Ethics Statement

In the interest of transparency, this document will make explicit the beliefs and principles on which Haywire is founded. It will explain how we see our relationship to the games industry, our writers and you, our readers.

Haywire is free.

Haywire exists as a shared space for critics. The platform itself is strictly not-for-profit. All editorial positions are filled by volunteers, server and domain costs are currently covered by our members. (It’s nobody’s obligation to chip in.)

Any writing that appears on the site remains entirely its author’s property and can be freely reposted, sold to other publications or made the subject of a crowdfunding campaign such as Patreons.

Haywire is open.

We will accept any writer, regardless of prior experience, and work with them to develop their pitch into something we’d like to run, so long as they are willing to do their part of the work. We don’t believe in setting strict rules for the format and shape of our content: take your idea to us and we’ll endeavor to make it happen, or at least to let you know why it’s not working for us yet.

We aim to do our writers just as much of a service as they are doing us, by promoting them, mentoring them and generally helping where we can. We see editing as a form of guidance rather than an effort in enforcing a particular style, and a matter of curation rather than gatekeeping.

Our status as a free platform keeps us from paying prospective writers. All the same, we understand that offering exposure is our industry’s way of profiting from unpaid work which really deserves compensation, so we make that offer humbly.

Haywire is inclusive.

We welcome people of all genders, sexualities, nationalities and creeds, and expect our readers to do the same. Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic or any other kind of discriminatory language will not be tolerated on this site.

We go through all comments manually and will delete any that fail to meet standards of respectful interaction. We consider the ability to comment a privilege, not a right. This has perfectly nothing to do with censorship. You are welcome to respond elsewhere, we are not obligated to host your response here. Not every story has another side that needs to be heard, and journalism’s obsession with providing balanced accounts far too often turns it into a platform for the ignorant, the hateful, the bigoted. Actually, we went ahead and got rid of the comments section, it was mostly just the occasional spam bot in there anyway.

Beyond that, we also understand that inclusion is about more than the absence of discrimination, and aim to publish a diverse variety of voices. We will not wait until this somehow falls into place, but will actively look for writers to enrich our cast with new perspectives.

Haywire is independent.

We are committed to serving our writers first and foremost, and aim to keep our relationship with publishers, developers, conventions and other writers respectful, professional and minimal. Our editorial content represents the opinions of the site and its respective authors, but no one else.

We accept review copies and codes, but will add a disclaimer about the source of the game to our text. In the absence of such a disclaimer, we have acquired the covered game ourselves. We will not accept gifts in excess of anything that is freely given away in the convention circuit (rule of thumb: anything bigger than a t-shirt).

We will consider nondisclosure agreements, embargoes and preview events on a case by case basis, but are generally skeptical of these concepts. After interviews, which we tend to carry out by email, we will ask our partners to approve a final draft, but keep the right to reject proposed changes should they alter the original message in ways we deem inappropriate.