All posts by Alexander Hinkley

Alex Hinkley holds a bachelors degree in Criminology. He is an Associate Producer on DreadOut and a Co-Producer on J.U.L.I.A. Enhanced Edition. He also founded his own indie gaming developer called Penguin Run Games that creates play-by-post online roleplaying games.

Interview with Writer of Dragon Ball Z: Light of Hope, Derek Padula

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The pilot episode of Robot Underdog’s new live action Dragon Ball Z web series Light of Hope was released on Tuesday. The episode has been a smash hit so far with most Dragon Ball Z fans having nothing but good things to say about it. At the time of this writing, the episode already has 1.8 million views and is climbing fast. I had a chance to sit down and talk with Derek Padula, the writer of Light of Hope, to talk about his work on the episode.

Haven’t seen it yet? You can watch the 13 minute episode on YouTube here:

Also a shameless plug before we jump into the interview, if you’re a DBZ fan and like online role-playing be sure to check out my online RPG: http://www.alexsdbzrpg.com. It’s been running since June 2000 and is currently the most active play-by-post RPG in the genre.

Alex: So how did you come to be the writer for Light of Hope?

Derek: I was approached by Robot Underdog in late 2013 because they wanted to create a live-action Dragon Ball Z series and weren’t happy with their current script. They found me online and felt I’d be a good match, since I’m the world’s only professional Dragon Ball scholar, at The Dao of Dragon Ball.

At first I wasn’t sure if I should do it, because Dragon Ball Z has never been done properly in live-action before, and it’s a difficult project to achieve. Most consider it impossible. But I thought, “What would Goku do?” The answer was that he’d see the challenge as an opportunity to improve himself. So I said yes.

I rewrote the script from scratch, and penned all three episodes in about a week. I had never written a screenplay before, but the idea’s appeared in my mind while I was meditating, in inspiration. I know these characters so well that it was easy to write natural scenarios, and I believe, fitting dialogue that rings true to who they are.

That makes it sound easy, but writing a Dragon Ball Z project is extremely difficult. It requires decades of fandom to truly understand these characters. You have to watch every single episode countless times, read all the manga, and study these characters until they feel real to you. Then, you have to somehow express that on a page, and show them in contrast to one another. That’s a challenge unto itself, but then to bring it to the screen with real people? That takes a lot of hard work, determination, and sacrifice. It’s why people say it can’t be done. But I feel like we did it, and the fans agree.

Alex: The pilot episode surpassed a million views on YouTube in just the first day alone. Were you expecting such a massive reception?

Derek: No, but I am glad to see that result. We missed our projected release date by a full day because of technical errors with the sound, so I wasn’t sure how that would affect the reception. But the fans have spoken, and they feel it’s worth sharing. I think the reason why is three-fold.

The first reason is because of the common conception that Dragon Ball Z just cannot be done properly with real people. This was established by Dragon Ball Evolution and the other fans who have attempted such a project, to different degrees of success. So we had to go above and beyond and really show that it is possible. This was achieved through the right balance of martial arts choreography, special effects, and costuming, along with a genuine and original story, instead of just doing a shot-for-shot recreation of a trailer. We had to walk the line between anime and reality, and I think we succeeded.

The second reason is that we stayed true to the source material. Dragon Ball Z fans across the world can see from our work that we’re also fans. The quality speaks for itself, so they want to share it.

The third reason is that it touches a part of their hearts, reminding them of their youth, and just why Dragon Ball Z is such a powerful force in their lives. Fans have said to me that Light of Hope moved them to tears. The high amount of views is nice, but I wrote this to touch people’s hearts and inspire them to tap into their potential. When I hear from fans that it made them cry tears of joy, it’s the greatest reward.

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Alex: What made you guys decide on doing The History of Trunks in live action as opposed to some other story arc?

Derek: The History of Trunks is the most realistic arc in the Dragon Ball Z story. There are no aliens, talking pigs, or magical dragons. It’s just three humans against two pseudo-humans. So even though it’s still extremely difficult to do well, it’s the most achievable.

The other factor is that it’s an emotional story, it’s self-contained, and it has a darker tone that appeals to a modern audience. So we felt this would be a good one to start with.

Alex: Fan reception thus far has been almost all positive. What were some of the challenges that you had to overcome to make live action DBZ work as compared to Dragon Ball: Evolution which pretty much everybody hated?

Derek: If the Hollywood executives had bothered to watch or read Dragon Ball, then they would’ve realized they were on the wrong track from the beginning with their adaptation. If you don’t stay true to the source material, you’re doomed. Did they not bother to ask themselves why Dragon Ball is so popular? It’s because of the writing of Akira Toriyama, the characters, the conflicts, the deeper message that’s inherent in the series. 20th Century Fox took everything that’s great about Dragon Ball and threw it in the trash.

In contrast, everyone at Robot Underdog, the actors, crew, and myself, have been devoted fans of the series since we were kids, so we stay true to the source material. True fans can see the details, from the color of the Androids’ eyes, the way Bulma foreshadows that she’s working on the time machine, how Gohan jokes about Trunks’ dad having pride, the mentor to disciple relationship, the Super Saiyan transformation, the list goes on. There are so many details to get right, and we tried the best we could with the budget and time that we had available. With more than $10,000, it could have been even better. So if your readers want to see an Episode 2, please donate to http://robotunderdog.com/donate

Alex: How is a fight scene created? The choreography and pacing of every shot really makes them stand out.

Derek: The fight choreography is done by a talented group of martial artists and stuntmen called Creative Action Development (http://www.academyofmovementarts.com), led by Tim Storms, in collaboration with Lohan Buson, founder of Z-Team films (http://www.zteamfilms.com/lohan.html). Here’s a couple behind the scenes videos that you can watch that go into the details: http://youtu.be/g_eqB9AtwyQ, and http://youtu.be/mN2_adoe2wU.

I write every aspect of the scenarios, the environments, and all of the dialogue, but for the intricacies of the fight, I leave it to the professionals. What I do is set up the key moments for them to follow. For example, such as when Gohan prepares to fire the kamehameha, and it gets negated, followed by his transformation. Then they fight for a while, and that’s all done by the other team members. This is followed by the fight between Trunks and 18, which I also set up, but they choreograph. Then the moment where Gohan head butts 17 in the face, shoots into the ground to create a dust cloud, saves Trunks’ life, and they fly away. I write that into the script, but they make it real.

So I set up the pivotal moments in the timeline, and then the professional’s add their awesomeness to it. At that point in the script I write, “Insert awesome fight scene.” And then they do!

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Alex: Aren’t you actually a martial artist in real life?

Derek: Yes, I trained in Shàolín gōngfu for several years, along with Tàijí-quán and sparring. Then I studied abroad in Beijing, China and trained with a Shàolín monk and Tàijí sword master. At the same time, in 2003, I started practicing Fǎlún Dàfǎ meditation. And that’s what led to a much better understanding of East Asian culture, because I had to actually put the principles into practice and become a better person.

The martial arts are not about fighting. They’re about improving your character. This aligns itself with the concepts in Dragon Ball, where the characters are always trying to reach the next level. So that’s when I started to see the parallels, and began writing my book series, The Dao of Dragon Ball (http://thedaoofdragonball.com).

The idea I want to express in Light of Hope is that they’re fighting for a reason. Gohan and Trunks would prefer not to fight at all. But it’s the only way they know how to keep everyone alive, and they’re fighting for a hope that maybe, if they work hard enough, they can change their future.

Alex: Where was the episode filmed?

Derek: In Los Angeles, in a mountain setting just outside of the city. There were also some scenes shot indoors, but we tried not to show the specific locations in order to maintain the believability of that world. So I don’t know where they are in real life.

That said, I can tell you that the Capsule Corporation headquarters is located on the same cliff face as Tony Starks’ mansion in the Iron Man films.

Alex: Who is your favorite DBZ character?

Derek: Goku. He inspires me to rise higher and to endure. He’s always focused on what is most important in life, takes the world lightly, and is pure-hearted. Great inborn quality, excellent enlightenment quality, and a heart of great forbearance. He’s an ideal to strive for.

Of course, his eating habits…

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Alex: Tell me a little bit about your books.

Derek: The Dao of Dragon Ball books reveal the true culture of Dragon Ball. They help you better understand your favorite series, and in turn, yourself. I use them as the vehicle to explain higher concepts, such as the energy that they fire out of their hands, the supernormal powers, reincarnation, multiple dimensions, and the East Asian answer to the meaning of life.

At the same time, the books also reveal the origin of the Dragon Ball series, giving you the first unofficial biography of Akira Toriyama that has ever been written. The books are filled with thousands of detailed facts that I’ve spent 12 years researching, compiling, and transmitting back to you in a way that’s easy to understand. I do this work upfront so that you can just sit back and enjoy your adventure with Goku.

If you think you know everything about Dragon Ball, then these books are for you. They’ll show you more about Dragon Ball, and yourself, than you ever thought was possible.

Alex: As a Dragon Ball scholar, why do you think Future Gohan wasn’t strong enough to defeat the androids? I mean the dude had been training/fighting for thirteen years!

Derek: There is no official answer, so it’s something a lot of fans wonder about.

I believe it has to do with his struggling to survive, rather than a quest for power. Trunks on the other hand, is the son of Vegeta, and believes that more power is the only solution. Gohan doesn’t have a master who pushes him harder, so he’s doing enough to make a difference in the world, while still growing in strength with each battle. But without a master or being forced to near-death situations, he can’t reach the next level.

A longer answer involves a lot of speculation about the effect Trunks has on the main timeline after he goes back in time to save Goku. This leads to a butterfly effect that causes the Androids in one timeline to be stronger than the other. It’s complicated and would require a long time to explain. There are a lot of DBZ forums that discuss it to death, back and forth.

So instead I’ll just say that the Androids in the future timeline are so strong that Gohan can’t catch up to them, even after all those years of fighting. When he’s a Super Saiyan he can go toe-to-toe with one of them at a time, but when they gang up, well… You’ll have to see what happens in Episode 2.

Why I Quit #GamerGate by Alexander Hinkley

Why Alex Hinkley Quit GamerGate on RealGamerNewz

I recently quit GamerGate because GamerGate has become everything it alleged to fight against. I was one of the pioneers of the movement. Hell, I had been fighting corruption within the video game industry for well over a year before the infamous “Zoe Post” that set this whole thing off was even an idea in Eron Gjoni’s head. I got fired from my four-year column at Examiner for actually reporting on the industry and not just playing ball (check out my appearance on the HipHopGamer Show talking about this).

