#Gamergate – Conventions, Calumny and Badgers

calgary_expo_on_gamergate_by_kukuruyoart-d8q1lhpAt the Calgary Expo this weekend – a big nerd convention in Canada – Alison Tieman and the Honey Badger Brigade (a Men’s Human Rights and nerd culture group) were thrown out. The reasons given have been rather varied and sometimes contradictory but tend to cluster around a few accusations.

Before getting into that, here’s a little groundwork.

I am commenting on the basis that:

1). One need not agree with someone on everything in order to agree that they have the right to express their opinions.
2). Free expression is a fundamental human right.
3). Truth matters.
4). Private or public, groups, organisations and events should be held accountable for the things that they do when they are unfair or unethical.

I am also commenting on the basis that:

Conventions are part of the lifeblood of the nerd communities. A chance to get together, share concerns and ideas and to argue on important (YMMV) viewpoints from which D&D edition is best to the representation of female characters or those of racial minorities.

That genuine diversity includes a variety of different opinions and that discussion, dissent and argumentation is ultimately the crucible in which good ideas are tested and emerge, improved.

The Accusations

1. The Honey Badger Brigade Disrupted a Panel

You can see (hear) for yourself here that they did not. They politely – even asking if they could speak – dissented from the majority opinion that was present. That’s it. This cannot be a meaningful definition of harassment or disruption.

2. The Honey Badger Brigade Lied and Misrepresented on their Application

As well as being a Honey Badger, Alison is also the creator/owner of her own comic series and artwork. Her comic is Xenospora and I recommend checking it out as it is interesting work.

The purpose of the stall was primarily to sell and promote Alison’s work, but also as a home base for the Honey Badgers who were also helping and supporting her presence there, as well as being present to participate in panels and to hold the banner for Gamergate and Men’s Human Rights.

There is nothing wrong in any of this.

The Badgers have also been up front, obvious and hardly ‘stealthy’ about their intentions or fundraising either and there’s little doubt that someone will have contacted the expo before they even attended to ‘warn’ that they were going to be there, yet they were allowed to book and their money was taken – now effectively stolen.

You can review the openness of the Honey Badger’s efforts at their site, it’s al archived. Here’s the link.

Their passes were even issued under the Honey Badger Brigade name, so there was no duplicity or secrecy involved here.

At the 34 minute mark in the video in this link (not below) there’s details from the show programme and other material that show they weren’t sneaking.

Screenshot from 2015-04-19 12:30:58

3. They were harassing people.

Not having attended I can’t say whether this is true or not, but the accusations seem linked to the panel non-incident and so this can be considered to be covered under 1. 20+ reports of harassment seems unrealistic and to be brigading.

4. They were selling rape-joke merchandise.

This does’t appear to be true, I don’t think even the meta-rape-joke of Mr Tentacles was present. It appears to be an oblique reference to a particularly uncharitable interpretation of the Vivian James colours of green and purple. You have to be in the know and of a particular mindset to see this as being a rape joke in any way. More information on that can be found HERE.

Comment

When you describe your convention as a safe, diverse and equal space but then censor a group whose main reason to be there is to fight censorship and to present more diverse and little-aired opinions, you expose yourself to ridicule and considerable bad publicity. At the very least I would hope a mistake is admitted, Alison’s lifetime ban from all expo events is removed and that the Badgers get their fees back.

Even if you opose their politics and opinions, I think that any genuine, honest person can see that an injustice has occurred here, though it does serve to underline increasingly widespread problems with convention policies.

If you doubt the sincerity of Alison and the others, tell me that again after watching this.

There is a lot of disinformation going around about what happened and if you see more rumours, excuses or relevant info, please inform me in the comments or via Twitter (@grimachu) and I will attempt to cover it with accurate and sourced information, as above.

‘Choobing More – What should I talk about?

YouTube-logo-full_colorI’ve been Youtubing a lot more lately (linky) but I need things to talk about.

So tell me what you’d like me to talk about. What things in my ‘process’ should I talk about? What games would you like to hear me talk about or describe or ‘sell’ to you?

Let me know!

#RPG Kagai! – Guro, Gore, Girls – RELEASED

Get it HERE in PDF form.

Kagai! is set after a supernatural apocalypse has swept the world. The players are part of the surviving members of humanity who are trying to fight back but, while all the men and boys are sent off the war the young women are left hiding in the Shimizu Arcology with the politicians, the war-wounded and others with an excuse not to fight.

They’re not content not to fight though, and may young women form vigilante gangs to hunt  the monsters in their midst.

Kagai! uses an innovative dicepool system that encourages real group tactics and cooperation to take down powerful enemies and encourages descriptive gore and intra-party drama.

Inspired by Japanese schlock-horror such as Tokyo Gore Police and Lust of the Dead, Kagai! should provide a great deal of fun for those who enjoy gross-out stupidity and high octane violence.

#RPG – Veteran Artist Brad McDevitt Seeking Work

144999Since the early days of Postmortem Studios I’ve worked alongside Brad McDevitt, a veteran RPG industry artist, selling stock art for him and giving him plenty of work on my projects.

Brad has recently gone back full-time as an artist and is looking for more work while he makes the transition.

I cannot recommend Brad enough as an artist. In an industry of flakes and broken promises Brad is consistent and reliable to a fault, talented and willing and able to turn his hand to virtually any project, without charging the Earth for his work – though he’d be worth more.

Our working relationship has lasted almost ten years and I count Brad as a good friend, as well as an inspiration in the art of the graft.

142682If you need a good, reliable artist for a project Brad is absolutely your man and he’d be great for related work on items such as visual novels, short story covers and others.

Check him out at http://www.bradleykmcdevitt.net/

#RPG PROJECT IS SAVIOUR – RELEASED!

PROJECT_Front Cover

Get it HERE

PROJECT is a role-playing game about heroic guardians of reality.

After a terrible, supernatural disaster the world has been rent asunder and strange things have begun to bleed in all around the edges.

Humanity has recovered to an extent and continues to fight these beings and forces from beyond known as ‘Entities’.

The group PROJECT is at the forefront of humanity’s defence, using the strange technologies and abilities of the Entities against them and reasserting reality one bloody fight at a time.

In the game you will take the role of one of the heroic agents of PROJECT, modified
through barely understood technology and thrown against the strange and deadly beings and events that press in on the Earth from its neighbouring dimensions and parallels. In the process you may begin to discover things that you wish you didn’t know and that the battle for reality is not as black and white as you have
been indoctrinated to think.

With stunning art by Toby Gregory and a customised version of the Open D6 system, PROJECT is a great game for mission-based play and conspiracy arcs.
PROJECT IS SAVIOUR


PROJECT uses the Open D6 system and can be customised to play at street, investigative, conspiracy or action levels.

A print version will come later, sold and distributed via Chronicle City.

#RPG – Zelart Scholarship winner for 2014!

Here is the winner of the 2014 Darkzel Scholarship.

His name is Josh Martin and more of his work can be found on his DeviantArt page.

You can buy this piece on RPGNOW and the money from it – and everything else in the ZelArt category, will go to supporting the scholarship next year. Thank you to the backers on IndieGoGo for helping boost the fund this year!

Buy it HERE.

#Gor – Update and Sketches

Since it has been so long since the last update, have some sketches of art.

We are a bit behind due to my illness and a couple of other factors, but I’m working hard to try and make sure the slippage doesn’t go too far.

shark-miner_sketch01

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