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Aug 16 2012

The campaign against Amy Davis Roth

I met Amy Davis Roth, also known as Surly Amy, two years ago at CONvergence 2010 – SkepchickCON 2. Jodi and I were on our honeymoon — yes, we spent our honeymoon at a geek convention. Couldn’t have picked a better venue. Amy had a table in the dealer’s room, selling her ceramic Surly necklaces, and I picked up a green atom necklace so I could wear science iconography where so many others wear their religious iconography. Her partner Surly Johnny was a bad influence on me and I drank too many Buzzed Aldrins. The experience was a bit of a whirlwind one, but I got a sense from everyone working the Skepchick party room that they were passionate, committed, and principled, even when they were doing their damnedest to make sure everyone had a good time.

My already favorable impression of Amy was redoubled when I found out that she’d nearly singlehandedly sent dozens of women to TAM over the years, organizing and running fundraisers and committing resources from her Surlys to that end. She had a great deal of help, but she was almost certainly the lynchpin. And she writes timely and important rallying cries when the movement needs them the most — and that’s what a leader does, even if they don’t necessarily want or accept that mantle.

I met her again at SkepchickCON 4 a month and a half ago, and her enthusiasm and pink Darth Vader costume put her over the top for me — I have a ton of respect for the lady. If we ever disagree, it’ll be on good terms. She’s earned quite a bit of goodwill with me.

So I guess it comes as a bit of a surprise to me that a mainstay of the skepto-atheistic blogosphere, who’s done so much to promote skepticism and atheism, and to foster inclusiveness of women in our communities, is under concerted attack.

I’m guessing this all started when, despite her monumental efforts toward bringing women to TAM who otherwise couldn’t afford it, she was targeted by a number of individuals because she’s a member of Skepchick, and Skepchick as a network had recently pissed off a lot of people because… because… DJ Grothe blamed them and others for TAM’s lower attendance. Yes, Skepchick pissed people off because DJ accused them of something they didn’t do. All because they support harassment policies, and Grothe — and his fans, apparently — think that the demand for harassment policies is an attack on TAM.

Rebecca Watson kinda took offense and withdrew from the conference. But Amy had already committed to going to TAM this year, with the women she’d given grants to. So she went anyway.

Harriet Hall wore a shirt saying she was “not a skepchick” and that she feels “safe and welcome at TAM”; some people wore obvious imitation Surly jewellery saying “you should be embarassed” or “that’s not funny” (referencing something she said about rape jokes and the Angry Skepchick Twitter account once! So clever!); the #TAM2012 live-tweeting hashtag was at some points inundated with more vitriol about Amy and Skepchick and the anti-harassment campaign than it was actual live-tweeting the convention; the Satiristas did a song about how the feminists have a stick up their asses about coffee and elevators; one of the grant recipients proclaimed herself “not a Watsonista” and apparently snubbed Amy and the other grant winners; people loudly and roundly proclaimed that Amy was part of an “axis out to destroy TAM”.

Amy rightly sensed her pariah status and cried in the speaker’s lounge. And that was her next big sin, which later became the focus of a new dozen lies about her.

Hall walked in on Amy crying, and there was a brief confrontation where Amy told Hall how uncomfortable it was to be explicitly targeted as a member of the Skepchick brand. Hall continued to wear the anti-skepchick shirt for three days (eww) despite this confrontation. Then secret harassment police swooped in out of nowhere, because Amy had evidently told someone about the ongoing anti-Amy sentiment at some point who knew the secret harassment police. Said secret police told Amy and her mother that she would be secretly taped and monitored for the rest of the conference, even though Amy herself never reported any of this harassment because it was to that point all stupid bullshit and nobody had yet crossed any lines that merited talking to officials about.

The surveillance was apparently the straw that broke the camel’s back, but she says she did not leave primarily because of it. Not primarily because of the t-shirt. Not primarily because of the parody Surlys. Not primarily because of the song. Not primarily because of the accusations of being part of a vast conspiracy. Not primarily because of the anti-Skepchick sentiment on the Twitter hashtag. Not primarily because of the backstabbing by a grant recipient. No, she left because of all of it put together.

Then the trolls came along and reframed the entire thing, saying that Amy was trying to censor the free speech of the t-shirt or of the imitation Surlys. That Amy wanted to run a campaign to keep people from being offensive to her. And that was apparently enough to induce every single cockroach that the skeptical and atheist movements have collected over the years — every single person who’s ever said “elevatorgate? Dude was just flirting! So coffee doesn’t mean coffee?” to pile onto this newest conflagration, to create a new target to be drummed out of the movement. Not Rebecca Watson, but her ally and friend and co-blogger Surly Amy. I mean, doing as much splash damage to the previous targets as possible in the meantime, but certainly the target for the mortars had shifted.

People now ask if it’s immoral to rape a Skepchick because they’re annoying. They call Skepchick and Freethought Blogs ‘feminazi’ and ‘femistasi’ because we point out when people in our movements are horrid to one another and take them to task over it. They tell Amy to self-immolate because there’s no policy against it at TAM (“The Other Atheist” is one of Franc Hoggle / Victor Ivanoff‘s pseudonyms, by the way.)

But Amy weathers those storms. She keeps on plugging away at improving the movement, both through her art and through her activism.

Then the trolls get the bright idea to wreck her art at the same time as going after her personally.

First Thunderf00t posts a copyrighted image of hers in order to make fun of her, and the very idea of harassment policies. Amy tells him he does not have permission to use the image, and asks that he takes it down. He does, but replaces it with an image mocking her.

Then a certain disingenuous and argumentationally-vacuous entity in our community, who claims both to be a leader and to represent the moral high ground of attacking people’s arguments instead of their person, posts a copyrighted image of Amy’s in order to try to cut her down. This entity — henceforth known as Entity (who will go unlinked, so I’m not accused of trying to ruin their reputation in a bullying fashion by pointing out their trollish actions!) — wrote the post to say that Amy is divisive and damaging to the community because she wants conferences to ban the parody jewellery, rather than what she actually suggested, that harassment policies would provide frameworks for complaining about being targeted for harassment like she had been. The entire post was a straw dummy, as is Entity’s modus operandi, but the post stood unopposed, unmentioned and unloved, until Blogger’s automatic DMCA takedown process reverted the post to draft status until the blogger in question could remove the offending image.

So people now have a rhetorical club to beat Amy with. Despite there being no evidence that Amy herself posted the DMCA takedown notice, it’s very probably her because she’s the copyright owner. But the action recommended in the takedown notice was to remove the offending content and the rest could be republished.

Did Entity simply do that and walk away? Of course not. Instead, Entity replaced the image with a sneering ‘shopped Surly that accuses Amy of censorship and trying to censor his entire post, then filed a DMCA counter-claim, which means that the original claimant either takes Entity to court within ten days, or Entity can put back up the copyrighted work. Counterclaims are rare, because most people don’t know about them and don’t know how to tell what’s “fair use” and what isn’t. Counterclaimants are usually advised to do so on advice of a lawyer, because the whole process is nebulous and a total crapshoot, no matter who’s obviously in the right. On the internet, fair use for images is a bit weird, but it’s well possible that Entity could even win such a case, assuming it was even Amy who filed it in the first place. What gets me is the sneering intentionality of the counterclaim — that sense of “I’ll use your work then hurt you for trying to stop me”.

All while this is happening, bullies who hang out on the #FTBullies tag, who spend all day every day on Twitter telling everyone about how horrible Freethought Blogs and Skepchick are, have been commenting on this case, demanding that it go to the Feds, that Amy be tried for perjury if her image wasn’t copyrighted. (Remember that the Berne Convention makes copyright automatic, though America limits statutory damages and lawyers’ fees as available only for registered works. She’s in no risk of being hauled before a Federal court.)

And those same actual bullies are spamming offensive non-Surly jewellery at people who are discussing the works, apparently in a dual attempt at drying up her revenue stream and hurting her personally. And then to top it all off, these exact same people pretend like Amy is just playing victim, and needs a thicker skin. After all of this targeted nonsense. After this obsessive hatred.

Why are these people like this?

Is this an extinction burst, the dying breaths of the most odious parts of our movement as they shrivel and fade away in the sunlight? Well, I suspect it will keep happening for quite some time. The haters will gain traction, there will be give and take, and some big names will rally in support of the people who really, really hate the idea of social justice merging with atheism and skepticism into a larger philosophy of humanism.

The interesting thing about this phenomenon is that while folks are being terrible to Amy for no apparent or rational reason, everyone taking them to task for it would absolutely defend their freedom to say or do those things. Otherwise, there are no actions to take them to task over! Really, pointing out their bad behaviour is a far cry from telling them they’re not allowed to behave badly. And most of the community agrees — the fight for harassment policies at atheist and skeptic conventions is already won.

The holdouts are complaining primarily that we’re impinging on their freedom, but on the contrary — they’re absolutely free to be complete shitheels to people they don’t even know. How else would the rest of us know that these people are unworthy of our time and attention? It’s a self-correcting problem, really — they’ll naturally make themselves unwelcome in all but the most offensiveness-reifying communities, BECAUSE they’ve got the freedom of speech to prove exactly how terrible of human beings they really are.

And good riddance. The sooner they expose their true colors and the community realizes exactly what kinds of people they are, the better.

If you’re sick of this nonsense, if you’d like to support someone who’s supported our community even while the cockroaches targeted her, go buy some of her lovely Surlyramics.

Surly necklaces, © Amy Davis Roth. Used with permission

I asked for her permission to include this image. See? That wasn’t so hard.

352 comments

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  1. 1
    Rich Wilson

    I’d like to suggest a virtual Surlynamic for those who don’t really want an actual Sulrynamic. Like, maybe “Mangina”. I’ve always wanted a mangina like Jason’s.

  2. 2
    Jason Thibeault

    My mangina is unique, like a beautiful budding flower.

  3. 3
    'Tis Himself

    The thing I find most amazing is that Surly Amy spent thousands of hours and a lot of money supporting TAM, so why have Grothe and his handlers have decided she’s persona non grata? Grothe’s feet are full of bullet holes.

  4. 4
    StarStuff, a soulless cunt

    I’ve wanted one of her necklaces for about a year, but I don’t usually have the money. But I will absolutely buy one once my financial aid is disbursed. I’ve had my eye on a few in particular :)

  5. 5
    Paul

    The thing I find most amazing is that Surly Amy spent thousands of hours and a lot of money supporting TAM, so why have Grothe and his handlers have decided she’s persona non grata? Grothe’s feet are full of bullet holes.

    It tells you loud and clear why they went with a secret harassment policy. They appear to honestly believe that it’s much more lucrative for their brand to pander to people who will be upset by the idea that they’re expected to behave around women than they did by all the sweat, money, and time that Surly Amy and others have put in.

  6. 6
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    If things go right for me and my family, it will also help Amy and her family. My wife and I are committed to doing the majority of our Xmas shopping from the Surlyramics store.

    The feeling that I get from the haters and the sideline haters like Kirby and Stangroom and Blackford, is a belief that is someone CAN be hurt, they DESERVE to be hurt. It is like the moment that Amy became upset by Harriet Hall’s amazingly hateful and immature display, that display became somehow valid because it was able to make Amy upset.

    I can’t diagnose mental illness, but there’s something seriously fucked up with those people, period.

  7. 7
    Besomyka

    I’ve already bought four necklaces from here, and intend to get more. She makes them in all sorts of lovely colors, and on topics that hit all of my different geeky/activist spots.

    Although she’s not in Austin, I consider her a local artist. She is to me, anyway.

  8. 8
    Crommunist

    “Mangina” sounds more like an attempt to macho-ize heart disease than anything else. “Shooting pain down your beer-chuggin’ arm? You might just have MANGINA! Consult a doctor immediately (*something explodes*)”

    I don’t understand how someone has this level of hurtfulness in them. I sincerely don’t get it. How can you be THIS dead to the suffering of another human being? How can you then turn around and whine about YOUR hurt because someone points out how fucking awful you are?

    The mind boggles.

  9. 9
    cethis

    I think the JREF is more concerned about its biggest donors than with grassroots activists like Amy. When there is a conflict between the two, the JREF will side with the donors.

    I never gave them enough money for them to care about me, and now I won’t care about them any more.

    Amy deserves a better skeptical movement.

  10. 10
    Hank_Says

    Never in the field in human conflict was the word “bully” used so ironically with so little awareness.

    That Amy is being so pilloried by an ostensibly rational community (including its alleged “pillars”) that she’s so diligently (and now thanklessly) supported off her own bat should make every single fucking one of us ashamed. That Hall decided to join in in the very behaviour that made Amy feel unwelcome shows a stark divorce from reason on her part.

    Is Amy “playing the victim?” No, she IS a victim. She IS being victimised, both by public Entities who ought to fucking know better and deserve every ounce of shunning and opprobrium they get, and by semi-literate keyboard-warriors from whom we should expect not even the common decency of staying out of an argument when not in possession of pertinent facts.

    The JREF should’ve immediately condemned the actions against one of their most enthusiastic supporters (participated in by one of their invited speakers, no less). That they didn’t speaks to either obliviousness or a deliberate decision not to. I’m leaning towards the latter, going by their (non)treatment of Ophelia Benson’s legitimate concerns and their frankly spiteful and ignorant criticisms of Skepchick.

    Amy should be damn well honoured by JREF for all her hard work – at the very least they should stand beside her and support her, as she’s supported them over the years. I wouldn’t be surprised one bit if this whole situation led Amy to bail on TAM and the JREF altogether. But hey, if they want their Bigfoot/homeopathy-debunking conferences to be exclusive and tribal, let them. There are enough other skeptics around to be able to create viable alternatives. I’d expect (and have seen) better treatment of an atheist at an evangelical conference.

  11. 11
    felixBC

    This personalized campaign against one woman really pisses me off. Being at TAM must have been excruciating. Other people having a bad day could settle into a lecture, pull out a notebook and disappear to other attendees. But Surly Amy’s *at work*, at her table, out in public. She can’t hide in any way.

    And now they’re attacking her livelihood online. Isn’t attacking people at work one of the worst crimes possible? Crossing that magical line between online activities and your personal life and livelihood–a no go area. Except for people targeting this woman. They’ll cry “he tried to get Abbie fired!” even as they mock Amy’s work, and make weird fakes of it to wear to TAM.

    At any rate. Off to shop. There’s cupcake pendant I’ve had my eye on.

  12. 12
    marismae

    I recently bought a Surlyramics pendant, but once my yearly raise comes in, it’s apparently time to buy another! The people attacking her and Rebecca and the Skepchicks and FTB in general just makes me sick :(

  13. 13
    Feminace, formerly Qurikythrope

    What a pack of fucking morons that haven’t done nearly as much as she’s done.

    *goes a searching for a new Surly to add to her collection*

  14. 14
    felixBC

    Oh, and StarStuff, I just visited your site and hit the donate button. Go buy something from Amy!
    Cheers from a former starving student and current artist-type woman.

  15. 15
    Arakiba

    When men feel their privilege is threatened, they get angry. Some get violent. If I was a woman who was thinking of going to TAM, I wouldn’t feel safe; especially not after what was described in this post.

  16. 16
    Steve Williamson

    Please correct this:

    “Did Entity do that? Of course not. Instead, Entity filed a DMCA counter-claim, ”

    The copyrighted image *was* removed. THEN the counterclaim for “Fair use” was filed.

    Thank you.

  17. 17
    Adam Lee

    The vicious and self-destructive spite shown by the JREF against a woman who was, until then, one of their most dedicated supporters is really what staggers me the most. You would think that a group that’s been besieged with complaints about its sexist treatment of women would want to have as many counterexamples in its corner as possible. Instead, it seems they went out of their way to prove the critics right and to send the message “We don’t give a shit what you think about us.”

  18. 18
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    Crommunist:

    I don’t understand how someone has this level of hurtfulness in them. I sincerely don’t get it. How can you be THIS dead to the suffering of another human being? How can you then turn around and whine about YOUR hurt because someone points out how fucking awful you are?

    The mind boggles.

    Well… I can understand how you can have that level of hurt in you. I can understand how you can be THIS dead to the suffering of another human being. I can understand those things, but I cannot remotely understand how you can be that debased and still see yourself as some sort of victim/hero in the story of your own life.

  19. 19
    Glendon Mellow

    Thanks for posting this Jason. All the Skepchicks deserve better than this.

    Surly Amy rocks as an artist, as a blogger and as a damn fine human being.

  20. 20
    The twelfth vote

    I chat on an #atheism IRC channel, and I’ve noted a distinct trend in the types of people join the channel and hate on Amy and Skepchicks: they are always viciously anti-feminist, anti-FtB, and often very loudly in favor of MRA’s. By “viciously”, I don’t mean “respectfully disagreeing”–it is always, always, the slurs, name-calling, and hate.

    If some of those people are reading this, I have to ask: If your intellectual peers are people who hang out on /r/mensrights, sneer about “Rebecca Twatson”, and laugh at the emotional distress of someone like Amy (who has done so much for TAM in the past), do you really think that you hold the higher ground?

  21. 21
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    Already done. I bought three after the TAM incident.

    They haven’t yet arrived in the post, but it was a custom order so she had to make them first. She’s really happy to do custom orders, so if for instance you really like a design but not the colour, just send her a message.

  22. 22
    callistacat

    This is just unreal. What exactly did Amy Davis do to deserve this, especially from her own community of skeptics? I wonder, do male atheists and skeptics get this abuse from fellow skeptics/atheists? Other than the “Manginas” of course. Do Richard Dawkins or Daniel Dennett or Sam Harris get death threats and rape threats from other atheists? I’m very curious.

    “Is this an extinction burst, the dying breaths of the most odious parts of our movement as they shrivel and fade away in the sunlight?”

    I don’t think so, I think these are the tactics that have been used against uppity women for thousands of years. Think of the myths of Amazons, witches, harpies, gorgons. (If these type of sexist men were responsible for writing history about the 21st Century, how do you think they’d characterize us?) According to author and journalist Jack Holland, “Representations of battles between men and Amazons are among the most popular depictions of women in Antiquity. Over 800 survive, the bulk of them Athenian in origin. They decorate everything from temples to vases and drinking bowls. Wherever a citizen looked, his eye would inevitably fall on a scene showing a man, sword or spear raised hauling women by her hair off a horse; or stabbing and clubbing her to death, a javelin pointed at her nipple…The greatest temple in Athens, the Parthenon, was erected in 437 b.c. to honor Athena…and to celebrate Greek victory over Persian invaders. But the battle scene chosen to decorate the shield of Athena was not based on any historical event. It was a depiction of the legendary victory of the hero Theseus…over an invading army of Amazons.”

    Feminists are modern version of uppity Amazons. Except we’re real, which must be really scary to male supremacists everywhere, including in this movement.

  23. 23
    Wowbagger, Designated Snarker

    Improbable Joe wrote:

    I can understand those things, but I cannot remotely understand how you can be that debased and still see yourself as some sort of victim/hero in the story of your own life.

    It’s how they justify it. If they were to admit that the people they do this to weren’t deserving of it, they’d have to acknowledge that they’re not courageous campaigners for fairness and justice for the poor persecuted menz, but are in fact cowardly scumbag assholes fighting to retain their entitled status.

  24. 24
    callistacat

    Yes I said male supremacists, because calling them Men’s Rights Activists is not accurate in the least.

  25. 25
    Brony

    I still think this has something to do with it.
    “Study explains why women are victims of sexual objectification”
    http://digitaljournal.com/article/329394

    This has some methodology.
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-07-people-view-women-body.html

  26. 26
    bubba707

    Having been reading about the attacks on Amy my position is to let everyone I know hear about it and disregard JREF and TAM as nothing but a bunch of useless asshats. They’ll certainly get no support from me of any kind ever again.

  27. 27
    hyperdeath

    Crommunist:

    I don’t understand how someone has this level of hurtfulness in them.

    The thing that strikes me is not the level, but the stamina. I can understand people writing a few nasty things on a few occasions, but some of them have continued almost non-stop for over a year. They’re not just nasty, they’re utterly obsessed.

  28. 28
    hyperdeath

    Wowbagger, Antipodean Dervish says:

    …courageous campaigners for fairness and justice for the poor persecuted menz, but are in fact cowardly scumbag assholes fighting to retain their entitled status.

    I think you’re assuming a level of coherence that just isn’t there. The line of thinking is more like “I hate those uppity bitches”.

  29. 29
    Nathair

    That Amy is being so pilloried by an ostensibly rational community (including its alleged “pillars”) that she’s so diligently (and now thanklessly) supported off her own bat should make every single fucking one of us ashamed.

    The problem is that being pro-science and taking the piss out of creationism and homeopathy is not enough to make someone a leader in a community which cares about social justice. We should stop acting as if it were. You are about more than merely skepticism and so am I and so is Jason and so is Amy and Ophelia and Rebecca and… That some others are not should be their shame, not ours.

  30. 30
    Eshto

    Can’t help notice how you’ve mixed random, offensive troll comments about rape in with public statements by respected intellectuals such as D.J. Grothe and Paula Kirby; somehow implying some connection, or that that Grothe, or Kirby, or anybody, should be put in a position to answer for them.

    You’ve been told this a million times and I don’t think it’ll stick now, but here goes anyway: Stop obsessing over troll comments on the Internet. Stop acting like they characterize everyone who disagrees with you.

    Just stop it.

  31. 31
    'Tis Himself

    Just stop it.

    Prithee, kind sirrah, but are you making similar comments to the people at the other side of the controversy?

  32. 32
    julian

    Stop acting like they characterize everyone who disagrees with you.

    Stop acting like they don’t. They do characterize the people who disagree with him as they’re the ones saying these things, excusing these things, upvoting these things and laughing at these things. Stop pretending you can shrug off with the majority (even if you want to consider it only the most vocal) on your “side.”

    And stop pretending abuse done over the internet isn’t abuse.

  33. 33
    Larkness

    “Amy deserves a better skeptical movement.”

