Trolling

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From The Guardian we must do something about this. If anyone is a victim of online abuse please contact me. The Article is below the form.

Philip Finlay Bryan B.Sc (hons) MA C.Q.S.W. FRSA

Online trolling against women is linked to domestic violence and abuse, experts have warned, and should not be dismissed as “obnoxious but harmless” behaviour.

Speaking before a conference on tackling online abuse, which will be attended by high-profile victims including the MP Stella Creasy and feminist writer and campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez, Polly Neate, chief executive of Women’s Aid, said the links between domestic violence and online abuse were too often ignored.

“It is critical that we make the link between this vicious online harassment and cyberbullying and real-life violence against women,” she said. “We need to understand that this is part of a domestic violence spectrum and we have to challenge this type of misogyny because it is the backdrop that allows that violence to take place.”

The “decimation” of domestic violence services was also leaving providers struggling to provide basic support to victims, and unable to tackle complex problems such as online abuse, she added.

Women’s Aid supports 350 services throughout the country. Its survey of 307 domestic violence survivors showed 48% had been harassed or abused online by their ex-partner once they had left the relationship and 38% reported online stalking. A further 45% were abused online during their relationship.

Three-quarters of women were concerned that police did not know how best to respond to online abuse or harassment, while 12% had reported abuse to the police and said they had not been helped.

The added pressure from online abuse on services to keep women safe comes during a difficult period for domestic violence charities, Neate warned. “We are seeing direct services decimated at a time when we need to invest in enabling them to respond to a new era. Greater access online is putting women at increasing risk of being tracked down by violent former partners – we live our lives online now and the structures in place to keep women safe in these spaces just haven’t caught up,” she said.

“Services are struggling to provide even basic care – how are they meant to cope with this new challenge? Services are being pared down to the bone and in danger of ceasing to exist at all.”

Criado-Perez, who will speak at the conference, said she felt a responsibility to push for change following the abuse she suffered after successfully campaigning to reinstate a woman on the back of an English banknote. “So many women got in touch to say they had been told not to ‘provoke’ attackers and thanked me for taking a stand,” she said. “You are told: ‘Don’t feed the trolls’ – but that gives no consideration to the victim. It’s about policing the reaction of the victim … telling women to shut up and that there is nothing they can do about it.”

She added that online trolling was the “vocalisation of a culture where domestic violence is still hushed up and not spoken about, a culture where two women can die a week at the hands of an abusive partner or ex-partner and it’s not even shocking”. Criado-Perez added that there was a lack of political will to tackle the situation. “It’s not just about addressing social media, it’s about tackling a deep-seated cultural problem, which takes time and financial investment – and this government is just not interested in that,” she said.

Creasy, who is also speaking at the conference on Tuesday, said the protocol for dealing with online threats and abuse needed a total overhaul. “If I received a bomb threat through the post, there is a protocol for dealing with that, but if I receive it online there is nothing in place,” she said. “We have to challenge this attitude that women just have to learn how to deal with these online threats, that they should be ignored.”

The MP for Walthamstow, who received repeated rape threats on Twitter and has called for the site to implement an online “panic button”, said the trolling had to be recognised as abuse. “Of course it’s distressing to receive these threats. I was told my attacker would fuck my dead corpse – it’s grim. If people want to create worry and fear then that is worrying. I want the police and other services to be able to understand the impact of these messages. I don’t want them to tell me how to learn to cope – I want to hear they are doing something about it,” she said.

She called for more training for police and more action from tech companies on threats. “Just because tackling this is difficult doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be pushing back. We have to say that this is not OK.

Gems

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I come across gems in second life. I think it is the blues community, nice thinking.My fav blogger is Serendipity Haven (serenhaven.wordpress.com)who writes little stories that are so informative and entertaining. Highly recommended. AND not just for second life users either. I have blogged about her before. Read her latest offering, its very informative.

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Take my partner, she has an awesome job that keeps her very busy but she spends much of her spare time with me. In her “spare” time she is a poet and has her own site. JessikaJenvieve.com fabulous poetry. Heres one she wrote for me:

It is Best

You wanted a love song
I don’t have the words
Cordelia – like, I have nothing to say
but it is inside,
deep
somewhere
I just can’t put my finger on.

You want forever and I want you to tell me
the pain in my head won’t kill me.
I want you to make my tea and a cheese sandwich.
I don’t want words, I want silence.
There’s a tangle of lyrics out there
waiting for me to catch my foot in them.
Pick the wrong one and you will fire up again.

Say nothing, it is safe.
It is best.

For PFB

“I’m a mature socialite cougar 60 k living in millionaires paradise” she says on skype……Love her sense of humour. We get on so well and are partners in second life, the online community. We spend a lot of time chatting to a background of the blues. Here you can see us dancing. At the top right are private messages bottom left are local messages.

