Feminism/Sexism and Gaming/Geek/Popular culture Catch All

SixteenBlue wrote:

Regardless of who you're talking about (male, female, famous, hermit, whatever) it's really weird to call someone a fake nerd.

If you would have told me 20 years ago that people would be pushing their dubious interests in video games and rpg books as a way to garner a following and media attention, I certainly wouldn't have believed it. We are in a strange world.

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

I dunno. I guess it's like art - you know it when you see it? It's definitely subjective and might be wholly in my head! I don't want to derail this bit here with one of my personal crusades that I realize is really actually unimportant. So I will close with emphasizing my big problem is just the phony commercialization of "nerd culture".

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

Angry internet men, duh.

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

And how exactly does one determine who is fake and who is real?

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:

Regardless of who you're talking about (male, female, famous, hermit, whatever) it's really weird to call someone a fake nerd.

If you would have told me 20 years ago that people would be pushing their dubious interests in video games and rpg books as a way to garner a following and media attention, I certainly wouldn't have believed it. We are in a strange world.

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

I dunno. I guess it's like art - you know it when you see it? It's definitely subjective and might be wholly in my head! I don't want to derail this bit here with one of my personal crusades that I realize is really actually unimportant. So I will close with emphasizing my big problem is just the phony commercialization of "nerd culture".

Care to elaborate on how you know they're dubious?

Tanglebones wrote:
clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

Angry internet men, duh.

So, business as usual then.

clover wrote:
Tanglebones wrote:
clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

Angry internet men, duh.

So, business as usual then. :D

Totes!

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

I don't know, but I want to meet this person. I spent my entire childhood trying to convince people I wasn't a nerd, and I met with little success.

SixteenBlue wrote:

Care to elaborate on how you know they're dubious?

Not really. I'm not going to argue for what is essentially a feeling of insincerity that I get from certain folks.

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:

Care to elaborate on how you know they're dubious?

Not really. I'm not going to argue for what is essentially a feeling of insincerity that I get from certain folks.

Well you said fake nerdery is a real thing. I just figured you'd have more to back that up than a feeling.

SixteenBlue wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:

Care to elaborate on how you know they're dubious?

Not really. I'm not going to argue for what is essentially a feeling of insincerity that I get from certain folks.

Well you said fake nerdery is a real thing. I just figured you'd have more to back that up than a feeling.

IMAGE(http://a5.mzstatic.com/us/r1000/002/Purple/be/cc/c0/mzl.enfeyiod.320x480-75.jpg)

SixteenBlue wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:

Care to elaborate on how you know they're dubious?

Not really. I'm not going to argue for what is essentially a feeling of insincerity that I get from certain folks.

Well you said fake nerdery is a real thing. I just figured you'd have more to back that up than a feeling.

It's two different tracks here, and I'm trying to keep this clear:

There is A) The use of "nerd culture" in a clumsy attempt to sell and market things. Of this there is clear and objective evidence. See here - http://www.gamergrub.com/

And there is B) People who seem to overinflate or overstate their self-professed nerddom in order to garner media attention and a following. This is, obviously, completely subjective. I don't profess to know such people well or personally, and accept I may well be very much off the mark.

Sometimes I think people's outrage and irritation with A causes people to throw others in category B with the firm belief associated with objective evidence you would find in A (but doesn't exist).

I don't think a discomfort with having one's preferred culture exploited or coopted is exclusive to nerdery (and maybe we should use a different term, like "gamers," to keep things focused?), nor do I think it's entirely wrong. To lend an example from another genre, Goose Island recently sold out to AbInbev, which has caught them *major* flack in the craft beer market.

That the discomfort in the gamer world seems (almost) exclusively focused on women is a telling clue, though, and I thought Blooo successfully detailed the difference.

Seth wrote:

I don't think a discomfort with having one's preferred culture exploited or coopted is exclusive to nerdery (and maybe we should use a different term, like "gamers," to keep things focused?), nor do I think it's entirely wrong. To lend an example from another genre, Goose Island recently sold out to AbInbev, which has caught them *major* flack in the craft beer market.

