I like to have my ear to the ground when it comes to issues concerning the social justice community since the whole #gamergate fiasco. Though I am not an avid gamer (not a gamer at all in fact), I seen from the sidelines how much power these oppressed first world ideologues garnered not just in the gaming community, but also in the mass media. And sometime ago, they promised to turn their sights on the next frontier (and a frontier that I actually care about a lot), Metal culture. Or as it has (or will) become in the digital world, #metalgate.
Now, it must be aknowledged that these SJW types did not come into both of these communities for no apparent reason. There was (and is!) elements that made such communities hostile to women, and some changes could be warranted in making the environment more comfortable.
The problem comes when these SJW’S fail to realize when their campaign has become an impossible pipedream in the context of reality.
For example, making games more inclusive to females (ideally, everyone) seems just common sense. But assuming malice just because some games portray babe’s with massive mammories is stupid. Because those computer generated images are there for the same reason that Buzz feed and Huff post type platforms publish “What’s hotter? His ass or his ads?” type articles.
Sex sells, and a sexual species laps it up.
And as for abuse and bullying suffered in open gaming chats (or for that matter, ANYWHERE online where people can openly communicate), not much short of absolute censorship will nip that.
I agree that one does not LIKE to deal with misogyny (or any other form of hate speech) online. I don’t like having to lock my home at night either. It’s just a part of life in a world with many people. Nothing short of leaving civilization (or disconnection from the digital world) will totally isolate you.
Not to mention that there are recourses. Block buttons, reporting systems. While not 100% effective by any means, it should take care of most of your issues.
I write this post, because I seen a new term circulating in the youtube anti-femenist circuit latley. That term is Cyber Violence.
What is Cyber Violence?
Basically, it is what we used to call Cyber Bullying. But since that was aparantly far to generalized and inclusive for the age of the SJW, the latter word was switched to Violence. The fact that the UN (and later Google) bought into this is quite concerning.
First of all, a personal rant. Back in my days in high school, I went though an online smear campaign that lasted the better part of my freshman year. I also lived though a verbally abusive (online as well!) relationship with a women during that same time period. And I was driven to the brink, quite a few times. In fact, I have only fairly recently been making bigger strides in putting that all behind me than ever before (more than a decade later).
Does this mean that Cyber Bullying (IT’S NOT VIOLENCE WHEN IT’S WORDS, IDIOTS!) should be any less of a concern for people?
I am saying, this is not a gender specific issue. And focusing on this in such a way is NOT helpful to those that just happened to be born without a vagina. A male that kills himself due to say . . . .homosexuality, is also just as dead as a women who is shot dead, or a women that takes her own life.
I do not know what the answer to bullying is. But I have some ideas.
When I was young and opinionated, I used to attribute it a lot to parents and social systems promoting conformity and individuality (ironically) on a mass scale. Basically, we all for the most part take on a mould of our parents worldviews. This includes things like political affiliations and religious beliefs (which can serve as barriers, depending on how moulded the kids beliefs are), as well as racial, gender and other biases that parents have.
Add on top of this, a layer of mass marketing that feeds a youngsters need for individuality, but at the same time creates more social groups (or cliques, as is the common high school term). Given this mess, it’s no wonder that conflicts arise. Not to mention the idiotic double standards of society (most notably, that between sexually active males and females). And then there are the untruths about certain groups that are passed on (women are not qualified for typically male positions).
Though I know that you are never going to eliminate bullying entirely (just as laws never entirely eliminate an activity), there are methods that could make a difference.
Though racial, cultual, political, religious and other prejudices picked up at home (or elsewhere) will always be a problem, we can help aliviate the negative effects of these things by promoting an open environment in the education system. Take on the “you are wrong because *talking point*” problem by presenting all popular options. Where they go from there is their own journey, but at least their starting it well equipped. Do what you can to lay to rest stereotypes of all kinds. But I would argue that one of the most important things a person can do to help aliviate bullying, is better equip young people to deal with the Internet.
This is a whole topic in itself. But a part of the problem with a HUGE number of cases involving the Internet and bullying (some that have ended in tragedy unfortunately), is a concept that I will coin/call Digital Ignorance (my bad if this is already in use).
With this, I mean the problem that you run into when you teach children (and people in general!) the basics of using computers and devices (and online digital platforms), but fail to cover the wide reaching ramifications of a single uncritically analyzed mistake (such as a post or a sent photo). Since the Internet and technology (particularly mobile technology ) is increasingly handling social situations that were once exclusively person to person, problems arise when people forget that these seemingly private conversations, are not private (or may not stay private) in the realm of social media and digital technology.
For example, a stupid and possibly offensive (but none the less harmless) conversation between 2 males about females. It always has happened, likley always will. But throw that on social media, and you have a whole heap of potentially permanently life altering trouble.
Or what about a female that shares a very personal photo with someone, only to have it leaked by the person (or someone that gets unconsentually photographed AND shared). Neither the person sending the photo, nor those participating by passing it on realize the damage they are doing (or the potential consequences!) of such actions, because we as a society have failed to provide that context in which to weigh an action against.
