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Alexis Kennedy hit w/ multiple #MeToo allegations Messages in this topic - RSS

Diptych
Diptych
Administrator
Posts: 3427

9/16/2019
I've noticed in the past that, when criticised, Alexis will portray himself as a lovable duffer who could never knowingly do wrong, while exaggerating the criticisms until they're made ridiculous and churlish, and he seems beneficent for even hearing them out.

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Emain Ablach
Emain Ablach
Posts: 341

9/16/2019
I find Lottie's post very interesting.

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Helen Demeter
Helen Demeter
Posts: 100

9/16/2019
Emain Ablach wrote:
I find Lottie's post very interesting.



For those who are curious: The aforementioned post of Lottie. (And, yes, it's still titled 'Blood Sport: Call-Out Culture from the Other Side.')

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Passionario
Passionario
Posts: 776

9/16/2019
My position remains the same: the responsibility for all the damage caused (to survivors, to Weather Factory, to Lottie and to AK) lies with Alexis Kennedy and no one else.

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Catherine Raymond
Catherine Raymond
Posts: 2372

9/16/2019
Diptych wrote:
I've noticed in the past that, when criticised, Alexis will portray himself as a lovable duffer who could never knowingly do wrong, while exaggerating the criticisms until they're made ridiculous and churlish, and he seems beneficent for even hearing them out.


But on the other hand, Alexis has not been accused by anyone of rape. The allegations of his misbehavior are of an entirely different kind. And Lottie makes a point toward the end of her post that I think needs to be discussed, not just here, but in general by anyone who wants "me too" to make lasting and useful changes in our culture:

"Does it want abusive men to just disappear? If so, where do they go once they’re outed? It doesn’t feel terribly feminist to say we’re cool with abusive people leaving games and going to work in other industries, preying on the women there. So does call-out culture want men to never work again? In which case, are we cool with that economic shock affecting their spouses and children? Do we want them to starve? Do we want them to live on the street? Do we want them to actually die? For all the noise it makes at the start, call-out culture is strangely silent at the end."

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Drake Dynamo
Drake Dynamo
Posts: 500

9/16/2019
I appreciate hearing from both Alexis and Lottie, and I think the most important point either of them make is this: if Alexis really was an abuser, why did no one ever reach out to Lottie?
In her words:
"But the allegations leveled at Alexis are from 2015, when he was CEO of Failbetter Games. I was the most junior woman at the studio then, one year into games and working side by side with the people who’ve recently come out against him. When I was just starting to date him, that information would have been useful. When I moved in with him, that information would have been useful. When I left Failbetter to co-found a studio with him, that information would have been useful. In this instance, I have been the one woman in the direct firing line of a so-called abuser for nearly five years. I have never heard a single thing about him, but apparently, hundreds of other people have. If whisper networks are so ineffective that they can’t warn the one person most likely to be harmed, they aren’t a viable system of protection."

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Oh no. Another post from that goon who goes on about statistics.

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phryne
phryne
Posts: 1256

9/16/2019
(Really just ordering my thoughts here while writing this down...)

Of course whisper networks aren't a very viable way of protection for everyone. They do work for some people, but their usefulness is always limited. I don't think that's a very important point. There are many others, in both posts.

And of course this was never about rape. Cathyr19355 pointed out on the first page of this thread that the term "predator" was at least a tad too strong. All the accusations leveled at AK basically came down to this: A) that he is a "creep" who regularly makes women around him feel extremely uncomfortable. The most serious accusation B) was that he was not only fully aware of this, but actively working to silence people about this issue.

It would certainly be interesting to learn who ran the original "IndustryAbuse" twitter account who started spreading the accusations about AK and others, but I guess there's not much hope here. In any way, it was these tweets that sparked Meg Jayanth's tweets, which in turn were, almost immediately, backed up by a number of people, culminating even in an official FB statement that these accusations were quite credible.

I still find these accusations A) very credible. Do not forget that it was a games journalist, Leigh Alexander, who was among the first to make the "open secret everyone knew about for years" statement. As a journalist, she has to be really, really careful with statements like that. If her claim was proven to be false, it could be her career in tatters. And FB, too, are putting their company's name on the line by making such a clear statement. They could've been a lot foggier in their wording. When I look at the motivations of all these people who made these very clear statements, I can't see them backing up unfounded claims simply out of revenge, the heat of the moment, or whatever. All of them have too much to lose themselves.

I was never sure about part B) and must say that AK's defense about that part sounds credible, too. Otherwise, we would have to imagine him as a James-Bond-villain-like devilish mastermind - rather unlikely.

