Concerns about transparency at SPJ Airplay 2

Well SPJ Airplay is half way funded and its our chance to get a bit more interest from the media (hopefully without the bomb scare to go with it).

We have a panel of Gamergate spokespeople ready to stand up and tell the world, on our behalf, what Gamergate is. It sounds brilliant. It sounds like an opportunity of great potential. Transparency.

I have very real concerns about one of the panelists. @CultofVivian. Now I know you are probably saying “That is no surprise”.

Yes I really don’t like her…

At all…

But I tried to let things go. She is a member and a popular one. My opinions are rarely her own. I find her annoying and yes here there niggled me. BUT something came up all to recently and I need to know whether or not she can be trusted to represent us and who and what we represent.

You may know (unless perhaps you were living under a rock) about the latest drama in Gamergate. If not:

Trying to take down Ralph Retort and the shitty article of Goose’s

And for more fun

Terribly exciting and altered chat logs of Ralph’s chat

Now for those of you who want me to give you a biased view for one “side” or another, NO. Goose’s writing was revolting and inexcuseable. Ralph made a terrible call in allowing it to be published and doubling down on freedom of speech was bad judgment. Now on the other side taking down his Adsense, his Youtube channel and so on? Pretty low. None of these acts were great and none of these things gives anyone the moral righteousness.

Now things have gone to Hell in a handbasket. Especially with release of altered chatlogs. As I mention in the article above IF you want to read them, take them with a grain of salt and read through them with the shameless glee of reading through someone’s diary or love letters or computer file or bank statements. Then laugh, cry, rage to your hearts content BUT then move on.

People are still holding onto shit. Shannon seems to be in the crosshairs now. Why not? Ralph is persona nongrata and she associates with him and so that makes her a terrible person. (And do not for a moment tell me about how she mocked or was horrible about suicide. Everyone has strong individual opinions about euthanasia, abortion and suicide. If you have been affected recently by any of these things, you are likely to react strongly. So….anyone asked Shannon what her experiences have been around this? No? Too invested in yourself and your feelings to ask? Did not care? Wanted to demonise her instead? Why not?)

One of Shannon’s most vocal critics was the aforementioned @cultofvivian

SO the whole bitter “We helped get you a stairlift so we own your values and opinions now, cripple” is not really here nor there. It is an argument. Hurt feelings no doubt on both sides.

BUT look here

Two accusations PUBLICLY on Twitter to Gamergate supporters on both and neither side of the conflict, making a claim that Shannon was crying and complaining that she did not get enough money after getting the $5000.

I remember that time well. Shannon was stoked and over-joyed. It was happier times and no one was miserable or angry.

But Shannon too strongly denies EITHER of these two separate claims.

They are big claims. They are not the general petty squabblings as you saw above them. They are big claims and strike me as two rather ugly lies.

 

So what? So, IF @cultofvivian is lying over small inconsequentials in Gamergate (and that WAS a Gamergate charity, supported by Gamergate supporters, to a Gamergate supporter) then how can we sincerely trust her with bigger issues? Or how much would be truthful? 95%? 50%? 5%?

Now when I did raise this, I had an orbiting beta called Forrest say this

Now, I am not offended by this. It does strike me as a bit disconcerting. Why? Look at what he leaped to as a default defence. I questioned @cultofvivian lying and in return, I “celebrate making fun of suicide victims”. My request to show any such example fell on deaf ears. The truth is I was mortified by Goose’s article and have NEVER defended that. I have never supported a defence of that. I liked Ash, I still do.

So why this default insult? The answer is simple and worrying.

“If you support X then you must believe Y”

“If I support holding @cultofvivian as accountable to lies she tells, I celebrate making fun of suicide victims”

“If I support Gamergate, I am a misogynist who wants all women out of gaming”

Why are we going down this road? Especially when it is abundantly clear I was NEVER about celebrating making fun of suicide victims?

 

We need to be able to address things a little more honestly and less Ideologically as the three statements above are. Be less emotional.

If Shannon did make the two claims that I accuse COV of lying about (AND I DO)I will apologise on Twitter and my blog and it will be unconditional.

If not and on the basis of moral standards

I would hope that she steps down and allows room for someone a little more honest. Maybe too for someone who sees more worth in our side and less in Gamerghazi. I want to have an honest Gamergate proponent going in to bat for us.