The only context we provide, is reactionary laws (“Tell your child that they can be charged for being a horny teenager!”), or stupid suggestions like those pedaled to the UN by Anita Sarkeesian and Brianna Wu. Their promotion of prevention of this stuff by way of censorship only, is like putting a few bandages on a gushing wound. Something that I would have thought the UN or Google would have been bright enough to figure out.
Speaking of those 2, there is a lot of conflict and information abound on them, and their intentions. I hear various allegations of financial dishonesty on their part (particularly Anita), but it’s not something that I will worry about because:
1.) It’s easy to stir up a witch hunt when money is involved
2.) Most everyone prominent on both sides of the debate seems to have been accused of this sort of thing. After awhile, it just seems to be an easy way to smear an opponent without having to back the allegations.
What I will focus on however, is this whole social justice movement that Anita, Brianna and many others are apart of. For some context on what I see wrong, ill quote Anita:
“Everything is racist, everything is sexist, and you have to call it ALL out”
First of all, gaming.
Most of the accusations here are of sexism. And to the SJW’S credit, even some of the most staunch gamer gate supporters (?)(The 2 sides always mix me up lol) aknowledge some issues that can be improved. But as noted earlier, a lot of the perceived sexism (VIA objectification) is less misogyny than it is marketing.
And if we stretch this out to the whole world of media itself, for the most part, the same goes. Though examples of racism, sexism and other biases can be found, most are unintentional (or marketing to a sexual species). I say that, because it seems that what is offensive to this community or that litterally changes DAILY. Not a week ago I fired a tweet with a headache because people were tweeting about the new star wars film being anti-white. It’s like a watching a conspiracy theorist connect the dots between Hurricane Katrina and zionist population control.
While I am not a staunch free speech advocate and do not view it as a dicotamy (all or nothing!) as many do (why is it that the freethinkers are so prone to this unnuanced crap?!), I can see how risky this can be. How can you ensure EVERYONE has a so called safe space, when everyone’s triggers are different?
And besides, when did the onus become mine to control what one most likely voluntarily sees?
The Waltons is on, but the Christian chooses to be offended at Bill Mahers show. That is HBO’S fault?
And as for this “internalized misogyny” or “toxic masculinity” crap . . . .NO!
The species is sexually driven. The status quo of many southern Christian states is also to deny this reality. Well, guess which states have the most teen pregnancies?
God is great, but aparantly not as great as teenaged hormones.
And what is “toxic masculinity” anyway? Can I label the modern radical wave of feminist ideals “toxic femininity”?
Looking at the mess this stuff causes on both sides of the gender division (and some places in between), it could be seen as an aplicable term.
Moving on, as a feminist with a background in academia has told me, it can be said that there IS indeed still a societal patriarchy for most of the world. Due to the vast majority of the highest positions being occupied by males.
Now, I have heard some argue down this stance by noting the choices that many women make in life. Often times unlike men, women have a direct and ongoing role domestically if they choose to have a child. Thus some may not ever reach higher opertunities, or these often extremely demanding careers are simply not compatible with parenting obligations.
But on the flip side, I have also heard that women are often just not viewed to be on the same level as men at a societal level from a young age, and so they interalize this message and stick to more traditional roles.
I side with neither, because frankly, I do not have enough information to come to an educated conclusion. Looking at various items could confirm either sides argument. So at this point, I’ve chosen to stay hands off until I know more.
I’ve been meandering all over the place in this post. But I’ve tried to cover a couple of my big concerns with both millenial and past generation reactions to social problems of today. In my opinion, both are failing to take all factors into consideration, and as such, both are failing to make the situations better (though both think that they are).
When it comes to Cyber Bullying, much like bullying, you are never going to fully stop it. What would help a lot (in my opinion anyway), would be preventative (as opposed to reactionary) actions (as outlined previously).
There is not much to be done about indoctrinated biases, and the business world will always be looking to line it’s pockets by targeting the young. But what we can do, is try and teach children that these are not as much negatives as they are positives.
With one of my cousins, I used to always correct her from calling herself “weird”, to “different”. People like to use words like weird, because it seems to entail a flaw. Where as with different, it’s just, another variation. Even if the child only accepts this on a personal level (many others around them were molded ), it still helps, since much of the pain of the bullying vanishes. My flaws used to bother me. Until I relaxed and realized that many people just tend to be herd minded idiots. Once that sinks in, bullies become less threatening and more, amusing. To add to this, an anecdotal observation of mine (as made thoughout my whole life) is that the more stupid someone is, the more likely that anger will be one of the first reactions to variables or inconvenience. After all, if you don’t have the facalties (or the sense) to challenge a situation intellectually or logically, you will resort to whatever method is most likely to end in your desired goal. Which tends to be (from what I have seen), anger and intimidation.
So, to end this piece, reducing bullying (and other big subjects of our time) will take more than just reactionary actions. And it will certainly take more than creating movements that claim to be a part of the solution, yet add to the very problem itself.