Daily Archives: March 5, 2012

The Difference Between PC and Polite

So my blog against rape culture got some hits.  Here and EN24.  In fact I got buried.  Big time.  There was a lot of support, there was a lot of trolling, there was even some constructive discussion.  There was also some misunderstandings.

Sadly, “politically correct” has gone from meaning “Being sensitive to the viewpoints of others” to being “Anal-retentive to the point of interfering with actual communication”

I didn’t put out a call to the community to stop using “Rape Cage,” and by extension rape culture, to be a whining jerk.  I did it because it is polite.  I did it because it was decent.  I did it because it is the right thing to do.  I did it because it will make the game more attractive to a wider variety of people.  I did it because it was good for the game.  Mostly I did it for friends of mine in two groups.  One of them consists of victims of rape who very reasonably WOULD NOT LIKE the term, the culture that goes with it, and a whole lot else.  The other is good and decent people who use the term out of ignorance.

See… there’s a difference between decent and PC.  PC would be saying “You can’t call me a capsuleer.  I am a Deteis Caldari of the Merchanters background!  And my Archon is not a “Capital Ship” it is a “Fleet support vessel of the Amarrian Empire!” or even “Providence is OUR space and you filthy slaves need to stay out or face the consequences.”

Decency?  Hmmmm…. “We beat the shit out of them” instead of “We raped them.”  Why?  They consented to PvP.  They may not have liked the outcome but they were a consensual party.  Rape victims aren’t.*  Similarly homosexual jokes, and racial/ethnic jokes aren’t used to enhance communication.  They might be used to actually insult someone, or in an attempt to impress people with how cool you are.  You know what?  I’ll go toe to toe with mots people on racist jokes.  Trust me I learned a few.  However I am only going to use them when I know that the people in my audience wont mind.

Spouting off random racist/homophobic/ethnic/rape culture slurs?  Let’s see what Mike thinks.

Well that went over well.

There are some things that are arguable.  There are lines, there is debate on where the line is.  Let me give you an illustration

Not Shown: /b

My contention therefore is this.  Rape has no place in the realm of decent behavior.  Rape can’t even see decent behavior from where it stands.  Your rape jokes aren’t funny.  They are sad, derogatory and hurt the game you profess to love.  There’s a simple test to see if something is decent behavior.  Make your joke in a public place.  Don’t hide behind the internet walls.  Stand and deliver.

I'm using it every time I can

* Now this argument might be a bit disingenuous to some people.  Especially people not familiar with EvE or with my theories in it.  Some people are under the misapprehension that there is non-consensual PvP in EvE.  There are circumstances where PvP is illegal WITHIN the game.  That is there are places where the aggressor will be punished.  However PvP is VERY NEARLY never illegal IN the game.   Other thank ganking nooblets at their starting stations your account will never be punished for aggressing in PvP.

 

Meetings!

Alliance and Corp meetings are often a fucking disaster.  As an Army vet I’ve been through meetings that had me longing for the roads of Baghdad and the whistle of incoming mortars or the screech of rockets.  I’ve been to meetings so bad they should have had us hand over all sharp objects to keep us from taking the cowards way out.

EvE meetings rarely get that bad.  Some of them do get deadly though.  Most bad meetings are bad because they are WAY too fucking long. Others wander pointlessly, some just don’t have anyone taking charge to keep things on-topic.  I’m going to talk about a few ways to make your meetings not painful.

  • Have a reason for the meeting.  It doesn’t have to be profound, but it should be fairly specific.  a “weekly update” meeting shouldn’t take more than a half hour.
  • Have a facilitator.  Someone has to be in charge of the meeting, with the ability to tell people to STFU, and generally keep things moving.  A GOOD facilitator has the ability to get people on-task and keep the sidebars to a minimum without despotically controlling the dialogue.  The main job of the facilitator is to focus the discussion, not drive it.
  • Have an agenda.  Lock it in ahead of time.  A new issue that someone “just brings up” had better have become an issue after the meeting starts.  Don’t let people raise issues that aren’t on the agenda before time.  A good general rule is have items for the agenda to whoever is running the meeting 36-48 hours before the meeting.  No later than 24 hours before the meeting starts everyone expected to attend should have an agenda available to them in evemail, forums, wherever.
  • Encourage people to use real data.  Discourage “Well I was told” arguments.  Don’t be afraid to table issues for further research
  • Assign tasks to people to be completed for future meetings.
  • Recap old business (fast) to make sure everyone is on the same page.
  • Take notes, report proceedings for people who were there, have a public reporting as well.

Lets put this together into a format:

 

MEETING AGENDA - Weekly Alliance Update
Facilitator - CEO A
Attendees - B, C, D, E, F
Recorder - G
Old Business:  CEO C reports on progress on ship replacement wallet and inventory, D reports on status of NAPs
New Business:  A, D, E requesting ops to clear moons for POS emplacement.  
D reports on new neutrals operating in the area
Recruiting update
Leadership Comments
Summary

Now this is a VERY simplified, quick and dirty agenda.  However it allows leadership to see what they need to be ready to talk about, what issues are currently important, and if they feel something is being overshadowed they can request for it to be addressed.  One of the most important things that needs to happen is specific assignments for tasks.  Saying “Someone should take care of that” is worthless.  Someone is not in your corp.  Assign tasks to people.

Meetings will still be onerous, nothing can really fix that.  The idea is to get as much done with as little pain as possible.  Setting an agenda, naming a facilitator, sticking to the topic and assigning tasks to individuals or working groups to avoid cluttering up the meeting with business that isn’t of interest to the entire group will make meetings far less painful and let you get back to important matters.  Like blue explosions.

I'm using it every time I can

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