Five Ridiculous #GamerGater Myths about Zoe Quinn

Zoe Quinn, moments before forcibly shipping 20,000 #Gamergaters to Dubai

Zoe Quinn, moments before exporting 20,000 #Gamergaters to Dubai in shipping containers. (credit: Eden of the East Wikia)

What’s happening, friends? Ah, nothin’; just browsing the internet about this latest trending thing called “#gamergate.” These dudes really seem to hate this woman I’ve never met, they make her sound like a camp monster. I made a list of some of the dumbest things #gamergaters actually believe about her.

5. Zoe Quinn slept her way to prominence in indie gaming. 

According to #gamergate canon, allegations about Quinn’s sex life were the straw that broke the gamer’s back. Way back when Gjoni published thezoepost in August, the putative #gamergate read about Quinn’s relationship with Nathan Grayson, a Kotaku journalist and they all just flipped.

#gamergaters somehow believed Quinn’s relations with Grayson was tantamount to her sleeping with him to obtain a favorable review of Depression Quest. However Grayson never reviewed Depression Quest, and never published anything about Quinn in Kotaku once their relationship began. If Grayson had written anything about Zoe Quinn after beginning their relationship, the ethically culpable party would have been Grayson. But Grayson never reviewed Depression Quest, so no ethical breach occured.

Still, this spun out to create the wider myth that Zoe slept with more people (the “Five Guys” of which Eron wrote, and then even more people) as if each liason earned her Video Game Industry Points or something. I probably shouldn’t have written that though; in case someone makes a flash game.

4. Zoe Quinn exploits her supporters for personal gain. 

This one is a favorite of Lawfag’s and was a popular mission in the #burgersandfries chat room back in mid-August. The primary evidence cited in the logs (as I covered here) was some successful crowdfunding campaigns conducted by Quinn, some about games and others not (one was to replace a stolen pocketbook.)

Suspicious of her success at raising money, #gamergaters were eager to prove Quinn had embezzled donations… so they tried to get her audited by the IRS. But during his extended Q&A Gjoni didn’t have any evidence of financial misconduct on Quinn’s part, and was reduced to criticizing her for doing things like negotiating contracts and having industry friends I mean, arrogance and rank nepotism.

To date I’ve found no evidence that Zoe Quinn is somehow stealing the funds people give to her as donations. The semantics of that are essentially weird. And as Save the Queen noted on We Hunted the Mammoth, Depression Quest costs nothing on Steam. (You may donate money if you choose.) This is hard to reconcile with #gamergater’s conception of Quinn as greedy.

And it’s not just about money. According to this reddit thread from yesterday about my most recent exploits, Zoe Quinn is a manipulator and I’m her thrall.

Dammit, I knew I should have trademarked that one.

Dammit, I knew I should have trademarked that one.

Triple Score: reddit user Hells-Drunkard goes directly from calling me “easily manipulatable” to grousing about Zoe Quinn’s Patreon Account and “playing the victim.”

hmm

She is good at manipulating easily manipulatable people. Don’t give her so much credit.

All she has to do is tell her followers who to hate and they jump. They pay her 3k a month for playing the victim and making nothing of any quality.

 

3. Zoe Quinn fakes the threats she receives, thus playing the victim.

This is probably definitely not true, unless the entire 2,500-page, 10-point type bulk of the IRC chatroom #burgersandfries (which was dedicated to harassing the holy hell out of Quinn) is fiction.

Which it’s not; the entire log was posted by pro-#gamergate folks to try and exonerate them, or prove that these comments were cherry-picking when the whole damn log was like that. The interview Eron Gjoni gave for #burgersandfries shows that they thought ZQ made shit up even then; e.g. about being mugged or with regards to past cases of harassment.

For a few days after #burgersandfries broke, #gamergate also tried to pass off the screencaps Quinn published as fake; as if she’d fabricated them herself in IRC using confederates. #gamergaters believe Quinn is capable of such devious cover-ups because #gamergaters themselves use the exact same tactics to cover their own asses.

2. #gamergate isn’t about Zoe Quinn (anymore)

Even today in 8chan, everybody’s happy to start a bandwagon hating on Zoe Quinn. Here’s a thread from 8chan about a blog post written by part-time internet attorney, full-time beserker MRA Mike Cernovich; where he screams Quinn’s legal name from the rooftops of the internet in response to my posting a photograph of his house on the internet yesterday; so this is very recent.

