John Oliver Tackles "Online Harassment" By Citing Wu & Sarkeesian

John Oliver Tackles “Online Harassment” By Citing Wu & Sarkeesian

I mentioned this news at the end of the last column, but I wanted to wait until after I had seen the actual segment from John Oliver’s show, Last Week Tonight. I’d already heard that Brianna Wu and Anita Sarkeesian had both been cited, due to Wu trumpeting the news from her Twitter account (and the KiA thread on it). She of course spun it as an attack on GamerGate itself, which isn’t the case. Still, I won’t say I’m happy with him using the Nightline footage, simply because I already know how these liars are going to portray things, with the help of a compliant gaming press. Despite the fact that there is zero evidence tying us to any kind of death threats or violence, the SJWs keep trying to spread their bullshit narrative.

The video is up here, if you want to watch it. I would embed it, but I’m pretty sure HBO would raise hell. Also, I’m not sure how long that will be posted, so you may want to go watch it now. The actual segment itself talks about a wide variety of issues, including revenge porn. I don’t co-sign that sort of thing, obviously. Death threats aren’t something I support either. But by citing notoriously unstable and unreliable people like Wu & Sarkeesian, you undermine the whole effort. They’ve told too many lies about too many things, even if some of the harassment they cite is real.

UPDATE: From YouTube…

Here’s how Wu (UPDATE: & Anita) is portraying the segment:

Well, you may have said a lot of things, but none of that was in the fucking episode. The only thing they showed from you was a brief clip from the Nightline piece. I’m sure you were talking their ear off, though. There’s no doubt in my mind. They probably had to fake an outage (or hostage situation) just to get your kooky ass off the line.

Let me know what you think after giving it a watch. It’s not the biggest deal in the world, but I don’t like giving these two clowns any mainstream airtime like that, even if it’s old clips. They just spin it as an attack on GamerGate, which the segment really wasn’t. They were careful not to mention GamerGate, actually. So maybe they wanted to cite those two, but without going in on us. Either way, it would have been a lot better to have just left them out altogether.

Ethan Ralph

Founder, Owner, & Editor-in-Chief of TheRalphRetort.com. Political fiend, gamer, & anti-bullshit.

  • Thomas Crehan

    I’ll be honest, apart from citing Anita and Wu, I actually thought it was funny.

  • WTF Magazine

    Yeah I agree they could have left those two out of the discussion
    The only harassment they receive is mean words on the internet whereas gg supporters have lost jobs, got shit sent in the mail, got bomb threats, got swatted, doxed, all that shit and all Wu and Sark do is cry real hard on Twitter about mean comments

  • Tenebrae

    Complicated. I have absolutely no problem with his advocacy against actual threats, especially when he isn’t demonizing sarcasm and snark. I do, however, find it rather problematic that he’s rejuvenating a deteriorating platform of two ideologues that have, obviously, lied in the past and do so for profit…blatantly so.

    It’s extremely obvious that he didn’t do the research…or he’d find the massive volumes of criticism directed towards these two ideologues, by men and women, for their deceptive behavior. That’s not really shocking…John Oliver is just the host, still…I wish he would have looked into it and made some sort of disclaimer, or hell…touched upon how media manipulation, especially in this circumstance, inflames these issues even further and how people should ALWAYS seek out the truth of every story by looking at both sides.

    …even that would have made me clap. Either way, it’s ultimately not something that bothers me much…Anita and Wu are pretty much ignored by the gaming industry now days, they make their money by suckling the wallets of the indoctrinated. Anita really killed her ride recently with the bullshit at E3.

    Enjoyed the show, excluding Anita and Wu…for obvious reasons. Shame we can’t get someone like Boogie2988 on there for a followup.

  • LongLiveGamerGate

    It’s not that bad, still I feel a little dissapointed by Oliver, I really like the dude. I’ve let that wage gap thing slip, hope this is the last non-researched thing that happens.

    • Keep hoping, it only gets worse from here on out.

    • Trybrow

      oh yeah now that everyone can use sources such as colbert and oliver to “prove” their “facts” about harassment, as opposed to and along with people nobody has heard of im sure its going to get better…. like, in your dreams.

      • ThatGuy

        >.> Colbert was one of the worst things to happen to Anita, especially if you watch the full interview as opposed to the tiny section that gets shown during the show.

        There’s a reason she’s never had another major TV spot, especially in an interview capacity, since that show.

        • Trybrow

          yeah I watched it all, seemed like a normal interview where they let her get away with her shit

    • I’m thankful the only talking head I ever paid attention to was Bill Maher. He’s nutty on animal rights junk, but he shits on pretty much everything else universally.
      Also been a good friend of Sommers’ since the 1990s shows.

