Posted By Robert G. about 2 months, 3 weeks ago
The internet is full of jerks, it seems.
A new indie game, titled Depression Quest, is currently attempting to make its way past Steam Greenlight. The title, is described as “an interactive fiction game where you play as someone living with depression.” Winner of several indie awards, including an Indiecade selection for 2013, Depression Quest looks like a unique shoe-in for Steam Greenlight to approve. There is a problem, however, and it stems from constant harassment that is falling upon on one of the developers of the title, Zoe Quinn.
Quinn is one of three developers who worked on Depression Quest, yet being the sole female of the group, is receiving all the harassment from another vocal minority on the internet. This time, the minority stems from the website Wizardchan, which is described as “A sanctuary for virgins who may be NEET or hikikomori to discuss their thoughts, interests, and lifestyles.”
Suffice to say, Wizardchan is a proverbial black hole for lonely men to be social on the internet anonymously, with many of them discussing their hatred or indifference for women because of their own self-proposed isolation. Naturally, a women like Quinn would not know anything about depression either, of course.
This is the second time that Quinn has been harassed for the game she co-developed, the last time ended with death threats and forcing Steam to take down Depression Quest for submission. Now, Quinn is lashing out on Twitter against her attackers, who have even tracked her phone number to send sexually explicit calls to her. “The fact that I can’t do something simple like put a game on Greenlight without shit like this happening while people say ‘oh it’s not REALLY sexist here…’ makes me sick with rage,” stated Quinn via Twitter.
This type of rampant abuse is often reported on within the gaming industry as of late, however this may be the first case where the abuse is strictly due to actual sexual discrimination. Those on Wizardchan have made it clear that their attacks on Quinn are due to her gender, and not politics or position like some others on the internet. Let me be clear: there is no real agenda here to push, other than rampant abuse “just because” is never justifiable in any form.
It would be easy to dismiss a group of lonely virgins who shout expletives from their dark corner of the internet, but sadly the abuse can strike at anyone in the end. Quinn sums this up rather succinctly, “I’m not alone in dealing with this shit, and neither should anyone else be,” she said on Twitter. “This is predictable. Unless we call this shit out & fight it when we can, this will continue to be the cost for me to stay in games.”
I couldn’t agree more.