Self Help

Crash Override How Gamergate (Nearly) Des - Zoe Quinn

Author Photo

Matheus Puppe

· 57 min read
  • Zoe Quinn is an independent video game developer who makes experimental games.

  • After breaking up with an abusive ex, he posted a manifesto online attacking her character and work. This spread to internet mobs that began harassing her.

  • The harassment escalated to death and rape threats, posting of nude photos, and stalking. The mobs falsely accused her of sleeping with a journalist for a positive review of her game.

  • The harassment grew into a larger online phenomenon known as GamerGate, a culture war over diversity and progressivism in the video game industry and online communities.

  • GamerGate brought in fringe groups like neo-Nazis, pro-rape activists, and others. It led to consequences like Gawker going bankrupt, Breitbart growing its audience, and Zoe receiving support from public figures.

  • Zoe was subjected to a vicious online witch hunt where mobs worked to systematically destroy her life and career. The harassment lasted far beyond the usual short-lived viral internet outrage and mob attacks.

  • Zoe argues that online harassment and abuse can happen to anyone for any reason as the internet has become more volatile. Her story is a cautionary tale of how these kinds of attacks unfold and the damage they can cause.

  • The author was at a dinner with friends in San Francisco before moving to France with her new boyfriend, Alex.

  • She received messages that someone posted a long, unflattering post about her on Something Awful, a website she had participated in for years. The post was quickly removed by the site’s moderators.

  • The author did not know who posted it or what exactly it said, but she feared it might relate to things from her past she regretted. She was anxiously waiting for more details.

  • Sitting in the bathroom, she realized it must have been her abusive ex-boyfriend, Eron. She started hyperventilating, as she had only recently escaped from her unhealthy relationship with him.

  • Eron had continued to manipulate her for weeks after their breakup. She did not yet have enough distance from the situation to fully recover from the trauma.

The key points are:

  1. The author’s enjoyable night out was interrupted by news of an anonymous online post attacking her.

  2. She feared the post would expose embarrassing details from her past before she realized her abusive ex-boyfriend was likely behind it.

  3. The relationship with her ex had been very damaging, and she was still recovering from its effects.

  4. His continued manipulation and control, even after the breakup, highlight why she was so distressed at the possibility of his involvement.

The summary touches on the key details around the mysterious post and her abusive relationship while condensing the overall story for brevity. Please let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of the summary.

  • The narrator attends a dinner with friends where she realizes her ex-boyfriend has posted a 9,000 word manifesto about her on the internet.

  • The manifesto accuses her of cheating on him with five different men, refers to her in degrading and sexist terms, and includes personal details, photos, and correspondence.

  • The manifesto is posted on the Something Awful forums, then spreads to 4chan and beyond, going viral. Trolls and harassers begin threatening and harassing the narrator.

  • The ex-boyfriend deliberately tailored the manifesto to appeal to misogynistic elements of gaming culture that oppose diversity and inclusion. Although the narrator is not actually a game reviewer, the manifesto falsely accuses her of exchanging sex for reviews.

  • The harassment includes vandalizing the narrator’s Wikipedia page, flooding comments sections of her online profiles with threats, and exacerbating her depression and anxiety. The narrator sees the external harassment as echoing her own self-destructive thoughts.

  • The narrator’s friends gather together to offer support and try to counter some of the online harassment, but they are overwhelmed by the scale of the abuse. The narrator realizes she is in serious trouble.

  • The narrator refers to herself as “patient zero” of the Gamergate controversy. Months later, an interview with her ex-boyfriend reveals he carefully designed the manifesto to destroy her reputation and make it go viral.

  • The narrator suggests her ex never saw her as fully human, but as either an “unspoiled moral goddess” or a “cartoon sociopath.” The narrator sees humanity as complex and flawed.

That’s the essence of the summary. Please let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of the summary.

  • The author grew up in a very small, isolated town in upstate New York that was socially conservative and behind the times. She felt like an outcast there as a queer, nerdy kid with mental health issues and big ambitions.

  • There wasn’t much to do for fun given how small and remote the town was. The author fell in love with video games at an early age since there were few other activities or social interactions. She would go between the few nearby houses that had gaming consoles to play.

  • The author’s own house was very rural, with no municipal utilities. Her father had to dig a well for running water, but its proximity to a highway meant the water was often contaminated by whatever garbage was thrown from passing vehicles. The highway was very close to the author’s bedroom, and she would watch the traffic at night and dream of escaping her circumstances.

  • In summary, the author had a difficult, isolating childhood in a backwater town. Video games were an escape for her, and from an early age she aspired to leave her surroundings for bigger and better opportunities. Her circumstances fostered a sense of being an outsider that has endured into her adult life and work.

The key details are the author’s challenging upbringing, her connection to gaming as a means of escape, her feelings of being an misfit, and her drive to get out of her small town. Her background has clearly shaped her in meaningful ways and contributed to her eventual role as a controversial figure in the gaming industry and online communities.

The author grew up in a broken home with blue-collar parents who owned a small business. They didn’t have many luxuries and the author’s main exposure to video games was through friends of her father. One friend gave her a Nintendo Game Boy, which fueled her love of video games, especially the ones she didn’t have access to. She would stare at magazine pages of games and imagine herself in the games.

When the author was 12, her father brought home a 3DO console with 50 obscure games. She became obsessed with the game Star Control 2, spending hours exploring the universe and filling notebooks with maps and notes. To get help with the secrets in the game, she went online for the first time using a free trial internet disc.

Going online opened up a whole new world to the author. She found online communities of people with similar interests, made friends, and felt less alone. She discovered people from all over with diverse life experiences. She found people dealing with depression like her, and talking to them helped her want to keep living.

The author was part of a generation that grew up as the internet did. Games were her entry into online communities. She played browser-based games like Neopets that didn’t require a strong internet connection. Neopets was her first online community, and from there she was hooked on communicating with people from all over. Relating to people online felt honest and less anxiety-inducing than in-person. She could be more open while still staying anonymous. She tried on different identities, looking for what fit.

In summary, games and the internet provided an escape from a difficult home life and loneliness for the author. They opened up a whole new world of communities and friends that made life more bearable.

  • The author had a difficult home life as a teenager. Her parents went through a brutal divorce and her mother was diagnosed with Hepatitis C. They moved into a poor, run-down neighborhood.

  • The author lost her virginity to a girl in high school, but then denied it out of fear. She felt like an outcast and turned to the internet for escape and connection.

  • A friend gave the author a floppy disk containing The Anarchist’s Cookbook, which exposed her to hacking and forbidden knowledge. This sparked an interest in exploring the dark side of the internet.

  • In the early days of the internet, people created personal websites to share information about themselves. The author made a GeoCities page and later used LiveJournal, DeadJournal, Xanga, and MySpace. The tone of the internet became less friendly and personal over time.

  • As a teen, the author experimented heavily with sex, drugs, and rock and roll. She got married at 19 in a quick courthouse ceremony.

