Today's Talk On Convention Anti-Harassment Policies At FtBCon

62 Responses

  1. Gary McGath says:

    Policies to stop genuine harassment at conventions are a good thing. In a number of cases, though, they've been written in an overbroad way that tends to chill discussion. There's a Boston convention that prohibits "insulting behavior." A Canadian convention prohibits comments that cause "personal humiliation or embarrassment."

    A good policy focuses on people's right to be left alone when they want to be. Focusing on the content of speech is bound to lead to the suppression of unpopular ideas under the guise of stopping offense. It's happened too much at American educational institutions, and I think it's spreading because people coming out of them are used to an environment where free and open discussion is discouraged.

  2. babaganusz says:

    KillEveryoneYouLoveCon?! where do I sign up?

  3. Lagaya1 says:

    In question 3, don't you mean "clothes"?

  4. Eric says:

    Aren't harassment policies at conventions a case of "You have the right to say what you want, but I don't have to let you say it in my living room"?

    I think even overreaching harassment policies (especially sexual harassment) make prefect business sense. The very rare false harassment claim will result in one person being ejected or blacklisted, which is bad. But it's much less likely to cause the sort of backlash that ignoring a true harassment claim might, especially if ignoring that claim leads to someone being assaulted in some way.

  5. Edward says:

    I don't know all the details for each example in the Ada initiative website. However, I found their "facts" about the Michael Shermer rape accusation dishonest, so I'm skeptical of the resource. For example, it claims that Mr. Deity said "it is the victims' responsibility to turn down alcoholic drinks if they don't want to get raped." This was clearly untrue.

    He did mock the assertion that Shermer offering wine to a female person at an event was evidence he raped someone else at a different event. This should be mocked. These kinds of dishonest word games drive a lot of the angst here.

  6. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    Ken, why does that form ask for my email address without telling me why you need it?

    tl;dr Your form needs a privacy policy declaration

  7. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    Hey Ken, no offense seriously, but that's a crappy crappy quiz if after making me answer the questions it only gives me the correct answers without reminding me how I answered.

    In my opinion you would be a terrible website UI/UX designer.

    I cannot recommend you for that.

  8. Kathryn says:

    While I am not happy that this is especially relevant to my life right now, I am very grateful that you gave this talk, I found it very helpful and timely.

  9. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    So on Chrome to check your answers, you can click right on the tab to duplicate it. Then click back on the first tab, then separate the tabs into new windows and check your answers.

    Fwiw, I got 10 out of 10 correct. Then Wayne and I had a beer, a burger, and laughed at Ken's paste joke because fuck feminazis and fuck the Ada Initiative and fuck their support of Adria Richards

    http://adainitiative.org/2013/03/valerie-aurora-writes-adria-richards-story-shows-how-sexual-harassment-endures-in-tech-community/

    > Reasonable people can disagree about whether Richards should have called out the two jokesters publicly or who, if anyone, should have been fired as a result.

    No, reasonable people will agree that Adria Richards was wrong to call out the two "jokesters" by tweeting their pictures to her thousands of followers and crying out her offense at their private conversation that had nothing to do with her and was not harassment.

    And especially fuck feminists who complain about lack of enforcement for all sorts of shit then proudly tell people how they don't and won't report their harassment or sexual assaults or rapes to the police and then complain no one believes them and no one does anything.

  10. eigenperson says:

    Giving your email address is optional, but I agree that it is off-putting to be asked for it without explanation.

    I assume it's secularwoman's fault, rather than Ken's, since I can't figure out what Ken would want with a bunch of email addresses.

  11. babaganusz says:

    anyone whining about being prompted (and not by Ken, if you're paying atten– never mind) for an e-mail address, while apparently not noticing that the other boxes are marked in the very common fashion of distinguishing "Required" from "Optional" input, must be

    1) new here (the realm of filling out Things on the 'tubes)
    and/or
    2) still in need of lessons in caution. if you have any questions about messages from Nigerian nobility, please your to [REDACTED].

    and let's try this once again: Things to which Ken links, away from this site, can be reasonably identified as Not Ken's Things. Things which are Ken's will quite consistently/generally already be on this site (a Thing which is Ken's), which makes a point of not looking like (let alone being) any of those Other Things.

    stay in school.

