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Games Critic Cancels Campus Talk After 'Massacre' Threat

Feminist games and media critic Anita Sarkeesian has cancelled a planned talk at Utah State University, following a threat of “the deadliest school shooting in American history” if she went ahead with the lecture.

The ‘Tropes v Women In Video Games‘ creator took the decision after local authorities declined to provide firearms searches at the threatened event.

An anonymous email sent to Utah State staff read that that “I have at my disposal a semi-automatic rifle, multiple pistols, and a collection of pipe bombs. This will be the deadliest school shooting in American history and I’m giving you a chance to stop it.”

“You have 24 hours to cancel Sarkeesian’s talk … Anita Sarkeesian is everything wrong with the feminist woman, and she is going to die screaming like the craven little whore that she is if you let her come to USU. I will write my manifesto in her spilled blood, and you will all bear witness to what feminist lies and poison have done to the men of America.”

The author also compared his planned actions to the 1989 Montreal massacre, in which anti-feminist Marc Lépine murdered fourteen women.

Sarkeesian tweeted that she had been “Forced to cancel my talk at USU after receiving death threats because police wouldn’t take steps to prevent concealed firearms at the event. Requested pat downs or metal detectors after mass shooting threat but because of Utah’s open carry laws police wouldn’t do firearm searches.”

The full text of the email sent to Utah State university follows:

This came days after game developer Brianna Wu and her family fled their house, after being sent death and rape threats which included her home address, in response to her Twitter criticism of the GamerGate campaign. Warning – graphic language and descriptions of sexual violence at this link.

Depression Quest developer Zoe Quinn also left her home in response to similar threats earlier this year, as did Sarkeesian, who reports a history of threats to venues she was speaking at. She speaks of some of her experiences of harassment and abuse in the video below.

RPS is staunchly opposed to any and all harassment, abuse and threats.

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Alec Meer


Ancient co-founder of RPS. Long gone. Now mostly writes for rather than about videogames.

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