April 27th marked the first day of the SPJ — Society of Professional Journalists — ethics week. A time to “recognize journalists who seek truth and report it, minimize harm, act independently, and are accountable and transparent.” Members of the amorphous online consumer revolt that gather under the hashtag banner of #gamergate wasted no time at all flooding the hashtag #SPJEthicsWeek with concerns regarding the alleged breach of ethics in many large video game publications.
Yesterday on May 4th a board member by the name of Michael Koretzky of the Society of Professional Journalism wrote about the outcry for an investigation or comment from the board. While the entire blog post is worth a read — the central message of his post was that regardless of details, whenever “someone says journalism ethics in a big way. SPJ should enter the fray.” This morning Koretzky announced the plans to do that with the AirPlay event.
From Koretzky’s blog:
My name is Michael Koretzky, and I’m a national board member with the Society of Professional Journalists — the world’s largest organization for one of its least-respected professions.
Yesterday, I wrote about GamerGate after my fellow leaders refused to. They warned me that any whisper of the movement would get us doxed and stalked.
Instead, I’ve been unable to keep up with all the fascinating comments, tweets, and emails offering passionate opinions, detailed corrections, and informative links.
So far, the worst a GamerGater has called me is a “snooty hipster” (which is, I believe, redundant). Meanwhile, I’ve been called far worse by my fellow SPJ leaders.
While I try to catch up on the correspondence, let me announce that SPJ will indeed delve deeper in GamerGate — in person.
I’m recruiting rank-and-file SPJers to support a live-streamed panel discussion called AirPlay.
Koretzky goes on to ask individuals who are involved in the online hashtag in any form to suggest individuals to represent sides in a discussion as to form and represent as a committee when planning details of the event.
Describing the events of the consumer revolt called #gamergate is an understatement. It will be interesting to see representatives of each ideological side leave the trenches set in place for the past eight months and come together for an attempt at reasonable discussion. Even if the event is currently scheduled for four months away.
APGNation reached out to the event director of the SPJ, and received this response from Jennifer Royer — the Communications Strategist of the SPJ — who wrote “As of right now, no one at SPJ’s headquarters has been told about such an event by its organizers.” It appears the event is either in the early planning stages among other possibilities.
Think the event will go off without a hitch? Or will there be another bomb threat disrupting the event (al la #ggindc/Anita at Utah State)? Let us know in the comments below!