David Pakman

Host of the syndicated political talk show that ebars his name, broadcast for radio, television and online.

 

Involvement with Gamergate

Pakman joined the discussion when he started doing interviews with several key figures from Gamergate starting late October 2014:

Others were invited on the show but their interviews didn’t come to pass for various reasons:

  • Stephen Totilo, who on 31 October was invitated via Twitter and politely declined [1]https://archive.today/v1exp
  • Zoe Quinn, who on 31 October was invited via Twitter, accused him of “public pressure” and enabling a “hate group”, among other claims from her and her peers, especially Alex Lifschitz. Please see the sections below for more details
  • Oliver Campbell, scheduled to be interviewed on 3 November, cancelled it [2]https://archive.today/QPKfW

Public reception of Gamergate interviews

Pakman’s very first piece on Gamergate, Brianna Wu’s interview, immediately drew criticism from the anti-GG side.

Brianna Wu’s criticism

Wu considered Pakman, who had so far not made any pronunciations on Gamergate, of being biased against her. During the interview itself, at about the 20:52 mark, she accuses Pakman of running a hit piece on her [3]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETVcInunAss.

Totalbiscuit commented on this on the Youtube, stating that she seemed to expect the interview to be a platform for her to uncritically expose her side and was surprised when Pakman contested her claims and put her on the spotlight:

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Soon after the interview, Wu took to Twitter to further her criticism of Pakman, whom she claimed was putting her “on trial” for being a victim [4]https://archive.today/T4cqM, fitting with the anti-GG narrative that casts Gamergate as a harassment campaign:

wu2

She ends her diatribe by announcing she will “answer all these tough question [sic]” soon in an interview with journalist Glenn Fleishman. A few facts not mentioned in that Twitter conversation are that Fleishman is a friend of Wu’s since before Gamergate or the “Quinnspiracy” controversy that preceded it [5]https://archive.today/3izMF [6]https://twitter.com/search?q=from%3Aglennf%20to%3ASpacekatgal and donated to the Kickstarter of her game Revolution 60 [7]https://archive.today/3qEvW#selection-463.0-463.15, whereas Wu has collaborated twice to Fleishman’s publication, The Magazine [8]https://archive.today/CQ6Yp [9]https://archive.today/3w6os and donated to two of his Kickstarters [10]https://archive.today/EXQU2. Thus Fleishman’s bias in the interview is a foregone conclusion [11]https://archive.today/wEkiA, as was his open stance against Gamergate as whole [12]https://archive.today/FLFlq.

Milo Yiannopoulos gets involved

Yiannopoulos took umbrage at supposed lies about him that Wu said in Pakman’s interview [13]https://archive.today/8Q7Ms [14]https://archive.today/yusbO [15]https://archive.today/9TMM9. This eventually led to more misunderstangs, explained on their respective pages.

Ben Kuchera’s preventive refusal

On 31 October, after receiving Totilo’s recusal for an interview, David Pakman lamented that they were having trouble finding anti-GG people to be on the show [16]https://archive.today/4oHHz. After a random commenter suggested he ask Ben Kuchera, the latter preventively recused himself with a peculiar message that compared Gamergate to creationists [17]https://archive.today/7N7dU. This reinforced the anti-GG narrative that GG, as a harassment campaign, has no merit whatsoever and doesn’t even deserve to be debated.

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Zoe Quinn’s invitation

Still on 31 October, as Pakman sought for more anti-GG voices to be interviewed, he tweeted at Zoe Quinn asking if she would like to be interviewed. She immediately responded by accusing him of applying “public pressure” against people [18]https://archive.today/U4oSF especially with GG’s “interference” involved [19]https://archive.today/hurQE, and of legitimizing a “hate group” via a golden mean fallacy [20]https://archive.today/LnIH4, before refusing the offer and requesting further conversations to be in private [21]https://archive.today/5IrEF.

