An examination of Brianna Wu’s Wikipedia article
Since I already ripped apart the lies, bullshit, blatant agenda pushing, and outright COI that RationalWiki’s page on GamerGate claims had, I got bored and have decided to tear apart another piece of utter horseshit: the vanity page of Brianna Wu, an indie developer of a middling iOS game that had lackluster sales, has gone an absurdly long time past multiple deadlines to be re-released, and from what I’ve seen on Twitter, it still looks like the same game, just with a lot of lighting effects splashed on top and mildly changed character models, but is what I predict will still be the same piece of crap that was panned by anyone Wu didn’t pay to shill for it or had connections to.
But I’m here to prove why Wu’s vanity publishing is POS by Wikipedia standards, and since that corrupt hellhole is intent on pushing a narrative that has repeatedly been battered down by even the most casual scrutiny, I guess it falls to me to expose this BS for what it is, so here we go:
https://archive.is/APkRn (Archive.is Link, because I refuse to reward Wikipedia for aiding and abetting this con artist)
Brianna Wu is an American video game developer. She cofounded Giant Spacekat, an independent video game development studio with Amanda Warner in Boston, Massachusetts. She is also a blogger and podcaster on matters relating to the video game industry.
We already run into problem with the first two sources: The first source is by someone who is clear friends with Wu, as shown here:
The latest Tweets on @riding_red spacekatgal. Read what people are saying and join the conversation.twitter.com
Of course, no mention of this COI is evident at all. Wikipedia, you have rules for this sort of COI level bullshit, follow your own rulebook.
The second source goes to Isometric, a podcast which Wu has an active stake in. Primary source Wikipedia, you need a reliable secondary source here, this is clear promotional sourcing. The proof can be found here:
5by5 is anAmerican Internet broadcasting network created byDan Benjamin that creates, distributes, and broadcasts web…archive.is
Brianna Wu was raised in Mississippi by adoptive parents. She grew up in an entrepreneurial environment, as her father was a retired US Navy doctor who opened his own clinic, and her mother ran a series of small businesses.
This source is damned as promotional bullshit by this line:
Powered by Squarespace. ©2013 Glenn Fleishman.
NewDisruptors 84: Depth Takes a Holiday with Amanda Warner and Brianna Wuarchive.is
Gleen Fleischmann is a personal friend of the Wu family, easily verifiable on Twitter. No mention of this COI anywhere.
This source looks acceptable enough, but needs a supplementary secondary source to back it up since the first one is clear sponsorship.
The article claims “Objective coverage”. My ass.
See above for proof, where Wu and several other fellow travelers are trying to name and shame the same editorial that did not reveal the writer of the Wu interview is well acquainted with Wu to begin with for having the audacity to have someone onboard who wrote material they don’t like.
Why, you ask? Because they defied “womyn in gaming are harassed by GAMERGATE narrative” and thus he’s a harasser too. Apparently, when they glorify people like Wu, they are good, but when they publish material Wu doesn’t like, they are evil.
In 2003 she enrolled at the University of Mississippi, studying journalism and political science. At the age of 19, she formed a small animation studio to create an animated pilot episode. The venture was unsuccessful, resulting in her withdrawal from college and a move to Washington, DC to work in political fundraising for several years. She later returned to college to finish her degree in investigative journalism, then worked as a journalist until she was inspired by the release of the iPhone to work as a graphical designer and create a videogame. In 2008, she married Frank Wu, four-time winner of the Hugo Award for Best Fan Artist. In 2010, she co-founded the company “Giant Spacekat” with Amanda Stenquist Warner, adding Maria Enderton as lead
Factual, but source is promotional and mostly parrots Wu own description of Revolution 60.
In July 2013 the company ran a Kickstarter campaign to fund a PC release of the game in addition to the iOS version. The fundraiser brought in $12,728, over 250% of the original $5,000 goal. The game, created with the Unreal Engine for a total budget of a few hundred thousand dollars, was released for iOS devices in July 2014. Wu, who described the sci-fi themed action-adventure as “Heavy Rain mixed with Mass Effect”, was credited as head of development.
No major issues here, except for the fact a lot of this crap has never been proven to be GamerGate related.
The game features female protagonists, said to echo the founders of the game studio.
Singular would be more accurate, as none of the people who worked on this with Wu are employed by Giant Spacekat at present, so it would be more accurate to say they are Wu’s self inserts.
