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An Open Letter to Silence Criticism

#221AsellusPosted 9/3/2014 1:31:24 PM
Geit posted...
Asellus posted...
I will freely grant that all of those claims are utterly ridiculous. I'd be a bit more impressed if they were sourced though.

They can all be found in the second half of her Women As Background Decoration: Part 1 video.


Alright, let's see if we can find them. There's a full transcript at http://www.feministfrequency.com/2014/06/women-as-background-decoration-tropes-vs-women/ so this should be easy to verify.

Claim:Several games are sexist because after killing female NPCs their bodies soon disappear. This is a mechanism put in by game developers to single out and objectify women.
"Their status as disposable objects is reinforced by the fact that in most games discarded bodies will simply vanish into thin air a short time after being killed." - no claim that this is behavior is unique to female NPCs though you're free to read this as an overreach of gameplay mechanics and engine limitations as they relate to sex-worker set dressing.

Claim: Fallout New Vegas is sexist because it singles out female NPCs by letting you kill female NPCs and drag their corpses around.
Nope. Does not seem to exist in any form. She does make a more generalized argument that sandbox games usually permit you to kill any non-essential character and that even if they don't actually do anything to reward the player for doing so the penalties they inflict are usually milquetoast "lie low for 30 seconds until everyone forgets about it" kind of deals if not actually a form of entertainment in their own right (ie, GTA police chases). She extends this into another argument that even if the game provides no incentive these characters are essentially designed to be disposable and that makes our "Bangkok street prostitute NPCs" into "*disposable* Bankgok street prostitute NPCs" which, make of it what you will, is still not misrepresenting either the game or game mechanics.

Claim: Sleeping Dogs is sexist because it singles out female sex worker NPCs to be beaten up by the player.

Again, no such specific reference.

Claim: Several games are sexist because they trivialize the murder of women by merely having authorities in-game go into temporarily high alert when you kill a female NPCs.

No claim that this behavior is unique to female NPCs.

Claim: Deus Ex: Human Revolution is sexist because it singles out female NPCs to be killed by the player.

Ditto.

Claim: Grand Theft Auto IV and Saints Row 3 are sexist because it singles out female NPCs to be killed by the player by making the female NPCs have loot for the player to collect after killing them.

Nope, no claim that this behavior is exclusive to female NPCs.

Claim: Hitman: Absolution is sexist because in one mission the game entices players to kill some female strippers, not only that but the stripper were put in the game solely for that purpose, in order for the player to become sexually aroused.

Closest I can find to this is a mention that "Hitman: Absolution features a mission in which the player can create a diversion by picking up and dumping the dead body of an exotic dancer near police officers.". Which is technically true in that it might do the job inasfar as being how game mechanics work (guards will move to check out any dead bodies they see) but the game doesn't suggest it as a method to get by any particular patrol area (scorewise you're actually penalized for killing anyone other than your target) and anybody would work just the same (wouldn't even have to be dead).

Gonna have to break this into two posts.
#222GeitPosted 9/3/2014 1:34:58 PM
If she's not saying they are unique to female NPCs, then it is not sexist. Which means she shouldn't be bringing it up. So why does she go on an unrelated tangent for over 10 minutes in a roughly 30 minute video about something that is not restricted to female sex workers, or female NPCs at all?
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"Every day I'm dead a little longer, Mister Conagher. I have seen the other side. There is nothing there."
#223Shadow DonPosted 9/3/2014 1:40:02 PM
KillerTruffle posted...
Shadow Don posted...
Stop pretending that this is only about zoe and kotaku.


Shadow Don posted...
Check out patricia hernandez.


Stop saying this is all about Kotaku! If you want to see the real problem that's evolved now, go read what this Kotaku writer said!


You wanted to make the situation about zoe so i brought up patricia.

Then you decided that all we care about is kotaku and then i brought up the issues with other sites and the indie game judges.

Im curious which which derailing tactic is going to come next. Whatever it takes to get these raging mafia gamers to shut up right?
#224AsellusPosted 9/3/2014 1:43:36 PM
Claim: Dishonored is sexist because the game singles out prostitute female NPCs to be killed by the player, and for the player to smash their bodies against the wall.

No such specific claim, just the broader "disposable Bangkok street prostitutes" argument again.

Claim: Fallout New Vegas is sexist because there are no permanent consequences for killing the female sex worker NPCs in Freeside.

No such specific claim, see above.

Claim: Sandbox games such as Grand Theft Auto and Saint’s Row are sexist because they single out female sex worker NPCs to have light punishments for the player killing them.

Again, no claim that the penalties for killing them are lighter than they are for killing any other NPC.
#225AsellusPosted 9/3/2014 1:52:58 PM
Geit posted...
If she's not saying they are unique to female NPCs, then it is not sexist. Which means she shouldn't be bringing it up. So why does she go on an unrelated tangent for over 10 minutes in a roughly 30 minute video about something that is not restricted to female sex workers, or female NPCs at all?


Her argument is that the Bangkok street prostitue (My, I did not think I'd be typing that phrase half so often when I woke up this morning) are disposable objects intended to titillate male players. She thinks that goes into worse territory when they're essentially-consequence free to have violence inflicted upon them and even seems to think there's a certain kind of audience they pander to do who get a kick out of seeing virtual Bangkok street prostitutes run in terror of violence. You're free to disagree with it (I do) but I'm not seeing anything that is clearly a lie.
#226SoporilBraceletPosted 9/3/2014 1:54:36 PM
KillerTruffle posted...

SoporilBracelet posted...
^Now you see, this is obviously stated in the Kotaku article I linked. If you cannot prove Zoe has claimed this by other means -a snapshot, an article, and the like will work-, I'd like to know where you got this information. This is also the way I'd say you referenced Kotaku.


