Reconciliation: A roundtable discussion with Chloe and Allistair

This past week was a harrowing one for the video game community as a whole, several members in particular, and for communities beyond. I wrote an article that was met with mixed response due to its vagueness, which was an attempt to not speak on any individual’s behalf. Yesterday evening I received an email from the individuals in question, who wanted to have an open discussion about what happened, and use GAB as a platform to share that conversation with the community.

These are two people I knew as much about as you did (next to nothing), so the conversation that unfolded was one that was as eye-opening for me as it was perspective-shifting. This has been an incredibly volatile issue in the community, but our discussion was anything but, as you’ll see below. We will be leaving the comments enabled on this post to continue the discussion, but will be moderating it with severe regard: if your comment is non-constructive, attacks either party ad hominem, or is the least bit toxic or bigoted, it will be deleted.

I realize that you likely have many more questions for Chloe and Allistair — as do I — but to say this has been an overwhelming ordeal would be a gross understatement, and both have expressed the need to spend time recuperating. Please respect this. Words of support for both parties are always appreciated, and can be shared in the comments below. I’ll make sure the appropriate party sees them.

Finally, because of how loaded this whole thing has been — and just to be safe — here’s proof of Chloe and Allistair’s involvement.

The Conversation

Below is the reply-all email conversation as we had it Friday May 17, from roughly 6pm – 11pm CDT, only edited to remove some additional questions/discussion at the end, mostly involving me making double- and triple-sure people still wanted to publish this. It began with introductions, then I moved into asking questions (in bold).

Chloe:

I am Chloe, an indie game developer, I started a charity with misleading information, and confided in Allistair.  We had a brief chat, and after the charity ended, I grabbed a knife and threatened to kill myself.  Allistair with the help of another friend, Mike, talked me down.  Another party called the police, and I spent the week in a psych ward.  I’ve had no contact with Allistair until today, after being release from the Psych Ward a second time.

Allistair:

I’m Allistair Pinsof. I’m a journalist who revealed Chloe’s identity without her consent — the thing she feared most upon meeting me. I never would have dreamed that Chloe would choose to get back in touch with me, after what I had done. She continues to display strong character in difficult times. I’d like this conversation to show that she did make the right choice and all three of us together can make a positive impact by righting some wrongs.

Sam:

I’m Sam Killermann and I’m the Executive Director of Gamers Against Bigotry. Allistair reached out to our organization to be a neutral party to host this conversation. I’ll do my best to lead this chat, but I want to make it incredibly clear that both of you can drop out at any time, and if anyone changes their mind about publishing this later just let me know. And Chloe, please do not feel like you have any responsibility to your fans, the gamer community, or any community to have this discussion.

First question: what are your main thoughts right now regarding this situation? For one another, and in general.

Chloe:

Well, I for one feel like a moron.  I’m working with Bertie from Eurogamer to release the full story from my perspective, and I acted out of fear, when I should have just been forward with who I am.  I feel like this outrage that is coming at my door was going to happen regardless, and it’s what I wanted to avoid from the start.  I feel hurt, but not by Allistair, he did what he felt was right.  I just wish people would stop fighting the both of us pretending to be doing this on our behalf.  I also feel like I’ve lost something that was my refuge, somewhere I could go and was treated based on what I could do and what I said, not based on who I was as a person.  Most of all, I blame myself for everything that has happened.  I am a terrible person.

Sam:

Chloe, you made a mistake, and you acted out of fear — things we all do. You’re not a terrible person. You’re a person.

Allistair, what’re your main thoughts right now regarding this situation?

Allistair:

Chloe sent me a letter today that could be, more or less, considered her life story. I suspect she shared it because she knew I wouldn’t have done what I did if I had read it prior. To read what she has been put through in life because of other people, from friends and employers to doctors, it suddenly became abundantly clear that society is the problem. The right situation would be one where Chloe wouldn’t need to acquire money to be who she is and one where it wouldn’t matter if people knew who she is. I did a bad thing but I don’t think that should define me as a person. I don’t believe in bad people. We all try our best and sometimes make mistakes along the way, and to define someone by their mistake is not fair. This entire event has informed me so much on people like Chloe. I’ve always been accepting, but only recently have I discovered that that doesn’t mean I can’t still be ignorant on what people go through, who they are, and how they’d like to be treated. I’m learning and I hope this exchange will contribute to that.

Sam:

Allistair, I think many people think that being understanding makes up for their ignorance — it’s great that you’ve realized the former doesn’t excuse the latter. In a lot of the messages I saw you sharing over the past few days it seemed like you were really hung up on that. And it’s also important to realize, as I suspect you do, that Chloe’s story is just that: Chloe’s story, and her life experience.

Okay, moving forward.

You both have something in common now that most people can’t relate to, in that you’ve been targeted by innumerable strangers who have flung a lot of horrible things your way, in many cases not really having an idea of who you really are.

You’ve both already addressed that situation a little bit, but if you could say one thing to the mass of strangers on the internet who were supporting you what would it be?