The implication of her accusations, in keeping with the standard anti-GG narrative, is that Gamergate has no valid points and isn’t even worthy of being discussed. As Pakman defended himself from these accusations, she further berated him for not asking in private [22]https://archive.today/b3H77 [23]https://archive.today/qXHmb. He apologized, claiming her replies were appearing out of order because of the software he was using, Hootsuite.

Still later on 31 October, Alex Lifschitz went on a rant because of Pakman’s requests for an interview. It’s pretty much impossible to highlight the most egregious tweets because it was effectively a day-long tantrum [24]https://archive.today/L57Ze.

Regardless, on 1 November Quinn mentioned responded to David Pakman to talk about a possible interview deal in private [25]https://archive.today/39CUy [26]https://archive.today/h0W7V. As of yet, she wasn’t interviewed by Pakman.

Source: 8chan

Source: 8chan

The same day, Pakman mentioned on Twitter how he had received many accusations of “leading a hate mob against women” simply for stating his neutrality regarding GG during the previous day’s fracas with Zoe Quinn [27]https://archive.today/SinMV.

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Wu piles on again

Following the multiple attacks on Pakman that followed the fracas with Zoe Quinn on 31 October, Wu again weighed in against Pakman, accusing him of egocentrism and making this “about him”, which Pakman refuted [28]https://archive.today/zJFEW.

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Arthur Chu’s criticism

The interview with Arthur Chu happened on November 4.

The second and so far last anti-GG figure to be interviewed by Pakman, Arthur Chu already had demonstrated animosity towards Pakman due to perceived victim harassment when offering her an interview [29]https://archive.today/iAFxm [30]https://archive.today/gvlvY.

Chu started openly criticizing Pakman soon after the interview was done [31]https://archive.today/4HzQT, to Pakman’s apparent surprise as he claims they agreed more often than not on the topics discussed. Later Chu claimed that his contention was that “the shows were set up as ‘Gotcha!’ zingers and whaddya know we did a half-hour on zinging me” [32]https://archive.today/6HBsZ, which Pakman denied [33]https://archive.today/qdrBO, without any proof presented by Chu.

Throughtout these Twitter conversations, Chu tries to smear Pakman’s reputation by claiming he is an unethical journalist who owes his career to a 2010 interview with Glenn Miller [34]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNrKqjYfv74 [35]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH93qfvnxls, a white supremacist who came to national attention on 13 April 2014 after a shooting rampage in a Jewish retirement community [36]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overland_Park_Jewish_Community_Center_shooting. Pakman and other Twitter users point out that the interview happened literally years before Miller’s crimes, which makes Chu’s accusations of sensationalism patently false, and moreover the interview tapes were handed as evidence to the FBI. However Chu still insisted that Miller’s 2010 interview and 2014 rampage where the springboard of Pakman’s career, while claiming his feud with Pakman wasn’t due to Gamergate but due to Pakman being only interested in “dirt” on his interviewees.

Days later, Arthur Chu put his contention in more simple, honest terms.

tjrjtyjytj8

Yet a few days later, Chu wrote an article for The Daily Beast against Gamergate. Beside the usual narrative of misogyny and self-denefnse from personal accusations, he took the time to write Pakman “seems to enjoy doing sensationalistic clickbait interviews for the attention and the fireworks, without considering whether they make any positive impact” [37]https://archive.today/u511N. Pakman responded in a tweet that Chu had shown no objections to their research process at the time of the interview but now rants about how it’s “evil” [38]https://archive.today/W8H0j.


Further defamation and David Pakman’s defense

Besides rebuttals on Twitter seen in the section above, David Pakman has saw fit to follow the series of interviews with a few video “editorials” of sorts.

Pakman’s position on Gamergate itself

In the first non-interview video about Gamergate [39]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9fiz35EP2I published on November 10, Pakman clarifies his position on GG itself. Claiming to be accused of bias for both sides and that he accepts neither label, he explains he clearly sees harassment and trolling coming from both sides, states that issues of sexism misogyny clearly exists but has not be presented with evidence that such issues are worse in the gaming industry than elsewhere, and that it’s clear that there’s no doubt about collusion in gaming journalism even tho obviously the field is obviously not a serious matter in the grand scheme of things. In the next video, he clarified that tho neutral in the issue, he sympathized more with the anti-GG side.

