination and other dangerous and painful punishments that often befall transwomen who are outed destroy said women… because they are friends with a person that these entitled fuckheads have decided is Satan). And just generally adding everyone they can to the conspiracy and sending death threats to any person who dares see through their violent sexist bullshit.

And of course, it’s bounding with all manner of right-wing fantasies. Warnings about evil Social Justice Warriors**** and their PC feminazi etc etc…

And just by explaining this mess of stupid, I’ve lost about half of my brain cells and my ability to control my left arm abfgigesdgis. Sorry, one second, lemme just do a quick lobotomy and all better… I like cheese.

Lying and cheating

Step forward [Zoe’s legal name stricken from my copy, because fuck these doxxing fuckers], who goes by the pen name Zoe Quinn. Quinn recently released an online novel called Depression Quest, described as an “interactive fiction game where you play as someone living with depression.” It’s an internet version of one of those old Choose Your Own Adventure books – except boring, and as excruciatingly badly written as its promotional material suggests.

So, one weird quirk among many that I have is that I don’t really experience jealousy. It’s a thing that makes me particularly well suited to poly, but does mean it’s sometimes harder for me to piece together jealousy in others as I can’t just compare their attitudes and actions to my own life experiences.

This is to say, even I can tell that this fucker is so jelly he’s climbing into a peanut butter sandwich and forming a rudimentary agrarian society there.

Nngh, she made a dumb game of stupid which is boring and stupid like girls and it doesn’t even let you blow the heads off of zombies. Nngh, how dare it be more successful than my game about how Kim Kardashian should break up with Kanye and get with me, well, it’s not so much a game as it is the thing I use to masturbate to every night while weeping profusely.

You can play it here, if you’re feeling masochistic. It’s barely a game at all, really, more of a hyperlinked Tumblr blog. Anyone could have made it, as this cruelly worded but factually sound run-down of the current controversy around Quinn points out.

A) The “cruelly worded, yet factually sound run-down” he cites is a conspiracy collection so nutjob that Alex Jones would point out the logical inconsistencies. Oh, and it’s filled with so much casual misogyny that even I, who regularly wade out into that shit out of masochism and mango-retrieval, was a bit taken aback. So, yeah, that’s where the dipshit is coming from. Dipshit Central.

B) I’m somewhat amused by how entitled gamer fucks don’t just scream out their opinion, but are often uncontrollably furious when not every other person on the planet shares their twisted worldview. It often rises, somewhat benignly in the form of freaking out over any reviewer who doesn’t have the same opinion as them about a game, including conspiracy theories that different scores than they personally feel is right is either “damaging” or “unfairly rewarding” a game in the all-hallowed Metacritic rating.

I mean, that’s some epic level abuser-style demand for control there. To be unable to function with the knowledge that someone out there liked a game that you didn’t like? To be moved to harassment and violence at the notion of someone not caring that you don’t like a game? To be frothing at the mouth in pure cuckoo-for-cocoa-puffs insanity at the notion that someone might not even be designing said game for you in the first place?

It’s literally that kid that demanded that he get every toy in the toybox. No hyperbole, no exaggeration for comedic effect, no apt metaphor. That is literally what this is. From people who are at least 20 years too old for this shit.

That’s a level of pathetic that’s almost awe-inspiring to contemplate. This is like staring at the Starchild, but instead of the mysteries of the universe, it’s a twitchy fuckwad who thinks playing Call of Duty makes him a real war hero having a temper tantrum that someone might make one single game that isn’t a brown military shooter

C) The website for Depression Quest has the tagline of “An interactive (non)fiction about living with depression”. It’s also for free and designed to be played by anyone who can operate the internet. It’s not purporting to be some grand sweeping space opera RPG or tactical shooter. Hell, it doesn’t even call itself a game.

So, this notion of attacking it on the notion of “unnngh, no murder, thus no game” is just idiocy to the level of dumbass. Not to mention that as a piece of interactive fiction with all the guts of a traditional video game including changing (though hidden) stats and key items (or rather services) which can greatly effect gameplay and game experience, is well possibly the best work I’ve seen in any medium for capturing the sense of self-blame, self-minimization, and intense guilt that often accompany depression.

As someone who has fought that battle, I felt a lot of resonance. I’ve looked at the back of a lover and hated myself for not being in the mood to give them what they wanted. I’ve apologized profusely to my partners and felt intense guilt and a need to hide my scars and keep them to myself when I’ve slipped up and lapsed into self-injury again. I’ve tried desperately to grasp onto some minor aspect of joy so that I can perform enough happiness so that my lovers won’t be dragged down by my dumb emotions.

Unlike a lot of works that have tried to plumb the depths of what that feels like, Depression Quest rings true, because yeah, the person who made it made it very personally about her own struggle. Hence the (non) lingering in the tagline.

And that’s the reason it has drawn a lot of praise. Not because it has 1000 of animators perfecting jiggle physics on some teenager’s ginormous breasts. Not because it has over 100 hours of game content. Not because it’s the latest release from the big studios. But because this small, minimalist creation by one game designer making something personal in a month for distribution for free on the internet managed to hit on something unique and powerful and worth taking a little time to explore.

And it’s probably a lot of why indie developers like Zoe Quinn, Christine Love, and Fullbright Studios have been targeted by the trolls. Because they make unique games that talk about experiences that aren’t about power fantasies for adolescent males who want to unleash a torrent of sexual and racist violence on a bunch of pixels.

And these control freaks can’t handle the notion that someone somewhere somebody is playing a game made by filthy woman or filthy queer hands and playing as filthy queer or woman characters. And they might even be enjoying it. WITHOUT THEIR APPROVAL!

And oh, if you saw the parallel between that and the control freak anti-choicers who demand that everyone proscribe to their religious horseshit? Fantastic, because that is pretty much the exact mindset that births shit like this.

Quinn started furiously marketing her game just after Robin Williams died. Tasteless and opportunistic, sure, but many gave her the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps she was just trying to “raise awareness.”


Okay, let me explain the full scope of how horrible and bullshit this is.

Here’s Zoe Quinn’s actual post on Robin Williams’s death.

tl;dr summary? She posted a whole agonizing post about how the news broke just as she was about to confirm the go-ahead about going onto Steam and genuinely struggling over the question of whether or not this would be tasteless. Eventually she decided that she wanted people to have access to the help of the game and the good it could do in aiding those struggling with the same demon as her and Robin Williams. She maintained her commitment to keeping the game free for everyone and furthermore there’s this bit:

Quietly. I will not be promoting it until a respectful time later. But I want it to be out there and available in all the ways I can make it be available so that if someone needs it, they have it. After agonizing over it and asking the general public, they’ve overwhelmingly responded with pleas to release it. Especially among depression sufferers.

She didn’t promote her game with a renewed bit of publicity, because she felt that was in poor taste and disrespectful. So the very thing this dipshit is accusing her of callously doing is the very thing she agonized over and decided NOT to do.

And yeah, extra irony for trying to pretend to be the champion of the depressed after spending most of the introduction trying to claim that depressed and anxious people are fundamentally broken and weaker people.

But hey, if that’s not ghoulish enough, let’s play a game of Shithead Theatre. What bullshit victim-blaming misrepresentations of harassment can we pull this week?

But what later came out, thanks to a startling series of confessions from Quinn’s ex-boyfriend, is just what an unpleasant and manipulative human being she is.

Oh hey, remember that abusive ex who made up fake affairs and then tried to sell this as a lack of integrity and proof that her stances in favor of social justice were lies, because hurga gurga SEXUAL WOMEN MUST DIE? Yeah.

Despite carrying more red flags than a Danish flag twirling contingent, the assorted scum of the internet have decided he is an impartial truth teller who’s word is the Lord and that anyone who points out that his conclusions are flawed, his arguments are bullshit, or that no one should really be caring this much if someone had an affair or not. I mean, it can be a shitty thing that marks the end of a relationship, but carrying grudges years later and asking the type of fucks who are famous for being harassing hacking assholes to punish your ex for you would be a sign of a horrible fucked up personality that deserved to get cheated on, if it was true. The additional fact that it’s all made up and is part of some abusive bitter ex bullshit just makes it even more inexcusable.

It’s hard to believe some of the allegations made about Quinn, who has been held up as an icon of probity by the liberal tech press, but web sleuths have provided copious evidence in support of their claims.

Huh, that’s the weirdest spelling of “hacking her personal information and phone so as to deliver an endless stream of harassment, death threats, and drive her from her home” I’ve ever seen.

Also, I’m not sure that repeatedly calling someone a whore and trying to ruin her life and all of her friends lives and anyone who coughed near her’s life counts as “evidence” either.

Hmm, have you tried not being psychotic wastes of sperm who think that fictional cheating > death threats and being rendered homeless? It might help you, yanno, not suck.

Oh, another form of “evidence” those super sleuths have uncovered? Nude photos graciously donated by bitter ex guy, which they’ve kindly mass spamed to all her friends, everyone she knows, and everyone in the contacts page of the various accounts they’ve hacked (which includes her email, skype, and randomly a domino’s account she opened a while ago).

Such, brave super-sleuths. Fighting for truth, justice, and ha ha these reprehensible turdblossoms can go fuck the hell right off.

Though she presents herself as a champion for depression sufferers, Quinn picked on a forum for depressed men called Wizardchan, misrepresenting content there to claim she was being harassed.

So, you know that link I had earlier about the first round of harassment she received? The one that included the lovely argument that women can’t ever be depressed because all they need to do is lie down and get their holes filled, because apparently lack of sex is the only thing anyone could ever be depressed about ever?

Yeah, this is that.

Said “depressed men” site is actually a site for intentionally misogynistic “lifelong virgins” rather than anything about “depression” and caused her to need to switch to a new phone number because of the metric butt ton of sexual harassing phone calls and rape threats she was getting from these “poor depressed men”.