Chloe:

I would say, if you want people to take you seriously as a skeptic, then do not run your mouth without having all the information, people have been doing this the whole time and it is just a shame.  If you just want to yell and scream and crucify someone, then by all means, keep sending me your hate, I will be your whipping post for whatever problems you have in your life, and if it makes you feel better, then at least one of us is happy.  I’ve survived killing myself twice now, it’s safe to say that I really don’t want to die, and I have a strong support group that is willing to help me when the time comes.  I may slip up and actually get away with it if this continues this way, but I’m just one person, I don’t matter.  I am not the victim in this scenario, I am the cause, I am to blame.

Sam:

Chloe, what thoughts do you have for the people who were acting on your behalf and leading the hate campaign against Allistair?

And Allistair, what thoughts do you have for the people who were acting on your behalf and leading the hate campaign against Chloe?

Chloe:

I would tell them that you shouldn’t blame Allistair for what he did.  I don’t think he should have lost his job, either.  I know he really wouldn’t have done it unless he really felt like he had to, and to be honest, I did make it seem like I had a vendetta against IndieGoGo.  Just leave him alone, he’s a good guy, and he’s been trying hard to make things right, even though he really doesn’t have to.  Do you really think you are going to teach him a lesson?

Allistair:

Well, I can tell that neo-nazi guy I blocked on Twitter I won’t be replying to his job offer. Jokes aside, these people make it so much harder to do the right thing once the person decides to do the right thing. For example, when I pointed toward you on Twitter as a source to send Chloe support emails. Just by associating your name with mine, both sides instantly hated you when it’s your job to help trans* community. It’s so silly. It’s complicated and people have no time for complicated issues on Twitter.

In a strange way, the emails supporting my actions helped me realize faster what I had done was wrong. These aren’t people I want to associate with. I have so much respect for the trans* people and others who wrote me saying they can’t agree with what I had done but they could understand that I’m not a bad person. Those emails meant so much to me. I hope Chloe gets lots of emails like that and this can be one of them: I can’t agree with holding a false charity but I can understand that you’re not a bad person.

There will be people on both extremes who will never forgive me or Chloe. I always turn back to a Dr. Suess quote: ”Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”

Sam:

Dr. Seuss is always a great place to turn. I’ll get back to him later. First I want to ask you both a question that you might not be able to answer, so please do not do so if you’re not comfortable doing so:

What’s the one thing you most want to hear from the other person right now?

Allistair:

For clarification, I still have my job. Not sure what the details are. My head is a mess and I’ve been concentrating on Chloe today but updates will probably go here. I don’t know how to fit that into all of this but it needs to be said somewhere.

Chloe:

I am glad about that.  As far as the question is concerned: nothing. Allistair has already said some very nice things in this past hour that have made me feel like everything is going to be okay.

Allistair:

I’d like to hear Chloe say “I’m going to make it through this.”

I’ve been in a position in life that affords me a certain amount of freedom. Losing my job (which I’m not) was a reality I quickly accepted. But for Chloe, she has been put through so much that I can’t fault her for lacking strength at times. Through my interactions with her, I can see she tries so hard. That mass of anger and refusal to accept I faced this week on Twitter is the noise she must face everyday; to find courage to go on with that is remarkable. She can’t simply walk away from anything. She can’t just walk away from who she is or change herself to be what anyone wants her to be anymore than I can be a stand-up comedian. Chloe takes negative remarks to heart and there will always be negativity directed at her online. I want her to be strong and to tell herself she’ll make it through. I believe she can and I’m not the only one.

People can say I’m full of it for saying the above. After all, I put Chloe in direct harm and pushed her off a cliff that there is no getting back from. But even when I made that awful choice — which I’d like to apologize for again: I’m sorry, Chloe — I still believe Chloe is a good person and that she needs and deserves the surgery.

Sam:

Wow. Can I just take a moment and say that I am incredibly floored by the direction this conversation has gone in, from both of you — that I’m really impressed by both of your strength and honesty and really just want to group hug right now? No? Sorry. Moving on. One more question from me — inspired by something said earlier — then I’ll open it up for questions from either of you:

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…” So, where do you go from here? And where should we go as a community?

Chloe:

A group hug would be nice.  There was a no touching rule in the psych ward, though we had one patient that just kept trying to touch everyone, and it annoyed everyone.  But he put his hand on my shoulder when I was crying.  It’s very rare to have anyone comfort me like that, and I try to remember the experiences.

I can’t suggest anything.  I have no idea what to do, I’ve been punching blind through this whole ordeal, and going about everything all wrong.  I don’t know what to do, and I can’t say I know what I will end up doing.  All I know is I’m way to stressed and I shouldn’t be at the helm of anything, especially the direction of an entire community.

Allistair:

Hugs. Hugs. Hugs <3 I’m glad I can continue to keep my job while miraculously not ending the world. I enjoy helping tell stories from perspectives or places you don’t often see. One thing I greatly miss from my days at my college paper is making a difference in people’s lives. Giving a game publicity isn’t quiet the same, though enjoyable in its own way. Supporting Chloe gave me so much satisfaction when I first met her. I hope I can continue to support her. I’d like to add-on the trans community to that and invite anyone to share game-related things going on in the trans community I can write about. Part of me is afraid that my name will always be associated with “does harm to the trans community” but I shouldn’t let that fear drive me away from doing good. And if people don’t want my support, that’s fine too.

