GamerGate: Borderlands 2 Dev Outs Destructoid Corruption, Polygon Nepotism


Borderlands 2

Well, this is it, folks. This is the turning point where we’ve been waiting for something big to happen… and it did. A writer at Gearbox Software has outed himself as part of the corruption and cronyism taking place in the gaming industry at the moment. Gearbox Software’s Anthony Burch tied himself to the exact kind of corruption that gamers have been crying out against during the #GamerGate movement.

[Update: Destructoid has updated their disclosure policies]

In a fit of rage, the Gearbox writer took to Twitter to express his anger at what he perceived as an attack against women, with Attack on Gaming capturing a collection of his Tweets. If you want to see how they appear on Twitter you can click on the link to their site. For the sake of clarity the tweets have been compiled into a quote below for readability purposes…

“2 BL2 DLCs I wrote got pretty good reviews from Destructoid writers who I was friends with. This has never been mentioned by #gamergate once” … “That’s fucking “corruption” as much as any of the other shit is. But, nah, I’m a guy, and so were those reviewers, so just let it be I guess” … “An entire “movement” pretends it’s interested in investigating all forms of “ethics,” then pretends “oh you just weren’t on our radar Ant””… “Yes, I wasn’t on your radar despite having 32.7k followers because your radar only hones in on women, you hypocritical fucksticks”…

“Me/Goldfarb/Linde/Destructoid/IGN/Gearbox is the most obvious “connection” chain and because we didn’t fuck anybody, you didn’t care.” … “So don’t pretend “oh wow thanks for letting us know! We just hadn’t gotten around to it” as if you weren’t busy harrassing women exclusively” … “Lead writer of BL2 gets good reviews from former workplace: (crickets)”

The articles in question are the ones from Chris Carter reviewing Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon’s Keep: https://archive.today/VFSUJ and the one from Darren Nakamura for Ravenous Wattle Gobbler: https://archive.today/dxBT9.

Interestingly enough, neither of the two writers acknowledge that they are, in fact, friends with Burch in their reviews and that they are reviewing a product from a good buddy. I’m not sure how Anthony thought that gamers were supposed to make that connection, but I’m glad he admitted as much, as it’s another good entry point into the examination of the connections between developers and gaming press.

Amazingly, the tweets are still up there. I imagine as this story spreads Gearbox may request Burch to delete them, as they themselves are still embroiled in a heated legal battle over the misappropriate marketing and advertising to sell Aliens: Colonial Marines. Don’t worry, though, Burch, we all feel your pain and I took the liberty of taking screenshots of those tweets so we’ll always remember how unfair we were to you and your active participation in cronyism.

A user on Reddit named henrykazuka had a perfect response to Burch’s outbursts, writing…

“That has to be the worst defense ever ‘I killed a guy yesterday and no one said anything on the news. It’s not a crime to kill people!'”

“Or he is so used to seeing corruption everywhere he thinks it’s something normal that everyone does. If that’s the case, I feel sorry for the guy.”

You feel sorry for him? I don’t.

Burch wasn’t done, though.

He decides to tweet about Polygon’s potential nepotism, posting the following Tweet.

[Just for reference, Phil Fish, Silverstring Media and Kotaku have all been called out (amongst others) during this movement, so Burch’s claim that it’s only “among chicks” is disingenuous.]

The Justin he refers to is a certain Justin McElroy and his brother Griffin McElroy. Justin is the managing editor at Polygon. According to Burch he infers the allegation that Justin used his position to help get his brother the job. A classic case of nepotism? It’ll warrant further investigation.

Nevertheless, Burch mentions that it’s no big deal. Why? Well, here’s why…

I think his dismissive attitude is sort of what’s sparking so much of this rising fire. The fact that a lot of people weren’t able to make the connections doesn’t dismiss that it’s wrong. It’s also ignoring the obvious problem of Burch making this disclosure public after the articles have been published for more than a year. It would be nice if this was disclosed as they were being published.

Would have been so difficult to make it known that the people reviewing the products are actually close friends with the person?

It’s interesting that Burch stepped forward in this way, since at the moment a lot of developers are afraid to step into the arena for fear of reprisal, as noted in another article at Attack on Gaming where Giant Bomb writer Patrick Klepek mentioned the following.

