#gamergate a voice for men advocacy of violence are these guys 12 years old? attention seeking Dean Esmay drama kings entitled babies evil SJWs evil women gamebros grandiosity men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny MRA no games for girls no girls allowed none dare call it conspiracy oppressed men playing the victim post contains jokes post contains sarcasm reddit

Men’s Rightsers take up arms against the vidya game destroyers. And Kroger supermarkets. Never give up! Never surrender!

This gif makes a lot more sense if you've seen Galaxy Quest
This gif makes a lot more sense if you’ve seen Galaxy Quest

#GamerGate and Men’s Rights: two terrible tastes that taste terribler together.

Ok, maybe that slogan needs a bit of work. But it’s true that when you combine the poor-oppressed-me-we-hate-AnitaZoe-Sarquinneesian narrative of the #GamerGaters with the poor-oppressed-me-feminazis-rule-the-world narrative of the Men’s Righsters you get some amazing outbursts of indignant self-dramatizing self-pity.

Take, for example, this melodramatic email sent by A Voice for Men’s “operations manager” Dean Esmay to … a grocery chain that advertises on the game site Kotaku, a bete noire of the #GamerGate movement. I’ve highlighted some of the Esmay-ist bits:

Greetings. I have been a Kroger customer, with a Kroger value card* me and my family use, for about 20 years. I have been grossly offended by the insults by Kotaku to me and my son, who have played video games together since he was about 3 years old (he’ll be an adult soon). Kotaku has been spreading hateful messages about people like me and my son and has been involved in what looks like blatant journalistic corruption. Please stop supporting this hateful publication with your advertising. If you do not, I will look to shop exclusively at your competitors in my area, including Meier, Bush’s, and Hiller’s.

Stop Kotaku’s abuse of my family. Thank you.

That’s right, Esmay thinks Kotaku is literally ABUSING his son, and the rest of his family to boot, by spreading “hateful messages” about gamers.

What sort of terrible hatred does Kotaku promote? Consider these ABUSIVE quotes from the site’s Editor in Chief:

I’m the editor-in-chief of a large gaming site with millions of readers. I consider myself a reporter. How else do I define myself? I’m a gamer. I don’t mind the term. If you do, that doesn’t bother me. I’m confident in who I am. If you’re a gamer who harasses? Who sends rape threats or stalks Twitter feeds or terrorizes people from their home or gloats at others’ struggles? Find a new hobby. If you’re a gamer who wants better games reporting? Be specific about what you dislike. Please seek, support and celebrate those whose work you do like. …

Gaming is better when it’s diverse, when it lets marginalized people find their creative voice or their escapist outlet or a social circle that welcomes them.

What a disgusting hatemonger!

Oh, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg! Consider this list of the most popular stories now up on Kotaku:

Popular stories Behold, Final Fantasy XV's First Live Gameplay Footage A Guide To Obtaining And Upgrading Legendary Gear In Destiny First Details about the Final Fantasy XV Demo Player's Secret Weapon In Destiny's Multiplayer Is...Sitting Wow, People Are Still Coming Up With Wild Silent Hills Theories Some of the Tokyo Game Show's Best Cosplay ​How To Trick Destiny Into Helping You Farm Tons Of Loot
Kotaku: Pure antimale evil

Live game footage of Final FantasyXV? Gameplay tips!? Pictures of Japanese people dressed up like video game characters!?!!

It’s as if the site were literally run by FEMINIST HITLER.

But all hope is not lost! Over on the Men’s Rights subreddit one angry and ever-so-slightly melodramatic gamer tries to rally the troops:

A message to those bravely standing up for video games in the unending face of Feminist oppression: DON'T GIVE UP. DON'T SURRENDER. (self.MensRights)  submitted 18 hours ago by fingerjesus  I've been watching this whole saga for a while now. I've done my best to participate; alerting you guys to the SJW journalists who should be driven out of our culture. All I have to say is this: DON'T GIVE UP.  Yes things may look bleak, the SJWs are still thriving and their lies still permeate every pore of our hobby. But remember this - it can't last. Sooner or later we're going to reach breaking point and we will emerge victorious, the SJWs will be sent running back to their Tumblr dwellings and video games will be free again.  I've seen a lot of you asking "What does this have to do with men's rights"? The answer is EVERYTHING. Have you not noticed? GAMER is a proxy word for MEN. They want to eradicate GAMER culture? Yeah, guess who that really means. Tthe SJws won't be happy until male culture as we know it has vanished, cosigned to the aether like a memory or a fleeting moment of 'what could have been'.  DON'T GIVE UP, WE CAN WIN THIS WAR.

