August-November, 2014 and #Gamergate hit the proverbial fan, setting off waves across the net:
- ‘Lack of ethics in games journalism’ saw female dev-minxes allegedly grinding completely innocent journalists until they were so hot on testosterone they willingly lay naked on floors, laptop-typing feverously positive game reviews that were stiletto heel edited with jabs to the neck.
- Hidden left-world think-tank, oestro-powered cranium-women sent Telepathic Mother Waves that were downloaded through big loopy earrings and regurgitated, unedited, by glam, pretty young things.
- Hidden left-world think-tank, testostro-powered unwashed news hacks sat around in hairy-huddles, picking fleas from each others armpits and groin-sniffed and chest beat until they thought they were Alpha Kong-Dongs and could defecate on everyone else from on-high.
- White, fat, hairy neckbearded menchildren responded and declared themselves the new oppressed minority majority, except the journalists had already killed them, so it was too late.
- Left to to carry the torch were women-trans-gay-coloured gamers who shouted at the open-minded and completely unbiased mainstream press who didn’t listen – they wanted to demonstrate sympathy with the fem-left by acting in an utterly patriarchal way: ‘helping’ distressed women against their online male oppressors because it was what their audience expected, and gamer-hating brought in the ratings and ad revenue.
- The Rabid-Fem community heard the ‘gamers’ who refused to conform though. Clothed solely in totally functional and ungenderising armour woven from whiter-than-white lily petals, these humanitarian souls labelled other women, non-whites and every gender imaginable, ‘white mens’ bee-atches’, ‘house-n*ggers’ and ‘gender-traitors’.
- The non-majority gamers retaliated with angry signs declaring ‘#NotYourShield’ and accusations of control, hypocrisy and prejudice.
Not nice, is it?
The confusion, clash of ideologies, nepotism, deceit and arrogance displayed through the whole debacle has left lives in tatters (no, really) and enraged people on- and offline. So, who’s to blame? The Quinns, Sarkeesians, or Wus? If women had that much power, even the most rabid man-haters would be appeased, their desired matriarchy firmly established over all men and any women still willing to treat the breast-less as human beings. Whatever their actions or politics, those three have taken enough flak and it’s time to let them get on with finding their lives. Zoe Quinn will, hopefully, eventually find joy in developing games and sharing them with an open-minded audience. Yes, Anita Sarkeesian will probably release another video or several criticising males and video games and appear on mainstream TV and in editorials, but that’s what she does. I’m not going to tell her she can’t. I’d even fight for her right to do so but she doesn’t need my help. Whatever she says or does, I hope those that threatened her are caught and dealt with. And Brianna Wu? I hope she keeps finding the courage to send a few mocking tweets – there are plenty on the internet who need a good prodding. My hope is that they’re big enough to take it, and restrict their responses to tweets-in-kind.
So, that leaves the misogynist gamers (no matter their colour, creed or orientation), the corrupt games journalists, the sociopathic trolls, self-serving mainstream media, the Boadicea Wimmin Warriors and Fem-Bashing Neanderthals. Who’s your tribe? Which group(s) do you hate?
Personally, I blame the cliques; group-think works for any ideology. It’s the safe way to live.
How to fight an historical patriarchy that remains as part of the establishment, making the life-slope steeper for women to climb? Solution: define yourself by opposition and become a man-hater pushing for preference, not equality.
How to fight racism and discrimination against human beings who just happen to have more melanin in their skin than I do? Solution: define yourself by opposition and call white males bigoted ‘rednecks’ and ‘neckbeards’.
How to fight the corrupt media? Solution: in-focus and huddle, until you call for boycotting of every site that hosts reviews you just don’t like, and not just because they manipulate and grant behind the scenes favours. Follow up by nit-picking every little mistake your opposition makes, as if that proves your point. (But your opposition does that too, so it doesn’t matter.)
Instead, do you join the corrupt media? Answer: absolutely, because you get to close ranks with your mates when the finger pointing starts, insult you readership, and refuse to even consider signing up to ethically sound journalistic guidelines to ensure a level playing field for everyone.
That leaves the disenfranchised, what should they do? Answer: form an anti-whatever group and send the hate ‘they’ dissed you with back at ‘them’, ten-fold.
What’s so utterly obvious, yet apparently so hard to believe and act on, is that no one is perfect. Prejudice, self-righteousness, anger, hatred, judgemental-ism: it’s part of all of us. People are complex. No-one’s online self is all that they are. But, whoever we are and whatever our weaknesses, we’re defined by our choices. So, which have you made? Do you hate/despise/belittle those who oppose you? Attempt to silence them? Attack them personally? (Note: criticising someone’s work is different – maybe just keep the bile out of it?)
Are you defined by being anti-something, or are you for something, and no, they are not the same.
Humanity doesn’t need hate-filled feminism any more than it needs self-interested patriarchy. It doesn’t need self-appointed, self-interested power groups any more than it does those who would resort to abuse or attacks to fight them. It doesn’t need groups or individuals labelling and condemning each other and not listening.
Whether our bits jiggle when we walk, or not, whether we turn pink in the sun, or not, when did we leave parts of our minds / souls / spirits behind?
Tomorrow is another day, so why not make it better?