Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Operation Angry Unicorn

So this is a thing:

  I sent one tweet to @GaymerX last October:

  The result:

  The context:

  "I can't just dismiss people who want to go to GX3 and also support GG for their own reasons. As I can't dismiss you."

  "I can't associate the bad behavior of many of the gg-ers with everyone person that uses the hashtag."

  "We don't support GG. We never will. We support queer gamers, though, some of them happen to have different ideas than we do."

  If only it were so.
  This video by MundaneMatt explains the situation well:

  GaymerX had an opportunity to remain neutral concerning GamerGate, as their initial tweets show. Pro-GamerGate people are largely accepting of neutral stances or non-participation:

  However, anti-GamerGate people will not accept any deviation from their narrative of gamers as sexist, misogynist, racist, homophobic, harassers, a hate movement, even literally worse than ISIS.

  GamerGate remains a consumer revolt at the core (with the overwhelming majority of people using the tag not "behaving badly"), and one aspect of this revolt is to fight against this false narrative. I am not a sexist, racist or homophobe (pretty sure I don't hate myself). Speaking my mind is not harassment. I do not hate people. I will criticize ideas that I think are wrong, and this does not make me worse than people who literally shot at me years ago.

  Operation Angry Unicorn is a part of the long running Operation Disrespectful Nod (named after this cringe), which is "a mailing campaign targeting advertisers on unethical video game journalism sites, especially those that participated in Gamers are Dead, asking the advertisers to reconsider their association with these publications." This one is targeting the advertisers associated with GaymerX. Note that this is not targeting GaymerX themselves. They are free to block whoever they want on twitter. They are even free to lie all day about the nature of GamerGate. And I am free to tell their advertisers how I feel about their lies and use of a blockbot.

  One side wants to have a conversation. One side wants to control the narrative.

  I've written once before about Blizzard's Core Values. That post was written after reading hit pieces against Blizzard by Kotaku with Erasing your audience isn't 'fun', and Rock, Paper, Shotgun with Blizzard on Heroes of the Storm,  Female Designs in MOBAs, and the particular value that I was highlighting is Every Voice Matters. However, according to GaymerX, not every voice matters. My next post will be an open letter to Blizzard pointing out that supporting GaymerX is in conflict with their Core Values, but for now I will preface it with a review of these Blizzard-specific controversies:

  Remember Rob Pardo's comments on women and diversity?

  "We're not trying to bring in serious stuff or socially relevant stuff or actively trying to preach for diversity... It's not because we don't want more women developers, it's just what the industry is... I hire game designers, I just don't get the applications."

  I think Blizzard wants to be a non-participant concerning "socially relevant stuff". I'm OK with this. It's OK to not be a gender activist. Of course, gender activists are not OK with this.

  Blizzard also wants to hire more women. There's just not many women applying. I see the imbalance of genders in this industry as a result of the different, free choices of men and women. Again, gender activists are not OK with this.

  I've since heard something almost identical to this with a "clear gender gap" with the Oculus.

  "We're having a hard time hiring all the people that we want. It doesn't matter what they look like."

  In the eternal shifting of goalposts that gender activists do, they claim that women are put off by sexism in the industry. Well let's examine that claim:

  Remember Ji Firepaw's dialogue in beta?

  To females he said"Hello, friend! You're some kind of gorgeous, aren't you? I bet you can't keep the men off of you! Join me ! You and I are going to be good friends!"

  To males he said "Hello, friend! You've got a strong look to you! I bet you're all the rage with the ladies! Join me ! You and I are going to be good friends!" 

  That's it. That was the controversy. Apparently this is what's "keeping women out of gaming." Oh, the heterosexism! Oh, the objectification of women! (Ignoring the same objectification of men.)  Seriously, if this is what prevents a person from playing a game, much less becoming a game developer, then I just don't know what to say. Grow up, I guess?

  Aggra won't be in Warlords of Draenor. Seriously? That's what's keeping women out of gaming? This strong female character that lit a fire under Thrall's ass and returned him to his roots had her time in the sun, but now we're seeing other characters rotate in, as they all do. This person's favorite character isn't front and center anymore. What a tragedy!

  The 2014 April Fool's joke. This is what's keeping women out of gaming. Totally, like, I can't even.

  Cherry picking, straw men and hyperbole over female lore characters. "... even in game Garrosh calls her a bitch with no repercussions." Oh, he got his due. (It's called a Face-Heel Turn, fyi)

  This beautiful art of Tyrande and Malfurion. Sexist.

  "Warlords of Draenor is a boy's trip." "The Dark Portal is the new glass ceiling." Really? This is some Poe level nonsense. "...a pretty male-centric vision of Warlords that left many people with a bad taste in their mouth." (keep it clean, Kal) One wonders where people get the idea that gender activists hate men.

  Female characters are not allowed to be sexy. They're also not allowed to be absent. They're also not allowed to be secondary characters. They're also not allowed to have imperfections. They're also not allowed to be ugly. They're also not allowed to be mothers. They're also not allowed to have male characters behave badly towards them, even if they're the new bad guy.

  And people really left over all of this nonsense. Star-Fired Beef left. Cynwise left. Orcish Army Knife left.

  Simply put, this is an outrage industry creating controversy and pushing a narrative, (and profiting off of it) and we've seen this all before:

  But here's the truth: Women are already in gaming, and they have been for quite some time.

  I've been careful not to say all of this comes from feminism, which is a claim I have made before. Instead I say "gender activists" because that narrows it down to some second- and most third-wave feminists. This isn't about equality between men and women, either equality of opportunity or outcome. This is a machination of academia and media which claims to be for equality and social justice, but instead is a perpetual "controversy", one after another, consuming subcultures and taking them for what they're worth.

  Gamers are just the first to unite and fight back. Feminists, non-feminists and anti-feminists, liberals, libertarians and conservatives, gay, straight, cis, trans and everything in between, all shades of skin, everyone no matter what's between their legs, everyone can be a gamer. This is how it has been and will continue to be. Gamers are not dead.

  And of course, gender activists are not OK with this.

  I'll end with a quote from one of those women who has been in gaming longer than I have been on this planet:

  "No, I have never experienced any problem with being a female in a so-called male-dominated field. They were happy to have me. It was really just up to me to put myself 'out' there. If more women want to be a part of the computer industry today, they just have to do more to put themselves out there. Nobody, in reality, is keeping them out... in my opinion anyway." - Roberta Williams in a 2006 interview

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