Anita's Irony: Every Hater Proves Anita Sarkeesian Right

Categories: Gaming

AnitaTropes.jpg
Anita Sarkeesian
This week Anita Sarkeesian released yet another installment of her Tropes vs. Women series of videos detailing how women are portrayed in gaming and why exactly it's a problem that needs to change. In response, the internet did what the internet usually does and hurled insults and threats so brutal and specific that Sarkeesian actually left her home to stay with friends just to be safe.

This harassment of Sarkeesian has been going on from the day she first launched a Kickstarter campaign for her series and has continued unabated. It's given birth to a Law of the Internet known as Anita's Irony that states, "Online discussion of sexism or misogyny quickly results in disproportionate displays of sexism and misogyny."

In other words, literally every hateful comment and harassment campaign proves Sarkeesian right time and time again.

Over the course of the series Sarkeesian has a basic premise: that violence and objectification of women in media is common and leads to the normalization such practices. Whether it's women as prizes to be won, possessions to be lost, or decorations to titillate the end result is that we spend hour after hour in interactive media feeling perfectly comfortable watching strippers get shot in the head, replenishing health from hookers, and just all around acting in ways that are illegal for a reason.

anitasirony1.jpg

I'm not saying that just because you can beat up a prostitute in Grand Theft Auto 5 it means you're going out for some prostitute-beatings or even that such attacks become more common place, and Sarkeesian isn't saying that either. What is being said is that if you see and do these things time after time in game after game it is definitely going to color the way you view women.

Which is hard to argue with. Here's a quick question. One of these quotes is a tweet to Sarkeesian, and the other is a line said in the game Red Dead Redemption that she highlighted in her latest video. Which is which?

"Stinking whore. I'm going to cut you a new hole."

And.

"I'll drink blood out of your cunt after I rip it open."

The second one is the tweet, but look at them there together. They are functionally identical, and this sort of thing happens in so many games that is it any surprise that gamers who enjoy these scene feel perfectly justified in using the same language to attack a critic of the practice?

You can split hairs on the subject as someone like Thunderf00t does and claim that each instance of these harmful tropes make up a tiny portion of the overall game experience just as each sexist comment and threat of sexual assault makes up a relatively small portion of a woman's total life experience. You could do that, but it's sort of like saying you should ignore a tumor because it's on the small side. The problem isn't one instance in one game. It's the trend and how widespread it is. Sarkeesian offers too many examples for us to say that such a trend does not exist. It clearly does.

And all she has to do to check out the consequences of that trend is open her Twitter feed. Clearly, gamers think it's OK to threaten to rape her. In fact, that was actually prominent Men's Right's blogger Karen Straughan's reasoning that Sarkeesian was just playing up her victimhood for cash and career advancement. Her theory was that the members of 4chan didn't threaten and harass her enough for any of this to be taken seriously.

Because of course a certain amount of objectification and sexual assault are to be expected when girls and games come together... which I'm pretty sure was the point Sarkeesian was sadly trying to make in the first place when she began her campaign for change.

Jef has a new story, a tale of headless strippers and The Rolling Stones, available now in Broken Mirrors, Fractured Minds. You can also connect with him on Facebook.

My Voice Nation Help
78 comments
Ramon Medina
Ramon Medina

I just addressed this on the HP website but I just wanted to re-post it here because I have not seen it addressed in the comments on FB. In particular, I took the critics seriously on the charge of Sarkeesian being a greedy scammer exploiting a bunch of suckers. So, I looked at the kickstarter page and found the charge hollow. There was one fact that immediately stuck out at me that the people making the charge ignored because it didn't fit their attempt to demonize their target and it's so obvious that I'm stunned the charge continues to circulate among her "critics". Here is how I addressed that discrepancy in a reply to a poster there.... "OK so let me set you straight. You think her asking for $6K to produce these videos outrageous? Let me just tell you that ****as someone who does video production work*** that that is a very reasonable amount to request if you want reasonable production quality. You, and all the truthers out there are so furious and obsessed that she received so much money from supporters that you are have formed an OPINION that this entire thing is a greedy scam yet conveniently overlook the FACT that this was a modest project with a very reasonable budget. Yes, people have funded her way beyond her original asking amount but you hold this up as a straw man to suggest greed on her part. What the final goal pledged amount reflects isn't someone out to exploit a situation but the generosity and support form backers who believe in the project."

