Paizo - Care to rebuttal?


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Dave2 wrote:
True but where is the proof that Paizo did it to be harmful or discriminatory.

That is completely irrelevant in patters of enforcing anti-discrimination policy: you can discriminate just fine by not caring about something, you don't need to actively hate it.


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Not meaning to be harmful and discriminatory doesn't absolve you of actually being harmful or discriminatory. I could hurt someone and say "but I didn't mean to!" but that doesn't change the fact that my actions or words still hurt someone. If Paizo made a mistake, its their responsibility to own up to it, apologize, and do better, regardless of their intent


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Dave2 wrote:
It is not necessarily silly due to the state of California being involved.

Why would the state of California be involved?

Why are all of your scenarios presented as being around male/female cohabitation or illness of some kind?

Why do you, and others, keep bringing up harassment statistics without sharing harassment statistics?

Why do you keep presenting that there is some sort of liability issue without providing any evidence or precedent of same?


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I'm no longer certain of what the conversation is about. Given what we know, any of the following scenarios could have happened. (I want to be clear they are all hypothetical possibilities and not based on any real knowledge. I'm not presuming anyone's actual motivations here.)

1. Crystal's situation made her manager uncomfortable due to the fact the manager disliked trans people or considered them to not match their gender identity, and the manager chose to forbid the rooming.

2. Crystal's situation made her manager uncomfortable because it was the first time a trans and cis woman were provided the opportunity to room together, and the manager made a call without considering all of the implications. Or made the call out of fear of legal repercussions that may or may not have actually existed.

3. Amanda secretly was uncomfortable with rooming with Crystal (for any reason, trans or not) and mentioned it to the manager who chose to run interference by taking responsibility for making the call.

4. Crystal was disliked by her manager for reasons unrelated to being trans, and the rooming was forbidden in order to keep Crystal from going to the convention, not to keep her separate from cis women.

I mean, the discussion now seems to be whether or not a real law was broken, but I don't see the relevance of that. Actions taken because someone thought the law (or rule, in the case of an unlikely company policy on the matter) was such and such don't necessarily have to have an actual law that justifies them. Say for instance, an 18 year old breaks up with her 17 year old boyfriend because she thinks that legally she's no longer allowed to date him, when the law of her state actually allows an age gap of two years. You can point to the fact that the law doesn't exist, but the perceived law still motivated her decision. (and in the case that the law and her actions were reversed, she would still suffer legal consequences for breaking the law.)

Silver Crusade

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Dave2 wrote:

So if that is the case then as mentioned those individuals to impact greater change should go to the labor board or EEOC who could assist them with their issues. Those agencies can investigate, mediate, and fine companies.

Blizzard entertainment is an example of that with the state of California. It has had an impact at Blizzard.

Never said it was against the law or illegal. I have said it can present an un needed risk of possible harassment charges. So having two employees share room by going to a voluntary activity (conventions) could have seemed like a risk not worth taking at the time. Why would a company take that risk on voluntary activity.

We are probably never going to have going to know all the details. I do not. My whole point in this is it may not be as simple an issue as people think. As I have said before would I think it is ok for Amanda and Crystal to share a room. Sure. Once again though it does not matter what I think.

I do think it is very good idea to have full time HR staff.
Having worked in government for close to 24 years there can be a lot of variables to complaints of conduct or harassment charges. Have dealt state and federal
EEOC investigations. Have worked with staff who have had medical diagnosis/disabilities there are often complex issue to be dealt with.

As a information referral there is state agency in every state that helps individuals with medical diagnosis/disabilities find a job, keep a job, or advance in a job.

Type in. Vocational Rehabilitation services state of
Type in your state.

Before anyone says it no I am not saying Amanda or Crystal had a medical diagnosis/disability.

But I'm again asking you what about a trans person makes it an "unneeded risk of harassment charges" over any other pairing of individuals. Gender identity and sexuality are not the same thing. There is just as much "risk of harassment charges" when you pair two women if one of them is attracted to women, or two men if one of them is attracted to men. Gender identity plays zero role in attraction to others.

Dark Archive

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Kain Darkwind wrote:
I mean, the discussion now seems to be whether or not a real law was broken, but I don't see the relevance of that. Actions taken because someone thought the law (or rule, in the case of an unlikely company policy on the matter) was such and such don't necessarily have to have an actual law that justifies them.