I’m curious to see where this goes and how far the rabbit hole stretches with Burch’s admission of guilt.

The fire continues to rise.

For further reading, be sure to check out the GamerGate tag on this site.

(Update: It’s been brought to my attention that Anthony Burch was possibly referring to this review here as well: https://archive.today/RCnXO from Joseph Leray, when he was querulously attacking #GamerGate)



About

Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Contact.

  • Lord Darque

    Just gets better and better don’t it?

    William you might enjoy a look at this thread since your articles now feature in it….

    https://www.reddit.com/r/games_journalism/comments/2ffkse/i_wrote_a_piece_because_im_generally_fed_up/

    • Billy

      Haha, awesome.

      Thanks man.

      This thing is turning into a real explosive thing now… I’m almost giddy with excitement to see where it goes next. As the focus shifts to non-females being involved with corruption (Burch and his cronies) they can’t hide behind the sexism facade any longer.

      • Anon

        Except 11 days later, the #gamergate threads are still busy going on about Zoe. Every other day I go in there and list off a huge list of names who’ve admitted corruption and sometimes even money bribes, and /v/ brushes them off because they’re not interesting targets.

      • Billy

        A lot of that has to do with Zoe throwing herself in front of the #GG hashtag while the beta-males hide and whimper behind litter boxes.

  • Spencer

    Wow, this is mind numbingly stupid. You false “ethics” crusaders are some of the saddest, truth stretching tabloid readers I’ve ever seen.

    Protip: having a friend who had a mild connection to creating something that you reviewed positively is not corruption. If so, reviews might as well just stop tomorrow because almost ALL reviewers have friends that work on games they review.

    The assumption that this is “corruption” or even a mild conflict of interest is so intellectually insulting that I’m surprised you bunch of uneducated yanks aren’t pouring rat poison in your eyes for better vision.

    It’s clear that you guys have a whole ton of growing up to do, because this – right here – is worse than elementary schoolyard arguments about who Suzy likes more.

    • Billy

      Protip: having a friend who had a mild connection to creating something
      that you reviewed positively is not corruption. If so, reviews might as
      well just stop tomorrow because almost ALL reviewers have friends that
      work on games they review.

      Well that’s the whole point of disclosure, ace.

      Someone going out to pay $60 for a new game may not know that the commercial with the 9/10 review score rolled out by KotakuGameSpotGNToid was actually reviewed by someone who used to roommate with someone, or was involved in a relationship or still good buddies. Because, I don’t know, someone who did know that might better take into consideration whether or not the individual who did the review has the consumer’s best interest in mind.

      And don’t for one second think that this isn’t a pro-consumer issue, because it is.

      The assumption that this is “corruption” or even a mild conflict of
      interest is so intellectually insulting that I’m surprised you bunch of
      uneducated yanks aren’t pouring rat poison in your eyes for better
      vision.

      No one said that this particular incident was the nucleus of corruption, it’s just part of a trend that feeds into a culture created by gaming media that perpetuates these kind of connections without disclosure.

      Would you say that Nathan Grayson’s indiscretion was just “intellectually insulting” knowing that his relationship wasn’t disclosed?

      How about Patricia Hernandez and Anna Anthropy? Not even a “mild conflict of interest” there knowing that they lived together and Patricia promoted Anthropy’s pieces regularly? Really? Seriously?

      It’s clear that you guys have a whole ton of growing up to do, because
      this – right here – is worse than elementary schoolyard arguments about
      who Suzy likes more.

      If I had a match…

      https://imgur.com/wSTeVL8.jpg

      “Make way; straw man burning coming through”

      • Spencer

        Ah, I see, so the assumption is that consumers are far too stupid to read a variety of reviews and previews and form their own opinions. They are single handedly swayed by these “corrupt” journalists that promote things they like, because hey, if one review is great and the rest say it sucks then it must be great right?

        If you had assumed that with review or coverage of games that you would be getting anything but a whole-hearted opinion by the person who wrote it, you’re painfully in the dark about what a game review is. While criteria for judgement are objective, such as the graphics or gameplay elements, the overall score and impression will ALWAYS be personal. Reviews are, at best, one person’s opinion about a game and is scored based on how much they enjoyed it.

