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Julia Hardy's Misogyny Monday

How to get the most out of your online sexist abuse

"I would eviscerate you."

"I'd like to finger the f*** out of you."

"I've got that perfect thing to fill that mouth."

These aren't quotes from 50 Shades of Grey, these are some of the messages I've received over social media. Some even from Facebook: the unsexiest, most vanilla and missionary-style social media portal you can find.

You might wonder why I would receive such things. Well I'm not a model, or one of those girls who takes selfies of myself in my pants (unless its for laughs). I'm just a woman in what might be described as generally a man's world - the world of Video Games.

Being a video games presenter and female has been an interesting experience: fantastic in so many ways, but quite disturbing in others. This all began when I hosted a little-known video game show called GameFace on UK satellite channel Bravo.

I'd been hired for two reasons: I could present and I knew about video games. I was over the moon! Finally my nerdy pastime could be used to actually get a job, instead of preventing me from getting one. Motivating yourself to get anything done as a freelancer is hard enough without having consoles to tempt you into their delicious couch oblivion.

GameFace was a pretty simple show: green-screened, autocued, with links to camera throwing to the reviews of the week. Initially everything had to be very heavily scripted and timed, a little frustrating as you are unable to put a bit of 'you' into the show. But it was early days and all shows go through a process of trial and error. As the series went on I was able to do little 'rants' about games I'd been playing or things that had been happening in the gaming world that week. It was nice to be able to express myself, as really getting to connect with people is why I love the job.

"Really this subtle sexism was just the tip of the iceberg. Subtle quickly came and went and left behind overt misogyny"

I remember going to read online what people first thought of the show (yeah, yeah I know.) But I really was interested to see what people thought and wanted to look for ways to improve it or myself. I read so much more about me than anyone should, but my goodness, it's like picking a scab. You know it's stupid, disgusting and a bit destructive but you're going to do it anyway. Aside from people critiquing the format, what really struck me were the comments asking how could I possibly know what the heck I'm talking about. I mean, how could I right?

You might wonder as to whether these were in fact sexist comments. Ask yourself, does this happen to men too? It's a good rule of thumb. And generally when it comes to video games, it does not. I knew other male presenters who worked for various other outfits and not once were their credentials ever questioned. Even the ones who knew less than nothing about it. Yet here I am giving personal reflections on games I had actually played and somehow what I said wasn't worthy, or someone had written it for me. I had no 'right' to comment on such things and should clearly keep quiet.

Really this subtle sexism was just the tip of the iceberg. Subtle quickly came and went and left behind overt misogyny. I'm not sure what is worse, outright in your face women-hating or the subtle endemic slow-chip sexism (hidden as fact) that is far more abundant than we realise.

One weekend on Sky News Paper Reviews with Iain Lee I got a barrage of tweets from a chap who went on and on about how he hated my ears. Nothing about what I had been arguing about or debating on the show. My ears! I asked Iain, "Does anyone ever comment on your appearance when you are on TV?" Iain smiled and said, "No of course not, I'm a man."

How right he was. Being female means that it's not just what you say that's up for discussion, it's who you are, who you were, what you look like, what you're wearing, who you had sex with, what you said flippantly two months ago and whether your audience would kindly consider f**king you if they had the chance. (That is the hot topic FYI.) That's a lot of things to factor in when it's what you're saying that should really be the thing up for debate. But of course not. I'm female so it's my shoes that are important, as I discovered on another Sky News slot. "Seriously she'd be half the height without those shoes." Yes, honey, they're heels. It's kinda the point. Never mind the fact that I strapped a Sky News presenter into Oculus Rift to play Eve Valkyrie on a screen the size of a house, you're talking about my shoes. That's what caught your imagination?

These first instances of online abuse really knocked me back. It's a horrible thing to feel like someone hates you for being you. And that's what it feels like. I'm not an actress and people aren't just critiquing my work and saying they dislike it - when you're a presenter it's 'you' they don't like! What you see on screen is who I am in my normal life. If they don't like that person, then they don't like you. It was a pretty depressing time. I guess no-one should really know just what people think about who they are. Or just how much fear and hatred it seemed there was towards women. Maybe some things are better left to ignorance.

"Anyone who's ever gotten into some serious Twitter rows knows just how draining it can be...It's not healthy

I spent an age arguing with people online, mainly as I felt the need to justify myself and stand up for the show. Plus, most of their arguments were so crudely constructed I knew I could win. I wanted to win and show them up for the idiots I felt they were. Anyone who's ever gotten into some serious Twitter rows knows just how draining it can be. You are so angry, so het up and so set on winning you're strapped to your phone in a perpetual state of anger-related stress. It's not healthy. I'm surprised I didn't collapse from overdosing on my own Cortisol.

