Facebook admits mistake on violent misogynist images


8:27 am - May 29th 2013

by Sunny Hundal    


      Share on Tumblr

Trigger warning: Some readers may find images at the end of this post distressing

Social media giant Facebook bowed to immense public pressure yesterday and accepted the need to revise its guidelines on hate speech against women.

The abrupt u-turn came after an online campaign targeted companies whose ads appeared next to offensive content promoting violence against women.

By yesterday evening 15 companies had pulled their advertising, including Nationwide and Nissan UK. Most of the companies who had pulled their ads were American.

Some, such as Dove, said they were working “aggressively” with Facebook to “resolve the issue”.

Facebook had earlier resisted attempts at removing such content, saying in a statement: “As you may expect in any diverse community of more than a billion people, we occasionally see people post distasteful or disturbing content, or make crude attempts at humour. While it may be vulgar and offensive, distasteful content on its own does not violate our policies.”

The statement was odd since Facebook already removes anti-Semitic, Islamophobic and homophobic hate speech. It has even rejected an ad about breast cancer because it showed a woman’s breast.

The online campaign was organised by over 40 women’s groups and individuals, including US-based Women, Action and the Media (WAM), the UK-based Everyday Sexism project and blogger Soraya Chemaly.

An open letter to Facebook had demanded “swift, comprehensive and effective action addressing the representation of rape and domestic violence on Facebook”.

Facebook initially refused to take action against Groups with titles such as: ‘Rapist Commmunity’, ‘Slapping hookers in the face with a shoe’, ‘punching rihanna’, ‘Bips Dead Hooker Emporium’, ‘This is why Indian girls are raped’ and ‘I kill bitches like you’.

After the social media campaign it deleted some of the groups mentioned.

In a blog-post yesterday evening a Facebook spokesperson wrote:

In recent days, it has become clear that our systems to identify and remove hate speech have failed to work as effectively as we would like, particularly around issues of gender-based hate. In some cases, content is not being removed as quickly as we want. In other cases, content that should be removed has not been or has been evaluated using outdated criteria.

We have been working over the past several months to improve our systems to respond to reports of violations, but the guidelines used by these systems have failed to capture all the content that violates our standards.

Facebook also promised to review and update guidelines and improve moderators’ training.

Examples of images Facebook initially refused to delete

.

.

.

.

Images taken from the campaign page.

    Share on Tumblr   submit to reddit  


About the author
Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
· Other posts by


Story Filed Under: News

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.


Reader comments


1. Chaise Guevara

That “I like her for her brains” one isn’t necessarily misogynistic. Could just as easily be a bloke. The rest are pretty nasty, though. Whether or not Facebook should take them down is kinda tricky; the whole free speech vs encouraging violence issue.

Going by the names of those groups I somewhat doubt they were making the world a better place.

Considering the hate that spews out of the Daily Mail and some other British newspapers constantly, it’s ridiculous to target a few non-entities on facebook. Let’s have a boycott of the people who put ads next to Littlejohn.

Two men who don’t have a problem with this sort of thing. What a surprise.

Ya. A huge part of the problem is how many men dismiss this kind of thing as trivial. Guess we just need to keep explaining that it’s not.

5. Chaise Guevara

@ 3 orly

“Two men who don’t have a problem with this sort of thing. What a surprise.”

Uh, was one of those men meant to be me? Did you actually read my post or are you just making stuff up as you go?

6. So Much For Subtlety

3. orly

Two men who don’t have a problem with this sort of thing. What a surprise.

Why is that (or not) a surprise? Because men can’t think? Can’t emote? What piece of trite sexism is behind that comment?

Hillary

Ya. A huge part of the problem is how many men dismiss this kind of thing as trivial. Guess we just need to keep explaining that it’s not.

Well go on. Explain why this is not trivial. Why do you think that a bunch of stupid 14 year olds on the internet poses any threat to anyone at all?

It seems to me these banners are an attempt at humour and the key to the joke is they are caricaturing the po faced attitudes adopted by many feminists and liberals.

Perhaps that’s why not many round here are laughing.

For example, the strapline on the Chloroform advert “The way real men get the girl” is almost certainly ironic however the greater irony is that the feminist lobby are proving the point of the posters (that they believe there are some things too serious to be joked about) by trying to have them banned.

@ Chaise Going by the names of those groups I somewhat doubt they were making the world a better place.

Spoken like a true Fabian, however I’m not convinced that was their mission……

8. Chaise Guevara

@ pagar

“Spoken like a true Fabian, however I’m not convinced that was their mission”

True.

To be honest, without context it’s hard to know whether these images are black comedy based on taking refuge in audacity, or expressions of genuine misogyny with wriggle room left to say “just kidding!” if challenged. I suspect the latter though.

Regardless of motive, I’ve little doubt that this stuff has at least some influence in terms of convincing misogynists that their behaviour is normal and hence acceptable. No idea how much.

9. Happy Wednesday

Dear Chaise Guevara, pagar, So Much For Subtlety, Chris,

You obviously have no awareness of what all that pictures represent. Violence against women… not anything new, not a thing to forget, nor forgive.

Sigh. Some of the commenters here don’t event think for a second to engage their brains before commenting.

Anyway – I’m glad that FB is finally taking a stronger stance against this stupidity. This isn’t a free speech issue.

I heard them talking about this on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour this morning. While the images are pretty obnoxious, this stuff on Facebook is more like modern day graffiti isn’t it? Like some obscene pornographic message you might see written on the wall of a public toilet years ago.

The woman on the radio sounded awfully pious and earnest – in the way that she was so concerned to make sure these images were filtered out by Facebook in a much more thorough way than they have been so far.
She wanted Facebook to really get off their butts and get serious about this, and not wait untill they had some complaints from users.
As I don’t use Facebook, I don’t really know how important any of this is.

Fair enough on most of the images, but the Chloroform image does appear to be a satire.

The central image is one of several Chloroform memes that have been doing the rounds for quite a while but the ‘real men’ strapline is a later addition and appears to be intended as a dig at the original meme.

@ Sunny

I’m glad that FB is finally taking a stronger stance against this stupidity. This isn’t a free speech issue.

Eh!!!

If a group looking to apply pressure to media hosts to censor content they find offensive is not a free speech issue, what is it?

I don’t wish to prevent free speech but I am pleased to hear that facebook is taking this stance, in the interest of women everywhere and hope that this extends to ALL images and references made about violence towards women and rape. It’s no joke!

@ Geraldine

I don’t wish to prevent free speech but I am pleased to hear that facebook is taking this stance

Sorry to have to advise, but this is known as having and eating your cake……

“Dear Chaise Guevara, pagar, So Much For Subtlety, Chris,

You obviously have no awareness of what all that pictures represent. Violence against women… not anything new, not a thing to forget, nor forgive.”

The responses from posters who obviously haven’t bothered to read what I, or others, said are deeply offensive.

@pager. Did you not read Facebook’s criteria for removal of offensive material: ‘that which includes posts or photographs that attack a person based on their race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, disability or medical condition.’ This ‘gag them and rape them’ is violence (attack) against women (sex/gender) as are the other images of battered women. Do you really wish to be seen to support the people that condone and propagate this treatment of women or would you prefer to support the struggle that women face everywhere? It’s another case of ‘put yourself in their position’.

18. Chaise Guevara

@ Chris

“The responses from posters who obviously haven’t bothered to read what I, or others, said are deeply offensive.”

Agreed. Always nice to be accused of being au fait about domestic violence on the basis of sweet FA.

Seriously, it’s like any comment more naunced than “Well done Facebook!” is a request for random accusations.

@chaise Guevara, et al. Oh, this is not satire, not humour, and nothing to do with free speech. You may not personally be that type of cowardly, bullying, despicable male or have been at the receiving end of male rape and violence or you would understand. Many women live this violence every day, you know the statistics – how do you think they feel seeing their pain displayed as humour, to be laughed at? Please rethink your arguments.

Pagar you get awfully exercised about Muslim clerics saying bigoted stuff – but not about pictures fantasising about beating, kidnapping or drugging women. Why is that? Maybe some unresolved issues in your life you need to confront?

The way real men get a girl” is mocking those less than man who have to spike females to get intimate contact. All though crap these pictures are nothing in comparison to whats on the internet and facebook is of such a nature you can control what content you see.

The case here is made very weak by the fact there is never a response from those who care when its men in the firing line of sick humour, especially when the in cases the consequences to the mans live run much deeper.

Pagar, I agree there is a contradiction when people say this is not a free speech issue. But do you have a view on whether this is legitimate free speech or something else?

It is not enough I think to say there is a right to be offensive, and leave it at that. Being offensive includes villifying social groups, treating violence against them as a joke and threatening violence against their supporters. Such intimidation makes speech less free for those social groups. It intimidates, putting people off from saying anything, and makes it harder for members of devalued group to be taken seriously and understood if they make a case. If they responded in kind it would just further constrict free speech in the same way.

Of course, outright banning jokes about violence against other people also restricts free speech, but at the same time protects freedom of speech for people, especially from culturally devalued social groups. It is no more than saying that bullying people infringes both their rights and your values and you will not protect such behaviour as legitimate free speech.

If people complaining appear to be po-faced, perhaps it is because they called for a ban in the spirit of appealing to ethical values instead of a spirit of bullying others for entertainment.

I agree there are lots of contradictions in the real world – lots of people get away with a lot of violent speech all the time. But if we oppose it we should choose our battles to nudge culture towards making it less acceptable. So well done to the campaigners.

@ Sunny

Pagar you get awfully exercised about Muslim clerics saying bigoted stuff – but not about pictures fantasising about beating, kidnapping or drugging women. Why is that? Maybe some unresolved issues in your life you need to confront?

