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The Internet’s worst people have a new woman to hate: Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones

Leslie Jones, badass
Leslie Jones, badass

[UPDATE: Milo has been banned for good from Twitter. My thoughts here.]

More than a year and a half of manbaby whining wasn’t enough to derail the opening weekend of the Ghostbusters reboot: the film took in a greater-than-expected $46 million in the US, and Sony is already talking about a sequel.

And so the Lady-Ghostbuster-haters have returned to their roots. And by that I mean harassing women. The woman they’ve chosen to target this time? Leslie Jones, who, in the tiny minds of her harassers, has two strikes against her: 1) she’s one of the stars of the Ghostbusters reboot and 2) she’s black.

The harassment campaign seems to have started in earnest yesterday morning, not long after “journalist” and Internet Nazi apologist Milo Yiannopoulos posted his, er, review of Ghostbusters on Breitbart, singling out Jones as “the worst of the lot. The actress is spectacularly unappealing, even relative to the rest of the odious cast.”

After this, the deluge. Racist Twitter goons swarmed Jones, attacking her as a “coon” and a “savage,” and comparing her to Harambe the ape; one critic, Jones reported, sent her “a pic with semen on my face. I’m tryin to figure out what human means.”

Taken aback at the sheer nastiness of the attacks, Jones started posting screenshots of some of the most blatantly racist abuse.

Did Milo and his Twitter goons organize this campaign of abuse? I don’t know. But he definitely poured fuel on the fire.

After Jones reported him on Twitter for abuse, Milo (or someone working for Breitbart Tech, which Milo ostensibly runs) assigned a Breitbart Tech “reporter” to write a “news” article about this momentous event. No, really.

When asked for official comment on his blocking by Jones this is what Milo said: “She must have read my review! Honestly, this is why I say feminism is cancer. She used to be funny but being involved in a social justice dumpster fire like Ghostbusters has reduced her to the status of just another frothing loon on Twitter.”

Further ridiculing Jones, Milo said, “Imagine it: the star of a Hollywood blockbuster sitting at home reporting random people on social media for saying her movie sucked. Sad!”

Imagine the editor of Breitbart Tech assigning a reporter to interview him about being blocked and reported on Twitter. Beyond sad.

Milo then Tweeted screenshots of some obviously fake Tweets purportedly from Jones that some of her haters had conjured up and posted on Twitter.

https://twitter.com/Nero/status/755255883446312960

https://twitter.com/Nero/status/755256958828089344

https://twitter.com/Nero/status/755258759748915201

Truly a class act, all the way.

After many hours of this sort of abuse, Jones responded to the hate with a series of heartfelt tweets.

The haters gloated over their “victory.”

https://twitter.com/GamingAndPandas/status/755277067084640256

If you’re on Twitter, show your support for Jones in the #LoveForLeslieJ hashtag.

And consider sending a strong but politely worded note to Twitter CEO  Jack Dorsey (@jack) to let him know that Twitter’s continued inability or unwillingness to rein in its nastiest abusers and trolls is not acceptable.

Twitter can be a marvellous platform to share thoughts and jokes and links and ridiculous gifs. It can also be the enabler of vicious campaigns of harassment and abuse. Twitter provided the platform that made the racist harassment campaign against Jones possible.

Get it together, Twitter, or Leslie Jones won’t be the only one signing off.

H/T — Thanks to everyone who brought this to my attention. Thanks to Colby Klaus, whose post on the Amala Network offered a detailed timeline of the abuse and highlighted Milo’s role in all this, which I drew on in writing this post. And thanks to @TakedownMRAs for staying on top of this and pointing out Lo-ping’s gloating Tweet.

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pitshade
pitshade
4 years ago

Old school trolls were based in the term’s origina as a fishing reference – dragging bait behind a boat to entice somethin(someone) to bite. Modern trolls are just bullies. ‘Don’t feed…’ sometimes worked on the old ones – if people stuck to it- but means nothing
when dealing with the modern style, who are emulating the monster not the fisher.

