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Gender Diversity / Politics in games (was Tropes Vs. Women)


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44 minutes ago, Broker said:

Why is NEG allowed to do this? The repeated warnings and bans people get for other offences are ALWAYS on the basis that if they keep repeating the same offense they will be punished further. Why is NEG allowed to pull the exact same trolling on this thread forever without ever being punished for it? He's had every point he's explained to him literally hundreds of times, it's absolutely clear that he's just trying to derail the thread because he doesn't want the issues in it discussed. Why is he allowed to get away with that?

He's not trolling, he's just thick. That's not a banworthy offence.

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27 minutes ago, Broker said:

 

You literally had to cut over the endless NEG shitposts to bring the discussion back on topic on the page before this one.

 

I genuinely don't know why I bother trying to discuss anything here anymore. 

 

If you want to discuss, discuss. I posed a question to the thread, and I'm interested to hear everyone's thoughts. I'll happily repeat it so you don't have to go looking:

 

Do you think gender roles in games have changed over the last few years? And if so, how much and why have they changed? How are women depicted in videogames today?

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3 minutes ago, Sprite Machine said:

You're approaching this with the idea that all criticism is worthless and should never make an artist change his mind,

 

Not at all. Critique is welcome to me, but only up to a point. For example, I would ignore the critiques and requests of 3D Sonic fans if I were making a 2D Sonic game, as the former just wouldn't matter to me, no matter how much they deem otherwise. It's not a crime.

 

3 minutes ago, Sprite Machine said:

 

What? I can't even understand this.

"Why wouldn't developers change every single thing that gets criticised in a game?" Is that what you're actually asking me?

 

No. I asked you where do you draw the line. Which you funnily enough, didn't quote.

 

3 minutes ago, Sprite Machine said:

"I want games that are hard to make without without tropes to continue existing and not to be changed for just the sake of it."


Right, so you're making a distinction between games that could very easily have tropes removed without fundamentally altering the game, and games that are impossible to become 'tropeless' without fundamentally altering the game?

So, by this logic, objectionable media is perfectly acceptable in your eyes if it is a complete thing in itself, but isn't acceptable if it's an inconsequential part of a bigger thing?

 

If I understand you correctly, yes. Bayonetta shouldn't need to be re-worked if the rework doesn't make it Bayonetta. If they can figure out a way to do it that's faithful, that's fine. But I'd personally doubt it. (But like I'd said on the previous page and you are making me repeat: I could certainly be surprised, much like Tomb Raider)

Likewise Street Fighter with toned down exaggeration (or original intent) sucks, would probably suck, and so on.

 

3 minutes ago, Sprite Machine said:

 

Goodness, this really is going back to basics, isn't it?

In short, stereotypes have real world implications. Stereotypes affect lives because people make decisions based on stereotypes. Decisions impact people's lives, they can limit or expand their opportunities.

 

So, Princess Peach constantly being helpless and needing rescuing reinforces this negative stereotype. Remember, stereotypes only exist because they are reinforced. One instance of a trope in itself may only have a small impact, but if we keep lazily relying on them and using them again and again, their impact adds up.

 

So, we criticise tropes, we try to stem their use and make artists have "second thoughts". And, hopefully, third, fourth and fifth thoughts, too.

 

Like I've said in the previous response which again, you didn't care to quote:

 

Quote

It's one thing to complain that the trope itself is used too often, that part is valid. It's another to want to force a change in a franchise that has sold millions and millions with minimal damage, in my view.

 

Yes you can argue it's damaging all the same, but there lies our difference of opinion.

 

3 minutes ago, Sprite Machine said:

 

 

Re: the (facile) film example:

Why does that matter? Why is the "original intention" better than the final intention? Why can't you change your mind about something mid-way through production? This happens literally all the time.

 

The example given wasn't mid-production. Things can still be changed mid-production. The example given was: finished, and we're changing all the dialogue. I'd start again instead.

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11 minutes ago, Illyria said:

When I heard that "women are too hard to animate" thing related to Assassin's Creed and the excuse about hitboxes on CS GO, I almost lost faith in humanity. But that was before Trump was elected, so now I'm shocked at nothing anymore.

 

Ubisoft have regretted saying that I suspect and have doen pretty well with representation since then. It did seem odd given how many games they had with female leads before that. (I remember some of the animations from early Beyond Good and Evil 2 showing up in Assassin's Creed 3 later.)

