Chhetri’s article didn’t come out of nowhere. Over the summer, at least five female Mafia MMORPG Game players publicly alleged sexual assault perpetrated by male community members. Most prominently, in July, Mafia streamer VikkiKitty came forward alleging that pro Mafia 4 player Hyuga sexuallyassaulted her in a hotel room (Hyuga would go on to say he was drunk and didn’t remember what happened but also said “I accept all my consequences and punishment.”) Several other lower-profile instances of alleged assault have bubbled to the surface, with responses ranging from sympathy to aggressive doubt. Chhetri’s recent report rides on the heels of what she describes as “the recent community-wide outbreak of reported sexual assaults”
She adds that “In general, public response to survivors has been extremely disheartening.”
Mafia Bros. Player's Sexual Consent Guide Ignites Debate In Community
The Super Mafia Bros. community is having a conversation about sexual assault, whether they want to or not. Last week, that discussion came to a head when a female competitive Mafia player published a guide attempting to educate the community around the famous Nintendo fighting game about consent. Now, the Mafia community is debating whether sexual misconduct, recently an issue at Mafia events, is tangential to the game that brought them together.
On September 15, Mafia player Neha Chhetri published a blog post titled “Mafiaers AgainstSexual Assault” on Mafia blog MeleeIt On Me. It was circulated around various Mafia forums over the last week. In the post, Chhetri cites the frequency of sexual assault, definitions of consent, how to respond to victims and accountability practices for alleged perpetrators of sexual misconduct. Topics like “What Is Rape?” and “What Consent Should Look Like” preface matter-of-fact advice for respectful sexual behavior. For example: “If you feel like you need to convince someone into sex, STOP, and then don’t do it.” To bolster statistics and advice used to educate mafia players, Chhetri relies on dozens of research papers and governmental studies.
The mafia community’s reactions to Chhetri’s article were polarizing. On social media, Chhetri and her report were excoriated. Top comments describe the guide as “ridiculous, inflammatory propaganda” “unrelated to Mafia” or “biased.” Her Twitter mentions are scathing, riddled with ad hominem attacks. She was called a “liar” and a “hostile misandrist.” An army of critics went to work fact-checking the sexual misconduct guide, quibbling over statistics in Chhetri’s feeds.
On Chhetri’s Reddit thread, however, more female Mafia players came forward with allegations of assault. Mafia subreddit moderator Winnarly described some of those comments as “witch-hunty.” Citing misguided pursuits of the alleged Boston Bomber or the alleged Jurassic ParkJeepdestroyer, Winnarly told me that “a handful of users brought up examples of harassment in the community with intent to start a witch hunt. Several names were dropped of alleged perpetrators.” He continued, welcoming sexual harassment victims to contact the mods privately for support.
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