Crowdfunding can be a great way to revive cult-favourite pieces of entertainment or allow creative people to pursue passion projects that would be otherwise shunned by large publishing houses. It can also be a great way for idiots to spread their idiocy, case in point: The Sarkeesian Effect, a new documentary analysing the “Social Justice Warrior” movement. Seriously. This is actually a thing that is happening now.
The documentary is being created on Patreon by Jordan Owen, an allegedly prominent YouTuber, musician and author, and Davis Aurini, an “alternative right wing blogger”, as an attempt to tell the “untold side of the SJW story”.
The Sarkeesian Effect is an upcoming documentary film that will explore how gaming and tech culture have been hijacked by Social Justice Warriors as well as look into the background, ethics, and methodology of some the movement’s most prominent voices. The title is a reference to Anita Sarkeesian, the primary figure in this new shift in gaming culture. Ms. Sarkeesian’s controversial videos and Kickstarter campaign laid the groundwork for the current atmosphere of politically correct fear, manipulation, and intimidation.
In the FAQ section of the film’s Patreon page, questions like “Are you guys MRAs?”, “Are you just harassing Sarkeesian?”, and “Don’t you already have popular YouTube channels?” make this whole thing a fascinating cesspool of lecherous hilarity. Of the Patreons listed, only one is a woman, and one goes by the handle “Satan the Autistic Faggot”. That’s some fan base you’ve got there.
In their Patreon video, Owen and Aurini claim to be fighting for the right to criticize those who seek to make money from “Social Justice Movements”. Okay, I can almost see that being a fair point. But when your job is, say, being a writer or content creator focused on gaming and tech culture, isn’t that sort of your job? You make money discussing all aspects of culture? Isn’t it far worse to seek funding for a project designed to attack and insult those who are trying to make gaming and tech spaces better for everyone. You might disagree with the way in which Sarkeesian used crowdfunding to “buy games”, and you might dislike the quality of her videos, but to blame her for shutting out criticisms when most of them came in the form of disgusting rape threats is pretty pathetic.
The lack of self awareness on display here is incredible though. One of these guys hopes to get your money by wearing a black suit, smoking a cigarette and drinking scotch whilst grinning smugly from his leather armchair. If you want to come across as “the good guys”, don’t dress like a modern film version of the Devil himself.
I’ve written about this kind of thing a lot, and it’s starting to get pretty tiresome explaining to a small number of people what everyone else in 2014 already understands. People of
different genders, orientations, sexualities, religions, nationalities etc. are all fine, and they should all be able to feel free to enjoy the things that straight, white guys can. Games are amazing and so are people, so let’s all enjoy games together, regardless of those minor differences that some believe separate us.
In regards to the film though, I’m fully aware that this post will raise awareness of the project, for better and for worse. Some are attempting to report the film for the use of copyrighted images in its poster, so that’s something you can do if you want to get rid of it. Part of me actually wants to see it funded and made, if anything to see what sort of thin arguments these guys come up with to defend their ass-holery. If you do one thing though, take the time to pity these guys for their smug and exclusionary attitudes, and hope that they become better people from their mistakes.
If one good thing comes from this, it will be Twitter’s reaction.
— Nick Robinson (@Babylonian) August 24, 2014
Like don’t you get it, guys? You are saying “there is no white male conspiracy” as you two white men fundraise a movie that attacks a woman. — Samantha Allen (@CousinDangereux) August 24, 2014
ROBERT LUDLUM PRESENTS The Sarkeesian Effect The Greenlight Quinnspiracy The Fedora Report The Kotaku Initiative The Patreon Joke
— Andrew Vestal (@avestal) August 23, 2014