The Firefly Papers
Nov 3rd, 2014
- RE: Let's take the fight directly to them. Why Gamergate is going to Tumblr and How to spread the word.
- Why and Reasoning:
- If you're not here from Twitter, you can skip this part.
- In recent weeks the revolt has been getting bogged down in a stalemate. Useless drama and e-celebrity happenings are sidetracking us and sapping our strength. We've become demoralized and are losing momentum. It's time to rebalance.
- Time for a new frontier, a new fight, a new chance to spread the truth.
- While Twitter can be considered an important part of the movement, it is one of the worst places to focus our efforts. Too much time, energy, and attention is currently being wasted there. Twitter's 140 character limit means that it's totally unfit for discussion or refuting enemy arguments. It's a toy and distraction while the real conversation should be happening elsewhere, like the comments on news articles and youtube videos. The only things twitter is good for are out-of-context quips and angry outbursts.
- Twitter is wearing us down, and it's becoming a red herring/albatross around our neck. It's time to use our limited resources where they will be more effective. While twitter and the current #Gamergate hashtag will remain useful for rapidly disseminating information to those in the movement, debating must fan out to new frontiers. Tweets per day will no longer be the standard by which we measure the revolt's potency, because they will fall after this. No big deal.
- As a group we've done a horrible job at reaching out to others and spreading our message. That's a problem. Instead of waiting for people to come to us, we need to go to them. That's why we need to go to Tumblr. Going forward, only 25% of the people who are currently on Twitter should continue to post and debate there. 25% should redeploy to fight on Youtube and defend our home turf while the other 50% should go to Tumblr. If you're willing and able, you should multitask.
- Tumblr is significant because it's wildly popular and messages can be spread on it with minimal effort(see Operation Overlord). In our case, the message will be a community-building and truth spreading effort. We'll "plant our flag" there sorta.
- So you don't go in unprepared, here's what you need to know:
- How to use Tumblr:
- There are many how-to guides available. Google is your best friend, but here's a good place to begin:
- About Tumblr's Target Audience:
- Most users on Tumblr are teenagers between 12 and 20, and most of them are girls. They are very interested in fandoms, anime, and other memes. Tumblr has a "reblog culture" meaning that posts should be short, snappy and to the point, and the campaign should focus on creating memes and photos to share. A good idea would be to use popular anime characters and pokemon to get the #Gamergate message out. Another idea would be to create crossover fanart with Vivian James in it. Tumblr enjoys appeals to emotion. While rational debate is important, make sure you are making it personal. For more information, check here: http://pastebin.com/dmhUkzEe
- Where and how to focus our efforts:
- Taking on Tumblr is a bold move. It's the opposition's home base. Contrary to popular belief, we're not there to convince them.
- Sending a message to fence-sitters and trying to get neutrals on our side should be and is the top priority. Ignore obvious shills and trolls, and report harassment on sight just like we do on Twitter. The first order of business is to take control of the #Gamergate hashtag and fill it with facts, information and informative photos, along with personal stories.
- Tumblr likes hearing personal anecdotes. If you want to share stories of bullying and harassment, then the hashtag is THE place to do it. A major effort will be spent on pushing our female and minority voices to the forefront via #notyourshield. the goal is to discredit and debunk the narrative and shut it off at the source. Have a large folder of evidence, along with the simplified image macros ready to share. The efforts will not only be focused on our hashtag however. A major failing of the current movement was limiting it to #Gamergate. In order to be effective, you must also talk about Gamergate in other relevant hashtags, such as popular video game titles like "Mario". It's important not to spam and to stay on message. Also, do not post Gamergate in irrelevant tags such as "dr who." THIS IS NOT A RAID. We're only there to build bridges and spread goodwill, and raiding would do the opposite.
- A site-specific "Gamergate for Tumblr Users" image should be created and reblogged. Focus on keeping the tag clean, while offering sound rebuttals and dismissals to any Anti-Gamergate posts. The tag is our beachhead. We must maintain control over it at all costs. Report any off topic posts and spam on sight.
- Tumblr is a different place than what you're used to, so take time to lurk if you must.