I’m incredibly grateful for this education I received on ethics, the trans community, and who I am as a person. Knowing what I know now, there are many things I would have done different. I can blame others for my ignorance — and did at first — but it’s more satisfying to focus on informing others. I’m too close to Chloe to tell her story, should she want to share as it develops, but I’ll continue to support and help her in the way she thinks best.

There will be many people who will walk away from this with nothing learned. Your blog, Sam, will undoubtedly receive hateful and ignorant remarks, but if we impact enough people that doesn’t really matter. I’m like Chloe in that I always focus on the negative comments in my articles, never realizing that those comments don’t matter. What matters is knowing we try our best, learn from mistakes, and listen to others who mean well. If me, Chloe, and everyone closely following our story does this, we’ll have a better world to wake up to.

Sam:

Chloe, you don’t have to worry about taking the helm, Starfleet Regulation 619 precludes you from command in that you’re emotionally spent, and that’s good enough for me (: … and you have a team of 20+ people from all over the world in the GAB staff who have offered their individual support, so don’t hesitate to call on it if you need it.

Allistair, if you’re sincere in that offer to take up trans-related gaming issues, I know a lot of folks who will want to take you up on that (some of the GAB team included), and if your actions follow your words I don’t think you’ll have to worry about your name hindering things.

Moving Forward

I’m going to leave this blog post as it is, and not include any more thoughts from myself. I still need time to process everything that happened, but I will be writing a reflection soon. In the meantime, I want to point everyone to a wonderful organization that is dear to my heart: The Trevor Project.

From their site: “The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth.”

If you need help, there are a ton of ways they can be there for you. Below are some links you’re encouraged to check out, as well as the number for their 24/7 lifeline where trained counselors are always there to support you.

AskTrevorButtontrevor-spaceTrevorChatButtontrevortextsmall2_0support
  • http://twitter.com/Cactus_Soup90 Cactus

    I was in Allistair’s position once (though not a journalist or anything like that), I know the damage that can be done under the best of intentions. As much as those not directly involved would love to fling crap around, what matters is taking each day as it comes; Chloe I hope you continue to make games and Allistair I hope you continue to write. We’re all more than we were yesterday, less than we will be tomorrow.

  • Candido

    I’ve been following this since Chloe’s original campaign (and, I believe, led there by Allistair’s article, no less), and I understand that the horror I felt at watching everyone’s reactions unfold, for and against both sides, is nothing compared to what either of you felt throughout all of this, and I commend you both for speaking out.

    I was shocked when I learned of Allistair’s original tweets a few days ago. Even more disheartening was the ignorance throughout this “community” that we may or may not feel affinity for; it is astounding and its implications are saddening. Many people seem unable to separate the actions of Chloe and Allistair, depite the latter’s acknowledgment. I am glad that avenues like GAB exist, and that open resources and platforms are freely available for those wishing to know more. We never stop learning.

  • James

    I’ve got a real problem with the way this is being handled by management at Destructoid. If the guy is fired, just fire him. But indefinitely suspended without pay? That seems deeply wrong. Companies do those sorts of things to force an employee to quit to dodge unemployment compensation.

    Also, although now edited, the founder of Destructoid made some comments that sound like he plans on blackballing Allistair. “He will already be paying for this for years to come, and he knows anything he says to excuse himself does not make it any more acceptable.” I imagine it’s been edited because Niero or his legal advisors realized this was an unwise threat to make, but it still happened.

    • http://Flixist.com Allistair Pinsof

      It’s still not clear if I have a job or not. If that’s important to you, let https://twitter.com/dtoidniero know. I can understand people who now view me as a symbol of bigotry and that they think my unemployment would forward some way for acceptance. I don’t know if that’s true. What I do know is that I learned a lot through this and I’d like to use my position to help others learn, in years to come.

    • http://alllen.tumblr.com/ allen

      They suspend him so they don’t have to fire him, they can just wait until this all blows over and the internet forgets about it before they put him back on. And a few weeks, months from now, we’ll all have forgotten about this.

  • http://twitter.com/SyrupBuccaneer Aaron Carter

    Probably THE most important piece of information about this whole thing and it’s completely ignored. By Dtoid itself, by other press campaigning against you Alistair, by Tumblr, by everyone.

    • Leroy Octopus

      Dtoid still hasn’t decided what they’re doing about Allistair’s job situation. Airing their dirty laundry to the public would frankly be unprofessional.

      • darji8114

        Yes they decided to terminate his contract because he was told to remain silent which he did not. In my opinion a very poor decision that has been made by destructoid.

  • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

    it engenders bad policy to keep pinsof onboard. if it is viewed solely as a “mistake” it compounds an already toxic “normal”

  • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

    its not about punishing any one person. if putting someone’s life at permanent risk is met with a forum post and indefinite suspension its not gonna be a world any of us enjoy

    • http://twitter.com/SyrupBuccaneer Aaron Carter

      Oh yes please do tell me how Alistair put Chloe’s life at risk.

      • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

        outing her identity in public. prior to the suicide attempt chloe herself cited great danger being tied to public knowledge of her gender identity, due in part to a lot of people questioning the campaign. 1 in 7 transgender women are murdered, so cultivating that conversation without consent…wellll it constitutes just that

        • http://twitter.com/BrosukeH Brotsuki Hanamura

          She had already outed herself prior to the article, I believe. He was definitely stupid for doing this without her consent, but still.

          • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

            naw. actually, she was insistent on not talking about it at all. in a the indie stone thread she addressed it herself “I also have to say that all this talk about what people feel my gender expression consists of is extremely foolish, and it breaks my heart. Not only is it no one’s business, but you seem to have failed to realize that there have been a good deal of the lgbt who have been killed, or have killed themselves over being outed. Unless someone gives you their permission to talk about it, you never, ever talk about it with anyone but that person directly. It has never been okay to act like that, and you should be ashamed, though that statement won’t be as effective coming from myself. Outing someone who does not want to be outed not only invites physical danger on to that person, but a host of emotional problems when others feel the need to insult them over it. And if anyone is going to make the argument that if they don’t do it, someone else will, don’t bother. You are better than this.”

          • http://twitter.com/BrosukeH Brotsuki Hanamura

            I read that, too. Allistair said otherwise on Twitter, and I assumed that it was on another forum or another post, but it’s possible that he was mistaken when he said that. I haven’t been able to track that post down as of yet. (hence why I said “I believe”. I’m not 100% sure.)

            In either case I think this has been a terrible experience for everyone involved. blah blah contract, accept your destiny yada yada. I found it rather ironic that the people who claimed to be defending her were also spreading her gender-identity near and far, even trying to attach the news to Felicia Day in order to make it a big public scandal and get Allistair fired.

            However, I am glad that actual discussion is happening in this article and I hope that this trend continues instead of the constant Tweet Wars and Mobs.

          • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

            spreading her identity near and far makes no sense as a point of being punitive

            the idea of “further outing” is stupid given there is was a goddamn wiki article on chloe. that box cant be shut, which is frustrating given killerman’s stance in the previous article. i dont think any of the people coming to pinsof’s defense, and pinsof himself fully understand what he did

      • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

        i mean, the fact you gotta ask puts this in scary perspective

        • StevenAn

          I think a lot of perfectly good people are ignorant of this issue. Probably because a lot of us grow up in fairly progressive places, and we don’t witness much overt bigotry, so it’s hard for us to understand how bad it can get. This can be a great opportunity to inform many people. Allistair, myself, and many others included.

          • http://twitter.com/ThatWrongLove MICHELLE WRONG LOVE

            education is important, but i’d like to also burn this into people’s heads: the onus of education does not fall on the heads of the oppressed and victimized

  • http://Flixist.com Allistair Pinsof

    I want to make something clear here. My standing with my employer is due to how things were handled and discussions between us after MY actions on Monday. It’s unrelated to Chloe at this point and it’s a very harmful thing to put out there that it she is responsible for things going forward. She’s not.

    Here’s what she is responsible for: Putting my mind at ease for my wrongdoings and giving me hope that even the people you hurt the most can sometimes forgive and understand.

    This isn’t about taking sides. Chloe’s part in all of this has been resolved in the best way possible. I’m proud of her. I made it clear to her that I’m great in a private conversation today. Jobs come and go but valuable life lessons are forever. Chloe is very sensitive and to say she is responsible for my current position or my employer’s is untrue and harmful.

    If people want to discuss the details of what Chloe or I did, there are many places to have that discussion. I hope this can be a place where people discuss the aftermath and the positive way forward.

    • RPGPrince

      Destructoid is the bad guy here. I can’t say I’m surprised they actually canned you. It’s wrong that they did.

      Allistair, to you, I am just some dude on the internet, but I will speak my mind anyway and hope you hear what I have to say, even if you disagree: You weren’t wrong, and Chloe isn’t evil. You had the best intentions, and Chloe was/is going through something incredibly profound. As a libertarian, I believe in being held accountable for your actions, and honestly, most can agree accountability found Chloe, correct? So what I would say to those who continue to throw hate at Chloe, leave her alone, she’s paid for her wrongs so much at this point, she deserves some peace.

      As for you Allistair, I maintain your actions weren’t wrong in spirit, the one area I can point to from my perspective is perhaps you jumped the gun on telling the story, perhaps you could have worked with Chloe after she was released to put out a joint article explaining the situation, or even told the story itself and spun it in a way to raise awareness regarding the struggle of trans-gender people. Maybe even made an attempt at raising money for her surgery? I dunno, just spit-balling. In any case, you seem like a good dude, and your heart is most definitely in the right place. Keep your head up, keep in contact with Chloe, and best of luck to the both of you in the future. You’ll get another job in the industry man, and Destructoid will regret letting go of you.

  • Judith

    Sam: thank you for facilitating this safe place for Chloe and Allistair to begin to try to tweeze something positive from this painful time.

    Chloe and Allistair: thank you for being willing to share this conversation in public. You have each demonstrated levels of courage, humility and compassion to which the rest of us can only hope to aspire.

