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1565 Comments

Letter from the Editor - 07/02/2014

Hey, hi. Let's talk for a sec, OK?

In the last few days there's been a lot of talk about what Giant Bomb is and isn't. What it stands for and what it won't stand for. A lot of people have made a lot of assumptions about what we do and how we act, and what we tolerate or even condone on our message boards and live chats. Most of this isn't new, but it's well past time to come out and say what this staff and this site stands for.

Giant Bomb is, by design, an inclusionary place. When we originally built the site back in 2008, it was originally thought of as a place where our audience could contribute in meaningful ways. Or, if they like, they can just sit back and enjoy our various productions. When I say "inclusionary," I mean exactly that. No person should be excluded from our site. The fact that some people have been resistant to people based on their gender, religion, race, creed, or anything else like that is not acceptable. Even less acceptable are people who make their exclusionary beliefs known (repeatedly and often aggressively) and then attempt to say that those viewpoints are valid and, thus, must be allowed for us to remain inclusionary. That is bad logic. That is a bullying tactic, and that style of intimidation will not be tolerated.

We moderate our live chats, message boards, and comment threads. And we do it rather viciously. Some things certainly do slip through the cracks and you may see some garbage on our site before we get to it. To those of you who help by reporting things to our moderation team, you have my thanks. We're certainly not perfect. When we launched the site, we launched it with one simple rule: "don't be a dick." This may have gotten by in an age when we were a fraction of our current size. These days, we've grown to a point where small community rules aren't enough. We'll be implementing new moderation policies and adjusting a few things behind-the-scenes to enhance our ability to moderate the boards. We'll have more to say about those policy changes as they come.

We felt the need to come forward and state our position after some individuals decided to speak out about how we're conducting business and were promptly attacked and abused on Twitter and other social media platforms. Whether one agrees with our critics or not, it certainly doesn't warrant the response they've received.

I feel absolutely horrible that people have been harassed for simply expressing their views about what we do.

The people attacking our critics do not represent our views and they never have, whether they're doing it in our name or not. I appreciate that people enjoy our work and that they often care enough about it to criticize it.

I would like to apologize to everyone that has seen any bit of unpleasantness this week, whether it is directly associated with our message boards or not. We will continue to work to make the site a better place for everyone to enjoy.

Thanks for using our site. It's been a very bumpy ride over these last couple of years and it just now feels like we're getting our feet underneath us and getting to a point where we can move forward. There's still a very active, wonderful, and beloved community at the core of this site, and their reputation has been tarnished alongside ours. We simply cannot and will not allow negative elements to ruin what we've built together.

-Jeff

Jeff Gerstmann on Google+
1566 Comments Refresh
Posted by Jadeskye

Supported from the start, not gonna stop now!

Behind you all the way jeff.

Posted by Rorie

Hey,

This thread has had led to some very interesting discussions and plenty of productive suggestions. I appreciate everyone who's taken the time to write here or send PMs or used any other avenue to get in touch.

That said, this is a holiday weekend and I am unfortunately not going to be around to comment very much for the next couple of days. I think a thread as tense as this one has been deserves to have staff presence in it to respond to the concerns of both site users and people new to the site. As such, we're going to be locking this thread to responses for a few days until I'm in a position to engage with everyone again. The moderation staff will still be keeping a close eye on the site, so don't get up to any funny business.

Some of you may assume this is an attempt to quiet our critics or sweep things under the rug, and I want to reiterate that that's not the case; I've made hundreds of comments in this thread and others like it over the last few days. Feel free to take this time to re-read the thousands of comments on the site about this issue if you like. We're not done with our discussion here, and we'll have more information about what moderation changes we'll be implementing in the coming days.

Thanks.

Staff
Posted by Rorie

Guys, I'm going to re-open this to comments. I would've done it sooner but have had various other issues to deal with.

Keep in mind that all applicable forum rules apply here, especially considering the heated discussions that have come here before. Be nice to each other or, failing that, be civil. Sarcasm, being dismissive, memes, jokes, and any other form of disruptive behavior in this thread, which a great many people want to discuss seriously, is not appreciated and will mostly likely lead to your comment being deleted. All interpretations of those guidelines are at the final discretion of the moderators. I also reserve the right to re-lock the thread if the discussion isn't productive or starts becoming circular again.

Staff
Posted by lowestformofwit

Guys, you are doing a great job here. Good luck.

