I was called a bitch, a cunt, a whore, an autistic, retarded, a fucking idiot, a faggot, a middle-aged mom, (that one was hilarious because it’s true but I guess was an attempt at an insult) a fake geek girl, and stupid too many times to count. I was told repeatedly to kill myself, drop dead, jump off a cliff, and deserved to be killed “700 ways” as well as numerous threats of rape and other forms of violent harm. I was told over and over that no one cares about me, or what I was saying, or what I did with donating my money, yet hundreds and hundreds of people were seeking me out to bully me, threaten me, and even photoshop a fake tweet meant to look like I wrote it that said “I really want all these trolls to die. In fact I’m going to kill them all myself.” This is a hell of a lot of effort going into not caring what I have to say. […]
What was crazy to me in all of this were the people coming after me to say that they “didn’t see a single threat” in my Twitter mentions and that I was lying. I guess when one lives online among a community of people who treat each other like this on a a daily basis, they think that kind of talk is perfectly fine.
–Anne Wheaton versus GamerGate.
This was prompted after Wheaton went to Calgary Expo and tweeted a photo praising the “cosplay does not equal consent” poster she saw there. The harassment intensified after she announced she was going to donate $1 per harassing tweet to Feminist Frequency, I guess because the Goobers thought they could, IDK. Bankrupt her or something? Which sort of worked, in that she ended up having to cap her donation, but Feminist Frequency, RAINN, and the ACLU still each got a cool grand out of the whole sorry episode.
But I like Wheaton’s point here in the quoted text: that people who exist online in toxic spaces don’t necessarily see how toxic those spaces are. There’s a reason Gators are associated with cesspits like 4chan, and a reason why we use words like “cesspit” to describe places like 4chan. Basically, if “fun” in your online spaces is predicated on the vicious tearing down of other people in that space, ((FWIW, this attitude is prevalent in progressive spaces, too. It just takes a slightly different form.)) then my friend? You have bigger problems than Anne Wheaton tweeting a con poster.