As a general update on my status: I am not a mod/admin. I declined the offer last night because I do not believe I can moderate alongside Derp in any sort of professional manner.
Best posts made by Roz
RE: TS - Danger zone
I do log all my TS like a dirty, dirty person -- because I log all my scenes. I admit I've never thought to ask permission to log.
I would never randomly share it with a third party without permission. I have and do play on some games where posting TS with a content warning is pretty normal, and on those games I do post (presuming the other player is okay with it).
I mean, look, TS is a funny little thing. Engagement in TS can range anywhere from "just writing more RP words like it's any other type of scene" and "definitely getting OOC sexual gratification." And, like, I think both ends of this are fine? People get off to way weirder stuff. I just say don't talk about getting off to your scene partner in the same way, you know, you shouldn't broach that generally in life unless you already definitely know the topic is welcome.
RE: TS - Danger zone
It can be both an IC romance scene and two human beings on opposite sides of an internet connection getting each other horny.
The real question is: What does it matter?
Some people get horny when they TS. Some people don't. These are both things that happen. Sex is a pretty common human experience and therefore can have plenty of relevance in character-driven narratives. It is also a thing that some people just find sexy to read and/or write about. All of these things can be true. AT THE SAME TIME. They're not mutually exclusive.
RE: GMs and Players
Here is what I think is something of a crux here:
Is more harm done by 1) someone innocent erroneously being removed from a game, or 2) someone malicious being allowed to remain?
That is, I think, part of the fundamental difference of opinion happening.
Yes, the US courts (and I assume others internationally, idk) say a person is innocent until proven guilty. Yes, that it is an incredibly valuable legal principle to use in actual criminal proceedings where the cost of declaring an innocent person to be guilty has severe consequences for that person's actual live.
But this isn't a court of law. It's an online hobby game. Big games in this instance might have a playerbase numbering in the hundreds; a lot of the games discussed here are more in the tens or dozens.
My view is that more harm is done by the malicious player allowed to remain. Hugely so if that player is someone who has actively stalked or abused another player. Being stalked is active, real-life harm. It is severe, in a way that being removed from a RP game simply isn't.
That does not mean that you have to simply believe each and every report that comes your way. There is a measure of common sense to be deployed here. If you have a long-term player who has a visible history of getting on well on the game, who does not have a history of making a lot of complaints, such that receiving a complaint from them is notable -- that is very different from receiving a complaint from someone who makes them regularly and frivolously and who maybe has had more than one complaint made about them. Someone making a clear, serious request involving stalking or targeted harassment is different from someone making a request about not getting along with someone. Yes, absolutely engage in judgment and critical reasoning here. Absolutely. But if a player's history on a game points to them being generally above board? That's also a form of evidence.
There are very, very few methods of providing evidence on a game in a manner that are 100% reliable. I know that Ares has built-in tools. Not every game is built on Ares, and any bad actor can easily avoid putting their efforts into places that can been directly reported on the games that are on Ares. If these are the only methods of evidence that are acceptable, you will be leaving countless openings for bad actors to exploit. If the answer is that any other avenues will likely be off-game and not policeable, I think that's a bad answer that favors manipulators and harassers. Yes, you may have to take a critical eye to evidence that's presented, and that's fine. But rejecting it out of hand as being outside the scope of a game's staff isn't.
As for staff favoritism: if staff are going to behave in an unethical manner to favor the people they like best, neither philosophy will make a difference. It will be an issue on both sides of this philosophy divide. No amount of evidence requirements will get around this if a staffer wants to give shinies to their friends.
As has been stated, if someone is being stalked or abused, and they are given hoops to jump through in order to avoid their abuser on a game, they will just leave. And maybe that won't impact the game in the grand scheme of things, and maybe it doesn't impact a staffer personally. But it is a form of violence on the victim's life. It is one more place of fun, engagement, socialization, and community that is now lost to that person due to the systemic efforts of their abuser.
And I don't want to be party to that. It is, in my view, a far greater harm and moral failing to allow that to happen than to potentially ban an innocent player.
RE: Coming Soon: Arx, After the Reckoning
I also really appreciate that the original theme is aggressively non-sexist (apart from that one jerk Great House) because so often in fantasy themes people are like BUT IT HAS TO HAVE SEXISM BECAUSE HISTORICAL ACCURACY as if all medieval-ish themes have to somehow reflect specifically those aspects of our own medieval era. Because elves are totally conceivable, but lack of sexism is way too unbelievable. It's nice to have one place where it's just like, nope we just don't have that as part of our fantasy world.
RE: RL Anger
It's nice that some people can't even fucking imagine anyone saying "if she bleeds she can breed" grossness to a 13 year old. I'm going to guess though that /you don't have one/. Well, I can't not fucking imagine it, because I've seen many things like it. Directed at mine, and her friends, and at other slightly older but still very young kids in "gamer geek territory" and outside it. And fuck yes the mama bear comes right the fuck out. (And I research any new place like whoa before we do). I /envy/ you if you can't imagine it.