Cernovich and the rest of #gamergate immediately attack ZQ for something I did; Cernovich by publishing more court documents, like I expected he might and #gamergate by discussing all the reasons they never liked Zoe Quinn anyhow.

meaculpa2

“purple haired landwhale”… “She looks photoshopped, I know she isn’t but damn girl u fat” – Anons (Source: 8chan/gg)

"This is why the nude photos of her younger and slimmer self were a favor to her. Was it worth it, Nathan?" - Anon, being a real creep (Source: 8chan)

“This is why the nude photos of her younger and slimmer self were a favor to her. Was it worth it, Nathan?” – Anon, being a real creep (Source: 8chan)

And lest you think I’m cherrypicking, or that hating Quinn is somehow unusual for #gamergate, the thread goes on in this vein. Posting pictures of Zoe Quinn, unflattering photoshops of the same, discussing her appearance, weight, how ZQ makes one 8chan anon want to “blunt a kitten with a sledgehammer.”; it’s all in there! But #gamergate lacks this self-awareness, and would like to think Quinn is so over, even as they spout bile about her at that very moment.

"Nobody cares about you anymore" except this guy, and all the other people in this thread and hundreds of others

“fuck off zoe. no-one fucking cares about you anymore. choke on my sage” – Anon, not caring about ZQ at all (Source:8chan)

 

1. Zoe Quinn killed a man

According to a photographer on Facebook, Zoe Quinn hired her to take pictures for a “softcore/ alt erotica” photo shoot in 2007. According to the photographer, whose name is Malorie Nasrallah, Quinn and she chatted; and during that conversation Quinn said she was attacked by a man and stabbed him in the face. There’s even a smoking gun:

The smoking gun: a redacted, undated email exchange. Allegedly Locke = Zoe Quinn

The smoking gun: a redacted, undated email exchange. Allegedly, Locke = Zoe Quinn (Source: Mallorie Nasrallah)

You’ll notice that I summed it up pretty quickly, although Malorie’s piece is 1,350 words long. That’s because most of what she wrote is actually Malorie grousing about Zoe Quinn as a client.

By time I arrived in Albany, Zoe had cancelled one of the three shoots we had planned. She lived in a tiny apartment with her boyfriend / spouse / lover (I did not ask personal questions) and her roommate. I had been assured I could over night with them, and that they had room to accommodate a guest, and room to shoot in. They had neither. We ended up doing an impromptu shoot in the extremely crowded apartment, in the middle of the night, to try to save the shoot.

– Malorie Nasrallah, grousing

I understand why this might be frustrating. That certainly does sound unprofessional. But it sounds like Nasrallah’s poisoning the well: because Quinn did not perform to her professional standards at a photoshoot, this is supposed to lend credence to the claim Quinn stabbed someone.

While we tried to plan a shoot for the next day Zoe, and Co. chatted with me. She claimed to have stabbed a man – attempted rapist – in the face, who had grabbed her. She relayed to me no less than three other accounts of alleged violent assault. I will not share the details here, I feel that would be fundamentally indecent. I was alarmed at this, and I admit, by the time she made the claim that she stabbed a man in the face with a knife* and ran away, I was skeptical as well. Two claims involved alleged workplace incidents, and were her prime explanation for why she could not hold a job. I was mildly disconcerted, because true or false, these stories have good cause to make one uneasy. She also claimed to have reported nothing to police, or management at her work.

That was not all we discussed, we talked about modeling, the websites, and erotica/porn in general. It was what we both did for a living, and candid conversation on the subject was not unusual.

I believe that being told by someone that they stabbed a man (who shall remain nameless) at some point in the unspecified past is hearsay. But there are other reasons the story bugs me.

For example, I try to beware of excessive details. They usually imply that someone is lying, adding more and more details so that their story seems credible. And 80% of this account is about Zoe’s softcore porn shoot (what is this, fanfiction?); complaints of how totally unprofessional she was, it’s mostly excessive details designed to make one think ill of Zoe Quinn.

Nasrallah even writes that Quinn still owes her money for the services rendered & clearly dislikes her. You might call that a “conflicting interest”; she seems to care more about her own interactions with Quinn than anything about this proposed murder. Still she offers herself up as a “character witness”; because people who hate Zoe Quinn will obviously only tell the truth about her.