        Not only are you putting too much stock in reviews, you’re attempting to levy a far greater amount of social responsiblity onto games journalists than is needed. It’s video games my friend. This is an opinion based business. Even IF someone gave coverage to a game just because, how does that hurt anyone?

        This isn’t someone reporting that naughty dog abuses their employees and it’s a false claim only made to help their buddies at Crystal Dynamics, it’s just someone giving coverage to a game they like, if that happens to be made by a friend, who cares?

        You also seem to be completely at a loss regarding the BUSINESS side of games journalism. Bottom line – if an article won’t get viewers, the boss is going to be pissed. If you believe games journalists can do whatever the hell they want and report on something because they were in bed with the creator, you’re gravely mistaken. Unless you want to be in on some conspiracy theory that a WHOLE CORPERATION is under the belt of one journalist that had sex or was friends with one person – and at that point I don’t believe we could have a logical conversation any longer.

        Your arguments seem to be based on a mob mentality and out of context evidence and are sorely lacking logic. Find some, then come talk to me.

      • Billy

        Ah, I see, so the assumption is that consumers are far too stupid to
        read a variety of reviews and previews and form their own opinions.

        If the variety of those reviews come from corrupt outlets, it doesn’t matter. The opinion will always be swayed.

        Reviews are, at best, one person’s opinion about a game and is scored based on how much they enjoyed it.

        No disagreement from me on that, Ace.

        Not only are you putting too much stock in reviews,

        I’m putting too much stock in the integrity of coverage from these media outlets, not just reviews.

        you’re attempting to
        levy a far greater amount of social responsiblity onto games
        journalists than is needed. It’s video games my friend.

        It’s just cars, my friend. It’s just electronics, my friend. It’s just music… movies and everything else in between. It doesn’t matter what the medium is, it depends on how it’s being presented. In this case, our information is being presented from skewed views. We make purchases based on the information presented to us. So it doesn’t matter if it’s games, it’s a consumer product that still needs to abide by a measure of ethics that doesn’t compromise a consumer’s ability to make an informed purchase.

        it’s just someone giving coverage to a game they like, if that happens to be made by a friend, who cares?

        People who don’t want to mistakenly buy crap because someone’s friend (or group of friends) promoted the game.

        Your arguments seem to be based on a mob mentality

        Mmmm, no. I’ve been saying this and being ridiculed by the high-horsers for years.

        and out of context evidence

        Click a few links around the site, especially under the gamer gate tag.

        and are sorely lacking logic.

        Mmmm, no. Lacking logic would be assuming someone is only attacking close ties to reviews and not the wider scope of the corruption issues at hand… oh wait…

      • Spencer

        Okay, bottom line based on what you’ve said – if you’re TOO STUPID to form your own opinion about a game, and rely on one review rather than gathering information from many, you DESERVE to waste your money.

      • m

        It’s about more than just the review process though. It’s awesome if someone is super hyped up about a new game about to come out.
        If the person making said game is the roommate of the person writing the story, maybe mention that.
        Best part of the whole reaction by far is comparing and contrasting the kinds of shit these writers are saying about this kind of impropriety and the kinds of stories we got out of the whole youtuber ad money kerfuffle a while back.
        Not disclosing that you got paid money to play a game while telling cick jokes as absolutely not a journalist is super bad, but someone saying “maybe don’t cover a product put out by someone you’re emotionally involved with” is a gross injustice and missing the point entirely, not to mention supporting people making death and rape threats on twitter.

      • C G Saturation

        The assumption is that people aren’t sleeping with the same people whose products they are promoting. I would have thought it common courtesy to disclose such relationships.

        That shouldn’t even be something to argue about.
        It’s not exactly hard to do: “You should try this. But hey, I’m buddies with the creator, so maybe I’m biased”.
        That’s the kind of thing normal people write.

    • Nathan Merrill

      Conflicts of interest are actually a really big deal in every professional endeavor.

      The issue is not with this guy – if you work as a creative person, you SHOULD lever every single personal contact you have to promote your product – but with the people who allowed themselves to be levered by him. And he just basically said “I am friends with these people and they reviewed my game without recusing themselves or disclosing our friendship.”

