Questions, Questions

Efilnikufesin has an insatiable curiosity.

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  • Matthew Kuhl

    Well, I don’t see why I’d want a rooster, no matter where it came from, or how large it was…oh, wait a minute…yeah, the answer’s still “no”.

  • Anonymous

    I mean, I guess if you used the rooster in a nice Coq au Vin with some carrots and potatoes… oh, right. Same answer as Matthew.

  • Mark Paterson

    I can already tell the time perfectly with the cl- oh, hang on. What, JPT said.

  • Pavlov’s Cat

    Hmm, however could anyone turn down big english cock? Especially as that’s usually more of a descriptor of the person as a whole.

    I have had random guys message me and say ‘oh, you’re a girl, are you hot?’ Quite apart from preferring to be referred to as a woman at my age, I always wonder what exactly they’re expecting me to say in response. Anyone? Bueller? Sad to say, the best I can usually do is ‘no, I have air conditioning’. There must be some magic words to make the trolls go away here.

  • Deanna Davis

    The magic words, Pavlov, are “I’m a dude.”

  • Brannon Sherry

    As a transgendered person, I play female characters almost exclusively and have friends who treat me the same way that they would a female friend. I understand your desire to not solve the problem by telling them that you’re really male. Because I play female characters usually and can come across as being very feminine, I get hit on a lot too. In my experience, the best thing to do is just watch what your female friends do to get rid of them and the figure out which of the things they do would be comfortable for you to do too.

    If I’m being hit on online and it’s really bothering me, I can just leave. If I don’t feel like leaving and it’s still bothering me, sometimes I’ll play along in a way that kind of keeps them at a distance while setting a boundary. Sometimes I’ll just try to hint to them that I’m uncomfortable and then wait to see if they’ll leave me alone. Ultimately, you can just ignore them most of the time and they’ll move on right away. They’re not really interested in you, they’re just looking for some girl who will let them get away with it. If you’re not responding, they’ll just run out of attention span and move along. 

    I’m not really assertive enough to do this, but a number of my female friends will just be direct with them and tell them to leave or back off or that they’re being jerks. Usually, a more firm response like that results in an aggressive response back, but then they leave us alone. If you’re not too timid to handle the aggressive reaction, you could just do that.

    There are ways to make them go away without telling them you’re a guy. Most women I know don’t want to tell people that to make them go away, so they find their own way to cope and deal with them; you can do the same.

  • Anonymous

    I want to believe that it’s only his cock which is english… Like it was grafted on while on holiday.  Or maybe he’s got a Union Jack stapled to it. Haha.

  • Pavlov’s Cat

    Which helps how exactly? By accepting that the only way not to be harrassed is not to be a woman? By reinforcing the idea that gaming is a space for men only?

  • Anonymous

    It stops the harasser from harassing.  That was the problem you wanted solved– unless you really thought there were some literal magic words that would make all trolls stop trolling.

    I think defusing a situation where someone is harassing someone else and trying to change the behavior of a culture are two different things.
    You use a gun in self-defense from a criminal.  You don’t use a gun to get rid of crime… To do that, you raise awareness and be vigilant.  The community take precautions and pre-emptive measures. People need to be educated.

    If saying you’re a dude will get a specific harasser off your back in a specific instance I see no harm in doing it.  I really feel as though you’re exaggerating the consequences of using the tactic.  You can say it without accepting that the only way not to be harassed is to not be a woman.  You can use the tactic without reinforcing the idea that gaming is a men-only gaming space.

    Now, I’m skeptical that a woman saying that they’re a dude will make harassers go away every time– I’d think a significant portion would just change the theme of their harassment (i.e. making fun of a dude who sounds like a chick).  If ruse is successful then there’s a chance the harasser will be more hesitant in the future about hitting on someone they think is female because they’d want to avoid the embarrassment of hitting on a guy.  Though it’s also very likely that they won’t change their behavior at all.

    If you’re trying to get some assholes to shut up why you’re trying to enjoy a game online then @facebook-500641051:disqus ’s tactic is a good one to have on hand.  If you’re trying to make assholes go away forever, then you’re going to need much, much, much, much, much more than words.

