Here's a handy social VR infographic from Jessica Outlaw, who led a recent Extended Mind study on harassment in social VR, with 49% of women reporting at least one instance of sexual harassment, and 30% of males taking the survey reporting racist or homophobic comments. The infographic above lays out the options that fellow social VR/online world users can take, to help intervene when such abuse occurs.
"My overall opinion is that people will ideally know all 5 tactics and be able to choose which one is best for the exact situation in front of them," she tells me. "I planned the training because I wanted people to know."
From my experience, the "distract" option is often the most powerful, because it deprives the troll of the attention they don't deserve while also shifting everyone in the space into a new context -- to the point where the troll often stops the trolling just so they can stay within that reset social frame. new context of whatever everyone in the social space has become interested in.
It's not always the best, adds Jessica. "But it's overlooked as some people just go to direct confrontation and that tends to escalate quickly."
Oh, about that unicycle icon:
"I was influenced by The Unipiper - a guy who counter-protests at events by playing the bagpipes on a unicycle. He's walking in this one [above], but he rides a unicycle in others. That's why i picked the 'unicycle' icon for the infographic. but the distract technique is recommended in actual bystander intervention training."
More conversation on Jessica's Twitter. She recently had a related Q&A with Philip Rosedale in High Fidelity: