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In furious post, SocialAutopsy’s Candace Owens attacks a WashPo story that isn’t there

Candace Owens: Taking aim at something that isn't there
There’s no there there

The already very strange Candace Owens story just keeps getting stranger.

In the week and half since her ill-conceived “anti-bullying” startup SocialAutopsy was kicked off Kickstarter- after being bluntly criticized by anti-harassment activists/GamerGate nemeses Zoe Quinn and Randi Harper, Owens has launched a veritable crusade against the two women, and against those she sees as their allies and/or co-conspirators.

She’s posted three weird and angry tirades on her degree180.com website (the first of which I wrote about here). On Twitter, meanwhile, she’s spewed forth literally hundreds of surreal tweets (some of which I’ve written about here) painting herself as the pure-hearted victim of some nebulous conspiracy.

Her latest post, which went up late last night, is her strangest and angriest yet — an overwrought attack on Washington Post writer Caitlin Dewey and her editor David Malitz for the imaginary crime of attempting to libel her in an article that the Post never published and that Dewey likely never even wrote. 

https://twitter.com/socialcoroner/status/724436591914176512

Later in Owens’ post there are surprise cameo appearances by Jeff Bezos and two white supremacists who longtime readers of this blog know well. We’ll get to them in a bit.

In the meantime, let’s take a look at Owens’ bizarre “attempted libel” charge, which turns out to be based on such slender evidence and tortured logic that it’s hard to even explain.

Owens relates a phone “interview” she gave to Dewey, in which she pointedly refused to answer questions or “specify which anti-bullying organizations we had dealt with.”

The SocialAutopsy founder’s reluctance to name even a single anti-bullying group seems a tad weird, since Social Autopsy’s now-defunct but still standing Kickstarter page openly proclaims that “we are proud partners and friends of the Tyler Clementi Foundation and their Day1 campaign.”

But Owens says she told Dewey she couldn’t mention any names because “anyone who had been even remotely associated with us had received some form of unwarranted contact.”

Doing some further reporting the story that, again, never actually ran, Dewey apparently called someone at the Tyler Clementi Foundation, or at some other organization that’s been publicly linked to Social Autopsy, in an attempt to confirm that they had indeed been harassed — that they, as Dewey apparently put it, had gotten some “hate mail.”

Here’s how Owens, cranking up the melodrama, reports what happened next:

At 7:23pm that evening Caitlin’s nasty plan was revealed

I was driving, and I received a phone call from an anti-bullying company. The phone call came from an individual very high up in command, and the tone of the discussion was unexpected.

He was angry, that I saw it fit to relay to the Washington Post that his company was acting as “consultants” to us on our app. He was also angry that as a result, I made a statement on their behalf, that their company had been receiving tons of “hate mail”.

It was a blatant lie. A flat out, disgusting, made up from thin air lie, and it was something that was incredibly opposite from what I had actually said.

Well, no, even by Owens’ own account, that’s not “incredibly opposite” from what she told Dewey. It’s more like “incredibly the same.”

Owens, you recall, told Dewey that she didn’t want to name names because “anyone who had been even remotely associated with us had received some form of unwarranted contact.” 

Dewey called one of those someones to ask if that was true. That’s not libel. That’s not even “attempted libel.” That’s reporting.

Owens cranks the melodrama up to 11 as she continues her tale of woe.

What happened next is something that I am loathe to admit, and so uncharacter [sic] of me in general: I cried.

Yes I pulled over my car to the side of the road and I cried to this unknown individual on the phone.

Unknown? Owens just told us he was “an individual very high up in command” at an “anti-bullying company.” We don’t know his name but she did.

Was it out of frustration? maybe. Was it out of genuine heartache and a final goodbye to everything that I had previously held true about journalism? perhaps. Was it a transition from naive Candace to angry Candace? Definitely. These people were willing to ruin my entire professional career and reputation, to protect the slimey images of Randi Lee Harper and Zoey [sic] Quinn.

And so Owens decided she “had to stop the lie before it was published.”

First, she “called Caitlin about 5 times,” then emailed her. No response.

Owens, apparently under the delusion that she’s narrating an action movie, informs us that “[t]his was at 7:35pm.”

Not 7:34. Not 7:36. 7:35.

At this point, unwilling to wait for Dewey to respond, Owens decided to get her thousand-plus Twitter followers to, well, harass the reporter. “I asked them to retweet my plea to Caitlin to have her please contact me, before publishing misinformation,” Owens writes. “There was no way she could ignore me.”