    Yes! I am so over all of this nonsense. Let’s all of us rational folks break off and start our own sect, cuz dammit, this shit ain’t cool.

  34. 34
    Wowbagger, Designated Snarker

    Eshto wrote:

    Can’t help notice how you’ve mixed random, offensive troll comments about rape in with public statements by respected intellectuals such as D.J. Grothe and Paula Kirby; somehow implying some connection, or that that Grothe, or Kirby, or anybody, should be put in a position to answer for them.

    Kirby should certainly answer for ‘feminazi’ and ‘femistasi’, since she was the one who used them.

  35. 35
    Jason Thibeault

    Steve Williamson @16: You have a point, I was unclear. I have clarified to:

    Did Entity simply do that and walk away? Of course not. Instead, Entity replaced the image with a sneering ‘shopped Surly that accuses Amy of censorship and trying to censor his entire post, then filed a DMCA counter-claim

  36. 36
    Jason Thibeault

    Eshto: I don’t want people to be held to account for things they didn’t say.

    I’m holding them to account for the things they did say.

    WHICH I LINKED TO.

  37. 37
    mcbender

    Thank you for this post, Jason. I hadn’t realised the campaign against Amy in particular had gotten this bad, despite being aware of most of the details: it’s quite a different thing to see it all gathered together in one place. This is absolutely appalling, and I wish I could say I found it hard to believe people were acting like this…

  38. 38
    Ouabache

    Yep. I’m officially done with the Skeptic movement. If this is how they choose to treat one another then I’ll find another group of Freethinkers to hang out with. I like most of the people who call themselves Skeptics but if this many of the leaders are opposed to Social Justice then I’m just going to move on.

  39. 39
    Wowbagger, Designated Snarker

    Jason Thibeault wrote:

    WHICH I LINKED TO.

    How dare you be such a link bully!

  40. 40
    StarStuff, a soulless cunt

    @felixBC
    Thank you so much! I’m going to buy one tonight (the “No God’s. No masters.” one)

  41. 41
    julian

    How dare anyone hold someone accountable for their behavior or behavior they’ve encouraged?

  42. 42
    pilot

    First of all I think it’d be helpful to remove the ambiguity. LousyCanuck is talking about a person called Justin Vacula.

    The post is still available at:

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/102887608/Surly-Amy-Conferences-should-ban-fake-jewelry

    Don’t worry, by going there you won’t be contributing traffic to the guys blog. Only scribd.com, and of course its minus the oh-so-very offensive image of Amy Lee Roths jewellery.

    [quote] Despite there being no evidence that Amy herself posted the DMCA takedown notice, it’s very probably her because she’s the copyright owner. But the action recommended in the takedown notice was to remove the offending content and the rest could be republished.

    Did Entity do that? Of course not. Instead, Entity filed a DMCA counter-claim, which means that the original claimant either takes Entity to court within ten days, or Entity can put back up the copyrighted work. Counterclaims are rare, because most people don’t know about them and don’t know how to tell what’s “fair use” and what isn’t. Counterclaimants are usually advised to do so on advice of a lawyer, because the whole process is nebulous and a total crapshoot, no matter who’s obviously in the right. On the internet, fair use for images is a bit weird, but it’s well possible that Entity could even win such a case, assuming it was even Amy who filed it in the first place. What gets me is the sneering intentionality of the counterclaim — that sense of “I’ll use your work then hurt you for trying to stop me”.[/quote]

    I think most people understand that copyright is a set of legal processes designed explicitly to protect the copyright holder (the artist, writer, producer of content) from unlawful monetary exploitation of their work. The blog in question was quite obviously not an attempt to do this, and was merely a criticism of Amy Lee Roth’s views towards what should or should not be allowed at conferences. Specifically whether “fake” jewellery (meaning, jewellery that satirises Roth’s work) should be allowed. That falls under the fair use provisions of the DMCA and the blogger was totally within his rights to counter-claim.

    As the blog post was skewering Amy Lee Roth and her pro-censorship views I find it highly unlikely that the only motivation for a takedown notice was the use of her artwork. An issue which might be resolved through a tweet or email. It seems just as likely that she didn’t like what she read and was attempting to censor that opinion.

  43. 43
    Hank_Says

    Stop obsessing over troll comments on the Internet. Stop acting like they characterize everyone who disagrees with you.

    Just stop it.

    That’s a tad obtuse.

    Much of this post was complaining about Amy’s treatment at TAM, by TAM attendees and by at least one invited speaker. The non-reaction from the JREF implicates them as ignorant of or apathetic to the problem. I see this as a rank betrayal of Amy’s support of the organisation over the years.

    The subsequent pile-on by trolls may not be the main problem, but has served to embolden hatemongers (and selective readers) and bring them out of the woodwork in great number, adding to the cacophony and adding further distress to those, like Amy, who have been targeted both online and off. Trolls being rude isn’t just some abstract phenomenon, it’s real people acting like real arseholes and, in this case, doing so toward someone who does not deserve it in the slightest.

    That the JREF or DJ or Kirby or any other “name” hasn’t repudiated the online OR offline hate campaign (with some, like the Entity, enthusiastically joining in online) gives succour to the trolls, which of course encourages them to continue. This apparent support encourages the “names” to keep demonising feminist skeptics as reactionaries, fascists, misandrists (or worse) which of course in turn further justifies the online haters’ hatred.

    These are two problems which feed each other. Dismissing trolls as “only trolls” is naive at best and at worst contributes to the problem.

  44. 44
    Kim Rippere

    I am appalled at this litany. The virtually 100% positive and supportive comments give me hope. Thank you.

  45. 45
    julian

    OMG!

    We’re pro-censorious! Censor! Censor!

    All your censor are belong to ME!

    MORE MEANINGLESS YELLING!

    It seems just as likely that she didn’t like what she read and was attempting to censor that opinion.

    It seems just as likely Justin Vacula is (wait for it) a drama whore looking to make himself internet famous. Sorry but I can’t take such people seriously.

    I mean, who cares about something that happened over a blog post? Dudes, get lifes and stuffs.

  46. 46
    tim

    It really isn’t surprising that this group is falling to pieces. This community has tolerated and even encouraged hostility to those who disagree. Those who mention the abusive language are attacked as tone trolls. I am disappointed but admit to some shadenfreude watching this drama over the past several months.

  47. 47
    julian

    The important thing is, tim, you can feel all superior and smug towards others.

  48. 48
    pilot

    OMG!

    We’re pro-censorious! Censor! Censor!

    All your censor are belong to ME!

    MORE MEANINGLESS YELLING!

    I’m the one who’s yelling. Hah.

    It seems just as likely Justin Vacula is (wait for it) a drama whore looking to make himself internet famous. Sorry but I can’t take such people seriously.

    I mean, who cares about something that happened over a blog post? Dudes, get lifes and stuffs.

    Maybe, but whether or not you take him seriously is not at issue. Nobody gives a fuck what you think really. The DMCA is law, and I don’t like seeing people being censored through its abuse.

  49. 49
    julian

    I’m the one who’s yelling. Hah.

    LOUD NOISES!!

    The DMCA is law, and I don’t like seeing people being censored through its abuse.

    But it’s just some internet stuff, guise. How can anyone take someone seriously who gets so bent out of shape over internet drama? Obviously Justin Vacula is just a troll looking for attention.

  50. 50
    callistacat

    @tim
    which group is falling to pieces?

  51. 51
    pilot

    But it’s just some internet stuff, guise. How can anyone take someone seriously who gets so bent out of shape over internet drama? Obviously Justin Vacula is just a troll looking for attention.

    I guess reasonable people will take the time to look at that blog-link and decide whether or not he was raising legitimate points or just trying to exploit Roth’s work for monetary gain.

    You seem to be looking for attention from me at the moment. You’ve got it now, well done, have you got a point?

  52. 52
    julian

    You’ve got it now, well done, have you got a point?

    Just parodying some of the things Vacula and his compatriots said in regards to SurlyAmy and Watson. Haven’t trolled in a while so I’m a bit out of practice.

  53. 53
    pilot

    Haven’t trolled in a while so I’m a bit out of practice.

    Yeah, I can tell.

  54. 54
    Forbidden Snowflake

    I’m going to have to choose between a few Surly necklaces that I like, but I do have to say that this one looks like a fucking joke at this point.

  55. 55
    Ophelia Benson

    Eshto is Ryan Grant Long, or at least that’s his Twitter handle (and it seems unlikely that there’s another Eshto who’s interested in this).

    Mandrellian @ 10 – Amy has already bailed on TAM and JREF altogether.

  56. 56
    Eristae

    I bought two! One for me (LUCA!!!!) and one for my mommy in an “I’m sorry I didn’t get you anything for your birthday while going through yet another emotional breakdown” gesture.

  57. 57
    kraut

    All I can say – if it hasn’t said enough already: Fuck TAM and every body who supports those idiots and the associated goons any further.
    They can go and fuck themselves and their MRA bullshit.
    Or rather:
    They should at least be consequent and surgically remove their peckers so we do not have to suffer further procreation of those
    dog fuckers.

  58. 58
    Eristae

    Er, I guess 56 should clarify “while I was going through…”

  59. 59
    julian

    Amy has already bailed on TAM and JREF altogether.

    For the best. Grothe and his friends don’t want her there and she’d rather not be dehumanized by them. Win-win!

    They should at least be consequent and surgically remove their peckers so we do not have to suffer further procreation of those
    dog fuckers.

    O_o

  60. 60
    Stephanie Zvan

    Anyone with an actual interest in copyright really shouldn’t be listening to pilot. That’s a naive, “common sense” approach both to what copyright is for and what fair use is. It’s also wrong. Relying on it will get you in trouble.

    For instance, pilot doesn’t seem to understand that what is copyrighted in this instance is the photo Amy took of her own work. There was no commentary about the photo accompanying the photo. pilot may be a little confused because the artist and photographer are the same person in this case, but think of it this way: If you want to comment on a Monet, you don’t get to just use any photo of the painting without regard to the photographer’s copyright.

    I don’t think Entity’s friends did him any favors here in getting him worked up enough to submit the counterclaim under threat of perjury. Maybe he should think about being nice to Amy for a change.

  61. 61
    Scr... Archivist

    Jason,

    I’m surprised that you did not mention Amy’s current series on Skepchick, “Speaking Out Against Hate Directed at Women”. Various male leaders in the atheist and skeptic movements have been contributing, and so far we have heard from fifteen of them. I recommend the series to your readers.

    I have to wonder if some of the sustained vitriol against Amy is because of this series. It shows that the male supremacists’ territory is shrinking fast, and they can’t like that fact.

    Also, regarding the DMCA counterclaim, would that allow the counterclaimant to learn the address of the claimant? Of course, it could have been an unrelated third party who filed the claim. But if it was Amy and she would have to surrender her address, I could see that as a problem.

  62. 62
    pilot

    I don’t think Entity’s friends did him any favors here in getting him worked up enough to submit the counterclaim under threat of perjury.

    This is as nonsensical as it gets. He submitted a counter-claim when he did not have to. He stood up for himself when he did not have to.

    I’d really like you to explain what “under threat of perjury” actually means. I’m warming up the popcorn now.

  63. 63
    Hank_Says

    Ophelia @ 55:

    Mandrellian @ 10 – Amy has already bailed on TAM and JREF altogether.

    I’m unsurprised, unsurprisingly. How many does that make now?

    It’s a pity the JREF didn’t value Amy’s efforts as much as the wider community obviously did (and still does). It’s an almost greater pity they didn’t appreciate (or flatly ignored) the awful time she had at TAM.

    Obviously I’m disgusted, but I’m also having a terribly difficult time understanding why the JREF and other ostensible allies in skepticism and reason are being so fucking unreasonable toward those who are guilty only of highlighting a problem that exists and wondering why the fuck so many others consider the highlighting itself and the ensuing conversation about what to do a BIGGER problem than the actual problem.

    Like, what the fuck is their problem?

  64. 64
    Xanthë, Amy of my threads

    Wow, pilot hasn’t read the relevant law otherwise ze would know that DCMA claims and counter-claims follow specific formulas as to who the copyright owner is, the infringed work which is under copyright, and so on, which if found to be fraudulent, expose the claimant or counter-claimant to perjury.

    Also, fair use does not circumscribe Amy’s moral rights; for this reason she would be entitled to request Thunderf00t, the Entity, or anyone else to remove images belonging to her that were published without permission.

    Not a lawyer.

  65. 65
    pilot

    @Xanthë

    Oh please, this is like being attacked by a damp sponge.

  66. 66
    Eshto

    “Eshto is Ryan Grant Long, or at least that’s his Twitter handle (and it seems unlikely that there’s another Eshto who’s interested in this).”

    Interested? That’s charitable. More like sick and tired.

  67. 67
    smhll

    Thank you for writing about this, Jason. I am appalled that Amy was treated so cruelly, over nothing and for sport, especially considering her efforts in support of TAM.

    I have nothing in common with these MRA flavored assholes. I’d personally rather do social justice work with mild mannered Xtians (!) than sit in a folding chair next to any of these dudes.

  68. 68
    julian

    Interested? That’s charitable. More like sick and tired.

    Of what? You and your friends belittling and berating others?

    We’re sick of that too. It’d be great if you guys stopped now.

  69. 69
    kaboobie

    I own several Surlyramics, some I bought and some my husband bought as gifts. I hope Amy will be at Dragon*Con, so I can buy a couple more.

    She’s done 100 times more for the Skeptic community than all the people slandering her put together have accomplished.

  70. 70
    Benjamin Cunningham.

    I suggest people do go to justin vaculas blog. If for no other reason but for the fact that crappy canuck is one to distort others arguments, and it would take some sense of skepticism to go to the original source that he conveniently omits for us.

    DMCA notices are a vindictive and shitty way to deal with things like this, in this situation he would likely win the counter claim, due to fair use. And amy or or whoever filed it (amy) would have been better off contacting the blogger, rather than trying to use a shady legal mechanism. (yes, DMCA is often used in a shady manner)

  71. 71
    julian

    Hey, guys, people who own copyright, no longer have a say in how their material is used! Yay!

  72. 72
    Jason Thibeault

    pilot / Xanthe: that’s a misreading of the events. Entity was told to counter-claim against Amy because the trolls thought they could get Amy dragged before the feds on a perjury charge for not owning copyright.

    Except as I pointed out, copyright is automatic under Berne.

  73. 73
    Jason Thibeault

    And could you stop using Entity’s name? That’s BULLYING, taking him to task for things he’s said and done!

  74. 74
    Jason Thibeault

    scrutationaryarchivist@61: The omission was an honest mistake, though I don’t know if that’s WHY she’s getting so much shit. I honestly think that her rallying support is just why the shit hasn’t abated yet — because she hasn’t gone hermit in the face of all the attacks.

  75. 75
    Jason Thibeault

    Benjamin Cunningham: certainly you’d be so kind as to point out where my arguments or descriptions of events have been inaccurate so I could correct the record, rather than merely airdropping in to poison the well and link your hero’s real name to the person I referred to as “Entity” to protect him from bullying!

  76. 76
    pilot

    julian says:

    Hey, guys, people who own copyright, no longer have a say in how their material is used! Yay!

    They absolutely do in the sense that they have the right to profit from their work. They don’t have the right to stop or censor criticism of their work when it uses that work only for reference material. This is really simple shit.

  77. 77
    Jafafa Hots

    Interested? That’s charitable. More like sick and tired.

    That’s what we’re all concerned about, after all.
    How rampant discrimination and sexism and vilification of women makes conversation turn in a direction that you’re bored with.

    Won’t anyone think of the poor Eshtos?

  78. 78
    bubba707

    Keep in mind these cretins are not now and never were anyones allies. There may be one shared issue but the majority of their positions are utterly repugnant to any civilized human being.

  79. 79
    Bob

    If I may butt in at the risk of getting decapitated and having my head placed on a pike as an example to others like me. :) I’d like to mention that the characterization of the “secret harassment police” is somewhat misleading, even if unintentionally so. The JREF had hired a consultant who specialized in sexual harassment to be available 24 hours in the event that there was an incident. I was at his interview with Amy at her request, and I’m probably on the report since they took my name. He struck me as deeply concerned that Amy was uncomfortable and upset. Really genuinely concerned. As I understood it from someone in the know, the staff all had his number. He was on the ground the entire time BEFORE there was ever an incident. So, that struck me as proactive. He could not shield her from criticism, and Amy seemed to understand that, however, he could secure her safety, and within 15 minutes or so of the first call to the consultant, the guy was on the phone with the head of casino security to make sure that no bodily harm would come to her. The JREF protected her. Well within an hour after the consultants’ (he had an assistant) interview with Amy, I saw DJ talking to her in the main hall. I don’t know what they talked about, but DJ seems to have checked in with her quickly (she was near her table, so he came to her). To see it spun as the Stazi coming in has been bizarre. Heck, the guy who made the call to the consultant even went off to find someone at the conference who was using the hashtag to rip on people to “stop being a jerk.”

    It was clear that Amy was a donor. She was praised and thanked by the JREF many times over the course of the weekend, and she had done a ripping job of bringing women to the conference, for which we were all genuinely thankful. For her efforts it was a better conference.

    So, when someone @63 says: “It’s a pity the JREF didn’t value Amy’s efforts as much as the wider community obviously did (and still does). It’s an almost greater pity they didn’t appreciate (or flatly ignored) the awful time she had at TAM,” that falls completely flat and uninformed to me.

  80. 80
    Jason Thibeault

    Interesting anecdote, Bob @79, thank you.

    The reasons for calling it “secret police” are less to do with the seriousness of the people doing it, and more to do with the fact that this came after a concerted harassment policy campaign where, ultimately, TAM refused to publish a policy save for a “we take harassment seriously and have an outside firm” two-line answer buried in an FAQ and not included anywhere in any documentation for the event. We call it “secret police” because we were surprised there was ANY anti-harassment policy whatsoever, and frankly, it would have been more effective with better public information dissemination prior to the event.

    Please see the link in the OP at “secret harassment police”. It explains why I use the term quite well, I think. And it may be hyperbolic, but it comes from a place of genuine surprise, given the shape of the rest of the conferences’ harassment policies.

  81. 81
    1000 Needles

    She was praised and thanked by the JREF many times over the course of the weekend…

    Well then, they fulfilled their obligations!

    Next time I see somebody experiencing bullying, I’ll be sure to let them know that their contributions are valued. That should fix everything.

  82. 82
    Brad

    I don’t think I’ve ever read any of her work, and this is the first time I’ve seen her crafting, but it doesn’t seem possible that the volume and intensity of shit could be anywhere close to being warranted. Go ahead and disagree on things, but jesus fucking christ this is just ridiculous.

  83. 83
    Jason Thibeault

    Entity wants you all to know he’s written the world’s longest “nuh-uh”, and you should go to his blog, and that I’m dishonorable for not including a link in the main post.

    I don’t owe you anything, Entity. Not after your smear campaigns against me and my friends.

    The link to his blog is in one of the comments.

  84. 84
    reappaden

    First I made the graphic you are referring to and it was not made in response to the DMCA take-down.The DMCA report is just a sad attempt to try and stop any criticism. The DMCA report is weak at best but considering the position they are trying to protect it’s probably the best that they could do unless they resort to a post like this which leaves out a lot of the facts and basically says “quit picking on my friends” The graphic was in response to Surly Amy suggesting that people shouldn’t be able to wear “fake jewelry” at conferences.She also says those rules should be included along with other harassment policies. She does not provide any suggestions as to where we draw the line she only talks about what is offensive to her. How dare anyone parody her, she is above it because she does so many positive things. I’m happy that Surly Amy has been helpful to so many women and I would thank her for that. The fact that she has done positive things does not mean she is not held accountable for her negative actions. The way you expect people to excuse her from calling for censorship of anything related to her because she has helped people is pathetic. This is similar to another tactic I often see among people like psychics (and you) who support gay rights or animal rights for example. They then attempt to claim anyone critical of them is also against anything they support. You have done this over and over again. Anyone who is critical of Surly Amy or Rebecca Watson is against women’s rights. I don’t know how you can’t see it or if you think you are actually convincing anyone of it, but it is an obviously flawed bit of logic. In fact there are so many fallacies contained in this post, if I were you, I would remove it out of embarrassment. If you choose not to, no worries I (and others) are more than embarrassed enough for you.
    I have watched you continuously cry and complain about people who don’t agree with you and call them trolls. Usually this happens when you can not support your own argument. It’s much easier to just make a claim and then throw up a barrier to prevent needing to answer to any concerns or valid arguments against it. In reality this very post is trolling. It distracts from the central issue this all stems from and that is Surly Amy called for censorship of anything she considers offensive. She also equated wearing fake jewelry to someone grabbing her ass w/o permission. I heard the interview on the August 5, 2012 episode of Amanda Marcotte’s “RH Reality Check. She clearly said just that. I’m glad you consider her a friend. Since you are Surly Amy’s friend why don’t you explain to her why what she said is wrong instead of making excuses for her? You do know why it was wrong don’t you? You have a habit of misrepresenting people’s words and positions canuck. It’s disrespectful and just plain wrong. All you are doing is causing more time to be wasted answering to shit you can’t get straight. I’ll wrap this up by assuring you I am no troll. My concerns are valid and I can support my positions and I will do so as long and as loudly as needed.
    Here are some of the fallacies you are guilty of please look them up for everyone’s sake

    suppressed evidence
    guilt by association
    name-calling
    ad hominem
    argumentum ad ignorantiam
    observational selection

  85. 85
    Bob

    Yeah, take what I say for what it’s worth. It’s about the only thing I can speak about regarding this whole situation with any authority or insight.

    Surprise…can be expressed other ways. I honestly would have expected people to be really quite immensely pleased that there was a policy and professionals on the ground at all times. Whether or not it would have been more effective if it had been prominently displayed…perhaps. Dunno. But if there was anything that a visitor thought they needed to alert the JREF to, there were always people available at the main desk and “TAMbassadors” mulling about. It was pretty thorough arrangement. To me, the victory is that there was a system in place protecting people–I saw it leap into action and be really thorough without being advertised in the program.