That is unworthy and untrue. If you check back any thread you like you will see I have always supported the right of Muslim clerics (and everybody else)to say bigoted stuff. Even the right to burn poppies on Remembrance Day.

“Freedom of speech cannot be tempered by the opinion of the majority- it must be an absolute right or it is a meaningless concept.”

http://liberalconspiracy.org/2012/11/12/police-arrest-man-for-posting-picture-of-burning-a-poppy/

And, to be clear, I believe that a man using violence against women is one of the most despicable acts it is possible to commit and anyone found to have done so deserves very severe punishment. I did not find the FB banners in the least amusing but I am not prepared to curtail someone else’s freedom to make bad jokes.

Nor am I prepared to accept Sunny Hundal’s version of when an issue is, or is not, a matter of free speech.

That’s a pretty dangerous road, I’m afraid.

24. Chaise Guevara

@ 19 Geraldine

“Oh, this is not satire, not humour, and nothing to do with free speech.”

I never said it was satire, I said it was probably motivated by misogyny. Kudos for being more polite than others upthread, but I am getting irritated with having to repeatedly correct people who for reasons best known to themselves decide to take the opposite of what I’ve said and pretend I said it.

Is it humour? Regardless of whether you and I think it’s funny, it’s obviously intended to be. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t come from a very nasty place, or that the opinions expressed aren’t serious. To be honest, I think this is irrelevant: if it’s misogynist I don’t particularly care whether it succeeds in making other misogynists laugh.

As for whether it’s a free speech issue: you’re right. I overused shorthand there and ended up making myself wrong. Facebook has every right to decide what it does and doesn’t show. The question is how moral it is to use financial pressure (via threatening to boycott advertisers) to try to get private channels to block things you find politically offensive. That’s an open question, by the way. I’m not sure what the right answer is.

“Many women live this violence every day, you know the statistics – how do you think they feel seeing their pain displayed as humour, to be laughed at?”

Obviously it’s horrible for them, which is part of the moral issue. So is the fact that the behaviour being encouraged – jokingly or not – is illegal. Perhaps most important is the risk that misogynists will see this sort of thing and take it to mean that their views are perfectly normal, which will encourage them to behave this way.

But I’m wary of the boycott method for this sort of thing. Imagine if the boycotters were Creationists trying to get rid of cartoons lampooning their beliefs. I’m not saying that if one’s right, the other must be too – perhaps this is an issue where each case should be judged on its merits. But I don’t think we should just ignore the ways in which this resembles free speech, and has similar implications.

25. Chaise Guevara

@ 22 AT

“Of course, outright banning jokes about violence against other people also restricts free speech, but at the same time protects freedom of speech for people, especially from culturally devalued social groups. It is no more than saying that bullying people infringes both their rights and your values and you will not protect such behaviour as legitimate free speech.”

Please note I’m taking this as a hypothetical, because nothing’s been banned. Facebook simply made a decision about its own service.

The problem is that this is all very poorly defined. Your quote above bans Fawlty Towers and The Young Ones, which I doubt was your intent. And “bullying” is a very broad term, just like “offence”, currently being used to jail people who write things that other people disagree with on Twitter.

Threatening/demanding violence and continued harrassment are forms of bullying that are rightly illegal. But criticising someone can be and sometimes is called bullying. A company could claim that people protesting about its practices are bullying it. And so on.

@Chaise Guevara.
‘The question is how moral it is to use financial pressure (via threatening to boycott advertisers) to try to get private channels to block things you find politically offensive’.
It’s comforting to see that you are understanding where the outrage is coming from but:
Politically offensive is not the correct description in this case, neither is moral the correct word, as each person has their own political and moral standards. No, this is simply wrong…. by any standards.
‘Imagine if the boycotters were Creationists trying to get rid of cartoons lampooning their beliefs.’
I don’t think that this is similar at all – who would take notice of such a thing – no-one is being harmed, brutilised or murdered. This is the difference, these images that we are complaining about are about women being raped and murdered. However foolish or misguided one feels Creationism is, it is not generally extolling violence.
AT. I like your arguments that ‘restricting free speech can actually protect free speech especially from culturally devalued social groups’.

Chaise Guevara, I totally agree with you. A bully can easily complain that they are the one being bullied if confronted. Working out what is going on from the outside is really tough. Working out what to do about it without over-reacting is tough. But it is just really important both to protect individuals and to avoid a culture of bullying spreading.

Just admitting that bullying does exist and isn’t acceptable, gives us a bit of responsibility. And like you suggest it probably is a never-ending responsibility, and could make all sorts of things we take for granted unacceptable for the next generation. That’s a problem progressive politics has, it can make people feel culture is always slipping away from them and being challenged, making us watch ourselves and each other. It isn’t comfortable.

In this case, I think the campaign got it right. It shouldn’t take too much effort at empathy to see how the images and jokes are threatening. Its own threats (of boycotts) were nonviolent and non-intimidatory. Its reasoning was non-discriminatory. A near textbook case of successful use of free speech to improve society?

28. Chaise Guevara

@ 26 Geraldine

“Politically offensive is not the correct description in this case, neither is moral the correct word, as each person has their own political and moral standards. No, this is simply wrong…. by any standards.”

That’s demonstrably untrue. There are plenty of people whose standards make room for bad-taste jokes. The fact that you personally feel very strongly about it does not put it in some special category, higher than normal moral argument, where you can claim it’s objectively wrong. There’s no such thing in the sense of “wrong” that you mean.

You can’t enter a discussion refusing to accept that anyone might feel differently to you.

“I don’t think that this is similar at all – who would take notice of such a thing – no-one is being harmed, brutilised or murdered. This is the difference, these images that we are complaining about are about women being raped and murdered. However foolish or misguided one feels Creationism is, it is not generally extolling violence.”

I think you’ve got the analogy the wrong way around: the Creationists are the ones demanding something be removed, not the ones who posted the offending material. They would argue that the cartoons caused them great mental anguish, and that posting them helped to fuel the “discrimination” of them not being able to force children to learn their dogma in schools.

What I’m saying is that there needs to be a defined cut-off to determine what’s ok and what isn’t. Is the standard you’re suggesting “jokes about violence”? Because, as I said, that includes Fawlty Towers.

About free speech, this is not about free speech. People are free to set up their own websites and make memes and send them to each other. They can make sexist jokes and no one can do anything legally to stop them. Unless people do it in the workplace. Then it’s harassment and discrimination. Not a free speech issue.

In this case, Facebook has many users. You want to set up your own website/server for this stuff? Great, the constitution protects you. You want to use Facebook or another forum? I have a right to put pressure on the company that allows you to do it. And since money is usually the only thing companies listen to, putting pressure on advertisers is the way to make that happen.
Not a free speech issue at all, and saying so misses the point. This is not the right of neo-Nazis to have a march in Skokie, Illinois. Which they did.

Facebook is not required to let you say whatever you want. It could ban the word “pink” if it wanted to, and you would not be able to bring a free speech infringement to court. The ACLU would laugh at you. Facebook has decided that you can’t post pictures of breast feeding or reconstructive surgery. It’s their company, their rules. They don’t answer to the tenets of free speech because they are not the government.
No, the fact is that Facebook is a product and has to answer to its users, and they have spoken. You can try and pressure advertisers to reverse the decision, but I doubt you’ll get many backers.
So, not a free speech issue.

Now, the difference between these posts and lampooning evangelicals or making offensive jokes? Firstly, because these images violate facebook’s own policy about graphic violence. Secondly, if there was enough of an uproar, you could try to get the posts lampooning evangelicals or other offensive jokes removed. As a consumer, you have a right to do that. But you’d have a backlash as people want to retain the right to make fun of whoever they want. And Facebook would have to decide what kind of company it wants to be. And how often it wants to cater to these kinds of protests. But it can choose what it wants because it doesn’t have to respect free speech. It will go in the direction of maximizing profit. It’s a for-profit business. If you want them to do something you have to hurt their pocketbooks.

As for whether or not the pictures are misogynistic, of course they are. With the possible exception of the chloroform which could go either way. Either making light of rape or making fun of rapists. It’s hard to tell.

If someone is seriously having trouble seeing the misogyny, and thinks the pictures are relatively harmless, I would suggest trying to come up with an equivalent to racism, which some people have an easier time understanding.

With the battered woman, I would equate that with a picture of a beaten black person entitled “n-word didn’t know his place.” And then ask yourself what harm it does circulating these kinds of images. Sometimes it’s easier to identify and call out the racism. If you yourself are a minority, then come up with something equivalent that’s repulsive to your group. Then you’ll have an easier time understanding and identifying sexism and misogyny when it occurs.

Also, when I say “you” in this post, it’s hypothetical. I’m not singling out anyone specific.

Also, I don’t know if anyone is aware, but this is part of a larger movement in which people say they won’t buy a product because of sexist advertising. #notbuyingit

Stuff like this didn’t used to bother me so much. I would either find it funny, or offensive but not care enough to do/say anything about it.

And then I had two daughters. So for people who think that subtle and blatant forms of sexism in media, or outright misogyny are harmless, try imagining raising a daughter who is observing the ways women are represented in our culture and forming opinions about herself and who she should be.

We have a right to protest, and we have a right to try and enact change. THAT is free speech.

@Chaise Guevara. Okay, I understand that for you this is an intelectual argument on the rights of free speech. Generally I would agree with you. I understand that some people may feel differently to me – clearly they do or we wouldn’t be having this discussion now, as no-one would have posted such vile, misogynistic images and women, including myself, would not have targeted the companies to ‘persuade’ facebook to remove these offensive images. If you cannot see the difference between the jokes on ‘Faulty Towers’ or the ‘mental anguish’ of the Creationists compared to these violent images of the abuse of women then I cannot make any reasoned argument with you on this aspect. It’s all relative and subjective, yes. Please refer to the latest post that I see on the aspects of free speech and facebook then, posted by Natalie, that is about the legality of the postings.