After GamerGate began, I had a game review taken down from another site I contributed on after mass complaints from SJWs who were offended over a tweet I made where I called a friend of mine a bad name on Twitter WEEKS earlier. I also got permanently banned from Wikipedia, where I had been a respected editor since 2006, for merely mentioning Anita Sarkeesian’s work history with Bart Baggett on her talk page and asking if it should be included in her article (I even sourced her old archived website and his current website both saying this information – but you’ll hear more about that in TheSarkeesianEffect). My history of fighting corruption to my own peril speaks for itself.

Does anybody remember when it came out that TechRadar’s William O’Neill joked “Who here hasn’t slept with a PR person or game developer? #AMIRITE”? That’s the kind of stuff I wanted to get out of the gaming industry and I thought GamerGate did, too. I was wrong.

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So what happened that helped me recognize GamerGate for what it really was? Back in September of last year I applied to be a video game contributor on a fairly well known gaming website after one of their big name people left. I’m not even going to be bother naming the site here but I’m sure once the story is finished you’ll know exactly where I’m talking about anyway. After some emails back and forth with the Founder, he told me that they were not currently hiring but would add my name to a list of people to contact/consider once they were. Fine.

Then in January that site fired another of their major personalities. Surely with two people gone now they’d be looking for replacements right? I decided to once again take the initiative and follow up with another email seeing if they would be looking for a new video game contributor now. No, said the Founder (calling him that sounds really Deep Space Nine-esque), unfortunately they were downsizing rather than expanding and were not hiring any new writers. He assured me again that my name was on the list of people to consider if and when they made new hires. That sounded unfortunate but hey what are ya gonna do?

That’s when things went downhill. Less than a week after that, it was announced they had hired new video game contributor – a well known female GamerGate e-celeb. I found it strange that for months I had been told they weren’t hiring. Stranger still was that the new hire had absolutely no professional writing experience whatsoever. She is a former amateur alternative model. That is fine but how exactly would she be more qualified than someone with over six years experience in the industry, thousands of articles written, and tens of millions of views? It didn’t make sense to me why they would hire someone objectively less qualified than other candidates. Could it be because she was an attractive woman?

When I brought this up on Twitter, I expected GamerGate to be outraged. After all, GamerGate claimed to support a meritocracy when it comes to job positions. They claimed they would like hiring to be based on objective qualifications and not simply to hire someone because of their gender or their looks. SJWs (Social Justice Warriors) on the other hand want women to be hired simply because they’re women and we need more of them in the industry, actual qualifications of the applicants be damned. What happened next was shocking.

Many GamerGate supporters began spamming me the exact same tired old lines that SJWs have so often used. For example, they asked me why I hated women. They called me a misogynist. Some asked for proof of what I was saying and when it was given to them they pretended it hadn’t been. They simply blocked me instead.

Be Strong - End Gamer Gate - Be Yourself - You Are Free Now

A few others did see what I was saying and agreed. They were immediately spammed as well. One poor girl was dogpiled by GamerGate supporters calling her an “anti-GG cunt” for echoing my concerns about hiring a less qualified candidate. This girl had actually been a GamerGate supporter since the movement began. Guess this didn’t matter to them because it got so bad for her she contemplated deleting her Twitter altogether. She ultimately ended up just scrubbing it with a bot that deleted everything and went on as if the whole thing never happened.

The incident becomes stranger still when I talked to the newly hired person in private. She confirmed that she had been hired after I had initially emailed the site (she didn’t know when I applied but I asked her when she got hired and it was after my emails) so it’s not like I emailed them too late and they had already locked her up or something. That would have at least been a rational explanation. She did say they had been in “talks” for several months, though.

What makes this part interesting is that she actually “quit” GamerGate last month after some trolls doxxed her. She said she was quitting GamerGate and deleting Twitter forever in order to keep her family safe. Less than a month later, she was back, and her new job was announced.

I asked her, “You quit GG to lay low after you got doxxed. Doesn’t this put you back into the crosshairs?” A fair question, I thought. Her response: “There’s a difference between actively participating in a heated discussion and attempting to gain experience for a potential future career. Although I don’t see why any of this is of any concern to you.” (Editor’s Note: This post has been edited to reflect word for word reproduction of the conversation, originally this conversation was paraphrased. No other edits have been made)

Oh. So apparently the risk is acceptable because now it’s benefiting you? Should GamerGate really just be a stepping stone to further people’s careers? I thought it was about ethics in journalism.

None of this mattered to the vast majority of GamerGater supporters. They stood behind her anyway because “one of theirs” had “stormed the trenches.” They made every excuse under the sun as to why she “deserved” the position over me. They said she was some sort of dynamo writer that wrote really, really interesting things so she doesn’t need to have any experience. Or maybe my writing just sucked so that’s why she got chosen.

Never mind the fact that I had contributed several articles to The Ralph Retort that some of these very same GamerGate supporters now criticizing me loved and tweeted out links to at the time. Then they tried saying we didn’t even apply for the same type of job, that I supposedly wanted a full-time job. Never mind the fact that the very title of my email was “Video Game Contributor.” They asked for proof. I showed them. They pretended it was photoshopped and either blocked me or spammed me with “salty” memes. Apparently they couldn’t let evidence destroy the narrative.

Be Strong - End Gamer Gate - Be Yourself - You Are Free Now 2

This opened my eyes to what the movement had become. Perhaps GamerGate started out with good intentions of fighting corruption. It is absolutely true that many SJWs really aren’t good people and they really do want to achieve power and control through surreptitious means. This should not be allowed.

It’s a shame GamerGate has become just as dubious now. GamerGate is NOT misogynist so let’s get that out of the way right now. But GamerGate definitely no longer cares about ethics in journalism. GamerGate supporters now only seem to care either about 1) benefiting themselves or their friends or 2) simply hurting people they personally don’t like – namely SJWs.

Neither of those things have anything to do with ethics in journalism. Trying to take down SJWs for the sole reason that you don’t like their political opinions isn’t ethics in journalism. Not all SJWs act unethically after all.

GamerGate has the same messed up double standards its supporters accuse SJWs of having. When something unethical benefits GamerGate, they look the other way. How is that any different from SJWs looking the other way on their shady dealings?

Imagine if the person who had been hired instead of me were not a beloved former pro-GamerGate personality but instead a well known and despised SJW. I am confident that GamerGate would have been in an uproar about how this is a prime example of nepotism and gender-based hiring. The fact this didn’t happen because they liked the beneficiary proves GamerGate doesn’t actually want to fight those things.

There’s also something to be said about the fact that the whole time I was pro-GamerGate, I never got spammed with hate on Twitter. Yes I did have complaints emailed to sites I wrote for and got unfairly banned from Wikipedia for pointing out Anita Sarkeesian’s hypocrisy, but my Twitter didn’t get hundreds of insults and hateful messages from SJWs. Most of them have me blocked, actually. My notifications only started blowing up when I began to question that girl being hired over me and her cult-like followers took exception to it.

Gamer Gate Is Not A Hate Group - But It Is A Cult - Leave Now And Free Your Mind

Come to think of it, GamerGate is pretty cult-like. It meets at least ten of the points on the International Cultic Studies Association’s Cults 101 checklist (found here: http://www.csj.org/infoserv_cult101/checklis.htm).

For example, dissent is discouraged and although there is no one leader, people are zealously supportive of the e-celebs within it. Supporters feel there’s no life outside of the group. Just look at their Twitter feeds. Many GamerGate supporters have been obsessively tweeting about it 24/7 for MONTHS. GamerGate is also unhealthily preoccupied with bringing in new members. You always hear about how “we need to get the neutrals.” These are just a few points to highlight from the checklist that GamerGate fits exactly.

GamerGate has become an “us” versus “them” (which ironically is another point on the aforementioned checklist) battle to see who can grab the most power in gaming media. Sorry, but I won’t support that. Power grabs aren’t ethics in journalism. I am against corruption no matter who it benefits. Unfortunately, that means I can no longer support GamerGate.

It seems that GamerGate would now agree with Leigh Alexander’s ethics policy of “get money, fight bullshit, and make sure that those I love stand the longest. That’s it.”

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Related Reading:

– Jon Ireson (Editor-In-Chief at RealGamerNewz) Quits #GamerGate

– Nerdcore Artist Random AKA Mega Ran Releases #EndGamerGate World Premiere On RealGamerNewz

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week: Lunar

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The SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week this week is Lunar Suicide. Lunar has been a SuicideGirl since 2011 and loves dancing, gaming, and Harry Potter.  I sat down with her to talk about some her favorite games, being addicted to Elder Scrolls Online, and what she thought of the ending of Dexter.

What made you choose the name Lunar?

I’ve always been captivated by anything intergalactic and space themed. I wanted to be an astronaut when I grew up. The universe and space simultaneously excite and terrify me so Lunar was my first choice. I wanted to spell it the way it’s spelled in reference to the moon and not like the name.

How did you first become interested in being a SuicideGirl?

I met Tarion Suicide at Burlesque dancing and she suggested I try out. I did and got in, became a SuicideGirl, and gained a best friend. When I was a teenager I was attracted to anything out of the ordinary. I used to look at the beautiful and unusual SuicideGirls in awe and wish I could be them. Zui was the first SuicideGirl I ever laid eyes on. I just thought they were beyond me.

lunar1How did you get into playing video games?

My love affair with video games started with Roller Coaster Tycoon which progressed into The Sims. I could play until 4:00 a.m. I still enjoy it. Next came Final Fantasy, Diablo, and DotA and the rest is history. I had a boyfriend who was a heavy gamer and it was either join in or watch. I left him but my love for games never left me.

So what are some of your favorite games?

I really enjoyed StarCraft, Final Fantasy VIII, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and Spore. I also loved the simplicity of Age of Empires II – the third one lacked that appeal.

Playing anything currently?

I am totally obsessed with Elder Scrolls Online, I play as a High Elf Templar on the European Server @Lunar_snow.

Do you think if they remade Final Fantasy VII for new consoles that would be a good thing or do you think it might detract from the nostalgic spirit of the old game?

I think originals are always better with the iconic games.

MMOs tend to get pretty time consuming. How many hours would you say you’ve put on Elder Scrolls Online?

During the week I can’t play much because of work so probably about nine hours and on weekends more like ten hours. I have been playing since April so about 500 hours in total I think. Time well spent!

How does Elder Scrolls Online compare with other MMOs like World of Warcraft for example? What’s Elder Scrolls Online’s most appealing feature to you?

World of Warcraft is one of the original MMORPGs and it has been in the market almost ten years. In its time it was/is a great game and was a platform and standard for many of the newer MMOs of today. ESO is still in its infancy stage and it has the potential to become a really great MMO like WoW. The TESO graphics and game play feel more modern even though there are still many issues that need to be addressed.

