Good Bye from GamerGate.txt

An archive of @gamergatetxt’s farewell twitlonger

This account is getting closed permanently in 24 hours. I don’t know what happens to twitlongers when the account closes down. Please archive this and share the text if you somehow manage to still agree after reading this.

@gamergate.txt was once the combined work of 3 people. Of them, only one reminds: The gal that you’d usually see making tweets / replies enclosed in [ ] instead of doing this account’s actual job. The other two members just didn’t spend too much time contributing and eventually got tired.

As you may have noticed, this account hasn’t been very active in the recent months and now it uses roundteam to automatically RT tweets. This drop in usage was due to I being unable to allocate energy. Browsing GamerGate for things to share is a very tiring and frustrating task. Specially as of late, the group has really gone full fringe. I think this feeling started when they made defending 8chan’s child porn part of their platform.

Starting now even the auto-RT is getting disabled. The reason will be controversial and many of the fans of this account are going to hate the following paragraphs.

TL;DR: Anti-GG no longer feels like a safe place for someone like me.

Q: Hey TXT, what do you mean by Anti-GG? You said Anti-GG was a straw man, disorganized, etc.

A: There was a time when GamerGate tried to create a myth of a monster equivalent to it in the opposing side. That concept of Anti-GG was never true. But as the months passed something which can be called Anti-GG did materialize. A group that has created strong links between them. Strong opposicion to GamerGate is the thing that rallies them together. This group has amassed impressive levels of influence in activism circles by attacking GamerGate. This is not the same as the laughable argument from GamerGate that lumps together everyone who has ever opposed them.

Q: So you are pro-GG now?

A: Of course not. GamerGate is a hateful mob of reactionaries that for the most part don’t even care about video games as much as they care about the status quo. GamerGate men are misogynists. GamerGate white people are racist. GamerGate cis people are violently transphobic. GamerGate straight people are homophobic. GamerGate non-black people of color are anti-black. GamerGate abled bodied/minded people are ableist. As a whole the group has less difficulty welcoming the support of Nazies than they have maybe considering that a trans woman might be right in calling Milo out for his incredibly overt, anti-scientific, hateful transphobia. Speaking of TFYC / Baldwin / Milo / Rogue / Kern / Biscuit and the like: I have a message for you: If you keep playing with fire, you are eventually going to burn yourself or get someone burned. When that happens will you be able to live with yourself? Who am I kidding? For some of you it already happened, you’ve already burned some people.

Q: Then what’s your problem with Anti-GG?

GamerGate started in August 2014 as a massive campaign to make Zoe Quinn an example. Taking advantage of a blog post from an ex boyfriend that we would later find was a domestic abuser. The first main reason behind the attacks was that Quinn once dared to make a video game that threatened the status quo in regards of the question “What’s a video game”. The second main reason was that on top of that she dared to have a sex life and agency of her own. The supposed fake reason was an “ethics” tale that accused Quinn of trading sex for a positive review score. This accusation was initially, intended to exploit misogynistic narratives about women. Even more damning was to find out that the positive review does not exist. But the campaign gained track aided by 4chan and TumblrInAction. The Fine Young Capitalist a one-man faux “Feminist” “Charity” took advantage of this by blaming the PR debacle that destroyed his game jam earlier that year on Quinn. Riding on this hatred he was able to recover monetarily and rebuild. Adam Baldwin would later get contacted by notable stalker and awful person “FartToContinue” about Anita Sarkeesian and also this accusation. Baldwin would share the story using a hashtag that at the time seemed like a bad joke: #GamerGate. Although there was nothing out of the ordinary in the take down campaign itself, the mascot, the hash tag and later the logo created a need for PR. Needing to mantain the “Ethics” campaign, GamerGate became a witch hunt for feminists and SJWs and later GG opponents in general.

