Toxic Game Designers and Publishers

If there's one thing that's been true of all of human civilization, it's that those who control information are those who control the public mindset.

For whatever your take on it, those who control today's information are those who can spin media first.

This has been bad for gamers of late. We have been suffering Slings and Arrows since Cooper and Mackie. With the recent school shootings, we're back at it again.

We're Entitled, We're Racist, We're Misogynist. We're always the weakest link in our chain that someone can find.

And no one seems to hate us more recently... than the very developers and Publishers that make their livelihood off of us.

This latest round has come from the Now Epic Game Store Exclusive and Tim Sweeney's Tim Sweenying. I'll never say an issue doesn't have at least two sides, but every issue has a starting off point, and it wasn't the original post. To me, it wasn't that bad. The tone is a tone that long time acquaintances might use, not someone you just met.

No. The problem was when he said that he wanted to have an open discussion, and when people tried he came off as less than favorable in a few people's eyes.

This is just one example of what I feel is a growing list of dust-ups that the Game Industry and the Game Customers are having. The writer for Ooblets, Ben Wasser, trotted out "Nobody owes you the game" when a person said that the EGS store doesn't support their currency.

I do not understand what meant when he said he wanted to have an Open Conversation with his audience. When his audience brought up legitimate complaints like this one, he is met with apathy. Ooblet's decision has actual ramifications for gamers.

But here's the point. With the growing amount of anger and/or condescension coming from leads in Game Design like Randy Pitchford and Tim Sweeney (no link needed)... How come they can throw around the title 'Entitled' and 'Toxic', but their communication is only 'Questionable'?

Their actions and communication are in a bubble, but the weakest displays from all corners of 'our ranks' (like gamers are actually some sort of monolith) must be firmly stamped on our heads for the entire world to know us by.

Here's the thing. I don't think the Ooblets creators are CD Projekt Red. I don't take Gearbox's behavior and consider Paradox to be the same thing. But because I currently stopped playing Skyrim to type up this musing, I'm in league with the same assholes who send death and rape threats because we've both play games. Because of those LCDs, I must walk around fearing what people will think of me because I play games.

Yet these game industry designers and developers can be nasty, rude, condescending, dismissive, and pretty much derisive and we must take it in stride. They can't be toxic.

Even though that's exactly what they are being.

Who gives a shit what others think if you play games. I don't. If those type don't want or refuse to understand or compromise, fuck'em. I am not here to impress everyone. As for the bitches in the box stand at the top of dev or publisher, they are assholes and they will be continued to be called out as such. Tim and Randy ain't foolin everybody as seen several times on Twitter. It's obvious they're talking about themselves more than the actual gaming community, but want to pass blame to feel better about themselves. As much as the gaming community has problems, neither of those dickheads are part solution and either start the problem or make the situation worse. People like Jim Sterling and others on YouTube will not stop at pointing bullshit when they see it from guys like them.

For Randy and others, I have only this left to say:

Your sins are going to catch up to you at some point.

"I want to give you my money for this thing you're selling, but because of the choices you've made, I can't."
"You entitled jerk!"

It's not toxicity; it's raw utter stupidity.

Its what happens when you start seeing your consumer base as nothing more than money symbols with legs and arms

The main issue to me is that we're just dealing with Trump and his cronies blaming Video Games and not the easy access to weapons or hate media for the violence that is happening. We as one stand up and defend ourselves.

These people malign gamers in a few different ways, and instead of focusing on the adult conversations that were levied to these people and how they condescendingly ignored them while calling us names... we focus on the childish element that is in EVERY group that goes to the Least Common Denominator answer with death threats and rape threats.

Those children are everywhere. In Politics, in TV, and Music. They are horrible, and they will always be apart of the Bell Curve of the majority of people behaving like adults and with a smaller number of people who are off trying to chime in. They are everywhere, sadly. And to pretend it's a bigger issue in video games is doing a disservice to the actual conversation at hand. We CAN have a conversation of what should we do with these people. And we should.

But the topic at hand is that Ben Wasser was not representing his brand in a way that deserves the respect he apparently is trying to receive by trying to clean up the optics of what he said.

"By engaging directly with that crowd, I mistakenly thought I could have some impact on their opinions and emotions and defuse the situation with some lighthearted criticism of the main things that drove them to attack people," Wasser said in today's post. "You can see how well that went. It was a stupid miscalculation on my part."

Wasser then posted a selection of messages directed at him and the other half of Glumberland, Rebecca Cordingley. The message are full of people wishing or threatening violence toward them and calling them homophobic, racist, and/or anti-Semitic slurs. One of the more printable messages read, "just don't disrespect pc gamers and expect to get away with it you swines."

Wasser said, "I'd challenge anyone to be on the receiving end of this for a few minutes/hours/days to not come to the conclusion that a huge segment of the broader gaming community is toxic. People are upset that I've said that word. Now imagine someone getting offended by me using the word 'toxic' in the context of what this group has been saying and doing to us."

He went on to defend his characterization of some upset gamers as entitled, saying that sentiment seemed to draw the most enraged responses. A developer making a game does not need to capitulate to the demands of potential customers in the same way they might owe something to actual customers, Wasser said.

"I recognize that none of this post equates to an apology in any way that a lot of the mob is trying to obtain, and that's by design. While some of what I've said was definitely bad for PR, I stand behind it. A portion of the gaming community is indeed horrendously toxic, entitled, immature, irrationally-angry, and prone to joining hate mobs over any inconsequential issue they can cook up. That was proven again through this entire experience. It was never my intention to alienate or antagonize anyone in our community who does not fit that description, and I hope that you can see my tone and pointed comments were not directed at you."

I'm trying to not editorialize, but this screams so much of the bratty little sibling who started the situation by calling his other sibling a name in the beginning, a fight ensues, and then he explains it away by saying "It's True that you are like that, but I should have realized you would have acted like that if I just voiced the truth"

Reminder, this is how he acted to Adult people trying to discuss the situation with him.

The Rogue Wolf:
"I want to give you my money for this thing you're selling, but because of the choices you've made, I can't."
"You entitled jerk!"

