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Harassment in gaming

MechaPilot

Explorer
Hmm, I might have paid to see that post. :)

It would have been very blue. Imagine if Richard Pryor had just come home from a tour of service in the navy (which, deserved or no, has a reputation for making people more potty-mouthed than they already are). However, a post might not have done the gut reaction justice. I mean, is there a smily that's actually so angry or ranty that it's spitting as it yells? ;)
 

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Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
With respect, you probably don't.
For someone arguing that we shouldn't question the intent or words of someone complaining of harassment, this is rank hypocrisy.

And before you question my credentials as to not understanding the frustration, I've sat in hospital hoping for word that a gay friend of mine would pull through after having his throat cut by a bunch of redneck yahoos that thought the guy in drag walking home would make for fun sport. He didn't make it. That's ONE of my painful brushes with harassment and abuse. If you need a woman, because a gay man isn't good enough, how about my girlfriend that was raped by a fellow gamer? She was ostracized for being unfaithful to me despite me saying that the guy raped her. We both found a different group of friends. She couldn't even bring herself to report it because of the social pressure applied to her over the issue.

So, maybe, just maybe, climb down off of your high horse of determining who's able to say they understand or empathize with the outrage and frustration that comes from harassment. You just look like a supreme jerk and gatekeeper of the one true thought.
I mean, among gamers and geeks, don't we already nearly worship Batman?
"What Would Batman Do?" is a stupendously stupid argument.
 

Springheel

First Post
And that word is, "In our hobby, we have a problem with the majority group either directly harassing minority demographics in the hobby or standing on the sidelines and not doing anything to help resolve the issue."

No, that's not quite right.

In our hobby, we have a minority of people harassing other people, a minority of people condoning such behaviour, and a majority that either speak up against it, or are unaware of it.

She's pretty specific in the blog post. Those perpetrating these actions are doing so maliciously with the intent of forcing women and POC out of the hobby.

In her opinion. She fails to mention how she knows what their intent is.

Those standing on the sidelines and not doing anything, are every bit part of the problem, since they aren't actually doing anything to prevent those who are maliciously driving people out of the hobby. Thus, they get called out as cowards.

I actually don't think what the original article said is very relevant anymore, but for the sake of accuracy, she did not say "those standing on the sidelines" (implying men who were witnessing harassment and not doing anything about it). She said:

[White male terrorism] succeeds because the majority of men in the community are too cowardly to stand against the bullies and the terrorists.

The majority of gamers ... are instead complicit in lower levels of harassment.

:):):):):):):) behaviour” only persists because the majority of men are too cowardly to call the :):):):):):):)s what they are.

Her claim is that the "majority of men" in gaming are as bad as those doing the harassing, because they are clearly cowards or racists ("It is almost impossible to convince gamers that sexist and racist jokes are unacceptable"). She (and you, apparently) makes no allowance for those who have simply never witnessed any harassment in their gaming experiences.

If they were recognizing the problem, then the problem would largely be solved.

Please explain. The majority of people recognize crime as a problem, yet crime is not "largely solved".
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
For someone arguing that we shouldn't question the intent or words of someone complaining of harassment, this is rank hypocrisy.

If they had said, "I've had that happen to me," I would not have questioned it.

But, that's not what happened. They instead asserted that they shared the emotional state of one who has been a victim, without claiming to have been harassed. So, I don't see how there's any hypocrisy there at all, much less it be rank.

Beyond that is something that comes out of both security training and grief counseling training - you shouldn't compare your own emotional experiences to a victim's *even if* you think you've been through an experience similar enough. For one thing, whether *you* feel it is similar enough is beside the point - if you are incorrect, you have effectively belittled the pain of another. Moreover, while there are some general classes of responses to harassment and other traumatic events, when dealing with an individual, the details of their feelings on the matter will be idiosyncratic, unique to them. Two people will react to similar events, and even the same event, in different ways. If you make a claim to having the same experience, you tend to actually believe their reaction will be the same as yours, and that's a mistake.