While hosting (a host manages the dj session greeting people and providing help like joining the group) I met a person who was fun to chat to, who I hadn’t met before. She too has a blog and this is what I found:

We seem to think that big events and weighty, important conversations make the bulk of a relationship. Yet .. it’s chatting of little nothings .. how spring air moves and caresses across the face .. picking dandelions and sending them off to seed other places .. or sharing two blades of grass with a friend and trying to make a blade-of-grass kazoo together.

Lobbing nonesense words and silly verses between us .. twirling and feinting at nothing .. nothing moments are what I miss.

If you are the very best of friends with me, I will fill you with letters of little nothings.

Her site which she hasn’t updated in a while is http://vixenquandry.wordpress.com/

One of the things people love to do is take photos in second life it is very photogenic. So here is a gallery a person I met in a European blues club. Name of Schlock who has a wonderful talking parrot called Clyde with, i would say, artificial intelligence!!!!

Heres the gallery, sorry missed Clyde but i sent Schlock an email coz he should have a blog!!

Then another person with a site http://www.deadmonkeysociety.org/writtenword/index.html the front page looks like this:

deadmonkeys

All this is just a taste of the variety of people that you meet in second life. It is a community of intelligent diverse people. Possibly it is the blues community as this is all i have experience of. I am still exploring and have lots to learn. I will have been in second life for a year. Yes I am addicted.

Its not a problem

hotstuffHere is a picture of my Storm Constantine  (aka Jessika) we have known each other for six months and we decided to partner. This means we have made a commitment to share and cherish each other. It may be likened to a marriage, the “ceremony” was an email and now we appear in each others profile. partner
There is a wonderful thing that happens in second life. You become one with your avatar and truly your avatar becomes an extension of yourself. when you join with another avatar like in a dance something magical happens. You begin to feel with your avatar. Holding your partner becomes as though you are holding a real person and in some ways you are. It feels real. You can get incredibly close to someone. It starts in chat. As in anywhere / place chatting to someone brings you close to that person. We have chat in secondlife. However how do you explain a kiss producing a physical response in real life? Second Life is awesome. I can only suggest you try it for yourself. If you need a decent avatar let Avatar Creations know and we will make you beautiful.

Women are Rising in Second Life – and we have the video that shows it!

Women are Rising in Second Life – and we have the video that shows it!.

Seren Says

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From : Seren Haven My Comments in Italics

notmyselfIf there’s one thing we can be sure of, people are very different from their real world selves when they are in sl. Many that i’ve spoken to will say that they are less reserved, more outgoing, and less inhibited in sl than in their real lives; for many, sl is an opportunity to explore ideas, pathways and leanings that are either impossible or untenable in rl. Indeed there are a large number of people who will say that the representation of the person you’ll meet in the virtual world is far more ‘themself’ than the person you will meet in the flesh – possibly the most absurd contradiction of all, but then again, perhaps also the most revealing of insights.

Co0mment: Why is there such a lack of inhibition?  This I find hard to understand. If I make a fool of myself in sl I blush in rl. When I make a joke I laugh in rl. From a study of Evolutionary Psychology “People are complex,” said Kruger. “Just because somebody seems to be a big risk taker in one area doesn’t mean they will take risks in all areas.”. I can (and have) base jumped off the Eiffel tower in sl and admit to having a wrench in my stomach,  even tho I could not die. We can take risks with our avatars without fear of approbation? I think not. People have been driven from sl because they have been emotionally hurt. s why the lack of inhibitions when the avatar can be censored?

That is not something with which i have a problem, but i can’t help wondering sometimes just how much my perception of the person, gathered from my interaction with them inworld, may be very different from the reality – and, if people really are very different when they’re logged in to the person who goes about their daily life outside sl, then how much is my perception of them coloured by their virtual behaviour?

Comment: This happens to me with women I have met. They have acted and looked in sl like 20 somethings. They have acted in speech like 30 somethings. I have reacted to them as such as I have been a 30 something. We have exchanged rl photographs. My perception of them has changed. The avatar “looks” become a mere cypher. However the behaviour mine and theirs  remains the same. In rl I act like a 30 something with physical limitations.

If we’re talking practicalities, then the answer to those questions is quite possibly, ‘it doesn’t matter’ – if i’m only ever going to spend time with you inworld, does it really make any odds whether the avatar bears any resemblance, in any way, to the person behind it? Probably not – ignorance, as they say, is bliss and in many ways it’s a lot easier to get to know and socialise with someone on a virtual level, that it can be to reconcile two very different, yet the very same, personalities that form the two sides of the sl/rl coin. That’s not to say it can’t be done – many inhabitants of sl have no problem with this sort of dilemma: within my own circle of sl friends and acquaintances there a quite a few who socialise with each other in both worlds, indeed, i can think of at least three couples i know who met in sl and have successfully, and very happily, developed that relationship into one that spans both worlds.