Then are the factual things. According to Nasrallah, ZQ went by the name “Valentine Locke”, so in reality all the facts here are about someone who called themselves “Locke” at the time. Nasrallah came into contact with ZQ after the fact; (“When I realized Locke was Zoe”) and only comes out with the story now, post-#gamergate.

The smoking gun is a mostly censored email exchange between Nasrallah and Locke/Zoe. These weren’t the first messages exchanged between the two, and Nasrallah gives us no sense of context to Locke’s/Zoe’s words because most of her prompting message is censored. So when Locke responds by discussing killing someone in self-defense we have no context for this message, save the one Nasrallah is telling us.

So basically this is a rumor, with no evidence, no dead body and no time frame. Just an undated email written by ZQ under an alias, allegedly boasting about having stabbed a rapist in the face (in self defense.) I wonder what Malorie is leaving out when she blacks out text that says “here am I allegedly saying I should have let her be murdered? etc.” I kind of wonder if it isn’t some rape-apologetic handwaving about that poor nameless, mysterious man she wants to protect.

Eron Gjoni was promoting this libel on October 8, directly linking to Malorie’s accusations in this series of tweets.

Eron Gjoni, promoting the myth that Zoe Quinn is a murderer, false rape accuser. This is libel.

Eron Gjoni, endorsing the myth that Zoe Quinn is a murderer, false rape accuser.

This might be libel, since he’s CCing some of the popular names of #gamergate in these Tweets. And did Eron Gjoni just say Zoe Quinn makes false rape claims? Gross. Don’t let this guy into your social justice club; whatever he thinks theoretically, this is who he is when the rubber meets the road.

But hey, Mike Cernovich believes it. On Oct 18 he asked #gamergate if Zoe Quinn admitted to killing someone on Twitter.

#gamergaters reposting the facebook photo ad nauseam

#gamergaters repost the facebook photo ad nauseam

More on Mike Cernovich as he screams Zoe Quinn’s legal name from the rooftops like it’s a magic word. – ID

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Mike Cernovich; #GamerGate Lawyer! (Content Warning: Migraine-Inducingly Terrible)

Edit: Turns out the condo which Cernovich listed as his contact address for all your lawyerin’ needs is actually his home. In the interest of protecting him from being torn apart by roving packs of SJWs, I’ve removed the photo of it which I originally included in this article.

Nearly three months after Eron Gjoni kicked off the poorly organized hate mob known as #gamergate, the battle rages on. Two other high-profile women in the gaming industry have been driven from their homes as a result of #gamergate-mediated harassment; experiments I performed Sunday on Twitter during a train ride north have shown the Animu Avatar Brigade to be alive and kicking.

But #Gamergate hasn’t moved on from harassing Zoe Quinn, lady game dev; even as Quinn takes legal action to be left the fuck alone & in peace. Her embittered ex, Eron Gjoni (who’s been featured in this space four times now) is largely sidelined due to the gag order, but someone else has taken his place: semi-professional lawyer and full-time Peter Fox facsimile Mike Cernovich. Today, I’m going to examine the relationship between Cernovich, Gjoni, and #GamerGate in order to build a dossier about this Internet lawyer guy.

Mike Cernovich in his natural environment

Mike Cernovich in his natural environment (Source: @PlayDangerously via YouTube)

This heavy-liftin’, ‘roid-raging, “alpha male posturing” Venice, CA attorney evidently doesn’t have enough clients to pay the bills, so he makes his daily bread by selling “fitness juice” to gullible idiots who want to raise their testosterone points to over 9000. I say he’s doing this to make ends meet because Cernovich’s contact address on avvo.com is the third unit in a four-unit condo; and it belongs to someone else. (Edit: Turns out it’s Cernovich’s current residence; probably a rental. – ID.) 

He recieved his licence to practice law in 2013, and has suspended operations “for the year” to focus on his current website. Given the arithmetic it would seem he’s actively practiced law for either one year, or not at all post graduation.

Cernovich has been blogging about men’s rights issues and bodybuilding since he was in law school. On that blog, Crime and Federalism, Cernovich talks about Roosh V. at length, and of how he preserves his youth with testosterone injections (obtained by a doctor’s RX, though “90%” won’t prescribe it, Cernovich writes.) He hasn’t really written about legal anything since 2012; when I found this posting about a much more established & successful lady lawyer. In it Cernovich describes her professional life in graphically sexual terms; so that this “almost intimidating figure” is reduced to a prostitute metaphorically.