This went on for quite a while. Whilst I won a lot of these arguments, it never really seemed worth it for all the stress it created. Days of feeling angry and sad and running things over in my mind just didn't justify beating some idiot on Twitter. Don't get me wrong, I like winning arguments, but not when they are always about how sh*t you are, or how you should "shut the f*** up."

2

Everyone told me 'Don't feed the trolls.' 'Leave them be.' 'It's not worth it.' After a time I decided that perhaps people had the right idea. All this stress, why don't I just ignore them so they'll go away? So I did. It was so hard to do, to keep quiet, but I did. The messages kept coming but I just pretended they didn't. A self-induced ignorance. (Well, denial.) And I was content for a while...But something kept nagging in the back of my mind. I am a woman and my super power, the one thing I can use against ignorance and injustice...is silence. That is the crappest super power I've ever heard of. All of your boss battles would be you hiding in a cupboard waiting for evil to get bored and go make a sandwich. Not sure you'd sell that many comics based on those skills.

I was at a stage where I needed to find a way to be ok with this. I needed to be able to read nasty things online and not let it ruin how I feel or question who I am. I needed to find a way to answer back, on my terms, and feel like in some way I'm effecting a change instead of just ignoring it.

It was then I decided to take a new approach. I still wanted to win the arguments but I didn't want it to affect my daily life.

This is how Misogyny Monday was born: a blog that takes all the thoroughly inappropriate comments I get online and re-appropriates them for my own amusement.

"I was at a stage where I needed to find a way to be ok with this. I needed to be able to read nasty things online and not let it ruin how I feel or question who I am"

I had paid attention to the interactions I had seen online from staunch feminists and one thing I'd noticed was that, when people really pushed a feminist agenda (no matter how right they were) it seemed to enrage some people all the more. So, I thought that perhaps sometimes we should respond to these moronic fools with something equally as jokey, equally as throwaway and equally as offensive.

It didn't happen overnight - some of my first responses were LONG and I found that the shorter and more smart-arsed I wrote, the better the reaction was and the better it came across.

People always ask me why I remove their names before posting the comments. The reason is that I had seen first-hand friends of mine naming and shaming people on Twitter and it always struck me as a bit petty and reactionary. For me to really rise above it and enjoy the process I needed it not to be about revenge. It seemed a waste of time to try and educate that one person who will probably never change their mind anyway. It's about showing everyone else what is acceptable behaviour. And for that I don't need their name.

3

Since then, I have actually weirdly enjoyed getting sexist comments as I revel in thinking up stupid retorts. It's actually pretty cathartic, plus, when you see the response it gets from people online, you know you're doing the right thing. So many men have messaged me in disbelief that people would dare to send such inappropriate remarks, and that's what is important to note. Most men never see this happen, they simply can't understand why women get so damn p***ed off, they haven't had years of this kind of interaction to really understand why we know sexism is still prevalent. And that's ok. This is why I want to show people that these kind of things happen all the time. Then perhaps they will be just as shocked as we are and do something about it too.

What's really funny is that some of these guys aren't even trying to intimidate me, they're reaching out and saying 'Hi! I really like you' - albeit by saying it through the medium of asking me to have sex with them. That's perhaps even more disturbing, as somehow it's easier to understand the intention behind a misogynistic view towards women (as history is littered with infinite examples of it) than the systemic undercurrent of some men thinking that women are 'things' or sex objects here simply for their gratification.

I'm not a sexualised person in my work. I have been careful to not post racy pictures of myself or sexualise the way I act, as I never wanted that kind of attention. It actually really creeped me out growing up - not that I'm a prude, far from it. It's just not a nice feeling to find out that someone you don't know is feeling sexually towards you. It feels predatory somehow. Perhaps it's not even that, perhaps it's simply that they think it's ok to act on those feelings. To lay it out right in front of you, with no mind as to how uncomfortable or intimidating it can be. They feel it, so why can't they say it? Surely it's the woman's fault for being sensitive? We should remember it is such a small percentage of men that behave this way online (although their voices are loud so it does seem like more), it seems unfair for the men who then get tarred with the same brush. When that innocent compliment you might make is met with hostility or suspicion. But don't blame women for that, blame the men who are messing it up for everyone by putting all women constantly on their guard.

"don't blame women for that, blame the men who are messing it up for everyone by putting all women constantly on their guard"

I don't judge the women who do 'sex it up a bit' either. I think it should be about balance, some women may want to be sexualised, I'm just at a bit of a loss as to why it seems all successful, talented women in the media end up having to, to get ahead. Why isn't Beyonce's voice good enough on its own?

