Seriously, you've never seen it? The woman who started the #yesallwomen trend on Twitter had to close her account because of all the rape threats she was getting.
That doesn't surprise me, I'm sorry to say. But I'm given to understand that any high-profile person on Twitter gets all kinds of threats, rape or otherwise. Obviously females are more prone to rape threats than males, but all 4 links (~2 minutes of Google News for "twitter threat") are for males and death threats. It's all the ass-end of the internet and warrants no concern
Not at all. I'm saying it's every geek or nerd's responsibility - along with everyone else's responsibility - to speak up when they see it. *Every* incident? Only if you're personally there for *every* incident, in which case, I'd have to wonder why you're always in the wrong place.
Is it your responsibility to stop *every* fire? No. If you see someone's house on fire, wouldn't it be a good responsible act to call the fire department, rather than just shrugging and walking away? Of course it is. Does it matter that you're not going to stop *every* fire? Of course not.
Fair enough, that's basically what I meant. But it seems like that doesn't really address the problem - you still have little pockets where this BS is tolerated, and I don't know how "nerds" can fix that to the extent that they don't make up those pockets. Seems like a more targeted group term could help.
I thought you said you couldn't think of any instances of harassment, and now you're throwing up specific examples like a Call of Duty server? Which is it?
I don't play Call of Duty, it's just a stereotypical example. I've seen it played a few times, and it seemed like a hell-hole, but there were no women so my statement stands - I've never seen a woman get harassed in an online forum. I've seen places where I suspect a woman likely would get harassed, were one present, but I don't even know what it looks like. Would it really take the form of such cliched, tired kitchen and sandwich jokes? Seems about as scandalous as "ima make u suk my dick fag0t" or a goatse link - what is this, 2002?
It used to be a common word everywhere. Up here in the North where we don't accept that language and speak up when its used, it is not prevalent. As you note, it's southern racists... and apparently no one in their circles is saying "stop using that word".
Precisely, so what's the plan for dealing with those problem circles in particular? (rhetorical question, if I knew I'd be doing it!) Blaming that behavior on "people", even "southern people" isn't very useful for winning allies - but that's essentially what's happening here with "nerds". You (n.b. "people in general") drive a wedge into the community and put people who are otherwise very sympathetic (like me!) on the defensive completely unnecessarily.
Telling people "just grow a thick skin" or "put up with it" is being part of the problem. Sure, you don't harass people... But you're not standing up to those who do, and you're telling their victims to suck it up. That makes you not quite as bad as the harassers, but no where close to being a good person. Ever hear the old poem about "they came for [X group], but I said nothing, because I was not [X]"? It's not supposed to be an endorsement of staying silent.
Here's where you and I disagree. This is a nuanced point for the internet, but basically the world will always be rough regardless of how nice we make people. In my mind, the thick skin is useful for its own sake, and there's obviously diminishing returns in the "how nice we make people" game. We shouldn't stop trying, but in parallel people should develop the ability to tolerate all the shit that the world slings at all of us, since if they don't they'll have a very hard time - even if every person in their life is pleasant as pie! They'll still have friends and family die, they'll still suffer hardships and get divorced and houses foreclosed on and fired from jobs and so on. As Hamlet so aptly described, we need to learn to "suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous Fortune", since being unable to do so means sharing Hamlet's fate.
When I was a kid, I had a pretty rough childhood. It took me a very rough couple of years to learn not to give a shit what anybody else thinks about you - people (family and (real) friends) have to *earn* that privilege of power over you, and they're the only ones that matter. If I didn't learn this lesson, I don't know how I would have made it through. So I see this as a extremely useful - nay, critical - lesson for everybody to learn. In my perfect world, as long as there was equality of opportunity, it wouldn't matter two whits what anybody said to anybody else - nobody would be discouraged by it, because they didn't let themselves be. Obviously the real world doesn't live up to my fantasy, so I agree it's important to cut down on the "softer" forms at discussion here. But this doesn't change the fact that it's important to control your own self-esteem.
Opening an entire other can of worms, I see your argument as very similar to the people who are up in arms any time someone suggests that college students would be less rape-prone if they got less fall-down drunk. It's easy to get mad about that, call it blaming the victim, etc - but the fact of the matter is that a) over-drinking is something we should discourage *everybody* from doing, for its own sake, b) most rapes are crimes of opportunity, so potential victims not becoming opportunities will lead to less of them, and c) it comes down to suggesting ways to protect one's self from crime, which we have no problem doing for car theft, pickpocketing, mugging, etc. None of these suggestions for reducing the risk of a crime are blaming the victim, and none are excusing the perpetrator. But people have agency, and can make things better for themselves - or not. The corollary is that those telling people that they SHOULDN'T take any of these common-sense measures is putting their listeners at risk, just like somebody saying "go ahead and leave your wallet in your back pocket, the police are blaming the victim!"
And so it is with harassment. You can simultaneously decry harassment and act against it - and suggest ways where a potential victim could lessen their risk exposure. To do otherwise is contrary to their well-being.
Of course I am. No one deserves to be sexually assaulted, even if they've been convicted of a crime (not that every prison rape victim is even a convict, rather than in pre-trial detention). Particularly worse is that it's not just jokes, but an implied added threat - "act up, and we throw you in jail where you'll be someone's biatch". That implicitly condones it.
I'm very glad to hear it. It bothers me tremendously that there is not more outrage about this, and instead there's late-night comedy routines. These are people whose responsibility for safety we've assumed, since we were the one who locked them up with their potential rapists.