On Nerd Entitlement. A few people have forwarded me MIT professor Scott Aaronson’s post about nerd trauma and male privilege (link here) It's part of a larger discussion about sexism in STEM subjects, and its essence is simple. Aaronson's position on feminism is supportive, but he can’t get entirely behind it because of his experiences growing up, which he details with painful honesty. He describes how mathematics was an escape, for him, from the misery of growing up in a culture of toxic masculinity and extreme isolation - a misery which drove him to depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts.
The key quote is this: “Much as I try to understand other people’s perspectives, the first reference to my 'male privilege' — my privilege! — is approximately where I get off the train, because it’s so alien to my actual lived experience . . . I know them feels, Scott. As a child and a teenager, I was shy, and nerdy, and had crippling anxiety. Like Aaronson, I was terrified of making my desires known- to anyone. Why nerd culture must die. Photo by Attila Acs My first girlfriend was someone I met through a MUD, and I had to fly 7,000 miles to see her in person. I read a paper version of the Jargon File at 15 and it became my bible. Just reading its descriptions of the internet I knew it was world-changing, even before the web, and as soon as I could I snuck into the local university computer labs with a borrowed account to experience the wonder of Usenet, FTP, and Gopher.
I chose my college because Turing had once taught there, and the designer of the ARM chip would be one of my lecturers. My first job out of college was helping port the original Diablo to the first Playstation, and I spent five years writing games. I’ve dived deep into GPU programming. My point is that if anyone can claim to be a nerd, it’s me. Over the last decade, that’s changed. And that’s where the problem lies. That’s why Marc Andreessen’s comment that Silicon Valley is nerd culture, and nerds are bro’s natural enemies felt so wrong. Like this: Rape and death threats are terrorizing female gamers. Why haven’t men in tech spoken out? By Brianna WuOctober 20 Brianna Wu is a software engineer and founder of Giant Spacekat, a company that makes games with female protagonists.
She hosts the Isometric podcast on the 5by5 network. (David Leather/Flickr) They’ve taken down women I care about one by one. Now, the vicious mob of the Gamergate movement is coming after me. They’ve threatened to rape me. They’ve threatened to make me choke to death on my husband’s severed genitals. This angry horde has been allowed to wage its misogynistic war without penalty for too long. Gamergate is ostensibly about journalistic ethics. The movement is not new. The fact that Gamergate supporters went after Quinn and not the journalist says everything you need to know about the movement. I became Gamergate’s latest target when I tweeted this joke about supporters of the movement: The next day, my Twitter mentions were full of death threats so severe I had to flee my home.
We’ve lost too many women to this lunatic mob. Some have. Adobe, Mercedes-Benz are Latest to Pull Ads at the Behest of GamerGate. You might be wondering what kind of doublespeak inanity is going on when tech giant Adobe’s announcement that they’re acquiescing to GamerGate requests is accompanied by an anti-bullying graphic, so allow us to explain. It’s a series of unfortunate events. Last week Gawker contributor Sam Biddle cracked some poor jokes about GamerGate on Twitter, suggesting (or jokingly suggesting) that the perpetuators of the so-called movement, linked throughout its existence with harassment and threats of violence toward women, deserved to be bullied themselves. As a statement of any level of humor, “two wrongs make a right” is never particularly defensible.
His handful of tweets were, however, an juicy target for GamerGate, which has been attempting lately to spin the narrative about the amorphous group around entirely to one where GamerGate supporters are the bullied parties, preyed upon by “social justice warriors” who… I guess want to keep ethics out of video game journalism? For reasons. Meet the Most Unlucky Schmucks In the World Right Now: The Guys At @GamersGate. Felicia Day Writes About Her #GamerGate Fears and Unlike Chris Kluwe, Is Immediately Doxxed. Felicia Day Writes About Her #GamerGate Fears and Unlike Chris Kluwe, Is Immediately Doxxed By Cindy Davis | Celebrities Are Better than You | October 23, 2014 | Comments (87 View Hey, remember the other night, we posted that fantabulous Chris Kluwe piece?
He got an *earful* on his Twitter in response, but you know what he didn’t get? He didn’t get “doxxed.” What’s doxxed, you may be wondering (I was)? Doxxed is when someone’s personal information (email, address, phone number, credit card numbers) is released online. Yesterday, Ms. “I had a day off this weekend from shooting Supernatural, and I was walking around downtown Vancouver on Saturday…At one point I saw a pair of guys walking towards me wearing gamer shirts. “I have been terrified of inviting a deluge of abusive and condescending tweets into my timeline…I have had stalkers and restraining orders issued in the past, I have had people show up on my doorstep when my personal information was HARD to get.”
As for Ms. Anita Sarkeesian Cancels Speaking Engagement After Threats Of Campus Shooting. Well, it’s finally happened. Feminist Frequency’s Anita Sarkeesian, who’s long been a target of harassment and abuse for her work on how women are portrayed in video games, was forced to cancel a public appearance due to safety concerns in light of a threat against her and the institution where she was scheduled to speak. Trigger warning for violence, particularly violence against women. Sarkeesian was expected to give a speech today at the Center for Women and Gender at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. Yesterday, however, it was revealed that a threat against Sarkeesian and attendees of USU was sent via e-mail to several staffers at Utah State University late Monday night.
According to student-run newspaper the Standard Examiner, the author threatened the school with “”the deadliest school shooting in American history” and said that, “feminists have ruined my life and I will have my revenge, for my sake and the sake of all the others they’ve wronged.” (via Deseret News) #Gamergate’s Harassment Of Women Hits The Front Page Of The New York Times | The Mary Sue. In recent days, #Gamergate has gone from being covered mostly by niche sites to gaining full cultural awareness by the mainstream media. Yesterday, Anita Sarkeesian’s story of harassment hit the front page of The New York Times. You can read the story in full here, in which they also speak with the man who coined the term #Gamergate, Adam Baldwin.