Dewey was apparently out with her aunt to a birthday dinner. When she sent an annoyed note to Owens three hours later, the furious Owens decided that Dewey was a “smug bitch” and that her email was “a pompous, arrogant, little bitch of a statement to make.”

Elsewhere in the post, Owens refers to Dewey as a “corrupt reporter,” a “smug individual,” a “terrible actress,” and “Caity-doll.”

You can read the rest of Owens’ outraged account of her interactions with Dewey if you’d like; the very thought of trying to summarize all this ado about nothing makes me weary.

Unsatisfied with Dewey’s responses, Owens also pestered her boss, WashPo Deputy Features Editor David Malitz. When he called her the next morning,

I told him that what I was accusing her of (journalistic fraud), was something that she had already been accused of in an article by Matt Forney.

You didn’t see that coming did you?

Yes. that’s right. Owens has apparently decided that MATT FORNEY — the schlumpy, white supremacist, woman hating MATT FORNEY — is going to be her guide to media ethics.

MATT FORNEY, who once wrote that “women should be terrorized by their men; it’s the only thing that makes them behave better than chimps.”

MATT FORNEY, who wrote (in that same post) that

Slapping a girl across the face isn’t just about hurting her, it’s a kind of neg. It says, “I can crush you like an insect, but you aren’t worth the effort.” It’s a tacit acknowledgment that she’s weaker than you, beneath you, and if she crosses you again, you’ll put her in the hospital.

MATT FORNEY, who responded to the San Bernardino shootings by Tweeting that we don’t need gun control but rather ““immigrant control, black control and Muslim control.”

That guy.

Forney’s accusations of “journalistic fraud” against Dewey are based on his tendentious interpretations of her writing — and his blatant and unconvincing attempts to whitewash his own.

At one point, Forney indignantly complains that

Dewey compares Roosh and me to deceased attention-seeking pastor Fred Phelps, Stormfront founder Don Black, Holocaust-denying preacher Michael Crook, among others.

In fact, those comparisons are actually pretty apt.

Both Roosh and Forney are raging homophobes. Last year, on Roosh’s Return of Kings, Forney tried to pin the blame for an Amtrak crash on what he called the “homosexuality and exhibitionism” of the train operator; the deck for the post suggested that “unchecked homosexuality is bad for society.”

Last Fall, Forney and Roosh attended an “identitarian” –that is, white supremacist — conference in Washingtnon DC together, with Forney declaring that the

speakers [were] fantastic, the atmosphere [was] convivial, and the experience of being in a room with close to 200 guys (and gals) who are on the same ideological wavelength like you is an experience you can’t pass up.

Oh, and both Roosh and Forney are good friends with Davis Aurini, who thinks that the the number of deaths in the Holocaust has been exaggerated, and that the Jews were sort of, kind of asking for it. Indeed, Aurini’s comments on the Holocaust inspired the editor of neo-Nazi internet tabloid The Daily Stormer to declare Aurini “a pretty cool guy” in an article titled — wait for it — “Davis Aurini is a Pretty Cool Guy.”

Forney continues, complaining that Dewey made these mean comparisons

despite the fact that neither Roosh nor I engage in illegal activity, encourage others to break the law, or write about anything other than masculine self-improvement.

Masculine self-improvement? Oh, so THAT’S what Forney is writing about in posts with titles like  “The Necessity of Domestic Violence.” “How to Crush a Girl’s Self-Esteem” and “Why Fat Girls Don’t Deserve to be Loved.”

I’m not seeing a lot of “journalistic fraud” going on here — except on Forney’s part.

Speaking of Davis Aurini, guess what? Owens also relies on a blog post by him in making her “case” against Dewey.

Most of Aurini’s unctuous — yet somehow also threatening — “open letter” is a deeply unconvincing defense of Forney and Roosh. His basic complaint about her coverage of Roosh’s Return of Kings isn’t that she misrepresented the site’s backwards gender politics, but that she didn’t recognize that women really

are far less feminine, far less loving, and far less chaste than they were fifty years ago….

You say that “the website ReturnofKings.com… advocates for gender roles even ’50s housewives would balk at,” but in light of our social deterioration, is this truly such a bad thing?

He’s also a bit offended that she didn’t notice his own “recent article on self-development and Leadership,” which I’m sure was quite the masterpiece of rational thought and good sense.