    For anyone who’s still reading this post: go read Rachel Gold’s “Being Emily”. Young adult, good read, World of Warcraft plays a supporting role… even if you already know about – or have lived through – all that stuff, you’ll know whether you want to recommend the book to someone else, down the line. (Full disclosure: I play WoW and “Being Emily” is set in my home state. Apart from that, I got nothin’)

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  • Dave

    The problem with this blog post is that it seems like it equates challenging someone who is trans is in itself bigotry-even if they are doing something wrong. Allistair was right to uncover the false nature of the charity AND informing people who donated-they deserve to know WHY the charity that they donated to was shut down. If Destructoid was so concerned that Chloe was in that much danger of committing suicide then the authorities should have been contacted and she should have been taken into the hospital. To do anything else would have been irresponsible for someone who calls himself a journalist, and you should be able to see and acknowledge this and realize that these actions have NOTHING to do with bigotry. To call this bigotry is to cheapen the word and distract from REAL bigotry.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      I’m still dying, and in an immense amount of pain. I didn’t lie that I was dying, I lied about why I was dying, because it would require me to out myself. I just felt I should clarify that. And the other problem was that I was willing to explain things at the end of the charity, IGG felt it better to just sever all ties and run. No one was saying anything because they wanted me to present the story, given the circumstances. I’ve had an apology/explanation paper (the ‘lifestory’ that Allistair alluded to) ready for several weeks now, I’ve just been waiting on Bertie to publish the article. I would have outed myself regardless of Allistair’s involvement, he just unfortunately posted dated information based on my reactions in duress, and based on that, he was right. At that time, I was not regretful of my actions, and I was extremely angry at IGG. I do not want to destroy IGG, but I would like them to know that I wasn’t too happy about how they handled the situation.

      And in terms of bigotry, the argument that everyone is just upset about me because I lied is somewhat flaccid. There are plenty of people that are, but if you just hop on over to the comments section of my youtube video that I posted for the charity, people have shown to just be attacking me because of my gender identity. The worst part of it all, is that people seem to have not learned much from this experience. If you’re going to attack me for being a transsexual, you’re no different than the people who started bashing on anyone from arab decent because of 9/11. I did what I did because I was afraid, and it was not a misplaced fear, again, take a good look at my comments section on youtube. They are saying things they would have said regardless of if I lied or not, it’s what I was trying to avoid, but I ended up making it worse in the long run. If you aren’t going to take the time to learn from other people’s mistakes and problems, don’t be surprised when it happens again.

      • youarescum

        Fuck you, you are lying scamming trash and Allistair did the right thing by outing you.

      • you are trash

        Fuck you, you are lying scamming trash. Allistair did the right thing by outing you. Fucking scum…

        • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

          Do you feel better now?

          • you are trash

            Nope, you are playing the victim when actually you deserve to suffer immensely

          • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

            Well, I hope that whatever is bothering you, you can work it out. If you need to talk to someone, I am here.

          • I feel better now

            I was really pissed about backing you,and now its all about what a horrible thing Allistair did. It really hurt me personally to see this situation turn into this when I would have backed you for whatever it is you needed (being both in the industry and community).Im upset that your dishonesty has caused so many repercussions to good caring people. The highground you take, however, is quite admirable.

          • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

            I can’t ask for you to forgive me or believe me, but the money was going to someone who needed it. I am thankful that you did help out when you did, and if it makes you feel any better, I have to live the rest of my life with the guilt that I did something absolutely horrendous, and I agree that the problems with Allistair are blown way out of proportion. I hope when the Eurogamer article comes out, it will hopefully shed some light as to why I did what I did, and I really meant no harm to anyone. As I said from the start, I would have had no problem with repaying every cent that I took after I got my surgeries, but at this point I am of no use to anyone being broken.

          • I feel better now

            Well, damn, you are quite an incredible person. I don’t think many people would handle all this with the grace you have displayed here. I’m glad you coaxed this dialog out of me, it has been an experience, so much so that I think this thread should stay as it is, initial hate and all, as a testament to your character.

      • try and try again

        Its madness to think you people deserve special rights and coddle, especially when you are a thief and bigot in your own right. Its a shame you didn’t have better luck with you “attempt” so we could all just hate you for the shit you are instead of you somehow becoming the victim.

        • StevenAn

          Another anonymous coward.

          • try and try again

            Yeah she/he sure is. Chloe won’t even use his real name in these attempts for pity. Thanks for joining in to call him out. Scamming jackass

          • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

            If you and I were in the same room together, how would you react? Also, keep in mind that Chloe Sagal will be my legal name come June 3rd. I am not afraid.

        • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

          I don’t seem to recall the part where I insulted or hurt anyone because of who they were as a person. I did get a good chuckle out of hearing someone call some one a bigot right after referring to her as “you people”.

          • try and try again

            I didn’t refer to any “her”. I was referring to YOU dude. You know, the GUY who tried to scam entire communitiesand should be thrown in jail for fruad.

          • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

            Well, if you can’t properly educate yourself on gender issues, then I sincerely doubt you’ve been able to properly educate yourself about the situation at hand. But if you need to vent, continue. I realize I slightly insulted you with this, but I mean you no harm.

      • Jem Diamond

        Chloe? How are you really dying? Please be truthful. Then I can stop being a bigot,

        • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

          It will all be in the Eurogamer article.

          • Jem Diamond

            I think the people who trusted you with their money deserve to know where it’s going.

          • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

            Back into their pockets? You know they got refunded, correct?

          • Jem Diamond

            It’s a happy ending for all but one. What about the poor brainwashed guy who’s trying to save face after he got victimized by both his employers and the people in the trans community for doing his job.

            Now he’s supporting you and the LGBT community out of fear of retribution.

