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[P]
Gender Inequality on the Internet

By cyndrekit in Internet
Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:03:03 PM EST
Tags: Culture (all tags)
Culture

More and more often, the average person is using text and chat services as a primary tool to keep in touch with others at a great distance. So the number of users utilizing these services is growing everyday, but at a disproportionate rate to the level of respect we give others. This can be seen in the treatment of females online, even in places such as #kuro5hin.


In our increasingly global society, we are changing how we interact with others and our community. This change of interaction is coming about from the continually modified forms of communication and interaction with each other. We have our cell phones, pagers, and email. But what is becoming increasingly popular among the standard society is the text chat services such as instant messenger, ICQ, or IRC. More and more people are starting to use this more than the previously primary ways of getting hold of others. One thing that is also interesting is how our interaction changes with each of these forms. Especially over the Internet, we act differently than we do in face-to-face interaction. We treat people that we meet online differently from those in real life and unfortunately, many times the manners we have so carefully developed are forgotten upon connection to the Internet. No where is this lack of courtesy more evident than the treatment of female users on the Internet.

There have been several articles regarding this form of communication over the Internet (text chat services); Rules of IRC, Undernet Faces Extinction, Old School BBS Communities, but none of them address specifically how women are treated. Often the 'rooms' are dominated by males and they have tended not to treat the women very nicely, and when the women do speak up in their defense, they are further attacked and/or harassed. If a female openly declares her gender, then almost immediately she receives attention from being hit on, asked for cyber sex, or outright attacked due to random pent up frustration.

The issue of how females are treated is something every Internet community has to deal with. Some may not believe it, but this issue hits very close to home in #kuro5hin, the official IRC channel for kuro5hin.org. Even in its own IRC channel the females have felt discriminated against, teased, picked on, and in short, harassed. It is understandable that in an IRC channel dominated by males, that the topic of conversation can get rather raunchy; but this is no excuse for what has been going on recently. Recently the conversation has been turning more lewd, porn oriented, and basic female bashing has ensued such as accusing all females after a certain age to suddenly become "insane." Even seemingly little jokes do add up after some time and create a very uncomfortable environment to be in.

(from an actual log):
male user>From 0-13 girls are nice. Then from 14-18 they completely lose it with their emotions, and really never recover.
female user> male 14 year olds aren't usually models of intelligence either
male user>True, but at least they eventually mature.

(later that same evening):
*** Topic is '"We Like Breasts" -#k5'
> You couldn't get laid if you fell in a barrel full of vaginas.
> how do you go about getting a barrel full of vaginas?
> a knife and some persevernace

Even if comments such as these are meant as jokes, it leaves females feeling alienated and uncomfortable. No one has actually stood up to stop this behavior from continuing and increasingly over a month and a half period of time, many of the females of #kuro5hin have become silent, staying out of basic conversation to keep from calling attention to themselves. Some of these females have even left the channel completely. But silence is not an effective solution.

The concept of "Netiquette" has now become common, formed from the ever increasingly popularity of the Internet. Netiquitte includes ideas such as: do not type in all caps, do not spam your friends or channel, and don't disclose other people's personal info without permission. It would also be useful to start adding other ways of conduct in regards to treatment of other people. Ideas such as closing a topic of conversation that is considered rude or offensive to a group of people that are also in the channel or room, speaking up in defense of those that are being picked on, or just stating that that topic is not appropriate to discuss in a public chat room could be implemented with very little effort, and would make the use of these forms of communication more accessible and enjoyable to everyone.

Some people may claim that females "already get too many special privileges" and are equal in society but I must offer a very different opinion including some facts regarding women's status. Females are still unequal in schools, work, and especially in social interaction. In schools "girls receive less attention in the classroom than boys, curricula ignore or stereotype women; reports of sexual harassment of girls are increasing; and many standardized tests contain elements of gender bias" (How Schools Shortchange Girls). In the work world, women still are getting less pay and less hours then their male peers and even in religion there is a glass ceiling. In only July of 2000, the first female bishop was ordained for the African Methodist Episcopal Church; the first time in its 213-year history (Ms. Magazine) but in contrast to this, "the Southern Baptist Convention voted and declared that women should no longer be ordained as pastors of the nation's largest Protestant denomination" (Ms. Magazine).

Socially, woman do not fare much better. "Women account for nearly three-fourths of the refugees in the world, and battering at home is the most universal form of violence against women. In the U.S., only one in 100 battered women ever report the abuse, and one in every five adult women in the U.S. have been raped." (Womens Status). The most shocking of all is the 1996 overtaking of the capital of Afghanistan by an extremist militia, the Taliban, who immediately stripped women of their rights and "ordered the publicly visible windows of women's houses painted black and forced women to wear the burqa (or chadari) - which completely shrouds the body, leaving only a small mesh-covered opening through which to see and prohibited women from leaving their homes unless accompanied by a close male relative" among numerous other decrees (Gender Apartheid). Worst of all violation of these very strict decrees result in women being brutally beaten, flogged and even killed for violating Taliban decrees. One such example of this is when the ankle of an elderly woman was accidentally showing from underneath her burqa, she was brutally beaten with a metal cable until her leg was broken.

Females constantly have to battle against both visible and invisible discrimination in today's society and trying to combat the discrimination is no easy task. Unfortunately the mistreatment of females online is something no one notices, or is considered just a joke. Luckily the use of online chat as communication is still relatively new and can be easily molded or changed. Being able to contact others from across the world is an incredibly powerful tool and can be used to change how females are treated in the increasing global society that we are coming to have these days. With this tool, used properly, not only can we change the way we interact with each other online, but also in real life and across borders. The challenge for all of us is to watch how much we actually do say and write things which are derogatory, and work to correct it. Through our observation, we can change the way we interact with others, and even positively change interaction between people and genders in the world at large.

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Poll
Have you noticed Women being treated disrespectfully on the Internet?
o Yes, and should stop 44%
o No, Not noticed 17%
o Yes, don't care 13%
o No, but shouldn't happen 9%
o Yes, but no worse than they're treated everywhere else 15%

Votes: 132
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o Kuro5hin
o Rules of IRC
o Undernet Faces Extinction
o Old School BBS Communities
o How Schools Shortchange Girls
o Ms. Magazine
o Ms. Magazine [2]
o Womens Status
o Gender Apartheid
o Also by cyndrekit


Display: Sort:
Gender Inequality on the Internet | 252 comments (250 topical, 2 editorial, 0 hidden)
Just a minute! (3.41 / 12) (#1)
by maarken on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:09:10 PM EST

Hey now! I keep #kuro5hin up almost 24/7, and I've seen both of those bits. I wasn't invloved with either. I don't like them. I don't really even like the people that were in them. In fact, I can't really agree more with female user.

Generalizations will most times ger you in trouble. So I treat females diffrent online? Sure, I try not say insulting to them because there are so few, I'd rather them like me. If I piss of a couple guys, so what?

Current #k5 pop:56.
Current female #k5 pop: 2 that I know of.

See? I'd rather not have 50% of all female pissed at me, so I'm generally nicer to them. Am I sexist? Seems so. I guess it's up to you to decide if my brand of sexism is bad.

--Maarken

Flip the symbols in my email.
3 females, not 2 (3.50 / 2) (#14)
by DJBongHit on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:39:22 PM EST

Current female #k5 pop: 2 that I know of.
Well, 3 (that I know of anyway): cyndrekit, communista, and ocelot.

~DJBongHit

--
GNU GPL: Free as in herpes.

[ Parent ]
Wrong. (4.33 / 3) (#35)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:53:47 PM EST

There are at least 5 female #kuro5hin-ers. And a great majority of them do agree. This was very much a joint piece of writing by a few of them (and some of the male #kuro5hin-ers).



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Happy (2.00 / 1) (#76)
by Devil Ducky on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 09:16:06 PM EST

If this was the topic of conversation on #k5 today. I'm glad I logged off when I did.

When everyone starts have a conversation about how PHP programmers are mistreated by those Perl and C people, then I'll need to be there.

Seriously, I don't praticipate in most sterotypifying activity, but what happens on IRC has always seemed lighter than what some people do in real life.

And just for the record; I use Perl, PHP, and C.

Devil Ducky

Immune to the Forces of Duct Tape
Day trading at it's Funnest
[ Parent ]
Current (3.50 / 2) (#88)
by maarken on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 11:22:55 PM EST

Guess I should have been more clear.
By current I ment "connected right now as I'm writing this". I know there's more than that that do connect. Hell, I end up liking most of them better than the guys, since they're less annoying, and more open to talking about !tech.

--Maarken

Flip the symbols in my email.
[ Parent ]
why the human won't exist forever ... (1.33 / 9) (#2)
by gullevek on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:16:15 PM EST

So, when I read this article it just prooves me again, that this race (the human one) is just something that went VERY wrong int the whole evolution process.

I think we are not worth living on this planet and will destroy ourselves (actually we already do this).

Oh I just could quote Agent Smith from Matrix ...

anyway ... human race should be destroyed. I beg for those bad aliens to come here ... quick!!!!

mfg, gul
--
"Die Arbeit, die tüchtige, intensive Arbeit, die einen ganz in Anspruch nimmt mit Hirn und Nerven, ist doch der größte Genuß im Leben."
  - Rosa Luxemburg, 1871 - 1919
You are fooling yourself (3.50 / 2) (#29)
by dzimmerm on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:32:33 PM EST

It is unlikely that a race as nasty as we are will kill ourselves off. Don't fool yourself into thinking it is likely. Do not forget that our aggressiveness turns to protectiveness as soon as a real threat needs to be dealt with.

dzimmerm

[ Parent ]

sound more like a typical military man (1.00 / 1) (#213)
by gullevek on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 02:48:41 AM EST

I could just say "We just have nuclear weapons to protect ourselves". HAHA! And so does every other stupid country argue when they want to justify their whole weapon arsenal.

What normal animal would invent weapons that could clean this race and everything else from this planet within few days ... just stupid humans.

If there are any aliens out there, they must lough there ass off, when they see us.

mfg, gul
--
"Die Arbeit, die tüchtige, intensive Arbeit, die einen ganz in Anspruch nimmt mit Hirn und Nerven, ist doch der größte Genuß im Leben."
  - Rosa Luxemburg, 1871 - 1919
[ Parent ]
Uh (4.60 / 5) (#59)
by DeadBaby on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:27:14 PM EST

That's a stupid statement.

Humans are by far some of the most civil beasts to walk the Earth. Lets look at one of our close relatives the gorilla. If he were to see a female he wouldn't make a few jokes about her orifices. He'd rape her and then try to kill her baby if it was threatening his dominance.

I hardly see the link between that and "nice tits" being screamed by a 12 year old. (or the mental equal)

"Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity -- in all this vastness -- there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us." - Carl Sagan
[ Parent ]
no difference (1.50 / 2) (#212)
by gullevek on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 02:45:34 AM EST

Well, at first look it might be no difference. But actually it's the same. And we humans males DO rape woman and kill there children.

Just look what war has done down in Ex-Jugoslawia, the human race, as we like to call ourself, is just another crappy wrong invest from nature.

mfg, gul
--
"Die Arbeit, die tüchtige, intensive Arbeit, die einen ganz in Anspruch nimmt mit Hirn und Nerven, ist doch der größte Genuß im Leben."
  - Rosa Luxemburg, 1871 - 1919
[ Parent ]
Change it 1 person at a time (3.00 / 2) (#130)
by meadows_p on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:39:52 AM EST

Lead by example, my friend. It's a real cop-out to just give up like that. Do the right thing yourself and you'll be amazed how you can influence others.

[ Parent ]
too many persons on earth (1.00 / 1) (#211)
by gullevek on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 02:42:44 AM EST

Well, I can try this, but this won't change the major development of this whole world.

It goes straight down and I can change as many persons as I want to, but at the end it won't count!

mfg, gul
--
"Die Arbeit, die tüchtige, intensive Arbeit, die einen ganz in Anspruch nimmt mit Hirn und Nerven, ist doch der größte Genuß im Leben."
  - Rosa Luxemburg, 1871 - 1919
[ Parent ]
counterpoint (3.40 / 10) (#3)
by Delirium on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:16:45 PM EST

Take a look through your #kuro5hin logs again, and count the number of times females in there have used the word "cock" or "penis." I'll assure you it's not zero.

That (2.16 / 12) (#7)
by OriginalGTT on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:24:37 PM EST

is only if you count communista as female....

---
I'm NOT on your level. Stay there, and I will stay up here where morals are high, and the air is sweet
--Psychologist
[ Parent ]
Funny, (3.00 / 1) (#165)
by communista on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:08:33 PM EST

I'm not sure whether I should be insulted or flattered by your comment. I think I'll choose flattered, because while I think you intended to insult me with your comment, I don't really see anything terribly slanderous.

If you commented as such to say 'Communista is like one of the guys' then I thank you for stating a very good point, as one has to be like one of the guys to survive in a tech based career/world. There are very few women in my office, and to fit in it's important to be somewhat androgynous in my personality. Surely the guys at the office don't really care about the article I saw on cosmetic tips in Cosmo last week, or about the great sale at Marshall Field's. Existing in a society that is dominated by males requires a little compromise on both sides.

If you commented as such for other reasons, I guess you had a point...somewhere - Even though it may have been lost within a failed attempt at humour.
/me fucks shit up!!!!
[ Parent ]
Allow me to expand. (2.85 / 7) (#168)
by OriginalGTT on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:18:16 PM EST

as one has to be like one of the guys to survive in a tech based career/world.

If you mean, "Pander to the lowest common denominator of immature teenage boys by discussing sex, your nipples and your love life in order to assure that attention is paid to me at all times and that everyone knows that I am just a fragile little feminine flower" then yes that's what I meant.

Any questions?

---
I'm NOT on your level. Stay there, and I will stay up here where morals are high, and the air is sweet
--Psychologist
[ Parent ]

Re: (3.50 / 2) (#175)
by communista on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:40:00 PM EST

While it's true that there are topics discussed as you listed above, please note that I am not the only one discussing these things. If you're ever in the channel, you'll notice that several patrons of the channel partake in similar, if not identical discussions. So I'm curious why you single me out.

I'm also curious why, if such conversation offends or annoys you...why you don't speak up in the #K5 channel and say so. If anything that I have to say offends and someone tells me, I stop. Please give me at least a little credit for being semi-intelligent. As of yet I haven't heard of any such requests (Again as I am not the only one who discusses non-technical issues in the channel). If you plan to persecute everyone who doesn't discuss things to your liking, put a coffee pot on, because you'll be writing for a while. If this is a personal hatred towards me, make it personal. That's what email addresses are for. Kuro5hin is not your personal forum to initiate flame wars.
/me fucks shit up!!!!
[ Parent ]
Correct me if I'm wrong, (3.25 / 4) (#180)
by OriginalGTT on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:09:06 PM EST

But I believe that "topics not to my liking" and "vying for the attention of everyone in the room" are different things. And I already remedied having to watch your pathetic dance around the hormones of #k5 by not hanging out there anymore. No big loss surely.

And a flame war takes 2 to play, so if you don't want it here you can email me or shut up. Your choice.

---
I'm NOT on your level. Stay there, and I will stay up here where morals are high, and the air is sweet
--Psychologist
[ Parent ]

Game over man.....Game over! (3.00 / 1) (#183)
by communista on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:16:36 PM EST

Telling me to shut up does NOT finalize this conversation, and I'm not going to play this game 'No you first....' -- 'No...really. You first.'

If you've left the channel then I'm sure it's a far better place as a result.
/me fucks shit up!!!!
[ Parent ]
Whee! You can't read! (3.50 / 4) (#186)
by OriginalGTT on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:35:08 PM EST

I did not tell you to shut up, I said that if you didn't want a flame war here then email me or shut up. See the difference?

Doesn't matter, you ignore my arguments and choose to insult me instead, typical trolling tactics. But remember, the old "She was asking for it" mentality applies when 14 year old boys are justifying making harrasing phone calls at your work.

The only way anyone has any way to judge you online is your words. Therefore you must choose them wisely. Unfortunately you have failed to do so up until this point. You kind of whine in a trhurler kind of way. It's interesting.

---
I'm NOT on your level. Stay there, and I will stay up here where morals are high, and the air is sweet
--Psychologist
[ Parent ]

It doesn't? (3.00 / 1) (#188)
by communista on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:49:31 PM EST

"And a flame war takes 2 to play, so if you don't want it here you can email me or shut up. Your choice.

Email sent.
/me fucks shit up!!!!
[ Parent ]
irritating sig (none / 0) (#251)
by streetlawyer on Fri Mar 09, 2001 at 04:21:28 AM EST

Mircosoft Windows supports long filenames and has done for really quite a long time.

--
Just because things have been nonergodic so far, doesn't mean that they'll be nonergodic forever
[ Parent ]
How often do they talk about cutting them off? (4.00 / 4) (#9)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:30:22 PM EST

Attitude is far more than a few curse words. Talking about another sex's genitals is not always harrasment, and isn't the only form of it when it is.


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
equal-opportunity lack of PCness (5.00 / 4) (#19)
by Delirium on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:00:20 PM EST

I don't think it's really an issue of gender harrassment, but just of in general what's normally considered "in bad taste" humor. There are plenty of bobbit jokes in k5 as well (grepping my logs gives me 3, and these aren't very old logs), so the bad-taste-humor folks are equal-opportunity. Plus there's the columbine jokes, the natural disaster jokes, and other manner of jokes involving death and mutilation. Just because one of the many bad-taste jokes happened to be specific to females doesn't, IMHO, imply that #kuro5hin is anti-female, or even that the particular person who made that joke is anti-female. Sure you can argue that it promotes a culture of intolerance towards females, but I could also argue that the jokes as a whole promote a culture of intolerance towards humans in general. I really don't see any specific gender-related hostility.

[ Parent ]
Not just women. (4.18 / 16) (#4)
by Defect on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:17:10 PM EST

The problem with online communication with strangers is that there is no punishment. It is not focussed only towards women, although, for some reason, dormant hormones in shy geeks do seem to go in overdrive at times, but try announcing your gay or black in certain rooms. I'm not targetting #k5, i'm saying in general.

Online communication virtually removes whatever social barriers there are in real life, and lack of tact goes without any negative repercussions, save maybe a kick/ban if you're in irc (if the ops are alive and aren't jackasses themselves). As if that wasn't enough, text doesn't generally do the best job at portraying feelings. Sarcasm, humour, sincerity, sorrow, anger, usually all of that is stripped leaving the recipient to determine the true meaning. So not only might someone take something more seriously than intended, one might not understand that you're sincerely upset either.

The only solution i can see to this is to do what most mothers say throughout your life, just ignore them. It's even easier online as ignoring someone completely removes their existance relative to you, but in real life you still have to consciously ignore people. Failing that, at least in irc, just make sure there's a female op in the chan as well.

But for the record, i think the country/world needs to advance a bit before much thought is spent on fair treatment online. I'd much rather have peace of mind when my friends go on vacation than know they're not getting asked to cyber on icq.
defect - jso - joseth || a link
Problem (4.38 / 18) (#5)
by tympanic on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:19:32 PM EST

I agree with you that there is a problem. I have seen situations, particularly on IRC, where
"If a female openly declares her gender, then almost immediately she receives attention from being hit on, asked for cyber sex, or outright attacked due to random pent up frustration. "
On the other hand, I have also seen the reverse happen (although not nearly as often). In a channel that has a large enough group of women, the women will make equally lude and derogatory comments about Men In General. I have had to leave fora that were dominated by women before, and I agree that it is not a good situation.

I do believe that women experience these situations far more often, and to far greater extremes, than men do. I just don't think it is right for either gender to make sweeping claims about the other.

"I've noticed success tends to mean making sure people's expectations are low and then exceeding them" -David Simpson

She's not (4.25 / 8) (#10)
by ocelot on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:31:47 PM EST

Where in that sentence do you see her saying anything about all males acting that way? They don't. Many males are very considerate towards females, both online and in real life. However, 9 times out of 10, it does happen, often from the same people over and over again.

And yes, I'll agree that the exact same thing happens when females get together. Or even in non female-dominated groups. I know I do it at times myself :) I also see a lot of racism online that I doubt would ever happen in real life. So it isn't just a question of treating females better, but keeping in mind the feelings of everyone.

[ Parent ]

Reference... (4.00 / 2) (#13)
by tympanic on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:36:59 PM EST

I wasn't necessarily referring to the quote when I commented on making sweeping claims. I was referring to other statements she made, specifically the first IRC log she quoted. I suppose I could have indicated that better.

My apologies for being unclear...

"I've noticed success tends to mean making sure people's expectations are low and then exceeding them" -David Simpson
[ Parent ]

Nah, my fault (3.50 / 2) (#17)
by ocelot on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:49:38 PM EST

No, that's my fault :) My mind just caught those two pieces of your post, and didn't put it together that they didn't necessarily refer to eachother until after I'd posted. Then I felt stupid, but there's no way to go back and edit or delete posts...

[ Parent ]
Equality is inherent in the Internet (3.84 / 13) (#6)
by jd on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:24:25 PM EST

When it's not possible to see other people, you cannot discriminate on the basis of any physical characteristics.

So, what's left?

What's left is the user. The problem lies, not in the medium, but in the blatant error between keyboard and chair.

Unfortunately, this requires better education, more mature adults (hey! children learn from those they see as older and wiser) and greater recognition of emotional & verbal abuse.

Just because someone isn't bleeding all over the floor does NOT mean you've not injured them, in a very real way. More to the point, just because you can't =SEE= them bleeding all over the floor does NOT mean you've not injured them.

Too many Internet users follow the theory "if I can't see it, it's not real". Fortunately, that attitude is very self-destructive, and such mind-sets will eventually make themselves extinct. Sadly, not before a lot of women and members of "unpopular" social and/or racial groups get very hurt.

IMHO, the big danger is for the change in attitudes to be too slow. A slow change will make for a lot of pent-up hostility, and a reversal of the abuse. The opposite of abuse is not further abuse. But that's exactly what will happen, if there isn't a very real perception of attitudes changing.

#kuro5hin is oppressive (4.06 / 15) (#12)
by Kiss the Blade on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:35:16 PM EST

I have noticed the rampant sexism that occurs in #kuro5hin. The topics there are invariably sexually orientated, and the conversation often lewd, sexist and blue. Once, as an expirement, I went in there posing as a female, using a different ISP. Surprise, surprise, I was soon rejecting offers of being asked to 'cyber' from anonymous users (not people in the channel, but obviously some of them had just fired up another IRC client).

I think the problem is the nature of the community there. They are mostly young males, inhibited, who find it difficult to get on with females in real life, for the most part.

In the channel in which I hang out, which has perhaps 20 regulars, there are 6 female regulars, including some #k5 refugees. Last week, for the first time AFAIK, the number of female users in the channel actually exceeded the number of males. But then, the channel I hang out in is more of an exclusive club, and so the denizens are reasonably well adjusted and so do not harass the female regulars. From what I can tell of #k5, this is far from being the case there. Perhaps this is why, out of 56 regulars, they have a mere 2 females.

The atmosphere there is just utterly oppressive.

KTB:Lover, Poet, Artiste, Aesthete, Programmer.
There is no contradiction.

Generalization (3.00 / 3) (#31)
by qslack on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:40:51 PM EST

Is it just me, or does it soom as if people are blaming this all on males ages 10-17?

I think the problem is the nature of the community there. They are mostly young males, inhibited, who find it difficult to get on with females in real life, for the most part.

OK OK OK, I get where this is going. It must be the young males (who, arguably, are discriminated at least as much as females) who are causing all this. Yes, it's them.

[ Parent ]
Male, age 14 (4.33 / 6) (#87)
by antizeus on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:55:58 PM EST

In the past I ran a sequence of BBS's, and also participated in a number of others. By far, the most annoying demographic was male, age 14 or so. If you noticed someone being extremely immature and rude, there was a pretty good chance that it was a 14-year-old male.

Of course, that doesn't mean that ALL 14-year-old males act that way. I, for one, was pretty mellow at that age. But there's definitely a strong correlation between that age/gender group and acting like scum (at least on electronic forums).
-- $SIGNATURE
[ Parent ]

not to mention... (3.50 / 2) (#154)
by Estanislao Martínez on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:10:25 PM EST

...the time somebody from the relevant channel posed as a female from a friend's computer, went to #k5, got treated like a piece of shit *and* somebody in #k5 tried to log in to his friend's computer as root...

--em
[ Parent ]

there are people who don't go to IRC (none / 0) (#249)
by B'voYpenburg on Thu Mar 08, 2001 at 10:10:03 AM EST

'cause they have more things to do. That means the K5 community != k5 on IRC

[ Parent ]
This article is really well written... (3.11 / 9) (#15)
by ragabr on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:40:00 PM EST

and covers some important topics... I believe that your reference to the Southern Baptist Convention is a little offbase. It's their interpretation that the Holy Bible forbids females to hold certain positions in a church. I feel that if an attitude towards a certain sex is defined by a belief, it's not necessarily sexism, it's simply morality. According to the Southern Baptist's the Holy Bible gives men a role and women a role. The same with Islam. In fact most religions give basic rules for how men and women are supposed interact. It's fair to argue that attitude may be wrong, but they can argue just as strongly that you're wrong.

-------
And my tongue would be made of chocolate. Mmmmm. Chocolate.
-rusty
Nonsense (4.14 / 7) (#20)
by RandomPeon on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:02:38 PM EST

It's their interpretation that the Holy Bible forbids females to hold certain positions in a church. I feel that if an attitude towards a certain sex is defined by a belief, it's not necessarily sexism, it's simply morality.

"Well, they say the Bible/Koran/Torah/whatever says so and we should respect that..." is the worst defense of primitive practices ever.

Can I quote Ephesians 6:5 "Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ" and say that slavery is morally correct? Your argument is no different than those used by Southern slaveholders to counter abolitionists.

You need to understand that both the Bible and the Koran provide social rules for primitive nomadic people. They weren't written for civilized people, and they definitely weren't written for modern civilized people. They contain great pieces of moral wisdom. They also contain "moral statements" which are repugnant.

People are not entitled to mistreat others because their religion tells them it's acceptable. In those cases, the religion is wrong and should be condemned as such. Not used as a defense.

[ Parent ]
I have to disagree... (3.33 / 6) (#23)
by ragabr on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:16:36 PM EST

You're totally neglecting the posibility that the religious works could in fact be the word of God/the gods/whatever. You're instant rebuking of this posibility, throwing peoples beliefs away as "social rules for primitive nomadic people". Just because you find an action repugnant doesn't necessarily make it so. In the case of the Southern Baptists, no one's really being discriminated against. They're putting forth their core beliefs, and if a woman wants to be a minister, she obviously doesn't share their beliefs. Same for Islamic women (outside of Theocratic countries of course). In the end it comes down to your morality vs theirs. You're whole argument is based on "I'm right, they're wrong" mentality.

-------
And my tongue would be made of chocolate. Mmmmm. Chocolate.
-rusty
[ Parent ]
True. (3.50 / 6) (#28)
by spaceghoti on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:30:17 PM EST

You're totally neglecting the posibility that the religious works could in fact be the word of God/the gods/whatever.

That's very true. I am discounting that possibility for two reasons. The first reason is because I find a lot of people use religions to justify immoral and irresponsible behavior. It's the "get out of Hell free card" mentality that I see all over the place. I'm not going to go so far as to say that all devoutly religious individuals are guilty of this. I will go so far as to say that I find it to be the norm rather than the exception. The second reason is because any morality or philosophy should be subject to scrutiny. Why does the Torah prohibit people from eating pork? Because at the time when it was written, people weren't very good about cooking their meat properly, and Trichothecenes can be a deadly disease when pigmeat is cooked incorrectly. Does that still apply today? Modern health officials think not; we're educated well enough that we know to cook the meat sufficiently to avoid that risk.

I'm not going to get into an argument about the validity of God/gods/whatever. I will point out that all philosophy and morality should be put under the microscope and each individual should ask themselves if they believe something because they were told they should, or because it really makes sense to them. Pointing to religious dogma means nothing to me: I'm interested in thoughtful and considerate self-examination.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
Doesn't change anything (3.50 / 4) (#37)
by RandomPeon on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:55:33 PM EST

I am dismissing the idea that the these things are the word of God out of hand. But assuming there is a God(which I do), would he/she/it be so evil as to endorse slavery and rape? Even if there is a supernatural being with these views, I would still contend that its teachings would be repugnant. If God exists and is pro-slavery, I reject God anyway.

Furthermore, there's no way these holy texts can be completely correct. They are self-contradicting and contain factual errors - the Bible computes the value of pi to be 3, for example. And they are always selectively followed. The Southern Baptists don't seem to object to cotton-polyester, a clear sin - "Thou shall not wear clothing woven of two fabrics". Nor do they seem to oppose marriage, even for their holy men, despite the fact that Jesus said, "It is better not to marry". We pick and choose which textual dictates to follow, and I contend we consider the sex roles assigned by the Bible and the Koran as outmoded as their regulations regarding infectious diseases or slavery.

Religious texts are like military regulations - a guide for the wise, a straightjacket for the stupid. To interpert either too rigidly is a sure path to ruin. The Taliban is an example of what happens when you use belief as a replacement for reason, instead of as a companion.

