|20 people marked this as a favorite.|
I had high hopes that action was being taken to protect trans people on these forums when the blog post about not tolerating transphobia was made.
Months later, I can see that it was mostly just talk and a token effort. Users who constantly make thinly veiled dog whistles about issues affecting vulnerable communities, and who are constantly antagonistic towards trans people, including making threatening lists of most of the major active openly trans people on the forums on their profile pages, are still here, and their hate speech has not been reigned in - they just have to thinly veil it.
People are still permitted to turn the thread attached to every "day of visibility" blog post into a debate on whether the relevant group of people deserve to be visible.
The list user I mention had their list removed by moderation (after I complained via email), but has re-added the list to their profile, just with my username and the context removed.
They will probably claim that it is a coincidence that the list of people they don't like overlaps almost completely with the active openly trans users on these forums.
Users that where banned for being openly transphobic or other reasons keep returning with dummy accounts, some of which are allowed to operate despite being pretty obvious about who they are.
Other users have been permitted to spend weeks fiercely debating the de-emphasis of slavery in the game, because apparently slavery being de-emphasized is something that is actually a deal-breaker for them.
Multiple trans users, and users from (or who are supportive of) various vulnerable communities have left these forums because of the toxic environment here. I am following suit. I probably won't be back, and I definitely won't be participating in pathfinder infinite (which I had been planning on releasing content on). I had thought about raising this privately in an email, but I have reason to believe anything posted privately will just be buried, because any trust I had is gone. We were told that the new Director of Community would protect certain users from moderation, and it seems that those warnings where correct.
When any minority feels like it is unsafe to be in a space, that space loses irreplaceable voices, and when bigots are permitted to get away with making one minority feel unsafe, all bigots are emboldened to make everyone else unsafe.
As a trans person, I just can't be on these forums anymore. I used to love it here, as I love talking about the game that I am so passionate about and found the discussions on how to play the game very useful. But now it is a massive drain on my energy and harmful to my mental health. Now the forums are a place that causes me anxiety attacks, and writing this final post has me on the verge of a panic attack*.
I have to fight the urge to end this with an apology for making a fuss or being dramatic - the fuss is justified, the feelings I am having valid. So instead I will just say that I hope that people at Paizo take notice of what I am trying to say, so that they can maybe stem the flight of LGBT people from the forums (and the company itself) by making the forums (and the company itself) a safer place, which can only be beneficial to Paizo and the community they claim to care about.
*Don't worry about me, I will be fine, I am resilient and have gotten very good at dealing with my mental health. Unfortunately, dealing with my mental health at this point means leaving these forums, which used to be a boon to my mental health.