      • Dave

        Chloe, I’m not saying that you haven’t been faced with bigotry and discrimination-I’m sure you have. I’m saying that what Allistair did was neither, and this blog post indicates otherwise. And okay, you’re willing to explain exactly what happened in some forthcoming article-I can accept that. But dying from metal poisoning and feeling suicidal because of lack of a proper gender reassignment are two different things. I’m not going to tell you what you coulda shoulda woulda done better, I’m just going to tell you that not everyone who has a problem with what you did is anti-trans or a bigot.

        I really do wish you all the best and do not think that you are a bad person.

        • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

          Well, just so you know, I’m not the one calling anyone a bigot. There is certainly a lot of it rolling around though. There is the inevitable suicide attempts (which are very very bad, I wish you wouldn’t oversimplify them, but that’s your opinion, I’ll respect it), but there is more to it, I just need to make sure it’s explained properly, considering that many people are already picking apart, over analyzing and misrepresenting everything I’ve said, as well as attributing things I have not said to me. It’s just a shame that Allistair jumped the gun on the issue, and I really wish I was contacted before all of this was said. But what happened happened, and it has the potential to be something good, and I’m hoping that it can be, for everyone involved.

          And thank you for at least being nice about this, it’s more than most people have been.

          • Dave

            I apologize for oversimplifying your suicide attempt, that was not my intention. Suicide attempts are very serious and I would never make light of it, especially as I’ve had an attempt of my own. I was just trying to say that it is different than literally dying of a physical poison, but I can see now how that came off as oversimplifying and insensitive so again, I apologize. If any of what I say is factually incorrect I apologize for that too, I’ve just had to piece together this story from various sources on the internet, and I look forward to the Eurogamer article.
            And just for the record, I’m not anti-Chloe, I really do hope for the best for you and the pragmatic part of me thinks that this may end up being a positive experience because the publicity will probably make it easier for you to raise the money you need in the future. And I didn’t mean to sound like I was attacking you and I don’t want to accuse you of pulling out the ‘bigotry’ card, my comments were intended to be aimed at the author of this mediation.
            Again, best wishes for you and I do hope that you will open up another fundraising project so you can see that your supporters are still your supporters.

    • http://Flixist.com Allistair Pinsof

      I wish people would think of me and Chloe as people instead of “journalist” and “false charity holder”. I told the truth without malicious intent. It wasn’t bigotry but it was a form of ignorance on how this would hurt the trans* community, Chloe included.

      People need to focus less on the ethical factors and more on the human factors.

      • Jem Diamond

        Allistair, you are a complete pawn. Chloe and the trans-community beat you down and now you’re just kissing their asses.

        So, uh, are you honestly sucking up to the transwomen who both manipulated you and threatened you with an obviously false suicide attempt or have you learned that she has more power in the press than you?

        I think you’ve learned a valuable lesson why not to mess with the trans-community. They have more power than you and if you say anything against them, they will not hesitate to cut you down.

        Welcome to 2013, Allistair and don’t forget to check your privilege, cis scum.

        Oh and PS to Chloe: Instead of admitting you’re a terrible person, just stop being one. I know it’s hard.

        • http://Flixist.com Allistair Pinsof

          There have been parties involved that have contributed nothing but negative commentary and influence since this thing blew up, but Chloe isn’t one of them. She owned up to her actions and is moving on. Anna Anthropy is the problem. Spurring so much action in hate and not any action in support of anybody. 100 comments of rage. How many emails of support? I’m embarrassed to say. It’s a result of Anna’s actions.

          I can understand the hurt that spawned the hate in Anna, but her actions are what have summoned responses like yours and others. It makes me sad. Chloe is the positive role model that Anna pretends to be. Chloe’s actions above should be celebrated.

        • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

          I was in the hospital when all of this happened. I literally had one e-mail where I was nasty to Allistair, and we began talking after that. I never threatened Allistair with suicide, in fact, he wasn’t even talking to me during the second attempt. I have not attacked anyone since I’ve been out of the hospital other than that initial e-mail, and even then I never called anyone a bigot. People are just angry and venting, the anonymity of the internet will do that to you, similar to how you are acting at the moment, though you are mostly tame compared to some of the comments I’ve been dealing with as of late.

          The Trans-community is not some hive mind, not everyone who belongs to it thinks exactly the same. I’ve been in many trans support groups, and to be honest, I really only liked one of the people from those groups, which is understandable since we are all normal people. Likewise, not everyone in it is condemning Allistair. More importantly it seems that a lot of people seem to be speaking for me, Allistair and everyone else even seemingly related to this issue, and I think that saddens me most of all.

          Just relax, I’m not here to fight anyone. You don’t need to fight me or the trans-community for Allistair, he isn’t fighting us. There was no holocaust here to be enraged about. I do hope you feel better.

  • Dave

    The problem with this blog post is that it seems like it equates challenging someone who is trans is in itself bigotry-even if they are doing something wrong. Allistair was right to uncover the false nature of the charity AND informing people who donated-they deserve to know WHY the charity that they donated to was shut down. If Destructoid was so concerned that Chloe was in that much danger of committing suicide then the authorities should have been contacted and she should have been taken into the hospital. To do anything else would have been irresponsible for someone who calls himself a journalist, and you should be able to see and acknowledge this and realize that these actions have NOTHING to do with bigotry. To call this bigotry is to cheapen the word and distract from REAL bigotry.