      It is your job as someone who makes something to sell that something, and it is journalists’ jobs to tell people how it really is. If the journalists are not doing so, you end up with an issue – and note that Gearbox is presently involved in a lawsuit over false advertisement of Aliens: Colonial Marines, including that they misleadingly promoted the game to consumers. Given SEGA’s claims that the false advertisement was all Gearbox’s fault, and that this guy works for Gearbox and admits openly to having friends in the press who review games for him (and give him good scores)… well, SEGA’s laywers will probably try and point to it and be like “See! It is all Gearbox’s fault! Look at how they manipulate people and are proud of it!”

      It isn’t even clear that the reviews or contact was corrupt, but the appearance of a conflict of interest here is pretty obvious.

      He basically sold them up the creek to their employer. If their employer didn’t know about their personal relationship with this guy, fun times.

      • Spencer

        But Colonial Marines was a terrible game. Every single review outlet hammered it. One positive score (which I doubt was given anyway) would not change the fact that the rest of the world says it’s terrible.

        Sega (or Gearbox) misleadingly advertising the game is another situation entirely – that’s flat out dishonesty to the consumer who has no other way to judge the quality of the game, and it’s illegal.

        But it someone is reviewing a game and they happen to have a friend that was a small, small, small part in creating it, I don’t think I need to know about it otherwise every review would be packed with arbitrary disclosures like that.

        Thank you for being rational, it’s rare to find someone on the internet that disagrees with you and doesn’t express it with hate messages.

      • Nathan Merrill

        The Guardian gave it 4 stars, actually – so not EVERY outlet hammered it. It was very lonely in its evaluation of the game, though.

        That being said, I think the main thrust of the lawsuit was, indeed, false or misleading advertisement. I’m not sure how much water it is going to hold, but apparently the game itself was a disaster. I don’t think that there should be lawsuits just because games stink, but I do understand if they feel that the advertisement was, in fact, false. And the thing is, in this case, they might have a case.

        In this case, the complaints were not about reviews, but about the pre-game hype buildup which was perpetuated by SEGA and Gearbox and (to some degree unwittingly) aided and abetted by the gaming press. Reviews are only one part of the coverage of a game, and often are amongst the last parts of the coverage. The industry has often been attacked for being a hype machine for upcoming games, even when the game ends up not being very good, and often not reporting until after the fact that the game was poor due to press embargoes and similar things.

        The problem is that because the press is chummy with these guys, and because of the oftentimes questionable relationship between “people whose games we are reviewing” and “people whose money we take to promote their games via ads” being the same, you end up with conflicts of interest and the appearance of conflicts of interest. Thus when you see press embargoes on a game which is terrible which was hyped by the press prior to its launch, even if they savage it afterwards, the damage may well already be done. The gaming industry is very unusual in the way it handles these things, versus, say, the movie industry, where there are usually critical screenings for movies and if there aren’t, people will often make note of it in a rather derogatory fashion because it is a sign that the movie is terrible. In the gaming industry, it is pretty much standard. And when you have selective embargoes – a minimum score to be published ahead of time – well… that’s really problematic from an ethical standpoint, because you are, at that point, essentially acting as promotion for the game. That’s really questionable, but it is hard for a lot of consumers to see what is going on.

        The whole thing is very unpleasant, and while conflicts of interest are very common, even more common is the appearance of a conflict of interest, and the idea that a lot of people in the gaming press simply don’t recognize when something questionable is going on in the first place. I think that this is actually the largest complaint – it isn’t just that people do immoral or questionable things, but that the people involved frequently don’t even -recognize- that what they’re doing is problematic.

        I think plenty of people on the internet are capable of being perfectly reasonable human beings, and really, looking through things, the majority of responses on the internet are fairly rational; the problem isn’t that people are mostly irrational, but that people who are loud and angry tend to be much more memorable and get a lot more attention than those who are not.

