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‘Beat Up Anita Sarkeesian’ maker disappears from Twitter

- July 9th, 2012

Ben (Bendilin) Spurr, the Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., man who made headlines after creating a video game where users could punch feminist blogger Anita Sarkeesian in the face has disappeared from Twitter. His account has been suspended, and the Twitter Powers That Be have not said why.

This comes after two straight days of defending himself online from people who find these kind of shenanigans abhorrent. He repeatedly insisted he deplores sexism, despite a Steam profile that indicates otherwise.

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Toronto activist Steph Guthrie was one of the first people to call out Spurr on Twitter, sparking a long and drawn out debate, out of which a lot of thoughtful posts and discussions were born. Guthrie has documented the whole thing in a very thorough Storify, seen below:


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15 comments

  1. Tommy Gunn | July 9, 2012 at 3:49 pm

    Where can I get this game? It sounds hilarious!!!

  2. Sheena Goodyear | July 9, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    It’s been removed, Tommy. And I’m sure it’d be real laugh-riot if it was about abusing a woman you know and love.

  3. Doug | July 9, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    I find the actions of Steph Guthrie and Ben Spurr both rude. The game is in bad taste but not out of line with other games I’ve seen about politicians fighting each other or stuff like that. So Ben Spurr has bad taste but he didn’t have any malicious intent. He’s dumb and immature as clearly demonstrated by the above comments. Steph Guthrie on the other hand has malicious intent with his comments and directing them at possible employers and the like. This is a type of bullying that I find disgusting … I can excuse the actions of someone stupid or immature. But an intelligent person bullying someone stupid or immature in the way I’ve seen above is not right at all.

  4. Vino | July 9, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    “Don’t you see, guys? What his game is REALLY about is equality! We should be equally free to hit men or women without persecution!”

    Well yeah idiot, we should be treating each other equally. While I do understand that this has become a feminist thing since the “victim” is an active feminist, why aren’t people giving him grief for making a game like that in general? Man, woman, child…does it matter? Isn’t the greater problem society’s love for violence? We shouldn’t hit each other regardless of gender. That’s where feminists have it wrong. I’m a humanist. I want everyone to have equality, regardless of gender.

  5. Mikey | July 9, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    @Doug

    The screenshot of his Steam Community profile reveals his misogynous beliefs. Coupled with this game, he can’t blame anyone for accusing him of having malicious and misogynous intent in creating this game.

  6. Mark (in Nova Scotia) | July 10, 2012 at 7:29 am

    I see, so Ben was just a “boys will be boys” case, but Stephanie was intentionally mean. See what you did there Doug? You excused (and actually forgave) the perpetrator, while blaming the victim.
    Oh but maybe you’re of the school of thought that the victim should have just kept her bitch mouth shut about her abuse, after all, boys will be boys.

  7. Mr. Bawkbagawk | July 10, 2012 at 8:59 am

    why is anyone taking this guy seriously? he has the steam profile of a 13 year old boy. i begin to wonder if ppl are taking him seriously or taking themselves TOO seriously.

    lighten up folks. hes a douchey little coward. much like a terrible movie about… more than one stooge that came on recently and offended a “catholic group” if you stop feeding it, it will go away.

  8. Frankie | July 10, 2012 at 9:05 am

    Good for you, you have saved womankind from another troll. And look, you now have a story and coverage because of it. Mission accomplished, another scumbag called out on the Internet right?

    Of course what he created was idiotic and what he believes is wrong. But I believe you are misguided in your Internet lynching…. as Gregory Allan Elliott tweeted in your Storify above:

    “@amirightfolks Hey @bendilin why not make a creative game to discuss your concerns? Your talents can #educate and #debate, instead of #hate.”

    Sure he was referring to @bendilin, but do you really expect the ignorant to teach the educated? Do you really think your Internet lynch mob has somehow helped women? Have you turned this into an opportunity to teach or to fuel the hatred?

    Why does he hate women? How can you help him understand where the hatred comes from and how it’s misdirected and even unwarranted?