I used to think that women who went down that road should expect that kind of unwanted attention. I have since revised that thought after seeing some of the messages a friend of mine who used to glamour model would receive. Some of the comments she'd get online, people should have been arrested for. Yes, she sexualised herself, but no-one, I don't care who you are or what you do, deserves to be spoken to that way. It was borderline terrifying.

The blog is a reaction to a problem I thought had disappeared, (it is 2015 after all) but with the anonymity of online interactions we often see peoples' true motives and feelings. Whilst it's disturbing, perhaps it's better that it's out in the open where we can try to find a way to eradicate it for good.

Misogyny Monday might not change the world or even the minds of the men I have spoken about in this article. But hopefully it might inspire everybody else to join in and call it out when it does happen. If we can make it socially inexcusable (on and offline), these people will keep it to themselves and hopefully we'll all be able to move forward to an internet where everyone is berated equally. Not just for having a vagina.

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Latest comments (24)

Darren Adams Managing Director, ChaosTrend4 years ago
"Misogyny Monday", both awesome and terrible.

Its awesome that Julia can take this daily crap and use it for her amusement, but equally terrible that she has to put up with this shit in the first place. "Awwww their using my hateful comments against me" come the cries of the guilty, tough crap buddy, you lost all rights to that when you gave it to whoever was unfortunate enough to be the recipient!

I wonder if there is a game in there somewhere, using these ridiculous comments in some way to make a great game and show how idiotic some of these people can be? If your gonna use it, really own that shit and make some money from it. :)

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Darren Adams on 1st April 2015 10:00am

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Nick McCrea Gentleman, Pocket Starship4 years ago
I love this as a response. I call it the Frankie Boyle doctrine. Unrelenting mockery!

The great thing about this is that it shows up the true division here. It's not men versus women. It's normal people versus total fucking morons. Hoist them up so we can see them and laugh.
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Like Julia I have found that the best way to respond to these sorts of idiots is to laugh them off. I spent several days at the end of last week enduring a barrage of hateful messages from people enraged by my nonplussed response to a high-profile tweet, and I found it deeply cathartic to respond to the messages with flippant, jokey and dismissive comments. And then blocking them, of course.

Simply being silent in the face of such ridiculous treatment is frustrating, and plainly venting your distress can unfortunately just increase your visibility as a target for lulz, but turning abusive comments around and biting back with sarcasm and humour is a great way to stay sane! Well said, Julia.
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Show all comments (24)
Kenny Lynch Community Rep/Moderator 4 years ago
One of the sad things I think is how many people seem to go from 'yeah this is totally unacceptable' when it is just abuse for being a woman, to 'it's her fault' or 'this is what happens when you...' as soon as a woman makes a mistake, or proves to have a different opinion from someone, or says something 'feminist' or nearly anything else.

Great way of dealing with the abuse. Silence as a superpower does not quite cut it in my book either...
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Gemma Suen Games Artist, Oysterworld Games4 years ago
This has always been the way I've dealt with nasty comments, makes you feel better and keeps things light. Getting too serious about anything on the internet with a bigot can be dangerous because (reiterating Julia's message) it's a waste of time and just drains you.
Another way to deal with these kind of 'disputes' is to keep things purely factual and void of emotion. Very quickly you'll start seeing the other person trying to emulate you because they don't want to be seen as the emotional, dumb childish one. It actually starts to keep things civil.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Gemma Suen on 1st April 2015 6:14pm

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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
Personally, I feel people focus to much on it being about women and sexism when the fact of the matter is, these trolls simply target everyone and change what they say depending on the circumstances.If they are going after someone who is on the bigger side, they are likely going to attack their weight. If it's a guy with a high pitched voice, they are probably going to attack his sexuality in some way. If it's simply a guy, they are going to attack his man hood or anything that will get a reaction. When they are going after females, they do exactly the same thing. They cater their insults to who ever it is they are insulting.

Trolls are terrible, but the correct response I always find is to simply have fun with it. Who cares what they say ... laugh at them, make some awesome responses and move on.

There is no doubt there is a problem, but it isn't specifically a female sexism one.
Ask yourself, does this happen to men too? It's a good rule of thumb. And generally when it comes to video games, it does not.
Of course it doesn't because the troll knows to piss off men you have to insult them in a different manner. Someone questioning a man on video games due to being a man makes no sense as an insult because it's not a thing. So it simply wouldn't work and that is why you don't see it.

For women you see trolls using the sexist remarks because it works, it's an insult and they get a kick out of it when the person in question actually gets butt hurt about it.