The Guardian describes it as “a cartoonish science fiction adventure for smartphones, notable for its all-female cast and cinematic story, a rarity on mobile platforms.” One reviewer on Pocket Gamer called it intelligent and “hugely entertaining”. Another cited some issues with pacing and a heavily linear storyline, but overall found it “enjoyable and compelling.”
The last source has some of that nasty COI rearing it’s head:
The latest Tweets on CraigGrannell spacekatgal. Read what people are saying and join the conversation.twitter.com
As can be clearly seen, Wu is quite friendly with Mr. Grannell on Twitter, no disclosure is provided.
Wu is co-host of the weekly Isometric podcast on Relay FM. The podcast was launched in May 2014 and covers the video game industry. Wu also writes essay and opinion pieces about feminism and antagonistic attitudes towards women in game development.
Two problems: No secondary confirmation, and no citations to articles Wu has written. There ARE articles written and/or co-written by Wu on various sites in the vein described above, why not link one or two as examples for context?
Oh yeah, forgot, they are listed in the section towards the end of the article, but providing an immediate citation to one would make this look a lot less like a puff piece.
And now we’re getting to my favorite piece, the Horseshit.txt that is Wu claims of GamerGate wanting to kill their sorry ass. I’ll do my best to rip apart the BS as dispassionately as possible, but hot flash, idiots who believe that: Wu is such a hilarious failure GGers get far more comedy out of Wu ALIVE. Wu’s death would just create a martyr, which is what Wu wants, and as far as I know, no one in GamerGate has ever seriously advocated the death of our opposition, their failure as living beings serves our purposes much better. But I digress.
Okay, not bad sources per se, though the HuffPo one clearly wears a bias on it’s sleeve.
Okay, let’s cover each source one at a time:
The Boston Globe takes a clear side here, but otherwise decent source.
The Washington Post takes a clear side too, but adequate.
The MSNBC source is decent.
Ugh, Gawker, but still, it actually does mention some actual facts despite the clear stance it takes, props for that, but very little about Wu that isn’t covered in the other sources. It’s a bad source due to having little relevance to the immediate subject, not because of bias.
The Kotaku one is just horrible, because Totilo is an open friend of Wu, easily verifiable by checking their Twitter interactions, no COI mentions at all. On the other hand, it’s better than the Gawker source on the relevancy front.
The Polygon one isn’t bad on the relevancy side of things, but I notice no source is ever listed proving that law enforcement was never able to verify a threat. Of course, it defies the narrative an assassin wants Wu dead and is connected definitely to GamerGate, which even this source cannot prove due to not having access to the police report at the time of its filing, though later findings when law enforcement did care to comment did not confirm the claims Polygon is talking about here, and in fact outright denied any threat was verifiable.
Of course, Wikipedia won’t dare mention this in a vanity article, but let’s move on.
While she was monitoring 8chan’s pro-Gamergate chanboard (/gg/), anonymous users posted sensitive personal information about her, including at least one post containing her address. Subsequently, Wu began receiving multiple, specific rape and death threats including her address, forcing Wu to flee her home. These threats have been widely attributed to Gamergate supporters.
ATTRIBUTED, but these sources cannot PROVE IT. Throw in obvious bias, and that last line would be more honestly rendered: These threats have been widely attributed to Gamergate supporters, though no corroborating evidence verifiable by law enforcement has been forthcoming.
“I was literally watching 8chan go after me in their specific chatroom for Gamergate,” she told Kotaku in an interview. “They posted my address, and within moments I got that death threat.”
Weird, no proof 8chan did this, we just have to take Wu’s word for it, and wow Wu, you knew within moments? Mind letting us know how you got a tip to check 8chan and know within moments when you were in danger?
I digress again. The first two sources parrot each other, again, no followup on Wu’s alleged leaving of home due to threats was disproven by law enforcement, and all they have are allegations, not PROOF. The third source merely contains a link to the Polygon source about Wu’s fleeing from home.
Stating that she would not be intimidated by the threats,
She ran from home, allegedly, sounds like Wu was pretty intimidated.
Wu continued as an outspoken and notable critic of Gamergate. Along with Anita Sarkeesian and Zoë Quinn, she is frequently cited by the media as one of the targets of the GamerGate campaign’s penchant for misogynistic, violent harassment of women in the gaming industry.
