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Valkyrie123

We need to talk about online toxicity.

Have you experiepnced online toxicity?  

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I suspect that in many cases like you describe, the aggressor's (alleged?) faith is merely a front. 

I am married to a religious person and have fairly close contact with people of different religions. Some of these are pretty liberal, others not so much.

I have great respect for religious convictions and the more they are in conflict with prevalent societal ideals the harder it must be for the people holding them to navigate the world with peace of mind. 

However, to my knowledge, no serious religion says "thou shalt harass", "thou shalt insult", "thou shalt threaten peoples lives" or "thou shalt hate". 

Does "where do you live I have a gun" dude seriously think his deity is proud of him? I doubt it. He probably just doesn't want to outright admit to being an asshole so he tries to somehow justify his behavior by throwing God in the mix. 

Good job quitting that place. I hope you find a nicer one. 

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3 hours ago, Douglas said:

I've known lots of "Religious" people (I'm not religious, as such: but I believe there's a God) who would not talk to you like this man has!!


Me too!  I know a number of very devout fundamentalist Christians who would follow the teachings of the Bible, to "love the sinner but hate the sin."  In other words (I believe that I'm stating this with reasonable accuracy), to respect the individual as a child of God, while looking for an opportunity to show them the error of their ways.  (And they mean with thoughtful words, not with guns!)

I wonder if the hate-mongers were not only brought up to hate/fear/avoid anyone unlike themselves, but might also feel that doing or threatening physical harm to those people "proves" how brave and/or correct they themselves are.  In other words, they're a specialized form of bully, not too different from those who instigate the throwing of bricks and the setting of fires in order to "prove" that their position is the moral one.  (In either case, I can understand -- though not condone -- that some people get caught up in the heat of the moment; it's the planners, those who do such things quite deliberately, that I'm talking about.)

@T.o.b.y -- I didn't see your response till I'd already posted mine.  Well said!

 

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Well said: Carol and T.o.b.y!! 

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Sorry for your bad experiences, @Valkyrie123 and @Artemis. I had bad experiences too but not to those extent. These cowards hide behind their anonymity and like Douglas said, it could really affect the mood and potentially cause emotional damage. I have little patience for bullies and tend to push back harder if provoked, online and real life,  luckily I didn't need to do that often because I don't really have much interaction, and certain imbeciles actually don't deserve any response, so I pick my fight too, some are just better to be ignored and from your cases, it seems like they don't worth your brain cells.

Personally, I hardly disclosed personal information online, I'd rather not being associated with anything to avoid unwanted judgement, but there is nothing wrong to do so, especially in this day and age. But internet bullies exists, and I believe there was a study somewhere, most of those are insecure people who feel good by trying to belittle others, some are just actual horrible sh*tty waste of space on earth.

In my little experience, anonymity is also sexist. I play games online, not even elaborate games, but I found that it's really helps to have male avatar, it's way too common to be harassed with female avatar, sadly, eventhough it's basic template avatar and there is no other information but sometime some jerks just do that. 

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50 minutes ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

Personally, I hardly disclosed personal information online

I think that's wise.  I obviously divulge a bit more than you do (assuming that Van Buren Supernova is not your real name), but I do make a point of being vague.  For example, some sites require my postal code, which is way too specific, so phooey on em!

50 minutes ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

I play games online, not even elaborate games, but I found that it's really helps to have male avatar, it's way too common to be harassed with female avatar, sadly, eventhough it's basic template avatar and there is no other information but sometime some jerks just do that. 

I've heard other people say the same thing about gaming sites.  I've never had a problem with specifying that I'm female (which could be deduced from my user name anyhow), but maybe that's because I stick to relatively serious discussion sites?

 

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9 hours ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

I found that it's really helps to have male avatar,

I have found this true as well.  I usually use male avatars or gender-neutral avatars, and try to mask my gender as much as possible.

I've never been one to give out much information about myself, I've always liked my anonymity.  But you might be surprised what people can find out about you with very little information.  Often they only need one piece.  Someone once found out my real identity just by gleaning my Photobucket username from a picture I'd posted.  The username was just a generic word, but sometimes a username can lead to a lot more.  In a matter of minutes, with only Google, I myself have been able to find out people's real names, addresses, numbers, emails, relatives, schools/workplaces, and more, with nothing but a username, age, general locale (state/country), or something else that seems innocuous and vague.  (This was done with the other people's full knowledge, by the way.  They actually asked me to see what I could find out because they wanted to test their online anonymity.)  Most people are comfortable giving out at least that much information online, whether on their profile or in the course of casual conversation.