[ Parent ]
Ephesians 6:5-9 (new international version) (3.75 / 4) (#32)
by regeya on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:41:05 PM EST

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free.
And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him.

There's a certain danger in using one verse to prove a point.

[ yokelpunk | kuro5hin diary ]
[ Parent ]

Want another example? (1.66 / 3) (#62)
by RandomPeon on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:37:21 PM EST

That doesn't change anything. The Bible still says slavery is morally acceptable. It still says pi is exactly 3. If you want another one, look in Exodus 21 for the regulations on beating slaves:

"If a man beats his male or female slave with a rod and the slave dies as a direct result, he must be punished, but he is not to be punished if the slave gets up after a day or two, since the slave is his property."

You can't take any holy book at face value. Sorry. It just doesn't work.

[ Parent ]
hmmm.... (4.33 / 3) (#73)
by regeya on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:57:13 PM EST

yes, it's all so clear that the Bible preaches that slavery is OK...

1 Corinthians 7:21-24 Were you a slave when you were called? Don't let it trouble you--although if you can gain your freedom, do so. For he who was a slave when he was called by the Lord is the Lord's freedman; similarly, he who was a free man when he was called is Christ's slave. You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men. Brothers, each man, as responsible to God, should remain in the situation God called him to.
In other words, if your calling is to be a slave, so be it. I think you're making a connection between African-American slaves and slaves in the biblical sense, and that may or may not be appropriate; I honestly don't know. Irregardless, it's not altogether clear that the Bible does advocate slavery. It seems to say no, but has clear rules of how slaves are to be treated, and how slaves should be treated. Remember, the old testament also teaches how to bury your feces to avoid making people in your camp sick. Many of the rules seem to advocate one thing, but really are (IMHO) designed to minimize human suffering.

[ yokelpunk | kuro5hin diary ]
[ Parent ]

also (4.00 / 2) (#74)
by regeya on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:58:20 PM EST

oops, left out the bit that the verse clearly says that if you can gain your freedom, do so. I think that's an important thing to point out. :-)

[ yokelpunk | kuro5hin diary ]
[ Parent ]

Where? (3.00 / 1) (#162)
by j on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:56:01 PM EST

It still says pi is exactly 3.
Could any of you please post the verse where it says that?
A quick search for 'pi' in my King James didn't come up with anything.

[ Parent ]
Congress shall make no law (2.00 / 1) (#149)
by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:49:29 PM EST

establishing a religion or prohibiting the free excersize therof.
Is it really worth destroying someone's freedom of religion to save them from what you see as bigotry?

I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
[ Parent ]
Religious freedom (4.50 / 2) (#167)
by spaceghoti on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:13:00 PM EST

I don't believe in destroying religious freedom. Quite the contrary, I want assurance that in addition to freedom to practice religious beliefs, there is freedom from religious beliefs.

What you and yours believe is entirely up to you. You can scrutinize your beliefs, or not, at your discretion. At the same time, anyone who oversteps the boundaries and attempts to enforce their beliefs on someone who doesn't agree with them will find their freedoms sharply curtailed. My own history and contemplations on religion and its nature are my business, and while I'm free to debate these things with anyone who chooses to answer that challenge, I acknowledge that no one is obligated to believe what I say or believe. If I make sense, that's great. If I can't convince anyone, that's how it is. I accept that I cannot and should not attempt to force anyone to believe what I believe; I also believe that the same courtesy should be extended to me.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
Fallacy (3.33 / 3) (#22)
by spaceghoti on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:15:13 PM EST

I feel that if an attitude towards a certain sex is defined by a belief, it's not necessarily sexism, it's simply morality.

Pardon me whilst I dig deep into my Baptist background, here. According to Genesis, Noah had three sons (bear with me here) named Shem, Ham and Japeth. After the Flood, Noah got drunk off his rocker and disgraced himself something fierce. Ham was the first to notice and went to laugh about it with his brothers. Shem and Japeth didn't laugh, but covered Noah without looking at him. When Noah came to his senses he cursed Ham, that his descendents would be oppressed and enslaved by the descendents of his brothers (Genesis 9:24-25). According to Genesis 10:6-20, his children became the inhabitants of Africa.

So, according to the logic above and the biblical history and translation that I learned in the Baptist Church, racism and slavery is permissible because the Bible says so. It isn't racism, it's morality. And that doesn't even begin to cover the ways the Bible describes how women should make themselves subservient to men.

Be very careful how you attempt to justify oppressive behavior. It leads down a very ugly path.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
While you're correct that it's a slippery slope... (2.00 / 1) (#27)
by ragabr on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:29:46 PM EST

It still comes down to morality. I personally think slavery and bigotry and misogeny are all wrong. I can do my best to fight them (mostly by not falling into them myself, but if I find something, to quote another response, repugnant I'll attempt to act out) but in the end, what do we have on the people who do hate and act on it? I'm really not into moral relativism, but I have to admit the other side could be correct.

-------
And my tongue would be made of chocolate. Mmmmm. Chocolate.
-rusty
[ Parent ]
Grounds for morality (4.00 / 1) (#30)
by spaceghoti on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:40:02 PM EST

There is always the possibility that I'm wrong. It could be that I'm operating off insufficient data or misplaced beliefs or any number of things. I try to operate off the principle of "enlightened self-examination," by which I examine all of my attitudes, beliefs and actions to see whether or not I was operating by dogmatic reactions or if I was really thinking about what I was up to.

My problem with using religious beliefs as a foundation for morality is not that religions do not promote moral and ethical groundwork. All of them do, bar none. They're all designed to give people guidelines and principles for civilized behavior and interaction, to socialize us into cooperation toward mutual benefit. The problem is that for the majority of human history (right up to this very moment), more people than not use religion as a crutch in place of actually considering and choosing their values. "I believe this because [X] says so," is the catch phrase, and I consider that unjustifiable. These people aren't thinking about what they're doing or reacting to, they're just going with established patterns that someone else taught to them and never considering the consequences.

Slavery, oppression, ignorance and far more evils have been perpetrated generation after generation because people accepted what was told to them without question or consideration. Therefore, attempting to justify gender discrimination as a "morality issue" is completely unacceptable to me.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
How do you justify morality? (1.00 / 1) (#48)
by ragabr on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:22:42 PM EST



-------
And my tongue would be made of chocolate. Mmmmm. Chocolate.
-rusty
[ Parent ]
Justifying morality (4.00 / 1) (#51)
by spaceghoti on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:48:33 PM EST

By verifying (either by action or intent, the latter being far more difficult) that the morality invoked is designed less for personal benefit than the good of the whole.

I accept that this is purely subjective. Morality is never an easy issue, and humans are by definition hopelessly complicated and contradictory. The touchstones I use for myself are those of relevance and intent. Is it relevant, is it something that can still apply to our society with our level of technology and (presumed) education, does the issue still fascinate or plague our society? The example of eating pigs comes into play here. And is the intent designed toward encouraging everyone to live in peace and harmony (the prohibition against murder and theft) or is it geared toward maintaining the status quo so that everyone is locked into their current stations (slavery, subservience of women, etc)? If we have readers from India, I know that your old school caste members are still very focused on maintaining their caste positions. I remember listening to a professor in college who had immigrated from India when he remarked on how astonished he was that a lowly janitor who dealt with unclean substances on a daily basis was expected to be accorded mutual recognition and respect as himself, a member of a high caste and learned scholar. Is that sort of morality based on thoughtful introspection or a personal desire to be deemed superior to those around him? The practical foundation for his morality, the issue of hygiene, has been resolved by modern technology and education so that the janitor doesn't threaten the professor with "contamination" anymore.

Yes, I am applying my personal values to judge the morality systems of other cultures and religions, and I do not apologize for this. I broke from the culture and religion I was raised with because, on close inspection, the Baptist system couldn't stand under my scrutiny. I realized for myself that the intent of religion, that being ethical behavior and moral foundation, had become lost in rigid dogma and blind self interest. To borrow from an excellent quote earlier in this discussion, religion can be a guide to the wise and a straitjacket for the ignorant. Stating religious principles for the degradation and oppression of women is to demonstrate the straitjacket mentality.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
Slavery in the Bible (4.00 / 2) (#89)
by dave114 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 11:23:03 PM EST

Slavery in the Bible seems quite different from the American form which existed. Slaves did have their rights. If I remember correctly the Jews were supposed to celebrate every 7 years as well as an extra celebration once every 50 (year of jubilee) in which slaves would be freed and their lands returned to them.

Seems to me more like contract labour than slavery.

[ Parent ]
Religion and contemporary issues (3.00 / 2) (#97)
by spaceghoti on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:30:41 AM EST

There's all sorts of material in all sorts of writings and religious texts in how to deal with the way things were. Slavery was the norm throughout the history of the Bible, and even God's Chosen People were allowed to indulge in it. This was mostly after they kicked the shit out of some neighboring nation either because of that nation's aggressive tendencies or their own.

If you don't like the example of slavery, let's look at another example. In the Book of First Samuel chapter 15, King Saul was instructed by God (through his prophet Samuel) to take the Children of Israel to go to a neighboring nation of Amalekites and slay them utterly, leaving no one alive, not even the children or animals. They were even punished when they failed to do this properly (they brought back some animals the Amalekite king as prizes).

Slavery, genocide, it's all in there. So long as God told you it was okay, you could do it. That's what makes religion so damned scary, and why I object to it being used as a moral foundation for something like treating women like second class citizens (if that). Imagine a religion that said it was acceptable (and even necessary) to kill anyone and everyone of a certain heritage because God said so. Or a religion that said that raping a woman who belonged to another man meant death, but if she was unclaimed then you just had to marry her. Oh, wait. They're both in the Bible.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
You are exactly correct (3.00 / 1) (#148)
by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:48:01 PM EST

The Bible condones all manner of bigotry. Incidentally, it was Noah's daughters who got him drunk.
Anyway, the Bible, when read without the lens of modern diversity training, clearly shows that certain races are superior and this was enacted by God. Further, Paul says that women should sit in the back of church and refrain from making a sound. Kinda hard to be a pastor when you can't talk in church. Also, a deacon or elder should be a *man* with just one *wife*, in good standing, morally upright, ad nauseum. That Paul specifically, and Christianity in generally is extremely bigoted should come as no surprise; all religions of the time were heavily bigoted of the 'my god can beat up your god' vein of bigotry.
The idea is that men and women have different *tasks*, not that man is superior. These tasks are enumerated. Whether one agrees with it or not, the man is the 'priest of the household' and the man is to be to the woman as Jesus is to the man. The woman is responsible for domestic tasks and the raising of the children and the man is responsible for discipline and the getting of the bread.

I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
[ Parent ]
Thank you (4.00 / 2) (#160)
by spaceghoti on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:52:33 PM EST

This provides an excellent clarification of my point. The Bible (and most religions) outline specific behavior deemed acceptable by men, women, groups and the like. Whether or not those behaviors are now valid in modern context is not considered when people attempt to enforce them on the people they meet. "The Bible says so" is not good enough when trying to explain to a modern career woman in a good job why she should give it all up to stay home and bake bread. If she chooses to accept that statement, I have no problem with it. Whatever makes you happy. But using religious reasons to enforce behavior patterns on people who don't want them and have no use for them is something else entirely.



"Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

[ Parent ]
gender opportunity (4.48 / 25) (#16)
by Delirium on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:43:36 PM EST

Females are still unequal in schools, work, and especially in social interaction. In schools "girls receive less attention in the classroom than boys, curricula ignore or stereotype women; reports of sexual harassment of girls are increasing; and many standardized tests contain elements of gender bias"

I'm not sure how you reconcile this claim with the fact that females are given preferential treatment in university admissions. If a female with a 1300 SAT score is admitted over a male with a 1500 SAT score, how can you claim that females are being treated unfairly in this respect? There are a great deal of programs specifically designed to help females in education - female-only scholarships, female-only programs of academic assistance and tutoring at many major universities, etc. Very few (if any) parallel programs for males exist. (Imagine the outcry if there were a scholarship foundation which restricted its scholarships to males.)

In the work world, women still are getting less pay and less hours then their male peers and even in religion there is a glass ceiling. In only July of 2000, the first female bishop was ordained for the African Methodist Episcopal Church; the first time in its 213-year history (Ms. Magazine) but in contrast to this, "the Southern Baptist Convention voted and declared that women should no longer be ordained as pastors of the nation's largest Protestant denomination"

Statistics are an interesting beast. Some studies claim that females are unfairly discriminated against in the workplace, and I would agree that there is some evidence of this. However the raw numbers are rather misleading - many women choose to work fewer hours, for a variety of reasons such as child-rearing (there are men who stay home or work less to raise children as well, but fewer men choose to do so than women, so this skews the statistics). Don't confuse a lack of equal results with a lack of equal opportunity - the simple fact that results (salaries, hours, etc.) between genders (or races, or whatever else you're looking at) aren't equal does not necessarily imply that there is not equal opportunity. There are many reasons why results may not be equal even in the presence of perfectly equal opportunity (in fact you might argue that it's statistically unlikely that results ever would be perfectly equal even given equal opportunities). So I think rather than looking at results you ought to look at opportunities - IMHO there exist at least equal opportunities currently; any lingering discrimination (standardized test biases, etc.) is more than made up for by reverse discrimination (affirmative action, females-only scholarships, etc.).

As for religion, you or I might disagree with the policy that only men may be priests, but IIRC this is based on Biblical teachings. It's difficult to imagine how a Christian church could then allow female priests without being accused of hypocrisy.

FYI (4.40 / 5) (#63)
by ucblockhead on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:41:20 PM EST

Women graduate college at a higher rate than men these days. The female graduation rate overtook the male graduation rate about five years ago.


-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]

Missing the point? (3.75 / 4) (#80)
by slakhead on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:04:22 PM EST

I don't know that cyndrekit is trying to prove anything to anyone but rather simply open our eyes to the reality of the world around us.

One of the problems with our society was that women used to not have much freedom at all. Then female rights movements started to get some equality in the country and all the men in the country immediately see such movements as a cause for war of the genders. Anytime a woman gets accepted into a college over a man with a better SAT, it sounds like there was blatant favoritism by someone. The fact of the matter is that things are not that cut and dry. Who cares if the guy in question has 1600 if he never did a day of community service and his GPA is a little less than respectable? If the female was active in her community, a member of student government, and involved in sports there is no reason she shouldn't get the position over the guy despite having a lower SAT. No favoritism or sexism there. It is just reality. But when you want to prove something you only see what you want to see and in this case you would only see the SAT score.

The point being made in the article is that women have enough stuff to put up with in their everyday lives without having to get home and be harassed online also. I don't think this is meant to be an argument or a battle. It is just a request for some moderation and respect from all online users to each other. We should all be respectful to each other regardless of gender to begin with.

[ Parent ]
Not the point at all (4.50 / 2) (#107)
by Delirium on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:18:31 AM EST

Anytime a woman gets accepted into a college over a man with a better SAT, it sounds like there was blatant favoritism by someone. The fact of the matter is that things are not that cut and dry. Who cares if the guy in question has 1600 if he never did a day of community service and his GPA is a little less than respectable? If the female was active in her community, a member of student government, and involved in sports there is no reason she shouldn't get the position over the guy despite having a lower SAT. No favoritism or sexism there.

That doesn't address my point at all; things like community service, sports, and other such activities are already taken into account in university admissions, for both genders. My point was that females are given additional preferential treatment even after these factors are weighed - a female who even after taking all these into account is simply a less-qualified candidate may still get in over a more-qualified male due to affirmative action.

[ Parent ]

Proof (none / 0) (#127)
by Ken Arromdee on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:10:30 AM EST

I don't know that cyndrekit is trying to prove anything to anyone but rather simply open our eyes to the reality of the world around us.

But that's what proof *is*. Proof (or rather, evidence, which we usually call 'proof' ) is how one decides if something is real in the first place. Saying that you can't prove something but you want people to open their eyes to it anyway is saying "you have no reason to believe it's real, so believe it without a reason".

[ Parent ]

Sexism in School (3.00 / 1) (#103)
by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:02:12 AM EST

The problem starts *much* earlier than SAT time. It's been shown that most teachers, given a class of elementary students, will pick the male students more often than the female students to answer questions, demonstrate a problem in front of the class, etc. A bigoted society feeds on its own tail.
-fsh
[ Parent ]
When I was in school (4.00 / 2) (#146)
by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:42:28 PM EST

Female students offered answers less often. I'm afraid a bit more work must be done before this can be assumed to be causality.

I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
[ Parent ]
You prove the point! (4.00 / 2) (#166)
by jabber on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:09:18 PM EST

If a female with a 1300 SAT score is admitted over a male with a 1500 SAT score, how can you claim that females are being treated unfairly in this respect?

This is exactly the crux of being treated unfairly. 1300 != 1500. What difference does the gender of the student make?

If a female who tests at 1300 is admitted over a male who tests at 1500, then both are being treated unfairly. Preferential treatment is unfair treatment.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"
[ Parent ]

you assume to much (2.00 / 1) (#190)
by alprazolam on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:16:18 PM EST

1) your assumption that the SAT is an effective measure of anything is probably not very accurate 2)if 10% of males score 1500 but only 1% of females score 1300, would you still take the male? does that mean that women are stupid? i would also like to point out that males who argue against some sort aggressive recruiting for women are absolute moron. would you rather go to a school with 10% or 50% women (of course i'm assuming your straight, which may be a bad assumption)?

[ Parent ]
Separate issues (4.50 / 2) (#196)
by jabber on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:49:07 PM EST

Whether the SAT is an effective means of screening for University admission is a separate issue from how it is applied to that end.

The point is that a comprehensive measure of qualification is needed, as men and women are very different. If nature or nurture defines the difference is yet another discussion. To be fair to both genders, separate means of determining qualification would be needed, and we've already tried the 'separate but equal' approach in the US, to no good end.

Then we really have to consider the in-between genders. Gay men and gay women surely are different than their straight counterparts, and so should be tested in different ways. Add race. Add primary language. Add handicap. Add financial status and cultural upbringing. Ad nauseum.

Suddenly you end up with a world full of individual people, where it takes more time and effort to come up with 'fair treatment' guidelines than it does to do anything else.

Sure, the SAT may be broken, but what alternative is there? And what is it's point? If you think that the point of University is to educate men and women in equal numbers, then I'm sorry, but I think you're badly deluded. In this direction lay quotas, and underqualified and uninterested candidates are given opportunities for which the 'majority' (whatever that means) is turned down.

What is the M/F ratio of college candidates? What is the acceptance ratio? What is the successful graduation and GPA distribution?

Assume for a moment that men are in fact better at math and science than women (there is some evidence to this conclusion, but it is arguable). MIT, being a tech school will by definition attract, approve, retain and graduate more men than women. Should women who want to go to MIT be held to a lower standard than the men? Should MIT give them easier tests, and as a result create sub-optimal Engineers? What would this do to the reputation of women in the Engineering field, if all the engineers in the world knew that women engineers have it easier, and can't solve as hard a problem, as the men?

The point here is that if women and men are to be seen as equals, they should be held to the same standards. If there's a disproportionate distribution of men or women who make the grade, so be it. The purpose of education is not to make people feel good about themselves, but to crank out educated minds which will better the world.

If the standards are poorly defined, or clearly slanted to favor one gender over the other, that's one thing... If, for example, a math question uses some obscure rule of football to lay out a problem, then this needs to be changed. But, if the standard simply tests ability in an area that is statistically 'male', then what's the problem?

If women in record numbers decided that they want to be NASCAR drivers, for example, should all the male drivers be held to different rules? Heavier cars? Smaller tanks?

Anyhow, I think you see what I mean, and the horse seems dead enough at this point.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"
[ Parent ]

It's just immaturity. (4.11 / 9) (#18)
by baron on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 04:58:36 PM EST

I've been on #kuro5hin for a couple days now, out of curiosity. The kinds of things said there and quoted in this article are the kinds of things I said online myself ten years ago, when I was an annoying teenager trying desparately to draw attention to myself or get a rise out of someone. I don't think I had the same sexual frustrations that some of these comments reveal, but overall, it's nearly the same as schoolyard teasing, and equally meaningful.

The difference between conversation in text and conversation in real life isn't necessarily the lack of "real" repercussions to socially unacceptable behavior. Communication is stripped down so bare that the only thing an individual can be judged on is their words. It's the ultimate baring of the soul for those who are real and themselves and honest. For those who want to be someone they aren't and who lack self-confidence, it appears (to them) to be the ultimate way to pretend to be someone else. Telling the difference between those two types of people is pretty simple, with a little experience, and provides one with a quick way to determine who is worth talking to.

I've personally never been bothered by either type of conversation, but based on my experience on both sides of the issue, the best solution is to ignore people who bug you. If there are few left after you're done ignoring people or if the conversation is otherwise boring, don't bother talking with that group of people and concentrate on talking to those you DO enjoy talking to. There are many places to converse with interesting people out there, and wasting time with losers just isn't worth the bother.

Just ignore it (4.60 / 5) (#26)
by ocelot on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:26:09 PM EST

Ignoring works well short term, or for the particularly annoying cases. But when you're subjected to relativly minor "lighthearted" harrasment on a regular basis over a period of time, it really adds up even when you try not to take it seriously.

Leaving is an option too, in a kind of "punish the victim" way.

But both options are passive options. They don't do anything to address the problem. I could say, "Fine, #kuro5hin is filled with immature idiots and I don't want to be there anymore" and leave (not necessarily my actual thoughts, just an example). What happens then? Will it make the channel any better for the next female who stumbles across it? Will it do anything to stop the people who are acting this way? No, it won't. Drawing attention to the problem may help, at least a little bit.

Things aren't going to improve at all unless people are aware of the problem.

[ Parent ]

Sure it is.. (4.40 / 5) (#66)
by DeadBaby on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:56:58 PM EST

But doesn't it concern you there are people who are 20-30 years old who are still acting like a 13 year old? That's the problem here.
"Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity -- in all this vastness -- there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us." - Carl Sagan
[ Parent ]
General agreement, but... (3.33 / 9) (#21)
by error 404 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:11:53 PM EST

The statistic on refugees is probably misleading. There are more women refugees because the men have been slaughtered or drafted.

Otherwise, very good points. And it is disturbing that the situation doesn't appear to be improving as one might expect with more women participating online.


..................................
Electrical banana is bound to be the very next phase
- Donovan

Being a girl on the net (3.66 / 9) (#24)
by enterfornone on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:17:53 PM EST

I was going to post this as MLP, but this article says it much better.

It's easy for guys to imagine that gender discrimination no longer exists since it is no longer as overt as it once was. But anyone who's ever IRCed with a feminine name or otherwise been thought to be a girl on the net would realise that there is still a lot of it out there.

--
efn 26/m/syd
Will sponsor new accounts for porn.

Everyone needs some perspective here (3.50 / 6) (#53)
by _cbj on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:53:54 PM EST

The thing about girls is that most people in most net communities, especially online games and irc, have no knowledge of them. They're exotic and distant animals in real life. Imagine the thrill when one of these remarkable, alluring creatures appears to be within reach. How often does that happen? Never to me, not before I bought a 56Kbps modem. Now I consider myself one of the better adjusted to close proximity to girls (online that is; I can still barely manage two words before turning shiny scarlet if one was physically near. This, however, is an infinite improvement from before I conversed with them in places like this.)

So everyone needs to just chill a little. Gotta get a feel for each other, and gotta appreciate that isn't always going to be the smoothest adjustment. Please have patience.

[ Parent ]

There is no inequality. (3.89 / 29) (#25)
by Signal 11 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:23:23 PM EST

I'm going to go out on a limb here and be politically incorrect: This article is a tempest in a teapot. That is to say, there's no real inequality here.

First, this article takes one example (#kuro5hin) and making grossly overgeneralized statements about the internet, a massive place where almost 50% of americans spend some of their time. #kuro5hin is not representative of that group. The mean age of #kuro5hin is about 16. The mean age of the internet population at large I would guess to be around 27.

We treat people that we meet online differently from those in real life and unfortunately, many times the manners we have so carefully developed are forgotten upon connection to the Internet.

That's an exaggeration, at best. Online you have only someone's nick and their writing style to give you any clue about themselves beyond what they say. People's manners don't "disappear" online - they are adapted to fit into a medium which is color and gender blind. There is no way for me to know you are male, female, white, black, asian, or american online. Any biases which you may be observing are not directly attributeable to your sex or race, but rather your communication in and of itself. What other possible way could I judge you in a text-only medium except by your words?

Even seemingly little jokes do add up after some time and create a very uncomfortable environment to be in.

This implies that the "right" moral action would be to censor and remove these comments and/or people from #kuro5hin. I question that position because this is an individualistic society (the online world, not just the united states) and people are encouraged to speak their mind, and also respect other people's speech even when offensive. The internet, for the most part, is an open forum - a public gathering place. As such, free speech includes offensive speech and people have the right to speak their mind. If you dislike what they have to say, you have many options - one of which is to leave.

and would make the use of these forms of communication more accessible and enjoyable to everyone.

Wait! Back up - judgement call there. People are obviously enjoying themselves without these restrictions. Many people like saying raunchy jokes, talking about sex, and generally saying things that are "offensive". Most everything is offensive to someone, and if we make a rule that "offensive" language and writings are not to be tolerated, we will eventually not be able to speak because someone is, or could reasonably be expected to be, offended. The concept of offensiveness is a slippery one - it depends on the receiver, not the speaker. It is much like sexual harassment - the only law on the book that I'm aware of that defines an illegal behavior as being determined solely by the recipient. In short, "offensive" is a loaded buzzword - we need more definition at the very least. Even then, I question how any kind of standard could be applied fairly.

...and [women] are equal in society but I must offer a very different opinion including some facts regarding women's status

An equally powerful argument could be constructed about men being "unequal" with regards to treatment in divorce cases, or alimony. Men are much more likely to be convicted of a crime than women for virtually every crime across the board, and in addition, the sentencing for women tends to be dramatically more lenient for women than men. But we're drifting off topic.

The bottom line is that this article is full of judgement calls and half-truths. Sexism is a sword that cuts both ways - in as much as social roles harm women, they harm men. It is simply unfashionable presently in society for men to complain about these injustices, and fashionable for women to blame men for all of the evils of the world. The reality is somewhat more sobering - each side is faced with social pressures which go against their nature. I think men's fashion is woefully lacking, that men can be as socially dynamic as women - more than the sum of their job and their pocketbook and that they can be caring and compassionate. Many women I have talked to agree, but stereotypes get in the way of men actually expressing themselves this way, perhaps because showing feelings is viewed as a sign of weakness, or for fear of being viewed as gay. Stereotypes such as "men just sit at home and watch TV" do not mirror the reality - which is that women lead men in every time slot for television by substantial margins. That is to say, women watch far more television than men.

No group can say they have exclusive rights to saying they are oppressed.


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.

Not quite. (3.90 / 11) (#33)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:43:19 PM EST

"Online you have only someone's nick and their writing style to give you any clue about themselves beyond what they say. People's manners don't "disappear" online - they are adapted to fit into a medium which is color and gender blind."

Discussion of the mutilation of people to make a barrel full of body parts is digsusting. I would expect this from the manner-less creaps that make up 1/3rd of all teenage populations. These people, male and female, have no concepts of appropriateness, or choose to ignore them. They are immature rejects of society. Some perfectly sane and nice people choose to be like this on the internet because of the anonymity it grants.

There are at least a few people who have admitted that in #kuro5hin, due to the changes in accountability, they discussed some things they would not otherwise discuss.

"This implies that the "right" moral action would be to censor and remove these comments and/or people from #kuro5hin. I question that position because this is an individualistic society (the online world, not just the united states) and people are encouraged to speak their mind, and also respect other people's speech even when offensive."

No one has the right to negative infringe on someone else. As the owner of #kuro5hin, I've previously only been there to facilitate discussion in a fairly passive way. Now I will be more active because what is right for the channel is a balanced view, not just whoever has time to say the equivalent of hello.jpg in the channel.

There are acceptable boundries for normal conversation. I don't censor people, but I do try to encourage intelligence. Someone today asked me if I was not swearing about something because it would offend someone. I replied that I only swore when I felt it appropriate -- and that is only when it's a fairly important situation. There are too many people who dillute the power of their own language by overusing it.

Related to that, these same people experience a form of velocitization. Like driving a car at highway speeds, going back to a more civilized discourse seems too "formal" to them. They act out in inappropriate ways. I don't support that. #kuro5hin is about civilized discourse, not about the lowest common denominator. Some regulars are all about the lowest common denominator because they don't know any better. That will be changing.

You have to understand that too much freedom is selfdefeating. There are limits to what you are allowed to do around others because you can infringe on their rights to exist happily.



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Reasonable limits on conversation (4.25 / 8) (#38)
by Signal 11 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:56:00 PM EST

Discussion of the mutilation of people to make a barrel full of body parts is digsusting.

I agree, but censorship isn't the answer. Slashdot tried that with the trolls.. we all know how that turned out. Peer pressure, IMO, is the best approach - either ignore it, or ask them to stop - neither of which has been requested. A polite request to stop, or a +b as an extreme measure to shut them up is probably all that would be required.