    1000 Needles @81: What else should have been done? I mean, what else could they do?

  86. 86
    Hank_Says

    FYI “someone” @ 63 used a name, thanks, Bob @79. No it’s not my real name but it is a consistent identity.

    That aside, thanks for the information. Those involved are to be commended for their concern and actions.

    I still have a raised eyebrow over the lack of a public policy. It’s SOP for every con I’ve ever attended to make theirs available on request or include them in attendees’ info packs or publish them online (or all, or a combination). Did they just decide it’d attract too much negative attention to have one available for all to see? Who knows if having it publicise would have mad any difference whatsoever – it’s academic now.

    But as for DJ’s remarks re: Skepchick’s highlighting of a real problem making the problem worse and the subsequent online shitstorm featuring Kirby, her Approved MRA Chorus and various other sycophants – I can’t help but think that might have contributed in some teensy way to the environment and shameful treatment Amy experienced at TAM (including, as I said, at the hands of invited speaker Harriet Hall). As the mouthpiece of the JREF he still holds some responsibility for that, regardless of how exemplary his actions might have been in this case.

    @84 reappaden:

    Short response: pfft.

    Amy’s friends and supporters are incensed because she has been the target of a protracted and extremely venomous hate campaign, in stark disproportion to any (and I’m being extremely fucking charitable here) purported wrongdoing on her part. Defending the campaigners makes you as culpable and odious as they are.

  87. 87
    1000 Needles

    @ Bob:

    What else should have been done?

    For starters: If I was running a conference and one of my speakers wore a shirt directly antagonizing the organization of one of my valued supporters, the absolute least I would do is have that speaker change shirts.

  88. 88
    Skavau

    Julian at post 46: “It seems just as likely Justin Vacula is (wait for it) a drama whore looking to make himself internet famous. Sorry but I can’t take such people seriously.

    I mean, who cares about something that happened over a blog post? Dudes, get lifes and stuffs.”

    I know that this was a troll post (he admitted it later on) but I’m noticing as #84 said a complete lack of concern for the possibility of a DMCA misuse in an attempt to silence someone else by a respected blogger. I don’t know about any of you but censorship by in large whenever I see it infuriates me regardless of whether I am targeted personally or otherwise.

  89. 89
    Amanda

    Take down a photo /= silencing

  90. 90
    Jason Thibeault

    Indeed, Skavau, the false DMCA claims being used to censor people are terrible, but you’ll notice that Entity was told explicitly in the automated DMCA process that once the offending IMAGE was removed, the POST could be restored. There’s no censorship, just a bullshit automated system that I may not agree with but I understand a damn sight better than you.

  91. 91
    Hank_Says

    As a general comment, I find most of the responses of the anti-Skepchicks, anti-Surlies, anti-FTBullies, pro-Kirbys, pro-Dramaf00ts et al (including of course the actual Kirbys and Dramaf33t) to be wildly disproportionate to the perceived crimes of their enemies. It appears as if that one word in Kirby’s oft-spammed Google doc – “Feminazi” – unleashed an escalating torrent of wild-eyed incandescent anti-feminist rage.

    They may self-identify as skeptical, reasonable people but for some reason, just on this one topic, they act a great deal more like tribal zealots than any common or garden religious fundamentalist.

  92. 92
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    This is similar to another tactic I often see among people like psychics (and you) who support gay rights or animal rights for example. They then attempt to claim anyone critical of them is also against anything they support. You have done this over and over again. Anyone who is critical of Surly Amy or Rebecca Watson is against women’s rights.

    Would you be kind enough to provide a quote that supports this notion?

  93. 93
    andrewv696

    Breaking news:

    https://elevatorgate.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/alert-3-dmca-notices-received/

    ALERT: 3 DMCA notices received
    I should check my mail more often, LOLZ

  94. 94
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    Amanda:

    Take down a photo /= silencing

    Such a simple concept.
    I’m not sure where people are getting censorship from.

  95. 95
    Skavau

    #92 “Would you be kind enough to provide a quote that supports this notion?”

    I’m new to this (the discussion, anyway) and have done my reading on the entire ‘conflict’ between the Skepchicks and the dissenters and it seems apparent to me that Skepchick supporters by in large seem to characterise anyone that has come into conflict with Rebecca Watson or Surly Amy as misogynists, male supremacists and MRA supporters. You can even see it on this comment page alone (see comments #24 and #61).

    Yet I’ve read the blogs. I’ve read the people in question declared persona non grata and I haven’t seen any sexism of any kind from them whatsoever. They might be cynical and obnoxious towards the Skepchicks and their objectives but they certainly aren’t sexist and loading that kind of rhetoric into the dispute only smears others and puts observers off.

  96. 96
    Eristae

    Oh for the love of Cheese.

    People are certainly forming incredibly strong opinions about a DMCA notice that no one really knows anything about or has any information about.

    Regardless of whether or not whoever needed Amy’s permission to use the picture (I don’t know), making whoever take down the picture wouldn’t stop whoever from posting their article, and whoever certainly could link to whatever picture they were wanting to use.

    Also, for a group of people that is so hyper skeptical of some things (“Do we have any proof that elevator guy even exists?!) there’s a whole lot of swallowing this story whole based on personal testimony.

  97. 97
    reappaden

    @mandrellian –”Amy’s friends and supporters are incensed because she has been the target of a protracted and extremely venomous hate campaign, in stark disproportion to any (and I’m being extremely fucking charitable here) purported wrongdoing on her part. –

    What you need to understand is I’m not supporting anything or anyone but myself and what I think is right. You don’t have to agree as long as you can be an adult about it. I don’t have time to play games with everyone who can’t connect the dots. I am addressing what Surly Amy said and canuck’s response to anyone who calls her on it. Yea having the the graphic removed is petty. Is it censorship? Debatable. I’m curious how many of you would be so quick to defend this action if it was some quack who did it? It’s not about good outweighing bad. I don’t give a fuck about all the previous drama people have created. I’m talking about calling for an end to others displaying what Surly Amy could consider offensive and the manner in which canuck defends her. You want to make it about anything more than that it’s your problem. It a fucking joke that canuck only talks about the trolls that are disagreeing with him he allows the ones on his side to run free. Let’s all pretend that isn’t happening, okay? Very good. Now carry on.

  98. 98
    Jafafa Hots

    I see some new faces (as far as this “debate” goes and the online interaction, defense of it/defense FROM it) coming along to correct our misapprehensions about how much they’ve been looking out for the victims of this harassment.

    I’m left wondering, since this has been going on well over a year, why these new faces are new.

  99. 99
    Amanda

    “What Amy said” was she doesn’t want people to mimic her jewellery, from which she makes a living, for the sole purpose of ridiculing her and flaunting their ridicule at her in person. Quelle horreur, the second coming of Toquemada! Honestly failing to see what about that could provoke the high dudgeon we have seen, from anyone acting in good faith that is.

  100. 100
    SallyStrange

    Claiming that the use of a specific photo violates copyright laws is most definitely not censorship or silencing. The rest of the post is still up, yes? And even the case goes to court, and Amy wins it, there’s no reason “Entity” can’t keep the rest of his silly post up.

    GodDAMN I hate these people. What a bunch of odious liars.

    And yeah, dudes, sorry, but in the absence of any RATIONAL explanation for such unwarranted and unhinged vitriol, I’m gonna go with Occam’s Razor and threatened male privilege as an explanation.

    Go ahead, prove me wrong. I look forward to reading your well-researched, well-reasoned arguments (snort).

  101. 101
    SallyStrange

    I don’t give a fuck about all the previous drama people have created.

    Translation: I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE FUCK I’M TALKING ABOUT, PLEASE GO AHEAD AND IGNORE ME.

  102. 102
    SallyStrange

    I’m new to this (the discussion, anyway) and have done my reading on the entire ‘conflict’ between the Skepchicks and the dissenters and it seems apparent to me

    Translation: I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE FUCK I’M TALKING ABOUT, PLEASE GO AHEAD AND IGNORE ME.

  103. 103
    Jafafa Hots

    I am no IP lawyer, but having personally examining over a quarter of a million trademark applications and delved into the issue of copyright, trademark and patents pretty extensively, I do know that “fair use” rarely if EVER allows for the reuse of an ENTIRE WORK, which is what copying and republishing a photo would be.

    I am totally against the DMCA, in fact I am against the legal concept of “intellectual property” in its entirety, but my beliefs don’t change what the law is and what has been ruled in various court cases.

    Of course, whether interpretation of that law goes your way or not mostly depends on how wealthy you are. Nonetheless, claiming that republishing an entire work (the photo) is somehow clearly “fair use” in the legal sense is BS.

    Fair use is whatever the court decides it is.

  104. 104
    B-Lar

    @Reappaden @84

     In fact there are so many fallacies contained in this post

    It is not enough to simply cry fallacy. You have to point out what was wrong too. You WILL get respect around here that way. Anything less that that and you look like an uppity whiner with no substance.

    Have you examined yourself for bias?

    Have you noticed that people who argue on the subject of feminism with people who are for feminism are anti feminism? And that they sometimes use spurious reasons like tone, censorship, or dogma? This is usually (in my opinion at least) because they hold beliefs that they intellectually know are wrong but are not capable of or inclined to fix the error within themselves and are attempting to convince themselves that they dont need to do the work. That is the most charitable reading. They could just be trollin’ trollin’ trollin’ trollin’ WHA!

    Also, name calling isnt fallacious. I dont think its helpful for ethics debate where everyone is actually trying to get to the truth, but thats not what is happening here. This is a pushback against a bunch of hand-fuckers who never left the playground. Amy deserves better. If she is actually wrong about something you could tell her, and she is equipped to take it on board. The hand-fuckers just want to crush her spirit. Not cool. They are nurturing a kind of anti-sacred cow. Now THAT is embarrasing to watch.

  105. 105
    Hank_Says

    104 B-Lar, true.

    If Amy had done something wrong or ill-advised I daresay she’s enough of a vertebrate to take and appreciate a correction. IF Amy had indeed done something like that and WAS simply corrected, I think most of us would have to accept that and move on. But that obviously isn’t what happened.

    What has instead happened is a bafflingly vicious hate campaign, with so many grabbing their pitchforks and jumping on the bandwagon and instantly slinging the shit I think it’s very likely the majority of them don’t even know why they’re angry or even who’s copping the hate. I’m pretty sure a large number of them just heard the word “Skepchick” and got an instant hate-on they couldn’t ignore. After all, aren’t all Skepchicks man-hating Bra-lek Vagylons out to ruin everyone’s perfectly harmless fun?

    And what’s more, a speaker at TAM shamelessly jumped on the fucking hatewagon as well, wearing a pithy (not) t-shirt that essentially said “Well, I’m here and I’m not being a whiny little bitch about it.” And wore it FOR DAYS. In the absence of a direct and honest mea culpa, Harriet Hall (whom I’ve otherwise admired for her work on sciencebasedmedicine . org) should not be permitted to live that down.

  106. 106
    eNeMeE

    Here are some of the fallacies you are guilty of please look them up for everyone’s sake

    Ok! Love to!

    suppressed evidence

    Umm, I had trouble finding this one in the post – could you point it out? I’m a little slow sometimes and need some help.

    guilt by association

    Okay, I think I can see where you get that one – though you might want to re-read the actual post. It doesn’t actually commit the fallacy – A does X, X is wrong, C does nothing about X, therefore C is not following through on the actions expected of a leader is not actually using this fallacy. Though I could be wrong – if you could break it down into some sort of simple thing and point it out, that would be great. I’m feeling awfully silly right about now.

    name-calling

    This became a fallacy when? I thought it just meant you were being insulting… I’m so confused.

    ad hominem

    I really need this one pointed out – could you do that? It’s awfully late and I’m tired. In fact too tired to go on with this.

    The way you expect people to excuse her from calling for censorship of anything related to her because she has helped people is pathetic.

    INIGO, I REQUIRE YOUR AID!
    [Inigo voice]You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means.[/Inigo voice]

  107. 107
    Hank_Says

    @ 106 eNeMeE:

    The commenter in this case is committing Argumentum ad Fallacium, whereby the commenter angrily disagrees with every single word you said, throws down a list of fallacies you’ve supposedly committed without specifying where and how you’ve committed them, then expects you to take their word that you’re wrong.

  108. 108
    eNeMeE

    @107 – I thought that was Argumentem ad Idiotiumdedumdum.

    I gets so confuzzled by all these big words and such, I can never keep track!
    /faint

    …fucking heat. I want to sleeeeeep.

  109. 109
    reappaden

    @B-Lar Look I’m not going to explain the obvious to you or anyone else. I’m not some punk who just started posting on the internet cause there was nothing better to do in my basement. I don’t have time to explain the obvious or defend against every one of canuck’s groupies because I am busy doing other things. Anyone can say whatever they like, they can say I hate women, or that I am part of a campaign against Surly Amy, that doesn’t make it true. There are reasonable people reading this and they will get the point no matter what the peanut gallery attempts to make fact through repetition. I’m sure Surly Amy is a good person with good intentions. What I have a problem with is her call for censorship. I also don’t think it is smart to equate parody jewelery with uninvited ass-grabbing.They are not equal and trying to make the claim they are hurts her credibility. Canuck may be a great guy in person I don’t know I haven’t met him. My problem is the way he muddies up this issue by making it personal when it shouldn’t be. He then thinks it is cute to talk about an “entity” when many readers know exactly who he is talking about but he has banned that person from responding. If this person has so little credibility then why even talk about him? If you feel you must talk about him then at least make it fair and allow him to answer to what you are saying. If canuck has a problem with what I have said he can remove my comments respond or he can send me an email or even call me, I will be happy to explain it to him. If he doesn’t care then I’m okay with that too. The comment section is where many arguments are won/lost. Some of you really don’t have a good understanding of that. Just talking shit for the sake of it or making lame observations doesn’t cut it, you are in public and pleasuring yourself in public isn’t what most people are interested in watching, sorry.

  110. 110
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    What I have a problem with is her call for censorship.

    Surly Amy was not censoring a blog post. She wanted her image to not appear as part of that post. Once the image was removed, the blog post would magically reappear on the internet.

    What is so goddamned hard to understand about that?

  111. 111
    B-Lar

    @EnEmEe

    Interestingly, supressed evidence is good because Jason failed to mention that Amy took a crap last thursday which didnt hit the water pre-wrapped with a little pink bow (as all REAL women are known to poop). Given that evidence we could have deduced that Amy is actually a total man hating free speech crushing bitch who needs to be run out of town and then mocked for running away.

    Suppression of evidence is one fallacy where the accuser has to do some work. Our learned friend has no idea how to call them, but he SEES them and thats all that matters right? Right?

    There was going to be a wisecrack about feeling smart versus being smart but… I dont think I could pull it off. Now I know what it feels lke to make a comment when I should have stayed quiet!

  112. 112
    dontpanic

    One Thousand Needles @ 110,
    It’s not so much can’t understand as doesn’t want to understand. Willful stupidity allows them to continue to make the same unfounded claims despite having it spelled out clearly to them. That’s one of the things that makes these slimeballs so infuriating.

  113. 113
    SallyStrange

    What I have a problem with is her call for censorship.

    Why must you lie? It renders everything else you say suspect.

  114. 114
    Forbidden Snowflake

    I don’t have time to explain the obvious or defend against every one of canuck’s groupies because I am busy doing other things.

    “I’m going to post four screens worth of WOT rants, but won’t defend anything I say in them, because I’m too busy and important to write many words on the Internet.”
    Hilarious.

  115. 115
    B-Lar

    @reappaden 109

    The cool thing about the obvious is that it doesnt need explaining.You are dodging the call to reason and quite rightly earning contempt for it.

    There are charitable ways you COULD take Amy’s objection to parody jewellery if you had the inclination just as there are charitable ways I could take the jewellry itself and all the other things that have been laid at the door of many long sufferring female activists. The way we choose to take such things is revealing to our character.

    I dont equate parody with sexual harrassment but they are both tools in the hands of subjugators. A butter knife is still a knife. Do you understand my meaning here? The detractors are using whatever they have at their disposal to induce feelings of isolation and powerlessness as silencing tactics.

    Objecting on grounds of censorship is pretty hollow. It spits in the face of those who are denied freedom of information and attepts to sidestep the uncomfortable question of why you are arguing from that perpective.

  116. 116
    Skavau

    #101 “Translation: I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE FUCK I’M TALKING ABOUT, PLEASE GO AHEAD AND IGNORE ME.”

    SallyStrange, do grow up. If you don’t want to address my points, don’t but being a child about it only underlines my point further.

  117. 117
    Skavau

    #110 “Surly Amy was not censoring a blog post. She wanted her image to not appear as part of that post. Once the image was removed, the blog post would magically reappear on the internet.

    What is so goddamned hard to understand about that?”

    He’s not referring to that, I think. He’s referring to her suggesting that fake jewelry should be banned at conferences. Which she did. She’s actually on record saying that, or hinting very strongly that she thinks it ought to be banned.

  118. 118
    eNeMeE

    Just talking shit for the sake of it or making lame observations doesn’t cut it, you are in public and pleasuring yourself in public isn’t what most people are interested in watching, sorry.

    ALL MY METERS HAVE EXPLODED! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! YOU MAY ESCAPE THE FALLOUT!

    Also, Inigo needs to appear again. Censorship means an official has reviewed and prevented the thing from being published – if the only thing that happens is that the person can’t use an image that isn’t even necessary for the post, that isn’t censorship. Or even related – you could go with “possibly suppressed the use of a copyrighted image by use of DMCA”, but I get the impression that’s a little dificult for you to grasp.

    I fart in your general direction!

    There was going to be a wisecrack about feeling smart versus being smart but… I dont think I could pull it off.

    Feeling smart happens after you get slapped – being smart is keeping your trap shut!

    Feeling smart is what happens when you explain to a two year old why they shouldn’t poop in public – being smart is also mentioning “Not in my shoes, either” (or is that for training puppies?).

    …I really am feeling exceptionally silly right now (which is probably why I’m posting as opposed to lurking like I usually do), so please don’t take any offense.

  119. 119
    eNeMeE

    …And if it’s referring to preventing the sale of parody jewelery it’s still not censorship – it then falls under the regulation of goods for sale at a convention.

  120. 120
    Skavau

    #119 If it is being sold, yes. Though her comment referred to “making” fake jewelry, not selling.

  121. 121
    eNeMeE

    Oh my god! Someone who makes money off making jewelery didn’t want people making parodies?! Holy shit! Censorship!

    …Oh, wait, no, that’s as harmful as asking for a unicorn. And as unusual as people making things. Can I have a unicorn? I really want to drink its blood and use its horn to heal my illnesses.

    Also, I’d appreciate it if you stopped calling me splenemee, or whatever it is you evil bastards do in your back channel of horrible evil that deserves to be, I dunno, soaked in Chanel No. 1.

    Or were they fakes? I’m getting conflicting reports.

  122. 122
    Skavau

    #121
    “Oh my god! Someone who makes money off making jewelery didn’t want people making parodies?! Holy shit! Censorship!”

    She said “fake” jewellery (whatever that means).

    Now I’m not that sure Amy has a monopoly on ceramic jewellery nor am I entirely sure what constitutes fake jewellery other than it being an imitation. If she’s referring to parody jewellery again I’m not sure she can dictate what people can and cannot make.

    “…Oh, wait, no, that’s as harmful as asking for a unicorn. And as unusual as people making things. Can I have a unicorn? I really want to drink its blood and use its horn to heal my illnesses.”

    What?

    “Also, I’d appreciate it if you stopped calling me splenemee, or whatever it is you evil bastards do in your back channel of horrible evil that deserves to be, I dunno, soaked in Chanel No. 1.!”

    What?

  123. 123
    kraut

    It is beautiful to behold the MR assholes and certified misogynists of TAM provenience pulling out the least important part of the story – the attempt to protect her art against abuse – to justify the abusive behaviour she had to endure.

    Again, anybody of the MR “movement” is welcome to have his sexual organs removed, so they can further indulge their misogyny without endangering the gene pool.

    TAM has become a waste of anybodies time who believes in rational argument about social issues.

  124. 124
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Though her comment referred to “making” fake jewelry, not selling.

    Considering the amount of bullshit that Amy has put up with, I would suggest a little lenience when parsing her words.

    If you were dealing with the amount of bullying and meanness that Amy is facing, I’m guessing that you would appreciate the same.

  125. 125
    Skavau

    #123

    “It is beautiful to behold the MR assholes and certified misogynists of TAM provenience pulling out the least important part of the story – the attempt to protect her art against abuse – to justify the abusive behaviour she had to endure.”
    I’m not a “MR asshole” (I assume by MR you mean Men’s Rights) and I’m not a misogynist. This just goes back to my point in #95 that anyone even mildly critical of the Skepchicks is instantly regarded as some kind of sexist malcontent. This kind of attitude only drives people away and turns mild disagreements into parts of much larger disagreements.

    Now, regarding protecting her from abuse – where does she have a right to ban “fake” jewellery or parody jewellery? I am sure any jewellery that directly or indirectly references her can be prevented from going on sale but its existence, I don’t think so.

    “Again, anybody of the MR “movement” is welcome to have his sexual organs removed, so they can further indulge their misogyny without endangering the gene pool.”
    See above.

  126. 126
    Skavau

    “Considering the amount of bullshit that Amy has put up with, I would suggest a little lenience when parsing her words.

    If you were dealing with the amount of bullying and meanness that Amy is facing, I’m guessing that you would appreciate the same.”
    Did I interpret her words incorrectly?

  127. 127
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    where does she have a right to ban “fake” jewellery or parody jewelry?

    So Amy can “ban” jewelry? From what, the internet? The world?

    That sounds like one amazing super-power. How does she do it?

  128. 128
    Skavau

    “So Amy can “ban” jewelry? From what, the internet? The world?

