Diversity & Inclusion

A major GamerGate hub has been running out of Midwood

Meanwhile, NYU Game Center Director Frank Lantz comes out with a strong statement against the movement.

Live for the high score. (Photo by Flickr user Ian McBurnie, used under a Creative Commons license)

It turns out that one of the main websites that GamerGate organizers use to stay in touch — that is, the ones who think it’s terrible that women are speaking their minds about the content of video games — has been running out of Midwood, Brooklyn, according to New York Magazine.

The site, 8chan, just turned one year old. The event was celebrated with a trip to the strip club, where the attendees apparently completely ignored the dancers.

8chan’s GamerGate board is the second most popular one on the site, after Video Games. If the design looks familiar, it’s because it is pretty much a straight 4chan ripoff, as the name suggests. The site was founded by Frederik Brennan, who is actually moving to the Philippines to start a new business partnership.

From the New York Magazine story:

“I’m not much of a gamer, but it’s really amazing how they’ve used the platform to really go after these fuckers,” said Brennan as he sat in his wheelchair in a parking lot before the party, between trips to raid a liquor stash in the trunk of a nearby vintage Mercedes. “Like, I encourage it. They try to make me take down the board, but I’m not going to do it.” Publicly, Brennan has been adamant that 8chan users aren’t behind the threats and harassment.

Meanwhile, NYU Game Center Director Frank Lantz came out with a statement on the center’s blog, addressing both what “#GamerGate” has come to mean and the underlying frustration of some of his supporters: that it may be hard to accept, but as games get bigger and become more relevant, it’s impossible to treat them just as technology; instead they should be treated as much as cultural documents as books or film or other art forms.

Lantz writes:

And no, it isn’t possible to point to harassment on both sides or to claim that the harassment is the work of a few isolated trolls. It doesn’t matter what percentage of the people who use the tag are decent folks who wouldn’t hurt a fly. The process by which words and phrases acquire meaning is complex and beyond our control, and the fact is that GamerGate has come to mean something abhorrent.

It has become clear that the Internet can be a hostile and unpleasant place for women. Technology can be a hostile and unpleasant place for women. And sadly, games can be an especially hostile and unpleasant place for women. These are serious problems that demand our attention. Regardless of intent, GamerGate has been inextricably linked to the worst aspects of this hostility and should be opposed.

Companies: NYU Game Center
Series: Brooklyn

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