I’m not going to spend a lot of time on this today, because I said my piece where it needed to be said and am otherwise trying my level best to stay out of something that (as far as I’m concerned) has nothing to do with me, But since the usual suspects are looking to make that impossible, I need to nip this part in the bud right now.
So. A few days ago a fellow film critic I’d been casually associated with on social media was accused of sexual assault and stepped down from his post. Subsequently, I posted a chained string of entries to Twitter (you can read them here) in which I stated that, one year ago, I was told disturbing things second-hand about this person from someone I love whom I should have believed… and did not. I went on to apologize for this, and referred to my actions as having made me “complicit in a status-quo of abuse and silence.” To be additionally clear about this (which I did not initially want to do because it feels vaguely like minimizing and centering myself): The information that I had been told about was not the sexual assault accusation.
I subsequently was informed that OneAngryGamer.net – a website affiliated with the so-called “GamerGate” movement (which has been celebrating the critic in question’s fall from grace because he had been a vocal critic of said movement, as have I) – had posted a “news” item about what I’d said which refers what I said in part as “MovieBob Chipman Admits Complicit Cover-Up…” The full article can be viewed HERE. Below is a screengrab, wherein the highlighted portion is shown to be a mischaracterization of the actual quotes they post below:
Now, as should be obvious to anyone who can actually read, “complicit in a status-quo of abuse and silence” (i.e. not believing makes me part of the bigger problem that people don’t listen in these cases – both this one specifically and more broadly) is in no way that same thing as “admitting” to complicity in a “cover-up;” as that implies not only direct knowledge (which I didn’t have) and direct action (which I did not take.)
So, suffice it to say, the piece is a grotesque mischaracterization of what I said that (at least from my perspective) could indeed be seen as rising to the level of libel. While I don’t expect that anyone whose opinion I’d care about will put any stock in a random GG-affiliated site, for posterity I’ve asked that it be taken down and I wanted to have this post up clarifying everything.
Now, can we please place the focus of this very serious matter back where it should be (on abuse-survivors and the need to treat them and their claims properly), rather than co-opting it to score cheap points against tangentially-related people and entities? Because that’d be great.