Posted by blacklab

It would be nice for once if people on the internet weren't such cockknockers.

Posted by Megulito

While I too would have loved to see more diversity (N'gai comes to mind) at giant bomb this is still the best video games website hands down and I trust you guys almost implicitly . You make great content and seems to stand for all that is right in games and games media. Please keep up the good fight and poach some difference when you can. My heart belongs to giant bomb.

Edited by crazylittle

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

Re: the Macklemore avatar that Samantha Allen pointed out... A person defending themselves from twitter trolls does not need to identify, build evidence against, point out that evidence, and then show proof that a troll is a troll. Just having a racist caricature as one's twitter avatar should be an obvious "this person is a troll" flag.

Wait, what? Racist caricatures as avatars can be a sign of a troll, but not necessarily. An avatar of Macklemore's amazingly ill-thought Jewish caricature costume isn't necessarily a sign that the person is trying to be an asshole. They could be well aware of how utterly stupid that costume was and use the avatar out of irony. Or maybe he is a troll douchebag. I don't know. I really don't know anything about that particular poster other than his choice of avatar and the question he posed.

That is not a defense of the guy. I'm just saying this because judging by avatars alone is a ridiculous practice that Giant Bomb is far from immune to. I can't count the number of times that someone on these forums have had their opinions discounted because they have, quote-unquote "anime avatars." That sort of "judge a book by its cover" attitude has got to stop.

There's absolutely no light where you can paint that racist caricature as a person asking questions with sincerity. Here's the question you're saying is sincere and that we shouldn't judge the questioner based on their racist caricature avatar:

This question alone implies (with Samanta Allen's complaint in context) that no qualified women exist or applied to the position, which is a massive assumption to make even though several qualified women stepped forward stating they too applied for the job. This is not to slight Dan or Jason as they're both extremely talented people and I personally love their contributions. The problem criticized isn't that "Dan/Jason got hired." The problem criticized is that an industry dominated by straight/white/males continues to be dominated by straight/white/males in stark contrast to a roughly 55% male / 45% female gamer demographic. If the media is supposed to be a reflection of the customer base, this is clearly out of whack with reality. Clearly from above you can deduce that qualified non-SWM are applying to jobs and simply not given a chance. The question is a red herring designed to shift focus onto challenging the qualifications of women. Further proof he's a troll can be found by reading his tweet history where he implies that a woman wouldn't have skill or chemistry with the bomb squad.

If you STILL don't believe he's a troll, chew on this tweet where he trolls a Patrick Klepek parody account: (completely unaware that he's trolling a fake)

Read these links and tell me again that the question was totally sincere, genuine, and not asked in bad faith:

Jenn Frank, "The Rolodex"

Maddy Meyers, "A GDC Epilogue"

@hailinel said:

@cabbagesensei said:

@hailinel: What about the rest of the points that @crazylittle made?

I'm not obligated to respond to every point.

Why should I respond to your post if you won't address mine?

Posted by Hailinel

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

Re: the Macklemore avatar that Samantha Allen pointed out... A person defending themselves from twitter trolls does not need to identify, build evidence against, point out that evidence, and then show proof that a troll is a troll. Just having a racist caricature as one's twitter avatar should be an obvious "this person is a troll" flag.

Wait, what? Racist caricatures as avatars can be a sign of a troll, but not necessarily. An avatar of Macklemore's amazingly ill-thought Jewish caricature costume isn't necessarily a sign that the person is trying to be an asshole. They could be well aware of how utterly stupid that costume was and use the avatar out of irony. Or maybe he is a troll douchebag. I don't know. I really don't know anything about that particular poster other than his choice of avatar and the question he posed.

That is not a defense of the guy. I'm just saying this because judging by avatars alone is a ridiculous practice that Giant Bomb is far from immune to. I can't count the number of times that someone on these forums have had their opinions discounted because they have, quote-unquote "anime avatars." That sort of "judge a book by its cover" attitude has got to stop.

There's absolutely no light where you can paint that racist caricature as a person asking questions with sincerity. Here's the question you're saying is sincere and that we shouldn't judge the questioner based on their racist caricature avatar:

This question alone implies (with Samanta Allen's complaint in context) that no qualified women exist or applied to the position, which is a massive assumption to make even though several qualified women stepped forward stating they too applied for the job.

The question was "What if he was the most qualified person available for the position?" That in itself is not an implication that no qualified women applied for the position. He is positing that Dan and Jason were hired because were the most qualified candidates that did apply, regardless of gender or race.