Oh, if you’re already tired of seeing “mischaracterization” trotted out like an aged stallion being spent for its last bit of spunk, then ha ha, you’re not going to enjoy the entire rest of this post, because we’re entering a part of the conspiracy theory which I like to call, “you’re totally making up the harassment we are doing to you right this minute”.

And yes, this lovely bit of gaslighting where we’re all asked to ignore our lying eyes and assume that all of the harassment that said men are posting at her and all over the internet don’t exist and that we’re in fact supposed to harass her for daring to claim she was harassed is the type of convoluted backflips you need to perform to still think of yourself as the good guys after calling up a woman on her home phone number and telling her you’ll gash her open a new hole and use it to fuck her to death***** (actual threat levied at both her and Anita Sarkeesian by separate people. The Anita Sarkeesian one is even worse because that one accompanied a posting of her home address. Have I mentioned I kinda hate this douchebro “gamer” community, cause I really really do). Cause “why are you hitting yourself” is apparently still the main bully go-to even after one is all grown up.

She used her influence to torpedo a charity – a charity! – which was later hacked by one of her supporters.

Oh fuck, you’re really going to make me explain this, aren’t you? Aren’t you?!?

Bob fucking damnitt.

Okey dokey… so 4chan decided that the next most awesome thing in being a harasser fuckwaffle is to sponsor a special not-a-real charity and create a astroturf “good deed” so that whenever anyone called them out on, yanno, being the scum of the Earth, they could point to said “good deed” and crow about how cruel the mean old Social Justice Warrrrriors (come out to play) are to attack such charitable charity charities and goodness.

Now, if you already think that’s dumber than the fucks who came up with this bit of bullshit three-card-monty, well have no fear, it gets dumber.

The thing they decided to create was an “avatar to represent women gamers” called Vivian James who is basically all of these reprobates’ Canadian Girlfriend who totally likes all the same games as them, but never gets upset when she’s called a whore and never ever wants to see representation of women in gaming or critique all the times people like her are brutalized in a game.

So yeah, they started a “charity” to defend themselves as really truly great awesome people who are the real victims which is a) not a charity, and b) is just an excuse to jack off some more over fake women. Oh and they also abandoned any of the parts where they’d have to actually like do something real to help people because that was just too much empathy than they were prepared to show in their lives.

So yeah, that’s the “torpedoing” that happened, a bunch of sexists abandoning the “good deed badge” the invented to pretend to be good people unfairly wronged by SJWs because they already had their wank material and besides, helping people is hard and shit.

And now you’re all dumber for having learned that. You’re welcome.

But hey, as dumb as that was, let’s begin ShitThatNeverHappened Theatre!

She is alleged to have used spurious copyright claims to stifle criticism. She threatened to end the careers of developers who disagreed with her in comment threads. She leveraged friendships with moderators at online forums to have nearly 25,000 comments deleted. She swept an allegation of sexual misconduct under the carpet using intimidation. There’s even a theory floating around that she is planning to have herself beaten up at an upcoming conference. It’s an unconfirmed internet rumour, but it illustrates Quinn’s credibility to gamers.


OH man, I’m sorry for laughing as this is genuinely horrifying and illustrative of the horrific way that women are treated in gaming and the lengths these conspiracy theories and those like it will go to blame their victim for them inventing a bit of bullshit so batshit that not even they believe it, but….

Oh come on, “It’s an unconfirmed internet rumour” but it totally proves that she’s a secret ninja teleporter time traveler and not that we’re a bunch of scared sexists literally throwing everything possible against the wall in the hopes that some of it sticks.

And yeah, no prizes on guessing that any of this is complete bullshit.

The pfft internet rumour pfft was a bit of nothing that 4chan invented out of nothing and left Zoe Quinn scratching her head at the stupid. The sexual misconduct is just them trying to reword their one single argument which is “WHORE!” as something unique and damning. The “threatening to end careers” thing is a remarkable bit of IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION seeing as how every single woman targeted as being part of this “conspiracy” have had endless tweets and emails threatening to end said people’s careers if they didn’t retract their stance at once and cave to these psycho’s demands.

And the rest is just… wishful fantasy. Ungggh, we’re not irrelevant tantrum-throwing man-children, you just deleted all our super cogent and thoughtful stuff with your hundred arm conspiracy even though the constitution says we have a right to dominate and overrun anything we want and never ever get pushback ever and now we’re forced to resort to calling you a whore over your home phone and trying to argue that the person who once fed your dog when you were away is part of the ultra conspiracy to make “gamers” look like rabid sexist fucks.

It’s hilarious, but also tragic in that this is the end result of all conspiracy theory addicts. Ever expanding categories of enemies who must be destroyed because they dared note the truth you are trying so hard to deny. This is basically the same shit as the Birth Certificate lunacy or Climate Change Denialism, just with more threatening to rape women.

And yeah, this conspiracy of nothing gets way less cute when you factor in what’s actually happening to the women being targeted by this endless harassment by pathetic men with literally nothing else to do.

Like this tweet from Zoe Quinn about how she can’t go home because her home information is still being circulated around by crazy fuckers (oh and for fans of Firefly or Chuck, you might want to prepare to be disappointed in someone when you click that link).

But oh noes, online moderators recognized spam and harassment as spam and harassment. Ungh censorship, bad ethics, no credibility. Puh-leze.

Quinn is not alone. There is a platoon of irritants in the media whose talents are vanishingly slight, but who generate column inches by the thousand for victimising innocents and manipulating their way around an over-sensitive industry.

Victimizing innocents apparently now means being the victim of a harassment campaign. I’d explain how this is supposed to work, but the front of my shirt feels really wet and everything tastes of copper. Oh, hey, a nose bleed [faint]

Some of them, such as Anita Sarkeesian, have no discernible higher purpose in life, except to bother innocent games developers.

So Anita Sarkeesian is the woman whose video I linked to in the last post. She’s a vlogger who does a series called “Tropes vs Women in Gaming” which is basically a standard feminist cultural art criticism piece noting the problematic tropes lazy writers resort to rather than actually doing some fucking work and how that adds up to really shitty things becoming “standard” and in fact “required” pieces of gaming to those making the games.

She’s also been endlessly harassed for over two years for daring to treat video games like the art said whiny gamers have been demanding games be treated as for years. Over two years of countless death threats, rape threats, games about beating her up, endless streams of overgrown man-children treating her like the sum total of everyone they’ve ever imagined have slighted them. She recently had to leave her home because a particularly bad death threat came through with her home address information as well as a threat against her parents and their home address. Oh, and the death threat was in the form of threatening to rape her to death, because she dares note that sometimes like with all other media, there are sexist tropes used in the stories and art.

And despite all that shit and all the bitter fucks still raging that she doesn’t just disappear off the face of the Earth because they don’t personally like her and even going so far as to threaten people like Tim Schafer, Lord British, and Joss Whedon for death just for noting that hey, that last episode was pretty good, she still keeps going. And she not only keeps going, but she keeps trying to help the community and the industry that has brought her so much personal pain. Hell, the creator of the fantastic game “The Last of Us” basically credited her with helping him re-examine his story and make it stronger, which led to it being critically acclaimed and even cited by a lot of other mediums as an impressive work of art. This is her “bothering game developers”. Making games that gamers love even better just by what she does. And she does this even though people spend all their waking hours trying to destroy her for having ovaries.

… Basically this woman has gonads of steel and deserves all the kudos the world has to give.

These women purposefully court – and then exploit – boisterous, unpleasant reactions from astonished male gamers and use them to attract attention to themselves. What’s remarkable is how deeply unpleasant the skeletons lurking in their own closets often are, how completely those skeletons give the lie to their public image, and how uncritically their claims are repackaged by credulous games journalists.

I mean, these women were asking for it. Did you see how short her sentences were? She totally wanted the harassment.

Hell, she probably made the whole thing up. Isn’t that awful? Isn’t that the worst, most cynical thing you’ve ever heard? Such a horrible woman deserves to be “put in her place” with some harassment. Oh come on with your claims and physical evidence and phone records and witnesses and being able to point to the tweets that are sent at you, you’re just making this shit up for attention.

Because just like people choose to be gay or trans* for all the awesome social benefits, women totally love not being able to go home and having to be terrorized and frightened for their own safety for moderate increases in followers for their free entertainment. Sure, most people just choose to like make a viral video or something, but these forward-thinkers go one step beyond.

Seriously, though, what is with this increasing trend for claiming that victims of oppression totally tricked the super innocent harassers and assholes into appearing assholic for some nebulous undefined benefit? I mean, remember that article I did a while back where someone tried to pretend that Sacco and Venzetti was a Bob damned false flag operation to make reactionary conservatives look like reactionaries.

Hey, dipshits, if you’re tired of looking like reflexive abusive assholes, STOP BEING REFLEXIVE ABUSIVE ASSHOLES!

Death threat hysteria

Let’s be honest. We’re all used to feeling a niggling suspicion that “death threats” sent to female agitators aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. And indeed there is no evidence that any violent threat against a prominent female figure in the media or technology industry has ever been credible – that is to say, that any feminist campaigner on the receiving end of internet trolling has ever been in any real danger.

Yup, harassment never ends in murder. Nope.

And it’s not like women are given less protection even with knowledge of credible threats because of this impression that threats are nothing.

And then there’s the just gall that’s being pulled here.

Threats are terrorism. Their purpose is to terrorize. To make people scared to function in a manner the terrorist doesn’t want them to. To make them and more importantly, to make others who are like them doubt themselves and second-guess themselves before they do something the terrorist doesn’t want them to do. The KKK burned crosses on lawns not because they were hoping the flames would somehow catch the house on fire, but because it was a way of communicating the fact that their targeted victim is unsafe and murder could easily come to them if they didn’t step in line.

Arguing that a threat should be discounted because, well, yanno, they’re probably too lazy to track you down and murder you. Though they do know where you live and they are really fucking crazy and convinced that you have personally done great harm to them and they have a shitton of abuser red flags and think about all the abuser types who’ve flown across the country to murder someone they hated for whatever reason. Oh, they threatened your lover. Your pets. Your children. Your family. But hey, you can sleep safely risking someone else’s safety because you didn’t take this seriously, right? I mean, it’s not like it’s going to happen… well, there’s all those activists who have been gunned down because of what they believed and stood for, but I wouldn’t worry about it too much. After all, nothing is going to happen, right? IS MISSING THE GODDAMN POINT OF THE THREAT!

