Yes, it’s this story again. You know, the one where Nintendo fired one of their PR people for holding a second job and saying legally questionable things on Twitter? The one where GamerGate and Torrential Downpour got blamed despite having nothing to do with the issue?
Well apparently, the International Game Developers Association doesn’t like their actions. In a statement to Nintendo about Rapp’s firing, they said that:
While Nintendo’s official statement on the matter of Alison Rapp’s firing strives to distance the company from anything related to the orchestrated online campaign of harassment and defamation that was raging against her, their timing in dealing with the issue is dubious at best. Unfortunately, the company seems oblivious to the consequences of their actions, not realizing the perceived victory it handed to the online hate groups who are now pursuing the dismissal of other women game developers by derision and defamation to their companies. By now, we would expect that all game development and publishing companies would be fully aware of negative social media dynamics and be more discerning of online feedback, as well as more protective of their employees — especially their employees of diverse backgrounds. Many have become proactive and aware but this industry obviously needs to make more progress.
Which, no offence, is a bit much for an organisation whose shown exactly the same behaviour in their own social media actions. Remember, the IDGA were one of the people who encouraged their members to use a Twitter blocklist to ‘get rid of anyone associated with GamerGate’, based purely on them following a few controversial people on the service. The person referenced was an indie game developer who found themselves unable to talk to their friends on Twitter because they were labelled for ‘wrongthink’.
They then claimed this wasn’t a blocklist, despite labelling it ‘a list of the internet’s worst harassers’, a questionable claim at best. So perhaps trying to hold the ‘moral’ ground isn’t the best decision here.
That aside, it’s also a bit silly because let’s face it, this was always going to happen. Posting thoughts on the age of consent on a social media account associated with a company like Nintendo? What did you expect would happen? Disney or other such companies would have done the same thing.
Add how it’s pretty clear said individual has nothing to do with localisation, that GamerGate wasn’t really behind any of this and that a significant amount of the gaming media (especially Nintendo sites) disliked said individual because of her recent claims, and you’ve got exactly the situation that’s bad for a company’s PR team and their job functioning.
But what do you think?