I agree that it's disappointing that the new hires weren't representative of groups outside of the white male demographic, but asking if they were the most qualified is not the same as saying, for example, that no one else was worthy. And that holds true regardless of what AlienGenesis's avatar is or could have been. It could have been a peace sign, or a Care Bear, or Martin Luther King Jr. You are assigning context to the question that doesn't necessarily exist.

And I'm not sure how that second tweet proves your point at all. Certainly not without the context of the tweet it was in response to, if it was in fact in response to a tweet in general. Context that you failed to provide.

I go back to my original point: Don't judge a book by its cover. You assume that the tweet in question was in bad faith based on a choice of avatar that, while of an insulting figure, is not necessarily meant as insulting through context. The use of such an avatar could be ironic. Again, I don't know enough about the guy to understand if he meant it as ironic or not. Is its use meant to be insulting? Possibly, but I haven't seen evidence in either tweet you have quoted that proves that it was used with bigoted intent. Or maybe he's using it to showcase Macklemore's own insulting shortsightedness. I can't say.

While I agree that the avatar is a poor choice and is not one that I would consider using myself, the avatar alone is not enough to judge him or his beliefs.

Why should I respond to your post if you won't address mine?

The irony here is of course that you took the time to respond to me. I did address your post, but I addressed the one point of your post that I felt compelled to give a response. If I don't have a response to your other points or do not feel strongly enough about your other points, positive, negative, or neutral, to merit providing a response, then I'm not going to respond to those points. It's as simple as that. Again, I am under no obligation to respond to each individual point.

Neither you nor cabbagesensei are refereeing this conversation; it seems odd that you would question my lack of a response to points B through F when I only had interest in responding to point A. This is not a formal debate. The only rules I am specifically beholden to here are the rules of the forum.

Posted by pavakah

Something dumb happened on Twitter? Weird.

Also, Jeff, while I appreciate the need to clarify GB's position on things at times, I also come here for something I don't find anywhere else. And that something is thorough, thought provoking, discussions about limited-run flavors of Gatorade. I mean seriously, dude, it's been at least five years! When are we going to get answers the questions we all want to know, like, what does five year old Tiger Woods themed sports drink taste like, etc? Please don't ever let GB become G2B, if you know what I mean.

Posted by GaspoweR

@hailinel: I think we can pretty much boil this down to people being disappointed over GB hiring guys that were still white and male instead of going for the candidates that we're not and because of how some of the criticisms were being presented (that were very scathing and whether intentionally or unintentionally painted the GB guys as being hypocrites, etc.) it metastasized like a cancer and it went from there.

Posted by FoxxFireArt

The sentiment behind this open letter is certainly admirable, and I do hope this is taking a serious move toward improving the level of discourse on the site's forums and comments. I just wonder if these ideals will be expanded equitably.

This site has been the source of one of the most virulent and malicious anti-anime campaigns I've ever seen, and the author its progenitor. Even the staff can't wash their hands of encouraging that behavior. Not with as many times as I've heard them repeat the meme of "Anime is for Jerks." in videos and podcasts. Sure, the initial intent 'may' have been based upon a joke, but repeating it over and over created in the community an almost Pavlovian reaction of hatred to even general anime discussion. I couldn't even mention anime in a comment or in my blog on the site without receiving needlessly aggressive responses.

This behavior isn't even limited to this site. I've seen and heard it over on Comic Vine as well, in podcasts and such. They even treat manga as something separate to comics. That one really confuses me, because I never see them making distinctions between comics from France or other foreign nations. Only the Japanese.

I just never quite understood why one would paint a whole group of people with such a broad brush for liking anime/manga. What's the point of inspiring such hatred? I enjoy manga, anime, games, movies, books, comics and cartoons. I basically enjoy media in general. If you're not into any of those things, that's fine. I personally find games such as STARCRAFT to be incredibly boring. That doesn't say anything about the quality of the people who play and enjoy it. It's just their thing.

I'll believe things are changing for the better when I no longer hear staff mention anime so derisively in future videos, and I can write a blog post referencing anime without being harassed by the user base.

Posted by crazylittle

@hailinel said:

While I agree that the avatar is a poor choice and is not one that I would consider using myself, the avatar alone is not enough to judge him or his beliefs.