Aurini also complains that Dewey was unfair to poor Mr. Forney:

You criticize his article The Case Against Female Self-Esteem, but did you bother to read it? It’s been widely noted that there’s a huge problem with over-inflated self-esteem, driven by the “Everybody gets a trophy!” culture.

In the article in question, which I’ve read several times, Forney declares, among other terrible things, that

The idea that women should have self-esteem or need it, beyond a low baseline to ensure they don’t commit suicide or become psycho stalkers, is one of the most disastrous social engineering experiments of the modern era. A woman with excessive confidence is like a man with a vagina. It’s an attribute that is at best superfluous and at worst prevents women from fulfilling their natural biological and social functions.

This is the guy that Owens thinks is some sort of expert on ethics.

It’s not clear to me that Owens actually read these two posts. I will assume, charitably, that she did.

But it doesn’t appear that she made much of an attempt to find out anything at all about Dewey’s accusers. Indeed, she bases part of her assessment of the credibility of Forney’s and Aurini’s posts on the not-actually-true idea that they don’t know each other and wrote their posts independently of one another.

“I think it is safe to say,” she declares, “that if three individuals who are unknown to one another agree that she is abusing her position and telling lies, then somebody should look into it.”

Yeah no. Forney amd Aurini have known each other for years. They do podcasts together.

Forney is the bald douchebag wearing sunglasses at night. Aurini is the other bald douchebag wearing sunglasses at night.
Forney is the bald, pasty douchebag wearing sunglasses. Aurini is the other bald, pasty douchebag wearing sunglassest.

They go on hikes together.

Uh, yeah, the title. Aurini kind of revels in his racism.
Uh, yeah, the title. Aurini kind of revels in his racism.

Hell, in his post defending Forney and Roosh, Aurini referred to them as “colleagues.”

Ultimately, the WashPo’s Malitz decided to wash his hands of the whole thing, sending Owens this brief note:

sosorryThe declaration that SocialAutopsy wasn’t important enough to merit a story in the Post seems to have infuriated Owens even more than Dewey’s alleged “lies.”

Aside from attempting to ruin my life and career, the Washington Post was now telling me that I wasn’t even important enough, and that if they wanted to— they would indeed use Caitlin’s lie in the future. Yup. They had somehow purchased future rights to a lie.

And this is where Owens’ post starts to get really weird.

Later that day, Owens informs us,

The day was winding down and my head was spinning. I couldn’t process that I had just caught the Washington Post red-handed in a lie, and perhaps worse, thatnobody had felt it necessary to apologize.

So Owens decided that all of the villains in her little tale remind her of the bratty rich kids she’d encountered as a child growing up poor.

I began thinking about the sheer brattiness of everything that had happened to date, with Quinn, Harper, Singal, Dewey, and now, oddly enough David Malitz.

Who was their Daddy?

SPOILER ALERT: It’s Jeff Bezos. Yeah, that Jeff Bezos, the Amazon.com dude. He’s their collective Daddy.

Well, sort of. Owens, who still insists that she’s no conspiracy theorist, explains that Jeff Bezos is their Daddy in the conspiracy theory that she might come up with if she were given to conspiracy theorizing.

Never mind that in her Twitter feed and in all three of her big blog posts she walks like a conspiracy theorist and quacks like a conspiracy theorist, she insists she’s definitely not one

But the totally hypothetical, totally not real, guys,  conspiracy theory that she comes up with is a doozy.

[I]f I were a conspiracy theorist, I would stop focusing on Randi Lee Harper altogether. I would give up any energy spent discussing Zoe Quinn, David Malitz, or [New York Magazine’s] Jesse Singal, [the subject of her last post], and instead devote myself fully to trying to discover who their figurative daddy was.

My sheer street-smarts would clue me in to the fact that none of these journalists are facing any repercussion from their jobs, despite having been accused of the same fraudulent offenses multiple times.

If I were a conspiracy theorist, I would focus on the fact Harper and Quinn have a long list of victims who have accused them, repeatedly, of harassment, and that these victims, like I, do not know one another.

She, personally, doesn’t “know one another?”

I would wonder how a figurative rich kid

A figurative rich kid?

could do all of that and still somehow manage to:

  1. Have the coveted Washington Post manufacturing lies for them.
  2. Work with Twitter to eliminate the very thing they’ve been accused multiple times (corporations usually will not involve themselves with controversial individuals)
  3. Have ties to Google, (in an effort to prevent online abuse, again ironic)
  4. Have a book coming out published by Simon & Schuster

WE’RE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS HERE, PEOPLE!