And hell is deliberately obfuscating the target. It’s not just Anita Sarkeesian or Zoe Quinn, it’s all women who identify with gaming. Those who create games or those who just play them. It’s about telling all women that they are unwelcome and unsafe in gaming and that violence, threats, economic insecurity, and endless amounts of emotional trauma will result if a man at any time decides you’re the next anything because you dared be visible where his eye fell. It teaches women to be invisible. Teaches women not to identify as gamers. Teaches women not to risk making that game or starting that kickstarter if they aren’t absolutely sure that all of their friends and family can survive and remain safe from a continuous harassment campaign. It’s about terrorizing women out of having a voice and participating so this small minority of douchefucks can lay claim to something they’ve never had any real ownership of.

And that is a problem regardless of how many women actually die. And these apologists fucks know this, because otherwise there would be no need to try and justify this shit. If this harassment didn’t work in sending a message to others or in scaring away those they’ve been offended by, they wouldn’t be doing it. It wouldn’t be the main “activism” method of groups like Men’s Rights Activists, anti-choicers, gun fetishists, the KKK, and 4chan. Terrorism works remarkably well, which is why there’s laws against this shit and why these fucks would be crying hell and high water if they were similarly threatened.

Hell, they scream louder than this just about being mildly critiqued or being thought of negatively. There is no way they’d be able to handle their own proportionate medicine. And until these fucks are shut down and neutralized, they’ll continue to have grave and horrible effects on our society.

But that doesn’t stop women like Quinn from using these admittedly feverish tweets and emails from angry men to change the subject (usually from their own shortcomings and misdeeds) and play the victim with the help of limp-wristed journalists. Tweets tagged #GamerGate, from video gamers frustrated by the antics of women like Quinn and the journalists who ignore her sins, have been skyrocketing in the past few days.

They’re ungallant, obviously, but death threats are sent by bored, lonely people – or simply out of casual malice.

No, they’re a tactic. Which is why the people who have been sending these death and rape threats are still pulling this shit after the nine-hundredth woman they’ve targeted.

This isn’t some bored teenager deciding to get high to get through an afternoon. These are people who are seeking to scare, to terrorize, to drive into hiding or suicide those they ideologically disagree with, because they have no faith in their ability to have even the semblance of a coherent defense of their stance, because “EEK WOMEN” isn’t a fucking stance.

This is not a neutral fucking activity you immoral fuck!

What’s even more pathetic than taking to the internet to work off your anger, though, is using death threats to get sympathy,

What? WHAT?!?

I don’t… I don’t even…

Hey, readers, if ever I decide to make an argument this devoid of basic awareness and empathy, please do not hesitate to shoot me in the damn head.

or to vindictively pursue your ideological opponents and see their lives destroyed with jail sentences.

Oh hai repackagaing of rape apologist tropes, I didn’t see you there.

So ugh, okay, let me spell something out real clear for the maggots. Death threats are a crime. Rape is a crime. Threatening someone with rape is a crime. All these things are fucking CRIMES. Yes, I know, you think that nothing a white man could ever do could be a crime, but the law as written says otherwise.

If you were to be “destroyed with jail sentences” because you decided to threaten someone with rape or death, you would not be hard done or betrayed or destroyed by an ideological opponent. You would have been arrested after committing a crime. Simple as that.

Same with rape. If you rape someone, you can be arrested. And yeah, if you actually get convicted, given our society’s relationship with the rape culture, then you pretty much left more evidence behind than the Manson Family.

So suck it up, accept the rightful punishment that is your due for committing a fucking crime.

Showing off injudicious responses from bewildered men has become something like a badge of honour for a certain generation of feminist campaigner, which gives you some indication of how seriously they take the implied threats. (That is: not in the least.) It’s a sort of online Olympics, where women strut and peacock and compete to show off the most explicitly-worded and imaginative hate mail they’ve received.

… What an inventive imagination.

Ok, once again if you don’t want your opponents using your worst face to gain whatever the hell you imagine women gain when they try and put forth a brave face against a metric butt-ton of raw hate, then JUST. DON’T. SEND. ANY.

Fuck, let them just go away. Hell, that should be step one. You want to marginalize them, you think they are using your threats to seem like they’re the victims instead of a bunch of angry misogynists who don’t even know what the hell they are pretending to argue anymore? Then, just fucking cut them off from this precious “Outrage Juice” you think the inhuman machines that are feminists function on. Take a break, go for a walk, send zero more death and rape threats and move on with your fucking life rather than continually serving as a chump and pawn for these nefarious sirens of the social justice.

This is what you would do if this was a stance you actually believed in rather than a last gasp attempt to pin your sins on your chosen victims. If the world doesn’t like your actions and having seen all the evidence, aligns with your opponents and sees them as the aggrieved party, it might be worth taking a quick glance at your actions. And if you ever find yourself having to try and justify sending constant death and rape threats, you are definitely on the wrong fucking side and you should fuck. the. hell. right. off.

The phenomenon’s not unique to the video game industry, of course: back in British politics, it reaches a monstrous zenith with professional troll Caroline Criado-Perez. The jealousy from her fangirls, such as the New Statesman’s Helen Lewis, is almost palpable. “How come CCP gets all the love?” you can almost hear them saying.

Death threat hysteria, whipped up by campaigners who are “offended by design,” is a cancer in the public square. It is designed to stifle debate and silence critics. Conversations are hijacked. Police time is wasted. Serious journalism becomes impossible. So why are so many American video game journalists allowing themselves to be taken in by it? The answer is ugly and sinister: because they get themselves laid if they toe the party line.

Yessssss… that’s the simplest answer. Every single person who disagrees with your insane conspiracy theory and your death and rape threat spewing casual misogyny is receiving endless blowjobs from SJW conspiracy theory members. I should know, as I am Blowjob Delivery Agent #419, tasked with supplying the many-tentacled shadowy figures of the SJW’s global sky palace in order to rewrite all tweets and posts on the subject of women by our enemies into clownish acts of buffoonery that no one other than the terminably sexist could ever take seriously. Spare a thought for those of us who perform a necessary job for the good of the Grand Feminist Conspiracy to Literally Take Your Toys Away if You Don’t Share [/echo voice]. Also, Hail Hydra.

The economics of the indie gaming world are intriguing. Far from the multimillion dollar turnover of so-called “AAA” developers, most amateur writers and programmers are flat broke

Because they’re a person (a person in the arts nonetheless) rather than a company with thousands of employees?

mostly because many of their games simply aren’t very good.

Right. Which is why a large number of prominent game critics for a long while have been despairing of the cookie-cutter and uninspired approach of major studio releases and turning to more indie projects leading to a bit of a Steam glut of new works. I mean, sure one-person developed games like Thomas Was Alone, Minecraft, or Papers, Please! have been earning all sorts of praise from all corridors, but…
er… um… only rich people have quality and thus are the only ones who truly deserve to be rich or successful. Just world fallacy for the win, anti-libertarian haters!

Many of the loudest voices seem to exist on handouts from the public.

…Okay, two things.

1) I know you really hate the idea that other people can have money and do with it what they please, buuuuut, someone putting up a Patreon or a Kickstarter and saying, hey, if you like what I do or want to support this project I’m putting together you can throw some money if you like is not a fucking handout. It is a person being paid for their work by people who want to pay them for said work.

Other people’s money doesn’t actually belong to you.

2) Gosh, it really is terrible that artists are unable to support themselves while crafting their art, because our society doesn’t value the arts. Hey, if we had a strong safety net or something akin to the UK system of paying artists to work on their art then we could eliminate those pesky patreons once and for all and artists wouldn’t have to beg for handouts just to be able to afford a roof over their heads.

Even some mainstream gaming journalists can be seen begging for money online,

Gawrsh, they should be paid better then.

Oh, I’m terribly sorry, I’m supposed to bristle in libertarian rage at the notion of people being paid by the people who enjoy their work instead of a single sugar daddy who pays them in wingnut welfare and santorum covered shame as if companies don’t love this setup as it allows them to get away with drastically underpaying their content creators.

Grrr. Damn freeloader kids, getting paid for working. You should get paid for serving up Breitbart’s sloppy seconds and falling for conspiracies so full of holes, you could unravel it all to a single thread. Also, get off my lawn.

which may explain their sympathy for women like Quinn, who regularly put out pleas for cash, alongside dubious claims about “muggings.”

Wait, that’s the made-up internet rumor. The one you admitted was just an internet rumor. Let me check… yup, sure thing. You pointed to your own made-up and admitted made-up bullshit in order to present your one and only demonstration of how she is “profiting” in… sympathy I guess. It’s really awesome how you can exchange sympathy and massive PTSD for goods and or services. Also…

You’re a fucking idiot.

Writers such as Nathan Grayson – with whom, along with at least four other men, Zoe Quinn cheated on her boyfriend for calculated professional advancement – know that they will be rewarded with sexual favours for promoting substandard work by some female developers. Grayson wrote about Quinn a few days before he admitted to starting a sexual relationship with her. His editor, on learning this, said no disciplinary action was necessary or would be forthcoming.

A) Made-up bullshit which wouldn’t matter even if it wasn’t made-up. B) Again, Grayson wrote all of two articles that even obliquely mentioned her work and both were in the context of pretty much a “these games are being released on this date” thing. So, if Zoe Quinn was paying sexual favors for good press, she GOT FUCKING ROBBED! C) 4! Other men! Again, if this was true (which it’s not as the very abusive boyfriend who first sold this shit has admitted they were made-up horseshit and a lot of things he accused were physically impossible given people’s schedules), so what? I know we are supposed to get shocked like virgins and go OMG 4 guys, that’s like infinite more percent than the number of women I’ve ever slept with consensually, how dare this smug whore have sex without giving me a blowjob, but it’s still just fucking pathetic. I mean, even if you were the sonuvabitch cheated on, the number shouldn’t matter, only the breach of trust and that’s not something for the collective internet to a) need to be aware of, b) should care about. Also, yeah, way to not hide how much this is about demanding ownership of women (especially young attractive pansexual women who you are convinced by their sexuality are inherently indiscriminate whores) and furthermore how much you think a woman being sexually active with any man means they should be sexually active with you otherwise they are being a lying cheating whore.