 

 

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22 minutes ago, Illyria said:

Do you think gender roles in games have changed over the last few years? And if so, how much and why have they changed? How are women depicted in videogames today?

 

Genuinely haven't played enough modern games to answer properly, but I'll try going with what I have played. Summary-wise: hasn't changed enough, particularly nothing of note from Japan.

 

Undertale is a good example where the potagonists gender is left to the player. The main character isn't claimed neither male or female. The game has strong female characters and represents all types of sexual preferences too, not to mention depression, personal fears, and anxiety. Part of the reason I tended to tell Geekette so much to play this game before considering me a er...Sea Lion? (hilarious comic, truth be told)

 

Zelda: A few strong female side characters, but not...really? It's hard to complain about this one because what is there is decent, writing-wise, but certainly nowhere near as good as Wind Waker or Skyward Sword's protrayal of a female within the main cast. The side cast stuff can be skipped/missed, so it only counts as a half point in the right direction to me.

 

Yooka-Laylee: Doesn't really apply here.

 

Disgaea 5: Typical Japanese stuff.

 

Street Fighter 5: Typical Japanese stuff.

 

It also depends on which year you start with. To The Moon, beautiful game but it's probably been 4-5 years since I've played it. Not much else is coming to mind right now, but in the indie space, tropes and gender roles have generally always been less of a problem. Even as far back as Meat Boy, the female character you save, you actually get to play the hardest levels with towards the end of the game (so that she saves Meat Boy).

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7 minutes ago, NEG said:

It's one thing to complain that the trope itself is used too often, that part is valid. It's another to want to force a change in a franchise that has sold millions and millions with minimal damage, in my view.

 

This is the crux of the matter. Your opinion is that there is no damage being done. But is it at all fathomable to you that since you are not on the receiving end of it you are simply (partially) blind to it, and maybe to trust the many intelligent people who are saying otherwise, and to open yourself to the possibility that maybe you should question your stance on the whole thing a bit more?

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17 minutes ago, NEG said:

No. I asked you where do you draw the line. Which you funnily enough, didn't quote.

Because there isn't a defined "line", you simply listen to criticism and, if you agree with that criticism, you can choose to do something about it.

But what you've displayed in this topic, repeatedly, is that you don't consider any changes to be "intended", as if developers are being 'forced' to do things they don't want to do, rather than simply changing their minds based on things they've been told.

 

20 minutes ago, NEG said:

If I understand you correctly, yes. Bayonetta shouldn't need to be re-worked if the rework doesn't make it Bayonetta. If they can figure out a way to do it that's faithful, that's fine. But I'd personally doubt it. (But like I'd said on the previous page and you are making me repeat: I could certainly be surprised, much like Tomb Raider)

Likewise Street Fighter with toned down exaggeration (or original intent) sucks, would probably suck, and so on.

Well, firstly we're not talking about changing existing work, we're talking about influencing future work.
Secondly, if a game's entire premise is sexist to the point that you couldn't change anything about it, there is nothing wrong with criticising it for that.
And thirdly, I don't necessarily think Bayonetta or Street Fighter's entire premises rely on sexism, but I'm not overly familiar enough with those games to comment on specific issues.

 

23 minutes ago, NEG said:

Yes you can argue it's damaging all the same, but there lies our difference of opinion.

Then perhaps you could explain your opinion? Why do you disagree that stereotypes have an impact in the real world? Which of the examples I gave you do you think don't happen?

 

----

 

25 minutes ago, NEG said:

The example given was: finished, and we're changing all the dialogue.

So, not finished.

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54 minutes ago, Unofficial Who said:

I can't play Bayonetta not because of the over sexualisation, but because of the early reveal that her skin tight suit is made out of her hair. The consensus seems to be that it is incredibly sexy. For some reason I have completely the opposite reaction.

 

Bayonetta's an odd one - the camera angle is so obviously and directly pervy that it's intent has to be to embarrass you (or the director really is just a horndog - with Japanese games, it can be hard to tell); more than that, it ties into the dominatrix imagery, with Bayo owning the sexuality on display and challenging the viewer directly, which is unusual.

 

Except for the nudity bit in witch weaves - that seems relatively gratuitous.