The actual visuals in ESO are appealing to me as well. I love the characters and magic, the world is literally beautiful. You can stand on a hill alunar3nd look down at the view. Also the option to play PvP and PvE (questing) keeps the game interesting and fun.

If you could get ZeniMax Studios to change or add any one thing to Elder Scrolls Online what would it be?

I think they should make it a bit cheaper, you are buying the game and then the monthly subscription so it adds up to a lot of money after awhile. In-game I would try to make the combats more responsive and run a bit smoother.

Do guys ever give you a hard time when they find out you’re a gamer?

Not really. I don’t really flaunt that I’m a girl though other than wanting to dye my whole armour set pink. They seem pretty amped that I play.

What is the worst pickup line you’ve ever gotten?

“You are the prettiest girl I’ve seen this year.” Um… so last year there was someone better? That’s what every girl wants to hear, hahaha.

Has anybody ever told you that your eyes remind them of Kirsten Dunst? Maybe it’s just me but you remind me of a hotter Kirsten Dunst for some reason…

Ah thank you. No I’ve been told Reese Witherspoon and Katy Perry but never Kirsten. I like her.

So your profile says you are also a Dexter fan. What did you think of the ending to the show? (spoilers ahead!)

Totally weak. Dexter should have died or been exposed.

What are some of your other hobbies outside of gaming?

I am pretty active. I do pole dancing and I’ve just started cheerleading and tumbling. I also like to read when I find the time. I get really restless when I am not busy so I try and do as many activities as possible.

Where can fans find more of you?

On SuicideGirls: https://suicidegirls.com/girls/lunar/

Or

Instagram: @littlelunarsuicide

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Are Social Justice Warriors a Cult?

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I came across something interesting earlier today on the International Cultic Studies Association website. It was a checklist of behaviors that are typically associated with groups that are considered cults.  When comparing this checklist with behavior of anti-GamerGate Social Justice Warriors, I was startled to see they displayed at least 11 out of the 15 “symptoms.” This was being fairly conservative and only counting ones that I was 100% sure of from my own personal observations of SJWs in the media and on Twitter. The page does caution the list isn’t meant to be used as a diagnostic instrument, but one can’t help but notice the striking similarities between the behaviors listed and numerous behaviors of SJWs. In this article I will briefly go over the some of the behaviors Social Justice Warriors have displayed that match up with this list. The full checklist can be viewed here: http://www.icsahome.com/articles/characteristics

The group displays excessively zealous and unquestioning commitment to its leader and regards his belief system, ideology, and practices as the Truth, as law.

Check. In a recent livestream with KingofPol (which you can listen to here), Social Justice Warrior Geordie Tait made it clear that he thinks Anita Sarkeesian is right and nothing can ever change his mind about that. If anybody disagrees with her, he simply thinks that they are wrong (and maybe even evil) because she is a source of pure good. This view definitely fits the criteria and explains why so many people still support Anita despite being a proven liar.

Questioning, doubt, and dissent are discouraged or even punished.

Check. Women and other feminists who disagree with the aggressive principles of Social Justice are viewed as “traitors” and “fake feminists.” They are often insulted and ostracized. For example,  noted feminist and respected academic Christina Hoff Sommers is often smeared by Social Justice Warriors simply because she doesn’t agree with their outrageous methods. The opinions of the #NotYourShield hashtag participants are also routinely written off by SJWs as not really mattering.

The leadership dictates, sometimes in great detail, how members should think, act, and feel.

Check. Social Justice Warriors tell people what they should be offended by and what they should care about. For example, some women like being cat-called. They find it flattering. But Social Justice Warriors “correct” them saying they should feel threatened by this behavior. Social Justice Warriors also want to dictate how to raise your children (not letting your boys play with Barbies is wrong), what books people should be allowed to read (they held a f*cking book burning of Christina Hoff Sommers’ book ‘The War Against Boys’), and even what you should be allowed to think (one of the GameJournoPros list members suggested that other journalists shouldn’t be allowing readers to even think about the situation with Zoe Quinn).

The group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader(s) and members.

Check. Social Justice Warriors often look down upon others as inferior. SJWs have a long list of demeaning insults used to describe GamerGaters such as man babies, neckbeards, piss babies, shit lords, etc. In fact, “gamer” itself is often used as a derogatory term. Some SJWs have even called people in GamerGate “sub-humans.”

The group has a polarized us-versus-them mentality, which may cause conflict with the wider society.

Big check here. The best example is a recent blog post by Zoe Quinn (which I will not link here to give it publicity) where she condemns people who are neutral about GamerGate and just trying to find common ground. She says being neutral is actually being worse than being pro-GamerGate. Thus either you’re with the SJWs, or you’re their enemy. Reminds me of George Bush

The group teaches or implies that its supposedly exalted ends justify whatever means it deems necessary. This may result in members’ participating in behaviors or activities they would have considered reprehensible or unethical before joining the group.

Check. Many SJWs have literally said the ends justify the means word for word. On the David Pakman Show, Arthur Chu said, “I don’t care if people in #NotYourShield are hurt…” Doesn’t care if he hurts people? Not only does this definitely fits the criteria quoted above but it is also incredibly hypocritical because not offending people is supposed to be precisely what Social Justice is all about. Another good example is an article written by Jessica Valenti where she advocates a “radical solution” to the wage gap is to just discriminate against men by paying men less for the sole reason they are men even despite the fact they are working more hours. Bringing down men doesn’t actually help women, now does it? This type of “ends justify the means” mentality would explain why it is suspected some SJWs have even stooped so low as to send themselves death threats. They would see this behavior as perfectly acceptable because the ends justify the means after all.

The leadership induces feelings of shame and/or guilt in order to influence and/or control members. Often, this is done through peer pressure and subtle forms of persuasion.

Another big check. If you disagree with Social Justice you are shamed by being labeled a woman hater or a rape apologist. This aims to guilt well-meaning people into joining their “cause” because nobody wants to be called a raging misogynist. For example, when Intel pulled their ads from Gamasutra, Gawker called them craven idiots and pusillanimous morons who lack integrity and caved in to a group of misogynist bigots in an obvious attempt to guilt them for this decision. Intel then may or may not have started running ads on Gamasutra again.

The group is preoccupied with bringing in new members.

Check. Anita Sarkeesian bragged about how she “converted” Stephen Colbert into a feminist.

The group is preoccupied with making money.

Check. It seems like every Social Justice Warrior has a Patreon account that you can donate to and support their “work.” Anita Sarkeesian raised $158,000 on Kickstarter for basically nothing. Brianna Wu allegedly wanted to crowdfund a flight to meet Milo Yiannopoulos from Breitbart. Crowdfund a flight?! C’mon…

Members are encouraged or required to live and/or socialize only with other group members.

Check. Social Justice Warriors created a “GamerGate blocklist” on Twitter that had over 15,000 names last I checked. This script autoblocks anybody with an opinion you might disagree with, effectively creating an echo chamber and limiting your interactions strictly to other SJWs like you.

The most loyal members feel there can be no life outside the context of the group. They believe there is no other way to be, and often fear reprisals to themselves or others if they leave (or even consider leaving) the group.

Check. Social Justice Warriors think that if you don’t believe in Social Justice, you should be killed. Geordie Tait said this quite vividly in a post on Facebook where he literally wrote, “I hope everyone posting in #GamerGate gets gassed, incinerated, and their tooth fillings melted into a silver/gold WiiMotes for Kim Jong-un and his extended family.”

So there you have it. Social Justice Warriors meet 11 out of the 15 criteria of behaviors often associated with a cult. Each of these criterion could have been fortified with dozens of other examples but I simply used the most readily apparent instances off the top of my head. You can view these behaviors from SJWs every single day, though. They are definitely not limited to these examples or the people mentioned in them.

Based on this list you would most definitely have to conclude that Social Justice Warriors are a cult.

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

Does the Independent Games Festival Support Sexism?

Destroy All Men Xbox 360 Mattie Brice GamerGate

Today was a big day for #gamergate news. A judge for the upcoming Independent Games Festival (IGF) was found to be making some very sexist statements on Twitter. The judge in question, Mattie Brice, made the following tweet earlier this week:

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This caused an uproar as GamerGaters were justifiably disturbed by this statement and began sending complaints to the IGF. Seeing GamerGaters were upset, Mattie then went on to mock and troll them in other tweets. For example:

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GamerGate supporters then started mass emailing all of the developers who submitted a game to the IGF.  After several hours of growing pressure, the IGF was forced to take some kind of action. They tweeted on their official account, @igfnews, that Mattie had stepped down as a judge. Mattie then began making some angry tweets of her own about threatening to permanently quit Twitter and sarcastically “thanking” the IGF for “throwing her under the bus” with their tweet that she stepped down.

This looked like a victory for GamerGate and game ethics. A judge who was publicly saying she was going to be biased against a certain group of people in her voting, even if said jokingly, should not be allowed to judge games.

The Social Justice Warriors were outraged at this win for ethical and professional conduct (which really makes you have to wonder if they think that unbiased voting for awards is a bad thing – what exactly are their morals based on?) They started spamming their own complaints at IGF on Twitter. You can probably already guess the content of some of the things they said. Some called the IGF misogynists. Others said they were disappointed the IGF would acquiesce to the demands of a misogynist movement allegedly based on harassment like GamerGate. They told the IGF in no uncertain terms that changing their policies because of a highly vocal group of complainers was everything wrong with the industry and kept saying over and over how disappointed and disgusted they were. What is ironic is they apparently failed to grasp that if the IGF listened to them and reversed their position based on complaints from SJWs, they’d be doing that exact thing anyway.

Unfortunately, the IGF did eventually capitulate to the Social Justice Warriors and issued an official apology to Mattie. The apology said they would welcome her back as a judge any time. They justified her tweets by claiming she was just making a joke and trolling people. The IGF said there’s not even a “down vote” option in the voting process so she must have been trolling (apparently failing to realize that she could effectively down vote games with male characters by simply voting strictly for games with all female characters). You can read the full text of their apology to her here: http://igf.com/2014/11/a_statement_on_igf_inclusivity.html

But digging a little further into Mattie’s history, it starts to look like she may not have been joking after all. Take a look at these tweets from back in September for example:

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According to her website, mattiebrice.com, Mattie also created a card/board game titled “DESTROY ALL MEN.” Here is the description for the game as stated on her website:

The cyborg feminist collective have decided it was time to take over the world, and finally get rid of the male scum that crawled on it. DESTROY ALL MEN enlists players to help their cause by dating unsuspecting men and crushing their hearts and souls when they are at their most vulnerable. Feminists have to be careful though, because it is common knowledge that men are trying to force women to submit to the patriarchy and leave them in the dust when they are tired of them.