Joekster
Joekster
4 years ago

If anyone here still plays WoW (obvious sexism and violence issues, but still fun), I just noticed that they claim o be instituting a ‘silence penalty’ in the latest expansion.

Is there any chance that this will a) stick, and b) not be used by trolls to silence people they don’t like?

Here’s the link to the Battle.net post.

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/20177160/

Sevenofmine
Sevenofmine
4 years ago

@Joekster

I think there’s virtually no chance that terrible people won’t try to use it to silence people they don’t like. BNet does say “after investigation” though, so presumably they’ll check chat logs and in game mail etc before they take any action. I’d honestly be more concerned that the silence penalty never happens because nothing will ever quite be inappropriate enough.

Having said that though, Blizzard has, of late shown real interest in being genuinely inclusive. Exhibit A would be Overwatch which is full of all kinds of very diverse characters. Also under the heading of Overwatch, there was “buttgate” a while ago where one of the victory poses of a female character was rather vampy and they responded to criticism of it by choosing a different, less sexualized pose for the final version of the game. Further, there was recently a Hearthstone tournament in which a black man got to the final and the racist bile in the chat was staggering. Blizzard issued a statement in the aftermath that they would be working with Twitch and Dreamhack to figure out ways of dealing with bigoted abuse.

So, while WoW’s portrayal of women is pretty suspect, I’m hopeful that Blizzard has turned a corner and is committed to excising toxicity from their communities.

Paradoxical Intention - Resident Cheeseburger Slut

@SevenofMine: Overwatch is a great step forward (I haven’t even played it but I already love the characters to bits which is good that you don’t need to play the game to get this information and participate in fandom), but lots of people have brought up that some of the armors are still a little sexualized (Like Pharah’s weird armor-kini), and that there is actually quite a bit of racism that has been pointed out.

I love the concept, and I’m glad this is what we’re getting, but it’s still just a baby step forwards.

There’s also a lot of problems with the fandom, and this is just a few things I’ve personally witnessed:
– Whitewashing Lucio (who is black), and (who is Latino and Hispanic, image shows him without armor, pre-experiments. I think Blizzard also shares some of the blame for this, because some of what could be Reaper’s skin in his normal look is like a very pale blue-grey.)

http://imgmr.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Lucio-Art.jpg
Lucio

http://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/overwatch/images/9/93/Reyesblackwatch.png
Gabriel Reyes A.K.A. “Reaper”

– Insisting that Mei isn’t chubby because she wears a thick jacket
– Trying to insist that every character is straight, despite Blizzard teasing that some of the characters are, in fact, gay.
– Trying to insist that not all of the characters need to be gay, or that it’s “stereotypical” to have the butch woman be a lesbian.

So yeah, I love this game already, and I love the fandom, but there’s still a lot of shit that needs to be addressed. : P

But, baby steps.

sevenofmine
sevenofmine
4 years ago

Oh no doubt Overwatch has its imperfections. My only point was that, for all the imperfections, I think that Blizzard has been making a real good faith effort over the last couple of years. So I’m more optimistic about this silence thing coming from Blizzard than I would be with a lot of other publishers.

Joekster
Joekster
4 years ago

Any thoughts on the WoW fandom? I hadn’t planned on getting into overwatch because I’d never gotten into FPS, but you guys are getting me interested in trying it out.

joekster
joekster
4 years ago

I meant to say ‘people’, not ‘guys’, of course 🙂 I should try to avoid gendered language.

Sevenofmine
Sevenofmine
4 years ago

The WoW fandom has its share of toxicity, but there are also plenty of good people to run around with. My advice would be to pick a server with a high population to give yourself the best chance of finding a good guild with lots of active members.