Sorry, I got a little carried away with the highlighter there, but almost everything he wrote is pure gold. If by “pure gold” you mean “the most ludicrous pile of crap I’ve seen in a long time, and I’m someone who reads Men’s Rights sites pretty much every day.”

H/T: Mancheeze, r/againstmensrights

NOTE: Just in case anyone missed it, this post contains



Well, sarcasm from me. I’m pretty sure those other dudes are serious.

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8 years ago


What I find so ridiculous is the fact that these guys act as though women playing/creating games is a new thing. I’m 3-freaking-6 years old. I’ve been gaming since the Atari 2600. I OWNED a copy of the ET game – yeah, that same one that most of those putzes only got to read about being discovered in a landfill in whereverthehell.

I had the E.T. game when I was a kid, too. My older sister actually beat it (she still plays video games today). I had a subscription to Nintendo Power. I subscribed to EGM during the SNES-Genesis “console war”. I STILL Have some old copies I look at for nostalgia (and I’m kinda a packrat).

I’m 35 and have been playing video games for as long as I can remember. It sucks that we have to bring out our “gamer cred” to prove we are gamers, but they get cred just for being a guy.
Chie Satonaka:

There was also a Simpsons game later on that I loved.

Me too, I spent so many tokens every Saturday on that game.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
8 years ago

Colecovision! I’d nearly forgotten about that, Chie. Back in high school we (male + female friends) used to hang out at this one girl’s house and play Qbert and Donkey Kong. Graphics were so primitive that nobody identified much with the central characters. There was no larger social agenda, no gender roles. Just simple hand-eye coordination challenges featuring inanimate shapes and colorful, cute critters. It seems like the dudebros started to take over around the time VGA and PC games gained market share in the early ’90s, and the graphics and storylines started to get more realistic.

“Leisure Suit Larry” is the first game I remember being totally repelled by – not just by the horrible PUA content, but because it was so divisive, and explicitly designed to make women feel uncomfortable and excluded from the gaming party. I certainly didn’t want to hang around the den and watch my brother’s girlfriend’s brother (and his friends) playing it. It didn’t make any sense that game designers would deliberately halve their profits by alienating/degrading a huge swath of their potential customers. But then again, segregation never made any economic sense either.

At any rate, there was at least a 20 year period in the beginning where gaming was for everyone. It would be nice to see a return to that golden age.

David – absolutely, feel free to quote!

8 years ago

What I find so ridiculous is the fact that these guys act as though women playing/creating games is a new thing.

It’s no surprise. Dudebros lack any and all sense of historical perspective. How things are today from their point of view is how it’s always been for everyone, everywhere.

8 years ago

I’ve always played games too; obscure board/card games, D&D, and video games.

I’m going to misspell this horribly, but one of the first video games I played was called Hunt the Wompus. Very early graphics, mostly stick figures. The goal was to figure out where the monster was and kill it with an arrow before it got you. (The monster was invisible until you shot it or got eaten). Nothing was gendered.

I still have my original NES, which I still break out occasionally to play Final Fantasy.

I have a 3DS and play PC games.

I’ve always been here (girl cooties and all).

Chie Satonaka
Chie Satonaka
8 years ago

I also remember playing this text-based D&D RPG on my cousin’s computer waaaaay back in the days of DOS. Green text on the screen, and it described what you were seeing and what your options were. And the first game I ever beat was Final Fantasy II on the original Gameboy — never had enough money to play the arcade games all the way through. I still remember that feeling of triumph. Good times!