Citation fucking needed on GamerGate’s alleged misogyny. Wu could be male and I’d still resent Wu as a con artist, but I’d still condemn any attempt on Wu’s life, health, and safety, as would any other GGer. Also, last source is a massive COI, Singal is a friend of Wu, and you guessed it, the lying sack of shit does not disclose his COI, and yes, dammit, lies of omission are still lies.
She has begun a legal defense fund for women targeted by Gamergate, and the Wu family is offering a $11,000 reward for identifiable information leading to the prosecution of those who have sent her death threats.
Props to the first source, it does adequate disclosure. Good job for being honest!
Second source Wu has moonlighted for as an author for, biased as hell. Maddy Myers, one of their writers, is a good friend of Wu’s. On top of the COI bit, The Mary Sue is a radical feminist blog without even the pretense of not having a bias.
Third source is decent.
First source has links where the guy who trolled Wu admits they are NOT a GGer and admits it was a non affiliated troll. Is this mentioned? NOPE!
Second source does confirm the first, but the bias is clear as day, and to it’s credit, the comments are ripping it’s BS a new asshole.
As of February 2015, she has received dozens of death threats over a five-month period,
That’s it? One fucking source? Don’t you need another confirmation source for this? On the other hand, at least it flat out admits Wu’s alleged flee from home worthy threat was not credible (which Wikipedia declines to mention)
deals with law enforcement at least one day a week, and only attends events in the U.S. with a security detail, but notes that because of the harassment “I’m one of the best-known women developers in the world today. That’s a fact. What’s funny to me is that by attacking me so viciously, they’re helping give me the visibility to usher in the very game industry they’re terrified about.”  In a September 2015 interview, Wu stated that she was “taking a step back” and no longer responding to hateful posts before blocking them.
Again, secondary source to confirm the first, where the hell is it? On the other hand, there is this bit of comic gold in the source:
“You sometimes tweet at individuals, too — people who’ve insulted you online. Why not ignore them?
If you look at Twitter lately, I almost always just block or mute people. I’ve kind of taken a step back. My biggest career fear is that Gamergate is all I’ll ever be known for.”
Wu was a NOBODY before GamerGate. Hell, remove all the Gamergate BS from the Wikipedia article on Wu, and it’s damn near a stub. Sorry Wu, even your vanity article makes it clear GamerGate is all you will ever be known for, and because your allies on Wikipedia chose what side of that they fell on, you have no choice but to accept that, even the defenders of your puff piece had to use that just to justify your article’s freaking existence.
- Revolution 60, July 2014 iOS game
- Wu, Brianna (2012). “SMOFs and Con Chairs: Ignore Videogames at Your Own Peril” (pdf). Argentus (12).
- Wu, Brianna (April 11, 2013). “Choose your character: Faced with change, an all-female indie dev team evolves to a higher form”. The Magazine (14).
- Wu, Brianna (April 24, 2014). “Why GitHub’s unconvincing investigation harms women in games development”. The Mary Sue.
- Wu, Brianna (July 22, 2014). “Opinion: No skin thick enough: The daily harassment of women in the game industry”. Polygon.
- Wu, Brianna (October 16, 2014). “It happened to me: I’ve been forced out of my home and am living in constant fear because of relentless death threats from Gamergate”. xoJane.
- Wu, Brianna (October 20, 2014). “Rape and death threats are terrorizing female gamers. Why haven’t men in tech spoken out?”. The Washington Post.
- Wu, Brianna (February 11, 2015). “I’m Brianna Wu, And I’m Risking My Life Standing Up To GamerGate”. Bustle.
One game, and bunch of op-ed piece mostly revolving around the same “GAMERGATE IS OUT TO GET ME!’ theme, which, according to Wu’s own words, is something they DIDN’T want to be all they were known for.
Great job keeping that promise.
I also notice that embarrassingly stupid “SAMUS ARAN IS TRANSSEXUAL” article is completely missing from your list of writings (ok, you co-wrote it, but you still had a lot to do with it).
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Conclusion: This is a highly biased puff piece clearly written to further Wu’s victim narrative, removes any hint of anything that might throw doubt on that, does not mention when one source disproves another (for the sources that are fairly decent), and over half the sources have massive COI issues.
In short, Wikipedia should be embarrassed to keep this dishonest piece of shit in it’s Article namespace as it currently stands.