I don't know, I just feel people take these comments a little bit too serious, when they really shouldn't. Now, on the other hand, if you are getting threats. I would just file a police report and leave it at that.

Also keep in mind youtube does provide ways to block certain comments. So it's not like you can't police your own comment section.
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Kenny Lynch Community Rep/Moderator 4 years ago
Brook, being victimised and not being silent about it does not make you butt hurt. And, no, not everyone has to put up with this. Is there anyway you can explain why you think sexism does not exist beyond your brash statements of 'I don't think it is that bad'?

Try to educate yourself.

http://everydaysexism.com/

On a totally unrelated note, do you think VR will ever reach the point where you can reach out and stab someone in the eye with a fork? You'd make millions ^^
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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
@Kenny
Brook, being victimised and not being silent about it does not make you butt hurt.
What would you define as butt hurt? Because to me, butt hurt is when someone gets upset about something someone else said and makes it into a big fucking deal. I also never said they have to be silent about it. So .. please explain to me where I said that.

In fact, I said the exact opposite.
" Who cares what they say ... laugh at them, make some awesome responses and move on." Making a response is NOT remaining silent .. is it?
And, no, not everyone has to put up with this.
What do you mean by not everyone? Everyone has to put up with the trolls, just in different ways, so I have no idea what you are talking about. Are you new to the internet? Have you never commented on youtube? Let me just give an example, I am transgender ... and when I comment on a video about transgender .. do you realize how crazy the comments section is? It's a whole hell of a lot worse than any sexism .. I can guarantee you that.

Difference between me and stupid people is, I don't get upset about it because it doesn't fucking matter what some random person thinks in some random place in the world. I am not going to cry about it. I am not going to cry wolf and act like that person in particular signifies what the rest world thinks. A troll is a damned troll. They are going to purposefully say messed up things to piss you off.

Also . .you wanna know what, you can't stop it. Unless you throw free speech out the window. You can't arrest someone for calling you names. Raising awareness isn't going to do crap, because they already know what they are doing is wrong, that is why they are freaking doing it.
Is there anyway you can explain why you think sexism does not exist beyond your brash statements of 'I don't think it is that bad'?
Where did I say sexism does not exist? I said people focus to much on sexism when it's more than just that in the youtube comment section.

As for education? ... Oh please. I am likely to be far more educated on the subject than you are because I actually look into all the studies feminists get their data on and I got news for you. Most of them inflate the numbers and lie. Many studies tend to mislead you by including not only the far extreme, by choosing the largest possible number, but also include irrelevant data.

Many feminists will point to these numbers as facts when they are far from it. If feminists want me to take things seriously then they need to stop lying. People now a days fail to learn to actually look things up themselves, and they simply listen to every damned article that comes there way. Just because someone says something, doesn't mean it's true. Actually look up the damned study yourself so you can read it and make your own decisions.

Everyone in this day and age is a damned sheep and they just follow the crowd and get scammed left and right.

Ok .. how come all the people who tell fat people to go kill themselves is never brought up?
Where are all the studies for all the other people who constantly get insulting comments?
What it HAS to be about females for it to be important?
Where are all the articles about how people are sexist toward men, calling out their man hood on youtube?
How come it's ok for feminists to be sexist toward men, and why is it never made into a big deal?
#killallmen

I mean .. seriously please oh damned educated one, explain this to me .. why are all these things not made into such a big deal?

I know I may be getting a little of defensive on this. However, I am so sick of people complaining about these things while oppressing other people. It's hypocrisy and there are double standards everywhere.

Anytime someone questions this, people tend to freak the fuck out and act like you are some misogynistic asshole and are part of some patriarchy. As if you didn't do the research or don't know what you are talking about. When in reality, I question these things because I DID look at the research and I DO face the same kind of bullshit everyday.

You want equality? Then fight for equality as a whole. Stop focusing on one side and acting like every other side doesn't face the same shit. Because they do.

Also .. the comment section of youtube is ALWAYS going to be a pretty crappy place regardless of what you do. You can't stop people from saying what they want.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Brook Davidson on 2nd April 2015 2:18am

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Craig Page El Presidente, Awesome Enterprises4 years ago
LOL, that's a funny blog Julia. Have you thought of feeding the trolls to gather more material until you have enough for a book?

Youtube comments used to bother me. Every time a new Let's Play video was made playing one of my games, the comments would fill up with insults towards the game, and people wishing painful things to happen to me. It stopped getting to me once I figured out they're just trolls, they hate everything and everyone, even each other. In one video's comments two trolls started off insulting each other, moved on to threatening to kill each other, and ended with one of them giving the other one his address.
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Darren Adams Managing Director, ChaosTrend4 years ago
Haha Craig, I already suggested to make a game about the subject, which oddly didn't go down so well considering we are on a games website?