CBC misidentification

In the second “editorial” video about GG [40]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kC7s7tfaEc, Pakman shares past instances where he was misidentified in the press (once as a former neo-Nazi, once as a dead gay suicidal teenager), and now it has happened again, thanks to CBC’s piece on Gamergate [41]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELZXPvdH9AY from 13 November.

During the segment, as the voiceover says that Gamergate began as a hashtag for the discussion of ethics in gaming journalism but has degenerated into a harassment campaign, the camera shows tweets and videos of several different people on the pro-GG side. Due to this lack of clarity, it can be implied that these specific people were labeled as either common gamers discussing ethics or harassers, and among the visible people is Greg Pakman. Worse still, the footage of Pakman that they used was precisely his previous video, where he states his neutrality. So the CBC article not only spuriously implies several people might be harassers, but it demonstrates they didn’t do any research at all in showing David Pakman as pro-GG at all.

The third “editorial” video is about CBC’s clarification e-mail to Pakman regarding the use of his image on the segment [42]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_782j_Cev8. It states that they didn’t imply he was a harasser, as his footage appears right as the voiceover mentions “initially a hashtag for the dicussion of ethics…”. However, it also states that his footage was chosen because he was an “early adopter” of GG discussion, which Pakman himself denies, claiming himself a latecomer to the debate. Thus the charge that CBC’s segment was badly researched remained.

ggautoblocker misidentification

During the fiasco of IGDA’s endorsement of the ggautoblocker program, it turned out that David Pakman’s personal twitter, @dpakman, was listed as one of the 10,000+ “harassers” within Gamergate [43]https://archive.today/d7WUG#selection-4902.1-4951.7, despite the fact that his maain account, @davidpakmanshow, had been whitelisted long before [44]https://github.com/freebsdgirl/ggautoblocker/commit/9fe7878983450b33f9fd716ae3799a2bd14b6e68

   [ + ]

1. https://archive.today/v1exp
2. https://archive.today/QPKfW
3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETVcInunAss
4. https://archive.today/T4cqM
5. https://archive.today/3izMF
6. https://twitter.com/search?q=from%3Aglennf%20to%3ASpacekatgal
7. https://archive.today/3qEvW#selection-463.0-463.15
8. https://archive.today/CQ6Yp
9. https://archive.today/3w6os
10. https://archive.today/EXQU2
11. https://archive.today/wEkiA
12. https://archive.today/FLFlq
13. https://archive.today/8Q7Ms
14. https://archive.today/yusbO
15. https://archive.today/9TMM9
16. https://archive.today/4oHHz
17. https://archive.today/7N7dU
18. https://archive.today/U4oSF
19. https://archive.today/hurQE
20. https://archive.today/LnIH4
21. https://archive.today/5IrEF
22. https://archive.today/b3H77
23. https://archive.today/qXHmb
24. https://archive.today/L57Ze
25. https://archive.today/39CUy
26. https://archive.today/h0W7V
27. https://archive.today/SinMV
28. https://archive.today/zJFEW
29. https://archive.today/iAFxm
30. https://archive.today/gvlvY
31. https://archive.today/4HzQT
32. https://archive.today/6HBsZ
33. https://archive.today/qdrBO
34. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNrKqjYfv74
35. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH93qfvnxls
36. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overland_Park_Jewish_Community_Center_shooting
37. https://archive.today/u511N
38. https://archive.today/W8H0j
39. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9fiz35EP2I
40. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kC7s7tfaEc
41. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELZXPvdH9AY
42. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_782j_Cev8
43. https://archive.today/d7WUG#selection-4902.1-4951.7
44. https://github.com/freebsdgirl/ggautoblocker/commit/9fe7878983450b33f9fd716ae3799a2bd14b6e68
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