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A transcript!

The busy beavers have been hard at work and have provided a complete transcript of that discussion between Jen McCreight, Rebecca Watson, Louis, Brownian, and me on Atheism+. Thanks!

Although…never, ever bother to read the comments on youtube. I went to get a link to the video, and found this amazing gem.

Uh, yeah. Elevator Guy ring a bell? It started out as a non-issue, then PZ Myers trumped up a storm and all of a sudden, Elevator Guy is a rapist, sexist misogynist son of a bitch bastard with white cisgender male privilege. Then she found all the traction in the world to make a mountain out of a molehill, and I’m sure she’s gotten more than a pretty penny from the whole debacle, and of course with support from PZ Myers himself.

We don’t even know what he looks like because she’s never said.

The distortions continue. I did not “trump up a storm”, and certainly did not say any such things about this elevator guy…and Rebecca Watson herself hasn’t said anything like that, either. It’s really bizarre to see how disconnected from reality the whispers have become.

Comments

  1. omnicrom says

    I’m totally and utterly unsurprised some privileged MRA nitwit totally distorted what happened. It happens everyday across the internet, “problem? What problem? It’s all the fault of those darn dirty feminists constantly making a mountain out of a molehill! let me lie some more to try and beef up my case”.

    Ugh.

  2. NitricAcid says

    I know a fellow who often wonders aloud if the incident in the elevator really happened, or if RW simply made it up. Since the outrageous part of ElevatorGate was not the fact that RW was hit on in an elevator, but that hundreds of men were horrified at the idea of being asked not to do that, I can’t really see how it matters.

  3. says

    Aside from the misogynist motivation to lie about this sort of thing, people believe all sorts of stupid shit, and it’s hard work quashing even the dumbest rumors once they get going. Add a little “selective skepticism”… it’d be surprising if nobody was still lying about EG.

  4. Usernames are smart says

    I know a fellow who often wonders aloud if the incident in the elevator really happened, or if RW simply made it up.—NitricAcid #2

    Well, yeah, because how else would she make all that money that she made?!</sarcasm>

    My pet theory is that people expect others to act the way THEY would in the same situation. If that’s true, then what does it say about our little basement-dweller? That he would accuse some random or imaginary person of inappropriate solicitaition in order to…get fame…and…make money? (How the hell does that work, again?)

  5. says

    Not to mention the sequel, where Rebecca Watson took out a contract on Richard Dawkins, and stabbed Stef McGraw to death in front of an audience.

    The sad thing is, this simpleton probably believes what he’s saying. The misogynists have constructed an elaborate mythology around Elevatorgate, which they proselytize at every opportunity. It’s rare to read a comment thread about this topic, without seeing one of the usual obsessives spreading their poison.

  6. says

    A year and a bit it is a little bit less bizarre. It seems like some men have this image of some sort of “transcendent male” that exists in the ether. That “magic man” absorbs any criticism directed at any man, and then funnels it down to all men everywhere. So a very specific and mild criticism of a single man in a narrow situation hits the “transcendent male”, gets combined with ever criticism ever leveled at any man in history, and then the idiots feel hit with all of that funneled stuff from the mythological magic man, and react accordingly.

    This explains why they are stupid, yet stupid in exactly the same way as though fed a fucking script.

  7. NitricAcid says

    #4- Said basement-dweller will cheerfully admit that he is a bitter misanthrope. That’s about the only time you’ll see him cheerful.

    He has reason for his bitterness, but he has a peculiar hatred/envy of any big name in the atheist/skeptical movement, and often rants about PZ, Dawkins, Randi and especially Shermer being frauds and posers.

  8. Chuck says

    I cannot BELIEVE we’re still talking about Elevator Guy. Rebecca Watson makes a single, innocuous, and totally inarguable comment — “Uh, guys, don’t do that” — and the shit is still hitting the fan a year later. I wonder what would have happened had she said something actually controversial.

  9. Amphiox says

    to make a mountain out of a molehill

    Spoken with all the unrecognized privilege of someone born riding on a giraffe.

  10. Lofty says

    Chuck, people will be talking about this until the last asshole MRA has reformed and treats women as equals. In the meantime talking about EG serves to draw out the MRAs and make them easily identifiable. The whole privilege thing won’t go away by ignoring its toxic presence.

  11. Anri says

    I wonder what would have happened had she said something actually controversial.

    She did say something controversial. She told men that women are not playthings.

    What’s sad is that’s controversial.

  12. Josh, Official SpokesGay says

    I know a fellow who often wonders aloud if the incident in the elevator really happened, or if RW simply made it up.

    I know a Russell Blackford who says shit like that.

  13. says

    We don’t even know what he looks like because she’s never said.

