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Author Topic: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game  (Read 20502 times)

Trar

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You're probably aware that TotalBiscuit is one of the names that can be automatically used if you don't enter a name for your character. I'm not aware as to why; although I seem to remember him doing a video or two on the game, I can't find said video(s).

I think his name should be removed from the automatic name list for the reasons outlined in this Gamasutra blog by David Gallant. Basically, he's aiding and profiting off of sexist harassment in gaming and is actively promoting regressive, abusive viewpoints. It's for this reason that I hate to think his name is in DoomRL.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2015, 14:44 by Trar »
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thelaptop

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I don't think this is up for discussion though.  It's a decision that only Kornel can make -- it's his game after all.

I am less concerned about the politics behind and more concerned about gameplay, which of course OP's request doesn't really affect.  In other words, I personally don't care much if the name is in or out, but to formally take it out will be up to Kornel's call, since it is a political thing and he probably needs to weigh in more on that than I.

Of course one of the ramifications from this is that it sets a precedent where we start lopping stuff off of DoomRL (or any ChaosForge game for that matter) when things we put in start to offend people (e.g. Carmack did something and many people don't like it -- does it mean we have to remove him as The Final Boss?; or the whole Hellish imagery present with DoomRL -- must we change them to something else?).  I am not sure if that's a healthy outcome to have.
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Malek Deneith

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I'll admit that I only briefly skimmed over the article, but at what I got from the glance it looks to me as Internet Drama 101. Maybe there is something to that, maybe there isn't, but I feel that trying to determine if there is substance enough to claims in the post, would require more effort that a sane man should put towards shit like that.
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Trar

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I don't think this is up for discussion though.  It's a decision that only Kornel can make -- it's his game after all.

I am less concerned about the politics behind and more concerned about gameplay, which of course OP's request doesn't really affect.  In other words, I personally don't care much if the name is in or out, but to formally take it out will be up to Kornel's call, since it is a political thing and he probably needs to weigh in more on that than I.

Of course one of the ramifications from this is that it sets a precedent where we start lopping stuff off of DoomRL (or any ChaosForge game for that matter) when things we put in start to offend people (e.g. Carmack did something and many people don't like it -- does it mean we have to remove him as The Final Boss?; or the whole Hellish imagery present with DoomRL -- must we change them to something else?).  I am not sure if that's a healthy outcome to have.

I'm less worried about 'setting bad precedent' and more with the fact that TB has demonstrably proved himself to be toxic. The chances that John Carmack will start acting the same are practically zero, and removing one name from a list will have much less of an effect than removing every trace of Hell from the game. Even if Carmack did start acting this way, he's still one of the creators of Doom. That would be enough to justify him remaining in the game. Regardless, you're right in that it is Kornel's decision.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I'll admit that I only briefly skimmed over the article, but at what I got from the glance it looks to me as Internet Drama 101. Maybe there is something to that, maybe there isn't, but I feel that trying to determine if there is substance enough to claims in the post, would require more effort that a sane man should put towards shit like that.

I'm pretty sure these things are both relatively easy to discern from his public social media and videos, and important enough to do so if you have millions of people reading, watching and absorbing his viewpoints.
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Malek Deneith

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Thing is you claim TB is "toxic". You use the article linked as proof, but... it's one point of view. Throwing the thing into google you can get other, dissenting points like here for example (just a random one that came up). There are probably more sites that would support your claim, and more that would go against it. The point is that unless you're willing to dig deep down to the root of the goddamn thing - which would mean finding the original posts, videos and what not (which would probably mean also learning about the whole GamerGate SNAFU that thankfully blown over the parts of internet I frequent), the only way to decide on whom you trust is to flip a fucking coin.

Also, that aside let me tell you a small story, a comparison of sorts that came to my mind when mulling over the situation during the day. Here in Poland is a man called Jurek Owsiak. That man is known for one thing: every year for 23 years now he throws a big fucking charity event, one which gathers millions, usually despite the influential people in the country shitting on him, which then are spent on buying much needed medical equipment for hospitals through the country. There is also another man, Piotr Ikonowicz. He's a politician, but unlike most of that lot he doesn't keep his head stuck up his own ass and instead of growing fat of off people's taxes he prefers to spend his time running an office dedicated to people in need. So essentially two great chaps, right?
Well this year somewhere during or after the event he runs Owsiak spoke some rather stupid stuff on what should be done with how polish medicine functions. In reaction to that Iknowicz, in a column he runs in a newspaper I read, started to throw mud at Owsiak, all while beating his chest like a primate over how what he does for people is better.
So what should I do then? One could say both of these gentelmen went "toxic" so should I scoff and disavov them? Refuse to support Owsiak's charity event, ignore Iknowicz even though he's one of few politicians that seem to care about people?
I say no. And you know why? Because, at the end of the day both of these men are just human. And that means that they're prone to having faults, and no matter what they do they might have some stupid opinions too. But at the end of the day, what they do is worth more good than their occassional fuck-up does evil.