I mean, for fuck’s sake, you’ve literally whipped up a conspiracy theory where some bitter abusive shitbag pretending the sum total of partners Zoe Quinn has had were all people she was cheating on him with, because controlling paranoia is turned from 4! Guys! into she has literally fucked everyone who has ever said something nice about her, liked her game or defended her from attack, because there is no other reason anyone would defend a slut who wouldn’t even sleep with them if they weren’t one of the “lucky ones” getting the free porn style nookie.

Oh hey, on that note accumulated sexists of the internet. Porn is not reality. Women do not actually exchange sex in lieu of payment for items such as pizza or plumbers. In fact, unless women are actually sex workers, women rarely trade sex for anything and in the case of sex workers it is almost universally sex for money. I mean, the only time it is remotely the case where sex is exchanged for other goods, you are either talking Burning Man, a fantasy BDSM scene, or economically abusive situations where a woman believes her safety or chance of survival is directly dependent on putting up with a creepy abusive fucks’ demands.

So yeah, just noting that. Turns out women are real people and earn most of their things the old fashioned way, money, talent, work.

Oh and I’d be remiss if I didn’t D) What? His employer said there was no evidence our made-up horseshit was even credible, much less accurate? That’s just proof that the employer is in on the conspiracy too. Along with all the SJW hackers who hide the umpteen bajillon reviews Grayson wrote and make them look like the work of a bunch of unrelated people most of whom hadn’t even really met her!

Cause that’s how you logic.

And it’s not just allegations of sex-for-coverage that’s dogging video games:

Yes, it’s not just our made-up fantasy that’s dogging video games, it’s also some other made-up bullshit and nontroversies we decided to pull out our ass when people started laughing at our porn idea of how business works.

Also, is it just me or are most of his examples of the things impacting video games stuff he and his pals have done rather than the supposed nefarious na’erdowellism that supposedly sparked this not at all sexist backlash. I mean, even if we were to accept your provably false horseshit fantasy as pure golden truth, all that would mean is that Zoe Quinn would be a girlfriend more suited to poly arrangements than monogamy, which is something to keep in mind only for those actually dating her and that she once offered to sexual favors for coverage to one guy who totally ripped her off, but luckily there were a bunch of other people who independently enjoyed the game.

Basically, even in this up is down black is white wonderland of bullshit, there would still be nothing a sane person would do more than shrug at. I mean, I hear about Tiger Woods cheating like a bajillion times on his wife and besides the part where he pressured people into not using condoms, my reaction is one big shrug, because well, I’m not dating him. I’m not being affected by his dating habits at all. If he slept with a golf magazine writer in order to get a glowing write-up, I wouldn’t be ranting that sports journalism has been murdered and send him endless rape and death threats. I’d be like, that’s fucking stupid.

Indeed, the backlash only makes sense in the context of misogyny. Only with the reflexive hatred of successful women and sexually active women does this non-event even make sense enough to understand why it exists. And it may be why these fucks only ever seem to manage sad argumentum ad twitter ramblings instead of anything anyone not a dedicated sexist could give a flying fuck about.

many of the same journalists who write about sexually liberated gals like Quinn

Oh no, sexual liberation is awful. Sex was so awesome when rape was seen as the same thing as love. I so wish we were back in those days… but then, that is kind of the unironic wish of a lot of these trolls. To roll back the clock and make women sexually terrified of the damage men could do to them if they dared raise a fuss. Because they’ve completely abandoned seeking consensual pleasurable sex and they only get off on the power and the violation of boundaries.

even pay her money, publicly donating cash to keep her afloat while turning a blind eye to her vindictiveness and mendacity. Not for any specific purpose, you understand: just to exist. The chutzpah it takes for them to ignore each other’s, and their own, conflicts of interest is astonishing. It has not gone unnoticed by their readers, who have been publishing exposés of their own in the last two weeks, demonstrating more investigative flair than any supposed reporter I have encountered in the video game industry.

Some websites, such as Polygon, owned by Vox Media, don’t care that their journalists financially support the same people they write about. (They do now ask for disclosures, though, in an apparent admission that there was a problem before.) Another website, Kotaku, part of Gawker Media, will not allow the donations to continue.

The mainstream gaming journalist linked to above, by the way, is Leigh Alexander, who writes for VICE, Gamasutra and the Guardian, among others, on video games. Alexander also runs a public relations consulting firm selling services to – you guessed it – game developers. The brazenness of it all is mind-blowing. She called a celebrity who mocked the uptight self-righteousness of gaming journalists “a washed-up crackhead.”

Now, that is shocking! Game journalists, being people willing to take shitty pay to obsess about a fucking toy for a living turn out to be… interested in said toys! Scandal! I mean, I know I’d devote my life to covering the minutae of a hobby for piss and bullshit out of nothing but practiced contempt for my subject.

Fuck, that’s how critics and media journalism work. People who love a medium will write for it and will even want to support the type of media they want to see get made. Because they are people who love said medium and care about what comes out of it. THAT’S WHY THEY ARE WRITING ABOUT IT.

It’s like the equally inane charge of “oooh, some of those journalists are friends with game developers” as if that isn’t expected or normal. I mean, Roger Ebert, one of the greatest, most acclaimed critics of all time was close friends with a lot of directors and even became obsessed fanboys of a couple. Because at the core, a critic is a geek who loves their medium and relates best with people who share their interests and passion.

And if you want to pretend that this is your line in the sand regarding nepotism, then brother, you can fuck yourself on the 30+ years of crony capitalism that got us into this mess rather than trying to pretend one woman having some friends and romantic partners in the media is the ultimate betrayal of journalistic ethics.

So corrupt, unethical and unprofessional are these gaming sites, they make tech startup blogs look like the Wall Street Journal. The manner in which the liberal tech establishment has closed ranks on the issue in defiance of their readers is remarkable,

Yeah, it’s enough to make you wonder if you are even their audience at all…

Ha, who am I kidding, you don’t know how to introspect.

and unprecedented in the decade I have been a journalist.

HAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… oh honey, no. Just no. You were never a journalist. Anyone who was telling you otherwise was lying to you.

It’s fifty per cent political instincts, and fifty per cent the knowledge that they and their mates are up to their necks in it.

The penalties for dissenters, even other media outlets, can be severe. TechRaptor, one of the few gaming and technology sites that has posted positive coverage of #GamerGate, had its official account banned on reddit. reddit is a major traffic source for any technology outlet.

Considering that reddit is fedorakin hive central, such a bullshit story just makes me wonder how Bob awful their hatred spew must have been for someone in higher authority to go… whoa, yeah, the guy posting 12 year old nudes can stay, but that business needs to go on timeout right now.

Also, feminists own reddit now too. Did Zoe Quinn give a blowjob to reddit in order to enact her nefarious plot?

Ugh… these fuckers are so willing to accept any insane and convoluted explanation necessary to avoid coming to the very simple and accurate conclusion that people are distancing themselves from them because they are terrible people no one wants to be around.

Instead of addressing allegations of corruption, examining their own prejudices and giving consideration to an industry-wide failure to provide any kind of acceptable service, the games press rounded on its own readers, accusing them of bigotry and misogyny and refusing to acknowledge that the community was sick of being lectured to and guilt-tripped on a daily basis by hypocrites and liars.

“Holy shit, we’re hounding independent game developers making free games out of their homes now? Um, this shit is kinda out of hand and we’re going to need to discuss this?”
“Stop guilt-tripping me!”
“I’m not. I’m just… is that a bloody dripping knife? Where is your babysitter?”
“Hypocrite! Liar! Creep shaming!”
“Oh holy balls, there’s blood coming out from under the closet door. I’m going to be sick.”

Watching the fallout on blogs, in forums and on Twitter, it’s tough to understate the extent of the shockwaves from all this, or the rift that has opened up between writers and readers as a result of Left-wing journalists reflexively defending their ideological allies. Gamers have uncovered evidence of such widespread corruption and conflicts of interest that the gaming blogs may never recover from it. The response from reporters – for the most part, denial and dismissal – is akin to mass professional suicide.

Cause the only reason anyone could ever have to object to terrorism is ideological allegiance… um… huh… that’s actually fairly accurate summation of right-wing handling of 9/11… well isn’t that an interesting bit of IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION.

While the entire gaming journalism establishment is speaking in one voice, mocking dissenters and tweeting that all men should be killed, readers and those outside the world of video games are scratching their heads, wondering how so many bright people found themselves selling their souls for sex, a few quid in their PayPal accounts, and a warm feeling of standing up to “misogyny.”

Yes, I would totally love being sent death and rape threats from deranged lunatics because I called obvious sexism misogyny. It would leave me with a warm feeling. Wait, not a warm feeling… sinking feeling, that was it. It gives me a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.

There’s a lesson here for would-be social justice warriors: bang on about equality, respect and ethics all you like.

And we will make you pay for it in blood.

Because this is terrorism to try and make you shut up so we can pretend that pretending to be a fictional soldier makes us superior to actual soldiers who don’t have the mettle and gumption to use their magic jelly and regenerating health rather than wasting all of our veteran’s care money on frivolous health care.

But don’t expect to be treated as an oracle when your personal behaviour is utterly reprehensible. The internet being what it is,

A cesspool of entitled men trying to angrily smack down dividing lines and declare random things their own personal domain that we’re not allowed to participate in because they’re scared their pee-pees are small?