This right here. If I'm understanding this right, some people are arguing that Paizo is either absolved of or innocent of these allegations of transphobia on the grounds that they THOUGHT they were covering themselves legally.

If Paizo made the call to discriminate against someone based on her gender because they thought they knew the rules and they were wrong, they were still wrong. Malice isn't required, you can just not know enough about trans people, which unfortunately is a problem a significant part of the population has.

Silver Crusade

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“Trans women aren’t women but are men and all men will rape women the first chance they get so by this law I just made up we have to keep men and women separate so Paizo was in the right.”

Worst. Carousel. Ever.

Dark Archive

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Yeah that is the journey we keep being taken on.


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Mergy wrote:
Kain Darkwind wrote:
I mean, the discussion now seems to be whether or not a real law was broken, but I don't see the relevance of that. Actions taken because someone thought the law (or rule, in the case of an unlikely company policy on the matter) was such and such don't necessarily have to have an actual law that justifies them.

This right here. If I'm understanding this right, some people are arguing that Paizo is either absolved of or innocent of these allegations of transphobia on the grounds that they THOUGHT they were covering themselves legally.

If Paizo made the call to discriminate against someone based on her gender because they thought they knew the rules and they were wrong, they were still wrong. Malice isn't required, you can just not know enough about trans people, which unfortunately is a problem a significant part of the population has.

Right. If you follow a law that doesn't exist, there isn't automatically a problem, other than you wasting your time. But if you break a law that you didn't know exists, you still broke the law.

And in either instance, I don't think we'll be privy to the details, unless Crystal gets more specific and/or whoever the manager was that made the call comes forward to explain.

And as I've said previously, I don't think they actually matter. A trans person shouldn't have to wonder if they were being separated from a group due to their identity.

As for the lawyers, it seems to me that the beancounters in HR would be just as adverse to a lawsuit from allegations of systemic transphobic actions as they would from a lawsuit that they placed a cis woman in a dangerous situation by having her room with a trans woman.

Realistically, if you had reason to suspect ANY person, regardless of their gender or orientation, of being a sexual predator or even just a creep, then they should have been on a no-con list to begin with, until you could remove them from the company entirely.

Silver Crusade

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What makes rooming with a trans woman a "dangerous situation"?


Cori Marie wrote:
What makes rooming with a trans woman a "dangerous situation"?

I would think the point might be nothing special, which would then be why we shouldn't think that fending off lawsuits about that topic should need to be specially important to any beancounters in HR.

Yeah?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Bean counters in an HR department that didn’t exist at the time and won’t till they finally hire them.


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Lonesomechunk wrote:
Not meaning to be harmful and discriminatory doesn't absolve you of actually being harmful or discriminatory. I could hurt someone and say "but I didn't mean to!" but that doesn't change the fact that my actions or words still hurt someone. If Paizo made a mistake, its their responsibility to own up to it, apologize, and do better, regardless of their intent

Deliberate malice in hurting someone, hurting someone from being reckless, hurting someone in pursuit of some other goal, and just plain unavoidable accidents are all different things even if the person involved is hurt.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
"She hasn't sued them, so clearly there's no real problem" isn't how I think we should have this discussion. Many victims of horrible crimes don't bother going to the police because they don't expect to be believed or don't feel like punishing the wrongdoer will fix anything, and going to the police is technically free. Would you say those crimes clearly didn't truly occur or matter?

There is also the issue of complaint escalation procedures, usually companies have a protocol for escalating complaints without threat of retribution. If Paizo had that procedure implemented and she didn't follow it, it is possible that whatever issue occured was an employee issue rather than a Paizo issue.

Humbly,
Yawar

Silver Crusade

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Ah we're to the victim blaming portion of the argument I see

Liberty's Edge

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So, if a victim doesn't report something to an authority they have reason to mistrust, they're to blame?

Edit: Cori, you type too fast, dammit.

Silver Crusade

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Watchmen sorta wrote:
I'm not a Republic Serial Villain Dan, I posted 29 minutes ago.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Lol, ok I read and type too slow, you've exposed my one and only fault.

That, and that those are two faults, so make that two and only faults, oh wait.....