  • The internet provided advice and community for the author. She found online queer communities to date girls, avoided overdoses using information from Erowid, and connected with local musicians.

  • Overall, the internet served as an escape, source of information, and place of connection for the author during a turbulent time in her life with little adult guidance.

The author struggled with homelessness as a teen after a series of unfortunate events. She turned to the internet for help and support. She started pinup modeling on alt porn websites to earn money. She and her husband eventually found jobs on Craigslist and got back on their feet, but she still struggled with depression.

She found solace and friendship in an online chatroom and IRC. She connected with a group of people with similar struggles. They supported each other through difficult life events. The author started playing tabletop roleplaying games with them online.

With their support, the author started learning photography. She picked up freelance photography work, photographing alt porn models. Her online friends helped her work through feelings of being fundamentally broken. They encouraged her creative pursuits, like music and photography.

Overall, the internet and the connections the author formed there saved her “ass numerous times.” Her online friends helped steer her away from dangerous decisions and supported her through homelessness, depression, and a lack of purpose. With their help, she was able to find work and reconnect with her creative interests.

The author rediscovered her passion for photography and reconnected with old internet friends who were supportive of her new endeavor. She ended up divorcing her husband, moving to Toronto, and pursuing a career in photography and game development.

She attended a program to learn how to make video games, despite having little technical experience. She learned through online resources, mentorship, and trial-and-error. She started creating and releasing small experimental games, building up her skills and audience.

Her first hit game was Depression Quest, born out of her own struggles with depression. It aimed to show players what it’s like to live with depression and make difficult choices. Though simple, it resonated with many players and brought mainstream attention to games focused on personal experiences.

The author credits the internet for enabling her career and connecting her with a community of like-minded developers. At the same time, she acknowledges the internet’s downsides, like toxicity in comment sections and darker pockets of the web.

Overall, the internet has had an enormous impact, for better and worse. It has enabled innovation, connected people, and amplified voices, but also hosts thriving “underground” markets and enables the spread of misinformation and hate. The division between “online” and “offline” life is blurring as the internet becomes more widely adopted and integrated into daily life.

  • The author has been exploring strange and disturbing parts of the internet since a teenager. This has exposed the wide range of communities on the internet, from harmless to hateful.

  • Anonymous message boards like 2channel, 4chan, and Reddit have enabled both positive discussions and unchecked terribleness. They have influenced internet culture but also bred hate groups, harassment, and even violence.

  • Poor moderation and mob mentality on these boards can lead to vigilante justice and witch hunts with real-world consequences, like falsely accusing innocent people of crimes. Some boards specifically cultivate hatred and have been linked to hate crimes and mass shootings.

  • Even boards not meant for hate can enable it by being so permissive. It can be hard to tell if a threatening post is serious or not. The author herself faced threatening posts on 4chan.

  • The common advice to “not feed the trolls” is wrong and damaging. Online harassment is not as harmless as the fairy tale creatures the phrase invokes. Early internet “trolling” was more lighthearted, but now the term applies to everything from silly jokes to hate speech and threats.

  • Online harassment is meant to control, instill fear, punish, and isolate the target. It parallels domestic violence in how abusers operate in gray areas and inflict psychological harm. Simply ignoring these harassers will not make them stop. They need to be confronted.

  • In summary, anonymous and unmoderated parts of the internet have enabled communities of hatred and psychological abuse. The tools and behaviors that started as lighthearted jokes have escalated into seriously harmful acts. Telling victims to ignore their harassers is misguided and prevents real solutions. Harassers aim to control and hurt their targets, not just provoke reactions. They need to be stopped, not fed.

  • Domestic violence and online abuse are methods that abusers use to control victims through fear, coercion, and intimidation.

  • The author’s ex-boyfriend wrote a manifesto to incite online harassment against her. He exploited elements that make content go viral, like humor and gossip, to spread lies and conspiracy theories about her.

  • This led to a “communal witch hunt” where groups that were prejudiced against women in gaming coordinated to attack and threaten the author. They shared personal details about her and made coordinated efforts to ruin her life and push her to suicide.

  • This type of “dogpiling,” where many people join in to harass someone, is hard to escape and becomes a “participatory game.” The same tools used to spread memes and connect people were weaponized against the author.

  • The harassers were very organized, dividing into groups to attack the author’s social/professional life, accounts, and reputation. They manipulated systems to censor her and make her a target, bonding over their harassment campaign.

  • Algorithms that track popularity and attention can be exploited by mobs to amplify harassment. They make no distinction between positive and negative attention, so attacks on someone become highly visible and suggested to others. This was seen when Facebook’s algorithm started suggesting conspiracy websites and tabloids without moderation.

  • In summary, online abuse and the infrastructure of the internet can be weaponized to facilitate domestic violence dynamics, control, and communal harassment. The author highlights how this was strategically done against her through a case study of her own experience.

• Viral hoaxes and “fake news” designed to generate outrage and clicks were widespread during the 2016 election. People were able to make money and gain influence by creating misleading stories.

• Algorithms that determine what people see on social media likely impacted the election. Studies found:

› 38% of right-wing news stories and 10% of far-left stories contained false information.

› 17 of the top 20 false stories were pro-Trump or anti-Clinton.

› The least accurate news sources were the most popular.

› Newly created websites spreading propaganda outperformed established media.

› Image macros and memes were an effective way to spread disinformation.

• Facebook’s decision to be “fair” and not moderate content likely backfired. Algorithms alone don’t determine truth or fairness.

• These algorithms can be abused to unfairly manipulate and harass people by elevating hoaxes and smears. Simply by continuing to have an online presence, victims end up promoting lies about themselves.

• The author, Zoë Quinn, experienced this firsthand after an ex-boyfriend published a manifesto smearing her. For years, searches for her led to conspiracy theories, and sharing anything about herself online led algorithms to promote the harassment.

• “Internet Inquisitors” on YouTube and elsewhere direct outrage mobs and spread disinformation for popularity and profit. They position themselves as truth tellers while promoting hatred and lies.

• Without leaders to coordinate them, anonymous online mobs usually fizzle out. But Internet Inquisitors sustain and direct them, validating feelings of hatred and paranoia. They scour the news for targets to rile up their audiences.

• Late-night TV hosts operate similarly, looking for news stories and public figures to mock and provoke outrage over in their opening segments. Internet Inquisitors do the same to coordinate harassment campaigns.

That covers the key points on how disinformation spreads, the role of algorithms and social media, the experiences of harassment victims, the nature of Internet Inquisitors, and how they operate. Please let me know if you would like me to explain or expand on any part of the summary.

  • The author describes encountering an online mob that engaged in targeted harassment against her. A central figure named “The Ex” spread lies and conspiracies about her to rile up the mob.

  • The mob, which the author refers to as “Internet Inquisitors,” are devoted to creating hateful content targeting individuals. Some do it for the power trip, some because they are “true believers” in a cause, but some do it to make money from the online outrage they generate. They raise funds through crowdsourcing websites and ad revenue.