Depression Quest has already spawned a hilarious parody,

Spoiler warning. It’s is not hilarious. Or even really much of a parody. I mean, unless you think the likes of the beating up Anita’s face “game” was hilarious or parody.

which is perhaps the real moral of the story here.

So-called “gamers” are worthless stains of shit and the few people who still care in this industry and community shouldn’t bother to save them as they slide into irrelevancy and vile bitterness?

That we should actually take away these children’s toys until they learn to behave and play well with others, rather than catering and kowtowing to their terrorism and thus training them that violence and threats are a legitimate means of expressing their toxic demand to control everything they can see?

Although one substandard generation of journalists has been replaced in the internet era by another, with the advent of the internet, anyone can fight back at injustice in their own, uniquely, cruelly, hysterically funny fashion.

Spoiler alert, it is also not funny.

Fuck, pretty much every right-wing attempt at “humor” fails because of how the right-wing approaches the very concept of humor. To them it is not a tool to amuse or deconstruct power. It is, like everything else, a tool to beat the lesser back into their tiny box of oppression. And when it is not that, it’s an excuse to point to in order to make harassment and threats seem like harmless jokes.

The enduring effect of #GamerGate

There is nothing about this appellation that doesn’t fill me with loathing. Not the fucking hashtag being included in the Bob damned name, nor the fucking unnecessary revenge for Nixon bullshit that is adding -Gate to every made up right-wing conspiracy fantasy, nor the dumbassery of putting gamer first thus demonstrating to the world what is the actual problem and cause of the issue because you’re too dumb to realize how your own revenge for Nixon appellations work.

Please sterilize yourself with a claw hammer so that you never accidentally breed.

the gaming media has destroyed its reputation and its relationship with readers, who will never again trust it on any issue beyond which power-up is most likely to get you past level 17. By blaming its readers and burying its head in the sand, the politicised bloggers who previously influenced the opinions of millions have voluntarily given up their authority to rabid, single-issue campaigners who silence criticism and sleep with journalists, peers and even their own bosses, as Zoe Quinn did, to get ahead.

This is a subject I’ll return to in a later column: a brief history of corruption in video game journalism needs to be written. In the meantime, those of us with some critical distance from the chaos can only sit back and marvel at how wide-ranging and fundamental the damage to the indie games industry has been these last two weeks. There are now two, bitterly opposed factions in the industry. Journalists and activists, who care more about gender politics than the video games they are supposed to be reporting on,

Unnnnnggggghhhh, you’re going to regret not being with us! We don’t need anyone else but the theorists! You’re all just trying to shut us down and shut us up by criticizing our criminal acts of terrorism with mild contempt and concern! Well, we’re totally every gamer ever and you’ll miss the way we scare every non-asshole out of your threads with our non-stop sexism and hatred of “casuals”! Cause we were so an important part of the gaming community and not the cancer poisoning the websites and online gaming communities and giving the whole industry an unfortunately well-deserved reputation for being the worst of entitled male dipshittery.

You’re going to regret us leaving when we finally go and leave you with a community that isn’t 70% dipshits threatening your non-white employees with murder and your female employees with rape… please regret us leaving… cause, um… it looks cold outside and um… I need to know if the generic brown haired man in the next Call of Duty game has his hair parted to the right or the left. And I need to call someone a spic faggot in your comment threads! I’m important! Honest!

and gamers, mocked, derided and bullied… but unbowed.

You know, there’s IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION and then there’s having the fucking gall. This is somehow both.

Video gamers, and video game culture, will never be the same again.


As I noted above, I’ve played teh vidjeo games for most of my life. It holds happy memories of better relationships with family and genuine intergenerational connection. Teh vidjeo games helped me through some dark times and sparked my curiosity in novel and important ways.

But I’m fucking done with this spoiled brat culture of entitled angry boy-creatures deciding that everything that isn’t their particular brand of homophobic, sexist, racist pile of shit needs to be shredded and raped and pissed on and that all of the world should cater to their specific fetishes for underaged girls with giant impossible breasts and games where you can gun down lots of brown people indiscriminately.

I’m tired of seeing genres I love get fewer and fewer releases because the type of shit-scum who games industry are convinced are the only gamers who exist because stereotypes in advertising have decided its infected with girl cooties now.

I’m sick of having to feel ashamed of having to admit the positive moments video games have brought, the powerful works of art and narrative I’ve enjoyed, the indie games with queer storylines or strong female protagonists I’ve had to dig out of obscurity, all because the well-deserved reputation of this thing I am unfortunately a part of is one of violent misogyny, misplaced rage, entitled controlling abuse, and casual bigotry. Where someone noting the obvious and treating games like the art form they are is responded to with years of constant, desperate abuse, rape threats, and fears for one’s life. Where people who try and treat the medium with respect, creating works that speak personally to them or trying to make this medium better are threatened with violent horrible rape and where MRAs feel more comfortable and welcome than women of any kind.

Where in order to be a person of color, trans*, queer, and/or a woman, you must have veins of ice and nerves of steel and accept a certain amount of horribleness as your entry fee.

Where the notion of a “gamer” has been poisoned beyond all healing and even the people so devoted to the craft of and growth of the medium that they’ve become professionally entangled don’t want anything to do with the label or the association.

Where someone like me, who has spent my whole life loving games would trade every one of them away for perpetuity and never have been made if all the fucks who think this shit is okay were locked up on a moon base with no internet where they couldn’t hurt anyone anymore.

Where hoping someone will take this issue seriously and change it is just that, a vain hope.

If this is “gaming”, then fuck gaming. If these are “gamers”, then fuck gamers. It’s a fucking toy, it’s not worth this bullshit.

‘Shorter’ concept created by Daniel Davies and perfected by Elton Beard. You know, it would be really awesome if bigot fantasies were true and feminists were really all out to steal their games and cut off their balls. We are aware of all Internet traditions.™

*Though the link is “Lying, Greedy, Promiscuous Feminist Bullies are Tearing the Video Game Industry Apart”, so apparently this complete doucheaddict began with laying out his deranged fears of women possessing sexualities that aren’t lying under his desk and sucking his dick while he plays Call of Duty and had enough presence of mind to go “hey now, this might make me appear a bit sexist”, but not nearly enough to not write a rambling fantasy essay of barely contained entitled gamer bullshit or not push publish.

I don’t know, I almost want to write a fanfic about that last self-preservation instinct of humanity that died there trying to clue this dingus into the fact that he’s a worthless waste of space with more issues with women than the most avid collector of Wonder Woman.

**Scared idiots of the world, I present you with this one stop tip on how to be manly. Ready? It’s being a man. That’s it.

For bonus points: Don’t be scared of all women. It just makes you look like a misogynist coward too afraid of being designated a woman by terrorists that you would gladly terrorize others to enforce something that is destroying your life.

***Christine Love, who is an awesome transwoman game developer who makes really amazing games exploring queer issues and misogyny, noted in her twitter feed that being targeted by the Anti-Zoe brigade for daring to speak in her defense doubled her twitter followers, her new sales of her games, and so on. Hell, Anita Sarkeesian, who has been targeted constantly by harassers got a majority of her press from butthurt assholes trying to “destroy her”. Each new effort has only gotten her more press, more acclaim from larger game and geek icons such as Joss Whedon, William Gibson, Tim Schafer, and Lord British, and so on. Hell, it’s at the point that conspiracists have been arguing that all their targets have actually been faking all of the harassment that the conspiracists have been crowing about participating in in order to get that sweet victim cash.

Because apparently, being super macho alpha dudes, their idiotic failure is just proof that the evil conspiracy of vile females is bigger than they thought.

****Okay, so Social Justice Warrior is obviously being grabbed because conservatives and assholes have realized that everyone’s caught on to the con and realized that being “anti-PC” just means being an intentional asshole. Fair enough, every asshole needs a rebranding. But still, is it just me or is this the most guaranteed to fail euphemism they could possibly have come up with. I mean, for fuck’s sake, by their very argument, they’re having to portray themselves as against the concept of social justice of any kind. Which is accurate, yes, but it’s not something most people see as a bad thing which is neatly demonstrated by everyone ranting about SJWs having to stop and explain why being a social justice warrior is a bad thing and different from being about equality and shit. Plus, there’s the fact that Social Justice Warrior just sounds badass. Like some noble champion of good. Being against that just makes one sound like Skeletor ranting about how he’s going to get that He-Man next time.

*****On the plus side, Zoe Quinn has accepted the gross fatalism of having her personal phone constantly barraged by people telling her how shit she is and how she should die and found a way to make some dark humor from it all. Here’s a video of her mocking one of her phone harassers and making him cry.

******No, really, the guy is a piece of work. This piece here though it’s more willing than I to put up with his bullshit self-delusions nonetheless paints the picture well. He leaked nude photos and spun a hate story for bigots. Bigots whom he is directly supporting and trying to circle all conversation in support of their bullshit even while he’s trying to sell this notion of how he’s all hurt and sad that his ex is being harassed. It’s such transparent self-serving textbook emotionally abusive behavior, right down to the refusal to take responsibility for the shit he’s still trying to pull in that interview (cause later comments by him reveal that this whole “scandal” he made up was something he made up (he only revealed it when everyone involved including the random guy’s boss demonstrated how it was actually physically impossible based on his claims, so he doesn’t even have the excuse of conscience)), because he demands to be seen as a good guy even when he’s trying to use fucking 4chan to hurt his ex. And I’m sorry, if you’re the type of “nice guy” to pull this shit after a relationship? I’m really not going to assume you were a really great and non-abusive guy during the relationship, cause why the fuck would I? And the fact that a shit ton of people took this guy’s red flaggy and paranoid mutterings not only seriously, but gleefully supported his campaign to destroy his ex really frames the picture well in how domestic violence (especially emotional abuse) are viewed and treated by society.


Comments: 76


I used to play Counterstrike online. That’s the last game I played online. I gave it up because I got tired of all the crap that gets said online.

And I have a pretty thick skin, mind you. You don’t spend years as a SAC crew-dog without developing a thick skin.