Most people don't have to worry about it, either.  But if it's something that concerns you, one good practice (besides not posting anything even vaguely personal about yourself) is to have a different username on every site.  A lot of people reuse the same one, so all their information connects and everything they've said online is right there with one click.  Using the same screen name on your social media and the sites where you want to remain anonymous is an especially bad idea.

 

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Interesting. I asked my husband about his experiences on gaming sites / online games, because he tends to use female avatars and neutral or female pseudonyms. But he says he hasn't experienced any open misogyny, just the occasional guy hitting on his online persona because they assumed he was a woman IRL. 

Some of those advances were pretty crude but I wouldn't call them hateful. 

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I usually keep a neutral avatar, however, even so people deduce from my usernames (which are also usually neutral, that I am female.) Even when I was single, I took to writing in my profile that I had a boyfriend to ward off unwanted attention, but for some reason that didn't stop the perverts and the pedophiles :nope_sad:.

 

This maybe crude, but on one chat site, a 50 year old man went round asking young girls if he could get some of their 'real poop'in the mail. That still makes me feel sick. :sick:

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7 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

Some of those advances were pretty crude

I get that a lot as well.

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Just now, Valkyrie123 said:

I get that a lot as well.

I think we react a little differently to those as actual women because we know that if we met the guy IRL, we might be in danger. Whereas people like my husband can just laugh it off. 

As for claiming to be in a relationship (or actually being in one), when has that ever worked as a defense against creeps? They just see it as extra challenge usually. 

Not that I have any first hand experience to speak of. I must give off strange vibes because I am hardly ever hit on, be it online or IRL. I've never been catcalled either. Dunno why but I am certainly greatful for that. 

I don't do much online besides this place and similarly obscure spaces and I only play the Sims and point and click puzzle / adventure games. So I guess that's another reason why I haven't met many a-holes yet or gotten weird messages. 

The poop guy sounds like the kind of person who gets off on shocking people. Very immature. 🙄

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2 minutes ago, T.o.b.y said:

think we react a little differently to those as actual women because we know that if we met the guy IRL, we might be in danger

I read an article somewhere which highlighted the fact that, in a relationship, men fear humiliation and unrequited feelings, whereas woman fear rape or abuse. This made me realise that in terms of relationships, men and women live in completely different worlds.

No offense to men, but lots of them don't realise just how much women face this every day. 

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11 minutes ago, Valkyrie123 said:

I read an article somewhere which highlighted the fact that, in a relationship, men fear humiliation and unrequited feelings, whereas woman fear rape or abuse. This made me realise that in terms of relationships, men and women live in completely different worlds.

No offense to men, but lots of them don't realise just how much women face this every day. 

That might explain some of their online behavior too? Like, a guy sending you hateful or obscene messages might think he's just being edgy or naughty and have no clue that he's sent off all your alarm systems. 

Not that that's any excuse whatsoever of course! 

I mean, my three-year-old understands that it's wrong to call people names and he's only just begun to figure out empathy. It really isn't that hard to not be a complete d***head. 

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2 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

That might explain some of their online behavior too? Like, a guy sending you hateful or obscene messages might think he's just being edgy or naughty and have no clue that he's sent off all your alarm systems. 

Yes, thats so true.

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2 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

That might explain some of their online behavior too? Like, a guy sending you hateful or obscene messages might think he's just being edgy or naughty and have no clue that he's sent off all your alarm systems.

Good point.  You know the cliche male comment "all she needs is...."?  They see women reading "romance" novels and maybe they think we really want to be treated like that -- by them personally, of course.  No offense, guys, but none of you are that guy on the cover, nor are you a nice safe fantasy, and we have absolutely no trouble telling the difference!

But yeah, a guy may think he's just acting sexy in a RPG kinda way.  Who knows, some women may even take it that way -- but they're taking a big risk if they agree to meet up with the guy.  Even if he's not a nut job, things could easily get out of hand on account of their differing assumptions and expectations.