People don't like to offend, and will generally take the conversation elsewhere if politely asked - unless there's 10 people discussing $ISSUE and $OFFENDED_PERSON asks them to stop - $OFFENDED_PERSON should just leave then.

No one has the right to negative infringe on someone else.

Hence the invention of /ignore, something you've advocated many times on #kuro5hin. Besides, if the person sticks around and is clearly in the minority opinion, they should leave. Nobody has a "right" not to be offended.

#kuro5hin is about civilized discourse, not about the lowest common denominator.

It's a nice thought, but ultimately you, I, rusty, and everyone else are not in a position where we can control people's thoughts. Simply put, shit, er, conversation happens. Most of the time #kuro5hin is, as you put it, civilized. But we're also human and sometimes we need to vent. Better to let it run its course than try to censor it out and raise tensions, which is ultimatly a vicious circle that increases the behavior you most want to supress.


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.
[ Parent ]

Sigh. (4.60 / 5) (#40)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:59:38 PM EST

The people who troll are immature. They're the kind of people who can't handle /ignore. They're the kind of people who just get more offensive as you ignore them, in a sick attempt to get more attention. These people have too much time on their hands.

As for venting and the like, you should understand that all your actions have consequences. That, and a little forethought on what is acceptable or not, should steer your manners. Unless you do want to be known as an asshole.



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Attention getting / behavior (4.33 / 3) (#44)
by Signal 11 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:07:50 PM EST

The people who troll are immature. They're the kind of people who can't handle /ignore.

Why do people act immature? Because they get attention. If you don't give them that attention, they won't act in a way that gets them that attention. I was trolled for quite some time on slashdot. By ignoring the people trolling me, that behavior eventually went away. If there's nothing to gain by it, they won't do it.

That, and a little forethought on what is acceptable or not, should steer your manners. Unless you do want to be known as an asshole.

Being an asshole is quite different from entertaining a viewpoint contrary to that of the majority, although people routinely confuse the two - what, he disagrees with me?! he's an ASSHOLE - everyone knows I'm right!

Be careful with defining "manners", as it is context-sensitive. What is appropriate to say at a party is usually not appropriate to say at a funeral. Trying to define "rules" for manners is the stuff many authors of thousand page books have been trying to for centuries. Manners is a subset communication, and communication is context-sensitive. Beware making general statements!


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.
[ Parent ]

Yes, but (4.50 / 4) (#61)
by aphrael on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:33:59 PM EST

Being an asshole is quite different from entertaining a viewpoint contrary to that of the majority, although people routinely confuse the two

Agreed, but a lot of the distinction hinges on the manner in which you voice your viewpoint and your disagreement with the majority. A lot of self-proclaimed individualists have a tendency to seek out the most provocative way of expressing their individualism and their viewpoints (see, for example, trhurler); it's the manner of their expression, and not what is being expressed, which makes people think they're assholes.

[ Parent ]

majority rules? (4.66 / 3) (#47)
by ocelot on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:20:35 PM EST

People don't like to offend, and will generally take the conversation elsewhere if politely asked - unless there's 10 people discussing $ISSUE and $OFFENDED_PERSON asks them to stop - $OFFENDED_PERSON should just leave then.

In general, I agree.

However, if you're in, say, #linux, and the majority of people are sitting around saying "Windows rules!", do you think it is appropriate for the few people who are actually there to discuss Linux to be the ones to leave? Or should the people who want to discuss Windows find a more appropriate place to do it?

#kuro5hin is a bit more difficult than that, because it doesn't really have a particular topic. However, as it's the channel for a large weblog, it really should be an environment that's comfortable for the intended audience of the weblog. Conversation which is hostile to females (or any other random group which could be considered part of the intended audience for k5) detract from this.

So, in the case of #kuro5hin, I'd say it would be more appropriate for those who are making the environment hostile to take their conversation elsewhere.

[ Parent ]

Mmm, okay... (3.11 / 9) (#43)
by qslack on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:05:30 PM EST

I'm sorry Inoshiro! I never knew this Internet was for people who discussed topics you deem appropiate. All "manner-less creaps that make up 1/3rd of all teenage populations" or anyone who you don't agree with should destroy their computer and only talk to you to ask you to validate them as part of your Internet community.

Discussion of the mutilation of people to make a barrel full of body parts is digsusting. I would expect this from the manner-less creaps that make up 1/3rd of all teenage populations. These people, male and female, have no concepts of appropriateness, or choose to ignore them. They are immature rejects of society. Some perfectly sane and nice people choose to be like this on the internet because of the anonymity it grants.

Then you went on to say that this passage was directeid at the teenagers in #kuro5hin. I knew you never liked me, Ino, but it is never right to make sweeping generalizations about a whole age group.

Instead of being anti-female (your sig: "Kuro5hin.org || "Is whoring an ethical way to support a weblog?""), you're being anti-teenager. I guess your "opinion" changes to whatever will make you most appreciated among the community? Or do you just hate poeple who are younger than you? I can't tell which.

Oh, and I have a few quotes from IRC (the whole log is at http://www.kuro5hin.org/?op=displaystory&sid=2001/1/8/2345/19721 ).
* Inoshiro pets his cute pussy which is sleeping in his lap
<Inoshiro> 10 would suck :/

So it's OK for you to make jokes but not for "manner-less teenagers" to do the same?

I thought one of the highpoints of the Internet was that no one judgded ANYONE based on age.

[ Parent ]
Projecting a bit much? (3.00 / 5) (#49)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:26:25 PM EST

Pussy Pus"sy, a.
See Pursy. Colloq. or Low

Pussy Pussy, n. Dim. of puss.
1. A pet name for a cat; also, an endearing name for a girl.

I'd also ask that you grep through there for "Inoshiro" .. I made a few remarks, all of which I stand behind. Everyone can read them and see if your choice of quotes was merely to get people onto your side before you villified me.

As for being anti-teenager, I think you're taking the disproval I have for some of your activities and trying to generalize it. You're not even a teen, at the age of 12. How can you logically stretch my disklike that way?

I don't appreciate a whole class of people who see learning and thought as garbage. If you act like you're "too good" to learn something new, or otherwise act beyond confidence into arrogance, of course I'll dislike you. Most will. You're just making a generalization fit your argument and projecting it onto me.



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Intent is the judge? (3.00 / 1) (#214)
by Miniluv on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 02:50:25 AM EST

I made a few remarks, all of which I stand behind. Everyone can read them and see if your choice of quotes was merely to get people onto your side before you villified me.
So all you have to do is stand behind your words and suddenly you aren't part of the problem but instead part of the solution? Interesting.

"Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
[ Parent ]
Well since this means me exactly (2.80 / 5) (#50)
by farl on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:31:43 PM EST

Since this applies directly to me and my usual offtopic conversations that wander through #k5, i guess i would have to ask you to delete my account here, all stories posted be me, and all comments please.

Childish games played in #k5 on the basis of "well rusty might have said ok, but i didnt, therefore you cannot", when all I asked was a question of what ops were responsible for on the channel, leads me to believe in Inoshiro's next best selling story "Inoshiro's Kampf".


Farl
k5@sketchwork.com
www.sketchwork.com
[ Parent ]
You're overreacting (IMO). (3.00 / 3) (#54)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:57:12 PM EST

I accepted channel founder status from Steven some time ago. This means I'm directly responsible for things which happen in the IRC channel right now. I'm cautious about things. Since I didn't sign off on you getting ops, I removed you.

That this affects you this way perhaps shows that I was right to play it cautious. The #1 rule of granting ops is that anyone who asks for it doesn't deserve it. I take my responsibility very seriously, even if you see it as some kind of game. If you want ops, you have to prove that you're worthy of it by being a regular, and being level headed like kraant, mdxi, transiit, etc.



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Level headed? Exactly. (3.75 / 4) (#55)
by farl on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:08:35 PM EST

Read your comment that you posted and evaluate it as if you did not write it. Then consider if your rant there was even close to level headed.

Likewise, de-opping someone just becuase you did not get to put your royal approval on it, while other ops on the channel (including rusty) thought it was ok, seems a bit childish to me.

I am a long time contributor to both k5 and #k5. What i tend to write and talk about is far from stable/normal/quiet, it seems that many people like my style of writing and talking and have judged that maybe i am pretty levelheaded, and that my arguments make sense (even if they dont personally agree with them). Likewise as far as being an op on a server, i have both op'd and run servers with over 10,000 users (including one that had 3,000 named accounts on Hotline), so i know a lot about how to run a server and behave on it. Your lack of confidence in me considering my vocalisations and activity on #k5 is i suppose what upsets me about this situation the most. I suppose I was not aware that #k5 was a dictatorship. I always thought it was a free/open forum.

Like you say you swear when you feel its necessary, i feel that i should stand up for what i believe in when necessary.


Farl
k5@sketchwork.com
www.sketchwork.com
[ Parent ]
Reasoned debate (4.50 / 2) (#60)
by aphrael on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:29:38 PM EST

Read your comment that you posted and evaluate it as if you did not write it. Then consider if your rant there was even close to level headed.

Both of the comments inoshiro posted which could be construed as ancestors to this message seemed perfectly level-headed to me.

What i tend to write and talk about is far from stable/normal/quiet, it seems that many people like my style of writing and talking and have judged that maybe i am pretty levelheaded, and that my arguments make sense (even if they dont personally agree with them)

Why are you taking this as being directed at you? Reading the article, and inoshiro's posts, I don't get that sense at all ... and from what i've seen of #k5 in the week or so i've been hanging out there, plus what i've seen here, doesn't suggest to me that you're part of the problem ... so chill out, dude. :)

[ Parent ]

What the hell? (4.33 / 3) (#67)
by Inoshiro on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:26:05 PM EST

I haven't personally considered you for oper status. Nor have you been reccomended to me. I always observe people for a period before making a judgement that they are fit for the responsibility of ops.

Since I hadn't gone through that process with you, I removed your access to chanserv. Once you have gone through the observation period, I'll be able to make a judgement call about how you'll react on IRC to IRC situations. Nothing more, nothing less.

I've had problems before with people "suddenly becoming ops," and the fallout of some of their actions. That's why I keep a tight reign on it. It's not because I hate you or wish you ill, it's because of the prerequesites everyone must face. Should I treat you any different than anyone else?

" Likewise, de-opping someone just becuase you did not get to put your royal approval on it, while other ops on the channel (including rusty) thought it was ok, seems a bit childish to me." Compare: " Likewise, firing someone just because you did not hire them, while other employees of your company (including the junior partner) thought it was ok, seems a bit childish to me." I'm the current person responsible for the IRC channel. Which means I'm responsible for using my judgement to decide on these matters.

Again: if you want to be an op, simply prove you're worthy by participating. People who participate nicely and/or are recommended all are evaluated.



--
[ イノシロ ]
[ Parent ]
Also (2.00 / 1) (#56)
by farl on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:13:37 PM EST

I suppose what bugs me is the lack of support other people show on #k5. While admittedly i did not stick around for too much longer of the declaration of the new #KKK5, its nice when other members stick together and voice their thoughts.

I suppose that this means that noone particularily agrees with me. Oh well. Sometimes you just have to stand up against what you think is wrong by yourself, even though the issue is much wider than that.


Farl
k5@sketchwork.com
www.sketchwork.com
[ Parent ]
yes, yes... (2.00 / 1) (#91)
by regeya on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:16:48 AM EST

and the Slashdot karma cap was put in place to punish exactly one person. And Lee Harvey Oswald shot John F. Kennedy.

[ yokelpunk | kuro5hin diary ]
[ Parent ]

Not all the same (4.33 / 6) (#52)
by Tatarigami on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:52:01 PM EST

Discussion of the mutilation of people to make a barrel full of body parts is digsusting. I would expect this from the manner-less creaps that make up 1/3rd of all teenage populations. These people, male and female, have no concepts of appropriateness, or choose to ignore them. They are immature rejects of society.

Doesn't that depend on the culture of the forum the discussion takes place in? It may be tasteless, but the original quote was a joke, not meant to be taken seriously. I'm active on another forum where a topic like this could come up in conversation without raising any eyebrows, and the average age of user there is late 40's. I don't consider myself to be mannerless, or a creep, or an immature reject of society. I wouldn't say that about any of the other users, either. We're just a bunch of people who enjoy discussion, and don't shy away from controversial topics.

I think the internet is becoming infected with a meme prevalent in the real world, which is that if it makes someone -- anyone -- uncomfortable, it shouldn't be said. Wrong, wrong, wrong!

I also think you're making the assumption that the only reason people have for appreciating the anonymity of the internet is because they can get away with gross lapses of courtesy. But on the other hand, it also allows people to say what they think without fear of (effective) censure or otracism for defying group consensus.



[ Parent ]
[OT] Cursing and velocitation (none / 0) (#79)
by fsh on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 09:59:36 PM EST

Inoshiro: Excellent point about overuse of cursing. When my father returned overseas from the Viet Nam war, he couldn't carry a civil conversation for weeks. Mom used to tell me some stories about Dad and her parents (who are *very* straightlaced - I got in trouble for saying 'durn' over there).
-fsh
[ Parent ]
Inequality is real (4.16 / 6) (#41)
by bjrubble on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:00:01 PM EST

While the article was a tad overzealous, this kind of blanket denial is totally unsupportable.

What other possible way could I judge you in a text-only medium except by your words?

This is a total cop-out -- yes, it's just words, but when you see someone it's "just" photons. Sure, I can write "any words I want" but if I'm honest those words will reflect my personal self, gender and race and all. And I've found that people are quicker to jump to conclusions or apply their stereotypes in a context where others appear only as disembodied text.

This implies that the "right" moral action would be to censor and remove these comments and/or people from #kuro5hin.

First of all, this implication is all yours. And even if we can't think of a way to solve the problem without trampling on rights, that doesn't mean we should simply ignore the problem.

Sexism is a sword that cuts both ways - in as much as social roles harm women, they harm men.

Bullshit. Men are somewhat constrained by gender-based social roles, but nowhere near the extent that women are. Your dissatisfaction with men's fashion doesn't balance out women who are raped and beaten and then accused of "inviting" it.

It is simply unfashionable presently in society for men to complain about these injustices

Seems to me it's eminently fashionable for men to complain about this. I hear it all the time. The fact that this comment is sitting at 4+ doesn't IMO help your point, either.

[ Parent ]
"cop out" ? (4.75 / 4) (#45)
by Signal 11 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:18:49 PM EST

This is a total cop-out -- yes, it's just words, but when you see someone it's "just" photons.

The method of communication makes all the difference in the world. Much of our interpersonal communication is non-verbal offline. tensing of your neck, nervously tapping a pen, looking distracted, etc, all contribute to the flow of the conversation. These things are all absent in a text-only medium.

And even if we can't think of a way to solve the problem without trampling on rights, that doesn't mean we should simply ignore the problem.

It's a judgement call. But rather than dismissing my argument with the words "total cop out" and voting me a "2" to try to hide my points is not going to further the goal of a rational discourse on this issue which will hopefully lead to a socially acceptable solution for everyone involved.


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.
[ Parent ]

No (3.50 / 2) (#98)
by bjrubble on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:32:52 AM EST

The method of communication makes all the difference in the world. Much of our interpersonal communication is non-verbal offline. tensing of your neck, nervously tapping a pen, looking distracted, etc, all contribute to the flow of the conversation. These things are all absent in a text-only medium.

So now bigotry comes from body language?

I agree, which is why I don't hang out on IRC -- text is far too little bandwidth to really communicate. But gender (along with most of the other qualities targeted by bigotry) is a crude physical fact. Unless I deliberately try to hide it, my gender will be obvious or at least guessable, even in a text-only medium.

It's a judgement call.

It's a judgement call that if a problem can't be satisfactorily solved, we'll pretend (insist, in fact) that it doesn't exist? Are you serious?

voting me a "2"

When did I do that?

[ Parent ]
Two points (3.00 / 1) (#144)
by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:31:33 PM EST

First of all, women *do* abuse men; mostly mentally, but also physically. Battered women syndrome exists and women do provoke men to batter them. These are scientific facts. There is abuse both ways but men are not allowed to blame women in our society because, whether you wish to agree or not, the US society is heavily women-dominated. That is why some of us decided to opt out of the land-mine-field that is dating these days. Men can't get a break.
Second, if a problem exists but no solution can be found, there isn't an awful lot to be gained by observing it. So, don't be surprised if people choose to ignore the problem while focusing on problems that *can* be solved.

I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
[ Parent ]
My dear Siggy... (1.00 / 1) (#108)
by ti dave on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:18:42 AM EST

I have to interject at this point and slay a meme you're trying to propagate.

"There is no way for me to know you are male, female, white, black, asian, or american online."

I assure you, it's quite possible to be Black AND Asian AND an American simultaneously.
These traits are NOT mutually exclusive.
Ask Tiger Woods.

cheers,

ti_dave
"If you dial," Iran said, eyes open and watching, "for greater venom, then I'll dial the same."

[ Parent ]
How do you reach this reading? (3.50 / 2) (#113)
by zakalwe on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 07:49:39 AM EST

"There is no way for me to know you are male, female, white, black, asian, or american online."

I assure you, it's quite possible to be Black AND Asian AND an American simultaneously. These traits are NOT mutually exclusive.

I can't see how you think that statement is contradicting what you claim. Not unless you think he's also claiming that one can't be "male AND white" also.

[ Parent ]
Here's How... (1.00 / 1) (#187)
by ti dave on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:47:04 PM EST

Parse Siggy's statement again.

Male>> Female
Clearly different.
That leads the reader to expect further differentiation in the phrases that follow.

Then, he lists 3 ethnic groups all separated by commas. OK, he grouped like items here.

However, Siggy then tacks "or american" on at the end, which lumps american with white, black (or) asian.

"American" is commonly referred to as a Nationality, though some would argue that it refers to inhabitants of that continent.
In either case, the use of "American" to describe an Ethnic group is incorrect, and not simply for the reason of "Political Correctness".

ti_dave
"If you dial," Iran said, eyes open and watching, "for greater venom, then I'll dial the same."

[ Parent ]
Ahem. (3.00 / 1) (#209)
by Signal 11 on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:55:40 PM EST

If you'd like to argue with semantics, that's fine. Male and female do not refer strictly to gender, but can also refer to gender roles. There are such things as masculine women, for example, as well as masculine guys. There can also be the absence of strict gender roles - people who take parts of each role and combine them into their own way. Stop thinking so laterally.

*rimshot*


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.
[ Parent ]

I can't believe ... (2.00 / 1) (#218)
by ti dave on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 04:58:53 AM EST

that I'm going to debate a 'bot, but here goes.

"Male and female do not refer strictly to gender, but can also refer to gender roles."

Point conceded.
Juxtaposed with:

"There are such things as masculine women, for example ..."

The use of "masculine" and "feminine" are probably a better choice to describe gender roles.
Oh, and your example of mix-n-match roles.

Besides, what IS "masculine" or "feminine"?
Kinda depends on the observer's cultural viewpoint, doesn't it?
That horse is dead dude.

Cheers,

ti_dave



"If you dial," Iran said, eyes open and watching, "for greater venom, then I'll dial the same."

[ Parent ]
A minor quibble (3.70 / 10) (#34)
by SIGFPE on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:52:23 PM EST

Women account for nearly three-fourths of the refugees in the world
Because men all over the world are more likely to be victims of violence they have a smaller chance of surviving to become refugees. Of course I've neglected to mention who is inflicting that violence...
SIGFPE
neglected to mention? (1.00 / 3) (#77)
by persimmon on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 09:36:21 PM EST

Do you mean "because men are killed more, women must be killing the men?" That's an egregious misuse of a piddly little bit of information.
--
It's funny because it's a blancmange!
[ Parent ]
It would have been... (4.50 / 2) (#99)
by Asperity on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:34:45 AM EST

But I don't think SIGFPE meant it that way. That last statement makes a lot more sense as an aside acknowledging a point you could (and did) make about the first statement than it does as an accusation...

[ Parent ]
Of course I'm not saying that! (4.00 / 1) (#177)
by SIGFPE on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:56:17 PM EST

Men are more likely to be both the inflicters and victims of violence.
SIGFPE
[ Parent ]
Your sample is a bit biased (3.50 / 8) (#36)
by skim123 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:53:56 PM EST

I would assume that if you went into a locker room filled with pubescent geek boys you'd probably hear the same banter. I assume the average IRC user is: male; teenaged; computer geek. Therefore, it doesn't really surprise me that you are hearing these comments in that scenario.

Money is in some respects like fire; it is a very excellent servant but a terrible master.
PT Barnum


You just hit the nail on the head. (3.28 / 7) (#46)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:19:19 PM EST

Why do the pubescent guys seem to think that they're in a locker room when they're on IRC?

That's the very heart of the problem. IRC isn't a middle-school locker room, it's a global chat network, where all types of people are interacting. The fact that pubescent males descide that they should act as if they're the only ones in the room, and everyone else can just kiss off and be offended, is the problem.


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
Two reasons why... (3.66 / 6) (#57)
by skim123 on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:17:33 PM EST

Why do the pubescent guys seem to think that they're in a locker room when they're on IRC

1. Because IRC, like a lockerroom, is primarily made up of those pubescent boys.

2. Because in IRC, unlike the real world, having everyone asking you to leave can't make you. For example, a smart ass may enter a room and piss everyone off in the real world, but he'll soon leave when everyone turns on him. Due to the anonymity in the Internet, no one feels that shame of having everyone look down on them/make disparaging comments/etc.

Money is in some respects like fire; it is a very excellent servant but a terrible master.
PT Barnum


[ Parent ]
Females and the Tech Culture. (3.70 / 10) (#39)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 05:56:32 PM EST

I think that a very important point is raised in this article, namely, hoe females are treated in the Tech Culture. This is important because it will greatly affect the way that technology is treated in the future.

The typical computer-savvy techocrat, and his juniors that occupy online cultures such as weblogs and IRC channels are notoriously ill-equipped in dealing with members of the opposite sex. This type of behavior is not only apparent in the types of conversations that go on in these forums, but in real life contact with these people as well. I remember going to a meeting of a student secular humanist group, and being appaled when one of the members refused to talk to a woman, because "women are in a conspiracy to bring men down, and they're evil" (actual, sincere quote).

That type of behavior is obviously an extreme case, but the fact that those types of feelings were allowed to brew inside of that man for so long (he was over 30) when his primary social conduit was the internet speaks volumes about the forum. Bigotry, when it is seen in such forums, is often ignored rather than confronted and rationally argued, or sometimes attacked with such pointless vitriol as to make the one expressing the bigoted viewpoint feel persecuted and, thusly righteously justified in his or her stance.

A prime factor in the allowance of this type of bigotedness is something that is being shown in this very discussion, the "It's not me" angle. Often, to escape the guilt that comes from having something one associates with being denouced for something like bigotry is the statement of one's personal stance on the issue, as an attempt to clear the name of the accused thing. This is a fallicy, as the feelings of the individuals associated with something can only provide so much insight into the nature of the forum itself. It is without a doubt that feminists and other equality-minded groups, use forums like IRC and web-logs. This doesn't mean that a typical group of male techies congregated in these forums are as unbiased as those other groups. While one person occupying the forum may be unbiased against other genders or races, that doesn't mean that none of the other members of the forum are. The fact that the members of the forum who are bigoted maintain that viewpoint over time and after much socialization in the forum places the blame on the forum itself, as the more enlightened members have neither the oppertunity or the desire to show the bigoted member the error of his or her ways.

Now, why is this so important? Because women are going to be the dominate sex in the coming years. Female college graduates already outnumber males, and the trend is continuing to rise. Too often a technically-inclined man will descide to take a high-paying job with little hope of advancement while his female peers will go to College and gain oppertunities in fields other than computer service and programming. This social enviornment almost guarentees that we will be seeing an increase in female managers and buisness professionals, who have both the best oppertunity for upward mobility and greater say over the work that the males who choose engineering fields do.

If the technically-minded male lacks the ability to properly socialize with members of the opposite sex, and an enviornment lax on bigotry is allowed to remain in the social enviornment that these males spend most of their time in, than I fear that we could see a great loss for those technically-minded males.

(Damn, that was interesting, an off-the-cuff, reply-to-an-article essay. I almost feel like Anne Marie.)


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
Most amusing typo... (none / 0) (#42)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 06:00:52 PM EST

That's how females, obviously not hoe females...
--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
Thank you... (5.00 / 1) (#81)
by theboz on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:09:11 PM EST

I was sitting here eating a nutrigrain bar that tried to visit my lungs when I was laughing so hard. At least I can see that noone has flamed you for it yet. Even though it was an accident, I find it very ironic and hilarious. Thanks.

Stuff.
[ Parent ]

That, dude, (5.00 / 2) (#105)
by pwhysall on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:11:40 AM EST

is one hell of a Freudian slip.
--
Peter
K5 Editors
I'm going to wager that the story keeps getting dumped because it is a steaming pile of badly formatted fool-meme.
CheeseBurgerBrown
[ Parent ]
Gotta play the game to win (4.33 / 3) (#70)
by RandomPeon on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:35:40 PM EST

Now, why is this so important? Because women are going to be the dominate sex in the coming years. Female college graduates already outnumber males, and the trend is continuing to rise. Too often a technically-inclined man will descide to take a high-paying job with little hope of advancement while his female peers will go to College and gain oppertunities in fields other than computer service and programming. This social enviornment almost guarentees that we will be seeing an increase in female managers and buisness professionals, who have both the best oppertunity for upward mobility and greater say over the work that the males who choose engineering fields do.

Actually, Salon just rebutted your argument today. Females now comprise a majority of college graduates, but the real wages of female college graduates are falling faster than their male counterparts. For reasons not worth analyzing here, women are more likely to choose relatively low-paying professions.

This social enviornment almost guarentees that we will be seeing an increase in female managers and buisness professionals, who have both the best oppertunity for upward mobility and greater say over the work that the males who choose engineering fields do.

This is actually quite bad. Sorry to tell you, but successful technology managers are people who understand what the hell their people do. Someone with an BS and work experience preceding their MBA tends to be much more succesful than someone who has no idea what's going on. Wired had a story with a while back about the "ignorant manager crisis". Companies are looking for technically sound management, not social butterflies. I also think you underestimate how many techies possess the right amount of social aptitude to be succesful leaders. Believe, an overly socially-inclined manager often spends time playing power politics and manipulating people. These people have an annoying tendency not to deliver.

The idea that women should stay clear of technology to get ahead is downright scary. You seem to want to ensure their opportunities for success are limited.

[ Parent ]
Did I say "no technical skills"? (4.00 / 4) (#75)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:58:54 PM EST

My comment wasn't saying that women will more likely have less understanding of technology than males, I was simply saying that they are more likely to graduate college.

Also, I know several people who skipped college (or failed out) and choose to take tech jobs. I don't know a single one of them who is even planning on going back to school. This is probably because of the current tech boom, but even when that's over, you have to ask if these guys will be able to make it back to school when their market value as techies finds its (surely) lower equilibrium.

In other words, you have more women with Degrees and tech experience, and more men with tech experience but no degree. Which do you think a corporation will be more likely to hire, or to promote to management?

Also, the male techie's lack of desire for a degree is only a supplement to the problem. What's really wrong is that you have an entire generation of men who are spending their time socializing in these electronic enviornments, which this article (and countless others) show is a mysoginistic, immature place where emotional and social growth are stunted, and members of the opposite sex are chased away instead of included.


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
22% women (none / 0) (#248)
by B'voYpenburg on Thu Mar 08, 2001 at 10:04:15 AM EST

>Female college graduates already outnumber males, and the trend is continuing to rise.

That may be true where you come from, but in my Technical University there are only 22% women. Yes, that is right, 22%. They don't even follow hardcore EE, no they stick to Industrial Design and Architecture. In my EE-year, only 5 out of 150 were women. I wish that were different, I really do. With no females around you social skills actually degrade to that of a newborn. But hey, I can't change this can I?

[ Parent ]
So what you're saying is, (3.94 / 19) (#58)
by trhurler on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:20:44 PM EST

I was tempted to give a really brutal reply, but I toned it down a lot. Here's a quote from People vs Larry Flynt that will illustrate how I really feel on the subject:

Some employee: "Some things are sacred!"
Larry Flynt: "You're FIRED!"

Sorry, but if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. I'm mocked, ridiculed, belittled, insulted, ragged on, and every other term you can think of for my views, my social status, and virtually everything else about me on a daily basis, here and elsewhere, and somehow, I never end up offended. Why? Because it doesn't matter. Not at all. Not even a little bit. If you don't want people to know, then don't tell them, and if you don't care, then stick to that claim - DON'T CARE. All this "Oh, I don't mind if they know, but they'd better not have anything to say about it" crap is so much whiny loser weakness.