I think all we are missing is a troll tv show, film and album. :D

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Darren Adams on 2nd April 2015 9:07am

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Emily Knox Associate Designer, CCP Games4 years ago
I don't know, I just feel people take these comments a little bit too serious, when they really shouldn't.
It's extremely easy to tell people to simply not be affected by something that troubles them. It's also not conducive towards anything.
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Kenny Lynch Community Rep/Moderator 4 years ago
Brook, I really don't understand how you can read the above article, and then call Ms Hardy stupid and butt hurt because sexist abuse upsets her. Maybe you don't hear about people being attacked for being overweight because 1) it happens less, and 2) they don't want to be called stupid and butt hurt by people on the internet. By using the term butt hurt (which is only a negative term, you couldn't call someone upset about the loss of a family member butt hurt) you attack the victim of abuse. Calling them stupid, is worse. It is not the victims' fault no matter how they respond.

And no, I have never commented on YouTube. It may seem strange but I have never felt the need. I am however a forum administrator with years of experience and I deal with trolls on a daily basis. Your understanding of what they are is really weird. People don't join my forum to throw hate about the place. They join the forum to discuss the game. I have never been harassed or had a campaign of insults sent my way.People don't spout hate-filled insults at people because they are bored and looking for a bit of excitement. They do it because they hate the person they are spouting the abuse at. Those who throw about homophobic or racist abuse aren't really nice people with too much time on their hands. They are homophobes and racists. People that attack transgender people, are confused by them, are scared of them, and yes, hate them.

What is your definition of a feminist? Someone interested in gender equality? So all people that are interested in gender equality lie? That really is your reasoning? That whole fields of academic research are based on falsehoods because you don't agree with them?

And finally, though I have to question why I even bother to respond to someone that is so lacking in empathy, it isn't about only listening to women. It is about supporting helping victims of abuse and making it clear to everyone that it is not normal, and it is not ok. That goes for men, women and everything inbetween. By attacking female victims as butthurt and stupid, you aren't supporting some sort of universal humanitarianism that is gender blind, you are just attacking women. For being attacked. For being women.

I'd love to think that in some small way I could reach you and let you see lacking in compassion you are in the face of human suffering, but I don't.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Kenny Lynch on 2nd April 2015 1:45pm

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You know, discussions like this wouldn't get blown out of all proportion if it wasn't for enormous, defensive overreactions like that opus you just penned, Brook. If you think anybody in this debate is being overly sensitive, you might want to go take a look in the mirror.
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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
Brook, I really don't understand how you can read the above article, and then call Ms Hardy stupid and butt hurt because sexist abuse upsets her. Maybe you don't hear about people being attacked for being overweight because 1) it happens less, and 2) they don't want to be called stupid and butt hurt by people on the internet. By using the term butt hurt (which is only a negative term, you couldn't call someone upset about the loss of a family member butt hurt) you attack the victim of abuse. Calling them stupid, is worse. It is not the victims' fault no matter how they respond.
First of all, let me clear something up. I was not specifically talking about Ms. Hardy. In fact, I like this Article because she handles it a lot more appropriate than most people do and she pretty much accepts that the only thing you can pretty much do is have fun with it, rather then getting upset.

Second, I wasn't calling her stupid nor was I calling anyone "butt hurt" ... I said butt hurt because that is what trolls are looking for. Whether or not a person is in fact actually butt hurt is a whole other question. I wouldn't be the one calling them butt hurt it would be the trolls and that is my point. If they can't even handle being called butt hurt .. what the hell are they doing on the internet where they are likely to be called far worse than that? It really boggles my mind.

What kind of message are you sending for women if you can't handle this stuff? You would think all the feminists would just joke around with these sorts of comments and not let it get to them to show that it doesn't effect them and they are strong.
And no, I have never commented on YouTube. It may seem strange but I have never felt the need. I am however a forum administrator with years of experience and I deal with trolls on a daily basis. Your understanding of what they are is really weird. People don't join my forum to throw hate about the place. They join the forum to discuss the game. I have never been harassed or had a campaign of insults sent my way.People don't spout hate-filled insults at people because they are bored and looking for a bit of excitement. They do it because they hate the person they are spouting the abuse at. Those who throw about homophobic or racist abuse aren't really nice people with too much time on their hands. They are homophobes and racists. People that attack transgender people, are confused by them, are scared of them, and yes, hate them.
You are wrong. Your forum doesn't represent anything nor does it give you even a hint of experience for what to expect on youtube. Do you want me to post a few videos so you can look through the comment section? Sexism, racism, hate, is pretty much a norm on youtube. Boggie2988 gets called a fat ass every single video he releases and is told to go kill himself. Pewdiepie disabled his comment section due to the rampant crap. Any video about transgender is littered with people calling transgender queer, fags, and making hateful remarks. This is so damned normal, that I don't see why anyone would take these comments seriously anymore. Many of them even get death threats daily, it's nothing specifically to do with feminism. Some of them even make a video series of the hate comments, much like misogyny monday.