8 years ago

Kotaku is the website that was totally fine to let their commenters bully one of their writers on every single one of her posts to the point that she started drinking so much she almost became an alcoholic. People were pulling pictures from her personal webspaces and posted them in comments to make the perfectly eloquent point of “lol, she so ugly!”.
This went on for months and no one – including the editor-in-chief – stepped in and told them to knock it off.
Compare that to his response just mere days after one of his male writers was named in the Zoe Quinn “scandal”, despite the fact that almost none of the assholes actually went after the writer and instead focused on Zoe.
This whole thing apparently was merrily going on until the point that she started missing deadlines on turning in her articles at which point the editor-in-chief finally went to her and asked what’s up and got her to go on a hiatius for a few weeks.
She made a post on Kotaku about it later and apparently once they did realize just how badly it was affecting her, they did try to get her help, but even then there was no official “Guys, just fucking stop it already” from the people in charge. And in that very post commenters were already starting up again about how she totally deserved it though, essentially for writing articles about games and the industry maybe not being all that cool with women just yet.

I wasn’t really too surprised that it happened though, Kotaku is part of the Gawker network after all. And we all know that Gawker was just fine letting their almost exclusively female writers on Jezebel (and the readers if the mods didn’t catch it in time) deal with thousands of graphic pictures of brutal rape and real corpses every single day.
They only stepped in once Jezebel called them out in public and other Gawker sites (Kotaku being one of the primary targets) started getting spammed with pictures of gay porn.
Cause clearly making women look at other women being raped and murdered is a-okay, but gamer-dudes having to look at pictures of two dudes fucking? The most horrible thing that you could subject a person (read: man) to!

I actually do read Kotaku every day, partly for the news and partly for my daily dose guys just being soooooo boo-boo sad that women aren’t shutting up already, but the Kotaku comment sections isn’t really known in the online world as being filled with horrible people cause they’re all just so damn feminist-y (totally a word that exists).
To look at Kotaku and see a website that is totally oppressing the menz is just so mindboggling, it makes me want to ask these guys just what reality they are living in.

8 years ago

the Kotaku comment sections isn’t really known in the online world as being filled with horrible people

Which I always found boggling; I have been driven away from the site by the immaturity of the editors and the commenters long ago.

Michelle C Young
8 years ago

My mind is boggled at this. Thanks, David!

Michelle C Young
8 years ago


It seems as well those who are applying the most criteria to the word “gamer” (You have to be playing the right games, for at least as long per day as me, if not more, you need to have it as a core part of your identity, more important than friends and family, you need to play everything in multiplayer) are the same people who are accepting Hoff-Summers as a feminist “because she says she is one”

And I just have to share with you a picture I have. I don’t even remember where I found it (pity – I’d give credit, if I could). I think it might have been from Comically Vintage, which David links on this site.
comment image?dl=0

Ummm, I hope that works.

I call it “Feminist-Man.” You’ll note, it is a comic strip panel. I imagine that “Feminist-Man” is the sort of “hero” we wind up loving to hate, and his competent assistant, “Secretary Woman,” is the lovable and effective side-kick who actually accomplishes all the Social Justice Warrioring, without getting any of the credit. Sort of like the old Bruce Lee version of “Green Hornet.”

“Good work, Cato! Now that you’ve taken down a dozen of these bad guys, untie me so that I can punch out that last one, and take aaaalllll the credit.”

Michelle C Young
8 years ago

@Headless Unicorn Guy

Thing is, I’m a gamer. From when “gamer” meant paper, pencil, funny dice, graph-paper dungeons stocked from Monster Manual random-rolls, and calling in pizza missions at 2 Ayem. Back when gaming was almost exclusively geeky white boyz like me, with three little books plus Greyhawk.

And we had a lot of a-hole gamer types back then who were “No Gurlz Allowed”. Including urban-legend horror stories of what happened to the first girl gamers when they started trickling into otherwise all-guy gaming groups. Didn’t happen in my regular group (but then, to us being gamers trumped being male or female — common interest), but when you introduce a female gamer to an all-male group who have never interacted with a RL female, a lot of dumb and clueless things can happen. But these guys are beyond dumb and clueless to flat-out hostile.