Sick of double standards ~ Good post above though.

@Natalie. Excellent post. I wish that every woman would see how this imagery is affecting their daughters (and sons) and act to stop it now.

Excellent point Geraldine, it also affects sons. I’ve only got girls so that is what my thinking is centered on, but you are right.
If you’re interested in learning more, watch the documentary MissRepresentation.
For me, this whole thing started when going up and down the toys aisle for the first time since I was 8, and seeing what was marketed to girls, and what was marketed to boys.

@orly “Two men who don’t have a problem with this sort of thing. What a surprise.”

This is a blatant Ad Hominem, dismissing the argument because of the person making it.

Feminists need to learn that facts convince better than feelings, accusations and sanctimony.

But then, I’m a man so I obviously don’t understand your pain…

Excellent post. I wish that every woman would see how this imagery is affecting their daughters (and sons) and act to stop it now.

Yet its nothing in comparison to what men are subjected to ~ I dont want to derail this topic, but why is that never even acknowledged?

37. Charlieman

@29. Natalie: “In this case, Facebook has many users. You want to set up your own website/server for this stuff? Great, the constitution protects you. You want to use Facebook or another forum? I have a right to put pressure on the company that allows you to do it.”

I presume that you aren’t British, Natalie. UK rights are interpreted from statutes and case law. We do not have rights inscribed on stone by white blokes with beards. That was British humour, even if it was crap.

I agree with you about the overall role of FaceBook as a publisher and censor. FaceBook is a walled garden; if you want to use the facilities, you have to stick by the rules. If you don’t like the rules, you have the opportunity to challenge the owners. Or you can challenge the sponsors (ie advertisers) of the gig.

A lot of parents assume that FaceBook is a decent place for their teenagers to visit on the internet. FaceBook has standards about unacceptable content and parents assume that FaceBook usage does not need to be supervised. It’s assumed that teen kid is reading about teen kid inanity, not looking at images which contain violence. The assumption may be wrong but that doesn’t make the parents bad people.

Without the original context, I struggle to identify which of the images posted in the OP could only be intended to be offensive. Some might be bad jokes; some might be really funny according to time and place. The Brass Eye TV programmes were gloriously offensive, hugely funny and oft misunderstood.

Outrageous humour is best learned in the same way as drinking alcohol; with people who care about you and moderate your consumption. FaceBook is a lousy place to learn about life, humour and drinking.

Should FaceBook remove unfunny images and groups that (ostensibly or actually) proclaim hate? Yes, it has to do so because the FaceBook brand, the portal that replaced AOL as a safe environment, otherwise becomes devalued.

Note: I will walk the plank at the top of the Eiffel Tower on my hands before I share any personal data with FaceBook. I know I am already screwed about sharing data with Google.

38. So Much For Subtlety

17. Geraldine Rose

This ‘gag them and rape them’ is violence (attack) against women (sex/gender) as are the other images of battered women.

Actually it is not. It is not violence. It is not violence against women. And what is more Facebook’s previous policy was aimed at protecting individuals – and it is not an attack on an individual. You are demanding protection for a group.

Do you really wish to be seen to support the people that condone and propagate this treatment of women or would you prefer to support the struggle that women face everywhere? It’s another case of ‘put yourself in their position’.

I don’t give a damn how I am seen, and if you want to make the irrational assumption that because I do not like this sort of bullying I must be condoning this sort of behaviour, please go ahead. It will still be irrational. Women do not struggle everywhere and I have no desire to be part of a bullying campaign by feminists.

Geraldine Rose

Oh, this is not satire, not humour, and nothing to do with free speech.

How do you know? Who decided it is up to you to define what is or is not satire? I am not convinced you would recognise it anyway.

You may not personally be that type of cowardly, bullying, despicable male or have been at the receiving end of male rape and violence or you would understand.

As childish shaming tactics I like this. It is like saying to someone of African descent that they might not be that sort of Black but if they had been mugged by some Yardies they would sympathise with the EDL.

Many women live this violence every day, you know the statistics – how do you think they feel seeing their pain displayed as humour, to be laughed at? Please rethink your arguments.

The statistics are that women in the West are remarkably safe from this sort of violence, but then I do not see this sort of violence. I see some pictures. I have no idea how they feel. Perhaps they should not go looking for Facebook pages that are likely to offend them?

AT

Such intimidation makes speech less free for those social groups.

This is an opinion which is used to ban things. It is part of the Left’s embrace of the 1984 “Freedom is Slavery” ethos. Do you have evidence for it?

Of course, outright banning jokes about violence against other people also restricts free speech, but at the same time protects freedom of speech for people, especially from culturally devalued social groups.

Censorship is not freedom of speech. Slavery is not freedom. Slavery is slavery and censorship is censorship. You are making a standard justification of totalitarianism but that does not make it right.

It is no more than saying that bullying people infringes both their rights and your values and you will not protect such behaviour as legitimate free speech.

The only people being bullied are Facebook – and to a lesser extent some posters in this thread. See how quickly accusations turn to justifying domestic violence and rape.

If people complaining appear to be po-faced, perhaps it is because they called for a ban in the spirit of appealing to ethical values instead of a spirit of bullying others for entertainment.

So they are good at fooling themselves about their own motivations? So what?

39. Chaise Guevara

@ 31 Geraldine

“If you cannot see the difference between the jokes on ‘Faulty Towers’ or the ‘mental anguish’ of the Creationists compared to these violent images of the abuse of women then I cannot make any reasoned argument with you on this aspect.”

Woah, woah! Of course I can see a difference! That’s why I’m raising Fawlty Towers as an example – to point out that there would be applications of “let’s ban jokes about violence” that I’m guessing all of us would find ridiculous. Hence me saying there needs to be a cutoff.

I guess the points I was working towards were twofold:

1) If you’re talking about banning this stuff under law, you need a solid definition of what is or isn’t acceptable. Otherwise Fawlty Towers gets banned, and worse, people are unfairly criminalised by a poorly defined overbearing law. You can’t just demand that the law apply common sense. You have to say in what exact circumstances this should be illegal.

2) If you’re just saying that this sort of thing is morally wrong, then it’s a sliding scale. Yes, we can have Fawlty Towers on one side as perfectly ok, and this stuff on the other as totally unacceptable. But what about the stuff in the middle?

There’s already uncertainty on this thread about two of the images, even among those of us who agree that most of them are utterly grotesque. Some think the chloroform one may be satire, and I for one think the “I like her for her brains” could just as easily be applied to a man, and therefore it’s jumping the gun somewhat to assume that it’s sexist rather than just a tasteless joke about corpses.

40. Chaise Guevara

@ Geraldine

“I wish that every woman would see how this imagery is affecting their daughters (and sons) and act to stop it now.”

Oh, one more thing – I’d be more worried about sons than daughters here. You’ve got a largish chance that your daughter will be angry and/or intimidated, and a far smaller chance that your son will be encouraged to treat women like shit. I know which scares me more.

41. So Much For Subtlety

29. Natalie

Not a free speech issue at all, and saying so misses the point.

No it is a bullying point.

No, the fact is that Facebook is a product and has to answer to its users, and they have spoken. You can try and pressure advertisers to reverse the decision, but I doubt you’ll get many backers.

No they have not. A small group of actvists put pressure on the advertisers. They have spoken. The majority of Facebook users have not spoken and were not asked. They are unlikely to be happy either. Mind you, they are not likely to care much either way, but all this is likely to do is accelerate the flow of people away from Facebook. Caving into politically correct bullying rarely works.

If someone is seriously having trouble seeing the misogyny, and thinks the pictures are relatively harmless, I would suggest trying to come up with an equivalent to racism, which some people have an easier time understanding.

I would have no problem with the racist equivalent either. Well not no problem, but no more or no less of a problem.

And then ask yourself what harm it does circulating these kinds of images.

What harm would it do? None at all from what I can see.

Natalie

Also, I don’t know if anyone is aware, but this is part of a larger movement in which people say they won’t buy a product because of sexist advertising. #notbuyingit

So we can resist this sort of bullying now or we can have the new Women’s Christian Temperance Union censoring all our media. Our choice.

So for people who think that subtle and blatant forms of sexism in media, or outright misogyny are harmless, try imagining raising a daughter who is observing the ways women are represented in our culture and forming opinions about herself and who she should be.

What an excellent opportunity for a teaching moment. Anyone who does not tell their daughter, clearly, that everything in the media about women is wrong and should be ignored is engaging in borderline child abuse.

We have a right to protest, and we have a right to try and enact change. THAT is free speech.

And we have a right to think this is censorship and be annoyed about it.

42. Chaise Guevara

@ 36 Onbe

“Yet its nothing in comparison to what men are subjected to ~ I dont want to derail this topic, but why is that never even acknowledged?”

I regularly point out that sexism against men is ignored, but… what? This is nothing in comparison to what men are subjected to? Fancy unpacking that a bit?

I regularly point out that sexism against men is ignored, but… what? This is nothing in comparison to what men are subjected to? Fancy unpacking that a bit?
—-

Well, we live in a society in which a male proffessor who speaks up about an observation of his, that some job roles are better suited to men because of the differences between the male and female brain and that proffessor is hit with such populist outrage it ends his career, that is the kind of reaction men face for any perceived slight against females.

Here we have outrage over pictures, a subtle form of sexism in self-generated media, media that is not main stream and can easily be avoided. Infact you have to search it out in its dark corner of the internet. How does a young women feel when she comes across this and does not understand its context, does not understand that for the most part they were created by 14 year olds and their meanings are not taken literally?

I do not know but I do know she will never be subjected to to such crap whilst sat in her living room watching tv, so lets change the question, how does a boy or man feel when he reads in the news that a man was drugged, tied up tortured and had his penis cut off and destroyed in a blender because he asked his wife for a divorce?