  • Philip Weigel

    I stopped watching when he mentioned “White Male Privilege”.

    FFS, John, between this and your idiotic stance on the “Gender Pay Gap”, you’re looking more and more moronic every time I see you. It’s sad, you used to be so good.

    • Typical

      true believers have to believe the whole party line.

  • Cameron A Ballinger

    I liked John, too bad he went almost #FullMcIntosh with this video. I just watched it and came here to read this article, a lot of BS was told in it. Wu is mentally insane, Anita is just a money whor– (Censored) I mean hound. I am just so sick and tired of these gamer wannabes coming in, trying to kick us out and taking over a hobby that I love from me. D:

  • Jon Doe #∞

    “They probably had to fake an outage (or hostage situation) just to get your kooky ass off the line” – I luv U!

  • I just couldn’t watch the whole John Oliver video. It was bloody pathetic, that thing.
    > Removes all agency, responsibility and consequence of action from women in question.
    > Makes invalid comparisons.
    > Says how easy it is to find anything on the internet, doesn’t bother to look up people he’s talking about.
    > Doesn’t understand how the internet works and what ‘There are no girls on the internet.’ actually means.
    > Heavily borders on acting like a white knight in general.

    I did have a few chuckles here and there, but I was cringing heavily with all the disinformation that fueled a good chink of this episode.

  • Freeman

    Eh, it will all be forgotten soon enough. It’s just like The Daily Show; they talk a big game about doing something about the world’s problems and nothing ever comes of it. It’s just a feel-good circle jerk.

  • Trybrow

    John Oliver is a fucking clueless simp.

  • GuitarAnthony

    I’m not going to watch another (s)hit piece but let’s be honest…it’s less ‘special programming on online harassment’ and more ‘Professional victim complex Patreon television advertising’. It’s funny how behind the media is that no one cares about the LW’s anymore & when anyone did, its was just for mocks, shits n giggles. Same old, same old. Frauds, charlatans, frontier salespeople selling a tonic that is ‘guaranteed’ to grow back your hair, make you lose weight & add 4 inches to your pecker. What they can’t stand is people are LEARNING. When people learn & wise up, less moniez in da Patreonz. Televangelist syndrome. Anita & Wu probably won’t make videos going “I HAVE SINNED AGAINST YOOOOOOOU!” like so old Southern TV preacher who for decades said hell was coming if he didn’t have a Porsche but fade back into the obscurity from whence they came.

  • BerwhaleTheAvenger

    I stopped giving a shit about John Oliver when he attacked Australia because we have Laws and a government official was trying to uphold them. (Barnaby Joyce and Johnny Depps dogs). So he can go suck a fuck for all I care, limey cunt.

    • Richard Olsen

      Yeah, that was the limit for me as well. That was bullshit.

    • Charles Lam

      Lolz limey cunt. I love it when Australians say that phrase.

  • Julie Shaw

    It wasn’t horrid but by having them or clips of them on he is endorsing their claims. I did not care for the fact that he also implied women are the only ones to get harassed online either. Men are harassed as well and they did not get into the very real harassment some women who claim not to be feminists or gamergate supporters receive from other women. I hope John reads all the feedback as he seems to do and readdresses it but I’m not sure his show has the balls to go against the popular narrative.

    • Shows like his preach to the faithful. I enjoy the work of Stewart, Colbert and Oliver but I don’t take them as anything but reinforcement of biases. I’ve seen Stewart tip his hat to O’Reilly when O’Reilly defended Michelle Obama, which was big of him, but again he plays to his audience.

      I don’t think these guys profess to do anything but entertain, but they certainly are a source of information to a lot of people and I think most of the audience accepts everything as gospel, without considering that the show wears it’s bias on its sleeve. People certainly don’t think “hey I should double check the facts of this comedy show”

      • yea, I remember there was a pew poll that said most college-age people find CC more trustworthy and informative than any of the 24/7 networks or their related websites. I think they finally picked up on that themselves and are going for broke with their ‘reporting’

      • Mr. Saturn

        Yeah I have friends who take what those clowns say as gospel.

  • The Bechtloff

    This is why I don’t watch any of that Daily Show crowd anymore.

  • Social Justice Whitey

    ,,,there is an HBO discussion forum specifically for this segment and when I checked it a couple hours ago there were only about 5 posts and 2 were pro GG,,,jump in folks,,,they asked for th’ discussion,,,here:

    http://talk.hbo.com/t5/Last-Week-Tonight-with-John/GamerGate-segment-please/td-p/436896

    • Masterdingo

      That’s a dead forum. All posts are from October 2014.

