Trouble with Racists


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Freehold DM wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Immediately (colorful descriptor) destroying anyone that doesn't already see the world like you is akin to racist behavior. You should at least attempt to properly inform someone. Now this is different then willful ignorance however.
we simply disagree here.

Wait what don't you agree with? Educating the ignorant? or not destroying anyone that that doesn't see the world like you?

or that willful ignorance would be an exception?

I'm just asking so i can see where our point of contention is.

Silver Crusade

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Hannibull Rektor wrote:
Someone shouting racial slurs at you is an entirely different thing than someone obviously misusing a word in a potentially-offensive context. If someone shouts racial slurs at you, they probably mean it offensively. As I stated above, context it key.

If someone tells you a word a slur stop using it, for it is always offensive. Don't try to justify it, don't say you weren't using it "non-offensively", because that's not possible.

From what you tell us your friend was using a slur, this was pointed out to him, and instead of stopping he tried to justify his use of the word by claiming he was using it in an "non-slur" way which just isn't possible. After someone tells you it is a slur you can't go "oh well when I say it I don't mean it as a slur."


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Rysky wrote:
Hannibull Rektor wrote:
Someone shouting racial slurs at you is an entirely different thing than someone obviously misusing a word in a potentially-offensive context. If someone shouts racial slurs at you, they probably mean it offensively. As I stated above, context it key.

If someone tells you a word a slur stop using it, for it is always offensive. Don't try to justify it, don't say you weren't using it "non-offensively", because that's not possible.

From what you tell us your friend was using a slur, this was pointed out to him, and instead of stopping he tried to justify his use of the word by claiming he was using it in an "non-slur" way which just isn't possible. After someone tells you it is a slur you can't go "oh well when I say it I don't mean it as a slur."

I think pretty well if the word is insulting or your using it in an insulting manner its a slur. (hence any word can be a slur if it is used in that way). some words that are often used as slurs also have other meanings sometimes. typically people tend to stop using its non-insulting version for obvious reasons. It is normally going to be good manners to not use a word that is used commonly as a slur. Probably just always a good idea to avoid using words that are used as slurs in any sort of situation.

Now if you are not aware that the word is a slur and you find out you can be excused that first time (that seems fair to me anyways). afterwards its on you. I'm reminded of the movie clerks 2 about one of the main characters whose grandma used to call him a slur and he wasn't aware it was. at least until other characters let him know. He wanted to use it still but change the meaning but you can't really decide how other people are going to react to the words you choose. Most people can't just guess your use of it is positive no matter how you mean it.

(Anyways that is my take before this thread is locked)

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I should note that there's a lot of space for initial confusion about the slur mentioned upthread. There's a lot of stuff from just a few years back - stuff I actually like - that uses it openly and without intended prejudice. (Disney's Hunchback being the most prominent example.) So I totally get the confusion, and I won't jump down anyone's throat right off the bat for using it. When it most recently came up, we tried to gently correct and educate, and it seemed to work out all right.

At the very least, please don't use slurs around here. Even if you have marginalized friends who told you it's OK, this probably isn't the place.

As for the idea of banning, it should only be the first response in really blatant cases of active and/or targeted hate-speech. Otherwise, correct and educate, removing posts where necessary... but be prepared to put the hammer down. I'm all for giving folks a chance, but if someone makes it clear that they don't care and just want to see the world burn, it seems better to remove the offender rather than let them ruin things for everyone else.


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Kalindlara wrote:

I should note that there's a lot of space for initial confusion about the slur mentioned upthread. There's a lot of stuff from just a few years back - stuff I actually like - that uses it openly and without intended prejudice. (Disney's Hunchback being the most prominent example.) So I totally get the confusion, and I won't jump down anyone's throat right off the bat for using it. When it most recently came up, we tried to gently correct and educate, and it seemed to work out all right.

At the very least, please don't use slurs around here. Even if you have marginalized friends who told you it's OK, this probably isn't the place.

As for the idea of banning, it should only be the first response in really blatant cases of active and/or targeted hate-speech. Otherwise, correct and educate, removing posts where necessary... but be prepared to put the hammer down. I'm all for giving folks a chance, but if someone makes it clear that they don't care and just want to see the world burn, it seems better to remove the offender rather than let them ruin things for everyone else.

Actually yeah what she said sounds a lot better then mine go with that.

Also I didn't know about that one until I saw that thread.


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It is actually possible to go back and say, "Hey, I did not know that word really meant that." without continuing to use the word. People just had an anyeurism because the word was said in the first place despite being in an innocent context and he was trying to explain his take on what the word meant.

People calling you appellations like "Hitler", "fascist", or "bigot" usually prompt a desire to explain that you are not, in fact, a racist and did not know whatever you did was truly racist/whatever. That's part of the very natural human desire to try and calm down a volatile situation and exonerate oneself of any perceived social misalignment.

To not allow a person to explain that they meant something else when the context made it clear that they did not intend whatever they said as racist is just toxic behavior. People have a right to defend their intentions when people are intent on metaphorically raking them over the coals. It is not defending the word itself as much as their innocence as to what the word meant to others.