No, but the other troll comments I pointed out are clearly enough to bury all doubt. This isn't a case of "judging a book by its cover" as you claim. This is an established history and repeated pattern of trolling.

Posted by Hailinel

@hailinel said:

While I agree that the avatar is a poor choice and is not one that I would consider using myself, the avatar alone is not enough to judge him or his beliefs.

No, but the other troll comments I pointed out are clearly enough to bury all doubt. This isn't a case of "judging a book by its cover" as you claim. This is an established history and repeated pattern of trolling.

I'm not seeing it. Other than the two tweets you posted directly here, the one you simply linked to, I mean this one:

This is a question, and a valid one. Should Giant Bomb have hired someone with less skill or experience purely for the sake of diversity? That is a question that is worth debate. Was it suitable for the Twitter pressure cooker at that time? Maybe, maybe not, but as a query, it's not invalid, nor is it specifically a sign of trolling.

Posted by JoelTGM

what do you mean "in 2008"? has it really been 6 years? hahahahaha... jesus.
still my only gaming website, because i love the staff and community.

Posted by PeldonPeldon

Thumbs up, to the nth degree.

Posted by rm082e

I was thinking about this over the weekend and I have an honest question for everyone:

Let's say GB did hire, or does hire a female or miniority editor in the future. If that female/minority editor is playing the same type of games the rest of the crew is, how would being female or a having a different skin color give them a "different perspective" on anything but gender and racial issues? In other words, how does being non-white or non-male potentially affect an opinion of Borderlands, Halo, or Assassin's Creed?

And if it doesn't, then should they be looking for people who have more diversity in their gaming diets, rather than gender or racial diversity? If we really want to talk about diversity, why not hire someone who is really into mobile and social games? Why not hire someone who is into table-top and board games? Seems like that would provide more variety to Quick Looks and the Podcast than just getting a female or black editor who plays and enjoys a lot of the same type of games they are already covering.

Thoughts?

Posted by UncleThursday

As I said in my rarely used Tublr post on the subject, There are two issues at hand here.

In regard to Samantha, Leigh, etc., part of it has to do with taking responsibility for one's actions. Their initial posts were very antagonistic in their tone. To not expect antagonism back when posting up something in that tone is naivete at best. The degree of antagonism returned wasn't necessary, obviously. However, to have thought that absolutely no one would be antagonistic back about the way in which the tweets were presented, the various 'go fuck yourself' replies Samantha made, etc., speaks volumes for the intelligence of anyone who didn't think something like that would occur.

The other issue really comes down to the nepotism that is in the gaming journalism field (all journalism, really, but very visible in gaming journalism). Rarely are new people given a chance at getting a 'big break' by getting hired at a big gaming journalism outlet. Rarely do people who have spent years in small press outlets or even just doing their own thing on blogs or YouTube given the opportunity to get hired on at these outlets when they are looking to hire people. Instead, they just incestuously trade people off between them.

As an example, let's say Jessica Chobot left IGN (as far as I am aware, she has not, she is just on maternity leave) and GB hired her on. Sure, it would make the 'we need diversity' crowd happier that a woman was hired on... but it still doesn't change the fact that Jessica is a known entity in gaming journalism, and it is just trading one more person from one gaming journalism outlet to another. I am aware Jessica is not an editor for IGN, more of an on-screen personality for the site.

Remember, GB made a very big decision to put the fact that they were hiring out on these very forums. That gave the impression that they were potentially looking for new blood. Instead, they hired on two people from Game Informer, another gaming journalism outlet.

Is it possible they already had their candidates in mind when they made the job openings? Of course. Is it something anyone not directly involved in the hiring process can definitely say is the case? Obviously not. However, because the new hires did, in fact, just switch from one gaming journalism outlet to another gives a very big appearance that the whole idea of putting the application out to the public was a farce from the get go.

Anyone saying they had to make it public is wrong. All they had to do was put it on the CBSi hiring website. That's it. That is 'public' enough. There are very few people who have job alerts set up for GameSpot and GB, so all they would have had to do, if their picks were predetermined, is tell them to fill out the application on the website. Companies do this all the time. The job is posted, but very few people outside of the people they already want will ever know about it.

Am I saying Dan and Jason aren't qualified? Not at all. Though I am, personally, not familiar with their work, I'm sure they are very qualified for the positions they now have. But, does it continue the very heavy appearance of nepotism of just trading off people one knows from another game press site to the one they work for when a position becomes available? It absolutely does.