        As far as the issue of disclosure: I think the idea of disclosing that you have purchased someone’s games is, generally speaking, incredibly irrelevant and the people crying about that are being stupid. I suppose there are some situations where it is relevant, but mostly, not so much. On the other hand, I think that there are questions of disclosure as far as personal friendship goes – friendly acquaintances are one thing, and probably not notable, but if you are actually friend-friends, then I think you should probably recuse yourself from doing a review of their product, and at a minimum need to disclose that you are friends. Friends have a hard time saying “this sucks” to their friends, and this would be more like saying “this sucks” to their friends in front of a hundred thousand people – difficult at best for most people, and if you look at, say, politics, even in cases of clear wrongdoing peoples’ friends will frequently defend them. I don’t know if people can really reasonably expect anything better from journalists, especially ones whose primary qualification is that they love games.

        I do understand the concerns about going overboard with them, but on the other hand, going overboard with them is better than being short on them.

    • C G Saturation

      It’s clear that you’ve never created anything, or else you would understand how serious this is.

      As an example, when I was in college, lecturers and students often collaborated with each other, as well as their personal friends, to sabotage online and real life events in favor of their own works, through biased voting. As a result they obtained national and/or international fame and recognition.

      I’m sure this happens everywhere, but as far as I and my associates are concerned, that is a clear conflict of interest, ie. it doesn’t matter how good you are or what people really think of your work, as long as you have enough friends to bomb voting.

      If you don’t see how unethical that is, you probably live in a country that does terrible, cruel things to innocent people every day.

      For the record, I’ve won awards without needing to unethically influence voting in my favor. That is a mark of true skill and talent. I didn’t need to sleep with anyone.

    • roiwnvfoem

      Having a friend with any connection at all to anything you review in any capacity without disclosing that relationship is corruption.

      If almost all reviewers have friends whose work they review, then almost all reviewers should resign.

      • Spencer

        You don’t understand how reviews work. You’re just like an angry child with no perspective on the world. Go outside for a bit, m’kay?

      • roiwnvfoem

        Incorrect. My views are objectively perfect, and you are a cancerous faggot.

      • Spencer

        Incorrect. Your votes are objectively juvenile and pathetic, and you are a waste of my oxygen.

      • roiwnvfoem

        Wow, you copied my posting style. Never seen that before.

        Unfortunately, you are incapable of comprehending the source from which I derive my authority, and so your words are meaningless.

      • Spencer

        Your source = your ass, which is why you’re an irrelevant Internet cretin whose words mean less than nothing.

      • roiwnvfoem

        Lmfao. Try harder.

  • Justin McDermott

    Just to clarify Griffin and Justin both worked at Joystiq with a handful of other employees including Chris Grant. It’s not like Griffin never worked at a game site before. If that were true this would be a clear cut case of nepotism.

    • Billy

      To my recollection I don’t believe anyone working at Polygon is a “newb”, so to speak. They’ve all come from some other place. I’m curious exactly why Burch would bring that up though? Did one pull a favor for the other to get him the job or did they both just get pulled in from Joystiq?

      However, in bringing up Justin and Griffin’s positions at Joystiq, that might be worth checking into.

  • m

    Your use of Patrick’s tweet is adorable. The people he’s talking about are afraid of being doxxed and harassed by the gamergate people. Taking it out of context by taking an image instead of linking to the tweet is clever, I guess.
    Fucking nutjobs.

    • Billy

      The people he’s talking about are afraid of being doxxed and harassed by the gamergate people.

      Because that’s obviously what happened when the Xbox guy came forward to support #GamerGate

      https://blogjob.com/oneangrygamer/2014/09/gamergate-gets-support-from-xbox-developer-microsoft-statement-hinted-at/

      https://img.pandawhale.com/post-31074-J-Jonah-Jameson-laughing-gif-S-NWLY.gif

      • m

        I’m not saying I think he’s right, I don’t know the people involved or how they think. I’m just saying I think it’s cute that you use a tweet from someone who is very firmly NOT in your camp and twisting his words.
        I’m no fan of Klepek, he’s a terrible writer and probably not a good person, but if you’re going to pretend to stand for integrity and ethics twisting people’s words might not be the best way to go about it.
        Not sure how the anonymous Xbox guy’s 4chan post is relevant.

      • Billy

        I’m just saying I think it’s cute that you use a tweet from someone who
        is very firmly NOT in your camp and twisting his words.

        Hm? Twisting, how?

        I’m no fan of Klepek, he’s a terrible writer and probably not a good person,

        Is it because of the hair? ‘Cause I think he rocks the hair right.

        if you’re going to pretend to stand for integrity and ethics twisting people’s words might not be the best way to go about it.