A measured approach is necessary to not come off as an ***hole, histrionic, preachy, etc. People who make mistakes react far better to honest discourse meant to correct said behavior instead of wild accusations and terrible false parallels born from a kneejerk reaction. There is, after all, a person on the other end of the screen and it pays to remember that not everyone knows what you know.

In my opinion, people getting irrational about someone making an honest mistake like that is almost as bad as if someone intentionally made a racist remark. Both are born from a closed mind and an unwillingness to view the world through any lens other than one's own.

EDIT: Seeing the new posts that cropped up while I posted this one, Miss Price has a wonderful way of handling it that matches the point I am making here. It benefits no one going off about unintentional misuse of words or acting on false information. Sane, reasonable discourse can often make a person see far more then name-calling, shaming, or banning can.

Silver Crusade

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Except from what you've repeatedly said you're friend wasn't doing that.

When someone tells you the word you used was a slur and to not to use it and you didn't know it at the time your response should be something along the lines of "Oh it is? My apologies, I didn't know. I won't use it again."

Instead you're friend tried to justify why they used that word rather than admit they messed up. "and he was trying to explain his take on what the word meant." His take means absolutely nothing. He was told it was a slur, and rather than apologize and admit that he messed up, however unintentionally, he tried to vindicate himself by declaring his specific use of that slur in that way somehow okay.

Sovereign Court

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Better, perhaps, to leave that event in the past and just try to do our best going forward.

Community & Digital Content Director

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Removed a couple escalated posts.

A couple things I think were missing in translation here: racist remarks aren't acceptable on our forums. There are contexts where certain posts may not be removed, such as when we see the community working to explain why a behavior is wrong, and the original poster coming to an amicable discourse about it (in that case, a moderator removing the posts doesn't make much sense). A poster saying something offensive out of the blue after extended participation in our community is generally not going to warrant permanent removal from our site (generally, these are cases where the poster doesn't understand the implications of words used, or the ground rules we lay out here). We reserve permanent suspensions for on-going and persistent issues (which we communicate to individuals on a one-on-one basis), or extreme cases. Permanent suspension is not a route we take lightly or enjoy resorting to.

Separately, restricting political threads was not caused by any one individual interaction, but a confluence of issues, which are outlined in the thread I indicated previously. We'd hope folks would have confidence in the Community Team's ability to discern what is "trolling" behavior and what is a general trend. This restriction is in response to a general and very negative trend we've seen over the last 10 months and our ability to properly accommodate the needed moderation for them. If we've missed something, or you're confused by action we've taken, we need to know about it. Detailing specifics to community@paizo.com is going to be the best route to ensure our team knows about a specific, individual issue and can respond in cases where you think action should be taken, and it hasn't.

Additionally: we do are not fond of bringing off-site drama to paizo.com. Interactions on other websites in other online communities don't belong here, for future reference.

Community & Digital Content Director

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Removed a derail. Folks, derailing this with a debate about what words are/are not offensive is not productive (for the record, "cis" is not a word our staff considers a slur, you can't use a particular "f" word to refer to gay people here either). If you're questioning whether a word is acceptable, our team is happy to answer, but elevating the conversation in this way doesn't help.


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Well, my long post just got eaten, so here is the short version:

Paizo has THE most well moderated messageboards on the internet. That is not some magical result of code writing,- it takes lots of hard, thankless work. Moderation is very difficult and can be extremely draining. The mods have gone above and beyond, and I give them my highest respect for everything. However, the discourse of our culture has become fairly toxic. Political threads were a luxury in the best of circumstances, and we are very far from the best of circumstances. The state of things is not an issue for Paizo to fix, it is an issue for our culture and media. I could not ask for a return of the political stuff until our society grows up a little.

I'm sad to see (most of) the politics stuff go, but I support the mods and Paizo 100% in that decision. I could not ask anyone to shoulder the burden of the current state of political discourse, especially when it has nothing to do with their actual business.

I would like to thank the mods for all that they have done, and apologize for any extra work I have caused them. I owe them all a few gallons of their favorite beverage!


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I'm feeling terribly sad about the loss of the political threads. The latest incident feels like all of us losing some very educational threads because of trolling. I wish the troll had been removed, not the discussion.

But, along with everyone else, I'm 100% behind the staff decision. I just hope that the LGBQT thread continues to stay open. In these times, that issue is very political and already draws people who post a lot of stuff that has nothing to do with those issues.

Accolades to staff for the skillful management of the previous threads.


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CrystalSeas wrote:

I'm feeling terribly sad about the loss of the political threads. The latest incident feels like all of us losing some very educational threads because of trolling. I wish the troll had been removed, not the discussion.

But, along with everyone else, I'm 100% behind the staff decision. I just hope that the LGBQT thread continues to stay open. In these times, that issue is very political and already draws people who post a lot of stuff that has nothing to do with those issues.

Accolades to staff for the skillful management of the previous threads.