  • The Internet Inquisitors work in “gray areas” of terms of service to avoid bans. The bigger their following, the less likely platforms are to ban them. Some have close ties to platforms. One example is a Reddit user named ViolentAcrez who moderated horrible subreddits like r/jailbait but was seen as important to Reddit.

  • Online witch hunts target people who don’t fit traditional ideals of purity, like the author as a queer woman in gaming. Her identity and openness about mental health and sexuality made her an easy target. “The Ex” tailored his manifesto to play on prejudices against women like her.

  • The author has faced discrimination, harassment and abuse as a queer woman in gaming. She is frequently asked about “what it’s like to be a woman” in gaming instead of her actual work. She has been outed, given awkward interactions in interviews, and lost work for rejecting the wrong men.

  • In summary, the author has been the target of an online witch hunt by devoted “Internet Inquisitors” seeking to make money and gain power from outrage. As a queer woman who does not fit ideals of purity, she was an easy target for their abuse which plays on societal prejudices. She has faced discrimination and mistreatment throughout her career.

  • Marginalized groups face disproportionately high rates of online harassment and abuse. Responding to the abuse often means giving up more privacy and engaging further with harassers.

  • The author faced an abusive campaign of online harassment after leaving an abusive ex-partner. The harassment took on misogynistic and transphobic tones, and her identity and genitals were scrutinized. She recognizes her relative privilege but wants to share the experiences of other marginalized people.

  • A trans associate avoids most online spaces due to frequent harassment and death threats from transphobes and TERFs.

  • A writer received hundreds of harassing messages per day, including death threats and racist comments, for writing that a game could have included more diversity. He left social media for a while due to the abuse.

  • A PhD candidate faced harassment, including doxing, transphobia, and racism, for writing critically about Gamergate. Her work was falsely accused of bias, and her identity and friendships were scrutinized.

  • Marginalized groups cannot easily distinguish or compartmentalize the types of abuse they face, which often include racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia. Discussions of online harassment often focus on the experiences of white cis women and ignore the abuse of people of color, trans women, and others.

  • Even when the media discusses online abuse of marginalized groups, their experiences are often relegated to footnotes and treated as side stories. The abuse they face is also often more physically threatening and dehumanizing.

The key message is that marginalized groups face disproportionate and intersecting types of abuse online that are frequently left out of mainstream discussions on harassment. Their experiences are treated as less central and less human.

Tone: The tone is solemn and disconcerted as the author recounts how her online accounts were hacked and used to spread misinformation in order to discredit her. She expresses feelings of panic, confusion and helplessness in the face of the coordinated attacks.

Where abuse is more overt: The abuse is made overt through the hacking of the author’s accounts and the spread of disinformation using those accounts. The author’s online identities and platforms were appropriated by malicious actors seeking to undermine her credibility and amplify abuse. The hackers were able to spread propaganda from the author’s own accounts by linking them together and compromising her blog.

Nonwhite and marginalized groups are more vulnerable: The author highlights how online abuse and harassment disproportionately target and impact marginalized groups with less access to resources and support. Black women, trans women and trans women of color in particular face higher rates of abuse. The author cites her own experience as an example, as well as a previous 4chan campaign targeting black feminists.

Little effort to support marginalized groups: The author argues that marginalized groups are seen as expendable in online spaces, so little is done to prevent or mitigate abuse against them. She says nonwhite people face weaker lines of communication and support, and are more likely to lack resources. As a result, they are viewed as “nice to have” but not integral, so platforms invest little in preventing their harassment or keeping them engaged.

Attacks come from multiple sources: The author documents how online abuse comes from diverse sources, including individual trolls, organized hate groups, and radical fringe groups across the ideological spectrum. She cites examples of abuse from white nationalists, the KKK, ISIS, men’s rights activists and trans-exclusionary radical feminists. The common thread is that they target marginalized groups.

Value of speaking out: Despite the risks, the author says speaking out against abuse is important to raise awareness, shift cultural problems, and support vulnerable groups. Staying silent only allows abuse to perpetuate itself. The author says she spoke out to bring attention to these issues and stand up for marginalized people, even though she knew she would face backlash.

Here’s a summary:

  • The author’s Tumblr and eBay accounts were hacked because she used the same weak password (“funkyfresh”) for both. The hackers posted her personal information, including home addresses for her and her father.

  • The author started receiving threatening phone calls, texts, and emails. The hackers had obtained a lot of her private information, including old phone numbers, addresses, and accounts. She rushed to delete accounts and change passwords to prevent further hacking.

  • “Doxing” refers to publishing someone’s private information to intimidate or threaten them. The author’s personal information, photos, friends lists, and more were used by the hackers to dig into her background.

  • Even people who are careful about their privacy can have their information end up online through data brokers, social engineering, and mistakes by others. The author received scam job reference calls because the hackers had obtained her employment history.

  • In addition to the main hackers, others with grudges against the author released additional private information, including old modeling photos. The hackers built huge “dossiers” of information by combining what they found with speculation and lies. They also targeted the author’s friends and family.

  • The author felt violated and panicked, as the hackers had obtained and distributed so much of her private life. Despite her public work, she valued her own privacy. The hacking and harassment campaign left her feeling suffocated.

  • The author is an independent game developer who was subjected to severe online harassment, including doxing, threats, and stalking after a bad breakup.

  • The harassment escalated to threatening her friends and family as well. She calls the online mob attacking her the “Five Guys Burgers and Lies” campaign.

  • The author’s ex-boyfriend initiated the harassment campaign to destroy her. The attacks caused tremendous stress, anxiety, and guilt as more and more of the author’s friends became targets.

  • The author’s friend, Phil Fish, spoke out in support of her, and in retaliation, his accounts were hacked and hacked, and his private Dropbox information was leaked.

  • The author had assembled a team to work on her next game, but her team members started leaving to avoid becoming targets themselves.

  • Even the author’s new boyfriend, Alex, became a target, with the mob contacting his employers and family to try and get him fired or cause trouble. Though Alex’s studio supported them, the mob began targeting other studios Alex had worked with.

  • The campaign forced the author and Alex to stay with various friends for weeks since it was not safe for them to go home. Their move to France where Alex had a new job was delayed due to the harassment.

  • The summary depicts the severe real-world impact of online harassment and how it spreads to affect all areas of a victim’s life. The author lived in a constant state of anxiety, not knowing where the mob might strike next or who might get hurt because of their association with her.

The writer felt sick after online harassment and threats caused her to lose her job and livelihood. She was targeted by an online mob that coordinated to flood her employers with calls and messages demanding her firing over a harmless article she wrote. Her employers capitulated to avoid controversy. This kind of harassment and threats, known as doxing, can have serious, long-term consequences like preventing future employment. The harassment escalated to include prank calls, unwanted mail and visitors, false reports to authorities, and even a violent home invasion. The writer lived in constant fear from strangers threatening and harassing her. Powerful companies were afraid to help despite pledging support in private. Online mobs are able to pressure even large companies into abandoning their own interests through mass harassment.