- You are the victim in order to gain sympathy and support. You can't expect to use the same strategies developed on twitter. Remember to read Operation Valentine Tango for more information: http://pastebin.com/dmhUkzEe
- Reblog Circle:
- Any time you see a pro-gg post, you need to follow the poster and reblog it in order to signal boost. This increases solidarity and cohesion. Build numbers and stay in contact with each other.
- Understand the culture, and reblog more than just #GG.
- This. It's important to be a real person and not some faceless nobody. This means you should round out your blog by reblogging interesting content you like from other, non gamer-gate related things. Take some time to enjoy the rest of Tumblr, as this will take a while. Build bridges, chat and make friends not because it will "help the plan", but because it's the right thing to do.
- Discredit their main argument.
- Notice how most, if not all anti-gg criticism hinges on the hatred and dismissal of thezoepost and Eron? Don't let them. Defend if the conversation comes to that.
- On harassment:
- "If #GG was only about harassment and misogyny (really hard to say since there are thousands in the movement including thousands of women), then why did we start our own harassment patrol specifically to report and block harassment and threats on sight?" Talk about how both sides are being threatened and far more pro-gg supporters have been harmed than anti-gg's. All the gamergate supporters who have been doxxed and threatened have NEVER harassed any of the women involved, yet the news never tells you about this. Ask them, what have the Anti's done to prevent harassment on their side?
- If the conversation shifts to the beginnings of #GG, Talk about the "culture of fear" or “rape culture” that keeps men from reporting sexually harassment. Make them feel guilty about adding to this. Put them on the spot if necessary and ask if they think emotional abuse is ok if it happens to men. Listen and Believe for all victims or no victims. Adopt their language. (When in Rome)
- If they continue to press the point after this, disengage, shame or ridicule them if necessary. They're just trolls. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0p0KTyRZJ94
- discredit the narrative
- share stories
- get emotional*
- defend news stories comment sections and take on tumblr
- band together wherever you are
- * By "Getting Emotional", I don't mean get angry- I mean don't be afraid to be open, personal, vulnerable. Tell people how this makes you feel.
- Resources. Be sure to use these, and link a lot of others too.
- Short Memes for Gamergate: https://archive.today/wfQU0
- Anti-Bullying video (gain sympathy) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJhD_pPNkU0
- Pro vs Anti Gamergate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwsPai-0Ov8&feature=youtu.be&a
- Stories with a pro-lean.
- Push the emotional side of this story to the forefront with #NotYourShield and others. I repeat, don’t be afraid to make it personal.
- Some more points, from /gg/:
- Don't Dogpile
- This is more in regards to how tumblr works than an actual issue with dogpiling, but if too many of you try to wedge in to a debate another user is having, then you will dilute the thread of conversation because there will be ten different reblogs with varying pieces of information. If you want to weigh in on a topic, PM the user with your opinions for them to consider in the debate, or make a blog commentary than a direct reblog-reply.
- Format and attract
- A normal tumblr user won't read long posts due to time. (Really, any Internet User) Find concise ways of presenting your argument. One reason why logical fallacies became such a common occurrence is because it was a lazy and easy to digest means of communicating an opposing viewpoint, along with poor argumentative skills.
- Having links should be reserved for larger, public announcement-type posts. Linking in the middle of a conversation will result in the person you're addressing becoming lax. Remember, you're setting out to do this so you put the work into making evidence from an article easy to digest and articulated.
- For content producers and artists
- Analyze tumblr. I mentioned this in my first post, but tumblr enjoys relatable and homely things. Consider when conveying your opinions to produce approachable and likeable art pieces. Look at the "art motivation" comics, high reblogged and non sexual fan art, cute stories and the like. A lot of pro-GG material is either defensive, upstanding or satirical, we don't have a lot of pieces that are informative whilst being inviting or friendly. It's hard to convey what sort of things work because it's art, but things like that red-nose zelda comic or the pusshin stuff really attracts people.
- Hell, even extra credits is worth a look at for an idea of what I mean, since their artistic presentation helps draw in people to watch until they realize they're bad people.
- Don't be afraid to turn Vivian James into Hello Kitty or a pony.