So before you dismiss what I said, I suggest you actually start looking at youtube comment sections, and you will soon find it's normal for trolls to troll simply because it's funny to them. Again .. if you want some examples .. I can most certainly give them to you.
What is your definition of a feminist? Someone interested in gender equality? So all people that are interested in gender equality lie? That really is your reasoning? That whole fields of academic research are based on falsehoods because you don't agree with them?
What the actual definition of feminism is doesn't matter when no one seems to follow it anymore. All people who believe in gender equality are better off not associating themselves with feminism anymore because it's littered with sexism and hate. There already are many females who don't want to associate themselves with it, because they feel feminism as deviated from what they where originally about.

Also .. a lot of the research isn't denied because of my opinion, it's denied because they actually do inflate the numbers on purpose. One example would be a study based around rape. They used a scale from 1- 5 on the likelihood of would you sexually assault a women if you knew you could get away with it. 1 being furthest to no and 5 being furthest to yes. They included everyone from 4 - 5 as saying yes.

They do this so they have a high number and for shock value. So many numbers they bring up are actually far lower. A youtube who goes over this very well is TL;DR (aka Teal Deer). He goes over all the studies many feminists cite as their source and you learn many of these studies are very dishonest in their findings.

So I consider anyone who wants equal rights a humanist or egalitarian. Not a feminist. Feminism focuses to much on female problems and hates on men way to much for me to consider them looking for equality. They claim they are looking for equality, but people looking for that don't say things like #killallmen and crap like that. That is hypocrisy, and it doesn't serve any purpose to further their goals, it only makes them look bad. I will not associate myself with that.
And finally, though I have to question why I even bother to respond to someone that is so lacking in empathy, it isn't about only listening to women. It is about supporting helping victims of abuse and making it clear to everyone that it is not normal, and it is not ok. That goes for men, women and everything inbetween. By attacking female victims as butthurt and stupid, you aren't supporting some sort of universal humanitarianism that is gender blind, you are just attacking women. For being attacked. For being women.
I pretty much already explained this above. I never once said it was normal or ok, you are just taking what I say out of context. Nor am I attacking the victims. If that is what you think I am doing, then you missed the entire point. Also . it makes no sense for me to attack women for being women when I consider myself a women.

In reality, I would tell this to anyone who is taking the youtube comment section too seriously and making it out to be some larger issue than what it really is..

Also ...
Maybe you don't hear about people being attacked for being overweight because 1) it happens less, and 2) they don't want to be called stupid and butt hurt by people on the internet.
No . .it doesn't happen less. Also .. no they are not worried about being called butt hurt or stupid. They bring it up, and they pretty much have the same thoughts as everyone else on youtube. They are trolls, and trolls will be trolls. You take them seriously and you only make it worse.

But hey .. you visit youtube all the time and comment right? Oh .. wait . .
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Marty Howe Director, Figurehead Studios4 years ago
the only thing you can pretty much do is have fun with it, rather then getting upset.

well, no, there's another option.

Ignore it.
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Kenny Lynch Community Rep/Moderator 4 years ago
Brook, this article is not about the comment section in Youtube. And I find it a little scary that you seem to be taking that as some kind of baseline for human interaction.

People don't have the right to tell other people not be offended or insulted by something. Just because one person is not offended by something does not mean no one else is allowed to be.

I don't want to get drawn into the feminist argument-I am not a feminist nor fully conversant with the theories that abound in a very diverse and often contradictory field, but the fact that you think that feminism is synonymous with "sexism" and "hate" it only goes to show what cesspools you frequent. And when you say you read the research, you do mean that you study the field, I hope? And not that you watch YouTube with some random guy spouting nonsense about the subject? Just to justify my question, the example you gave was either collected by the maliciously dishonest or the pathologically stupid. The normal and neutral response to the question you pose, or others such as "do you want to kill yourself?" or "how likely are you to try to kill your children in the next week?" is not 3 but 1. Being as likely to rape someone as not is not middle of the road, but extremely worrying. 4 or 5 is a very affirmative answer. Failure to understand that shows a total lack of understanding. Or a deliberate attempt to distort the truth.