Clearly this woman holds some misandrist (man-hating) views.

So why did the Independent Games Festival apologize to her? Does this mean they support misandry and sexism against men? At the very least it would mean they support joking about it and then trolling people on Twitter who get upset over this issue.

Even if she was joking, which seems like a stretch based on her past statements, jokes about committing wrongdoing in a professional setting should not be tolerated anyway. Remember back in March when a homeless man named James Boyd was shot and killed by police in Albuquerque, New Mexico? Well it turns out that the officer who shot him “joked” about shooting him in the penis hours before the incident (source). Is this an okay “joke” for a police officer to be making? Clearly not. Neither is it okay for a judge of a serious gaming award festival to be joking about being unfair to certain games or groups of people. Imagine if a court judge “joked” with friends about only convicting a certain group of people. If that behavior was found out, the judge would be thrown off the bench. So why should it  be accepted in this venue?

The Independent Games Festival is pretty serious business. According to their website, igf.com, the winning game will be awarded $30,000. In addition to that $30,000 Seumas McNally Grand Prize, there is another $30k in various other awards being given away such as three grand for excellence in audio, three grand for excellence in design and so on. That’s a ton of money!

One has to wonder then why it’s deemed okay by people who supposedly want “social justice” to discriminate against or even joke about discriminating against men. If everybody should be treated equally, which they should, then you can effectively replace any one group with another group to determine whether or not a certain statement is discriminatory or bigoted. So let’s replace “men” with “black people” in Mattie’s statements as a sort of litmus test. If she made statements such as “kill all black people” or “I will automatically rate low all games with black people in them” would these statements be okay? No. They would be racist and anybody would be pretty hard-pressed to defend such outlandish remarks. So her statements about men are not okay, either. Those are sexist. Why defend sexism?

So, essentially if we can agree that her statements are sexist, then the IGF supporting and even apologizing to her, means that IGF must therefore support sexism. Shame on them.

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

Blizzard CEO Denounces Harassment, Seems to Support GamerGate

Mike Morhaime

President and CEO of Blizzard Mike Morhaime made comments supporting #gamergate in his keynote speech at Blizzcon 2014 earlier today.

“I’d like to take a moment to talk about something serious,” he said. “Over the past couple months, there’s been a small group of people who have been doing really awful things. They have been making some people’s lives miserable and they have been tarnishing our reputation as gamers. It’s not right.”

Some anti-gamergaters have tried to spin this story as if he was speaking out AGAINST #gamergate, but this is clearly untrue. He never actually mentions GamerGate by name so let’s look at exactly what he said to determine why his comments support the consumer movement rather than condemn it.

First of all, he referred to a “small group of people.” GamerGate is obviously not a small group of people. There have been over three million tweets since the movement began. When you compare the total number of tweets between the rival hashtags of #gamergate and #stopgamergate2014 over the last month, it is quite obvious which is the small group.

One Social Justice Warrior recently created a GamerGate blocklist which includes upwards of 15,000 usernames on it. 15,000 people isn’t a small group. Therefore you can reasonably conclude Morhaime is NOT talking about GamerGate. It is much more likely he was referring the small cabal of corrupt game journalists and Social Justice Warriors who have infiltrated the gaming industry and media that GamerGate has been fighting against.

This is further evidenced by Morhaime’s next statement where he says, “…they have been tarnishing our reputation as gamers.” Here he is likely referring to the dozens of “gamers are dead” articles which paint gamers as basement dwelling, social degenerate losers that are racist, misogynist, and unable to adapt to the norms of society. Social Justice Warriors have made their opinion on gamers to be very clear often referring to them as overly entitled immature “pissbabies” that need to get a life and move out of mommy’s basement.

“There is another person on the other end of the chat screen,” Morhaime said, “they’re our friends, our brothers and sisters, our sons and daughters. Let’s take a stand to reject hate and harassment.”

You have probably heard in the mass media that GamerGate is “steeped in harassment” so who is Morhaime actually talking about here? A 17 day ongoing statistical analysis of tweets involving GamerGate being conducted by a Twitter user named @The_Nimbus_ has shown that thus far GamerGaters have made 32 harassing tweets while Anti-GamerGaters have made 122. The study looks at a random sample of 100 tweets per day (so 1,700 random tweets total in 17 days as of this writing) and includes a pastebin file listing every single tweet included so you can look them up and verify the data for yourself if you so wish. This means that anti-gamergaters harass people on Twitter at a rate of 3.8 times that of which GamerGate harasses others.  Therefore, Morhaime denouncing online harassment must be aimed at the group doing the most harassing: anti-gamergaters.

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week: Cigno

Cigno

This week’s SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week is the absolutely gorgeous SG Hopeful Cigno. Cigno started playing video games when she was little but then lost interest in them. That is, until she met her now-fiancé who got her back into gaming now more than ever. So there you go guys, it is possible to get your girlfriend into gaming as much as you! I sat down with Cigno to talk about her favorite games, her tattoos, and what the best show on Cartoon Network is.

How did you become interested in the SuicideGirls?

I was always the one that was different and didn’t really fit in. I’ve always had my own way of thinking and expressing myself which always made me the outsider and the nerd who got good grades. I always felt that the SuicideGirls community is a place where you can just be yourself. I started following SuicideGirls even more when I got into tattoos and piercings which was around five years ago. I see my body as a canvas with a lot of space for art such as body modifications and tattoos. I also like to express my personality through my own style. I love everything that is colorful and different.

I tCignohink this quote of SG summarizes it well, “What people think makes us strange or weird or f@#ked up we think makes us beautiful.” When I was younger I was very insecure about myself and SG definitely helped me to accept and embrace myself for who I am.

After following SG for a couple of years, I took part in a selfie contest on Facebook and didn’t get picked but some weeks later the SG girl and model coordinator Rambo got back to me via email asking me to apply with a Hopeful Set. She hooked me up with Waikiki, the Staff Photographer, and I flew all the way to the Netherlands to shoot with her. Now that I’m in the US, the country where SG was founded, I identify even more with the community and there is much more going on for Hopefuls and SuicideGirls. I shot two new Sets for SG here in the US which will go up in five months.

When did you first start playing games and what are some of your favorites?

I grew up in an environment where it was said that new media, TV, video games, and so on were bad for the development of the child so I spent most of my childhood outside which is not a bad thing. We got our first TV when I was about eight years old and then one day I got a SEGA Mega Drive from the thrift store with a couple of games. My favorite game back then was Sonic the Hedgehog which came out 1991 where I had to defeat the evil scientist Dr. Robotnik. My favorite character was actually his best friend Tails who is able to use his two tails to propel himself into the air like a helicopter. I also liked to play The Lost Vikings and World of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck where Mickey and Donald must work together in order to find a way back home from a magical world a evil magician sent them.

I lost interest in video games when I grew older but recently found my way back into gaming through my American fiancé who is a total geek. I love how video games make you dive into a fictive magical world – where you can forget about time and space. We spend nights playing our Xbox 360 taking turns and drinking a couple good beers. At the moment we’re playing Bungie’s new game Destiny. I just hit level 27 yesterday. I am a female Warlock and Voidwalker and my super ability is the Nova Bomb. I love playing the Vanguard and love to kill with my melee attack – it makes me feel like I really punch them in the face. The game I got hooked on first when I started playing again was Borderlands 2, where you are one of four Vault Hunters on the planet Pandora. I love the Hyperion CL4P-TP or better known as Claptrap and his funny way. After that I played BioShock Infinite. I was more focused on the story where Booker DeWitt has to rescue Elizabeth, imprisoned in the flying city of Columbia, for a clean slate.

I noticed you described your fiancé as American. Where are you originally from? cigno3

I am German but haven’t lived in Germany since 2010. I moved to London first and then to Sweden where I was able to study a couple semesters at the partner university of my German one. Then I graduated in Educational Science and Psychology and decided to stay longer in Sweden where I met my American fiancé who was working there for an American company. Sweden was a nice experience but also very cold and dark during the winter, short summers but wonderful landscapes, lakes and endless forest. Sweden has a very low population and is very rural so it is a paradise for outdoorsy people. The language was very hard to learn but I managed after two years. Pennsylvania is a good contrast to my life before and you get both the big city life and nature.

Are you going to get the new Borderlands game that was released earlier this month?

I think so. I like the fun factor of the Borderlands games. The pre-sequel will include four new playable characters, a bunch of new weapons and my favorite character Claptrap.

There was a recent controversy about Destiny when someone found downloadable content already existed on the disc but was hidden and locked implying Bungie already finished the content when the game shipped but is simply going to charge gamers extra anyway. What are your thoughts about downloadable content for games?

I think it is ridiculous to ship a finished game and then charge people extra for stuff already on the disc. Not to mention that the content of the game is already very limited. I like to play the Vanguard for example but there are only four different strikes to play and sometimes you get put in the same one multiple times in a row. It sadly gets a little bit boring sometimes. But I still like the game a lot, though!

Have guys ever given you a hard time for being a gamer?

I met guys who believe they are the better gamers just because “playing video games is something for boys.” When I was a teenager it was really more a boy thing to play video games which were mostly focused on action and shooting – society and stereotypes I mean how we are brought up and what we are supposed to do/like according to our gender.  Well I love action and I love fighting people in video games and have many hobbies where guys give me a hard time sometimes. I’ve heard more than once stuff like “are you having fun running in circles shooting the sky?” or guys making fun that my armor is purple and pink. I am also a rock climber which is dominated by guys and there is a lot of competition going on. They call me “she hulk” at the gym. Guess it’s hard for guys to deal with a strong girl!

What’s the tallest thing you’ve ever climbed?

I used to do a lot of sports climbing with a rope and me and my friends went from Germany to Italy every spring for rock climbing. My tallest climb was a route in Italy probably about 1,500 feet tall. I’ve gotten more and more into climbing without rope, though. It is called Bouldering and means that you climb short but more technical routes and fall or jump on a big pad when you want to come down. If I don’t climb, I actually love riding my new long board or drink coffee.

Tell mcignoe a little bit about your tattoos

I have the dandelion tattooed twice at different times. This flower symbolizes my restless nature and my urge to always move on to broaden my horizon. I drift away like one of those little parachutes/seeds in the wind. By now I’ve lived in four different countries and love discovering cultures and studying their language. My most recent tattoo is Princess Lumpy Space from Adventure Time saying in a banner “Love your Lumps” which stands for love yourself for who you are. I got this one after I became a Hopeful on SuicideGirls. I also love Cartoon Network and all their shows.