    This is actually the single most important aspect of the whole “elevator guy” idiotic reaction to Rebecca Watson’s YouTube video. No one knows what he looks like because she described behavior that she considered inappropriate given the circumstances. If you do not do this behavior then she’s not talking about you. That Ms. Watson described behavior makes what the guy looked like irrelevant.

    This is the important bit, Mr. MRA, do try to keep up.

    Now and then I encounter idiotic women who complain about the right behavior from the wrong person. The same behavior from one of the young, handsome cool desirable guys is OK but if it’s someone she does not find appealing then the behavior is some sort of act of wrongness. This conflating of undesired behavior with undesired individuals is something many of us encounter in our day to day lives. But this has nothing to do with someone who can clearly articulate an instance of behavior that’s wrong no matter who does it and has nothing to do with the behavior so described. If Ms. Watson’s YouTube video or any other woman pointing out how some men treat her disrespectfully or creep her out somehow triggers a flashback to all the times a woman rejected you then the best advice I can offer is grow up and get over it. Everything isn’t always about you.

  14. Amphiox says

    I wonder what would have happened had she said something actually controversial.

    Probably the same thing.

    Rebecca could say “hello”, and one of those MRA slimepitters would be foaming at the mouth about her inflection of the first syllable.

    They react the same way to everything she says, because she’s a woman who dares to speak.

  15. says

    Rebecca could say “hello”, and one of those MRA slimepitters would be foaming at the mouth about her inflection of the first syllable.

    Michael Moore on the Rachel Maddow show once said that all he has to say is “good morning” and there are people who hear “Communist!” It’s funny how certain individuals can only hear what they expect and not the content of what’s actually said.

  16. says

    No one knows what he looks like because she described behavior that she considered inappropriate given the circumstances. If you do not do this behavior then she’s not talking about you. That Ms. Watson described behavior makes what the guy looked like irrelevant.

    to the MRAs. it’s totes important. It’s the most important thing in this whole conversation. You see, they have this “theory” that “creep”, “don’t do that”, etc. are forms of slutshaming ugly men. According to their “reasoning”, if EG had been an “alpha-male” she’d done him right then and there. She only said “don’t do that” because he was a lowly beta fishmale.

  17. says

    You see, they have this “theory” that “creep”, “don’t do that”, etc. are forms of slutshaming ugly men.

    Sad to say I have encountered women who behave in this manner. But none of them are named Rebecca Watson. Conflating goes on at both ends of this idiocy.

    Is there some way we can teach elementary school children to take each people one individual at a time? Or is this some pipe dream of mine?

  18. arglebargle says

    Oh sweet fancy moses, why is the elevator incident such a big deal with anyone. Even if you are just trying to go after the feminist atheists you should be able to find something better than “Guys, don’t do that”, and if they were pissed because they didn’t realize it was a bad idea to proposition women alone in an enclosed space with no exit and didn’t like being told they had been acting like assholes, they should have gotten over it by now.

  19. says

    and if they were pissed because they didn’t realize it was a bad idea to proposition women alone in an enclosed space with no exit and didn’t like being told they had been acting like assholes, they should have gotten over it by now.

    One would expect so. But then, given who it is we’re talking about, we don’t believe in miracles, do we? I thought this was an atheist forum. [/snark>

  20. ChasCPeterson says

    Elevator Guy is a rapist, sexist misogynist son of a bitch bastard with white cisgender male privilege.

    I heard he was Jack Rawlinson.

    (Not sure how much that’s different.)

  21. Davros says

    Personally i am thankful to RW as i might have unthinkingly
    done what the EG guy did

    And when i saw RW’s video i was horrified not that She had asked that this not be done but that i could have been the EG guy it gave me lots to think about

    i am always happy to be called out on something that i might be unthinkingly doing

    if we do not learn how do we become better people

  22. zmidponk says

    arglebargle #19:

    Oh sweet fancy moses, why is the elevator incident such a big deal with anyone. Even if you are just trying to go after the feminist atheists you should be able to find something better than “Guys, don’t do that”, and if they were pissed because they didn’t realize it was a bad idea to proposition women alone in an enclosed space with no exit and didn’t like being told they had been acting like assholes, they should have gotten over it by now.

    The sad truth is that there still is some men in the world who are extremely quick to jump on any criticism by females of the behaviour of any man as proof of ‘feminazis oppressing men’, to such a degree that a woman pointing out slightly creepy behaviour as slightly creepy behaviour, and explaining why it’s slightly creepy is sufficient to stir up a shitstorm that massively over-exaggerates what was actually said so that we’re still hearing about it, or, at least, a somewhat distorted version of it, over a year later.

  23. Muz says

    For a while I was one of those who thought the internet would lead us out of the dark ages of lies and misinformation, leading to bad policy and war over myths, and into the sunlit uplands of empowered, informed democracy.
    Obviously plenty has disabused me of this notion since those optimistic days. But with Elevatorgate I’ve been able to watch lies and distortions turn into the official version for a whole bunch of people, first hand. Then watch them dig in when actually faced with the facts of this non issue, clinging for dear life to their team and its self important rage.

