Not a good idea to irritate my buddy Gamer here

There’s further mainstream media coverage of #GamerGate, while Christina Hoff Sommers continues to tweet in support of the brave rebels.

Christina H. Sommers @CHSommers · 7 hours ago
Not a good idea to irritate hundreds of thousands of gamers. @Gawker #GamerGate Ht:@lizzyf620 …

Media has maligned & defamed millions of innocent gamers. Big mistake. You have awakened a sleeping giant. @Gawker #GamerGate

#Gamergate is not about misogyny.It’s a consumer rebellion against media bullies & shallow ideologies. & these r consumers who
like to win.

If you missed this Spike article, pease read it now! #Gamergate …

Gamers are one of the most diverse & welcoming groups I have ever known.But in the face of unfair attacks,they react.

Wrong.There are different kinds of giants.The video game community is gentle giant that uses polemics for weapons. Not howitzers. @MiahSaint

Here’s the GamerGate Manifesto (yes, there is one) and a translation of it by somewhat_brave on Reddit

Do you notice how very, very familiar it all is? How exactly it resembles what we’ve been seeing ad nauseam for the past 3.5 years?



  1. Al Dente says

    So among the gamergaters’ other sins we can include pomposity, pretentiousness and lack of self-awareness.

  2. Athywren says

    Speaking as a gamer, gamergate is really irritating me.
    This characterisation of criticism of games as an unfair attack is irritating me.
    The characterisation of criticism of the rampant misogyny found right at the surface of gamergate as an unfair attack is irritating me.
    The idea that gamers are an irrational horde to be unleashed on the people who want to make games better irritates me.
    The idea that that last might actually be true of a significant portion of gamers infuriates me.

    Why the hell do I have to keep doing this? Can I not be a part of even ONE subculture that isn’t filled with fucking vile people who react with hate and fear to the idea that women are more than npcs?

  3. says

    Geez. Some of those points (#3 to start with) sound like they see themselves as standing up against a comic-book supervillain. Too much time spent playing games, perhaps?

  4. A Masked Avenger says

    So when a sleeping giant is awakened, it starts tweeting death threats to women and high-fiving itself?

    Somehow I expected more from a freshly-awakened giant.

  5. Rowan vet-tech says

    @6 It only just got up. The giant hasn’t had time to have its cup of coffee yet, but once it truly wakes up, watch out! … Or it might just sit on the couch and take a nap.

  6. says

    Pretty much the first thing a bear does on waking from hibernation is take a really big dump. Sounds about right so far.

    Unless Sommers is wrong and most gamers are not snotty misogynists, in which case awakening them will rally them to the sides of the feminists who are under attack. I suspect, though, that these gamers aren’t really awakening at all, but rather will simply cede their image to the loathsome minority among them, much as mainstream religious people have tended to do. I hope that isn’t so, but to me it seems likely.

  7. Anthony K says

    Not a good idea to irritate hundreds of thousands of _______

    Is there a more naked appeal to the majority power of the status quo than to hector people afflicting the comfortable? She didn’t say kill. She didn’t say beat. Not starve, not threaten, nor harass, but irritate. Don’t cause these guys discomfort, feminists! Be silent, lest they turn their attention to you and be discomfited.

    She’s right, of course, that it’s not a good idea in that gamers will threaten to kill you for irritating them. But she seems to be defending their actions, not criticizing them. And there are, arguably very good reasons to irritate hundreds of thousands of people, even if they threaten to kill you in response.

    So I’m wondering if she would still be Dawkins’ hero if she’d said ‘religious people’, not ‘gamers’. There’s no reason she shouldn’t say it, given that she’s not even making an argument with this tweet; she’s cheering the retaliation of a sizeable population for being irritated. It’s not a good idea to irritate hundreds of thousands of Islamists, or Catholics for the same reason; they’ll threaten to kill you too.

    Even if you insist that she’s not talking about the death threats per se, she’s still simply cheering the mob. Don’t irritate these guys! This is how they react to irritation. There are hundreds of thousands of them, and they don’t like being irritated. Especially don’t write a book with an irritating title like “The Game Delusion”. That’d be super irritating, way more so than “Tropes vs. Women in Video Games”. They’ll react to being provoked. They’re a threatening, sleeping giant, and you’re powerless so you’ll shush if you know what’s good for you.