  12. Given Popehat's otherwise Libertarian leanings, I wonder what his opinion is of "anti-harassment codes" being used to push content-based censorship, not merely protection against harassing speech. Put simply, many of these "anti-harassment" policies have been drafted with some very broad language, and unfortunately resemble the kind of problematic "speech codes" that many colleges have been notorious for over the last couple of decades.

    To call out a specific and very notorious case, I'll specifically note the Ada Initiative's stifling of a talk by sex-positive tech writer Violet Blue on the flimsy idea that her talk title was overly "sexualized" and might be "triggering". Details here: http://underthehills.blogspot.com/2013/03/the-ada-initiative-vs-violet-blue-over.html

    And, yes, I know the almost wrote response will be, "these are private meetings, the First Amendment doesn't apply". Which is true, but really doesn't quite cut it as a counterargument. Yes, private events have a right to regulate content any way they seem fit, but at the same time, to use intensive outside lobbying to make sure that any event or space remotely technology- or "geek"-related bans certain types of "sexualized" speech, or perspectives that are insufficiently pro-feminist most certainly does amount to a kind of de facto censorship across a very broad milieu. If one does not find this objectionable, then certainly one could find similarly no fault in right-wing pressure groups that seek via targeting of advertisers to get rid of media content they find to racy, gay-friendly, etc. I could also note that the phenomenon of McCarthyism also had a large private component – private publications like "Red Channels" and non-governmental campaigns for Hollywood companies not to hire the people on it were as much a part of McCarthyism as HUAC.

    The issue of the First Amendment not applying in private spaces also sidesteps the issue of how intellectually healthy a particular milieu is if broad questions about gender and sexuality are reduced to a party line and closed off to debate. Sure, private spaces *can* ban any expression they want, but the real question is, to what degree *should* they?

    BTW, I've written about this topic more extensively here:

    http://www.skepticink.com/skepticallyleft/2013/04/07/sunday-sinner-guest-post-iamcuriousblue/

  13. Lagaya1 says:

    I should have said Q4.

  14. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    @babaganusz

    In this day of nsa intrusions, complaints of tracking by 3rd parties, and complaints over spam, etc., it's WHINING to criticize forms that say right on them:

    "First, what is your email address?"

    Perhaps it's not me whining so much as you trying to defend your preferred position beyond all reason.

    Is that Ken's Quiz or not?

    "This quiz was developed by Ken White, a partner at Brown White & Newhouse LLP in Los Angeles, whose practice includes giving anti-harassment training for businesses and organizations. – See more at: http://www.secularwoman.org/harassment_quiz#sthash.zTr8qiSF.dpuf"

    To quote a wise philosopher:

    "wtf whatever dude"

    All of that pales in comparison to IACB's 100% on target criticism of the Ada Initiative and how they silenced a completely reasonable discussion of sex.

  15. "All of that pales in comparison to IACB's 100% on target criticism of the Ada Initiative and how they silenced a completely reasonable discussion of sex."

    Thank you for that, though on my browser my post is reading "in moderation", so I'm pleasantly surprised that anybody else has gotten to read it. If it has somehow gone into moderation, perhaps based on the inclusion of several blog links, I do hope it's released soon.

  16. z! says:

    Uh, where was it previously announced? Don't think I saw anything on popehat. I know 6-8 people that are heavily involved with convention policies and would have been on line for it had they known. Some are even from a Boston SF&F convention.

  17. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    @IACB,

    It WAS visible. And now it's not!

  18. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    And … it's back again.

    I'm calling Fox Mulder.

  19. Gretchen says:

    z, you and your 6-8 friends can already watch the recorded video of Ken's talk here: http://www.popehat.com/2014/02/01/todays-talk-on-convention-anti-harassment-policies-at-ftbcon/

  20. Grifter says:

    I'm late to the party, but I got 100%, go me! Woo!!