    That sounds like one amazing super-power. How does she do it?”
    She seemed to want fake jewellery banned from conferences which seems to me extremely unreasonable.

  129. 129
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Did I interpret her words incorrectly?

    Can Amy prevent somebody else from making something? How?

    So maybe the answer to your question is yes.

  130. 130
    Skavau

    “Can Amy prevent somebody else from making something? How?

    So maybe the answer to your question is yes.”
    I chose my words poorly. I never meant to imply she could ban all fake jewellery or parody jewellery but she does seem to want them banned from conferences which as I said just a minute ago seems to me to be extremely unreasonable and certainly a point she should be scrutinized on.

  131. 131
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Skavau, twice now you’ve said Surly Amy is being unreasonable, but you have yet to explain why.

    “Unreasonable” is a truth claim. Please back it up with facts.

  132. 132
    Skavau

    Skavau, twice now you’ve said Surly Amy is being unreasonable, but you have yet to explain why.

    “Unreasonable” is a truth claim. Please back it up with facts.”
    Saying someone is unreasonable on holding a certain idea is an opinion. I’m curious though: Do you think it is reasonable for someone to say that all fake jewellery and/or parody jewellery or a certain type at a conference should be banned?

  133. 133
    Skavau

    *jewellery of a certain type

  134. 134
    borismeier

    @pilot

    Could you elaborate on why you call her Amy Lee Roth?

  135. 135
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Saying someone is unreasonable on holding a certain idea is an opinion.

    Wrong! “Unreasonable” means the conclusions do not follow from their premises. This is not subject to opinion.

    If you get to parse Surly Amy’s words with a fine-toothed comb, then I am at liberty to do the same to you.

  136. 136
    Jaclyn

    Skavau,

    She would like it if jewellery that parodied hers and made mockery of her hard efforts did not exist. That seems like a reasonable want to me, whether or not there was any actual outcome to that desire.

  137. 137
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    But if we’re using your definition of “unreasonable”, then I am at liberty to dismiss your assertions as just that: unsubstantiated opinion.

    Whew, that was easy!

  138. 138
    Jafafa Hots

    So now we’re arguing over the legal technicalities of how you are or are not allowed to gang up on and personally mock and deride a fellow attendee and supporter at conventions, and what is legal for the victim of that hate campaign to say in the midst of their emotional reaction to that attack.

    Because that’s what we are arguing about isn’t it? I don’t see any discussion from the other “side” about what harassment policies should entail, I don’t see any anger at the tolerance of an organized hate campaign at the con, I don’t see any arguments over whether or not coordinated hate campaigns are a good fit, or proper, or not good, and if not good what should be done about them.

    I’ll I’m hearing back is how unreasonable the victim of this organized hate campaign is. How unforgiving of it she is, how hypocritical of her it is to react to having been ganged up on by doing something that you can find a technical quibble with.

    And how unreasonable it is for the rest of us who are not happy with it to be so, how some thing we said once or allegedly did once or some other tangential action we made shows us to be hypocrites and so, well… THAT’S the important thing, and we lose.

    That targeting someone with a hate campaign?
    We hypocrites can’t talk about THAT, too late, we’ve been shown to be do something somewhere, us hypocrites, so that first thing’s just not an issue.

  139. 139
    Skavau

    “She would like it if jewellery that parodied hers and made mockery of her hard efforts did not exist. That seems like a reasonable want to me, whether or not there was any actual outcome to that desire.”
    Desiring it not to exist is fine. However, that did not seem to be what she said:

    “We’re not asking for anything crazy – just basic rules so that we can say the sort of thing like making fake jewelry and intentionally offending people is not okay nor is grabbing someone’s ass. That’s it, that’s all we’re asking for.”

  140. 140
    Skavau

    “Wrong! “Unreasonable” means the conclusions do not follow from their premises. This is not subject to opinion.

    If you get to parse Surly Amy’s words with a fine-toothed comb, then I am at liberty to do the same to you.”
    This is a pointless semantic merry-go-round. I’ll ask again:

    Do you think it is reasonable for someone to say that all fake jewellery and/or parody jewellery or a certain type at a conference should be banned?

  141. 141
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Skavau, I’m waiting for you to demonstrate why, as you have twice-insinuated, Amy is being “unreasonable.”

    Please make your logical case or stop asserting your unsubstantiated opinion as fact.

  142. 142
    Skavau

    I’m not asserting my opinion at fact. When have I asserted it as fact? I said that I view that kind of request as unreasonable. Why I think it is unreasonable is that it is prohibiting the kind of jewellery people can wear for reasons of feeling offended (and the definition of ‘fake jewellery’ appears to me to be unclear).

  143. 143
    Michael

    I feel bad for her but I wanted to question the whole

    ” Skepchick as a network had recently pissed off a lot of people because… because… DJ Grothe blamed them and others for TAM’s lower attendance”……No, if you think this is the reason the skepchicks have pissed people off you clearly do not fully understand the situation

    Apart from that great post

  144. 144
    Jaclyn

    Apologies if I am not cogent enough, it’s almost 3AM here and I’m running on little sleep.

    I agree with whomever said it that fake jewellery/intentionally offending someone should not be in the same category as grabbing someone’s posterior.

    I think, however, that you are trying to narrow down the issue to fit your argument best. On the face of it, saying jewellery that is parody/fake should not be allowed may not seem entirely reasonable. However, I’m pretty sure that intentionally offending someone was grouped with that, and I think that is more the crux of the issue than the jewellery itself.

  145. 145
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    This is a pointless semantic merry-go-round.

    Oh, when it’s your words being parsed, it’s semantics! When it’s Amy’s words, every syntactic technicality is fair game.

    What a double standard!

  146. 146
    Skavau

    “Oh, when it’s your words being parsed, it’s semantics! When it’s Amy’s words, every syntactic technicality is fair game.

    What a double standard!”
    I’ve said, from her words that she wants fake jewellery banned from conferences. I interpreted that from:

    “We’re not asking for anything crazy – just basic rules so that we can say the sort of thing like making fake jewelry and intentionally offending people is not okay nor is grabbing someone’s ass. That’s it, that’s all we’re asking for.”

  147. 147
    Jafafa Hots

    Do you think it is reasonable for someone to say that all fake jewellery and/or parody jewellery or a certain type at a conference should be banned?

    I have no problem in saying that t-shirts and other wear intended to mock another attendee at a conference should be considered a breach of the standards a convention requires of attendees in order to foster a friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

    I have no problem with saying that if at a convention attendees wear shorts or jewelry or anything else intended to mock or ridicule another attendee, they can and should be requested to remove or replace the insulting item and if they refuse they can be disinvited from the premises.

    Yes. Entirely reasonable. Behave like adults, leave your personal attacks at the door. Yes, goes both ways.

  148. 148
    Skavau

    #144 “On the face of it, saying jewellery that is parody/fake should not be allowed may not seem entirely reasonable. However, I’m pretty sure that intentionally offending someone was grouped with that, and I think that is more the crux of the issue than the jewellery itself.”

    It was. Though I’m not sure why jewellery that intentionally (or otherwise) offends another should be banned either.

  149. 149
    Jaclyn

    I agree with Jafafa Hots. Otherwise, why would people pay to go to these conferences for the privilege of being mocked? Does that make sense?

    For conferences/conventions to grow and thrive, these attitudes need to be confronted so that people attending can feel as safe as possible.

  150. 150
    Skavau

    I think it rather depends on the content of the parody. Not sure why ‘fake jewellery’ would come into that at all though.

  151. 151
    Jaclyn

    “It was. Though I’m not sure why jewellery that intentionally (or otherwise) offends another should be banned either.”

    In this case, it was an organized attempt by multiple people to repeatedly upset a convention goer. That is harassment. Harassment should not be allowed.

  152. 152
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    Skavau, you are incorrectly parsing Amy’s text, and I’ll show you where:

    making fake jewelry and intentionally offending people is not okay

    See that logical operator, “and”?

    What Amy is trying to say is that fake jewelry, made for the intent of offending, should not be allowed. This is very different than a ban on “all fake jewelry.”

    You seem to be reading that phrase as:

    making fake jewelry or intentionally offending people is not okay

    I hope you can appreciate the difference. Now that that has been cleared up, please let Amy off of your semantic merry-go-round.

  153. 153
    Skavau

    #152
    Sorry, that’s not the interpretation I get from the “and”. That sentence to me reads like she dislikes both fake jewellery and offending others. I can assume from that she dislikes fake jewellery designed to offend others but then why even use the word ‘fake’ in that context anyway?

  154. 154
    Jafafa Hots

    Though I’m not sure why jewellery that intentionally (or otherwise) offends another should be banned either.

    You don’t, huh? So it’s cool to have people wear shirts or jewelry intended to mock or ridicule or attack other attendees?
    That’s a very interesting attitude.

    I’ve been thinking about the bit with the “security” and I came to the conclusion tonight that the reason there is such a disconnect between what some expect and what others expect is as simple as what you express here.

    No public release of a harassment policy and then a secret group of security personnel to hover over someone who has been targeted doesn’t make any sense if you come in with the attitude that what should be done is to make the event welcoming and friendly and inviting and fun.

    It DOES start to make sense if you think about it as a group of individuals coming together not to be together but to pursue their individual desires unhindered in a group setting.

    Then security just needs to make sure some line is not crossed, and being “skeptics” that line better be pretty extreme.
    So, some attendees are targeting another attendee with ridicule and mocking and personal attacks?

    Security needs to act! Surround her to protect her. Don’t tell the people targeting her to stop and behave themselves, that’d spoil the fun.

    Just surround her just in case the fun gets TOO out of hand and someone actually tries to physically attack her.

    Is that it?

    Because if you aren’t going to require attendees to not be assholes to each other, that’s the only conclusion I can come to.

  155. 155
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    I can assume

    Yes, and you can be wrong.

    Why are you continuing to nitpick the words of a harassment victim to an extent which you do not want your own words to be nitpicked?

  156. 156
    embertine

    I just purchased four. Perhaps I shouldn’t be allowed around jewellery stores? *facepalm*

  157. 157
    Skavau

    #155 “Why are you continuing to nitpick the words of a harassment victim to an extent which you do not want your own words to be nitpicked?”

    I didn’t nitpick it, I gave you my interpretation of what she said. Your assurances that she meant something else is far as I can tell, just your observation as well.

  158. 158
    maureen.brian

    Skavau @ 48,

    Presume you have someone competent enough to run a conference. One of the minor attractions over the years has been the sale of a popular brand of product. The makers of those products have been ploughing some of the profits back into your conference.

    Would this competent person then encourage the sale or display of either parodies or cheap knock-offs, to the detriment of a business which supports him and the active discouragement of one of the conference’s most vocal supporters? Of course not.

    Someone with a totally different agenda might, though!

    Now try another intellectual exercise. Here is a link to a photograph, a photograph of nothing in particular – http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/213151 – and which has nothing to do with Surly Amy.

    You will note two things. One, that I own the copyright. Two, that I have agreed to relax my hold a little so that it may be used in an information / non-profit way, beyond any definition of fair use and without further permissions.

    BUT – please concentrate here – if someone were to use that photograph (or a parody) to damage a business I was running or to destroy my reputation I’d be able to use every protection of copyright law.

    That’s all Amy was doing. Your amour propre never came into it!

  159. 159
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    So Skavau, let me get this right: You’re chastising Amy for your mistaken interpretation of what you think she said? While simultaneously dismissing your own unclear sentences as ‘semantics’? And on top of that, you then claim that you’re not nitpicking her words?

    Do you think you’re applying skepticism here? If so, please stick to Bigfoot.

    I demonstrated for you exactly how you were misinterpreting Amy’s words, and I backed that up with:
    - the most probable intent of what Amy was trying to communicate
    - the word that would need to change in order for your misinterpretation to be valid

    At this point, just stop. Stop your misplaced hyper-skepticism. Stop pretending your unsubstantiated opinions are reasonable. Stop nitpicking over the words of a victim. Stop waving around your irrelevant red herring and have some fucking compassion.

  160. 160
    Skavau

    #159

    “So Skavau, let me get this right: You’re chastising Amy for your mistaken interpretation of what you think she said? While simultaneously dismissing your own unclear sentences as ‘semantics’? And on top of that, you then claim that you’re not nitpicking her words?”
    I have my interpretation and you gave me yours. I am unconvinced of your interpretation after reading your explanation.

    “I demonstrated for you exactly how you were misinterpreting Amy’s words, and I backed that up with:
    - the most probable intent of what Amy was trying to communicate
    - the word that would need to change in order for your misinterpretation to be valid”
    I know you did this. I told you I disagreed.

    “At this point, just stop. Stop your misplaced hyper-skepticism. Stop pretending your unsubstantiated opinions are reasonable. Stop nitpicking over the words of a victim. Stop waving around your irrelevant red herring and have some fucking compassion.”
    Compassion about what? If Amy’s received threats (I’m sure she has) and insults then sure, that’s wrong and those that do it should be ashamed of themselves. I don’t see specifically otherwise though what you want me to be compassionate on here.

  161. 161
    hyperdeath

    Eshto says:

    Can’t help notice how you’ve mixed random, offensive troll comments about rape in with public statements by respected intellectuals such as D.J. Grothe and Paula Kirby; somehow implying some connection, or that that Grothe, or Kirby, or anybody, should be put in a position to answer for them.

    I can’t help noticing how many of these “respected intellectuals” enthusiastically participated in the #FTBullies twitter conversation, but studiously ignored the presence of some of the most repellent trolls on the same hashtag. Silence isn’t always approval, but considering they complained bitterly and unendingly about the supposed bullying coming from the Skepchick/FTB side, it’s obvious that they didn’t care.

    In some cases it wasn’t just silence. For example, Paula Kirby thanked the author of that obsessive stalkerish @ElevatorGATE Twitter feed and blog for his support.

    You’ve been told this a million times…

    Yes, this excuse is repeated ad nauseam. The problem is, it’s not that simple.

  162. 162
    Joe

    If Amy’s received threats (I’m sure she has) and insults then sure, that’s wrong and those that do it should be ashamed of themselves.

    But she has received insults. The fake jewellery seems to have been made to mock and offend her. At least, that is how it seems from where I’m standing.

    This would also explain why One Thousand Needles’ interpretation of Amy’s statement makes the most sense. People where jewellery designed to offend her. She then makes a statement mentioning fake jewellery and offending people together. Makes sense to me that she is talking about one causing the other.

  163. 163
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    “We’re not asking for anything crazy – just basic rules so that we can say the sort of thing like making fake jewelry and intentionally offending people is not okay nor is grabbing someone’s ass. That’s it, that’s all we’re asking for.”

    A) This does NOT equate offending people with grabbing ass. It names two examples of things that are not OK. There’s a lot of things that are not OK. Dishonestly presenting what somebody said is one of them.

    B) Coooontext
    In the context of this being about Amy’s treatment at TAM, the inly reasonable interpretation is that this is about fake SurlyRamics intented to offend Amy and make her feel unwelcome. Because unless “make fake SurlyRamics” were an official event at TAM “making fake jewelery” cannot be about behaviour at TAM.

    +++
    Well, another data-point about the hypothesis that those people have the emotional development of a badly adjusted preschooler. First the “you can’t tell me what to dooooo!”, now the patological inability to understand the difference between “mine” and “yours”

    Guess christmas comes early this year…

  164. 164
    magicthighs

    @pilot “The blog in question was quite obviously not an attempt to do this, and was merely a criticism of Amy Lee Roth’s views towards what should or should not be allowed at conferences. Specifically whether “fake” jewellery ([b]meaning, jewellery that satirises Roth’s work[/b]) should be allowed”

    The jewelry didn’t satirise Amy’s work, it was an attack on her person.

    “That falls under the fair use provisions of the DMCA and the blogger was totally within his rights to counter-claim.”

    Seeing as the blogger in question didn’t actually criticise the jewelry, I doubt the fair use for criticism excuse is valid (but IANAL, and neither are you).

    @reappaden “The graphic was in response to Surly Amy suggesting that people shouldn’t be able to wear “fake jewelry” at conferences.She also says those rules should be included along with other harassment policies. She does not provide any suggestions as to where we draw the line she only talks about what is offensive to her. How dare anyone parody her, she is above it because she does so many positive things”

    You don’t think that the organisers of a conference have an obligation to prevent and correct hostile behaviour, overt or not, towards speakers, panelists, attendees, and sponsors?

  165. 165
    Pteryxx

    Well, y’all latest batch of free coffee speech jewelry harassment-eliders are too late. BoingBoing featured SurlyRamics artwork, and that alone should send her more than enough geek traffic to make up for the parody jewelry makers’ attempts to damage her business out of spite.

    http://boingboing.net/2012/08/16/cool-ceramic-jewelry-for-scien.html

  166. 166
    Mike

    What the hell is wrong with these people? I’ve watched this situation with increasing dismay from the request for harassment policies (SHOCK) to the response to the clear demonstration of why harassment is a problem by people who think harassment isn’t a problem to the complete lack of a proportionate response by DJ and the organization he represents to this sort of hateful bullshit.
    Fuck TAM and fuck JREF. I’d much rather be part of the sceptical community that doesn’t think bigfoot is the beginning and end of where to apply your damn brain.

  167. 167
    thetalkingstove

    I just can’t fathom this pathetic “parody jewellery”. This is allegedly a movement based on reason and intelligence and these people are behaving like children, and particularly vindictive children at that.

    I’m also *shocked* to see that the claim upthread that Amy said parody jewellery was equivalent to groping turned out to be entirely false.

    It’s absolutely reasonable that organisers be asked to remove material (t-shirts, jewellery, anything) designed to attack a fellow conference attendee.

  168. 168
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    BoingBoing featured SurlyRamics artwork, and that alone should send her more than enough geek traffic to make up for the parody jewelry makers’ attempts to damage her business out of spite.

    Well, didn’t you know that she’s a hypocrite for not DMCAing them? That’s what they claim over at the #FTBullies hashtag.
    Not to mention that they don’t know whether she gave permission to use the pic or not and that it’s a pretty big difference between somebody sending customers your way and trying to drive them away

  169. 169
    QueQuoi

    [X-posted from the Pharyngula lounge]

    I am contemptuous as all fuck with all these godsdamn, mysogynist, asshole “skeptics”. It reached a peak today reading Justin’s blog about Surly Amy’s treatment at SkepchickCON 2. To keep the steam that was coming out of my ears from steaming the wallpaper off, I started a Tumblr page:
    quequoi dot tumblr.com

    It’s called “Love for FtB and Skepchick” and is meant to be a way for people to have their messages of support, or LOLcats/squids for laughs posted for the wonderful bloggers at these two spaces. If you’d like to send me something to post, send it to quequoi at gmail.com along with how you want attribution. I will of course keep all emails confidential. (I am hesitant to just open up the page to any posters)

    I’m not sure it will go anywhere, but liked the idea of a public space where PZ, Amy, et al. could go to see all the support they all really have.

  170. 170
    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle

    Fuck TAM and fuck JREF. I’d much rather be part of the sceptical community that doesn’t think bigfoot is the beginning and end of where to apply your damn brain.

    100% co-signed. This is reenforced by the completely useless dipshits and liars that come to defend it.

    We can see through your bullshit, boys. Grow up and go away. Go back to your caucasian sausage fest and talk about how cool you are that you totally know Sylvia Brown is faking it.You’re not needed or wanted where good people gather.

  171. 171
    Pteryxx

    Well, didn’t you know that she’s a hypocrite for not DMCAing them? That’s what they claim over at the #FTBullies hashtag.

    Sure, because a woman can’t possibly be permitted to CHOOSE where, to whom and under what conditions she gives consent to someone. That’s JUST LIKE HYPOCRISY.

  172. 172
    One Thousand Needles, lumper-splitter

    That’s JUST LIKE HYPOCRISY.

    No you mean CENSORSHIP!!1!1!

  173. 173
    Raging Bee

    I heard somewhere that most, if not all, of JREF’s directors were libertarians. If true, that would explain AT LEAST 90% of the infantile hatefulness we’re seeing here. In addition to mindlessly rejecting even the most basic notions that people should care about other people, libertarians have been known to function as dutiful and effective sock-puppets for the kind of radical right-wingers who despise liberals, skeptics, and everything people like Amy ever stood for. I would not be at all surprised to find that most of the assholes who are harassing Amy over the ‘tubes are actually Republicans. It certainly wouldn’t be hard for a Republican to pose as something else on the Web, or to let his inner child out of its inner reform school.

  174. 174
    Raging Bee

    I don’t see specifically otherwise though what you want me to be compassionate on here.

    If you’re that unable to understand what we’re talking about here, then you should just shut up and stop pretending you have anything worthwhile to say on the subject.

    I have my interpretation and you gave me yours.

    Grade-school subjectivism — I’ll take that as an admission that you’ve lost the argument adn don’t have the guts to admit it.

  175. 175
    Tom Foss

    Points which may be relevant:
    1) Amy was (as I understand it) listed as an official TAM sponsor. Not just a supporter, not just an enthusiastic participant. A sponsor.

    2) That the DMCA has been abused in the past (say, when creationists used it against a variety of atheist YouTubers) does not mean that all use of the DMCA is abuse.

    3) Hey, remember that time that there was a lawsuit over the use of “Imagine” in the movie “Expelled,” largely because people, including Lennon’s copyright holders, disagreed with the film’s thesis? Good times.

    4) Hey, remember how the same basic thing has happened to Rush Limbaugh (for his theme song) and pretty much every Republican presidential candidate who’s ever used a John Mellencamp or Bruce Springsteen song on the campaign trail, with varying results? Good times.

    5) In the United States, fair use is contingent on a number of factors. I suspect Entity would defend his use on the grounds of “criticism,” but he’s not criticizing the artwork, he’s criticizing the artist (and moreover, not for anything directly related to the art he’s chosen).

    6) Fair Use is also partially contingent on the not-for-profit nature of the use. Entity’s blog has a book ad and donations link.