I’ve debated a friend on which is better, Regular Show or Adventure Time. What are your thoughts?

What I love about Regular Show is that it takes you back to the 80‘s, the fashion, the rock stars, the music and also all the old school video games Mordecai and Rigby are playing.

Adventure Time is still my first pick, though. I am just very much in love with the characters. BMO for instance, the little Game Boy that strives to “BeMore” or the brotherhood between Finn and Jake. Aside from all of the very different characters, this show also really makes you think and has a lot of inspiring and motivational wisdom about life in it such as, “Sucking at something is the first step to being sorta good at something” –Jake the Dog.

Sometimes Adventure Time is just bananas, especially the episodes about Lemongrab or Lemonhope. I also like the “science” in it and Princess Bubblegum’s laboratory. Well that show is, as Finn and Jake put it, just MATHEMATICAL!

Where can fans see more of you?

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007303752541

SuicideGirls: https://suicidegirls.com/members/cigno/

Instagram: http://instagram.com/cignohopeful

Model Mayhem: http://www.modelmayhem.com/3534379

 

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Anita Sarkeesian gets exposed as a fraud by Stephen Colbert

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Anita Sarkeesian went on The Colbert Report on Wednesday to talk about GamerGate, her perceived sexism in the video game industry, and the allegedly nonstop misogynistic harassment she’s received from gamers. She ended up getting a little more than she bargained for, however, and her appearance on the show made her look extremely bad (you can see her interview in this clip on the Comedy Central YouTube channel).

Many third wave feminists, Social Justice Warriors, and even other news outlets rejoiced after her appearance saying she “hit it out of the park” and (for the second or perhaps third time now) declared GamerGate was dead. This analysis shows that they are ignorant of what The Colbert Report is and does. The very fact other media was “signal boosting” anything on Colbert to begin with should have been a red flag. Normally Colbert and the media are not the best of friends.

The Colbert Report is satirical humor which frequently mocks the mainstream media for doing lazy and usually inaccurate reporting. When Colbert showed clips and headlines from mass media outlets categorizing GamerGate as a hate group harassing women, this wasn’t to inform his audience of the facts. It was to show how one-sided and absurd these news stories are. This is what The Colbert Report has been doing in the entire nine years of its existence. The show didn’t suddenly fall out of form for this one story in which it reversed positions and sided with the mass media. So viewers of the interview need to first understand that going into this coverage, the Report was already implying it legitimately was  pro-gamergate and the true object of ridicule here are the SJWs.

Then Colbert got to the interview with Anita herself. True to form he did crack several jokes using gamers and GamerGate as the punchline. Namely saying gamers were probably shocked women were talking to them at all and then his “separate but equal games” line. Both were good zingers which I will admit I laughed at. Feminists and SJWs mistakenly and quite ignorantly thought this meant Stephen must actually be anti-gamergate. He’s mocking gamers so he must be anti-GG right? Not so fast. Recall that Colbert is satire. In every episode he uses things that deep down he supports as punchlines for jokes. Colbert has mocked Dungeons & Dragons and the nerds who play it many times but Stephen is (or at least was) an avid D&D player in real life.

In his interviews over the years, you can usually see through the facade and determine Stephen’s true stance by judging the questions he is asking and what kind of information he beckons out of his guest. This is what you must analyze to see if Colbert is truly pro or anti gamergate.

And what you find is that he pretty much grilled her with questions that make her position look incredibly weak. Because he invited Anita on the show, he did catch himself a few times and relent, perhaps thinking he was being too harsh. For example, when Anita was talking about the damsel in distress trope and stated that damsels should be able to save themselves, Colbert started to mention we already have games like that (seen at 1:30 in the clip linked above). He stopped himself, shrugged, and simply quipped “I didn’t know you brought a posse,” remarking at the crowd’s highly unusual applause. This looked like a momentary slip from character where he was about to argue against his guest based on his actual thoughts but caught himself and stopped.

Immediately after that he brought up the Utah State University threat which caused her to cancel her talk there. He asked her about it, she said it happened, and then the interview clearly cuts to a different segment of the interview of him asking about something else. The USU threat is simply glossed over with nothing more than a passing mention. Is this an indication the editing team (and thus by extension the show itself) found this wasn’t actually pertinent information or that her explanation wasn’t credible (just like law enforcement officials said the threats posed absolutely no risk to students, staff, or her in a statement the day before her scheduled talk). This apparently wasn’t the only cut in the interview. An unverified comment on the KotakuInAction subreddit from someone who alleges he was at the taping of the show says that a lot of the truly hard questions were cut from the final airing and that Anita did not look at all happy with how things went. Again, this is unverified but judging by how any in-depth discussion about the USU incident was obviously cut, it does lend credence to the idea a lot of other stuff was as well.

Colbert then asked her to specifically name games she thought were sexist. She wouldn’t. He challenged her to name three games. This should be no problem considering all the games she talked about in her YouTube series videos. And yet she STILL refused to name any sexist games. This was puzzling. Perhaps she couldn’t remember the names of offending games that Jonathan McIntosh wrote in her Tropes vs. Women script (fun fact: McIntosh is the producer and writer of that series so things Anita is saying on video were actually written by him and aren’t necessarily her thoughts or research).  This seems pretty unlikely considering all the talks she’s given but why else wouldn’t she name any? Perhaps she thought that if she publicly called out blockbuster game franchises on national television as sexist, too many people in the “real world” would see she has no idea what she’s talking about because anybody who has played these games know the clips are cherry-picked. She begrudgingly did name one, Grand Theft Auto, the safest possible game to name since it is often scrutinized for its violence and adult themes.

So basically Anita didn’t say anything of any substance on the show.

A second reason her appearance on The Colbert Report reveals her as a fraud is the very fact she appeared in the first place. Anita supported the #cancelcolbert hashtag back in April. For those unfamiliar with it, it was a hashtag created by a Social Justice Warrior named Suey Park who accused The Colbert Report of being racist for a stereotypical Asian character he used in a few episodes. Park obviously got a ton of hate from Colbert fans who had the audacity to call her overly sensitive ideas “stupid.” Sarkeesian added her voice to the movement by tweeting out an article written by Katherine Cross which heavily supported Suey Park. Not only that, Anita highlighted excerpts from the article on her Feminist Frequency website which literally called Colbert fans the “virtual embodiment of the patriarchy’s crowdsourced police…”

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Then on another Feminist Frequency blog post highlighting yet another apparently important excerpt from Katherine Cross’s “must read” article on the subject, she literally uses the #CancelColbert hashtag!

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So it is clear that Anita supported Suey Park and the #cancelcolbert movement and that she agrees Colbert viewers are the embodiment of the patriarchy. Why then would she want to go on his show? Not only go on it but seemingly be star struck when she gets there! She took pictures behind Colbert’s desk, standing side by side with Stephen, and was noticeably giddy during her interview with him. It was as if she had a crush on the man. But just six months ago she wanted him canceled!

It seems that Anita is not truly fighting for ideals she strongly believes in that will better society but is actually in it for the publicity and simply to further her career as a professional speaker. There is quite a bit of other evidence for this. For example, check out this video where a young Anita gives a video testimonial about a teleseminar conference she attended or this video with juxtaposed clips of her saying she is a gamer then saying she is not a gamer. Based on the fact she recently wrote the statement “Even though I was playing lots of games, I still didn’t call myself a ‘gamer'” in her article on the New York Times just a few days ago we’d have to conclude the latter is true and that she doesn’t consider herself a gamer.

But back to the point at hand. Anita was clearly willing to stuff all of her principles about wanting the show canceled in the trash and go on anyway because it was national television. This is the big time! She’s made it! But you have to wonder, if she didn’t really care about #cancelcolbert and yet she was supporting it, what other ideas is she falsely supporting in order to further her career and gain supporters under the guise of social justice?

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week: Sairyn Suicide

sairyn

The SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week this week is Sairyn Suicide. Sairyn has been playing video games forever and loves them so much she’s even applied to work at a video game store. I sat down with the beautiful Sairyn recently to talk about some of her favorite games, tattoos, and whether or not Hello Kitty is a girl or a cat. She also shared some pretty good gaming pickup lines that may have a chance of actually working on the right girl gamer.

What made you choose the name Sairyn?

I chose the name Sairyn because I love mythological creatures. The siren has always been one of my favorites along with mermaids. A seemingly beautiful woman, reeling in her prey for the kill. I’d like to think I’m alluring, but also semi-dangerous, or at least can take care of myself! The original spelling “Siren” was taken on the SuicideGirls site, so I decided to make it my own by spelling it different. I broke the word down to “si” and “ren”, decided to spell it “sai” (as in the Japanese dagger weapon) and change the ending to “ryn.” Sairyn!

When did you first start playing video games?

I’ve been playing video games since I can remember. I was always watching someone play something; Mario, Zelda, Ecco, Tetris, or Qbert. When I was around six or even years old my mother started working at a movie rental store. I would come with her to work when I didn’t have school and I would get to hook up the PlayStation, Sega, or whatever to check to make sure games worked before and after rental. One of my fondest memories is my mother forcing me to play Mario Party for so many turns and it being like 5:00 am. I was falling asleep and then definitely didn’t wake up for school. She let me skip school because we were up so late playing Mario Party. She rules!

What are some ofsairyn4 your all-time favorite games?

My favorite games would definitely have to be Tomb Raider, Katamari, and then Pokemon for Game Boy! Oh and Ecco the Dolphin and Donkey Kong!

What game did you play most recently?

Honestly I play Tomb Raider once a week. I just love the puzzles, mazes, artifacts, everything. But recently my boyfriend and I have been playing this weird arcade-like game Super Meat Boy? I’m also always playing a stupid farming game on my phone like Tiny Village or Tiny Zoo.

I noticed your Hello Kitty tattoo. What are your thoughts on the debate between whether she is a cat or a person?

I haven’t really read up on it, just heard things. I mean yeah it’s a girl character, but she’s definitely a kitty. Her whole family are kitties! Her sister Mimi, her parents, and boyfriend Dear Daniel! Their defense was she has a pet kitty. I just don’t think a lot of people understand Japanese culture sometimes. There are so many silly cartoons with personification of animals. It’s just cute. Mickey has a pet dog, Pluto, for space sakes!

Tell me a little bit about some of your other tattoos.

Most of my tattoos are traditional style and bright. I’m pretty pale. I have a few “nerdy” tattoos. A heart with a bust of Cynthia, Angelica’s doll from Rugrats. I have a small Pokeball filler on my calf. I also have a few Native American inspired tattoos; an Indian lady head, a feathered arrowhead, and my deceased chihuahua, Topange Jane, as an Indian with a headdress and everything. She’s beautiful! I would really love to get a Lara inspired pin up!

