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Interviews: Ask Brianna Wu a Question 727

Brianna Wu is the head of development at Giant Spacekat, a company specializing in cinematic experiences using the Unreal engine. She’s also a frequent speaker on women-in-tech issues and was one of several women subjected to a campaign of attacks in Gamergate. Wu has worked as a journalist and politico. She currently has a patreon campaign which helps to offset the costs of doing speaking engagements and work to further the goals of feminism and women in tech. Brianna has agreed to give us some of her time and answer any questions you may have. As usual, ask as many as you'd like, but please, one per post.
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Interviews: Ask Brianna Wu a Question

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  • College life (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    What was your college life like?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:44PM (#50110545)

      Dear Samzenpus, how to you justify click-bait crap like this when you have the discovery of new sub-atomic articles [] being announced? I know that this will probably get 500+ comments, but do you realize that you are driving away the really interesting people that will make slashdot sustainable in the long run?

      Nobody who matters cares about Brianna Wu or GamerGate. I come here to read opinions of people who matter. Do you care about readers like me?

      • Dear Samzenpus, how to you justify click-bait crap like this when you have the discovery of new sub-atomic articles [] being announced?

        I'm sure he'll soon be posting a sub-atomic article just for you.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        Slashdot is powered by your submissions. Instead of complaining, post the stories you want to discuss. It takes less than a minute to copy/paste some text and a link into the submission form.

        • by 0100010001010011 ( 652467 ) on Wednesday July 15, 2015 @11:03AM (#50116595)

          And then Dice will ignore them and shoehorn in what ever the most profitable agenda is at that time.

          Right now they're banking on SJWs being profitable. It's a short term solution that is going to alienate a lot of people, especially when the SJW house of cards comes down

          For those of you that want to know how Wu plays into this:

 did Brianna get involved anyway? All I remember is she just appeared one day making accusations and that whole house thing.

          She involved herself. No one knew about her until she tweeted some ridiculous crap, got called out on her bullshit and instantly cried harassment.

  • dome projectors? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by i.r.id10t ( 595143 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:27PM (#50109467)

    Are y'all doing anything aimed at dome projectors for a planetarium?

  • Questions: (Score:5, Insightful)

    by juanfgs ( 922455 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:30PM (#50109513)

    I never heard much about game developers, but it seems like GamerGate has put many of them in the spotlight, specially women.

    Has the Gamergate movement somehow boosted your popularity and of other game developers and benefited you in any way? Do you regret that a big part your popularity didn't stem from the work you've made all these years in your professional life and rather from a political counter-movement?

    Sorry for my lousy english.

  • Transgender voice? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:32PM (#50109529)

    You recently tweeted that no one who isn't transgender should voice opinions on transgender issues yet you regularly voice your own opinion on these issues. Is this a tacit "coming out" of your own transgender past, and if so, what does it mean for your own position as a representative and "megaphone" for women's issues and how you speak to the personal history of growing up as a woman?

  • by bistromath007 ( 1253428 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:38PM (#50109621)
    Are you ever going to stop criticizing other developers for having character design that is in fact less "hypersexualized" and "misogynistic" than yours is?
  • by Krishnoid ( 984597 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:46PM (#50109707) Journal

    On your Patreon, it says you're the Godzilla of Feminists. Do you have any concept/fan art of this? Because that would be incredibly awesome.

  • by Rick in China ( 2934527 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @01:46PM (#50109717)

    I'm interested in what development languages you excel in and how you mastered them - as head of development for a gaming company, I think that's my first question. Follow-up side-points would be when you transitioned from journalist to game developer, and why game development? Was it related to some of the 'sparks' and 'movements' by some other females 'in the gaming community' - and seen as an easy way to jump on a bandwagon that was clearly going to make waves? Journalist to developer just seems like a very strange transition to me, so I'm curious about the particulars.

    Do you have a github account where you publish some of your code?

  • Why did you pick the computer world to launch a career in journalism? You get around $3k a month from hapless dupes with a case of the feels, any tips for setting this up? What is your actual technical experiance with computers? On a scale from one to ten, how much of a sucker is the average person reading your 'journalism'?
  • Capital (Score:4, Interesting)

    by HellYeahAutomaton ( 815542 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:09PM (#50109999)

    How did you secure the capital to start Giant Spacekat? How did you do it in 3 months, and what obstacles did you face?

  • by Tokolosh ( 1256448 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:10PM (#50110027) []

    Serious question: How do women and minorities get selectively harassed online when it is usually impossible to know their gender or race?