While there is on one level little difference between abuse directed at a specific target or abuse directed at a random target by a psychopath. The problem is that by denying sexist motivation instead of it being used to comfort those abused, 'it's ok, it is nothing personal', it is used to criticise the victim's feelings of hurt, to call them hysterical, to blame them for not passing the 'cool dude on the internet' test. When people contact you on Facebook to express the wish to perform a horrific sexual act on you, to claim it is not sexist because of comments on YouTube makes as much sense as telling a black football player that has a monkey noises shouted at them and inflatable bananas thrown at them that it is not racially motivated. And of course white players don't get it because they would not act all butt hurt like black players do. Victim's fault, not the abusers, or the society that normalises and accepts the abuse.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Kenny Lynch on 4th April 2015 10:43pm

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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
@Kenny
Ahh crap .. I screwed up.
I just realized I messed up while typing. It wasn't 4 - 5 that they considered yes. It was 2 - 5. I probably said 4 - 5 because I was thinking 4 out of the 5 where said as yes. In other words, only those who answer 1, where not counted while anyone who answer anything else was counted toward "Men who would rape if they could get away with it" ... which added up to around 30% or so. Which obviously is a misleading number.

My typo pretty much screws up a large portion of your response ... sorry XD.

Also as for looking into the studies. I look directly at the papers feminists write about to make sure their numbers match and to see what those studies actually say. I don't "study the field". I just read the studies. AKA no different than what the feminists do, except ... I don't take things out of context and I don't write articles based on faulty studies.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Brook Davidson on 5th April 2015 3:52am

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Shehzaan Abdulla Translator/QA 4 years ago
"Ask yourself, does this happen to men too?"

Yes, it does. Don't presume to talk for me. The only differnece is it happens selectively in topics related to feminsm with feminist posters rather than as a general trend. As Brooke pointing out earlier: this is the internet, it happens to everyone. The difference is in which trends are identified and which ones are not. Women and feminists being on the receiving end of it isn't new, it' recognised and been talked to death.

While this is all well and good, I can't tell you the number of times I've seen similar strategies employed in response to geniune, non-abusive comments by feminists themselves. It's like being in secondary school again: people pile on and pat each other on the back and ultimately the side with more likes "wins" even if what they said ignores the pertinent issue or simply switches to attacking someone making a legitimate point. And this kind of behaviour is considered acceptable, even on this site where the mods sit around as feminists do the digital equiviliant of saying "fine" before pissantly sauntering off. Apparently that is enough to garner upvotes and mass approval when you're in the "cool crowd".

And guess what? I bet people are already smashing their keyboads to defend their gross behaviour or spin it in some positive light. Or worse, deny that it even happens. Something I've noticed sites such as this try to supress with extreme force. I have no idea why arsehole-ism is allowed to propogate, let alone be celebrated as professional, simply because the arsehole in question is feminst.

But I want to take a second to point out something this article touches on: the need to feel correct on social media, the process of how draining it is, and all that inspite of the fact that we, on some level, know it doesn't really matter. Yet all the same we fight on.

I've never tried to deal with comments with curt, flippish off-hand comments like this. That would only reflect poorly on me. But I have to admit that taking the high ground means you never really get that sense of "winning". You simply end up writing long comments and inevitably the reader ignores 90% of it and then miscontrues one part for whatever contrived point they want ot make. It's so easy to just write a flippant response and be celebrated for it, but that's pathetic as well. Like being back at high school and winning out for being "cool" rather than the actual content of your ideas.

I'm not going to use the momentum of social pressure, that is the weight of people liking my comments, to make my points for me or lend them weight. Indeed, I've not once pointed out the number of likes or dislikes on my comments as if they substantiate what I'm saying. The catharsis isn't worth the loss in integrity.

Edited 4 times. Last edit by Shehzaan Abdulla on 6th April 2015 6:28pm

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(edit) Actually, never mind. Rising above etc :v

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Jessica Hyland on 6th April 2015 8:10pm

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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
@Jessica
A win .. how? In my opinion, this whole feminism issues going on as of late. No one is winning it. In fact, I would say it's causing more problems than it's solving.
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Brook Davidson Artist / 3D design 4 years ago
Edit: I see you edited your post, but I will leave this here, because I honestly think it's important.
@Jessica
However, Don't you think that in itself looks bad on you. I mean, if you are unwilling to even read 90% of it ... it essentially means you are extremely closed minded and essentially don't care what anyone else says.