I think any man will squirm at that point, how does he then feel when a group of female presenters on day time tv announce “cutting off a man’s penis is quite fabulous”
“its different when its a man” “it depends on the reason why” backed by the hysterical laughter of the audience for several minutes of the most vicious mocking of a male vitcim who”s life has been destroyed while he still lays in a hospital bed bleeding.

What opinions are men forming about their worth to society when they see this and there is Zero consequence, infact the worst of the perpetrators goes on to star in a series that has millions of viewers, a massive percentage of those being younger females.

If a female had been mutilated for life and had a major part of her gender identity removed, what would the world make of a panel of male tv hosts taking the piss out of her? Would the man end up on oprah to have a joke with the audience?

I dont need to ask you these questions Chaise Guevara I know your answers, its a sad fact that these pictures are laughable in comparison to whats main stream and accepted abuse of men, and until women take serious issue with this shit the outrage against pictures hidden away on the internet will remain irrelevent and almost insulting.

Seriously:

Fictional photoshoped images for MEMES = out rage

Real life victim tortured and mutilated = “ha ha”

45. Chaise Guevara

@ 43 Onbe

Firstly, did that thing about women on a daytime show laughing about an actual victim of mutilation really happen? What show was it?

Secondly, you’re comparing everything men have to put up with to a small set of not very serious things that hurt women – these pictures. That’s comparing apples with oranges. So you’re missing out all the domestic violence, rape and so on that happen to women on a regular basis.

Yes, men are victims of abuse and sexism, and yes, our society tends to get less het up about it than when it happens to women. But women are far more often victims of abuse and (probably) serious, life-harming sexism.

This campaign to police Facebook is running in conjunction with the campaign against ”Lads Mags” being sold in WH Smiths. Because even to have to handle these magazines as a female shop worker and put them on the shelves is a form of harassment say UK Femenista.

Check out these front covers of a href=”http://images.google.com/search?client=gloucestershire&source=searchpage&q=attitude+magazine&biw=731&bih=457&sei=Ch6nUZ3wIoep7Aayn4DoCA&tbm=isch”>Attitude magazine.

Perhaps these gay lads mags also need to be banned off the shelves. They’re exactly like the people complaining about Nuts were talking about.

Correct link for Attitude magazine here.

So Much For Subtlety (#38)

You can look at my argument 2 ways, either as:

1. free speech (to say whatever you want regardless of consequences) should be balanced with rights protecting us from bullying, or

2. free speech as a broader principle with rights and responsibilities, includes the responsibility not to diminish the value of free speech for others, eg by villifying other social groups.

I am not necessarily talking about laws, I am discussing why I support this campaign as a positive, responsible, non-violent use of free speech.

I agree it is also an act of censorship, so I understand why you think it is opposed to free speech narrowly defined. Fair enough, then see it as principle (1) not (2). I do not support the censorship because I disagree with the images, but because the images seem to me to constitute bullying (1) or to fail to respect others’ freedom to speak up for equal rights without fear of violence (2).

Being able to speak for human rights without fear of violence or stigmatisation is a right I would like protected, whether as part of opposing bullying (1) or for promoting the kind of free speech which makes me comfortable enough to actually dare speak (2). And I do not think this is a standard justification for totalitarianism.

I do agree that the argument could itself be used in a bullying way though – to suggest that vulnerable groups are actually the ones who threaten equal rights and safety so need to be censored. So I think it is fair that you ask for the evidence that this kind of speech does affect others’ feelings of safety. I’m not sure what kind of evidence would be realistic and meaningful, though, and that is a problem – who do we trust to do the cultural analysis?

As an individual I rely on my empathy, but all individuals have different understandings. So on a societal level I’d need to participate in discussion, for which I rely on free speech, about what constitutes a context of speech which is egalitarian and safe as well as free.

That’s what I’m doing now, probably without much success. Especially if it is being interpreted as a plea for totalitarianism!

That my post with the video and links of the case has disapeared without a trace proves my point doesent it..

@Charlieman,

Whoops! This is a British site I stumbled upon. (I’m outnumbered, aren’t I?) The first time posted it was from my mobile, and it’s not that obvious from the mobile site that it’s based from England. Now posting from my computer, I can see my mistake.

Unfortunately, I don’t know that much about how British government is set up. I know it’s a constitutional monarchy, but that doesn’t mean the British and American constitutions have the same content. So you are right, I am definitely coming into this from an American perspective, thanks for noticing.

Also, our white blokes which enscribed these laws in stone did not have beards. They were all clean-shaven at the time thank you very much.

I should have been clued in by the slang and references to shows and organizations I’ve never heard of. (Brass Eye TV? EDL?) That being said, I’ll just make a few qualifiers: my grandmother was British, I drink milk in my tea, I have yet to see a scone in America which is actually a scone, Coupling was way better than Friends and the TARDIS is the best method of travel EVER. Are my credentials good enough?

51. Chaise Guevara

@ 49 Onbe

“That my post with the video and links of the case has disapeared without a trace proves my point doesent it.”

Not really. I’ve only got your word for it, and in any case it would only tell us about this site’s owner, not people in general.

Anyway, my point stands that you’re comparing apples with oranges.

Not really. I’ve only got your word for it, and in any case it would only tell us about this site’s owner, not people in general.

Anyway, my point stands that you’re comparing apples with oranges
——

Hardly, in my previous deleted post I quoted that 40% of domestic violence victims are male, these issues impact men and women the difference is when a man is drugged and mutilated with a knife by his partner its mocked on national TV and nothing is done about it, to even provide evidence of this is censored. It shows how much people really do care about equality doesent it.

@Onbe-

Sexism against men is talked about. Do a search, you’ll find articles, research, studies, etc. Does it get as much press as sexism against women? No.

Why? Because rich men still run the world. And rich white men still run western style democracies.

But the thing that I find a bit ironic is that I often see sexism against men brought up on feminist blogs, feminist news sites, or anything having to do with equality for women, as if it is the feminist movement which is causing sexism towards men. Think about it for a bit.

The sexism that men face, is not brought about by feminism. It’s brought about by a patriarchal culture and patriarchal standards as to what a woman should be and what a man should be. Which feminism is against. You don’t like sexism against men? Feminists are trying to change the cause of it, even if your issue is not their motivation.

And that’s what I think a lot of people are missing. If you want to protest sexism against men, feminists are your natural allies.

Castration is a joke. I know. The John/Lorena Bobbit thing supplied tons of comedic material. (I don’t know your blender story, but we’ve got an equivalent over here in the states) Double standard? Yes. But why is it a double standard? Why is it “different for a man?” As you put it? Because a patriarchal society says that men are stronger, that they should just get over it. Men are not victims. Except that they are.

This is not something that comes from feminism, which doesn’t want to assign “male” and “female” characteristics or roles. There shouldn’t be gender specific stigmas dictating how a person should be, or act. They should be judged based on their qualities, on their deeds, and given/denied opportunities based on their personal qualities. Not their gender.

Your case with the professor – I think you should cite it, otherwise it just sounds like vague hearsay. Because there is a lot of subtle sexism (some more blatant, but not as often) against women on campuses in male-dominated areas of study. There was a recent story at CalTech which has gotten press, and if you spend time on the internet searching, you will see that it is indeed a problem. The faculty don’t get sacked and have their career ruined. That’s not how it goes. Indeed, some have tenure and prefer to give the middle finger to criticism. But when it’s pointed out, the goal is not firing, but education and awareness. Like a workshop in which faculty (and also students, who contribute the general atmosphere of a department) are made aware about how their comments impact those around them. Education and awareness.

And something that was also ironic, the very same day that you said that sexism against men isn’t talked about (yesterday) a great article came out in the Atlantic which I think does a good job of explaining why advocates against sexism against men have natural allies in feminists, and shouldn’t be looking at them as adversaries because the cause for both types of sexism is the same. A patriarchal culture.

http://www.theatlantic.com/sexes/archive/2013/05/when-men-experience-sexism/276355/

It’s a good read.

@So Much For Subtlety-

Bullying? I think not. You want to call it bullying so that you can associate what’s happening with something negative, like bullying. As if that is a reason in and of itself to oppose what’s been accomplished here. Try and convince me that a billion dollar corporation is a victim of bullying. Go ahead.

It’s called activism, and in some cases, societal pressure. If you don’t like something about your society, you can try to change it. One person standing up and saying something isn’t right isn’t necessarily going to change society for the better. A group has more power as they can’t be marginalized as easily. The ultimate power in our capitalist society is how we spend our money, or who we vote for, and that is how you enact change. That’s not bullying.

Here’s the difference between societal pressure and bullying:

I can say that I refuse to buy from a corner shop because the owner puts up racist bumper stickers on the shop windows. The owner could tell me to go jump in a creek, it’s their choice. If it really bothered me, I could talk with people in the community and have them sign a statement saying that they would no longer be patrons of this store because they too think that the racist bumper stickers shouldn’t be displayed like that. Now his pocketbook is hurting as he will get less customers.

Bullying? No. Societal pressure? Yes.

Now, if I went to the owner and threatened to vandalize the store, or if I actually vandalized the store, or if I threatened to do the owner and family bodily harm, or if I actually did the owner and family bodily harm, then yes, THAT would be bullying.

In short, you don’t like the results, so you call it bullying. That’s not a reason.

One thing that you are correct in, is that the majority of Facebook users have not been asked. In general, most people are apathetic and won’t raise a finger to change things unless conditions become intolerable for them. But I’m willing to bet that if Facebook posted a survey the majority would back its decision.

You don’t agree? You have the right to change things. If this is so important to you, then you can raise awareness, start a group, get some followers, and then try and reverse the decision. If you don’t win, it doesn’t mean that you have been bullied by a small group of activists, it means that you don’t have enough sympathizers to enact enough societal pressure. If you think that it will accelerate the flow of people away from Facebook, then that’s how you have to make your case. You have to convince Facebook of that. That’s how you win.