  • The author had to deal with an abusive ex-boyfriend who was actively harassing and stalking her. He had posted a manifesto online attacking her and rallying others to harass her as well.

  • She tried contacting him via text to beg him to leave her friends and family out of the harassment campaign. She wanted to avoid talking to him directly as much as possible due to the trauma from their relationship.

  • However, he was completely unrepentant and tried to manipulate her further. He claimed that he was “helping” her by posting his manifesto and harassing her. He tried to twist things she had told him privately to use against her.

  • She tried to get him to understand that his actions were endangering people’s lives, but he refused to listen and instead attacked and blamed her further. She was left horrified at how remorseless and malicious he was.

  • His harassment campaign against her was escalating and becoming more dangerous, requiring her to take precautions for her safety at public events. But she felt trapped and like there was little she could do to make him stop.

  • The situation shows how abusers can continue to manipulate and harm their victims even after the end of a relationship. And it highlights the dangers of online harassment campaigns, especially against marginalized groups.

The key elements are the abusive behavior of the ex-boyfriend, his total lack of remorse, the escalating harassment, the feelings of being trapped, and the psychological manipulation and damage. The summary covers these main points while removing most of the specific details and events. Please let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand the summary further.

The author tried to get her ex to stop harassing her and her friends, but he refused and blamed her for his actions. She started receiving death threats again and realized she needed to get a restraining order.

She called the police to ask about getting a restraining order, but they told her she would have to file a report in person in Boston, where she lived, even though it wasn’t safe for her to go back there. The reports she had already filed didn’t seem to help. Reporting abuse and harassment is difficult for many reasons:

  1. Police often don’t understand online harassment and abuse. They may not accept digital evidence or may require victims to print everything out.

  2. It’s hard to report anonymous attackers when you have little information about them. Police reports also require victims to provide a lot of personal information, which can then be obtained by abusers.

  3. Police are often understaffed, apathetic, or unsympathetic toward victims, especially those from marginalized groups. Victims frequently have to do a lot of work to document and explain the harassment.

  4. Restraining orders don’t always work and can provoke abusers to escalate their behavior. The author’s ex used her restraining order as an excuse to spread more information about her to hate groups.

  5. Legal processes require victims to continually respond to and relive the abuse. The author had to keep addressing legal filings from her ex full of lies and victim-blaming.

Overall, the summary shows why reporting abuse and harassment is so difficult and frequently an imperfect solution. The systems in place often fail or further victimize those they are meant to help.

• In criminal proceedings, the victim is essentially an asset for the state’s case, not an equal party. The victim has to rely on the limited knowledge of law enforcement and legal professionals.

• Victims have to give up control and remain silent to be a “good victim.” Anything they say or do can be used against them. Abusers, on the other hand, often continue their harassment and control the public narrative.

• The author went through an extended legal process against her harasser but the judge dismissed the charges, telling her to just “get offline.” Her harasser faced no consequences.

• The ongoing harassment and legal struggles took a major toll on the author’s mental health and relationships. Her relationship with her partner suffered greatly under the constant stress and turmoil.

• Many of the author’s friends and colleagues distanced themselves out of fear of also becoming targets or facing backlash. The author felt guilty for the harm that came to those who tried to support her.

• The author eventually had to give up hope that the situation would improve or that she could return to her old life. She realized that some situations simply do not get better, and investing hope in the wrong outcomes only leads to disappointment.

• After two years, the harassment and abuse were still ongoing with no end in sight. The author and her partner remained targets with little recourse.

In summary, the author and her partner faced a campaign of orchestrated online harassment that authorities failed to address, leaving them isolated and with little hope of escape. The abusers faced no real consequences for their crimes.

• The harassment campaign against Zoe Quinn that began in 2014 has lasted for years and fundamentally changed her life. She lives in a constant state of vigilance and has to carefully consider the risks of any public action.

• Quinn cannot live a normal life or do basic things without worrying about her safety and privacy. She has to run a “risk calculus” for things like tweeting, attending events, or even ordering items online. She lives under constant surveillance from harassers looking to amplify and weaponize any information against her.

• The harassment has isolated Quinn from friends and potential new relationships. She has to make sure anyone she interacts with can handle the harassment mob, and she often has to explain bizarre situations that most people cannot comprehend. It is hard for her to be fully open and honest without upsetting others. She tends to connect most with others who have had similar experiences.

• Quinn feels deep guilt over others who have been harassed or targeted because of their association with her. She worries about bringing new people into her life and exposing them to potential harm. The logistics of starting new relationships seems nearly impossible.

• The harassment has made it difficult for Quinn to work or be creative. She struggled for a long time to do the activities she loved, like making games, because of the harassment. She worried about further harassment, threats, and even fictional portrayals of violence against her. She felt like the person she was before died when the harassment began.

• By 2015, Quinn was struggling to manage the emotional toll. She was couch surfing, her relationship was strained, she had trouble working, and she turned to alcohol to cope. She felt she could never go back to her old life and work. She grieved the loss of her old life but eventually realized she had to build a new one, even if the light at the end of the tunnel seemed impossible to find.

• In summary, years of sustained harassment and abuse have caused tremendous difficulties, isolation, guilt, and emotional anguish for Quinn. Though the harassment stems from events in 2014, its impacts on her life are constant and long-lasting. Moving on from such traumatic experiences proves nearly impossible.

The author had endured nine months of severe online harassment and abuse, including doxxing, hacking, and stalking, after she spoke out against misogyny in gaming culture. She was traumatized but gained a deep understanding of how online abuse works.

She moved to Seattle for a fresh start and cut ties with many people in her life, including her romantic partner, Alex. Though it was difficult, she realized the relationship was unhealthy given their shared trauma.

The author and Alex, who had bonded over surviving the harassment campaign together, decided to launch a crisis support network to help others facing similar abuse. They called it Crash Override Network.

The key principles behind Crash Override Network were:

  1. Consent: Nothing would be done to help someone without their consent. People had to opt-in to receiving help.

  2. Control: A major loss for victims of online abuse is a sense of control over their lives. The network had to avoid further taking away people’s control or agency.

  3. Strategies: The network’s strategies for helping victims had to come from the right place, with an understanding of what people in these situations actually need.

  4. Failures: The network had to avoid replicating the failures of existing systems to help victims of online abuse, like police, tech companies, and employers.

The goal was to stop the cycle of abuse that destroys people’s lives by giving victims back a sense of control and the tools to strategically push back against their harassers.

The author and her partner Alex started an organization called Crash to help victims of online harassment and abuse. They realized the scale of the problem was too big for just the two of them, so they recruited experts from various fields to join them as anonymous “agents.” Crash provides pro bono help to victims, creates free public resources on online safety, and works with tech companies and law enforcement to improve policies and responses.

At first, the author was hopeful they could fix the problems by educating people in power. But after attending many conferences and meetings with leaders in tech, law enforcement, and policy, she realized the issues are much worse than she imagined. The people and systems with the power to stop online abuse are failing and often seem unwilling to take meaningful action.