When GG was trying to build PR and spreading propaganda, I started this account so I could let GamerGate’s own words and actions speak for themselves. I wasn’t the only one. Eventually I learned that a TXT account is supposed to be funny so I tried to grab unintentionally funny statements from GG but do something serious once in a while. This made the account popular although I am not sure how much of the popularity was from gamergaters not being aware I was copy pasting their own tweets to mock them. The priority was to let people know how bad this is. I’m being honest when I say that one of the initial reasons I did this in a new account rather than using my actual identity was to avoid building a media presence from this. I must admit though that later I found th greatest benefit was protecting my identity from GamerGate’s revenge attacks.

Those times are long gone and the situation changed in a gradual but now easily noticeable way. It’s been a while now but I think it’s no longer needed to prove GamerGate are bad. All media coverage except extreme right wing outlets acknowledge this. Even GamerGate’s own resources make the truth very evident. Any person who takes a look to deepfreeze and doesn’t instantly recognize it as a childish hit list was probably destined to be a supporter anyway. GamerGate is now a political corpse. Screen-capping gamergate to show how bad they are has become the equivalent of exhuming a corpse and showing it to people. I know, I am highly guilty of this. I am very sorry. There’s a difference between documenting abuse you or your friends receive and just taking any conversation between gamergaters and spreading the screen cap around. All this does is ruffle feathers. GamerGaters will likely strike back not attacking you but someone marginalized. Even worse, you are basically spreading their message instead of letting it stay in the fringe. Is this a meaningful contribution? Is this what we should be doing with our time? Rather than actually supporing the marginalized voices in gaming?

Once again, I am in no way talking about documenting abuse. It is very necessary to keep receipts of what GamerGate are doing. But is it necessary to keep making this content viral in twitter so that everyone looks including those who don’t want more exposure to this? If you are being victimized by GG, this complaint is not to you, feel free to react to the attack in whatever way you consider more appropriate. This also doesn’t mean we shouldn’t support people receiving GamerGate abuse. In fact, what I’d like to see is more support for people rather than just using the abuse to score in the fight against GamerGate.

But those are only thoughts and doubts I’ve had for a while. The real reason for removing this account is what people are doing with the political positioning they are acquiring through attacking GamerGate. It has been a very awful ride for me and some friends in the past months. It feels like to the Anti-GamerGate hammer, all nails are GamerGate. The influence acquired is getting used to dismiss voices. The toxicity that has been added by Anti-GG is not something that is turning out a positive experience to me. This is not something I can support anymore. Among the voices being dismissed are people that were victimsand/ or big opponents of GamerGate early on. This is a fact that keeps getting erased.

Many things were said about people acting like the worst strawmen from GamerGate. I have to say something. To me the worst strawmen from GamerGate weren’t a dislike for capitalism or being uncompromising. To me the worst strawmen GamerGate created of the people they target are:

  • Exploiting tragedy for profit and or political positioning.
  • - “#notyourshield” aka privileged people talking over marginalized people while defending them.
  • - Hypocricy.

— — Final points — -

  • Don’t let anyone twist this into me saying that GamerGate and “Anti-GamerGate” are equivalent evils. They are very different. One is a fringe hate group / witch hunt. The other is a structure that has formed inside activist circles. The methods by which they can harm people are very distinct. And again, I’m not talking about all people who are opposed to GamerGate. Also, Anti-GamerGate is something that we can blame GamerGate for. They were the ones who created this vile climate of fear.
  • Once again. I’m not saying we shouldn’t oppose GamerGate. When you catch them harassing someone, be helpful and supportive. When GamerGate try to pull any new culture jamming, defend against it. If they attempt to bomb a good hashtag, defend it. I’m arguing about the approaches being used.
  • The end of this is not to take down GamerGate. They are a sympton not a cause. If you want to really harm GamerGate, make Gaming and Geek spaces in general more inclusive. Besides of defending against negativity we need to spread positive things. Build support networks.
  • Spend some of that energy and money in supporting marginalized game developers and journalists.