Author Topic: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts  (Read 282 times)

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Offline Houseman

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The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« on: October 07, 2018, 08:28:10 PM »
Russ Pits, Editor in Chief of Escapist Magazine , and Vice President of Enthusiast Gaming, has been behaving badly as of late. Since he cannot be criticized on his own site (See Rule 1 of The Escapist's Code of Conduct), I would like the opportunity to do so here.

Russ, if you see this, TRIGGER WARNING, this post will contain criticism, something you obviously cannot handle like an adult. You might want hit that little X and go back to your own site where such things are explicitly disallowed.

The Context: Enthusiast bought The Escapist and brought back Russ Pits in his current role. His first statement was to announce that he was leaving politics at the door .

The Event: Shortly after the Escapist site was revamped, an article was published with the title of "I'm a Transgender Woman Because of Video Games". Predictably, many people in the comments pointed out that this is not "leaving politics at the door".

One user in particular objected that this was an "intrusion":



After a brief back-and-forth in which MindTheGap attempted to express his viewpoint, Russ became condescending, prompting another user to come to Mind's defense:



Russ' response, shutting down the conversation:



Now, here's the kicker. See that deleted post? That was MindTheGap asserting that Russ was indeed attacking him, including calling him an idiot in the process, posting the gif that Russ himself used on Twitter while doing so:



Yes, whether or not Russ called someone an idiot is "not a debate". Because it's a fact.

Welcome to the new Escapist, where you can't criticize or "sass" moderators or content contributors, but where the Editor In Chief can be condescending and call you an idiot over twitter. And if you attempt to point any of that out, he'll delete your comments and threaten to ban you.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2018, 10:15:42 PM by Arnox »

Offline Ogoid

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2018, 08:48:59 PM »
I wish I could say I'm surprised.

Mr. Pitts' behavior on display here is the precise reason why I bailed on The Escapist... though I'm sure the "good riddance" feeling is wholly mutual.

Offline Arnox

Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2018, 10:19:26 PM »
An article link was broken. I fixed it for ya' though.

Some of the comments in that article though... And man, Russ is acting SO unprofessional at what he's doing. I mean, I kind of am too, but the difference is, what I say as a user on this site, and what I actually do as an admin are completely separate. In fact, I sometimes think I should probably just leave this account for official duties and use another account for just commenting.

Quote
I was so, so scared to click on the comment section in this article.

Da fuq? This reminds me of the "Internet Hate Machine" scare with Fox News.

-

Quote from: NegativeBurns
(sigh) When ever I see these types of confess/testimonials I roll my eyes.
Despite walking through you own internal struggle at key point of the game
industry releases you own lack of self awareness has cause you to fail to see
or come to the logical conclusion in your own essay. You were Role Playing in a
Fantasy setting. A key observations in this narrative I would have though.

As you state in your own writing, "...feminine coming of age...",
you choose to identify the Games culture interpretation of an artificial social
construct of 'feminine'. There are so many issues here I doubt I have the
patience to enumerate them all and the nuance inherent in each. So in much like
your confessional I'll board brush.

Lets start with some key concepts and words: Sex is binary, male/female,
genetically irrevocable without a very fringe exceptions like hermaphroditism
or disorders in sexual development.

Now whether you choose to conduct yourself or conform to the social norms
that identify you as feminine, masculine, neither, or/and all is choice. Good
on you for whatever you choose.

Now lets get some hard observations out of the way. Unfortunately the
majority of what is identified as 'feminine' in most cultures has been
relegated to passive behaviors and personal/physical weakness. I agree that it
sucks and deeply wrong to try and prescribe these to females just because they
are female, and we should try and do something about it on a social level.

But you took it in a different direction. You don't want to transform what
is 'feminine' but embody it. You want to conform to the social norm of passive
weakness and literally emasculate yourself on this alter of the social
construct of 'feminine'.

And videos games are the inspiration of your self realization? The whole
'art is an imitation of life and life imitates art' thing is only true in so
much of the narrative being described. These are fictional stories in fantasy
worlds that will never and probably should never exist. They are but a facade,
skin deep in creation and necessity. A magic trick is interesting only while
the illusion exists, once it becomes 'real' the glamour fades and the stuff of
dreams evaporates. This escapism nice for a short while, but it is
irresponsible to try and live in it forever. Like a renfaire player living in
the park quoting Shakespeare to joggers and the homeless long after the event
has packed up and gone.

But do as you wish. I would caution you against doing permanent damage to
yourself. The advancements in surgery and medicine are amazing but it is only a
facade.