 

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56 minutes ago, Carol the Dabbler said:

Good point.  You know the cliche male comment "all she needs is...."?  They see women reading "romance" novels and maybe they think we really want to be treated like that -- by them personally, of course.  No offense, guys, but none of you are that guy on the cover, nor are you a nice safe fantasy, and we have absolutely no trouble telling the difference!

:applause:

Put that on a t-shirt, Carol. I'd buy it. 

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16 hours ago, Artemis said:

But if it's something that concerns you, one good practice (besides not posting anything even vaguely personal about yourself) is to have a different username on every site. 

I think one of the good way is, do not sign up for anything using facebook. Never ever do that for personal purpose. It's convenient, yes, but as you said, it's so easy to link them.

I used to wonder how come members here that I have never heard of, have never posted, change their username and avatar? I remember the forum gives notification and it occurred often (haven't paid attention whether it still happens now), then I think maybe it's because they change their facebook setting and it's reflected here? Not sure, but I guess that is a possible explanation. 

 

13 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

Some of those advances were pretty crude but I wouldn't call them hateful. 

I have to say most of those I encountered are only annoying advances, but I did get hateful in some occasion that unfortunately happened when they lost the game. I played a strategy card game (4 player, anyone/strangers that happen to be online and play at the same time, it's realtime) and some really really hate losing to someone with woman's avatar. (This is avatar that comes with the game, a generic blank woman mugshot silhouette, distinguishable with man's avatar only by longer hair). He hurled abuse, but I continued to play and won over and over again and he got worse. You see, we were playing with virtual coins, there is no real world money involved, it's just for fun. Sometimes another player joined in to comment negatively, but most didn't do anything. I could exited the room and joined another, but it happened quite often, surprisingly, until I changed my avatar to man. The worse I could get was 'ouch' when I won their worthless virtual money. I wonder.

13 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

As for claiming to be in a relationship (or actually being in one), when has that ever worked as a defense against creeps? They just see it as extra challenge usually.

From personal experience, in real life it works. They see relationship as challenge, yes, because it's not 'final', but actually wearing a wedding band saves a lot of problem and annoyance. It helps at work too. 

Some 'nice guy' likes to think you are leading them on even when you do nothing and the clueless person on earth in term of romance, as long as you actually look at them and don't seem like you are about to stab them, it's on. Some guy sees no problem approaching you that way eventhough you are not available. The creepier ones would find out your schedule and appear even when you, obviously, very uncomfortable. Or call you and suggest something creepy when he somehow finds out you are alone at home. This is the time before internet, I can't imagine now.

13 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

I don't do much online besides this place and similarly obscure spaces and I only play the Sims and point and click puzzle / adventure games

Same here. When I mentioned game online, it's not those elaborate game with those super role playing, character or avatar. I'm merely playing some puzzle, card or word game. I believe it's not uncommon, as many other serious player actually put 'no chatting' or similar as their user name, and the developer updated the game feature that you have to give permission in order for someone to chat you up, so it seems like it is a thing.

13 hours ago, T.o.b.y said:

The poop guy sounds like the kind of person who gets off on shocking people. Very immature.

Could be poop fetish, and yes, creepy and inappropriate too.

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1 hour ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

do not sign up for anything using facebook.  [....]  It's convenient, yes, but as you said, it's so easy to link them.

Good heavens, you're right, that is an option -- but not a good one!  Of course I could sign in from my Dabbler facebook page, but prefer to register with each site separately, just --- because.

1 hour ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

used to wonder how come members here that I have never heard of, have never posted, change their username and avatar? I remember the forum gives notification and it occurred often (haven't paid attention whether it still happens now), then I think maybe it's because they change their facebook setting and it's reflected here? Not sure, but I guess that is a possible explanation. 

Yes, I assume it was something like that -- facebook or Twitter or whatever other site they'd joined by way of.  But all I'm seeing at the moment on the All Activity list is forum-related stuff -- posts, likes, followings, and when Valkyrie changed her avatar a few days ago.  No strangers, and like you say there used to be loads of them.  I assume Tim's been busy.  Thanks, Tim!