Good luck finding support for your cause, and advertisers that sympathize with you.

“Caving into politically correct bullying rarely works.”

In this case, it’s caving into politically correct societal pressure. And it did work. Good job to everyone that got involved. It shows that you can make a difference in society. That you can take on a billion dollar corporation without having an army of lobbyists and politicians at your side, and still win.

Power to the people.

“What harm would it do? None at all from what I can see.”

No harm that you can see? Of course. You don’t want to think about it. What harm does it do to widely circulate racist and misogynist pictures? It makes it commonplace. It makes it normal. It desensitizes you. I’m not racist, I just make racist jokes.
Sure.
People (and you) are more susceptible to media than they would like to think. People (and you) are influenced by what they see and read. If these kinds of pictures are deemed acceptable by a major coorporation, and allowed to become commonplace, then subtle and blatant sexism and racism elsewhere, in other domains, is not a big deal.

Except it is.

As for the rest of your post about #notbuyingit, it’s all purely in your head. You have not written an accurate description (or really, a description at all) of what that group is, what they are trying to do and why. I can’t debate something that is purely fiction. Read up a bit if it’s something you want to discuss. But right now, you have no idea what you’re talking about.

@AT- you’re not talking about laws or totalitarianism or free speech. Or at least, you shouldnt be. This is about a policy which a company is trying to hash out based on how to retain the highest number of users and advertisers.

Is is censorship? Sure. You also can’t post porn on Facebook. That will be censored. It’s a decision of the company. Not a law.

56. Chaise Guevara

@ 52 Onbe

I’m aware that female-on-male domestic violence is far higher than people realise, and agree that it needs to be taken more seriously. I suspect that this is partly because, on average, it tends to be less serious. Women aren’t as strong, so deal less damage. However, I’m sure it’s also because many people think female-on-male DV is funny, and a male DV victim will take it on himself even more than a female one because of the added “got beat up by a woman” stigma.

57. Chaise Guevara

@ 53 Natalie

“But the thing that I find a bit ironic is that I often see sexism against men brought up on feminist blogs, feminist news sites, or anything having to do with equality for women, as if it is the feminist movement which is causing sexism towards men. Think about it for a bit.”

I’m sure plenty of idiots do see feminism as the cause of sexism against men, because they see the whole issue in stupid Man VS Woman terms.

However, I often get frustrated with feminists who commit the same error in reverse. If I raise male victimhood in feminist-related discussion it’s normally because DV or whatever is being discussed by some people in completely gendered terms, going so far as to use “man” in place of “abuser” and “woman” in place of “victim”. People will probably go on to say things like “What men need to realise…” Of course, when someone points out that some men are victims, they’ll immediately have “WHATABOUTTEHMENZ?” shouted at them like it’s some kind of killer argument.

Aside from the sexism and demonisation going on there, the big problem is that this perpetrates the myth that male victims don’t exist, which is believed to the point that I’ve heard (can’t source offhand) that it’s common for a man to call the police because his wife/girlfriend is beating him up, only to find that he’s the one arrested when they turn up. And the myth is being perpetrated by the people you’d most hope to be on the side of victims.

You say that anyone wanting to end sexism as men should see feminists as friends. In theory that should be true, and in probably most cases, yourself included, it is. But ultimately it depends on your feminist. It’s a very broad church – it would be nice if it was all Sarah Ditums, but there are plenty of Harriet Harmans in there too.

Hi Chaise.
Feminism has its faults, and excluding people (intentionally or not) is one of them. In the case of domestic violence, not acknowledging male victims is exclusionary and not good practice. Removing prison rape from the conversation is bad as well. The movement was built and shaped by white educated women and addressed the needs that those white educated women felt needed to be addressed. And it still does. If people concerned about DV with men would get more involved instead of posing themselves as adversaries, they’d realize that they’re allies looking to combat the same system of cultural stereotypes.

Another example of exclusion:

In the case of slutwalks (remember those?) African American women and Hispanic women didn’t feel as if it was a movement they could participate in. I can’t fully express why because I dont entirely remember, but I read an open letter to the organizers about how minority women still could not take the word “slut” and own it like white women could. So while they appreciated what the Slutwalks were trying to accomplish, it wasn’t something that spoke to them.

Agree that feminism is a very broad movement. People are complicated. I’ve got no clue who those two women were that you cited, time for some googling!.

Anyway, long story short, I agree with your post.

59. Chaise Guevara

@ 58 Natalie

“The movement was built and shaped by white educated women and addressed the needs that those white educated women felt needed to be addressed. And it still does.”

Very good point. That hadn’t occurred to me, probably because I’m a white educated man and hence didn’t notice anything amiss.

“I read an open letter to the organizers about how minority women still could not take the word “slut” and own it like white women could. So while they appreciated what the Slutwalks were trying to accomplish, it wasn’t something that spoke to them.”

Interesting. My guess is that, due to the sociodemographic differences, the white organisers were more likely to hear “slut” thrown at them on the internet, rather than in real life like their African-American and Hispanic allies.

“Agree that feminism is a very broad movement. People are complicated. I’ve got no clue who those two women were that you cited, time for some googling!.”

Long story short: Harriet Harmen is a British politician (keep forgetting you’re an American) who, when discussing prostitution uses “men” to mean “clients” and “women” to mean “sex workers”. She famously said that we need more women in politics because men can’t be trusted to handle things on their own, which sounds kinda cool and clever in an all-us-girls-together sort of way until you try inverting it. Just to be clear, I agree we need more women in politics, just not with her deliberately insulting way of putting it.

Sarah Ditum is a smart, considered feminist who certainly isn’t of the “men vs women” persuasion. She has a blog.

“Anyway, long story short, I agree with your post.”

Cheers! You’re obviously one of the good ones.

There’s lots of good ones everywhere. Both sides. People get up in arms when they have to play defense. Keeping conversations civil allows everyone to learn something. And You’ve got a great point in that inverting statements is a good way to gauge if its sexist.

I used to participate in a Middle East discussion forum until it fell apart. (really sad) Inverting things was a good method of seeing whether or not something was anti-Semitic or anti-Arab.

And if someone truly wanted to empathize with the other side and understand them, trying to argue the opposite position. It’s difficult, and shows whether or not you truly understand what someone else is saying, or if bias has altered your perception.

I’m aware that female-on-male domestic violence is far higher than people realise, and agree that it needs to be taken “more” seriously. I suspect that this is partly because, on average, it tends to be less serious. Women aren’t as strong, so deal less damage.
—–

That would hold true, it being seen as less serious because they pose less of a threat in terms of strength, if only when it was serious it was taken seriously.

But its not, male victims of castration can turn on the tv from the hospital bed to witness tv presenters saying that there situation is a good thing, backed by the laughter of the audience, female perpetrators can be invited to tv talk shows and given almost celeb like fame.

Its not the individual cases that essentaily count from my perspective here, as bad as they are, its the conditions a society has to be in in the first place for this to happen.

A women is raped ~ media response – deep sympathy

A man is castrated ~ media response – funny

A male victim is not going to turn to anyone if he is beat up or cut up, society tells him men arent worth shit.

@onbe- you are partially correct. Where I take issue is how you see female rape victims. Ever heard if victim-shaming? Sympathizing with the rapists? The media is not sympathetic by any means. That is an issue feminists get up in arms about.

There were a few high profile cases in the US recently. Look up Stubenville, and look up analyses of how rape victims are portrayed in the media. What was she wearing? How much was she drinking? That 11yr old dressed very mature for her age. Those poor boys (the convicted rapists) are going to suffer for this the rest of their lives, how tragic.

A major deterrent in reporting rape is the blame and shame that victims have to deal with. Both by people they know, and the media. And before you say I’m marginalizing men, ill say that goes double for male victims of rape.

But again, it’s a patriarchal culture that castigates the victim in such a way. Horrible if you’re female, even worse if you’re male.

Where I take issue is how you see female rape victims. Ever heard if victim-shaming? Sympathizing with the rapists? The media is not sympathetic by any means. That is an issue feminists get up in arms about.

Yes I have heard of victim shaming and individuals sympathizing with the rapists, individuals sympathize with all manner of twistedness serial killers and all, they should be treated as the loons they are. Would I sound crazy to say the majority of media coverage is on the womens side? Why sympathizing loons are given air time is beyond me and its right people should be up in arms about that, at not point are those sympathising mocking, hystericaly laughing and claiming it was deserved however for no other reason than they find it funny, and if they were to whilst being male they would likely end up dead.

You seem to have more understanding than every single femanist I have ever talked to combined, its my view that until we see the kind of uproar against any gender as opposed to just one concerning these issues sadly not much is going to to change.

64. Chaise Guevara

@60 Natalie

Agreed with everything. TBH I suspect we’d agree on most stuff, because your post @60 could have been written by me. The whole “try to see the other side’s position” is something I pretty much live by, and gets me in trouble with people on my side who think I’m being too nice to their hated enemy.

65. So Much For Subtlety

48. AT

You can look at my argument 2 ways, either as:

Slavery is Freedom or Freedom is Freedom. You have a very common and well rationalised argument as to why slavery is freedom but it isn’t. It is slavery. Censorship is not a free press. There is no evidence that preventing what you call vilification (ie punishing those that come closest to being heterosexual White males) helps anyone. You just rationalise your politics that way.

I do not support the censorship because I disagree with the images, but because the images seem to me to constitute bullying (1) or to fail to respect others’ freedom to speak up for equal rights without fear of violence (2).