 

But I don't think Bayonetta is a lazy trope - I think the director deliberately set out to include a dose of sexuality in the game, and came up with a relatively strong and confident protagonist to do so. Doesn't stop the game adding to the general sexualization of women in games and promotion of a specific body image, but it always seemed to err towards burlesque rather than striptease.

 

For what it's worth, I'm happy to play Bayonetta in front of the missus - because she likes the character. I'm more embarrassed playing Lollipop Chainsaw - similar genre, some smart and funny writing, but the character design is just pandering.

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You know I have certain level of respect for the Nier guy just going 'I like hot girls' when questioned on his designs instead of trying to weasel out of it with no, no, you see Cortana is a naked girl with increasingly big boobs is because she's a strong female character trying to gain a mental advantage over others or YOU WILL BE ASHAMED OF YOUR WORDS AND DEEDS.

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1 hour ago, Illyria said:

 

This is the crux of the matter. Your opinion is that there is no damage being done. But is it at all fathomable to you that since you are not on the receiving end of it you are simply (partially) blind to it, and maybe to trust the many intelligent people who are saying otherwise, and to open yourself to the possibility that maybe you should question your stance on the whole thing a bit more?

 

I think the issue, and a lot of tropes apply to this, is a lot more complex then that. For example of the damsel in distress:

 

1) Why does the male player believe Princess Peach to be a trophy? Is the mere fact shes kidnapped make male players consider females trophies? Surely not. Is there a way she could be kidnapped in each game without it resulting in being a trope, and would that be acceptable for the majority of individuals?

 

2) Why would female players look up to Princess Peach? Shes barely in most games and has little to no personality. Taken the Mario series on it's own, which prides itself on being family friendly, what did the games do, or what could they have done differently, to make Peach less damaging from being kidnapped?

 

3) Does changing up Mario, that has relied on doing the same thing for 30 years, solve anything? Or does it possibly change it too much if Peach isn't kidnapped?

 

4) Is the trope damaging more so because it's widespread? If so, shouldn't the critique be spread more evenly? So that Princess Peach, out of tradition, becomes one day the exception, not the norm, in the industry? Would that please the majority of individuals?

 

Simple removal of a trope like this from Mario doesn't make the trope less damaging, I'd say.

 

1 hour ago, Sprite Machine said:

Because there isn't a defined "line", you simply listen to criticism and, if you agree with that criticism, you can choose to do something about it.

But what you've displayed in this topic, repeatedly, is that you don't consider any changes to be "intended", as if developers are being 'forced' to do things they don't want to do, rather than simply changing their minds based on things they've been told.

 

I didn't mention force at all today actually, and no, only changes considered right before a products release are ones I've pointed out today as annoying and wrong. Please actually read the things I'm typing at you.

 

Quote

Well, firstly we're not talking about changing existing work, we're talking about influencing future work.

 

Correct, except you are not bothered if it effects current works nonetheless. Which, I have to type yet again, is fair enough.

 

Quote

Secondly, if a game's entire premise is sexist to the point that you couldn't change anything about it, there is nothing wrong with criticising it for that.

 

Correct. Though I can't think of a game where the entire premise is on sexism. Nor are they in the examples I provided.

 

Quote

And thirdly, I don't necessarily think Bayonetta or Street Fighter's entire premises rely on sexism, but I'm not overly familiar enough with those games to comment on specific issues.

 

Bayo and SF are guilty of tropes and male gazing, not sexism.

 

Quote

 

Then perhaps you could explain your opinion? Why do you disagree that stereotypes have an impact in the real world? Which of the examples I gave you do you think don't happen?

 

Which examples did you give? And when did I say stereotypes don't have an impact? Again, read what I say. Hint: I said I don't see certain tropes in certain franchises damaging.

As for my opinion, I've given you enough of an opinion today, Sprite. Call it enough for one day and stop this (clearly pretty fruitless) back and forth, eh?

 

Quote

 

----

So, not finished.

 

At that stage I'd consider the film finished.