    Blind auditions for orchestra positions are now standard. Can we not have the same for gaming and technology?

  • Easy to filter (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Imazalil ( 553163 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:15PM (#50110087)

    Well at least the mods will have an easy time filtering out the questions as the usual drivel is, unsurprisingly, posted by anon cowards.

    I don't have a question, but jesus christ people grow the fuck up.

  • article (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Is what a friend of yours says in this article [] true?

    But one of Wu's friends in the gaming industry has suggested that her story may be more complicated than she lets on--that as bad as the situation has been for Wu, she "wasn't dragged" into it. "She taunted Gamergate for weeks," this woman continued, who asked that her name be withheld. "She baited them, and then they finally came after her, which is exactly what she wanted them to do."

  • by Vanderhoth ( 1582661 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:41PM (#50110499)
    What are your feelings on creating memes to mock people you disagree with?

    Do you think someone running with a meme you might have created is harassment?

    Do you feel it's ok to make fun of autistic children to score political points?

    Good luck with the rest of the questions.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:42PM (#50110511)

    Brianna, you alleged that you are the the target of an online harassment campaign, and that law enforcement has done nothing about it [], and yet it has come to light that you never contacted the police [] in the first place.

    Would you explain why you made those allegations? Is there anything you wish to say in defense of your article?

  • An honest question (Score:5, Insightful)

    by 0xdeadbeef ( 28836 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @02:50PM (#50110623) Homepage Journal

    in light of your recent behavior on reddit that had you removed from a subreddit aligned with your own cause...

    Have you ever been diagnosed with a personality disorder, and if so, which one?

  • Don't you wish sometimes that a person's suitability for a particular field depended on their actual skill rather than where their genitals happen to be situated?

  • Game Design (Score:2, Interesting)

    by deltatype0 ( 843675 )

    I am a "neutral" in the Gamergate debacle, preferring to observe more than directly interact, but in one case I watched the somewhat-infamous interview between Wu and Reddit KotakuInAction mod TheHat2. In it, they discussed the points of her iOS game "Revolution 60" and game design in general. One of the questions asked there was why she decided to work with iOS first versus the popular PC platform Steam. I don't remember the exact answer, but I think it revolved around developing for a platform that more w

  • Don't you think it is disingenuous for anyone to:
    (1) Troll GamerGaters at the very beginning, when they were fighting for ethics in Games' Journalism.
    (2) Get b***h slapped by a torrent of angry gamers.
    (3) Cry on the roof-tops that you're being harassed by "men."
    (4) That "men" are scaring "women" from the industry (when you are a trans-woman btw).
    (5) Claim to have received death-threats and was too afraid to live in your own home but still gave copious number of interviews from it.
    (6) Eventually got ar
  • When are you going to admit the feminists lied about gamer gate and it wasn't a attack at all but a justified concern about corruption in gaming news?
  • egalitarian? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by johncandale ( 1430587 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @03:12PM (#50110923)
    Why are you a feminist instead of a egalitarian?
  • by evilRhino ( 638506 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @03:53PM (#50111277)
    one of the aspects of gamergate that really bothers me is the immediate dismissal of anyone that suggests corruption is a problem is just using it as a cover for misogyny. It has led to an attitude that corruption is only a problem among liberals. Do you think that corporate sponsored politicians undermining women's health is a bigger problem than depictions of women in art? And what would you propose could be done to disassociate arguments against corruption from gamergate?
    • by Yosho ( 135835 )

      It has led to an attitude that corruption is only a problem among liberals.

      I don't think that's true. GamerGate is not a partisan movement. Many of the people who are very vocally slandering it (such as Wu) are part of the authoritarian left side of the spectrum, and there are some people on the far right who have professed support for GG simply because "the enemy of my enemy is my friend", but GG itself targets corruption regardless of where it comes from.

  • I guess page views are all that matter.

  • It's easy to dismiss others as being a troll when they say something you don't like, but that's also disingenuous. I'm also not denying there hasn't been harassment from people who support GamerGate, but you actively threw yourself into the fray -- you chose to fight GG. I see women in the industry like Jennifer Dawe and regular gamers alike not get blindly attacked by GG because of gaming while female -- clearly there is more than just being a female gamer that causes automatic resentment. It's attitude, n
  • by JdeK ( 4185459 )
    Few women can start their own game companies or publications. Any top feminist friendly companies you'd recommend to women wanting to break into tech/games/tech writing?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @04:11PM (#50111451)

    Hi Brianna,

    No idea if this will bubble near enough to the surface for you to see it, but I'm curious how much, if any, work you and your team had to do in the "guts" of the Unreal Engine to get your game out the door, or if all of your work was done at the Unreal Script / editor level.

