Quantcast

News

Felicia Day Doxxed 50 Minutes After Writing on Gamer Gate

on

Well that didn’t take long. After finally breaking her silence on Gamer Gate last night, Felicia Day found herself the subject of doxxing. Doxxing, for the uninitiated, is when one’s personal and private information is placed on the internet (usually on comments, or Twitter, or what have you). This also tends to open up the victims to a very wide manner of harassment. It’s what sent Anita Sarkeesian and Brianna Wu out of their homes.

What Felicia Day wrote is depressing, quite frankly. It’s something that I know many people feel, but not many have articulated. In her post she mentions how for the first time, she’s not proud of the word “gamer”. In fact, it’s a group she’s now unsure if she feels welcome in. What sparked this post is her walking down the street in Vancouver and seeing two guys wearing gamer shirts (one for Halo, the other for Call of Duty). Instead of feeling proud and talking to them, she crossed to the other side of the street. In her own words,

“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. Because after all the years of gamer love and inclusiveness, something had changed in me. 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.”

 

This is a subject she’s avoided really interfacing directly with, for many reasons including the obvious harassment ones. That incident quoted above is what inspired Felicia Day’s post. She explained how it made her feel and how finally she just couldn’t even remain silent anymore. She had to voice her thoughts on the matter. While the piece can sound depressing, it’s also in its own way uplifting. She is careful to state her fears, yet also provide encouragement. “So I write this to urge any person, male or female, who now has the impulse to do what I did, to walk away from something they love before, to NOT. Don’t let other people drive you away from gaming.

“I am terrified to be doxxed for even typing the words “Gamer Gate”.”

Her post inspired many, and as of publication has received almost 36,000 notes on Tumblr, almost all of them in support. That is a point Felicia herself if very quick to point out, adding on Facebook,

“I posted this essay yesterday afternoon on Tumblr. Yes, personal information was leaked shortly after, but the better thing to concentrate on is that the majority of replies were overwhelmingly kind and supportive on social media. It gives me hope we can heal the world of games a bit. It needs it.”

That’s a positive outlook I can absolutely get behind, and my respect for Felicia Day has only grown. She is an amazing woman, and an amazing icon in the gaming scene. Of course, though, we also need to consider and condemn those who have been doxxed. While there are some in the movement who say Gamer Gate is about ethics in journalism, we must also consider the fruits of the movement’s labor. Women have been driven out of their homes due to death threats and personal information has been posted online. While it’s easy to say “this isn’t about feminism or attacking women,” that seems to be exactly what’s happening because of it. Real breaches of ethics either haven’t been uncovered, or are totally ignored unless it’s by a woman, or what members of Gamer Gate are referring to as social justice warriors. When men do stand up, the response is starkly different. Chris Kluwe, former punter for the Minnesota Vikings and general gamer who takes swearing to another level, write a piece for Medium explaining his thoughts on Gamer Gate, and they aren’t pretty. Extra Credits, the popular YouTube channel for educational videos about games, also wrote their own condemnation of the Gamer Gate movement. So far neither one of them have been doxxed to my knowledge. Kluwe even went so far as to call out the movement on that fact.  

That disparity needs to be addressed, and to a degree the Reddit home of Gamer Gate, /r/KotakuInAction has been attempting to condemn doxxing, specifically the doxxing of Felicia Day. The attempt is admirable, and anyone trying to prevent harassment is trying to do at least some good. Their message against corruption on games journalism is also something worth hearing. We, as consumers, need to be aware of the biases and the flow of money from the games industry to the press and how that effects what we read and buy. It should also be noted that within a minute of Felicia Day getting doxxed, there were immediate cries to flag the comment and remove it.

A call for a report on the comment was made within the minute.

Don’t get me wrong, either. the anti-Gamer Gate side isn’t innocent either. Poor GamersGate.com, a game reseller site, has been threatened for having a name even remotely similar to the movement.The Fine Young Capitalists also saw their campaign hacked, and one member of the organization doxxed by the movement before Gamer Gate was officially a thing. It seems no side is coming out on top in this debate.

The Gamer Gate issue is a complicated one, though I will say the encouraging words of Felicia Day, and the slowly evolving narrative against doxxing on both sides is a positive step forward to at least some form of resolution. With Felicia Day doxxed, however, a lot more sympathy has been added to the anti-Gamer Gate side of the debate. We will see how this turns out, and what will come in the future.

If you enjoyed this article, please consider contributing to our Patreon campaign!

About Stephen Crane

Stephen was hooked by the NES at a very young age and never looked back. He games on a daily basis and is currently trying to climb his way up the ranked ladder on League of Legends! Outside of the video game world he actually likes running and owns a rapidly growing collection of toed shoes. Stephen Crane is the owner of Armed Gamer.

Recommended for you