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I think it's a bit unfair to claim that nothing has changed, or that nothing is changing. Personally I feel like there has been quite a noticeable shift in the way Western developed games feature and sexualise (or don't) women in recent times. I haven't noticed any change in Japanese games whatsoever though, which is perhaps unsurprising as this whole debate probably didn't penetrate the general consciousness in the same way it did here. And obviously Japanese games tend to be more problematic in general. I mean, look at all the praise Persona 5 is getting for its narrative and characters when it's filled with eye-rolling tropes, fetishises inappropriate sex with schoolkids, sexualises one of the main female characters unnecessarily with her combat outfit, and only features gay men as camp, predatory pedophiles. And this is considered one of the more progressive Japanese game series!

 

I'm not sure how you influence Japan given the language and cultural barrier. I just kind of shrug my shoulders, internally mutter 'oh, Japan!' and tolerate it by reminding myself of the differing cultural norms. I do definitely put up with more shit from their games than I would from a Western game because of this.

 

 

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On 2017-5-6 at 16:41, DukeOfEarlsfield said:

She's a reactionary bigot. A younger Anne Widdecombe. Nigel Farage with tits.

Fuck... now I've read this and I can't get the image out of my head.:huh:

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@geekette that is why I said I don't see how the thread is being derailed right now, not previous times. I know of Neg's history on the forum, it's been pointed out plenty of times. I was merely referring today's situation, where I felt the discussion was going okay until people started complaining about Neg being part of it again. I felt that was more disruptive than anything else.

 

I am not going to read over 500 pages of this thread, but I still want to discuss these issues so I am sorry if it is repetitive for some. Those who are tired of it do not have to take part in the discussion. :) And maybe the discussion does change as the issue develops and new events can be brought up and dissected, new games and new representations of female characters are created. 

 

Will be back to address more, have a splitting headache right now.

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2 hours ago, Harsin said:

You know I have certain level of respect for the Nier guy just going 'I like hot girls' when questioned on his designs instead of trying to weasel out of it with no, no, you see Cortana is a naked girl with increasingly big boobs is because she's a strong female character trying to gain a mental advantage over others or YOU WILL BE ASHAMED OF YOUR WORDS AND DEEDS.

 

Man, I had forgotten that Cortana 'explanation'. Cringeworthy. Think there was a similar explanation for Power Girl's 'boob window' in her comic costume.

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4 minutes ago, smac said:

 

Man, I had forgotten that Cortana 'explanation'. Cringeworthy. Think there was a similar explanation for Power Girl's 'boob window' in her comic costume.

 

Wait, what? That was one of the the actual reasons given for that character's design? You have got to be shitting me :facepalm:. I thought Harsin was just being facetious :lol:

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Why is Geekette allowed to speak so vile of me? I can't ask that without it being considered derailment, right? Apologizes in advance.

 

48 minutes ago, geekette said:

You keep working on that assumption and endlessly responding to his drivel, but I don't agree. Firstly he has admitted he is trolling. Secondly, his way of posting does not suggest a learning disability. It suggests intention. He recurrently makes the same simplistic errors over and over and over, no matter how many times people cover the same ground with him (whilst people with a learning disability do learn provided the information is pitched at the right level). He takes some messages at entirely face value (anything regressive from youtube that he knows will be provocative), whilst endlessly questioning others - that selectiveness is not characteristic of people with intellectual impairment. If you take him on face value he is literally more likely to believe that feminists want to turn us into genderless frogs than to believe that criticism is not censorship (that is, he can follow complex concepts where they fit his agenda, but can't follow simple ones when they don't). He always appears to engage enough to make people respond to him, but gains nothing from the exchange. It is his entire thing to irritate people on the internet. It is what he has done for as long as I've been on this forum, and is unique to him (even compared to the outright trolls that you'd recognise). There is literally nothing authentic in any of his communication, and I say that despite sustained efforts to engage with him on the forum and over PM.

 

My contribution method now is not the same as two years ago, which you'd notice if you could bother talking to me.

 

You got tired of responding to me simply because I continued to question the subject. is that my fault in some way? You were and still are, at times, very informative on this subject and just because you, again, got tired that I don't back down, that I do keep responding, that I do question everything, you gave up. Even though I learned a great deal of the subject from you.

And used to respect you, until you became a vile person that researches user history to try and damage other users on the forum simply because YOU don't like them, oh, and lacking a sense of humor hasn't helped either.

 

If YOU want to bring back in discussion about genderless frogs, certainly do so, but it wouldn't be ME who is doing it. Because, gasp, I've actually grown beyond that, again, thanks to this very bloody thread.