It could it was merely frayed temper or whatever but loose cannons is not what I want either. There is a time to shut your mouth as CoV knows

Oh and for those that say that others lie. And? Don’t have THEM represent you either. We want good, solid, smart, reliable and honest people to represent us. We ought not settle for second best.

 

 

These “very exciting” and infamous Ralph chat logs

So there are leaked logs in Gamergate and everyone is abuzz and losing their shit. Everyone has an opinion. To some it is a chance to sink the toe into Ralph – to settle some score, to some it is a chance to see who is associated or connected to him and hurt them, to others it is something is just good gossip, to others still it is a rallying point. I think most people see it as needless drama and hope it just resolves.

But everyone is talking about them so, Hell, why not?

Someone leaked private chat logs from a group of people including Ralph and from a chat site he set up, and released some of these the day after people from Gamergate chose to defend Sarah Nyberg and get Adsense taken down. 

There is a bit above which may ring a few alarm bells. If not I will explain.

Who: The type of person that would side with Sarah bloody Nyberg to take away Ralph’s livelihood. The type too who would see no problem in releasing privately discussed information.

When: The day after Ralph’s Adsense was taken down? (I think so maybe the day after). Convenient timing.

Okay so what about the records themselves? Were they real? Were they fabricated? Were they complete? Were they out of context? Were they damning?

What: You will no doubt have people enthusiastically tell you like the street gossip that “They are all real. They were verified as real by people that were there”. 

So there you go. They were verified as real by people in the group so THEREFORE they not fake and can be counted on. Right? Not really.

Unfortunately human nature is such that we want nice easy and simple. We want to join the dots and have everything black and white and handed to us neat and tidy, and unfortunately sometimes you just don’t get that.

Firstly, the two people who have said the logs were real. Who were they and what exactly did they say? The first was Guitar Anthony. Dan Mappplethorpe showed him an alleged chat snippet showing Guitar Anthony saying that he thought Dan was not to be trusted. (Words to that effect – but ask Dan, he will gladly present this himself) and Dan’s quoted response back was “It’s true isn’t it?”. So WHAT was true? The log was a true representation of the chat logs or that Dan was untrustworthy or something else? The second was Jennetic Anomaly saying that the chats looked right but the headers were not a part of the chat channel and the chat seems out of context.

So where the Hell does that leave us with “real”? There WAS a chat and the chats presented on initial inspection, by someone who was there, “seemed right”? Bit airy-fairy. Not a lot to hang one’s hat on:

That is like saying, “Is this definitely the man that robbed you?”

“Yeah, I guess so. The guy was about 6 foot average build, black haired and white. So sure, why not? Not like there is likely to be any other guys matching that description”

But let’s be charitable. IF we can presume they were leaked from a private chat log into the public and the log is not complete (more coming soon – why not all together?…I will get there) and verified – as it looks on initial inspection – like the real deal. Then what is that small detail about the headers? The headers were not part of the log.

Here is where, at best case, it gets a little murky and now into areas of grey rather than black and white, and at worse an absolute wash.

The Headers were added, for effect and for easier categorising. If we accept that they were added after the fact, then the LEAST we know is that the Chat logs WERE altered. If you look at the chat logs, you WILL know that they were not the real deal. So we know the chat logs WERE altered. The question is how much?

If you say that this was the ONLY alteration. Okay. Sure. How do you know? You trust the person releasing this is going to not alter the logs….except that they did. You trust them because they dislike Ralph, but doesn’t that raise an antenna at least a little? It is not some impartial third party that is simply releasing documents to a higher power because they are required to but rather someone seeking to do Ralph harm and therefore biased to doing Ralph as much harm as possible? Moreover, they are precisely the same type of people that would defend Sarah Nyberg and who would leak private discussion. You would trust that what they present you would not be tampered with (and especially after KNOWING that they already tampered with the chatlogs adding by headings to an unheaded chatlog.)

Jenn notes that they were taking things out of context and that is a problem. Real becomes a weaselly word. More of a based on real. If you look through the logs and see time and date you will notice that there are “bits missing”. Why? Could be because those bits would show a particular log in better light or provide context. We don’t know. What we do know is that the person leaking them promised more to come.