  21. Dbp says:

    "And especially fuck feminists who complain about lack of enforcement for all sorts of shit then proudly tell people how they don't and won't report their harassment or sexual assaults or rapes to the police and then complain no one believes them and no one does anything."

    Why? For many victims all that goes into filing a report with the police is as much of an ordeal as the assault itself. Sometimes more. (Remember one of the many mottos here is: law enforcement is not your friend) Cops are often as bad if not worse than the rest of society. Reportingit isn't any guarantee of people taking you seriously and can make things much worse for you. Putting any sort of responsibility of stopping future sexual assaults on one victim is really shitty.

  22. Gretchen says:

    What Dbp said. I don't think any feminists are "proud" of not reporting their assaults to the police. If it could be reliably expected that the police response to reports of assault and/or rape was to take it seriously and refrain from directly or indirectly accusing the victim of being responsible for her own attack, you can bet feminists women would be a lot more likely to report such things. There's no hypocrisy in realizing that odds are good the police will harass you instead of enforcing the law and then complaining about the lack of law enforcement.

    In his talk, Ken encouraged the victims of harassment to report it– but he wasn't talking about reporting it to the police. He was talking about reporting it to conference organizers. Very different story.

  23. Fatwa Arbuckle says:

    @eigenperson –

    Ken might want those email addresses to send us all marketing spam.

    Or anti-pony tracts.

  24. M. Alan Thomas II says:

    I like that the Scalzi Principles require that the policy be clear on what constitutes unacceptable behavior. I'm not sure it was intended this way, but it is reasonably interpretable to mean that the policy cannot be so vague as to be chilling beyond its intended boundaries. (Whether or not its its boundaries are reasonable is not addressed.) Similarly, it requires publication so that it does not act as (a private analog of) secret law.

  25. Pete Newell says:

    wtfwhateverdood:

    OK, granting for purposes of argument everything you say: she had no right to photograph the jokers and tweet and had not been harassed, do you think the flood of death and rape threats that she got was justified?

    Because the way I read the Ada initiative post, the point they were making was about the response. You seem to have ignored that part.

  26. Lagaya1 says:

    wtfwhateverdood- I'm betting you had a lot more than a beer. You're going to be embarrassed when you sober up. So women make you all mad, I guess?

  27. Marconi Darwin says:

    You have done a Very Nice Thing, Ken. Thank you

  28. Matt says:

    You can just take the quiz without giving an email, you know. It's not starred or anything.

  29. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Fuck people who say "fuck feminists".

  30. Dan Weber says:

    I am enjoying the quiz. I just skipped the email address.

  31. babaganusz says:

    if you ever thought my 'preferred position' was 'never say anything against the Ada Initiative', you were fooling yourself.

  32. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    No lagaya1, but we'll note your use of shaming language and apparent belief that constitutes part of logical argument.

    Does that work for you often?

    Where did you learn that tactic?
    In liberal forums or in a gender studies course?

  33. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    Related, here is a terrific article by Cathy Young:

    http://reason.com/archives/2014/02/02/is-there-a-cyber-war-on-women

    Is There a Cyber War on Women?
    Some pundits say women are under attack on the Internet. But do they have the data to back up their claims?

  34. Lagaya1 says:

    wtfwhateverdood- try not to live that way. Your anger hurts you more than anyone else.

  35. Ken White says:

    Yes, wtf, I noticed Cathy Young's article, in part because it links to a post here. I commented on it.

    I don't have any problem with Cathy Young questioning the premise that women are disproportionately targeted for online nuttery, because she does so in a professional and normal-person manner. Compare and contrast with what happens in the comments here in my posts, linked in this post, about harassment of women.

    And, by the way, I would like to personally apologize for the anguish you suffered when an online quiz someone coded using text I provided was not formatted to your personal satisfaction. I hope to live in a world someday where such things do not happen to people.