Sarkeesian, like game developer Brianna Wu, is still calling for major players in the gaming industry to speak up against harassment. “Game studios, developers and major publishers need to vocally speak up against the harassment of women and say this behavior is unacceptable,” Ms. Additionally, the New York Times has put out a call for any women who have experienced sexism in gaming to come forward and speak with them about their experiences “related to gender.”
And Wu is still standing up to her harassers on national media. Of course, while she continues to be vocal about her experiences, Wu is continuing to receive threats such as this: GamerGate Death Threats - Business Insider. Wikimedia, CCZoe Quinn, a female game developer who has become a target of death threats from video game players. To anyone who is not a hardcore video gamer, the "GamerGate" controversy is completely baffling. Some video game fans claim that game developers and journalists have relationhips with each other that are too close, breaching ethical guidelines for writers reviewing video games. The GamerGate movement has resulted in widespread outrage — at least on Twitter — among game fans. And now some women who have criticized video games, or those who play them, are being subjected to death threats by men who play those games.
Yes, it's bizarre. It makes no sense whatsoever. And yet it's happening: (You can read some relatively sober summaries of "GamerGate" on Reason here, and on Know Your Meme here, and on Gawker here.) If you're thinking, "none of this makes any sense! None of it makes sense. And yet on Twitter you'll find some particularly disturbing tweets from men who play games. Anita Sarkeesian Cancels Speaking Engagement After Threats Of Campus Shooting | The Mary Sue. Gaming’s summer of rage - Television. Katherine streeter for the boston globe Those who don’t follow gaming closely missed a big, loud, embarrassing controversy that ate up a big chunk of this summer. But it’s worth acquainting oneself with it, because it tells an important story about gaming’s awkward, tumultuous adolescence as an art form.
The controversy in question is called either GamerGate (often presented as a Twitter hashtag: #gamergate) or the Quinnspiracy. It surrounds Zoe Quinn, a game developer who created “Depression Quest,” a well-regarded indie title that, as the title suggests, is about what it’s like to be depressed. Continue reading below One of them was a writer for the popular blog Kotaku, and when this came out a certain subset of the gaming community erupted with videos and blog posts and other rants how she had seduced him for favorable coverage (the wench!).
But that didn’t stop a torrent of unfathomable outrage. The haters know they’ve lost, though. Joss Whedon, Boston Globe Journalist Smack Down “But GamerGate Is About Journalistic Ethics!” Argument. And GamerGate just keeps on churning. The last time we wrote about it, mainstream news organizations like CBS, PBS, and The New York Times were starting to get in on the action. One such publication is The Boston Globe, which ran a piece called “Gaming’s summer of rage” in late September. In it, author Jesse Singal identified the core of GamerGate as not concern over journalistic integrity, but instead “insecurity—profound insecurity—on the part of some male gamers reacting to their hobby of choice becoming more diverse and nuanced and, I dare say, emotionally intelligent.”
Surprisingly, GamerGate took this frank assessment of the hypocrisy of their movement to heart. Ohhhh, and then. The takedown to end all takedowns. Methinks it’s time to share this comic again: Take it away, Singal. Uh huh. The comments are filled with a predictable number of screeds about how GamerGate really is about journalistic ethics, “my intellectualy dishonest friend.” Joss Whedon, Boston Globe Journalist Smack Down “But GamerGate Is About Journalistic Ethics!” Argument | The Mary Sue. The Only Thing I Have To Say About Gamer Gate | Felicia's Melange. Why #Gamergaters Piss Me The F*** Off — The Cauldron. Dear #Gamergaters, Do you know why you piss me the fuck off?
Because you’re lazy. You’re ignorant. You are a blithering collection of wannabe Wikipedia philosophers, drunk on your own buzzwords, incapable of forming an original thought. You display a lack of knowledge stunning in its scope, a fundamental disregard of history and human nature so pronounced that makes me wonder if lead paint is a key component of your diet. You think you’re making piercing arguments when, in actuality, you’re throwing a temper tantrum that would embarrass a three-year-old. There’s this herd of people, mainly angsty teenage caucasian men (based on an informal survey of 99 percent of the people who feel the need to defend this nonsense to me on Twitter), who feel that somehow, their identity as “gamers” is being taken away.
These paint-huffing shitgoblins think they’re “gamers,” and it pisses me the fuck off. I grew up playing games. I am a gamer. Gaming is part of who I am, I can promise you that. or. Felicia Day Writes About Her #GamerGate Fears and Unlike Chris Kluwe, Is Immediately Doxxed. Gamergate Roundup: IGN & Occupy Wall Street Comment On GG, Internet Makes Hella Memes | The Mary Sue.
Every morning I wake up and forget, just for an instant, that Gamergate is even a thing. It’s consistently been the best part of my day for a week now. Alas, the “movement” is still trucking, so here’s (some of, since it’s churning out faster than we can write it up) what you missed if you’re not on Twitter all day and don’t have to subject yourself to this news on a constant basis. First off, some weird news: The Occupy Wall Street Twitter has officially come out as a Gamergater, citing the admittedly harsh and terribly-thought out tweets by Gawker’s Sam Biddle as “anti-geek hate speech.” No, really: It’s worth noting, of course, that the Twitter account no longer belongs to the same people it did when it was first launched in 2011 (which is a problem Occupy Wall Street’s been having for a while with other Twitter accounts linked to the movement—that’s what you get for not picking a leader, I guess) . Those guidelines are all solid and commendable, but see that last part?