    7) I don’t think many people online realize that their use of images on blogs and so forth is a privilege, borne of the goodwill of some image-creators and the inability of the same to go around the Internet and issue copyright notices to everyone who copied their work off a Google Image Search.

    8) It’s kind of hilarious to see a group of people who will defend Kirby’s use of “femistasi” because people just aren’t understanding the argument and are getting hung up on words, fixating on Amy’s (spoken, not written) comment, and debating the meaning of the word “and.” No, it can’t possibly mean that these two phrases (as opposed to the phrase set off by the word “nor”) are meant to be linked in some way, obviously they’re separate because the word “and” separates them.

  176. 176
    magicthighs

    @reappaden “Here are some of the fallacies you are guilty of please look them up for everyone’s sake

    guilt by association”

    I’m sure you were similarly outraged when Surly Amy, someone who has worked tirelessly to get more women to attend TAM by paying for their admission, was made the target of ridicule and scorn just because Rebecca Watson chose not to attend this year, and she was the next best thing available, namely another Skepchick, right?

    Right?

  177. 177
    G Pierce (Was ~G~)

    I specially ordered some of her earings for my wedding (with the Darwin finch diagram.) I recently posed a questions to skeptics I know (not in the context of Amy but it certainly is relevent here):

    ‘These stories of how students were mean to her in school until she went home crying make me a little suspicious.
    http://ffrf.org/publications/freethought-today/articles/teen-stands-tall-for-first-amendment/

    No witnesses are coming forth. There is no physical evidence, and I don’t think she ran and told the teacher each time something happened, so it must not have been that bad or she certainly would have done so and put a stop to it. Plus, look at the source. It’s a group who clearly supports her ideology.’

    How would you respond if I had posted this at the time it occurred?

    I guess the difference is Jessica is pointing the finger at religious privilege and not male privilege. (And frankly, Amy wasn’t even that involved in posting about harassment during that time that I remember. Please correct if I’m wrong.)

  178. 178
    nterese

    Wow, those are definitely the kind of people who make me wish there was an evil, vengeful god that sends people to hell to burn for all eternity.

  179. 179
    eNeMeE
    …Oh, wait, no, that’s as harmful as asking for a unicorn. And as unusual as people making things. Can I have a unicorn? I really want to drink its blood and use its horn to heal my illnesses.

    What?

    Asking for impossible things, particularly when stressed, is not a bad thing. It’s often considered part of being human. For they’re impossible – that means that they cannot be achieved (like banning the wearing of something at a convention that doesn’t strip search all attendees), and asking for them is often simply a stress response designed to alleviate some emotional pain by imagining a world where less shitty things happen to you.

    Much like asking for a unicorn to heal my various medical problems – it cannot be done, but saying it and dreaming about it can be cathartic and allow me to at least dream of not requiring drugs to survive for the rest of my life. It was an illustrative example, and deliberately silly, so that you might try and figure it out; alas, not to be.

    I therefore declare you a poopyhead, and shall now ride my unicorn off into the sunset!

    P.S. Blockquote is your friend. It’s not hard to use, and it makes for much easier reading than quotations marks (that aren’t even in bold or shooting stars or crapping rainbows or anything).

  180. 180
    casewagner

    Regarding the “censorship” in question. This was an individual who had agreed to the Terms of Service of a business violating said terms. They weren’t censored. They were free to use any other service that didn’t have such terms in place.
    If I invite you into my home it doesn’t mean I’ve given you permission to shit on the rug.

  181. 181
    Assassin's Cloak

    That reads so much like my experience of being bullied in High School that I’m having to take deep calming breaths.

  182. 182
    pilot

    @nterese

    [quote]
    Wow, those are definitely the kind of people who make me wish there was an evil, vengeful god that sends people to hell to burn for all eternity.[/quote]

    You’d send people to hell for eternity for posting a picture they didn’t own the copyright to? I don’t even think the RIAA have gone that far.

  183. 183
    Stephanie Zvan

    pilot, acting that obtuse just makes you look that obtuse. It doesn’t win you anything. Not even internet points. Knock it off.

  184. 184
    G Pierce (Was ~G~)

    I’m trying to conjure up who “Amy Lee Roth” might be. Does she jump around with crazy spandex with the periodic table on them?

  185. 185
    Raging Bee

    If I invite you into my home it doesn’t mean I’ve given you permission to shit on the rug.

    How DARE you impose rules on my bodily fucntions, you spirit-crushing collectivist Nazi slave-driver!

  186. 186
    dontpanic

    pilot,
    Re: [quote] [/quote]. You know right above the box you type your reply into it shows you how to do blockquotes. Use the damn < and > characters. Though I guess trying at least puts you one step up above the completely clueless Skavau.

    Yeah, people hyperbolically venting (and it being obviously so) is just such a crime.

    Tom Foss@175,
    Bravo. Thanks for so succinctly hitting a number of points that I kept wanting to see explicitly spelled out or repeated. The pseudo-lawyers all clamoring “its not a crime to post someone else’s photos/artwork” really aren’t trying to understand what “fair use” says.

  187. 187
    Richard

    Thanks for the background, all I had was Twitter reactions because I’m not one of the cool kids :P It is so discouraging to see our movement be inundated with squabbles with something so seemingly benign as harassment policies. To think there are people of an otherwise enlightened community suggesting that harassment polices are censoring free speech. Reminds me a lot of the religious folks who cry about censoring their freedom of speech when they’re not allowed to do whatever they want always.

    At the end of the day I think we should follow one of the golden rules of internet discourse. DON’T FEED THE TROLLS!

  188. 188
    Mike

    @Richard. Please read any of of the articles and/or discussions on freethoughtblogs or skepchick on the “don’t feed the trolls” issue or this: http://www.illdoctrine.com/2012/06/why_you_should_feed_the_trolls.html

  189. 189
    Forbidden Snowflake

    Richard, please learn the science.

  190. 190
    gragra, something clever after the comma

    Thanks from me too, for summarising the whole sad debacle. You’re also going to cause me to spend quite a bit of money at Surlyramics.

    I have to say though… that while I think their stunts were pathetic I don’t think I’m down with including words on T-shirts as part of an harassment policy. I mean, I can conceive of words that could be, but I wouldn’t draw the line at Harriet whatshername’s T-shirt.

  191. 191
    Richard

    Happy to be wrong.

  192. 192
    CompulsoryAccount7746, Sky Captain

    @Jafafa Hots #154:

    No public release of a harassment policy and then a secret group of security personnel to hover over someone who has been targeted doesn’t make any sense if you come in with the attitude that what should be done is to make the event welcoming and friendly and inviting and fun.

    It DOES start to make sense if you think about it as a group of individuals coming together not to be together but to pursue their individual desires unhindered in a group setting.

    Security needs to act! Surround her to protect her. Don’t tell the people targeting her to stop and behave themselves, that’d spoil the fun.

    Just surround her just in case the fun gets TOO out of hand and someone actually tries to physically attack her.

    Is that it?

    Because if you aren’t going to require attendees to not be assholes to each other, that’s the only conclusion I can come to.

    QFT
    Fits with the influence of libertarianism, and/or sticks and stones.

  193. 193
    pilot

    Yeah, people hyperbolically venting (and it being obviously so) is just such a crime.

    Well its not a crime its just fucking funny.

  194. 194
    Stephanie Zvan

    Well its not a crime its just fucking funny.

    Well, here’s a funny thing: You know what is against the law? Copyright infrigement.

    Isn’t that hilarious?

  195. 195
    Eristae

    I don’t think I’m down with including words on T-shirts as part of an harassment policy.

    Has anyone actually done this? Because I’ve been hearing variants of this statement ever since the t-shirt thing went down, but I’ve never seen anyone actually advocate making said t-shirt against the rules. Have people said it was mean? Yes. Have they said it was petty? Yes. Have they said it was hostile? Yes. Have they said that Hall shouldn’t have worn the t-shirt? Yes. Have people said that the t-shirt was unprofessional? Yes. Have people said that it rightly made Amy feel unwelcome? Yes. Have they said that someone (Amy) who worked so hard for TAM for so long deserved better treatment than this? Yes.

    But have people said Hall should not have been allowed to wear it, that there should have been a policy against it? Not that I’ve seen.

  196. 196
    pilot

    Well, here’s a funny thing: You know what is against the law? Copyright infrigement.

    Isn’t that hilarious?

    Edgy stuff here. Razor sharp. If you want to make a point then you should just make it.

  197. 197
    Stephanie Zvan

    The point, oh, obtuse pilot, is that you’re sitting here whining about Amy and blog comments in defense of someone who almost certainly infringed on a copyright and was too stupid or upset to just own up to in when called on it and has, thus, left himself open to federal perjury charges. The point is that the more you do this, the more you appear to have a strong interest in missing the point.

  198. 198
    pilot

    Okay Stephanie, when it gets to federal perjury charges i’ll be sure to visit your pitiful blog and tell you personally that I was wrong.

  199. 199
    gragra, something clever after the comma

    Has anyone actually done this? Because I’ve been hearing variants of this statement ever since the t-shirt thing went down, but I’ve never seen anyone actually advocate making said t-shirt against the rules. Have people said it was mean? Yes. Have they said it was petty? Yes. Have they said it was hostile? Yes. Have they said that Hall shouldn’t have worn the t-shirt? Yes. Have people said that the t-shirt was unprofessional? Yes. Have people said that it rightly made Amy feel unwelcome? Yes. Have they said that someone (Amy) who worked so hard for TAM for so long deserved better treatment than this? Yes.

    But have people said Hall should not have been allowed to wear it, that there should have been a policy against it? Not that I’ve seen.

    I agree that it’s all those things.

    I don’t know, I thought some of the commenters here were including it in the definition of harassment, such as magicthigh’s comment #164 here in response to reappaden. Obviously that doesn’t constitute a consensus.

  200. 200
    julian

    pilot, stop talking. You don’t need the last word in every conversation.

  201. 201
    Jason Thibeault

    pilot: You do realize that DMCA claims and counterclaims are made under penalty of perjury if you file them falsely, right? Since Amy owns the copyright (automatically, under Berne), if she IS the person who filed it, she can’t be accused of filing it falsely.

    If Entity (or this ElevatorGate ponce pseudointellectual — see below comments) doesn’t actually have fair use rights, their counterclaims open them to perjury charges — charges that Amy evidently isn’t under any threat of.

    I’m no lawyer, but if my interpretation is anywhere close to correct, this is going to backfire in a big way for your heroes.

  202. 202
    'Tis Himself

    pilot, do you have a point to make or are you just being a jerk?

  203. 203
    Stevarious, Public Health Problem

    Just let them go on long enough and they’ll give up on the ‘pretending to be a rational adult’ and slip right into the nasty 5th grade schoolyard sniping they keep pretending they don’t do.

    Yeah, people hyperbolically venting (and it being obviously so) is just such a crime.

    Well its not a crime its just fucking funny.

    To you, Amy demanding that her copyrighted work not be used without permission is somehow wrong, but seeing her literally driven to tears by the constant harassment and hate is ‘fucking funny’.

    Who’s the bully again?

  204. 204
    eNeMeE

    Well its not a crime its just fucking funny.

    Thanks for telling us that – everyone can have a chuckle now, based on your explanation of how this situation is funny, and you can cease contributing.

    …oh, wait, you didn’t actually explain. You could still do the second part though. That would likely be nice of you.

    OMG!!!1111elventyONE! I JUST TOTES CENZOR’D PILOT!

  205. 205
    pilot

    pilot: You do realize that DMCA claims and counterclaims are made under penalty of perjury if you file them falsely, right? Since Amy owns the copyright (automatically, under Berne), if she IS the person who filed it, she can’t be accused of filing it falsely.

    You’ve got this ass backwards, there is no perjury charge that could be successfully prosecuted from either side (on the assumption that it was Amy who filed). I certainly haven’t said that she could be subject to a perjury charge.

    Vacula however is equally is within his rights to counter-claim as there is a grey area for fair-use and criticism entitling him to use the image in the manner that he did. A perjury charge against him would be laughed out of court.

  206. 206
    Stephanie Zvan

    pilot, go look up what a DMCA counter-notice is and what you have to attest to in order to file one. You’re just embarassing yourself here.

    Jason, I don’t think “ponce” is the word you think it is.

  207. 207
    Jason Thibeault

    Stephanie @207: Err, evidently not. I don’t think ElevatorGate is a pimp, nor do I think being showily effeminate is a problem. I think I’ve seen it, in context, as “pseudointellectual” often enough it wormed its way into my vocabulary as such.

    Sooo… yeah.

  208. 208
    magicthighs

    @gragra I never said that it should be included in the definition of harassment. I asked that person if he didn’t think the organisers of a conference have an obligation to prevent and correct hostile behaviour.

  209. 209
    pilot

    @Stephanie Zvan

    pilot, go look up what a DMCA counter-notice is and what you have to attest to in order to file one. You’re just embarassing yourself here.

    This is getting a bit “somebody is wrong on the internet” at this point so i’ll make this my last comment on the subject, feel free to pile on the bullshit afterwards. I won’t read it till tomorrow. You are safe.

    I would urge you to go look up what a DMCA notice is and whilst you’re at it to look up what perjury actually is. To be prosecuted for perjury through filing a DMCA takedown counter-notice you’d have to prove that the counter-claimant was lying. If Vaculas counter-claim was on the basis that he actually owned the copyright to the image in question that would be a case. Do you think he did that? Are you so far removed from reality

  210. 210
    Jason Thibeault

    Just noticed this by B-Lar @104: “hand-fuckers”.

    There’s nothing wrong with fucking hands as long as they belong to consenting adults. There’s plenty to vilify these people with that doesn’t do splash damage via sex shame.

  211. 211
    Jason Thibeault

    Have you ever considered, pilot, that YOU are the SIWOTI here? You’re driven to comment and comment and comment about something you evidently know precious little about save for “common sense” interpretations of second-hand accounts of these laws.

  212. 212
    Your Name's not Bruce?

    Jafafa Hots at #138

    This.

    These people are trying to figure out how far they can push, how much they can hurt, the degree to which they are entitled to punish. They have no problem with the pushing, hurting and punishing in the first place. The target of all of this is allowed no defense whatsoever. I’m sorry that Amy has been forced to have to put up with this shit. How is it that all these allegedly freedom-loving individuals who are persisting in this campaign don’t seem to care that they are forcing this abuse on another individual (who probably would love to be free from this abuse)? Isn’t that supposed to be wrong or something? Or is it only wrong if it’s a government that does it?

  213. 213
    Stephanie Zvan

    “Whilst”. Great. We’ve got a non-American trying to wax eloquent on U.S. law. No wonder he’s got it so far off.

    pilot, there’s a reason people almost never file counter-notices unless advised to by an attorney. You don’t have to just be sincere in thinking you have the right to use the image. You have to be right. A consultation with an attorney, a good faith effort to educate yourself about Fair Use, a really borderline case–those might protect you from the perjury charge. “My honor is at stake, and my friends said it was okay”? Not going to cut it.

    Vacula really ought to be worried at this point.

  214. 214
    'Tis Himself

    “Whilst”. Great.

    I might use “whilst” when I’m trying to be so erudite as to be recondite. And I is ‘Merican!!

  215. 215
    'Tis Himself

    215 is David Mabus breaking his parole.

  216. 216
    Jason Thibeault

    Spammed it, ‘Tis Himself. Will forward to the appropriate parties.

  217. 217
    smhll

    I have to say though… that while I think their stunts were pathetic I don’t think I’m down with including words on T-shirts as part of an harassment policy. I mean, I can conceive of words that could be, but I wouldn’t draw the line at Harriet whatshername’s T-shirt.

    A T-shirt is a form of messaging or “speech” that repeats itself over and over each time someone sees it. It’s an especially annoying form of expression in that it never shuts up.

  218. 218
    mdevile

    The level of hate and invective and bullying directed at Amy has made me sick since I saw Thunderf00t’s post lambasting her for being upset about the T-shirt at TAM. I still don’t understand how mocking somebody for being hurt has anything to do with science and education and skepticism, but whatever. It makes me sad to see people I used to respect dedicating so much time and energy to what amounts to a colossal grudge-wank.

    I’m sorry that it’s not dying down. Between this post and the boing-boing feature, I really hope Amy has an Anita Sarkeesian moment and gets completely inundated with love, support and money by everyone else who is as tired of this shit as we are.

  219. 219
    Tom Foss

    Gragara @200 (and others):

    I don’t know, I thought some of the commenters here were including it in the definition of harassment, such as magicthigh’s comment #164 here in response to reappaden. Obviously that doesn’t constitute a consensus.

    I think the definition of harassment shouldn’t be so specific as to include whether you can or can’t wear t-shirts with specific things on them. However, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to include, in the harassment policy, protections against efforts to attack/insult/demean specific individuals or groups, which Harriet’s t-shirt and the parody SurlyRamics surely were.

    If people were walking around with shirts or prominent jewelry that said “Randi is an ass” or “Pamela Gay is not a skeptic” or “DJ Grothe should resign in shame,” or if someone were giving away copies of a “For Bad Reasons” parody podcast denouncing DJ and the JREF, I’d expect a harassment policy to have something to say about it.

  220. 220
    Eristae

    I am with mdevile in that I am deeply saddened by and irked at the belief that some people hold that it is okay to mock someone for being unhappy/hurt. My father (the abusive asshole that he is/was) used to punish me all the time for being upset. It lead to, among other things, my being completely and utterly unaware of what I was feeling. I was sad? Hurt? Unhappy? Stressed? Angry? I often couldn’t identify these feelings because to consciously experience them was to risk being found out as having these emotions. If I masked my feelings, even from myself, then I would not be punished for my feelings. For years I could not cry, even if I wanted to; my body simply could not let go enough to have such a reaction

    It was a terrible way to live, and I’m glad that I’ve managed to reverse it to some degree. It infuriates me when I see people try to force such an existence on someone else.

  221. 221
    gragra, something clever after the comma

    @209 magicthighs I stand corrected. I realize you were speaking specifically of the jewelry. Do you think though that wearing that T shirt equates to hostile behavior? And what follows from that?

    @220 Tom Foss

    I think the definition of harassment shouldn’t be so specific as to include whether you can or can’t wear t-shirts with specific things on them. However, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to include, in the harassment policy, protections against efforts to attack/insult/demean specific individuals or groups, which Harriet’s t-shirt and the parody SurlyRamics surely were.

    This seems like an each-way bet to me. In an ideal world how would this T shirt have been dealt with assuming Harriet Hall wasn’t going to just take the high road and change into something else when asked?

    With a proper open policy the first and most reasonable thing would be for someone to go up to Harriet Hall and say, “that shirt is upsetting someone. Could you wear something else.” And if she says “no”, what next?

  222. 222
    Stephanie Zvan

    What next? “Let us get you a conference t-shirt to wear instead. Yours is being disruptive and detracting from the fun and relaxed learning atmosphere at our event. I’m quite certain that as a speaker, you understand how important that is to us.”

  223. 223
    Richard

    If the JREF doesn’t really make some serious efforts to rebuild the bridge to the Skepchicks and their many fans, I don’t think TAM will survive long, or if it does, it will be viewed as a parochial and regressive backwater. The reaction against the Skepchicks (Harriet Hall’s demeaning actions, the insulting parody jewelry) is mind-boggling. All it does is show everyone who can’t attend TAM how valid the harassment complaints must be. I have long wished I could attend, but now I view it as about as inviting as a Tea Party meeting. I know there are some truly great people who attend, but the level of idiocy that was displayed leaves me flabbergasted. I was obviously pretty naive, and I thank Rebecca Watson, Surly Amy, Lousy Cannuck, PZ, and all the others, for shedding some light on this truly dark aspect of the skeptical “community”.

    Thank-you, fellow Cannuck, for addressing this issue so eloquently.

  224. 224
    Richard w

    Just realized there was another Richard who has been posting — I didn’t read all the comments. My first was #224

  225. 225
    Amy Larimer

    Well this clears up one thing for me. I will NEVER go to TAM as long as Grothe is in charge of it. As long as it is still okay to harass people because you disagree with their viewpoint. It’s okay to disagree on this. What’s not okay is this 8th grade playground mentality of harassing people you disagree with, of making fun of them in what seems like a very hurtful way. No, not my kind of people, I don’t think. So, although I like many of the speakers and guests at TAM and other such events, I will not be an active participant because I would not feel welcome there.

  226. 226
    marilove

    This makes me SUPER SAD. :(

    Amy is awesome. Super-awesome. I am going to be non-broke again soon and I already have a necklace I want to buy. Everyone should support her. Her stuff is gorgeous and SUPER AWESOME.

    This whole thing is rotten. Why do people have to be such ASSHOLES? Ugh.

    Amy, you rock.

  227. 227
    SallyStrange

    So, gragra, if I make a t-shirt that says “Gragra sucks” and show up at your next skeptic/atheist meetup and talk smack about you all night long, you wouldn’t have the slightest inclination to ask me not to wear the t-shirt, to be more charitable, or to disinvite me if I refused to stop?

    I’d rather hang with the Nuns on a Bus than with someone who doesn’t understand that deliberate harassment is hurtful and wrong.

  228. 228
    male voice

    With the demands of banning that t-shirt the feminists have dropped their masks once again. Feminism is basically an operation to curb the freedom of speech on a large scale . Within feminism freedom of speech means the freedom to say what the feminists like to hear. Pussy riot with exchanged roles.

  229. 229
    Jafafa Hots

    With the demands of banning that t-shirt the feminists have dropped their masks once again. Feminism is basically an operation to curb the freedom of speech on a large scale . Within feminism freedom of speech means the freedom to say what the feminists like to hear. Pussy riot with exchanged roles.

    Poor “male voice.”
    If we demand that attendees and speakers at conventions not engage in three-day long hate campaigns targeting another attendee for abuse and scorn and mockery, it’s “an operation to curb the freedom of speech on a large scale.”

