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October 13th I posted an article on my view of #GamerGate. As an outsider I had only read the reports in the mainstream media, which made GamerGate out to be this misogynistic hate group of harassers who wanted to prevent women from altering their video games. So I wrote the article with this idea in mind, but giving these people the benefit of the doubt. This open-mindedness led the GamerGate community to reach out to me and to lead me to answer questions, as well as ask some of my own.

I realized that the well of GamerGate was a lot deeper than I had ever imagined. The first revelation was that harassment was extensive on both sides of the debate, with gaming reviewer King of Pol being doxxed, sent a knife, told to “please kill yourself” and sent a fire service, and Milo Yanniopoulos was sent a syringe full of mysterious fluid. It became obvious to me that the vast majority of harassment on both sides was carried out by internet trolls wishing to carry on the argument, gain exposure and dilute credibility.

That is when I went on HuffPoLive and talked about the experiences I’d had with the #GamerGate community. The truth was those who oppose it had shunned me, banned me from their forums and called me nasty things. The supporters had, with a few notable exceptions, welcomed me with open arms, answered my questions and lifted me high on a gold and velvet throne, simply for lending them my ears. I realised the movement was not how the papers had painted them out to be at all, but a downtrodden and yet ever plucky underdog.

I suffer from bipolar disorder, and while medicated, the rush of adrenaline from the adoration of the supporters of GamerGate simply for giving them a voice was enough to send my body into overdrive. I was taking prescription sleeping pills just to get 4 hours of sleep a night. My mind raced with ways I could help these people. My partner, who opposes GamerGate with every dark inch of his heart, and I fought frequently, in arguments that would last hours and well into the night. He was proud of my achievements, but also partly jealous and harbouring a lot of hatred and resentment for those who had elevated me.

It all culminated in a 2 hour bus ride where he bullied and berated me, for the entirety, simply for helping the supporters of, in his mind, a hate group. My tears couldn’t stop him, nor my constant pleas of “who are you? Because you are not the man I love.” I do not wish to demonise him here; he is not a bad person. He is an amazing and wonderfully supportive person. This situation only goes to show the passion and malice instilled deep in some of those who oppose GamerGate’s very existence.

Becoming a part of the whole GamerGate story has been tough on me. It stretched my body, it tested my relationship to its very limits, and it occupied my every thought, but a lot of good has come from it too. I’m finally getting noticed for my work, I’ve met thousands of amazing, inspiring people, and most importantly of all I am helping bring a voice to those who had been gagged and demonized by the mainstream.

Publications I have written for have been pressured into removing my articles,  because they should not give a voice to a “hate group;” I know David Pakman and HuffPoLive have experienced similar condemning feedback. I say they should be given a voice. If they are the hate group which the mainstream media paints them to be, then they will surely hang themselves with their own words. Just as giving Osama Bin Laden time on the news did nothing to boost his popularity, if GamerGate is a hate group terrorizing women within the industry and an entity as evil as ISIS, the KKK or ebola as I have seen it compared, then you have nothing to fear from their media attention.

If you believe that GamerGate is a consumer revolt trying to stamp out corruption in the media through boycotts of fraudulent websites, then the public at large has nothing to lose by giving them their right to speak in the press and possibly are given the hope that there will be less lies, collusion and corruption in our future media. Unless of course you are, or support, those fraudulent media outlets – the only people who can potentially collapse from GamerGate’s balanced exposure.

In the end it was all worth it. The average person still might not see the GamerGate movement for who they truly are: humans, but slowly the media is changing. Perception is changing over what is good or bad practice within the gaming industry, and maybe one day gaming will once again be about the developers, games and consumers and not simply those who choose to write about them.


Georgina Young

Contributor

British girl, currently in Japan. Surviving on a diet of retro games. Worshiping the god that is the Sega Megadrive. I like Nintendo.



  • NorBdelta

    I am so sorry for what you have been put through, it is completely unacceptable. It goes to show how the opposition to GamerGate is so willing to dehumanize us at every turn and in effect make us less than them regardless of message. Hallmarks of fascism.