((Or I just don't hit refresh before typing my reply))

Dark Archive

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Lonesomechunk wrote:
Not meaning to be harmful and discriminatory doesn't absolve you of actually being harmful or discriminatory. I could hurt someone and say "but I didn't mean to!" but that doesn't change the fact that my actions or words still hurt someone. If Paizo made a mistake, its their responsibility to own up to it, apologize, and do better, regardless of their intent
Deliberate malice in hurting someone, hurting someone from being reckless, hurting someone in pursuit of some other goal, and just plain unavoidable accidents are all different things even if the person involved is hurt.

Not from the perspective of choosing to discriminate based on mistaken beliefs. "I thought I was doing the right thing" when someone is doing the wrong thing might buy some leniency once they've at least acknowledged that they've done the wrong thing.


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YawarFiesta wrote:

There is also the issue of complaint escalation procedures, usually companies have a protocol for escalating complaints without threat of retribution. If Paizo had that procedure implemented and she didn't follow it, it is possible that whatever issue occured was an employee issue rather than a Paizo issue.

Humbly,
Yawar

So to let Paizo off the hook we have to invent policies and procedures and then we have to make the assumption that Crystal ignored those policies and procedures that we just created whole cloth in our minds.

Customer Service Representative

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I have removed a few posts. Please stay on topic and keep things civil. Thank you!


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Cori Marie wrote:
What makes rooming with a trans woman a "dangerous situation"?

If she had a loaded gun. A real katana she liked swinging around in the dark. A recent trip to some of the local taco places I've heard about from con tales. If she was sick with an easily communicable disease. If her significant other was an angry jealous person prone to violence. If she was a runaway princess from Jupiter that even as we speak, lethal bounty hunters are scouring the system for any trace of to bring her back to her evil uncle, that he might legitimize his claim to the throne.

The theme of the above would seem to be 'nothing inherent to being trans' in my mind? But I'm not a bean counter. I don't have a lot of empathy for a theoretical position predicated on the idea that a trans woman rooming with a cis woman is anything other than two women rooming together. Because the silent part that keeps running through my mind is that they are thinking "We don't want to room a man with a woman." As long as the situation is just trans women can't room with cis women, that's the reason I'm assuming, and that's blatant transphobia. In fact, the only version of the scenario that makes sense to me that wouldn't be transphobic would be if the decision came about due to something particular to Crystal herself, rather than her gender. Which seems it might still be a problem, just a different one. And as I've said, we don't have enough information to support that.

At worst, Paizo had a deliberately transphobic policy. At best, Paizo's decision made Crystal feel she was the target of a transphobic policy. All the other scenarios fit in between those, whether their decision was a bad call based on a poor understanding of legal ramifications or whether it was a personal attack on Crystal, or whether it was a transphobic choice on the part of a manager and not Paizo at large.

Unless someone is on a different page than 'trans women are women, trans men are men', I don't see how the particulars of the case matter overmuch to the community at large. No matter what degree of transphobia was involved, I don't think anyone here thinks it was ok for Crystal to feel discriminated against for her gender identity? Now, I am of the opinion that legally, we won't be seeing an apology or acknowledgement of that unless Paizo loses a courtcase about it, because such an admission opens them up to being sued. That's not going to sit well with a lot of people, but I think that is the reality. Which is why I wanted to see that there would be a policy that prevented such discrimination from occurring in the future.


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So I was asked to reference my sources for possible harassment issues that can arise with men sharing a room with women. I am glad you won your case. Can you please reference the laws that allow a persons self identification to be legally recognized. Where this is important is that if someone self identifies as women but it is not legally recognized then this is where the issues can occur. So siting such court presidences or any state laws would be helpful for many people.

If they existed at the time of the incident then there is strong discrimination case.

You took the state of California out of context. The rest is why it is important to bring in the labor board or the EEOC the provide protection for staff. It created change at Blizzard. It also creates a record of cases. This part is important to help create change. Posting on Twitter or public forums may get statements but the same issues seem to be occurring.


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Dave2 wrote:
So I was asked to reference my sources for possible harassment issues that can arise with men sharing a room with women.

No, you were asked to provide references of your sources for your claim that there were possible harassment issues that can arise with a trans woman sharing a room with a woman. Those are two different things.

Dave2 wrote:
Can you please reference the laws that allow a persons self identification to be legally recognized.