And yet again... I'm not claiming *Zoe* claimed this. I'm claiming that the very same stuff ShadowTheReaper was posting a couple weeks ago trying to prove timeline *disproved* it instead. Zoe's ex explicitly stated that he knew she was cheating with the Kotaku guy around May/June. The Kotaku guy's article that mentioned Depression Quest was like in March, as I recall. That's a couple months prior. I have no idea where in the hundreds of links people have dedicated to this nonsense the articles are, but it definitely was not just Kotaku - it was other sites responding to questions on *why* they have chosen not to get involved.


I'd misread that. Move along from this part, my fault.


One article I do think has summarized it rather accurately tho...

The choice for the reader, then, is whether or not they trust our professionalism and discretion as we forge and maintain these relationships. The reasonable choice, should the reader decide they do not have that trust, is just stop reading. They should make the decisions for themselves, and to allow others to come to their own conclusions.

Instead, a vicious contingent [note the use of the word "contingent" - this is not blanket accusing all gamers] of the traditional video game audience takes every complaint about misogyny in the video game industry as an excuse to make death threats against influential women in the video game industry or engage in the sort of puerile gossip about a woman’s sex life that ought to have ended in high school.

They somehow do not see the irony of complaining about fresh voices “ruining” the video game world when these harassers and stalkers and verbal assaulters are, as we speak, making video game culture the worst it’s ever been.

One would think these peoples’ time is better spent behind a mouse and keyboard or a control pad, rather than ranting in article comment threads or on social media, if they profess to love video games so much.


Uses one side's harassment while completely ignoring the other. Overemphasizes the harassers of Quinn and Sarkeesian. Every community has its sexist and misogynist extremist bunch, and that's not okay, though it is the reality. Major corruption of gaming journalism, however, is just as an important issue, which is not covered by these major gaming sites. Acting like harassment, which is mutual, is the only important thing won't get anybody anywhere. Which is pretty much what these sites are doing.

But then again, by your standards, sleeping with a bunch of people influential in the industry is all right if you do it a few months after they write an article about you.
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#227KillerTrufflePosted 9/3/2014 1:56:58 PM
It's pretty much par for the course to take messages like what she puts out and twist them to *sound* like she's saying things she's not. Just because the gamer jihad can't come up with actual things to argue against, so they have to make stuff up. That's the common theme I've seen running through all this.

This has been possibly the longest, worst internet temper tantrum I've ever seen tho... and it *does* make me a little ashamed to associate with the people doing it.
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23
#228KillerTrufflePosted 9/3/2014 2:01:27 PM
SoporilBracelet posted...
Uses one side's harassment while completely ignoring the other. Overemphasizes the harassers of Quinn and Sarkeesian. Every community has its sexist and misogynist extremist bunch, and that's not okay, though it is the reality. Major corruption of gaming journalism, however, is just as an important issue, which is not covered by these major gaming sites. Acting like harassment, which is mutual, is the only important thing won't get anybody anywhere. Which is pretty much what these sites are doing.

But then again, by your standards, sleeping with a bunch of people influential in the industry is all right if you do it a few months after they write an article about you.


Sleeping around, cheating on your boyfriend, etc. isn't "all right" by any standards I hold, regardless of circumstances. That's a major perversion of what I've been saying all along, and you know it.

As for overemphasizing one side over the other, have Quinn and Sarkesian supporters actually made death threats, rape threats, or any other sort of threats against the gamers? Because if so, you're right - that's pretty one-sided. But I'm inclined to believe no instances of something *nearly* so severe exist in the other direction, which in itself pretty much excuses the fact that the article is unbalanced when talking about threats of violence - they've only gone one direction. If you have links or evidence to the contrary, of course...
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23
#229PhantomWarcryPosted 9/3/2014 2:03:18 PM
Geit posted...
If she's not saying they are unique to female NPCs, then it is not sexist. Which means she shouldn't be bringing it up. So why does she go on an unrelated tangent for over 10 minutes in a roughly 30 minute video about something that is not restricted to female sex workers, or female NPCs at all?


Because apparently it encourages violence against women, never mind that it should then encourage violence against men too and we've been down this road with Jack Thompson.

Most of Anita's complaints not related to sexism are related to violence and criminal behavior in general and how they apparently influence how we act in real life, so yeah. She's free to make her complaints of course and suggest alternatives (all I've heard from her was some idea where the princess saves herself, gets a non sexy suit of armor, and then talks through her problems) but, as with everyone who didn't call out people making death and rape threats against Jack Thompson and is now supporting her, everyone who wasn't in favor of Jack Thompson censoring or banning games and supports Anita's essentially similar message, has proved themselves to be a hypocrite.

EXCEPT that I don't even know of Anita calling for any games to be censored or banned, and the one video I watched of her she said she's not trying to change the games, just raise questions. So I'll give her that, and I'll give that it's not illegal to be a hypocrite

But, even if I am a sexist jerk, they don't get to shrug off accusations of hypocrisy on the grounds of my apparently prejudged character. Two wrongs etc.

And this is just the response I have had to Anita's videos - which have nothing to do with the current issue; in fact she had nothing to do with if before she decided to broadcast a death threat she got in the middle of an incident that supposedly had nothing to do with her
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#230KillerTrufflePosted 9/3/2014 2:07:00 PM
^ Has Sarkesian ever actually said "this treatment of women in games encourages real-world violence against women?" Or is that just another of the dozens of ways people have twisted her words to come up with messages that aren't actually there?
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"How do I get rid of a Trojan Horse?" -Sailor_Kakashi
"Leave it outside the gates of Troy overnight." -Davel23