Joekster
Joekster
4 years ago

@sevenofmine: thank you for the assessment.

todd
todd
4 years ago

@joekster I am so glad We live in a country where women can take tons of s.e.x.y pictures of themselves at the gym to post on social media and not worry about over sensitive GUYS or GALS criticizing them. I’m all for equal pay and equality in general. But no matter how many times you scream SEXISM , or MISOGYNY women are still gonna wear tight outfits,heels,makeup and other things to attract whoever they want. Therefore the men are gonna naturally observe,size them up and approach in an attempt to mate with them. The Real world is just too much you.

Joekster
Joekster
4 years ago

@todd: actually, I suspect a lot of women would rather not dress in ‘tight outfits, heels, and makeup’. And I’m not only talking subliminal patriarchy here.

I recently asked my wife why women would choose to wear mini shorts. They seem extremely popular, and I don’t mean to diss anyone who actually enjoys wearing them (men or women), but I honestly can’t think they’re comfortable, and I know I’d feel exposed as hell going out I public in that. She pointed out that she hasn’t been able to find knee length shorts for women in years, so the option is mini or pants, and Ho wants to wear pants outside when it’s 90 degrees and 80 percent humidity?

It made me think.

Also, I attracted my first troll 😀

kupo
kupo
4 years ago

@todd
I’ll wear whatever the fuck I want for me, not for you or anyone else, asshole.

@Joekster
I have not worn short shorts because I feel uncomfortable being that exposed, but in a world where nudity weren’t taboo and people weren’t made to feel like shit for how they look, I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t want to wear them on a hot day. Less heavy clothing while still keeping the sensitive bits protected sounds nice.

I hate the current trend of clothing being so revealing all the time. I don’t want a tank top or super short sleeves, I want at least 3/4 sleeves. Can we go back to the extra long sleeves of the 80s/90s? I loved those. I have one shirt with those today and I love it so much.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
4 years ago

@kupo

Can we go back to the extra long sleeves of the 80s/90s?

B-but then, how’s Todd supposed get his dick hard? Why are you oppressing his natural right to to turgidity? Only tight, uncomfortable, revealing clothes for you. And, yes, all 3 simultaneously. Just not too skanky, OK!? That would give him his precious boner, but he’d be sad about it. Men’s Human Rights!!1!!

But for serious tho:

approach in an attempt to mate with them

Approach in an attempt to engage in conversation? Great. Approach in an attempt to propose a date? Fine. Approach in an attempt to request sex? Alright. But fuckin mating? ‘Met this hottie last night, bro. And, bro. We totally mated, bro!’ What’s with these dudes and ‘mating’ and ‘breeding’? *Blergh*

pitshade
pitshade
4 years ago

Sort of like the creators of Reefer Madness attempting Game.

Handsome "These Pretzels Suck" Jack (formerly Pandapool)

@joekster I am so glad We live in a country where women can take tons of s.e.x.y pictures of themselves at the gym to post on social media and not worry about over sensitive GUYS or GALS criticizing them. I’m all for equal pay and equality in general. But no matter how many times you scream SEXISM , or MISOGYNY women are still gonna wear tight outfits,heels,makeup and other things to attract whoever they want. Therefore the men are gonna naturally observe,size them up and approach in an attempt to mate with them. The Real world is just too much you.

What…is this even suppose to mean? Like, joekster was talking about WoW. What does this have to do with WoW, at all?

You realize those avatars in the game aren’t real, right? And most are dressed by the players, right? And can only be dressed in the stuff the game designers put in it, right?

I mean, I don’t understand what this has to do with WoW still. I don’t think you understand why people think “sexy” clothes are sexist and misogynist when talking about video games. There’s a difference between having sexiness be optional and having sexiness thrust upon you. And when the only clothing option that is available is sexy and tight, that’s not really a choice.

Here you are, saying women have the choice to dress sexy, which, yeah, they can, because there’s options in the real world to not dress sexy, but in the video game world where there’s many games where you can’t choose to not be sexy, that argument falls flat, because it’s no longer a choice to be sexy when all the available stuff is sexy.