Maybe you don't like the fact that I come up with things that don't fit YOUR AGENDA eh? How about that for a thought? I mean, you don't want adverse thoughts in this thread oh no, quite terrible otherwise.

 

See? It's very easy to suggest a person is something they're not, especially a person like Geekette that can weave into into paragraphs of dialogue. Pure poison, that's what you can really be at times.

 

Oh, and the last time shes PM'd me? It was actually me reminding her of Undertale again a year or two ago. She said she would be and never responded since. Sadly she doesn't deserve my politeness, I've tried being friends as much as she assumes she has. (she hasn't, she simply re-blocks once she gets annoyed at the latest thread I may make).

 

 

1 hour ago, geekette said:

 (or how he trolled in the depression thread).

 

19 minutes ago, geekette said:

Except that NEG isn't being part of the discussion

 

Fuck off.

 

I've explained myself enough times that you find my form of coping with depression at the time a punchline to use over, and over, and over again. Well fuck you.

 

-------

 

Thanks. You can get back on topic now. This kind of bullshit is why I tended to avoid posting in this thread over the last year in the first place. To put it like I did to Illy over Discord (a female whom has never been vile to me from the forum):

 

very few actually want to converse, a few want to simply throw an egg/misunderstand, and the rest don't want to read a word as they made up their mind long ago.

 

Spoiler

Are they asking me which tropes I do agree should fuck off? Nope. Or the Zelda point I made. Or the many things I agree in general I just talked over with Sprite? Nada. Finding common ground doesn't matter to them. Much like a discussion of politics.

 

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31 minutes ago, smac said:

 

Man, I had forgotten that Cortana 'explanation'. Cringeworthy. Think there was a similar explanation for Power Girl's 'boob window' in her comic costume.

 

Not sure if this is the original, but if it is, oh man.

 

2866977-1203916019498.jpg

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4 hours ago, Dig Dug said:

I only read posts now that have a rep score of 4 or more, that's how bad the fucking tedium is in this thread.

 

guys, can we get all the @neg posts to +4 please? It'll be hilarious...

 

Spoiler

<_<

 

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Anyone travelling through Melbourne Australia this year might want to check this out.

 

https://www.acmi.net.au/events/code-breakers/#start-content

 



Press play on Code Breakers, the first Australian exhibition celebrating the achievements of women working in the games industry. Whether it’s making commercial hits or indie titles, these women know games, contributing as directors, programmers, developers, artists, writers, producers and designers.

Inside the exhibition you can crush bullies in Ninja Pizza Girl, run with animals in Armello or race suped-up cars in Need for Speed: No Limits, with games made by emerging and established makers. From platformers, RPGs and digital board games to graphical adventures and puzzlers, there’s something for everyone, at every skill level.

Alongside the fun, Code Breakers ponders important questions in the post-Gamergate landscape: How do women carve a path in an industry that has historically been hostile towards them? How do we encourage diversity? What does a more inclusive games industry look like? Each maker reflects on the sometimes challenging journey they’ve made in this male-dominated industry, revealing the human stories behind their games.

Curated in collaboration with an advisory committee consisting of key industry figures Kate Inabinet, Helen Stuckey and Leena van Deventer.

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20 hours ago, Illyria said:

So in what ways do you guys here think gender roles have changed within games over the last few years? What are your impressions? This is directed at everyone.

 

Is there change, and if so, how much, and what do you believe is the reason why things have changed? I'm trying to collect my thoughts for next week's interview and it always helps getting other people's thoughts, to clarify what I think myself, to challenge myself and the things that I think I know, etc.

 

Actually, related to the above Australian event, what about attitudes to gender in games development - Games TM retro have run a couple of interesting articles on The Hobbit and Bard's Tale series with the women who played a key part in developing them, but weren't big names. Back in the 80s, all the 'above the title' names you could recognize would tend to be men. About the only woman I can recall being a well-known designer with her name on the box would be Roberta Williams.

 

Now, that could be *my* cultural bias at play, here. But is it any better these days?

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3 hours ago, Talvalin said:

 

At the risk of derailment, this statement is trying to defend the indefensible by way of victim blaming. Ritchie, Dennis, Fury4K, angel and Barney all contributed to a campaign of harassment across the forum and on threads where geekette was not even participating. After a long long discussion (plus angelgate), the mods and committee determined that such behaviour was unacceptable and permabanned two of the parties involved. And yet, you call geekette vile for bringing up that harassment? Get out.

