Difference between revisions of "David Auerbach"
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Revision as of 08:38, 25 January 2018
David Auerbach is a writer and software engineer. He has worked for both Microsoft and Google, and is currently a columnist at Slate.com, as well as being a contributing editor for the American Reader. He has written multiple articles upon subjects such as anonymity, GamerGate, gaming culture, and his personal experiences as a Wikipedia editor.
He was one of the five participants in the Al Jazeera Gamergate debate.
On 27 August, 2014, Auerbach wrote an article about the Quinnspiracy scandal. In the article, he addressed the scandal with undisguised skepticism. Nevertheless, he recognized and disapproved of the censorship that many sites such as 4chan, Reddit, and Kotaku were imposing upon any and all Quinnspiracy-related discussions. Additionally, he made careful mention of the positive outcomes of the controversy, highlighting things such as the then-$13,000 in donations that The Fine Young Capitalists had accrued from a wide variety of gamers. However, he also made fair note of the negative outcomes, citing the harassment, hacking, and doxing being perpetrated by both sides. He blamed this impropriety on a handful of internecine trolls, which he hastened to remind were not in any way exemplary of the viewpoints or conduct of either side. Lastly, he suggested that it would be more conversationally effectual to focus the discussion upon gaming journalism, as he believed that the allegations against Zoe Quiin were secondary to it, and that people discussing the issue should do so with civility and simultaneous protest towards the illicit tactics practiced by many of the third parties who regularly pretended to represent the opinions of the competing sides. 
Role in Gamergate
Articles about GamerGate
On September 04, 2014. Auerbach wrote an article entitled "Gaming journalism is over", in which he addresses just how detached the gaming press had become from its ostensible audience, the gamers themselves. To substantiate this, he cited the poor quality that pervaded the vast majority of the news articles written by the gaming media within the last few years, as well as the listless and generally spiteful attitude the medium had adopted towards its audience. The article then went on to describe just how gamers noticed this, and explains their general absconding to Youtube reviewers and streamers. It cites this sudden decline in popularity as the impetus behind the 'gamers are over' incident.
On October 28, 2014. Auerbach wrote an article in which he explained why he felt GamerGate should be ended. His main reason was that it gave trolls an easy way to evade responsibility for their actions by making GamerGate their scapegoat. He analyzed the multiple sides that comprised the "pro-gg" and "anti-gg" movements, and suggested to both outside journalists and the gaming media themselves that they should appeal to the moderates inside GamerGate, accept that gaming journalism is in dire need of reform, listen to their petitions, and abandon all gendered mudslinging, wishing to end the debate before further trolling could claim another victim.
Articles about Wikipedia's bias
On December 11, 2014, Auerbach wrote about the hostility that Wikipedia's admins and older editors frequently levied at newcomers, underscoring the elitist agenda-forwarding that allowed older editors to intentionally and repeatedly break the rules without receiving any kind of punitive action. Later on, he recounted a recent experience he had had with Wikipedia. As he was browsing Wikipedia one day, he happened upon a misquotation accredited to him, and decided to ameliorate it, an action to which an editor named ryulong--and several others--took particular exception to. They responded with unchecked aggression, alleging that Auerbach had made multiple threats against them. This was taken to such an extreme that Jimmy Wales himself had to intervene in Auerbach's defense. Afterwards, Auerbach learned that the editor's actions had gone unpunished, as they were members what other Wikipedia editors called "The unblockables".
I recently delved into the wild and wooly realm of Wikipedia editing, which helped me appreciate just how unique and byzantine its environment is. A controversial edit of a page attributed views to me I would never hold, and when I tried to correct the misinformation, several recalcitrant editors attacked me until Wales himself stepped in and saner editors prevailed and fixed the error. (To them, I am grateful.) As it turned out, I’d run into a couple of what one Wikipedia administrator terms “The Unblockables,” a class of abrasive editors who can get away with murder because they have enough of a fan club within Wikipedia, so any complaint made against them would be met with hostility and opprobrium.
— David Auerbach
Wikipedia's 'reliable sources'
On February 05, 2015, He wrote another article about Wikipedia, this time addressing the unreliability of wikipedia's research. Citing numerous examples of how erroneous information had been taken as veracious simply because it was released by sources that Wikipedia considered 'reliable', it aimed to expose the lack of credibility that encompassed many of Wikipedia's GG articles. The article included the most recent case regarding Gamergate's arbcom, which was fallaciously construed by The Guardian as "wikipedia purging feminist editors". Despite being wrong, Wikipedia had to take it as fact, due to The Guardian's 'reliable source' status.
Al Jazeera Gamergate Debate
David Auerbach was one of five participants in the Al Jazeera Gamergate debate, discounting the Al Jazeera moderator.
last modified on 22 February 2015, at 22:31.</li>