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11 August 2008

XX ex-Mefites, where y'at? [More:]
Are any of the women who've left MeFi over hostility to women (or related reasons) still posting over here?

If you don't mind chatting about it, feel free to email me: xnoarchive@gmail.

I just feel it would help to chat a bit with someone who maybe can relate. Thanks!
hey loiseau, I still read AskMeta from time to time but I rarely read the blue any more, for various reasons including "related" ones. I'll be sending you an email.
posted by muddgirl 11 August | 15:08
I emailed you too! (Not that I've left MeFi, but just to say hey).
posted by Miko 11 August | 15:24
I emailed you. Also, hello!
posted by occhiblu 11 August | 18:36
I can understand how it feels.

posted by hadjiboy 11 August | 20:18
emailed! :)
posted by jonathanstrange 12 August | 00:45
I'm not a girl, but this is one of the reasons I left MeFi.
posted by BoringPostcards 12 August | 09:05
(If anyone's still reading this, I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts/experiences as well)
posted by muddgirl 12 August | 09:23
I'm not XX, but I quit Meffy over hostility to discourse (in some part; to be fair, I mostly quit due to my own immaturity and lack of self-control). I think a great deal of what goes on over there gets construed as hostility to _____ depending on the context, when it's actually just people "having their say" or cracking wise or whatever, and it's really hard not to address it as such, to just ignore it and carry on the conversation with the few who want to have a conversation.

That's not to say that hostility to women isn't common over there. But I think in certain threads the background noise gets amped up and has a cumulative effect: stuff turns from dumb boorish shit into "vitriol," a word that's almost always hyperbolic on Meffy (I'd point to larger trends in society regarding loose use of language -- "hater," for instance, to mean anyone who disagrees with the speaker, is a stupid usage that threatens the strength of feeling that is the reality of hate -- but this may not be the place for such semantics).

Then there's my own tendency to want to argue, and instead of searching the thread for the folks who are making sense, I respond to the asshole who's just goading me into a response.

Sure, it sounds like I'm blaming the victim, but I'm not. I recognize a big problem with the way discourse is handled online. What we don't say, in person, can be assumed by those who know us or explored by those with whom we're speaking. In the wild written free-for-all of an online forum, clarity is difficult as, even if you write everything perfectly, there's always something you didn't address, or something that gets misunderstood, and then if you don't respond you're starting a fight, but if you do respond it's a challenge, too.

So there are scads of dicks there saying shit to trigger a reaction, and the reaction is overblown to match it, and then cooler heads point out how wild the reaction is and are lumped in with the dicks sometimes, and then everything gets turned into a this side versus that side thing, and of course if you're out of type for the side you're on you'd better either establish your bona fides quick or look to get smacked around by God knows who.

Of course that's not every thread, and of course most of the sexism is real and by its repetition you know the individuals who say it really believe it, but with a bucket of folks putting words in one another's mouths, it tends to look like cocks all the way down.
posted by Hugh Janus 12 August | 09:55
Well, I'd definitely be glad to discuss things openly here, I just don't know if it would be kosher to bring grievances from there over here. But I did know that there were at least a couple of MeFi exiles over here.

I can say I'm really happy to hear from you all. There have been a couple of things I've read on MeFi in the last 24 hours that were beginning to make me think I must be crazy.
posted by loiseau 12 August | 11:03
(to clarify, I meant by email - I don't think discussing Metafilter is appropriate for MetaChat.)
posted by muddgirl 12 August | 11:09

For what it's worth, what I said isn't really grievance, and isn't really specific to Meffy. But I gotcher point and if the mods think what I wrote above is better excised, by all means, wipe it out. I'm not even the right sort of person to be responding to this post in the first place.
posted by Hugh Janus 12 August | 11:18
Oh, I don't think your post was Mefi specific, HJ, and I didn't intend to call it out or nothin'.

This is getting complicated. If anyone wants to share specific experiences by email, I'd like to hear them. If anyone wants to complain about internet discourse in general, then yeah, please post here rather than email me! :)
posted by muddgirl 12 August | 11:25
I think I closed my account on August 7. Not because of hostility, I'm pretty good at ignoring it, but because I was on Metafilter entirely too much. I felt compelled to answer questions and I realized (a long time ago, probably from the beginning) that I didn't have a lot to contribute. I'm not having a pity party. It's mostly true. I still love Metafilter and I still go there since I've closed my account. Sometimes I regret closing but it's good thing. It was hard to do. I think my heart was beating a little harder when I pushed that red button. The final button. I'm on Metafilter a lot less since I have no ability to answer or ask. And I consciously make the decision not to go there as much. I wish I had the discipline to lurk and keep my account open, but I don't. At least not for now. I didn't do Metafilter in moderation.

They ask for your reason for leaving and I said, "taking a breather". Taking a breather implies that I may return. Sad that I won't be able to use my LoriFLA screen name if I did want to return sometime down the road. I didn't email Jessamyn or anyone else beforehand. (Not that they care.) It was sort of an impulsive decision, but one that I have been thinking about doing for a while but was too afraid or wasn't ready. Some nights when I crawled into bed I would say to myself, "I'm not going on Metafilter tomorrow." I always did. There were days I didn't. Many days, but my usage wasn't healthy. I spent entirely too much time. Metafilter is addictive for me. I have small kids. They would say things like, "Mommy, you're always on the computer."
posted by LoriFLA 12 August | 18:04
I miss you LoriFLA! I think you had a lot to contribute and really enjoyed your comments because they were so genuine (plus you had that kick-ass decorating comment recently). My children also complain about me being on the computer but I justify it as my "me-time" because I don't really get a break from them right now.
posted by saucysault 13 August | 06:13
Thanks, saucysault. Maybe I'll reactivate my account sometime down the line. When I understand the concept of balance and moderation. :-)
posted by LoriFLA 13 August | 07:38
Sad that I won't be able to use my LoriFLA screen name if I did want to return sometime down the road.

Sure you will. Just ask Jessamyn or Cortex via email to reinstate the account...they can fix you up pretty quickly.
posted by danostuporstar 14 August | 13:04
Thanks, dano.
posted by LoriFLA 14 August | 19:11
Wow. I don't know if anyone will read this again (I was a "Recent Activity" page user on Mefi, and I don't see anything similar here) but I want to thank everyone for posting here and for emailing me. I was surprised to receive so many friendly emails.

I quit the site a few days ago, after absorbing what everyone said. I didn't flame out massively or anything, though I did write that I felt the site was often mean-spirited. I just realized while reading a "bait the scammer" post that the culture doesn't suit me and headed for the red button.

My reason, I wrote, was that maybe I am too sensitive but I can't abide the nastiness that pops up. (Or something to that effect.)

One of the people who emailed me mentioned that reading has been more enjoyable when commenting isn't an option, and I agree. (Though I had forgotten how many dang ads there are when you're not logged in!) I've been looking at the site but I'm alright not posting.

I hate the idea of no longer presenting a side of the feminism conversation that's lacking, and I'm sad that I won't be representing the people who MeMail or email me and thank me for sometimes contradicting the anti-woman stuff. It meant a lot to know that what I said sometimes represented more than just my widdle opinion. But, maybe they will go on to speak up now. (I really am not a feminist scholar anyway and only speak from my heart rather than from any defensible school of thought or scholarship. I'm just opinionated.)

Anyway. Again, thanks for being nice here. I find MeCha a bit hard to keep up with (If I still had a day job in an office I'd be on top of it!) but I do like popping in. I'll probably be around here more now.
posted by loiseau 17 August | 14:14
I hadn't listened to any Supertramp in years, || Bunny! OMG!