In one sense, I'm not one of those people who takes excessive pride in the labels "geek" and "nerd." They are, or were, juvenile insults, and efforts to reclaim them and make them positive, while well-meaning, often come off as corporate, fake, forced, and cheesy. It also seemed to me that, while I don't mind celebrating my hobbies, it's important to me that I remain humble. That is, a lot of people give "geek" culture a bad rap because they're out there being just as bad as the people who bullied them, belittling other people as dumb or common for not liking the same things as them, or having tastes more aligned with mainstream popularity.
I heard about Petscop from a Game Theory video. The subtitle for the video was, "The Scariest Game You'll Never Play." And I thought instantly, that's bullshit, click-bait. I've deleted tons of crappy emails or scrolled while rolling my eyes past tons of comments of what they call "creepy pasta," that is, cut-and-pasted, internet-circulated horror stories, often having to do with urban legends about haunted video games.
Well, it's been a few years, so "Gamer Gate" has kind of blown over by now. But that's precisely why I feel a pressing need to talk about it. Because, in the thick of it, it was hard to even say "Gamer Gate" without getting tongue-lashed or even censored. Now, hopefully, since "time heals all wounds" we can sit down like reasonable adults and have a reasonable discussion about it. It's worth discussing. We shouldn't try to pretend it didn't happen just because it was ugly and tantrum-y. Both sides raised important arguments and made interesting statements about what they think the "gamer" identity is and should be. These days, to move forward as gamers, we should address the concerns of the critics of the video gaming community. I think we should do this with rational arguments, which were lost to the firebombs of virulent hostility on both sides I witnessed a few years ago.