Sexism in EvE: Male Privilege

So I was reading through random news when something came up.  I’ll admit to being a feminist.  I’m one of those wild, uncontrollable loons who thinks women should be treated with respect and dignity as much or as little as men.  That they should have the same expectation of a safe public environment as men.  So the story is a police officer in Arizona got drunk, drove himself to a bar, flashed his badge to skip the cover and entered a bar, then groped a woman to include sliding a hand up her skirt and “running his fingers across her genitals.”  The jury handed down a conviction and the judge went to sentence the case.  Being a fair judge in a modern sensible courtroom she of course placed full blame on the public servant who utterly failed in his responsibilities as a police officer, a human being and a man and willingly chose to violate multiple laws, common decency and good order.  Alternately she said this to the victim:

“If you wouldn’t have been there that night, none of this would have happened to you,”

- and -

“When you blame others, you give up your power to change,”

Sadly the correct answer is B.  Apparently women aren’t supposed to go to bars.  If they are foolish enough to go to bars they should be willing to accept that men whom they normally expect not only to obey the law but to uphold it to break it in some of the most disgusting ways possible.  I’m leaving the names out as the judge in question HAS come forward and apologized for her comments to the satisfaction of the victim in this case, but still, to me, there’s clearly a problem in the system.

Yes I’ll bring it back to EvE.

Ever wonder why there aren’t many women in the game?  Ever wonder why most MMOs don’t have that many women?  Because of this crazy “locker room atmosphere” where everyone thinks it’s hilarious to spam dicks in local.  Because of this crazy “locker room atmosphere” where rape jokes ARE STILL CONSIDERED HILARIOUS.  Because of this crazy “locker room atmosphere” where a woman who expresses disgust at disgusting conversations isn’t apologized to and made to feel more comfortable, but instead told to HTFU.

That’s not what HTFU means guys.  HTFU means when your ship blows up whether it’s a Thrasher, a Hookbill, a Guardian, a Navy Mega or a shiny-fit Bhaalgorn you realize that it’s EvE, ships go boom and YOU accept responsibility for YOUR actions.  You chose to undock those ships, you chose to put them in the line of fire knowing that ships going boom = EvE.  HTFU does not mean you can sperg your drek in local, or even in pub rooms and expect people to put up with your shit.  I’m a man.  I’m accountable.  If I say something awesome, you know damn well I’m taking credit for it, so if I say something terrible I’m damn well expected to own up, apologize and deal with the consequences.

We don’t play like that in EvE.  We shit up local.  We make “sammich” jokes.  We make rape jokes.  God forbid a female voice comes up on comms or else the shit will really get out of hand.

Then we wonder why women don’t play EvE.  We assume they don’t want to play it because it’s hard.  That’s not it.  Most women like a challenge.  They don’t want to play with us.  They don’t want to play with sexist assholes.

I’m using it every time I can

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About Corelin

An Eve playing Fool who occasionally writes about the shenanigans he and his minions get up to.

Posted on September 9, 2012, in Meta, Things I think I think. Bookmark the permalink. 29 Comments.

  1. This was pretty terrible.

  2. I think most guys are okay with women not playing eve, they’d rather be ‘sexist assholes’. That said, you’re never going to have as large a population of women in eve as there are men just by the nature of the game. It’s not because it’s hard, or even necessarily because it’s ruthless, but because of the differences between men and women. Women, in general are more verbal while guys are visual and logic oriented. Women might find the social aspect of the game fun, but will probably find the game-play dull.

    I personally find peoples fascination with spamming dicks retarded and a bit homosexual; it’s like they’re reenacting some childhood experience. Other than that I think your concepts about trying going out of your way to “respect women” is a bit… cliche. Sure, because of my upbringing, I respect women, but I’ve also been told to respect everyone. In a civilized society, people should respect everyone regardless of their sex, race, or creed. However, this is EVE, if you want a goon or someone from test (for example) to act civil, you’re going to be disappointed.

    In regards to the judge, I agree she was out of line in her comments. In regards to the police officer, it’s because they think they can get away with it. Cases like this or when I see them arrest someone for videotaping police, piss me off.

    • Stopped at “Men are more logic oriented”. That’s one of the most ridiculous constructs I’ve ever had the displeasure of hearing. It implies that women, by nature, are incapable of enjoying logical games or thinking logically. The truth is, surprisingly, perhaps, that every woman is different, and has different interests and strong points.

      “What, just like real people?”