    It’s been enlightening. Terrifying but enlightening too.
    Happy as hell it’s not directed at me.

  24. im says

    I was thinking about ‘why did the MRA care about Rebecca saying how he looked’. I kind of wonder where the idea that women creep-shame men who they would normally just reject comes from, especially given that PUA culture already has the established assumption that women’s goal is to reject men.

    One thing I really want to deal wiht is the assumption and either truth or falsehood that women have it much easier than men finding an acceptable partner if they have poor social skills. It’s awfully pathetic that these men get to the point of envying women for their sexual harrassment.

  25. piegasm says

    I wonder what would have happened had she said something actually controversial.

    Same thing. I was just watching Rebecca’s CFI talk about how women’s intuition is total BS. The top comment, with ~120 votes, is some tool snarkily saying he’s sorry for being white and male. The talk isn’t really even about sexism per se and she’s actually more critical of women who perpetuate this myth than men. Apparently MRAs have now convinced themselves that Rebecca Watson never speaks about anything other than her alleged hatred of men.

  26. coldthinker says

    Are violent threats not illegal in the US (on internet forums or otherwise)? I try to avoid reading the worst garbage, but I’ve seen some horribly threatening comments against Rebecca Watson or other people which have been so explicitly violent and graphic that they seem actionable.

    I respect people like Rebecca Watson for trying to rise above these threats, but still threatening someone with rape or other violence certainly crosses the line. In my part of the world, there have been police investigations in such cases. I’m not sure if the perpetrators were eventually prosecuted, since going after IP addresses behind the pseudonyms is not an easy issue. Still, the police and legal system is there to protect our safety from violence. So, at certain point it would serve the public interest to investigate and prosecute the internet thugs, as even if acquitted, it would give pause to those with problems managing their violent urges.

    Or is this seen as a free speech issue in the US?

  27. Louis says

    Barrypearson,

    I’ll give ‘em a look when the server lets me. It seems your blog might be suffering from Pharyngulation or something!

    Louis

  28. Tinjoe says

    After being linked to a video making fun of Jen McCreight tweeting that her boyfriend “banned” her from the internet because it was some failure of feminism or some bullshit like that, I came to a realization, you can’t win with these people.

    These people simply hate you, they resent your prominence in the community and they will never allow the possibility of conceding anything. Say the sky is blue, they’ll probably tell you you’re wrong because sometimes it’s red. Try to say “Guys, don’t do that” and they’ll hear “Chop their dicks off for our mad god Feminista”

    No wonder there is a group of people who no longer wish to engage with them any longer, they continue to make the same bad/tired points without giving a single inch or demonstrate the possibility that they might be wrong in their definitions of feminism, sexism, or whatever their ill-formed beefs appear to be.

  29. jarjar says

    @im

    One thing I really want to deal wiht is the assumption and either truth or falsehood that women have it much easier than men finding an acceptable partner if they have poor social skills. It’s awfully pathetic that these men get to the point of envying women for their sexual harrassment.

    I am under the assumption that this is true for a lot of women where I live. And it has a lot to do with gender roles.

    Where I live most women meet men the same way. They spend an hour or two dressing up and putting on makeup. Then they go out to the bar with a group of friends and they just sit there like fish bait and wait for prince charming to ride up and sweep them off their feet.

    If you are a shy or anti-social guy who is afraid to approach people then you are just not going to meet anyone. They’re not going to approach you. Not even if they like you. After all, if you don’t like them enough to approach them and try to woo them (like all the other guys that want to get laid) then you must not be all that into them, anyway.

    As for girls with poor social skills, lets be honest, a lot of men will tolerate poor social skills or any number of mental problems if the girl is attractive.

  30. Quinn Martindale says

    coldthinker

    Are violent threats not illegal in the US (on internet forums or otherwise)?

    Broadly they are, if we’re talking about specific threats to individuals. Although each state has its own penal code, generally states criminalize threats in two ways. Threats which place someone in reasonable fear of immediate bodily harm are assault (e.g. yelling “I’ll kill you” at someone in close proximity. Threats which attempt to intimidate someone to constrain their behavior are coercion (e.g. sending someone a death threat to prevent them from speaking out on a subject.) Of course, the fact that something is against the law doesn’t mean that law enforcement will do anything about it.

  31. David Marjanović says

    No one knows what he looks like because she described behavior that she considered inappropriate given the circumstances. If you do not do this behavior then she’s not talking about you. That Ms. Watson described behavior makes what the guy looked like irrelevant.

    to the MRAs. it’s totes important. It’s the most important thing in this whole conversation. You see, they have this “theory” that “creep”, “don’t do that”, etc. are forms of slutshaming ugly men. According to their “reasoning”, if EG had been an “alpha-male” she’d done him right then and there. She only said “don’t do that” because he was a lowly beta fishmale.