Why should they provide reference to any applicable laws - you've refused to do so for five days in a row now. Why do other peoples statements require a different level of evidentiary standard than yours do?

Dave2 wrote:
You took the state of California out of context.

Did I take out of context that you were further discussing Blizzard so that you could continue to muddy the waters about the conversation we're actually having?

Dave2 wrote:
The rest is why it is important to bring in the labor board or the EEOC the provide protection for staff.

How do you know that they didn't? You have literally spent a week now parroting this line as if to armchair quarterback what is happening with this claim. You don't know if they filed and it was thrown out on a technicality. You don't know if they weren't aware they could file until after the deadline for reporting abuse cases like this. You in fact know just as little as the rest of us.

Dave2 wrote:

It created change at Blizzard. It also creates a record of cases. This part is important to help create change. Posting on Twitter or public forums may get statements but the same issues seem to be occurring.

Ah yes both more water-muddying talk of Blizzard and more recrimination that they "did it wrong" by posting things to Twitter wrapped up in a nice combo.

Can you prove that there are legitimate liability issues with a trans woman rooming with a woman that don't derive from trans panic?

You've spoken about harassment rates - can you show us the statistics that demonstrate that trans women are likely sexual harassers or are you just making that up?

Silver Crusade

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Okay, but what is the difference between harassment that occurs from a man to a woman and say the harassment that occurs from a lesbian or bisexual woman to a woman? Our point is that gender identity and sexual harassment do not go together, and your classifying a trans woman as a man just because of what equipment you think she has is transphobic.


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Cori Marie wrote:
Ah we're to the victim blaming portion of the argument I see

No, she wouldn't be at fault for the incident either way. It is just that Paizo wouldn't be at fault for systemic transphobia, since Paizo's system would have had mechanisms in place to correct or adress the issue. It isn't any companies business to micromanage their employees.

Additionally, if this were the case, she would be partially responsible for any similar future event regarding the person responsible since her failure to report this issues continues to enable the person responsible.

Finally, unless you asume that Paizo was threatening their employees or had a history of ignoring this complaints, which are really serious accusation, she not trusting Paizo would be an issue on her side, not Paizo's. And, if Paizo's would have retaliated or ignored her after a complaint she would have had a relative solid discrimination case on her hands.

Again, this is assuming Paizo had such system in place.

Humbly,
Yawar

Silver Crusade

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Well considering that part of the allegations here are that management repeatedly ignored complaints and that there was a history of retaliation and threats? Yeah, I'd say there was every reason to think that taking it up the ladder would not work out.


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YawarFiesta wrote:


No, she wouldn't be at fault for the incident either way. It is just that Paizo wouldn't be at fault for systemic transphobia, since Paizo's system would have had mechanisms in place to correct or adress the issue. It isn't any companies business to micromanage their employees.

I'm awful curious about this one: If she wouldn't be at fault, and Paizo wouldn't be at fault - who would be at fault?


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dirtypool wrote:
YawarFiesta wrote:


No, she wouldn't be at fault for the incident either way. It is just that Paizo wouldn't be at fault for systemic transphobia, since Paizo's system would have had mechanisms in place to correct or adress the issue. It isn't any companies business to micromanage their employees.

I'm awful curious about this one: If she wouldn't be at fault, and Paizo wouldn't be at fault - who would be at fault?

The individual working at Paizo that was responsible for the incident. Much like a company isn't really responsible if an employee commits murder all of the sudden during company time.

Humbly,
Yawar

EDITED: clarified who would be at fault.

Silver Crusade

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You make absolutely no sense here.


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YawarFiesta wrote:

The individual working at the company. Much like a company isn't really responsible if an employee commits murder all of the sudden during company time.

Humbly,
Yawar

Okay, let's take generics out of it. If Crystal isn't at fault and Paizo isn't at fault, then who is at fault?

Liberty's Edge

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Upper management using sharp elbows, ignoring legitimate grievances, fostering uncooperative relationships between departments, and retaliation are all things that I'm the most convinced was (maybe still is) a real problem as we have every reason to believe that is actually based in reality given how widespread this type of thing is in ALL corporations and businesses.