      Yes. Women are just like people. In fact, we *are* people. I’ll let that sink in.

  3. Let me tell you a story. A woman once walked into a bar and started groping a man. The man tried to take her to court, but “she was flirting.” Now don’t get me wrong, it’s NEVER okay to sexually assault anyone, but you can’t claim that since they’re women we have to be all cutzie with them and talk about ponies and rainbows. Boys will be boys, and to claim that because a girl is on everyone should treat her specially and for that matter better than everyone else, is sexist. The problem here isn’t that men make jokes about girls, it’s that girls EXPECT them to be all sweet and kind the second a girl walks into a room. It just goes to show that ‘sexism’ is usually just people being sexist against men. Think about it, a girl eyes a guys junk, she’s flirting so the guy should feel good. A guy eyes a girls junk even for half a second, he’s a pedophile an a sexual predator and should be shunned from society immediately.

    • I think the kind of girl that wants to play EvE doesn’t want guys to be sweet. They just don’t want “TITS OR GTFO” “MAKE ME A SAMMICH” “GIRLS SUCK AT EVE” the second they make their gender known. Yeah there are double standards, but aren’t WE supposed to be the tough ones? If that’s the case why do we tilt the playing field in our own favor?

      • You are right that some don’t need the guys to be sweet. I’ve never cared for sweet, soft guys. But being an asshole does not mean that they have to treat me poorly as well.

        I’ve met a lot of great guys on Eve. Watching my boys (corp and alliance) rip into someone who leaves the realms of good taste is interesting. At the same time I don’t want to dilute the boys club feel. It works out in the end when both sides are mature and get to know what individual tolerances are.

        I’ve also met some very angry men who seemed offended that I was playing.

        And of course, obligatory accused of being a guy with a demand of pics or its a lie. I wrote on the topic a few months ago. Then, when one of my articles was posted on some more… Vocal websites I received a lot of gender directed nastyness.

        But that storm was weathered and I love my corp and alliance.

  4. Well said. This all comes back to not being a dick. I suspect many people say and do things online they never would have the balls do do in real life, because they don’t have to worry about getting their ass kicked. People complain about the UI and numerous bugs in EVE and the numerous imbalances in the game, but the worst part of the EVE experience for me is the huge amount of assholes and douchebags who play it and think that they’re actually witty, or funny or that anyone wants to hear what they want to say. It’s really too bad that while these losers are congratulating each other, there are so few of us to tell them to shut the fuck up.

  5. I’m glad to see I’m not the only male feminist in EvE. Everything you said here is 100% right on.

    It makes me sad to see the sort of comments that your reposting on EN24 got. The “Geez, women should just learn to take a JOKE!” and “Girls wouldn’t want to play eve anyways.” It shows that they don’t get the whole point of your post, or reality.

    I would go on, but you’ve said everything much better than I can. Fight on.

    • Riverini usually lets me know when I get syndicated. I set a timer, after an hour or so I stop watching the comments because they are all trolls after that much time.

  6. I don’t understand why people identify as feminists and not egalitarians.

    • It is typical in English to find words that most define our meanings specifically. In an event that we are discussing women’s equal rights it serves us to use the word “feminist” as it let’s the listener/reader know that which portion of the population we are going to be referring too.

      You’ll also find that many people who would otherwise consider themselves “egalitarians” would balk at the word feminist.

    • It’s not that they don’t see themselves as egalitarians, but that people who are not wouldn’t understand them while using this word ; you often simplify your language when you talk on subject you know well with people who don’t. And as you know, for lots of people, having egality between men and women is seen not as being egalitarian but as being feminist, so people will use this word, which is the common word, even if they don’t agree themselves with it, because it will be easier this way.

  7. That was an awesome post mate. Just wait for the torrent of privileged pricks on the comments. Good luck to you and keep on the good work.

  8. Ummm… Thanks? I’m so happy there is a man like you to protect us weak women of eve.

    • The argument that “only x can defend x” is one that is both invalid and used by only the laziest and unoriginal of trolls. If this article was on the rampant homphobia in Eve you wouldn’t see any comment like “I’m so happy there are straight people to protect us weak homosexuals of eve”.

  9. The problem with making things taboo is that by doing so you make breaking that taboo very funny. Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert, has a wonderful essay about the sources of humor. There is not just one thing that is funny, there are many. Humor can be transgressive, anyone who has ever heard a rendition of “The Aristocrats” knows that there is funny in foul. When the Catholic sex abuse scandal came to light there was immediately a wave of Catholic Priest jokes. Those aren’t just rape jokes, those are rape of children jokes and people laughed their asses off.