Which version of Lara Croft do you like more, the old-style original version or the younger Lara Croft from the new remake?

I will always have a love for the original triangle-boobed, blocky Lara. But as a huge fan I’d have to say the new Tomb Raider was so bomb. Even the anniversary game that they remade of the original first one. After you beat it you could turn on commentary to hear the original developers talk about each level like what they were trying to do in the first one and how they were able to do it in the remake. I think they’ve always done a great job in reinventing Lara for each games needs.

You’ve mentioned Pokemon a few times now. Do you have a favorite pokemon and which game is your favorite?

Haha, for some reason I’ve always loved Psyduck and he sucks! But probably Mew! My favorite game would have to be Pokemon Blue. I still have my original Blue and Yellow games. There are so many games and new pokemon now! I could probably ramble off quite a few names from the original 151. I still have all my cards, and the trading card game for Game Boy is so awesome. Just picked up a copy!

How do people usually react when they learn you’re a gamer, are they surprised?

Yes. Always surprised. I don’t see how in 2014 people are still surprised to see a girl gamer. I’m usually being stared at from down the game isles in stores. Also, I’ve still never been hired at a video game store.

What are some of your other hobbies outside of gaming?sairyn2

I am a crafter! I love to make jewelry, and to sew! I would love to one day have my own shop, or line of my own designs! I’m a bartender so I also drink a lot in my spare time. Hahaha.

Being that you like to sew and you also love video games have you ever considered doing any cosplaying?

I would really like start to doing cosplay! I actually dressed like Rikku from FFX-2 for the first anime convention in West Virginia! My mom and I sewed and put together the whole thing.

Your profile says you’re a Walking Dead fan?

Yes I do, but I’m also a fan of not having cable so you can usually find me watching something on Netflix. I’d much rather enjoy the whole season all at once. Spoiled by technology! So I must admit I’m behind by a season. But I couldn’t wait for Breaking Bad so I went to my mom’s house every week for that. I do love The Walking Dead, how they started it, and how they made their own type of zombie “disease.” But I heard it came from comics? I haven’t read them yet, probably should.

Give me a good gaming-related pickup line that has a chance of actually working.

Are you a Hitmonlee? Cause your body is kickin’.

Or is there something wrong with your auto aim? You can’t keep your eyes off me. Hahahahaha.

Or… something about being a pokemon and that you’re a pokemon master! Gotta catch em all!

Where can fans see more of you?

SuicideGirls: https://suicidegirls.com/girls/sairyn

Instagram: @SairynSuicide

Tumblr: @UnravelTheFlesh

Storenvy/Etsy: UnravelTheFlesh
sairyn3

Is GamerGate A Hate Group?

tweets

If you’re a gamer you have probably heard the term GamerGate at least once over the last couple of months. At the time of this writing, the #gamergate hashtag on Twitter has well over two million total tweets! The debate between GamerGate and so-called “Social Justice Warriors” has become so convoluted at this point that it is difficult to separate fact from fiction.

A psychological technique called gaslighting has made GamerGate into quite a big mess. On Wikipedia, gaslighting is defined as “a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making victims doubt their own memory, perception, and sanity.” In relation to GamerGate, opponents have used gaslighting tactics to make it nearly impossible for your average person to determine what is actually going on through the dissemination of literally books worth of misinformation.

I have been following GamerGate since it erupted so I hope this article will help provide a relatively concise summary of events to better inform you, the reader, on what GamerGate is.

A quick disclaimer: this is not an exhaustive history of GamerGate. One article cannot cover the entirety of two months of events without inadvertently leaving something out. This article is merely meant as a means to get you acquainted with some of the facts of what’s happened that thus far the mainstream media has refused to properly report on. I encourage you to take to Twitter, search up the hashtags, and do more research into the matter for yourself.

Background 

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Actor Adam Baldwin, known to many for his role as Jayne Cobb on Firefly, created the #GamerGate hashtag on August 27th but that is not actually when the problems began. GamerGate says they are fighting for journalistic integrity and to keep video games about gaming and not about pushing political agendas on unsuspecting gamers.

Adhering to journalistic ethics has been a problem that has plagued the gaming industry for years. Everybody remembers that picture of Geoff Keighley sitting glassy-eyed next to Doritos and Mountain Dew (it’s worth noting the fact Geoff is a man didn’t immunize him from being strongly chastised as a shill by gamers). For years it has become apparent that video game journalists have gotten far too close with those in the industry such as public relations, developers, and publishers.

It is important to realize that GamerGate isn’t a new problem, it is just the name given to the somewhat more organized movement fighting against this type of corruption.

The straw that broke the camel’s back involved indie gaming developer Zoe Quinn. Quinn allegedly had sexual affairs with video game journalists in exchange for positive reviews of her game Depression Quest. This served as a striking example that journalists and developers were too close and fired people up. It has since been realized that these “positive reviews” actually do not exist but Depression Quest did receive some questionably earned awards.

There’s a lot more to this part of the story but it really doesn’t have anything to do with GamerGate at large other than the fact it served as the impetus of gamers’ outrage into corruption. If you want to read a history of events pertaining to Zoe Quinn, sometimes called “Quinnspiracy,” check it out here.

Zoe further drew criticism, however, after she undermined a Game Jam project by The Fine Young Capitalists which aimed to get more female game developers into the industry by potentially funding a game pitch. The project allowed only female contestants. It seemed strange, then, why Zoe would have attacked it as oppressive. You can learn more about that here.

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With gamers now starting to worry about ethics in the video game industry more than ever before, Breitbart writer Milo Yiannopoulos published several pieces in September further highlighting the extreme lack of journalistic integrity in the gaming press including “Exposed: The Secret Mailing List of the Gaming Journalism Elite” and “The E-mails That Prove Video Games Journalism Must be Reformed.”

These articles exposed leaked information he received about a secret mailing list called GameJournoPros in which journalists from various top gaming sites including Kotaku, Polygon, Ars Technica, and WIRED to name a few would collude with one another about what they should be reporting and what they should not be reporting.

Milo points out that this is especially troubling in the messages where they discuss the Zoe Quinn incident. Quinn had started getting a lot of accusations about using her sex life to further her career and the messages show various gaming journalists talking about how to best defend her and even a plan to send her a signed card to show support. Milo states how this indicates there is pretty much no boundary line between the reporter and the subject being reported on in their eyes.

“…I don’t think we, as games press, should support furthering the story by commenting, editorializing or even allowing others to ruminate on it,” said one journalist.

The GameJournoPros mailing list isn’t a conspiracy theory. Those involved in the list have admitted what Milo exposed was real but that they simply see no problem in what they did. The list’s founder, Kyle Orlund, who is also the Senior Gaming Editor from Ars Technica, tweeted out “I regret nothing” immediately after the list was exposed by Milo. He later apologized for the tweet.

Some gamers unfortunately bought their excuses, claiming it’s perfectly normal for people with the same interests to talk to one another. But the problem is they weren’t just talking to one another about innocuous things. I previously wrote an article explaining exactly why GameJournoPros mailing list is important here.

These revealed messages and emails proved that game journalists were not only too close to people inside of the industry but also colluding with one another in order to push their political agendas to readers as well.

Gamers began to suspect more and more that there was feminist agenda being pushed into video games. That’s how feminist speaker and game critic Anita Sarkeesian was also dragged into GamerGate because of her “Tropes vs. Women in Video Games” series on YouTube. In these videos she tries to show why video games are sexist against women and need to be changed. For example, she claims the new Hitman game is sexist because in one mission players are able to murder a bikini-clad stripper, then drag her body around the room and hide her corpse in a box. Anita claims that this is meant to give gamers a perverse sexual thrill of power and control over a woman’s dead, sexualized body.

What critics of her video quickly pointed out is that she ignored the fact 99% of every other character you kill in the game is a male and that dragging and hiding corpses to avoid detection is a major game mechanic. Also, you are actually penalized in-game by killing the stripper because she is considered an innocent – not your target. Therefore the game doesn’t want you to do it so how does this prove the game is sexist?

So Zoe Quinn and Anita Sarkeesian began drawing a ton of criticism from gamers angry that Quinn and her journalist friends would violate the perceived integrity of the gaming media (or what little was left of it) and angry that Anita would misrepresent gaming to push an agenda. As you might imagine, some of this criticism was more acerbic than others. Both women allegedly started receiving death threats which they went to the police about.

YouTubers Jordan Owen and Davis Aurini, who are working on a documentary about the situation entitled “The Sarkeesian Effect” then released that during their research for the film they contacted Anita’s local police department and found out she had never filed a police report. Anita started getting called out for lying on Twitter. She countered this by soon revealing she instead went to the FBI and the FBI has supposedly confirmed they are investigating the threats. There has been no update about the findings of the investigation as of this writing.

Social Justice Warriors (SJWs) and “Third Wave Feminists” defended both Zoe and Anita by claiming gamers were only attacking them because they are women. SJWs began to call gamers misogynists, sexists, and sometimes even racist despite the fact Zoe and Anita are both white. Around that time the #NotYourShield hashtag was created by another Twitter user to state that he does not want to be used as the shield for Social Justice Warriors to hide behind while they push their agenda.

 shield

Leigh Alexander, a writer for Gamasutra, made things worse when she published an article at the end of August titled “Gamers don’t have to be your audience. Gamers are over.” Her article declared hardcore gamers were dead and developers should stop pandering to them. This sentiment, that gamers were “dead,” was echoed on numerous other game media sites at the same time.

The strange fact so many sites published such similar opinion articles at the same time seemed to imply they had colluded a push specific narrative – which got exposed a few weeks later by Milo Yiannopoulos on Breitbart as mentioned above.

dead

It turns out gamers don’t like to be told they are dead so GamerGate started accusing Leigh Alexander of hating gamers. Intel even ended up pulling advertising on Gamasutra after they were flooded with complaints from gamers over Leigh’s article. SJWs then began calling Intel a bunch of misogynists seemingly oblivious to the fact Intel’s current president is a woman named Renée James.

Leigh, who is a woman, began to fall back on the standard strategy that had thus far been utilized by SJWs to defend Zoe Quinn and Anita Sarkeesian, which is to say that gamers were only attacking her because she was a woman and they are misogynists. We’ll get into whether or not GamerGate is full of misogynist men more in the next section. The actual reality is that gamers went after Leigh because of the absurd things she wrote both in her articles and on Twitter. Take for example some of her tweets where she threatens people, promotes doxxing, makes racist statements, and brags about her power to ruin careers:

leigh

As GamerGate began to gain more and more momentum, Social Justice Warriors began turning to less ethical means to stop them. GamerGate supporters started to get “doxxed” where their real life information such as name, address, phone number, and work are made public and then they are harassed.

