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Saturday, March 5, 2011

Speaking of what makes people laugh becoming a moral issue...

...this is pretty much the definition of it.

I'm not sure if I want to write a full-fledged post on this topic or not.  As you can see from that timeline it's a controversy that has been going on since August of last year with frequent twists and turns, and no shortage of different perspectives-- but then that's always the case, isn't it? There are almost never just two sides. I think some timeless truths about online disputes can be drawn from it, though.  Such as:

  • It's hard to overestimate the ability of gamers to be arses, particularly of the misogynistic variety.  And I say this as a person who loves to play the video games herself, but the community does have its share of misogynerds.  (I just learned that term today, and this will probably be the only time I use it.  But it's fitting now, if ever)
  • Reasonable people may disagree, but they don't threaten violence.  That's an automatic and permanent revocation of one's credibility card.  
  • As a debate about the value of something said on the internet continues, the probability that someone will interpret objections as threats to freedom of speech approaches 100%.  
  • Real or effective online anonymity plus an audience doesn't turn everyone into total fuckwads, but it inevitably works like a charm for some.  

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