Everything can seem to be bullying if that is what you want to see. Facebook is definitely being bullied. And people on your side are trying in this thread. There is no connection at all between these pictures and anyone’s fear of violence in the real world. Even assuming that this was a goal we would want to achieve. Because any shrinking little violet can claim a fear of violence and so censor someone whose views they do not like. And if you doubt this, then I am such a violet and your views make me afraid of violence. Please set a good example by stopping.

Being able to speak for human rights without fear of violence or stigmatisation is a right I would like protected

Which has nothing to do with this campaign at all. You simply need to think it does.

I’m not sure what kind of evidence would be realistic and meaningful, though, and that is a problem – who do we trust to do the cultural analysis?

And that is the problem – you know you have no evidence of it being a problem and you do not care.

66. So Much For Subtlety

54. Natalie

Bullying? I think not. You want to call it bullying so that you can associate what’s happening with something negative, like bullying.

No, I call it bullying because it is bullying. What else do you call threats against anyone designed to change their behaviour whether those threats are to their physical well being – and let’s see how long it takes to get around to those – or to their income.

It’s called activism, and in some cases, societal pressure.

As I said, bullying.

That’s not bullying.

But this is not about how you vote or how you spend your money. It is about threatening advertisers to put pressure on Facebook. Not you threatening advertisers either but a group of people threatening them.

Bullying? No. Societal pressure? Yes.

Although the line is a fine one. When the KKK did something just like this, a lot of people found it mildly threatening and no doubt most people would have called it bullying. But it did get people to put the stickers in the window.

In short, you don’t like the results, so you call it bullying. That’s not a reason.

I would call it bullying even if I did like the results.

If this is so important to you, then you can raise awareness, start a group, get some followers, and then try and reverse the decision.

And so dies liberal society as the only effective response to a lack of tolerance is a counter-lack of tolerance. I prefer to see liberal society survive a little bit longer before your sort of totalitarianism, or someone else’s counter form, finally takes over.

If you don’t win, it doesn’t mean that you have been bullied by a small group of activists, it means that you don’t have enough sympathizers to enact enough societal pressure.

Actually it usually means most moderates have lives and families and homes. They have better things to do. The nutters are socially dysfunctional and so have a lot of time to spend on pushing their pet agendas.

In this case, it’s caving into politically correct societal pressure. And it did work. Good job to everyone that got involved. It shows that you can make a difference in society.

Not for Facebook it hasn’t. Or at least it is not clear if it has. It hasn’t for the rest of us. We are all a little less free and a little more intimidated. I am sure it has worked for you – your groups will have got more money and the pleasure of bullying others.

No harm that you can see? Of course. You don’t want to think about it.

Good for you. Don’t argue the issue. Go for the ad hom. Don’t debate the merits of socialism in one country, call your opponent a Zionist. Brilliant.

What harm does it do to widely circulate racist and misogynist pictures? It makes it commonplace. It makes it normal. It desensitizes you.

A series of value judgements pretending to be facts. There is no reason to think that it makes it normal or that it desensitizes anyone. Again you need believe such pseudo-science because it justifies your bullying.

What is more we are talking about a Facebook page. Hardly commonplace or routine. No one would have ever seen these pictures if people had not campaigned against them. They do not want these pictures to remain obscure. They need to publicise them because it helps with fund raising.

People (and you) are more susceptible to media than they would like to think. People (and you) are influenced by what they see and read. If these kinds of pictures are deemed acceptable by a major coorporation, and allowed to become commonplace, then subtle and blatant sexism and racism elsewhere, in other domains, is not a big deal.

Another set of value judgements. People aren’t you know. Or the Soviet Union would still exist. And the people of the Soviet Union would love Africans. And the Buddhists of Burma would not be attacking Muslims. In both cases people got over 50 years of multicultural leftist media. Doesn’t seem to have worked.

Natalie

If people concerned about DV with men would get more involved instead of posing themselves as adversaries, they’d realize that they’re allies looking to combat the same system of cultural stereotypes.

No they would not. As feminists usually campaign against sharing funding and the limelight with any group that has anything to do with men.

but I read an open letter to the organizers about how minority women still could not take the word “slut” and own it like white women could.

White women can’t either. As much as the feminists would like to argue otherwise, the concept of slut represents something deeper about the way that men see women, the way women see women, and the way that women actually are. No amount of politics can fight the reality.

@Onbe-

Would you sound crazy to say the majority of the media is on the womens’ side?
Crazy? No. But it’s an odd way of forming a statement. And it shows that you don’t really understand the problem here. But I’ll get back to that in a bit.

Firstly, you’re framing this as if it’s a women vs. men thing and who suffers more. Whose pain is greater? And that’s why you think I’m the only feminist you’ve talked to who agrees with you. Because I’m ignoring the fact that you’re framing it that way, and just looking at the point you’re trying to make. If you try to emphasize sexism against men by minimizing or side-lining sexism against women, you’re alienating the people who you want to see your point. So you actually have no idea what feminists think (as if they were some monolithic entity that all thought and reacted the same) because you’re trying to marginalize the issues that they care about in order to bring attention to yours.

Here are some of your statements:

“The case here is made very weak by the fact there is never a response from those who care when its men in the firing line of sick humour, especially when the in cases the consequences to the mans live run much deeper.”

1) But there is a response. You’re just not looking for it, or you’re not aware of it. Like how you said nobody talks about sexism against men and that very same day there was an excellent article in The Atlantic (it’s a major news publication here in the US) on that topic. Is the response not as large as you would like? Absolutely. Is there still a culture of denying that men suffer from violence/rape and refusal to deal with it as a serious crime culturally, unless it happens to boys? Absolutely. But that’s patriarchal standards. It has nothing to do with feminism. And you come off as blaming feminists for the lack of response when they are fighting the same cultural bias that you are. You’re going to have difficulting finding common ground if this is the tone you take.

2) “the consequences to the mans lives runs much deeper” Men suffer more than women, you say. It’s a pain competition. See? You can say that men suffer from the same culture of victim shaming that women do without trying to minimize what happens to women. It makes you sound like you don’t understand what’s happening to women, or you’re just saying it’s not as important. I’m not saying that’s what you think, but that’s what it sounds like.

“Yet its nothing in comparison to what men are subjected to ~ I dont want to derail this topic, but why is that never even acknowledged?”

Nothing in comparison. You don’t really believe that, do you? It these are the kind of things you say in a thread about portrayals of battered/raped women, you’ll lose your audience. Also, I hope that now you know that it is definitely acknowledged. It gets less press because while 1 in 5 females are victims of rape or sexual assault, 1 in 77 males are. It happens much more to women. That doesn’t mean that men suffer less when it does happen. And I will never try to say so. It’s not a pain competition.

“its a sad fact that these pictures are laughable in comparison to whats main stream and accepted abuse of men, and until women take serious issue with this shit the outrage against pictures hidden away on the internet will remain irrelevent and almost insulting.”

Again, you’re framing it in a men vs. women arguement. It’s not. And again, if you make it so, you have potential allies shouting you down as irrelevant.

“Seriously:

Fictional photoshoped images for MEMES = out rage

Real life victim tortured and mutilated = “ha ha””

No.
This is just not knowing the entirety of the problem with Facebook. There were actual pictures of beaten women and beaten girls, and actual pictures of raped women being posted. Not just photoshopped pictures. Do a search, it will disgust you. And these real life female victims are posted for laughs and bragging as well. Notice, I’m not saying that male victims aren’t laughed at in order to prove my point about violence against women. That’s why you don’t feel alienated by me, and feel like you can talk to me. (at least, I hope you do)

“It shows how much people really do care about equality doesent it.”

This attitude comes from a PATRIARCHICAL CULTURE. Which, by definition, does not want equality, but defined roles and characteristics based on gender. So this has nothing to do with a movement that is trying to promote equality.

You’re alienating feminists by telling them that they are responsible for a culture that they are trying to get rid of.

“A women is raped ~ media response – deep sympathy

A man is castrated ~ media response – funny”

And back to this. You want to believe that victim shaming of women is something that happens by some wacko that gets airtime. Some “loony” as you say. But that the victim shaming by men is much more pervasive. As if it’s a competition.
So I’ll start off by saying that 1) it’s not a competition, you’re allowed to say that victim-shaming happens everywhere, regardless. Again, you don’t have to say that men suffer more than women in order to make your point, I know I’m repeating myself, but really. This is where you’ll lose people.

And 2) Major news outlets have just covered some high profile rape stories in the past few months and it was appalling. NBC, ABC, CNN, Major news outlets. Local and national. We’re not talking about some pundit going on a rant here, we’re talking about news coverage. It was just the atmosphere of how things were presented. In the NY Times it was very apparent in that one day, an article came out reporting one of the cases and the following day, another article came out castigating the journalist for how everything was presented. From questioning the actions of the victim to feeling sorry for the punishments the teenage perpetrators would have.

No, victim shaming is pervasive in the culture. The actions of the victim are questioned, couldn’t she have done anything to prevent it? Maybe she shouldn’t have drunk so much? Why didn’t she fight back? What is her prior sexual history? Why did she have to wear revealing clothing? How many people was she flirting with that night? These things are commonly asked, not only when the victims tell their friends/family afterwards, if they tell anyone at all, but then by the police, and during court in the trial, and then the media further speculates on it.

And does this apply to men? Yes, but in a different way. It’s a different kind of shaming which is very well discussed in the link that I posted.

How much speculation on the rapist and their actions?

Well, that’s how the slutwalks started. A policeman in (Toronto? Montreal? I forget) told women that if they want to prevent rape or sexual assault, they shouldn’t dress like sluts. Rather than pro-actively trying to educate people so that they are less likely to sexually assault someone or rape someone, they tell the people how they should change their actions to avoid rape. The onus of responsibility is on the victim to avoid his or her own rape.

It’s disgusting.

So, in answer to your question, is the majority of the media on the women’s side? Not at all. Not even close. Not the media, not our culture. And that’s why the vast majority of rapes are not even reported. And whatever fraction is reported for women, that fraction is even smaller for men.