"But Malek", I hear you say, "surely you can't compare making video game reviews to helping hospitals and people in general". Well true, what TB does is nowhere near that. But even so he does provide a valuable service: in this day where developers forgot what a demo is, where so called game journalism seems largely riding the hype train, TB is a surprisingly solid source of information on new releases. Each one he reviews is given a fair amount of time, with as much relevant information provided as his first-impressions format allows. He isn't afraid to rip a bad product or company a new one. And he tends to bring up good indie titles a lot, and they need all the press they can get, to not be drowned out by AAA companies with their megabucks advertising. And that, in my opinion has value. That is good. We gamers need stuff like that to make educated decisions on what to buy or not to buy. And in my opinion that's enough to overlook the occassional fuck up, assuming what the originally linked blog says is true. Because John Bain, as influential he might be, is still human and thus allowed to make errors, including errors of judgment.

And frankly fuck it, when I go to view one of his vids I'm interested in the title he's reviewing, not in what his opinions on subject X is. On anything else I can make my mind up on my own.

That's my $0.02 on the subject, please excuse if it's difficult to read - tends to happen when I start writing a longer post.
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Tavana

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That's my $0.02 on the subject, please excuse if it's difficult to read - tends to happen when I start writing a longer post.

All the blood in your alcohol system probably doesn't help, either.
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Malek Deneith

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All the blood in your alcohol system probably doesn't help, either.
To put it in Discworld terms I'm probably at least half a drink below par.
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thelaptop

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To put it in Discworld terms I'm probably at least half a drink below par.
Wait, why are you drinking blood again?
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Trar

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Thing is you claim TB is "toxic". You use the article linked as proof, but... it's one point of view. Throwing the thing into google you can get other, dissenting points like here for example (just a random one that came up). There are probably more sites that would support your claim, and more that would go against it. The point is that unless you're willing to dig deep down to the root of the goddamn thing - which would mean finding the original posts, videos and what not (which would probably mean also learning about the whole GamerGate SNAFU that thankfully blown over the parts of internet I frequent), the only way to decide on whom you trust is to flip a fucking coin.

That website pretty clearly supports GamerGate, and its existence doesn't mean there's moral or especially numerical equivalency to both sides of the issue. As for what GamerGate is, you can read this for the origin, & this, this and this for good measure for the 'root of the thing' investigation. That last link by the way contains disturbing (not explicit, but quite disturbing) evidence of one of the home bases of GamerGate being a child pornography site.

Also, that aside let me tell you a small story, a comparison of sorts that came to my mind when mulling over the situation during the day. Here in Poland is a man called Jurek Owsiak. That man is known for one thing: every year for 23 years now he throws a big fucking charity event, one which gathers millions, usually despite the influential people in the country shitting on him, which then are spent on buying much needed medical equipment for hospitals through the country. There is also another man, Piotr Ikonowicz. He's a politician, but unlike most of that lot he doesn't keep his head stuck up his own ass and instead of growing fat of off people's taxes he prefers to spend his time running an office dedicated to people in need. So essentially two great chaps, right?
Well this year somewhere during or after the event he runs Owsiak spoke some rather stupid stuff on what should be done with how polish medicine functions. In reaction to that Iknowicz, in a column he runs in a newspaper I read, started to throw mud at Owsiak, all while beating his chest like a primate over how what he does for people is better.
So what should I do then? One could say both of these gentelmen went "toxic" so should I scoff and disavov them? Refuse to support Owsiak's charity event, ignore Iknowicz even though he's one of few politicians that seem to care about people?
I say no. And you know why? Because, at the end of the day both of these men are just human. And that means that they're prone to having faults, and no matter what they do they might have some stupid opinions too. But at the end of the day, what they do is worth more good than their occassional fuck-up does evil.

