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GTFO: Get the F&#% Out

Friday, May 8, 2015 - 12:30pm
Saturday, May 9, 2015 - 4:30pm

COMMUNITY PARTNER

Trailer

GTFO: Get the F&#% Out

Shannon Sun-Higginson | 
USA |
 2014 | 
74 minutes

NO MEMBERSHIP REQUIRED. OPEN TO YOUTH UNDER 18.
Classification: 14A (Advisory: Coarse & sexual language)

Both screenings will include a post-film discussion.

Hot on the trail of last summer’s #Gamergate controversy, director Shannon Sun-Higginson’s new film GTFO: Get the F&#% Out takes a hard look at the rampant harassment that women face in the world of video gaming. Interviews with young gamers, game creators, journalists, and academics provide a critical analysis of rape culture and online bullying.

The film is unabashedly and brutally honest as it argues how we treat each other in online spaces is a reflection of how we treat each other in the real world. Hiding behind keyboards and screen names, trolls pour out racist, sexist, and homophobic slurs with the click of a button — and anyone who dares to speak out becomes a target. Jennifer Brandes Hepler, a writer for the Dragon Age game series, discovered this phenomenon the hard way. When Hepler added a storyline that included gay romance to the game, the result was a prominent and very ugly online harassment campaign. At one point, Hepler was receiving more than 500 harassing messages a day that threatened both her and her family.

It’s clear that challenging mainstream gender, race, and sexual representations is key to making safer spaces, but as gaming becomes increasingly inclusive, online bullies seem to lash out stronger than ever. Shocking footage of online threats and offline harassment paints an alarming portrait of just how nasty it can get. But as young women find solidarity with each other, and create new platforms to share their experiences, change appears to be happening. As one gamer points out, “Sometimes just existing in spaces is an activist statement.” -SC


Shannon Sun-­Higginson is a documentary filmmaker from New York City. In 2009, her first documentary short Hapa Perspectives aired on Current TV. She has worked as a Production Coordinator at Zero Point Zero Production on the documentary television programs No Reservations on The Travel Channel and Parts Unknown on CNN. She has also worked as an Associate Producer on such programs as City.Ballet on AOL On and The Getaway on Esquire Network. She is currently producing her second feature documentary about a family enduring an unspeakable tragedy, entitled The Witman Project.


RATED Y FOR YOUTH PANELIST:

Grace (a.k.a. gtz) is a co-founder for the website Fat, Ugly or Slutty. Started as a joke by a group of friends, the site catalogues the awful, horrific, abusive, weird, crazy, creepy, and somehow hilarious things gamers say to one another. Fat, Ugly or Slutty is named for the only 'logical' reasons that women would choose to play online video games. She looks toward working on other related projects, such as Isolated Incidents.While the common advice in the face of harassment and abuse is simply "Don't Feed The Trolls," Grace has been outspoken about modifications that game developers can make to improve the online gaming community. Having spoken at several geek conventions as well as to the BBC World Service, Global 16x9 and the New York Times, she advocates for a greater focus on in-game systems and tools to manage player harassment, promoting a better online experience for everyone.