Well, I can't say I'm particularly thrilled with being lumped into a political debate, but I will concede the point that life is in the things you do, however that doesn't preclude us from how we shape and use our language.
I don't know you so I won't assert whether you're a progressive or not. What I am saying is that progressives tend to fixate on words rather than deeds. I've been in enough debates on social justice, global warming, etc. to recognize that for progressives, it's often more about making themselves feel good rather than actually doing something.
One of the issues with the "judge people only on their actions" idea is that the actions we see from people online are
words (for the most part). I am not willing to fully divorce a person from their words. I'm not going to sit here and argue the pen is mightier from than the sword (although it can be) but it would be silly to judge people solely on actions alone. After all, there's business built around manufacturing image.
If I post a picture of our games team that clearly shows that nearly half the team are women, I think it says a lot about the "safe" environment we have. It also shows that we hire based on merit and not based on some frat house mentality. Meanwhile, you have guys like Charles Randall who you just know works somewhere where there's probably few if any women there. Why is that? Well, we know why don't we? That's what his "white knighting" is about. It's to make himself feel better about the fact that in real life, he's probably part of the problem. Hey, maybe I'm wrong, I'm willing to give him as much benefit of the doubt as he's willing to give me.
Our words do matter, especially when you and I are only able to communicate through them online (atm). I'd say things like MLK's Dream speech and chants of We Will Overcome are as much a part of the power of the Civil Rights movement as much as the actions. It's all tied together and I struggle to look at the world as a place where it's okay to say anything I want so long as I don't "rape her skull" or actually show up and murder you.
I concede that point. However, there's a big gray area of speech that is open to interpretation. Like Jafo later says, my statement was taken by him to mean that the anecdotes in that article aren't really that unusual compared to what many people get (like myself) on a regular basis. You chose to interpret it differently. Who's fault is that? Someone could have asked for clarification. And when I did try to clarify, our feminist friend claimed there was no way I could clarify without "looking like an asshole". Really?
Anyway, I'm wasn't claiming you said the ladies in the article need to toughen up, I'm saying you belittled their experiences by claiming yours (rightfully or not) were worse. If your point, as you claim, is that internet communication is toxic then perhaps it would've been better to have said that and left out the portion where you dismissed the experiences of two women in the gaming industry because their experiences didn't measure up to the stuff you've seen others receive or you yourself have received.
I'm not belittling their claims. I am, however, saying that the abuse they experienced may have had little to do with their sex and everything to do with the toxic culture of the Internet.
As a reminder: According to Xan, people on another forum are posting pictures of my home. When Leigh has people posting her address and home on public forums let me know.