    Reminds me heavily of The Lucifer Effect (Standford Prison Experiment) worth the read, or The Republic of Fear. Excellent books that describe in depth how to control and manipulate the minds of individuals, the psychology of evil, and how it is used against people.

    I have watched Anita, The Media, and a few other conduct themselves in the same manner Totalitarian Dictators would, manipulate the message against the innocent, abuse their power. Truly terrifying that this is occurring so overtly, it makes me worry for society. I will fight this evil at every possible turn.

  • Doc Hammer

    I had no idea the toll this was taking on you Georgina. I can’t put into to words how much your coverage is appreciated.

    But it pains me to hear that your relationship has been suffering because a ragtag group of internet dwellers is attempting to take on games media. I don’t know what problem your partner has with GamerGate; I don’t understand his hatred of people that I consider my friends, in spite of everything you’ve written and everything you know. You say he is supportive, but if he drove you to tears over this, I do not understand that either. My only hope is that he can put his hate aside for you, because you should not be suffering over this. The costs of this long war have already been too great.

  • Mermadesings

    This is a very brave piece, Georgina, especially since you’re discussing your private life.

    PS – If you want viewer pets, can you put an e-mail on the about page on youtube?

  • ArsVampyre

    I dearly hope things are ok for you. While I think #gamergate is important, that doesn’t mean your health and well-being are any less important. Please, take care of yourself.

  • Topgeartony

    Good read. GG has taken its toll on so many people.
    I do hope more people start looking at it like you have.
    I also hope that this isn’t the last gamergate piece from you, but I understand if someone is backing out.

  • Perplexico

    がんばってください, ジョージナさん!

  • Cire Padela

    I want to give you my most sincere and heartfelt Thank You for all of your efforts. You will forever have my appreciation for going through so much to help give us a voice. Again, thank you.

  • Bearpants112

    We will get through this as a gaming community, as we got through the Jack Thompson nonsense. The only question for me is how many of these passionate anti-gamers will go back to writing pointless diatribes about how corrupt the industry is and how much they want to reform it, once the opportunity to do so has passed.

    When we get to the nuts and bolts of #GamerGate, i think a lot of the animosity expressed by anti-GG people, especially games bloggers, is genuine embarrassment. For many years, we’ve been hearing from them about all the nasty stuff that goes on behind the scenes. Now that gamers have finally risen up to demand the change only previously talked about, the bloggers are in the uncomfortable position of being part of the machine they claimed to deplore. People in uncomfortable positions tend to lash out.

    I firmly believe that when this is all over, it will be hard to find anyone in the industry who will admit they opposed the reforms demanded by #GamerGate. Can the games bloggers swallow their pride and be part of the solution now instead of continuing to pretend they weren’t caught with their hands in the cookie jar?

  • Teutates

    so sorry to hear that 🙁 thank you for all your effort en pieces you written i really like your writing 🙂

  • David Weizades

    A very personal, quite emotional and honest account of your experience. If only more writers could be as tenacious and open as you we’d be done with GG by now.

    It’s extremely frustrating to see the media’s one-sided reports filled with misrepresentations, out-right lies and accusations while blocking you so you can’t even defend yourself. The stress takes it’s toll on my ulcers but some rest and Losec sorts it out.

    So thank you for giving us a chance and I hope it was worth it. 🙂

  • Damian Salcedo

    What an interesting story, keep the good work Georgina!

  • Bearpants112

    I’m sure most GamerGate supporters would be willing to forgive, even the nastiest comments, if it showed genuine willingness to reform the industry practices.

  • SevTheBear

    Wonderful article. I’m so sorry as well for what you have been though of hardship because of this debate. I can only say that you are a REAL BADASS who stands for what she believes in and have a clear view of things. NO ONE can ask for more. It’s because of women like you, that we have a voice and don’t stand alone in this. Thank you so much for all of you hard work.

  • Jonathan Roberts

    I can’t be thankful enough for your unyielding integrity throughout your coverage of gamergate, you and you’re colleagues at Techraptor are an example to be held up to others in your field. You chose the difficult path and went against the grain of popular opinion and rhetoric. any success garnered is well desereved and i wish you continued success in the future.