So, like, maybe give people the choice to make their women avatars sexy by giving them the option to not be sexy. Let them be fat, old, scared, muscled and shit. Let Lara Craft get old and wrinkly. Solid Snake gets to be old and wrinkly. Let R. Mika get fat. Birdie and E. Honda get to be fat. Let Juliet Starling get super fucking ripped. Do you know how much muscles you need to swing around a chainsaw, let alone cut fucking meat and bones?

Let women have the option to be sexy by having characters that aren’t sexy. Genius, right? Glad you agree since you love that women have the choice to be sexy or not.

(IDK, I’m rambling at this point, but this todd is obtuse as fuck and needs to actually think about shit before voicing their option.)

Paradoxical Intention - Resident Cheeseburger Slut

You know what I love?

3/4th sleeve Baseball tees.

comment image

The perfect sleeve length! Long enough to be comfortable for most people (and not jammed in your armpit like some women’s “t-shirts”), but short enough that you’re not constantly pulling your sleeves up if you’re doing certain tasks.

And the material’s generally super light and breathable on baseball tees.

Ooglyboggles
4 years ago

Guess what show just had a broadway musical episode?

http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/001/149/724/228.gif


Singing, crying, singing while crying.

EJ (The Other One)
4 years ago

@todd:

Therefore the men are gonna naturally observe, size them up and approach in an attempt to mate with them.

Are we? Speaking as a man, I’m not going to attempt to mate with every woman I meet in the gym or who wears heels in the office. That would be awkward and unprofessional. It would also stop me from getting any exercise or work done, which is a shame because those are the reasons I’m in the gym or the office.

If a woman wants to look sexy to me personally then that’s one thing, but otherwise her clothes are her own business and it’s not going to make me “naturally observe and size her up.” I like to think that we men are more dignified and more self-controlled than that. We’re not dick-guided automata.

Or am I just manning wrong?

Sarah
Sarah
4 years ago

I have personally gotten worse from tumblr anonymous posts telling me to kill myself and asking why my mom didn’t abort me. This is peanuts.

Virgin Mary
Virgin Mary
4 years ago

@paradox

Yes! Love those. I’ve got one of those with the Smiths on it, and a Star Wars the Force Awakens one!
And guess what else I’m wearing? I’ve got some of those short Hollister cut offs with the inside of the pockets showing, but I’m not wearing them because I want a guy to leer at me, it’s nearly 30 degrees out and I’m painting the kitchen and I want to be cool.

Imaginary Petal
Imaginary Petal
4 years ago

@Sarah

Have you gotten it from 300 000 people at once?

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
4 years ago

Therefore the men are gonna naturally observe,size them up and approach in an attempt to mate with them.

Every time some Internet rando calls sex “Mating” non-ironically, I picture them as the cavemen from How Is Babby Formed.

chesselwitt
chesselwitt
4 years ago

But no matter how many times you scream SEXISM , or MISOGYNY women are still gonna wear tight outfits,heels,makeup and other things to attract whoever they want. Therefore the men are gonna naturally observe,size them up and approach in an attempt to mate with them.

WOMEN ARE NOT DRESSING SPECIFICALLY FOR YOU AND YOUR BONER. These guys can’t conceive that women do/wear/say things without a single thought or care about how it’ll be perceived by men.

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 years ago

How does one attempt to mate with a photo? Are you just, like, licking your phone screen? Teach me your ways, Todd.

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
4 years ago

What really gets me mad is that these clowns actually SUCCEEDED in driving people like Leslie Jones off the internet!

NO! MS. JONES! YOU STAY ON THERE AND FIGHT THE GOOD FIGHT! YOU’RE STRONG! THEY ARE WEAK! FIGHT TWITTER!

I know it’s draining! I know what it’s like to be bullied! I know it hurts!

But I would NEVER write a tweet that says, “I give up! You win! I’m off the web!”.

I’m sick of it! Where are the heroes?

Are there any harrassed women on the web who stuck on line and kept fighting?!!

Are all THE GOOD PEOPLE on the web so weak and timid that they can’t fight the weak and inferior?