Now I don’t know at this point about you, but when I heard that, I automatically thought “Why later, why did they not release it all in one fell swoop?”. The answer to me, that popped straight into my head, is that they needed to “work on it”.

I want you to imagine you are at school (Yes, this is exceedingly hard for a middle-aged man like me but when I see crap like this in Gamergate my mind is somewhat cast back) . You come across a diary of someone you hate. You take it to your friends. You look through and KNOW that what you are reading is the real deal. Now lets pretend similar situation except that your friend brings it to you. It “seems” mostly right but some of the bits look slightly different and foreign to the diary. How much of the diary are you going top believe absolutely?

Whilst the chat log was altered and headers were doctored into it, THEY were transparently obvious. But even a technological retard like my good self could change the font and size of the text. Select the right one and the leaker can change the logs?

Question is Why? Because: changing context; Changing who said something; Cutting out waffle; putting a slightly different spin, is what makes a tighter and more interesting narrative, and may paint villains as more loathesome. If only they had not done so damn badly with the header in the first instance.

Does that mean any of the chat is genuine? I would say absolutely. What is not altered is real. Were all the people in the chat logs part of the group? Maybe. Did each thing said come from that person the log said or by someone else in there? Probably for the most part. Were any bits removed? Most certainly (As said it was not in its entirety according to leaker who would be releasing more) Was most of it intellectual conversation, strident operative planning against others or rambling shit talking? Rambling shit talking. Can it be trusted in to present it in context? No.

So what exactly would be the point in altering it further? As much as it pains me that I cannot think of a better way to show a different example

 

So that is the visual example of something REAL but in its entirety not “trustworthy” or to be taken seriously. We are talking in textual terms but the same applies. There is good reason to what to enhance something. Unlike the above where you can tell the things said out of context and the added bits, and with it being done as a mickey take, textually done with intent to enhance to positions, it may not be as easily recognised.

You and I do not know how much of the chat logs are real or altered/doctored/tampered with. We just know they have been at least a little. Take it with a grain of salt (not uncommon in these parts lately) and a healthy amount of skepticism.

Don’t read the logs? Why not? Go for your life. Enjoy with the same abandon as opening someone else’s mail or looking through their drawer, or medicine cabinet, computer files or reading through their diary. Trawl through to see any mention of your name. Then once that desire is sated, for fuck’s sake, put it behind you and concentrate on the remnants of Gamergate.

If this seems kind of pointless and petty and juvenile and not worth pursuing, believe me I am with you. Don’t give people shit about it, just let them get it out of their system. Let them feel their cathartic rage or moral indignation of “Well, I never” and exhaust their gossip. It will pass. At least people are engaged.

If we could harness that motivation that exists to hurt Ralph and anyone who is associated with him and channel that against Progressive media, we would move closer to the cohesive arse kicking watchdogs we want to be and less the squabbling clown show Gamergate has been lately. I reckon that would be unreal.

 

 

 

What to be proud of and what legacy not to leave

So 16 months later, I think a bit of taking stock, may be in order for #Gamergate.

Our opposition I express as: Bigger Anti-GG names, The wannabees, The Progressive Press, The institutional backers, and the hordes of ideological SJW followers.

Let’s look at the Bigger names.

Feminist Frequency

Jonathan McIntosh and Anita Sarkeesian have been the biggest success story after 16 months. (All teary stories of harassment and depression aside). They cleaned up in donations, conference circuits, trips to developers, trips to Google, talks at the UN.

That said…..JMac has constantly come across to pretty much everyone as a milksop and unabashed Marxist authoritarian. There is no pretense and his ideological lens is magnified to the point that he comes across as a radical nutjob on first impression to anyone

That leaves the “face” of Feminist Frequency, Anita. I have nothing against larger women. Nothing at all. But damn, it is an issue such rapid weight fluctuations. Its unhealthy. It is a bad mindset.

But then we are talking about the mindset of the brainwashed Feminist Progressive (or blatant ideological fraud if you are less charitable). Personally I think JMac is the bigger issue in Feminist Frequency. I think she is a fraud and con artist. I think she is using Fem Freq to further her notoriety. I think she is a very clever lady.