"Did she insist that, as a Florida lawyer, she could be not sued in New York?...No. She knelt down on her knees, and gave Rakofsky a virtual blow job."

“Did she insist that, as a Florida lawyer, she could be not sued in New York?…No. She knelt down on her knees, and gave Rakofsky a virtual blow job.” – Mike Cernovich

I can’t imagine why the courts don’t take this lawyer seriously. He also claims to have been “falsely accused of rape” in his website bio and to have defended the charges in court. His Twitter acct covers charming topics, like how to get away with murder, or how rape w/o force is not rape; he then donates to charities so as to seem like a nice guy.

Cernovich seems to be selling these #GamerGaters on his law degree to get a ticket to internet fame; or infamy. He even stated outright he hasn’t any interest in gaming or video games per se; the only shared interest between Cernovich and #Gamergate in general is a reactionary hatred of anything “SJW”.

But for the fact that #GamerGate is a trendy topic/ wannabe army of NEETs (like in Eden of the East) Cernovich probably wouldn’t want anything with them. #GamerGaters as I’ve spoken to them seem like the kind of folks who Cernovich would mock for being weak lazy betas; #Gamergaters seem to like anime, video games, and Vivian James; not bodybuilding and anabolic steroid (ab)use.

According to Cernovich, his “past is full of nonsense”; he’s “moving forward” from the statements he made as recently as August; although he has “No Remorse.” Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, Gamergaters; Mike Cernovich is a real actual lawyer with a degree and he knows his shit! His legal inexperience and Social Darwinst ideas about crime should be a selling point; this is a man who can see the issue from all sides. Even a rapist’s side, because he was accused of that once. Call him for every restraining order you find filed against you in California. Eron Gjoni certainly seems to be in contact with him; he even said “they’d share a beer” should he go to MA.

Cernovich claims to have in his possession a police report filed by Quinn, and posted a sliver of a court document around midnight of Oct 19. Zoe Quinn contacted me yesterday morning about the document and confirmed its authenticity. Cernovich has tweeted that he wouldn’t post dox, although he totally could and says it would be legal. But if I were Quinn I would take that as a warning.

The controversial 1-year gag order clause attached to Eron Gjoni's restraining order.

The controversial 1-year gag order clause attached to Eron Gjoni’s restraining order.

But how did Cernovich know which court to check for these records? I searched for the same information on Oct 1 and came up with nil; and none of the average Joes in #GG knew anything more at that time either; this wasn’t common knowledge. The whole reason I started covering this was because Gjoni seemed to be raising money for a phantom purpose. Even after Eron’s anonymous friend posted an eyewitness account on Reddit, the court has only ever been identified as being in Massachusetts someplace. I asked Cernovich how he figured this out on Twitter, but he did not respond to my inquiry.

Cernovich has two things working for him here help him to violate Zoe Quinn’s privacy. Firstly, these are public documents; albeit obscure ones which cost money to obtain. Second is that he’s not the accused party here, he’s an attorney; albeit an inexperienced and out-of-practice one. His First Amendment rights argument is incorrect I think; Gjoni’s right to freedom of expression is limited here because it infringes on Quinn’s right to live her life without being pilloried, threatened, harassed, libelled, and driven from her home. It’s called incitement; and if Gjoni “tried” to draw an appropriate line w/r/t how much is too much in his writings, he missed it by a country mile with thezoepost. And in defending Gjoni like this on Twitter, Cernovich is harassing Zoe Quinn himself.

Cernovich & Gjoni, apparently thick as thieves now.

Cernovich & Gjoni, apparently thick as thieves now.

More on Cernovich as he continues to chest-thump on the internet, the “testosterone replacement therapy” working on him so he’ll be the human equivalent of a silverback gorilla, which he’s taken on as an emblem for his current website. Did you know that gorillas have really tiny penises (3 cm)? It’s true. It makes me wonder if Cernovich himself is compensating for something.

The Reality Condom; or, the reality of condoms

Content Warning for HOT SEX.

In my short, hedonistic life I’ve had sexual relations with a number of men. Not all men of course; but more than a score and less than a hundred. And none of my lovers have taken condom-wearing very seriously.

