Can anyone tell me what to what kind of writing it’s appropriate to respond with threats of rape, comments about the writer’s fuckability, or belittling, sexist insults?
As it happens, I disagree. I disagree when people do it, and I disagree when they defend it because “men get crap on the internet, too”, or “it’s not that bad”. Because it’s not the same from the other side of the gender divide, not when one in six women are sexually assaulted at some point in our lifetimes, not when we’re socialized to be shut up by men, not when we’re outnumbered and outshouted in these masculine communities.
(And even if it were the same, would that make it acceptable?)
If you don’t believe it happens, gentlemen, I dare you: choose a female name and log onto a gaming board, or a deep geek IRC channel, or a heated political discussion. Disagree with the common herd and see what you get back. Then do the same with a male name. And then remember that you’re being kicked on undamaged flesh; it’s much worse when there’s already a deep bruise there from all the charming things people do in meatspace, too.
Look. Let me be clear on this, dear friends of the male persuasion. You want to be in my good books? You want to be among the righteous in my pantheon? Speak up. Stand beside women. Speak up and be counted, because the people who do this stuff, they don’t listen to us. That’s kinda their whole point.
This includes, by the way, women you disagree with. Give us the space to be ordinarily wrong, misguided, angry, weird, biased. If only the rational angels of sweetness and light are allowed to speak unmolested, that’s just another kind of gag. I want an internet where a woman can be angry and not be called a bitch; where she can say something stupid and not be told to make a fucking sandwich.
I am so tired of this crap.
Edited to add: Let me just forestall one of the usual lines of commentary that appears in these conversations. I’m only interested in “that’s just the way the internet is, whatcha gonna do?” comments and other More Cynical Than Thou fan-dances if you also include links to at least three comments that you, personally, have made fighting against the problem. Otherwise, save your weary ennui for another thread. I don’t want it here.