  36. Ken White says:

    The issue of the First Amendment not applying in private spaces also sidesteps the issue of how intellectually healthy a particular milieu is if broad questions about gender and sexuality are reduced to a party line and closed off to debate. Sure, private spaces *can* ban any expression they want, but the real question is, to what degree *should* they?

    Actually it doesn't sidestep it at all. As you demonstrate, it's perfectly possible to have a discussion about how — ethically or morally or in the name of good citizenship — people ought to use their free speech or free association rights. I have no problem with people criticizing a convention for excluding a talk or criticizing a group for agitating for its exclusion.

    I do, however, consistently call out dishonest rhetoric used in that criticism. Aside from promoting ignorance in a society that is already dangerously ignorant about its rights, I think that misapplication of First Amendment terminology is deliberately dishonest argumentation. Also, it subtly or not-subtly promotes incoherent theories of rights — like the idea that I have a right to speak on someone else's soapbox.

  37. neverjaunty says:

    While I have a great deal of respect for the position that we should rely on facts and not merely anecdata, Cathy Young also has made it quite clear in the past that she has not personally experienced sexism, so she finds the idea that sexist behavior in the US is anything other than a wacky, random, isolated event engaged in by lone weirdos to be completely beyond the ken. And of course, as has been discussed here before, the idea that being perceived as female leads to a disproportionate and gender-specific level of harassment online is hardly anecdatal.

    @Dpb, you know that if those 'feminazis' who give wtfwhateverdood the vapors progressed immediately to police reports, he and his fellow travelers would whine (as they do) that the response was disproportionate, that it was ridiculous to make a criminal case and a federal matter of out something that was a) clearly a misunderstanding and b) better handled informally. Should b) happen in the absence of a clear, formal harassment policy, they'd then whine that there was no possible way anyone could have had notice that their behavior constituted "harassment".

  38. Gretchen says:

    Yeah, Cathy Young's article can be summed up as "Women don't experience sexist attacks on the internet because men do too, and sometimes women attack each other." Seriously, that is the entirety of her argument.

    I don't know if I would conclude therefore that she herself hasn't experience sexism, on the internet or otherwise, though. In order to properly portray people who speak up about internet harassment as censorious harpies, it might be necessary to downplay or even dismiss the fact that you've experienced precisely what they're talking about.

  39. Allen Garvin says:

    I loved that quiz. It was far more interesting than the quiz we got after the harassment training at my company (where all the questions were completely obvious, except for the one about "elevator eyes", which I assumed were when secretly looked down the blouses of women in the elevator, many of which are employed by other companies since we're in a 36 story building and only have one floor, and probably not covered–but it turns out they meant raking your eyes up and down your coworkers).

  40. neverjaunty says:

    Gretchen, I may not have been clear that I was referring to postings she's made in the past rather than that article specifically. Which is, ironically, anecdatal reasoning: I am female, I have not experienced this kind of anti-female harassment, therefore others' reports of such harassment are flawed or insignificant. (That, and there is that politically-based tendency among many libertarians to deny or minimize the existence of bigotry.)

  41. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    I don't have any problem with Cathy Young questioning the premise that women are disproportionately targeted for online nuttery, because she does so in a professional and normal-person manner. Compare and contrast with what happens in the comments here in my posts, linked in this post, about harassment of women.

    Heh, do you see what happens in your comments when people (men and women) speak up to criticize feminism or discuss harassment of men?

    Oh yeah, professional and normal person like comments like lagoya1's! (and other ad hominem tactics exposed here: exposingfeminism.wordpress.com/shaming-tactics/).

    And, by the way, I would like to personally apologize for the anguish you suffered when an online quiz someone coded using text I provided was not formatted to your personal satisfaction. I hope to live in a world someday where such things do not happen to people

    Apology accepted, but uh I was mostly kidding as I'd hoped you might have recognized when I suggested I couldn't recommend you as a UX/UI designer.

    That email field though should be removed or made explicitly optional.

  42. wtfwhateverd00d says:

    @Gretchen did you read to the part where she showed that the statistics mentioned in the original articles were sketchy, cherry picked and minimized the little difference between women's harassment online and men's?

