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Wednesday, September 04, 2013


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I want to boycott companies that exhibit at PAX. I want that to be the solution to this but I'm not sure that's possible. It would be like boycotting auto manufacturers who exhibit at the Detroit Auto Show.

Adeon Writer

"I want to boycott companies that exhibit at PAX."

A noble stand, but it requires giving up on videogames entirely.


Well when a Judge in MY Country decides that there was no rape cause the victim was not a virgin at the time of the rape, what can i say more?

Arcadia Codesmith

The comic itself looked to me like No Big Deal. I capitalize "No Big Deal" because when you accumulate 10 or 20 or 50 of them every single day over the course of a lifetime, you end up with a humungous steaming pile of No Big Deals that form one very impressive Big Deal. And next to every pebble that makes up that mountain stands a boy (usually) who's looking at you all hurt and defensive and whining, "What? It's No Big Deal!"

I'm very sorry the boys get their feelings hurt, but the only way to dismantle Big Deal Mountain is the same way it was formed - one pebble at a time.

And if a particular No Big Deal is No Big Deal, then it's No Big Deal to let go of it. You can't simultaneously argue that it's so criticly important that you have to take a heroic defense against censorship to defend it, yet so trivial that your opposition is blowing it entirely out of proportion. That's cognitive dissonance in action.

I have advocated for and will continue to advocate for freedom of expression. But when my expression contributes to somebody else's Big Deal Mountain, I stand up for their right to criticize me. We achieve nothing by howling our POV to the heavens and never listening to any response that is not an echo of agreement.


I was linked to this piece on twitter, and went back and read a few of your other pieces about PA and Dickwolves. Thanks for writing this, and thanks especially for writing this with such a calm tone and expository manner.

I've had an incredibly difficult time understanding so much of the issues surrounding Krahulik because I just don't understand a lot about trans culture.

I thought I did, I consider myself an ally for gay and lesbian friends and have always been the best friend and supporter I could be to them. But there's a lot about trans culture that I didn't and don't understand, and trying to learn more during the PA situation has been wildly difficult.

There's a lot of words and terms being thrown around that I truly didn't understand, and when I tried to ask people on twitter, I got either venom or apathetic mocking. I didn't know what cisgendered even meant until a few weeks ago. I thought it was some kind of hate term, because everytime I saw it, it was usally used in "death to cis white men" tumblr posts.

This has already gone on too long, but thank you for writing about this in a way that doesn't talk down to someone unfamiliar with a lot of the culture involved and just wants understand the foundation of what they did wrong, and how I can be more more accepting in my conversations with transsexual people and in regards to trans culture.

Thanks, and if you have any further recommended reading on the subject, I'd be very interested.

Information Chef

Great article! There's a great related new post by Daniel Griffiths on Forbes analyzing this from a brand & business sense for PA & PAX. Good read. http://www.forbes.com/sites/danielnyegriffiths/2013/09/05/pax-problems-censorship-and-sensibility-in-the-penny-arcade/

Pussycat Catnap

No Big Deal mountain...

That's a very good analogy Arcadia.

I think what needs to be done is to pressure one of the big development houses into not attending. Do this by reaching out to some of their key developers that seem enlightened, so it becomes 'office talk'. Which means reaching out to them without aggression, but with discussion. If that requires contacting female developers first and only - do so. The 'Good Old Boys' will have a lot more trouble standing up for hate when the pressure starts coming from people they work with and like/respect.

I've had it on my sig on the SL forums for a while, and its my response to those who say we need to 'get over it' with offensive conduct:

Bigotry has been "hiding" behind the "its your problem for getting offended" line for far too long.

- When they say 'it no big deal' or 'its just a joke' they do so because they either lack empathy or worse, possess hate. And that is no joke.

Ordinal Malaprop

The message I get from it all is "this is not a conference for you or people like you. This is a conference for people who wear dickwolves t-shirts and complain about liberal feminist censorship on the internet. Look, here they are! And here's one of the founders encouraging them! Look at them cheering!"

Given the number of people now saying they are tired of this shit now and won't bother next time, it looks like it _will_ increasingly be just the dickwolves brigade and people who want to sell games to them. That's what happens when you set out your stall in this way.

Iris Ophelia

@Pete First and foremost, thanks for commenting, and thanks for making the effort. If you're specifically interested in gathering more perspective on the trans issues involved in this discussion, I really recommend Samantha Allen's writing, specifically "Trans 101"( http://srlp.org/resources/trans-101/ ), "7 Ways To be a Trans Ally" ( http://thoughtcatalog.com/2013/7-ways-to-be-a-trans-ally/ ), and "How to React When You're Called Out for Transphobia" ( http://thoughtcatalog.com/2013/how-to-react-when-youre-called-out-for-transphobia/ ). For more general discussion, Gamers Against Bigotry is a great resource, and they even have their own post up about this fresh Dickwolf B.S. ( http://gamersagainstbigotry.org/2013/09/do-not-engage-dickwolves-again/ ). Krahulik also released (a rather underwhelming) apology today, so I suspect lots more opinions and articles will be published in the next few days.

Hope that helps! :)


"Thanks for writing this, and thanks especially for writing this with such a calm tone and expository manner." -Pete

Indeed it was very well written/expressed. Even taking a moment to consider potential effects of actions people may consider taking.

Well done Iris.

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