Russ didn't do anything to this comment in order to have it "stand as an example." So we have inconsistent moderation here as well. Just complete rookie admin mistakes everywhere...
« Last Edit: October 07, 2018, 10:35:37 PM by Arnox »

Offline Samtemdo8

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2018, 10:24:24 PM »
I am seeing a list of people that are viewing this thread and one of them is listed as a "Guest"

So mabye its actually Russ? :(

Offline bluegate

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2018, 10:26:27 PM »
Par for the course, isn't it?

Haven't the people at the Escapist always had a mentality of I'm right, you're wrong, lalalala and if you disagree then whoops, you're banned.

Offline Arnox

Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2018, 10:38:16 PM »
I am seeing a list of people that are viewing this thread and one of them is listed as a "Guest"

So mabye its actually Russ? :(

I don't think he'd touch this site with a 10-ft. pole.

Offline Signa

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2018, 10:39:37 PM »
I am seeing a list of people that are viewing this thread and one of them is listed as a "Guest"

So mabye its actually Russ? :(
We have bots and other visitors showing up all the time.  It's a bit wishful to hope it's Russ.  It needs to be Russ though :)

Hi Russ!  Here's what non-censored opinions look like!  See anyone dying in a bloody pile of viscera yet?  No?  Well, I guess there is no harm in letting people talk, now is there?
The first and second amendments guarantees your right to oppose the first and second amendments.

Offline Samtemdo8

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2018, 10:41:51 PM »
Par for the course, isn't it?

Haven't the people at the Escapist always had a mentality of I'm right, you're wrong, lalalala and if you disagree then whoops, you're banned.

Compared to other forums I have visited, I always found the Escapist to be a bit more authoritarian and strict with its moderation.

I mean in other forums I get suspended when I actually go as far as to insult someone. I got suspended once in the WOW forums for calling a guy a Fucking Manchild for basically bitching about whatever bad things Blizzard and video games publishers at large does.

Here I feel I have to be careful of saying anything, even making a single word post that gets to the point can get you banned there.

Offline Arnox

Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2018, 10:43:16 PM »
Quote from: Russ Pitts
You don't have to like it. You don't have to read it. And you certainly don't have to comment on it.

Invalid. If you want to stay in business (and the Escapist IS a business or else nobody gets paid), how people view you is at least a bit relevant.

Offline Houseman

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2018, 10:43:42 PM »
Par for the course, isn't it?

Haven't the people at the Escapist always had a mentality of I'm right, you're wrong, lalalala and if you disagree then whoops, you're banned.

That's what I find the most disappointing. When I first came to EscapistMagazine, I was looking for community.  When you have a separate tier of people that are treated like gods and cannot be criticized or questioned, it ceases to be a community.

This behavior will always hurt the people who engage in it, because the users that you don't respect will leave. Less users = less money. You think that the user called an idiot is inclined to support the Escapist? Or the person who defended him? Or anybody else who saw that exchange and said "man, that guy's a jerk?"

But they won't realize this until it's too late, because they convince themselves that they're righteous, and that the ends justify the means.

Quote from: Russ Pitts
You don't have to like it. You don't have to read it. And you certainly don't have to comment on it.

Invalid. If you want to stay in business (and the Escapist IS a business or else nobody gets paid), how people view you is at least a bit relevant.

Yeah, that.

But hey, the only people who don't like it are either bigoted alt-right nazis or russian bots, m i rite, and who needs their money?

« Last Edit: October 07, 2018, 10:46:06 PM by Houseman »

Offline Arnox

Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2018, 10:55:25 PM »
Quote from: Wookie Groomer
The bulk of all online media outlets, gaming developers, comic book readers, cosplayers, nerd culture in general are gay and transgender people.They speak a language in their creations that have deeper meanings to those that are born to understand it.



Quote from: Kyle Gaddo (Mod)
Everything in this life is political, even attempting to stay apolitical. Please note this before commenting again. Thank you.

Fucking hell. This comment thread is like a train wreck. I can't stop reading.

And they're still actually employing Yahtzee with this attitude? Are they for real?

Offline Signa

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #11 on: October 08, 2018, 05:30:29 AM »
Quote from: Wookie Groomer
The bulk of all online media outlets, gaming developers, comic book readers, cosplayers, nerd culture in general are gay and transgender people.They speak a language in their creations that have deeper meanings to those that are born to understand it.

They have it backwards.  The bulk of all online media outlets, gaming developers, comic book readers, cosplayers, gay and transgender people are in nerd culture. 
The first and second amendments guarantees your right to oppose the first and second amendments.

Offline Monoochrom

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2018, 07:51:01 AM »
I think it's pretty damn pathetic, but I am not surprised, this is how the Escapist has always been, it's just a bit more blatant. That they have a crippling fear of criticism or transparency with their community has always been rather obvious if you pay attention, though actually writing up that criticism is VERBOTEN is a new level of pathetic.