    Except of course it isn’t. Government isn’t coming in and slamming your ass in prison… nobody is curbing your “freedom of speech.”

    Buying a ticket to an event doesn’t give you the right to deliberately make that event horrible for another person who PAID to attend that event, let alone a SPONSOR.

    You want your free speech? You have it. Wear your insulting shirt OUTSIDE and not inside a private venue that the target of your abuse also paid to attend.

    Do you WANT a convention where people are free to verbally abuse, harass, mock, and ostracize other attendees? Then create The Assholes Meetup and go ahead and tear each other new ones to your hearts’ desires.

    If JREF wants people to PAY for fucking TICKETS to their event, and SPONSOR their event, then they’d damned well better disassociate themselves from the likes of “male voice” and they damned well better do it FAST. It may already be too late.

    Who the hell wants to pay to go to an event where they might find themselves bearing the brunt of the attacks of a group of obnoxious shitheels who don’t even know how to behave at an organized gathering?

    You have the freedom to be an asshole and wear personally insulting shirts out on the damned street. You seriously want to argue that a convention should be a free-for-all? Where factions can form and battle for popularity like its high school?

    What is wrong with you? Seriously.

    Feminists have dropped their masks? Oh poor fucking oppressed “male voice.” Someone doesn’t want “male voice” to treat like shit whoever he wants to treat like shit.

    Pathetic.

  230. 230
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Erista

    My father (the abusive asshole that he is/was) used to punish me all the time for being upset. It lead to, among other things, my being completely and utterly unaware of what I was feeling.

    You’re upset = you’re wrong
    It’s also “hyper-rationality” or straw-vulcanism = Emotions and the display thereoff disqualify you from discourse. Becoming a petty criminal, OTOH, is perfectly rational.

    A male voice shows us again that misogynists are actually unable to follow a discourse for substance, to understand the idea behind anti-harassment policies and the simple fact that although the example in question is Amy and Harriet Hall, this would also apply for DJ Grothe and people wearing shirts “be a man, not a Grothe”

  231. 231
    SallyStrange

    So now our dear Entity has posted Amy’s address… in the Slymepit. Apparently.

    Sure, her address may be easy to find, but posting it at the Slymepit, which is basically a site that was invented for the purpose of harassing people, especially feminists?

    Fucking despicable.

  232. 232
    dogeared, spotted and foxed

    Oh for fucks sake. Amy asks that conferences include a policy against targeting specific individuals and uses examples from her own experience. This somehow morphs into censorship and free speech? Ridiculous. This just another case of the willfully blind editing a concept down to a plucked-out phrase in order to manufacture faux outrage. (See: guys don’t do that = all men are rapists!!!!!eleventy!!!)

    Amy did great things for TAM. In return she was subjected to a barrage of insults and a targeted effort to make her, specifically, feel unwelcome. She would rather this didn’t happen and would like to prevent it from happening to anyone else. That is an important conversation. Far more important than the blatant intellectual dishonesty of snipping a quote and ignoring the context.

  233. 233
    magicthighs

    Do you think though that wearing that T shirt equates to hostile behavior? And what follows from that?

    Yes, I do consider that hostile behaviour. What should follow is the organisers kindly requestion that person change clothes.

  234. 234
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    The fucker is beneath contempt now.
    Any of his friends come forward to defend him a bit or to explain how this is all Amy’s fault anyway?

  235. 235
    male voice

    If I wore a t-shirt saying “Republicans, a party only for rich people and religious nutjobs” and some Republicans would ask the organizers to make me change the t-shirt your reaction would be…. But feminism is such a rational worldview.

  236. 236
    FelixBC

    The usual cranks on Twitter are defending him. But even a couple of the slymepitters thought it was over the line. Because they yell so loudly when the doc drop is on them and theirs.

  237. 237
    SallyStrange

    If I wore a t-shirt saying “Republicans, a party only for rich people and religious nutjobs” and some Republicans would ask the organizers to make me change the t-shirt your reaction would be…. But feminism is such a rational worldview.

    Yet more demonstration of the intellectual paucity of the opposition. Obvious lies, inability to follow the conversation, analogizing between an individual and the Republican party…

    That the likes of you consider feminism to be irrational is a point in its favor.

  238. 238
    SallyStrange

    Now I’m being accused of sockpuppeting myself: https://twitter.com/JackTheRayner/status/236750164738584576

    Background: “Anonymous” on Thunderf00t’s blog threatened to track me down and rape the shit out of me. Then a person pretending to be Tfoot posted Anonymous’ alleged IP address. It resolved to somewhere in NJ. I didn’t realize it wasn’t Tfoot then, but figured if it was him he’d be sending it to my email. Still haven’t gotten any emails from Tfoot on the subject one way or another.

    Since then Tfoot’s fanboys have taken to saying that that was my IP address and therefore I was also Anonymous, because rape threats are so hard to come by that I have to fabricate them.

    Fun times.

  239. 239
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Sally Strange
    I’ve seen it and it’s disgusting.
    You’Re threatened with rape and all they have to say is to attack you
    If TF had any integrity left he’d actually have cleared it up long ago.

  240. 240
    Kristjan Wager

    At least one of his friends has said that it was just thoughtless, not a threat.

    DJ Grothe condems it, but is trying to mend sides. Not buying it – definitely don’t want to be part of the same movement as the sort of people who harass Surly Amy.

  241. 241
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    At least one of his friends has said that it was just thoughtless, not a threat.

    Yeah, as if anybody is going to believe that after the whole doc-dropping thing has been discussed to dead and resurrection recently

  242. 242
    Kristjan Wager

    Yeah, as if anybody is going to believe that after the whole doc-dropping thing has been discussed to dead and resurrection recently

    Well, it is the same type of people who claims that he might just have invited her for coffee….

  243. 243
    Steve Williamson

    @Sally #240

    Did you ever actually try putting that IP address given into a browser address bar…?

  244. 244
    Steve Williamson

    Whilst on the subject of copyright infringements:

    http://atheiststoday.com/articles.php?article_id=23

    The last paragraph is of interest….

  245. 245
    julian

    Since then Tfoot’s fanboys have taken to saying that that was my IP address and therefore I was also Anonymous, because rape threats are so hard to come by that I have to fabricate them.

    Great bunch of people.

  246. 246
    Jason Thibeault

    Steve Williamson, being a Slymepit participant, is apparently aware that the IP is a Goatse address. So very clever. So, someone sockpuppeted Thunderfoot to troll the person who just got rape threatened, and people publish Surly Amy’s home address (the original definition of “dropping docs”) and WE’RE THE FUCKING BULLIES.

  247. 247
    Tom Foss

    Man, Male Voice would be a lot more impressive if he weren’t illiterate. I mean, that’s the only conclusion I can come to regarding his spin of the t-shirt situation. It’s not like Amy specifically said that Harriet had every right to be an asshole continue wearing the shirt or anything.

    Oh, wait.

    It’s a shame straw is so cheap, or they might risk running out.

  248. 248
    Pteryxx

    and Steve Williamson made a point of coming here and nudging SallyStrange just in case the trolling hadn’t worked yet. Where’s the skepticism and rational argument in that? “Made you looook!”

  249. 249
    male voice

    @ Tom Foss
    Of course she did. Just like Rebecca Watson did not call for the elevator guy to be tarred and feathered. These demands are what the rank and file feminists in the comment sections are for. Just because you are a feminist does not mean you are stupid.

  250. 250
    Steve Williamson

    “and Steve Williamson made a point of coming here and nudging SallyStrange just in case the trolling hadn’t worked yet. Where’s the skepticism and rational argument in that? “Made you looook!””

    No – to point out that the IP address given to her was not in fact that of a poster at Thunderf00t’s blog as she had been claiming.

    “publish Surly Amy’s home address (the original definition of “dropping docs”)”

    Amy’s address was already publicly available information therefore is *not* “doc dropping”

    Disagreement with some of the methods used to promote a cause does not equate to disagreement with that cause.

  251. 251
    Jason Thibeault

    Really boring us, male voice. Especially with the suggestion that anyone cares about Elevator Guy’s punishment, without actually providing links of such, despite it completely contradicting my every memory of the events in question with regard to who has called for punishment of whom. It’s sad, really, that you think these things actually happened.

    So, you’re in moderation. Try providing evidence next time if you expect to get your comments cleared.

  252. 252
    Pteryxx

    When the cause is ‘women shouldn’t be harassed and threatened’? Yeah, harassing and threatening them IS disagreement with the cause.

  253. 253
    SallyStrange

    and Steve Williamson made a point of coming here and nudging SallyStrange just in case the trolling hadn’t worked yet. Where’s the skepticism and rational argument in that? “Made you looook!”

    Yeah, much like the doodz on Tfoot’s site. “Haha, I talked about hate-fapping! Bet you’re mad now!”

    I was like, “Yeah, I smeared shit on the wall and now people are mad! I win!” They’re like, “Now you’re getting the idea!”

    I don’t get it. Is someone out there handing out toaster ovens or luggage sets for the mighty feat of causing decent human beings to get angry about your assholery?

    And no, I never did put the IP address into my browser address bar. How sad that I missed out on all that goatse stuff.

    What a terrible bully I am.

  254. 254
    SallyStrange

    No – to point out that the IP address given to her was not in fact that of a poster at Thunderf00t’s blog as she had been claiming.

    All of the people commenting on this lie like fucking rugs. Why is that, do you think? Perhaps because they are dishonest assholes who are aware, at least on some subconscious level, that they are horribly wrong, both factually and morally?

    I never claimed that the IP address was “of a poster at Tfoot’s blog.” I only ever said that Fake Thunderfoot gave it to me, that it resolved to somewhere in New Jersey, and that I was idly wondering who it actually belonged to.

    But thank you for coming here to demonstrate the abjectly pitiful lack of integrity that is typical of people in your camp.

  255. 255
    Steve Williamson

    “But thank you for coming here to demonstrate the abjectly pitiful lack of integrity that is typical of people in your camp”

    You do not actually know which “camp” I am in though, do you? I have yet to state anything which would indicate such. Apologies for claiming you had claimed as I had stated (oh look – there is some integrity there n’est pas?), but that was the impression that was given.

  256. 256
    dougal445

    Then a certain disingenuous and
    argumentationally-vacuous entity in our
    community, who claims both to be a leader and to
    represent the moral high ground of attacking
    people’s arguments instead of their person, posts
    a copyrighted image of Amy’s in order to try to cut her down. This entity — henceforth known as
    Entity (who will go unlinked, so I’m not accused of
    trying to ruin their reputation in a bullying fashion
    by pointing out their trollish actions!)

    Nice move. Make up another ficriicious coplaint and a clver story so you dont have to provide any evidence. Just like the elusive elevator guy.

  257. 257
    Jason Thibeault

    Steve Williamson: you’ve yet to indicate which “camp” you’re in HERE, yes.

    I hate that there are camps. I hate that there is a self-selected group of people who’ve decided to go tribal and hate on anything two blogs participate in. I absolutely despise this nonsense, coming from people who claim to be skeptics and rationalists and humanists. It’s unbecoming and it’s beneath us as a movement and as individuals.

  258. 258
    SallyStrange

    You do not actually know which “camp” I am in though, do you? I have yet to state anything which would indicate such. Apologies for claiming you had claimed as I had stated (oh look – there is some integrity there n’est pas?), but that was the impression that was given.

    The fact is that you got your information from the people who are blatantly lying about me, about Surly Amy, about Rebecca Watson, and about feminists and feminism in general, as demonstrated by “a male voice”. That shows that you are either sympathetic to their camp, or too lazy to actually check out their claims. Were you actually unaware of the depths of their dishonesty? Well, consider yourself educated. But you don’t get to get up in a huff when you spread the lies that they originated. Fuck you.

  259. 259
    bubba707

    There is no “movement”, there are only various camps with a few common issues. This whole thing reminds me alot of the “left” in the 60s and 70s. The end result will probably be the same, dissolution and obscurity after some heat and flame.

  260. 260
    Pteryxx

    That catch-22′s been covered before, too. Name names and you’ll be accused of bullying and smearing; don’t name names and you’ll be accused of making shit up with no evidence. Heck, sometimes you can be accused of bullying AND making shit up at the same time!

  261. 261
    SallyStrange

    Hey, Bubba. I’m going to repeat something I originally posted at “Friendly Atheist.” J

    Here’s the thing, guys:

    Atheism is the product of skepticism applied to religious claims.

    Skepticism is a useful tool that everyone should know about and use in their daily lives.

    If–IF!–you truly believe that EVERYONE should be able to learn about and use skepticism, then you will be doing everything you can to ensure that the organized structures that exist to promote skepticism and critical think are welcoming to literally everyone.

    That’s the genesis of the intersection of skepticism/atheism and social justice.

    On the other hand, if skepticism is just a fun toy for you, or a way to feel superior to the rest of the world because you know you’re right about God and the Bermuda triangle, while those deluded fools are just wrong, well then of course you don’t see the point of incorporating social justice concerns into skepticism’s big tent.

    I would submit that treating skepticism that way is selfish and immoral and makes you kind of a jackass. But that’s just my opinion, based on my non-empirically verifiable belief that it would be a good thing to reduce suffering and increase the opportunities for all human beings to flourish and live happily and healthily on this planet for the short time we are here. I recognize that not everyone shares my humanist values, and I suspect that those are the people who don’t see the point of having an organized atheist/skeptical movement. Heads up: nobody is forcing you to be a part of this movement. You’re perfectly welcome to sit at home and play parcheesi while continuing to not believe in God or chupacabras. But I don’t understand what compels you to seek out these outlets where the movement is organizing and re-organizing itself and complain that there are people trying to get organized and get out there and effect social change.

    Unless you’re opposed to that social change.

    Are you?

    So, are you?

  262. 262
    Setár, Elvenkitty

    Rebecca Watson tweeted about an hour ago that Surly Amy’s home address is getting posted on their home forum.

    -sigh-

  263. 263
    bubba707

    Sally, I’m 62 years old and been around some. I’ve seen movements come and go. I’ve been part of some, avoided others. I don’t really express myself well and a bit shy on language skills. My experiences with “skeptics” are less than stellar. Explain to me why I’d want to associate myself with people that give me nothing but disrespect, hunt for excuses to dismiss anything I might say. No, I’m not part of it, I’ll remain an outsider and a rather solitary person. Don’t get me wrong, I respect Amy and Rebecca very much and I’ve said so other places than here and I loathe the assholes pushing this idiot vendetta against something that crawled out of their own imaginations. Given my druthers, I’d go live somewhere miles from any other human being and let everyone else go to hell in their own handbaskets.

  264. 264
    Jason Thibeault

    SallyStrange: wonderful comment @263. The same thoughts have been buzzing around my head since I wrote Mission Creep. I thought I had it all out of my system but evidently there are indeed people who aren’t down with making the community inclusive, so this stuff bears repeating. And refining. And posting, and turning into a talk, and drum-beating and rally-crying. This is our movement. We must needs retake it from the barbarians.

  265. 265
    gragra, something clever after the comma

    “What next? “Let us get you a conference t-shirt to wear instead. Yours is being disruptive and detracting from the fun and relaxed learning atmosphere at our event. I’m quite certain that as a speaker, you understand how important that is to us.”

    Yes, and I would like to think it would end there. But as she wore the thing for 3 days straight I doubt she would have gone along with that request. That was all I was wondering about – what happens if she refuses? That makes her an asshole, if that were in doubt before, but what do they do then? Throw her out?

    And Sally, I said that her wearing the T-shirt was wrong.

  266. 266
    Steve Williamson

    “The fact is that you got your information from the people who are blatantly lying about me, about Surly Amy, about Rebecca Watson, and about feminists and feminism in general, as demonstrated by “a male voice”.”

    I actually got that information from posts YOU had made.

    Jason: “I absolutely despise this nonsense, coming from people who claim to be skeptics and rationalists and humanists.”

    This is coming from both sides though. There is a great deal of abusive behaviour both on the blogs hosted here (a lot of which in the comments supporting those blogs, against those who have posted respectful disagreements) and elsewhere. “It’s unbecoming and it’s beneath us as a movement and as individuals.” – Agreed, and I have stated as much before here but was lambasted for being a “tone troll”

    @Pteryxx #254: “Yeah, harassing and threatening them IS disagreement with the cause.”

    Where have I condoned any such behaviour? You may note I stated “disagreement with some methods used to promote a cause…” Please do not put words where they were not stated.

  267. 267
    SallyStrange

    Sally, I’m 62 years old and been around some. I’ve seen movements come and go. I’ve been part of some, avoided others. I don’t really express myself well and a bit shy on language skills.

    That’s nice. So?

    My experiences with “skeptics” are less than stellar.

    Mine too. That doesn’t change my conviction that skepticism and critical thinkING (can’t believe I didn’t catch that error before) are essential tools, which should be promoted at every opportunity.

    Explain to me why I’d want to associate myself with people that give me nothing but disrespect, hunt for excuses to dismiss anything I might say.

    Why do you want me to explain a position I don’t hold? What I said was that if you don’t want to be part of any movement, fine, but at least fucking stay out of the way of those who do.

    No, I’m not part of it, I’ll remain an outsider and a rather solitary person.

    Except where you popped up here to moan and kvetch about other people not being solitary. WTF?

    Don’t get me wrong, I respect Amy and Rebecca very much and I’ve said so other places than here and I loathe the assholes pushing this idiot vendetta against something that crawled out of their own imaginations. Given my druthers, I’d go live somewhere miles from any other human being and let everyone else go to hell in their own handbaskets.

    Nobody is going to fucking stop you. I just wish you’d shut up about it instead of diverting our attention to your useless comments, attention which could be better spent combating the assholes with the idiot vendetta.

    Comments like yours are about as discouraging, if not more so, than those from the assholes with the idiot vendetta. Please consider that BEFORE posting next time.

  268. 268
    SallyStrange

    Yes, and I would like to think it would end there. But as she wore the thing for 3 days straight I doubt she would have gone along with that request. That was all I was wondering about – what happens if she refuses? That makes her an asshole, if that were in doubt before, but what do they do then? Throw her out?

    Yes, they should throw her out. What? That’s the point of having a policy–there are enforceable consequences of violating the policy. I would think, that if Harriet Hall were faced with either expulsion or changing her shirt, she’d choose changing her shirt. But perhaps I am overestimating the rationality of the anti-Skepchick faction? She was never faced with that choice, so we’ll never know.

    Apologies, gragra, I got the impression that you didn’t see any problem with wearing a t-shirt that targets a fellow attendee/sponsor of the conference one is at. Glad to see I was wrong.

  269. 269
    Pteryxx

    You may note I stated “disagreement with some methods used to promote a cause…” Please do not put words where they were not stated.

    Full quote:

    Disagreement with some of the methods used to promote a cause does not equate to disagreement with that cause.

    which I refuted specifically above. Please do not TAKE OUT relevant words where they WERE stated, by you. Goalpost-shifter.

  270. 270
    bubba707

    Sally, good way to try to spread the message to those being dissed, tell them to shut up and go away. Bye.

  271. 271
    SallyStrange
    “The fact is that you got your information from the people who are blatantly lying about me, about Surly Amy, about Rebecca Watson, and about feminists and feminism in general, as demonstrated by “a male voice”.”

    I actually got that information from posts YOU had made.

    O RLY?

    Links and quotes please. I predict you won’t supply these. And, I know what I have said on the subject, so if you do surprise me and provide the links that left you with that erroneous impression, I know we will only be left wondering whether you were lying or just unable to read for comprehension.

    This is why I don’t bother with giving the benefit of the doubt to people who spread lies.

    P.S. Blockquote is easy.

  272. 272
    SallyStrange

    Sally, good way to try to spread the message to those being dissed, tell them to shut up and go away. Bye.

    I’m confused. You already expressed your lack of interest in movements and your preference for a hermit’s life. What exactly has changed here?

  273. 273
    SallyStrange

    This is coming from both sides though.

    Word of advice: if you’re going to lie, it’s best to not to pick a falsehood that has NOT already been repeatedly and thoroughly debunked.

  274. 274
    Pteryxx

    I’m confused. You already expressed your lack of interest in movements and your preference for a hermit’s life. What exactly has changed here?

    Maybe that was your cue to beg him to stay because he’s so helpful? *retch*

  275. 275
    SallyStrange

    Whoops, I garbled that sentence. Correction:

    Word of advice: if you’re going to lie, it’s best to not to pick a falsehood that has NOT already been repeatedly and thoroughly debunked.

  276. 276
    SallyStrange

    Maybe that was your cue to beg him to stay because he’s so helpful? *retch*

    Yes, it’s ever so helpful when Bubba predicts that the likely outcome of our efforts is “dissolution and obscurity after some heat and flame.” How will we ever manage without him??!?

  277. 277
    bubba707

    Ok, here ya go, my last comment. You talk about movements but mostly what I see is fighting and insults. I’m not seeing any good reason to give up an afternoon of fishing or kayaking to participate. Believe it or not, there are a hell of alot more like me out here in fly-over country that are going to want a good reason to give up any of what little time we have to spare from making a living. It’s your choice, movement or fad. No reply neccesary, just think about it.

  278. 278
    Pteryxx

    Personally, “people are getting crapped on unfairly and systematically” is more than enough reason for me. No ego-stroking required. So sorry that women getting lies and rape threats doesn’t outweigh your fishing and kayaking on the internet. (How the heck does *time posting on blogs* interfere with your outdoor activities? Are you flycasting with one hand while posting from an iPad with the other?)

  279. 279
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    Bubba, shut the fuck up. You just want to complain because you don’t like what people are saying and you don’t give a shit to discriminate ethically among the various positions. If you’re an anti-social hermit then be true to form and take your fucking bullshit kayaking.

    And shut the fuck up.

  280. 280
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    Believe it or not, there are a hell of alot more like me out here in fly-over country that are going to want a good reason to give up any of what little time we have to spare from making a living.