You may consider that she is stupid because she constantly gets video games wrong and makes errors en masse. Of course she does. She is not REALLY interested in games. She wanted an “in” and she got that. She has manipulated her way into the position she is now and making money hand over fist and will now use that to platform to being a cultural critic, rather than JUST a video game critic. THAT is smart.

That all said, some rather stupid comments  have damaged her a little. Her impact from a year ago is not “quite” what it was. JMac for all his ability to make her look great cannot do the same for himself and is dragging her down a little. The UN talk was a laughfest.

She has done well and we have not seen the last of her. She is rebranding and looking to redirect her efforts. I think the end game may well be in the political arena.

Zoe Quinn 

She has done well out of this ride. From ex-stripper/porno star (?) or was it nude model, I forget? To Hell Dump Something Awful Troll, to Twine Adventure Story sensation (Hahahahaha) to potential memoir-based Autobiographical Screenplay. Not only this but for the last 16 months she has been making a shitload on Patreon ($3000+/month) for doing NOTHING…..and no doubt appearance fees. She has also been hitting up Google and UN to sell her weird perspective.

What about her “homelessness”. She has 4 Wilmer Hale lawyers on her case against Eron. They charge individually up to $750/hour (you do the math). I think it is safe to say that Zoe is a liar.

Now here is where it all goes south a bit for her. The initial charges and gag order against Eron is in serious danger being slammed, to the point she tried to void the charge to save it getting adjudicated on. Her Patreon is falling March 2015 – less than a year ago  and Now

Furthermore her risk of liable for reasons that are blatantly obvious, are REALLY high in respect to both the memoirs and the potential movie.

BUT Zoe looks to me to be doing the smart move. After coming into an industry that she has no skills or talent for, she has won awards, “earned” heaps of cash and sold rights for a fictional novel and rights to a film and is looking to move on like she did when she poisoned other workspaces.

Randi Harper

Like an unflushable turd, Randi has managed to stink up the gaming space and by harassing everyone whilst somehow (words escape me) being oppressed or victimised or some other buzzword.

But she found it a lot tougher than Zoe or Anita or Jmac. Having a face like Spanky Ham and a body like Ummm…this guy? She did not have social capital with respect to appearance. Nor did she have personality or charisma. She also could never stray too far from harassing crap out of someone.

But she had the blockbot. It was something. How she could string this out over 16 months, was an indicator of how “good” she was at hustling. She is very, very good. Are you kidding me? $60 000/year+ For What? (But that is falling dramatically now – Dropping like a rock)
So what does she have now?

Nice Patreon income that will eventually dry up and a blockbot. What about her fall back? She has build her identity around a blockbot and her FreeBSD community connections. Recently she was in effect thrown out of the community, unceremoniously on her bulbous arse.

So her talking circuit will fall. Unlike Zoe she did not cover an end of days fallback position to cash out on and the community that she identified with threw her out. So mixed bag really

Brianna Wu

Hahaha. What a trainwreck. Lie after lie. Attention whoring after attention whoring. How Brianna has stayed relevant enough to warrant attention, is not a testament to her efforts (as it was with the other three) but rather the desperation of Anti-Gamergate to swallow lies and promote a transgender personality, no matter how poisonous their choice was. (Make no mistake Ashley Lynch would have been as poor a choice but Katherine Cross at least has “some” substance to her). But such is the Progressive mindset.

Brianna wants to be two things.

  1. A respected and successful Video Game Developer
  2. A Socio-political Feminist talking head

Maybe she realises now that she should have picked one. She has fucked up both. Now late releasing her failure of a game Rev 60 and a shrinking Patreon, she is in much worse a position than Randi.

Progressive Media

After shitting on their fanbase for so long, what they did NOT expect was for gamers to hit back. Gawker (who happily led the charge against #Gamergate) got a bit bloodied for the experience. It cost them millions.

Now with an imminent lawsuit in the wings against Hulkster and other smaller ones against smaller figures, they are in danger of falling completely. Lay offs HAVE happened and sites in the corporation have been closed down (Valleywag for example).

Will Hulkster fuck them up completely? I don’t think so but I really hope so.

But what about The Mary Sue and The Honey Badgers? That has potential too. Not bankruptcy or liquidation but at least being given a bloody nose for their dishonest ideological bullying.

How is Leigh “I am games journalism: Alexander doing lately? What about the once opinionated and slimy, Ben Kuchera?