In the end, it boils (and always boiled) down to this: AK acted "creepy" towards an undefined number of women. Whether he did this "habitually" we do not know. He himself is probably in complete denial about it. (I don't think I need to point out how totally, depressingly common this sort of thing is.)

Is that a problem? Sure.

Should that ruin his career? Probably not. His life? Definitely not.

Is it understandable that the emotions of the accusers boiled over when it seemed that something which they had suppressed for so long was finally being talked about? Absolutely.

Does that mean that online call-outs are generally great and totally unproblematic? Absolutely not.

Do you have a better idea? Tell me about it.


The baseline is that both Lottie's and AK's statements contain a lot of important truths, without actually refuting the accusations A) (even though they probably believe they do). As is not unusual, everyone is speaking the truth on some level. Undoubtedly, this whole thing is incredibly hurtful to everyone involved. Undoubtedly, we - bystanders and third parties - should all back up a step. Unless more, especially more dreadful, things come to light, I consider this file closed.

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Jolanda Swan
Jolanda Swan
Posts: 1595

9/16/2019
This was a great read, Phryne.

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Diptych
Diptych
Administrator
Posts: 3427

9/16/2019
Personally, I found Lottie's post rather offensive - including the suggestion that Alec Holowka's victims bore moral responsibility for his death, particularly after it was revealed that he had used the threat of suicide to further isolate and traumatise them.


Catherine Raymond wrote:
Do we want them to starve? Do we want them to live on the street? Do we want them to actually die? For all the noise it makes at the start, call-out culture is strangely silent at the end."



There is middle ground between being an acclaimed indie CEO and dying in poverty. For instance, he could continue to work, but not in a position in which he can use his power and status to abuse others.

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Sir Frederick, the Libertarian Esotericist. Lord Hubris, the Bloody Baron.
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Jolanda Swan
Jolanda Swan
Posts: 1595

9/17/2019
Just an aside: I doubt that not warning someone else should be held against you, or should be used to belittle your claim. People who have been abused do not rush to disclose it, they even rationalize it away sometimes. And yes, they often feel guilt about that - so I didn't like the insinuation that the claimants were either liars or bad victims for not warning another.

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Waterpls
Waterpls
Posts: 256

9/17/2019
Sorry for my english.
I am mostly worried that general public do not care about proofs. At all. There are many accusations. And zero proofs. And it not like Victorian Era, today some of our actions leave digital trail, every conversation can be easily recorded with minimal preparations from "victim's" side.
It seems that some people think that numbers can decide what is true. Yes, many people added their voice. Yes, FBG's statement is quite clear. But what proofs they have revealed? It's not the democratic procedure, where majority should decide what is right, we are talking about facts and i dont see solid evidence from accusors. And how can you clear your name? You cant disproof what is not proven. And should not (presumption of innocence)

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Diptych
Diptych
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Posts: 3427

9/17/2019
If the general public were a court, with the power to pass sentence, it would be necessary for them to see all the evidence. But, they are not. Some details of the events described might be private, and remain private, and you'll just have to be OK with that, because no-one has any responsibility to share them with you.

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Catherine Raymond
Catherine Raymond
Posts: 2372

9/17/2019
Diptych wrote:


There is middle ground between being an acclaimed indie CEO and dying in poverty. For instance, he could continue to work, but not in a position in which he can use his power and status to abuse others.


Agreed. It's the middle ground that we all, as a civil society, need to find. I'm glad to see that need being acknowledged in this thread.

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Cathy Raymond
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Catherine Raymond aka Mrs. Rykar Malkus http://fallenlondon.storynexus.com/Profile/Catherine%20Raymond (Gone NORTH)
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Waterpls
Waterpls
Posts: 256

9/17/2019
@Diptych general public have enough power to ruin reputation, career and business. That power should not be used on "i belive even without proofs" basis.

As far as i know some members of Weather Factory left, some volunteers left, kickstarter campaign for new game is stopped (and probably would be stillborn if started).
edited by Waterpls on 9/17/2019

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Diptych
Diptych
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Posts: 3427

9/17/2019
That's not "the general public" acting as a single unit - that's several individual people becoming aware of information and choosing to act on that information according to their own interests and inclinations. I'm not saying it's a perfect system, but that's more or less how business has operated since time immemorial.