I was part of that “males-only” table-top gaming group. Not that they ever said they’d refuse to allow a woman to play. I was simply the only woman there. And my big brother was the Game Master. No one DARED to insult me, or insinuate that I had no place there. Nope. Big Bro was protective of me, and anyone who was mean to me would PAAAYYYYY! Seriously, my bro is the kind of “smiling game master” you never want to trust, and if he wants you to suffer, he’ll keep healing you juuuuuusst enough to make your torture last a long, loooong time.

Golly, but Iove him!

However, at first, it did not occur to me that they ever thought of me as anything other than “one of the guys.” I guess they all had sense enough to behave from the get-go. It was only that night we were out late, and he insisted that the whole group walk me back to my dorm, that I realized I really was getting some special treatment. See, big bro smiling Game Master smiled at me, too.

As long as everyone treated me as just “one of the guys,” it was all cool, though. My Bro insisted on everyone behaving politely to everyone in the group, regardless. Clean language, no insults (except the clearly playful kind), and if anyone’s feelings were hurt, then we had to resolve the issue. Basically, if the other person isn’t enjoying it, you have to stop. They never had a chance get sexist at me.

So, really, the walking home thing was the only difference. And the only reason he asked them all to join was because we weren’t done with a particularly interesting discussion, and he didn’t want to miss it, while he walked me home.

Yes, he always insisted on walking me home. I was glad of it, because this was during my “Can’t stand to be touched – still traumatized and scared” period, so it didn’t feel paternalistic or patronizing, at all. It felt like he was loving me, when I needed it most, acknowledging my fears as real, and helping me get through them until I didn’t feel so darned vulnerable all the time.

He’s also the one who taught me how to defend myself, for when I needed to go out by myself, and it’s thanks to his training that I was able to go out and about alone, at night, when my roommates were huddled in the dorm, because there was a known rapist (escaped convict) sighted in our area. He taught me how to feel confident and safe. He taught me to take precautions, and be prepared, and not be afraid. But also, if those precautions failed, and the monster attacked, he’d never blame me. He’d blame the monster.

He frequently told the guys, though, that it was very valuable having a woman in the group, because I tended to look at things from a different perspective than they did. In other words, I saw the traps they didn’t, and they saw the traps I didn’t, and we complemented each other quite nicely.

That was when I decided that “Gamer” meant “geniunely good, nice, and kind person, with whom I could feel safe and trusting.” The first man I trusted, outside my family, after high school was one of those gamers. Since then, I LIKED gamers. Way to stereotype, I know, but I was young, and had really good experiences with the gamers, and thought they were representative of the community.

#&T%*#(#$& this stupid #GamerGate business, and them showing themselves to be such jerks. I don’t think so highly of “gamers,” now. They have usurped the term, in my mind. Although those fellows I used to game with? Still great guys.

I can only hope that the “Gamers” are just the vocal minority of the gaming community, and that most people who game are still those genuinely good, nice, kind people I loved.

TL;DR: #GamerGate has ruined “Gamers” for me, and made me ashamed to call myself a Gamer.

Michelle C Young
8 years ago


I’m 3-freaking-6 years old. I’ve been gaming since the Atari 2600. I OWNED a copy of the ET game – yeah, that same one that most of those putzes only got to read about being discovered in a landfill in whereverthehell.

I have one word for you: Asteroids.

Michelle C Young
8 years ago


I can’t imagine, say, model railroad enthusiasts getting all bent out of shape about more people taking up their hobby, and embarking on a hate campaign to define it as for old people ONLY.

Oh, this made me laugh out loud! I got this mental image of old dudes, waving their canes and shouting obscenities at the young whippersnappers having the temerity to suggest that maybe there should be more diesel engine representation, instead of only steam engines, all the time.

Emma Sherrifs
Emma Sherrifs
8 years ago

5 upvotes and only 1 comment. Well worth doing a ridiculous article on. Wouldn’t be surprised if you typed it yourself

8 years ago

You don’t think David types his own articles, Emma Sherrifs? But yes, Dean Esmay and Gamergaters are incredibly ridiculous. Snarking them is indeed well worth it.

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