Gue1
Gue1

when will Anita go to the police to denounce these harassment and death treats instead of keep using them for instigation on twitter?

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

Didn't Bush 1 and Quayle say similar things regarding TV, music and video games?  Yeah, that seemed pretty stupid then, as well.


How is this different?

Ramon Medina
Ramon Medina

It's not a question of comprehending your comments, it's trying to squeeze out some semblance of a rational and intelligent position out of what you initially wrote. It's not arrogant or pompous to be giving you the benefit of the doubt and hoping for a reasoned discussion. The fact is you do not understand how to have a civil discussion is an issue you should think long and hard about. A reasoned discussion suggests that when you make assertions, you back them up with more than "I don't like it." You offer no proof of her merely doing this for money yet assert her intent as if it is a priori. So here is the obvious question for you, what is the proof for you claiming this is only about money? Please elucidate for us.

Kylejack
Kylejack topcommenter

@fitnessspm Laaaaaame. Consider this: Maybe she views tweets on a mobile device, got these threats, and then went on her computer browser to get a good screenshot of this maniac's tweets.

RamonLP4
RamonLP4

@fitnessspm Wow, so THIS is the big take down???? Pardon me if I'm underwhelmed.


OK so let me set you straight.  You think her asking for $6K to produce these video outrageous?  Let me just tell you that ****as someone who does video production work*** that that is a very reasonable amount to request if you want reasonable production quality.    

You, and all the truthers out there are so furious and obsessed that she received so much money from supporters that you are have formed an OPINION that this entire thing is a greedy scam yet conveniently overlook the FACT that this was a modest project with a very reasonable budget.  

Yes, people have funded her way beyond her original asking amount but you hold this up as a straw man to suggest greed on her part.  What the final goal pledged amount reflects isn't someone out to exploit a situation but the generosity and support form backers who believe in the project.




JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

@fitnessspm Oh, Paul Elam. Isn't he the guy who openly tells people he uses his donations for personal expenses?

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

Do you ever stop being a terrible person? Seriously, I've had four new writers ask me what your problem is.

mooninaut
mooninaut

@c5813 John C. Wright is a right-wing tool who is in denial about his beloved right-wing being taken over by idiots, hypocrites, liars and bigots. There's a reason that more and more Americans identify as independents of late, and a great deal of it is Republicans fleeing the party of toxic stupidity.

h_e_x
h_e_x

@c5813 When people complain about political correctness, what they are actually complaining about is being called out for being as ass. They pine for the good old days when they could talk out of their ass and have people not in approval.

ColorfulQualia
ColorfulQualia

@Kylejack - however her first screenshot was only 12 seconds after it was posted, that's  pretty quick.

h_e_x
h_e_x

@JefWithOneF I think there was a time when he wasn't contrary for the sake of being contrary, but something must have happened. 

Just take to heart that the older generation is giving way to a more empathetic one, which is only a good thing.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

In what regards am I incorrect?

And I pretty much speak my mind. Does your generation not have the stomach for it? I try to respectfully disagree, and I get this tripe?

c5813
c5813

@h_e_x @c5813 You are correct, unfortunately. PC at its best serves to protect and defend beleaguered political, social, and economic groups. PC at its worst, however, has on occasion fostered a mob mentality that relentlessly attacks perceived offenders. Wright's biggest complaint is that the mob sometimes targets those who don't pile on with enough enthusiasm.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

You really don't have any factual basis to think she's lying.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

I'm just saying you're the common denominator in a whole lot of "what the hell?" Conversations.

And you compared a rating system to the normalization of violence towards women. That's incorrect.

Also, I'm 33 with a kid. The writers I'm talking about are in their 40s. This isn't generational

h_e_x
h_e_x

@c5813 @h_e_x I know what you mean. Tumblr social justice warriors fit this bill perfectly. They are young and will hopefully understand the necessity of effective communication. Few teenagers can effectively communicate, but at least they show some empathy.