AGAIN.

I know, I used this in my past post, but seriously, there is nothing in the universe more apt than it. Or at least nothing on YouTube.

So how do the reverse vampires of Simon & Schuster connect to the saucer people at the Washington Post?

DADDY BEZOS.

“If I were a crazy conspiracy theorist,” Owens writes,

I would be intrigued by the fact that Amazon’s founder and owner, Jeff Bezos had, in an unprecedented move, outright purchased the Washington Post and all of it’s subsidiaries in 2014.

I would probably then recall an article I had read years before then which informed me that Jeff Bezos put up the initial investment in Google back in 2008, and so of course, owns a significant piece of that as well.

Which might only be interesting to a crazy conspiracy theorist if they had already considered the fact that he made an early, significant investment into Twitter back in 2008

Plus Amazon closed a multi-year deal with Simon & Schuster. 

THE PUBLISHER OF ZOE QUINN’S UPCOMING BOOK!

I’ve left out some of the details of this totally not real conspiracy theory here, but obviously I’m running out of really dramatic 4-second-long videos.

Yeah if I was a conspiracy theorist, I would be devoting a lot of time to taking a closer look at Jeff Bezos, a billionaire who could potentially produce such arrogant children.

Because who would apologize for almost ruining someone’s like with a lie if they had Daddy Bezos in their back pocket? Who wouldn’t feel confident enough to talk shit after committing fraud on twitter, with Daddy Bezos to go home to? And why in God’s name wouldn’t two women laugh and take credit for torpedoing a pathetic little Kickstarter campaign, if Daddy Bezos was who they had to fess’ up to?

With that many billions to count…who would ever feel the need to say sorry to the nobody Candace Owens?

Owens then tries another tack, suggesting — this time for realz — that

I do actually believe that Mr. Bezos needs to take a closer look at his acquisition. Seeing the Washington Post lose all credibility at the hands of a few bad reporters, would be a terribly ironic end, to it’s historical reign.

Owens’ post then takes on yet another radically different tone.

Noting that she is African-American, Owens compares her alleged poor treatment at the hands of the Washington Post — which, again, has published absolutely nothing about her — to the horrifying abuse her grandfather suffered at the hands of the Ku Klux Klan, when

he was caught selling oranges on the “wrong” corner. As a resulting punishment, the Ku Klux Klan hunted him down, and branded him in the face (you know, like they do to cattle).

In the “postscript” to her long and fragmented post, aimed directly at the Washington Post’s Mintz, she declares that

I too have dreams. And all I’ve ever wanted was the opportunity to go after them. So you’ll have to excuse my general shock when you insinuated to me that you could take them all away one day, through the simple publication of a lie.

Yup. That snotty little e-mail was more than added insult to an injury– it was an idea that I couldn’t bear to wrap my head around; it was the idea that you and your fraudulent staff are somehow in ownership of every single thing that I have worked for my whole life.

Growing angrier by the word, Owens tells Malitz:

You thought you could instill power over me because you work at the Washington Post? The Washington Post, is now absolute shit in my eyes, and your placement there is little more than a confirmation of it’s dying brand.

Because when I close my eyes:, what you and Caitlin have done to me, feels like a branded warning to my face that I have infringed upon your figurative property.

Yes, that’s right. The fact that the Washington Post would NOT be running a story that Owens had decided would contain some terrible lie about her, and the fact that the editor she pestered about the non-existent story had decided not to “investigate” the non-writer or the non-story based on 1) Owens’ assumptions of what that hypothetical story might contain and 2) the completely unconvincing accusations of two literal white supremacists — these things, in Owens’ mind, are somehow comparable to HER GRANDFATHER BEING BRANDED IN THE FACE BY THE KKK?

Owens ends her post by telling Malitz

F**K YOU.

Leave me and what my family has worked for, the hell alone.

She says this at the end of a 4600-word piece viciously attacking the writer and editor of a Washington Post piece that does not exist.

Leaving people alone is apparently not something Owens is very good at.

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Kevin
Kevin
4 years ago

Looks like she still hasn’t got over the furore generated when she was bullied by text aged 17. Owens has issues that she may need professional help with.

Pete
Pete
4 years ago

I can’t even…

Margaret Pless
Margaret Pless
4 years ago

When WaPo’s thinking of writing about her, she’s convinced it’d be lies and smears. But when WaPo kills the article, Owens is also not happy with that.

