She didn’t smile, she didn’t say hello

I know this feeling.

Instead of greeting two male gamers wearing Halo and Call of Duty shirts, prominent gamer and actress Felicia Day crossed the street.

“Seeing another gamer on the street used to be an auto-smile opportunity, or an entry into a conversation starting with, ‘Hey, dude! I love that game too!’ the Supernatural actress wrote on her Tumblr. But for the first time maybe in my life, on that Saturday afternoon, I walked towards that pair of gamers and I didn’t smile. I didn’t say hello. In fact, I crossed the street so I wouldn’t walk by them. A small voice of doubt in my brain now suspected that those guys and I might not be comrades after all. That they might not greet me with reflected friendliness, but contempt.”

I know that feeling. I know it so well. In certain crowds – crowds I would once have assumed were full of natural friends – I become a bit like a rabbit in open country: watchful, cautious, ready to bolt at any sign of contempt or loathing.

The change in Felicia Day’s case is of course GamerGate.

Day said she has kept quiet on GamerGate, which recently forced Intel to pull advertising from gaming site Gamasutra, largely out of “self-protection and fear.”

“I have been terrified of inviting a deluge of abusive and condescending tweets into my timeline. I did one simple @ reply to one of the main victims several weeks back, and got a flood of things I simply couldn’t stand to read directed at me. I had to log offline for a few days until it went away. I have tried to re-tweet a few of the articles I’ve seen dissecting the issue in support, but personally I am terrified to be doxxed (having personal information such as an address, email or real name released online) for even typing the words ‘Gamer Gate.’”

So, what happened? Don’t be silly, you know what happened. Of course it did.

In fact, Day was reportedly doxxed within an hour of writing her post on GamerGate. The immediate doxxing of female GamerGate critics, including Day, has been pointed to as an example of the sexism of the movement. Former NFL player Chris Kluwe, who wrote his own post calling GamerGaters “basement-dwelling, cheetos-huffing, poopsock-sniffing douchepistols,” said Day was only targeted because of her gender.

“None of you fucking #gamergate tools tried to dox me, even after I tore you a new one. I’m not even a tough target…Instead, you go after a woman who wrote why your movement concerns her,” Kluwe said onTwitter.

Well they’re not going to mess with a football player, are they. He might hit them.



  1. Athywren says

    Apparently the media corruption they’ve been worried about all this time is the possibility of women being willing to interact with them. Now that no woman anywhere in the world will ever be willing to talk to a self-identified gamer (yeah, thanks for that) their work is done, and they can fuck off back to whatever hellscape they crawled out of.

  2. Al Dente says

    My favorite quote from Kluwe’s rant:

    In fact, #Gamergaters, if your concern really was ethics, the very first thing you would be saying about this whole mess is, “Holy shit, get these fucking misogynistic creeps away from us. Let’s find a different hashtag to assemble under RIGHT FUCKING NOW.” You’d be doing everything in your power to make sure the legitimate cause you’re concerned about wasn’t hijacked or used as a shield by those with no other agenda than to make women and minorities afraid, simply because they can. You wouldn’t defend the oppression of someone simply based on their gender (because let’s be real honest here, I haven’t seen a single #Gamergater go after Activision, or Ubisoft, or Rockstar), and you definitely wouldn’t concoct ever-more wild conspiracy theories to support your increasingly flawed view of reality.

    (My personal favorite is that a combination of a secret cabal of power-mad journalists are working with the world-threatening feminist agenda in order to remove the purity of video games, because Obama and Jews. That’s a good look, people. Very convincing. I’m surprised you couldn’t work chemtrails in there somehow.)

    Kluwe has the gamergaters’ number.

  3. says

    It all comes down to the lines being drawn between power and poweless, and those defining what is “power.”
    Well, if you’re helping disempower others, sooner or later you’ve got a problem – otherwise you need to explain why it’s necessary.

  4. says

    Felicia Day? They’re targeting fucking Felicia Day now?

    You know what… I tried to be nice. I helpfully supported GG supporters who were being doxxed. I highlighted a positive experience I had with them. And not because I don’t care about the doxxing of Zoe, Anita, and Brianna. Those were fucked up enough, but I had so many telling me “it’s not us! It’s trolls! Look we’re trying to found out who’s doing this ti them, too!” that I wanted to believe them.

    I was wrong. I’m a fucking idiot for believing them even a tiny little bit. First they “find” a Brazillian journalist who probably was one of Anita’s harassers and then turn him into a scapegoat. And now they go after Felicia Day. I kind of hate myself right now for falling for it. Fuck me. And fuck them.

  5. says

    A little bit of bright news:

    Worth running the text through Swedish -> English on Google Translate. My interest in this is that Massive was the last studio I worked at and David Polfeldt, my ex-boss, is a friend. He’s also a sincere man and I believe this is a genuine effort he’s making to try and recruit more women to his studio. Certainly, of all the studios I’ve worked at in the games industry, it is one of the most progressive.

  6. says

    I think Kluwe’s “Holy shit, get these fucking misogynistic creeps away from us. Let’s find a different hashtag to assemble under RIGHT FUCKING NOW” is a little naive. It won’t work. A lot of people tried to do exactly that under the banner of Atheism+, and look what happened to them.

    And then there are those of us who stuck with atheism and instead chose to fight back against the misogynistic shits, and look what’s happening there: it turns out that misogynistic shits will just throw yet more shit at you, and a whole lot of non-misogynistic shits (hi, Michael!) will stand back and accuse you of causing the shit-storm.

  7. John Horstman says

    rorschach@ #7: Was the irony of saying you stay away from atheists on an atheist blog comments roll intentional or are you really that self-unaware?

    @PZ #9: It’s a bit different. The ‘gaters latched onto a hashtag that was originally and explicitly created as part of a harassment campaign against Zoe Quinn; the “-gate” i.e. “scandal” being referenced is her supposed sexual infidelity with Nathan Grayson (though she wasn’t dating Gjoni at the time) and supposed sex-for-review trade (which never happened as Grayson never reviewed the game). A+ was created as a social justice movement. The question Kluwe is posing is the same one I always pose: why, if you’re actually concerned about ethics, did you decide to rally around a hashtag dedicated to harassment instead of making one related to ethics? He’s pointing out that it means they are not and never have been arguing in good faith; the fact that the A+ crowd DID go make their own space instead of, say, joining a Penn Jillette fan club while claiming they cared about social justice is a demonstration that they are/were acting in good faith. The misogynist creeps clearly wouldn’t leave everyone alone if they had made their own hashtag under which to organize, but the fact that they didn’t in the first place and instead glommed onto a harassment campaign exposes the cover lie for what it is. That’s the point of that bit as I read it, and I’m reasonably certain it’s the intent, given the context.


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