Home Gaming Nintendo fires employee targeted by online harassment campaign

Nintendo fires employee targeted by online harassment campaign

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Alison Rapp fired from Nintendo

Does the name Alison Rapp ring a bell? It probably doesn’t if you’ve shied away from online conflict and disgusting harassment campaigns over social media, but it’s a name we’re likely going to be hearing about for the foreseeable future thanks to Nintendo. Alison Rapp was formally employed by Nintendo of America, but was fired yesterday after what she claims to be an unjust inquisition into her social media life. In short, Rapp claims that she was fired for defending herself online.

Rapp has been engaged with a heated harassment campaign for months now, which she credits the most blame for her recent unemployment. A member of the Treehouse localisation team for Nintendo, Rapp was personally targeted and singled out as the reason for so many localisation changes made to Nintendo titles in the West, most predominantly being ones cantered on character sexualisation and sexual content. Being an outspoken Feminist, this type of attack was common for Rapp.

Rapp wasn’t even involved in the actual development of these localised ports. She was part of the marketing team, representing Nintendo frequently at shows like E3, appearing on live streams for Treehouse and acting as a project manager for many different projects. Rapp was used to this unjustified hate, but never expected it to force Nintendo to look into her social media arguments and find cause for dismissal.

“As many of you know, the last couple months have been quite a whirlwind of controversy and [Gamergate] harassment. Over the last few [weeks], I’ve had to talk safety measures [with my] family — including talks [with] police to warn them of possible suspicious activity… Throughout this, GG has been digging up all kinds of things about my personal life and contacting Nintendo about them.

“Today, the decision was made: I am no longer a good, safe representative of Nintendo, and my employment has been terminated.”

Xenoblad Chronicles X came under fire for apprently censorship in the USA

Nintendo, of course, came out shortly after Rapp posted the above on Twitter to explain their reason. Yes, they had engaged in a full search of her online activities, including a search of an Amazon Wish List that she had shared with people online. What they found what that Rapp had been working a second job under an anonymous name, which Nintendo claims was a conflict of interest and breach of their employee agreement.

“Alison Rapp was terminated due to violation of an internal company policy involving holding a second job in conflict with Nintendo’s corporate culture. Though Ms. Rapp’s termination follows her being the subject of criticism from certain groups via social media several weeks ago, the two are absolutely not related. Nintendo is a company committed to fostering inclusion and diversity in both our company and the broader video game industry and we firmly reject the harassment of individuals based on gender, race or personal beliefs. We wish Ms. Rapp well in her future endeavors.”

Rapp responded again at this point, not denying that she had taken up a second job under an anonymous name to pay off student loans. She feels that the second position wasn’t a conflict at all, as moonlighting under a pseudo name detached her from her position at Nintendo. That may or may not be the way Nintendo sees it, but Rapp claims that she’s been at this for a long time now without issue. And she could’ve continued, if the hate campaign directed at her didn’t choose to dig up her personal life and decide to act on it.

“It was moonlighting Nintendo didn’t like, despite the fact that it was anonymous. Here’s the thing: Do [you] honestly think that without GG’s attacks, the ‘lateral move’ and the obsessive privacy digging would have happened?” Rapp said. “Do you think that if the industry wasn’t afraid of women, sex-positivity, etc. that the [anonymous] moonlighting I did would have been a problem?

“The amount of obsession it must take to dig up old tweets, find addresses, link me to anon things not related to games is … not normal for a professional industry.”

Alison was a marketing specialist at Treehouse, Nintendo's localisation house

And that’s all very true. regardless of whether or not Rapp’s second job was a breach of Nintendo policy or not (Nintendo isn’t exactly being clear on that, and no one outside of the circumstances really knows), it seems none of it would’ve made a difference to Rapp had anonymous parties not searched for it out of a hate for her. Rapp is uncommonly outspoken for a Nintendo employee online, so it’s also curious that Nintendo is trying to brush that aside after a history of weird relations with people and their personal Twitter accounts.

Rapp now becomes another casualty of unjustified online harassment, which is nicely detailed in an older investigative piece conducted by Kotaku. Being singled out for changes in games that Rapp had no control over because of her views on woman’s representation in games in one thing. Making sure she gets fired as a result of this vendetta is a completely different, twisted thing entirely.

I don’t expect Rapp to let this die down lightly either, and Nintendo will probably have a little more explaining to do if they’re really trying to dodge questions as to why the investigation was conducted in the first place.

