Turns out it was all an elaborate troll by a bunch of dudes. Sly Buehl Rigilio spun an elaborate tale to BuzzFeed about how hard it is to be a trans gamer and how rejection from the tournament made him cry.
The group first tried to enter online with pictures of themselves in bad wigs but were unsurprisingly rejected and warned they could be penalized for trying to fake their gender. Then the Electronic Sports League, the organization running the tournament, told them they could enter manually, but only if they showed passports that proved their gender was female.
The ESL’s spokesperson even told BuzzFeed they put these rules in place because of the large number of male trolls entering into the tournament as a joke.
The story was picked up by numerous other media outlets like Pink News, Fusion and Cucktaku. The story even prompted another female gaming tournament to revise their rules on accepting transgender applicants.
But less than a week after BuzzFeed published their article, Rigilio told Paul Joseph Watson of InfoWars that the story was a hoax. “Over the past 2 weeks we set up a plot to see if we could trick BuzzFeed into posting something that is fake, for the laughs,” Rigilio told Infowars.
“We decided to pose as a ‘transgendered’ pro team, we made it as ridiculous as possible by uploading obvious troll pics to our profiles on the tournament’s website (pics of us wearing wigs, etc). We knew we were going to get declined into joining the tournament, so once we did get turned down, I then sent an email to a Buzzfeed journalist by the name of Lane Sainty to try and bait them into making a story out of it.”
Rigilio did nothing to hide their gaming team name from Buzzfeed, the Rigatoni Family. A quick google search would have revealed the group’s website and YouTube channel which reveals them to be a group of trolls with a conservative bent.
Maybe Buzzfeed should stick to what they do best: repetitive food lists and Disney princess quizzes.