  • Representative Katherine Clark (D-Mass) along with the National organization of women tried to rally the house to demand better enforcement of existing cyber stalking laws. She then herself became a target for online harassment. Has anything come of the congresswoman's efforts and did she reach out to you after becoming a target herself?
  • I've got some (Score:5, Interesting)

    by NotDrWho ( 3543773 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @04:51PM (#50111767)

    Was it tough going from being a journalist and politico to becoming a hard-working developer at a legendary game and media studio like Giant Spacekat?

    What engine do you develop on? DO you have an on-site rendering farm that you work directly with, or do you outsource it?

    How do you find the time for public speaking with all the 60+ hour weeks that you must put into developing Giant Spacekat's massive games and interactive media library?

    Are you tired of ignorant people saying your "developer" title is just a joke and that your game company is just a sad front for your real job of gender hustling?

  • by core ( 3330 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @05:09PM (#50111887) Homepage

    I've been reading daily since 1997, but I can't condone pandering to a professional victims and hatemonger and giving out a patreon link to fund more of this crap

    Reddit was destroyed by SJWs in a matter of weeks, if Slashdot wants to follow the same route and promote safespaces after almost 20 years of being a respected destination, fine.

    Any good suggestions?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      SoylentNews [] is a Slashdot-knockoff which appeared during the protest against the "beta" interface. The site runs on a fork of slashcode and has a very similar moderation system. Predictably, the community consists largely of former and current Slashdotters and the overall culture is very similar.

  • by serviscope_minor ( 664417 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @06:30PM (#50112511) Journal

    As a game designer, I assume you've spent a fair bit of time playing games. What's your favourite arcade classic, and why? Or, if you can't choose one, what's the list of your favourites.

  • More and more developers seem to be using the existing engines (i know you used Unreal 3 for Rev 60, Unity, UbiArt, etc) which makes sense given the huge number of features they provide with little initial development cost and common tool sets/plugins used by other developers. Do you think there is much future in developers using custom engines for games (both indie and non-AAA) or do you think it will continue to become more uncommon for common genre games as you start at a larger and larger feature 'deficit' by having to redevelop the features on your custom engine, let alone porting issues, leaving only vert large/profitable houses (Naughty Dog, Insomniac, EA, etc) to be able to bear the time/$ costs?
  • by JumperCable ( 673155 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @10:39PM (#50113909)

    You recently ran a successful campaign to get your game approved on Steam's greenlight. What approaches did you use to get your game ranked high enough to be greenlit. What do you feel had the biggest impact in getting the numbers? What suggestions do you have for other Indie Game Developers who want to get their games approved on Steam's greenlight system?

  • Hi Spacekat (Score:4, Insightful)

    by poity ( 465672 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2015 @10:43PM (#50113939)

    What are your own thoughts about the sexist manner in which you were banned from /r/gamerghazi? Is the misogynistic toxicity of that community reflective of the anti-gamergate faction?

  • Technical (Score:4, Insightful)

    by goose-incarnated ( 1145029 ) on Wednesday July 15, 2015 @02:48AM (#50114731) Journal
    Have you ever produced anything of note, notability commensurate with your celebrity status? Have you ever demonstrated any technical ability?
  • Downvote Spamming (Score:3, Interesting)

    by _KiTA_ ( 241027 ) on Sunday July 19, 2015 @12:06AM (#50138103) Homepage

    Just as an aside everyone, either this article got brigaded by Ghazi or some other SJW hugbox, or some specific user with 6+ accounts is running through hitting things repeatedly with -1 Flamebaits. Two of my questions that were critical of Wu that were +5 are suddenly -1 Flamebait. [] []

    As you can see, it's very obviously someone abusing multiple accounts, as both comments were -1ed into oblivion before moving on to the next one: []

    In addition every other question that was critical of Wu has been docked down to -1 or 0 Flamebait as well: [] [] [] []

    Granted, this doesn't surprise me as having happened, as sockpuppet abuse is a very common tactic of these Social Justice Warrior Trolls, but it's still amusing to see in action.

In less than a century, computers will be making substantial progress on ... the overriding problem of war and peace. -- James Slagle