Just remember, next time you bring this up, don’t frame it as a men vs women issue, and don’t minimalize the suffering of female victims because the rest of your comments will fall on deaf ears no matter how well thought out they are.

@Not So Subtle –

“But this is not about how you vote or how you spend your money. It is about threatening advertisers to put pressure on Facebook.”

Then you have a definition problem. How are people “threatening” advertisers? By saying they won’t buy their products. Which is… how you choose to spend your money. A lot of advertisers took action on their own because they didn’t want to be associated with racism and misogyny. I would think most forward thinking companies would feel the same.

You need to figure out what the difference is between societal pressure and bullying. Your arguement consists of “No, it isn’t” in which the only reply is really, “Yes, it is.” And you can see how well that would progress. You say there is a fine line between bullying and societal pressure. Define it then.

Your comments about a liberal society and totalitarianism are neither here nor there. This is a company policy. The policy is made by the CEO, or the board of directors, or some higher ups in the company, and it’s based on what kind of image they want the company to have, and profit margins. It’s not a democracy. It’s not a republic. It’s not a liberal society, it’s not a totalitarian society. It’s not a government. There are no laws involved. It’s a for-profit company owned by share holders.

“Actually it usually means most moderates have lives and families and homes. They have better things to do. The nutters are socially dysfunctional and so have a lot of time to spend on pushing their pet agendas.”

Okay, so the moderates with families and homes and lives don’t mind that the companies they buy products from advertise on a forum which allows the posting of battered and raped women, misogynistic and racist pictures, in which advertisements from the companies they buy from appear right next to those pictures… rather, it’s only the nutters and socially dysfunctional people that get up in arms about this.

I disagree.

“A series of value judgements pretending to be facts. There is no reason to think that it makes it normal or that it desensitizes anyone. Again you need believe such pseudo-science…”

Sure there is. People have studied it. Just because you don’t know much about cultural bias and how people are affected by media doesn’t make it pseudo-science. Psychology and human behavior is an interesting field that we both know a lot about and at the same time, very little. You’re dismissing an entire area of study for no reason.

“What is more we are talking about a Facebook page. Hardly commonplace or routine.”

It’s a social media platform with one billion users. This sets a precedent. And a good one. 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted or raped. That’s pretty commonplace and routine. And these images encourage a culture which perpetuates those statistics and in which there is victim-shaming.

“Another set of value judgements. People aren’t you know.”

They are, or advertisers wouldn’t be in business. And governments wouldn’t bother with propaganda in the first place.
Saying that people are influenced by media is not the same as saying they don’t have free will and can’t think for themselves. They have free will, and they are influenced by the media around them whether they realize it or not.
Soviet Union, Burma, etc – that’s neither here nor there. Too much happening to say, “the media doesn’t affect people because of Burma.”

“No they would not. As feminists usually campaign against sharing funding and the limelight with any group that has anything to do with men.”

Sure they would. It depends on how the argument is framed. If you go to the MRA, then feminists are less likely to be on your side, aren’t they?
Feminists fight for womens’ causes. But if the adversary is the same, they can cooridinate with another group advocating for a different cause. They can collaborate. See the article in the Atlantic, it’s already happening.
It doesn’t have anything to do with sharing the limelight or money. Things aren’t black and white. You can preserve your own cause, your own issue, and still work with others.
Right now, people are blaming feminists for sexism against men, as we’ve seen in this thread, which precludes any collaborative activism.

“White women can’t either. As much as the feminists would like to argue otherwise, the concept of slut represents something deeper about the way that men see women, the way women see women, and the way that women actually are. No amount of politics can fight the reality.”

The slutwalks are a start. There’s still work to be done. But that’s a pretty accurate description of what the problem is, you describe it much better than I did. And people are fighting it. It’s a cultural perception. Cultural perception can be changed. Reality can be changed. That’s part of what’s going on now at Facebook. How women are perceived and portrayed culturally has changed a great deal since the 1850’s. And it’s still changing.

As an aside, I find your thought process to be really inflexible. It’s either yes or no, a or b, black or white. Life just isn’t like that, and that’s why you’re having so much trouble proving your points to me. It’s easy for me to disprove them when you’re speaking in absolutes. I can find merit in some of what you have to say, but you push it so hard to an extreme you make it really difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff.

@Chaise –
I’m just extending a hand shake. It was nice talking with you, I think we both learned something in the process.
To productive debating!

Firstly, you’re framing this as if it’s a women vs. men thing and who suffers more. Whose pain is greater? And that’s why you think I’m the only feminist you’ve talked to who agrees with you.
—-

No Im framing it as its mens pain thats worth so little to society its mocked on tv and womens pain is worth so much there are armys of helpers going through the back alleys of the internet looking for offense, after all this topic is about mocking/making light of a victims pain, not the actual attacks them selves. Its not that you are the first feminist thats ever agreed with me because this is not about me, you are the first femaninist I have come across thats said yea.. men can suffer/be discriminated against to.

But there is a response. You’re just not looking for it, or you’re not aware of it. Like how you said nobody talks about sexism against men and that very same day there was an excellent article in The Atlantic (it’s a major news publication here in the US) on that topic. Is the response not as large as you would like?
—–

There is zero response, there may of been an article in the Atlantic about sexisim but when there was a Real life victim of castration being mocked on day time tv, a Real person, not fabricated pictures taken from domestic violence campaigns misused for memes, there was zero response.

There was national outrage not long ago because a tv presenter said “Women don’t know the offside rule” he lost his job over this sexist comment, that has everything to do with feminism but when it comes to a man being mocked over his castratation the total lack of response has nothing to do with femanism, its the “patriarchal standards” you say, I come off as if I am blaming femanists for THEIR total lack of a response and thats because I am.

If they were standing up to the same cultural bias their voices would have been heard loudly on the issue infact the response would have been identitical to that of a panel of men making a joke about a female victim of genitile mutililation by their partner because she asked for a divorce.

If this is the tone femanists are going to take I will not only have trouble finding common ground I will have trouble seeing them as anything other than vile human beings.

Nothing in comparison. You don’t really believe that, do you? It these are the kind of things you say in a thread about portrayals of battered/raped women, you’ll lose your audience.
—-

I dont believe, I know that pictures created by teenage prats on facebook are nothing in comparison. Imagine being sat in your house and on the news there is a case of a female victim who was mutilated so badly she could never have a sexual relationship again, all because she asked for a divorce. You turn the channel and it happens to be a morning tv talk show, 5 men are saying its actually quite fabulus, maybe she deserved it, its different when its a women, its only a women..the audience of men roar with laughter…

Picture your reponse and the response of the femaninist community, what would happen to these 5 internationaly known men some of who work across the media and on very popular shows with children?

When you can picture a world in which there is NO response, No consequence, perhaps laughter from your parnter at most, and when you bring the subject up you are told welll…you know..there was an article in the Atlantic about sexism against women the other week, is the response not big enough for you? hmmm?

When you can picture this you will understand what men face in comparison to women on this issue. You may go on to instantly quote the difference in numbers of men and women that are attacked and say it does not happen to men that often but this is not only not a competition, its about how these things are portrayed in media, you may rationalise why those women were not forced out of a job because they are in no way suited to represent society, you call it patriarchal standards, your rationalizations mean nothing, the correct response comes from being human.

We are done.

I started responding to some of the posts yesterday but then had to leave off to attend to my work. Today I’ve been looking back at the continued conversation and found it very interesting to see how it all went. I particularly enjoyed the correspondance between Chaise and Natalie and their ‘coming together’ by the end of their conversation. If only everyone was as ‘open-minded’ and prepared to listen to the other side of the argument as these two all would indeed be well in the world.. We women have son’s too, you know, and know some of the difficulties within our patriarchal society that they have to deal with. We love them but we also want them to be good feminists. I hope that we have all learned something through this discussion – even from the negative comments! I know that I have. Thanks again Natalie and Chaise.

72. Chaise Guevara

Natalie, Geraldine – I’m going to be offline for awhile and will probably not be back until after this article drops off the front page, so wanted to say cheers and that it was good talking to you.

@Onbe-

First off, if I’ve insulted you, I apologize. Neither one of us is going to learn anything if tempers flare. Saying “we’re done” after an angry rant solves nothing. I’ve reread your post a few times and I think I’ve pinpointed the problem. We’re talking about two different things. I’m talking about violence against men (woman against man, man against man, hate crimes, etc.) in general. You’re talking about castration.

I’ll start off by saying that I didn’t understand that you were fixating on castration only. I just realized that this is the predominant issue for you. When we were talking about violence against men, I was referring to the sexual assault, rape and violence which men are subjected to, especially in prison where it’s more common, and pretty much tolerated. This kind of violence (not castration specifically, although it could certainly be included) is what I’m referring to when I say that it is a patriarchal society and culture which results in the victim-shaming and tolerance of this kind of violence. Not feminism.

The castration, I always pictured it as something that was very uncommon, which is why it results in lots of press and media sensationalism. When I picture violence towards men, I don’t picture castration at all. Maybe I should. I don’t know how common it is. Do you?

And I will agree with you that finding castration funny, and making it a joke, or a threat – serious or not, is a byproduct of women’s empowerment and feminism. It’s not a patriarchal culture or value system that will make jokes about it. I’m wrong, you’re right. That being said, it’s not feminists that find it funny, although some feminists may find it funny. Do you understand the difference?

You see, we have to understand where we disagree, and why. We were talking about very different things. It is a joke, and you’re right that when you flip it around, and put the woman in the place of the mutilated person, it has a very different connotation and would not be the butt of jokes of feminists or anyone else. You are absolutely right about that. And you can blame feminism, not patriarchy, for why castration is funny, and female mutilation is not.