    Instead you and your online violence against this guy are now famous. For what? Because this guy created a stupid game and vented his hateon for women. He sounds like my 6 year old son. And now his hate has more coverage than it ever would have had you not launched your crusade. And in turn, you too have hurt someone, dare I say, bullied the guy with your Internet bravado.

    We need dialogue, compassion, understanding… you are just as guilty as he is for widening the gap of why it is wrong to hit a woman… wrong to hate women… wrong to blame women… and how he can overcome his feelings.

    I realize that there is an imbalance in the responses men vs women received in regards to this issue. But you are responsible for streamrolling this guy and it is a responsibility you should have considered twice before starting. What impact have you now made on his life? Positive or negative?

    We women face SO MUCH persecution, in Canada and elsewhere, every where, every day… singling out this one misguided guy… and crushing him, his hopes of employment, and more importantly.. his small window to learn from his mistake… was wrong.

    Yes what he did was foolish and wrong, but good God! Tell me there was a better way to teach him, to help him.. or you don’t really give a shit and now you can feel better you have spit on the face of another jerk?

    Have you made a difference in the lives of women and men by your actions?

    I’m disappointed in both of you. Equally.

  9. Sheena Goodyear | July 10, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Frankie, perhaps you are right. I appreciate your thoughtful comment and will give it some serious thought.

  10. alex | July 10, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    I really think she is a scammer and her actions really don’t state what she wants say. She was just in for the money.

  11. Frankie | July 10, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Maybe you could share this link with Steph? And thanks for the quick reply!

    http://lifewise.canoe.ca/Living/2012/07/05/19955691.html

  12. Dave | July 11, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    I agree with Frankie, two wrongs do not make a right. The shame approach, especially when you get a large group attacking someone, tends to isolate and steel someone’s heart making them stubborn against their attackers. Any hope of him seeing a better way is most likely gone now, as he needs to stand his ground to have any chance of coming out of this in a functional way. He’s been demonized and needs to justify himself to make himself more sympathetic… right or wrong, and I am not saying he was right.
    Ben was wrong in making a game like that, just as Joan Hoak Robie was wrong in all of her books condemning TMNT, D&D Gaming, etc… The guy who made the beat up K-Fed game was wrong too. Opinions can be damaging especially when they spark a crusade. People that perpetuate hate of any kind are heinous, and far too common. In this case, hate was spewed from both sides and a war is being fought when it did not need to be.
    We complain about wars being fought with missiles and guns and scream at world leaders to give peace a chance, but it is in our nature to then jump onto the battlefield like this one if our own opinions are challenged.
    To salvage this, there is only one way, talk and forgiveness. Both figureheads here need to collaborate to stop this and derail the train before it escalates further. I know that neither will see the other’s point of view, but you can at least agree to stop the violence and disarm long enough for people to forget and heal from this.

  13. Sheena Goodyear | July 11, 2012 at 12:24 pm

    Alex, it’ll likely be along the same vein as her TV tropes series, which you can see here: http://www.feministfrequency.com/tag/tropes-vs-women/ Those videos are no only widely viewed, but people use them in classrooms as well.

    And while I admit she’s probably got more money than she can use now, thanks to the trolls and the media coverage, her original asking price was reasonable. Video productions cost money, even simple ones, and research takes time — time during which you’re not getting paycheques but still need to pay the rent and eat.

  14. Diana Cook | July 12, 2012 at 10:26 am

    This is a situation of someone having an opinion that another dislikes and makes a huge fuss about it. Who cares? I wonder if it would be the same reaction if it was a game about putting this anita girl in the kitchen and having her do dishes and cook?

    This activism nonsense needs to be stopped, its a headache and the more self righteous it begins to sound the less likely someone like myself is willing to listen, or care.

    TL;DR Feminism is stupid, and so is misogyny. Everyone is equal.

  15. ScottyP | January 19, 2013 at 12:24 am

    Steph Guthrie’s self-righteousness in this thread is almost as loathsome as the game itself.

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