What's weird is that some people wear their bigotry like a badge of honor, as if they are taking a brave, heroic stance, when in reality they are adopting the status quo, which is to hate and divide people.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

@Kylejack @lindawong30 @JefWithOneF @Gue1 And Barack Obama posted his birth certificate. Honestly, what's the point? Her detractors looking to argue their point by arguing her character constantly move the goal posts. If she posts the police report, they'll day it's faked. If they get it through a FOIA request, they'll say it means nothing because the threats were faked anyway. Everything can be explained away as her evil plot. 

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

And you're not answering my initial question: How is your suggested censorship any different from that of the dumb stuff in the 80's?

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

I will always be in a lot of "what the hell" conversations, whether it is by my pseudonym or my real name. I've always tried not to pander to anything and I've also liked a lot of your articles, as well as many others on here. I sincerely love most of your video game things. But I will always speak my mind. Sadly, it has cost me a few writing gigs, and that sucks. I think any liberal should be open to a differing opinion. That is one thing I see lacking. Mostly...

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

Well, I just read her entire 2014 Twitter feed and found exactly two, and both of those only recently after she became a registered non-profit. Out of dozens of posts showing harassment. That took 15 mins of looking.

By the way, blaming the victim of seeking gain or attention? Still part of rape culture.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

You really can't see the difference? I think that might be the problem

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

The difference is that you equate twitter to real life. I loathe anonymity, myself. I say dumbass things from time to time. But I own them. You see twitter as real life. I don't have that cynicism yet. Why do you?

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

You might feel different if you got thousands of rape threats and your address posted. But that will never happen because you're not a wan critiquing video games.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

I might what??? Do you know how many times I've actually got my ass kicked?

Different times, I guess. And Ive got one of the rarest last names in Houston.

I like most of your writings. I need to give you more kudos when I do. But I'm damn tired of y'all having a problem when someone disagrees with your points.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

You really just have no idea, do you? You see this and think it's either made up or acceptable. Certainly it has no consequences.

This isn't because you disagree. It's because the reason you disagree is ridiculous.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

And you're a helicopter parent that is shocked that anyone ever lived through anything before you existed.

And I have no idea. Get a clue.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

You mean back in the day when marital rape was legal?

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

Yes, jef. Back when we could stone people in 1992...

If you're going to make a point, make it a valid one.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

Marital rape didn't become illegal on all 50 states until 1993

karall9
karall9

Slavery didn't become illegal in all 50 states until 1994. Does that mean slavery was a big problem then too? Just because something isn't on the books in a few states doesn't mean it's actually a problem.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

Yes... That of course was my point...

Look, kid. I get it. You bred a daughter and now feel a fierce need to defend her.

Just understand that you are way overdoing it.

Or show these articles to her before she goes to high school.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

It wasn't even acknowledged as existing until 1973. And I did 1500 words on the survivors of marital rape so I feel pretty secure in saying your evidence is out to lunch

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

And that's great. Just prepare for a bit of backlash. I've got a 15 year old son, and plenty of parent friends with kids in their teenage Years. Did you ever grow up near or around Catholic kids? I'm thinking you didn't.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

I grew up in Galena Park. Do you ever get tired of wrong assumptions?

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

Not sure how I made any incorrect assumption. Are you stereotyping galena park? That's not what the jef that I know would want you to do.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

It's really Catholic there. Also, you don't know me.

FattyFatBastard
FattyFatBastard topcommenter

I grew up in Baytown and Bellaire.

Here's what I tell my son: Accentuate the positive. Eliminate the negative. The middle stuff? Crap. Don't sweat the small stuff.

Not saying I'm doing any better job than you are at parenting, but you don't see similarities to this and the nonsense that happened in the late 80s?

Only difference I see is cyber bullying, and I will back you on any quest to eliminate that.

Edit: sad that you had to include that last edit in there.

Now Trending

Houston Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

General

Health & Beauty

Loading...