|Kiki Wilson · Progress · July 14th, 2012|
SKEPTICHUNTCON'S NEW TEXTUAL HARASSMENT POLICY TO COMBAT HARASSING EMOTICONS/TWEETS
In recent weeks and months it has come to light that some attendees at The Amazing Meeting 2011 (TAM) were textually harassed during that conference, while organizers did nothing. Here is one of their harrowing stories (warning: text-based assault triggers)
(Excerpted from Facebook)
The night before I was at the Del Mar Lounge. One man introduced himself and my friend and I weren’t too interested, but we politely chatted a bit. He wouldn’t shut up about the Yankees for some reason. Then the next day he posted at me on Facebook (we have a few common FB friends). He made disgusting remarks, about his tongue and god-knows what else.
I was horrified, especially by the phallus emoticon at the end. I told DJ Grothe, as well as hotel security. I emailed my congressman, President Obama, and the Postmaster General (I later learned that he does not regulate electronic mail, just regular mail). I was promised there would be an investigation, and perhaps a grand jury indictment. Although I sent many insistent emails, I never received the satisfactory action that I deeply desired.
While DJ Grothe has steadfastly denied that TAM has a real problem with harassing tweets, texts, and the like, we are taking action on the issue. Here is SkeptichuntCON’s brand new textual harassment policy, which will protect each of the 40 or so conference attendees from unwanted assaults, 140 characters at a time:
Skeptichunt is dedicated to facilitating open discourse, and providing a sterile, harassment-free experience for all participants regardless of race, religion, gender, body size, sexual orientation, favorite color, choice of hat, or preferred degree of victimhood. We will not tolerate harassment of anyone, in any form, by anyone in attendance of any event we have organized, even if it happens at a nearby private bar or hotel where we actually have absolutely no control.
Textual harassment includes offensive emoticons and tweets related to gender, disability, astrological sign, physical appearance, race, favorite Pokemon, bra cup size, dietary status, political party, and sexual orientation except for necophilia, because even we have to draw the line somewhere. Actually we take that back. You can’t judge people that way.
The following emoticons and similar variants are banned at SkeptichuntCON:
( . ) ( . )
>:| (angry faces are intimidating/stalking)
The use of the numbers “3” and “8” are permitted, for now, but should be used judiciously and not in any way in which they might be misconstrued as either breasts or buttocks. It is recommended that conference-goers spell these out, as in “I’m in room three zero eight.”
If you lean over someone’s shoulder and see that they are being textually harassed, or if you receive a harassing retweet, please contact a Skeptichunt or Freethoughtblahgs organizer or volunteer. Be assured they can help you, even though they have no training or experience in security or human resources issues. We value your attendance.