I’m not blaming her but all these good people SHOULD KNOW BY now that being driven off the web is what the inferiors….who have no power….want!

WE; THE GOOD PEOPLE, NEED TO START A COUNTER-ARMY WHEN THIS CRAP HAPPENS! ARE WE TOO WEAK TO DO IT?!

ARE WE NOT THE MAJORITY?!

C’MON!

WE WILL TELL LESLIE JONES TO GET HER BUTT BACK ON TWITTER AND BE THE BADASS SHE IS AND WE WILL HAVE HER BACK!!!

LESLIE, ANITA AND THE OTHERS….I DEMAND YOU GET BACK ON THE WEB FULL-FORCE, RIGHT NOW AND POST AND TWEET AND EVERYTHING!

BLOCK ALL THE HATERS! BLOCK THEM!

WE; THE GOOD GUYS….WHO ARE LEGION AND SUPERIOR AND STRONGER AND BETTER AND FAR MORE NUMEROUS WILL SET UP A WAVE OF COUNTER-ATTACK SO VAST AND SWEEPING THAT THESE WEAK, INFERIOR FASCIST MALES WILL BE FORCED TO BOW AT THE ALTAR OF LADY LIBERTY!

Good is Greater than evil!
The Left will rise again!
We are legion!
We are more numerous!
We are the majority!
Time to quit being wimps and START (Non-Violently) KICKING SOME FAR-RIGHT, WINGNUT FASCIST ASS!

I have CORRECTED Orwell’s quote to reflect the REAL TRUTH….

If you want a vision of the future, imagine a FLOWER-ENCRUSTED BIRKENSTOCK stamping on a FASCIST’S face – forever!!!

It’s not too late!

There is hope!

We, Progressives MUST REJECT PESSIMISM AND HYPER-CYNICISM! We have been losing for so long….despite being smarter, more educated, more humane, more favored by karma….because we lost that fighting spirit!

We have no morale! We need to write articles, compose documentaries and make commentaries that end on A HOPEFUL POSITIVE NOTE! It must be an unwritten LAW in Progressivism!

Everything must be hopeful! Even when an ugly situation or injustice is being talked about….it must end on “WE CAN FIGHT THIS! WE WON’T GIVE UP!”

We need to grow a spine! Be as shrewd and ruthless as they are (albeit ethically).


THE DOVE WILL FEAST OF THE CORPSE OF THE HAWK!

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
4 years ago

The post before this one was cuckoo with rage and ALL-CAPS. I’m sorry. I looked stupid….but the gist of the point still stands.

GOOD NEWS!

LESLIE IS BACK ON TWITTER AND SHE’S NOT BACKING DOWN!!!
https://twitter.com/Lesdoggg/status/756209745506238464?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

In fact this whole mess has become a big WIN for her!
http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2016/07/leslie-jones-and-the-power-of-speaking-up/492590/

I feel that all these social media thingies should have very obvious, easy to find and use Block & Hide buttons. Just push a button and BOOM. Not only should these forums find a way to be serious about banning harassers and sockpuppets but they should also give the user tools to instantaneously get the jerks out of their face!

Many sites do have Block/Hide features but some don’t have them obvious! The Block/Hide should have a program in it that would affect other accounts the abuser would have (especially if they sockpuppet).

And again; There needs to be a counter-group for when stuff like this happens! People who provide support and counter the trolls.

Pietro_McM
Pietro_McM
4 years ago

Went to Ghostbusters, this afternoon. More fun than I was expecting. Definitely one to see in 3D. Best 3D experience I’ve had so far, made me jump a few times.

Was it worth, €13.00 (including €1.00 for a set of 3D specs)? No film’s worth €13.00, but definitely an excellent popcorn movie.

Hope there’s a sequel. 😀

SpukiKitty
SpukiKitty
4 years ago

I usually wait until a new movie comes on DVD.

I’ll buy it then….along with the original.

I love Ghostbusters!