It's not toxicity; it's raw utter stupidity.

I believe it was actually "I gave you money for this thing that you're selling when you begged for money on kickstarter, and now I can't play the game that was promised to me because I can't use the epic game store."

"You entitled jerk! We already let you give us money, what more do you want? Oh, you want a game? No body owes you a game."

Dirty Hipsters:

The Rogue Wolf:
"I want to give you my money for this thing you're selling, but because of the choices you've made, I can't."
"You entitled jerk!"

It's not toxicity; it's raw utter stupidity.

I believe it was actually "I gave you money for this thing that you're selling when you begged for money on kickstarter, and now I can't play the game that was promised to me because I can't use the epic game store."

"You entitled jerk! We already let you give us money, what more do you want? Oh, you want a game? No body owes you a game."

Someone better @ Sean Murray this exchange

ObsidianJones:
Reminder, this is how he acted to Adult people trying to discuss the situation with him.

Is that screenshot real? Cuz I've heard a lot of the screenies of the Ooblets dude being a dick are fake.

If real tho, oooh boy, getting a bit of a Phil Fish vibe. His avatar even kind of looks the part.

Chimpzy:

ObsidianJones:
Reminder, this is how he acted to Adult people trying to discuss the situation with him.

Is that screenshot real? Cuz I've heard a lot of the screenies of the Ooblets dude being a dick are fake.

If real tho, oooh boy, getting a bit of a Phil Fish vibe. His avatar even kind of looks the part.

Though I am a little scared that contrarians or Epic store fans are going to unload dumptrucks of money to him just to spite us normies...

ObsidianJones:
snip

If you are getting your info from one angry "gamer"; you owe the other side to tell their side of the story.

https://medium.com/@perplamps/regarding-whats-been-happening-3af0f27d863c

You made a big mistake: you grouped every gamer with the harassing mob, while the developer didn't. Why did you do that?

CaitSeith:

ObsidianJones:
snip

If you are getting your info from one angry "gamer"; you owe the other side to tell their side of the story.

https://medium.com/@perplamps/regarding-whats-been-happening-3af0f27d863c

You made a big mistake: you grouped every gamer with the harassing mob, while the developer didn't. Why did you do that?

First, I actually did bring up his statement. I called it an attempt to clean up the optics after enough of his replies spurred on more outcry.

Secondly, that's not true. I wished you spoilered snipped me so no one can claim that I edited my reply (meta humor), but this is what I said that could have talked about gamers as a whole:

ObsidianJones:
This has been bad for gamers of late. We have been suffering Slings and Arrows since Cooper and Mackie. With the recent school shootings, we're back at it again.

We're Entitled, We're Racist, We're Misogynist. We're always the weakest link in our chain that someone can find.

And no one seems to hate us more recently... than the very developers and Publishers that make their livelihood off of us.

ObsidianJones:
I do not understand what meant when he said he wanted to have an Open Conversation with his audience. When his audience brought up legitimate complaints like this one, he is met with apathy. Ooblet's decision has actual ramifications for gamers.

ObsidianJones:
Their actions and communication are in a bubble, but the weakest displays from all corners of 'our ranks' (like gamers are actually some sort of monolith) must be firmly stamped on our heads for the entire world to know us by.

ObsidianJones:
Here's the thing. I don't think the Ooblets creators are CD Projekt Red. I don't take Gearbox's behavior and consider Paradox to be the same thing. But because I currently stopped playing Skyrim to type up this musing, I'm in league with the same assholes who send death and rape threats because we've both play games. Because of those LCDs, I must walk around fearing what people will think of me because I play games.

ObsidianJones:
The main issue to me is that we're just dealing with Trump and his cronies blaming Video Games and not the easy access to weapons or hate media for the violence that is happening. We as one stand up and defend ourselves.

These people malign gamers in a few different ways, and instead of focusing on the adult conversations that were levied to these people and how they condescendingly ignored them while calling us names... we focus on the childish element that is in EVERY group that goes to the Least Common Denominator answer with death threats and rape threats.

Those children are everywhere. In Politics, in TV, and Music. They are horrible, and they will always be apart of the Bell Curve of the majority of people behaving like adults and with a smaller number of people who are off trying to chime in. They are everywhere, sadly. And to pretend it's a bigger issue in video games is doing a disservice to the actual conversation at hand. We CAN have a conversation of what should we do with these people. And we should.

Now, if you can show me where I said anything but "Gamers are not a monolith", that would help me out greatly. In fact, one of the things I quoted myself in saying (it will be in bold) that it's unfair that we get judged by our weakest links and we all have to wear their indiscretions as a Scarlet Letter simply because we enjoy the same Medium of Entertainment.

Back to my original point about Ooblets behavior, I must admit that I'm not an Internet God. I can not pretend to know what happened first, negative DMs before the Discord conversation, or negative DMs after his responses. What I do know as that it doesn't matter. Let's take you and me. Say I have someone on this forum calling me names, calling for my eradication, and have it filled with this and that. Of course that can get me heated. Angry to the extreme.

But if you weren't one of those people, I can not take that out on you. I can not look at you and see those people who messaged me. If I took your response and said "You know what, Caitseith? I'm tired of hearing your whining and you can go off with the rest of the toxic crybabies here"... Completely unwarranted and unprofessional. You did nothing to warrant that.

I won't even question of those messages are fake. I know the entire enough to know people like that are out there. But I know Ben Wasser was rude and uncivil to people who asked him questions like adults. And he told people who voiced legitimate concerns that said concerns were akin to the whining he was hearing from toxic gamers, and outright told some people that Ooblets wasn't for them.

My point is you can't decry being toxic while you, yourself, are being toxic. That's what he was doing.

Those people who were actually being toxic like those you quoted matter, but matter as a separate problem. He does not get to lump them in as an excuse for his uncalled for actions with people who WERE being civil with him. Just like I don't get to curse you out because if people here currently are being unconscionable with me.

The deflection he attempted doing was stating that people who had a problem with the decision and/or his tone were the Entitled gamers. This is the issue I and others had with it.