  • The Deuce

    I respect you enormously Georgie, more than ever after reading this. I didn’t realize how much you had sacrificed personally just for standing up for the truth, probably far more than the vast majority of people who were with the movement from day one. I know it’s been tough, but you’ve always our support. I’m sorry about your partner. I think a lot of people have their egos and sense of self-worth wrapped up in the notion that they’re fighting for social “justice” and their opponents are evil demons, so they become dogmatic about it and cannot let go of falsehoods even when the truth is standing next to them staring them in the face and they’re hurting the ones they love. I hope he comes around eventually. Thanks for all you’ve done.

  • benanov

    My wife isn’t much of a gamer, but she doesn’t care for the whole “easily offended” crowd that we’ve collectively called “SJWs” (heck, she’s even meaner to them than I am.)

    I can’t imagine what it’d be like to be in a relationship that crosses the lines. It has to be very hard on you, and if you need to step back, we understand.

  • The Deuce

    For the most part that’s true. A few like Ben Kuchera are well past any benefit of the doubt, and should be put out of the industry for good and never let back in no matter how they might try to ingratiate themselves.

  • Cole Pram

    Thanks Georgina,

    I understand where you’re coming from. I’ve had horrible fights with my older sister, who I respect very much, over GamerGate. I couldn’t have survived this without support from my wife, who is amazing, along with support from people who do have a larger voice like you.

    It kills me to say it because I love reading your articles, but I personally would completely understand if at this point you wanted to step away from GamerGate and pursue some other avenues of interest, your health is more important.

    Please do whatever you feel is best for **YOU**

    I’ll carry on, I don’t think I could quit now if I tried ^_^

  • E-Bon

    While I’m not very good at expressing myself in any medium, I do wish to express my thanks to you for this article and all the other things you’ve done to shine a light on the aspects of GamerGate that others ignore.

  • Reptile

    Thank you for being a supporter! I really love to read your articles, Based George.
    Don’t worry about your partner, he sooner or later will realize where the reason belongs and that GamerGate side isn’t the monster they paint, just be patient and strong!

  • ☆L.E. Mental☆

    Jon, You listen good. As a man, who lost his gaming other to a brain Aneurysm, I think you better treat this woman with the love an respect she deserves. I am sure you are a well meaning guy deep down, who has let the SJW doctrine tickle your ear, but, nothing is worth losing the one you love.

    Sorry if this was a bit too deep for in internet comment board.

  • n2xotps

    I am not a doctor, or a psychiatrist, but no matter how important a movement looks like for us, or how much we like to help people, in my opinion it’s not worth ii if it affects our health and the relationships with people around us. I hope you and your partner are OK, although from your words it looks like it will be very hard to repair that relationship (and I am rooting for you, because as I said gamergate or any other cause doesn’t worth it over our relationships).

  • Arbitrary

    Please don’t back out.

    Don’t let your fucking boyfriend win.

  • ExDeath730

    I’m very sorry to hear about the toll GamerGate is taking in your private life, Georgina, and i hope that you and your partner can move on in a good way after all this is said and done, because really, politics is just too little to get in the way of love.

    I’m on this on day one, and i thank you for how you gave us a chance to show what we truly want and what we truly are, we’re just people fighting for something that in today world full of corruption and collusion is probably alien to a lot of people. We’re fighting for Ethics and the Truth, it’s amazing how Journalism lost it’s way.

    But…In the end it doesn’t matter, if there’s something i noticed is that with every pathetic antic they try to pull, we get stronger, more neutrals lend their support, and people like me that is fighting since the start of all this feel the fire rising even more. We’re gonna win, it’s just a matter of time, and we’re gamers, we’re used to win.