Hopefully, this has already been partially addressed with internal changes or otherwise is being prioritized because improvements on this are going to make for the most impactful and beneficial changes for workers... well, other than finding ways to raise the salary of most staff and freelancers contributing to their many products but that's an entirely different subject that Mark, in particular, seems to be interested in working on so I have some faith that the needle will move on that front.


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dirtypool wrote:
YawarFiesta wrote:

The individual working at the company. Much like a company isn't really responsible if an employee commits murder all of the sudden during company time.

Humbly,
Yawar

Okay, let's take generics out of it. If Crystal isn't at fault and Paizo isn't at fault, then who is at fault?

Hard to tell, since Crystal doesn't single out the manager or supervisor that vetoed her from going to conventions. But that would be the person to start with.

Humbly,
Yawar


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Cori Marie wrote:
You make absolutely no sense here.

This complaints escalations leave a paper trail. While they are generally implemented to protect companies from false or exaggerated accusations, they are solid evidence when a company is at fault. This makes Crystal's decision not to sue baffling, IMO, since, giving what you said, it should have been an easy case.

Humbly,
Yawar


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YawarFiesta wrote:


Hard to tell, since Crystal doesn't single out the manager or supervisor that vetoed her from going to conventions. But that would be the person to start with.

Yes, and that manager would in this instance be acting as the company and would therefore be considered Paizo.

YawarFiesta wrote:
This complaints escalations leave a paper trail. While they are generally implemented to protect companies from false or exaggerated accusations, they are solid evidence when a company is at fault. This makes Crystal's decision not to sue baffling, IMO, since, giving what you said, it should have been an easy case.

First, we don't know that a complaints escalation process with a paper trail even exists at Paizo, that was a thing you mentioned "might" exist. We don't have proof, so we can't assume that it does.

Secondly, a person's decision not to pursue legal recourse is often decided through a cost analysis of whether the outlay of legal fees at the start of a lawsuit is worth the potential settlement at the end - and since we have plenty of evidence that Paizo doesn't pay that great - Crystal might simply not have been able to afford to commit herself to a lawsuit.


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YawarFiesta wrote:
Cori Marie wrote:
You make absolutely no sense here.

This complaints escalations leave a paper trail. While they are generally implemented to protect companies from false or exaggerated accusations, they are solid evidence when a company is at fault. This makes Crystal's decision not to sue baffling, IMO, since, giving what you said she it should have been an easy case.

Humbly,
Yawar

This operates on the assumption of a 'perfect environment'.

When the perception is that 'the system Does Not Work' or 'Does Not Work Well', then such logical constructs break down rapidly.

We have an incredibly robust paper trail/HR machine at work.

And no one uses it, because EVERY time it gets used, the 'unofficial' retaliation is an order of magnitude WORSE than the original issues brought up. The only people that really use it are actually abusers of it, who game the system to try and get a perceived advantage.

EDIT: And no, this isn't make-believe exaggeration of the facts. Every time someone calls on HR it's a month's long proctology exam while the person who put the report in gets treated with 'kid' gloves, and then for years (and decades) thereafter they are effectively immune to direct retaliation.

The indirect retaliation, however...


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
YawarFiesta wrote:
Cori Marie wrote:
You make absolutely no sense here.

This complaints escalations leave a paper trail. While they are generally implemented to protect companies from false or exaggerated accusations, they are solid evidence when a company is at fault. This makes Crystal's decision not to sue baffling, IMO, since, giving what you said she it should have been an easy case.

Humbly,
Yawar

This operates on the assumption of a 'perfect environment'.

When the perception is that 'the system Does Not Work' or 'Does Not Work Well', then such logical constructs break down rapidly.

We have an incredibly robust paper trail/HR machine at work.

And no one uses it, because EVERY time it gets used, the 'unofficial' retaliation is an order of magnitude WORSE than the original issues brought up. The only people that really use it are actually abusers of it, who game the system to try and get a perceived advantage.

EDIT: And no, this isn't make-believe exaggeration of the facts. Every time someone calls on HR it's a month's long proctology exam while the person who put the report in gets treated with 'kid' gloves, and then for years (and decades) thereafter they are effectively immune to direct retaliation.

The indirect retaliation, however...

While certainly possible that would be an incredibly serious accusation to throw lightly. And sadly, one of the things that would require a lawsuit to change the status quo.