  • Ora

    1) Given what I’ve seen, I know I’d like to see both Allistair and Chloe gainfully employed.
    2) It remains to be seen (until Monday it sounds like) what the outcome will be.
    3) I would think the odds slightly favor a cisgender male journalist in finding a job more easily than a transwoman game developer.

    Maybe I just missed something, but is Chloe employed?

    And even if she is, I totally understand the situation. If I were not in debt for student loans, I could probably raise the funds for surgery in 7-8 years (which by the way is still ridiculous). But I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to afford surgery the way things are now. The only thing that’s kept me alive is ridiculous, but it works (a pact with an angel that I can’t take my life). It’s rough trying to make what little heaven I can get from a life of hell in a society that gives so little. I even started an IndieGoGo campaign myself for the exact same reasons — albeit I was fully open about the reasons, and I pulled out after a month of doing no real campaigning (and I’m not a public figure in any way).

    Allistair, I don’t know what Chloe wrote in her life story letter to you, but I can tell you that unfortunately there are more stories like that than you could think possible. For me, with only one “cry for help” suicide attempt (2000), consistent thoughts for over a decade, 6 figure student loan debt, just above poverty income, and with degrees that mean little (music composition), I consider myself one of the luckiest ones for the occasional bits of happiness I have in my life. I have things that a lot of trans people don’t have, even though I have very little money.

    All I can do is continue to keep trying. I take one day at a time and forget about the rest. I don’t watch or read things that upset me about the state of the world (except in the case of this story, I happened to see my friend’s Facebook feed). I try to eat healthy and keep my apartment clean (clean house, clean mind). I make a list of happy thoughts each day, things that made my day more enjoyable. Most of all I’d say I try to forget I’m trans as much as possible so I don’t have to think about what society is doing to me and the injustice I bear each day.

    5 years ago, I was turned down for a job that paid twice as much as what I make right now (still not much). I passed the first interview wonderfully with the President of the company, but on the callback interview, when I was supposed to interview with the Vice President, I got his second in command instead. The moment I sat down, I knew I had lost the job. You can see it in their eyes, and all the work you did to get there is suddenly flushed down the drain because they think you’re mentally disturbed or trying to pull a fast one on them or whatever excuse a person makes to not hire a trans person.

    These are the things that are not getting talked about here. They are the cause of all of this. But so many seem content to blast Allistair and Chloe, when anyone who is not trans ought look themselves in the mirror and see how they are living their own lives. What kind of a person are you being to others? How do your words help us all? How do your words help trans people who are so marginalized by society?

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      I’d be interested in talking with you further. My facebook page is linked to this account, if you could just message me through there, that would be fantastic.

  • http://twitter.com/SyrupBuccaneer Aaron Carter

    Chloe how do you feel about sociopaths like @CousinDangereux using your situation as a means to further their agendas? You cannot possibly consent to this exploitation.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      I don’t know her personally, so I don’t know if I’d call her a sociopath. People will always use examples and analogies to support whatever cause they feel is right, regardless of it fits or not. I’m not in a position to tell someone to do something or not, but I hope whatever she is working towards, it is towards something positive that the we all can benefit from. I just wish that some of these people would speak to me, rather than speaking for me, just as they feel misrepresented when they feel I am speaking for the entire community. I’m trying to make a good habit of talking to everyone who is talking to me, and responding to everyone personally.

  • http://twitter.com/Aglytwohands Agly

    Wow, amazing. This lying scam artist fakes a suicide video and uses depression as a shield from criticism and people are falling all over themselves to validate this behavior. Pathetic.

    Chloe, there are people out there that have actual issues with suicide. They never fake committing the act, and they don’t use the threat of suicide to silence people when they’ve been caught doing something improper, as you did when caught scamming people out of money.

    I feel no sympathy for you. This has nothing to do with your status as trans, and everything to do with your behavior. You are dishonest to the highest degree, and claim bigotry and oppression when you are rightly called out for being what you are. A scam artist.

    You lied to people, claimed that you were dying. You are not dying, and if your intent had been to honestly kill yourself, as opposed to whatever it was that you were doing in that video, you would just be dead, and not back on the internet trying to garner as much sympathy as possible. People who are as suicidal as you make yourself out to be, don’t talk about how suicidal they are, they don’t wear it like some badge as you do.

    Shame on you for lying to people, and shame on you for using the claims of bigotry and oppression to silence people who have serious criticisms of your false deeds.

    And for all of you who want to go on about how we should treat Chloe as a person? Well then do just that. Take her for her actions, as you do for anyone else. Her behavior has nothing to do with the trans community, and everything to do with who she is as a person. A dissembler, attention seeker, and a scam artist.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      How you do know my suicide was fake? The police were there and took the knife from me and everything. If you’re argument is that suicides are always successful or silent, then just stop, there is plenty of evidence to suggest otherwise. Would it help you if I published the report along with the Eurogamer article?

      Again, I didn’t lie that I was dying, I lied about why I was dying. Also again, can you find a quote from me where I said I was a bigot and I was being oppressed, or that I threatened anyone with suicide? I’m sure you can find plenty of quotes where I mentioned how all this attention is driving me nuts, though. Please don’t put words in my mouth from other people, why don’t you try talking to me instead?