That's why it's important to have conversations like this. Personally I can't imagine not reacting strongly if a child - anyone's - is addressed that way, but that's where communication breaks down some. For example my first explanation here was that maybe my choice of gaming venues excludes places where that would come up, which doesn't make sense since you explicitly state you research such places ahead of time. And while I've met objectionable people during my gaming I truly can't fathom anyone who'd act that way - but again my inability to even consider it doesn't mean it doesn't happen.
So how does it? I mean who does it - are they, for lack of a better term, weirdos? Do they seem to come from a particularly skewed demographic? Do they act differently (more appropriately perhaps) when other men are around?
Give us some insights and we can keep an eye out. Maybe not for your daughter but someone else's.
One of the biggest mistakes I see guys make is think that the kind of guys who harass women are all losers and weirdos. They're not. Sexual harassment and sexual assault is too commonplace. If you want to be serious in being a man on the side of women in this, get used to the idea that someone who's your friend is probably guilty of something. Someone you probably wouldn't expect. Tons of harassers have friends who would never think in a million years they'd be such an asshole. These friends are usually (but not always) other men. For every woman who's been scared off of a geek group/tabletop group/circle of friends by one bad egg, there's usually more who went quietly into the night before her.
One of the biggest things I can say is to just pay more attention if you have women in a group with you. A lot of stuff starts with comments you might find innocuous because you're not used to thinking about them. Call us SJW whiners if you want, but dumb sexist jokes pave the way for gross sexist jokes which pave the way for worse and worse. Harassment proliferates where others remain silent. Some harassers do keep their worst comments quiet until they're in private, but I think more than you're expecting happens in front of other people.
These issues don't happen because other men are absent to deter them. They happen because other men don't notice or say anything. They happen because men read a long account of a woman's history of being harassed in geek cultures, and they say things like "I'm calling bullshit" or "Well I didn't really like how it's written" or "That's probably exaggerated" or "I'm not saying she's lying, but..." or "Wow I really can't imagine that happening" or "Well stop hanging out in [this hobby that the man would probably never consider leaving themselves if they were harassed, because they'd consider it their right to not be harassed]." Commenting on personal accounts of women's harassment like that is a luxury. And it's easy. And it's just the first step in building these atmospheres in harassment.
Believe women. Believe it when all the women commenting just here are saying, "Yup, I can believe it." Believe it when the vast majority of women can say, "Yeah, I've been sexually harassed recently." Because the things that guys can't believe about what we say we experience is the fucking background noise our entire lives.
I literally just had the urge to say something like, "Sorry for going on a rant there," because women are constantly taught to apologize for the space they take up, but I'm not really sorry. This shit is important. The fact that I feel strongly about it is a reasonable, proportional reaction to the situation.
Please believe that there are truths in the world that you can't imagine but that are nevertheless true.
RE: Regarding administration on MSB
Hoo boy. A few things.
First? There are some areas of the moderation reaction where I feel like people could ease up. There have definitely been some moments that felt like people were really eager to jump in aggressively at the slightest hint of misstep in a way that wasn't always constructive. I think there needs to be a space where we're able to respond to the natural missteps of growing pains as moderation is figured out with a little benefit of the doubt. But, like, I'm reminded a bit of when I was staff on Steel & Stone and we added a Chatter channel because we wanted to keep Public more game-focused and there was a high volume of chatter going on. Some people would get really offended at being asked to move, and they'd be super ready to point out if you didn't immediately ask someone else to move or something. Like. We're all human there.
That said? There's been a lot of defensive doubling down even at perfectly mild responses to inconsistencies. Which is only going to encourage those people who are starting at mild and civil to ramp up to less mild and less civil. I think we as the posters need to avoid having an attitude of "you fucked up, please commence public flogging" so that the mods can also have an attitude of "oh we fucked up, let's just fix it, we're all learning and it's not the end of the world." Like. Yeah, that one thread probably shouldn't have been moved wholesale over to the Hog Pit. But there's just a certain level of vitriol about it that I find honestly weird. Like. Is it that people really think @Ganymede was doing this to spite and silence people? Idek! But both sides have to be willing to have a certain amount of chill that is just not existing. These missteps don't have to be a huge deal for the most part. We're talking about how and when to move threads.
However. I will state that I don't think @Auspice has a good temperament for modding here. When the board was handed over to @Arkandel, I nodded and thought, "Yeah that makes sense." When he added @Ganymede as a mod, I nodded and thought, "Yeah that makes sense." When he added Auspice, I paused. This is not actually because I hate her as a poster or a player by any means. It's just that she tends towards a regular sort of defensiveness and temperament as a poster that I didn't feel was a great fit when she was announced as being on board, and I think that's kind of becoming clear.
