Something Awful, also known simply as SA or SomethingAwful, is a comedy website devoted to making fun of internet culture. It houses an enormous amount of content ranging from blog and feature articles to reviews of video games, movies, and other media. It was begun by Richard Kyanka, also known as "Lowtax," in 1999 as a personal website, and quickly grew, as did the content it had. Something Awful is best-known for its forums, which require a $9.95 membership fee (intended to keep out the rabble) and which has had a lot of excellent contentin its own right. Something Awful has also led to many prominent events in Internet culture, from Kyanka's infamous boxing match with Uwe Boll and the creation of the character Slenderman, who would go to star in the game series of the same name. Something Awful users refer to themselves as Goons.
Something Awful's relevance to this website is something of an odd one; for reasons uncertain, a lot of prominent people of interest this site has covered either are former Something Awful alumni who would later go on to be banned from the site for their behavior, including Sarah Nyberg, Zoe Quinn, and Laurelai Bailey.
Involvement in GamerGate
During the GamerGate controversy, Something Awful was either directly or indirectly involved with a number of known false-flags that occurred, including the initial death threats against Brianna Wu and later mocking of her sick dog, attempts to report Arthur Chu to the police for delivering what could easily be constituted as a bomb threat, and a number of minor trolling assaults across social media intended to provoke. The general justification for doing so was simply to take pot-shots at the ongoing internet slap-fight; many of the Goons saw this as simply highlighting just how idiotic they saw the entire conflict as.
Humorously, while many of these attempts, many of which reflected poorly on all involved (including Something Awful), were initially decried by GamerGate supporters, the net result of Something Awful doing this over time was generally a net positive for the consumer hashtag revolt in the long run; the events highlighted by the Goons had a bizarre and fascinating tendency to cause GamerGate opponents on Twitter to self-destruct in very public ways; in Brianna Wu's case she continued to treat the incidents as credible threats against her life years after she had publicly acknowledged the events to have been a hoax, causing her to further be revealed as a charlatan.