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Wednesday, October 23, 2013


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Pussycat Catnap


I would like to see this controlled a bit for

- is the result being more open to promiscuity
- or more open to agreeing with victim blaming.

Because I see a critical flaw... if one were to approach women on the street who were dressed conservatively and women on the street dressed revealingly... I suspect you would get the opposite conclusion. That women who dress conservative might think the women who dress revealingly are "asking for it" but that the women who dress revealingly have more complex motives, the least likely of which would entail "seeking to get assaulted"...

Context plays a HUGE role in this too...

In SL, Goreans have created a perception that the less clothed a female is, the less she has a right to empowerment - and where nude = slave. That perception filters out to the rest of SL in a number of ways...

In many an MMO however, powerful action heroines are often very scantily clad, and has no 'slave culture' about them. And weaker peasants can often be seen in raggedy robes that are almost nun-like.

Sailor Moon, that popular anime in the 90s, tied 'bikini top and mini-skirt' to Girl Power. Which was often about being cute, sexy, strong willed, and super humanly powerful. Wonder Woman in the 70s did much the same for my generation.

Conan style fantasy seems to go the other way: the princess needing rescue is typically nude. But then there is Red Sonja in a literal chainmail bikini. And Conan himself has just half a bikini... :)

The study needs to be controlled for preconceptions, and for context.

If I put these participants into a Gorean sim in SL, and then surveyed them, I'm sure they would come away from it very differently than if I put them into an MMO like Guild Wars or World of Warcraft...


When you control an avatar you made, instead of operating prefabricated one, it's more like "you are affecting the avatar's behaviour" rather than "avatar's look controls yours". Basically, it's the logics of that research running backwards. So I guess the persons who are running almost or fully naked in SL are pretty okay with "the fact", as it is the choice of their own will.

Arcadia Codesmith

I think Iris is on to an important point. Choosing to dress in a "sexy" mode is an exercise of agency, of free will. Having that mode foisted upon you as a default or as the only possible choice of body type and outfit is a denial of agency -- and denial of agency is a fair description of the underlying motivator behind rape and threats of rape.

The authors of the study caution that this is a preliminary work. But it definitely warrents further investigation, and I would most certainly hope that the major design studios take the findings to heart.

Emperor Norton

Bad science.

* No reason for anyone to identify with an avi they were just given.

* The VR set up used isn't how gaming is done.

* The provided avatars aren't dressed nearly as revealing as gaming avatars get.

* avatars aren't associated with the constant violence that happens in a typical game.

The last point is striking considering this is supposed to be a study about rape.

Arcadia Codesmith

I don't think it's "bad science", just preliminary science. You always control for extraneous variables. Once a baseline is established, then you can factor in those in a controlled fashion.

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