Many GamerGate supporters reported that SJWs had called their place of work and tried to get them fired by telling their employer they were sexist, misogynist, racist, etc. A few well known GamerGate supporters that were doxxed include Boogie2988, the lovely Shoe0nhead, Adam Baldwin, and even Milo Yiannopoulos.

In a more recent incident, game developer Brianna Wu attempted to create a new meme called “Oppressed GamerGater” which depicted GamerGate advocates in a negative fashion using the image of an autistic child. For obvious reasons she started getting a ton of backlash from GamerGate and others who instead flooded her with insults and memes mocking her.

Brianna, much like Anita Sarkeesian, said she started getting death threats which forced her to flee her home and contact the police. She connected these threats to GamerGate and used it as “evidence” that GamerGate was full of misogynist, vile, woman-hating gamers who wanted her dead simply because she was a woman speaking out on sexism in video games. Gamers have countered this assertion by pointing out she wasn’t speaking out about anything, but mocking people with a highly offensive meme.

brianna

At 2:24 PM on October 14th, Brianna apparently tweeted out to someone to “leave me out of your mentions, you gross fucking aspie” (aspie being a slang term for someone with asperger’s syndrome – a form of high-functioning autism). She quickly deleted this tweet then claimed her Twitter account had been hacked and it wasn’t her who really said that.

The claim her account was hacked didn’t add up with the fact she legitimately retweeted other tweets at 2:24 PM and 2:26 PM. She didn’t delete those, which indicates she was indeed in control of her account at the exact time the insulting message was tweeted.

brianna2

Update 10/30/14: Since this article was published, it was learned that the “aspie” tweet seen above was actually made from a spoof account that used an uppercase i instead of a lowercase l at the end which on twitter looks identical. This exonerates Brianna of responsibility for that hateful tweet but also shows that she lied when she claimed her actual account had been hacked.

Is GamerGate Misogynist?

Let’s perform a thought experiment. If you were being personally exposed by GamerGate and you wanted to kill the movement, what would be the best way to go about doing that? The answer is you would want to make GamerGate into the villain rather than yourself. Perhaps the best method of accomplishing this these days is to make GamerGate seem like a hate group.

Nobody wants to seem like they are racist or sexist so if they think GamerGate is a bunch of racists or sexists, they would be less likely to support that movement even if their goals of fighting corruption in games journalism are seemingly agreeable.

One of the best methods of actively turning people against GamerGate would be to stage a false flag and blame it on GamerGate. For those unfamiliar with the term, a false flag is when an attack is carried out and made to look as if a certain group is responsible for it when they are actually not.

The purpose of a false flag varies from being used as a pretext for a military attack to a tactic to undermine a certain political group. There is a long history of real life false flags which you can read about on Wikipedia. It is not simply a “conspiracy theory.” False flags are real and are even considered war crimes prohibited from being used in wars today by the Geneva Convention.

As we have already discussed in the previous section, many of the Social Justice Warriors such as Zoe Quinn, Anita Sarkeesian, and recently Brianna Wu have reportedly received numerous death threats which they then blamed on GamerGate. Anita even canceled a talk she was scheduled to give at Utah State University because of threatening messages claiming they were going to go on a shooting massacre if they let her talk. Because of Utah State’s gun laws, police apparently couldn’t prohibit guns from entering the venue so out of fear for her safety she canceled the talk.

This seems horrible. Obviously nobody should be in fear for their life and safety no matter how disagreeable their ideas are. Freedom of Speech is a fundamental right in America to be cherished and protected. But it is important to note that there is absolutely no publicly available evidence any of these threats have been made by legitimate “GamerGaters.”

In fact, Utah State University officials along with several law enforcement agencies including USU police and both state and federal law enforcement experts investigated the threat made against Anita Sarkeesian and found it to not be credible and made a statement the day before Anita’s scheduled talk that there was no risk to students, staff, or the speaker (Anita).

Many of the violent threats allegedly being made have never been proven to have happened at all and those that have been shown publicly were made from what looked like sock puppet accounts created specifically to threaten that person. For example, Brianna was threatened by someone whose name was “Death to Brianna.”

Even if the pathetic criminals making these threats were to expressly claim they were GamerGate supporters, that doesn’t necessarily make it true. For a threat to legitimately be traced back to GamerGate, it would have to come from someone who was well-known within the movement and had a lengthy history of supporting GamerGate. This has not yet happened. In fact, many GamerGate supporters are actually among the first who condemn and report these threats to Twitter when they see them.

To be sure, one doesn’t need to look far to find examples of people threatening themselves online in false flag attacks. A recent video by Thunderf00t details the case of how in 2013 a University of Wyoming student named Meg Lanker-Simons posted comment under a different name on a Facebook page that threatened performing violent sexual acts on her. She then condemned the comments as “disgusting” and “misogynistic.” After an investigation she was later forced to admit that she herself had posted the original comment and was issued a police citation for interference (source). She ended up pleading no contest to the charge.

It’s worth mentioning that Thunderf00t got suspended from Twitter for several weeks after mysteriously being mass-reported for for “harassment” when he tweeted out a video that was critical of Anita Sarkeesian.

It is conceivable, then, that someone trying to paint GamerGate as a hate group would stage a similar false flag by threatening someone like Anita and claiming to be with GamerGate when they are not. This could be anybody against GamerGate, a supporter of Anita, or possibly even Anita herself as in the example detailed above.

shoe

To answer the assertion that GamerGate is just a bunch of woman-hating misogynist nerds, you need only look at the diverse group of people that support GamerGate. Many of them are actually themselves women! GamerGate supporter and man with awesome sounding accent Sargon of Akkad recently made a YouTube video titled The Lie Heard Around the World #GamerGate #NotYourShield showing dozens of women and girls that support GamerGate.

Noted feminist Christina Hoff Sommers is even a supporter of GamerGate. In her Factual Feminist video “Are Video Games Sexist?” she talked about the controversy and concluded the evidence shows that video games are not sexist and the industry is actually more inclusive than ever before!

The Social Justice Warriors’ response to this? These women just have internalized misogyny and are so oppressed by the patriarchy they don’t even know it. SJWs even tried to smear Christina H. Sommers by falsely calling her a right wing extremist nut job and discredited “fake” feminist. In other words, Social Justice Warriors simply dismiss any women’s opinions who don’t agree with them as not mattering. Now isn’t that a bit sexist?

TL:DR Summary

  • The evidence shows that GamerGate’s main concern from the beginning has been about corruption in the gaming media, not keeping women out of gaming. Geoff Keighley is a man and yet he was heavily criticized anyway.
  • There is no publicly available evidence the violent threats directed at Social Justice Warriors such as Anita Sarkeesian can be traced back to GamerGate supporters.
  • GamerGate supporters have been doxxed and had their careers threatened by Social Justice Warriors. These claims actually have been proven by showing chat logs and forum threads of noted SJWs discussing doxxing them before it happened.
  • The claim that GamerGate is a misogynist movement propagated by woman-hating men is unfounded and doesn’t hold up to the fact that so many women and even feminists like Christina Hoff Sommers support it.
  • The currently available evidence seems to support many Social Justice Warriors hate gamers, hate men, have resorted to highly unethical activities (for example, doxxing), and have intentionally misrepresented facts in an attempt to kill the GamerGate movement and push their unwanted/unneeded feminist agenda within the gaming industry.

samantha

Polygon contributor Samantha Allen proudly hates men. Shouldn’t this sexism be frowned upon by progressives?

Conclusion

GamerGate is not misogynist and is not a hate group. The mainstream media has only recently started reporting on the mess that has become GamerGate. They unfortunately haven’t been very thorough in their investigation and have so far only reported that women are being forced from their homes due to threats against their lives because they “stood up against sexism” in the video game industry. As we have seen, that isn’t anywhere even close to the full story.

If you don’t know anything about the history of GamerGate, you’ll likely see such a report and think that GamerGate supporters are some of the worst people in existence. This might explain why Dell employee George Reese compared GamerGate to ISIS, a comment YouTuber “Syrian Girl” found to be extremely offensive.

isis

GamerGate is a prime example of why one should not jump to conclusions without knowing the full story. Do your own research into the subject and never listen to just one side of a debate no matter how obvious things might look at first glance.

As with any group of people there are always those who take things to the extreme. There’s no doubt a few GamerGate supporters probably take things way too far but this is natural and to be expected of any group as large and as diverse as GamerGate is. The entirety of GamerGate or even just gamers in general shouldn’t be judged by the actions of a few random trolls.

Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this article are that of the author and may / may not represent views of the rest of RGN Staff / our audience. This article will not be removed and all takedown requests will be ignored.

SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week: Bitten

Bitten Suicide

Bitten Suicide is this week’s SuicideGirl Gamer of the Week. Like most gamers, she has been playing video games ever since she was a kid. RealGamerNewz spoke with Bitten about her love for bats, cats, serial killers, and of course video games.

So what made you choose the name Bitten?

I chose the name Bitten because I love bats. I currently have seven bats tattooed on me. I have a huge collection of bat items as well. I own a ton of clothing, a poster on my bedroom wall, a bat-shaped spatula, stuffed animals, plates, cups, and a few ceramics that are all bats. This is just a short list of all my bat items! Halloween is the best time of the year to pick up new items for my house, of course. It all started when I chose to do a paper on bats when I was in college. I learned what fascinating and beautiful creatures they were. I’ve been obsessed ever since.

When did you first start playing video games?

I have been playing video games since I was very little. I remember playing a Mario game so much when we first got it that the music brainwashed me or something! I was forced to go to bed and would hear the music and get angry my parents were up playing it but they actually weren’t! I swore I heard the theme music loud and clear.

WhaBitten Suicidet are some of your all-time favorite games?

Some of my favorite games are Zelda, Final Fantasy 3, Chrono Trigger, ActRaiser, Castlevania, and Guitar Hero. I really love the old school game. They are more focused on storyline rather than just the graphics. If the story sucks then I lose interest in playing pretty quickly. I like to be dragged into the game where that is all I think about when I’m not playing.

Which Zelda games are your favorites?

I love all the Zelda games. They are all awesome but if I had to choose I would choose Majora’s Mask. I loved all the side quests in that game. My favorite is where you have to give the paper to the guy in the toilet. Hahaha. I think I’ve beat that one three times. Next would be the original one. I’ve beat that one fifty times at least! I recently played the third Zelda game. Man, that was so difficult! I gave up. I downloaded it on my Wii. It had a lot of glitches in it.