We can see that my perspective is borne out in society, because there are some women who seem immune to the discrimination you allege is all-pervasive. You know the ones. They're smiling, they're well adjusted, they're happy, they're well paid for doing a job they enjoy, they have nice things, they have the best guys, and nothing can touch them. You know why? Because THEY DON'T CARE. They know the world has shitty people in it. The same applies to anyone - if you let people get to you, they will, and if you blow them off and go on having fun, then all of a sudden, they're just a bunch of twerps making fools of themselves. You are shit on because you LET people shit on you. It wouldn't matter if you were a rich white guy - people would STILL shit on you, because by your meekness, you beg for it. Cut that crap out, grow a backbone and a hide, dish some out when you have to, and you'll be a lot happier.

By the way, the barrel full of vaginas thing was actually pretty damned funny. A thing need not be politically correct to be intensely amusing, nor need it be appropriate to ever actually DO that thing. Of course, unless you're part of that tiny minority that finds EVERYTHING offensive, you already knew this, but going on a holy crusade requires not admitting it...

I'm not totally unsympathetic, but the solution is to fix your attitude, because you aren't going to eliminate meanness and crude jokes. They're on the rise, and that's life.

In short, as the inimitable Dennis Leary says, "Life sucks. Get a fucking helmet."

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

Weak. (3.66 / 6) (#65)
by DeadBaby on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:53:55 PM EST

I'm all for having a thick skin but "get a helmet" is a cop-out answer to a question like this. Maybe I want to come to your home and scream filthy names are your daughter/mother/sister/wife and you could tell her to "Get a helmet" but I doubt you would.

You'd probably be far more interested in causing my nose to become broken. You shouldn't give every teenager who's downloaded one too many HOT_LESBO_TEENS.AVI get away with being a jackass simply because it doesn't effect you directly.

If there was social pressure for them to act like adults maybe they'd grow up.

"Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity -- in all this vastness -- there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us." - Carl Sagan
[ Parent ]
Weak is right... (4.33 / 3) (#68)
by trhurler on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:30:53 PM EST

Maybe I want to come to your home and scream filthy names are your daughter/mother/sister/wife and you could tell her to "Get a helmet" but I doubt you would.
As long as you weren't trespassing, I'd ignore you. If your racket kept me from sleeping, I'd probably call the cops for a disturbing the peace violation. Otherwise, I figure I'm better off letting you make a fool of yourself. Trespass, and I'll call the cops for that.
If there was social pressure for them to act like adults maybe they'd grow up.
The ones who are going to grow up will do it, because there IS social pressure on them and also because they're - get this - growing up. Kids can be mean. They don't magically gain years of maturity by way of being screamed at, pressured, or otherwise punished. That's just a delusion held by people who don't remember being a kid as well as they think they do.

What's weak is letting the attitudes of a bunch of punk kids matter so much in your life that you actually give a rat's ass.

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
Difference btwn occasional shit & culture of shit. (4.00 / 4) (#69)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:31:36 PM EST

I have to agree with Deadbaby. This isn't about trying to stamp out all cases of things that some people find appropriate. This is about finding a cultural standard in these communities that we're currently building that isn't hateful or prejudiced against any group of people.

Yes, shit happens, but that doesn't mean that you have to wallow in it.


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
Ah, but... (4.50 / 4) (#71)
by trhurler on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:37:39 PM EST

You are now confusing "community" with "personal attitudes." A community is nothing more than the sum of its parts. If you have a community made up mostly of 15 year olds, then that community is going to pretty much ACT like 15 year olds, and there is nothing anyone can do to change that fact. Want a community of mature, intelligent people? Don't let anyone else in. There's no other way to build it. This isn't that community.

By the way, I'll reiterate a point I made that you seem to have either forgotten or ignored: even crudity can be funny, and even to the targets of the crudity. It is all in knowing that it doesn't really matter. For instance, do you think whomever was talking about mutilating genitals really meant it? Do you suppose he really has a barrel of human vaginas in his basement? Somehow, I'm guessing not. So, either you find it funny(I did,) or you don't, but it doesn't matter. There are important issues in life, and this is not one of them.

--
'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

[ Parent ]
It's all about leadership. (4.00 / 3) (#72)
by Electric Angst on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 08:52:05 PM EST

I agree, anything can be funny. It takes a real talent to actually make it funny, though, and too often people use this excuse to throw off whatever tasteless joke they want.

Now, about community standards and teenagers, I believe that the problem isn't that the group is made up of immature young males, but that everyone puts up with the immature young males. I mean, honestly, when's the last time you heard someone rebutt a sexist or racist comment on IRC, or the weblogs you frequent? How often will people say "hey, that's not very smart" or "that's really innapropriate".

What we need is people to take a stand, for those that are mature and socially well adjusted to stand up for what they believe in, and not allow the kind of harassment that exists go unanswered. Even if a room os full or immature fifteen year olds, a few mature people taking a stand can change the community standards, and help the immature members to grow up.


--
"Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
[ Parent ]
Mmmkay... (2.33 / 3) (#104)
by spcmanspiff on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:52:53 AM EST

My god, I think my Personal Cynism Index just rose 10% after reading that. In order to restore any chance of optimism, I'll have to go through this thing piece by piece...

  • Sorry, but if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    I can't stand the 'heat' of, say, human rights abuses in China even though I'm not in any way abused by China, and I'm certainly justified in checking tags on things I buy, writing letters to my representative in Congress recommending that we re-think trade agreements, etc. You seem to be implying that since I'm not 'in the kitchen' I should shut my mouth and move along. Bullshit, and it applies equally to gender discrimination or anything else.

  • We can see that my perspective is borne out in society, because there are some women who seem immune to the discrimination you allege is all-pervasive. You know the ones. They're smiling, they're well adjusted, they're happy, they're well paid for doing a job they enjoy, they have nice things, they have the best guys, and nothing can touch them.

    My reaction here is to say that they are the exception rather than the rule -- and I'm not just talking about women: Success as you describe it here will always be destined for the few. There are far more stultifying jobs out there than good ones, only so many 'best' guys/girls, and only so many things you can buy... Since the cards are stacked against women, it's no surprise that fewer of them get a share in the limited amount of success that goes around these days.

  • The same applies to anyone - if you let people get to you, they will, and if you blow them off and go on having fun, then all of a sudden, they're just a bunch of twerps making fools of themselves.

    You seem to be confusing a healthy self-esteem with a thick skin. There is a world of difference.

  • You are shit on because you LET people shit on you.

    Your husband beats you because you LET him beat you. Fuck that. The shitee(?) has done absolutely nothing wrong, while the shitter is at the very least being an asshole. (Pun not intended -- honest).

  • By the way, the barrel full of vaginas thing was actually pretty damned funny.

    FWIW, I agree with you (though it was really only sorta funny, not damn funny), but I also recognize the difference between an irrevent joke and a continious, pervasive pattern of jokes targeted at a specific kind of person.

  • You aren't going to eliminate meanness and crude jokes (emphasis mine)

    Maybe we should think about trying?

  • They're on the rise, and that's life.

    Um, maybe someone should look into why they're on the rise? Maybe even think about doing something about it? Change personal habits, become an advocate for civility, or admonish jerks when they act up? Something like that?

    Oh, wait. Life is something that happens to us; we have no real control over it anyway, right?


    [ Parent ]
  • Er... (4.00 / 2) (#129)
    by trhurler on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:32:31 AM EST

    I can't stand the 'heat' of, say, human rights abuses in China
    You just compared being unkind to torture, murder, theft, and the occasional rape. What the hell is wrong with you?
    You seem to be implying that since I'm not 'in the kitchen' I should shut my mouth and move along.
    Apparently, you can't understand figurative language. Therefore, I will be literal about this: if you can't handle the fact that people on the kuro5hin irc channel can be cruel on occasion, then DON'T JOIN THE CHANNEL! It isn't as though you have a right to do anything you want, go anywhere you want, and never be offended. That's life.
    My reaction here is to say that they are the exception rather than the rule
    I know more happy and successful women than men. Men are often considered successful by others, but rarely by themselves, and I know very few happy men. Strangely enough, most of the happy people I know love crude jokes and being generally hard on each other - as a form of mutual entertainment.
    You seem to be confusing a healthy self-esteem with a thick skin.
    They're both quite useful, and they're more closely related than you probably think, but I don't even get into self esteem discussions if I can help it, because people seem to think their self esteem is inherently based on the way others treat them and on the degree of their success in life, and I regard that as absurd. I certainly had a cast iron ego long before I was happy, well treated, or successful. That's partly WHY I became all those things.
    Your husband beats you because you LET him beat you.
    While this in no way justifies wife beating, it is often true that the wife lets the husband beat her. Either she thinks she can change him, or she thinks she needs to stay "for the kids," or she is afraid to leave because she's convinced he'll track her down. Women who DO leave usually end up with much better lives. All that said, once again, you're comparing violence to unkindness. This is absurd.
    continious, pervasive pattern of jokes targeted at a specific kind of person.
    You should have no problem with me, then. I target my continuous, pervasive pattern of jokes at a specific kind of person - I believe the technical term is homo sapiens!
    Maybe we should think about trying?
    You do that, Atlas. Meanwhile, I'll be busy being happy and successful and having a good time with other happy successful people who know that opinions are like assholes.
    maybe someone should look into why they're on the rise?
    Because they're funny. Do I get a Nobel prize now?
    admonish jerks when they act up
    You get right on that. Good luck!
    Life is something that happens to us; we have no real control over it anyway, right?
    The fact that I do not believe this is why I don't overreact to cruel jokes. You do not HAVE to get upset about them. Nobody does. You have control over yourself. You do not have control over others. Making this distinction carefully and clearly may well improve your thinking a great deal.

    --
    'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

    [ Parent ]
    Sort of ... (3.50 / 2) (#141)
    by spcmanspiff on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:19:22 PM EST

    You're mostly correct, if a bit angry and defensive, as long as we're talking about a mean joke.

    But I'm not, and the article was not about a joke or two: They were used as examples of a larger problem -- 'gender inequality on the internet,' to wit, or even gender inequality as a whole.

    I'm comparing violence to unkindness because, and welcome to the real world, the two are so closely tied together. Actual violence against women is just a symptom of a society that continuously encourages discrimination against women. So is the fact that, if you can tell me one joke that denigrates a straight guy, I can tell you 20 that zing women. The joke is not the problem; the pattern of jokes is. Why? Becasue it's not just a pattern of jokes, it is a pattern of discrimination and violence as well. Jokes are part of that.

    Now, I'm coming off a bit more liberal-sounding than I actually am. I'm not advocating poltical correctness, and certainly not government-mandated political correctness. They're crappy solutions and cause more problems without really solving anything. What I am saying is that by changing your own attitudes and paying more attention to your behavior, and encouraging others to do the same, brings change and a solution to the problem, rather than a "that's life" sort of reaction you enjoy so much.

    Anyway, I'm rambling, and I don't really think I can convince you of anything. You seem to be too busy having fun with other happy and successful people., not to mention rationalizing the moral shortcomings of a life that consists entirely of that sort of fun.

    [ Parent ]
    Ah! (4.00 / 1) (#145)
    by trhurler on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:36:27 PM EST

    You're mostly correct, if a bit angry and defensive,
    To date, nobody has seen me angry on k5. Ever. :)
    gender inequality on the internet
    Which, insofar as I can tell, consists of a lot of crude jokes.
    I'm comparing violence to unkindness because, and welcome to the real world, the two are so closely tied together.
    Correction. The two CAN be closely tied together. The problem is, what you call unkindness, others call humor, and sometimes the "victims" find it funny too.
    a society that continuously encourages discrimination against women.
    I admit, I'm not familiar with that society. I know one that discriminates against whiny liberal pains in the ass who are convinced they're being discriminated against, but that's not really gender specific.
    the moral shortcomings of a life that consists entirely of that sort of fun.
    An interesting condemnation, all things considered. First of all, what moral standard do you hold, and what is the purpose of having it? Secondly, what makes you think my life consists entirely of things I want to do, much less things that are fun? And finally, even if you were right, what makes you think I'd have any need to rationalize? Unlike most people, I feel no guilt I have not specifically earned. Certainly none merely for being successful and happy.

    --
    'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

    [ Parent ]
    Okay. (more re:s, in other words) (4.00 / 2) (#210)
    by spcmanspiff on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 12:03:55 AM EST

    To date, nobody has seen me angry on k5. Ever. :)

    Well, maybe you're not angry, maybe you are. I was talking about your rhetoric, which is highly antagonistic at the very least. (RE: 'whiny liberal pains in the ass')

    I admit, I'm not familiar with that society.

    Okay, I see a few possibilities here:
    One: You do not believe that our current society has any gender bias whatsoever.
    Two: You don't think that a pattern of degrading jokes has any bearing to gender bias, assuming you realize it exists.

    If either of those is what you really think, well, I suppose I can argue my fingers limp trying to convince you to open your eyes a bit, but it seems you've already made your decision on that score.

    First of all, what moral standard do you hold, and what is the purpose of having it?

    Big question. I can't really tackle the first part without a long blather. Short, horribly incomplete version: living fully in a Sartre sort of way, personal growth, and altruism in a categorical imperative sort of way. Second part: The purpose of holding a moral standard is to have a purpose. What's the point of having a life if you can't do right by it?

    Secondly, what makes you think my life consists entirely of things I want to do, much less things that are fun?

    What I read into your original statement wasn't that your life consisted entirely of having fun -- it was that having fun with successful was what you valued in your life. I certainly enjoy my fun, but it's not top on my list of values. Forgive me if I misinterpreted what you originally said, btw.

    Unlike most people, I feel no guilt I have not specifically earned.

    This is getting way OT, but 'most people' feel guilt as a result of their realization that they have some individual responsibility towards society as a whole -- 'society' is nothing more than a bunch of individuals banding together and each individual choice has repurcussions throughout. I would say that they have an unhealthy and illogical reaction to this responsibility, but you seem to be saying that there is no responsibility at all. And that is what I would consider a moral shortcoming.

    Anyway, 'nuff said.

    [ Parent ]
    Hmm (none / 0) (#237)
    by trhurler on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 11:48:15 AM EST

    If either of those is what you really think,
    I think there are individuals who discriminate. I think most people do not, to any significant degree. I think, most of all, that the women who worry about themselves instead of what others THINK of them have nothing to fear from such idiots.
    and altruism in a categorical imperative sort of way
    Well then, we aren't going to agree. I never have been or will be an altruist in any way, shape, or form. In particular, I regard the categorical imperative to be a ridiculous generalization - it is correct under limited circumstances, and the rest of the time, it is just a cop out for a lack of actual reasoning on a topic.
    The purpose of holding a moral standard is to have a purpose.
    My purpose for having a moral standard is to have a guide to life; I was not born knowing how to live as a man, but that is what I have to do. In any case, adopting a morality merely to have a purpose begs the question: without a morality, why would you even desire to have such a purpose?
    What's the point of having a life if you can't do right by it?
    This begs the question; 'right' depends on what moral code you adopt. What you consider right, I am liable to consider disreputable and/or criminal, and much of what I consider to be right, you would probably think disreputable, and a small part of it perhaps criminal as well.
    This is getting way OT, but 'most people' feel guilt as a result of their realization that they have some individual responsibility towards society as a whole
    I and most of my family put far more into 'society' than we get back from it. Before I die, I'll have put millions more in than I've ever benefitted or ever will. I am thoroughly uninterested in any claim that I owe anything more. Whatever benefits I derive from life, I earn; "society" at large cannot say the same of the time and money it takes from me without my consent. The distinction here, between you and me, is that you claim to be an altruist; I am a certain sort of what philosophers call an ethical egoist, although much of what passes under that label does not really apply to me, just as, in all likelihood, much of what people might associate with altruism may or may not apply to you.

    --
    'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

    [ Parent ]
    Getting all philosophical now (none / 0) (#243)
    by spcmanspiff on Tue Mar 06, 2001 at 02:41:22 PM EST

    I and most of my family put far more into 'society' than we get back from it. Before I die, I'll have put millions more in than I've ever benefitted or ever will. I am thoroughly uninterested in any claim that I owe anything more. Whatever benefits I derive from life, I earn; "society" at large cannot say the same of the time and money it takes from me without my consent.

    You've got blinders on. I wasn't talking about money, time or the tax-man. 'Society' is an abstraction, a useful one, but it's still just a vague conception of the universe of other people we coexist with.

    Individual responsibility towards society as a whole comes from the recognition that each person's actions affect others -- immediate neighbors, yes, but also they impart a direction and form to 'society'. You seem, reasonably, to be saying that morality & ethics are learned. Where from? Did you learn only from your parents? Only from your peers? Only from the television?

    A corollary to this: Where does moral lapse come from? Is it from a weakness present in an individual from birth? From his/her parent's failure? From too much TV? From hanging around with the wrong people? Unless you're a believer in original sin, or that human instincts are inherently amoral, it follows that moral lapse is a learned behavior as well.

    Now, wandering back on topic, you say that there are individuals who discriminate. Damn straight, and I'm sure we can agree that this sort of discrimination is amoral. So. Where is it learned from?

    Can you honestly say that repeated, unbalanced telling of jokes that consistently degrade one segment of the population doesn't have anything to do with these individual tendendencies to discriminate? Or, getting back to the violence connection a few posts ago, they have nothing to do with rape or wife-battering?

    I'm sure you can see why I like the categorical imperative. I agree with you, though, that it is an oversimplification. How much does my individual choice to, say, smoke weed apply to someone across the country's decision to snort cocaine? The categorical imperative doesn't apply too much there. If I do it in front of my kid, and she overdoses thirteen years later, did my example have any bearing on her later behavior? What if it was only three years later? Obviously, the moral responsibilities are complicated in these situations -- and in everyday life, as well.

    Oversimplification or not, the categorical imperative is a useful way to start looking at the repurcussions of one's actions in the larger context of not only your individual neighbors, but the 'society' that blankets us all.

    In other words, you're missing the forest for the trees. Sure, each time discrimination occurs is is perpetuated by an individual, and they bear moral responsibility for it. Their discrimination, however, is made possible only by a social environment that taught it to them, and each of us has a hand in its shaping.

    (pheew!)



    [ Parent ]
    Thing is though... (4.00 / 1) (#114)
    by slaytanic killer on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:20:24 AM EST

    The article seems to be about maximizing the signal-to-noise ratio. In particular, gender-related noise.

    I don't want the only information that reaches my eyes to come from hardened people who are willing to fight through ridicule so they can speak their minds.

    [ Parent ]
    Avoid IRC (3.00 / 1) (#133)
    by leviathan on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:51:17 AM EST

    You may have noticed that my nick wasn't exactly designed to gift readers my gender. I chose it when I was still getting a feel for this forum and how it worked. However, weblogs ar generally not too much of a problem - provided you do have a thick skin. The problem is services like IRC. On a weblog, you can ignore comments, rebut them, focus on constructive conversation and so on. On a chat system, s/n drops too low very quickly due to the fact that things you do want to respond to can scroll out of context quickly. There's only one weblog I know of where the s/n is too low to be really useful, yet there are thousands of IRC channels and even some newsgroups (even with killfiles) like that.

    I guess there are facilities on IRC as there are elsewhere to selectively choose your discussion group, but I've never bothered to hang around for long enough to try. Most of the chat forums I frequent generally don't need it. They tend to be ones where openness is embedded in the system (very much unlike IRC) - there tend to be facilities for declaring your a/s/l and often your sexual leanings. That tends to mean that if your average white male does get uppity, you can call on your teammates when things get ugly ;) These forums tend to be female/gay/whatever friendly simply because of the mechanisms in place. Often there's a problem in IRC (especially if I use a nick like this) where people assume everyone else is an average white male with a mental age of 12 like them.

    I have to admit, I enjoy taking the piss as much as the next dude, but I generally do it to people I know and are present - not behind their backs, and not to entire groups of people I decide to declare as 'other'. The barrel-full joke is odd here, because it is taking the piss out of someone present. I think that's a different problem to the other (young girls) quote, which is targetted at females as 'other'. I'm don't see a great problem in the former, as it's quite easy to respond with 'You're sick' and deal with it because you're not responding as the recipient of an attack.

    Ramble over. Thank you for your attention.

    --
    I wish everyone was peaceful. Then I could take over the planet with a butter knife.
    - Dogbert
    [ Parent ]

    Adult Material (3.23 / 21) (#64)
    by DeadBaby on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 07:47:42 PM EST

    Well it shouldn't be too shocking to anyone. Most of these kids probably spend half their day downloading porn and the other half making use of it.

    Do any of you females understand that there are people who will sit on the internet and download pictures of a specific female "pop star" for hours? That have collections hundreds of MB big of them? You should probably consider yourselves lucky they don't hunt you down and spy on you. A healthy sex drive is one thing, sexual sickness is another.

    It's very clear to me that adult material on the Internet has helped contribute greatly to the overall objectification of females. It's gotten to a point where there will be some very negative long term effects for these kids. Most of these kids have probably had access to hard core (and often violent) adult material since they were in their early teens. There is no such thing to them as a respectable, intelligent, and polite women. Only a porn star on her knees. It seems that's the only way they know how to treat women.

    You'd expect more from people (ie, geeks) that pride themselves on being intelligent. I've always found the overall attachment to adult material very pathetic and sad.

    The unknowing female IRC user who happens to stroll into a chat room with a nick that suggests she is female is a huge target. The only advice I can give is... Stop hanging out with people who act like children. There are many people of various ages who treat people with respect. You simply can't stop a bunch of sex obsessed children from acting like themselves.









    "Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity -- in all this vastness -- there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us." - Carl Sagan
    Why are you so afraid of porn? (5.00 / 2) (#215)
    by Miniluv on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 03:02:06 AM EST

    It's very clear to me that adult material on the Internet has helped contribute greatly to the overall objectification of females
    Porn is often consumed by those who view women as objects, we all know this. That doesn't show any sort of causal relationship, yet you're more than willing to go beyond implication and state one.

    Most of these kids have probably had access to hard core (and often violent) adult material since they were in their early teens
    Hardcore? Meaning the holy cock and cunt are shown? Or do you mean hardcore as in kinky? Does violent equal BDSM? Or does it mean simulated rape? Why don't we define our terms a little before we slander the entire adult industry with such incredibly loaded words.

    You'd expect more from people (ie, geeks) that pride themselves on being intelligent. I've always found the overall attachment to adult material very pathetic and sad.
    Since when does intelligence equal a lack of sex drive? Why would smart people disdain pornography? Perhaps you feel Larry Flynt is a moron, because he's a pornographer? Is Hugh Hefner a dimwit because he invented the skinmag in modern America?

    Do any of you females understand that there are people who will sit on the internet and download pictures of a specific female "pop star" for hours?
    Were you aware that there are females that do the same? Some of them even of female popstars because they're horrendously deviant?! This is a truly shocking trend, I know, and I'm sure you don't have enough time to stay right on top of all the things people will do to commit atrocious sins of lasciviousness, but be warned, its out there.

    You should probably consider yourselves lucky they don't hunt you down and spy on you. A healthy sex drive is one thing, sexual sickness is another.
    Gee thanks Freud, did this prognosis come before or after you proclaimed Cocaine a miracle drug? Why should anyone stalk any random IRC user without provocation? The anonymity of the Internet makes that exceedingly difficult. And who are you to judge the difference between a healthy sex drive and sexual sickness? Where did you get your degree, and how many sessions have we had together?

    "Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
    [ Parent ]
    A Solution (4.12 / 8) (#78)
    by kraant on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 09:40:20 PM EST

    I'm not too sure how much of a problem this is... As an op I've always made a point of kicking the offenders if I think they're getting too out of line. I'm fairly tolerant since the general tone of #kuro5hin is more misanthropist than misogynist.

    But if there is as much of a problem as is implied by this article and the resulting conversation then there is a fairly simple solution. Make a female an Op on #kuro5hin... 'cos you either respect the Ops or you get kickbanned... Simple as that.

    To paraphrase Pitr "God?... Op?... What is the Difference?"


    --
    "kraant, open source guru" -- tumeric
    Never In Our Names...
    not a good idea (4.00 / 2) (#106)
    by Delirium on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:16:19 AM EST

    IMHO that's not how a channel should be run. Kickbans should be reserved for abuse of the system (flooding, etc.). People who you just dislike or disagree with you can /ignore rather than banning.

    [ Parent ]
    It can be both (none / 0) (#121)
    by Defect on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 10:01:20 AM EST

    Ops can either guide the channel to what they think it should be, or they can just prevent it from being abused. The main issue is that which routes the ops are going to take needs to be out in the open from the very start, and it needs to be consistent. An op can't kb someone who they thought was offensive, and then laugh with another over a very similar issue.

    Rules everywhere need to be clearly stated and consistently enforced. I'm not saying irc channels need to have gestapo constantly monitoring lines of text, but in general. If one user is pissing everyone else off, then kick him for the sake of the rest of the users. It's a lot easier to get rid of one person than to have everyone /ignore the bugger.
    defect - jso - joseth || a link
    [ Parent ]
    Americans maybe worse than some others..... (3.75 / 4) (#82)
    by Blarney on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:10:18 PM EST

    I don't have too many data points to go on here, but a lot of my classmates are from the Republic of China, a.k.a. Taiwan, and most of them seem to love telnetting to bulletin boards back home in .tw, even the female ones. It might not be as much of a male-dominated activity there as IRC seems to be here.

    Beautiful looking boards, too ..... Big5 characters with animated ANSI color codez....

    If only I could read the language!

    Good article, but... (4.11 / 9) (#83)
    by ODiV on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:44:49 PM EST

    No, I'm not going to trash it or anything, I think it's a good article. I just wanted to point out that for some #kuro5hin-ers this is probably a bit of a shock.

    Some of us probably had no idea that the women in the channel felt this way. Was it ever brought up in the channel? Has someone ever said, "Hey, knock it off"? I'm not there 24/7 and I haven't seen anything like that. I have seen some jokes based around gender though.

    I'm not saying it's not cool that you're bringing it up here at this time. I'm just saying that if no one tells a person that their behaviour is unacceptable, why would they change it? If the atmosphere in #k5 is rampant with this stuff, how come no one brought it up before it got this bad?

    Anyway, that's pretty much it from me. While I don't think I've gotten out of line like this in #k5, I could be wrong. I suppose I'll know in the future (or at least that's the plan). Maybe I'm expecting too much that people who feel offended by a comment react right away. I think that's how I've reacted in the past, either commented or forgotten it. But then I haven't been a 'target' either.


    --
    [ odiv.net ]
    Yes, we have (5.00 / 6) (#93)
    by ocelot on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:40:17 AM EST

    Yes, we do speak up, at least some of the time, when we don't feel comfortable. We're generally told something like, "We're just joking. You're taking it too seriously", argued with, or otherwise made to feel like we're in the wrong for feeling upset about it. And when you're told over and over again that your feelings don't matter, you eventually stop bothering, and stop participating or leave.

    I'm sure miniluv and some others can testify to the fact that I frequently speak up and say "Hey, not all females are like that" and other similar things. And I know that other females have said similar things. Heck, look at the log included in the article. A female user speaks up and says "That's not true" and is essentially told that she is wrong.

    It simply doesn't change anything.

    Is it partially our fault for not being louder in our protests? Possibly. But how much do we have to say to get it across?

    Consider this post an escalation in our efforts to be heard.

    [ Parent ]

    Being heard is good (none / 0) (#102)
    by Miniluv on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:39:10 AM EST

    Yes, we do speak up, at least some of the time, when we don't feel comfortable
    Bully for you, honestly. Everyone ought to speak up when they don't like what they see, maybe the world might get better. Just because you don't like it does not mean we shouldn't say it though. The world is not all about offending the lowest number of people possible, and if you expect IRC to not reflect life you're sadly mistaken.

    I'm sure miniluv and some others can testify to the fact that I frequently speak up and say "Hey, not all females are like that" and other similar things
    Yes, you do. We often argue about the applicability of a specific comment, but I don't remember trying to cram down your throat the idea that all women are inherently anything other than the proud owners of breasts, a vagina, and a different body chemistry than men.

    The assumption that is being made in this story is that we're trying to be offensive, that we don't want you around, and that OWE you time on IRC without being offended. That's a bogus assumption, nothing in life is handed to you on a silver platter, and no, it shouldn't be changed.

    "Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
    [ Parent ]

    assumptions (none / 0) (#109)
    by ocelot on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:29:36 AM EST

    Yes, you do. We often argue about the applicability of a specific comment, but I don't remember trying to cram down your throat the idea that all women are inherently anything other than the proud owners of breasts, a vagina, and a different body chemistry than men.

    Sorry if I implied otherwise. I mentioned you specifically because I knew we'd crossed paths in the past, not because you're the worst offender or anything lke that. It's actually honestly just chance most of the time - I'll flip back to the screen after not looking at it for hours, and you'll have just said something that I can't resist responding to :)

    The assumption that is being made in this story is that we're trying to be offensive, that we don't want you around, and that OWE you time on IRC without being offended. That's a bogus assumption, nothing in life is handed to you on a silver platter, and no, it shouldn't be changed.

    Is that the assumption being made in the story? It isn't how I read it. I know that, for the most part, people aren't trying to be intentionally hurtful. The point of the story is to point out that it *does* hurt us, which is something that many people don't seem to realize.

