It appears Kotaku is slowly cleaning up its act. It’s been years in the making and required a lot of activism from the part of ethics-driven gamers, but it’s happening. First, Kotaku overhauled their ethics policy at the behest of #GamerGate, and then they improved their reporting standards and journalistic integrity enough so that one of their self-proclaimed journalists managed to win some Kunkel Awards.
Keep in mind that the Kunkel Awards only ever came about because #GamerGate worked with a director from a chapter of the Social of Professional Journalists during the SPJ AirPlay event to discuss ethics in journalism, which eventually led toward the creation of the Kunkel Awards to reward ethical video game journalists for being ethical.
Well, it appears that one of Kotaku’s writers is no longer sticking around, despite the outlet going through an ethical epiphany following the censure from the #GamerGate consumer revolt. Patricia Hernandez has announced that she will be departing from Kotaku this very week.
The news comes courtesy of a tweet from Hernandez that was posted on May 21st, 2018.
I’ll still write about video games. But, I’m also going to be tackling the wider world of pop culture, internet culture, and sex. If you follow my work, this is no surprise: I love writing about people and what things mean, especially in the age of internet / YouTube celebrity.
— Patricia Hernandez (@xpatriciah) May 21, 2018
Hernandez picked up quite the reputation for reporting on games made by people she was romantically involved with while failing to disclose such ties. This happened on multiple occasions as chronicled in her profile on Deep Freeze.
If you were hoping that Hernandez would be gone from gaming for good after working toward smearing people like Cards Against Humanity creator Max Temkin in an article after false accusations of rape surfaced on a social media post, or perpetuating claims of sexual misconduct attached to falsehoods about Stardock Entertainment president Brad Wardell, you hope in vain.
According to journalist Brad Glasgow, Hernandez will be joining fellow intersectional activists at The Verge.
Looks like she’ll be joining The Verge, which already has such esteemed intersectionalists as Feminist Frequency’s Laura Hudson and Katherine Cross.
— Brad Glasgow (@Brad_Glasgow) May 21, 2018
This is actually verified by managing editor at The Verge, T.C. Sottek, who confirmed that Patricia Hernandez will be joining the staff as a culture editor.
Bijan and Patricia are joining an incredible team led by @laura_hudson, and will be covering internet culture, games, and entertainment. I’m excited to see what they do with @dynamofire, who joined us recently as The Verge’s first internet culture editor.
— tc (@chillmage) May 21, 2018
Some gamers question if this was possibly a move by Univision to trim some of the financial fat at Kotaku, or if there are other forces at work going on that potentially forced Hernandez out at Kotaku.
The reasoning behind some believing that Univision is behind this is because there was a recent article that spread through the Gizmodo media circles claiming that Univision was a financial mess and was losing money. The article was published through Gizmodo and spread by Gizmodo and its subsidiaries’ staff back on May 5th, 2018.
If it’s true that Univision is trimming off staff due to financial straits, then Hernandez certainly won’t be the last to leave Kotaku. If it’s in response to certain ethical issues, then we’ll likely never know the whole story because Social Justice Warriors hate attributing ethics-related victories to #GamerGate.
I attempted to reach out to Hernandez for comment, but she has me blocked.
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