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Puny mortals!

I love this thing. The internet tells me it’s a stone sculpture in Krabi, Thailand. I go to sleep at night listening to a looping MP3 recording of ocean waves and imaging happy little crabs skittering across sandy ocean floors.

But I don’t want to talk about that. I want to talk about GamerGate.

GamerGate is an unfolding nasty slap-fight between low-status nerdy video game players and high-status hipster smartasses. It should be small and meaningless, but it’s blossomed into something big and ugly…and emblematic.

I’m firmly on Team Nerd, but I haven’t been able to articulate what I think about it — and before I managed to do it, someone at PopeHat did it ever so much better than I could, with links and references and everything. (If you don’t read PopeHat, I recommend that you do. This group blog frequently pisses me off — I’m just sure they take more pokes at my team than they do the other guys — but is nearly always thoughtful and interesting and seldom wasted time).

Clark does a bang-up job relating the current kerfuffle to the larger historical trends, which is the very thing I have been thinking about lately. Larger historical trends, I mean. If you haven’t got time for the whole thing, skip to the bit that’s sub-headed “Our forces have Technograd surrounded are pounding it with shame bombs, and our sappers are inside the walls” (I’d link to it directly, but there isn’t a tag for me to grab onto. That’s nerd talk).

Oh, and see you back here tomorrow, 6pm WBT, Dead Pool Round 70!


Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 23, 2014, 9:29 pm

p.s. don’t go to the comments section. It’s always a cesspit of smug lefty smartassery.

Comment from Some Vegetable
Time: October 23, 2014, 11:08 pm

A fascinating read. I guess that I am Red Team and reactionary. I have little time and patience for Social Justice Warriors, and used to engage them whenever I encountered them and their shallow and poorly thought-through enthusiasms. However, I must concede that I have been driven off Reddit and Kinja by them. One wearies of the fight eventually, and surrenders into silence. How can you battle intellectually with attackers who dismiss your comments as “derp, derp, a derp”? There is nothing to discuss with such people, and they are legion. Eventually, one lapses into silence, and avoids further battles, leaving them holding the field unopposed no matter how ignorant their points and perhaps especially so.

I am comfortably retired now, and have no children. The United States will not lapse into defacto Socialistic Totaliarianism before my death nor will (however unlikely) the oceans boil from the dreaded climate change. How much discomfort am I willing to bear for my beliefs? Still I must admit that during my working career, I learned the hard way that just nodding and going along served me poorly. I always ultimately did better by standing up and fighting the stupid bastards, no matter the short term cost.

So, I have no desire to mount my weary charger, and take the field any more, but am afraid of the consequences of abstaining from the fight.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 23, 2014, 11:16 pm

We’ve talked about this a lot lately, Some Veg. We have a neighbor who turns up at social functions and is a boilerplate lefty. She has become more and more strident lately — it’s tempting to think she believes ‘her side’ is at risk at the moment. Everyone else just clams up when she gets going. Honestly, there is no point arguing; nothing good happens. It’s just unpleasant for everyone.

But they are so smugly sure they’re right. They are as certain of salvation as any Victorian maiden auntie, and as unshy about promoting their point of view. No, worse — they think they are doing the whole world a service by shouting down wrongthink.

I know more than one person like this. I’m getting very tired of it.

Comment from Nina
Time: October 24, 2014, 4:33 am

Ditto what Some Veg said, sans the comfortable retirement and no children part. I don’t have the energy to tilt with idiots any more, I just do not. Too many idiots, not enough blood pressure drugs.

Stoaty, I have people in my life like that too, and they have the same effect on social situations as you describe. Of late, however, right-minded friends have shut them down before they even get started by preempting their tirades with pithy comments, leaving them with nothing to say that hasn’t already been found ridiculous. They can only sit there glowering impotently.

It can be vastly entertaining. 😉

Comment from Christopher Taylor
Time: October 26, 2014, 2:04 am

What this all comes down to is that Anonymous and the gamer community was not conspicuously and reliably leftist enough and this is the lefty activist effort to take it over. They recognize a lot of power and cultural influence out of their control and the left can’t let that abide.

Comment from mojo
Time: October 26, 2014, 6:15 am

I dunno, my reaction to that statue is more along the lines of “THEY’RE HEEEEEEERE!!”

Too many SF movies, probably.

Comment from JuliaM
Time: October 26, 2014, 6:19 am

I am utterly sick & tired of the ‘Guardian’ columnists declaring that ‘women find being online intimidating’.

What sort of woman is intimidated by griefers, FFS?

Comment from Skyrim Cursing Mudcrab
Time: October 29, 2014, 3:44 am

Hey, nice arrows.

Do they come in gray?

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