Even some of the proposed fan favorites, like Cara or Maddy, would really just have kept that going. They already have names for themselves in some way or another in game journalism. It's still just bringing in more known entities if they were to be hired.

That people seem to really miss this as a big issue on the subject, including Samantha and Leigh in their initial tweets, really boggles the mind. As soon as the posting went up, I saw no less than 3 people talking about leaving other bigger gaming sites and said to myself, 'well, there's a big potential hire if I ever saw one.' From that point, even with my near 15 years experience in small press (10 years) and doing my own thing (the past 4 years), I knew my resume was probably not even going to get a second glance.

Technically, I suppose my own resume would have just been another known entity, but the small press outlet I worked for wasn't extremely well known, so I'm sure my own 'notoriety' in gaming press would have been extremely little at this point (I can guarantee less than 10% of the people on this forum can remember where I worked-- which no longer exists-- or anything I may have written... and going as high as 10% is hugely generous, it is probably far lower). But, I, or someone else from a lesser known small press outlet or their own thing, would still be at least an appearance of newer blood. And if they hired on anyone from the forums-- some of which for the video stuff posted up some very impressive reels, I should add, far better than my own meager video abilities-- then that really would have been bringing in someone 'unknown' beyond these forums.

Instead, the gaming press nepotism just kept going strong. Samantha, Leigh, etc. turned it into a cause of minority or female representation instead of the bigger issue... the fact that the chance of an actual unknown or lesser known person would actually get the chance was about as close to 0 as one can possibly get.

Edited by crazylittle

@hailinel said:
This is a question, and a valid one.

Not at all. It's a leading question which does nothing more than level the accusation that women are unskilled, inexperienced, and unqualified. Context matters, and you're ignoring the context of the question.

@rm082e said:

Let's say GB did hire, or does hire a female or miniority editor in the future. If that female/minority editor is playing the same type of games the rest of the crew is, how would being female or a having a different skin color give them a "different perspective" on anything but gender and racial issues?

Well for one, I don't think any of the current bomb squad are receiving credible rape threats on a daily basis. Stuff like that tends to change a person's perspective.

@unclethursday said:

As I said in my rarely used Tublr post on the subject, There are two issues at hand here.

I think you raise a lot of excellent points and agree with most of them but also think it's a tad bit unfair to Maddy Meyers to say that she's unknown considering that she's won awards for her writing. Maddy wrote this blog post on the topic.

Edited by rm082e

@crazylittle said:
@rm082e said:

Let's say GB did hire, or does hire a female or miniority editor in the future. If that female/minority editor is playing the same type of games the rest of the crew is, how would being female or a having a different skin color give them a "different perspective" on anything but gender and racial issues?

Well for one, I don't think any of the current bomb squad are receiving credible rape threats on a daily basis. Stuff like that tends to change a person's perspective.

Likewise, I don't think most females and minorities on the internet are receiving credible rape threats on a daily basis. Certainly some are, but there's no reason to think the average person getting hired into GB would be.

Posted by Hailinel

@hailinel said:
This is a question, and a valid one.

Not at all. It's a leading question which does nothing more than level the accusation that women are unskilled, inexperienced, and unqualified. Context matters, and you're ignoring the context of the question.

And in what way is it a leading question?

Edited by crazylittle

If women like Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, weren't receiving such threats then they wouldn't be writing about them, but they are being threatened, so they do write about it.

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:
This is a question, and a valid one.

Not at all. It's a leading question which does nothing more than level the accusation that women are unskilled, inexperienced, and unqualified. Context matters, and you're ignoring the context of the question.

And in what way is it a leading question?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy_of_many_questions

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Begging_the_question

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Concern_troll

The questions asked aren't a whole lot different from, "when did you stop beating your wife?"

Posted by Hailinel


@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:
This is a question, and a valid one.

Not at all. It's a leading question which does nothing more than level the accusation that women are unskilled, inexperienced, and unqualified. Context matters, and you're ignoring the context of the question.

And in what way is it a leading question?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy_of_many_questions

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Begging_the_question

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Concern_troll

The questions asked aren't a whole lot different from, "when did you stop beating your wife?"

Pointing to Wikipedia links does not answer my question. In what way is the above question specifically a leading question?

"So they should have hired someone who may have had less experience, skill, or chemistry for the reason of gender?"

