Why I'm writing about my "dick fantasies" on Engadget

Note: Earlier today, Engadget shut down its commenting section. A story I wrote served as the catalyst for that decision. Here's why I wrote it.

Growing up gay as a West Texas preacher's son, I've experienced homophobia in its most ridiculous, shit-kicking-est forms. Bigots in Texas aren't particularly quiet about their distaste for fags like me, so when I relocated to the Bay Area and started working in the tech press, I wasn't expecting the subtle, veiled discrimination I witnessed.

It's no secret that the tech industry has a historically sticky relationship with sexual minorities. Just look at the fate of Alan Turing, Tim Cook's reluctant coming out, or the comments section of just about anything I've ever written. Even discussions around diversity in tech tend to ignore sexual orientation. If you're gay and working in tech the message is clear: your voice doesn't matter.

Which, my friends, is a flaming pile of bullshit. It doesn't matter who you are or what you do with your genitals, everyone is affected by technology today. And that's why I'm writing about my "dick fantasies" for one of the biggest tech sites on earth. Engadget isn't the gadget blog it used to be. We're talking about real human experiences as they relate to technology, and the last time I checked fags are humans too.

Technology affects everyone and it's rapidly invading every aspect of our lives. Given my background in the porn industry, it seemed obvious that I write about the convergence of sex and tech. Boning is a personal act, so I naturally decided that my column on the subject, Computer Love, would be culled from my experiences.

I didn't anticipate the level of ignorance I'd encounter along the way. Earlier this week, I wrote about my adventures in an adult MMORPG. The post, titled "The massively multi-player online role-playing orgy I never had," was the most popular story on Engadget for most of the day; it also contained some of the most derogatory comments I've ever received. This is the one that started it all:

"If we're going to read Sex on Engadget can we at least get a straight journalist? You know, what 90% of your readers are."

I'm used to being accused of single-handedly ruining the best tech site on earth with my disgusting, depraved, tabloid-style journalism. But as a gay man who's had to fight for just about everything he has, I won't be told to shut up. I responded, pointing out that his stats were a "Strong and homophobic assumption" and that "I thought our trolls were more progressive."

The conversation devolved from there, with other, presumably straight male commenters jumping into mansplain me the definition of homophobia, complain about a particular line in which I use the phrase "wash my ass," and accuse me of forcing my "dick fantasies" on them. I had stifled the voices of straight men by using my own and was told that Engadget should "give equal time to us from the pitching side as you do from the catcher side."

Again, a bold assumption. I'm a pitcher and a catcher, but that's largely irrelevant. Point is, it's because of comments like these that voices like mine are so important in the tech space. It may come as a surprise to some, but there's no lack of straight, white male perspective on the internet.

So, no, bro, I don't owe you anything. If you want to see your dick constantly reflected back at you, just open your eyes. It's everywhere.