    And if harassment of women is so ubiquitous then given how Young has been on the net since its earliest days, I would assume she understands as well as you the sort of harassment people get online.

    Also, since she has more than once been the target of the highest trafficked feminist websites as well even as the highest trafficked mra websites my guess is again, she has experienced the worst of online harassment.

    If she hasn't after all those years and all those opinions I have to question the claim that harassment of women is ubiquitous.

    Maybe she is as the feminists love to harass women by saying "a chill girl", "sister punisher", "gender traitor" (all of which are very close to the ugly label the mras use: "mangina").

  43. Fasolt says:

    @Allen Garvin:

    Did they have a question about Ebony Eyes?

  44. Gretchen says:

    Maybe she is as the feminists love to harass women by saying "a chill girl", "sister punisher", "gender traitor" (all of which are very close to the ugly label the mras use: "mangina").

    No, not really. "Mangina" is like "pussy," "sissy," "fag," or any other of a million words used to insult a man by claiming he's too much like a woman. All of those are sexist, because there's nothing wrong with being like a woman, even if you're a man.

    "Chill girl" (I'm not sure about "sister punisher" or "gender traitor," but maybe they mean the same thing) is a term for, basically, a sexist woman. A woman who says and does things which are sexist against women in order to ingratiate herself with other people who are sexist against women, usually (but not always) men. I'm sure you've met women who like to talk about how much women suck (with the assumption being that, apparently, she's one of the few exceptions to this otherwise universal gender-based suckage)? That, basically….though of course it can often be far more sophisticated and subtle.

    It's not harassment to describe a woman as doing this– unless, of course, she doesn't actually do it. Nor do feminists as a group "love" to use this term. The existence of sexist women is depressing.

    Hope that helps. Is Cathy Young a chill girl? I honestly don't know. To me her article sounds more like she wants to ingratiate herself with people who think that any kind of private moderation of a forum or other web space is a violation of someone's freedom of speech, and therefore she downplays online harassment of women because the obvious solution to that is what? More moderation of private online spaces.

  45. ysth says:

    Is "mock his close" in the quiz supposed to be "mock his clothes"?

  46. Marconi Darwin says:

    No, it has to be "mock his close." That's the only thing that makes sense, why would anyone mock his clothes?

  47. "I do, however, consistently call out dishonest rhetoric used in that criticism. Aside from promoting ignorance in a society that is already dangerously ignorant about its rights, I think that misapplication of First Amendment terminology is deliberately dishonest argumentation. Also, it subtly or not-subtly promotes incoherent theories of rights — like the idea that I have a right to speak on someone else's soapbox."

    First, I think this is a "frame of reference" issue. True, invoking the First Amendment as bearing on private spaces is pure misapplication – one indeed has no "First Amendment" right to anybody else's platform. That said, I think one can meaningfully talk about internal free speech issues within space, community, or milieu. And one can say, in a meaningful way, that something like the atheist community lacks internal free exchange ideas if overly-broad codes like the Ada Initiative model are adopted widely. So while raising "First Amendment" issues is indeed a misapplication, raising more general free speech and intellectual freedom concerns most certainly isn't. It is a question about whether one wants to be in a community with an almost therapeutic attachment to the idea of "safe spaces", or one with a free exchange of ideas, even where there's a risk of offending other members of the community, and that question is entirely meaningful, coherent, and I'd add, important.

    On the subject of "incoherent theory of rights", I'd say the more aggressive promoters of the "safe space" model are at least as guilty of that, since they're aggressively pushing for "safe space" rules *in other people's spaces* and claiming it is outright discrimination (based on gender or some other axis of inequality) if their demands are not met.

  48. "To me her article sounds more like she wants to ingratiate herself with people who think that any kind of private moderation of a forum or other web space is a violation of someone's freedom of speech, and therefore she downplays online harassment of women because the obvious solution to that is what?