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Edited by crazylittle

@hailinel said:

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Bullshit. Now you're adopting the premise (in a leading question) that women are unqualified, and your implied point is highlighted.

Edited by Hailinel

@hailinel said:

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Bullshit. Now you're adopting the premise (in a leading question) that women are unqualified, and your implied point is highlighted.

I am not adopting that premise at all. The question never presumes that all women that applied for the position were completely unqualified, unskilled, inexperienced, or lacked chemistry. The question presumes that Dan and Jason were the most skilled, experienced, and compatible out of all the people that applied. If any of the women (or any minority candidates, for that matter) that applied for the position didn't quite match up to Dan or Jason, but were still obviously skilled, experienced, and compatible enough to be serious contenders, should they have been selected ahead of Dan and Jason? That is the question.

Posted by rm082e

If women like Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, weren't receiving such threats then they wouldn't be writing about them, but they are being threatened, so they do write about it.

I never said the threats do not exist. I'm saying Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, do not represent all females and minorities. Lumping all women or all minorities into the same bucket as these individuals is gender/racial stereotyping - just like lumping all "straight white men" into the same group. That's kind of why there was a huge blow up in the first place.

Edited by crazylittle

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Bullshit. Now you're adopting the premise (in a leading question) that women are unqualified, and your implied point is highlighted.

The question never presumes that all women that applied for the position were completely unqualified, unskilled, inexperienced, or lacked chemistry.

I highlighted the presumption in your text.

You've also established a nice false dichotomy there in assuming either:

A) You hire an unqualified woman/minority

B) You hire a straight/white/male. (non-minority)

while leaving out the entire universe of other possible options such as:

C) You hire a qualified woman/minority

D) You hire an unqualified man

etc.

@rm082e said:

@crazylittle said:

If women like Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, weren't receiving such threats then they wouldn't be writing about them, but they are being threatened, so they do write about it.

I never said the threats do not exist. I'm saying Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, do not represent all females and minorities. Lumping all women or all minorities into the same bucket as these individuals is gender/racial stereotyping - just like lumping all "straight white men" into the same group. That's kind of why there was a huge blow up in the first place.

You seem to be minimalizing / marginalizing the gravity of the problem here. If it's not a problem then why did Jeff write the article you're commenting on? These aren't isolated incidents.

As for "just like lumping all straight white men into the same group"...

Edited by rm082e

@rm082e said:

@crazylittle said:

If women like Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, weren't receiving such threats then they wouldn't be writing about them, but they are being threatened, so they do write about it.

I never said the threats do not exist. I'm saying Samantha Allen, Anita Sarkeesian et al, do not represent all females and minorities. Lumping all women or all minorities into the same bucket as these individuals is gender/racial stereotyping - just like lumping all "straight white men" into the same group. That's kind of why there was a huge blow up in the first place.

You seem to be minimalizing / marginalizing the gravity of the problem here. If it's not a problem then why did Jeff write the article you're commenting on? These aren't isolated incidents.

If I were minimizing or marginalizing the problem, I wouldn't be bothering to talk about it. I'm simply calling you on your attempt to take the events that have happened to specific individuals and apply them wholesale to all people of the same gender. That's a tired debate tactic for pushing an agenda, and it doesn't have anything to do with the original question I asked.

Posted by Hailinel

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Bullshit. Now you're adopting the premise (in a leading question) that women are unqualified, and your implied point is highlighted.

The question never presumes that all women that applied for the position were completely unqualified, unskilled, inexperienced, or lacked chemistry.

I highlighted the presumption in your text.

You've also established a nice false dichotomy there in assuming either:

A) You hire an unqualified woman/minority

B) You hire a straight/white/male. (non-minority)

while leaving out the entire universe of other possible options such as:

C) You hire a qualified woman/minority

D) You hire an unqualified man

etc.

There is no false dichotomy. On the assumption that the two people hired (Dan and Jason, both white guys) were in fact the absolute best candidates for the job given all job-related criteria (experience, skill, etc.), then all other candidates regardless of gender, race, or sexuality came in second at best. Given this assumption (Dan and Jason being the top-picks for the job in terms of experience and skill), do you pass over them and select an otherwise second-place candidate because you put diversity ahead of top qualifications?

This is not about the female or minority candidates being unqualified. They wouldn't get this far in the hiring process if they were deemed such. Qualifications are not binary by nature. In hiring Dan, or Jason, or any other individual, it is not a statement indicating that all other candidates were unqualified for the job. Some candidates just have better qualifications than others. You can get a 99% on a test, which any reasonable person would find an excellent score, and still come in second place because someone else was just a little bit better.