That the discomfort in the gamer world seems (almost) exclusively focused on women is a telling clue, though, and I thought Blooo successfully detailed the difference.

The difference is you just gave an actual example. You didn't say you have a feeling Goose Island is a dubious craft beer.

(I hope I formed that sentence right, I have no idea about the craft beer market).

SixteenBlue wrote:
Seth wrote:

I don't think a discomfort with having one's preferred culture exploited or coopted is exclusive to nerdery (and maybe we should use a different term, like "gamers," to keep things focused?), nor do I think it's entirely wrong. To lend an example from another genre, Goose Island recently sold out to AbInbev, which has caught them *major* flack in the craft beer market.

That the discomfort in the gamer world seems (almost) exclusively focused on women is a telling clue, though, and I thought Blooo successfully detailed the difference.

The difference is you just gave an actual example. You didn't say you have a feeling Goose Island is a dubious craft beer.

(I hope I formed that sentence right, I have no idea about the craft beer market).

FAKE BEER NERD.

(sorry)

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:
Seth wrote:

I don't think a discomfort with having one's preferred culture exploited or coopted is exclusive to nerdery (and maybe we should use a different term, like "gamers," to keep things focused?), nor do I think it's entirely wrong. To lend an example from another genre, Goose Island recently sold out to AbInbev, which has caught them *major* flack in the craft beer market.

That the discomfort in the gamer world seems (almost) exclusively focused on women is a telling clue, though, and I thought Blooo successfully detailed the difference.

The difference is you just gave an actual example. You didn't say you have a feeling Goose Island is a dubious craft beer.

(I hope I formed that sentence right, I have no idea about the craft beer market).

FAKE BEER NERD.

(sorry)

I laughed.

I'm reminded of this moment in pop culture history.

Heh, runway flannel.

Hehe, most of those models look pissed off at having to wear flannel.

It's the early 90s... maybe everyone's pissed they had to be dragged from their coke dens.

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

Seth wrote:

Instead, we've had people try to tell me they know the innermost thoughts of the women in my life better than I do, and that I'm discussing from a position of complete ignorance. When that happens, honest discussion ends. ... That said, I get that many posters here find the idea of a woman taking pleasure in domestic work roles anathema; that's fine and I applaud them for their views.

Valmorian wrote:

Nobody said they knew the women in your life better than you do. Nor did anyone say that women can't or shouldn't take pleasure in domestic work roles.

MrDeVil909 wrote:

Yeah, I don't recall seeing anything like that being said.

Seth wrote:

Well if you don't see it, I suppose we're at an impasse. maybe check some of DanB's , Amoebic's, and Valmorian's comments.

Now that things have calmed down a bit, I wondered if we could revisit this a little bit. I think it would be a useful thing to do in order to learn how to avoid saying things that give that impression in future discussion--because I don't believe that anybody was actually trying to make such a claim.

I tried to dredge back through the discussion back to page 48 to find any comments from DanB, Amoebic, or Valmorian that I think might be taken that way, in order to include them here.

Seth, if you would be willing, could you comment and share your interpretation, and maybe pull some other quotes if there are other comments that you interpreted in that way? Since you mentioned multiple people and I only found one comment, I imagine there must be other comments you were thinking of.

--

Seth wrote:

Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad.

Bet they'd enjoy someone lending a hand though. As a kid and teenager my mother "appeared" to somewhat enjoy running the house, by the time I was old enough to have an adult conversation about these things I discovered there was lots of task that she fundamentally disliked. So it's not clear to me how we can use the things people accept as their lot as a decent measure of harms caused.

I can see how this would be taken as a comment on Seth's family and on Seth, although I belive it was intended in a more general sense.

I do agree with the sentiment in that I have never known anyone whose attitude towards housework was genuine enjoyment. Satisfaction when it's done, yes. A certain calm meditative feeling when doing it, sometimes. But never enjoyment (as in something to look forward to).

I'd imagine that a better way to express the same sentiment would have been for DanB to simply share his astonishment and relate his anecdote without the first sentence, since that sentence seems like the part that makes the comment feel personal and a bit accusatory.

Hypatian your response was thoughtful and considered, I'll need till tomorrow to think about it.