We have not even discussed the effect of the ethical compromises having to be made by journalism sites in listing conflict of interest rather than risk trouble.

Big Institutional backers 

Here is the bad news. We have no hurt these guys AT ALL.

The SJWs did not spring from a vacuum. They were well entrenched in the community. IDGA backed a certain Indie developers and this clique was the ones that got/get Progressive Gaming Press’s ear, and awards and grants through the IGF and Indie Grant funding, make for a powerful SJW stronghold.

 

So in the wash how did we do?

They were already in their strongholds and they went out on the offensive and considering what we were up against with the initial shock and awe and the later siege and war of attrition, we did well.

We dug in, repelled the invaders again and again, then sent them back to their strongholds. We did not have the organisation, finances, structure or numbers to take them on in the strongholds at the home base, but we did not need to.

We got many more runs on the board than they did (as we see above).

 

However, NOW I see real issues. Not from without BUT from within. People like Devil’s Advocate (Twitter) and FSMhelpsusall (from KIA – same person, maybe?) are trying to have all of Ralph’s advertisers taken down. How? Well by defending things said against certain Anti-GG pedophiles/child rape fantasists. (No there really is not a position to argue this). So they are doing an “enemy of our enemy is a friend”.

Yes its hypocrisy 101. When Ralph was fighting against the people they were and in the way that they approved with and writing and accepting the right articles, it was all good BUT when he made a HUGELY bad call (as I believe he did in allowing the article to be posted when it was – Yes I agree it was repulsive and inappropriate and disrespectful) then suddenly the people THEY and HE were fighting against will be defended by THEM to get at him. Yes you were happy to fight against those people and condemn them until Ralph upset you and you would cite him attacking those people as a defense of those same people.

Its not just that, not nearly. We collectively rallied to strike out at big journalist corporations that chose to condemn gamers collectively and force a Progressive agenda into gaming. Big journalism sites that tried to censor us collectively. They used unethical practices to push their Progressive ideology and authoritarian practices in gaming spaces. We struck out at their advertisers.

Now people like the aforementioned Devil Advocate and FSMhelpsusall are doing exactly the same thing to Ralph and justifying it because “it is just the same”

Except….He isn’t “big journalist corporations”, “condemn(ing) gamers collectively”, “forc(ing) a Progressive agenda into gaming”, “Big journalism sites that tried to censor us collectively”, “use(ing)unethical practices to push their Progressive ideology”, “(using) authoritarian practices in gaming spaces”

SO basically asserting it is similar or the same is a lie and what it REALLY amounts to is more similar to THIS:

“Wild Goose wrote a repulsive article that should never have seen the light of day. Ralph made a very bad call. Whilst not agreeing or excusing the article, chose to print it, as he has done with friend and foe, on his site , and without censor. He doubled down and made this a freedom of speech issue. It was a bad call…………BUT that means he is morally terrible and because he is, he is a monster, and because he is a monster he is not subject to humanity, and nor is anyone who associates with him, including his girlfriend (because she should have had better taste than to date a monster). Because he is a monster, who cares how we treat him or those he cares for or those that care for him. Fuck it. Let’s use those same tactics against Ralph, that worked with Gawker $100 mill corporation vs a blogger that we had a different position than and whilst we are at it let’s defend one of the people we have been fighting against for 16 month…in fact let’s defend one of the most morally reprehensible of them. If it gets him to lose his livelihood, its so worth it. Gamergate is now: an Authoritarian movement which we do not allow personal liberties; we are not concerned with Anti-GG journalism sites but GG blogs; we are not considered with people pushing Authoritarian Progressive agendas on us, but rather we are anti-libertarian and free speech (If it is speech we find reprehensible); we are no longer fighting Anti-GG but using articles on them to strike at people within our movement; Our measure is now who offends us.”

Congrats. Next step is to adopt a blockbot and chum it up with Anti-GG and use new words in our vocabulary like “triggered”, “safe spaces and “goobergraper” (unironically)

 

Becoming the very thing we fought against for 16 months. Own it and take a bow.

*and to those  that are not dishonest nor stupid, do not back this idiocy. We achieved a lot and for good reason. It was NOT to turn into a caricature of what we were, nor simulacrum of what we fought*