To fight abuse at its source, Crash worked to build relationships with major tech platforms where harassment often occurs. They aimed to get fast response for urgent cases, share information on how terms of service were failing in practice, and push for policy changes. Most companies were open to talking, but some—like Reddit and Steam—were unresponsive.

Crash’s main goals with tech partners were:

  1. Establishing escalation channels to get quicker action on sensitive cases. These were relatively easy to obtain and allowed Crash to intervene faster than normal reporting.

  2. Sharing information on patterns of how abuse happens on platforms based on experiences as targets and caseworkers. The author found that traditional reporting systems were largely ineffective, with either no action taken or action that was too little too late.

So in summary, the author started Crash to combat online abuse by helping victims, working with companies and authorities, and pushing for practical changes. But she came to realize, after years of effort, that the systems meant to address this issue are largely failing or unwilling to take it seriously. Still, Crash continues to fight by building relationships with tech companies to improve response times and share information on how to better prevent and handle abuse.

  • The author initially thought that the difficulties in controlling abuse on tech platforms were largely due to the huge scale and volume of users and reports. However, after building connections with the security and policy teams of major tech companies, the author discovered more systemic issues.

  • Though the author’s organization was able to get some clear cases of abuse addressed, they frequently got reports bounced back or ignored, even for obvious violations. The author noticed patterns of unequal treatment, especially for minorities. Enforcement of policies was inconsistent and often too little, too late.

  • The companies’ terms of service are often opaque by design, kept vague for the public but with much more detailed internal policies. This ambiguity allows discretion but fails to properly set boundaries for users. One company even hid details of its policies from the author’s organization.

  • An exhausting example is given of spending a whole day compiling evidence of widespread, serious abuse against a client, only to have almost all reports come back as “unactionable.” Even accounts solely dedicated to harassment were allowed to remain. The head of security at one company dismissed concerns, saying that sometimes the abusers posted about other topics as well.

  • The author expresses frustration at the toll of sifting through such abusive content only to be ignored, and questions why any value of other posts could justify allowing the harassment of others. The author concludes that the problems come from within the companies themselves, not just issues of scale, and that the fight against online abuse will continue to stall without speaking out about these systemic issues.

In summary, the author argues that tech companies frequently fail to adequately or consistently address abuse on their platforms. The problems stem from the companies themselves, not just the challenges of scale, and public pressure is needed to drive real change.

  • The author was unable to convince the company to remove death threats against their client that were posted on the company’s service. The company representative gave a meaningless PR response.

  • Companies have terms of service that users consent to, and they can ban users for violating them, even for hate speech or threats. Banning users in these cases does not violate free speech.

  • Harassment and threats are not protected as free speech. Companies should draw the line at letting users actively terrorize others. It is bad business to ignore how users experience a platform.

  • Some tech companies selectively enforce free speech when it benefits them. They ban some content like spam but not harassment. Some attribute this to a focus on growth over user experience.

  • Marginalized groups especially need safe online spaces. For some, online communities can be a lifeline. We should evaluate platforms based on how they serve vulnerable users.

  • We need more diverse voices addressing online harassment, not just white cis men. Solutions that work for privileged groups may not help marginalized groups. Input from underrepresented communities is needed.

  • Companies do not always understand online harassment, especially if leaders do not experience it themselves. Talking to those in the trenches and learning from their experiences is key. Some companies are unaware of major issues.

  • Policies like real name requirements can harm marginalized groups by limiting anonymity. They are often made by privileged people who do not experience the issues that such policies exacerbate.

The key arguments are that companies need to prioritize user experience, especially for marginalized groups; address online harassment; and develop policies with input from diverse, underrepresented voices. Anonymity and safe spaces online are important, and one-size-fits-all policies can do more harm than good. Overall, online harassment is an issue that companies must work to understand and solve.

• Government IDs and real name policies can negatively impact marginalized groups like trans people, sex workers, domestic violence survivors, and activists.

• Hiring a more diverse workforce is important but not enough. Companies need to commit to finding solutions and supporting diverse staff.

• Plans to address online abuse should be developed alongside a platform’s main functionality. Developers should consider how tools and features could be misused for harassment.

• Enforcing terms of service is challenging, especially at the scale of major platforms. However, quick action is important to slowing down abuse campaigns. Chronically abusive users often need to be removed.

• Allowing users more control and options to moderate their own experiences, like filtering, reporting, blocking, and muting can help. But platforms still need to take an active role in combating abuse.

• Considering the targets of abuse and their goals should be central to solutions. Abuse often happens across platforms, so solutions need to take that into account.

• Transparency about how reports are handled and what actions may be taken against offenders can help users make informed decisions and have reasonable expectations. Muting abusive users without notifying them can be an effective approach.

• Automated systems and machine learning show promise for identifying and addressing abuse at scale. However, human review is still important, especially for complex cases.

• Centralizing information about specific abuse campaigns and offenders can help in developing solutions tailored to the issues. Looking at factors beyond just individual reports is important.

  • The author has attended many anti-harassment summits and has observed several recurring issues: lack of diversity, absolutist free speech arguments, and suggestions of increased law enforcement as a solution. However, as victims know, law enforcement is often not helpful and can even be an agent of further abuse, especially for marginalized groups.

  • Answering whether someone should report to the police is difficult because the options are often disappointing. For many victims, especially those from marginalized groups, the police are a source of harassment and abuse, not help. Pushing for more police involvement ignores those who need help the most. The issues with law enforcement are not simple to fix with just education or resources.

  • The author provides an example of the police overreacting to social media posts criticizing police while often ignoring more severe threats that the author and clients have reported. Selective apathy cannot be overcome. While working with clients on nonconsensual nude photo cases, the author found connections to child pornography distribution but the FBI was uninterested. Working around law enforcement is often more effective than funneling resources to them.

  • However, law enforcement does have some uses, like alerting them to possible SWATing attempts. But this must be done carefully by starting with more familiar concepts before getting into technical details, otherwise the concerns may be dismissed as nonsense. Building connections with local law enforcement by reporting less severe issues and following their recommendations can help build credibility so they take more serious reports seriously. But there are no guarantees, and marginalized groups especially will likely continue facing discrimination and disbelief.

  • The author argues that addressing online abuse will require addressing systemic discrimination and lack of diversity both within and outside the tech industry. Laws and policies alone will not fix cultural problems. While fighting for legal remedies, we must work to fix the root causes that allow abuse to thrive with impunity. But this is difficult, often thankless work.

The key arguments are that law enforcement is often not helpful and can be abusive, especially for marginalized groups; working around the system is often more effective; building connections may help but will not solve systemic issues; and real progress requires addressing root causes through difficult cultural work, not just legal or policy changes. But this work is hard and often unrewarding.

  • Reporting harassment and abuse to authorities like the police is not always the best approach and should only be done when necessary for a specific purpose, like obtaining a restraining order. Often, reporting to the police can escalate situations unnecessarily. Calling the police ahead of time about potential false reports can help prevent dangerous situations from arising.