If you need a woman, because a gay man isn't good enough, how about my girlfriend that was raped by a fellow gamer?

My wife is a rape survivor as well. What you won't see is me then claiming to understand how *you* feel about it. That's the real point. It isn't about having credentials, as if having some specific set of life events allows you a seat at the discussion, or something. It is about not asserting you know how others feel.

So, maybe, just maybe, climb down off of your high horse

This is not a constructive way to address anyone.


"What Would Batman Do?" is a stupendously stupid argument.

In a literal sense, yes. But, the fact remains that our culture still generally believes in taking matters into your own hands on occasion - our love of Batman, superheroes, and rogue cops who go outside the law when they have to are indicative - so you can expect that some folks will feel it is okay to do so.
 

Shasarak

First Post
Hmm, I do not like people being harassed and on the other hand I do not like being called a White Male Terrorist so I guess that makes me apathetic.
 

MechaPilot

Explorer
Hmm, I do not like people being harassed and on the other hand I do not like being called a White Male Terrorist so I guess that makes me apathetic.

Not really. Being apathetic means you simply don't care. You care, on both counts. You don't like harassment, and hopefully you would stand up against it if you saw it going on (you've always seemed like a decent person when we've talked here and on the WotC forums, so I suspect you might at least tell a harasser to stop acting like a jerk) You also don't care for the inflammatory language used in the article. I think a fair amount of people don't, but I also think many of realize that we wouldn't be having this discussion if the language in the provoking article wasn't so inflammatory. The inflammatory language has hurt the discussion, certainly, but it's really a personal judgement call as to whether it has done more harm with the hard feelings and periodic derailments than the amount of harm that's done by not addressing harassment.
 

Shasarak

First Post
Not really. Being apathetic means you simply don't care. You care, on both counts. You don't like harassment, and hopefully you would stand up against it if you saw it going on (you've always seemed like a decent person when we've talked here and on the WotC forums, so I suspect you might at least tell a harasser to stop acting like a jerk) You also don't care for the inflammatory language used in the article. I think a fair amount of people don't, but I also think many of realize that we wouldn't be having this discussion if the language in the provoking article wasn't so inflammatory. The inflammatory language has hurt the discussion, certainly, but it's really a personal judgement call as to whether it has done more harm with the hard feelings and periodic derailments than the amount of harm that's done by not addressing harassment.

I dont want to associate with the crazies on either side so that puts me firmly in the apathetic camp. Just let me play my game.
 

MechaPilot

Explorer
I dont want to associate with the crazies on either side so that puts me firmly in the apathetic camp. Just let me play my game.

I'm a little confused. Are you including people who are being harassed in "the crazies?" What about the people who see someone being harassed and say something about it? And what about the people who think that harassment is a problem and advocate for doing something about it, but who don't use the kind of inflammatory language found in the article (for instance, me)? Are you lumping them (or even me) in with "the crazies" too? That doesn't jive with the impression that I have of you, especially not after you were kind enough on the WotC forums to PM me about comments I made that led you to believe I was having problems (and boy was I ever at the time).
 

S'mon

Legend
I'm a little confused. Are you including people who are being harassed in "the crazies?"

People who claim - and in some sense believe - they've been harrassed when they haven't really, and people who grotesquely exaggerate minor incidents, could count as crazy in my book. I guess people who claim that all such claims should be believed, no matter how seemingly improbable, and race/gender groups condemned on that basis, could also be considered crazy. I tend to think they are mostly just bad, not mad, though the more radical ones may be somewhat disturbed.
 

Springheel

First Post
In a literal sense, yes. But, the fact remains that our culture still generally believes in taking matters into your own hands on occasion - our love of Batman, superheroes, and rogue cops who go outside the law when they have to are indicative - so you can expect that some folks will feel it is okay to do so.

Which says absolutely nothing about whether it actually IS okay to do so, as you implied when you first used it as an example.

Some folks apparently "feel it is okay" to grope cosplayers, but we don't condone that.
 