Makes me wonder what would satisfy her – a glowing review? But her conduct with WaPo up to this point has already removed that from the realm of possibility.

leftwingfox
leftwingfox
4 years ago

Witness an ego so dense, it warps the very nature of space and time around it!

arando
arando
4 years ago

After reading this, I feel like you’re going to get your own “response” piece from Owens. Which would be delicious.

DexX
4 years ago

Okay, I think I have this worked out.

Jeff Bezos, using his ownership of the Rand Corporation, in conjunction with the saucer people, and under the supervision of the reverse vampires, are forcing the Washington Post to not libel Candace because she’s too unimportant to attack, which is an attack in itself because she’s totally important.

Do I have it straight?

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
4 years ago

If you want to translate her rant into English, just copy-paste “GIVE ME MONEY” 1500 times.

Seriously – she’s paired up with Aurini, for fuck’s sake. That pretty much proves it.

davidknewton
4 years ago

I can’t do this – this is impossible to follow in any meaningful way. But thank you as always for trying 🙂

DexX
4 years ago

Also, I really must add… WHAT DID THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE EVER DO TO HER??? Jesus, you’d think it murdered her parents or something. I think she decides where to put commas by printing out her blog posts and putting them on a blackboard [edit: dartboard, ugh], then getting VERY drunk before throwing about forty darts at the same board.

She’s some kind of twisted god at malapropisms. There are so many, and they’re SO weird. “Instill power over me”, “a branded warning to my face”, “in ownership”, “the coveted Washington Post”, and so on. She writes like an idiot who thinks she’s a poet.

…and one more thing: “unprecedented move”??? A rich guy with obvious interests in media companies buying a newspaper company is an “unprecedented move”? What the hell is this kid smoking???

…oh, one more one more thing: it amuses me greatly that she is intimating that she’s put this Bezos thing together on her own, simply because she’s so damned smart and can see the big picture that nobody else can, but she’s obviously lifting it directly from alt-right websites. She’s proven she can’t do her own fucking research, so all these corporate buy-outs did not come from her own googling, I can tell you right now. She’s being fed this line of bullshit just as surely as she’s been fed all of the previous garbage. She’s a fucking muppet, with GamerGate and the rest of the alt-right hatefest stuffinf their arm into her to the elbow, but she thinks she’s a GENIUS!

Sorry, I’ve gone beyond pity and bemusement and I’m settling comfortably into rage. Poor Zoe and Randi, and Anita and everyone else who’s already been through years of this shit, who will now be facing a new wave of it because of this fucking idiot stirring everything up.

SYFOB
4 years ago

Hooooooleeeeee crap.

varalys the dark
varalys the dark
4 years ago

I… just.. WHAT?!

I wish the noble art of videogaming wasn’t being linked to more crap. *goes and plays Watch Dogs to calm down a bit*

Prof. H.
Prof. H.
4 years ago

Did you see where she called herself a feminist (“I do feminism.”)

https://twitter.com/socialcoroner/status/723362516550574080

and then later retweeted Andrea Hardie (with a “Thank you. X”)

https://twitter.com/socialcoroner/status/723678915080949761

She’s great at research!

Mea
Mea
4 years ago

She’s got to be a fake persona. Between all this madness and referring to herself in 3rd person once makes me think that she was created or spoofed by some 8chan troll as an elaborate attempt to stir things up.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

I don’t know much about the various personalities here but the impression I get of the woman referred to is that she’s being delusional rather than acting with malice. I also get the impression that the usual suspects are winding her up and feeding into that for their own nefarious reasons. I actually feel sorry for her, notwithstanding the harm she may be causing to actual victims of harassment.

I’ve seen similar things before in the legal world. I hope I’m not internet diagnosing but we refer to such cases as “querulous paranoia” (That’s a lay term rather than a medical diagnosis; it is here at least)

This all seems very bizarre. However I do have some concerns that a vulnerable black woman may be being exploited by some very nasty people for their own ends. I dread to think what may be in store for her when she’s of no further use to them and they turn on her.

ETA: my thoughts above are all predicated on the assumption she’s actually a real person of course, rather than a fake persona created by the usual suspects.

Jen
Jen
4 years ago

I’m really glad you’re recapping this whole thing, cause I tried to go to Owen’s site and read the articles myself and couldn’t get past a paragraph or two. They are way too over dramatic and, sorry, unprofessional to sit through.

I genuinely feel bad for her. She seems completely consumed with misguided notions.

Also, the ego is strong with this one.