And to wrap it up finally, I already talked about those idiots such as the ones you listed. I mentioned while they are shameful, they aren't germane to the discussion because literally every group will have those vociferous Fringe Elements. I stated we should have an actual talk about them, but we should not used them as Scapegoats to justify unpopular actions. Such as I might hate Pitchford, but I will not say I'm allowed to talk smack about Paradox because of Pitchford's actions.

Chimpzy:

ObsidianJones:
Reminder, this is how he acted to Adult people trying to discuss the situation with him.

Is that screenshot real? Cuz I've heard a lot of the screenies of the Ooblets dude being a dick are fake.

If real tho, oooh boy, getting a bit of a Phil Fish vibe. His avatar even kind of looks the part.

I'm not a twitter dude. But the only thing that I've seen that Ben Wasser stated wasn't true was was a comment about Gamers deserve Gas Chambers.

Now, I don't use Twitter. It seems like when you go to his twitter front, the latest thing he talked about was a new feature in his game, and when I scrolled down I saw something from Jan and under it was something from a fan drawing that was showing support for the developers after the backlash. So, I could just not know how to find it. But again, that's the only definite thing I found that he stated was false.

In fact, in his statement, he doesn't call anything else to be a falsehood out. He admitted stating that some of what [He has] said was definitely bad for PR, [But He] stand[s] behind it. So I have to assume it's true.

Given the amount of absolutely horrible shit I see people saying on the forums for a lot of online games, I'm not sure I can really side with the consumer as much as I used to. People send a lot of terrible messages to developers and and in general whiny and childish little shits.

ObsidianJones:
Let's take you and me. Say I have someone on this forum calling me names, calling for my eradication, and have it filled with this and that. Of course that can get me heated. Angry to the extreme.

But if you weren't one of those people, I can not take that out on you. I can not look at you and see those people who messaged me. If I took your response and said "You know what, Caitseith? I'm tired of hearing your whining and you can go off with the rest of the toxic crybabies here"... Completely unwarranted and unprofessional. You did nothing to warrant that.

True, however it would be extremely unfair if people dogpiled even more on you after that reply (most of them making new Escapist accounts just for that) without even caring what I thought about it. Maybe after being rude with me, I empathized with what was happening to you as human being, because we have read each other posts long enough to probably know how we both react when under pressure, and what was happening to you was thousands times the undeserved pressure than you're used to find at this forum. But no; they don't care. From the start they are just saw you as defying the norm and they are using your answer to me as an excuse to put you back to the place where you belong.

I wouldn't care how unwarranted or unprofessional was, I can't blame you. It'd be also your right to call them for what they are: a toxic mob (they had nothing to do with the original exchange, and yet, here they are like if they spoke for me). You may choose to be civil and say nothing, but you don't owe them to do so (why would you?); and whoever in the hate mob who thinks otherwise is (if you excuse my expression) an "entitled baby" who thinks he deserves all the respect while bandwagoing in an attempt to break someone else's will.

Why was Ooblets targeted in the first place? Because of making their game an Epix Store exclusive. The angry mob just needed an excuse to make an example of those two developers; and although the later delivered it in silver plate, what the mob is doing is wrong and can't be separated from this discussion (it would be like separating the shooter's manifesto from El Paso shooting; we would end up blaming the victims or scapegoating videogames).

ObsidianJones:
Now, if you can show me where I said anything but "Gamers are not a monolith", that would help me out greatly.

Gladly:

ObsidianJones:

The main issue to me is that we're just dealing with Trump and his cronies blaming Video Games and not the easy access to weapons or hate media for the violence that is happening. We as one stand up and defend ourselves.

This is the part that threw me off. It sounds like you're referring to gamers in a monolithic fashion, and since 2014 I'm kinda not too eager to blindly follow that plan.

ObsidianJones:

But the topic at hand is that Ben Wasser was not representing his brand in a way that deserves the respect he apparently is trying to receive by trying to clean up the optics of what he said.

I don't understand. Does having a gaming brand make you automatically a servant to all gamers and you can't never raise your hand to your new masters?

CaitSeith:
True, however it would be extremely unfair if people dogpiled even more on you after that reply (most of them making new Escapist accounts just for that) without even caring what I thought about it. Maybe after being rude with me, I empathized with what was happening to you as human being, because we have read each other posts long enough to probably know how we both react when under pressure, and what was happening to you was thousands times the undeserved pressure than you're used to find at this forum. But no; they don't care. From the start they are just saw you as defying the norm and they are using your answer to me as an excuse to put you back to the place where you belong.

I wouldn't care how unwarranted or unprofessional was, I can't blame you. It'd be also your right to call them for what they are: a toxic mob (they had nothing to do with the original exchange, and yet, here they are like if they spoke for me). You may choose to be civil and say nothing, but you don't owe them to do so (why would you?); and whoever in the hate mob who thinks otherwise is (if you excuse my expression) an "entitled baby" who thinks he deserves all the respect while bandwagoing in an attempt to break someone else's will.

Why was Ooblets targeted in the first place? Because of making their game an Epix Store exclusive. The angry mob just needed an excuse to make an example of those two developers; and although the later delivered it in silver plate, what the mob is doing is wrong and can't be separated from this discussion (it would be like separating the shooter's manifesto from El Paso shooting; we would end up blaming the victims or scapegoating videogames).

It's my right to call the toxic individual toxic individuals. As it is also your right to be referred to as what you're being, as respectful person that is not causing any drama and thus should not have that thrust upon them. I do not have the right to refer to them as an excuse to my poor treatment of you because you didn't do anything. Sure, I can be tired of them. But I don't have any right to be tired of you.

And to why Ooblets are being targeted in the first place? I won't deny that there's a population who attacks anyone who does an EGS exclusive. But this conversation should end right now if we can't admit that isn't even the biggest reason now. SidAlpha, The Quartering, Pretty Good Gaming, Yong Yea, Jim Sterling (before he took it down), and others are voicing their reason for their frustration: How Ben responded to those people who weren't the threatening idiots. At once, they are all

And why do I ignore the articles? I don't. I realize that they are mentioning the death threats. And they should. Both sides of the story should come out. Those ACTUAL toxic people who are sadly members of the gaming community must be exposed and shown that this isn't how you represent yourself.