        Didn’t really twist the words… but I can see how it could be construed that way. Just mentioned that people were afraid to speak up. Also, it was mentioned by other devs that they are afraid to speak up on behalf of #GamerGate because they don’t want to get blacklisted by SJWs. Not sure how true that is, but Klepik’s tweet seems to hint at that.

        Not sure how the anonymous Xbox guy’s 4chan post is relevant.

        Because he’s not afraid of gamers, he’s afraid of SJWs. He’s saying that he supports #GamerGate but can’t reveal his identity. Doesn’t sound like someone afraid of gamers, sounds like someone afraid of crazies on the other side.

      • m

        Again, not sure how that relates to Klepek, as he’s clearly not on that side. His stated opinion is “we can’t talk about anything brought up by these people, because it’d be capitulating to the people harassing Zoe&friends” (paraphrase).
        He thinks it doesn’t matter what points are brought up now, because it’s more important to focus on the harassment and how bad gamers are. And he’s not coy about stating it.
        So, I can only assume you’re purposefully twisting his words, because you don’t come off as stupid enough to have honestly mistaken his intentions.

      • Billy

        Again, not sure how that relates to Klepek, as he’s clearly not on that side.

        Doesn’t matter what side he’s on, he’s just reiterating what other devs have said. I’ll slow it down for you… real slow… real, real slow.

        Check the tweets:

        https://twitter.com/DanielVavra/status/506882173279166464

        https://twitter.com/DanielVavra/status/507923825494089728

        https://imgur.com/OQTesWh.jpg

        You see, he’s saying the same thing Klepek is saying. I’m not twisting anything, I’m expanding a narrative. Heck, YOU are the one interpreting words in the article that aren’t even there. It kind of lets me know which side you fall on, lol

        He thinks it doesn’t matter what points are brought up now, because it’s more important to focus on the harassment and how bad gamers are.

        Well that’s very close-minded of him to be a journalist.

        you don’t come off as stupid enough to have honestly mistaken his intentions.

        Ace… you never know… you never know…

      • m

        Yeah, I’d say he’s incredibly close minded. And utterly undeserving of the title journalist to boot.
        His reaction in this case probably has something to do with him knowing several of the people getting harassed as well as that jackass internetaristocrat going “maybe zoe fucked Patrick klepek too?” in one of his videos for no reason.
        But really though, I think he’s just completely lost in his little twitter echo chamber where everyone he follows keep repeating the same shit over and over and bullying is the worst thing ever unless it’s bullying the right kind of people. Your basic Tumblr self-righteous hypocrite asshole.
        My only point is, his tweet is not saying what you think or what you pretend it’s saying. Depending on how dumb you are.
        And if you’re going to take the moral high ground about ethics in reporting you should at least not misrepresent the people you quote.

      • Billy

        My only point is, his tweet is not saying what you think or what you pretend it’s saying. Depending on how dumb you are.

        To humor your point, let’s say you’re right. I might be misrepresenting his point — I can’t know because it’s kind of vague.

        However, the only way to know for sure is if I contact him. Except… I’m not in the clique and no one at the larger sites have had ANYTHING to do with me. So, we’re kind of at an impasse.

  • disqus_8PYCzfEDEv

    Response from a Destructoid writer on their forums:

    “Anthony left a trap with those tweets though. I’m not sure he did it intentionally, but he did. He mentioned 2 DLCs we reviewed that were scored well, but he neglected to mention that it was out of NINE reviewed pieces of DLC. In total, they are:

    Captain Scarlett’s Pirate Booty – 8/10
    Mr. Torgue’s Campaign of Carnage – 7/10
    Sir Hammerlock’s Big Game Hunt 4.5/10
    Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep – 9/10
    T.K. Baha’s Bloody Harvest – 5/10
    The Horrible Hunger of the Ravenous Wattle Gobbler – 7/10
    How Marcus Saved Mercenary Day – 5/10
    Mad Moxxi and the Wedding Day Massacre – 7/10
    Sir Hammerlock Versus the Son of Crawmerax – 6/10

    So yes, we gave Borderlands 2 some good reviews, but we also gave the content some middling reviews as well. When all of the data is actually taken into consideration, we have rated Borderlands 2 DLC at an average of 6.5/10.