      I understand that you’re angry, but I can assure you you have no idea who I am as a person. If you want to lash out, then lash out, I am more than willing to listen. Talk to me, I am not here to hurt you or judge you.

  • grimspec

    This conversation should have never happened.

    Anyone with two eyes can see that you’re a man dressing as a woman, no one outed you, especially not Allistair. People were being kind to you, the same way they are humble and timid around the crazy guy on the subway screaming about Jesus.

    You shake your head and nod, you agree with him, and then you get the hell away.

    Allistair is not a promoter of bigotry, he’s someone who tells the truth. You may be living as a woman, but you were born a man, Chloe.

    You were scamming people for money for your own selfish needs. Any way you spin this, you can’t deny that.

    That being said, if you honestly think that chopping your ghoulies off will make you feel like more of a woman, then you obviously don’t understand what being a woman is, and you’re a detriment to your own efforts.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      Allow me to quote myself by saying, “Well, if you can’t properly educate yourself on gender issues, then I
      sincerely doubt you’ve been able to properly educate yourself about the
      situation at hand. But if you need to vent, continue. I realize I
      slightly insulted you with this, but I mean you no harm.”

      • grimspec

        And you think that being anonymous has anything to do with my dislike of you being a scam-artist?

        I understand you’re relishing the attention you’ve got, given that you were on somethingawful.com begging for it, you’ve finally gotten what you want, and all it took was exploiting people and a couple suicide attempts.

        That being said, you need to ease up on your attitude, and you might find even more support.

        Also, nice stubble bro.

  • RK

    Chloe, I really hope you get the treatment you need and deserve, and not only the surgery. This may sound crazy but from the complex medical perspective involving all physical and mental factors it looks like the surgery should be the least of your concerns right now. You need to be ready for the surgery, mentally and physically. Given what happened and what has been shown so far I doubt you are ready. Things with gender reassignment and the surgeries are a complex process, you know that, or you should know better by now. Do not try to picture it as if you get the surgery today then tomorrow everything will be OK. That line of thinking almost got you killed, and YOU almost did it, not the surgery or the lack of surgery. It may be a life saving surgery, but not in the way you got it into your head, things got out of hand.

    If you lived in some different country you would be entitled to receive the full treatment from public health services. But you don’t live in such country. You have to work things out in the place you live and with honesty. And I think you already realized that being honest is the right thing. You were dishonest, and lied before, and this impacts your credibility. But if you need financial aid, and given what happened I’m sure you do, I do I hope you succeed and raise the funds for the right reasons. If you can’t do it immediately then be calm and try to sort things out in a decent manner.

    All the bashing and hateful comments shouldn’t affect you that much. You should learn from your mistakes, face the consequences (legally speaking if you broke any law), and move on. There will always be haters and supporters, opinions in favor and against, the only thing that matters is your life and doing good for/to yourself, the ones you love and even the people you don’t know.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chloe.sagal Chloe Sagal

      Thank you for that. I have been in therapy since highschool, I am mentally ready for the surgery. I did not try to kill myself because of worrying about the surgery, it was a moment of duress from a very stressful situation. The second time was due to feeling like garbage for betraying everyone, and others egging me on. There are more factors involved in terms of what surgeries I need, when and health concerns that I have not published yet, but I just ask that you trust that my doctors, therapists and I know what I need to do and what needs to be done. I know that the final surgery, GRS, potentially may be able to be covered by the state, but there still is 3 other surgeries that I will need. Most people fail to realize what exactly it is that we feel, and what really is necessary. I’m not claiming that the surgeries will be a magical fix, but they will be an enormous weight lifted. I find that telling someone to be comfortable with what they have when they have transsexualism is akin to homosexual aversion therapy, but that’s just me. I am trying very hard to be compassionate to people who do not know what it is I am going through, but feel the need to be vitriolic about it. Many of them have been extremely nice back and have tried to understand, but there have been so many people who feel it’s necessary to put me down or mock me. I just don’t know.

  • Douglas

    I just wanted to post here to say some things.

    You know, when this all started, I didn’t really know who Chloe was. I went to the campaign page, saw that a person was struggling to get money for a life saving surgery, and immediately did my part to pitch in and get that person help, through donations, and whatever else I could do.

    I even went so far as to talk to my local government officials to see if the state couldn’t do something to assist with her situation.

    Then a few days later, her Indiegogo campaign got taken down for fraud.

    I really can’t express how incredibly embarrassing this was. I put my reputation out there, begging, pleading, soliciting donations for something that was all a huge, and unnecessary, deception. Do you have any idea what this did to my credibility? How much of a (Sorry but for lack of a better word) “jackass” I felt like?

    And the real irony of the situation, was had I know what the real truth was, I probably would have still helped.

    I am sorry for the aftermath and tragedy that happened with you at the end of all this Chloe, I really am. BUT I’m not going to lie, I am absolutely, VERY angry about all this, because now I have to look in folks faces, who called me a fool, and an (And I quote) “Idiot” for getting them involved in a “scam”.

    Well, that’s really all I have to say about this. It feels better to get this off my chest.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004633297669 Dustin Mann

    Can someone explain what in the hell is going on here in a summary?…I read the whole post and all the comments and I still can’t figure out wth happened….

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