  • Pavlov’s Cat

    I’m sorry, clearly the points I raised and my tone have brought out some uncomfortable feelings in you. It’s not your fault that gaming is a hostile space, and you should obviously do what works for you to make that space one you can still inhabit. If the alternative for you is not to play at all, then that’s clearly worse. It’s not my intention to add to the problem by making female gamers feel unwelcome because they’re not acting the way I would. If you do use a male identity for gaming, I accept that you can probably make it a less hostile space by using that adopted male privilege to gain attention when you model behaviour that isn’t hostile.

    I think you’re right though. In addition to the points I already made, if I pretend to be male some people probably will just switch to jibes at a perceived lack of masculinity. While I accept your point about embarrassment, I’m not sure I want to harness anyone’s homophobia to make me feel better.

    The idea ultimately in looking for a productive response would be to make gaming a better space for myself and other women. You seem to think that’s a big ask. I don’t plan on doing it all by myself though. It’s my understanding that, both here and elsewhere, I’d have a lot of help. I was just looking to network a little. I apologise again for having unsettled you.

  • Male imposter

    There is definitely some sort of male privilege and I quite like being able to enjoy it. Most of the time I’m online, I present myself as male and wa-la I have no problems of the sort posted on this site. When I happen to use the mic, I just tell them I’m a kid and my balls haven’t dropped. Of course they might mock me because of this, but hell, what won’t these types of people mock someone for?

  • Anonymous

    Haha! I’m a dude– like, for reals.  I’ve never been mistaken for a lady before.  I think I’m flattered.  I don’t want to take this conversation off on a tangent, but what about me seemed feminine?  Is it that I dare to have an opinion on the issue?  Or maybe it’s because of the intentions of this site and you made assumptions about the community because of it.  You can’t offend me; I’m just curious.

    The inspiration for my intrusion into the conversation was that I felt you were being kinda dickish to someone who was just trying to help.  Deanna sincerely tried to help you and you just trashed it. …Eh… Maybe it wasn’t totally sincere.. Perhaps she was joking a bit.  But either way: Not cool.  Then the exaggerations further rubbed me the wrong way.

    Which brings me to this: I don’t think the embarrassment hinges on digging at someone’s homophobia.  I think there’s embarrassment purely in making the mistake of talking to someone as if they were someone else.  Have you ever started talking to someone while their back was turned only to realize that they aren’t the person you thought they were?  I would think that most people have.  And I think that most people would start making very sure of the identity of the person before interacting with them in future encounters.

    If it ends up working because it plays on the homophobia of the harasser, then I think it’s incidental.

    I, too, want to make the gaming space a better place for women.  I love that this website makes it so that at least some assholes can be held accountable for their assishness.  I love that it raises awareness about the issues women face in games without being preachy or whiny.  I wish there was a forum here so it would be easier to make a community here so like-minded folk can network more easily.

    I just also think that looking for a response to combat the harassment is a fool’s errand.  I know that well-retorted zinger can be very cathartic, but there’s no reason to believe that it will contribute to the overall downfall of gaming misogyny.  There won’t be one magic word to shut the trolls up because every person is different.  Words that would defeat one person will invigorate another.  You need an arsenal of response and the wit and intuition to use them correctly on the right douche.

    Now let’s say you’re trained and can deflect and disarm any unwanted attention the dickbags can give you.  Great.  All that effort and you’ve done nothing to help with the overall problem because while they can’t touch you, there’s still a cyberspace full of women who succumb to their dickish way.  These dicks are still winning more than they are losing.. At least they aren’t losing enough to make it worth it to stop being terrible people.

    And how are these morons winning? By getting responses.  Any response, for the most part.  The folk that do this stuff are the type pokes things just to see what happens.  They might have an optimal response, but they also enjoy the surprise of when things go awry.

    So in order for the “magic words” to change the culture, essentially EVERY woman would have to be wittier than EVERY person that trolls them.  It’s just unrealistic.

    I feel that the much more sensible tactic would be just to obey the wisest of rules: Don’t feed the trolls.  It’s much easier just to say nothing than trying to out-think a jerk.  If people don’t respond, then they’ll soon realize that they might as well be harassing a brick wall.  They want the reaction to their stimulus.  Don’t give it to them.