Edited by crazylittle

@rm082e said:

If I were minimizing or marginalizing the problem, I wouldn't be bothering to talk about it. I'm simply calling you on your attempt to take the events that have happened to specific individuals and apply them wholesale to all people of the same gender. That's a tired debate tactic for pushing an agenda, and it doesn't have anything to do with the original question I asked.

By shifting the focus to specific events you are marginalizing the larger issue highlighted. By claiming parity of this problem with "lumping all "straight white men" into the same group" you are making an equivocation fallacy on a laughable order of magnitude that I can only surmise:

Yes, women receiving sexual harrasment online is the same as lumping all white men into the same group.

Edited by rm082e

@rm082e said:

If I were minimizing or marginalizing the problem, I wouldn't be bothering to talk about it. I'm simply calling you on your attempt to take the events that have happened to specific individuals and apply them wholesale to all people of the same gender. That's a tired debate tactic for pushing an agenda, and it doesn't have anything to do with the original question I asked.

By shifting the focus to specific events you are marginalizing the larger issue highlighted. By claiming parity of this problem with "lumping all "straight white men" into the same group" you are making an equivocation fallacy on a laughable order of magnitude that I can only surmise:

Yes, women receiving sexual harrasment online is the same as lumping all white men into the same group.

You shifted the focus to specific events by bringing up Samantha and Anita, not me. I wasn't talking about the harassment they received - I was talking about the hiring process at Giant Bomb.

I also made no such equivocation because I was never talking about the sexual harassment either of those people received - I was equating you lumping their experiences into the experiences of a larger group to some people lumping all straight white men together. They are one in the same - taking one individual and assuming all other people like them can be defined in the same ways.

But hey, if intentionally taking my words out of context and misrepresenting as a means of pigeon-holing me into a category of troll allows you to feel like you "won" and post the Seinfeld gif, go for it. But all you managed to do was dodge my original question, which doesn't get us any closer to understanding how we can all work towards equality in a constructive way in the future.

Edited by UncleThursday
@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:
This is a question, and a valid one.

Not at all. It's a leading question which does nothing more than level the accusation that women are unskilled, inexperienced, and unqualified. Context matters, and you're ignoring the context of the question.


@unclethursday said:

As I said in my rarely used Tublr post on the subject, There are two issues at hand here.

I think you raise a lot of excellent points and agree with most of them but also think it's a tad bit unfair to Maddy Meyers to say that she's unknown considering that she's won awards for her writing. Maddy wrote this blog post on the topic.

The question itself is not implying anything but asking if they were the most qualified. You are the one putting it in the context saying that the question is implying that no women were qualified. It can be used in that way, yes... but the actual question, in and of itself, does nothing of the sort.

Now, you are entitled to your opinion as to who is more qualified for the positions, Dan and Jason or Maddy and others. However, in the end, neither your opinion, nor mine, has any bearing on who did get hired. That decision was, ultimately, up to Jeff.

As to Maddy not being an unknown or lesser known... you are aware the the majority of game writers fall into these two categories, correct? Jeff became a much bigger name when Gertsmanngate happened a few years back, but he was known to people who frequented GS... not so much for people who never went to GS.

Off the top of my head, the only game reviewers I can mention that have any sort of more well known presence are Greg Kasavin (though I think he now works for EA or something, I do remember the name from a while back), Dan Hsu formerly of EGM, Jeff (I knew of him before Gertsmanngate, but he became much more well known then-- even watched him and Ricardo whateverhisnameis butt ahead of me at the Sony press conference the year the PS3's initial pricing was announced), Adam Sessler and Morgan Webb.

Out of all of them, people know Adam and Morgan the most because of X-Play. Then probably Jeff because of Gertsmanngate. People might remember Dan if they used to read EGM, otherwise they won't. Kasavin is more of an old school GS editor thing, so people might not remember him that much.

You couldn't pressure me to name any other major game reviewers not from this site (I know of Brad, Vinny, Alex and Patrick, the first three from GS, Patrick from here), though, even if you held a gun to my head and told me to name some or you'd blow my head off.

You'd be hard pressed to find a ton of people who knew of Maddy or Samantha outside of certain circles. Walk into a random gaming store and ask about them before this whole fiasco started, and you'd probably get confused looks more than anything else.

