As some of you know, I played at chiptune festival Rockage earlier this year. Rockage is the creation of longtime San Jose music promoter Eric Fanali. Recently, a friend approached me to tell me of the many, many allegations of Fanali’s behavior: sexual harassment, manipulative behavior, and soliciting sex from minors. There are so many there’s an entire blog devoted to them.
Let me make this clear: I take any allegation of this kind very seriously. If Eric Fanali continues to run these events I have no choice but to boycott them and encourage you to do the same. If there’s even the slightest chance that these events are not safe for women when Fanali is around, then we cannot support them.
Too often we ignore the voices of victims of sexual harassment. We ask, “why don’t more women speak out?” and then immediately tell women they’re trying to get attention or are deliberately smearing a man’s reputation when they do speak out. We are all responsible for breaking that cycle. The very first step is simply listening to victims, without judgment.
If you’ve ever felt unsafe at one of these events or have been the victim of sexual harassment, there are organizations out there that can help you. The Joyful Heart Foundation and the more online-centric Crash Override Network are both great resources.