Comment:  Are there different personalities inhabiting the same rl/ sl complex? Seren would say yes. Quiet, unassuming, shy rl  + outgoing, chirpy, vociferous in sl . We have :
“Dissociative identity disorder (DID), also known as multiple personality disorder (MPD),[1] is a mental disorder characterized by at least two distinct and relatively enduring identities or dissociated personality states that alternately control a person’s behavior, and is accompanied by memory impairment for important information not explained by ordinary forgetfulness.

Is this what we are seeing? Two enduring personalities but without memory impairment and do the two identities cross over  at all?  I am reminded of Superman, mild mannered Clark Kent until he becomes the avatar Superman. His were integrated and Clark would lift his glasses to see through walls.

Long-time adherents of this blog and close friends will know that i am not one of those people. When it comes to the division between real and second lives, i tend to see either/or and that dividing line is, for me at least, a difficult one to cross. You might imagine that there’s a simple explanation for this – but it’s actually quite a complex set of factors that result in the stratification of worlds in my mind, and much of it boils down to the point i made at the head of this post: the person behind the avatar, through design or ‘accident’ is highly likely to differ from their inworld persona in, often very fundamental, ways. Anyone who has ever corresponded with me outside of sl will attest to the fact that this is entirely true when it comes to myself.

Inworld, i am gregarious, fun, sociable and utterly bonkers – sometimes i have to consciously make an effort to shut myself up and let somebody else get a word in edgeways, and yes – i am one of those who would say that this is more representative of the ‘real me’ than you would ever see in the real world. Take me even a small step distant from sl and my personal changes dramatically – there are few people indeed, even close friends from sl with whom i’ve made connections outside the virtual environment, who will ever have received a chatty, amusing or sociable e-mail, or for that matter any correspondence that is more than a couple of lines of bare facts and information. Gone is the gregarious, risk-taking, typo-monster – instead you’ll find a person for whom normal conversation and social interaction is insanely difficult. (So if you ever do get an e-mail from me along the lines of “Hi, here’s that thing i promised to send you. Bye!”, it’s not that i’m being rude, i simply clammed up beyond any hope of recovery after the “Hi”!)

Sad, isn’t it?

Yes it is sad. I would love to take you down the pub and a circle would develop around you. You would be the life and soul of the party as you are in sl. i am reminded of the movie :Nim’s Island where a writer of a popular adventure story is an agoraphobic recluse. Living her life vicariously through her books. When faced with a reality dilemma she rises to the occasion magnificently. She becomes her avatar. What are you frightened of Seren? What have you got to lose?

Sometimes i do have a crazy moment and think it would be amazing to meet up with someone from sl in the real world, maybe go for a drink or play tennis, or whatever it is that normal people do… but then sanity asserts itself and i safely rationalise myself out of trouble.

The way i see it, sl is sl – rl is rl and, until i can be convinced otherwise, never the twain shall meet. You see, i really enjoy the illusion that sl weaves – the happy, crazy, clever, chatty people that i surround myself with and count myself to be fortunate to know – but the point is that it is only their sl persona that i really know, and it that illusion was to be tarnished or shattered, things could never be the same again. What if that incredibly talented, funny guy that i know so well in sl turned out to be an insufferable bore, with bad breath and an irritating manner in rl? What if that daft girl, with the ridiculously tall avatar and the terribly inappropriate topics of conversation inworld turned out to be ridiculously short, terribly staid and awfully sensible when away from her laptop? Just as bad… what if i turned out to be a massive disappointment to you?

Comment. Why the dichotomy? When I see you in sl I see the blogger Seren I do not see an avatar. I find you intimidating both blog and avatar wise. Its why I haven’t spoken to you these past two weeks. And dear lady I reached this space through your sl profile. physical characteristics play little part to the discerning mind. as do physical avatar characteristics. Avatar character however DOES play a part. All of us do not belong in a psychoanalytical box. Humans / avatars are part of the same being labelled ME. I am including this in my briefing on cyberculture.

How could we retain the rosy-hued picture we’d built up of each other, if we knew the reality would make us feel nauseous if we had to spend more than ten minutes in each other’s company? Bitter experience has taught us that, in so many things, the reality is never as palatable as the imagined reality… so, to avoid disappointment, maybe i’ll just stick to my imaginary friends. Will you be my imaginary friend too?

s. x

I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together. 
See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly. 
I’m crying.

I’ll be your friend. Fancy a pint?

Philip / Dude

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