    Understand something: We don’t want people like you and we’re not upset when you abandon ship. I’m being very serious. You’re not worth a damn to anyone if you’re inclined to do so because you’re a fuss budget. It’s good that people like you leave. That’s less time to waste on bullshit “moderates.”

    Go back to fly-over country. Go. Really.

  281. 281
    SallyStrange

    BUBBA: I agree with your cause, but your movement sucks and is destined to fail and I don’t want to participate!

    ACTIVISTS: Okay, fine. How about you do the very least you can do–that is, go away and stop undermining those who DO want to participate?

    BUBBA: How dare you! I’m leaving!

    ACTIVISTS: Just go already.

    BUBBA: You’ll be sorry!

    ACTIVISTS: How can we miss you if you won’t go away?

  282. 282
    dogeared, spotted and foxed

    This is so frustrating. I was impressed with DJ Grothe late last night when he was honestly condemning it. That didn’t last long.

    First he hand-waved it away as “toxic online culture” which makes me furious. This isn’t about bloggers and comments. A TAM sponsor was targeted at TAM by multiple parties. This is not an internet squabble. It is real life hostility which has continued.

    After that it was just more of the same “both sides!” nonsense and then he promoted Vacula’s podcast.

  283. 283
    bubba707

    Perfect examples of why animals are better than people

  284. 284
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    Animals are people, dumb-ass. Don’t you have a whole middle-of-the-US-region that needs hermiting?

  285. 285
    Miriam

    @258

    Nice move. Make up another ficriicious coplaint and a clver story so you dont have to provide any evidence. Just like the elusive elevator guy.

    While I can’t blame you for not taking the time to read all of these comments, maybe you should. As has already been mentioned, the blogger in question is Justin Vacula and you can find his blog and the post(s) in question through a simple Google search.

    Also…for the love of FSM, learn to spell.

  286. 286
    Miriam

    Perfect examples of why animals are better than people

    Sure, in the animal world you’d just get captured and eaten alive. I guess that IS better than getting rape threats on the internet.

  287. 287
    Feminace, formerly Qurikythrope

    Fly-over country? Fuck you, dude, I’m in fly-over country, generally anti-social, struggle to make a living, and I give a good god-damn about social justice because I know there’s a bigger fucking world out there outside of my desire to be left alone.

    If people being treated fair isn’t enough for you at least give a fuck, then I’m with Josh. Stay gone. Just don’t paint all of us in ‘fly-over’ country with the same selfish brush.

  288. 288
    Steve Williamson

    “O RLY?

    Links and quotes please. I predict you won’t supply these. And, I know what I have said on the subject, so if you do surprise me and provide the links that left you with that erroneous impression, I know we will only be left wondering whether you were lying or just unable to read for comprehension. ”

    The comment thread on Thunderf00t’s latest blog as well as your Twitter.

    “P.S. Blockquote is easy.”

    P.S. So what? I choose not to use it.

  289. 289
    oolon

    @Sally Strange, if you are about did you complain about that rape threat on TF blog? Even the ‘other side’ or ‘slimepitters’ were mostly calling foul there so you know it was wrong – they may not even cry foul if you report it.

    You cannot get the IP from TF as I doubt when you sign up to a wordpress blog you get that much access. I may be wrong – but TF seems to have disappeared anyway – he has shown no interest in blocking the person sock-puppetting him.

    If you report abuse to WordPress they will likely take action to either get him to remove the comment or presumably if they think it is sufficiently bad report the user.

    http://en.wordpress.com/abuse/
    …and the comment in question: http://thunderf00tdotorg.wordpress.com/2012/08/12/ftb-and-the-conspiracy-to-defraud-drawing-a-line-under-this-pointless-crap/#comment-9837

  290. 290
    Steve Williamson

    “Word of advice: if you’re going to lie, it’s best to not to pick a falsehood that has NOT already been repeatedly and thoroughly debunked.”

    So you are implying there have *not* been abusive posts by people from both sides of the argument, including, but not limited to, personal attacks? Examples of which can be seen in this very comment thread.

  291. 291
    SallyStrange

    The comment thread on Thunderf00t’s latest blog as well as your Twitter.

    So, as I predicted, you won’t do me the basic courtesy of quoting me the words I wrote which made you think I said something I never said.

    How predictable. Chalk you up as a liar, then?

    @Oolon, you’re right, I should report it to WordPress. It’s a possibility that hadn’t occurred to me til today, when someone else pointed it out. Thanks for the links, since I am, I admit, less than eager to return to the site.

  292. 292
    SallyStrange

    …Done.

  293. 293
    Robert

    I went over to Entity’s blog, read the pertinent posts.

    It’s clear to me that two camps have formed in the skeptical/atheist online world about this and related issues. It is also clear to me that only one of them contains people with whom I would willingly associate.

    It’s not Entity’s side. It’s not DJ Grothe’s side. It’s not Thunderfoot’s side.

    Please remember – I don’t know any of these people personally. All I can know of them, and their opponents, is what I read that they have written, and what they and their supporters write about them. For me, it is primarily about culture. People express their cultural beliefs in how they speak and act. The closer you get to [ ], the further you are from { }, and vice versa. And the closer you get to BITCHES AINT SHIT, the further I want to get from YOU.

  294. 294
    oolon

    @Sally Strange, I don’t blame you for not wanting to go back. I think any nym that is identifiably from FtBs comments and they get into a massive frenzy of hate filled comments. If it is any consolation apart from that one comment the topic was mostly just low grade childish name calling – Greg Laden on the other hand!

    I suppose you could chalk that up to their mindset – a feminine FtBs nym and you have to be subjected to sexual comment – male FtBs nym walks into the room and the hackles rise and mainly hateful invective is passed their way. Somehow the only way to ‘get’ at a woman is to throw sexual insults. A man on the other hand would not be shocked by anything sexual so you are better off sticking to conventional invective. Even if you can just dismiss all their crap as ‘just for lulz’ it is still pretty indicative of sexist unimaginative minds.

  295. 295
    Tom Foss

    Male Voice:

    Of course she did. Just like Rebecca Watson did not call for the elevator guy to be tarred and feathered. These demands are what the rank and file feminists in the comment sections are for.

    Fascinating: a specific accusation, yet no link to anything even resembling evidence. So close!

    Just because you are a feminist does not mean you are stupid.

    I’m beginning to think, however, that being an MRA does mean that.

    Steve Williamson:

    Amy’s address was already publicly available information therefore is *not* “doc dropping”

    Ah, should people also refrain from getting upset with those anti-abortion activists who post the home addresses of abortion doctors on websites and such. I mean, it’s not like they couldn’t have found them in the phone book!

    I’m open to the possibility that there’s a non-stalkery, non-threatening, non-creepily obsessive reason someone would have for publicly posting the home address of a person they dislike. I can’t think of one, and haven’t seen one yet proposed, but maybe you can enlighten me on that.

    SallyStrange:

    I should report it to WordPress.

    Oh noes! This is just like book burning or pogroms or something else Nazis did! How dare you silence that innocent sockpuppet’s free speech? FREEEEE SPEEEEEECH!!!

  296. 296
    Tom Foss

    Robert:

    And the closer you get to BITCHES AINT SHIT, the further I want to get from YOU.

    Yeah, but the Ben Folds version is pretty entertaining at least.

  297. 297
    SallyStrange

    It’s clear to me that two camps have formed in the skeptical/atheist online world about this and related issues.

    I think this can be fairly described as the split between humanists and… I don’t know what to call them. Not-humanists.

  298. 298
    Tom Foss

    Hey, a thought:

    A bunch of anti-feminists attack Rebecca Watson/Ophelia Benson/Surly Amy/whomever = Reasonable dissent against [cue eerie music] CENSORSHIP!

    A bunch of FtBloggers and feminists criticize DJ Grothe/Thunderf00t/whomever = “Oh, looks like [X] is the new ‘witch of the week’. FTBULLIES!!!”

    I mean, I shouldn’t be surprised at the double-standards any longer, but seriously.

  299. 299
    'Tis Himself

    Not-humanists.

    Anti-humanists.

  300. 300
    Jason Thibeault

    Steve Williamson: your false equivalency is noted. Please bear in mind that “fuck you” might be emotive, but it’s certainly not a targeted hate campaign designed to do chipping damage against a goddamn pillar of our community.

  301. 301
    bcmystery

    As a father who doesn’t want his son to grow up to be a douchebag, I see a certain narrow value to being able to point to people like Steve Williamson, male voice, or pilot and say, “Son, don’t be that guy.”

  302. 302
    John S. Wilkins

    This is why one should not try to make a movement out of negative views, views that are contrary to some other views. Inevitably the movement becomes about position and status, and defending those positions and statuses against perceived threats. Skeptical movements around the world, and most certainly here in Australia, tend to have a small circle of those who run them who are concerned that newcomers don’t get too strong.

    Since most such movements were set up either in societies that are male dominated (including, I am afraid to say, many scientifically oriented subcultures) they tend towards the standard male chauvinism of the eras in which they began individually. It’s not surprising that they treat skeptical women like this: they treat all women like this.

    There are other sidelined and marginalised groups too; ethnic, social, and personality types are also treated like this. The result is that the movements will start well in a cultural context but then slowly denature like molecules left in a test tube over time.

    For a movement to be both a positive force and adapt to changing cultural values such as egalitarianism for different or new groups than the ones that started it, the movement must have a positive set of values. Humanisms of various stripes do, but basically we demonstrate in this the fact about religion that we cannot emulate and which explains its successes: to be really successful, you have to exploit some primate cognitive biases, and set up arbitrary totems around which to dance to establish loyalties. If you can’t do that (and from principle skeptical and atheist movements cannot consistently do that), then your target audience (the human primates) will not stay true to the aims of the movement.

    IMHO

  303. 303
    carlie

    Believe it or not, there are a hell of alot more like me out here in fly-over country that are going to want a good reason to give up any of what little time we have to spare from making a living. It’s your choice, movement or fad. No reply neccesary, just think about it.

    Believe it or not, there are a hell of a lot more like other women who are sick and tired of being harangued and harassed out of the movement, and need a damned good reason to give up what little they have. You’re not the only one who counts here.

  304. 304
    Entrained

    Just curious, what I’d part of Amy’s story isn’t accurate?

  305. 305
    Entrained

    Sorry, that should read, what if part of Amy’s story isn’t accurate?

  306. 306
    Jafafa Hots

    Sorry, that should read, what if part of Amy’s story isn’t accurate?

    That still not effect the POINT, which is that people deliberately mocking and targeting a fellow attendee at a conference (which there is evidence of and even admission of without needing Amy’s testimony) should not be tolerated. Regardless of what the person targeted says or does afterward.

    You’re not supposed to claim immunity from criticism for a social transgression you’ve done based on events that occur afterward.

    (I swear, if these spend any more time “being skeptical” about minutiae we’re going to find ourselves having to explain object permanence. As it is we’re stuck at explaining kindergarten-level morality.)

  307. 307
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    I’m not seeing any good reason to give up an afternoon of fishing or kayaking to participate.

    Perfect demonstration of armchair-decent people.
    He really doesn’t care, good bhubba. It doesn’t affect him, he can simply walk away, so he does at the least sight of troubles (although it should be noted that he’s been doing that routine for months). And he’ll blame us for chasing away the fish

  308. 308
    sc_67bb5977d4314b6c05da49448768e0f3

    15. Arakiba says:
    August 16, 2012 at 8:09 pm ADT
    “When men feel their privilege is threatened, they get angry. Some get violent. If I was a woman who was thinking of going to TAM, I wouldn’t feel safe; especially not after what was described in this post.”

    –Yeah, that’s not sexist. You should be shouted out of the community for that comment.

  309. 309
    sc_67bb5977d4314b6c05da49448768e0f3

    Milquetoast, sycophantic, man-hating comment. Genuflecting and bowing to my Surlyramics shrine with candles lit.

  310. 310
    julian

    shut up, you passive aggressive, fuck. Everyone’s sick of you.

  311. 311
    arbor

    Steve Williams said:

    You do not actually know which “camp” I am in though, do you? I have yet to state anything which would indicate such. Apologies for claiming you had claimed as I had stated (oh look – there is some integrity there n’est pas?), but that was the impression that was given.

    How very clever of you.

    I know you’re not in my camp – you are unworthy.

    Ooze on somewhere else.

  312. 312
    mraandproudofit

    Whoa, bud, next time, could you keep it a bit shorter and not so rambly? I skimmed it and couldn’t find anything of value.

  313. 313
    Jason Thibeault

    mraandproudofit: if it was “women are human beings, full stop” you’d still not have read it. You’re in moderation now. Wail at me privately if you must, but you’ll spew such uselessness on these pages no further.

  314. 314
    Stephanie Zvan

    You do not actually know which “camp” I am in though, do you? I have yet to state anything which would indicate such.

    Bwahahaha! Because, you know, all the stuff you’ve said anywhere but this precise comment thread disappears when you comment here. FFS.

  315. 315
    JesseB

    “Said secret police told Amy and her mother that she would be secretly taped and monitored for the rest of the conference, even though Amy herself never reported any of this harassment…”

    Wait. Didn’t we just go through a huge argument because DJ Grothe didn’t respond appropriately to Chinese whispers of a harassment report from Ashley Miller? So, not paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is wrong, but paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is also wrong?

  316. 316
    Rich Wilson

    You’re in moderation now. Wail at me privately if you must

    I for one welcome our Canuck Overlord’s willingness to protect us by throwing his body onto the wailing.

  317. 317
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Jesse B

    Wait. Didn’t we just go through a huge argument because DJ Grothe didn’t respond appropriately to Chinese whispers of a harassment report from Ashley Miller? So, not paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is wrong, but paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is also wrong?
    A) No, we didn’t. We went through a huge argument because after everybody thought that DJ had handled the harassment of Ashley well he then claimed there was no harassment report. NOt to forget the other harassment reports he didn’t mention
    B) Not every action is good action. You know, if there’s a problem with racists harassing the children on their way to school, then to accompany schoolchildren by police as if they were criminals going to a trial instead of stopping the racists is action, but not appropriate action.

  318. 318
    cuervocuero

    addressing #54. Forbidden Snowflake.

    Re: the ‘defined Atheist’ acronym Surlyramic. If Ms Amy adopts the A+ idea, all she’d need to do is add the + beside the A on the pendant and she’s good to go.

    The A+ seems such a simple chime of a concept enhancer. It’s still just a symbol without the concerted goodwill of people pressing hard to include and not exclude but it’s really interesting to watch the declarations of ‘fair play’ get firmer and more definitive.

    Evidentiary fair play is another simple concept that seems so hard for adults to express when they’re comfortable with the obfuscation we all get wrapped up in. It’s exciting to see it hammering for more air.

  319. 319
    clamboy

    I may have completely missed it, but has Dr. Hall spoken or written publicly on why she wore that shirt in the first place, and/or why she continued to wear the shirt after Surly Amy spoke with her about it? This is way, way, way down here, so it may be missed, but I thought I would ask. Cheers.

    Oh, and: A+.

  320. 320
    Entrained

    326@Giliell, not to be confused with the Borg
    Wait. Didn’t we just go through a huge argument because DJ Grothe didn’t respond appropriately to Chinese whispers of a harassment report from Ashley Miller? So, not paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is wrong, but paying attention to indirect reports of harassment is also wrong?
    A) No, we didn’t. We went through a huge argument because after everybody thought that DJ had handled the harassment of Ashley well he then claimed there was no harassment report. NOt to forget the other harassment reports he didn’t mention
    B) Not every action is good action. You know, if there’s a problem with racists harassing the children on their way to school, then to accompany schoolchildren by police as if they were criminals going to a trial instead of stopping the racists is action, but not appropriate action.

    I assume based on your reponse in B your perspective is the action taken with Amy was incorrect. Just curious what action should have been taken once a report of harrassing behavior has been reported and triggers an interview, not an interrogation, where a highly agitated person expresses concerns for her safety and feels threatened because of inappropriate tweets and irl issues and t shirt messaging?

  321. 321
    Sally Strange

    Chinese whispers

    What the fuck are Chinese whispers? Whispers that are nasty and evil like Chinese people are nasty and evil? Indirect like Chinese people indirect?

    Racist motherfucker.

  322. 322
    Jason Thibeault

    Sally Strange: it’s also a tell that this goober likely swallowed Thunderf00t’s lines of argumentation on harassment and the “rift” whole. The F00t is the first person I’ve heard in any of this series of arguments to use the phrase, excised as it’s been from most people’s vocabulary for being racist and useless when “telephone game” is just as serviceable.

  323. 323
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    Entrained

    I assume based on your reponse in B your perspective is the action taken with Amy was incorrect. Just curious what action should have been taken once a report of harrassing behavior has been reported and triggers an interview, not an interrogation, where a highly agitated person expresses concerns for her safety and feels threatened because of inappropriate tweets and irl issues and t shirt messaging?

    1) The whole fucking setup was wrong. They should have a clearly written, broadly communicated harassment policy that’s part of ToS. It should have been wildly known and announced that the “ambassadors” would be there for you if any problem occured.
    2) Now, as things were as they were. Other options would have included talking to Harriet Hall that her conduct was seriously hostile towards another attendee, a sponsor nonetheless, checking Twitter names and comparing them with the names of attendees and if they could be identified talking to them that this is unacceptable and so on.
    You make a clear statement towards the harassers that this conduct is not tolerated and don’t make the victim bear the burden

  324. 324
    Bernard Bumner

    What the fuck are Chinese whispers?

    …it’s also a tell…

    Chinese Whispers is still the rather unfortunate name used in the UK (and possibly elsewhere). To the best of my knowledge it isn’t considered racist over here, and is actually quite likely to be employed in the mainstream media without the slightest hesitation.

    The (folk?) etymology seems to be based on the confusion between native European- and Chinese- language speakers during early meetings, rather than being a racist slur on the Chinese.

    I don’t necessarily buy into that, but my point is that a majority of UK English-speakers probably wouldn’t even consider the possibility that the phrase might be racist.

    Telephone Game I would suggest is virtually unknown in the UK.

  325. 325
    Bernard Bumner

    By the way, I don’t endorse anything Entrained has said – all of those words just boil down to the same tired dismissal of Amy as emotionally unhinged due to a t-shirt.

  326. 326
    clamboy

    Richard Dawkins used the term “Chinese Whispers,” meaning the game known stateside as “Telephone,” in writing about evolution, I don’t remember where. I remember being puzzled and affronted, however, so I looked it up and found the meaning. Yeah, it’s the name of that game, and intended as metaphor, but geez.

  327. 327
    Entrained

    Giliell, not to be confused with the Borg,
    1) The whole fucking setup was wrong. They should have a clearly written, broadly communicated harassment policy that’s part of ToS. It should have been wildly known and announced that the “ambassadors” would be there for you if any problem occured.
    2) Now, as things were as they were. Other options would have included talking to Harriet Hall that her conduct was seriously hostile towards another attendee, a sponsor nonetheless, checking Twitter names and comparing them with the names of attendees and if they could be identified talking to them that this is unacceptable and so on.
    You make a clear statement towards the harassers that this conduct is not tolerated and don’t make the victim bear the burden

    1) Interesting response but not the point. Amy never looked to make a report, a volunteer from TAM notified the consultant so regardless of the policy, it was in fact a volunteer that drove the activity. And, Amy made the point that she never read the FAQ which identified how to find help with issues. We are in agreement it should have been more widely known but again the issue occurred and action was taken that you said was wrong.
    2) As to this issue, Harriet Hall has every right to wear a t shirt she made. Harriet was voicing a non threatening opinion. Amy has every right to be upset. Seriously hostile, I guess it depends on perspective. But Amy has made ambiguous statements about the impact of the t shirt and it should make zero difference whether Amy was a sponsor and should bear no weight in an investigation.
    Now you have no way to know if there was a conversation with Harriet or not but regardless she has every right to wear the t shirt whether you agree with it or not.
    A volunteer did in fact talk to some of the people in attendance at TAM that were part of the Twitter issue and they did stop.
    You didn’t mention the irl issue.
    Regardless, because of the hostility and threats, surveillance with Amy’s full knowledge was enacted. She could have declined the surveillance but if she felt so threatened why would she? Regardless, she did not.
    So, let’s say you talked to Harriet but she still chose to wear the shirt and stopped the tweets, then what would have been your course since you believe surveillance was incorrect.

  328. 328
    Entrained

    Bernard Bumner
    By the way, I don’t endorse anything Entrained has said – all of those words just boil down to the same tired dismissal of Amy as emotionally unhinged due to a t-shirt.

    I’m not dismissing Amy or anyone else. Harriet has the right to wear a t shirt with a message, Amy has the right to get upset at that message though she has been ambiguous regarding the effect the t shirt had on her. I never said she was unhinged but she was emotionally overwrought. People can make their own judgements if it was an over reaction. All those words as you so eloquently put it have consequences for everyone. For Harriet it’s been vilification, for Amy well I’m not sure what it’s been for Amy.

  329. 329
    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle

    All those words as you so eloquently put it have consequences for everyone. For Harriet it’s been vilification, for Amy well I’m not sure what it’s been for Amy

    The post made very clear what the consequences for Amy have been.

  330. 330
    Entrained

    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer
    All those words as you so eloquently put it have consequences for everyone. For Harriet it’s been vilification, for Amy well I’m not sure what it’s been for Amy

    The post made very clear what the consequences for Amy have been.

    From a particular perspective which I’m not sure I share.

  331. 331
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    1) Interesting response but not the point. Amy never looked to make a report, a volunteer from TAM notified the consultant so regardless of the policy, it was in fact a volunteer that drove the activity. And, Amy made the point that she never read the FAQ which identified how to find help with issues. We are in agreement it should have been more widely known but again the issue occurred and action was taken that you said was wrong.

    How convenient to blame Amy. You know before that point everybody was actually thinking that in spite of having had an anti-harassment policy the year before they didn’t have one. And no, having a harassment-policy burried somewhere in the FAQ isn’t a policy that gives people confidence. Not to forget all the things that happened prior, the fact that harassment-complaints had become “forgotten” about. And yes, I say that things were handled badly.