  • Reforms to the legal system, like educating judges, prosecutors, and victims’ advocates about online harassment, can help address these issues. Victims’ advocates in particular can help guide people through the legal process and advise them on safety measures.

  • “Revenge porn,” or the nonconsensual distribution of intimate images, is a major form of online abuse. Websites dedicated to revenge porn, like, profit from humiliating and violating people, often women. They frequently claim to offer “remove my photo” services for a fee but are often run by the same people who run the revenge porn sites. Some revenge porn site owners have been charged with extortion, identity theft, and other crimes.

  • Changes to laws like Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects websites from being liable for user-generated content, are often misguided attempts to curb abuse that would do more harm than good by impeding internet functionality. Policymakers need to understand technology and how it can be misused in order to effectively legislate it.

  • The summary gives an anecdote about the author’s friend suggesting she leave a message for her representative to highlight the importance of policymakers becoming more technologically literate. Overall, the key points are that reporting abuse to the authorities is not always the solution, the legal system needs reform to address online harassment, revenge porn is a major problem, and changes to laws protecting websites should be made carefully by those who understand technology.

  • The author and her organization, Crash Override, met with Congresswoman Katherine Clark to discuss online harassment issues and legislation to make SWATing a federal crime. The meeting went well, and Rep. Clark understood their concerns about avoiding overbroad laws that infringe on anonymity and privacy.

  • The author was invited to speak at a UN conference on online harassment. Although she had concerns that the issue was being framed as solely a “women’s issue,” she attended to provide her perspective. However, the UN’s report on online harassment showed a lack of technical understanding and recommended the kind of overcorrection the author feared. This demonstrated that education on these issues is still lacking.

  • The law is still determining what constitutes an illegal threat, as evidenced by the Elonis v. United States Supreme Court case. Although free speech laws are complex, there are more targeted laws that could help curb abuse. For example, laws regulating data brokers and requiring effective opt-outs could make it harder for abusers to access people’s private information.

  • While many victims and activists advocate for strict laws and incarceration of abusers, the author questions whether this would actually help. Studies show incarceration does little to deter crime. The prison system is flawed and biased. And the justice system aims to punish, not protect victims. Civil cases are difficult and often do not provide justice or closure.

  • Overall, the author argues that education, cross-disciplinary cooperation, and targeted, well-crafted laws are needed to effectively address online harassment. Broad, reactionary laws and incarceration alone will not solve the problem. A multifaceted, informed, compassionate approach is required.

  • Academics and journalists have begun studying online harassment and abuse more frequently. This is promising, as their research and reporting can be used to influence policy makers, educate the public, and archive important cultural events.

  • However, researchers and journalists must be extremely careful and ethical in their work, especially when involving or reporting on victims of online abuse. These individuals have often had their privacy and consent violated already, so academics and journalists should partner with them and obtain their full consent. Failing to do so can further traumatize victims and lead to inaccurate or incomplete information.

  • Researchers should focus on perpetrators of online abuse as well as victims. Studying how abusers operate and spread harassment can provide critical insights. However, researchers must be careful not to spread or amplify the abuse in the process.

  • Journalists frequently fail to report on online harassment ethically. They often rely only on public information, amplify abusive messages by embedding tweets, take victims’ words out of context, and contact victims in insensitive ways. They need to exercise caution, obtain consent, and avoid further traumatizing victims.

  • In general, while the involvement of academics and journalists is promising, they must make the consent and well-being of victims a top priority. Failing to do so can undermine their work and further harm those already facing abuse. Researchers and journalists should partner with advocacy groups and victims themselves whenever possible.

The key takeaways are:

  1. Consent and partnership with victims should be central to any research or reporting on online harassment.

  2. Amplifying or spreading abusive content, even inadvertently, should be avoided.

  3. Perpetrators and systems that enable abuse should also be studied to gain a complete understanding of the issue. But this must be done carefully and ethically.

  4. Journalists frequently fail to report on online harassment ethically and sensitively. Higher standards are needed.

  5. Partnering with advocacy groups and victims leads to better research and reporting. Their insights and experiences are invaluable.

Does this summary accurately reflect the key points and takeaways from the chapter? Let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of the summary.

  • Journalists must be careful when reporting on online abuse and abusers to avoid unintentionally assisting or amplifying them. Simply exposing abusers does not always lead to consequences for them and instead gives them more visibility and platforms to spread harm.

  • It is better for journalists to focus their reporting on the victims and effects of online abuse rather than the perpetrators themselves. This avoids signal boosting lies and disinformation, provides important context about the real-world impacts, and gives a voice to the targets of abuse. Reporting should focus on the systemic issues that enable abuse rather than individuals.

  • When journalists do report on specific abusers, they should examine the broader factors that allow the abuse to happen rather than just the individuals involved. For example, reporting could explore how companies or platforms empower and support abusive behavior.

  • Good, well-researched journalism can effectively counter disinformation and smear campaigns targeting victims of abuse. It provides an important factual record and helps repair reputations damaged by abuse and harassment.

  • Nonprofits and advocacy organizations have also made progress in raising awareness of online abuse issues. They should work to integrate best practices around online safety and support into their existing efforts. Traditional support organizations like suicide hotlines should also update their practices to account for the impacts of online abuse.

  • Overall, journalists, academics, nonprofits and advocates must make consent, safety and support for victims central to their work on online abuse. The goal should be to address systemic issues, not profit from or spectacle of people’s suffering. Responsible reporting and advocacy can make a difference, but only if done carefully and ethically.

• Nonprofits and institutions have significant resources and credibility but also face pressures from funders and lack flexibility. They can provide valuable help to targets of online abuse but should not be seen as the only solution or automatically credible.

• Institutions are slow to change and often enable abuse. Although many within institutions want to help, higher-ups frequently limit their efforts. People who push for change often burn out or get fired.

• Framing the issue as “good people” vs. “bad people” is counterproductive. This prevents understanding of and change by those perpetrating abuse. Everyone, including the author, has the capacity for causing harm. The key is examining and taking responsibility for impact.

• The author engaged in online abuse as a teen, attacking strangers to feel powerful and lash out due to personal issues. Most people don’t realize how harmful their actions are online. Targets seem abstract, and the impact is hard to see fully. The abuse says more about the perpetrator.

• To solve online abuse, empathy and understanding of all sides are needed. Simply demonizing others prevents progress. The author’s experience helps provide insight into motivations and solutions. Mistakes can provide perspective if learned from.

• Online, targets seem like “words on a screen,” not real people. Aggressors get enough of a reaction to feel powerful but not fully see the pain caused. For targets of strangers, the abuse is impersonal, using the target as a symbol for something hated.

• For the author, abusing other women online as a teen stemmed from being closeted and unable to deal with it. The women were proxies for the anger she felt toward herself. Most aggressors are dealing with their own issues and insecurities, not the actual attributes of the target.

  • The writer used to call people hurtful slurs like “faggot” and demean other women. She has since realized this was wrong.

  • Empathy and understanding are needed to counter online abuse and dehumanization. However, the burden should not fall on victims to “prove their humanity.” A cultural shift is needed.