Now it’s strictly single-player for me.


I wonder if there’s a tendency, when someone turns a hobby or interest into an identity, for it to go seriously off the rails. Bronies come to mind here.


I wonder if there’s a tendency, when someone turns a hobby or interest into an identity, for it to go seriously off the rails.

No idea what Bronies are, but Republicans, aka the current re-branding of the KKK come to mind.

That said, I played video games in the arcade, and pong on the TV. Asteroids and Missile command were my favorites in the early days. later, there was a motorcycle racing game and an awesome hockey game. had to scrounge through the couch cushions for change. Pinball was my favorite. Never had a console, messed around with doom (with cheat codes) for a bit…Just never got hooked. Not to say that there is anything wrong with that.

Some of my best friends are gamers.

Cerb, gonna have to download this one for offline reading, given my limited time on the nets today.


I’ve barely started reading and just Milo’s title has me impressed. It’s like some compressed zip file. In just nine words, I can see the whole article and the counter-arguments and counter-counter arguments and the vast stew of evil misogynist comments that will ensue.
It’s a talent I suppose. It leads to think that at some point in the future of political discourse we are going to save time by saying things like:
Video games- argument 12, sub 27
Counter 16, sub 42. You’re a dick slap.


Firstly, wow – great post Cerb. It’s undeniably true that the “Gamer Community” is rife with toxic msculinity, obtuse lack of self-awareness and aggressively entitled sociopathy. And that’s speaking as someone who still self identifies as a “Gamer”. There is a mountain of work that this community needs to do and issues that need to be addressed. I totally fess up to not having done my share of lifting here, despite not being in or of the industry – just an avid consumer.

So, I probably have a few more words to put in on this topic but it’ll take quite a bit more thinking before I’m ready to write ’em down.

That said, there is something I’d like to address:
Bronies come to mind here.

Why? What is it about bronies that is “off the rails”? I don’t want to hijack this thread but I seriously think that you are harshly and unfairly pre-judging bronies out of ignorance. I think you might get a bit out of this non-Brony’s view of that community.


I wonder if there’s a tendency, when someone turns a hobby or interest into an identity, for it to go seriously off the rails. Bronies come to mind here.

I tend to agree. The whole consumer/commercial producer feedback loop has turned video games and anime into a bizarre parody of straight male sexual empowerment fantasies. The reason JRR Tolkien, for example, didn’t go that route, is that he was more interested in creating a plausible world for his made up languages and telling compelling stories than he was in satisfying the urges of under socialized weirdos. Demanding that every video game be aimed squarely at their interests and that the product be free from critical scrutiny is roughly the same as demanding that every Hollywood movie be a porno. It is a perverted and selfish thing to ask.


What is it about bronies that is “off the rails”?

What is off the rails is the creepy sexual fetishization that some bronies indulge in. The vast majority of bronies aren’t posting …imaginative sexual pictures of ‘my little ponies’ to deviantart, and yet some people are. It’s just another example of the most extreme examples of a community being the ones people think about when they think about a community.


It’s just another example of the most extreme examples of a community being the ones people think about when they think about a community.

Bronies get that a lot. The Jezebel article talks about it.

Here’s the thing about the cloppers though – try and imagine what the typical non-clopper brony thinks about them. If you think you’re disgusted by the secualization of cartoon ponies from a children’s show, imagine how you might feel if those cartoon ponies were also your heroes. These are the people that are getting accused of being cloppers.


for fans of Firefly or Chuck, you might want to prepare to be disappointed in someone when you click that link

I already knew that Adam “I have a regular column on Blartfart” Baldwin was basically a less-classy version of Jayne, but if you haven’t seen it, it’s New To You™!


Okay, gonna stop carping about Brony discrimination now.

So, I said that I still self-identify as a “Gamer” despite it being a terrible community with all sorts of garbage loaded into it. Part of why is that I am an optimist. I honestly believe that the disgusting over-the-top reactionary flailings of these assholes is because they’ve never been challenged or questioned before and considering their response, are going to “loose”.

Not saying that they’re right in that their precious games are going to be taken away – there will still be tons of stupid games made for the giant tits and violence crowd. No, what’s happening is that the industry is starting on the road towards actually developing things that the bulk of the market won’t find offensive.

A lot of devs are dudes. But they aren’t necessarily dudebros. And here’s the thing about privilege – it’s about ignorance. And there’s a bunch of different responses one can make when discovering the gaping blind spot you have. Sometimes they are even positive.


I was going to post this at my blog, but I have misplaced my alphabet soup password, so I will post it here:

Video game reviews will only start approaching respectability when they are primarily found outside media financed by video game advertisers. Does one look for unbiased reviews of horror movies in “Fangoria”? or in the movie section of the Chicago Tribune? It is disappointing although not surprising that media has dropped the ball on giving game reviews as many column inches as movie reviews or book reviews. Video games are interactive in a way that film, television books and concerts are not. One’s video game experience depends not only on the creator’s skill, design and execution, but also on the player’s ability to skillfully interpret those decisions. Since video games began as simple toys, video games reflected the tastes of children. Now that video games are sophisticated enough to tell almost any story, the choices of video game makers are being judged by a larger section of the population. And in many cases the choices game designers have made to pander to the fantasies of young men, look unneccessarily violent and sexist.

Video game designers should welcome this critical scrutiny because it shows the audience for games is expanding. There is a market for games whose central mechanic is not the killing of others. The runaway success of “The Sims” should have demonstrated that to be the case. But by chasing the reliable spending money of the young male market, they have walled themselves off from potential customers who want different things from games than professional sports simulation or military reenactment. Gamers too have reacted poorly to what they see as an intrusion into the exclusive clubhouse of online video games. The previous barriers to entry (of price and technical complexity and connectivity) into the world of online gaming have been deliberately torn down by the makers of PCs and consoles and even smartphones in order to reach the broadest possible audience. And what that broadened audience has discovered is that the earliest adopters of online gaming, have embraced the same sexism classism and racism that the rest of the world is learning to condemn.

Books, movies, plays, television and popular music are all regularly examined in light of sex, gender, race, class, and economic issues. Why should computer games be exempt? Critique is not limited to condemnation, it’s barely counts as accountability. The existence of Oprah’s book club hasn’t stopped the publication of skin magazines, of gun literature of the Gor series of SF novels. “Fried Green Tomatoes” “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” and the Twilight movies didn’t stop “Transformers 4”, “The Expendables 3” or whatever number SAW movie they’re up to from being made. Good reviews from multiple perspectives help the industry fine tune their product, and help the customer spend their entertainment dollar in the fashion they prefer.

But you’d think from the overreaction of some of the gaming communities worst griefers and trolls that the mere existence of feminist critique was a magic dick scorching laser that would inevitably emasculate the online world, and make it so the edgiest game was Hello Kitty’s Island Adventure and where first person shooters were outlawed like cockfighting.


I want to say that Social Justice Warrior would make an awesome video game that I would buy for my kids (which in itself is impressive because as my kids will tell you I’m a cheap bastard who never buys them anything).
I imagine avatars in classic outfits of social justice movements from phrygian caps, laborer outfits, Mao jackets, hippie wear, suffragette sashes, dashikis, Afros, dhotis, you name it. Then you can go around recruiting your army from the dispossessed to fight against an endless horde of zombie-brained oppressors. To say nothing of the fact that it would give a whole new meaning to “boss level.”
Makes me wish I had any talent or knowledge to make video games.


There is a market for games whose central mechanic is not the killing of others.

Where’s the fun if nobody gets hurt?


All that bullshit renews my happiness at having no vid game predilections or penchants. I’d hate to enjoy gaming but have to deal with the flood of puerile nonsense spewing forth from the community.

Also FYWP.


Love the post Cerb, it sums up everything really well.

One thing I want to point out, when they talk about a charity being hacked, they might have been talking about the Fine Young Capitalists. Not 100% sure though.


W T F does Chrome on my Nexus 7 not have a goddamn scroll to bottom fuck all shit crap browser. And when you close all tabs? You have to press “new tab” which brings up the speed dial and address bar. How fucking stupid is that?

Big Bad Bald Bastard

Feminist bullies forced Electronic Arts to release “Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s Nutpunch”.



While I agree with most of what you say, I do have some issues with it. I don’t know if the reviews being on gaming advertised sites is that big a deal. Yes there was a scandalous controversy about it with Jeff Gerstmann and the first Kane and Lynch game, but Gerstmann is doing pretty well for himself now and no one takes Gamespot reviews seriously anymore (although to be fair they weren’t taken very seriously beforehand).

You compare it to other media like movies, books and plays and such. Well, a lot of the reviews for those media do in fact appear in publications supported by advertisements from the publishers/producers of that media. Next time you read a movie review, look at how many movies are being advertised on the very same page.

There’s a big hooferaw about game reviews being completely unobjective shit because of paid ads. This is something that the entitled fanboys who insist that every iteration of their favourite series get perfect scores harp about all the time. I don’t think it’s true. I mean I have some serious issues and complaints about video game reviewers, but the fact that their opinions are paid for by advertising is not one of them. That is just a fact of the new media world in which we live – content is usually paid for by advertisements and those advertisements tend to peddle things related to the content.

Also, another point – video games did not start as children’s toys. The examples everyone gives – Pong and Spacewar! – neither are for kids. Nor were the vast majority of games before 1980. And even when they did start targeting kids during the heady days of the quarter eating arcades, there were still lots of adult oriented titles.

The idea that video games are for children is a total myth. The ESA does regular surveys about gamer demographics and they peg the average age of a gamer at 31, and it would be significantly higher than that if we discounted smartphone gamers from the group (which, reasonable since these are much less likely to be the hardcore entitled dudebros that are acting like shitwads). i.e. if we were talking only of console and pc gamers.

The reason for the pandering to dudebros in video games is probably the same as the reason for pandering to dudebros wherever it occurs – industry groupthink. A widespread acceptance among executives and upper management in those industries about who their target audience is. i.e. for the same reason that the Bechdel Test is still a relevant concept despite the fact that movies passing the test grossly outperform movies which fail it.