Flora
Flora
4 years ago

I can understand this all too well, because Candace Owens parallels exactly what my mother would do. Anyone who does not praise her must be “against her” and if they are “against her” there must be a reason which means they are all talking to each other which means they are all in it together which means she is the poor victim of a grand conspiracy… All because a few people did not immediately sing her praises or attempted to provide constructive criticism.

Thus the Washington post can be evil and slanderous whether or not they actually ran the story, because the intent to harm her was there before she was even interviewed.

If you remove all agency from individuals and imagine everyone as existing solely in relation to Owens, it starts to resemble a coherent thought pattern.

Jo
Jo
4 years ago

@Kevin – I think it’s better if we don’t pathologize her dumbassery. Her behaviour is revolting, it doesn’t require us to speculate about her mental state. We can focus instead on reasoning skills that would shame a tree frog, misplaced arrogance that makes drunk teenagers look modest and assholery that gives anuses a bad name.

I don’t mind Alan’s thoughts, as they are clearly from a place of pity and also hedged carefully.

DexX
4 years ago

@Jo – I’m kind of inclined to agree, but on the other hand… TOTALLY NARCISSISTIC PERSONALITY DISORDER!!! Well, no, it could possibly be BPD, but NPD is my guess. My dad had NPD and was physically and emotionally abusive, so I’m hypersensitive to the symptoms.

Margaret Pless
Margaret Pless
4 years ago

Alan: I suspect you are correct. Assuming Owens isn’t some trolly made-up person, she’s almost certainly having her own credulity exploited by exactly the sort of people her anti-bullying registry was supposed to combat. And It doesn’t help that the trolls clubs manipulating her are as obsessive and conspiratorial as Owens herself. They’ll probably feed off each other – the trolls have no reason to quit and Owens reuses to step back from this even for a few days.

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 years ago

Also, I really must add… WHAT DID THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE EVER DO TO HER???

She really is a terrible writer. I usually avoid criticizing other people’s writing, since there are lots of reasons why people may not express themselves perfectly, and anyway it’s not like I’m the world’s best communicator. But she makes repeated reference to her journalism degree, and talks about her dream of being a writer, all while committing serious thesaurus abuse.

The worst bit was when she criticized Randi Harper’s open letter for being badly written.

Jody
Jody
4 years ago

I’m more convinced than ever that she’s a fake. It’s all too convenient. An African-American woman somehow agreeing with every MRA and white supremacist talking point she comes across?

There’s some racist little edgelord shithead behind this.

Cerulean (Miss A)
Cerulean (Miss A)
4 years ago

What in the actual fuck did I just read up there…..

I’m just….like…what….there’s just no words at this point.

mockingbird
mockingbird
4 years ago

My advice to Candace Owens:

* Take a break from all of this for a week.
Don’t read anything about it. Don’t write anything about it. Watch some bad TV, go for a few long walks, get lost in a book or three, slaughter some raiders and deathclaws if that’s your thing.

* Proofread before you post anything else.
I have no doubt that you’re intelligent, but anger and haste are the enemies of intelligible writing.

weirwoodtreehugger
4 years ago

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_unt6OCTujXM/TKTOTSngwOI/AAAAAAAAAo4/W-mapRMaWYU/s1600/gw.png

I don’t know what else to say besides that.

It’s not even funny now. It’s just kind of baffling.

I just hope Caitlin Dewey doesn’t get years of harassment by gamergate because of this.

Dark Statistic
Dark Statistic
4 years ago

That’s just it, though. Anyone can have a bad idea. Anyone can be wrong. Anyone can say something stupid or do something hurtful or make a foolish mistake or misread a situation they blunder into.

All of these things get amplified on the internet. It’s probably not hard to dig down and find something problematic that someone — anyone — has said or done, sometime. I really believe that as a culture that’s moving online, we have to get over this to some degree — we have to accept that things get taken out of context, that they are phrased badly to begin with, and that people evolve on issues. I’d hate to be a teenager online, considering the amount of inane and offensive shit I unwittingly spewed back in the day. I don’t even like being an adult who can be misunderstood and have that permanently recorded somewhere. So I get the urge to just shake your head and look away.

But. There is something truly disturbing about a personality that, when faced with criticism, constructs a conspiracy theory rather than allow that they might have been wrong, or even just imperfect. About a person who thinks that people need to be reprimanded by their employer if people complain about them, whether or not they’ve done anything wrong. A person who cannot effectively judge the character of the people she aligns herself with or critically assess their argument except to say that they must be right because they agree with her. It’s a parallel to the contradictions and tortured logic of the MRAs, just a different expression. Instead of being entitled to a hot girlfriend, she’s entitled to pursue her dreams and make a lot of money no matter who she ruins in the process.