The most common excuse (or reasoning) I get is one of sensations. Wearing condoms doesn’t feel as good to them, although most men can orgasm while wearing condoms. Another excuse I have heard is “Don’t you trust me?” as if condom-wearing was some symbol of distrust, and not a safety device. (If you got in a friend’s car and put on your seat belt for the ride, would it be logical for him to take offense that you didn’t “trust” him to drive carefully?)

I’ve never known a man to actually carry condoms, for they expect me to have them. (And I often do.) If I’m on hormonal BC getting a man to wear a condom is harder than winning a presidential debate. It’s gotten to a point that I simply won’t use the pills unless I’m going steady with someone (and ready to expose myself to all their past sex partners.) I’ve even handed a condom to a man I was about to fuck and he coyly threw it away. (He didn’t get a call-back, then stalked me for months.)

I thought the problem was me, or my taste in lovers; but then I read this article in the Times, and this one by Jessica Valenti; and also this petition by Parsemus.org. Apparently fewer than 20% of men use condoms, and historical declines in condom use are correlated with increases in use of other (woman-controlled) methods like hormonal BC. So it isn’t just me; apparently nearly all women (<80%) have to fight with their boyfriends to make them put on a rubber.

This brings me to a device called the female condom; sometimes marketed under the brand “The Reality Condom.”

realitycondom

“Today’s protection for today’s woman.” Which idiot wrote this packaging copy?

Male condoms sometimes have suggestive, sexy names; like Trojan, Kimono, Sir Richard’s, etc. Or they may have neutral names like Lifestyles, Crown, or Trustex. But we girls get the “Reality” condom; as if asking a man to be responsible for his own contraceptives is some kind of fantasy.

There’s another shitty reality to the Reality condom. They’re hard to find and expensive. Most drug stores only stock male condoms; even sex toy stores like Babeland don’t always keep them in stock (they sell out quickly, LOL.) On Amazon, you can buy 5 reality condoms for $18.95, or a whopping 3.79 per condom (excluding cost of shipping.)

By comparison you can get 48 Kimono condoms (my preferred brand) on Amazon for $19.68… a cost of 41 cents per condom (excl. shipping.) Female condoms cost nine times that of male ones. And according to one couple interviewed by the Times, the Reality condom has all the visual allure of a trash can liner.

Now, I’m not some condom fetishist. I don’t particularly like wearing bits of latex during sex; there’s issues of lubrication, chafing & etc. It can be difficult to stop yourself (or your partner) during foreplay to put a condom on; and it’s harder still if he starts whining about it like a schoolboy. But the vast majority of men seem to think condom-wearing is somehow optional but contraception is not, which is incredibly foolish.

Firstly, it’s foolish because the pill doesn’t protect against STIs. You can still give a woman HIV if she’s on the pill. Secondly, it’s foolish because men have to take the woman’s word for it that she’s on the pill and trust her (that “trust” again) to use them correctly. So by not wearing a condom, a man shunts the responsibility for contraception onto the woman he’s sleeping with.

And if the woman’s birth control fails, she must choose between two equally horrible options. If she elects to end the pregnancy, there’s a certain breed of woman-hater who thinks she has no right. And if she carries the pregnancy to term, there’s a certain breed of man who thinks she has no right to expect child support. If you read AVFM enough you will find men angrily writing both viewpoints: that women have no right to abort their children; nor have they the right to raise those children with their paycheck (i.e. demand child support.) Some woman-haters even think men should have a right to disown any children they don’t *want* to pay for, as a right commensurate to a woman’s right to termination.

Let me bring this back to the “Reality” condom. In my links above you might have noticed there’s been some developments in the whole male-birth-control front: both a “clean sheets” pill which stops ejaculation (though orgasm still happens) and a polymer called Vasalgel which works like a reversible vasectomy. (Neither of these things are currently available for consumer use in the US; but there is a pilot project in India.) But how many dudes are going to let a doctor inject their scrotum with a polymer if they can’t be bothered to roll a latex sheath over their penis? Why should I expect someone too selfish for condoms to take a pill every day to forestall ejaculation?

The reality of contraception for women today might be summed up as “Your body, your problem.” We’re ones who get pregnant and overwhelmingly it’s women who have to deal with the consequences. We’re at least 80% responsible for using contraception, not because there aren’t suitable male options (like condoms) but because it’s our bodies, ergo our problem. Engineering male contraceptives won’t do anything to dismantle the attitude that using contraception is women’s work.