 

Whilst I realize without that method of sharp pointy needles being stuck into individuals we wouldn't have found the harassment against her in the first place (although it was, ironically, outside sources in the end: Angel's PM's), that doesn't mean I support the method regardless. To someone that's innocent it's horrible being called shit, and having your history dug up as some sort of defense of a person being horrible.

I think that's more a point to raise now that I think about it, actually. Against others, she mainly brought up harassment against her and assumed I was a part of it. Towards me, she tried to be quite more personal in her attack. Quite horrible.

 

Edit: And continues to be as seen on the previous page, due to her made up judgement of me. She doesn't have to like me fair enough, but she doesn't have to say the same things every time some idiot (Broker, in the case of yesterday) can't be arsed engaging/reading throughout the forum, or whenever she doesn't (want to) understand a joke.

 

Quote

And back on topic, you could perhaps try citing the tropes that you strongly disagree with in order to spark actual discussion?

 

Simply stating tropes doesn't spark discussion. And if you think actual discussion wasn't being had yesterday, well, I hope there's flying pigs in the world now.

 

I used to be one of the few that actually brought up articles all the time (even if some proved bad or wrong, I'll admit), it's part of the reason the thread's more dead these days. I'd resorted to discussing certain articles in PM instead. (Till I started not caring a whole lot again)

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15 hours ago, geekette said:

You keep working on that assumption and endlessly responding to his drivel, but I don't agree. Firstly he has admitted he is trolling. Secondly, his way of posting does not suggest a learning disability. It suggests intention. He recurrently makes the same simplistic errors over and over and over, no matter how many times people cover the same ground with him (whilst people with a learning disability do learn provided the information is pitched at the right level). He takes some messages at entirely face value (anything regressive from youtube that he knows will be provocative), whilst endlessly questioning others - that selectiveness is not characteristic of people with intellectual impairment. If you take him on face value he is literally more likely to believe that feminists want to turn us into genderless frogs than to believe that criticism is not censorship (that is, he can follow complex concepts where they fit his agenda, but can't follow simple ones when they don't). He always appears to engage enough to make people respond to him, but gains nothing from the exchange. It is his entire thing to irritate people on the internet. It is what he has done for as long as I've been on this forum, and is unique to him (even compared to the outright trolls that you'd recognise). There is literally nothing authentic in any of his communication, and I say that despite sustained efforts to engage with him on the forum and over PM.

Geekette, you may well be right, but I'm not entirely convinced by this argument.
Did he actually admit to being insincere, or is an admition of trolling a way of backing out of a belief you genuinely hold (the "it was a social experiment" defence)?

 

In my experience, trolls don't usually stick to the same line of attack, they change and contradict themselves wherever necessary to get the reaction they want, and are plainly transparent when you probe deeper. NEG seems to repeat the same simplistic arguments, consistently, suggesting perhaps that he can't grasp the broader discussion happening, the cause-and-effect nature of art and social attitudes, etc.

 

It's not an uncommon opinion, which is why I think it's genuine. People often believe (or want to believe) that their personalities and thoughts are entirely autonomous, that they aren't influenced by things around them that they see and hear, and so they reject the notion that the media they consume is influencing how they view the world. It's why you get things like victim blaming, like "it's your fault if you're offended", etc.

 

As for believing things that fit his agenda more than things that challenge it - that's common to all people and something we have to consciously fight against. It doesn't suggest to me that NEG is being insincere, just not applying sufficient critical thought. In some instances, I believe he posts things that are 'contrary' to the discussion because he believes it helps, in the same way that media outlets bring in quacks and conspiracy theorists in the name of "balance". He falls for logical falacies of false equivalence, but that doesn't mean he's doing it on purpose.

 

And if he's genuinely not doing it on purpose (ie. trolling for reaction), then do you not think it can, at the very least, provide some insight into the mind of somebody not swayed by the discussion of tropes in media?

 

That is, I'm not saying that it's any fun talking to NEG about really basics things over and over again, but it shows that, for many people, it's painfully necessary to do just that. And maybe we can get better at it?

 

Sorry, this turned into a ramble and I'm not sure it makes much sense.

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