    Dawkins is a real fan of hers, I hear.

  8. Adam James says

    Actually nearly of their stated points are quite admirable. I just wish my experience with them resembled their platform.

    My last encounter was on Twitter, where one Gamergate-r took me to task for offering sympathy to Anita Sarkeesian (after she revealed that a lot of the harassment had come from atheists [ugh]). They said I was acting “illogically” because I didn’t have enough evidence of the “supposed harassment”. I guess that means in the future I’ll need sworn affidavits from multiple witnesses before hugging a friend who’s had a bad day (*ahem*, allegedly had a bad day).

  9. says

    Small wonder that the Atheist Establishment has appointed CH Sommers their Official Feminist.

    Equally small wonder that the #GamerGhazi manifesto is as fucking pompously grandiose and pitifully paranoid as the brave heroes we’re all acquainted with.

    Gosh, these manly-men types are sure able to get their jockeys in a twist over nothin’, amirite? I’d say they oughta stop worrying their pretty lil’ heads about such things and just get back to playing Space Mario until they can quit being so emotional. Clouds the judgement, don’tcha know – makes a feller say silly things. [/snark]

  10. says

    Now, for the sake of argument we can grant that g’gate isn’t about misogyny or sexism or shutting up women who irritate you (by, say, threatening their lives).

    But once you do grant that g’gate isn’t about misogyny (which was exceedingly generous of you, well done), you then have to find an explanation for all the fucking misogynists who’ve appropriated the hashtag and have joined the campaigns against people who are mostly women and mostly not journalists.

    Or, let me quickify that: if #gamerghazi isn’t about misogyny, please explain all the fucking misogynists.

    Parable (so do forgive any generalisations): a man walks into a bar. It’s full of men. A few of them are snogging, close-dancing or watching a drag show. None of the other men seem to mind or even notice that much, focused as they are on their friends or phones. There’s a big rainbow flag behind the bar and lots of posters for LGBT-friendly events, concerts, rallies etc. The man asks the barman “This is a gay bar, right?” The barman says “Nope. It’s a regular bar. But gay dudes are the only people who’ve ever come here. Or worked here. Or performed here.” The man who walked in doesn’t care that the bar’s full of gay dudes, but he does wonder if there’s any meaningful difference between a ‘gay bar’ and a ‘regular bar full of nothing but gay dudes’. He decides that there isn’t and that it doesn’t matter anyway, because the bar is what it is, not what someone might have meant it to be.

    And so, oh-so-bloody-obviously (I’m not exactly Yeshua bin Yosef when it comes to parables), I’m wondering if there’s any meaningful difference between a movement that, I’m told (unconvincingly), wasn’t conceived as a misogynist hatewank but has nonetheless come to be defined by misogynist hatewanking.

  11. Dunc says

    What the hell is “the Industry of Outrage and it’s [sic] guilt-based economic model”, and how do I get in on some of this action? Will there be an IPO?

  12. chrislawson says

    Dunc@14: I had similar thoughts on reading the manifesto. I mean, how does one become a patented guru? How long until a guru patent expires? Is there any chance I could sell a guru patent to a large corporation for a substantial sum?

  13. electrojosh says

    As a gamer myself I have no time for this GamerGate nonsense. This is why:

    When I first heard about it, though, I was intrigued. I already though that game journalism is very much influenced by the industry – especially the large companies – and cannot always be trusted when it comes to consumer advice. So I did some digging.

    The first problem was that this was kicked off by an angry screed written by a jilted boyfriend of an indie game developer. Someone I not only had never heard of but was hardly an influence in the way EA or Ubisoft’s executives were. It seemed strange that this would be the catalyst that caused people to rally for change.

    Then I noticed a lot of their focus was on Anita Sarkesian. Whatever someone’s views are on her and her videos it just seemed completely irrelevant to concerns about corruption, collusion and lack of ethics in game journalism.

    Then I looked at what some of the game critics, reviewers and journalist thought of it. All the ones I respected and enjoyed had, to a person, been against it. These were people who often passionately discussed the very things GamerGate was, allegedly, all about. Yet they weren’t supporting GamerGate. In fact many of them, and the websites they write for, were put on a blacklist by GamerGate. An odd state of affairs when they had, in word and deed, been all about very things GamerGate claims to stand for.