Last Updated: March 31, 2016

35 Comments

  1. Very very disappointed in Nintendo…Even when the harassment was going on, i expected them to step in at least…Horrible

    Reply

  2. Umar

    March 31, 2016 at 09:53

    The fact that the harassers were making her out to be a pedophile is even worse.

    Reply

    • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

      March 31, 2016 at 11:41

      No, Umar, she’s not a pedophile (or at least there’s no proof that she is) she’s worse, she’s a pedophile enabler. Any person who argues a pro-pedophila stance is a morally reprehensible sick freak.

      Reply

      • Deceased

        March 31, 2016 at 15:26

        Wait, is this trolling or is this woman ACTUALLY trying to legalise / lax laws surrounding child-pornography?!

        Because you know – if it’s trolling, I can understand that she’s an attention whore, but if not, by everything that is unholy, how did we get here?! 😐

        Like, I honestly can’t make out whether it’s serious or not :O

        Reply

  3. Original Heretic

    March 31, 2016 at 09:56

    If they ulterior motive in firing her was the harrassment thing, that’s messed up. But they are quite justified in firing her for having an alternate job if it stipulates in her contract that she not allowed to. The mere fact that she had it under a false name makes it clear she knows she was wrong.

    Reply

    • Jan Prins

      March 31, 2016 at 09:58

      Or it could have been, due to the nature of the work she decided to remain anonymous?
      Not saying you are wrong, but I don’t believe we know enough info to jump to conclusions?

      Reply

      • Original Heretic

        March 31, 2016 at 09:59

        I’ll concede that point. The nature of the second job is key. Was it toy sales? We may never know…

        Reply

        • Knowles2

          March 31, 2016 at 12:29

          given that Nintendo is a toy company, that would be a clear conflict of interest, I haven’t actually found out what her second job is through.

          Reply

          • Original Heretic

            March 31, 2016 at 13:01

            Depends on the kind of toys she was dealing with.

  4. Kromas untamed

    March 31, 2016 at 10:11

    There is a Nintendon’t joke in there somewhere.

    But seriously Nintendo is not really winning any loyalty points the last couple of years.

    Reply

  5. D4RKL1NG

    March 31, 2016 at 11:10

    Loool she sold noods posing with Ninty products. Also,a woman reported her to Nintendo not woman hating gamers. But of course GG or whatever will be blamed for this. Expect hit pieces soon by Polyshit and kaktaku.

    Reply

    • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

      March 31, 2016 at 11:42

      Hopefully, after Hulk Hogan collects, Kaktaku will close its doors for good.

      Reply

    • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

      March 31, 2016 at 11:42

      Wow, I missed this…. 😮 What a freak!

      Reply

  6. HvR

    March 31, 2016 at 11:13

    Her decision to get involved in public mud-slinging with one of the bigggest a-hole movements on the internet, at anytime she could have bowed out and asked Nintendo to handle the public outfall for her as it was direct correlation with her job. If Nintendo didn’t want to and then fired her her complaint might be valid.

    She then made very controversial comments regarding child sex/pornography on open intern forums and social media while working PR FOR A FAMILY-FRIENDLY ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY> OF COURSE THEY ARE GOING TO LOOK INTO HER SOCIAL MEDIA PUBLICATIONS.

    Then she was caught in contravention of her employment contract.

    Reply

    • Greylingad[CNFRMD]

      March 31, 2016 at 11:17

      This is also what I gathered from these articles, yes, being isolated and attacked on social media is not nice, but then, like you say, get the firm you work for to defend you in the public eye, don’t try to meddle with it yourself…

      Reply

      • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

        March 31, 2016 at 11:37

        Of course Kotaku left out the bits about her being an incredibly vocal pro-pedophilia activist

        Reply

  7. Dean

    March 31, 2016 at 11:13

    This is simply yet another 3rd wave feminist crying foul when they’ve stepped out of line. Like it or not as a well known member of the Nintendo team, commenting on gaming related issues as they pertain to her feminist views puts her company in an awkward position of having her opinions reflected as theirs. Add to that she knowingly deceived Nintendo in order to circumvent their rules about additional employment, regardless of the reason she was in the wrong.

    It takes two to tango and this woman is certainly not a victim in the case of her employment, regardless of any war she claimed to be waging on her private time against anti-feminists.