If I'm mad at Police Brutality, of course I'm going to force on the people who are actually brutalizing people. If you can show me that it's an untold number of police who do not brutalize any one, that's great. That's how it should be. But those good cops do not erase those corrupt ones who do brutalize. And trying to make the conversation about the good cops when we're talking about how the corrupt ones get away with it simply robs the conversation of any intellectual honesty.

We can talk about the toxic members. I already said many times we should. It is a problem. It needs to be addressed. Just like it needs to be addressed that people like me and others are upset with Ben Wasser for his treatment of people and potential customers.

And I know. Next idea is to focus on the numbers. "How many people was Ben Wasser rude to? the number of people in the discord server at most? He's gotten (reportedly) THOUSANDS of messages from toxic sources".

... Yeah. That's how things work would you call out literally Billions of people. One person versus billions. Does it excuse those threats? Nothing will. But you act in a way that self-preservation is vital at all times. That's simply what life is. I limit my clothing color options when I go to the Bronx because you could be going into Crip territory or Blood territory. It's not fair. I should be free to express myself however I want. And for the most part, most of the human population understands that... or more over doesn't even care I exist. But if I wear blue in Blood territory and I condescendingly say out into the wild "God, gang members sure are entitled babies"... I am a sheer idiot.

We can all agree that I shouldn't have harm placed upon me for clothing choices and voicing my opinion, but we'll all think I'm a God Damned Idiot for doing it and would be really wondering what I was expecting. That is the outlook I have with Wasser. Even though I don't like his statements, he has a right to say it. Just as I have a right to respond. Just like everyone else does. It is foolish of him to expect that all people he maligned will act like I do because universally that's never how humanity has ever worked in the history of mankind. You call people out, and some people will respond.

A group of people have taken Trump's rhetoric to heart and have been telling Latinos that they need to get out of this country because they are illegal. Not everyone is doing it. But if you put out static, enough people will respond to that. That is the Bell Curve of Humanity. And while I wish no one would ever threaten others like that, living on this Earth long enough, Wasser diminished and insulted a category of people. I am not shocked that the Fringe took offense and acted on it. And no amount of "Sorry but Not Sorry" amount of Optics cleaning will make me see it any differently.

Lastly, You're brushing people's legitimate displeasure of how Wasser actually responded to people to lump them up as an angry mob. To borrow from you, why did you do that?

ObsidianJones:
Now, if you can show me where I said anything but "Gamers are not a monolith", that would help me out greatly.

Gladly:

ObsidianJones:

The main issue to me is that we're just dealing with Trump and his cronies blaming Video Games and not the easy access to weapons or hate media for the violence that is happening. We as one stand up and defend ourselves against these accusations. As I went into further with the next paragraph while

This is the part that threw me off. It sounds like you're referring to gamers in a monolithic fashion, and since 2014 I'm kinda not too eager to blindly follow that plan.

Got it. In truth, I thought the topic switch and the sheer amount of times where I said gamers aren't a monolith would convey that I meant that we stood as one on the topic of Trump and media trying to blame video games for the shootings. In the next paragraph, I went on to say that the public normally ignores the rational responses for the weakest presentations of humanity via the vociferous Lowest Common Denominator.

Then in the paragraph after that, I said how all groups deal with the bell group of having the rational numbers ignored for the fringe element. And that we should have a discussion about those immature number who spoil the perception of a group due to their poor showing.

But you did find it like I asked. Thank you for that.

ObsidianJones:

But the topic at hand is that Ben Wasser was not representing his brand in a way that deserves the respect he apparently is trying to receive by trying to clean up the optics of what he said.

I don't understand. Does having a gaming brand make you automatically a servant to all gamers and you can't never raise your hand to your new masters?

That is a vast over-reach. I specifically said that he's not representing his brand in a way that deserved the respect he's apparently trying to receive by cleaning up the optics. That is a far cry from capitulating yourself to be subservient. Without cleaned up language, he acted like a dick. He was caught acting like a dick. So the sane treated him like a dick. That's all.

If he raised his hands to the death and rape threats, I'd be with him. I'm sure sane adults would do the same. But when he raised his hand against rational people trying to convey why this decision goes against what they would like as consumers and how it's legitimately detrimental in some cases, THAT'S where you have problems.

Again, let's use the Escapist as an example. If the new owners just started banning people left and right when they respectfully brought up legitimate concerns like the removal of the R&P forum, I'd assume the majority of us would have a problem with that. This is no different. The 'Raised Hand' response to rational, thought out discussions is the problem here.

I'm not saying that people have to be subservient when you enter the marketplace. But don't try to portray yourself as a class act trying to fruitlessly engage in dialogue against a 'tide of toxicity' when you yourself are toxic and egging it on.

ObsidianJones:
But if I wear blue in Blood territory and I condescendingly say out into the wild "God, gang members sure are entitled babies"... I am a sheer idiot.

OK, but if you say it far outside their territory, a gang member you didn't notice just happened to be at hearshot, and then approached you to teach you a lesson; were you still a sheer idiot?

ObsidianJones:
Lastly, You're brushing people's legitimate displeasure of how Wasser actually responded to people to lump them up as an angry mob. To borrow from you, why did you do that?

Because, four things:

1. As legitimate such displeasure is, the situation right now calls for patience and to wait for the proper time to bring it up; otherwise you'll keep getting lumped with the angry mob, and without the proper channels all your voiced legitimate displeasure will keep falling in deaf ears and miscategorized as just more senseless anger. Is that what you want? Because I don't

2. The angry mob is the one that started spreading the screenshot replies (tampered and cherry-picked for maximum shock effect), to incite displeasure from people who wouldn't get involved into this if they understood the big picture (like Jim Sterling realized).

3. I have seen enough harassment campaigns to stop giving to the phrase "legitimate concerns/criticism/questions" a blind benefit of the doubt; specially in cases like this where lots of misinformation is being thrown everywhere.

