Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Not your shield

For the longest time I decided that I'm not touching Gamergate with a 60ft pole. Then I was asked to write about the incident to a blog I edit. The text I wrote is the one below:

I hope you didn't eat anything before starting to read this because the subject of this text is disgusting and induces nausea. I will be talking about Gamergate incident as someone who has tried not to follow all the speculation and dirt tossing - just closely enough to be annoyed by it - and who happens to be a woman.
The incident started with Zoe Quinn, a female game developer who told the media that she had received death threats and suffered harassment just because she was a woman. I will not start speculating whether these threats and harassment actually exist, because I don't think it matters. Why is that?
Because death threats, rape threats, harassment and belittling do exist. As a female gamer I don't need Zoe Quinn to tell me that. I have been a gamer for years, and while I have gotten to experience the best of it - the thrill, the joy of getting better, and the integrity and kindness of the community - I have also experienced the worst.
The harassment in gaming community does exist. Despite my skills, despite how I act around others, despite my contributing to the community, I can still get harassed just because I am a woman. It doesn't matter whether I suck or whether I'm the best of the team, there are always times when someone would like to "rape my sorry ass" just because I am a woman gamer. This is a real problem and it should be solved, it should be talked about.
Which is exactly why Gamergate incident pisses me off so much.
I can see I have gotten some of you confused now. Didn't I just ask for a knight in shining armor and white steed? Hell no. In fact I was talking about something completely unrelated.
Because #Gamergate is not about us female gamers. It is about corruption, smearing, bribery and lack of objectivity in video game journalism. All these things have very little to do with equality or gender. There has been so much talk about the harassment and inequality in the gaming world that personally I have gotten very fed up with the subject. It's nothing new. And not only that, the community changes little by little: fewer gamers every day accept harassment, whether the victim is a male or a female. I see this as a positive change even when there is still a lot of work to do.
Social Justice Warriors, you can go home now, there is nothing for you to do here.
The two points I wanted to encase in here:
1) Gamergate has nothing to do with gender or harassment. It has to do with god-awful journalism and we need to change that. As a result of this shitstorm a change will happen, and I sincerely hope it will be for the better.
2) Minority gamers should not be used as shields or smokescreen to cover up biased journalism or to attack people you don't like. Journalists, this is not about us, it's about you.
tl;dr: I don't want social justice, I want a goddamn explanation to why video game journalism is at this state.

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