I don’t understand how people get like this. And I think it’s worth observing in real time to figure it out.

DexX
4 years ago
Reply to  Viscaria

Viscaria wrote:

The worst bit was when she criticized Randi Harper’s open letter for being badly written.

Oh look, projection. A strong NPD indicator. 😉

Seriously, though, I’m a professional writer and former professional editor. Her prose makes my brain bleed. See, I can deal with bad writers who know their writing isn’t great, and of course I love great writing. What pisses me off is a shitty writer who thinks they are brilliant. You can smell it, the reek curling off every word: that self-satisfied smugness of the person who is deeply impressed with her own brilliance.

So yeah, she offends me on all kinds of levels, not just the WOC-anti-bullying-campaigner-quoting-Davis-Aurini level.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
4 years ago

Remember the last time a bunch of people ignored the rules against keyboard diagnoses? And then it turned out the whole thing was an act? Just saying.

Wetherby
Wetherby
4 years ago

I don’t know much about the various personalities here but the impression I get of the woman referred to is that she’s being delusional rather than acting with malice. I also get the impression that the usual suspects are winding her up and feeding into that for their own nefarious reasons. I actually feel sorry for her, notwithstanding the harm she may be causing to actual victims of harassment,

I feel exactly the same way (especially the last bit), and can’t help but notice the rather curious tone of the comments under the original blogpost – when I read them, they were almost all supportive, but in a really loaded, button-pushing way (for instance, the attempt to stir Anita Sarkeesian into this particular pot) that makes me strongly suspect that they’re not entirely sincere.

I really do think Ms Owens would be much, much better off taking a break. I haven’t seen anyone this painfully out of her depth in a long, long time.

The Kitten King
The Kitten King
4 years ago

I know you disapprove of accusing people you report on of mental illness (a policy I agree with), but this is REALLY reading like a mental breakdown. I kind of feel bad for her.

Supermeerkat
Supermeerkat
4 years ago

She reminds me of Game Developer Extraordinare Derek Smart for some reason. Perhaps it’s the angry verbose ranting…

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 years ago

Oh look, projection. A strong NPD indicator. 😉

Dude, not cool. Everybody projects. I project sometimes. You probably do too. That’s not a good reason to attribute this odd situation to a highly stigmatized disorder.

DexX
4 years ago

Sorry. like I said, I grew up in a household dominated by an NPD dad. I have a lot of baggage around it.

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
4 years ago

I’ve swung back to feeling pity for Candace Owens. I wish she could channel all that anger and passion into more worthwhile endeavors – something that would actually help the kids who’re being bullied.

ETA: Y’know, I just realized that Owens’ analysis and writing is reminding me of somebody: Orly Taitz. Now there’s a scary thought.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
4 years ago

@DexX

So did I. I still follow the fucking comments policy.

Jo
Jo
4 years ago

I just can’t buy the suggestion that she’s a troll creation.

(1) There are multiple newspaper reports concerning the bullying she suffered at school.

(2) She’s reached out to the press, who would probably sniff out a fake startup fairly quickly.

(3) Why would a troll make her evidence for Randi and Zoe being behind the harassment so laughably weak?

Redsilkphoenix
Redsilkphoenix
4 years ago

Is Randi Harper’s actual middle name Lee (and does she sign her work using it?) or is Owens conflating Randi Harper with Lee Harper, deceased writer of To Kill a Mockingbird here?

Also, I find it amusing that the random ads chosen for this page (before refreshing, that is) are for Daymond John’s Launch Academy. (The Launch part, not the guy’s name part, to be clear here.)

Dark Statistic
Dark Statistic
4 years ago

Redsilkphoenix: I’m pretty sure it’s her real name.

Victorious Parasol:

Orly Taitz.

Oh Lord, you’re right.

me and not you
me and not you
4 years ago

I read several of her posts. dear LORD.

On one hand, I feel real bad for her. On the other, I kinda don’t.

I mean, the NY Post article she rails against? He was fairly balanced. She didn’t come off nearly as rambling as she does in her own writing. He basically just wrote it as “this is what happens when people who don’t know the internet try to internet”.