4. What percentage of people with true concerns did he reply in an acceptable manner? The people in his Patreon (the people who have the most right to police his attitude) seem to be less than concerned about getting lumped up with an angry mob after voicing their own concerns. How many people have complained about Ben's attitude towards their audience before this shit started? The level of displeasure you seem to portray makes him look like he has a sizable list of past misbehaviors. Toxic is a long term behavior, not a first-time infraction.

We are in the know on how toxic and overwhelming the fringe can be; Wasser didn't know the fringe was actively involved in the ESG outrage, he wasn't prepared and erred at it. We are aware that the fringe threaten, use bad faith arguments, misrepresent, lie and make themselves look like victims to stir anger from all gamers (that's what makes the fringe disgraceful). I'm more concerned about becoming a tool of the fringe than Ben's behavior, because the former has a more negative impact to gamers' reputation than the later.

Even if the accusations of being rude against innocent people are completely accurate, I consider calling him toxic too severe for what he said and the amount of times he said it.

Specter Von Baren:
Given the amount of absolutely horrible shit I see people saying on the forums for a lot of online games, I'm not sure I can really side with the consumer as much as I used to. People send a lot of terrible messages to developers and and in general whiny and childish little shits.

Considering the number of consumers there are of the product, the number of abusive assholes to people who are not is in the fraction of a percentage figure. There's nothing other consumers can do to curtail offensive statements made by others online, and so it is unfair to judge them for the actions of a tiny minority.

No matter how toxic a board or forum might seem, always remember that there are - at most - 2000 users on there, not all of them are active and not all of them are going to be toxic.

ObsidianJones:

CaitSeith:
True, however it would be extremely unfair if people dogpiled even more on you after that reply (most of them making new Escapist accounts just for that) without even caring what I thought about it. Maybe after being rude with me, I empathized with what was happening to you as human being, because we have read each other posts long enough to probably know how we both react when under pressure, and what was happening to you was thousands times the undeserved pressure than you're used to find at this forum. But no; they don't care. From the start they are just saw you as defying the norm and they are using your answer to me as an excuse to put you back to the place where you belong.

I wouldn't care how unwarranted or unprofessional was, I can't blame you. It'd be also your right to call them for what they are: a toxic mob (they had nothing to do with the original exchange, and yet, here they are like if they spoke for me). You may choose to be civil and say nothing, but you don't owe them to do so (why would you?); and whoever in the hate mob who thinks otherwise is (if you excuse my expression) an "entitled baby" who thinks he deserves all the respect while bandwagoing in an attempt to break someone else's will.

Why was Ooblets targeted in the first place? Because of making their game an Epix Store exclusive. The angry mob just needed an excuse to make an example of those two developers; and although the later delivered it in silver plate, what the mob is doing is wrong and can't be separated from this discussion (it would be like separating the shooter's manifesto from El Paso shooting; we would end up blaming the victims or scapegoating videogames).

It's my right to call the toxic individual toxic individuals. As it is also your right to be referred to as what you're being, as respectful person that is not causing any drama and thus should not have that thrust upon them. I do not have the right to refer to them as an excuse to my poor treatment of you because you didn't do anything. Sure, I can be tired of them. But I don't have any right to be tired of you.

And to why Ooblets are being targeted in the first place? I won't deny that there's a population who attacks anyone who does an EGS exclusive. But this conversation should end right now if we can't admit that isn't even the biggest reason now. SidAlpha, The Quartering, Pretty Good Gaming, Yong Yea, Jim Sterling (before he took it down), and others are voicing their reason for their frustration: How Ben responded to those people who weren't the threatening idiots. At once, they are all

And why do I ignore the articles? I don't. I realize that they are mentioning the death threats. And they should. Both sides of the story should come out. Those ACTUAL toxic people who are sadly members of the gaming community must be exposed and shown that this isn't how you represent yourself.

If I'm mad at Police Brutality, of course I'm going to force on the people who are actually brutalizing people. If you can show me that it's an untold number of police who do not brutalize any one, that's great. That's how it should be. But those good cops do not erase those corrupt ones who do brutalize. And trying to make the conversation about the good cops when we're talking about how the corrupt ones get away with it simply robs the conversation of any intellectual honesty.

We can talk about the toxic members. I already said many times we should. It is a problem. It needs to be addressed. Just like it needs to be addressed that people like me and others are upset with Ben Wasser for his treatment of people and potential customers.

And I know. Next idea is to focus on the numbers. "How many people was Ben Wasser rude to? the number of people in the discord server at most? He's gotten (reportedly) THOUSANDS of messages from toxic sources".

... Yeah. That's how things work would you call out literally Billions of people. One person versus billions. Does it excuse those threats? Nothing will. But you act in a way that self-preservation is vital at all times. That's simply what life is. I limit my clothing color options when I go to the Bronx because you could be going into Crip territory or Blood territory. It's not fair. I should be free to express myself however I want. And for the most part, most of the human population understands that... or more over doesn't even care I exist. But if I wear blue in Blood territory and I condescendingly say out into the wild "God, gang members sure are entitled babies"... I am a sheer idiot.

We can all agree that I shouldn't have harm placed upon me for clothing choices and voicing my opinion, but we'll all think I'm a God Damned Idiot for doing it and would be really wondering what I was expecting. That is the outlook I have with Wasser. Even though I don't like his statements, he has a right to say it. Just as I have a right to respond. Just like everyone else does. It is foolish of him to expect that all people he maligned will act like I do because universally that's never how humanity has ever worked in the history of mankind. You call people out, and some people will respond.

A group of people have taken Trump's rhetoric to heart and have been telling Latinos that they need to get out of this country because they are illegal. Not everyone is doing it. But if you put out static, enough people will respond to that. That is the Bell Curve of Humanity. And while I wish no one would ever threaten others like that, living on this Earth long enough, Wasser diminished and insulted a category of people. I am not shocked that the Fringe took offense and acted on it. And no amount of "Sorry but Not Sorry" amount of Optics cleaning will make me see it any differently.

Lastly, You're brushing people's legitimate displeasure of how Wasser actually responded to people to lump them up as an angry mob. To borrow from you, why did you do that?

ObsidianJones:
Now, if you can show me where I said anything but "Gamers are not a monolith", that would help me out greatly.

