Even though I am not a gamer, I read with interest an Op-Ed piece in today's NY Times about ugly developments in the video game field, particularly in the area of game criticism and the rough way that game fans have threatened and otherwise gone after game critics.
The article, "Can Video Games Survive? The disheartening GamerGate Campaign", written by Chris Suellentrop is here (http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/26/opini ... paign.html) describes a sort of mob rule where conservative, misogynistic bullies are threatening and harassing game critics and designers, especially women.
While I haven't gotten anywhere near the level of hatred, threats and harrassment described in this article, I have seen some inkling of some of this in responses to my own movie reviews. I wonder if others have, too?
One sentence from this article caught my eye in particular: "To me, these anti-intellectual players, who want games to be 'just games' and want criticism of them to be devoid of things like political and social context, are almost as worrisome as the horrifying, and criminal, actions of the harassers." This is certainly something I've run across. The idea that you can't criticize a movie because it is "just a move" is just as illogical as it is prevalent in a society where critical thinking seems to have all but disappeared.
I hope that I never personally experience anything close to the level of "GamerGate" as described in this article.
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- Name: Kristen Lopez
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As a woman following these proceedings - as well as the issues rising within book blogging communities too - I'm very concerned. I review both films and books associated with films and I think I've subconsciously tried to be "neutral" in my reviews for fear of someone taking it the wrong way. I haven't gotten any level of hatred compared to someone like Anita Sarkeesian, but I've received hateful comments attacking my gender or ethnicity for not loving certain classic films (you should have seen the lambasting I got for not adoring Gone With the Wind). It's a very scary world for online criticism at the moment.
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