    I think the problem is not any specific subject, but of vulgarity. Richard Pryor could tell a joke about race relations in America. The problem is that a bunch of people are running around spamming: “Nagga stole ma bike.” It is as humorous as a punchline that simply says: “blacks steal.” It lacks any grace or wit, there is no surprise or inversion. It is simply a mindless repetition of hateful nonsense. They haven’t realized that the meme has gotten stale and they still parrot it for cheap laughs.

    People take delight in the slaughtering of sacred cows. This is a fact of the human condition. I am not arguing that you shouldn’t expect better behavior from EVE players, just that the more rigidly a line is enforced, the greater the potential humor from crossing that line.

  10. As much as I appreciate the point of view, I got sick and tired of listening to the tired arguments on BOTH SIDES of the issue on various WoW blogs. Let EVE be a cold, hard place – even in this regard.

    • This sort of thinking is what the term “male privilege” refers.

      • As there was nothing in my short posting that indicated that I felt entitled to special status or rights that are generally denied to women, or that males in general should be entitled as such, I will kindly dismiss your reply as little more than an attempt to “stir the pot” merely for the sake of stirring.

  11. I usually put it down to stupidity on the part of anyone listening, who (having the power to intervene) simply ignore the bigoted comments…or worse yet, add to the atmosphere by sexual harassment ‘lite’ (flirting) and thus set a bad example.

    I find that usually scares the females and/or younger players away…there’s no ‘emorage’ (that’s for the above idiots i mentioned) they just simply leave without saying a thing.

    In any group activity, there’s going to be leaders, and you simply HAVE to deal with some things…perhaps though, and just perhaps, maybe alliances simply can’t deal with this behavior because they fear losing the assholes who are in the majority.

  12. I watched a panel with some of the maintainers for sites like , and for some men it’s a deliberate tactic to exclude women. They want an all-male space, and the “humor” is actually a sort of territorial marking.

    Successful comedians are surprisingly good at psychology. The best ones tailor hot or transgressive humor to their audiences. Laughter is a reaction to internal conflict or ambiguity, so you almost have to transgress something to make people laugh. But there’s an art to it, and failure can be incredibly painful. The guys in game chat slinging ‘rape’ around casually are not Lenny Bruce, Richard Pryor or Louis CK. They just want a space where they don’t have to behave anymore, and they resent the intrusion of anyone who’d make them have to behave again.

  13. Thanks for calling this out. It’s really awesome to see people pointing out problematic behavior in the hopes of stopping it in the future.

    There are sadly all kinds of -isms as well, in particular, that I’ve tried to convince people that I share a region with to stop. http://tinyurl.com/stopusingslurs has been fairly effective — about 80% of the people we link it to say “oh, okay, sorry, I’ll stop” and the other 20% go on rages about how they have the right to be as offensive as they like, at which point they go on our ignore/do not fly with lists.

  14. We are two side of a genetic coin. We ALL start as two simple cells… an egg and a sperm, both sexless. At some point hormones flip a coin and a male or a female is ctreated form the sexless ‘human’ in vitro…

    Maybe EVE should be more like the Khasis… “http://www.posoowa.org/story/matrilineal-society-khasis”
    “The woman is considered the mistress of the household and the sole custodian of wealth and not just a proprietress….”

    Then again… mebbe it should be run by the Sharia Laws… “http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia”
    Imagine a fewm toom maker with a wonderful selection of Burkas… mebbe even a Burkini line… (don’t believe me, see “http://ahiida.com/”)

    Or, mebbe, just mebbe… we need to just accept each other as we are… and the one YOU deem not worthy of your trust an friendship, ignore. I have often wished there was a “block” button availabe IRL… =]

  15. Why is it women seem to expect men to bend over backwards to accommodate them everywhere they go? If you’re my equal, stop whining, and deal with it like a man.

  16. I’ve played EvE on my friends account and while I really liked talking with people and doing things…I found the game to mostly play itself. Which really was not engaging for me. ALl of the people I ran into were fine, but eh, I may have gotten lucky(I have had those awful experiences before). I just found it sad that I my school work kept me more engaged then the game did.

    • EvE is not terribly accessible. Half the time I take a break from EvE to do accounting homework. The game focuses a lot more on mid-to-long term experiences rather than abrupt events, although those events CAN be awesome if you can get in on them.

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