Gladly:

ObsidianJones:

The main issue to me is that we're just dealing with Trump and his cronies blaming Video Games and not the easy access to weapons or hate media for the violence that is happening. We as one stand up and defend ourselves against these accusations. As I went into further with the next paragraph while

This is the part that threw me off. It sounds like you're referring to gamers in a monolithic fashion, and since 2014 I'm kinda not too eager to blindly follow that plan.

Got it. In truth, I thought the topic switch and the sheer amount of times where I said gamers aren't a monolith would convey that I meant that we stood as one on the topic of Trump and media trying to blame video games for the shootings. In the next paragraph, I went on to say that the public normally ignores the rational responses for the weakest presentations of humanity via the vociferous Lowest Common Denominator.

Then in the paragraph after that, I said how all groups deal with the bell group of having the rational numbers ignored for the fringe element. And that we should have a discussion about those immature number who spoil the perception of a group due to their poor showing.

But you did find it like I asked. Thank you for that.

ObsidianJones:

But the topic at hand is that Ben Wasser was not representing his brand in a way that deserves the respect he apparently is trying to receive by trying to clean up the optics of what he said.

I don't understand. Does having a gaming brand make you automatically a servant to all gamers and you can't never raise your hand to your new masters?

That is a vast over-reach. I specifically said that he's not representing his brand in a way that deserved the respect he's apparently trying to receive by cleaning up the optics. That is a far cry from capitulating yourself to be subservient. Without cleaned up language, he acted like a dick. He was caught acting like a dick. So the sane treated him like a dick. That's all.

If he raised his hands to the death and rape threats, I'd be with him. I'm sure sane adults would do the same. But when he raised his hand against rational people trying to convey why this decision goes against what they would like as consumers and how it's legitimately detrimental in some cases, THAT'S where you have problems.

Again, let's use the Escapist as an example. If the new owners just started banning people left and right when they respectfully brought up legitimate concerns like the removal of the R&P forum, I'd assume the majority of us would have a problem with that. This is no different. The 'Raised Hand' response to rational, thought out discussions is the problem here.

I'm not saying that people have to be subservient when you enter the marketplace. But don't try to portray yourself as a class act trying to fruitlessly engage in dialogue against a 'tide of toxicity' when you yourself are toxic and egging it on.

Obsidian Jones... you're a good guy in my book, but I wouldn't take morality advice from somebody like The Quartering. That dude is a major asshole that has done some many shading things. And YongYea while nowhere near as bad as the former, I wouldn't always trust what he says either sometimes. then now he's just now Young's content too repetitive for my liking.

CaitSeith:

ObsidianJones:
But if I wear blue in Blood territory and I condescendingly say out into the wild "God, gang members sure are entitled babies"... I am a sheer idiot.

OK, but if you say it far outside their territory, a gang member you didn't notice just happened to be at hearshot, and then approached you to teach you a lesson; were you still a sheer idiot?

Probably not. That's just a bad time.

However, then the discussion becomes what is the definition of territory.

When I lived in the Bronx, the territory that I knew of began in Wakefield NY, went to Mount Vernon, expanded into Eastchester, and eventually dripped into the East Bronx.

That was their territory. It was strongest around the 2/5 train lines due to logistic reasons.

Theoretically, if you stayed away from those areas, you would have less of a risk to run into a Crip or a Blood. And realistically speaking, we're talking about at absolutely highest... a couple of hundred people in an area that would house a million and see maybe three times that for business, shopping, and play.

Ben Wasser's territory is on the internet. There are no bounds on the internet. Our conversation right now can be looked at someone from South Africa at the same time as someone in China decides to peek in. And if it goes viral, I literally can not fathom how many people's eyes of various tempers and opinions will be cast upon it.

You do not have private conversations on the internet. Especially when you deal with a topic that literally billions of people on this planet are interested in. And if not in Ooblets as a game, how the gaming market is going. Ben Wasser called out 3 billion potentials in a territory called the World Wide Web.

CaitSeith:
Because, four things:

1. As legitimate such displeasure is, the situation right now calls for patience and to wait for the proper time to bring it up; otherwise you'll keep getting lumped with the angry mob, and without the proper channels all your voiced legitimate displeasure will keep falling in deaf ears and miscategorized as just more senseless anger. Is that what you want? Because I don't

2. The angry mob is the one that started spreading the screenshot replies (tampered and cherry-picked for maximum shock effect), to incite displeasure from people who wouldn't get involved into this if they understood the big picture (like Jim Sterling realized).

3. I have seen enough harassment campaigns to stop giving to the phrase "legitimate concerns/criticism/questions" a blind benefit of the doubt; specially in cases like this where lots of misinformation is being thrown everywhere.

4. What percentage of people with true concerns did he reply in an acceptable manner? The people in his Patreon (the people who have the most right to police his attitude) seem to be less than concerned about getting lumped up with an angry mob after voicing their own concerns. How many people have complained about Ben's attitude towards their audience before this shit started? The level of displeasure you seem to portray makes him look like he has a sizable list of past misbehaviors. Toxic is a long term behavior, not a first-time infraction.

We are in the know on how toxic and overwhelming the fringe can be; Wasser didn't know the fringe was actively involved in the ESG outrage, he wasn't prepared and erred at it. We are aware that the fringe threaten, use bad faith arguments, misrepresent, lie and make themselves look like victims to stir anger from all gamers (that's what makes the fringe disgraceful). I'm more concerned about becoming a tool of the fringe than Ben's behavior, because the former has a more negative impact to gamers' reputation than the later.

Even if the accusations of being rude against innocent people are completely accurate, I consider calling him toxic too severe for what he said and the amount of times he said it.

1.) As much as I actually can see this point, once again it can't be held because this is the internet.

Unless my reading comprehension is really bad, Ben Wasser himself stated that after trying to talk to 'the entitled', he subsequentally received death threats and the like. Let's do a recheck.

ObsidianJones:
But the topic at hand is that Ben Wasser was not representing his brand in a way that deserves the respect he apparently is trying to receive by trying to clean up the optics of what he said.