All of that said, yes the dudebro reactionary responses are in fact quite harmful to the very industry they claim to love. And that other people playing video games will have no impact or bearing on their continued access to AAA FPS or Fighters where most of the cast look like porn stars.


DKW: I didn’t mean to rustle your jimmies. I was a bit tired when I posted that and my thoughts weren’t as composed as they ought to have been.

I think what I was trying to put across was… well, I was in the Furry Fandom for a while; even went to a couple of conventions. There was a spectrum of fans ranging from “Hey, I like funny animal stuff” (where I was, pretty much) to, “I like fiction and art that anthropomorphizes animals– even the occasional sexy pinup!” … and then all the way to “I am a anthropomorphic animal trapped in a disgusting hy00man body and how DARE you suggest that I might be in any way mentally unhealthy for asserting this!” That last group tended to be the types who, if they weren’t calling themselves “otherkin”, tended to describe themselves as furry “lifestylers” and saw criticism of the fandom (even something like “Uh, guys, maybe the NC-17 section of the art exhibit should be just a *little* less accessible to children”) as a personal attack and tended to react accordingly.

And it’s that last type, where they’ve internalized their hobby/interest to a degree that doesn’t seem too emotionally/mentally healthy, that I was thinking of.


On the reviewer independence front – it’s like the Blogger Ethics Committee thing – there is this standard that we’re expecting of video games reviewers that we don’t expect of anyone else. That Zoe Quinn sex for reviews story? Here is how the advertisement funded games reviewing website addressed it:

That’s pretty professional and transparent and significantly better than what the accusations warranted. Maybe it’s because they had an easy and easily defensible answer. Let me also point out that fallout from the debate caused them to change an unrelated policy, which is described here:

This is the level of response these “can’t be taken seriously” review sites give when faced with ethics issues. This is the level of seriousness they engage in day to day.



Okay cool. Just the whole bronies = perverts thing is BS and I just wanted to make that point. Because it’s hard enough for bronies out there without being thought of as cloppers all the time. Although as someone who was Furry Fandom curious, you probably know exactly what I’m talking about.

Also just want to state, it’s not that I think bronies are angels or anything either. Just that using them as shorthand for “potential pedos or horsefuckers” is more than a little bit unfair.


Yeah, I think I thought I implied “the crazier flavor of Bronies” and failed.


under socialized weirdos
Hey, I resemble that remark!!


The idea that video games are for children is a total myth.

I dispute this. That idea is outdated but wasn’t wrong at the time. Game consoles and computer games are pitched to kids all the time. I grew up with the Atari 2600, and Nintendo and Sega, and if those were aimed at grownups, it sure wasn’t reflected in the marketing. Even Pong was pitched at kids, or at least as “fun for the whole family”.

Which is not to say that video games and computer games aren’t played by adults, and now comprise their largest audience. They do. But the adults that play video games now* are the kids and teenagers that played video games then and never grew out of it.
And the toxic dudebros who make life miserable for anyone who looks at their pet games with a critical eye grew up gaming, and interacting on line with the dudebros who make life miserable for anyone in tech who isn’t a straight white male. And many game companies are complicit in this, because they feed the market for sexist, violent games because they know they can sell them, and that they won’t experience much pushback. But these gamers are going to do what a few generations of alarmist crusading moms and opportunistic lawyers couldn’t do, with their “ban violent games” fearmongering which is get a critical mass of people to look at what kinds of games are being made and marketed. That doesn’t mean that “Modern Warfare N+1” won’t be made next year, but if it means that game designers give us options about what kinds of games get made at the A-list level and what kinds of situations get depicted, then it will be a win. There’s no reason the next “Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six” couldn’t have a mission or two where one can talk the terrorists into releasing the hostages. Heck, if they just changed the bad guys to not always be scary swarthy foreigners it would be a step in the right direction.

Someone with more time could probably trace “gamer culture” back to “engineering culture” and “hacker culture” seasoned with a liberal sprinkling of “pen and paper RPG nerd culture”, none of which were particularly welcoming to women as a whole. The reason they are a bigger deal now, is that technology has empowered all of their retrograde impulses. Male dominated engineering culture was a problem only for the women who wanted to be engineers, ditto for hacker culture and pen and paper RPG’s. But the internet means more women than ever are playing games and talking about games and the hostile environment they encounter when they game on line, which sadly leads some gamers to hostile responses.

*not counting everyone who plays candy crush saga on their smartphone.


Now it’s strictly single-player for me.

are you in your bunk?


Also too, this whole “corruption in gaming journalism” thing is bullshit. I’m not saying there isn’t any – there’s loads. But this specific complaint focuses on reviews and by extension review scores. Everyone knows review scores are meaningless. Even iOS casuals picking apps from the store know that the star rating is made-up bullshit. “Give us a 5 star rating to unlock extra powerups”. But guess what – Gamers care. Because Gamers and scores. It is hard wired.

Kieran Gillan’s New Games Journalism Manifesto (no link, I am on a phone) is ten years old. Basically it said games reviews should be moar like travel journalism. Moar of a guide (spoiler free of course) about what to expect from a game. Nowadays the video game review world is topped by folks who don’t score. Yahtzee’s reviews for example are immensely popular and he almost never suggests that anyone actually play the game reviewed. RPS’ reviews, the “Wot I Think”s are great examples of this approach layered with some pretty in depth analysis. Kotaku’s reviews accept that folks use reviews to inform buying decisions so they just answer that question straight up with explanations of why they feel that way based on what they experienced. The thumbs up/down style of reviewing.

Yes, absolutely this review approach is still susceptible to “corruption” but I bet it doesn’t happen. Because it is a lot harder to determine whether the briber got what they wanted. And also it totally befuddles the jack was executives who would be most likely to try to bribe for higher review scores.


PS. I am well aware that I give scores when I review games.



Fuck “Gamers”

Fucked a few back in the day but now I’m married so I can’t help you out there.


PENISD*cky Chug Sports Bottle

“Roll over image to zoom in”

Let’s not and say we did.


Thinking about it some more, I probably should’ve gone back further to the concepts of FIAWOL (Fandom Is A Way Of Life) vs FIJAGH (Fandom Is Just A Goddamn Hobby) when trying to articulate my point. The FIAWOL types are the ones who I suspect are most likely to internalize their interests in unhealthy ways.


are you in your bunk?

It’s served me well over the years.


Pong, while the home version was presented as family friendly, it did not start that way.

Spacewar! predates it anyways. As did a baseball simulator and a Star Trek text adventure.

Yes, there were some toy style games on the Magnavox Odyssey, but there’s also stuff that would bore the crap out of anyone under 30. Here’s a list.

Infocom existed throughout the arcade years providing adult alternatives to quarter munchers.

Koei was publishing eroge in 1982.

Sierra might be remembered for King’s Quest and Space Quest, but they also did Leisure Suit Larry, Police Quest and Manhunter. In fact, Ken and Roberta Williams are on the cover of Softporn Adventure (1981).

The C-64 was a haven of “sex” games, mostly terrible. A result of the mid-80s being the start of the shareware movement and the hosting of image files on alr.binaries.

MS Flight Simulator also dates from the early 80s.

And sports games. I’ll concede the car racing games as being for all ages, but baseball simulators? Football Manager? The more action-y track and field or baseball games might have been family friendly as well, but they were designed with an older target audience.

And that’s not counting video poker and other VLTs.

Adult oriented titles have always been available. They were just eclipsed by Pac Man Fever.


This article led me to a game I liked. I said I liked it on twitter. I am now, apparently, a White Knight, a sad and lonely virgin.


This stuff has gone mainstream. Forbes had that article on MGSV (this character is hawt and badass, ergo feminist, QED). And I’ve gotten into an email exchange with the guy at MetaGearSolid, who’s written some insightful media analysis in the fast, but recently railed against neofeminists (bowdlerization of feminazi, score one for Limbaugh) for profiting off the manufacutersy, or some such.

My response was the MRAs are admitting, essentially, that their so-called men cannot control their own righteous anger. And that’s all it is, by definition. The crux of their argument is that feminists successfully trolled them. And then I replied that the big money ‘feminists’ he should be worried about are Camille LaPaglia, S.E. Cupp and the other professional liars on FOX.

It’s very disappointing. Glad I got out of the gamer scene long ago.


So, you’ve decided to stand with the payolla-loving, sex-for-good-review trading, free-goodies-and-cushy-jobs-for-favorable-coverage offering gamer ‘press’.

What a fucking joke the liberal blogosphere has become. Some conservative somewhere could come up with a cure for cancer, and because it is genetically impossible for you to acknowledge that they might be right about at least some part of an issue, you would all declare cancer to be the greatest thing to ever happen to humanity.



Conservatives have already claimed to cure cancer, and like a lot of things conservatives claim, it’s a lie to make millions by exploiting the vulnerable.


Well, I for one, welcome those conservative Einsteins curing cancer!

Oops, did I say “Einstein”?

I forgot that conservatives have already disproven his theory!



So, you’ve decided to stand with the payolla-loving, sex-for-good-review trading, free-goodies-and-cushy-jobs-for-favorable-coverage offering gamer ‘press’.

So, by basically repeating all the same lies that Cerb disproved in her post, and claiming them the equivalent of “a cure for cancer”, you’re hoping to shame us into supporting your side?

No wonder the right has nobody but surly manchildren on its side lately.


Also, given the tendencies of conservativism these days I fully expect them to be advancing science any day now by reviving the fine work of Trofim Lysenko.

Big Bad Bald Bastard

Some conservative somewhere could come up with a cure for cancer, and because it is genetically impossible for you to acknowledge that they might be right about at least some part of an issue, you would all declare cancer to be the greatest thing to ever happen to humanity.

A cure for conservatism would be more beneficial to humanity.

Big Bad Bald Bastard

Also, it’s funny that our new troll fantasizes about a conservative curing cancer when real conservatives can’t even pave a goddamned road.