  • DoxBait

    I really hope your man mans up and starts treating you like an equal. It’s one thing to disagree with your partner passionately. It’s another thing entirely to bully them. To be honest, I’d expect him to adopt a more neutral stance towards GamerGate simply because you do. If my wife suddenly registered for the Republican party, I’d be angry, but I’d also assume she’s got to have some sort of reason for doing so. She’s intelligent, thoughtful, and empathetic. I’d be a fool to not reevaluate the situation, trying to see what it is she found and I missed. Digging in my heels, assuming she was stupid, careless, or immoral would be incredibly disrespectful.

  • Ricardo Lima

    Im sorry this has been grueling for you, it should not have been. We are not a hate group and you have nothing to apologize for.

    You stood for your believes and we are grateful for it. We know and will remember it Georgina.

    We are thousands and from all over the world we are with you and you are not alone.

  • Bearpants112

    As a Republican married to a Democrat, I can attest to the ability to strongly disagree without bullying/belittling.

  • GEhotpants101 .

    ” My tears couldn’t stop him, nor my constant pleas of “who are you? Because you are not the man I love.””

    That part worries me a little bit. I don’t understand how hearing someone you love ask you that you could go on. If my boyfriend asked me “what happened to the woman I love?” I’d be stopped dead in my tracks. How could you not see you’ve become consumed by something that’s not necessarily good for you after hearing that from someone who knows you so intimately?
    I worry for what this is doing to your relationship and health, and I worry for exactly what’s happening to make people so against GamerGate it drives them to berate people they profess to love for hours. It disturbs me to hear about that…and the worst part is it isn’t the first time I’ve heard of relationships taking a turn like this from GamerGate. How can someone look at someone they love and respect and turn so suddenly like that because of certain disagreements? How could seeing someone they respect and love come to a conclusion that something isn’t all bad, and rather lump their loved one into a hate group instead of taking a second look at the matter?
    Thank you for your support, Georgina. In my opinion, you shouldn’t have to have gone through so much to give it, but that just makes us all more thankful for it. We love your support, but I think as the comment section has made pretty clear, we’d rather you think of your health before us. Do what’s right for you, George, we’ll be behind you.

  • Sad to hear it had such a negative impact.
    Honestly, I cant imagine any loved one of mine bullying me for a difference of opinion (except my Mum :3), and I am a contrarian in many ways (I drink regularly with my uncle and engage in vigorous debate on religion, politics, and social issues. He’s an old school working class guy, with plenty of prejudice and yet we always embrace and exchange “love you” when we part)

    First thing I say to anyone engaging with gamergate is the warning of how bad things can get.
    As important as I think it is, I think placing ideas above people is ALWAYS a bad idea. That’s what makes our opponents so shitty without even being aware of it themselves.
    They ideas are more important than the people they oppose.

    Stay strong, and I hope your significant other wakes up and realises exactly what he did.
    If he’s the good man you believe he is (and I genuinely believe good people can make mistakes and mistreat others without being beyond redemption :P) then the make up might be worth the tears, right?

    Thanks for your professionalism <3
    Lets hope it rewards you appropriately!

  • Jakelongdown

    I’m sorry to hear about the way it’s messed up your life, i agree with other people that Gamergate isn’t worth ruining your relationship over. That being said it’s a shame that sites like ABC will never take a look at the comments below mine, nothing much more need to be said about gamergate being a “mysoginistic hate group” having read them

  • The problem will come when aGGros pretend they “won” or that they only ever opposed gamergate because of “the trolls in the hashtag”

    There’s gonna be a LOT of lies and claims of neutrality eventually.

    True shame is a lot of people showed themselves to be cowards or VERY tribal.
    Lots of “ecelebs” and journalists have opposed gamergate *exclusively* because of personal friendships.
    I dunno about you, but even with people I love the most I don’t *assume* they are always right.
    Sometimes people are angry at those I love with perfectly legitimate reasons. Doesn’t mean I have to be angry with them too, but doesn’t mean I should defend them automatically.

    Plenty of “professionals” could stand to learn that lesson.
    Their thinking is what makes feuds last generations and is responsible for much of the hate and intolerance in the world.