Humbly,
Yawar

Shadow Lodge

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YawarFiesta wrote:
And sadly, one of the things that would require a lawsuit to change the status quo.

Does it, though?


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YawarFiesta wrote:

While certainly possible that would be an incredibly serious accusation to throw lightly. And sadly, one of the things that would require a lawsuit to change the status quo.

They just claimed that the perfect environment that you presume exists breaks down if the perception is the system doesn't work or doesn't work well - the rest of it was an example based on their own work environment.


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dirtypool wrote:
YawarFiesta wrote:


Hard to tell, since Crystal doesn't single out the manager or supervisor that vetoed her from going to conventions. But that would be the person to start with.

Yes, and that manager would in this instance be acting as the company and would therefore be considered Paizo.

YawarFiesta wrote:
This complaints escalations leave a paper trail. While they are generally implemented to protect companies from false or exaggerated accusations, they are solid evidence when a company is at fault. This makes Crystal's decision not to sue baffling, IMO, since, giving what you said, it should have been an easy case.

First, we don't know that a complaints escalation process with a paper trail even exists at Paizo, that was a thing you mentioned "might" exist. We don't have proof, so we can't assume that it does.

Secondly, a person's decision not to pursue legal recourse is often decided through a cost analysis of whether the outlay of legal fees at the start of a lawsuit is worth the potential settlement at the end - and since we have plenty of evidence that Paizo doesn't pay that great - Crystal might simply not have been able to afford to commit herself to a lawsuit.

And as Wei Ji says below, there are consequences for lawsuits or even reporting through HR. Often indirect consequences that can't be proven. If management is hostile, it's really burning your bridges with the company and sometimes with the entire industry. Word gets around and no one wants to hire someone who's going to cause them trouble.

There are real reasons people don't report even workplace problems that are much worse than any of these. The internal systems for handling them are very often designed to protect not just the company but the managers who put them in place. The legal system is a blunt instrument that can be effective, but usually only if the offense is blatant or long term and pervasive.
And then of course, if any one talks about it publicly without reporting it, they can be dismissed. And if they do report it or sue, but without sufficient evidence to prove their case, they can still be dismissed. Then eventually when something too blatant to cover up happens, it can be treated as no big deal, since everyone already knew the company was like that.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

The indirect retaliation, however...

There is no mention from Crystal of receiving any indirect retaliation on her tweets, if I remember right, so I don't think this would be the case.

Humbly,
Yawar

Silver Crusade

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There are many, many reasons that someone may not wish to pursue a lawsuit. Chief among them is the fact that lawsuits take a lot of mental bandwidth whether or not you're actually doing the work. My lawsuit took two years, was incredibly stressful, and caused my ulcer to flare up for the first time since high school.

Lawsuits are also expensive. Even if you find a firm willing to represent you pro bono, there may be times that you have to take days off work without pay to deal with the lawsuit or go to court.

They take a lot of time. As said before, mine took two years. Some people may not want to deal with that for several years, reliving the trauma over and over.

They make you a target. I sued a beloved local grocery store. I got death threats in the mail afterward. That was for a small grocery store in a town of 60,000 people. Paizo is a beloved TTRPG company with many fans. Suing them would bring a hellstorm from people that want to "protect" the company they love.

You can keep saying she should have sued, but there are very good reasons she may not have wanted to.


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YawarFiesta wrote:
While certainly possible that would be an incredibly serious accusation to throw lightly. And sadly, one of the things that would require a lawsuit to change the status quo.

A lawsuit that would be incredibly hard to win. Despite a few high-profile examples, successful cases are incredibly rare and require either really blatant abuse or well documented long term pervasive discrimination.

Indirect retaliation is common, often subtle and almost never legally actionable.


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You can't afford a lawsuit with the money Paizo pays. Unless it's small claims case, but these change nothing in grand scheme of things.

Silver Crusade

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You could potentially get representation from someone like Lambda Legal, but Seattle isn't really the place they're looking for when selecting cases, because Seattle won't help set precedent in a place where it's much more needed


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Totally Not Gorbacz wrote:
You can't afford a lawsuit with the money Paizo pays. Unless it's small claims case, but these change nothing in grand scheme of things.

If you have solid evidence, some lawyer would take the case in exchange for a substantial cut of the settlement or compensation that would be obtained.

Humbly,
Yawar

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