      • Social Justice Whitey

        ,,,dammit,,,gotta quit internettin on more than two joints,,,thanks man,,,

        • Masterdingo

          Don’t sweat it, we’ve all done it. 🙂

  • bulletbites

    John Oliver is a crowdpleaser ala Jerry Springer. To entertain his audience he needs to make things simple and understandable to soak up the glorious wisecrackery-filled segments without much afterthought. It’s seldom extensively researched or indepth; it don’t need to be. As long as all legal matters are checked off (can we say this, is it buzzworthy, can we make these jokes with it, etc) the “truth” becomes a second fiddle. I also believe that John Oliver himself couldn’t object if he wanted to because the show is produced and he is simply playing his part (“read stuff from the teleprompter and sell it, John, make it your own”).

  • Robert Alan Andersen

    There is a level of responsibility to posting information publicly that a large portion of the public seems incapable of handling or understanding. This mirrors some child/young celebrities’ burnout, in that having that much attention directed at you is something that takes a lot to get accustomed to.

    “Threats” related to your public profile and statements on sites like twitter and facebook are like voicing your opinions by posting posters all over every town, with your name and address on rip-off slips. If you do this you will get targeted threats and you should expect it. The anonymity of the internet allows these threats to be made with out repercussions and should therefore be taken less seriously, as risk weeds out trolls.

  • Zanard Bell

    No shit. Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and now John Oliver.

    These guys have been charlatans since forever, and people just noticed?

    • Charles Lam

      I lost respect for Stewart after the vaccine/autism interview. Funny how it backpedals now.

  • Mr Snow

    The liberal media will only have themselves to blame when conservative candidates win the next set of elections.

    I think there’s a lot of people that align with gamergate’s logic but just don’t identify with the cause. That is not liking people telling us what is and isn’t acceptable, shaming us for being critical of “special snowflakes”, not caring for third wave feminism’s radical ideology, and not following a “listen and believe” mandate.

    Liberal / left leaning people disenfranchised with the liberal left. Then when conservative media like Milo on BreitBart or FoxNews are willing to be critical and let the other side be heard, guess where the disenfranchised start wandering towards.

    • ezralyte

      As an uber-liberal, I’m definitely feeling extremely disenfranchised / demotivated this time around but it’s not because of GamerGate or the media. It’s that said social “activists” (supposedly my side) are more worried about shaming someone for not using the right pronoun online than the on-the-ground activism and laws at work in politics.

      If anything the reason conservatives have any shot whatsoever is that Clinton won’t be progressive ENOUGH for the people who can’t be bothered to even follow what’s happening or are completely unaware that they need to vote instead of making a Twitter campaign about it.

      • A Real Libertarian

        The problem with Hillery is:

        1. She’s pretty much around Dubya’s political positions, on war, civil liberties, and a large chunk of economic issues.
        2. She can’t openly endorse SJW positions without losing any hope of the White House, and SJWs will crucify her for it.
        3. Baggage, baggage, baggage. She’s got too much dirty shit in her past for anything more then “I’m better then the other guy” to be believable to anyone beyond the party sheep (and those are a lot less then the party bosses believe).

        • ezralyte

          I actually don’t disagree at all. Which is really sad.

          • A Real Libertarian

            On the the other hand, if she collapses, then Bernie is the clear front-runner.

          • ezralyte

            Bernie Sanders’ policies are (generally speaking) more in line with my own. But he and Clinton both aren’t going to change the political landscape. Unless something drastic happens it’s pretty much a given that Congress is going to be far right until 2020 and I’m not so sure that the Senate won’t be leaning that way either.

          • USKensington

            The Congress isn’t “far right” now. Republican majorities don’t equate to “far right,” unless you refuse to notice them scrambling over ways to save ObamaCare should the subsidies collapse in the Supreme Court this month.

            They give lip service to being “far right” whilst governing as Democrats.

          • Forreals, America is as “right” as it is “capitalist”
            Which is to say: not at all. There’s religion, and that’s it.

  • ElderWolf

    The worst part about it is Mr. Repzion did a video on her last night talking about how he’s tired of her making obviously bullshit claims that the media just parrots. He talked about the recent E3 badge scandal and how some big names even called her on her bullshit, but it hasn’t stopped the usual people from using it as “evidence”. We’re all tied of it. If it was something complicated, i could understand the lack of research, but these are glass house narratives, things that simple research will disprove. There’s no excuse for this lack of research other than to push an adjenda.