What's the alternative? Either we punish victims for speaking out even more than we already do (and the UK has some of the most punitive libel laws in the world), which would give abusers even greater license to abuse, or we forbid businesses from choosing who they want to work with and consumers from choosing what they want to purchase, which sounds, well, costly to enforce, at the very least.
edited by Diptych on 9/17/2019

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Juniper Brown, the Ill-Fated Orphan. Esther Ellis-Hall, the Fashionable Fabian.
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Waterpls
Waterpls
Posts: 256

9/17/2019
>>>What's the alternative?

Of course, i am not a specialist, but i see two ways. Court and / or private investigation within the company. Both are practiced for a long time with various rate of success.

>>>that's several individual people becoming aware of information and choosing to act on that information according to their own interests and inclinations

Good point. If so, its totally compatible with two proposed ways.

Social networks should not be used in such cases at all, or at least until court / investigators have final decision.

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Diptych
Diptych
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9/17/2019
Court is only an option if the misdeeds involved are specifically criminal as well as unprofessional and unethical, which isn't always the case. An internal investigation relies on the perpetrator and their victim/s all working within the same company, and B: the company putting the needs of the victim/s and the public good ahead of their own commercial interests. After all, whatever their findings, it's often the most economical option to keep the facts secret.

--
Sir Frederick, the Libertarian Esotericist. Lord Hubris, the Bloody Baron.
Juniper Brown, the Ill-Fated Orphan. Esther Ellis-Hall, the Fashionable Fabian.
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Waterpls
Waterpls
Posts: 256

9/17/2019
Yes, but this is still better than online shaming, where most do not have access to the facts and proofs and act mostly on emotion, fashion of the season, or some sort of solidarity. What about Blackstone's ratio? It's hard to belive for me that twitter people concerned about false positives as much as they should.
edited by Waterpls on 9/17/2019

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Diptych
Diptych
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9/17/2019
Again, that's a principle relating to a court of law, that cannot be practically applied here. (I have other objections to it - that it only measures the suffering caused by wrongful convictions, allowing the powerful to wash their hands of the social ills caused indirectly by their laws and policies, but that's neither here nor there.)

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Sir Frederick, the Libertarian Esotericist. Lord Hubris, the Bloody Baron.
Juniper Brown, the Ill-Fated Orphan. Esther Ellis-Hall, the Fashionable Fabian.
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Drake Dynamo
Drake Dynamo
Posts: 500

9/17/2019
I am not a fan of the mindset that is propagated by callout culture. When people are abandoning a creator en masse because of claims on social media- ones unsubstantiated by any sort of proof, beyond "oh yes, I heard these things too"- that is a major problem. The public pillorying of Alexis on little-more than hearsay is abominable, and you Diptych continue to make up excuses for this mob.

"Why was no evidence provided" "no one has any responsibility to share them with you" Really? When someone makes a public accusation about a person, they do have a responsibility. I fancy myself someone who waits for concrete evidence before I believe a serious claim, clearly you are not that sort of person, Diptych.


"Why didn't they take other avenues to deal with these matters" "Court was not an option, and neither was an internal investigation" Ah, so clearly firing off a series of tweets and inciting an angry mob is the best way to handle this! Let us not forget that this wave of accusations in the game industry was started by Zoe Quinn, a notorious liar and something of a huckster (a kickstarter project that was never completed, and no refunds, comes to mind). It's no wonder these grievances against Alexis were aired in such a public way- the momentum of the games journalism industry was behind it, and there's no better way to win online brownie points than from fellow concerned "listen-and-believers."

And finally, Lottie's post was offensive? Was she wrong when she said public humiliation drives people suicide? Whether you like it or not, Alec Holowka's accusers, in handling the situation the way they did, do bear a degree of moral responsibility for what happened to him. Instead of going to the police, or a PI, or some sort of private arbitrator, or even a law suit, they chose the route which would cause the most damage in the shortest amount of time. Nothing destroys people's lives like getting twitter upset with you.

This sort of discourse, bringing people down in the public sphere so they can't work/lose their business & employees, is harmful to society. No one is ever safe, all it takes is one person to start a rumor, and then some time later 'come forward' with an accusation, and your life is ruined. Why anyone would ever condone that sort of behavior, single-mindedly believing everything you hear and then attacking someone because of it, it is beyond me.

--
Oh no. Another post from that goon who goes on about statistics.

Drake Dynamo -Correspondent, Hesperidean Cider Drinker , Matchmaker, and Paramount Presence
The Antioch - The Coffee God (I do not check this account often)
Mr. Mauvais - A ghostly skullduggerous fellow, chopped up for the time being (Only active during seasonal events)

Guide to becoming a Poet-Laureate
If you need to discuss RP matters, I can typically be found on the IRC in #Argo.
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