Darkwing Duck

First Post
I also think many of realize that we wouldn't be having this discussion if the language in the provoking article wasn't so inflammatory

Or, she could learn to write persuasively _without_ using such cheap and bigoted rhetoric.

I, for one, was turned off by her use of terms like "coward" and "white male terrorist." What I found persuasive were the incidents she mentioned. They raised my passion about this issue. They would have been even more persuasive if she had provided ways to fact check them. Her use of cheap and inflammatory rhetoric raises my suspicion that those incidents are made up. They make her text less persuasive.
 
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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Or, she could learn to write persuasively _without_ using such cheap and bigoted rhetoric.

I, for one, was turned off by her use of terms like "coward" and "white male terrorist." What I found persuasive were the incidents she mentioned. They raised my passion about this issue. They would have been even more persuasive if she had provided ways to fact check them. Her use of cheap and inflammatory rhetoric raises my suspicion that those incidents are made up.
You're still stuck there? Repeating myself:

The issue ISN'T about her ability to write well. Dismissing the validity of her claims or choosing not to engage in a discussion of them on the merits because of the relative skill with which she makes the claim is a logical fallacy.

If you saw a woman running down the street chased by a hockey-masked, machete wielding man, and she was just uttering an inarticulate, wordless scream, would you sit there and say, "Well, she could have phrased that better..."?

And the lack of verifiability in a great number of these incidents is part of the issue.. How does one prove a barely heard comment, a quick grope in a crowd or a verbal chant in public where the only one not chanting is the victim?
 
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cmad1977

Hero
Or, she could learn to write persuasively _without_ using such cheap and bigoted rhetoric.

I, for one, was turned off by her use of terms like "coward" and "white male terrorist." What I found persuasive were the incidents she mentioned. They raised my passion about this issue. They would have been even more persuasive if she had provided ways to fact check them. Her use of cheap and inflammatory rhetoric raises my suspicion that those incidents are made up. They make her text less persuasive.

Because what's important isn't the message it's the tone!
Seriously though... If you aren't tough enough to see through some harsh words it's possible they apply.
 

tomBitonti

Explorer
Because what's important isn't the message it's the tone!
Seriously though... If you aren't tough enough to see through some harsh words it's possible they apply.

This issue has been raised several times, with the response Being to look past the words used to the core issue.

We can do both: Looking at the words used and saying that the message could have been delivered better is possible while at the same time accepting that harassment is a problem and working to reduce it. One doesn't have to do only one and not do the other.

Also, the complaint isn't just about tone. The complaint is about accuracy. A person can reasonably look at a message and try to figure out how true it is. Given the vast quantity of misinformation which abounds on the net, having a strong filter seems necessary.

Another complaint (which I previously made) is that the message uses a number of techniques to play rough with emotions. Going for a strong emotional response while sidestepping reason. To go "hey wait a sec" doesn't seem unreasonable.

Edit: One response has been to say, "ok, so while not literally true, we can look aside and see that such events occur with enough frequency that we ought to look past the lack of literal truth". Sure, but this seems to be a very dangerous mode in which to operate. It is very easy to substitute what one believes to be true for actual truth. One has to ground reason in knowledge which is much more concrete.

Thx!
TomB
 
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Darkwing Duck

First Post
The issue ISN'T about her ability to write well.

As long as people are excusing away her use of inflammatory and bigoted accusations on her ability to write persuasively, such as MechaPilot did here
I also think many of realize that we wouldn't be having this discussion if the language in the provoking article wasn't so inflammatory.
Then, her use of such offensive flames IS on topic, regardless of whether _you_ like it or not.
And the lack of verifiability in a great number of these incidents is part of the issue.
Why should i believe that someone is telling the truth when there is no evidence to support them?
 

Darkwing Duck

First Post
Because what's important isn't the message it's the tone!
Seriously though... If you aren't tough enough to see through some harsh words it's possible they apply.
But, it is likely that they don't.

Your argument "OMG, that guy got offended when I said he was guilty, that's _proof_ that he's guilty!" is not how things work in the real world. It is batshit crazy.
 



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