1 hour ago, Van Buren Supernova said:

I played a strategy card game (4 player, anyone/strangers that happen to be online and play at the same time, it's realtime) and some really really hate losing to someone with woman's avatar.  [....]  it happened quite often, surprisingly, until I changed my avatar to man. The worse I could get was 'ouch' when I won their worthless virtual money.

Weird.  But I guess I'm not surprised.  I've noticed that a few men seem to bolster their egos by thinking that even though they may not be particularly great, well at least they're better than a WOMAN!!!  And then you go and stomp on them.  I don't know whether to snicker or feel sorry for them.  Both, maybe.

 

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The way men behave these days, makes me ashamed to be of the male gender!!! 

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3 hours ago, Douglas said:

The way men behave these days, makes me ashamed to be of the male gender!!! 

Oh, no need for that if you ask me. 

As far as I can tell from history and anecdotes, average male behavior has actually improved over the past few decades, at least in this part of the world. 

And there have always been some good men, some horrible men and lots of perfectly ordinary men imho and same for women. 

Like I said before, it's not that hard not being a d****. Most of it is common sense. If you aren't participating in or encouraging vile behavior yourself, then I see no need to feel ashamed just because some people who also have a Y chromosome do. 

I certainly don't take responsibility for all the s*** that other women do either. 

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Indeed.

Like I said, it seems to be only a few men who are blatant jerks, it's just that they're so noticeable that they sometimes give a bad name to the entire gender -- which is hardly fair!

It's just like everything else.  The general public tends to assume that *all* Star Trek fans are pathetic losers, for example, merely because of the few vocal ones that make it onto the news program.  Same with politics, religion, etc. -- it's the noisy extremists who get all the press.

 

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Wise words: T.o.b.y and Carol! Well said!! 

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On 7/20/2020 at 5:06 AM, T.o.b.y said:

As far as I can tell from history and anecdotes, average male behavior has actually improved over the past few decades, at least in this part of the world. 

And there have always been some good men, some horrible men and lots of perfectly ordinary men imho and same for women. 

THIS.

I think it's safe to say that there are many gentlemen out there, and they make up for it. At the very least, I believe quite a big percentage of those online jerks don't actually behave that way in real life. Most people wouldn't say what they said online in real life. There are something about anonymity that brings out the worse version of us, in a weird way they feel some kind of power to do things they are too coward to do without much consequences. 

Little thing that we could get from this, I guess we have to be grateful that we feel secure and confident enough as human being in order not to do the same. It takes a lot to be 'real' nowadays in both online and real life persona. If you think you are one of them, be proud of the confidence!

 

On 7/20/2020 at 11:26 AM, Carol the Dabbler said:

The general public tends to assume that *all* Star Trek fans are pathetic losers, for example, merely because of the few vocal ones that make it onto the news program. 

As non Star Trek fan, I thought it's the other way around, especially nowadays when 'nerdiness' is cherished or even cool. I never get the hype, but I think there is nothing wrong, I make fun of it sometimes :P but I'd never think they are losers, actually it's quite awesome that there is this community of hardcore fans. Hey, switch it to something else that I like and I behave exactly that way too.

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I've come up with some good comebacks over the years

I was talking to some older guy in the library just now, he said I was really hot. I said 'my boyfriend thinks so too'. He left.

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On 7/19/2020 at 11:26 PM, Carol the Dabbler said:

It's just like everything else.  The general public tends to assume that *all* Star Trek fans are pathetic losers, for example, merely because of the few vocal ones that make it onto the news program. .

🤔 I'm not sure I'd classify Sir Patrick as a 'pathetic loser'.

*I'll get me hat.*

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On 7/19/2020 at 11:26 PM, Carol the Dabbler said:

The general public tends to assume that *all* Star Trek fans are pathetic losers,

 

On 7/21/2020 at 12:13 AM, Van Buren Supernova said:

As non Star Trek fan, I thought it's the other way around, especially nowadays when 'nerdiness' is cherished or even cool.


You're probably right about that, so my example was outdated.  I hadn't stopped to think that the world has changed a good bit since William Shatner did that "get a life!" skit on Saturday Night Live.

 

1 hour ago, Sheerluck said:

I'm not sure I'd classify Sir Patrick as a 'pathetic loser'.


Are you saying that you still classify all Trek fans as losers, but will make an exception for Sir Patrick?   :P

 

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