[Update:] Buzzfeed is reporting that after reaching out to Vice for comment about the matter, a source told them that Vice decided to no longer utilize the services of Sam Kriss. He’s effectively relieved from all duties at the online outlet.
[Original Article:] Sam Kriss, a journalist for Vice and The Guardian, recently was accused of sexual misconduct. During the trend of the Twitter moment #MeToo — a hashtag designed to allow victims to tell their story of sexual abuse, assault or harassment — a victim of unwanted sexual advances posted up her story, which is currently archived on Imgur. The story implicated Kriss as the culprit of unwanted sexual conduct, and upon hearing about this story, Kriss took to Medium to apologize for his sexual misbehavior.
In the Medium Post, Kriss briefly takes time to address the lengthy account of his alleged sexual harassment of another peer, writing…
“Today an allegation of sexual harassment and aggression was made against me, and I want to address it here. My behaviour was absolutely unacceptable, beneath both me and especially the person involved, and there’s no excuse for it. I’ve apologised privately to her, and I’m apologising, publicly, now.”
In the original post, the woman explained how she had encountered Kriss a couple of times before, and decided to invite him out to the theater. She recounts how all night long he mostly did nothing but kiss and grope her, and on a few occasions forcibly commit to publicly fondling her. Kriss doesn’t deny these allegations, but instead attempts to justify why he thought they would be okay, writing…
“I’d like for a moment to add some conext to the events described, which I hope will make them more explicable if not more excusable. By the time of the night described in the accusation, she and I had, as she mentions, previously met twice and we had an existing sexual relationship. The behaviour she describes was informed by that fact. I wasn’t fully aware of how unwelcome my advances were at that point: we had been messaging intimately and frequently up until then, and I went into the evening thinking it would be a continuation of the relationship we had already established.”
Before that evening, the victim explained that she had only met Kriss two times before that. She did not explain in detail exactly how intimate they were, or what sort of rules of engagement they had established beforehand. Even still, due to being in the same circle of cohorts and peers, the victim wanted to avoid angering Kriss for fear of putting her own social and occupational prospects in danger, especially since she mentions that they both existed on the “Marxist far-left”. In fact she explains her reluctance in outright rejecting him due to him having powerful friends, where she writes…
“How can I get away without pissing him off? Sam [Kriss] and I know lots of mutual people, we both exist on the Marxist far-Left. He’s a writer for Vice, the Guardian, various other lets, he circulates around Momentum, and I didn’t want ‘any trouble’ then or later. Sam is, by his own words, from an incredibly wealthy, well-connected background, and therefore compared to me, very powerful.”
The Marxist far-Left is also strongly associated with third-wave feminism, and attracts lots of male feminists, some of whom have been readily exposed as sexual aggressors, harassers, or in some cases actual rapists.
Many of these male feminists, and those accused of sexual misconduct, have also been strongly aligned as anti-#GamerGate. The original consumer revolt was a movement against unethical behavior in media journalism, and a call for better practices in the media industry. It’s become a systematic pattern lately to see many of the critics, pundits and journalists who opposed the movement to eventually get exposed as misogynists, rapists, and sexual deviants. Sam Kriss is no exception to the rule, and is also an avid anti-#GamerGate critic.
B-VolleyBall-Ready from Kotaku in Action spotted the accusation, the apology and his anti-#GamerGate criticisms, as depicted below.
probably the funniest gamergate hangover is right-wing weirdos pretending to have incredibly exacting standards for objective journalism
— Sam 🐄 Kriss (@sam_kriss) August 25, 2016
to be honest i don’t understand what #gamergate is so upset about. i played depression quest. it’s not that hard. i beat depression quest
— Sam 🐄 Kriss (@sam_kriss) November 6, 2014
hey #GamerGate i am a published video games journalist and i hate all self-identified gamers. i will destroy you & you can’t stop me
— Sam 🐄 Kriss (@sam_kriss) September 1, 2014
There’s actually an entire archive of tweets dating back years, since 2014, of Kriss antagonizing and criticizing #GamerGate.
It wasn’t just sentiments shared across social media, however. Kriss took the opportunity (and platform) of outlets like Vice to mislabel and denigrate #GamerGate, writing in a piece that was published on August 17th, 2016…
“Free speech here doesn’t really mean free speech. These are, after all, people from the same alt-right milieu who in ” Gamergate” threw an extended tantrum over video-game journalists writing things they didn’t approve of, with the implicit prescription that these things should not be allowed to be written, and then another one over an all-women Ghostbusters film, with the implicit prescription that this film should not be allowed to have been made.”
Given the fact that Kriss’ apology was just recently published on October 17th, 2017, we have yet to see if The Guardian or Vice will take action against one of their writers being involved in a sexual harassment case. Various other male feminists and journalists who have been accused of similar forms of misconduct have been fired or relieved from their positions.
If Vice or the Guardian decides to take action, we’ll be sure to update the story.
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