    I'm also not assuming that you don't want us around. In fact, I'm assuming the opposite. However, this is from a logical standpoint. From an emotional standpoint, comments such as the ones mentioned in the article and the ones I've mentioned in other comments give the impression that as females we are unwanted and our feelings don't matter. I'm sure this is not an intentional message. But the point is that this is the message we are receiving, whether you intend to send it or not.

    Do I think that anyone owes me time on IRC without being offended? No. But I do think that the channel would benefit from being more hospitable to females. If the channel as a whole decides otherwise, either by a vote or through their actions, I'm not going to try to force the issue. I'll either deal or leave.

    And I fail to see how asking for some respect and consideration for our feelings is expecting life to be handed to us on a silver platter. Especially when you say before that it's good for people to speak out when they see something they don't like.

    [ Parent ]

    quick retort (none / 0) (#178)
    by Miniluv on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:58:16 PM EST

    The bulk of your comment makes perfect sense to me, and believe me I didn't feel picked on for being mentioned by name. I've always gotten the impression that your little jibes at me in channel were mostly humorous, as they are usually in response to absolutely ludicrous statements of mine when I'm off on a rhetorical jaunt.

    I'm also not assuming that you don't want us around. In fact, I'm assuming the opposite. However, this is from a logical standpoint. From an emotional standpoint, comments such as the ones mentioned in the article and the ones I've mentioned in other comments give the impression that as females we are unwanted and our feelings don't matter.
    I guess I just have a problem with people tossing around the statement, "You make it seem like my feelings don't matter." without giving any real sort of evidence. I'll be brutally honest and say that 90% of the people in #kuro5hin don't matter one little bit to me, and 80% of the people I know offline don't matter either. So I treat IRC slightly worse than real life, where I give less than .5 shits about what people think or feel unless they're one of the privileged elite who does matter. If I'm not intentionally trying to give offense, how am I supposed to keep track of what you're feeling? If you do say something and I say "Sorry, I didn't mean it that way" what else am I supposed to do?

    In my mind it boils down to the fact that people do a lot of bitching and no suggesting when it comes to solving this problem. Because of that I've moved it from issue to non-issue in my mind, since if it was that important you'd have some sort of suggestion.

    "Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
    [ Parent ]

    quick retort to a quick retort (none / 0) (#228)
    by ocelot on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 12:59:23 AM EST

    I've always gotten the impression that your little jibes at me in channel were mostly humorous, as they are usually in response to absolutely ludicrous statements of mine when I'm off on a rhetorical jaunt.

    Well, more argumentative than humerous. In any case, yes, they aren't entirely serious.

    Here's my suggestions:

    If someone indicates that they are upset by a conversation, drop it. Don't make them feel like they're wrong for being upset about it.

    If you think someone may be upset by the conversation, but isn't comfortable saying anything about it, ask them. If they are being made to feel uncomfortable, ask people to cut it out.

    I've noticed on IRC (and here I'm not referring to #k5 in particular, I'm thinking more of another channel, really) that people tend to purposefully act as offensivly as they possibly can, just for the heck of it. Try to keep the offensiveness general, rather than aimed towards a specific person/group.

    Anyway, I'm sure I could think of more, but this is already rather un-quick for a quick retort.

    [ Parent ]

    life is hell (2.33 / 6) (#85)
    by jokulhaups on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:50:32 PM EST

    welcome to the real world. even the internet is subject to being dominated by the inane. i've heard far worse things, and the problems are mostly because of the relative security that the internet offers. there is no real consequence for acting like an asshole on the internet, except for maybe getting a ceremonial ban on a channel here or there.

    let's face it, discrimination is here to stay with the way things are. the 'net is just another bastion for people like kids, who just love to cause dissent wherever they can. i can't say that it's something i'm thrilled about, but there is no easy solution. until kids can be taught things at the right age about decency, and until people don't take their aggression out on invisible foes, things will only get worse.

    plus, i cannot help but wonder how much of that is just natural stuff? like bar-room conversations, which i must say i am apt to joke around with. maybe it's more extreme, but i know a great number of people who hang out on the net as though it was their own bar to joke around with friends. they just don't realise that it's not the same in some cases.

    well, the last thing to say is really "where is the internet heading?" i think it is already in the process of massive segregation, like the online society that it has become. can we, or should we, stop everything at the level of the internet? or should we focus on the roots of the problem?

    A matter of perspective. (4.00 / 5) (#86)
    by tokage on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 10:54:41 PM EST

    As someone who's been online in some form or another since late '89, I've watched the interaction of male/females online for many years. It's been an interesting phenomenon. In some areas, things have changed quite a bit, but not so much in others. You need to stop and think about the environment you are in, from who populates your particular medium of discussion, to the very administrators. The gender ratio used to be a lot more unbalanced, than it is even today. One of the most serious issues facing equality on discussions online is the fact that we are mostly anonymous. Just strands of disembodied text, and ideas. This is also the beauty, but it leads to feelings of not have any accountability. Take into account the fact that the large percentage of are males, and of that percentage, a large number are..shall we say..quirky, you have the problem that is disturbing cyndrekit. There are also the garden variety losers, the a/s/l morons, of whom you likely won't see on channels populated with more intelligent types.

    Having said that, I would like to point out: there are far greater evils in the world than someone saying something which offends you on an irc channel. The author pointed out a lot of inequalities in real life. I would like to say that these are real issues, women being sold into slavery as prostitutes, various other abuses. I do not think that a few comments made on an irc channel should be blown out of proportion. My advice is: develop a thicker skin, if you're going to be online, and especially a girl. If people cross the common-sense boundary, let them know. "I think that is utterly disgusting and should not be said" would make most people pay attention. Put people on /ignore, it works great. If something seriously is disturbing you, message an op, most of them would be happy to help you.

    One could argue that expression by men online is an extension of their behavior in real life, and partially I agree. I feel, however, the sense of anonymity greatly exaggerates peoples actions. I personally am often over the top on irc, but try to maintain a certain boundary. Occasionally I'll go over, when someone irritates me, or they are exceedingly thin-skinned. People who are quick to be offended should expected to be offended often on irc. When someone says something which offends you, consider the source. Just as in real life, there are often jerks within online forums who enjoy offending people. If it crosses over into real life, or becomes threatening in some way, contact a law enforcement agency.

    Women are inequal in society, and it's a sad fact. So are various ethnic groups. Mankind has always ostracized its fellow beings, and belittled people on the basis of everything from height to hair color. It's a fact of human nature. Perhaps we're slowly evolving into a kinder, more mature culture, but as it stands now, we have a long way to go. I often doubt we'll live long as a species to become anything but the short sighted, greedy, selfish beings we are.

    I always play / Russian roulette in my head / It's 17 black, or 29 red

    ICQ and Harrassment (4.00 / 8) (#90)
    by Jin Wicked on Thu Mar 01, 2001 at 11:52:57 PM EST

    I can personally testify to the fact that in general females get treated very differently than males online. I'm sure there are many exceptions, but this has been my experience, in the chat program ICQ primarily, and also on Instant Messenger:

    It seems that there is a large portion of men online who [for whatever reason] completely abandon any semblance of manners they had once they sign onto the computer. Perhaps they are lonely, perhaps bored, but regardless of the purpose they behave in an absolutely disgusting fashion. I have my ICQ settings on "available for random chat" and list a very specific and lengthy list of things I would like to talk about. I get an average of 20 messages a night. All of them male -- I will get maybe one message from another female in a week, and it will almost always be a young woman who wants to "girl talk" about men. Of the majority of messages, most of them are interested in asking me about my sex life, if I want to "cyber" with them, or if I have nude photos of myself to share. These people then become offended when I am hostile or rude towards them or don't wish to grant their requests. Telling them I have a boyfriend is most of the time futile. Of all the crap messages I get, of the rare few that do turn out to be interesting conversations about my interests, about a third of them ask half an hour into it if I have a boyfriend. If I say yes, they promptly excuse themselves and I never hear from them again. Because of all this, I have become extremely wary of conversations with strangers. I have met a few interesting people this way; enough to justify putting up with the annoyances, but generally if someone doesn't say something interesting within two or three messages, I simply ignore them. I've had to do this, just because of the sheer volume of inane "How r u?"s I get every night. So, I usually get called a colourful array of profanity every evening by these wounded online egos everynight. It really gets old after awhile.

    It wouldn't bother me so much if I knew these men were actually like this...but for the most part I think this is behaviour they'd never dare attempt anything close to in real life. In person most people are afraid to even talk to me, and won't approach unless I'm already speaking to someone. Online, they seem to think I'm some kind of whore. I have the same standards for making friends online that I do in real life. It upsets me that people seem to need to hide behind a computer monitor where they are safe, so that they can vent whatever it is that's bothering them by treating other people poorly. The anonimity of it absolves them of responsibility in their minds, I think.

    Incidentally, if I change my profile to say that I'm male, I might get one message in a night. So while I'm not male-bashing in the slightest here, it does seem to me that it's primarily men exhibiting this kind of behaviour. I don't really know what could ever be done about it, though.


    This post was probably not written by the real Jin Wicked. Please see user "butter pie" for Jin's actual posts.


    Looking in the wrong place? (none / 0) (#96)
    by pb on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:28:14 AM EST

    I fully agree that random chatting on ICQ and AIM is almost totally pointless if you're looking for discussion. So why do it? Lately, I wouldn't recommend posting to slashdot for a discussion, either.

    I tend to have better luck with Kuro5hin, and if I were a real stickler, maybe I'd look for a moderated USENET group. But for whatever reason, I don't mind sifting through some of the crap on some sites just because I'm often surprised and amused at what I find. I'm easily amused sometimes, though.

    However, FWIW, I thought your homepage was fairly entertaining, and your compatibility test is hilarious. And I have a girlfriend. So what did you want to talk about?
    ---
    "See what the drooling, ravening, flesh-eating hordes^W^W^W^WKuro5hin.org readers have to say."
    -- pwhysall
    [ Parent ]
    identity thief! goniff! (4.00 / 1) (#112)
    by CodeWright on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 07:37:26 AM EST

    identity thief!!! the REAL Jin the Wicked has her own account called "Jin the Wicked".

    You are some kind of weird identity thief, similar to the Educated Escort clones.




    --
    A: Because it destroys the flow of conversation.
    Q: Why is top posting dumb? --clover_kicker

    [ Parent ]
    Paranoid much? (5.00 / 1) (#122)
    by Jin Wicked on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 10:12:09 AM EST

    I recently bought jinwicked.com to use instead of jinthewicked.com because I am dropping the "the" from my pen name. I changed my kuro5hin and /. accounts accordingly. I'm only about 1/5th done with the graphics for the new site when the URL changes over.

    Good to know you're either a very concerned citizen looking out for my welfare, or a stalker, though.


    This post was probably not written by the real Jin Wicked. Please see user "butter pie" for Jin's actual posts.


    [ Parent ]
    Paranoid always. (none / 0) (#234)
    by CodeWright on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 09:14:46 AM EST

    Maybe, maybe not.

    In any case, my warning was less for your benefit or Jin the Wicked's, than it was a warning for others who might mistake one for the other.

    It would be easier to believe if the "Jin the Wicked" account made any mention of the "Jin Wicked" account, rather than the other way around.... especially since comments are still being posted by "Jin the Wicked" too.

    Instances of virtual identity theft are always interesting to watch, both when the perpetrator is caught, and even more interesting when the thief is successful and the community accepts the imposter rather than the real thing.

    To be more technical, the definitions of "nymity" (or pseudonymity) in network mediated communities are a fundamental issue. The constant debate surrounding the relative merits and pitfalls of anonymity are just one aspect of this issue. Specifically, the only difference between anonymity and pseudonymity is that there is no continuity with anonymous messages, whereas an equally unverifiable (in a physical world sense) pseudonym can at least build reputation capital by virtue of historical context.

    Given my interest in the definition of identity, it becomes particularly interesting to me whenever a potential identity thief arises -- mostsly because I have no idea what motivates that kind of person.

    Ultimately, any case of identity theft is a real world application of social engineering -- and thus directly related to security issues (a professional interest of mine).

    The best identity thieves are very subtle, while the worst typically give themselves away rather easily.

    If you are, indeed, a thief, then you sit somewhere in the middle (a good thief would have made sure to use a domain registration address similar to the original, for example).

    You could, of course, easily dispel any questions about your identity, assuming you were not a thief. On the other hand, if you are, it should be fun to watch you attempt to deflect any interest before you are accepted as the de facto real identity.




    --
    A: Because it destroys the flow of conversation.
    Q: Why is top posting dumb? --clover_kicker

    [ Parent ]
    Last time I checked I was me. (none / 0) (#238)
    by Jin Wicked on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 01:15:23 PM EST

    A simple look at my account information and the dates on my posts would have indicated that the time I stopped making posts under Jin the Wicked I also began posting under Jin Wicked. One also might have noticed the consistency in my spelling and writing style, as well. (Not to mention the nature of my opinions.)

    Jin the Wicked does not still make posts, because I have not logged into that account since I started this one. As far as I am concerned one of the site admins can delete it any time they choose. I am quite flattered, however, that someone would think I am unique enough a person that someone would want to steal my identity.


    This post was probably not written by the real Jin Wicked. Please see user "butter pie" for Jin's actual posts.


    [ Parent ]
    Men and women online. (5.00 / 1) (#163)
    by jabber on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:59:48 PM EST

    I leave my ICQ gender unspecified, and I have very few unrequested contacts. When I set it to 'female', I get lots of teenage boys trying to chat me up. When I set it to 'male', I get a lot of Russian women wanting to send me nude pictures of themselves.

    In my experience, the women and nublie girls on ICQ are a lot more rude and raunchy than the boys and men. Not only are they always overtly sexual, they all want my credit card number. Sickos, the whole lot of 'em!

    [TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"
    [ Parent ]

    ummm hate to tell ya (3.50 / 2) (#198)
    by el_guapo on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:00:07 PM EST

    but men are pigs. the ones that aren't really ARE but are just ashamed of it. it must be a testosterone thing, i dunno. i remember going to networking class with a VERY upstanding "promise keepers" guy, you know, all that moral christian stuff. and the SOB went and boinked titty dancers every night (he's very married with kids). i was completely stunned. so, the trick is to find those rare guys that are ashamed of being pigs, i guess. (and note, i did not form this opinion on this one experience) or maybe a happily married guy, i've found it way easier to converse with women after i got married, with the other woman knowing that. it's like, i'm harmless or something. i can cut up and what not because i figure the other person knows i'm not really trying to get into her pants or something; which is a major concern of mine when i was single. (ok, go say "hi" but TRY and not look like you really mean "hi, wanna screw?" - which obviously ends up with me looking like i really mean "hi, wanna screw?")
    mas cerveza, por favor mirrors, manifestos, etc.
    [ Parent ]
    ICQ problem, not general problem (none / 0) (#242)
    by Delirium on Tue Mar 06, 2001 at 05:28:38 AM EST

    I think it's more that "only people who want to get laid go around looking for random chats on ICQ" than "females are always viewed as sex objects online." Normal people who are looking for normal friendships online generally don't message random ICQ people - they meet on weblogs, in IRC channels, on mailing lists, etc.

    [ Parent ]
    When I Was Young, And Had No Sense..... (4.28 / 14) (#92)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:32:55 AM EST

    ...I took a whiz on an electric fence. -Beavis

    I first discovered online communities when I was at university ('92-'93). At the time, I was taking a class on sociology taught by a professor who was very much an ardent feminist. One of the first things I noticed about the online communities was the vastly different treatment that the different genders receive. So, I decided to try logging on with an obviously female nick, as a social experiment.

    Okay, okay, it was a lot more than just a 'social' experiment, but that was the motive I told myself to keep my super-ego quiet. The real reason was that there was a board that only allowed female members, and I wanted to get in there and find out what sort of cool stuff they were talking about. As any female reader probably already knows, I learned a lot more than I ever really wanted to know.

    I don't even really remember what I was expecting, to be honest. Something salacious, to be sure. What completely astonished me was how different the conversation was on this board. I couldn't understand the reason for this difference, however, and couldn't even really define the difference. By this time (since I had discovered usenet pr0n as well), I actually was extremely interested from a social vantage point.

    So I stopped trying to act like a 'girl' (my naive idea of a girl, anyway), and started trying to post normally. I say trying, because it was terribly unsuccessful. I remember one episode very clearly. I had made a mention of some sort about the 'world as flat plane' idea that floated around Europe from fall of Roman Empire to the Renaissance. The world is presented as this way in the Bible, too, and the primary 'teachers' of the time were monks. But I was actually shot down from all sides. "It's obvious that the world is round." There were many more, but here are the few arguments I specifically remember:

    "Have you ever seen a sailboat go over the horizon? The boat disappears before the sail."
    Yes I have - my mother lives on the beach (Kill Devil Hills, NC). Unless you have *extremely* sharp vision, you can't tell what dissapears first, and since the sails would be the largest and most visible part of the ship, it would be easy to mistake the line of sight issue with the perspective issue. Also, in rough weather, the movement of the boat over the horizon is impossible to tell from the movement of the boat through the trough and peak of the wave.

    "Any where you look, the horizon is shaped like a circle. The only way this is possible is if you're on the surface of a sphere."
    Analytical geometry is not as easy to grasp as it sounds. Although this is certainly provable, it requires a very solid education in logic and geometry. IE, I could do it, but probably not without a geometry book in front of me. Not that many people today could prove that (as a percentage of population, not k5'ers)

    "Do you really think the people back then were as stupid as you seem to be?"
    Believing what you're taught by your elders (or the church) is very common. Christians have one theory for the creation of the universe, Buddhists another, and Scientists yet another. Just because a thing is wrong or not true doesn't mean that someone won't believe it if taught so.
    And yes, this was one of the comments flung at me (not an exact quote, obviously, but *very* close. This same person tried to get me to chat with him privately a little later that same day for a quiet snogging session.) I had *never* gotten a reaction of this sort before I tried the female nick, *never*. And I had put up some very naive posts that probably deserved this sort of treatment. But it was so incredibly difficult to shake these attacks off. I couldn't understand it.

    My face was bright red from shame; when I left my dorm room to use the bathroom, someone asked if I was feeling sick. I drank some water, tried to calm down and sort out my thoughts, and headed over to the all-women forum, just to get away from the insults in the previous room, to go somewhere they couldn't follow. The women welcomed me, sympathised with me. "*sigh* Boys will be boys." I started to question my viewpoint. If everyone was arguing against me so vehemently, then I must be wrong, yes? The answer was a resounding NO. But *that's* what the all-women's forum had been created for: a place for women to talk about women's issues, and a place to escape from the bigotry of men.

    The shame I felt at being humiliated only added to the shame of deceiving everyone, and I never fessed up. In fact, I never logged onto that board again (or any other until #kuro5hin). But I learned a great deal more from that week on the discussion boards than I did from the semester long class from my feminist professor. To those who say "Just Shake It Off", I say that sometimes you just can't. Whenever I just sit and think of that episode of my life, my hands get a little clammy, and my face gets a little flushed; I've felt that way since I started writing this article. They may only be butterflies in your stomach, but a ton of butterflies will crush you just as easily as a ton of lead.
    -fsh

    Re: Flat Earth (none / 0) (#111)
    by Enthrad on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 07:20:35 AM EST

    This page is an interesting read. I don't know how credible it is.

    I think I came across it from a link on NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day a few months ago.

    (Ah, yes. But curiously, I remember it being December 31st 2000, not 1999... so modifying the URL, I found this page which is identical except missing two of the links... including that one. Odd.)

    [ Parent ]

    Quite right (4.00 / 1) (#124)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 10:39:19 AM EST

    I definitely did some research on this topic subsequently ;) While it is certainly true that the educated/literate ruling class were mostly aware of the round earth theory, there was a *huge* gap in the education levels of the upper and lower classes, and no middle class to speak of until a little before the renaissance. The simple fact is that the only education most people had was the reading of the bible by the local priest, and discussion of this education was *not* encouraged. While it certainly didn't happen regularly, they were certainly periods of time when any uttered heresy could get you burned at the stake, tortured, flogged, etc. Not necessarily because you uttered the heresy, but because you uttered the heresy when someone who didn't like you was listening. And it's tough to know which parts of the bible you should follow and which you should ignore, especially when you're illiterate.

    *Nobody* expects the Spanish Inquisition!
    Our cheif weapon is surprise. Surprise and Fear. Wait, two weapons. *grin*
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]

    Well... (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by Ken Arromdee on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 10:47:47 AM EST

    And if you think that guys don't get remarks calling them stupid (or remarks that *horrors* dispute things that they say), you haven't been around the Internet long enough.

    [ Parent ]
    This just happened to me (4.00 / 2) (#137)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:01:17 PM EST

    For insisting that Social Darwinism is a viable theory. No, I don't want to get into that argument again, thank you.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    [OT] Social Darwinism is kewl. (3.00 / 1) (#150)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:55:53 PM EST

    heh. here's my take on a specific aspect: murder and darwinism
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]
    Must have been unclear (5.00 / 1) (#139)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:14:35 PM EST

    I agree it also happens to men. My point is that the scale is vastly different. We are social animals; society as we know it cannot exist without peer pressure.

    I also didn't point out the patronizing attitude presented to me, simply because of my nick, that wasn't there when I used a male nick. Basically because this is the only episode I remember with any clarity. It happened a long time ago. This was simply one instance of many that was particularly brutal.

    But if you don't beleive me, try it for yourself. It's easy to argue that you know how someone else feels because of X reasons, but it's simply not so. If you try it yourself, you might be surprised.
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]

    Flat Earth? (4.00 / 1) (#128)
    by mpeever on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:28:25 AM EST

    I had made a mention of some sort about the 'world as flat plane' idea that floated around Europe from fall of Roman Empire to the Renaissance. The world is presented as this way in the Bible, too, and the primary 'teachers' of the time were monks.

    Where in the Bible is the earth presented as being flat? I've heard that a lot, but have yet to actually see a quotation.

    BTW, the effect of a circular horizon (if I correctly understand the point that was made) is not necessarily proof of a spherical earth, although it may be a proof of a spherical sky. In actuality, it could be an effect of perspective (the earth and sky seem to merge at a distance) and the fact that sight distance is realtively isotropic. This would yield a 'circular' horizon.
    "Assertion is not proof" -Erasmus
    [ Parent ]

    The sight question is exactly correct (1.00 / 1) (#136)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:00:05 PM EST

    The angle of vision from the eye itself to the edges of something linear from one would result in a curve up, not a curve down, but since people tend to believe that things the same distance from their eyes are the exact same z-distance on a cartesian solid, their distance perception would warp and appear to curve down. Did that make any sense?
    Anyway, what I really wanted to say is that nowhere in the Bible is there any mention of the geometric nature of the earth. Biblical people hadn't yet discovered the *possibility* of such a discovery.
    The idea of a flat earth really comes out of Greek mythology, of which Christianity borrowed rather wholesale. Ditto concepts of up being heaven and down being hell and the 'kosmos', or earth and everything terrestrial, being evil, as well as 'sarx', or flesh, specifically human flesh, which, incidentally, is female gender in Greek, being evil. Thus the statement Paul made, sorry, forgot where, transliterated as 'all flesh is her flesh', meaning, all flesh is evil, because the female possessive intensifies the evil part of the meaning. Now wonder why Christians tend to be such bigots? It's in the Greek language...

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    Geometry and Religious Roots (none / 0) (#155)
    by mpeever on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:16:08 PM EST

    Geometry is one of my weakest subjects. I learned only what was strictly necessary to get through my degree...

    Having said that, I don't think I quite grasp the full import of your analysis. Are you saying that the actual effect of a flat earth would cause the horizon to appear concave upward at the edges, but the brain would make us see it as the opposite?

    I never knew 'sarx' was feminine (Greek is another very weak area :)

    I wonder about the validity of saying that Christians borrow(ed) wholesale from Greek mythology, though. Much of the Bible was written before the Greek society had any real kind of prominence. Of course, Christianity never began until after the Romans had completely trampled the Greek Empire, and the Romans did very clearly borrow wholesale from the Greeks... Interestingly, Pliny, Linus and Herodotus all wrote about Bablyonian and Egyptian mythology and their coalescence (is that even a word?) with the current Roman/Greek beliefs. Clearly the myths pre-dated even the Greeks.


    "Assertion is not proof" -Erasmus
    [ Parent ]
    Greek (none / 0) (#157)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:30:20 PM EST

    x is one ending that is sometimes neuter, sometimes feminine. Think dominatrix.
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]
    I'm stepping into hot water, but... (none / 0) (#161)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:55:07 PM EST

    The Bible itself has roots, to some scholars, in Babylonian myth, specifically pre-Habyru migration. That parts of it are historically correct are unmistakable, and that it was heavily sanitized for Hebrew consumption is also not in doubt, but it is a volume of historical and mythical literature that was written by four major disciplines through time, of which there may have been hundreds, perhaps thousands of writers. Of course, any staunch Biblicist will deny this.
    That is the Old Testament, anyway.
    The New Testament is a collection of essays, some of which were written by the people in question; no one really questions that Paul wrote what is attributed to Paul, but the gospels with the exception of Luke, seem largely to have been written by committees over time, and I won't go into the Revelation/Daniel controversy except to say that it is entirely possible that Revelation was written by a crank to give Christianity its very own prophetic book, while Daniel was completed to provide a prophetic book for Jews.
    Most of Christianity as we know it today came from various patriarchs of the Christian church, the majority of which were Greek. Paul was a Roman citizen, and well schooled by Greek tutors, as is evidenced by his use of formal logic rather often.
    What is viewed as Christianity today would probably be repugnant to an early Christian. This has seeped to the point where Christians today view actions of Biblical people through the eyes of modern morality and pass judgement on them. I was just in a Christian discussion group where Jacob was called un-Christian for tricking Laban out of his flock in the way God had told him to behave. Of course, Jacob wasn't a Christian; he wasn't even a Jew.
    That being said, I am agnostic with a host of Christian relatives, which is why I get drug into these things, and, of course, I was a Theology major for two years.
    As to the eye thing, it's hard to explain without paper, but imagine that you are looking at a square from slightly above it. You will see that the rays that start at your eye and terminate at the corners will pass above the plane of the rays that go to the center. However, humans tend to see things that are the same distance from their eyes as the same distance away, so it would be more like looking at a paper plate, which would cause one to see it curve down.
    Whether humans would have evolved this way without the essentially curved nature of their environment is an interesting question.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    Bible and flat earth (none / 0) (#138)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:14:20 PM EST

    Deuteronomy 28:64
    Then the LORD will scatter you among all nations, from one end of the earth to the other.

    Job 38:13
    that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it?

    These are just two examples out of many. Obviously, a sphere has no ends or edges. There are also many references to the foundations of the earth. And while it is certainly true that most educated people knew that the earth was round, a significant portion of these still thought you would fall off once you came to a certain point. IE, the assumption (of the less educated) was that gravity pointed in a universal direction, down, so that if you were on the opposite side of the sphere, you would immediately fall into the abyss. Until Newton et al. came along, of course. The greeks did have some pretty serious arguments over this one, and it was the main reason behind the earth-centric universe; If earth is a sphere, and anything dropped falls to the center of the sphere, then the center of the sphere must be the center of the universe.
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]

    Biblical Quotes (none / 0) (#152)
    by mpeever on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:05:36 PM EST

    Those quotes do seem to support your view.

    I found this section on an online Bible somewhere, from Isaiah 40:21-23:

    Have ye not known? have ye not heard? hath it not been told you from the beginning? have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in: That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity.

    I suppose a disc would also have a 'circle', but I have heard that this particular section influenced Columbus to view the earth as a sphere. I have no idea whether this is true.

    I hope you understand that I asked because I hear a lot of assertions about what the Bible or a lot of other books say, while only very rarely seeing any quotations. People have a lot of funny ideas about what's in the Bible...


    "Assertion is not proof" -Erasmus
    [ Parent ]
    subjectively offensive? (4.45 / 11) (#94)
    by cow on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:41:35 AM EST

    Although I've spent time in #kuro5hin off and on for a while, it's only recently that I began logging significant time there. I was around for both of the conversations of which cyndrekit quoted a brief portion (and have them in full in my logs, as well). Speaking as an undefined observer, my routine reaction to comments such as those in the above IRC conversations is that of customary indifference. While I was mildly irritated with those who exchanged derogatory remarks about adolescent girls, I didn't bother to comment and ignored the discussion of "centipede-infested vaginas." After all, such remarks are a few drops in the bucket of thousands of other identical conversations that take place daily, right?

    However, speaking now as a sixteen-year-old female member of one of the most maligned groups in the geek community, I have been questioning my reactions to such discussions as I watched cyndrekit and a few others flesh out their ideas in writing over the last few days. Would I be this blasé had the conversations taken place out loud and in front of me? Probably not. Is it at all disquieting that I didn't consider such talk atypical of this largely young, male, supposedly open-minded and intelligent group? Maybe.

    But there are a few certainties. Were someone to air some bitterly misogynistic tirade, I trust that at least a few would speak up in our defense. God knows that most geeks are not known for their anti-women's lib (or anti-gay, or anti-minority) propensities. Second, women gathering in groups are frequently guilty of the same sins, although perhaps not to such a degree. What is the difference? It's always been more acceptable to make disparaging remarks about the social majority. Maybe it's some misguided manner of balancing the past sins of the majority; I don't know.