Most game reviewers/writers just aren't well known. Just because you knew about Maddy or Samantha before this, doesn't mean they were well known. It just means you knew about them. There's a huge difference.

Oh, and I read that blog post a few days back. I almost couldn't finish it for the amount of self pity she has in it. Seriously, does she think her own life is so much worse than everyone else on the entire planet? Does she really think not getting an email response for her resume to GB is any different from the over 99% of people who applied and heard nothing back? Does the world owe her something it doesn't owe anyone else?

News flash: Life sucks for most of the world's population. The universe isn't here to conform to each and every one of our personal desires.

I wouldn't have hired her. I have my own problems, and so does everyone else, without having to deal with such a downer personality every day at work. There's only so much of that type of personality one can take before they want to slit their own wrists just to not have to deal with that person anymore.

She has problems. You have problems. I have problems. We all have problems. I just don't air my problems for people to read and hope they feel sorry for me.

Posted by sqrabbit

Just a polite suggestion. Can Brad and Patrick stop saying god damnit so often? I know it slips out at some times, but they are throwing it out there sometimes three or four times a minute.

I'm not boycotting the site or anything silly, thanks for doing what you do.

Posted by billmcneal

thank you

Posted by Quintessence

@sqrabbit said:

Just a polite suggestion. Can Brad and Patrick stop saying god damnit so often? I know it slips out at some times, but they are throwing it out there sometimes three or four times a minute.

I'm not boycotting the site or anything silly, thanks for doing what you do.

I think that would be helpful and respectful to certain portions of the audience. Perhaps @rorie can bring it up. Not sure if it would really go anywhere. Giant Bomb is a bunch of duders, which is why we all love them, and sometimes saying these things is just what duders do.

Posted by Rorie

@sqrabbit said:

Just a polite suggestion. Can Brad and Patrick stop saying god damnit so often? I know it slips out at some times, but they are throwing it out there sometimes three or four times a minute.

I'm not boycotting the site or anything silly, thanks for doing what you do.

I think that would be helpful and respectful to certain portions of the audience. Perhaps @rorie can bring it up. Not sure if it would really go anywhere. Giant Bomb is a bunch of duders, which is why we all love them, and sometimes saying these things is just what duders do.

I fully admit that I say this more often than I would like. I'm sure it makes people uncomfortable, so I'll do my best to rein it in on my part in the future.

Staff
Posted by Johnnboy2000

Ahhh i just love the interweds!

Posted by coaxmetal

@hailinel said:

@crazylittle said:

@hailinel said:

It's a pretty simple yes/no/maybe question. Either you believe that Giant Bomb should have hired for diversity first and skill second, you believe that they should have hired for skill first, or maybe it's a question you haven't given enough thought yet, in which case you don't have a clear answer.

This is not nearly the same as phrasing a question that presumes you beat your spouse.

Bullshit. Now you're adopting the premise (in a leading question) that women are unqualified, and your implied point is highlighted.

I am not adopting that premise at all. The question never presumes that all women that applied for the position were completely unqualified, unskilled, inexperienced, or lacked chemistry. The question presumes that Dan and Jason were the most skilled, experienced, and compatible out of all the people that applied. If any of the women (or any minority candidates, for that matter) that applied for the position didn't quite match up to Dan or Jason, but were still obviously skilled, experienced, and compatible enough to be serious contenders, should they have been selected ahead of Dan and Jason? That is the question.

Sorry to bring an old thing up, just happened to be reading this again. But in response to that, I think that a possibility is that well qualified women applied, and were rejected, neither because they were unqualified nor because GB had anything against hiring women, but because of inherent and unconscious prejudice against hiring women. Not even anything against women, but the idea that, perhaps, the audience wont like a woman, or, well men fit bitter. Those of course could have also been conscious decisions (in which case I might even think less of GB, as those are likely untrue, at least the first) but also those any many other things are part of the culture and can influence decisions. Of course, I am not saying that is what happened, I don't anything about the process or applicants. In retrospect, I would have preferred someone other than Dan, but that is a matter of opinion on Dan and nothing to do with this really. Anyway, I think inherent bias should be acknowledged, as it is far more common and insidious than explicit bias. And again, I am not claiming it was an issue here, but rather that is it a larger issue that people should be aware of. Certainly it is a very big issue, and problem in my industry (software/tech), I assume it is also an issue in the video games industry.