I’ve deleted this.
I stated at the top of the piece that it was a deliberately one-sided argument, a counter to an ongoing topic I’ve seen come up over the years, and made emphatically clear that things about it would be wrong. But this is not a possible way to go about things, it turns out. A large part of the reaction has been incredibly inappropriate, with people interpreting an argument that contained,
“And I am quite certain that some brilliant writers are not receiving the consideration they deserve because of their sex, sexual identity or nationality. There are boys’ clubs in this business, and this business is a massive majority of white men. Hello. The lack of diversity in the coverage is a significant problem, and is most clearly revealed in the tacit or overt tolerance for the worst tropes of the games themselves. It’s a mess.”
as one that was arguing that there were no such problems, or even that I was deliberately attempting to oppress people. That’s insane, and not something worth trying to deal with. I know it’s a lie, and the people close to and important to me know it’s a lie. But it remains a terrible lie.
It’s been pointed out to me that my article, on a different day, might have been received differently, but right now a few people are hurting too much for it to be a useful contribution. This may well be the case. I haven’t engaged with that side of things, presumably I don’t follow the relevant people on Twitter and missed it. I was capturing thoughts I’ve had for a long time, and wasn’t responding to any individual. But if it just caused more hurt, then it wasn’t useful either. I likely wandered into a discussion I don’t know about, and looked like I was directly attacking specific people. I wasn’t, and I apologise to anyone who was hurt by it.
I have worked so hard to fight for the rights of freelancers, both when I was one, and since I’ve been in a position to employ them. I vociferously campaign against companies that are exploiting freelancers by not paying them. I am proud of what I’ve done. Since what I wrote was either so faulty and poorly communicated, or so wilfully misinterpreted, to suggest the opposite, I can see no good in leaving it up. Thank you to everyone who understood what I was saying, and thank you to those who engaged with where the argument was wrong and provided excellent replies. The comments are still below.