    And this was before the evidence they were behind harrassment campaigns, the fact they ignored an actual game journalism scandal that broke last week (until others pointed this fact out to them), and that their efforts are concentrated on attacking people critical of them or aspects of games/gamer culture.

    Honestly they seem like they are terrified their toys will be taken away from them – even though none of their “enemies” has ever suggested such a thing. They also appear incapable of introspection around their motives. Some do genuinely believe GamerGate is about ethics and integrity but I am betting they are falling away as it keeps being demonstrated that this is a cover to hold games, gaming and gamers free from any sort of critique.


  14. Brony says

    This is the same substance-less dreck that repels me from involvement in a lot of politics. If a statement from a group reads like “I hate bad stuff, I like good stuff” with no reference to things that prompted the statements, I have no idea if the people are worth anything.

    “We are Gamers” is the most specific thing here.

  15. Jack Stone says

    Do you notice how very, very familiar it all is? How exactly it resembles what we’ve been seeing ad nauseam for the past 3.5 years?

    Yes, I do.

    Wait, you mean you are anti-gamergate?

    Deja Vu #485 reading a anti-gamergate talking point.

    Sectarianism is not in what you say, but how you support it.

  16. Athywren says

    @Jack Stone

    Wait, you mean you are anti-gamergate?

    Are we opposed to a movement that claims to oppose corruption in gaming media while ignoring corruption in gaming media and hurling abuse at anyone who criticises them for hurling abuse at people instead of tackling the corruption in gaming media that they claim to oppose?
    Um… yeah. Weird, huh?

  17. Tauriq Moosa says

    As I said on Twitter, referencing your post: “So everyone is documenting violent reactions from gamers, Sommers KNOWS this, but goes on about “waking sleeping giant”. Jesus. And then says BUT THEY’RE SUPER FRIENDLY AND INCLUSIVE.

  18. Jack Stone says

    Are we opposed to a movement that claims to oppose corruption in gaming media while ignoring corruption in gaming media and hurling abuse at anyone who criticises them for hurling abuse at people instead of tackling the corruption in gaming media that they claim to oppose?
    Um… yeah. Weird, huh?

    I agree with you. I think some of Dawkins tweets are obstensibly defensible, but in many ways supports bad ideas. I think he gives cover for Sam Harris to make sexist remarks. I find no excuse for Micheal Shermer’s behavior. I find Anita Sarkeesian to mostly be spot on. But then there are people saying you must pick a side and that if you’re on the wrong one, you are supporting sexism and harrassment. That attitude can pre-empt the very right to question or criticize the wrong “side”.

    When your opponent is wrong it doesn’t validate your position except when their fault directly infers as to why you are right.

  19. says

    I’ve just realised that there’s a cycle to when I start seeing an upswing in Christina Hoff Summers clickbait articles doing exactly the job she intends them to do, which is get significant levels of criticism from left/moderates (although she doesn’t tend to acknowledge that moderates really exist) so she can then go on talk shows and point at screencaps and talk about how awful *mean* and *unreasonable* those leftist critics are (and bootstrap a bunch of other rightist talking points on top of whatever the clickbait culture war topic of the day might be).

    There’s a Congressional election looming, isn’t there?

  20. says

    To be scrupulous, I’m just assuming that she does what other right-libertarians do when they get “interviewed” on Faux News etc – I haven’t seen it with my very own eyes. Presumably it’s the unpaid interns in the back rooms who have to actually sort out the screencaps, but it seems to be a fairly standard MO for how the cozy chats about those loony lieberals go over on their panels these days.

  21. Chris Walker says

    “perpetually parrot their prejudiced hate…as progressive political preferences”

    Suffering succotash! Maybe if they spent 10% as much time on honestly and critically examining their position as they spent on pompous, overly alliterative sentences, then their manifesto wouldn’t be such pretentious garbage.

  22. John Horstman says

    @Athywren #2: Other than explicitly-feminist subcultures (and not even all of them)? Nope, doesn’t look like it. :-/

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