    2) As to this issue, Harriet Hall has every right to wear a t shirt she made.

    Under the constitution, yes. But private events aren’t like that and with a proper policy (which would apply to all such shirts, not only the ones targeting the Skepchicks), this looks different. If I have a policy that says “racist propaganda and behaviour is not tolerated” I’m perfectly within my rights to tell somebody with a KKK t-shirt to change or leave (no, I’m not saying that Harriet Hall’s t-shirt was like a KKK one. I just want the example to be very clear cut)
    And yes, she’s been told by Amy herself, under tears, how hurtfull and unsetteling that shirt was for her. If you go on to wear it after that your intent can only be described as malicious since now you’re deliberately hurting somebody.

    A volunteer did in fact talk to some of the people in attendance at TAM that were part of the Twitter issue and they did stop.

    Good, that’s appropriate action.

    Regardless, because of the hostility and threats, surveillance with Amy’s full knowledge was enacted. She could have declined the surveillance but if she felt so threatened why would she? Regardless, she did not.

    Seriously, what were her options at that point?
    1) Decline, thereby declare that things weren’t as bad as they actually were and go on fearing for her safety
    2) Accept. Gain ersonal safety, lose personal freedom. Be the one who’s watched as if she were the potential worngdoer.

    In the end she chose
    3) Leave the place never to come back again.
    So, do you think that if somebody who stood at your side, worked for your event, sponsored dozens of women to attend leaves early and doesn’t plan to come back because of the harassment that your handling of the issue was well done?
    No, the stage for this was set long before, when Grothe blamed the people talking about harassment, when he lied about there never having been reports and thereby giving everybody the message that they didn’t take harassment serious, when they flat out refused to have a well-written and public harassment-policy (I’m still wondering about that expert of them. If he really was an expert, wouldn’t that have been the first thing he told them?). And Grothe continues to this day by treating everything “we” say with hyperskepticism and gives enormous amounts of benefit of doubt to every hateful asshole out there.

  332. 332
    Entrained

    Not blaming Amy, the facts are the facts. She didn’t read it.
    I absolutely agree with your last comment that some of this was self fulfilling.
    Seriously, the surveillance wasn’t just to protect Amy but to play it safe and ensure an extra layer of safety for all the attendees who were innocent bystanders.
    By the way, Amy said she was going to leave before the surveillance conversation took place.

  333. 333
    Sally Strange

    What’s wrong with the whole scenario is focusing security’s efforts and attention on the person who was targeted by harassers rather than focusing them on the harassers themselves. By doing that they empowered the harassers to keep harassing. You know, so long as they toed the line and refrained from outright physical assault, but just kept up a steady, muted drumbeat of verbal and emotional abuse.

    Yeah, sounds like an awesome party.

  334. 334
    Entrained

    Sally Strange@#342
    Wrong, and not a little wrong, completely and dangerously wrong. No one was empowered. Period. If the harassers could have been pointed out they would have been talked to and measures taken. Except the harassers went unidentified and/ or anonymous. So short of winning the million dollar challenge and lacking omnicsience, in the interim, protect to the highest extent possible, the person being targeted and ensure other attendees are also protected. Any person that believes Any’s threats weren’t taken seriously with significant action taken to protect her and those that were around her defies logic and critical thought.

  335. 335
    MattP (must mock his crappy brain)

    Entrained@#343
    How exactly is placing the person being harassed under video surveillance protecting anyone other than the organizers? Did they make a public announcement to all attendees about what consititues inappropriate behavior and that any and all ongoing harassment needs to stop (does not even require making specific references to Amy or Skepchick)? Did they announce the surveillance/”protection” to anyone other than Amy so as to discourage further harassment? Did they make any attempt to discuss the shirt issue with Harriet Hall? Did anyone call out the Satiristas at TAM for the douchebaggery of their song?

    Wrong, and not a little wrong, completely and dangerously wrong. No one was empowered. Period.

    If a person or organization does not clearly and publicly proclaim disapproval or condemnation of inapproriate behavior when clearly informed of its occurrence at an event organized by that entity, then that entity is providing implicit approval of the behavior. PERIOD. FULL. FUCKING. STOP. When those engaging in inappropriate/harmful behavior face little to no negative consequences (either social or legal) for their actions, they have no incentive to stop and will likely be emboldened/empowered to further escalate their inappropriate behavior.

    Here’s a question that will hopefully illustrate this point in a manner you might actually be able to wrap your head around: Would you deny, that by not openly and vocally condemning (and producing for legal prosecution) the priests who abuse(d) children in their churches, that the Vatican provides implicit approval for the continued abuse of children?

  336. 336
    Bernard Bumner

    I never said she was unhinged but she was emotionally overwrought. People can make their own judgements if it was an over reaction.

    Innuendo, then?

    All those words as you so eloquently put it have consequences for everyone. For Harriet it’s been vilification, for Amy well I’m not sure what it’s been for Amy.

    Harriet Hall has not been vilified, but criticised and made unwelcome by certain people who would once have been allies. It would be hard to argue that she handled the situation with any sensitivity or sensibility. (Rights are one thing, but responsibilty is another.)

    Amy certainly has been vilified and attacked, personally and professionally, and her substantial personal contribution to making TAM a success has been ignored and twisted.

    If the harassers could have been pointed out they would have been talked to and measures taken.

    Pointed out? As in, there is Harriet Hall, you may recognise her as one of your speakers? (I know there were others, but as a very visible example, there was one.)

    But no, the organisers of TAM didn’t proportionately react to the specific complaint; the put up a wall of steel that (by accident or purpose) served to isolate the victim. Their anti-harassment measures amount to little more than effectively quarantining the problem; they were badly conceived and poorly implemented, and it still remains unclear as to why this was the case (whether it was pride, malice, or incompetence).

    At best, the situation was mismanaged, since it can be to no-one’s satisfaction that it happened as it did. Grothe’s reputation has been shredded, Harriet Hall’s has certainly suffered, Amy has been left feeling victimised, and I would say that this could be the beginning of the end for TAM as a flagship skeptic’s event.

  337. 337
    Entrained

    @344
    I understand your arguments and they are all valid in my view.
    I don’t philosophically agree with your remedy.
    When someone says they are threatened you protect them and the only argument germaine to the discussion is if she had been harmed and no action to protect her had been taken, then this would be a very different discussion about the failure of TAM to physically protect an attendee. The analogy perfectly illustrates my point. There are laws in place to protect children from this type of harm and it did nothing. These crimes happened in neighborhoods that are self policeing and nothing prevented it. And even after folks in these tough neighborhoods found out, it continued. And yes I agree that people in the Vatican were responsible, it still happens. Paper and rules sure didn’t help any of those kids. By the way, a judge ruled this week the Vatican in not the employer of the priests so the Vatican is not financially responsible.

  338. 338
    Entrained

    @345
    Innuendo? Ah, you are a mind reader.
    In my view Harriet had been vilified but she made a decision and now bears the consequence. She felt responsible to make a statement. She did. People chose to interpret her actions and have rightly or wrongly.
    Harriet didn’t harass anyone in my view. The shrt was not a threat or harassing, it was her personal point of view which she gets to do. Amy gets to be upset if she chooses and you get to be however you choose. But harassment, nope. This is the genius of the constitution, we get to speak openly about our feelings and if toes get squeezed, well too bad. And by the way, I wasn’t crazy about the t shirt but she gets to do it.
    When someone says they feel threatened you protect them to the extent you can. Harriet was not going to physically assault Amy, how can you be sure about those sending the tweets? As I just mentioned in a previous note, if no remedial help had been taken and someone was hurt, this would be a whole different conversation.

  339. 339
    Bernard Bumner

    This is the genius of the constitution, we get to speak openly about our feelings and if toes get squeezed, well too bad.

    If you need to resort to referencing the Constitution to defend someone’s behaviour, it is a fair bet that their behaviour went beyond the pale for a normal social context.

    Anyway, as I said, rights are one thing, responsibility another. Her right to wear the shirt? Fine. But continuing to wear it, knowing that you have upset a notional ally who is also helping to sponsor the event at which you’re speaking? That makes you look like a shitty human being, it should have been dealt with.

    We know that the t-shirt was only part of the problem, but what significant cost was there to Harriet Hall to not continue wearing it? (Did she really only pack that one shirt?) On the other hand, what was the cost to Amy?

    Most people don’t find that to be much of a dilemma.

    And by the way, I wasn’t crazy about the t shirt but she gets to do it.

    Sure. But not at an event with an effective harassment policy.

    When someone says they feel threatened you protect them to the extent you can.

    Most effectively, by nullifying the threat.

    Harriet was not going to physically assault Amy,…

    What? Anything short of physical assault is fair game?

    Anyway, you feel free to wrestle with the definition of harassment. Don’t be surprised if you struggle to find agreement here.

  340. 340
    Sqrl

    I read all this with interest. As an onlooker from the UK, it’s saddening to see the sceptics group fracturing in this way; it’s a bit reminiscent of how religious groups split. Ironic, I guess.

    As ever, there is a lot of hot air and passion here, and perhaps too much scrutiny of exactly who said and did what to whom. I’m an occasional reader of these blogs, and I’m not familiar with who everyone is; however, the following is quite clear to me:

    1) Harriet Hall should not have worn the T-Shirt at the event. She publicly ridiculed a sponsor of the event, to Amy’s obvious distress. Perhaps she didn’t think about the consequences? Or perhaps she wanted to ridicule and cause offence? I cannot say as I do not know her. If Harriet has any compassion, she should apologise to Amy.

    2) Conferences are not free-for-alls where everyone can say anything to anyone no matter how offensive! Surely this is obvious? Codes of conduct should be agreed and in place – mocking sponsors would seem like a pretty good one to avoid! The organisers should have asked Harriet to remove the T-Shirt, or leave.

    3) Asking someone to remove your photo from their web-page is not an affront to free-speech. If you’ve taken the photo, you own the copywrite, pure and simple.

    The Atheism+ idea is new to me. I’m not convinced. Why not describe yourselves as humanists? Or am I missing the point? Both “sides” in this spat are atheists and so the base meaning is not going to change. Do we really want the sectarian divisions so ubiquitous within the religious community? Is this not the best way to polarise views and entrench our positions? I would hope that the humanist point of view is one that can be argued for – and would it not be better to have a freethinking debate in an open forum, rather than hurling vitriol at the other camp?

    Keep thinking freely,

    Sqrl

  341. 341
    Entrained

    #348
    It’s not a defense for behavior as much as their right to behave that way if they choose. If you don’t like it, then don’t do it but don’t presume to manage someone else’s choices.
    It doesn’t make anyone a shitty human being except in your opinion, for what that’s worth to Harriet. Probably not much.
    In all candor Harriet has spent her life earning the right to wear that shirt by being pretty tough and pretty brave so if someone doesn’t like her wearing it, tough shit. An effective harassment policy would not have prevented Harriet from wearing that shirt.
    Most effectively by nullifying the threat..that’s great.when you can determine what the threat is. Amy said she felt threatened and couldn’t identify where thevthreats came from which led to her being protected which you conveniently continue to ignore.
    If past performance is an indicator of future behavior then I agree that no one here will agree on what harassment means, which is causing this race to the basement.

  342. 342
    G Pierce (Was ~G~)

    I keep thinking of a scenario where I am in a restaurant for which I’ve pre-paid for a very expensive meal. People are at the next table are being obnoxious in a way that is directed at me, to be derisive of me making it impossible for me to enjoy my meal. Should the wait staff just ignore that or say something? If I pointed it out to the waitstaff or manager, what if they started talking about constitutional rights, and that they don’t presume to manage someone else’s choices. I think most people would leave in disgust and leave an irate review on yelp.

    I doubt a restaurant with a menu more expensive than say, Denny’s would last long if it regularly tolerated one table of patrons purposefully directing ire (in whatever form) directly at other specific patrons. Sounds more like a bar in an old western than an event I’d want to spend $1,000 to go to. (and yes, that is at least what I spent when I went to TAM in 2010.) Bottom line is, people who want that environment where people can be as big of assholes as they want (and presumably have to put up with it from others as well) can keep going, the rest of us can vote with our pocketbooks.

  343. 343
    Entrained

    @351
    Please don’t confuse the point with whether or not I think it’s right or not where boorish behavior is allowable. I am not defending boorish behavior but the right to be boorish. Any venue has the right to ask folks to leave or allow them to stay while others leave, it revolves around consequences and luck.
    Voltaire said, “I do not agree with what you say but defend to the death your right to say it.” Our country is founded on that principal and it also includes some types of behavior that is offensive. Recently, blogs have been loaded with ways to legislate behavior, just exactly like religion, just not the same behavior.
    That leaves me a choice, continue to spend the money I spend going to conferences and being involved or evaporate from this arena.
    I hate we have restricted the dialogue.
    I hate that bloggers and participants at time lack civility in discourse.
    Whether or not I agree with Jason or Stephanie, I believe they are trying to do the right thing, I just don’t think what they are doing is the right thing.
    And as the conversation continues, tempers flare, discourse dissolves and sides are drawn.
    We (Atheists) are going to splinter. Such a shame.

  344. 344
    G Pierce (Was ~G~)

    @352
    I would then benefit (as may others) from a bulleted list or something of your exact point(s) of contention here. I haven’t been able to decypher it yet. And of course if there are references to “people saying this” or “so and so wants this” quotations will be helpful if not necessary if you want to make sure we know what you are really trying to communicate.

  345. 345
    ericsmith

    @347

    “Amy gets to be upset if she chooses…”

    Will you stop that, please? Feelings do not work that way, as you well know.

  346. 346
    embertine

    My Surlyramics might be waiting for me when I get home from work today… *fingers crossed*

    Of course, I have now gone back on the site and found the photons one, and the pink Feynman diagram one, and the…

    Damn you, Amy! *shakes fist at sky*

  347. 347
    Dogsi

    My only beef with the whole “surly Amy” thing is the community censorship. Anyone who dissented from the accepted view was attacked. If skepticism is really the intention, people should be allowed to express dissenting views with out being kicked out of the forums or banned.

  348. 348
    Bernard Bumner

    You resuscitated the thread for that? Okay, but let me ask; do you have an example of anyone being banned or kicked off forums for merely expressing dissent?

    Have another look at the various threads discussing this – there is dissent aplenty (I suspect, more commonly there is misrepresentation, ignorance, and lies surround the circumstances of the incident, but there we go). The arguments are there to be seen. The counter-opinions, the naysaying, the vitriolic rants, are copiously spattered across the web. Where was the censorship?

  349. 349
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    My only beef with the whole “surly Amy” thing is the community censorship.

    So, they came to your house, took your computer, beat the crap out of you until you told them your passwords and then deleted everything you ever said and threatened you with more should you continue to?
    Guess you’Re on the run now and typing this from a throwaway phone.
    Wait, nobody did that but people argued with you, they disagreed with you, probably even used the word “fuck”?
    Here’s a hankie for your pains.

  350. 350
  351. 351
    bradfeaker

    Wow..I am appalled. See what happens when you aren’t looking. I (stupidly) thought that level of cruelty was reserved for High School. While I am glad I found this post, I am bitterly disappointed in quite a few people I had previously looked up to. Thanks for the info Jason.

  352. 352
    SallyStrange

    My only beef with the whole “surly Amy” thing is the community censorship. Anyone who dissented from the accepted view was attacked. If skepticism is really the intention, people should be allowed to express dissenting views with out being kicked out of the forums or banned.

    LOL! Yeah, people get attacked–the same way global warming denialists get attacked for “dissenting” from reality. You’re “allowed” to express anything you want. You’re just not “allowed” to express anything you want AND not be criticized for it–or “attacked” since you seem to like the taste of faux victimhood.

    You’re the platonic ideal of a FREEZE PEACH advocate. Keep up the good fight, Brave Hero!

  1. 353
    It Isn’t Enough to Feel Righteous | Almost Diamonds

    [...] you haven’t yet, check out Jason’s post on the harassment campaign Surly Amy (Amy Davis Roth) is facing because she decided to keep her commitments to TAM then didn’t keep quiet about the shit she [...]

  2. 354
  3. 355
    How I Unwittingly Infiltrated the Boy’s Club & Why It’s Time for a New Wave of Atheism | Blag Hag

    [...] to our private email listserv. And anyone associated with us feminists are fair game. People have tried to destroy Surly Amy’s business, and Justin Vacula has publicly posted her home address with a photo. One blogger who describes [...]

  4. 356
    Urkkkh! | Evolving Thoughts

    [...] The campaign against Amy Davis Roth [...]

  5. 357
    How to ruin the life of intrepid critic, Justin Vacula « elevatorgate

    [...] Write a post of FTBlogs about Justin Vacula, and bitch about him in the comments. There are currently 300+ comments, at the time of writing. 2. [...]

  6. 358
    Heroes that actually deserve the name | Alethian Worldview

    [...] Amy Davis Roth (Surly Amy) [...]

  7. 359
    A new atheism | Lousy Canuck

    [...] for or correctness of the criticism itself, we receive undue levels of vitriol and opprobrium, as Surly Amy has learned, for the mere crime of suggesting that we’re not taking harassment in our communities [...]

  8. 360
    A new dawn | Butterflies and Wheels

    [...] to our private email listserv. And anyone associated with us feminists are fair game. People have tried to destroy Surly Amy’s business, and Justin Vacula has publicly posted her home address with a photo. One blogger who describes [...]

  9. 361
    Against sexism | The Heretical Philosopher

    [...] also suggest reading “The campaign against Amy Davis Roth” for an example of the kind of behavior that Jen is posting about. Like this:LikeBe the first [...]

  10. 362
    This Week In FTB’s Year Zero – AtheismPlus « grey lining

    [...] my more private thinking about the evil among us. Then I read Lousy Canuck’s account of the whole abuse of Surly Amy at TAM and elsewhere, which enraged me (I had previously only known parts of that story). It shows [...]

  11. 363
    Deep Rifts | Reasonable Conversation

    [...] #mencallmethings hashtag, or listen to Watson talk about what she goes through regularly, or what Surly Amy went through at TAM this year just for being associated with Watson, or, or, or…I could go [...]

  12. 364
    An inevitable outcome of atheism, and a revolution in the works « Toward a Moral Life

    [...] to our private email listserv. And anyone associated with us feminists are fair game. People have tried to destroy Surly Amy’s business, and Justin Vacula has publicly posted her home address with a photo. One blogger who describes [...]

  13. 365
    What the Boss Likes – Taking a stand because you dissed one of my heros | Club Schadenfreude

    [...] bad behaviors and the request for policies standing against sexual harassment at real world events (this post seems to be a good rundown on how things started).  You know, in the 21st century, I’d think [...]

  14. 366
    The Great Geek Sexism Debate [Video] | Public House Services

    [...] harassed, just plain harassed). Roth makes very recognizable “Surly Amy” jewelry, and one group created knockoff Surly Amy necklaces featuring slogans making fun of things Roth had said on Twitter. I spoke to her by phone about what [...]

  15. 367
    Anatomy of a Bully | Atheism, Music, and More…

    [...] of course, there’s what happened to Amy Davis Roth at TAM 2012; by which I mean, what actually happened to Amy Davis Roth at TAM [...]

  16. 368
    Rebecca’s article at Slate | Butterflies and Wheels

    [...] and even out of their homes. My fellow writer on Skepchick, Amy Davis Roth, moved after her home address was posted on a forum dedicated to hating feminist skeptics. In September, blogger Greta Christina wrote that “when I [...]

  17. 369
    Sexism in the Skeptic Community | Ripening Reason

    [...] and even out of their homes. My fellow writer on Skepchick, Amy Davis Roth, moved after her home address was posted on a forum dedicated to hating feminist skeptics. In September, blogger Greta Christina wrote that “when [...]

  18. 370
    Splitting the difference between reality and mythology » Lousy Canuck

    [...] And the timing! Surely it’s a coincidence that yet again, something posted on the Slyme Pit is turned into a conspiracy to defame and libel one of their hated competitors for the heart and soul of the secular movement. Repeatedly. Really repeatedly. No really, all the damn time. [...]

  19. 371
    We Were Too Forgiving » En Tequila Es Verdad

    […] So you may remember when DJ Grothe accused certain skeptic women of scaring other women away from TAM, and destroyed the goodwill of many in our community. Former supporters ceased supporting TAM, but most of us were willing to give James Randi the benefit of the doubt. Some of us even tried to meet our obligations to TAM, and suffered for it. […]

  20. 372
    Esceptica | Posts desde Skepchick: Ateismo, sexismo y acoso. El precio de hablar.

    […] muerte, daños corporales o simplemente odio generalizado. Hemos sido sujetos de escarnio, parodia, burla, mentiras, amenazas de demandas judiciales y, en algunos casos de acoso […]

  21. 373
    Creeper Shitstorms Continue, This Time Among Rationalists | Bad Axe City

    […] voice in the New Atheist movement right now). Another woman, Amy Davis Roth, moved after her home address was posted on a forum dedicated to hating feminist […]

  22. 374
    I’m not sorry atheists are divided » Godlessness in Theory

    […] atheist bloggers have had their home addresses published, had their businesses sabotaged, had petitions demanding colleagues remove from their own podcasts, been blackballed from speaking […]

  23. 375
    Atheism+: What it is, and Why I want to be a Part of It | Atheism, Music, and More…

    […] other people, scaring Natalie Reed, whose anonymity protects her place in the real world. Then, Jason Thibeault told all of us how Skepchick blogger Amy Davis Roth, also known as Surly Amy, was ha…… leaving in tears, I might […]

  24. 376
    Terms of engagement: why the Dawkins-Benson pact is meaningful » Godlessness in Theory

    […] atheist bloggers have had their home addresses published, had their businesses sabotaged, had petitions demanding colleagues remove them from their own podcasts, been blackballed from […]

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