I do understand that her real intent in her response to @meg was "Hey, if people really want to start sharing RL stories about this back and forth, it might work best in a different thread." I also understand how it felt very much like "This isn't the place to share your RL story." Meg wasn't sharing a story just to share the story. She was sharing an experience to directly comment on the conversation happening in that thread. Frankly, it's no one else's business to say "You'll be more heard with this story if you make a new thread for it. It'll be lost in two months here." Maybe she doesn't want it to be something that lingers after those two months? Maybe she didn't want to make a thread focusing on her RL experience because she only wanted to talk about it in terms of how it related to that thread. And at the point when Auspice commented, there hadn't been a major derail of topic by any means. A couple folks basically said "yeah I've had those kinds of shitty experiences too," and that was it. When people reacted negatively to Auspice's comment, her reaction was to basically say "You're only reacting this way because it's coming from me." AKA thoroughly dismissing the idea that people could have felt negatively about what she said. And in this thread, her reaction was to say that people were literally too obtuse to understand if they had any sort of confusion. Which is just, flat out, not something you can say as a mod, just like it's not something you can say as a MU* staffer.
The fact of the matter is that, as mods, you will never be able to post without some sort of mod voice. It will be seen as such whether or not you personally think you're posting JUST AS A POSTER, the same way people pay extra attention to when a staff alt on a public channel says something about knocking something off. It's the reality of moderating, just like it's the reality of staffing.
I don't know how much it's really going to solve anything to start making new forum sections, but I'm very happy to be proven wrong here. But I don't see how having a reviews section will end up any different from what already happens on the ad threads.
I think the bottom line for me is that the response a person has to messing up is vitally important. Right now, many of the responses to messing up from the mod team has actively exacerbated the conflict going on.
That said, this is a terrible forum to have to mod for.
RE: Emotional bleed
What I mentioned before Tek split this off into its own thread is that I think a real issues can be in the community sense of "bleed is bad, only bad players have it, so if you have it you are a bad player." This doesn't help anyone, and in fact will actually compound problems, because then people who are maybe just having a little bleed are now also going to feel shame spirals about having their feelings to begin with.
Feelings cannot be controlled. Our behavior in reaction to them is what we control. It's much better to just let your feelings be your feelings, to validate them, even, but then also recognize when they're yours to work through (as opposed to someone having actually wronged you in some fashion or something like that, where there's a problem that others have some responsibility in that might require a conversation with them to work it out).
What I find immensely invaluable is having a small few trusted friends who are good at virtually squeezing my hand, validating my feelings and empathizing, while also being on the same page as far as understanding that these are INSIDE FEELINGS to work through, not ones to take to other people who may be involved in whatever situation I'm having feelings about. They're the ones who will empathize with the experience of feeling unpleasant things while also helping me keep perspective.
I'm also a player who cries easily at media in general, like I cry plenty at movies and whatnot, so I do cry sometimes during RP. Like, just recently, I cried through scenes I was playing in on Arx about my PC losing one of his best friends that he'd been in love with for years. Not because I was upset that the choice had been made for the character to die or anything, but because it was a really sad story! And I think that's generally okay to feel feelings like that.
Latest posts made by Roz
RE: farfalla banned
This is absolutely beyond the pale. I know what that conversation contained. You are angry at Farfalla for being one of the people to post unhappily about administrative choices and you are absolutely using this as retaliation. I am honestly shocked that you would engage in this level of unethical fashion.
RE: The hog pit thread titled Admin Derp
when the situation has been dealt with to my satisfaction,
How long does it take to tell Derp he should step down?
I wonder if people would be so comfortable reading an unemotional statement of legal procedure as an attack if it had come from a woman.
Absolutely disgusting, my guy. Get out of here.
Why? He was essentially told to sit down and shut up. It’s a valid question. Or maybe I should be asking if an unemotional legal analysis would be taken as an attack if made by anyone but Derp.
He was not told to sit down and shut up. He was asked not to respond in such a condescending manner by asking someone "How is this surprising?" when someone was being upset at a major political moment. Most of his initial post could have stood without anyone being bothered, I think, if not for the explicitly unempathetic opening implying that someone was stupid for being upset.
RE: ANNOUNCEMENT: We are moving.
If you are accessing from the IP because the domain isn't pointing to the new site yet, you can help speed up the process with this:
chrome://net-internals/#dns<-- this does half the trick (if you're like me using Brave, just replace
braveand it works. not sure about non-chromium browsers
ipconfig /flushdns(Windows) or
sudo dscacheutil -flushcache; sudo killall -HUP mDNSResponder(Mac) <-- this does the other half of the trick from a command prompt
RE: Forum wonk
@arkandel I know there's stuff people want to keep but man at some point I can't help but feel like it might be easier to archive certain important posts/threads in some fashion and then start a fresh forum. I know a lot will be lost but it sounds like any sort of migration is going to be either costly or damn near impossible and i fear we may hit a point where, as you mentioned, restoring functionality won't be available and we'll lose everything anyway.
I just saw an Arx cat tarot Kickstarter raise thousands of dollars in 24 hours, I don't think cost would be a difficulty.