GameStop Fired RapeLay Commenter to Save $$, Stop Boycotts

A GameStop employee fired for discussing piracy and RapeLay in a college newspaper says that he was canned in order to avoid costing the videogame retailer “millions of dollars.”

Derek Littlejohn told Kotaku that following publication of The Globe article, his District Manager was contacted by a GameStop Vice President, who said he was getting calls about an article in the Globe, which the VP thought alluded to the British tabloid of the same name. Littlejohn’s manager told him that he was fired because “people were threatening to boycott and picket GameStop, which would cost the company millions of dollars.”

Littlejohn indicated that the author of the Globe piece, Ann Straub, was a friend of his, but that he “Didn’t know she was gonna cite me as an employee of Gamestop, which is what they were able to use as for firing me…”

Littlejohn summed up the situation, “So in a nutshell: You cost us millions of dollars, gtfo.”

GameStop would not, of course, directly comment on Littlejohn’s situation, but did offer the boiler plate rhetoric:

However, I can confirm that like all other Fortune-ranked, publically-traded corporations, we have very clear company-wide policies that include protocols for associate interactions with the media and elected officials. With over 40,000 employees in 17 countries, we communicate those protocols during the onboarding or hiring process. Each employee signs off on that they have read and understand those policies when they are hired.

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  1. Kojiro says:

    "Like I said in the other article, he shouldn’t be surprised about what happened and Gamestop was well within their rights to fire the guy. If he wanted to keep the job he shouldn’t have had more presence of mind."  – Shahab

    Quoted for truth.

  2. Shahab says:

    Like I said in the other article, he shouldn’t be surprised about what happened and Gamestop was well within their rights to fire the guy. If he wanted to keep the job he shouldn’t have had more presence of mind.

  3. Thomas P. says:

    Sounds like someone is butthurt because they violated company policy and was canned for it.


  4. hellfire7885 says:

    If he was kept anonymous then Gamestop would likely begin making life hell until someone confessed.

  5. Neeneko says:

     Well, at least she learned a valuable lesson.

    Though it is really not unusual for full names to be used in articles if the source gives permission.

  6. black manta says:

    For that matter, why isn’t there any anger directed at the person who identified him by name and as a Gamestop employee in the first place?  Granted, she’s a college student reporting for a college newspaper.  But even so, in Journalism 101, one of the first things you’re taught when reporting is discretion.  You need to cite your sources, yes.  But there are times when it is wiser to simply keep things ambiguous.  This happens in many journalism pieces all the time, as the phrase "an employee spoke on condition of anonymity" will sometimes turn up.

    Then again, I don’t know if college journalists can be held to the same standard as professional reporters.  Even a close friend of mine who is an assistant editor for the newspaper of an esteemed Ivy League college (see what I did there?) and whose stories are usually objective and even-handed wrote a piece on online gaming and addiction that came across as pretty one-sided.

  7. Neeneko says:

     I have plenty of anger twards them… oh yes… lots of displeasure…

    In this case, I consider them outright scum.  Threatening a company if they do not fire someone for daring to do an interview giving an opposing viewpoint?  Horrible people who enjoy looking for moral exuses to hurt others.

  8. Zerodash says:

    Why isn’t there any anger directed at the fools who would boycott or protest Gamestop over an employee’s opinion?  I have more issue with the people who made this Rapelay thing blow up than Gamestop firing someone for breaking a company policy.

  9. TBoneTony says:

    Alot taboo about nothing…

    He was commenting on a game that would never be sold in Gamestop.

    The journalist should have never revealed that he was a worker at Gamestop.

    The company should focus on selling games instead of being afraid of what family groups people might think of them.

    The game was banned in Japan like in a few months in 2006 after the game was released, long before the western world suddenly became aware of such a game, at the same time not knowing of the many Porn games in the western world that have been around since 1983…

    The game itself DOES NOT support rape in any way, why would people think that if they really saw what happened at the ending of the game where the rapist gets killed by his own victim…

    sure, I can go on and on…

    But seriously, politicians and family groups are nothing but ignorant people who shout all they like about computer games without any real understanding of them.

    Worse still, they will never listen to reason, because with emotions like that they can’t even have the will to listen to someone who knows more than what they know…


    all in all, a much taboo about nothing…really…


  10. Conejo says:

    sounds like that ex-employee has one fewer journalist friend, too.

    Here are we — and yonder yawns the universe.

  11. beemoh says:


    GameStop have two stores in the UK- they’re managed by their Irish division.


  12. SticKboy says:

    But…. there isn’t a British tabloid called The Globe! GameStop doesn’t operate in Britain anyway – what gives?

  13. Zerodash says:

    The First Amendment doesn’t apply in this case, as it only prevents the government from infringing on speech. 

  14. paketep says:

    First amendment anyone?

    So, they don’t like boycotts?. Tough luck. They got mine now. No buying from GameStop for me.

  15. Neeneko says:

    Does anyone have the contact info of anyone important at GameStop?

    I wish to express that after this, I have no intention of shopping there again. 

  16. GoodRobotUs says:

    These people who were going to ‘boycott’ Gamestop, were they people who even shopped in GameStop in the first place, or where they doing the usual section of public reaction of ‘These video games are so terrible that, if I bought them in the first place, I’d stop’.

    Sounds more than a bit fishy to me… Maybe GameStop work out their sales figures the same way companies calculate losses to piracy, ‘If they actually came in the shop and bought something, they’d spend X on it’.

  17. Neeneko says:

    Wait, what were people threatening to boycott them over?  How many threats does it take for them to take notice and make rash moves?  Could we use this to our advantage?

    *sigh* companies really need to grow spines.  Sticking up for your own people is more important then a threat of a picket that will probably just be two people who give up in an hour. 

    If GameStop has not already lost my buisness, they would have now.

  18. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Oh wow……. this reminds me of all the losses claimed over piracy….. gotta love that corporate mindset…..they need to lay off the cocaine its making them to OCDy….

    Until lobbying is a hanging offense I choose anarchy! CP/IP laws should not effect the daily life of common people!

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