To add a different direction for the thread....

I just watched Salt. What an awesome movie, and Angelina Jolie kicked all sorts of ass. How awesome would it be if the IP was continued with her character, Evelyn Salt.

To follow up on the awesome point made by Amoebic, a friend of mine in university, when asked by my (female) PhD supervisor what she wanted to do when she was finished answered " Get married, have kids and be a full-time mother". To which my professor answered "Don't you want to do something important with your life?"

My question is the following: Is there a difficulty in the feminist movement(can you even group them together like that? Honest question from a lack of knowledge here) in resolving the conflict between wanting women to go out and do an outside-the-house job and also allowing for the fact that some women are perfectly happy and content to be "just a mother".

(Note, there is not intended to be any disrespect aimed at either choice. Being a mother is a damned hard job for which not enough recognition is given. )

I'd like to state that my interpretations are my own and they have no bearing or projection onto anyone else. I don't speak for anyone I do know, let alone those that I don't. If I came across as trying to speak for all the womens, that wasn't my intent. Each woman has a different takeaway that I fully support if it aligns with my perspective or not.

Taking pride in domestic pursuits is fine. If that's what people choose to do, more power to 'em. I make a bitchin broccolli salad and I enjoy hand-washing dishes. Anything that is a source of pride and bestows a satisfying sense of accomplishment is a worthwhile endeavor. What doesn't sit comfortably with me are messages directed at women that this is the expectation from them whether they choose it or not.

So much of media directed at women preys on insecurity and implied expectations from society, social circles, and stereotypes. That ad is just like millions made before it. You're struggling; we're here to help.

And because they're fantastic AND relevant:

There are definitely feminists who reject any of the traditional trappings of femininity--and who look down on women who choose that path, even when they do it fully consciously. That's a very problematic stance to take, and it brings in all sorts of other issues.

Basically, it's just like that thing your professor said: sexist, but in a different way. The essential problem is one of categorizing things traditionally associated with feminine gender roles as "not as good as the things traditionally associated with masculine gender roles". The thing is, that doesn't actually solve the problem. To solve the problem, you need to: 1) establish that there should be no expectation that someone fill the roles traditionally associated with their gender, 2) get rid of the bias that the roles traditionally associated with femininity are inferior, and 3) get rid of the bias that women are in any way inferior to men.

The people who straight up reject the traditional stuff somehow keep the idea that certain roles and behaviors are inferior, and then decide that therefore in order for women to be equal all of those things must be rejected. This, understandably, is rather a turn-off for people who are attached to those roles and behaviors and yet still feel that they should be treated as equals.

It's not a totally bad thing to have some people that think that way: it's good to have people who will militantly reject traditions, because that helps break stereotypes. The only reprehensible thing about it is projecting those attitudes onto others, rather than just applying it to your own life. Saying "I will have nothing to do with traditionally feminine things" is fine. Saying "Nobody should be expected to fulfill certain expectations based on their gender" is great. Saying "you are a bad person and not a feminist because you don't reject all traditionally feminine things" is awful.

But, of course, those attitudes do not constitute all of feminist thought, or even the majority of it. Unfortunately, it's pretty common for that line of thought to be portrayed as "feminism" in media, since it's an awfully easy target to mock. If other feminist ideas were presented more commonly, that wouldn't be a problem--but it gets held up as a straw man for all feminism, which leads people who actually *are* feminists to reject the label because they don't identify with what they see presented as "feminism".

clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

IMAGE(http://www.toptenz.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/biff-tannen-300x208.jpg)

I notice that "mother" is being used here as a direct synonym for "home-manager." Is this common usage?

kazooka wrote:
clover wrote:

Who gets to decide where the line for "real nerd" is?

IMAGE(http://www.toptenz.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/biff-tannen-300x208.jpg)

IMAGE(http://i1094.photobucket.com/albums/i453/czpv/NERDS.jpg)

LarryC wrote:

I notice that "mother" is being used here as a direct synonym for "home-manager." Is this common usage?

It's a common conflation, though not equivalent. I'm a "homemaker" now but have no plans for being a mother.