After a very turbulent year involving all sorts of crazy shenanigans, the one thing that really seems kind of heartbreaking is how a game jam that would work toward pushing more games into the industry was cut short and demolished under a blind bit of string-pulling from major gaming outlets. Well, you can’t keep a good thing down if enough people pool the use of their efforts together to see it rise above the oppression and detriments set forward by a corrupt and dysfunctional system.
So what is this all about? Well, a group called The Fine Young Capitalists wanted to work as a catalyst to help creative female directors get their feet wet in the industry by providing them a platform in which they would pitch an idea, gamers would vote on the idea and they would use crowd-funded money to turn that project into a reality. Sounds like a good way to make the kind of games the community wants while also giving a fair shake to females looking to break into the industry, right? Well, not quite.
One individual decided to use a bit of vocal pull and propaganda within the gaming industry to have their campaign shutdown. It’s summarized in a series of tweets captured in an image format here and here (before they were deleted to cover the tracks of the alleged perpetrator, of course). And there’s also a video for those of you who don’t feel like looking through each of the tweets.
The Fine Young Capitalists made a statement on their official website entitled “Peace Treaty” after having very lengthy conversations with their lawyers that left many supporters wondering what would happen next.
Technically the “Peace Treaty” is more like “We don’t want to have to deal with the crap we’ve been dragged into anymore” and I completely understand. They’re working hard to distance themselves from the scandal altogether, but first they make it known that it was not just one particular individual who personally or tangibly attacked their campaign, with part of the lawyer-approved statement saying…
“Regarding our grievances with Zoe Quinn, an associate of hers, posted my Facebook information. Zoe did not add any information to the post, nor did she post my phone number or email. The subsequent death threat I received via email was not orchestrated by Zoe. Nor was the DDOSing of our website or the banning of us from Twitter. She was simply the most famous voice in a choir of people that did not understand the project.”
The major problem are those associated with the accused and the kind of influence and lengths they go in order to silence those who aren’t will-and-rule under their thumb. They seem to operate in a similar manner to the very people they condemn for harassment and exclusionary antics. Harassment to troll someone and harassment because they don’t adhere to your thought-agenda doesn’t magically change the rules of harassment.
Nevertheless, the post from the marketing director over The Fine Young Capitalists explains that…
“I do not feel Zoe understood the ramifications of what she associate was posting or how it would affect me professionally and personally. Arguably speaking, many people would have killed for the Internet publicity I recieved due to the attention her presence called to the post and my subsequent failings to control my anger about the issues by posting to reddit. I had no idea it would go viral, and for that I am sorry for the people that I hurt.
The fallout from the posting of my info costed me around $10,000 dollars, as a business partner walked of the production because of the negative publicity and a sponsor refused to come on board with production being deemed transphobic. I have paid this money and it has not affected my standard of living. The fallout she is receiving, from what she personally described to me, is.”
Even after the doxxing and shutting down of the original campaign, the team decided to come back bigger and stronger than ever… except, they couldn’t get any support… at all.
The Fine Young Capitalists had been blackballed by major gaming media outlets, hence the continued silence over their campaign from major gaming outlets.
They had the most support from 4chan’s /v/ and /pol/ threads, who put $5,000 into the IndieGoGo campaign the first day up and even helped create a character that would appear in the game that eventually gets voted on and made by the community known as Vivian James.
Even more than that, 4chan teamed with The Fine Young Capitalists to support and help the gaming community recognize the achievements and accomplishments of female game designers within the gaming industry, highlighting notable names such as Anna Kipnis and Corrinne Yu. Other smaller sites like Cliqist and Random Rocker are providing positive coverage but sites like Vice are still using it as a platform to launch attacks and slander the campaign.
Even still, the campaign was blackballed by gaming media and those who have the social pull to help put the campaign over its goal have even been told not to support The Fine Young Capitalists in order to stick with the current agenda being pushed by the radical Social Justice Warriors. Just check out how those who wish to show support are deterred from doing so.
The post by TFYC goes on to mention that this will be the last time that The Fine Young Capitalists will have any dealings with the individual sitting at the center of the controversy, noting that…
“I no longer wish to discuss her role in this fiasco. I apologize to any reporter that may be interested in this story but if asked I will simply say “I do not recall exactly what happened.” So the conversation can end.
“We may never be friends, but we are no longer enemies, and she will not be involved in TFYC. Your opinion of what she did is your own, my opinion is that it is no longer worth mentioning in regards to this production.”
I can’t fault anyone for wanting to do something good by distancing themselves from something toxic.
Heck, Brad Wardell had a thing or two to say about the toxicity of the current gaming media culture and it’s a sad state of affairs but this is what we have to deal with as the leaders of video game news media.
Nevertheless, The Fine Young Capitalists hope that by burying the hatchet they have an opportunity from major gaming media to get some proper coverage, stating…
“I am sorry if this causes you to lose respect for me, but in the end this is something that I must do, for the good of the project. Because perhaps by getting past this issue journalists will finally cover not only what TFYC is about, but also the incredible achievements women have accomplished in the industry, instead of a narrative that only points them as victims.”
Yes, finally, thank you!
It’s so amazing that right now the narrative has nothing whatsoever to do with people trying to do good in the gaming industry or their fight for equality by bringing positivity and growth to the sector for more inclusion, it’s all about the Jerry Springer trash stinking up Google News at the moment.
With a bit of help from Adam Baldwin and maybe with the hatchet buried, I’m curious if any of the major news sites will grow some balls and finally give The Fine Young Capitalists a chance, or are they still trying to keep their stained skeletons in the closet?
You can support The Fine Young Capitalists by hitting up their IndieGoGo campaign page.