  • Online abuse is often done by mobs. It gives people a sense of belonging and community, even if it’s built around harming others. Influential people speaking out against abuse can help sway public opinion and reduce mob behavior.

  • Disinformation and false narratives fuel online abuse by making targets seem less human and more villainous. We need to be skeptical of information online and cautious about spreading unverified claims.

  • Most people who engage in online abuse think they are the “good guys” fighting some kind of villain. Dehumanization allows them to rationalize harmful behavior against a “villainous” target. We are all susceptible to this kind of thinking.

  • It’s dangerous to divide people into “good” and “bad.” The same people who condemn abuse in some cases may cheer it on in others against those they deem deserving. Mob mentality makes it hard for people to reflect on their actions.

  • Diffusing responsibility allows people to participate in harmful collective behavior without feeling personally accountable. But everyone who joins in plays a role, even if small.

  • The writer believes no one deserves to face harassment or abuse, even if they have engaged in harmful behavior themselves. “Justice” is not found in mob vigilantism. Past mistakes, if owned and apologized for, should not forever damn someone. The focus should be on current and future behavior.

  • Institutions are largely failing to prevent online abuse. In the meantime, victims can practice good “digital hygiene,” be cautious sharing personal information, know how to report harassment, and build support systems. The story doesn’t end at waiting for top-down solutions. Grassroots work and community support also help.

• Practice good digital hygiene like using strong, unique passwords for your accounts and enabling two-factor authentication whenever possible. This makes it much harder for someone to access your accounts.

• Be aware of what personal information about you is available online. Do searches for your name, address, phone number, etc. and see what comes up. Make sure social media profiles and websites where you’ve shared information have strong privacy settings.

• Remove unused apps and services connected to your social media accounts. These can be security risks if compromised.

• Turn off geotagging on social media posts to hide your location.

• Choose nonsensical security questions and passphrases instead of information that can be easily found online.

• If accounts or personal information have already been compromised, prioritize your physical safety first. Change passwords immediately and enable two-factor authentication. Freeze credit reports and monitor accounts closely. Report serious threats to the police.

• There are no easy answers in responding to online abuse and threats. Seek help from victim advocacy organizations which can offer additional advice and resources. Your safety and well-being should be the top priority.

• Take threats and doxing seriously. Ensure your safety by staying with friends, locking down accounts, and contacting authorities if needed.

• Handle sensitive information, like home addresses or financial accounts, as top priority. Act quickly to lock down or monitor for attacks.

• Feeling fear, anxiety, anger, or helplessness is normal and valid. The response depends on the individual and information involved. Marginalized groups may face higher risk of violence.

• Consider precautions like warning police about potential SWATing or using tools to block harassers. Reporting abuse is a personal choice that depends on the situation and possible retaliation. Provide documentation if reporting.

• Going public also carries risks and rewards that depend on the individual and audience. Staying silent or denying information confirms the attack was successful to harassers. Prepare for verification attempts on posted information.

• Coping with the emotional impact is challenging. It’s normal to feel upset or struggle, even with experience. Putting the needs of others first, rewatching shows, misjudging risks of cutting people out are common mechanisms for surviving ongoing abuse. There are no easy answers, only doing your best each day.

• The hardest part is figuring how to keep going in the face of despair. There is no “right” way to feel or single method for overcoming. Find what works for your situation and needs. Connecting to a community or cause can help establish purpose, but self-care is also vitally important.

That covers the key points around handling threats, securing information, coping emotionally, and finding the will to continue during sustained abuse. The summary touches on why certain reactions or decisions may be normal and how to approach them in a healthy way. There are no simple fixes but focusing on safety, self-care, and community can help establish strength and purpose. Please let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of the summary.

• The author suffers from PTSD due to abuse from an ex-partner. She requires a high dosage of medication to cope with violent nightmares and flashbacks. On bad days, she screams into her motorcycle helmet while riding to escape.

• There is no “right” way to react to abuse. Feeling hurt, scared, numb, or overwhelmed are all normal reactions. Comparing one’s experience to others’ is unhelpful. Online abuse is unacceptable no matter the degree.

• Self-care is important. Breaking from obsessively monitoring abuse, talking to others with similar experiences, counseling, mindfulness exercises, humor, and hobbies can all help.

• Leaving the situation that is causing harm is sometimes the healthiest choice. This requires strength and should not be a source of guilt or shame. Community support is the biggest factor in recovering from abuse.

• The author continues to face abuse out of stubbornness and not knowing what else to do. Backing down would go against her personality and history. She urges readers to do whatever they need to live their lives. Help from others makes coping possible.

• Online harassment can be a form of PTSD, as it is ongoing with no escape. The “P” for “post” does not really apply. Professional help, community support, and self-care are all essential. There are many coping strategies to try, and different ones work for different people.

• The author uses humor and the absurdity in her situation as a way to stay sane, though this method does not work for everyone. Finding comedy in tragedy can be empowering for some.

• Leaving an abusive situation takes strength. There should be no guilt or shame for putting one’s health and safety first. Rebuilding one’s life is difficult work that requires courage.

Does this summary accurately reflect the key points and overall message? Let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of the summary.

  • It’s important to take proactive steps to protect yourself online, but avoiding harm is better than mitigating it. Use the connectivity of the internet to build support networks and community-based solutions to curb abuse. Shift the burden from victims to the community and make abuse unacceptable.

  • Be cautious in your approach. Know the issues, get consent, and avoid making the situation worse. Different people have different needs, so listen to what those targeted actually want. Don’t let your desire to help outweigh the needs of those you want to help.

  • Intersectionality matters. Abuse disproportionately targets and impacts marginalized groups in specialized ways. Solutions that work for privileged groups may not work for others. Focus on the people with the least power and privilege.

  • Listen to a diversity of voices. One person’s experience does not represent the whole issue. Seek out perspectives from marginalized groups and those with different life experiences from your own. Share and spread this information.

  • Marginalized groups can help each other by sharing information about threats, solutions, and tactics. This makes communities more resilient. What impacts one group may impact others, so cooperation and sharing knowledge is valuable.

  • Some suggestions for helping: consider the well-being and privacy of victims, don’t spotlight or further share abusive content directed at someone, report abusive behavior to the proper channels, show public support for victims, and encourage bystanders to speak up against abuse. Provide resources and help connect people to support systems.

The key takeaway is that we need to work together, especially marginalized groups, to curb abuse. Listen, share information, build solutions together, and make the internet inhospitable to abusers. Support victims and prioritize their needs above all else. Abuse should not be tolerated or normalized. Collective action and a change in culture are needed.

• Good intentions aren’t enough. Think about the impact and unintended consequences of your actions before posting on social media. Do not add to someone’s stress or overwhelm them with multiple replies.

• Disable the “reply all” function to avoid escalating harassment. Do not provoke or argue with harassers, as this often makes the abuse worse.