    I guess that when it comes down to it, what now bothers me most is that I consider disclosing my vital statistics (a/s/l, anyone?) tantamount to a confession. It is a cause for shame; after all, at least in my mind, admitting to being sixteen and female is in the end not much more than handing out a label with undesirable baggage attached.

    _________________
    "Well... other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?"

    inhibitions (4.33 / 3) (#110)
    by Glacky on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 06:08:24 AM EST

    The only reason you dont see the same behaviour in RL as online is entirely down to inhibition. If you go on a channel and say you're female (or have a feminine nick) you'll get hit on by 50%+ of the guys there, in my experience. Dont think that they wouldn't do exactly the same thing in RL, if they had the balls.

    The point is, text-only communication removes a whole lot of barriers. This is both a good thing and a bad thing, as a lot of people are finding out. The solution - just as you wouldnt waltz into a guys locker room wearing a bikini, dont talk to groups of sex-deprived punks online with a female nick :-)

    There are intelligent, non-threatening and non-sexist conversations to be had online. It's just rare to find them on IRC. The same could apply in a downtown bar.

    [ Parent ]
    whose responsibility? (4.00 / 5) (#119)
    by puck42 on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 09:19:14 AM EST

    The solution - just as you wouldnt waltz into a guys locker room wearing a bikini, dont talk to groups of sex-deprived punks online with a female nick :-)

    This is putting responsibility for sexual harassment on women, once again. Are men in a locker room incapable of not harassing a woman in a bikini? Are men online not capable of harassing anyone with a female nick?

    I suggest an alternative solution -- that all of us should work together to create an environment where sexual harassment is not acceptable.

    This is not to say that we all have to be very careful about talking about sex for fear of being accused of sexual harassment. Part of working together to prevent sexual harassment is to discuss what that means and how we feel about it.

    Puck

    [ Parent ]

    In all seriousness....... (none / 0) (#253)
    by NDPTAL85 on Sun May 06, 2001 at 08:59:17 AM EST

    ....if a man cannot harass a woman in a bikini in his own lockeroom, then WHERE can he? Where can a man be crass if not in a lockeroom? Or do you just want a man to bottle everything up until the breaking point?

    [ Parent ]
    re: inhibitions (5.00 / 2) (#153)
    by ocelot on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:06:25 PM EST

    The solution - just as you wouldnt waltz into a guys locker room wearing a bikini, dont talk to groups of sex-deprived punks online with a female nick :-)

    So, we should have to hide the fact that we're female if we want to be treated with respect? This is *exactly* the problem that the article is trying to address. Why should we have to hide who we are in order to participate online?

    It also doesn't address the problem of comments directed at females in general, rather than the ones directed at individuals.

    [ Parent ]

    criminy (4.75 / 4) (#95)
    by 3var g on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:43:24 AM EST

    seems i don't get out enough.. it is very hard for me to believe that there are still people out in the world (and wired people at that) that actually care what other people think, say, or do.

    if it is not directly affecting you, it is senseless to try and control it. if it is directly affecting you, than by all means, try and control it. the first question to ask for effective control is not "how do i stop this from happening to me?" but "what exactly is this that is happening to me, and WHY am i allowing myself to be bothered by it?" understand yourself before trying to control others. see trhurler's comments fer sum smart thinkin'.

    Sometimes I forget that its just a Life, and meant to be enjoyed. That usually coincides with when I start hurling dung at innocent passers-by.

    Do you want us there? (4.42 / 19) (#100)
    by ocelot on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:03:25 AM EST

    I'm hearing quite a few comments, both here and on IRC, to the effect of, "If you don't like it, leave".

    So let's try phrasing this issue another way.

    Do you want females and other minority groups participating in the channel (and other similar forums)? Or is creating a hostile environment more important to you?

    I find it very hard to believe that the majority of the members of #kuro5hin don't want females around. However, this is the message we get, and this will be the end result if steps aren't taken to make the channel less hostile towards females. Because we aren't just going to sit around and take it if we don't feel comfortable. We're going to exercise this option that's being pointed out and leave. In face, some already have.

    I think what some people need to learn is that treating people with respect may prevent you from being able to say whatever the heck pops into your mind, but it carries other benefits. Like people being willing to be around you.

    I'm also hearing a lot of "Does this mean we shouldn't talk about sex at all?" No. It doesn't mean that. Speaking soley for myself, sex talk doesn't really bother me at all really (though it may bother other people), and I'll even participate in it if I feel comfortable. We're also aware that most males are sexually attracted to females, and vice versa. It's when we, or females as a whole, are being disrespected that we get upset. (again, this is speaking only for myself, and based on my conversations with others females. I'm not trying to speak for females as a whole).

    I actually am a lot more bothered by the first log excerpt above than the second. The second is definetly gross, but it's questionable whether it shows a lack of respect for females or simply a rather detached response to a technical questi on. The first, however, definetly shows a lack of respect for females.

    In terms of sexual conversation, the line for me is crossed when people pursue the subject when I've indicated that I'm not interested or that I'm uncomfortable, or when women are being objectified.

    Females online hear these types of comments on a pretty much constant basis, and it adds up over time. Here's some things I've heard lately (not all on #k5):

    "Traffic problems would disappear if half the drivers were taken off the road. The female half."

    "This channel is being overrun with females!" (This said when there were ~5 females on a channel with ~50 people)

    Being told to take the girl talk elsewhere when two females are discussing a relationship on channel, despite the fact that males talk about relationships all the time.

    Being told that I'm respected on the channel because I don't act female.

    All these things send the message that being female is bad and that females are not wanted (or tolerated only as long as they don't interfere with the men's enjoyment of the channel), even if this isn't the intended message. And it's simply impossible to ignore it all, day after day, year after year.

    You know, I don't even object to the idea of a Men's club channel where guys can go and be as mysogynistic as they want. In fact, some of us females have started a channel for female talk, where males will only be tolerated as long as they're treating us right. I simply regret that some people seem to feel that a general interest channel like #kuro5hin should serve this purpose.

    So anyways, if you want females on #k5 and other internet forums, treat us with respect. If you don't, don't be surprised when we refuse to participate :) ~

    Female/AOL/newbie/whatever bias (4.00 / 3) (#101)
    by Dion on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:34:24 AM EST

    Where I come from (various web fora, mailinglists and irc) the gender really doesn't matter, only the technical merits of whoever speaks, so I really havn't seen much of the gender based distrspect that the orignal poster talks about...

    However, I've seen plenty of other groups disrespected because of some stereotype, AOL users, newbies or other outsiders, I really don't think that the gender is what is important here, the gender based insults are IMHO mainly made because they are easy ways of dissing someone.

    I think the real problem is that people (mostly guys) seriously need to grow up and start being more tolerant and patient with other people, not just the ones that happen to be female.

    Oh, and btw. drivers have been bitching about other drivers since the first time one car had to share the road with an other, so I'm not really suprised about the driving comment, but is the net based gender bias really worse than in real life?



    [ Parent ]
    This is quite disturbing. (3.40 / 5) (#117)
    by mdxi on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:31:59 AM EST

    "Being told that I'm respected on the channel because I don't act female."

    IMO, there was probably -- probably -- a key word left out of this statement but meant to be there implicitly: "typically".

    I don't like the way typical females act. Neither do I like the way typical males act. I loathe the vast majority of humanity.

    #k5 is not a guy channel or a girl channel, it is a geek channel, and I find that most geeks share the above sentiment to some extent.

    I really do think some of these comments have been a bit over-analyzed. #k5 is a very inappropriate place...people there constantly joke and jab at each other. Do you really think the comments quoted in the original story were meant literally?

    Do you really think anyone in there hates females? Do you think that the #k5 crowd doesn't simply adore girl geeks? I mean, just look at the way Communista keeps them all dancing in the palm of her hand!

    If you do, then perhaps you are a bit too PC for #k5. I personally think people say things like that because they feel that we are all equals, and you would be welcome to make all the gynocentric comments you want.

    As for relationship talk, I HATE IT. I don't like it when guys bitch about their (lack of) girlfriends any more than I would like listening to girls bitch about their (lack of) boyfriends. I ALWAYS try to steer the conversation away from that topic. I guess I just wasn't paying attention the day you saw guys going on and on.

    --
    SYN SYN NAK
    [ Parent ]

    So, in other words, it's for elitists only. (3.50 / 4) (#131)
    by Electric Angst on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:41:21 AM EST

    The attitude of the above post is a real problem in the so-called "geek" community.

    Hating the behavior of the majority of human beings doesn't mean that you're not biased. In fact, it means you're an even bigger asshole than a simple male chauvinist.

    Until those who wear the label of "geek" with pride start to wake up and realize that the rest of humanity isn't some kind of lower form of life, I sincerly doubt that problems like this are going to go away.


    --
    "Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
    [ Parent ]
    Dictionary attack (none / 0) (#219)
    by mdxi on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 11:02:07 AM EST

    Monsieur Chauvin was immortalized in language for his patriotism which verged on the fanatical. Therefore, a chauvinist is someone who is jingoistic and/or overly prideful about belonging to a certain group.

    Given the statement that I seriously dislike and disapprove of most males, and their behaviour, how does it follow that I am a male chauvinist?

    ROADBLOCK: Remember kids, knowing what words mean is IMPORTANT!
    KIDS: Thanks, ROADBLOCK! Now we know!
    ROADBLOCK: And knowing is half the battle!

    G.I Joooooooe!

    --
    SYN SYN NAK
    [ Parent ]

    Very well, you're a Geek Chauvinist. (3.00 / 1) (#223)
    by Electric Angst on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 05:45:05 PM EST

    I apologize for the mistake...
    --
    "Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
    [ Parent ]
    oh, puh-leeze. (5.00 / 1) (#217)
    by Estanislao Martínez on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 03:54:38 AM EST

    I don't like the way typical females act. Neither do I like the way typical males act. I loathe the vast majority of humanity. #k5 is not a guy channel or a girl channel, it is a geek channel, and I find that most geeks share the above sentiment to some extent.

    Oh, please. You're giving the perfect example of what I talk about in my top-level post. This is just a bunch of rationalizations to justify a female-intolerant culture in #k5.

    And, oh, playing the "I'm a g**k, I'm special" card is quite childish, BTW. Your personal problems may explain your actions, but they sure don't excuse them.

    Do you really think anyone in there hates females?

    If you, in true mysoginistic fashion, define "doesn't hate females" as "desperate to get some pussy", sure, whatever you say, nobody there hates females. However, this is obviously not a very bright POV to take on the very heightened level of aggressiveness that comes up when a female tries to participate in the channel.

    If you do, then perhaps you are a bit too PC for #k5. I personally think people say things like that because they feel that we are all equals, and you would be welcome to make all the gynocentric comments you want.

    "Since I am happy if you behave in an offensive and aggressive ways towards me, I feel I have full license to do such towards you."

    Not to mention that you simply gloss over the fact that "girl talk" gets shouted down real quick.

    Stop being in denial and rationalizing away what happens right in front of your eyes.

    --em
    [ Parent ]

    ahem. (none / 0) (#220)
    by mdxi on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 11:07:59 AM EST

    If you, in true mysoginistic fashion, define "doesn't hate females" as "desperate to get some pussy", sure, whatever you say, nobody there hates females. However, this is obviously not a very bright POV to take on the very heightened level of aggressiveness that comes up when a female tries to participate in the channel.

    Were you around on the first day Communista showed up? I was. And I yelled at everyone in there for being so amazingly pathetic: playing the fool in order to impress the girl.

    I was going to expound fo a while here on the deep *social* problems many of the denizens of #k5 seem to have...relating to people in general and a deep anxiety about wanting to be liked, etc., but I really have to get back to work.

    I've things to do and after work I was planning to go shopping and then out for dinner with three of my best friends in the world, all of whom are sort of on the female side.

    You know nothing about me; do not label me.

    --
    SYN SYN NAK
    [ Parent ]

    Men need to be men (3.00 / 5) (#132)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:48:55 AM EST

    Men need a place where they can be men. There used to be a lot of places where women simply didn't go and men could be men and discuss things in the way men do, which is normally irreverent, exaggerated, and crass. Women start showing up and take offense. When men just want to hang out, yes, a woman in the mix is a bad thing unless she can handle it. Most women are rather offended by the way men think. Most men need time to just be themselves.
    If this kind of behaviour bothers you, the only thing you *can* do is leave. Probably, that *is* what they want, anyway.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    So K5 should be men-only? (4.33 / 3) (#147)
    by Electric Angst on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:46:54 PM EST

    Yes, I agree that having the ability to socialize with members of the same sex can be a good thing from time to time, I don't think that excuses blatent crudeness in a mixed forum. If one wants a place to go 'hang with the guys', then why not create #K5guys? Why should the general IRC channel be made into a man's lair, simply because they're in the majority?

    This attitude, that the Internet is a man's domain, is exactly the kind of prejudice that this article is attempting to address. It's something we need to fix, and it will continue harm our society until it's gone.


    --
    "Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
    [ Parent ]
    We can't... (4.00 / 1) (#182)
    by Elpenor on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:16:08 PM EST

    Just to play the devils advocate I am going to argue with you a bit. So don't take it personally :)

    You say that we should make a #K5guys channel or something like that so that we can be our inner 14 year olds in peace, but it is not that easy. That in itself is discriminating against women and would not be tolerated for very long. Who would not complain about not being let in somewhere just because of their gender? I fully agree that people in general should be more considerate and respecting to the people around them but I also believe that it is their right to be an asshole (excuse my profanity). While we can't just go around saying "boys will be boys" we also can't force people to change what they say because we don't like it. It is basically a catch 22. The best we can do try and educate people so that they show respect to people different from them. Naming their channels better (like #K5guys) would make it easier for people (women in this case) to navigate to places that they had a better idea that they would feel comfortable it would not solve the problem. It would probably make it worse because as soon as someone complained about the behavior in that channel it would make the offensive people even more offensive because they would feel they have no where to go to be themselves (How ever rude crude and offensive they want to be). Making rules associated with a channel seems acceptable to me and anyone breaking them and being offensive to anyone could be banned or whatever, but I believe that people have the right to think what they want and be assholes and jerks as long as they are not hurting anyone, and I am positive that people will keep being assholes and jerks and there is no stopping it.

    Anyway, for now the internet is dominated by young men and so the general attitude will be that way, but things are changing and I think the attitude will change as more women join in communities like these and don't stand for the attitude given them.


    Elp
    ----------------
    "Duff Beer - You know you want it..."
    [ Parent ]
    Segregation (5.00 / 1) (#226)
    by ocelot on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 11:25:26 PM EST

    Does segregation help or hinder?

    My immediate response to your post is that I'd much prefer it if the males on #k5 would start #k5guys, and take discussions there when females are uncomfortable with it, because I'd rather keep #k5 itself open to everyone. In fact, some of us females have already done this. Not a female only channel (there have been guys on it), but a channel where we can be females without having to worry about males getting on our case in some way or another, and where we're the ones in control of the conversation.

    But I do think you're right that segregation doesn't help the real problem. If anything, it encourages guys to keep thinking/talking about women in the same way, as long as they don't do it when women are around.

    Another example - in my community, there's a large asian population, and there are some racism problems. In many ways, this population chooses to segregate themselves (having seperate student groups, churches, etc. And you occasionally see people advertising for roommates, specifically asking for asian only). I think that this self-segregation contributes to the racism problem, as it encourages the idea of the groups being inherently difference.

    [ Parent ]

    Men and women are the same? (none / 0) (#252)
    by NDPTAL85 on Sun May 06, 2001 at 08:46:51 AM EST

    Men and women ARE different. That is why when men are all together and alone there should be no problem with however they discuss women. If a bunch of men who are alone want to rag on women then let them. As long as they don't do it in front of you shouldn't that be enough? Or must they think what you want them to even when they are by themselves?

    [ Parent ]
    Inequality? What inequality? (4.00 / 1) (#115)
    by dneas on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:23:07 AM EST

    The level of "anti-female" (moreso, perhaps, geekboy female mis-understanding and obbession) chatter really does vary, from group to group. I have frequented 2 IRC channels ever since I started this enormous waste of time, 5 years ago.

    The first channel had quite a recieving attitude towards the females in the group, who totaled around 5 regulars and a couple of past-regs who popped in now and again. The grisl gagged and laffed with the blokes as much as the blokes did within themseleves - I never saw any evidence of naive sexist comments and frankly there was more flriting going on between the guys.

    The second channel I frequented, I still spend time in today, makes the first resemble a dutch coffee shop. We've had a good share of homophobic discussions (even with gays or bis in the channel) followed by the ritual "Will you love me?" pouncing on any passing female. I'm not saying everyone took part in this but the ones who did tended to have the larger gobs, or were the more coherant. The channel unwritten rules went, usually, if you disagreed with these people (who passed off the banter as ironic statements, seriously) then you were some sort of outcast. A few of them were wankers, regards to this.

    However, the females who were in the channel recognised that attitudes were formed by where these ppl came from. It was attitudes in society which were molding this, not any special net-war. The utopia of world understanding through knowledge - like the machine utopia and the marxist utopia - hasn't happened. Instead IRC can only reflect what we think ourseleves, perhaps showing the uglier sides of personalities that social rules and norms usually permit.

    -- "The car is on fire, and there's no driver at the wheel." Cut out the spam block if you need to email about something.
    Princess Syndrome (none / 0) (#232)
    by Robert Gormley on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 09:46:58 PM EST

    One of my friends described being female on IRC as a double-edged sword... "Guys can treat you like a princess. If you need or want something they'll trip over each other in a rush to help you... make you feel very special at times."

    "Then, they'll make you feel decidedly like an object, and a stupid one at that..." (She is a CS student)... "Can anyone tell me what the pin-outs are for an RS232?"

    Actual response: "Look at the back of your computer... you see the smallish cable going to your modem... that's what the RS-232 port is, but you're probably better calling it the serial port" etc etc.

    [ Parent ]

    Online women (4.00 / 2) (#116)
    by Beorn on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:29:21 AM EST

    I'm not a #k5 regular, but I think it's a mistake to make this into a larger, social issue. Someone else compared your examples to teenage boys locker room discussions, and I think that sums it up pretty well. The problem as you describe it is with a group of immature #k5-regulars, and it should be solved on that level, with whatever social and technical sanctions the #k5 community thinks are necessary to make women feel at home there.

    On a larger scale I don't think there is a major problem, and if it appears to be larger online than in real life it's only because young males are disproportionally represented on the net, - and because women finally have access to a part of teenage male culture which have previously been hidden. This goes both ways, of course.

    The point is, of all the BBS, Usenet, IRC and web communities I've been in over the years, I've seen very few where women as a group were actually discriminated or mistreated. Large chat channels on IRC, obviously, but these are practically giant teenage male locker rooms, and I mean, how many moronic messages do you need to receive before realizing a channel isn't for you? Public FPS servers can be pretty immature, (when, oh when, will TFC players tire of the word hwgay?), but more or less mature clans aren't difficult to find.

    The good communities, the ones I enjoy coming back to, consist of mature, intelligent adults. These aren't difficult to find, if you're persistent. The fact that there are also plenty of immature communities out there says everything about the people in those communities, and nothing about the net in general.

    As I said, I don't know anything about #k5, but if women (or anyone) feel harassed there, they should ask themselves: "Is it possible to fight back or ignore it?" If yes, do so, if not, leave. If your article is an attempt to fight back, I wish you good luck, but don't make it into a larger issue. Good communities exist everywhere, don't waste your time on the pricks.

    - Beorn

    [ Threepwood '01 ]

    Bad Methodology. (4.40 / 5) (#118)
    by broody on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 09:14:09 AM EST

    I was with you until you started citing questionable, undocumented statistics. The "1 in 5" study uses questionable methodology at best and irrates me to no end. Why distort when the reality is jacked up enough? Haven't the Andrea Dworkins of the world done enough damage?

    The poor research hurt the credibillity of your essay and the closer I looked the more distorted it appeared.

    My chatroom time is long past but I still suffer from reminiscential thoughts of the old BBS days. I recall a wide range of "rooms", some corrosponding to your descriptions, some the opposite, most in between. I don't see the looming crisis but I do agree that in a public space it would not hurt if people treated each other with kindness and respect.

    There is certainly a place for being "raunchy" and lately I have been fortunate to have "lewd, porn oriented" converstations with many powerful, sexy people. If I were into online chats, I would likely have similar ones under an appropiate topic (BDSM, kink, sextalk, etc). If someone told me that "is not appropriate to discuss in a public chat room", I would promptly tell them to bugger off and enjoy doing so. Carol Queen and Pat Califa would be proud of my "rightous indignation". <:

    Topics like "We Like Breasts" seem like a prime canidate for locker room humor or online events like this. One way or the other anotomicly based topic headings should give you a clue what terroritory you are headed into at before you get there.




    ~~ Whatever it takes
    Would you prefer 1 in 10? (4.00 / 1) (#120)
    by slaytanic killer on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 09:51:55 AM EST

    The 1 in 5 study jibes with my observations in different social areas. The article you cite uses questionable methodologies at best as well. Surveying college girls about rape? It makes sense that a lot of sexual assaults occur in college, but there are many places where situations are far worse, and a very significant part of the population lives in them.

    Would you rather hear that 1 in 10 women have been raped/mistreated in the US? I'm comfortable with that since it's a number way lower than reality, but easily defensible and nevertheless shocking.

    And I hope you get used to the Andrea Dworkins of the world. Frauds. exist. in. each. part. of. culture. Conniving presidents. Lying "abused" children. Cheating husbands.

    [ Parent ]
    Touch Choice. (none / 0) (#123)
    by broody on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 10:25:11 AM EST

    The number itself is less important then the quaility of the research. It has been awhile but IIR the studies seemed to consense around 1 in 8. My personal experience suggests it to be closer to 1 in 7, obviously YMMV.

    The opinion piece that I linked to did a couple things right, even if I disagree with a fair bit of it. One it cited it's sources, you can look further into it and decide for yourself. Two it provided a decent summary of the various types of research and some of the differences in methods and conclusions. Is it perfect? No but it is decent opinion piece. Obviously real research requries a better methodolgy.

    A single statistics course will make it clear to anyone that surveying college students and suggesting the results apply to the American population as a whole is a fundimental error on the part of the researcher.


    ~~ Whatever it takes
    [ Parent ]
    Experience as research (none / 0) (#216)
    by Miniluv on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 03:15:42 AM EST

    You're a lucky guy. Why are you a lucky guy you ask? Because you have little experience with the pain and suffering men can bring to this world.

    1 in 7 women you know has been raped or sexually assaulted? That's it?! Why don't you step into my world of knowing perfectly normal girls and women, and let's stipulate I'll only accumulate statistics on women over 20. How would you react to knowing that 24 of 25 women I can think of offhand have been raped. Not just "sexually assaulted", but flat out raped. The only person I can think of who hasn't been is my own mother, kinda sad isn't it?

    "Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
    [ Parent ]

    Hmm... (none / 0) (#236)
    by broody on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 10:47:06 AM EST

    The level of violence that some men have inflicted on the women that you know is horrid. The closest experience I have with that level of violence you describe is a DeSade novel and for that I am fortunate. At the same time, considering what has happened to some of the people close to me, I do not normaly feel "lucky".

    My "1 in 7" number is based on people over 25 whom I know well enough to "know" one way or the other. It takes a lot of courage to speak of first hand experince with rape and sexual assult, hence the selection criteria. Perhaps there is a difference in the way we are operationalizing rape and sexual assult? I was working from the criteria of forced removal or clothing or worse.

    As this conversation alone demonstrates, there is quite a bit of variance in individual experience. I find it unfortunate that there is not better research available on the frequency of rape and sexual assult. I suspect that with the levels of violence that you have encountered you would be able to discern several flaws in the existing research methodolgy if you choose to do so. In the event that you do, I would be curious to hear what you have to say.


    ~~ Whatever it takes
    [ Parent ]
    I Like breasts too! (none / 0) (#193)
    by perdida on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:28:24 PM EST

    There is a proble.,.. the solution however is up for sdiscussion. It should not be politically correct control of discussion, but rather just letting people know when they step over the line, and when informed that you have stepped over the line you should not flame the person who was brave enough to complain.
    The most adequate archive on the Internet.
    I can't shit a hydrogen fuel cell car. -eeee
    [ Parent ]
    going away (none / 0) (#227)
    by ocelot on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 12:15:03 AM EST

    Topics like "We Like Breasts" seem like a prime canidate for locker room humor or online events like this. One way or the other anotomicly based topic headings should give you a clue what terroritory you are headed into at before you get there.

    Well, the topic isn't always "We Like Breasts". That's what it happened to be at that particular moment in time. Topics on IRC are a temporary thing which can be changed easily.

    But that's beside the point :)

    This type of situation is not unique to #k5. It's something I've seen to some extent or another in every technically oriented but primarily social IRC channel I've joined. So does this mean I shouldn't join channels which reflect my interests? Particularly when the problems I have with the channel are with things that have nothing to do with the topic of the channel? (I obviously wouldn't join #sex and complain about sexual talk there)

    Or perhaps I should just not get involved with computers at all, since they're so commonly a female unfriendly environment?

    [ Parent ]

    Alternatives.... (none / 0) (#235)
    by broody on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 10:16:26 AM EST

    I will grant you that my experience with with IRC is limited, too much noise and not enough signal for my tastes. There are several things you can do short of packing it up and going home; some of which you already done. You have plenty of power to cause change, use it.

    Here are few of them that come to mind at the moment:
  • Write essays like this one to generate discussion and consideration of the topic.
  • Try to change attitudes in a given channel's topic.
  • Create you own topic within the #k5 channel.
  • Create your own channel.
  • Fight fire with fire; sometimes flames are appropiate.
  • As the old saying goes, "When presented with two choices, pick the third".


  • I think a big part of the issue is treating things as they are at a given time. There is nothing wrong with a chainsaw, till you attempt to treat it like a razor. This is not an excuse not to try to change things but rather an important first step to understanding so we can make the change we want to see in the world.

    I doubt I would waste my time on a topic like "We like Breasts!", I have better things to do. I suspect you do too. To me it is obvious that you are not going to find a mature, technical disscusion under this topic.

    There is certainly a need for more places like LinuxChix.Org on the web. I tend towards charging off on my own and doing, rather then organizing a group or changing an existing one. I am not sure what results you have observed based on this essay but I suspect that the more direct and individual your efforts the more productive they will be in creating change.

    As always, YMMV.


    ~~ Whatever it takes
    [ Parent ]
    My take on it... (4.50 / 4) (#126)
    by Elpenor on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:07:42 AM EST

    Here is how I look at the problem. It is more of a lack of thought then a lack of respect. Most people hanging out on chats and on IRC are doing just that, hanging out and relaxing. Not really thinking about what they are saying or whom they are saying it to. What has to be realized by everyone is that what is said is not meant as an insult to you or meant to drive you away, and the person talking has to take a split second while they are typing to run what they are saying through their brain and think about what they are about to say and to whom. This gets tricky though because of the way the chat rooms are setup you have no real idea of the gender, age, or anything else of the people who you are talking to. So you can either assume that everyone is just like you, thinks like you, has the same opinions as you, and the same sense of humor as you (this is the default for most people), or as is mostly the case realize that everyone is not the same and may not think like you and think that what you say is as funny as you think it is.

    I myself am guilty of having made jokes about women's driving and such to my girlfriend but I know her and know how she will react and that she wont take it personally (but it does get a rise out of her, and she is so cute when she is mad...) but would I make the same comments to another female, not until I got to know them a lot better and then only if I knew they would take it as a joke. So unless you know exactly who is listening to you and how they will take what you are saying think about it before you just through it out there.

    As for the larger problem of how society treats women, I believe that it still could use a lot of work. I have no idea what can be done about the problem besides educating people because it is only the ignorant that treat other people based on stereotypes (my feelings about stereotypes).

    Anyway that is my take on the situation.


    Elp
    ----------------
    "Duff Beer - You know you want it..."
    Good Essay (3.50 / 2) (#134)
    by Khedak on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:52:27 AM EST

    Except that your prescribed course of action is vague and indeterminate. It is addressed entirely in the last two sentences of your article, which can be summarized thus: Don't be rude.

    Regardless of whether anyone has or doesn't have the right to be as rude or polite as they please, it seems like this treatment ended prematurely. You've written a bald and straightforward recognition of the sexist vulgarity that's become all too commonplace and described its social implications. However, fighting intolerance with intolerance isn't always effective. Maybe some more research should have been put into the reasons that otherwise normal male netizens engage in behaviour like the kind you mentioned.

    If you want the moral highground, you have it, but if you want to really understand what's going on and what can be done about it, you're going to have to do more research into the male side of the issue. I know it sounds ironic, but there are all too many males who will read your post and see nothing but 'feminist propaganda.' Consider the possibility that building on similarities can be more effective than concealing differences.

    female - elderly (4.33 / 9) (#135)
    by mami on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:56:43 AM EST

    You know, I think I have never read a more whining account of how much we females are victimized than this one. Poor us. It took me three minutes to decide if I should read through all the comments made here and decided not to.

