Last week on Thursday night, Friday morning, at 12:25am August 26th, 2016, an anonymous user sent a media press package out containing the Skype chat logs that were leaked from the abuse specialist organization, Crash Override Network. The package contained an outlined, bullet point presentation of the chat log contents, informing journalists how they could run stories and what some of the highlights were of the text. The logs were sent to most major gaming and pop-culture online outlets.
The citizen journalist who sent the e-mail, signing the message as Anonymous, explained that no nefarious means were used to acquire the logs and pointed out that personal information that could be used to harass the individuals were redacted, writing…
“No hacking was involved in the obtaining of the leak, a member of the group approached us with it and we combed the logs for relevant information and redacted phone numbers, addresses and other such data (you can find these by searching for the word redacted).”
The press were notified in the e-mail that they would have exclusive access to the chat logs 24 hours ahead of a public release that would take place on various free-speech platforms. For those not in the loop, the full chat logs are currently available through sites like 8chan and Reddit. So yes, some of the major gaming sites out there had access to these logs well ahead of the public.
One Angry Gamer was included amongst a list of other notable outlets, including:
- Kotaku (both their tips e-mail and Stephen Totilo’s personal address were given the heads-up)
- Niche Gamer,
- Rock, Paper, Shotgun,
- The Escapist Magazine
Various journalists such as Ian Miles Cheong, David Auerbach and Cathy Young were also contacted.
The message also contained graphs, showcasing how much each individual from the chat logs posted and what frequency they had in using the logs. You can view the images below in case you haven’t seen the graphs that were posted up on 8chan or Reddit.
Essentially all of the individuals in the e-mail chain and the sites listed above were put on blast by the anonymous individual as a “call to arms” to investigate the matter.
One of the entries at the top of the e-mail points out how Randi Harper, the infamous headliner behind the GG Autoblocker, was spearheading efforts to get people fired from their jobs, as outlined in a piece recently published here at One Angry Gamer…
“Randi Harper of Online Abuse Prevention Initiative doxed a Facebook group in the chat. CON (partnered with Twitter-Support) members celebrate and discuss how they can get people fired. Katherine Cross of Feminist Frequency praises Harper for doing this.
“CON members discuss that one of their goals is to make it so “GamerGaters” are fired and never find work again.
“In one particularly egregious case, they reported a disabled purple heart recipient for nothing other than disagreeing with them.”
The press package even neatly highlighted some topics that have been commonly reported on by some sites, such as Jezebel’s obsession with gender politics. The e-mail laid out one particular scenario that should be right up the site’s alley, with the anonymous tipster writing…
“CON lied about the involvement of Rob Marmolejo (@UnseenPerfidy), who was recently accused of having sexually harassed up 20 women, while working for CON.”
The press package is very short and very to the point, containing various highlighted topics from within the chat logs that would gel with the topical themes of specific websites and their categorical reporting.
Previously, Michael Koretzky from the Society of Professional Journalists, advised those in #GamerGate to spoon-feed journalists the information in easy-to-digest formats and with press packages that basically does all the work for them. The e-mail pertaining to the Crash Override Network leaks is basically a spoon-fed template for constructing an article around the various topics highlighted within the chat logs.
Whether or not other media outlets will actually pick up the info and run with it is a completely different story, but some outlets have already begun reporting on the leaks.
With Jezebel and Polygon having praised Crash Override Network in such a lovingly fashion in the past, one has to wonder if they will highlight the network’s members shortcomings when it comes to advocating doxxing, harassment, attempted blacklisting and corporate sabotage?