Game Developer Brianna Wu, who’s become known for being an advocate for women facing harassment in the gaming community while also becoming known for being pulled into the cluster that is Gamer Gate, has decided that she will try to run for the U.S. House of Representatives come the 2018 election season. Her running for the U.S. House of Representatives seems to stem from areas directly associated with her involvement with technology and gaming.
Although she hasn’t made anything official yet, she has a clear idea of her agenda and main focus for her tentative campaign:
“My main agenda will be economic. Here in Massachusetts, taxpayers spend an amazing amount on subsidizing education – particularly with infrastructure. But then students and entrepreneurs take that investment by our state to San Francisco or Austin,” she said. “I think we can do a much better job keeping startups here in our state. Also, look at the game industry, which has been devastated here in Boston with the loss of Irrational and others.”
When asked which area she’d like to serve in if elected to the House of Representatives, the answer was simple:
“I’d hope to serve on the House technology subcommittee. It was very disturbing to me to see members of the House tie the Mirai botnet (malware that hijacks computers) to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), simply parroting special interests. It’s an example of how our tech policy doesn’t serve the American people. We need people making policy that actually understand technology, that understand the assault on our privacy. It’s a national security issue, and we’re failing badly.”
Considering how much drama there’s been this election season concerning cyber attacks, her focus on protecting our national security via our technology is completely understandable. We are technologically behind in many areas and the reality is that there are a mere handful of people who truly understand technology in the House and, overall, our government.
Brianna Wu is currently building up her advising team and it seems the team will comprise of people with interests that have mirrored her previous campaigns such as harassment against women, which has already been on the rise especially after Trump’s election:
“I will be adding legal experts on cyber-bullying and revenge porn to my advising team soon,” she said. “The reason I decided to run is simple: [President-elect Donald] Trump is terrifyingly now in the White House. I can’t sit by making pleasant video game distractions for the next four years while the constitution is under assault. Hillary [Clinton] ran a brave marathon, and now it’s time for women of my generation to pick up that baton and commit to public service.”
Ultimately, though, she is running because she wants change like many of us do after the 2016 election:
“The other reason I’m running is because I’m ready for a bolder Democratic Party. I didn’t personally support Sanders in the primary, but he tapped into a very powerful disconnect between our party’s leadership and our base. We want leaders that will fight for us, and all too often the Democrats don’t stand up to the fringe extreme of the Republican Party. I’ve been called a lot of names over my career, but I’ve never been told I’m scared of a fight. You know just how passionate I am about women in tech. But I believe we’ve hit an asymptote with what activism in tech can accomplish. People are aware of the problem, but all that’s getting done is window dressing. We don’t need more catered women in tech lunches, we don’t need speeches – we need structural bias against us to stop. And I think women in tech serving in the legislative branch is the next step forward.”
Brianna Wu’s step towards running for the U.S. House of Representatives is the exact step that we need to see from women going forward now that we’ve had a month or so to digest the fact that a Trump presidency is happening. Instead of stepping back and licking our wounds, we need to make steps forward to address the changes we want made and just go out and do the thing. Yes, I make it sound easy. It won’t be. But, with women like Brianna Wu stepping forward and engaging in actions towards creating that positive change, maybe we’ll see other women being inspired to join in her footsteps.
What do you think of Brianna Wu running for the U.S. House of Representatives? What do you think of the issues she hopes to address and focus on throughout her campaign? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments below and do be civil.