- I'll suggest some points of action, but I encourage individual effort since personal touches are the best kind.
- Be relatable
- Tumblr likes things they can relate to and half the shit you find they enjoy best is homely or nostalgic. Vintage Instagram filters abound. Showing yourself as someone who is genuinely concerned with what corruption in the industry means and has a stake in gaming will go a ways in being taken seriously as opposed to some group-representin' page with a faceless agenda to push.
- To begin with, having a profile say why you love video games, why you're a decent person and concluding with "I am a person and I support gamergate" will show you're human. You don't need to give your life story or anything, just show you're passionate and make it personal. If you are making a new account, don't choose a name that has anything to do with video games or gg.
- When discussing and arguing, it's good to establish why you're personally affected by the corruption in journalism and bullying. Show why you have a stake in it, it seems less like you're bandwagoning something you've overheard.
- Have some fucking manners
- Because talking like a cunt can be really fucking hostile even if it sharply nails the point. I get some of you guys enjoy the shitslinging language and the fuckyouisms of the prominent youtuber, but it's not inviting. That's not to say you have to read like a Disney script, but the language you use will be one of the deciding factors in who you appeal to. The last thing you want to do is make a redundancy by drawing in and informing the same people who are already heavily invested in GamerGate.
- That being said, keep an open mind. You're going to encounter opinions and standpoints you don't believe in. Denying them off the bat won't persuade anybody. People are the heroes of their own story. Find the good behind their argument and convince them why it is better represented in Gamergate. Some people aren't going to be compatible or they may just hold shitty beliefs, don't engage in a war with them. Simply move on or let them carry on if you find them behaving in a manner that can highlight foul play.
- Address actions, not individuals
- The ongoing narrative about GG is that we're out to harass individuals. Even if we cover up identities of people by calling them literally who and the like, it's still isolating a person.
- Only bring names up factually, don't address the person as a cause, address their actions as a symptom of something worse. "The agenda put forth by games journalism will only split the community than unite it because it drives a wedge between those who feel alienated from the topic and those who align themselves to a just-worthy cause when one is protested. See articles by Leigh Alexander to see what I mean" is a better way to frame "Leigh Alexander is a sexist and racist and people who side with her are bigots."
- You may be pissed off by an individual and they may deserve to be condemned, but what will speak first is the actions that they have taken and the consequences that it has.
- Identifying and explaining the consequences of corruption is the most important factor in convincing an impartial faction
- And I mean fucking legitimate consequences, mid to long term consequences. Nothing that will make you seem delusional or seem unfounded. Indie developers not getting highlighted for their belief is one legitimate concern, all games being infiltrated with sex-negative design choices is too far out there and unproven to really hit anybody at heart. Remember Rule number one: Be Relateable. If it's not a consequence these people can envision, it won't resound with them until you've convinced them.
- And remember:
- Gamergate is not a movement. It’s not even a consumer revolt. Gamergate is an EVENT.
- Like all other “Gates” before it, Gamergate is an event- namely a scandal. GG uncovered irrefutable evidence of corruption in gaming journalism. The media organizations involved, instead of addressing those legitimate concerns and firing those involved, went on a monthlong rampage against their readers claiming that “Gamers were Dead” (Mind you, Gamers are the main audience of said publications.) They released an onslaught of harassment and character-assassination culminating in threats of bullying and downright hate speech from some of the upper management. Understandably Gamers are upset. What happened after the scandal- that’s the consumer revolt.
- To claims the movement is rooted in evil, remember to mention WWI. The zoepost was only the spark that set it off. That’s like saying WWI was started because of Franz’s assassination- there were longstanding tensions between reader and writer before then, and it was bound to happen sooner or later.
- Be patient. This is not a raid. Rome wasn't built in a day. Rather, this is a long-term effort to build a sizable community of supporters on Tumblr and gain a foothold in hostile territory. Building our presence on Twitter took weeks. If you need a break, take one. Just continue to spread the word and don't be a jerk, ever. Don't let them demoralize you!
- Good luck!
- Need to chat? #OpLightUp on Rizon IRC
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