I read through all of Shehzaan's comment and it's not anti-feminist trash. But I guess for you it's better to write it off as so simply because you can't be bothered to actually discuss it like an adult. What you are doing is equivalent to a kid putting his or her fingers in their ear say "nanananananan not listening"

Keeping in mind, I am only saying this because ignoring the other side of the coin solves nothing and as I said in my previous comment, causes more problems. I doubt there is a single person here who isn't for equality. However, many feminists don't care, even though that is what feminism is suppose to be about. If it's truly for equality .. why is it such an issue for us to ask questions or and give criticism on things we are concerned with? Why label people anti-feminist and ignore them when they really are not doing anything wrong?

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Brook Davidson on 6th April 2015 8:18pm

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Shehzaan Abdulla Translator/QA 4 years ago
"Being female means that it's not just what you say that's up for discussion [but also] what you said flippantly two months ago"
Actually that's how it works for everyone. Must be shocking realising that, fair or not, people hold you to the things you say regardless of how or when you said them. If you have a problem with it then stop doing it yourself. And believe me, feminists love doing nothing more than digging up years old quotes out of context and having a field day with them. You don't get to complain about shooting yourself in the foot when you're the one pulling the trigger.

Keep your complaints to when someone else is holding the proverbial gun, or you will indeed get called out for mixing self-inflicted wounds with non-self-inflicted ones. That's not victim blaming, that's blaming you for playing the victim where you aren't.
It's just not a nice feeling to find out that someone you don't know is feeling sexually towards you. It feels predatory somehow. Perhaps it's not even that, perhaps it's simply that they think it's ok to act on those feelings.
But this isn't really about the fact that you don't know that person is it? There's zero actual argument or reason happening here, just an icky feeling that's wholly the writer's issue to deal with. Don't present it as if its a fault with those people. Although having said that there's plenty of room to dissect HOW those people act on or express those feelings, the fact that they have them should not be considered an actual issue.

If it is considered an issue then there's a massive contradiction as you're saying "it's not okay for you to have unrequited sexual feelings towards me unless I reciprocate". But turn that statement on its head a second and you get this: It's only okay for you to have sexual feelings for me if I'm reciprocating. Now take that to it's logical conclusion: It's okay for me to have unreciprocated sexual feelings towards you so that if and when you do have them towards me I'm already in a state or reciprocating your feelings making it okay for you to have them.

In other words: It's not okay for you to have unrequited sexual feelings towards me. It is however, okay for me to have unrequited sexual feelings for you (in the event that you might reciprocate). That's not even a double standard. It's flat out contradictory.
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Shehzaan Abdulla Translator/QA 4 years ago
(edit) Actually, never mind. Rising above etc :v
I didn't read the original comment. But I will say that you specifically are one such example of the kind of person that leverages the weight of social consensus to make their points for them. At times turning to directly attack those that disagree with you by switching from engaging with their points to instead trying to discredit them as people. If you didn't have your clique of like-minded buddies to high-five and egg you on maybe you wouldn't be so ready to treat people that disagree with you like they weren't even deserving of a basic modicum of respect.

Indeed, it's comments like yours that have crossed this site off from my regular roster of check ups. There's nothing productive to be had by talking to people like you. Believe me, I've more than done my share to give you the benefit of the doubt, and at some point doubt simply wins out.

Unfortunately, because you are feminist, people don't stop to actually call you out for fear of being made an example of everything that stands against feminism -- something that you and the cliques that support you will ensure happens. For most people knowing that all they have to gain for engaging in a feminist topic is being vilified is enough to turn them off engaging with the topic at all, because unlike feminists they don't have a specific goal or end result they're striving for, so it doesn't matter if they voice their opinions or not.

But make no mistake, the lack of dissenting opinions (which have been on the steady decrease) isn't indicative of feminist progress (the rate of which can't be recorded so) - it's simply indicative of a group of people that are sick and tired of dealing with your BS. And given that they have no mission they have no reason to go out of their way to make themselves a target. Why bother?

Here's what you need to know: Like it or not, one day you will achieve all your goals as a feminist. But when that day comes the internet will remain, recording everything you've said. If you won't answer for your actions and behaviour now because your feminist mission is so important that we can't question you on them, then be assured, in 5, 10 or even 20 years time they'll be plenty of time to look back and call you out on every. single. instance.

So you might want to work on minimising what you will eventually get called out on. Your feminist shield won't last forever because feminisms' ultimate goal is to make itself redundant (universalised).

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Shehzaan Abdulla on 7th April 2015 9:10am

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Anthony Gowland Director, Ant Workshop4 years ago
Any article about women on this site is always a great honeytrap for the "ignore user" function. I don't really know why you wouldn't use it - no matter which side of the argument you're on there's just a huge amount of energy wasted arguing, and I'd put good money on not a single person having changed their opinion as a result of it.
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