So I got some actual news to report today, a nice little story about how an anonymous group of people try to ruin other people’s lives out of a false sense of justice. Yes this is about Gamer Gate, and no I don’t have a single good word for them today. Not after the shit they pulled,…
Spoiler alert: this became more of a rant then an actual article, but I think it nicely captures how I feel about what happened.
So yesterday it was brought to my attention that Alison Rapp was fired by Nintendo over what can only be described as some serious Gamer Gate bullshit. Before we go into that any further I want to state very clearly that this is not a call to crucify everyone who identifies with said hashtag. I know there are a lot of people among them who do not condone this kind of crap, if anything they’re also a victim since their little movement is being abused by an anonymous minority of self-righteous idiots who think they have the right to go after peoples jobs when they do something they don’t like.
So what exactly happened? Xenoblade Chronicles X had a "boob slider" in its Japanese release version, yes it’s about one of those things, that got cut from the North American version. Fire Emblem also decided to remove a "face petting" minigame and somehow Alison became the face of all these decisions, she had nothing to do with by the way. Nintendo was flooded with complaints about her, and people started to dig up anything they could find against her. The group she linked to Gamer Gate stumbled upon a paper she wrote all the way back in 2011. Yes 2011! In it, she investigated Japan's child pornography laws and sympathized with that country's cultural norms related to teen sexualisation that are usually seen as taboo in western society. When Gamer Gate found this paper they labelled her a paedophilia apologist. Yeah let’s recap this for a second shall we,… They found a paper from 5 years ago, I which she didn’t outright condemned something that doesn’t stroke with western Morales, and was without further question labelled a paedophilia apologist.
Now I want you to let that sink in for a second. We all probably wrote somethings in that past that could easily be turned around to make us look like something terrible, right? Hell, personally I’ve probably written stuff that could be used to make it seem like I hate all of the western hemisphere. Which I don’t by the way! My point is that how in the world can this ever be the creative and accepting industry that we want it to be if every single time someone does something we don’t like we go after him or her personally, cause he/she shouldn’t have messed with our industry? And for what? Because you didn’t get your fucking boob slider? Are you fucking kidding me?
Do I personally wanted to control the size of the boobs of the character I play? Not really. Would I mind being able to do so? Not really. But apparently there are people who deem this more important than someone’s actual fucking job. I’m sorry for the swearing, but this pisses me of like you wouldn’t believe. I’m going to link you guys an article that covers this story in more detail than I ever could, and I’m going to tell you guys a different yet related story.
Gaming culture is not the one I sympathise whit the most. I’m first and foremost a member of the metal community. You see we also have assholes trying to dictate the scene, and go all purist on everyone who likes a band they don’t consider “real metal”. Sounds familiar? But what we also have is a majority who actually step up for one another. People who don’t know each other who will help each other up when they go down in the mosh pit, who will kick someone out who is bullying the little guys at gigs, and bands who don’t fire their crew just because whining, self-entitled fans throw a fucking tantrum about them. We stick together, we encourage new directions in our favourite music, and yes there are people who try to ruin it for the rest of us, but you know what? We don’t let them. That minority of assholes,… that’s all they are, they’re a minority.
The point I’m trying to make is, that those dickheads who go after peoples jobs because they can’t have their way. We don’t have to let them. If we all crack down on them when this kind of stuff happens they would have no choice but to shut up and play the games the way the developers wanted to make them. Will this ever happen? I hope so, I really do, because this is not a community I want any part of and as long as this shit keeps happening I will no longer call myself a gamer. It may be a fairly empty gesture but it’s the only one available to me at this point. I’m completely disgusted by what happens and I don’t think anyone should shrug this of as “not a big deal”.
edit: It was brought to my attention that I didn't state she was not only harassed by the gamer gate movement, so I apologies for that. So no The harassment spread further then just gamer gate and I extend my sincerest apologies for sowing misinformation.
If you want the full story about what happened you can read it here.