  • Dr_Zox

    Thanks for all the support and fighting the good fight,

    I am really surprised by your boyfriends reaction, and am wondering if it would do him some good to actually talk to some gamer gators

  • Ncrdrg

    Very sad to hear what you went through for your opinions on the gamergate controversy.

    What you’re describing here is the effect of dehumanization. A person can be good but when dehumanized, bad behavior becomes justified. I’m going to quote this piece: http://www.beyondintractability.org/essay/dehumanization

    “Once certain groups are stigmatized as evil, morally inferior, and not fully human, the persecution of those groups becomes more psychologically acceptable. Restraints against aggression and violence begin to disappear. Not surprisingly, dehumanization increases the likelihood of violence and may cause a conflict to escalate out of control. Once a violence break over has occurred, it may seem even more acceptable for people to do things that they would have regarded as morally unthinkable before.”

    Now, obviously, we’re not in the realm of physical violence but this psychology enables individuals opposing GamerGate or individuals that hate feminists for that matter, to justify themselves that doing bad things are okay because those people, they’re bad people, they’re evil scum. So bullying is okay, doxing them is fair game and calling their jobs to have them fired is just desserts.

    I hate Brianna Wu for example but I would never rejoice at seeing her harassed or go tweeting her home address. Even if she convinces herself we’re terrorists and that no moral person can be part of gamergate. Never fall for this logic that she’s not human. It leads to a dark road, one I have no wish to ever visit.

  • Brian Hall

    Simply put: Based Georgina is a hero.

  • biztron

    Sorry, Georgi. We’re forever in your debt for speaking up on our behalf.

  • juicyhopfrog

    You’ve always seemed like neutral reporter who just stated a more rational and honest presentation on #gamergate based on what you saw. Sadly, being neutral isn’t an option for those that have a vested interest in labeling us in the most extreme and false terms. While many in the tag have gone or were anon, you have shown incredible integrity and bravely by simply doing your job. I honestly had to pause typing to let that last idea sink in. But that’s what this entire situation has become.

    In my life of 30 years, I have never personally come across a mindset like what I’ve seen in the “anti’s” mind. A zealous and self righteousness that seems to make them incapable of neutral discussion and very capable of hurting anyone they see as not in complete and total agreement of their ideology. And they are becoming more dangerous everyday. I have lost two friends over this, one I felt was mostly rational and was always up for a heated debate over a few pints. Something changed him, and with an unusual speed.

    I say the above to hopefully illustrate that you are not alone, but many of us are “supporters” of #gamergate and expect it. But it’s far from right that someone who just reports on the subject without a sharp bias should go through the harassment, threats, and damage to their personal life. I sincerely hope this gets better and want to thank you for looking at all this with a rational mind and objective eye. It is appreciated and should be valued by all.

  • Ellen J Miller

    There isn’t much I can say to that but thank you, Georgina.

    For me, I’m grateful for all the cool sites and wonderful people I’ve met due to GamerGate. My passion and pride as a gamer burns ever brighter. My Twitter feed surges with new people to talk about games and other cool things with. I just wish that came without people getting the treatment you and others have.

  • Wrds

    Georgina I’m so sorry you’ve had to go through what you have just for being open minded. I can only hope that the appreciation of the people you’ve helped represent is enough to mitigate some of the emotional turmoil you’ve experienced.

    All the best.

  • Psichaos

    It’s saddening to hear that there are some people who are unable to look into something with an objective mind and just buy the first thing they are told and treat it like a message from God. It’s doubly sad that your boyfriend is willing to ruin a loving relationship solely because you happen to support it. A truly caring partner would at the very least listen to your side even if they don’t agree with it. It’s upsetting that merely asking for the media to take some responsibility has turned into this war that has cost people their jobs, put their lives at stake, and even ruined relationships that were seemingly okay beforehand.

