When Games Media Forgets The Whole Abuse Thing (The Jimquisition)

When Ubisoft’s horrific history of abuse was exposed last year, it stunned me how quickly games media moved on when it came time to review the latest Assassin’s Creed guff.

Some argue game reviews and coverage of game releases are no place for reminders that said games are published by monsters. I argue they absolutely are, and that it’s ridiculous how quickly some of us want to forget.


  1. Its genuinly shocking that this stuff isn’t shocking anymore.

  2. “We, the undersigned at [Games Website], stand against the allegations at Activision Blizzard and we stand with marginalized workers. Anyway check out this new action bar coming to Diablo 2 Resurrected!”

  3. You know this is gonna be a good Monday when it opens up with “Mr. Forgetful” like that did. That just contains a *_sliver_* of the collective rage against the machine we all have to these coercive companies.

    Steph, as a Far Cry fan turned Far Cry serial pirate, God bless you and your beautiful enby self for continuing to talk about this. If you of all people didn’t talk about it, *_NOBODY_* would have.

  4. Imagine how good our games would be if development studios actually gave workers a normal work week and safe environment

  5. Anyone who still thinks JimSteph is just ‘games reviews’ clearly has no idea about just what it is they actually stand for – it’s LONG SINCE stopped just being about the games on a surface level.

    And we wouldn’t have it any other way now – these companies need exposing, not placating.

  6. The ethical environment behind a product’s creation absolutely has a place in reviews. Ethical sourcing is already a normal part of the discussion in many other industries

  7. A coworker recently left and I found out she reported being sexual harassed and groped by a supervisor. I’m disgusted to hear the other supervisors knew and didn’t want to do anything about it. Due to lack of cooperation by her and lack of evidence (cause the supervisor took her where he knew cameras weren’t watching) nothing is gonna happen to him and everyone is acting like nothing happened.
    I”m writing a letter to my manager and her boss telling them how they need acknowledge what happened protect our remaining female staff. It’ll either do nothing or get me in trouble but I can’t sit by and let this horseshit stand.

  8. “Beating a dead horse” refers to someone who won’t let go of a petty grievance that doesn’t have an effect on people anymore. Abuse in the video game industry has never been rectified, it continues minute to minute. You can’t beat a dead horse if it is alive and sexually assaulting people.

  9. Never give up, never surrender. You’re one of the few journalists of any stripe remaining in the world.

  10. The videogame industry needs a union. Straight up.

  11. And remember: Developers who actually make video games do not get compensated more or less depending on how well the game does or reviews.

  12. The whole “focus on the game and not the abusive company/developer that makes the game” reminds me of how people frequently use “Death of the Author” not so much in a philosophical sense like how it was intended, but to not have to think about the terrible people who create the works of fiction that they like. Feels kind of weak and cowardly, especially since people are prioritizing their own sense of enjoyment over the bigger picture here, most notably supporting these creators/companies through coverage and purchases of their products.

  13. It’s good that someone still talks about holding these people accountable for their actions. No crime should go unpunished and continuously letting those comapnies get away with it is just making things worse – if you show someone that they can get away with it, they’ll keep doing it.
    Good on you James Stefanie, keep up the good work, and thank god for you.

  14. Don’t ever let them forget, Steph. We won’t forget, either.

  15. It’s hilarious that some people say you’re beating a dead horse. If the abuse is still happening, then the horse isn’t fucking dead is it?

    Keep on kicking that horse’s ass, Jim. Someone in this industry has to.

  16. James Stephanie Sterling, I just want to take the time, in case you read this to let you know that while I have had to step back from watching your content(along with many others) due to mental health reasons, I stay subbed because seeing how happy you’ve become, and so see you still fighting not only inspires me but also makes me genuinely happy. I’ve been following your work since The Escapist and I have gotten to watch your journey, I have gotten to see you become a happier person despite all the video game drama and internet bullshit. You have remained passionate, honest and brave through it all.
    Thank you for all the hard work you do. Thank you for being open and honest about yourself and having the willingness to share(On the internet of all places). Thank you for not shying away or letting others silence what needs to be said.
    But most importantly Thank God for you.

  17. From the brave people inside the hellish situations willing to speak, to the diligent and principled journalist who actually speaks truth to power, to the person with a massive platform and massive audience with the integrity to burn Bridges to make sure that the sausage eating public knows exactly what’s going into our mouths…. Love ♥️ and solidarity ✊.

    On an emotional level I can understand why there are so many people who reflexively just want to consume their escapist corporate media uncritically. As the Enby Emperor JSS has put it before, we would all love to not hear about it, but not because we want our heads in the sand. Because we want abusive dick holes to not be in power. We want those at the mercy of others to not be exploited and taken advantage of. We don’t want it to happen in the first place. But in the face of it having happened already and continuing to actively happen now, only a coward chooses comfortable ignorance. To be ignorant to be unknowing is one thing. But to be TOLD, one of your fellow human beings, one of your working class Brothers sisters and enby siblings is suffering untold damage to their body their mind and spirit, and then Choosing to try and forget is bad enough. Going after not the person who is lighting shit on fire but the one raising the alarm that the building is catching on fire and then making excuses for the arsonist? Do you seriously not expect to be burned, either at some point, or again? Or if your responses I’m suffering too, then you should be pissed like the rest of us.

  18. My mind went down a tangent when you started talking about crunch culture, and I’ll have to rewatch this video as I missed most of it in my train of thought, but I’ld like others to be made aware of some details in my tangent train.
    Back in the GameCube, XBox, and PlayStation2 era of gaming – back when rasterization took 3D gaming into what I like to consider as the 2nd generation of 3D gaming – these studios had maybe a few dozen developers usually. It was *Rare* for them to have more than a hundred developers. Games made back then often got relaunched as $20 “Player’s Choice” titles when they were the lucky few to hit a million sales. Games made back then were usually launched in a completed and working state; often contained developer hacks repurposed as cheats; had on-console multiplayer; and never had DLC, updates, microtransactions, live services, etc. Games made back then were usually made in 2-4 years and rarely hit the 5 year mark. Games made back then had far less graphical features, but the tools today are orders of magnitude faster at making the same games. So in the span of 20-ish years our developer studios have increased quintupled the average number of developers per studio; games take double or longer to finish; the tools are faster and more powerful; graphical features have tripled; fidelity expectations have increased in orders of magnitude; and the predatory business models of freemium mobile games have been injected into a business model of pushing games out unfinished at the 5 year mark due to investment law and trying to finish it in the wild.
    I for one want to go back to the GameCube, XBox, and PS2 era of gaming.

  19. It is so tragic that we actually live in a world where Jim Stephanie is told to stop talking about this, not by ActiBlizz marketing people using sock puppet accounts, but by actual individuals who are more interested in their gaming fix, than people’s lives and safety…

  20. I’m one of those people who isn’t your target audience for your aesthetic, your preferred style, or your approach to writing. I think these are all successful for those audiences and am glad you’ve found a consistent style that seems to work for you.

    I say all that to emphasize that I’m here SPECIFICALLY for your continued rigorous look at the horrific conditions of the game industry in order to help me make informed decisions about who makes the games I’m interested in playing and how I can support those affected by those abuses. I’m here for this video and those like it.

    Thanks for continuing to at least put a few thumb tacks in their shoes while we work and hope that nails for their coffins are somewhere down the line.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.