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Heartbreak & Heroines Kickstarter campaign

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TRIGGER WARNING This article or section, or pages it links to, contain information about sexual assault and/or violence which may be triggering to survivors.

In July 2011 Caiomhe Ora Snow, a blogger on livejournal and dreamwidth who had been an active participant in Racefail and other social justice discussions, began fundraising for a roleplaying game "Heartbreak & Heroines". This game focused its mechanics on women heroes. Initially Snow received a lot of support from feminist commentators, especially after there was an extremely hostile and anti-woman thread on RPG.net criticizing the campaign.

However, shortly thereafter Snow's ex-partner Jack identified her as an abuser and said that she raped him. Alexandra Erin, Jack's girlfriend, confirmed that Snow raped Jack at WisCon 2011 and that she (Erin) witnessed it. Snow proceeded to make a post 'defending herself'; however that post included an IM chat transcript in which she admitted that Jack asked her to stop touching him but she would not. She subsequently deleted the post, though Erin saved excerpts, along with a dissection, on her blog. Snow ultimately abandoned the Kickstarter.

Further controversy was caused when several other prominent bloggers who had been involved in Racefail posted in support of Kynn, including Avalon's Willow, who speculated that the timing of the accusations was deliberate, and Sparkymonster, who said : "I am doing my best to carefully say 'Jack is a rape survivor who I believe and support' and not say 'Kynn is a rapist.'" This was picked up by Unfunny Fandom and Failfandom Anon.

Kynn subsequently successfully funded another RPG kickstarter for about $20,000.

In summer 2014, when Jim Frenkel was accused of sexual harassment at Wiscon and was given a relatively minor punishment, Natalie Luhrs noted that another harasser at Wiscon, Rachel Moss, didn't seem to have been banned either. Given Wiscon's track record of not banning people for misbehavior, some wondered if Snow had also escaped punishment and was free to return to Wiscon, despite having raped Jack during the convention.

References Edit

Original posts:

Link roundups:

  • Comprehensive link roundup at Linkspam.
  • Jim Henley compiles the list of entries: "I have a short, largely favorable personal history with [Caiomhe]. I also have a set of feminist priors that means giving the benefit of the doubt to the testimony of rape victims. And no basis for an argument of the form, 'So-and-so has been nice to me on the internet and therefore can’t be a rapist.' So I believe the victim." [dead link]

Wikis, discussions, and forum threads:

  • Discussion at Unfunny Business.
  • Wiki page at failfandomanon.
  • Thread at Making Light originally supporting Snow as a victim of RPG.net's criticism and encouraging Kickstarter contributions, later amended to withdraw support for the Kickstarter campaign in light of Jack's accusations (note, the thread contains other accounts of assaults).

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