"By engaging directly with that crowd, I mistakenly thought I could have some impact on their opinions and emotions and defuse the situation with some lighthearted criticism of the main things that drove them to attack people," Wasser said in today's post. "You can see how well that went. It was a stupid miscalculation on my part."

That's good enough for rock and roll. I'm going to present several theories anyway.

So, let's say that it was logical responses first, then outcry afterwards. Well, we get this situation. Where the logical conversations complete with his rude interactions of people presenting their case gets ignored for the much juicier story of the Deplorables.

Ok. But what would happen if they waited after? That still wouldn't be the selling story. Because as a civilization, we still exist on 'If it Bleeds, it Leads'. The Drama would be the click-fest more than the "Oh, by the way, Wasser was rude to people who were talking to him politely".

If it happened at the same time? Again, Politeness will get overshadowed.

Frankly, there ISN'T a good time to talk about anything if we follow this mindset because the Deplorables will always take center stage. We don't have news stories about how many cities don't have mass shootings per day. And if we do, we only show it because there was a recent mass shooting and we're trying to figure out why everything is going to hell.

2.) That falls under the Deplorables, and I agree. That is a childish tactic that undermines legitimate grievances.

But two things.

I can never know for certain, but the only questionable message that Wasser himself pointed out was the Gas Chamber comment. He had more than enough time to state anything else that was patiently false. And while I already admitted I'm not the more saavy when it comes to twitter, I have not see anything else he actually disputed. So for that, I'm going to count only one instance.

And that's the absolute rub.

We can count one instance of this falsehood (and it is certainly bad), and it gets attributed to the entire angry mob. What about the one guy who actually did it? It would be like saying the Slender Man is actually created by Creepy Pasta because that movement birthed and built on it, not Eric Knudsen has the [url=https://theslenderman.fandom.com/wiki/Copyrightlegal rights to Slender Man[/url].

The 'Angry Mob' didn't all gather on 4Chan and create the picture together. One person did. And the rest thought it was real. One person was nefarious, the rest were duped. You can't hold them all accountable.

3.) I get the sentiment, but I can't fully go there if I want to remain someone not clouded by my bias (we all are, but I attempt not to be). That's all I got on that.

4.) So, again, like I already stated with the question of numbers, what ratio is acceptable and what ratio is not. Again, if literally millions of people read up on this and Ben Wasser got replies of a thousand, do those numbers make it better? Only a thousand people behaved badly against millions. That seems like a decent number. What if it was a couple of hundred thousand? still, that number of one thousand seems small. I guess where I'm getting at if you ask the number of how many people Wasser was rude to compared to how many people he was ok to, anyone can counter with

Anyway, this point is a tangential one. Because out of all of the screenshots that we have (which are still valid because Wasser himself stated that he came off harsh and only disputed the Gas Chamber comment). Because he wasn't a jerk just to 'pamplemousse avenger 95' or 'DaSeXiiL3xi'... most of the replied he gave likened gamers to being entitled and whiny. In fact, in those screenshots, it's hard to see when he refereed to gamers without having the descriptor 'baby' attached. So who was he directly rude to? Gamers.

It's the same way as people have to refer to republicans as racist or democrats as unhinged. They are blanket terms used to demean and lessen the opinions of a group, and delegitimize them. And it doesn't matter if there are actual Republicans who are Racist and how many Democrats are actually unhinged. They simply all aren't that way, so caterogizing them as such using blanket terms and then trying to clean it up afterwards is cowardly and undeserving of understanding.

Just like he didn't have any understanding for the comments and reasons levied towards him.

CoCage:
Obsidian Jones... you're a good guy in my book, but I wouldn't take morality advice from somebody like The Quartering. That dude is a major asshol that has done some shading things. And YongYea while nowhere near as bad as the former, I wouldn't always trust what he says either sometimes. then now he's just now Young's content too repetitive for my liking.

Hey, my Guy. You're gravy in my perception as well. Meant to tell you, using a Pharcyde video in a response? Hell, if I didn't like you before, that would be enough to make me think "... Maybe I have this guy all wrong"

But the issue of it is that I grabbed people speaking about it. I do watch Quartering. And I don't agree with hardily anything he says. I see that he tries to be 'fair' in his own way, even though he can't see beyond his inherent bias of things.

But I need to see everyone's viewpoints on matters. Not just people I agree with. I watch Fox News not because I think they have things right. But I have to understand where people are getting their... 'information' from. Because it helps to understand how people look at the world.

ObsidianJones:

CoCage:
Obsidian Jones... you're a good guy in my book, but I wouldn't take morality advice from somebody like The Quartering. That dude is a major asshol that has done some shading things. And YongYea while nowhere near as bad as the former, I wouldn't always trust what he says either sometimes. then now he's just now Young's content too repetitive for my liking.

Hey, my Guy. You're gravy in my perception as well. Meant to tell you, using a Pharcyde video in a response? Hell, if I didn't like you before, that would be enough to make me think "... Maybe I have this guy all wrong"

But the issue of it is that I grabbed people speaking about it. I do watch Quartering. And I don't agree with hardily anything he says. I see that he tries to be 'fair' in his own way, even though he can't see beyond his inherent bias of things.

But I need to see everyone's viewpoints on matters. Not just people I agree with. I watch Fox News not because I think they have things right. But I have to understand where people are getting their... 'information' from. Because it helps to understand how people look at the world.

Alright, so long as you know and understand. People like the Quartering and Fox & Friends I refuse to watch out of principle alone, and I find their "moralizing" and "fair views" disgusting. Hearing either of them speak makes we want to smack them in the face with barbed wire baseball bat. If I need information, I know better places than them. You know what you're clearing getting in to, so I would never hold that against you.

You can thank the 90s TV show, New York Undercover. My older brother and I used to watch it every night the show came on.

ObsidianJones:
snip

I didn't want to do this, but...

5. Is THAT charged question your definition of legitimate? (Penguin seems less concerned about being able to get the game, and more about calling him out in bad faith) If that's the case, then we better wrap up this discussion, because we'll never agree.

Gamers may need to be defended from many things; but not from Ben.

