Sitting here enjoying a nice afternoon of ibuprofen-relaxed profession leveling on Momokawa and Zeptepi (damn, that enchanting stuff is pricey!) and I read this stream in trade-chat that is like witnessing a gang beating up a kid in an alley. Did I stop them? Did I say anything? No, I chickened out.
Basically, what you don’t read before this is the citizens of Whisperwind deciding Nenrock is gay, and 12, and then subsequently harassing him to leave the server. Nothing I read by Nenrock suggested any reason for this harassment, no trolling or provocation. And even if he was, no need to blame the victim/target–he was just bullied, plain and simple. His spelling was perfect, by the way, suggesting that he is not 12. As to his sexual orientation, that is his business, just as mine is mine and yours is yours. The language of bullying is clearly demarcated: we call each other the names that we feel we are most vulnerable with, things at our very core we cannot change: the color of our skins, our sexual orientation, our cultures, our parents, and our gender.
I hate it.
Now this screenshot is out of context. I have no idea if “Kylerie” was secretly whispering Nenrock with nice words, or if it was a usual trade-chat hoax. I hesitate to even put this here because if they are innocent of harassment, then they should be left alone, too. But I decided to put it for maybe some greater good, a message to myself, that if I do see trade-chat bullying, to maybe step in when I need to. I have whispered players in the past to see if they are okay, or to give them clear information, and it’s either met with a “thanks, I know, just kidding around” or a “thanks.”
Social Media Chimps: http://socialmediachimps.com/2012/trolling-cyberbullying-and-the-first-amendment/
Speaking with an adolescent authority on this issue this afternoon, because the younger generation is clearly ensconced in a code or diatribe we digital pioneers still do not grasp, or want to, he reminded me that in evolutionary protocols there is much “bullying” in chimpanzee communities as part of a strengthening of the tribe. Okay. I get that. But at what point do we humans stop de-evolving and step up our game a bit? At what point do we embrace the extra-ordinary, the outsider? Maybe we all swing from the “not in my backyard” to the “welcome wagon” syndrome every day. For every trolling incident or harassment, there is a balance of “LFM” or guild recruitment ads that encourage all levels of players.
I guess I would like us all to be a little less Lord of the Flies and a bit more open to the quirkiness. I just want to scream from the cathedral tops and the heaps of pixelized ruins, YOU ARE ALL QUIRKY SH*T-HEADS PRETENDING TO BE ELVES AND ORCS! GET OVER YOURSELVES!
But alas, I fear no one would hear me. And then they would just start throwing poo.