Don't worry I don't believe the LGBQT thread will be going anywhere. And anyone going there to troll probably will get the ban hammer.

Scarab Sages

Chris Lambertz wrote:
Removed a derail. Folks, derailing this with a debate about what words are/are not offensive is not productive (for the record, "cis" is not a word our staff considers a slur, you can't use a particular "f" word to refer to gay people here either). If you're questioning whether a word is acceptable, our team is happy to answer, but elevating the conversation in this way doesn't help.

I hope this was not aimed at my post that was removed, if so, I do apologize, it was never my intetion to derail or to question whether a word is acceptable or not.


feytharn wrote:
Chris Lambertz wrote:
Removed a derail. Folks, derailing this with a debate about what words are/are not offensive is not productive (for the record, "cis" is not a word our staff considers a slur, you can't use a particular "f" word to refer to gay people here either). If you're questioning whether a word is acceptable, our team is happy to answer, but elevating the conversation in this way doesn't help.
I hope this was not aimed at my post that was removed, if so, I do apologize, it was never my intetion to derail or to question whether a word is acceptable or not.

Nah, that was probably me. :)

I also apologize, though that wasn't quite my intent either.


We are targeting derailers now?
*Shudders*
I'm afraid I'm getting all my posts deleted.


Wait, does that mean my greyhawk dwarf needs to be kind to those filthy knife ears?

Opps I meant to say, those woodland humanoids.

Sovereign Court

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Teiidae wrote:

Wait, does that mean my greyhawk dwarf needs to be kind to those filthy knife ears?

Opps I meant to say, those woodland humanoids.

Teiidae - you have restored my faith in the PFS Boards... I clicked on this thread hoping to find some material for use with my PCs. Instead I found... something less enjoyable.

Here, let me leave with a quote on a famous Racist...

"Rincewind had always been happy to think of himself as a racist. The One Hundred Meters, the Mile, the Marathon -- he'd run them all."


CrystalSeas wrote:
I'm feeling terribly sad about the loss of the political threads. The latest incident feels like all of us losing some very educational threads because of trolling. I wish the troll had been removed, not the discussion.

I'm sad to lose them myself. I especially enjoyed some of the postings about peoples own participation in politics by running for local office, attending meetings, protests, etc. With that said, the issues go far beyond one troll, one thread, and sometimes even to other parts of the messageboards. Even longtime frequent posters occasionally had posts removed, etc. While these issues were always present, the level of gnar has ramped up in the last year or so. If the mods are anything like me, they aren't looking for more of that kind of stress, especially at work!

I'll miss some of the really great discussions we once had, but I look forward to talking to the same folks about science, history, culture, and maybe even Pathfinder!


Fergie wrote:
CrystalSeas wrote:
I'm feeling terribly sad about the loss of the political threads. The latest incident feels like all of us losing some very educational threads because of trolling. I wish the troll had been removed, not the discussion.

I'm sad to lose them myself. I especially enjoyed some of the postings about peoples own participation in politics by running for local office, attending meetings, protests, etc. With that said, the issues go far beyond one troll, one thread, and sometimes even to other parts of the messageboards. Even longtime frequent posters occasionally had posts removed, etc. While these issues were always present, the level of gnar has ramped up in the last year or so. If the mods are anything like me, they aren't looking for more of that kind of stress, especially at work!

I'll miss some of the really great discussions we once had, but I look forward to talking to the same folks about science, history, culture, and maybe even Pathfinder!

Unfortunately some of that is going to fall under "politics."


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Muse. wrote:

Teiidae - you have restored my faith in the PFS Boards... I clicked on this thread hoping to find some material for use with my PCs. Instead I found... something less enjoyable.

Here, let me leave with a quote on a famous Racist...

"Rincewind had always been happy to think of himself as a racist. The One Hundred Meters, the Mile, the Marathon -- he'd run them all."

I've never read anything by Terry Pratchett, I've been meaning too.

That being said I'm glad someone enjoyed my tongue in cheek antics. Great quote by the way.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
CrystalSeas wrote:

I'm feeling terribly sad about the loss of the political threads. The latest incident feels like all of us losing some very educational threads because of trolling. I wish the troll had been removed, not the discussion.

But, along with everyone else, I'm 100% behind the staff decision. I just hope that the LGBQT thread continues to stay open. In these times, that issue is very political and already draws people who post a lot of stuff that has nothing to do with those issues.

Accolades to staff for the skillful management of the previous threads.

I'm optimistic that the closing of political threads is the first step in Paizo's full departure from works related to real-life politics.

Also I doubt the LGBQT thread will go down, as it seems to be more about community support than partisan politics.


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Kalindlara wrote:


As for the idea of banning, it should only be the first response in really blatant cases of active and/or targeted hate-speech. Otherwise, correct and educate, removing posts where necessary... but be prepared to put the hammer down.

Education only works when its one minor thing as sometimes the amount they get wrong is enough to start its own thread.

EDIT:
And mind you I don't necessarily hate anyone involved because said poster admitted ignorance but still I felt like I would just derail the thread horrendously.

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