    *lightbulb moment*

    Of course! This allows them to believe “but I wouldn’t have been rejected! He’s a loser, I’m, like, totally not! I’m totally an alpha-male, man! I can, like, totally have every chick I might possibly want!”

    What a clusterfuck of desperation and stupidity.

    I am under the assumption that this is true for a lot of women where I live. And it has a lot to do with gender roles.

    Where I live most women meet men the same way. They spend an hour or two dressing up and putting on makeup. Then they go out to the bar with a group of friends and they just sit there like fish bait and wait for prince charming to ride up and sweep them off their feet.

    If you are a shy or anti-social guy who is afraid to approach people then you are just not going to meet anyone. They’re not going to approach you. Not even if they like you. After all, if you don’t like them enough to approach them and try to woo them (like all the other guys that want to get laid) then you must not be all that into them, anyway.

    Exhibit A for patriarchy hurts men, too.

  32. says

    Of course! This allows them to believe ““but I wouldn’t have been rejected! He’s a loser, I’m, like, totally not! I’m totally an alpha-male, man! I can, like, totally have every chick I might possibly want!””

    actually, no. most MRAs consider themselves beta males oppressed by both the alphas and all the women who refuse to fuck them. Most oppressed group in the universe and blah blah

  33. says

    As for girls with poor social skills, lets be honest, a lot of men will tolerate poor social skills or any number of mental problems if the girl is attractive.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    no.

  34. TonyJ says

    Don’t you people know that the phrase “Guys, don’t do that” is just about the most offensive thing ever uttered?

  35. David Marjanović says

    actually, no. most MRAs consider themselves beta males oppressed by both the alphas and all the women who refuse to fuck them. Most oppressed group in the universe and blah blah

    Oh.

  36. carlie says

    I can’t believe they’re complaining she hasn”t outed him. IIRC, one reason she gave was to protect him from possible internet assholery, because she didn’t think he deserved that. And in thanks for that, she gets more assholery aimed at her. Can’t win for losing with these guys.

  37. says

    and certainly did not say any such things about this elevator guy

    No, you didn’t but when Dawkins didn’t understand why Rebecca was uncomfortable (beside the objectification) despite her saying “I was a single woman, you know, in a foreign country, at four AM, in a hotel elevator, with you, just you” and asked you what he was missing you explicitely explained why, because of the existence of cases where women are raped in elevators, it makes them uncomfortable to be alone with a man, in a small confined space.

    They take that as you accusing EG of being a rapist even though it has nothing to do with him and everything to do with Rebecca not knowing him and being unable to read his mind to know how he would react.

    They also take grave offence at men being viewed as potential rapists, the logical conclusion of that attitude being that women should never be anxious in a man’s presence unless he is already raping her (they don’t say it explicitely and may not have thought it through but it is the logical conclusion none the less).

    Another poster also called you and Ashley Miller liars because DJ claimed there were no reports of harassment at TAM and instead you said (Ashley in a blog post and you in a G+ hangout) that he claimed there were no cases of harassment at TAM.

    I pointed out that it was most likely accidental given that besides a slightly different wording it made no difference as either way Ashley’s experience mooted DJ’s argument so that there was no motive for it to be deliberate, but he still hasn’t retracted his claim.

    I’ve also noticed what I am starting to call the two step shuffle:

    First step: Dismiss all internet misogyny as being from trolls who will say any horrid thing to get a reaction out of you.

    Second step: Dismiss all unevidenced report of real-life misogyny by saying something like “I’m not sure if I believe her”.

    That way they only have to deal with cases with witnesses which, of course, are much rarer and thus enables them to say that they don’t think there is a misogyny problem in the atheistic community.

    I’m not sure if that tactic is conscious or not but it is very disturbing and frustrating. The level of cognitive dissonance, unevidenced assertions, avoiding of answering questions and rarely admitting they were wrong on a point makes it really feel like debating with creationists and really drives home the point of why Ateism+ is needed IMO.

    Also, Youtube’s 500 characters per comment limit makes debating an absolute pain and favours unevidenced assertions over backed up arguments.

  38. markbrown says

    I was told by a MRA on YouTube that ElavatorGuy was Richard Dawkins, and Rebecca Watson was trying to capitalize on his fame. Despite never naming the guy.

    @Julien Rousseau> The 500 character limit is bad enough on YouTube, but not being able to put proper links into comments annoys me more.

  39. says

    Nah, you can just post link(.)com instead of link.com so it is not too bad.

    Breaking a detailed answer in 500 character chunks, having Youtube ask you for a captcha because you posted many small comments… is IMO worse.