Kotaku wasn’t the first to report about the NeoGaf sexual misconduct scandal. They weren’t the second, nor the third. In fact, Kotaku was one of the last sites to report on the NeoGaf scandal over the course of the weekend, following behind sites like ComicBook.com, PlayStation LifeStyle, and even USGamer.net. Many gamers took to social media to ridicule Kotaku for being slow on the draw, publishing the article just past dusk on October 22nd, 2017, a full day after the events transpired at NeoGaf.
Across social media gamers used the trending NeoGaf tag to mock Kotaku for being late on reporting the issue, especially since Jason Schreier — one of Kotaku’s journalists — was a frequent poster on NeoGaf. Some posters even considered him as one of NeoGaf’s own.
Gamers on social media did not consider Schreier to be one of their own…
RollingStone has picked up the story no word from Polygon or Kotaku maybe because they get their stories from Neogafhttps://t.co/OaLxQSXaRT
— AtlasSighed (@Based_ReTodd) October 22, 2017
— Moor Knutts (@m0rnutz) October 22, 2017
Can’t say I’m surprised that Kotaku, Polygon, & IGN are acting like the NeoGAF meltdown didn’t happen.
— Austen Parkin (@broodwars64) October 22, 2017
When the article did arrive it was put together by Cecilia D’Anastasio and edited by long-time NeoGaf frequenter, Jason Schreier.
When originally asked why Schreier didn’t immediately write-up an article covering the topic because he was traveling Las Vegas at the time.
The allegations about NeoGAF’s owner sexually harassing women are horrifying. I’ve been traveling all weekend but Kotaku is investigating.
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) October 22, 2017
When the article did go live a lot of people began questioning Kotaku why these allegations weren’t addressed originally during the Q&A Kotaku held with NeoGaf owner Tyler “Evilore” Malka? Especially since these allegations are years old.
— strelok (@notstrelok) October 22, 2017
Kotaku’s Jason Schreier knew of the sexual assault allegations against NeoGAF’s owner, Tyler Malka, but never asked him about it. pic.twitter.com/zFUrJ8iO8k
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) October 22, 2017
Sub-Reddit Kotaku in Action spotted Schreier’s reply in the comment about not addressing these allegations earlier, especially during the Q&A Scherier conducted with Malka back on April 10th, 2015, a year after Malka had come under fire previously for other allegations regarding sexual misconduct. Schreier attempts to shift the blame to brigaders, saying that’s why he didn’t originally ask Malka about the claims back in 2015, writing…
“I’ve seen Gamergate cretins accusing me of wanting to protect Malka because we had him on Kotaku for an AMA a couple of years ago and I didn’t pay close attention to the comments, many of which brought up the Spain post and other allegations. Earlier today I went back and checked my history and found that back then there was a brigade post on the vile, racist website “NeoFAG.” From what I remember, I assumed those were horrible people just trying to get a rise out of Malka and Kotaku. (There’s also a lot of misunderstanding floating around about the way Kotaku comments work — during an AMA, the person answering questions is the one who filters and answers them. We don’t force people to answer questions they don’t want to answer.)
“It’s a bit frustrating to see people accusing me of trying to protect Malka when I’ve spent half my weekend on this story, while traveling to and from Las Vegas for a book festival at that. (I just helped edit this article from the airport and am actually on the plane right now.) Needless to say, I did not and would never try to cover up anything like this.”
Some questioned why brigaders would dissuade Schreier from asking Malka about the sexual assault allegations?
Others became emboldened by the excuse and took Schreier to task over not being more stern about the sexual misconduct claims that had embroiled the image of NeoGaf’s owner in a stew of disrepute.
Maybe next time do an actual AMA and your job, instead of filtering out the shit you don’t want to hear.
— Joe Themig (@TheMig29) October 22, 2017
A few people defended Kotaku and Schreier for their reasoning of not pursuing the matter further, but many saw it as being hypocritical given Kotaku’s strong stance on being a “Progressive” website and pushing for very specific Liberal viewpoints within their content.
I’ve read Jason’s replies and this article, and I can tell you with confidence:
Kotaku knew. About all of it.
— João Santos (@TGJVS) October 22, 2017
Others saw the emperor with no clothes, and immediately took no qualms about bluntly calling out how small and uncouth Kotaku appeared in the public eye.
Basking deep in boiled spite, the community lashed out at Kotaku across social media for being less the vanguard of social justice and more the safeguard for the socially unjust.
After hearing about the sexual assaults at Neogaf and burying that shit, let me bluntly just say fuck Kotaku.
— Sam At Pumpkin Hill (@Brutuxan) October 22, 2017
Bullshit. Evilore admitted to groping women on Neogaf and you turned a blind eye to that and the other allegations. Gaming “Journalism.”
— sarah winters (@tribalsarah2) October 22, 2017
The court of public opinion did not slam the gavel down favorably on Kotaku’s behalf.
Impressions of cover-ups and cronyism lined the thoughts of an audience who presumably felt fed up with the status quo of perceived corruption.
I attempted to reach out to Jason Schreier for comment on whether he would ask Malka about the previous sexual misconduct allegations, but he has me blocked on Twitter.