    If a woman wastes her time to chat with the wrong phantom people, at the wrong time, about the wrong subjects, for all the wrong reasons, in all the wrong places, it's her own fault.

    What the hell to do you need IRC for ? It's a fata morgana of a conversation with nobody. Makes you sick and is worth nothing.

    The rest of the article is a reflection of laws in various societies which reflect specific violations of human rights for women, some more serious than others. I think it's pathetic to put those issues on the same level as "trash talk" in chat rooms online.

    The author is very close to inviting readers to play the "gender" card (like some can't resist to play the "race" card etc.). I resent that. It's not helpful.

    I was treated respectfully on k5. If people don't answer to my comments, I know they want to be polite. That's fine with me. I can understand silence.

    Slightly changed... (2.25 / 4) (#140)
    by DAldredge on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:18:55 PM EST

    You know, I think I have never read a more whining account of how much we blacks are victimized than this one. Poor us. It took me three minutes to decide if I should read through all the comments made here and decided not to. If a black wastes her time to eat with the wrong colored people, at the wrong time, about the wrong subjects, for all the wrong reasons, in all the wrong places, it's her own fault. Now do you see how crazy that sounds?

    The word is American, not USian.
    American \A*mer"i*can\, n. A native of America; -- originally applied to the aboriginal inhabitants, but now applied to the descendants of Europeans born in America, and especially to the citizens of the US
    [ Parent ]
    What was your point? (none / 0) (#158)
    by shadarr on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:32:46 PM EST

    "The author is very close to inviting readers to play the "gender" card (like some can't resist to play the "race" card)". Couldn't resist, could you?

    [ Parent ]
    female - elderly and blind (none / 0) (#171)
    by mami on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:22:01 PM EST

    Now do you see how crazy that sounds?

    I see said the blind woman to her deaf husband.

    [ Parent ]

    Nothing like the whining card (2.00 / 2) (#206)
    by canitesc on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:24:47 PM EST

    Despite the fact that her comments may not have been justified in her article, it does not mean that the argument is any less valid. By labeling her a whiner, you yourself are stereotyping. If a man had put up such a comment im sure that the justification of such extra material would not have been needed, but because of her gender, any valid or legitiment problem that she addresses that may carry over into otehr aspects of life lables her a whiner. A man would have been seen as socially enlightened and would not have been barraged with people calling him a whiner. are mens gripes the only legitament ones? or can you see the difference whining and fleshing out and supporting your arguements?

    [ Parent ]
    Nothing like a whining card (none / 0) (#208)
    by mami on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 11:23:53 PM EST

    I don't think it's was necessary to support the observation that males in anomymity behave the way they do with a shopping list of issues about women's discrimination worldwide.

    I wouldn't honor male lockeroom trash talk by lifting it up to the level of serious political issues. That is exactly what I think makes her approach weak. With it she invited that "whining" jugdement to be thrown at her. I did throw it at her, to save her from the trap to take that sort of judgement as a typical male chauvinist answer. It's a bit more annoying to hear that from a woman, but may be she understands that her approach is just not doing herself any good nor does it change anything (if the author was female to begin with).

    It's kind of silly to go into a lockerroom and complain about naked boys playing naked men in there.

    Had she posted a log of "trash talk" from K5 IRC or sent a complaint to the moderators (if she thought that would be necessary), she had a clear cut argument. And that's all she needed. Trash talk is trash talk. Post it in public and it speaks for itself.


    [ Parent ]
    differences (3.16 / 6) (#142)
    by Seumas on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:28:23 PM EST

    Men and women are biologically, physiologically, emotionally and mentally different on the whole. Anyone who points this out for discussion is a biggoted asshole. This immediately terminates any productive discussions.

    As long as men and women try to treat each other as exact duplicates, instead of equals, there will continue to be major conflicts and confusion. Women may as well start complaining about how men can't keep going after they orgasm without a refractory period. Sorry ladies -- men just aren't biologically built that way. We couldn't change it if we wanted. Likewise, we think and behave, overall, differently. (It seems the way to resolve this is usually not to just understand and live with the differences, but for men to 'fix' themselves by doing things the way women say they are supposed to.) This too you may never undrestand and we don't necessarily ask you to. We promise not to cry, throw a tantrum and hold a silent grudge against you until you figure it out on your own -- we'll just settle for the undstanding that some people are male and some are women and there are great differences between the two.
    --
    I just read K5 for the articles.

    Sorry, Schools are *NOT* biased against girls (4.44 / 9) (#143)
    by FlightTest on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 12:30:43 PM EST

    I was going to hold my tounge, but I'm getting tired of seeing this myth of school bias against girls continually put forth as fact.

    There is a rather long winded but quite well researched essay essentially disproving the myths put forward in "How Schools Shortchange Girls" here. One of the opening paragraphs states:

    But the idea that the "schools shortchange girls" is wrong and dangerously wrong. It is girls who get higher grades in school, who do better than boys on standardized tests of reading and writing, and who get higher class rank and more school honors. It is young women who enter and graduate from college far more frequently than young men. It is women who have made dramatic progress in obtaining professional, business, and doctoral degrees. The great gender gap of the 1960s in advanced degrees has almost closed, especially in the professional fields to which ambitious women aspire. In the view of elementary and high school students, the young people who sit in the classroom year after year and observe what is going on, both boys and girls agree: Schools favor girls. Teacher think girls are smarter, like being around them more, and hold higher expectations for them.
    One of the more interesting part of the whole piece is about 2/3 of the way through, where Professor Judith Kleinfeld talks about the difficulty she had in getting the actual data used to support the conclusions in the report:
    While the politicized version, How Schools Shortchange Girls (1992) is available for a mere $16.95, obtaining the full data report requires a payment of $85.00 for unbound xeroxed pages. The AAUW provides an 800-number for ordering its reports, but the person I called at this number knew nothing about the full data report. I then called the AAUW offices, left messages, and waited for weeks to get telephone calls returned until I finally located someone who knew of this report.
    Hardly sounds like people who are sure that their data supports thier conclusions. The facts simply do not support the conclusion that girls are somehow shortchanged in school.

    This rant would have done well to leave off the last three paragraphs, as they seem to argue that the internet can be used to fight the horrible (and real, as opposed to thin-skinned whining about rude comments) wrongs committed against women in the world, rather than support the thesis which is that gender inequity exists on the intenet.



    Why did I flip? I got tired of coming up with last minute desparate solutions to impossible problems created by other fucking people.
    Agreed (none / 0) (#231)
    by Robert Gormley on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 09:34:51 PM EST

    In fact, the opposite is true in places. In order to redress the vague "inequity" society placed on girls re science, people chose to replace this with a definite, tangible inequity: Girls-only science. Girls-only sport. Girls-only MUSIC?

    No options for boys. They can take co-ed classes or go to a boys school, damnit.

    So apparently now "equality" is defined as "treating males as second-class, because in the past we've treated females as such", because apparently two wrongs make a right.

    And in a stunning display of the obvious, what has happened at schools? "Boys performing poorly", "Boys receiving inadequate attention", whereby boys grades have declined well beyond what statistics would indicate if we'd actually offered both boys and girls *equal* opportunity.

    This annoys me.

    A female group here in Melbourne purchase a gym chain. They summarily terminate all male memberships, deciding it's a female only chain now. Some guys go to the Anti Discrimination Tribunal - their appeal is turned down.

    Two weeks later in direct response, some guys decide to start a *new* (ie no revokation of existing memberships) male-only gym. Feminists go to same Tribunal and have the business declared discriminatory.

    Equality is equality. When you start tipping the scales to the other side in some misguided attempt at providing equality, you inevitably end up with a wild see-saw ride that hurts both sides.

    [ Parent ]

    Can't men be men? (2.46 / 13) (#151)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:00:44 PM EST

    Men are rude and rough with each other. In the group of men I hang out with, we sometimes drop down and flying tackle each other without warning. I weigh 290 pounds and if I attempted this with your average woman, I'd put her in the hospital. Men are tougher emotionally than women. We are raised that way. Men have to let off steam and complain about women largely due to how much idiotic constraints that the presence of women cause.
    So, along comes a medium with no repercussions for actions, and men suddenly start being exactly what they are, and women complain. See, they thought they had managed to domesticate man, but now they are running up against what the vast majority of men really are, and they still want to change it. It's like the male-only clubs that eventually had to admit females, and males had to go elsewhere to be manly and primitive and disgusting. Every time women force themselves into one of these things, the cycle begins again.
    As to female only clubs, they mostly work because men have no wish to be a part of them. Sorry, but the commisseration and so on mentioned by one poster, the support, the feeling of sisterhood, would make me feel very odd indeed. It's too sickeningly sweet, but then, I'm a man, and evolution has endowed me with the ability to beat up a brontasaurus, not to heal rifts in the family.
    Anyway, my point is that men and women are different, and men and women need different places to be themselves, so would you please quit calling it discrimination and go somewhere else if it bothers you?
    I get the distinct feeling that women in the US won't stop until every manly trait is beaten out of their men. Well, like a pressure cooker, if you don't let them blow off steam, you will eventually have an explosion. I don't care if you think it morally wrong to behave this way, it is the way men *are*. In other parts of the world, women recognize this. The control a woman exerts on her man in the US is phenomenal. I, for one, am tired of it. If women are, indeed, equal, they won't need these special protections. They will be able to stand up for themselves. If they aren't equal, they shouldn't be in the middle of a pissing contest by men.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    Note on Moderation. (3.00 / 3) (#159)
    by Electric Angst on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:50:33 PM EST

    Typically, I wouldn't moderate this to a 0, simply because it isn't pure spam or crapflooding. It is, however, a pretty blatent troll, and the hateful attitude expressed will only serve as an annoyance at best, and poison the intelligent discourse currently happening at worst.

    So, if you're a trusted user wondering why I just did this, there you go. Now are you going to put it back on the front page, or show that bad trolling just won't happen in K5?


    --
    "Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
    [ Parent ]
    So, a blatant troll... (3.00 / 1) (#164)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:01:12 PM EST

    Is something you strongly disagree with? I assure you it was no troll. That people would react to it strongly is expected. However, it is exactly how I feel about this subject.
    People deeming something they disagree with strongly a blatant troll is exactly the reason I do not post on Slashdot any more.
    Anyway, I appreciate that you do not use a 0, although it would not much hurt me on this board. I just implore that before the label 'blatant troll' is applied that people carefully check to make sure the person isn't making what appears to him to be a valid point.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    Incindiary subjective claims, called truth = Troll (4.50 / 2) (#176)
    by Electric Angst on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:44:37 PM EST

    I didn't call this a troll because I disagreed. I called this a troll because your argument was purposfully incindiary, and had many subjective claims with the label of truth put forth. I called is a bad troll because the argument was not well done, and offered nothing.

    I would have called this level of argument a bad troll no matter what side it was on.

    Now, before you go saying I'm not backing up any of my claims, let's look at your post:



    I'm a man, and evolution has endowed me with the ability to beat up a brontasaurus, not to heal rifts in the family.
    C'mon? Beat up a brontasaurus? You've got to be kidding me.

    I get the distinct feeling that women in the US won't stop until every manly trait is beaten out of their men.
    Once again, a sexist and uninformed attack. What type of discussion are you honestly trying to start with this kind of argument?

    See, they thought they had managed to domesticate man, but now they are running up against what the vast majority of men really are, and they still want to change it.


    Once again, more sexism, and the introduction of your absurd notion that women are working together to attempt to de-masculate men.

    I think that should show enough to make you understand why I called this a troll. If it was, I think you should polish up a little before trying again. If it wasn't, I apologize for the zero, and pity you as a human being.


    --
    "Hell, at least [Mailbox Pipebombing suspect Lucas Helder's] argument makes sense, which is more than I can say for the vast majority of people." - trhurler
    [ Parent ]
    I think you need to understand what a Troll is (4.00 / 2) (#191)
    by extrasolar on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:24:23 PM EST

    I think you need to understand what a Troll is. In fact, there a link to a definition on the webpage you type these comments in. I agree, in part, with what the original poster said. Now, if you want to degrade me to the scowl of human kind, go ahead. Its not like I am going to take any time thinking about it.

    [ Parent ]
    Lessee... (4.50 / 2) (#194)
    by weirdling on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:28:29 PM EST

    <--
    C'mon? Beat up a brontasaurus? You've got to be kidding me.
    -->
    Or beat up whatever else gets in the way; in evolutionary history, the gender role of man has been more violent. The idea remains the same.

    <--
    I get the distinct feeling that women in the US won't stop until every manly trait is beaten out of their men.

    Once again, a sexist and uninformed attack. What type of discussion are you honestly trying to start with this kind of argument?
    -->

    A sexist and uninformed attack? Where is your support? You have merely assumed I am wrong. My point was not to start a discussion but to disagree with the general trend in society today, which is to say that men must become less of what they are to accomodate women. That is sexist itself. To insist that one side change to aid/support another is inherently sexist. To let them be themselves is not. See, the term sexist has been changed with special pleading; it now means 'anything against women' for the most part, not 'anything that materially treats one sex better', which *all* of the proposals for *fixing* this problem result in; they result in men modifying their behaviour, not women becoming less sensitive, so they are sexist in their own way.
    As to uninformed, where do you live? I have lived in many different countries in many parts of the world, and nowhere else I have lived has this problem been so pronounced. Once again, my perspective differs; hence you find my statements offensive, sexist, and uninformed, which you don't hesitate to point out, but your defense is lacking. Disagree with me, don't censure me, if you really have actual data to back it up.
    I agree that other countries do have this problem, but I haven't lived in them, so I do not know.

    <--
    See, they thought they had managed to domesticate man, but now they are running up against what the vast majority of men really are, and they still want to change it.

    Once again, more sexism, and the introduction of your absurd notion that women are working together to attempt to de-masculate men.
    -->

    Do you honestly believe this is not the case? Have you seen how a confirmed batchelor lives? How a married man lives? It is not that women themselves are attempting to do this overtly; it is that who women are attempt to do this through the way they feel and believe and American men let them. So much of the current political landscape is littered with feminist thought. The million-mom march. Anything Oprah says. Don't get me wrong; I realise these are generalizations, but so is the generalization that all men are pigs, but such a comment, thinly disguised by the poster, is not sexist while what I say is, effectively giving precedence to one sex over the other.

    Now, that clearly doesn't show why you called this a troll. I don't appreciate pity, but thanks for the moral over-zealousness. You have assumed my existence is worse than yours with nothing to go on but the fact that I so manifestly disagree with you that you will dismiss me out of hand with no argument and no discussion. I never called you the names you call me; I merely protested that this is not common consensus that women are horribly mistreated through this kind of behaviour.
    That my argument was not well done is perhaps correct. That you furnished no argument whatsoever is, however, fact. I would have expected better from one so enlightened, but it never fails a moralist to insist that a thing is self-evident when it manifestly isn't.
    Feminists do not now and have never wanted equality. Special treatment is what all special interest groups wish for or they would not even exist. Simply put, if one is actually equal, one does not need to be treated differently. That was the aim of my post.
    The fact is that there are differences between the sexes, and if the truth is sexist, I apologise for it, but it cannot help itself. Women tend to be more sensitive and men tend to be more brash and rude, and these have very valid evolutionary roots, as do gender roles. As a society that no longer needs those gender roles explores the changes associated with not needing them, they are relegated to the heap through social pressures, which certainly can't be very compassionate.
    The feminist movement in America has made the dating situation a mine-field. I'm not the only one saying this. However, oddly enough, women are finding it harder to get dates at the same time. It is perhaps a fault of feminism itself, driving these men away from women in general, which requires that they vent on the internet, where attendance is *not* compulsary, and where women *can* find another IRC channel.
    I guess I would have been less upset if you had provided more of a disagreement, or would do so in the future. Left alone, the comment will fall. If a post has language that is *calculated* to inflame, not merely inflames you because of what it is trying to convey, then mod it down. Even though your statements were inflamatory to me, I did not mod them down, despite the fact that they lacked everything you accuse me of having vis. an argument. Essentially, if the post personally attacks another poster, you can mod it down. If it contains absolutely no content, it can be modded down. Otherwise, leave it alone. And, please, if you are to mod something down, disagree with it, make a point, and prove it.

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    *giggle* (4.00 / 1) (#199)
    by aphrael on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 05:45:22 PM EST

    Men are tougher emotionally than women

    Odd ... in my experience men are taught not to admit to their emotions and end up being more brittle than women as a result.

    [ Parent ]

    not all men... (4.00 / 1) (#203)
    by Elmin on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 07:47:06 PM EST

    "Men are tougher emotionally than women. We are raised that way."

    If it's because we're raised that way, then what does it have to do with gender? I'm not raised that way, and I know quite a few women who are more emotionally tough than I am, so from my perspective it has nothing to do with gender at all.

    I give similar treatment to the rest of your comment, since it is all along the same line of thinking: Men are raised a certain way, and therefore should be forgiven for insulting everyone who is not masculine.

    Frankly, I find the people you describe to be distasteful, and honestly wish this female tyranny would hurry up with the domestication so I don't have to deal with them anymore.

    [ Parent ]
    Gender bias is not totally genetic (none / 0) (#240)
    by weirdling on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 02:49:33 PM EST

    A *lot* of the gender difference seen in society is a result of environment. Did you know I was the first male in the High School I attended to ever wear pink?
    That you are an anomally in a situation where I pointed out that I was making generalizations does not invalidate the rest of the argument. The problem with people is that they are different and there are all kinds. This is why generalizations are made.
    Anyway, one of the things I meant to convey is that men often insult *everyone*, not just females. Insulting each other is often a form of male bonding. This is often the case.
    The people I am describing are distasteful? Bigoted, aren't we? This is exactly what I was complaining about. Bigotry cuts both ways. These people are distasteful; let us be rid of them. That is what has been said of various groups during various times in the history of earth; now you are saying that about a group that is themselves bigotted. Has a certain symmetry...

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    Making the wrong distinctions (4.00 / 1) (#241)
    by Elmin on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 08:48:56 PM EST

    "The people I am describing are distasteful? Bigoted, aren't we? This is exactly what I was complaining about. Bigotry cuts both ways. These people are distasteful; let us be rid of them. That is what has been said of various groups during various times in the history of earth; now you are saying that about a group that is themselves bigotted. Has a certain symmetry..."

    Conceded for two reasons: first, I agree with you, and second, my original comment miscommunicated my views on the matter, which seems to be happenning all too often of late...

    Just in general, the type of insults and rudeness you describe is not unique to men, just as the wearing of pink clothes is not unique to women. I think you are trying to counter a gender issue by making up a new gender issue, and that is counterproductive.

    On the other hand, I doubt any of this is at all related to the article; I still don't see any signs of genderial bias from anything anyone has said here. Instead, all I see is that some people do not share the sense of humor shared by others, and therefore take needless offense at their jokes.

    [ Parent ]
    tee-hee! (3.00 / 1) (#204)
    by 0xdeadbeef on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 07:50:42 PM EST

    The control a woman exerts on her man in the US is phenomenal. I, for one, am tired of it.
    If you were so much a violent, stupid animal, you wouldn't need a handler.

    [ Parent ]
    Interesting view of men. (5.00 / 2) (#229)
    by fsh on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 03:52:21 AM EST

    While I agree that men need their own place, apart from women, I strongly object that a public forum, open to everyone, is that place. To use your analogy, no one is saying you can't roughhouse with your friends: we just ask you not to do it when there are other people standing around.

    Your view of men is very interesting, but I would reply that you may be referring to the baser nature of man, the id, and ignoring the man as a whole, with the ego and super-ego, as they're refered to in Freudian psychology. Most men i know do not always act the way you describe, and certainly none of the men I know on a professional basis act this way. they may do so at home, where I don't know them, but they certainly don't in a public area.

    Men are tougher emotionally than women.

    I would have to strongly disagree with this statement. I can't see how emotional toughness has anything to do with gender, and, in any case, how do you measure emotional toughness? The only way to find out is to put someone in a stressful situation and see how they handle it.

    Men have to let off steam and complain about women largely due to how much idiotic constraints that the presence of women cause.

    I would seriously like to see what you consider an 'idiotic constraint' placed on you by women.

    I'm a man, and evolution has endowed me with the ability to beat up a brontasaurus, not to heal rifts in the family.

    But yet the father plays a key role in the myths of all of our cultures, and the purpose behind many psychiatric visits is to acheive atonement with the father.

    If they aren't equal, they shouldn't be in the middle of a pissing contest by men.

    I simply think it's rude to have a pissing contest in an open forum. If it were the #pissing_contest channel on IRQ, I'd have no problem with it.
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]

    This is a very well thought-out response (4.00 / 1) (#239)
    by weirdling on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 02:38:51 PM EST

    Most of what I got from the post I made is of the "you're wrong, primitive, idiotic, violent, trolling, etc." vein. Your post at least bothered to disagree with me genteely, and to a certain extent, you are right. However, I do believe that I must clarify some things.
    First of all, I am referring to the id, as Freudian psychology puts it, although the word I prefer is anima, out of Jungian psychology. Of course, men, when in control of their higher orders of the psyche, behave differently. However, in the case of just 'hanging out', men tend to be in the control of the anima, or id, or whatever, and as such, tend to behave in very primitive ways. That men can behave in another way is manifestly evident; that they behave in this way is also manifestly evident. My point was to not blame them for what is essentially, to my point of view, natural behavior.
    As to the rest of the generalizations, let it be known that the origional story was fraught with generalizations, as well. I am speaking of the average man, who is considerably less likely to be offended by this kind of behavior than the average woman. Men, due to the way society is structured, are often raised with a modicum of abuse such that they are made tougher. This is happening less often, I realise, but hey, generalizations are generalizations.
    The existance of a woman in a conversation often results in quite a few constraints being placed on that conversation; that has been my experience. Granted, my experience is somewhat stilted, but for the most part, there are entire subjects that cannot be discussed in the presence of women. What these subjects are varies from society to society.
    The very fact of those visits to psychologists demonstrates that men are traditionally more emotionally aloof, which was a survival trait in early man that survives as an evolutionary artifact. It may or may not still be necessary, but it certainly still is there.
    I agree this kind of thing shouldn't happen in an open forum, but I was under the impression that it was happening in IRC chat rooms, which I do not consider an open forum. Several posters said that they frequented channels in which this sort of thing does not happen.
    Anyway, all of that being said, I myself am not given to this kind of behavior often. I do not go on IRC chats for this exact reason. The barrel joke frankly disgusted me. What I meant to do was to defend the right of those who do these things to have their place to do it. The reason I do this is that I also do things which annoy/disgust others, and eventually, when they're done persecuting these, they will come after me. Who knows who could be next? Morality knows no limits...

    I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
    [ Parent ]
    Speak up! (3.75 / 4) (#156)
    by Erf on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 01:25:04 PM EST

    The simple solution is this: if you're in IRC (or some other chat forum, or a vocal conversation, or whatever) and somebody says something galactically stupid and offensive, say something. They may not have intended offense, in which case it's even more important to speak up. As other comments have mentioned, a lot of the time it's a case of not thinking -- of not realizing that this isn't a boy's locker room, and shouldn't be treated as such.

    I'm male, but I'm offended by the sample IRC snippets, and by that kind of rudeness (racism, sexism, whatever) in general. We'd be better off without it, and I think all cyndrekit's trying to suggest is that it's possible to at least reduce it with a little forethought...

    -Erf.
    ...doin' the things a particle can...

    YES!!! (none / 0) (#184)
    by Bastian on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:20:47 PM EST

    Staying quiet is the worst thing we can do about this. If there is anything that can stop this stuff, it is knowledge and understanding.

    I was recently involved in a small scandal on my campus involving some guys I know singing a song. . . one that I personally can't stand. I won't repeat the lyrics, but suffice it to say that it is one of the most misogynist uses of the English language I have heard to date. I was vocal about them not singing the song, but they kept on doing it. They thought they had something cute, and it never even occurred to them why it might be so hurtful to women.

    Well, they had a genius idea - why don't they sing it to some women they knew?

    A few friends turned enemies later, I am still trying to explain to them what happened. These guys have never been exposed to women's issues in any way, and don't have a clue what it is about these songs that is so bad. (the step I am trying to get them to take now on the grand journey to understanding is to understand that they haven't had the same experiences in life as everyone else around them, but that's a side note.) I honestly don't think anyone has ever bothered to sit down and tell them exactly where they are screwing up. Whenever they have done or said something out of line around women when I have been around, the women have either taken it in stride or gotten up and left the room in a huff. Never did anyone sit them down and tell them what is so bad about what they are saying. And given who they are and where they are and where they are going in life, the are never going to figure this stuff out on their own.

    If there's anything I have learned since this whole ordeal started, it's that most the people in the culture I live in (I can't speak for other ones) can't be bothered to take a walk in another's shoes if the only reason to do it is purely altruistic. So be it. I guess we'll have to drag people kicking and screaming into discussions about the people we share this rock with.

    [ Parent ]
    Don't speak for all women! (4.33 / 6) (#169)
    by digihorse on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:19:30 PM EST

    I am tearing down your soap box little one... You believe yourself rightous in speaking on behalf of "womenhood"... you do not speak for all of us! In specifically attacking the online community, you are showing just how insecure and ignorant you really are... I have found no gender bias among the techies I regularly communicate with... in fact... quite the opposite is true. It is truely the one place where you are judged by your intellect and contributuion, and not your body. However, if you yourself, participate in such a whining, bemoaning fashion, then I would consider you fair game... Women in the Western world have demanded and received equal opportunities, and now that they're allowed "into the locker room" they want the men to shut up, and be curtious.... Excuuuuse me... Get out of the locker room, or participate! There is no raunchier, ruder group of humans than a few women gathered together... You are a woman... and with that comes more power than a man will ever realize... Stop being a whiner, grow up, and glory in your power. Will you meet chauvinists? Absolutely.... They were raised that way... or their society views women in a rather biblical way....they can't help it. That's their problem, not yours... Teach them by your actions, not your preaching... the preaching only proves their outdated ideas... I am sick to the point of homocide, of hearing about women who feel sexually harassed.. Get over it! Use it! Make it work for you... don't whine about it... Did you bother to notify the "boys" you found so offensive in their jokes, that you found them offensive? Or, did you sulk off into cyberspace... to write the diatribe above. Good Mother guilt works every time, in every venue... Take out your verbal sword... it is a woman's age old best weapon... akin to "the look"... and if you don't know what "the look" is, then you have been spending way too much time in darkened rooms in chat rooms. Ok, I feel better now... not as nasty as I wanted to be... you can have your soap box back now... just don't speak for me.

    In principle... (4.00 / 2) (#174)
    by fsh on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:37:21 PM EST

    ...I agree. The problem seems to be defining the boundary of the locker room. To put it bluntly: If K5 were a men's only club, then no problem. It's not, however, and I hope it never becomes one. You can't have valid cultural discourse by ignoring half of the population. The fact that #k5 is listed on the k5 webpage indicates that it should be a forum governed by similar rules, and nowhere in the rules do I see anything about exclusion.

    Well, with the exception of the 0 mod, which I disagree with, btw. "I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."
    -fsh
    [ Parent ]

    Damn Straight!!! (4.00 / 1) (#185)
    by Elpenor on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:30:03 PM EST

    <fsh wrote:>

    "I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

    Words to live by!!


    Elp
    ----------------
    "Duff Beer - You know you want it..."
    [ Parent ]
    I wanted to vote your post a 5... (4.50 / 4) (#179)
    by slaytanic killer on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:03:28 PM EST

    ... but looking at these posts, it is so tiring that everyone thinks that a woman is this or that...

    I don't want a woman using her "natural powers" to gain advantage over little boys. I want to know that I am talking with a human being, someone who freely perceives and does not sit behind a mask hoping to make people act a certain way. Someone who feels, rather than acts out a charade that life gives her.

    I am a man, and I am nothing like what Seumas thinks what a man is; I change and people change. I am not forever bound to my gender, like some animal. I can understand, and I can come to understand through the efforts of people complaining about some group I hadn't known I was married to.

    Do I think there are women who are more like me than other men? Quite possibly. Are there some men who are what I never wish to become? Yes. I don't want people excusing me just because I am part of some group. I want to be condemned or liked because of who I have shown myself to be.

    As for using the "unique qualities of women" as tools to gain power... trust me, it does not get you as far as you want it to.

    [ Parent ]
    Ok, "little one" ;) (4.00 / 1) (#181)
    by perdida on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 03:15:11 PM EST

    It would be funny if I were biting on a troll, but...here goes..

    Some of us don't have The Look.

    Some of us get harassed in a way that we can't "make it work for us."

    Women don't just get harassed because they look like Calista Flockhart, they also get harassed even if they fall waay outside the traditional beauty norms.

    Men harass not just because they are attracted to someone, but sometimes because they are afraid-repelled-conflicted; becuase you look like some woman who has hurt them in their lives.

    No matter the reason, a system that promotes and encourages patriarchy encourages and protects their behavior. It doesn't question or second guess their reasoning, it gives them the benefit of the doubt when they harass.