You also mentioned Chrono Trigger as one of you favorite games. Did you ever play the sequel, Crono Cross?

No unfortunately I’ve never played Chrono Cross. I should put it on my list. If it is a good as the first one that would be amazing. I just can’t imagine it happening. I’d love to be proven wrong though!

Playing anything currently?

Right now I am playing two games. First is Infamous: Second Son. It is really hard! I started on normal but kept dying so switched over to easy. It still took me over an hour to get past one part in the game! You can choose to be good or bad in that game. For example in the very beginning of the game you can choose to confess to save your friend or have her take the fall. The choice you make changes the outcome of the game pretty immensely. If you are good, the crowd cheers you on and if you are bad they run screaming from you when you walk around. It also changes the powers you have as well. It is definitely a unique part in the game that makes it really fun. Plus when you beat the game you can replay it with a different outcome! The second game I’m playing is Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. I’ve always been a huge Final Fantasy fan. XIV is an MMORPG so it’s pretty different from the older Final Fantasy games. I also just got done playing the new Tomb Raider on the Playstation 4. I beat it four times. I really enjoyed that game a lot.

So being how you feel about bats, is Batman your favorite superhero?

Yes of course Batman is my favorite superhero! I own all the Batman movies and saw them all in the theaters. I have a couple Batman items in my collection.

Which Final Fantasy world do you think would be the coolest to actually live in?

I really like the character I have made in A Realm Reborn. She is a miqo’te arcanist. I really like that race because of the cat ears she has. I made her pretty hot. She has two minions currently. I would love to be friends with her in real life so I would like to live where she does in Limsa Lomsa.Bitten Suicide

Aside from Tomb Raider what other PS4 games do you have that you would recommend?

Outlast was fun but really scary! You are a reporter at an asylum. All these crazy guys are trying to kill you. It is intense because you cannot defend yourself. All you can do is hide. I just finished Infamous: Second Son the other day, too. I am sad it is over. I am going to start Assassin’s Creed soon. I bought it long time ago but got distracted by Tomb Raider.

What inspired you into becoming a SuicideGirl?

Just look at the girls! They are all stunningly beautiful! Who wouldn’t want to be connected to that? If I would of been told I was going to be a model five years ago I probably would have laughed my ass off. Taking these pictures and meeting so many of the SGs and other members has made me feel amazing.

If you were to ever get a video game-related tattoo what do you imagine it would it be?

If I were to ever get a video game tattoo it would have to be the original Castlevania bat. You know, the very first boss. Not sure how well that would translate into a tattoo though since it isn’t that detailed but it is a bat! I would probably put it on my thigh. I’m digging thigh tattoos lately. I have a narwhal on mine. Not scary at all but very girlie. I decided after all my bat and owl tattoos I needed a “girlie” tattoo.

Outside of video games, what are some of your other hobbies?

I love animals a lot. My hobbies are spoiling my two cats George and Callista. They are my fur babies. I also love to read about serial killers. John Wayne Gacy is my favorite. He was a clown who killed boys. I mean how creepy is that? If I didn’t know better I would think it was a bad horror movie plot instead of real life. They are so fascinating. I am addicted to real crime shows, too. Man I sound so macabre. Bats and serial killers hahaha.

Where can fans find more of you?

SuicideGirls: https://suicidegirls.com/girls/bitten/

Twitter: @BittenSuicide

Bitten Suicide

Why the GameJournoPros Secret Mailing List is Important

video games

Earlier this week journalist Milo Yiannopoulos exposed a secret mailing list between top gaming journalists called “GameJournoPros” in an article published on Breitbart titled Exposed: The Secret Mailing List of the Gaming Journalism Elite. The article exposes leaked messages as well as emails that showed beyond any doubt there was collusion between various game journalists on major publications in which they determine what should and should not be reported on.

This article is going to explain why this revelation is important and not about the specific details of the messages/emails so I’m not going to re-publish a bunch of them here. You can already read them on Breitbart and Milo’s site. But there are a few quotes that stand out as especially ridiculous and if you don’t read any of the other messages, you need to at least see these two:

Who here hasn’t slept with a PR person or game developer? #AMIRITE -William O’Neal, U.S. Editor-in-Chief of TechRadar.

and

This is barely a game-industry story, no matter how some people want to frame it. This is a story about a person who happens to be in the game industry and their personal relationships (no matter how it may weave back into “the industry” and however poor the person’s judgments may have been) and public expose of private materials by that person’s partner as revenge, so I don’t think we, as games press, should support furthering the story by commenting, editorializing or even allowing others to ruminate on it. – Andy Eddy.

The last few words of the second quote are almost heinously shocking. Andy does not even want to “allow others to ruminate” on this story. Andy literally wants the power to control what gamers can and can’t think about! Talk about thought police. What’s this guy think he’s living in George Orwell’s 1984?

Milo has since dumped the entirety of the leaked emails which you can sift through on his website here: http://yiannopoulos.net/2014/09/19/gamejournopros-zoe-quinn-email-dump. Milo has also pointed out some of the other shocking quotes in another article on Breitbart titled The E-mails That Prove Video Games Journalism Must be Reformed.

So why is this important? First of all you should keep in mind this isn’t just some conspiracy theory. Several of the journalists exposed as part of the mailing list have already confessed and simply hold to the position they don’t think it is wrong. “I regret nothing,” Tweeted Kyle Orland, the founder of GameJournoPros. He then tried to innocently pass it off as just a place they go to chat. It’s natural for people of the same profession and with the same passion to just chat about things they have in common right? Right?!

Well as a game journalist myself for over five years now, I can tell you that game journalists already have a place to “just chat.” There is a website called GamesPress that you need to be a verified member of the media or PR to join. The site has a very active forum including two sub-forums named Games Industry and Journalism where members of the gaming industry and media go to OPENLY discuss the video game industry in general, details about upcoming video games releases and events, and to get in touch with specific PR people for review requests or game details among other things. The difference between the GamesPress forums and the GameJournoPros mailing list is that one is out in the open and transparent while the other is secret. People weren’t supposed to know about the latter. The fact GameJournoPros operates like some sort of secret society in of itself makes you wonder about its legitimacy. What is more likely? That Kyle Orland completely forgot that game journalists already have a well-known place to chat about stuff called the GamesPress forums which has 26,000 registered members and 98,000 total posts or that his excuse is a load of bull? Orland is either completely inept at his job or is completely lacking in journalist integrity and ethics. Either way you slice it, he probably shouldn’t be the Senior Gaming Editor of such a large website.

Unfortunately, some gamers have accepted the excuse and believe this isn’t important. One user on Twitter using the #gamergate hashtag wrote, “…many companies have internal mailing lists among their employees why is this a big deal? It’s not.”

That’s just the thing. The people on this mailing list don’t work for the same company. Therefore, this by definition isn’t an internal mailing list. The people on this list are supposed to work for COMPETING websites. See in the real world, journalists compete with one another for scoops. They want to be the ones to break something faster than their rival news site. Sure it’s okay to be friendly with your competition. You don’t need to be an asshole to people. But on the same token that doesn’t mean you invite them over for sexy parties either. This secret mailing list exposes that is not how gaming journalism works.

The messages on the mailing list and subsequently leaked emails prove that gaming journalists aren’t actually working for separate entities. They are colluding with one another to determine what is newsworthy and what is not. Which games get coverage and which don’t.  They want to manipulate how people perceive events in the industry and control what their readers are even allowed to think about. In short, this means that the various websites involved in this scandal are all actually operating under one entity – GameJournoPros. Kotaku isn’t actually different from Ars Technica which isn’t actually different from WIRED which isn’t actually different from…etc. etc. They could all just be re-branded a site called GameJournoPros.

No wonder most of the major sites almost always either universally hate a game or love it.

Another reason this mailing list is important is because not only do journalists collude with one another, but the line between reporter and subject being reported on is virtually nonexistent. The problematically close relationship between game journalists and publishers, developers, and public relations people is already pretty well known. Most gamers have seen that picture of Geoff Keighley surrounded by Doritos and Mountain Dew. Gamers had an inkling that some review scores probably can’t be trusted because journalists love getting free games. But most people expected this was an issue with journalists on an individual basis. They didn’t realize just how deep it goes.

In one of the emails Milo exposed Andrew Groen, a contributor to WIRED, writes “There is an ocean of distance between ‘hi we’re strangers and we’re aware of your dirty laundry’ and ‘Hi, we’re your colleagues, and we appreciate the work you do for our community. Illegitimi non carborundum.”

Milo points out that Groen is “seemingly unaware that Quinn is not a ‘colleague,’ but the subject of reporting. Describing Quinn as a colleague shows how paper-thin the barrier between reporter and reported has become.”

So the corruption is actually several levels deep. Game journalists see themselves as part of the game industry, which they are supposed to be objectively reporting on. They view developers, publishers, and PR people as their personal friends which further discourages objective reporting. This would be bad enough if it were done on an individual basis as gamers used to suspect but the fact that game journalists themselves then get together to spread the corruption makes it that much worse.

To see just how damaging this kind of collusion in the media is, imagine if it were to happen in the real world with mainstream news outlets. Imagine if CNN, CBS, Fox News, MSNBC, and all the other mainstream media had a secret mailing list where their top journalists and reporters discussed what stories they should all report and what stories they should all ignore. Then imagine there was a scandal implicating President Barack Obama in some treasonous misdeeds that could result in him being impeached. Obama, however, is good personal friends with all the reporters from these major news outlets (as game developers, publishers, and PR people are often good personal friends with game journalists. William O’Neal wrote, “Who here hasn’t slept with a PR person or game developer? #AMIRITE”). So the mainstream media obviously doesn’t want their friend Obama to go down in flames. Using this mailing list which enables them to talk with one another in secret, all the major news outlets collude about how together they can spin this Obama story and make it into a non-issue. They could all decide to refuse to report on it (like the game journalists that refused to report on the Zoe Quinn story) and they might even decide to pledge their support for Obama in the form of a signed letter to let him know he’s not going through this alone. The mainstream media therefore never reports on the story or if they do, it’s in SUPPORT of Obama. The news of the scandal never accurately reaches the American public.

Imagine if that happened in real life. That is called a conspiracy. So why is it okay for gaming journalists to do it? The answer is, it’s not. Everybody involved on that mailing list needs to be fired immediately. These so-called “game journalists” have forgotten they are supposed to be working for gamers, not themselves and not the industry. Their job is simply to inform people. Not to push their friends’ games or protect them from public backlash. Gaming journalism is corrupt and needs to be cleansed.

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