Two otherwise decent politicians having a row isn't exactly the same as a person being consistently undecent. Maybe TB was alright in the past, but the fact is that he's decidedly much less so now.

"But Malek", I hear you say, "surely you can't compare making video game reviews to helping hospitals and people in general". Well true, what TB does is nowhere near that. But even so he does provide a valuable service: in this day where developers forgot what a demo is, where so called game journalism seems largely riding the hype train, TB is a surprisingly solid source of information on new releases. Each one he reviews is given a fair amount of time, with as much relevant information provided as his first-impressions format allows. He isn't afraid to rip a bad product or company a new one. And he tends to bring up good indie titles a lot, and they need all the press they can get, to not be drowned out by AAA companies with their megabucks advertising. And that, in my opinion has value. That is good. We gamers need stuff like that to make educated decisions on what to buy or not to buy. And in my opinion that's enough to overlook the occassional fuck up, assuming what the originally linked blog says is true. Because John Bain, as influential he might be, is still human and thus allowed to make errors, including errors of judgment.

I agree, gaming journalism needs some better work being done. I'm fine with the concept of him looking at various games and giving his honest opinion. But I would classify the bad things he's done as more than an occasional screw-up. Mind you, the list in my link was of actions he did within the past five or so months alone, and it seems to indicate that he's, again, actively supporting and courting GamerGate because it's turning out good for him and because he seems to agree with it enough to do so. If you're thinking that isn't so bad, please read the pages I linked to at the beginning of this post. I'm giving them to you in good faith so that you can see for yourself that others have done the muckraking, the investigating, and you can indeed easily see what they're up to and make up your mind about it.

And if there's a majority of articles, opinions and evidence against GamerGate containing things such as sustained harassment of women and defense of child pornography, that might just be an indication of problems with GamerGate. Or that GamerGate is just made up entirely of problems, but I digress.

And frankly fuck it, when I go to view one of his vids I'm interested in the title he's reviewing, not in what his opinions on subject X is. On anything else I can make my mind up on my own.

That's fair enough, but consider that his opinions might influence what you see of the title, and what he might do regarding that title. To say nothing of what others take away from listening to his opinion, or what he does at a wider level.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 19:57 by Trar »
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Alright, that's enough from both of you.  I did warn that this request is not up for discussion.  Kornel will decide what to do about the request.

I'm locking this thread for now.

As for the debate on the nature of TotalBiscuit vis a vis gaming journalism and what-not, take it to the Off-Topic board.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 20:14 by thelaptop »
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Kornel Kisielewicz

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Re: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2015, 00:37 »

Moved to off-topic on thelaptop's request.
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Re: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2015, 03:50 »

You do realize that TotalBiscuit being pro-GG automatically means that he will be shitted on by the contra-GG side, right?

And that this article is doing exactly that.

I would also very much like to see where he profits off sexual harassment, that certainly sounds quite interesting.
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Re: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2015, 12:38 »

Hey Trar, I didn't realize that you're so interested in social justice issues.  I think that's kinda cool.  Keep fighting the good fight.  :)

As for the issue, the other question is, "would anyone even be bothered if we got rid of the name, Total Biscuit?"  It seems like it would be a simple enough change and there are plenty of other names on the list.  (Disclaimer: this is coming from someone who never uses random names)
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Re: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2015, 13:24 »

I for one had no idea it was a real person, I just thought it was a easter egg type thing. Although replacing all the names to the format Big McLargeHuge like Mystery Science Theater 3000 would be good.
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Trar

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Re: I think the devs should remove TotalBiscuit's name from the game
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2015, 17:01 »

You do realize that TotalBiscuit being pro-GG automatically means that he will be shitted on by the contra-GG side, right?

And that this article is doing exactly that.

If all he did was say he supported GG, maybe it wouldn't be as much of an issue. But that article lists the many other, stronger pro-GG things he's done. That still doesn't mean both sides are somehow equal.

I would also very much like to see where he profits off sexual harassment, that certainly sounds quite interesting.

It's swelling his viewerbase with the GGers. He makes money off of his YouTube channel.

@emulord: I thought so too when I first saw the name.

@Tormuse: No prob. It wouldn't be hard at all I don't think, but it is still ultimately up to Kornel. I would be pleased if he did and I know that many others who play the game or who might play it in future will be pleased as well.
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