• Offer meaningful support like self-care, money, platform security, or promoting the person’s work. Listening and signal-boosting their voices are helpful. Sharing stories of people’s pain and misery is less so. Provide a content warning if sharing distressing news.

• Be aware of what you share and why. Check facts and consider the motivations behind sharing shocking or salacious stories. Delete and issue a correction if you share false information. Do not spread nonconsensual intimate images or details of abuse.

• Law enforcement and vigilantism are not always the answer and can further harm victims. The legal system is flawed and can retraumatize. Do not take the law into your own hands.

• Take care of yourself to avoid secondary trauma and compassion fatigue. Make sure you are in a place to help before assisting others. Do not make victims support you emotionally. Your needs matter too.

• Always obtain consent before helping or speaking on someone else’s behalf. Different people need different types of support. There is no one-size-fits-all solution.

• Promote marginalized voices and the work they produce, not just stories of their suffering. Share the good as well as the bad. Emotional whiplash results from only amplifying pain.

• Listen and make space for others to speak. Do not dominate conversations about communities you do not belong to. Elevate and learn from those with lived experience.

• Tailor your help to the specific person and situation. Consider your relationship and their needs.

• For close friends, offer practical help like improving online security, reporting harassment, documenting abuse, etc. Avoid being alarmist. Give them agency and respect their wishes.

• Suggest doing an enjoyable activity together to help distract them. Respect if they want alone time. Don’t pressure them if they can’t participate.

• Listen without judgment. Validate their feelings. Don’t try to minimize the abuse or tell them not to let it affect them.

• For acquaintances or strangers, send a kind message of support. Keep it light and don’t expect a response. Mention something you admire about them. Avoid explaining the situation or asking them to educate you.

• Don’t make assumptions or think you know someone just because of what happened to them. Avoid unsolicited advice. Simply offer resources that could be helpful.

• Don’t give the abusers credit for turning you on to the person or their work. Don’t link the abuse and their visibility or accomplishments.

• Share positive info and resources on social media to make the platforms better and more supportive. Promote empathy and understanding.

• Provide information about tools and resources to help combat online abuse without burdening the targets. This helps protect privacy and consent. Signal boost underrepresented voices and projects. Get permission before sharing someone’s content.

• Speak up against abusive behavior and misinformation. Say something to the person directly or report them. Focus on specific behaviors, not labeling someone as “good” or “bad.” Approach issues with the goal of rehabilitation and helping targets. Do not engage with those acting in bad faith.

• Be aware of and protect the privacy of friends and contacts. Let them know if public posts may compromise their security. Be secure yourself so you are not an attack vector.

• Talk to other bystanders. Share concerns, process feelings, and strategize solutions together.

• Support targets of abuse. Gently check in on them and encourage self-care. Validate your identity when contacting them. Let them define what happened to them. Do not treat them like a spectacle.

• Learn from your mistakes. Apologize and do better when you mess up. Focus on specific behaviors that were problematic. Do not argue or try to prove you are not a bad person. Commit to change.

• Everyone should help combat abuse and make the internet safer. Targets cannot do this work alone. Provide support at whatever level you are able. Make online communities and the world better through your own conduct. Institutions are slow to change, so people must lead the way.

• No one person can fix everything, so focus on the holes you can patch to make a difference. Helping others also helps you heal. Together, people have the power to improve the internet and protect marginalized groups. But progress requires a collective effort at multiple levels.

The key points are educating others, preventing abuse, supporting and protecting targets of abuse, improving conduct and online communities, and people coming together to drive change on these issues. Overall, the message is one of empowerment that through collective action, individuals can make a real difference. But change requires ongoing work and commitment at both individual and community levels.

  • The author was subjected to severe online harassment and abuse, known as GamerGate, that destroyed her career and life as she knew it.

  • She became an anti-abuse activist to help others in similar situations and gain a sense of purpose, but found the work exhausting and emotionally draining over time. She had to suppress much of her personality and feelings to be effective.

  • Though she helped many individuals, she felt like the underlying issues remained and systemic change was needed. She grew frustrated with the lack of real progress and support from companies and organizations she worked with.

  • She wanted to return to her creative work making games, but struggled with it for a long time, thinking that part of her life was over. However, she had a breakthrough and was able to start working on a game she had envisioned before the harassment began.

  • The photo shows her during filming for that first game, which is about “leaning in to the skids of your failure and learning how to love yourself for your flaws.” Though the abuse and its impacts remain, she found a way to reclaim a part of her old creative life.

  • The summary suggests that while recovering from severe trauma can be an ongoing process, there is still room for hope, growth, and reclaiming one’s identity. Moving on, even in small ways, is possible.

Does this summary accurately reflect the key details and main takeaways from the story? Let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand the summary in any way.

  • The author was able to return to her work as a game developer and comedian after years of online harassment and abuse. Though it was difficult, she found her creative voice again and collaborated with others in her field.

  • She remained friends with her ex Alex, who had stood by her during the harassment. Though they broke up, they reconciled their friendship. She says the people who stood by her through everything are now like family.

  • Though life has improved, the author still experiences episodic harassment and difficulties. She worries about the political environment and rise of figures like Trump who she believes profited off and encouraged abuse like what she experienced.

  • However, the author remains determined to support and help others who experience similar abuse and trauma. She knew all along that people in power often fail to understand or act on these issues. But she has found community with other activists and survivors.

  • Overall, the author seems to have reached a place of “calm acceptance,” though difficulties still arise. But through her work, relationships, and advocacy, she has found meaning and purpose again.

I’m afraid I couldn’t find what information you were requesting about “ans, points, grades and rank on factors like usefulness, clarity, politeness, etc.” Can you clarify what you were looking for? I apologize for the confusion.

Here is a summary of the resources:

  • Coral Project: A collaborative journalism organization that builds open-source tools to help newsrooms better engage with their communities.

  • Crash Override’s Resource Center: Provides resources and support for victims of online harassment. Offers guides on digital and physical security.

  • Cyber Civil Rights Initiative: Aims to combat nonconsensual pornography and online harassment through legislation, education, and advocacy.

  • The Debunking Handbook: A guide to debunking misinformation by presenting facts and evidence. Published by Skeptical Science.

  • Decent Security: Provides resources and education for journalists, activists and organizations to improve their digital security.

  • HeartMob: A resource to report and address online harassment. Offers support groups and empowerment.

  • Prison Culture: A blog focused on issues surrounding incarceration and the criminal legal system. Run by Mariame Kaba, an organizer and educator.

  • Southern Poverty Law Center: A nonprofit organization monitoring hate groups and other extremists in the U.S. Aims to combat racism and bigotry through litigation, education and advocacy.

  • Speak Up & Stay Safe(r): A digital resource with education and strategies to address online harassment, published by Feminist Frequency.

  • TrollBusters: Volunteers who work to combat online harassment by reporting abusive accounts and behavior. They aim to make social media safer through community support.

  • Women’s Media Center Speech Project: Works to expand women’s freedom of expression and access to public debate. Provides research, advocacy and education on online harassment, access and representation.

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About Matheus Puppe