PS: "Rust red horses" isn't shorthand for "all horses are rust red".

Judging the entirety of people who play video games is like judging the entire internet, or everyone who watches TV or movies, or everyone who reads books.

Some books are Green Eggs and Ham, some books are Atlas Shrugged, some books are Harry Potter, some books teach you how to cook.

More hot take though, people who 'reject the gamer label' aren't helping, cause the gamer label is as descriptive as 'someone who likes books'.

CaitSeith:

ObsidianJones:
snip

I didn't want to do this, but...

5. Is THAT charged question your definition of legitimate? (Penguin seems less concerned about being able to get the game, and more about calling him out in bad faith) If that's the case, then we better wrap up this discussion, because we'll never agree.

Gamers may need to be defended from many things; but not from Ben.

PS: "Rust red horses" isn't shorthand for "all horses are rust red".

Ok, I hate to do this as well, but perhaps this is where the impasse must be drawn.

I literally read the words "I wanted to by the game, but now I'm 100% unable since I don't have the means to do so, does not wanting to support Epic Games make me an entitled angry child just because my country isn't allowed to buy games in my own currency?

... That seems to me to be that he's concerned about not being able to get the game due to EGS's practices. This man literally can't buy games from EGS. Yes, that's a completely legitimate reason to be upset. "Epic Game Store isn't Steam" isn't that valid of a reason, even though I get the sentiment. "Epic Game Store does not accept the only currency I have" is a very legitimate reason to be upset over the move to making the game an Epic Game Store exclusive if he was going to buy the game before.

I absolutely agree with you that Gamers don't need to be defended from Ben. But Ben isn't above reproach just because he's apart of a small team of developers. He was condescending and (in other posts) maligned gamers. He got called out for it. Like anyone condescending will be. Like you and I would if we did the same. You shake a Hornet's nest, don't call the more feisty Hornets 'entitled babies' if they sting.

But really, back to my point. There's a gulf between perception if you can look at that exchange and not see someone upset that he can't get the game because Epic Game Store won't allow him. We can continue if you'd like, but at that I doubt understanding can be reached between us.

Hell, I'd be interested in other people's takes on it as well. Very well, I could be wrong. But if that's so, my entire perception will need to be re-calibrated.

Saelune:

More hot take though, people who 'reject the gamer label' aren't helping, cause the gamer label is as descriptive as 'someone who likes books'.

I refuse to call myself a gamer. However I felt about the term before, Gamergate saw to that.

But even if it never happened, I doubt I would. People can call themselves "gamers" if they want - certainly people base their lives around the medium in some cases. But I do far more than just play games.

ObsidianJones:

CaitSeith:

ObsidianJones:
snip

I didn't want to do this, but...

5. Is THAT charged question your definition of legitimate? (Penguin seems less concerned about being able to get the game, and more about calling him out in bad faith) If that's the case, then we better wrap up this discussion, because we'll never agree.

Gamers may need to be defended from many things; but not from Ben.

PS: "Rust red horses" isn't shorthand for "all horses are rust red".

Ok, I hate to do this as well, but perhaps this is where the impasse must be drawn.

I literally read the words "I wanted to by the game, but now I'm 100% unable since I don't have the means to do so, does not wanting to support Epic Games make me an entitled angry child just because my country isn't allowed to buy games in my own currency?

... That seems to me to be that he's concerned about not being able to get the game due to EGS's practices. This man literally can't buy games from EGS. Yes, that's a completely legitimate reason to be upset. "Epic Game Store isn't Steam" isn't that valid of a reason, even though I get the sentiment. "Epic Game Store does not accept the only currency I have" is a very legitimate reason to be upset over the move to making the game an Epic Game Store exclusive if he was going to buy the game before.

I absolutely agree with you that Gamers don't need to be defended from Ben. But Ben isn't above reproach just because he's apart of a small team of developers. He was condescending and (in other posts) maligned gamers. He got called out for it. Like anyone condescending will be. Like you and I would if we did the same. You shake a Hornet's nest, don't call the more feisty Hornets 'entitled babies' if they sting.

But really, back to my point. There's a gulf between perception if you can look at that exchange and not see someone upset that he can't get the game because Epic Game Store won't allow him. We can continue if you'd like, but at that I doubt understanding can be reached between us.

Hell, I'd be interested in other people's takes on it as well. Very well, I could be wrong. But if that's so, my entire perception will need to be re-calibrated.

If Penguin's post had been just the first sentence, I would totally agree with you. But it isn't; it goes from "I'm worried I won't be able to buy this game" to "who are you calling entitled manbaby!?". If it isn't a bad faith question, it's a very least a rude one that was just answered in kind.

Being how he has always been referring to the harassers and enablers, Ben never maligned the majority of gamers. I'm tired of people insisting that I got maligned when it wasn't the case. Have a nice day.

CaitSeith:
If Penguin's post had been just the first sentence, I would totally agree with you. But it isn't; it goes from "I'm worried I won't be able to buy this game" to "who are you calling entitled manbaby!?". If it isn't a bad faith question, it's a very least a rude one that was just answered in kind.

Being how he has always been referring to the harassers and enablers, Ben never maligned the majority of gamers. I'm tired of people insisting that I got maligned when it wasn't the case. Have a nice day.

Hey, you as well. Thank you for taking the time out to discuss this with me.

Hawki:

Saelune:

More hot take though, people who 'reject the gamer label' aren't helping, cause the gamer label is as descriptive as 'someone who likes books'.

I refuse to call myself a gamer. However I felt about the term before, Gamergate saw to that.

But even if it never happened, I doubt I would. People can call themselves "gamers" if they want - certainly people base their lives around the medium in some cases. But I do far more than just play games.

While I do more than just play games, I am not afraid to call myself a gamer. I don't give a shit about the gamergate/anti-gamergate bullshit. That whole fiasco solved nothing and made things worse for everyone. The only "good" thing out of it was that it showed shitty gaming journalism (not that I needed gg to figure that out) and that Anita Sarkeesian was later discovered to be a fraud. But that is less gamergate and more she kept fucking up, failed to deliver on her promises, and took all of her supporters money wasting it.

 

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