Also, I know some folks think she’s fake, but this is all fairly common behavior. She just doesn’t seem to have the filter most folks use when interacting with strangers and she’s shouting into the echo chamber of the internet. What’s surprising is her naivety surrounding the internet, considering she’s in her 20s.

Amanda M Ching
Amanda M Ching
4 years ago

If she indeed not a troll, i am genuinely concerned that she’s having some kind of break.

ScarlettAthena
ScarlettAthena
4 years ago

So, let me get this straight, what set Owens off is that she gave an interview to a WaPo journalist about her start up. During that interview, the topic of which associations she was, um, associated with, and she refused to answer.

Later, this journalist checked up on an association that was stated on the Kickstarter page by calling and just asking if they were receiving hate mail.

This, in turn, made someone “high up” in the organization so angry that they called Owens and they yelled at her about it. Owens knows this person is “high up” but also doesn’t know who it is?

The fact that angry “high up” yelled at her made Owens upset but instead of thinking “wow how inappropriate for someone to call me up and scream at me” she gets upset at the WaPo journalist and so it is open season on the latter’s reputation.

WaPo doesn’t even publish the article because meh, and Owens still thinks “Hey let’s go all out and find some conspiracy theories.”

Have I got this?

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
4 years ago

@ Dark Statistic

Not just me who sees the resemblance, then? I’m not sure if I should be glad of the company, or sad that we’re seeing yet another bonkeyhead blathering on.

So far I’m managing to stay on the pity end of the spectrum re Candace Owens. I don’t think she’s a troll, mostly for the reasons Jo gave above (though I’m not sure the press would do such a great job of uncovering a troll; the 24/7 news cycle interferes with the resources required for god investigative journalism). I don’t know if she’s been manipulated, as such, though she does seem to be getting fed inaccurate info by people who find her useful. OTOH, as an adult, she should’ve learned by now how to weigh information received, and do her own due diligence, even to the point of seeking out sources that don’t support her findings.

dreemr
dreemr
4 years ago

What? Oh, my goodness, Candace, WHAT??

I’ve been away this weekend, have to catch up on this discussion, but….WHAT??

Kootiepatra
4 years ago

When I got to the end of the article I realized my head was grasped in my hands and my jaw was hanging open.

I just.

What.

All of my what.

How could a person decide to start an internet service, and fund it with internet crowdfunding, and be so utterly lost about a) how the internet works, and b) how to check the origins of one’s supposed allies?

Cripes.

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 years ago

I feel bad for her, too. I feel bad for everyone involved in this. It’s just a giant mess.

Dark Statistic
Dark Statistic
4 years ago

Victorious Parasol: No, you’re not alone. At least we’re in this ambiguous “laugh or cry” place together.

So far I’m managing to stay on the pity end of the spectrum re Candace Owens.

When I think about her, I get angry. Outraged! What a jerk this kid is! But then I read something she’s written and I just feel so crushingly sad. She’s so… Pitiful. I want to save her from herself. Then I go away and remember how out of touch and destructive and, well, generally shitty she is and get angry again.

I think that’s part of why I just can’t look away. The fact that every time she opens her mouth (so to speak) she invokes another shitlord doesn’t help, either.

By the way, has anyone else poked around that 180 blog? There’s some solid gold on there. Like how women need to shut up about reproductive rights because “abortion isn’t going to be made illegal! It’s just not! Get over it!” And how men deserve sexual fulfillment too and women need to stop being so damn selfish about orgasms.

snork maiden
4 years ago

I just can’t tear myself away from this, though I’m starting to feel guilty about it. I mean, everyone could just ignore this woman and she would run out of steam and go away, right?

I’m just wondering where her friends and family are in all this?

Cerulean (Miss A)
Cerulean (Miss A)
4 years ago

Yeah, it’s just a giant fustercluck all around at this point. =(

Mmm Pie
Mmm Pie
4 years ago

I’ll watch fail videos occasionally and see a drunk person doing something awful like eating chips off a train floor or driving a children’s tricycle into a ditch. I’ll think to myself, “These people need better friends.” Because we all fuck up in life and we have moments where we need someone to stop us from carrying out bad ideas.

This woman… needs better friends, employees, family members, whatever. Someone help her! I don’t know who can help but it needs to be someone who can answer the cry of “I need an adult!”

OoglyBoggles
OoglyBoggles
4 years ago

Yay Candace you’re now the new faceshield of GG. Now be sure to make sure you don’t walk out of lockstep, or you’ll meet the same end as all the other past shields.

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