    Voltaire once said: “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” It seems especially apt here, as apparently we are not allowed to criticize the likes of Anita Sarkeesian or any of the journalists exposed in corruption, and we have been branded worst than terrorists, had various supporters source of funding pulled, barraged with DDoS attacks, and 8chan even had their domain seized for a time, just for having spoke out against them. And we are not even given even a minute to defend ourselves against the absurd claims these people make. Not only do they act like some of the worst dictators in history, but they’ve been given the power to act on it as well. As a free-speech and anti-censorship advocate myself outside of Gamergate, It’s horrifying to see our very media complicit and supportive of people who wish to stamp out freedom of speech for those who would oppose them. It’s important now more than ever for Gamergate to tough it out and prove to these people that no matter what they do, they cannot silence us. Not only for the sake of ethics in journalism, but for our freedom of speech as well.

  • defektiv

    Hope your partner can come around to at least tolerate us 😛

    Much support and keep up the good work!

  • peakage

    Bringin’ us the truth, no matter how bad it hurts:

    now THAT is fighting the good fight.

  • Erthwjim

    Your article sounds like you’re saying goodbye, let’s hope it’s just me reading into things too much. I’m sorry your bf acted the way he did, even if I disagree with my wife I would never berate her to the point of tears, at some point you just know when to fold them and agree to disagree. I won’t continue on with my opinions of your bf, because I’m sure you don’t want to hear it, but I can say I’m glad you’ve been one of the few voices of reason in the gaming media world, that you knew enough not to jump to conclusions and at least questioned the narrative that the mainstream gaming media was regurgitating. Gaming needs more writers like you and less like Ben Kuchera. We need modesty not elitism, and I think you bring that to the table. I won’t say you’re perfect, but no games writers are, but what you do that they don’t is strive to improve your skill and listen to your audience, you don’t think you know better than they do nor do you think that you are perfect. So for all of the above I thank you. For lack of a better phrase, thanks for keeping it real.

  • realgamer07

    Thanks for everything you have done for us georgi, we will never forget that, you my lady, are a BADASS. I would 100% understand if you want to step away from it. Take care and thank you. *Bows to you*

  • Wow, just wow. Don’t wanna meddle in your family affairs but if your partner acted to something like GG like that I think he needs some professional counseling because that kind of reaction is definitely not ok and out of proportions. As for media and GG, If other groups like KKK can go on public television and say whatever the fuck they want without reporters who interview them being pressured, harassed and fired then why not GG members. Its a prefect opportunity for anti-GG to show the world all them neckbearded mysogynerds filled with misogyny and sheer hatred sent by the devil himself :).

  • Markus9343

    I am extremely appreciative of all of your hard work Georgina, but, please do take care of yourself first. We all would be far more upset if you were hurt in anyway from this.

  • JCTXS

    Holy shit. I never knew you went through hell during those months. You sure didn’t show or express it. I didn’t even have any idea of your partner doing that, even during your exchanges on the casts. It didn’t show to me.
    It must have been the worst to not only go through the harassment but also feel that from your partner…

    I hope you are getting plenty of rest from this since it takes a huge toll on anyone and you were sacrificing sleep for it….

  • dsadsada

    “I suffer from bipolar disorder, and while medicated, the rush of adrenaline from the adoration of the supporters of GamerGate simply for giving them a voice was enough to send my body into overdrive. I was taking prescription sleeping pills just to get 4 hours of sleep a night….It all culminated in a 2 hour bus ride where he bullied and berated me, for the entirety”

    “Gamergate causes woman suffering from bipolar disorder to lose sleep. Leads to woman being publicly harassed and bullied.”

    Jokes aside, I’m sorry to hear about what happened to you. Maybe it’s because I value logic more than emotion but it makes no sense to me why a person would want to shut themselves off from the person they claim to love. I would think that after the initial spat, one would stop to let their loved one’s words sink in then take the time to really talk about it.

  • TeLin特林

    I’m sorry you’ve had issues in your personal life.

    I’ve had aimiliar arguments with my wife. She’s a feminist who took several woman studies course…sometimes feels its because the man at her work are sexist for why she isn’t given promotions…all the while other women (with more exp. Get those jobs…)

    -sigh-

    So I’ve stopped talking about GG

  • WTF Magazine

    Thanks for doing what you guys do
    We’re all a rambunctious bunch of spergs but we mean well