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  • Showing only topics with the tag "harassment". Back to normal view
    1. I'm interested in the stories of anyone willing to speak about their experiences, whether it was cyberbullying, stalking, doxing, hate mobs, or anything else. Given the sensitive nature of the...

      I'm interested in the stories of anyone willing to speak about their experiences, whether it was cyberbullying, stalking, doxing, hate mobs, or anything else.

      Given the sensitive nature of the question, only share what you're comfortable with, if at all. The following questions are not a list to be answered but more just jumping off points for consideration.

      • What was the harassment like for you?
      • What platform(s) did it take place on?
      • Was there a specific inciting incident?
      • Was it related to any larger cultural factors?
      • What was your response like?
      • What impact did it have on you and/or others?
      • How long did it last?
      • What takeaways do you have from the experience?
      18 votes
    2. Inspired by discussion here. Toxic players don't create toxic games. Toxic games create toxic players. About a year ago, I wrote up a comprehensive report on why Overwatch's community is such a...

      Inspired by discussion here.

      Toxic players don't create toxic games. Toxic games create toxic players.

      About a year ago, I wrote up a comprehensive report on why Overwatch's community is such a shitshow. Give it a read if you're at all interested in why game communities turn toxic, or if you're curious why Overwatch didn't stick longer as a phenomenon.

      (At this point, with Overwatch now past its prime and usurped by other games due in large part to reasons I described there, I'd like to also offer a nice fat 'I told you so' to actiblizz. I didn't want to stop playing...)

      The baseline question was this: Overwatch has great representation, an entertaining formula, and good messages. The game is super fun to play on the surface, and offers hundreds of hours of unique new experiences. So why is it so easily considered to have one of the most toxic competitive communities out there?

      There's no explanation or reason for why naturally toxic players would gravitate towards the title, stick around, and infect the rest of the community. Nothing about Overwatch would indicate that it was going to somehow filter out the worst of the worst and keep them for itself, and that's because - bumbudaaa! It didn't.

      Toxic players didn't infect Overwatch; Overwatch created toxic players.

      The same things can be said for basically any other huge competitive game on the market, with CS:GO, LoL, and DOTA2 being the easiest examples. Their communities are all total swamps.

      Despite this, there is virtually no game on the market which properly addresses the root cause of community-destroying toxicity: the game itself.

      I'd rather not repeat myself because that above link will do a better job of going in-depth and can be applied to a lot of games, but the baseline problem is this: games catch and ban bad apples, but do nothing to stop those bad apples from forming. Failing to realize that parts of an otherwise amazing experience are fundamentally frustrating, the focus and blame is put on the players for reacting (see above thread) in exactly the way the games are designed to make them.

      Chief among these issues? Games demand teamwork, cooperation and a community voice, but do nothing to facilitate them. Games that are designed to be fun casually will be frustrating competitively - and vice versa. Toxic communities will not form where every style of play is catered to, which is sometimes balance, but often a fundamental disconnect between what the game was built for, what's actually promised, and what the player's trying to get out of it.

      So, I'd rather send the discussion in the other direction, which is why I posted this here. Rather than blame the community, it's time to look for solutions from the actual people responsible.

      (To be clear: yes, there are assholes in the world, and yes, they play games. But the idea that the culture has only just now soured to a patch of racism and misogyny is laughable to anyone who grew up playing Xbox Live. It's been blown completely out of proportion by a fundamental discontent with games themselves, like further kindling on a fire, driven mostly by competitive culture.)

      18 votes
    3. “There are no girls on the internet” is one of the “rules of the internet” of the olden times. It was a tongue-in-cheek saying that meant two things. The first interpretation is that women don’t...

      “There are no girls on the internet” is one of the “rules of the internet” of the olden times. It was a tongue-in-cheek saying that meant two things. The first interpretation is that women don’t hang out on online forums because only loser guys do that. This obviously wasn’t totally true, but it felt true because of the second interpretation: gender doesn’t really exist on the internet, or at least it didn’t back then. Someone posting on IRC or 4Chan could be male, female, black, white, or any combination or race or gender, but you wouldn’t know that. Your post just existed in a void, completely separate from your social identity. While sexism and racism existed, someone wouldn’t be discriminated against on those grounds, because on the internet there are no girls. Only people.

      People who brought up their gender were accused of being attention seekers who couldn’t get by on their own merits. This was probably just a shitty excuse to justify harassment (ie tits or gtfo), but there might have been some truth to the idea that your gender and race have no effect on the legitimacy of your opinion.

      Today on the internet, a the “rule” “there are no girls on the internet” is completely done away with. Not only is the social makeup of the internet much more diverse today, all of the major networking sites have profiles on which you can proudly display your gender, race, sexuality, etc.

      I only just now came to realize this difference as I was reading some threads that posted statements like “as a gay man” or “as a girl who...”. These kinds of statements used to attract ridicule, but are now accepted as the norm.

      I’m not sure if this is an improvement or not. I do think it’s an improvement that harassment is no longer tolerated, but I struggle with the concept that it’s okay to that someone’s race/gender/etc can legitimize a claim, but it is not okay to think that it could deligitimize someone’s claim.

      Again, I want to add a disclaimer that I do not think it is or ever was good to harass people, or to discriminate based on identity. I just want to start a conversation about how the internet has changed in this respect, and whether or not online discourse has been hurt by this change.

      58 votes