    Of course, I don’t think this should be the only strategy used to change the culture.  As I mentioned before, awareness, education, and vigilance are important too.  Everyone should do their part and report folks that are being terrible.  People can form their own communities and exclude those who make other players uncomfortable.  In these like-minded communities, it doesn’t require everyone to be at their best 100% of the time– others in the community can pick up the slack.

    I believe in the cause.  I just want everyone to be cool to each other.

  • Pavlov’s Cat

    So sorry. The reason I made the assumption was that I thought anyone who would accuse me of exaggerating might have some qualification to comment on that, rather than it just being the same old ‘oh, you’re exaggerating, you’re imagining it, you’re being emotional’ women usually get from a guy. So it was an optimistic assumption.

    Which part of my comment was being dickish? The part where I didn’t sprinkle it with ad hominem attacks? The part where I didn’t use aggressive or insulting language? The part where I just pointed out why I didn’t fancy that approach?

  • Anonymous

    Haha. So men aren’t qualified to recognize to recognize when someone isn’t being fair to another?  Or that men are incapable of pointing out statements which are demonstrably false?  Haha! It seems as though you’re trying to fight sexism with sexism. Hahaha..

    Oh, wait– then you get personal.

    I didn’t say that you were imagining it (and I’m not sure I would know what that would mean if I did).  I certainly didn’t say you were being emotional (though you clearly are, but I presume that it’s justified.  Emotions don’t have to hinder someone.  I have emotions on a daily basis and I can still function well!  It’s my understanding that most people do and can.).  It seems that the only thing that insinuates that I implied that you were also imagining things and that you were being emotional (in a bad way) is that because I’m male.  It’s pretty hard not to interpret that as sexist, but I’d love to hear a perspective I haven’t considered yet.

    “Optimistic assumption”? Ha! More seeming sexism, with the implication that it would be better if I were a woman.  But maybe the intent was just to rile me and the sexism is incidental.

    It’s true!  I did not regard your comments as “womanly” (or however you assume I interpret the word “exaggeration” when I’m speaking to a woman).  The word means the same to me no matter the gender of the person I speak to, I assure you.

    You said that if you tell people you’re a dude to keep them from hitting on you then you must also accept the following two things:
    A. the only way not to be harassed is to not be a woman.
    B. you reinforce the idea that the gaming space is for men only.

    It’s clear that neither of these are a necessity for using the “I’m a dude” tactic.    What makes what you say an exaggeration is because you insist on a necessity that isn’t actually necessary.  I used a bunch of words explaining this.  I didn’t just say you were exaggerating and left.  I supported my stance.  If you’re going to disagree with me, then counter the points I have made, don’t just write me off because I’m male (that would be sexist!).

    Your absurdly absolute remarks did provoke me to classify you, however (but not as “typical woman”, as you seem to think).  They reminded me of other extremists… folks who are too close to their cause and can only see things from a narrow perspective.  Anyone making an absolute statement isn’t appreciating the nuances that life is consisted of (paradox!).

    “Which part of my comment was being dickish? The part where I didn’t sprinkle it with ad hominem attacks? The part where I didn’t use aggressive or insulting language? The part where I just pointed out why I didn’t fancy that approach?”

    I’ve already explained it, but I’ll see if I can be clearer.

    First, you stated a problem, i.e. You wanted to know the magic words that would make people hitting on you go away.
    Second, Deanna offered a solution to your stated problem, i.e. Tell them you’re a dude.
    Third, you reply in a snarky and unthankful way that dismisses Deanna’s solution due to unmentioned requirements for the solution.  i.e. You ask how does Deanna’s solution help, even though it meets all the previously mentioned requirements for the solution.  Her last name is Davis, not Troy– she can’t read your mind.

    It would be like if I said, “I need a shirt”. And then someone, out of the goodness of their own heart, gave me a shirt, but I was like, “Why would I wear this shirt? It’s red!  And it has a collar!”  I would be a huge dick in this scenario.

    You try to suggest that you only pointed out why you didn’t fancy that approach, but if that were the case, you’d say something more along the lines of,
    “I don’t like that solution because I feel it means I accept that in order not to be harassed online I’d have to not be a woman.  Also, I feel like it reinforces the idea that gaming is for men only.”
    Instead, you phrase things in question form, like Deanna should already know the answer to the questions you’re asking, which implies a deficiency on her part.  So that’s kinda dickish.

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