Crash Override: How GamerGate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate

Zoë Quinn. PublicAffairs, $26 (256p) ISBN 978-1-61039-808-4
In 2014, indie game developer Quinn became the target of death threats, hate mail, and other online abuse after an internet vendetta devised by her abusive ex-boyfriend spiraled into a harassment campaign that came to be known as Gamergate, in which several women in the video game industry become the targets of largescale, coordinated online abuse. Quinn uses her personal experiences to advocate practical steps toward creating a safe and open internet culture. She rejects tired advice such as “don’t feed the trolls” and “just go offline,” instead advising social media users to secure passwords and to keep active records of any incidents of abuse and contact law enforcement. She calls on readers to resist the temptation toward vigilante justice. Instead of using the same tactics as the internet trolls, which just feeds the online outrage culture, Quinn encourages readers to focus their efforts on restorative justice by seeking out perspectives of people—particularly voices of trans women and women of color who are often targets of online abuse. For Quinn, winning the “cultural battle for the web” starts with reframing the issue as not a matter of good vs. bad people fueling hate culture on the internet, but rather “acceptable and unacceptable ways to treat each other.” It’s a remarkably clear-eyed view that’s all the more powerful in light of Quinn’s backstory. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/24/2017
Release date: 09/05/2017
Hardcover - 288 pages - 978-1-5011-3537-8
Paperback - 978-1-5011-5389-1
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-1-61039-809-1
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