    The reason I address this specifically because I take it as an attack on my integrity as a writer for Destructoid, and that super offends me. The point I hope the data here shows is that just because Anthony Burch is a former colleague of ours doesn’t mean we don’t serve our readers first and still tell them exactly how we feel. It’s true that a 5/10 is not technically a “bad” score, but we all know that in this industry, saying something is mediocre is often enough to steer a substantial number of people away. If I were looking out for Anthony and Gearbox before the readers, those 5s would be 7s, and those 7s would be 9s. (That is not even to mention the review text, which we know nobody actually reads.)”

    Also, I’m not sure what “investigating” you plan to do with the McElroy brothers. They’re not exactly hiding the fact that they’re brothers. Plus, both of them worked for Joystiq for half a decade together. Maybe you’ll argue that one of them used pull to get the other a job there but people help their friends/family get employed all the time. They want to work with people that they get along with and (in the brothers’ case) have worked with before. It’s hardly material for a conspiracy.

    As far as their employment at Polygon goes, Chris Grant (editor-in-chief) made the decision to hire them: https://twitter.com/chrisgrant/status/507547446743146496

    • Billy

      Also, I’m not sure what “investigating” you plan to do with the McElroy
      brothers. They’re not exactly hiding the fact that they’re brothers. […] It’s hardly material for a conspiracy.

      Definitely not a conspiracy, but we’ve been checking into every avenue just for the sake of it. Burch seemed to think the opposite of you and was rather peeved we hadn’t been looking further into those connections… so… *shrugs* you can’t win with everybody.

      As far as their employment at Polygon goes, Chris Grant (editor-in-chief) made the decision to hire them

      lol, more than anything that would make me want to investigate the matter more. Grant’s the one who had a blacklist of people that the bigger sites should ignore (whether for coverage and/or conversation).

  • flight2q

    Thank you for informing me about Gearbox. I don’t appreciate being called a hypocritical fuckstick by their people for being a gamer. They clearly lied to me about being all about gamers in remastering Homeworld. Preorder cancelled: https://imgur.com/vMesb59

  • C G Saturation

    Actually, I’ve been wondering about Burch’s corrupt connections ever since he became employed by Gearbox. I saw that he donated to Quinn as well.

    Everything pointed to him being part of the corruption, and I was wondering why almost nobody was talking about it. I brought it up with my friends as well, a long time ago.
    So… people really were talking about it. It just wasn’t the main focus.

    As I’ve said elsewhere, I think the focus is on Quinn because she happens to be involved with so many. It’s not because she’s a woman, but I do believe that her being a woman has positively influenced the sheer scale of her connections.

    With the way Burch is complaining about this, perhaps he’s just jealous he
    isn’t as bigtime a scammer as Quinn. She has fingers in everybody’s
    pie. Burch can’t compare at all.

    Burch = GearBox Destructoid.
    Hernandez = Kotaku Two female devs.
    Quinn Five Guys, Kotaku, Reddit, etc, etc.. the list goes on and on.

    • Billy

      Burch = GearBox Destructoid.
      Hernandez = Kotaku Two female devs.
      Quinn Five Guys, Kotaku, Reddit, etc, etc.. the list goes on and on.

      You hit the nail on the head. Quinn keeps throwing herself right in front of the target while also being involved with just about every major player involved with corruption and censorship.

      I think it’s the censorship that really stings, because if it were just the corruption bit, I think gamers may have let it slide (like what happened with Doritogate). But being told that they were the scum of the Earth by skeezy game journo scum and then being censored by major websites from discussing the matters at hand, really just put most people over the edge. And unfortunately, Quinn was sort of the catalyst to all of this powder keg reactionism.

    • FuryOfFirestorm

      “She has fingers in everybody’s pie”

      And everybody had their fingers in her pie…

  • FuryOfFirestorm

    Either Burch is so confident of his influence in the industry that he’s just running his mouth without fear of reprisals, or he’s secretly on our side and giving us ammo without blowing his double agent cover. I’m hoping it’s the latter, but i’m pretty sure it’s the former.

  • Guest

    We already knew you were a complete tool, Burch.

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