    • ElderWolf

      Also, if you go into the comments of the LastWeekTonight youtube video, it’s full of people calling bullshit and white knights trying reverse psychology to prove their point, usually along the lines of “You don’t like her, so her claims are bullshit?” Or “So you’re saying her recieving death threats was justified?” Or even “So you want her to recieve death threats?” Basically morons that have nothing so they’re trying to shout down their opponent.

    • Mr. Saturn

      Yeah I retweeted that image and a friend of mine who almost believes everything Anita says without nary a bit of skepticism was upset that as he said, committed fraud. I was hoping he would be like “hmm, she lied about this. What else has she lied about?” For a little fun I poked fun at him calling him a misogynist for daring to question her honesty and when he responded angrily, I told him that is exactly what he does to anyone who criticizes her. Didn’t take kindly to that no-siree. Unfortunately he is incapable of critical thinking when he has made up his mind.

  • mrwizeass

    You know, I’ve heard my conservative side of the family bitch about “muh ivory towers” when it came to taking points that came from people that leaned to tje left. I’m beginning to think there’s some semblance of truth in that statement.

  • C-Rod8391

    Why do they talk to survivors of real harassment or real women’s activists like John Bain or Christine Hoff Summers?

  • REAPER

    Hey John (I’m talking about Wu, not Oliver), hows your bullshit documentary with your fascist buddies Totilo and Quinn coming along?

  • Philip Weigel

    You know, considering how much bullshit came out of John Oliver’s mouth over the “Pay Wage Gap” and now this “white male privilege” shit (couldn’t watch the rest of the video), I’m left wondering “what about Colbert and Stewart, they endorsed this guy, how much did they support and I went along with because I didn’t know the facts but what they supported was total bullshit?”

  • Richard Olsen

    Why am I not surprised that John Oliver just parrots lines written for him by a team of researchers and joke writers. After all, why would he want to do any of the work himself?

    Just wait until he says something, does something, or thinks something that offends these concern grannies and they will lynch him. It’s only a matter of time.

    • Charles Lam

      They eat their own. They eat their own.

  • Clark
    • Charles Lam

      Hey guys! Check your pants. Apparently we shit them.

  • Clark

    Did anyone else catch that Maryland 2006 study that just showed Women:100 Men: 3.7? Did some digging and it’s referring to a study wherein they used male and female names in an IRC chat room. They don’t specify which chat rooms, of course, and they only count sexually themed comments. One of them was “I’m horny”. It’s more than likely confirmation biased due to this tacked on comment at the end: “Boys can be preyed upon too. And boys could be the ones doing it and thinking it’s not harmful,” she says. They don’t comment on the gender of those enacting the harassment, either.

    He also denies men as being the victims of revenge porn. He also denies men having their lives ruined for saying things online. He basically outright denies that men only exist on the internet as abusive woman haters. God bless you, John, and go fuck yourself. The feminists will let you live.

  • D-Bone

    This is just really sad and stupid. I’m 6’6″ and 248 pounds, I lift a ton, I play in a lot of adult sports leagues and I’ve been directly death threat to my face, in person over 80 times and all that came from that was one drunken fistfight, that’s it. Internet threats aren’t serious and they should just be laughed at. Notice how all the women claiming and damsel in distressing over it are notoriously unattractive, definitely a huge part of playing the victim.

  • AStereotypicalGamer

    This is by far his most downvoted video on Youtube. Roughly 30% in comparison to most videos where the percentage of downvotes is single digits.

    This really wasn’t an anti-#GamerGate piece, but anyone taking Sarkeesian or Wu seriously can be safely dismissed based on the quality of their sources. It makes me less likely to trust this comedian to objectively report the news.

  • TeLin特林

    Loves how he implied men don’t deal with harassmentdeath threatsetc….even though the very study he cited states the exact opposite

    Very convenient to talk about death threats/harassment but only quote the “sexuality harassment” data.

    Jack ass

  • tz1

    Employers also look at all the social media. Lots of people themselves post things which will make things difficult to get jobs.

    I’m not sure how “non consensual pornography” would work and not be like the various regret campus rapes or reposts or the takedown notices of cat’s purring sounding like a copyrighted song.

    A parallel to “fear of my life” the women are complaining about are some of the police shootings where the cop just says “I was in fear of my life” when it is reasonably clear that nothing the person the police shot (or often a family pet) was doing was threatening or fatal.

    There is legitimate, rational fear, and there is paranoia. Are we now a nation of paranoids because bringing up this new F-word becomes a free pass?