    If you want to live in a society where you feel free and accepted when you choose to use your sexuality, don't expect the rest of us to live within the narrow boundaries of sexual acceptability as defined by men. If you choose to live there, more power to you. But let's make sure that those of us who choose not to live within those boundaries, or are unable to fit within them, also have a life free from fear and violence.


    The most adequate archive on the Internet.
    I can't shit a hydrogen fuel cell car. -eeee
    [ Parent ]
    pinned on your own verbal sword... (2.00 / 1) (#205)
    by canitesc on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:12:43 PM EST

    on the internet, actions are words and you yourself advised her to take out her verbal sword, and yet you are the first one to condemn her for her actions. It would seem that when a woman lets out a legitament lament,despite the fact that she did not sob or bemoan the facts,but made a supporting case, she is considered a sulker, or whiner or bitch. If a man pointed out the same facts he would be enlightened, if she does she is a whiner and should grow up. So when she took up a gripe that she found pertinant from her own personal experiences, in which she has not been alone in experiencing, you would pin her with your own verbal sword.

    [ Parent ]
    Real Life Manners (4.00 / 2) (#170)
    by j on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:21:47 PM EST

    While the three hours of work week I have left here are way too short to even touch upon the topic of inequality in general, I would like to make a short remark about one of my pet peeves:

    We treat people that we meet online differently from those in real life[...]

    In my (not so humble) opinion, the root for many of those problems is illustrated quite well by the above sentence: For many people, online communication is less real than, say, a phone call.

    Why would an online chat not be considered 'real life'? I think that this is just wrong. The people, the ideas, the feelings behind a chat session are just as real as the participants of a phone conversation or any written communication.

    I recently read an interview with users and administrators of different chat systems. One user stated that he was constantly making an ass of himself because to him, the whole thing was just a game. The other participants were to him like the NPCs in some text adventure - the only difference being that instead of saving the princess, you have to tick off as many people aspossible.

    Many people seem to think like that, but it's wrong: The things you do in games are not real - but the things you do in online communication are. The other people in a chat room / irc channel / whatever are not there for you to play with. They like to be treated like real life people. </vent>

    It should stop, but not just against women (3.50 / 4) (#172)
    by cable on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:23:52 PM EST

    The Internet is full of people who will lash out at anyone who appears to be different. Not just women, but almost anyone can be the target of harassment and abuse. Someone can be targeted because of race, religion, sex, lifestyle, origin, background, weight problems, emotional problems, psychological problems, or anything else that "problem users" see fit to pick on.

    I myself have been made fun of because I am overweight and online photos show it. Then on Yahoo someone was spoofing my name and handle and stole my photographs and made up a lot of untrue stuff about me.

    People can be just plain mean. I guess we need better moderation on the Internet? On Yahoo, you can complain to a CGI script, but I've yet to see anyone take any actual action against it. This is the stuff that lawsuits are made up, to tell you the truth.

    To be honest, I've also seen some women do the same to men. Or at least user accounts that listed themselves as being female. Could be spoofers again trying to fake us out?

    ------------------
    Only you, can help prevent Neb Rage!
    Speak for yourself (3.00 / 3) (#173)
    by jet_silver on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 02:36:16 PM EST

    We treat people that we meet online differently from those in real life...

    Not necessarily. In your attempt to be inclusive you've dipped everyone in the same shit. None for me, thanks.

    many times the manners we have so carefully developed are forgotten upon connection to the Internet.

    Again, not necessarily.

    There was a time when people thought 'On the Internet no one knows you're a dog.' When did this change? I think the Internet is very much like a slightly creepy city street, with porn barkers standing around, groups of kids acting up and various people driving around gawking. In this environment the way you're treated probably has something to do with the way you present yourself - just like it does on a slightly creepy city street. Look aware, prepared and unwilling to take any shit, and you are probably OK. Look like an easy mark, and bing, you are one.
    "What they really fear is machine-gunning politicians becoming a popular sport, like skate-boarding." -Nicolas Freeling

    IIRC this was funny (none / 0) (#233)
    by FeersumAsura on Mon Mar 05, 2001 at 06:47:43 AM EST

    First apologies for the poor quoting I can't find the origional article.
    If the Internet is a Superhighway
    It's 12 lanes wide with no speed limit and no off ramps. The signs don't exist and if you ask for directions everyone replies RTFM/FAQ. Everyone drives their own cars, some are minis with lawnmower engines other run on nitromethane and idle at 300. AOL is a giant bus lurching down the road while it's occupants throw dead and diseased animals at the other drivers. There are cops, they're on bikes with broken whistles, vigilantes armed with nuclear weapons wander the roads and 3 years olds on tricycles squirt hydrochloric acid at the unwary.
    Above the road dark shapes can be seen moving, the anonymous encrypted traffic that exists.
    This is the internet. You can live in the happy smily, media filled corporate hell. People will be nice to you, you can complain, you can be offended and you can fuck off.
    There are still people who aren't interested in rules, morals, ethics and not offending people. Yes there are sick puppies about use /ignore you feeble idiots. You don't have to stay on IRC, I don't give a toss if you leave. If you don't want to stay just choose a name which doesn't reveal your gender. Many of us don't give a toss either way, and we're not all 16 year olds.
    A parting message, fuck Windows, fuck the president, fuck M$ and fuck the whining crybabies who get offended.

    I'm so pre-emptive I'd nuke America to save time.
    [ Parent ]
    I've seen a couple of these incidents in #k5... (4.11 / 9) (#189)
    by Estanislao Martínez on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:08:01 PM EST

    ...and the thing that has made the greatest impression on me is *not* the isolated, highly verbal mysoginia shown by a few persons, which the submission emphasizes. Rather, what has impressed me the most is that when somebody like cyndrekit complains, self-appointed "mediators" step in and shout them down with an endless barrage of rationalizations; "he's just joking", "this is not serious", "don't whine about it", "stop complaining on the channel, we don't want to hear about it", "his remark about women can be interpreted many ways", "you have a persecution complex", etc.

    The contempt, condescension and dismissiveness that pops up when a female complains about this treatment is hard to convey in words.

    --em

    Ok, but... (none / 0) (#202)
    by trhurler on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 06:41:35 PM EST

    Admittedly, I don't frequent ANY irc channels, because irc sucks, but I've seen the same thing on here and elsewhere. The trick is, though, generally, people shout down ANY complaint, of ANY kind, no matter who makes it or why. That's hardly discriminatory, although you might take issue with it for other reasons.

    I think, though, that in the end, people are going to find that there's no refuge from the rude; the solution is to quit caring about them or create forums in which they are not welcome. It is pretty obvious that k5 is not going to be one of those, for better or worse.

    --
    'God dammit, your posts make me hard.' --LilDebbie

    [ Parent ]
    Your Two Quotes (4.62 / 8) (#192)
    by gauntlet on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:28:15 PM EST

    I don't believe the stats. That's been talked about. The feelings of one "male_user" are not evidence of societal behaviour. As for the joke, when John Bobbit had his penis cut off and thrown out the window of a moving vehicle, what was society's reaction? Women cheered her, men told jokes about him.

    What would our reaction have been if he had cut off her genitals?

    Before anyone is going to come out and say that women are treated differently, they should ask themselves these questions:

    • Would you be willing to cut off a piece of your female offspring's genitals at birth?
    • Would you send your son to ballet classes?
    • If your son and daughter were walking together, and your son was attacked, would you chastise your daughter for not defending him?
    The point is, we all treat men and women differently. That's more nurture than nature.

    You want equality, follow these steps:

    1. Accept that men and women are, in fact, different (not hard)
    2. Figure out how much equality you actually want, given #1. (really hard)
    3. Treat men and women, especially those close to you, with that degree of equality.
    If you make it to #3, you'll no longer feel the need to complain.

    BTW, I know that "how much equality" and "degree of equality" aren't really logical. Consider the question to be "in what areas do you want equality between sexes", if that helps you.

    Into Canadian Politics?

    I'll grant you partially on Bobbit, but... (none / 0) (#200)
    by Karmakaze on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 06:12:12 PM EST

    • Would you be willing to cut off a piece of your female offspring's genitals at birth?
    • Would you send your son to ballet classes?
    • If your son and daughter were walking together, and your son was attacked, would you chastise your daughter for not defending him?
    • Actually, from what I've read of the health issues involved, I probably would not choose to have my hypothetical son circumcized, either.
    • Yes, I would send my hypothetical son to ballet classes, if he showed an interest. It's a terrific way to develop strengh and coordination. I would not force my hypothetical son to go to ballet classes, any more than I would force my hypothetical daughter.
    • If I were walking with my brother and he were assulted, I would feel terribly guilty for being unable to protect him.
    Is that equal enough for you?


    --
    Karmakaze
    [ Parent ]

    equality (3.50 / 2) (#225)
    by ocelot on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 10:46:24 PM EST

    Equality isn't really the issue here at all. I think most females on #k5 are sensible enough to know that men and women are simply not built the same. I don't think it makes sense, for example, for standards to be lowered on physical tests for jobs like firefighting, etc. when the test is testing for strength which is crucial to proper performance of the job (if the standards are artificially raised to prevent women from joining, that's another matter entirely). Physically, men are built differently than women, and tend to have more upper body strength, and if upper body strength is necessary for the job, it makes sense that men would be better suited for the job. I do think that intellectually, men and women are equal, including in mathematical and scientific aspects. However, I have no proof of this. But even on the off chance that, on average, they aren't, that doesn't mean that individual females cannot be of equal or greater intellectual capacity than individual males.

    Perhaps more relevant to this discussion - like you pointed out, males and females are raised differently. There may also be nature reasons (hormonal differences?) that make women think slightly differently. These differences in experiences and/or nature are going to change how we percieve and interpret things, which is why we may be offended or more sensetive about things that males don't find bothersome.

    In fact, if we really wanted to be treated the same as men, we wouldn't have any problem when guys talk to us the same as they do towards other guys (as has been pointed out more than one time in the discussion). That's actually kind of the opposite of what we (or at least I. I really shouldn't speak for all females :) want.

    What I would like is to be respected, despite of these differences. And to have these differences (including possible differences in how I interpret things) respected as well.

    Oh, and circumcision is a matter I'll investigate more when it becomes an issue (and probably go with my husband's feelings about it, as he's the one who's had personal experience with the matter), but if forced to choose right now off the top of my head, I'd choose against it. Sure I'd let my son go to ballet class if he felt like it. And if my daughter had the ability to defend my son and didn't, I might chastise her. And I wouldn't chastise my son if he didn't protect his sister because he didn't have the ability for whatever reason.

    [ Parent ]

    IRC has low S/N by nature (4.00 / 2) (#195)
    by michaelmalak on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:44:48 PM EST

    Unmoderated text-only real-time chat historically is mostly dribble. Change any of those three parameters, and meaningful conversation takes place. Media-moderated press conferences with public figures, NetMeeting casual chats, and mailing lists all have higher S/N and a corresponding decrease in sexual harassment.


    --
    BergamoAcademy.com  Authentic Montessori in Denver
    It all depends on context... (3.00 / 1) (#197)
    by fross on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 04:56:06 PM EST

    I've seen this happen for years... from spurious "write"s and "talks" under unix, through MUDs and IRC and then web-based chats, online games etc.

    i think a point to remember is unfortunately, the average offender in this case (male in late teens) is one really predisposed to this sort of abuse. whether it's through peer pressure, ego problems, latent homosexuality or millions of other causes, this group of kids are not respectful to women to begin with. couple this with anonymity and an implied invulnerability it bestows, together with the fact this this is a male-dominated medium (until very recently, at least, and even still, in many cases) where people of like mentality will back each other up, and it's not surprising it happens.

    on the other hand, unfortunately women do experience this already in many scenarios (imagine the snide remarks one would receive as a woman going into a pool hall or a "lads'" bar), so wilfully walking into a room full of anonymous 16 year old boys, one should epxect them to behave like anonymous 16 year old boys. this isn't so much an internet problem as a social one.

    i'm glad to say that elsewhere on the net this doesn't happen, and is not tolerate. just like in real life. on that note, i think the examples given above are completely illogical and give an erroneous view of the attitude. i'll give a counter example - on online gaming servers i go on (counterstrike and so forth), if a girl comes online and plays, after the usual couple of rude jokes (which should be replied in kind), they're accepted as just another player. if anything the swearing and dirty comments drops. the only ribbing that goes on is between the males "huh huh, you got beaten by a girl" if she's doing well. ;) the examples given above are the sort of talk that boys do between themselves, rather than in mixed company.

    in short, if #k5 is turning into a haven for immature 14 year old boys, then it will be as such. it doesn't speak about the rest of the internet. however i for one would be happy to see more repercussion available for this sort of behaviour. luckily it seems increasingly that sending an ISP a behaviour log, an IP and a time/date is usually enough to get their account shut off.

    should we have special rules "protecting" women? no. we should have rules/guidelines that state that discrimination of people due to race, creed, colour, gender or any other factor is intolerable. no-one should have to be a minority, we're all people.

    David


    easy solution to this problem (1.50 / 2) (#201)
    by glmull on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 06:34:06 PM EST

    VA Linux (www.valinux.com)

    When K5 accepted money from OSDN network in exchange for their sponsorship, that means you can complain to VA Linux. I'm sure K5 wants their money and support. Kuro5hin lost the ability to let this kind of stuff go on when they got on the payroll of VA Linux, right russ?

    From the osdn website:

    "And please don't forget our advertisers, business partners or the kind people at our parent company, VA Linux; they're the ones who pay our salaries and buy the bandwidth for 100 million pageviews a month. Without their support, we wouldn't be able to supply OSDN services free, and give away free OSDN memberships. "OSDN" and "OSDN.com" are trademarks of VA Linux, Inc. "
    Zetatalk tells us what will happen in 2003.

    Context is important (4.00 / 2) (#207)
    by Elmin on Fri Mar 02, 2001 at 08:31:07 PM EST

    "Ideas such as closing a topic of conversation that is considered rude or offensive to a group of people that are also in the channel or room, speaking up in defense of those that are being picked on, or just stating that that topic is not appropriate to discuss in a public chat room could be implemented with very little effort, and would make the use of these forms of communication more accessible and enjoyable to everyone."

    In vocal conversations with people you don't know, do you typically do any of this? I don't, I don't know of anyone who does, and I know from experience that none of it works unless the person doing it is obviously of greater age, wisdom, or authority and is totally separate from the conversation in the first place (e.g. teachers and parents). Online, there doesn't seem to be any higher authority with these obvious traits, so I doubt any of that would work unless it was a very tightly-knit community.

    Your examples are ones I am somewhat familiar with from conversations in the flesh -- they are generally referred to as "ribbing," and are totally harmless in intent. As for effect, it totally depends on your reaction and interpretation. There is no particular indication from the tiny quotes you post that these people have any real bias or problems dealing with the opposite sex; I have plenty of friends who would not be out of place saying those kinds of things in mixed company without any offense taken by anyone involved. These are not 16-year-olds, either, and not all of them are male. If you want to convince me there is a problem, show me someone getting upset besides you, for example: "I talked to someone else who observed the conversation and she told me she was seriously offended by these comments which were obviously the views of these people." At the least, I'd appreciate some context.

    Context? (none / 0) (#221)
    by Dolphineus on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 12:44:20 PM EST

    If you want to convince me there is a problem, show me someone getting upset besides you, for example: "I talked to someone else who observed the conversation and she told me she was seriously offended by these comments which were obviously the views of these people." At the least, I'd appreciate some context.

    While the context of a discussion is important (extensive harm has been done claiming a statement is biased by taking it out of context), it is also important to remember that the determination of offense lies not with the speaker but with the listener. Does this mean you should censor your thoughts to make sure the do not offend anyone? No. However you should be aware that something you said in jest, or in the flow of a conversation may be offensive to someone, even though no offense was intended. With a little polite discourse, the offendee should be able to inform someone that they have given offense and should be able to settle the matter. Unfortunately, this rarely happens IRL, let alone over the net.

    C ya
    Dolphineus

    [ Parent ]
    Handling offense (4.50 / 2) (#222)
    by spaceghoti on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 04:20:03 PM EST

    Offense is so completely subjective that it becomes a real hot potato, particularly in online forums. It is so easy to offend someone (or groups of people) without even trying that it sometimes becomes pointless to say anything at all. In which case, I find that it ultimately boils down to two options: refrain from making any comment whatsoever, or say what you think and let the moderation sort it out.

    Earlier I made a lot of comments about using religion to justify behavior. I knew when I posted them that these comments were going to be taken as trollbait by people who are incensed by the very thought that their religion might not be the cornerstone of morality they assume it is. Sure enough, several of those comments got rated to 1 by individuals who decided I was either being heretical or attempting to provoke flames. I can't argue with the heretical aspect (also highly subjective) but I wasn't trying to provoke a flamewar. What I was doing was arguing against the position of using religious beliefs as justification for behavior I find morally and ethically questionable, such as degrading women. Unfortunately, my backgroud provides me with ammunition that makes my arguments seem like blasphemy. So be it. I'm not just making stuff up, I've actually thought about what I believe for a long time.

    Knowing that what I had to say would be offensive to people, I said it anyway. In doing so, people saw an implication that I think people with strong religious convictions are somehow inferior to me. Because the topic is so polarizing and my statements so thoroughly biased toward one end of the spectrum, I could not avoid this. It was going to offend somebody and very likely a whole group of people. So should I have not said it even though I devoutly believe my statements are true and accurate? Or should the people I offended have not rated me down or argued against me? At best we can agree to disagree, and not everyone is mature enough to accept that position.

    Sometimes you're damned when you do and damned when you don't. I personally believe that when something offends me, I need to step back and ask why I am so offended. If the offense is because I'm not willing to accept an alternate point of view, then the problem is purely mine and not the fault of the person who gave me offense. If the offense is because the offending individual was attempting to deliberately hurt or provoke me, then I can take it up with them and discuss where I stand. Otherwise I feel it is my duty to keep quiet and work out my own problems for myself.



    "Humor. It is a difficult concept. It is not logical." -Saavik, ST: Wrath of Khan

    [ Parent ]
    the guys I work with (3.00 / 2) (#224)
    by anonymous cowerd on Sat Mar 03, 2001 at 06:01:59 PM EST

    All these guys I work with can't see a woman walking down the damned sidewalk without compulsively braying out, "she's workin!," by which they mean, "she's a prostitute." They say indecent things to the waitresses at lunch, and get themselves banned from restaurants. I've given up lunch; I take a nap alone in the truck, and enjoy pleasant, revivifying dreams instead.

    When no one is looking, women treat generalized men pretty bad, by which I mean "contemptuously," too. Snoop, you'll see.

    I'm really depressed about all this, it's hard to move or even breathe. Where's the love? or, what's so funny about peace, love and understanding? Life's difficult, all of us are doomed, and people are mostly fools, which makes it even worse.

    Sourly yours WDK - WKiernan@concentric.net

    "This calm way of flying will suit Japan well," said Zeppelin's granddaughter, Elisabeth Veil.

    Agreed 100% (none / 0) (#230)
    by dvicci on Sun Mar 04, 2001 at 11:00:25 AM EST

    I graduated in 1996 with a Social Welfare degree from the University of Kansas. Being one of 8 or 9 males in a graduating class of 60+ people, I have first hand experience with being woefully in the minority. It's true... women lower themselves to the same contemptuous behavior that you've described of men. I was, both intentionally and (mostly) unconsiously belittled, harrassed, and ignored, by both students and professors - yes all female... I was rarely in the same class the other males, so there was unfortunately little companionship there. My experiences turned me off Social Welfare completely... I'm not an Apache administrator and mod_perl programmer at a small company just outside Kansas City.

    [ Parent ]
    Gender identity on the internet is shaky at best (none / 0) (#244)
    by jester69 on Tue Mar 06, 2001 at 06:07:39 PM EST

    I wonder, how on earth can anyone tell from meeting someone in a chat room what gender anyone else is... I remeber years ago when irc was the bomb, and IM hadnt yet been thought of, gender bending was common. Girls would come on as boys to not get 100 /msg a minute from greasy perverts, or would make sure to have gender neutral nicknames &/or e-mails (pre identd.) And i have seen a few cases of what i am sure are men posing as women to get into hot keyboard sex with horny straight guys of the younger age bracket. And the funny thing is, i hung out in music and technology oriented IRC rooms, i'd hate to see what was going on in the likes of #hottub.

    So, how does this tie into gender equality? Well, the internet is essentially Sexless. Basically, you meet "people" and they dont have a corporal incarnation so you are left to get to know them on the basis of their mind. What is between the ears so to speak. And between the ears we are all a balance of masculine and feminine personality traits. Intellectual gender is most assuredly not black and white.

    I try to obfuscate verything about my personal identity on the internet, even to the point of what my age is, what color i am, my name, socioeconomic status, gender, etc.

    Why? Well then you have no choice but to take my statements for what they are. You are free from any bias you may have for or against any particular group.(though many people like to pigeonhole me into one group or another so they dont have to deal with my statements and can dismiss them as propoganda from group X.)

    I have noticed a disturbing tendency in this modern world for people to divorce themseves from identifying all people as their brothers, and instead to fight for the egenda of their particular group over all others. many claim it is to foster equality or tolerance, but that isnt the case at all. The best way to engender tolernace is to break down the idea that men and women are different in some fundamental way, Sure we have different bodies, Emotions *tend* to be similar among women or men, but there are no hard and fast rules. I give equally dirty looks to people who make "all <insert gender here> are <insert rudeness here>" remarks regardless of which gender they seem to hate.

    At the end of the day, both sexes are human and have exactly the same wants. To be loved, to not starve to death under a tree, to have friends and a sense of belonging, a warm place to go to sleep at night, etc.

    To divide problems into "mens issues" or "womens issues" is not the way to foster progress. Instead we need to attack these as common courtesy issues and call people to task when they are being a jerkwad to our group or any other group. It does'nt matter if you are being an ass to a white man, or a chineese woman, you are still being an ass and i will tell you so and/or just avoid you. If everyone tried to behave like this, then the genders would truly be equal. Until then we will have to suffer through unenlightened advocates making things worse in a misguided attempt to make things better.

    jester,69



    the ghost in the machine fighting for the rights of humanity everywhere
    Its a lemming thing, Jeep owners would understand.
    Uh, okay. (none / 0) (#245)
    by gromm on Wed Mar 07, 2001 at 03:25:19 AM EST

    Maybe I'm weird. Maybe I'm more intelligent than the average bear. Maybe it's something else entirely. But online, I can guess a person's sex just by how they act, and most of the time, I've been right. (although when I'm wrong, it's much to my chagrin)

    Also, one of the weirdest trends I've seen on IRC in the past five years is the proliferation of women in sexually oriented channels. One of the channels I currently hang out in is#analsex, (yeah, yeah, I'm a sick pervert, watch me care) and five years ago it was populated by about 5 guys with nicknames like hard34 - all irregulars and lurkers - and was unregistered. Now it's registered, has regular ops and bots and all that stuff, and I would have to say that at *least* half of the regulars are female. And most of them don't hide that fact either. Yes, there is a problem with men /msg'ing the women, usually with such successful pick-up lines as "r u f or m?" but the women stand up for themselves and the channel regulars vehemently support them, which means that such people are kicked or banned for such behaviour, and it is explicitly disallowed in the channel rules. Women also have positions of power in channel, as operators or owners. I have found that this sort of social structure is present in most of the sexually oriented channels and webboards I've visited. The exceptions have usually been unmoderated, and so horrible that I couldn't see how anyone who wasn't either a spammer or a wanker would *want* to visit.

    Anyway, that's my two bucks Canadian. :)
    Deus ex frigerifero
    [ Parent ]
    The default male is not a blank slate (4.00 / 1) (#246)
    by fizbin on Wed Mar 07, 2001 at 10:18:51 AM EST

    I wonder, how on earth can anyone tell from meeting someone in a chat room what gender anyone else is... snip Girls would come on as boys to not get 100 /msg a minute from greasy perverts, or would make sure to have gender neutral nicknames &/or e-mails (pre identd.)

    So what you have then is an online society in which you can reveal as much as you wish about your gender, but any woman must either lie or reveal nothing. The "male" becomes the default sexless standard, and "female" takes on this weird oversexed identity; in essence, this promotes the idea that women are nothing more than damaged men. (No, I didn't say it's equivalent to that idea, just that this promotes it)

    If there were a complete and total disconnect between genders online and genders offline you might have a point - but to do that we would need to have a completely different set of genders online and offline. I suppose that this could be done on a heavy-rpg mush with alien genders and physiology (LeGuinnMoo, anyone?), but for casual chatting ala IM channels or IRC, that's clearly unworkable.

    Frankly, I'd welcome an online community in which everyone was forced to pretend that they were female, with the obvious males being harassed (or klined) out, if only as a source of contrast. And I suppose that there could be channels that were explicitly testosterone hangouts; my objection is to the idea that there is nothing wrong with having the default state forcing women to hide. While I guess that eventually this behavior will be mitigated by getting more women into these fora, (though I have my doubts, given recent reports on the progress of academic institutions wrt. tenuring female faculty) saying "there's nothing wrong with this because no one has to know you're female" strikes me as dangerously close to saying "there's nothing wrong with an anti-gay environment [in the military|in the workplace|in _______] because no one has to know whether you're gay".

    I had some comment here about how the latest windows' viruses prey upon the different standards of behavior we hold ourselves to while in front of computers, but it wasn't really directly related.



    [ Parent ]
    default male doesnt exist... (none / 0) (#250)
    by jester69 on Thu Mar 08, 2001 at 06:45:17 PM EST

    The "male" becomes the default sexless standard, and "female" takes on this weird oversexed identity; in essence, this promotes the idea that women are nothing more than damaged men. (No, I didn't say it's equivalent to that idea, just that this promotes it)

    Perhaps i misspoke, i had meant to say gender was irrelevent. back in the day, the ratio of male/female was like 10:1, now it is approaching parity. Ignoring random jerks who /msg anyone with a female handle, hell i got a/s/l messages all the time and my handle wasnt female, any of the irc channels i spent time on nobody cared if you were male or female. Everyone was kind and tolerant to everyone else, flame wars and arguments notwithstanding. If women have experienced other than this, perhaps it is the channels these women choose to hang out in.

    Frankly, I'd welcome an online community in which everyone was forced to pretend that they were female, with the obvious males being harassed (or klined) out, if only as a source of contrast. And I suppose that there could be channels that were explicitly testosterone hangouts; my objection is to the idea that there is nothing wrong with having the default state forcing women to hide.

    But, as i said before the only way to foster equality is to stop concentrating on which group has it worse than the other. I fight for all people to be treated with respect and dignity. If you believe somehow women are more deserving of dignified treatment than men (which i believe to be the case with your anger toward that group as expressed above) that is an equivalent attitude to one who mistreats women.

    Mistreatment is mistreatment and it is not something i do towards any group, and if it is something you do i wont condemn you or dislike you or avoid you, i will try to be as tolerant of intolernace as anything else in this world. I do, however, reserve my God/Dao/Allah/Krsna/Force given right to use every trick in my bag to help you become a person that treats all people with equal compassion, regardless of their reproductive equipment, social status, or any other arbitrary division of the human race.

    The Jester


    Its a lemming thing, Jeep owners would understand.
    [ Parent ]
    there is no men's studies program. (4.00 / 4) (#247)
    by riot158 on Wed Mar 07, 2001 at 04:16:14 PM EST

    >>In the work world, women still are getting less pay and less hours then their male peers (..)

    This is an illusion created by the fact that more women work part-time jobs than men. I'm not going to argue whether or not they *have* to work part-time jobs, just that they do, in fact, work more part time jobs than men. The point is that part-time pays less per hour (a LOT less when you factor in the extra benefits (insurance, etc) that full-time workers get over part time).

    Another thing to consider is that 95% of workplace deaths are men. Certainly higher pay is warranted for more dangerous jobs.

    And studies have been shown that for homogenous situations (i.e. all wages included in dataset earned by full-time workers), even in 'male-dominated' fields such as engineering, there is no wage gap.

    >> Socially, woman do not fare much better. "Women account for nearly three-fourths of the refugees in the world, and battering at home is the most universal form of violence against women.

    In surveys based on randomly sampled populations, scientists found that, in 1975 men were battered by their wives by a 1.2:1 margin. Ten years later, that margin had increased to 1.47:1 (Handbook of Family Violence, Steinmetz and Lucca, p 237)

    >> In the U.S., only one in 100 battered women ever report the abuse

    I'd be surprised if 1 in a thousand battered men reports the abuse. I'd be even more surprised if 1 in ten thousand isn't laughed out of the police station. The bitch of it is is that men get the worst of both worlds -- we're percieved as being so dangerous and powerful that we're a threat to women, and this same perception implies that we have nothing to fear from them. Of course, no one cares about the plight of the 'bad guy', even if they're only the bad guy because of a rabid paranoia and slander campaign. Domestic abuse does not skyrocket on Superbowl Sunday. It's just what we're told to believe, and sadly, most of us accept these 'facts' without question or confirmation.

    I'm not a misogynist. I'm a masculinist. There's a difference.

    Feel free to take back the night --
    I'll be over here, taking back the light.

    Gender Inequality on the Internet | 252 comments (250 topical, 2 editorial, 0 hidden)
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