Also, it’s funny that our new troll fantasizes about a conservative curing cancer when real conservatives can’t even pave a goddamned road.

my favorite part is: and because it is genetically impossible for you to acknowledge that they might be right about at least some part of an issue, you would all declare cancer to be the greatest thing to ever happen to humanity.

from the same group of folks who have had a continuous freak-out since 2008 over bronco bama…



Heh, you reprobates really don’t have anything better to do than stalk google for every single mention of Zoe and Anita do you? Wow, that’s really sad.

Also, apparently harassing and sending death threats to women because the voices said they were guilty of something they demonstrably did not do and wouldn’t be a big deal if they did is apparently equivalent to a cure for cancer.

Is beating up a trans* person equal to a nobel prize or is it more on the level of saving a cute puppy from a burning building? Cause I kind of want to know how this accomplishment conservative-fantasy-of-how-affirmative-action is supposed to work.

And let’s not even get into the IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION on how liberals would supposedly turn on awesome things if conservatives supported it at the same time that conservatives have been stamping their feet and yelling no over things that were their own ideas not that long ago simply because liberals support it. Fuck, or the fact that conservatives willfully choose death, self-harm, and the extinction of all or most human life on the planet all to spite some imaginary liberal somewhere.

Oh, and addendum that I want to tag onto my initial post because it wasn’t nearly long enough is this bizarre idea some fucked-up geeks have that attention is some rare and limited resource that someone else can steal from them.

I mean, with this and the whole “fake geek girl” storm in a teacup, there was this angry, violent reaction at the notion of women taking attention from hard-working geeks.

And yes, the origin of that has a lot more to do with this idea that spaces these fuckers have decided to claim as theirs should then be guarded and protected from these same fuckers having to be aware that people not like them exist. As if it is society or a convention or a geek space’s job to turn away all the brown people, women, and queers so that a precious white male anxious about his place in the world can be safe pretending his hobbies are some celestial suburb, where he can live the Klansman’s Paradise in peace.

But on its surface, taken at its value… It’s just sad. Like, pull on the heartstrings, wet dog pressed against the window pathetic. These wretches have somehow convinced themselves that attention, not positive attention, not friendship, but rather just the raw act of being noticed is a) something to even care about and b) something rare that they find lacking in their own lives.

And that’s just “oh you poor baby” to remark on and it really does underlie a lot of the justifications geeks use to excuse bad behavior. Oh, any publicity is good publicity. Bad attention is just as good as good attention. At least, when one is reviled and hated, one is noticed and remembered as an existing living person.

And it’s also something that is entirely these assholes’ faults. “Attention” is not a rare resource and even the geekiest most loner gamer can find kindred meatsacks who share their interests and understand their life experiences. They can gain friendship, love (for those who are romantic rather than aromantic), and community. And it’s not that hard and doesn’t even require leaving the house or the game machine thanks to well video games and the notions of Clans and so on.

But through their raw toxicity, their bitter treatment of anyone who reaches out, their various stewing resentments over minor imagined slights, their conspiracy theories and casual bigotries, and their desperate all-consuming addiction to the losing cycle of toxic masculinity, they deny themselves all of this and then misinterpret their own loneliness as yet another example of where they’ve been slighted and someone has stolen the attention that was their birthright.

And not only do they seem not to realize that this is happening, but that this sad commentary on themselves is a real issue that everyone else in the world will think just the same as them about.

Of course everyone is just as angry about women getting attention from sempai-chan just because they are women and so get noticed in the flood of white men in a way they never will for worse and worst. Because why wouldn’t they be? I mean, sempai was supposed to notice me! ME!

And it just adds one more baffling and petty internalizing of slights that makes these people so toxic to give anything other than indifference or mockery.

And fixing that is really on them.


Oh, and it also illustrates the unbelievable entitlement at the center of all of this.

I’m owed attention, me. And it’s being stolen from me by these nefarious demonic unpeople who are daring to exist near me and steal precious microseconds that could be given to me.

The notion that other people can exist and worse, can talk about things that interest them amongst each other without THEIR APPROVAL freaks their little control freak hearts out and so they demand total ownership of the global attention supply (no, you, person I’ve never met, can’t be interested in that indie game, there’s no guns. You can only be interested in what I’m interested in and care about) in much the same way that religious control freaks demand to control every woman’s sexuality and how everyone spends the money they have earned.

To this subset of addicted authoritarians, nothing short of them being The Editor from Doctor Who would suffice and even then, they’d fuss and complain like him at the drones who dared question their lot.

And it’s extra sad that they really do seem to believe that they’d be in the control seat if that happened, rather than one of the faceless marks.


You do go on, don’t you, Cerb? 🙂

Anyway, I can’t help but wonder, as I said in a previous post, about how this all ties into the present “zombie” thing, and how I wonder if part of it is the idea of being able to shoot “undesirables” at will on the grounds that now you have an iron-clad excuse.

Which just kind of makes it all the more pitiful; they aren’t brave enough to declare their love for “Turner Diaries: The FPS” so they have to settle for capping zeds and pretending they were Those People.


Also, it’s funny that our new troll fantasizes about a conservative curing cancer when real conservatives can’t even pave a goddamned road.

c.f. all the grand plans for Libertopia, which never get off the ground because these yahoos expect someone else to come along and fund their projects, just like welfare except the gummint ain’t involved so it’s okay.


“Soullite?” That name has trolled before. (Used to appear often when Matty Yglesias was at Think Progress, I b’leeve.)

Current iteration.

Current theme: “You liberals this, you liberals that.” Also: “Bitches.”


My oh my, that Soullite creature has a very angry soul lite. Or perhaps I should say its soul is so lite it’s nonexistent.

Also FYWP too.


I don’t think anyone at Breitbart is a gamer I wanna associated with.

But I’m still a gamer.


I’m owed attention, me. And it’s being stolen from me by these nefarious demonic unpeople who are daring to exist near me and steal precious microseconds that could be given to me.

I’M the attention whore around here. Work your own side of the street, you soulless soullite turdface turd.


I like to play online poker for play moneys. Iz I a gamer?


My oh my, that Soullite creature has a very angry soul lite. Or perhaps I should say its soul is so lite it’s nonexistent.

oh, hey…i was so tempted to post something like this, but i’m trying to not be provocative towards trolls…i remember all to well what happened the LAST time i interacted with one…ewww…


Have I mentioned yet how much I hate these people?

“The minimum wage is mostly people who failed at life and high school kids,” Erickson said.

“Seriously, look. I don’t mean to be ugly with you people. What? So my producer from my show is in here and he’s just staring at me, can’t believe I said this. If you’re a 30-something-year-old person and you’re making minimum wage you’ve probably failed at life.”

And he knows about failing at life!


I like to play online poker for play moneys.

All I know about poker is that if you can’t spot the sucker in the room it’s probably you.


I thought Soullite was just Pennis reinventing itself. Or maybe an entity called Derv that I’ve had the misfortune to encounter over on The Archdruid Report.


One of the under appreciated reasons why anime has gotten de-emphasized – other than that there are tons of anime conventions now – is that is has become extraordinarily difficult for conventions and gatherings to actually show the material.

Getting public showing licenses on the cheap is all but impossible anymore. Which is really sad. Basically, either they want more than would be reasonable or they won’t respond to inquires at all… But will certainly send cease and desist billing threats.


…In the last week Twitter stopped taking third-party harassment reports.

Basically, unless you are: The person being harassed, the harassment is direct, and you have a twitter account – the incident is perfectly fine by them.



…And why the heck does it tell me to slow down my comments if I haven’t commented for hours or days until I click the post button about four times?


. (Used to appear often when Matty Yglesias was at Think Progress, I b’leeve.)

I associate Soullite as more of a LGM troll.


LGM has been fairly troll-free since they went to registration.


I associate Soullite as more of a LGM troll.

Also, Eschaton, where the troll in question is more often referred to as “Soulpatch” (I prefer Souplatch, myself, after a typo).


Also, heh heh. Turns out Zoe Quinn managed to record a whole bunch of 4chan’s blackhat IRC where they were planning the orchestrated harassment of women (which include her ex, shockingly enough) and send it off with other proof to the FBI who is investigating it.

Apparently Zoe Quinn is the ultimate badass and the creepers of the internet were too fucking dumb to tangle with her. I am feeling all the schadenfreude over this.


Adding an addendum that one of the people doing the orchestrating was her not-at-all-abusive ex who started all this who made appearances to tell the harassers which of Zoe’s friends to target and how best to target them.



And I’m especially pissy about this whole affair, because awesome black trans* game developer and journalist Mattie Brice dropped out of gaming entirely because of these turds. She was the maker of Mainichi which was probably the first deliberately trans* video game I ever played and an all around awesome lady I knew somewhat personally. So yeah, all the fuck yous for these reprehensible shits.


awesome black trans* game developer and journalist Mattie Brice dropped out of gaming entirely because of these turds

Even worse, they’re chortling about it.


I’ll have to admit to skimming the last couple thousand, not yours but his…
Jesus Fucking Christ in Hell, what the fuck is wrong with people…

I mean I get the garden variety idiot conservatism, but between this and elevatorgate, I am inclined to turn in my justly earned Platinum Geek credibility card. (CV available on request.)


Above link to last show that I played live.


Hey, what kind of gig was it that the video is private?


Well, I see Cerb has already passed on the #gameovergate news. Like I said, it’s not that there aren’t issues with gaming journalism, there sure a fuck are. But what was happening was clearly fake. Fakity fake fake.


Queen of the castle

Awwww! (not so fast FYWP!)

Big Bad Bald Bastard

Queen of the castle

“I don’t usually eat cat food, but when I do, it’s Tender Vittles.”


New post.


some of the folks from #gg have been leaving a trail of stupid over in the forums at boingboing. in one thread there were numerous sockpuppets that kept popping up as new members to leave their particular brand of fail. this is a great post and a remarkably restrained recounting of events. thanks.


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