    Reply

    • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

      March 31, 2016 at 11:36

      Worse than 3rd wave feminism, she’s a pro pedophilia activist.

      Reply

  8. Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

    March 31, 2016 at 11:35

    Oh god Sandy, you need to get off Kotaku. The reason she was targeted on social media was because she’s a vocal pro-pedophilia activist, and that’s essentially why she was fired by Nintendo when this was highlighted. Go read her thesis on this for clarity.

    Nintendo did the right thing here.

    http://www.dailystormer.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/1XDf8W6jec_-h3mCEWNcZ0g-618×415.png

    http://www.dailystormer.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/1djtbzImiKKbJlc85mQzFog-618×222.png

    https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/max/400/1*4Ec92tyRlADIS8gXbHvlWQ.png

    Reply

    • BakedBagel

      March 31, 2016 at 11:57

      forcing your kids to watch gore is pretty fucking sadistic.

      Reply

      • Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

        March 31, 2016 at 15:15

        She’s a pretty scummy person, and it’s not surprising that Kotaku is white-knighting her.

        Reply

  9. BakedBagel

    March 31, 2016 at 11:55

    Lmao Nice kool-aid drinking there Mr Barbosa, i see nothing has changed in that regard.

    >Investigative piece
    >Kotaku

    HAHAHAHA. Thats a good joke.

    It must be because harrassment and not child porn justification.

    Must be.

    Reply

  10. Knowles2

    March 31, 2016 at 12:21

    Project manage is usually the one that decides these things, so yes she is actually responsible for the changes, the coders, artists and others follow her orders. Obviously a good project manager will take feedback and advice from the team but ultimately the decision is with the project manager.

    Obviously that irrelevant, what relevant is her contract, which she publish online all to view but if it bans her from working a second job then usually such clauses are made in an abundantly clear way and often verbally as well when you are first employ. She broke her contract and was fired simple really, if she believes Nintendo done wrong their the courts to pursue her argument in, an any lawyer would order her to stay off twitter until that case is done.

    Reply

    • Thinus Swart

      March 31, 2016 at 12:59

      While I’m not going to comment on the other comments in this thread with regards to alleged things that she may or may not have done, I don’t think your comment about the duties of a project manager is correct.

      A project manager does not make decisions with regards to creative decisions. A project manager manages the resources given to a project with regards to people, time and budget. They have to make decisions with regards to how many people are assigned to which tasks, which deadlines take priority, which meetings need to be facilitated, etc.

      The creative decisions are left to a Creative Director of a project or even a Creative team.

      Again, not wanting to stir, merely addressing the project manager bit.

      Reply

  11. Galbedir

    March 31, 2016 at 13:40

    I guess *Puts on glasses* that’s a Rapp….

    Reply

    • Allykhat

      April 1, 2016 at 13:35

      YYYYYEEEEEEAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

      Reply

  12. Blerd

    March 31, 2016 at 13:47

    She was fired for holding very disturbing and questionable views on child porn and sex with minors,the second job thing isclearly a cover up. Lets be real here if someone at lazy gamers started spouting racist beliefs on twitter and someone from a race relations NGO complained they would be fired faster than yoshi can gobble up gombas

    Reply

  13. Kerrits

    March 31, 2016 at 14:54

    So you are saying that her being in breach of contract is OK, because Nintendo only found out about it due to an harassment campaign?

    In other news, JZ shouldn’t have to pay back the money, because we only found out about it due to racists looking for a way to discredit him.

    Reply

  14. Jim Hogan (Banana Hulk Hogan)

    March 31, 2016 at 20:24

    I’m just going to throw this on here (why you should take Kotaku with a cup of salt:

    http://i.imgur.com/Bzcgre5.jpg

    Reply

  15. Strawman Jim

    April 10, 2016 at 17:25

    And now it turns out she was actually moonlighting as a prostitute. I can’t believe so many SJWs and aGGs used Alison as the hill to go die on. And that’s why you don’t trust Kotaku.

    http://www.gamezone.com/news/it-seems-former-nintendo-pr-employee-alison-rapp-was-a-prostitute-3435712

    Reply

  16. Strawman Jim

    April 10, 2016 at 17:32

    Lol, to be on the side of the regressive left

    “What a dilemma Social Justice bros! So we bitched and moaned about the GDC dancers but now we have to support Alison’s prostitution… Oy vey!”
    http://i.imgur.com/KLud3Ys.jpg

    Reply

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