morning afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Ethan Ralph, and I’m here to bring you another day of news and shit-talking, as always. Let’s start off with a follow-up on our last post, which concerned SXSW and the way the media has tried to spin yesterday’s cancellations. If you read that post, you know that they’re super busy trying to pin the whole thing on us, even though there is no logical reason why we would want to sabotage our own panel before it even began.I guess you could make the case that we would have a motive to doing it during the actual show. It would still be bullshit, but you could at least make that case. Their current story makes no sense, though.
As it turns out, we now have an unlikely ally in this fight: BuzzFeed. Well, I guess it’s not quite that simple. They mainly talk about the Fat Randi panel that got cancelled, so you can’t call them fully-fledged allies. Still, to their credit, they say that they want both panels reinstated, or else they’re going to withdraw from the festival altogether. It’s BuzzFeed, so they’re probably doing this for media stunt and virtue signalling reason. Still, we have to give them some props on this one.
From the article…
BuzzFeed plans to withdraw its participation from the South by Southwest Interactive festival after organizers decided to cancel two gaming and online harassment panels after receiving “numerous threats of on-site violence.”
In a letter to the organizers of the Austin-based media festival sent Tuesday, President of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures Ze Frank, BuzzFeed publisher Dao Nguyen, and Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith wrote, “We will feel compelled to withdraw … if the conference can’t find a way to do what those other targets of harassment do every day — to carry on important conversations in the face of harassment.”
I gotta agree with BuzzFeed more than I do some people on Twitter last night. There were those of us who said to be forgiving to SXSW for even giving us a chance in the first place. While Zoe Quinn and the SJW con crew spazzing out is hilarious, the fact of the matter is, we should be pissed as well. As always, Master Milo was there today with some words of wisdom.
Both panels have now been cancelled. In a statement, SXSW explained that they had “received numerous threats of on-site violence related to this programming” and that the panels were cancelled to “keep dialogue open and respectful.”
In other words, they received a few empty threats from the internet, clearly intended to shut down the panels, and SXSW spinelessly caved in. Bizarrely, they justified their decision by referencing “strong community management.” But cancelling discussion between two important groups in the gaming community has nothing to do with either strength or community.
I’ve been covering GamerGate for over a year now and have received so many threats I’ve lost count. None of them have come to anything. Because of course they haven’t. When I was asked to get protection for an event in Los Angeles, I (quite rightly) wasted my security budget on a black porn star instead. In a foolish precedent, SXSW has now established the principle that the only thing needed to bring down a panel at their show is a few groundless anonymous online threats.
Their contention that the panels would not be “open and respectful” is baffling. London’s annual Battle of Ideas Festival, hosted by the Institute of Ideas, recently hosted two very well-attended panels that discussed GamerGate. My colleague Allum Bokhari and I were on one of them. The Society of Professional Journalists also hosted a GamerGate panel this August, which I attended. It was so productive that the SPJ are now considering making a bigger push to raise standards in the games media.
It’s pretty sad when only BuzzFeed has the guts to stand up and call out this trash. Well, of course Milo is there as well, but I’ve begun to take that as a given. He’s always there fighting the insanity. The point is, most other outlets were too busy lying about GamerGate to bother with any sort of formal protest. Lies needed to be told in order to move clicks, principles be damned. This is exactly the sort of thing we’ve been fighting against from the start. It reminded me a lot of GameJournoPros. The SJW media wanted to get out front and poison the well against GamerGate and their associates.
Milo echoing my thoughts from last night. No free pass for cowards…How can one man be so based? pic.twitter.com/QrK5pd4B6F
— Ethan Ralph (@TheRalphRetort) October 27, 2015
Then again, I don’t ascribe much morality to BuzzFeed, since they’ve not exactly been fair to use in the past. Maybe they’re just over-budget and need to save money. Still, credit where credit is due. They’re stepping up to the plate on this one. Anyway, I have a lot more for you, including some Milo overload with his new announcement and profile piece that I ended up not getting quoted for. I’m gonna print my response to the author, cause I think it was that damn good. Drop me a line down below, and I’ll be back within the hour.