Mighty No. 9
Dina Abou Karam
Occupation Community Manager
Dina Abou Karam was the English community manager of Mighty No. 9, a video game under development by Comcept studios, designed to be the spiritual successor of Mega Man, led by Keiji Inafune (the original designer of Mega Man) and funded through Kickstarter. Her responsibilities as community manager include moderation of Mighty No. 9's Facebook account, Twitter account, and the Mighty No. 9 forums (open to Kickstarter backers only).
Dina has been a subject of contention among gamers over the majority of Mighty No. 9's development due to disputes over her initial hiring, her unprofessional and unsatisfactory behavior as community manager, censorship of all GamerGate discussion on the forums, and her antagonistic attitude towards #GamerGate supporters on her personal Twitter account.
Dina was hired as the Mighty No. 9 English community manager shortly after development for Mighty No. 9 began. Many supporters of Mighty No. 9 were wary of her impact on the development of the game as she had previously expressed a desire to change the game's main character from male to female to promote female representation in games and had promoted the notion with a redesign of the main character that was vastly stylistically different from the rest of the game. Additionally, posts from Dina's Twitter account revealed that she had never played a Mega Man game and had only expressed interest in the position due to her friends and “bf” working on the Mighty No. 9 staff. Questions of how she got the job as community manager and what qualified her over other applicants arose among gamers. Apprehension worsened when some vaguely-worded tweets by Dina gave backers the wrong impression that she had become a designer for Mighty No. 9, yet an e-mail from the game company's management team revealed that Dina was not involved in the Mighty No. 9 design process.
When backers for the Mighty No. 9 Kickstarter took their concerns and complaints to the Mighty No. 9 forum (open to backers only), many of their comments were met with vague responses from forum moderators and threads being locked from further discussion. During this time, Dina locked her Twitter and the tweets mentioning her relationships with other Mighty No. 9 staff and her lack of experience with Mega Man games were deleted.
The culmination of Dina's inexperience with the games that Mighty No. 9 celebrates, her desires to change the main character, suspicions of cronyism due to her friends' employment on the development team, and the strict moderation of forum members' concerns caused many backers to request refunds of their funding from the Mighty No. 9 Kickstarter. It is unknown how many refunds were issued and how much money was lost.
GamerGate discussion was disallowed on the Off-Topic boards of the Mighty No. 9 forums and threads on the subject were locked by Dina and other forum moderators due to reasons of character defamation and age-innapropriate discussion, despite the fact that discussions on similar controversies were being allowed.
#GamerGate Supporter Blocked from Mighty No. 9 Twitter
In September and October 2014, Dina became involved in #GamerGate on her personal Twitter account, displaying antagonistic behavior by taunting and lashing out at #GamerGate supporters responding to her tweets and identifying GamerGate as a "faux-movement of thinly veiled misogyny". (Archives )
Although Dina's opinions on #GamerGate were kept to her own Twitter account and were not present on the official Mighty No. 9 Twitter, a Mighty No. 9 backer reported that he had been blocked from the Mighty No. 9 Twitter due to his support of #GamerGate, despite donating $300 to the game's Kickstarter. When confronted about the block, Dina stated that the backer had been blocked from the Mighty No. 9 Twitter because he posted screenshots from the Mighty No. 9 forums publicly, which was a bannable offense. However, no explanation was given as to why he was not banned from just the forums and why the ban extended to the Mighty No. 9 Twitter account as well.