There are people, even in said comment section, including Russ making statements that the Escapist was subject to some kind of alt-right takeover. Think that over for a minute, ask yourself, just how entrenched would someone have to be in their ideology to think that the eternally, clearly left-leaning Community even approaches having been taken over by the alt-right at any point in it's History. That's essentially saying that a bunch of complaining liberals and Zontar are the essence of the alt-right xD

Plenty of ignorance of basic reality. The entire argument that a article about being Transgender is non-political is senseless. Regardless of what one may personally feel on the matter, for such a article to be non-political, it would first have to be broadly accepted by society that such a Identity is even valid to begin with, something that is clearly not the case. Which, I would like to remind everyone, has nothing to do with whether the person exists...which is strangely often used as a counter argument, as if the sheer existence of the person validates their view of themselves and the World (which is also strangely not applied to the person they are arguing against, so they must be aware of the senselessness of the argument).

Truth is, nothing suggests that running a business is something Russ can be entrusted with, I see plenty of small things that will ultimately boil over into another characteristic escapist shitstorm. Ultimately this can only go down 2 ways, either Russ will inevitibly be shown the Door...again OR he'll latch onto the Site until he's given it the rest and it dies.

This is supposed to be some kind of Phoenix from the ashes situation, weeks, no months if not over a year in the making, yet the code of conduct has mistakes in it. Despite all that prep, the grand architect of this revival doesn't seem to have much planned at all beyond enforcing his personal politics and going on a little power trip...because antagonizing Users and declaring yourself without fail will clearly not have negative reprecussions and will attract tons of Users...especially the kind that make good, functional communities.


Offline Arnox

Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2018, 08:36:57 AM »
I think it's pretty damn pathetic, but I am not surprised, this is how the Escapist has always been, it's just a bit more blatant. That they have a crippling fear of criticism or transparency with their community has always been rather obvious if you pay attention, though actually writing up that criticism is VERBOTEN is a new level of pathetic.

There are people, even in said comment section, including Russ making statements that the Escapist was subject to some kind of alt-right takeover. Think that over for a minute, ask yourself, just how entrenched would someone have to be in their ideology to think that the eternally, clearly left-leaning Community even approaches having been taken over by the alt-right at any point in it's History. That's essentially saying that a bunch of complaining liberals and Zontar are the essence of the alt-right xD

Plenty of ignorance of basic reality. The entire argument that a article about being Transgender is non-political is senseless. Regardless of what one may personally feel on the matter, for such a article to be non-political, it would first have to be broadly accepted by society that such a Identity is even valid to begin with, something that is clearly not the case. Which, I would like to remind everyone, has nothing to do with whether the person exists...which is strangely often used as a counter argument, as if the sheer existence of the person validates their view of themselves and the World (which is also strangely not applied to the person they are arguing against, so they must be aware of the senselessness of the argument).

Truth is, nothing suggests that running a business is something Russ can be entrusted with, I see plenty of small things that will ultimately boil over into another characteristic escapist shitstorm. Ultimately this can only go down 2 ways, either Russ will inevitibly be shown the Door...again OR he'll latch onto the Site until he's given it the rest and it dies.

This is supposed to be some kind of Phoenix from the ashes situation, weeks, no months if not over a year in the making, yet the code of conduct has mistakes in it. Despite all that prep, the grand architect of this revival doesn't seem to have much planned at all beyond enforcing his personal politics and going on a little power trip...because antagonizing Users and declaring yourself without fail will clearly not have negative reprecussions and will attract tons of Users...especially the kind that make good, functional communities.

Perhaps the most frustrating thing about all this, or at least for me, is that a majority of the Escapist's forum users will not come over here, no matter how great or functional or free Sanctuary is. It seems many users will complain but when you give them a valid alternative that is, actually in many objective ways, better than the site they're currently on, they'll just ignore it in favor of the familiar. Makes me want to pull my hair out.

Offline andersonnnunes

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Re: The bad behavior of Russ Pitts
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2018, 03:31:21 PM »
Perhaps the most frustrating thing about all this, or at least for me, is that a majority of the Escapist's forum users will not come over here, no matter how great or functional or free Sanctuary is. It seems many users will complain but when you give them a valid alternative that is, actually in many objective ways, better than the site they're currently on, they'll just ignore it in favor of the familiar. Makes me want to pull my hair out.

Never heard of this guy or that site before. It is not uncommon for forum admins to think of themselves as gods and do whatever they feel like doing to other users.

Eventually people will vote with their feet. For example, r/brasil is heavily censored and people started moving to r/brasilivre (think of it as country name + "ree" from "free"). Some guerrilla marketing might speed up the rate of change, like it did in this case, but many people washed there organically.

If the alternative does not exist, using client-side scripts to block these admins on their own forum is kinda satisfying too.