    First, claiming that Cathy Young is trying to "ingratiate" herself with anybody is exactly the kind of nonsensical argument the "chill girl" canard invokes. That somehow Young's membership in the female gender means there's a "women's" line that she must tow, and if she has a difference of opinion with established feminists, it can't be an expression of her own actual opinion, but rather, simply an attempt to "ingratiate" herself into a presumed boys club.

    Second, did you really read Young's article? It really has nothing to do with moderation policies or access to other people's online spaces at all. Rather, it's a response to the claim that women, and in especially feminists, are the targets of particular online harassment. She provides, in my estimation, a very well researched and argued article that statistics don't bear out the idea that women are particularly targeted when it comes to reported harassment, and that given the norms of the feminist blogosphere, there's a massive double standard as to what kind of speech is treated as "harassing" or "misogynist".

  49. VPJ says:

    Is it just me, or does Ken look like James Burke back when he was doing Connections?

  50. Ken White says:

    That's preferable to Karl Rove, which is what I usually get.

  51. Dave Ruddell says:

    No, you don't look enough like a canned ham with glasses to pull off Rove.

  52. VPJ says:

    Burke did have some way cool glasses…

  53. stillnotking says:

    No, not really. "Mangina" is like "pussy," "sissy," "fag," or any other of a million words used to insult a man by claiming he's too much like a woman. All of those are sexist, because there's nothing wrong with being like a woman, even if you're a man.

    This is the kind of statement that makes me scratch my head. Do you mean there is nothing wrong with it, or that there should be nothing wrong with it? Because I assure you, in the real world, heterosexual men who act like women tend not to get laid, and that is considered a problem.

    On the other hand, perhaps you mean that people shouldn't be mocked or insulted for any perceived defect in their behavior, a sentiment in the same class as wishing everyone would stop caring about sex.

    So: bald denial of human nature, or bluenosed condemnation of it? Perhaps you could clarify. Lefty rhetoric is often ambiguous.

  54. Edward says:

    I hate the term "chill girl," because it is usually thrown out at women who try to use their brains instead of follow the pack. It's just another sexist putdown, among the many.

  55. Kilroy says:

    9/10. Had an issue with #3 since I didn't think ConCo was identified as an organizer of the Con or had any ability to control 3rd parties behaviors. Live and learn.

  56. Cal says:

    When did "mangina" stop meaning "a guy that likes to play as female characters in online games"?

    I may need to be horrified at myself :(

  57. neverjaunty says:

    @stillnotking, I'm also scratching my head, for slightly different reasons. Your comment about 'perceived defect in their behavior' is not only a silly exaggeration, but appears to willfully miss Gretchen's point entirely. That point being, of course, that 'mangina' is not a comment which means 'hey, straight dude, exercise more circumspection in your performative masculinity, or you'll hurt your chances of catching trim'.

    So: disingenuous argument, or complete failure of reading comprehension? Or am I making the common mistake of asking either/and when it's a more inclusive both/or?

    (BTW, you do know that the origin of your user handle is not exactly one that falls into the Manly Men Being Manly category?)

  58. stillnotking says:

    'mangina' is not a comment which means 'hey, straight dude, exercise more circumspection in your performative masculinity, or you'll hurt your chances of catching trim'.

    Of course not. People who employ terms of abuse are rarely, if ever, doing so with an eye toward assisting those they abuse, with the possible exception of drill sergeants. If I call someone an idiot, I am not encouraging him to go read a book. I am trying to hurt him personally or socially by drawing attention to a perceived flaw.

    All of which is irrelevant, since the point isn't my motive, but his qualities. Being stupid is a defect, and being effeminate (as a straight man) is a defect — not in exactly the same way, of course, but still. Again: Is your position that it isn't one, in fact, or that it shouldn't be? Which counterfactual assertion is demanded by your politics?

  59. AlphaCentauri says:

    Because I assure you, in the real world, heterosexual men who act like women tend not to get laid, and that is considered a problem.

    I hear a lot of women say, "All the good ones are gay." So I'm not sure It's even true that traits men consider effeminate would hurt a man's chances of being laid.

