She's Not Hiding From The Hate She's Getting For Examining Video Games. She's Exposing It.

Image for article titled She's Not Hiding From The Hate She's Getting For Examining Video Games. She's Exposing It.

Anita Sarkeesian wanted to make a web series about how women are portrayed in video games. She asked the world for $6,000.

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Some of the people who thought that was interesting and worth doing have given her just shy of $159,000.

Some of the people who thought it was not worth doing, have defaced her Wikipedia page, written vile things to her on YouTube and.... well, that's what she already told us about in mid-June. But, wait, there's more, as Sarkeesian explains in a new post on our Feminist Frequency blog:

In addition to the aggressive actions against me that I've already shared, the harassers launched DDoS attacks on my site, attempted to hack into my email and other social media accounts and reported my Twitter and YouTube accounts as "terrorism", "hate speech" or "spam". They also attempted to "dox" and distribute my personal contact info including address and phone number on various websites and forums (including hate sites).

Tropes Vs. Women: Video Games is the name of the project. It'll be a video series. It hasn't even been made yet. That hasn't stopped the trolling. I guess I should quote the mission statement of Sarkeesian's project, though that implies that there is some mission statement out there that she could have had that would have merited this reaction—and that the only reason this reaction is condemnatory is because Sarkeesian's mission statement doesn't seem to merit the attacks sent her way.

Here's the beginning of her Tropes Vs. Women: Video Games mission statement, to the extent that it even matters:

I love playing video games but I'm regularly disappointed in the limited and limiting ways women are represented. This video project will explore, analyze and deconstruct some of the most common tropes and stereotypes of female characters in games. The series will highlight the larger recurring patterns and conventions used within the gaming industry rather than just focusing on the worst offenders. I'm going to need your help to make it happen!

World-ending stuff, huh?

It's not always that easy to be a woman in the world of gaming, but this is ridiculous.

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Sarkeesian writes: "After struggling with whether or not to make the extent of the attacks public I've decided that it's ultimately important to shed light on this type of abuse because online harassment and bullying are at epidemic levels across the internet."

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Agreed. It's absurd. There are far smarter and funnier ways to disagree.

Image Based Harassment and Visual Misogyny [Feminist Frequency]

DISCUSSION

By
Frosted Mini-Wheats

Wow. In my view, personal and technological attacks against someone who is interested in exploring a topic you personally find objectionable is pretty much indefensible. I don't even view this as "a way to disagree" - this is attempting to silence and discredit someone simply for intending to analyze and deconstruct a recurring pattern in video games.

If my reaction sounds entirely one-sided, that's because it is. Is there anyone here who is able to speak up and justify the actions of these people at all? There are people who will argue that piracy is okay, there are people who will argue that talking trash on Xbox Live is okay, is there anyone who will argue that these attacks are okay?

Because the only way I'm able to see this right now is just awful. An awful thing done by awful people.