  60. Hello Eric,

    Policies that overreach in either direction are a bad idea. We need to keep a careful balance between not punishing too many people who didn't harass anyone (false positives) and not letting too many people get away with harassment (false negatives).

    There's no way we can know just how rare or common wrongful accusations are — especially given the nature of harassment. Keep in mind that accusations can be wrongful, mistaken or unreasonable without being false (which implies actually lying).

    For example, as a Facebook group administrator, I've occasionally gotten complaints that such-and-such a post is bullying. All of those complaints might have been in good faith — but some of them have been just plain wrong. Critical and even unfair is not the same as bullying…or harassing.

    Not to mention that any harassment policy needs to include a fair procedure for hearing both sides of the story. Maybe it's not unconstitutional to eject someone just on somebody's say-so. But depending on the circumstances that could be breach of contract.

    (And of course, depending on how badly the situation was mishandled, as the quiz points out we have possible defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault and battery and/or other charges.)

    Not to mention that it seems only in keeping with the raison d'être of conferences in general, not to mention atheist, skeptic and other conferences in particular, to encourage weighing the facts on all sides with open minds, and discourage rushing to judgment.

    Bottom line: Since harassment is common enough to be worth addressing, so are wrongful complaints.

  61. Castaigne says:

    @wtfwhateverd00d:

    Then Wayne and I had a beer, a burger, and laughed at Ken's paste joke because fuck feminazis and fuck the Ada Initiative and fuck their support of Adria Richards

    Ah, an MRA. I love MRAs. They provide hours of entertainment.

    Some factual corrections:

    1) The only "feminazis" that exist are trans-exclusionary radical feminists who support 2nd Wave feminism, particularly the doctrines of Dworkin and MacKinnon. The ADA initiative and Adria Richards are choice/3rd Wave feminists and not TERFs; they are not feminazis.

    No, reasonable people will agree that Adria Richards was wrong to call out the two "jokesters" by tweeting their pictures to her thousands of followers and crying out her offense at their private conversation that had nothing to do with her and was not harassment.

    I am a reasonable and rational person. No, she was not wrong to call them out. I would have done the same. If I can hear it, it's not a private conversation and the contents of that conversation are fair game.

    Does that work for you often?
    Where did you learn that tactic?
    In liberal forums or in a gender studies course?

    Ah, the "tone argument". Nice derailing tactic there.
    My answer would be "Conservative forums, where I hang out" (Free Republic, Where Liberty Dwells, Conservatism on LJ) and RationalWiki. That's pretty much where I learned to mock the feebs.

    Heh, do you see what happens in your comments when people (men and women) speak up to criticize feminism or discuss harassment of men?

    Men who feel harrassed are uniformly Beta Males who need to learn to "man up" and be Alpha.

    @Iamcurious:

    And, yes, I know the almost wrote response will be, "these are private meetings, the First Amendment doesn't apply". Which is true, but really doesn't quite cut it as a counterargument.

    Why, exactly? Seems perfectly sound to me.

    If one does not find this objectionable, then certainly one could find similarly no fault in right-wing pressure groups that seek via targeting of advertisers to get rid of media content they find to racy, gay-friendly, etc.

    I don't. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

    The issue of the First Amendment not applying in private spaces also sidesteps the issue of how intellectually healthy a particular milieu is if broad questions about gender and sexuality are reduced to a party line and closed off to debate. Sure, private spaces *can* ban any expression they want, but the real question is, to what degree *should* they?

    1) "Should" is subjective, therefore it is entirely up to the person in charge and their whim.

    2) It's irrelevant how intellectually healthy a particular milieu is. It's very simple: My house, my rules. In my house, you will be obedient to my rules. If you are not, you will either not be in my house, or you will be dead.

    It's that simple. And it's all that really matters.

  1. February 2, 2014

    […] Ken's post with resources, and with links to posts in which he's discussed why talking about harassment causes such disproportionate anger and more harassment.  http://www.popehat.com/2014/02/01/todays-talk-on-convention-anti-harassment-policies-at-ftbcon/ […]