Okay, so you’ve convinced me. But do you see how we were talking about two different things? Once I realized what was getting you so upset, I did a quick search “why is castration funny?” And wow. Honestly, I didn’t even know this was an issue. Do you see what a bit of education and awareness can do? Most people want to be good people. Instead of yelling and getting upset, try explaining. Really. It works.

This:

“If this is the tone femanists are going to take I will not only have trouble finding common ground I will have trouble seeing them as anything other than vile human beings.”

will not.

You’re also tarring an entire movement that has been in existance since the 60’s with one brush. That will get you nowhere. Talking with one person or lots of people is not talking with every single feminists on the planet.

Now, you want to call people out for finding castration funny, make them realize that it’s hypocritical? Go do that. Have a civil conversation and it will happen. Explain the inversion situation. It’s very effective in getting your point across. But if you call them vile human beings for not understanding what is wrong with a very popular cultural bias, you’re not going to make any progress.

There’s still some issues with your post. You still don’t have a full understanding of the problem on facebook. REAL images of ACTUAL beaten women were posted. People were posting pictures of women that they or their friends had ACTUALLY violated. Not just photoshoped images as is shown on this blog – actually, one of them is beaten, so I don’t know why you say that it’s photoshopped. If you look them up, you’ll see them. I looked up “why is castration funny,” you can look up pictures of little girls given two black eyes and some others. It’s pretty horrible. It’s not just “some teenage prat making images on facebook.” And saying so is minimalizing the problem. And if you minimalize a problem in order to make your case about castration, you won’t get anywhere.

The Atlantic: The article was brought to your attention because there are MANY others, and this one just happened to be posted yesterday. Did you read it and get the references? But while it addresses sexism against men, it doesn’t address castration. So maybe this is a non-issue for you, maybe the article is not important to you if it doesn’t talk about castration.

So here’s a question: Are the other issues of sexism against men less important for you than castration being a joke? I’m trying to put things in perspective, to see things how you do. When I hear about sexism towards men, I usually hear about victim-shaming from domestic violence or other kind of violence/sexual assault/rape, prison rape, alimony and child-custody, societal pressure to be the bread winner, being shamed for choosing a “women’s profession”, being scorned for being emotional, signing up for the draft, etc. And because these are the issues that I hear about, these are the ones that I think are important to men. And all of these are products of a patriarchal culture. Not feminism.

So I’m curious, do you think that the humor in castration is more serious than other types of violence that men face? I ask because it doesn’t seem like it’s something that happens very often. If 15,000 men are the victims of rape and assault (it’s probably more, I’ve got no clue what the statistics are) in a given year, and 1 is castrated, but mocked everywhere on TV, and the perpetrator celebritized, paid for selling her story, etc, is it still the castration that is the biggest issue for you?

This is the first time I’ve heard someone talk about the humor of castration. And it’s an eye opener.

Education and awareness is how you spread the message. Not alienation.

@Chaise, Geraldine – ditto.
Have a good weekend.

@Chaise, Geraldine-
Ditto!
Have a good weekend

@Natalie. Thanks. Might I assume that you are a writer or a researcher? This because you write so very well and also have an analytical mind. Even before I had finished writing you had responded to Onbe with such a good argument that anyone with half a mind would see the logic. If you are not a writer then maybe you should be! I am a publisher! I don’t know if I’m supposed to advertise here or I would pass on details of our web-site. Thanks again for your interesting comments. I’m sure that you have made a lot of people think!

Geraldine, I’m actually both. I studied chemical engineering. And these past few days have been full of instrument troubleshooting. Tweak something and wait. Tweak something and wait. A mobile device helps break the monotony, as does posting on this forum. Hence my frequent posts.
But really, I think that the qualities that you admire come from my participation in the failed Middle East forum. It’s really really REALLY hard to come to a consensus. But if your goal is to understand the other person and have the other person understand you, and you assume that the motivations of the other person are good, and that person is good, then maybe you can come to some kind of understanding where if you don’t agree, at least you can respect that person’s opinion and why they hold it instead of castigating them for thinking differently.

You have not insulted and I am not fixated on castration, I am pointing out the differences men and women face in this area, how their suffering is portrayed and whats acceptable in the media and I have used one of the worst things that can happen to a male to illustrate my point. That it does not happen much is irrelevent, that the two cases I know of one was glorified and offered onto tv talk shows whilst the other was hysterically laughed at by feminists on another tv talk show really does say everything that needs to be said about feminists attitudes.

It is a joke, and you’re right that when you flip it around, and put the woman in the place of the mutilated person, it has a very different connotation and would not be the butt of jokes of feminists or anyone else. You are absolutely right about that. And you can blame feminism, not patriarchy, for why castration is funny, and female mutilation is not
—-

Butt of the jokes with femanists? I cant IMAGINE their response to the mocking of a female victim, I dont blame femanism for why castration is funny ( funny you should term it like that..) because it is not funny at all. I blame femanism for screwing enough minds up making them sick enough to find it acceptable such a thing could be mocked on tv.

You’re also tarring an entire movement that has been in existance since the 60?s with one brush. That will get you nowhere
—-

I do not need to tar them they exposed them selved for what they were the day there was no backlash to that tv show whilst on the other hand a long standing tv presenter gets fired because he pointed out a women did not know the offside rule.

Now, you want to call people out for finding castration funny, make them realize that it’s hypocritical? Go do that
—–

I dont need to call them out its a stand alone fact it is not funny, people can believe or be amused by whatever they like no matter how sick that makes them however when a person exposes them selves as a loon in the public domain they expose them selves as unfit for the position, femanists have become so sensetive to what a loon actually is they destroy a mans career for stating an observation.

Pictures hidden away on facebook upset them greatly yet we see feminists on tv mocking male victims with zero backlash from the very same femanists who are greatly upset over pictures and “she does not know the offside rule” observations.

If people want equality they have to be it..I said we are done because you are not going to see my point, yes pictures on facebook are bad perhaps you should just count your blessings and be thankful pictures of victims arent held up on talk shows and mocked with the backing of society eh?

@Obne-

“You have not insulted and I am not fixated on castration, I am pointing out the differences men and women face in this area, how their suffering is portrayed and whats acceptable in the media and I have used one of the worst things that can happen to a male to illustrate my point.”

I’m glad I didn’t insult you. That’s the last thing I want to happen.

So you need to make a choice. Are you talking about castration? Or are you talking about violence towards men. Because there is a huge difference between rape/assault/violence/murder against men, and how that’s portrayed in the media, and how castration is portrayed in the media. Castration is not representative of how violence against men is portrayed in the media at all. It’s completely different. So you can’t take castration and hold it up as an example of how violence against men is portrayed in the media because it is an anomaly among violence directed towards men.

There is rape/assault/violence/murder of women, and how that is portrayed in the media, and rape/assault/violence/murder of men, and how that is portrayed. That’s your apples to apples comparison. Castration gives you a whole different reaction. And so it does not illustrate a point which is comparable to how rape/assault/violence/murder of women is portrayed.

“That it does not happen much is irrelevent, that the two cases I know of one was glorified and offered onto tv talk shows whilst the other was hysterically laughed at by feminists on another tv talk show really does say everything that needs to be said about feminists attitudes.”

I ask how common it is, because it’s not something that I’m familiar with outside of the John/Lorena Bobbit story. I also ask how common it is, because – let’s say I was in charge of some men’s sexism organization. How do I direct my time and resources? I’d want to make the biggest bang for my buck in societal impact. How much time should be devoted to talking about castration humor? What I’m asking is, how important is this to men? To you? Especially when taking into account things that are much more prevalent. Or is it the way that it’s laughed at which makes it that much more of an issue?

Also, a few people on a talk show, feminists or not, does not equal all feminists. Surely you can see that? You have no idea what all feminists think. I have no idea what all feminists think. Nobody does.

“I blame femanism for screwing enough minds up making them sick enough to find it acceptable such a thing could be mocked on tv.”

Fair enough. And then what you have to do is point out why it is sick. Take me, for an example. I really didn’t know this was a problem. Honestly. I haven’t devoted any time to thinking about it. I didn’t know it was an issue.

“I do not need to tar them they exposed them selved for what they were the day there was no backlash to that tv show whilst on the other hand a long standing tv presenter gets fired because he pointed out a women did not know the offside rule.”

I do think people should be censured for public sexist (against men and women) remarks. Sacking for a comment is extreme, but sexism shouldn’t be tolerated. You cite one or two examples of people being fired for a sexist remark, and I really wish you would give a link because the cases I’m familiar with involve those people being censured, or forced to make a public apology, or forced to undergo some kind of awareness training, if they’re forced to do anything at all. We’ve had some politicians lose elections because of sexist remarks. It’s hard to believe that it’s only a sexist comment, and nothing else, which resulted in someone being fired. That being said, I don’t agree with someone losing their livelihood because of a sexist remark. The story would have to be more complicated than that. Provide links please.

And if you want the same to happen to those who mock castration victims, then you have to raise awareness. It’s that simple. Or complicated, depending on how you view it. Sexist remarks against women used to be accepted, used to be the norm. Now we can point them out and sue if it’s directed at us repeatedly at the workplace.

“I dont need to call them out its a stand alone fact it is not funny,”

Obviously, it’s not a fact to a lot of people. It’s a cultural bias. It’s a sexist cultural bias. If you don’t want it to be considered funny, you need to explain why it’s not.

“ yes pictures on facebook are bad perhaps you should just count your blessings and be thankful pictures of victims arent held up on talk shows and mocked with the backing of society eh?”

But the problem is that this isn’t an apples to apples comparison. You are holding up an anomaly (castration) among how violence against men is portrayed in the media, to how violence against women is portrayed. Castration is not representative. Horrible? Yes. Disgusting? Yes. Will I remember this discussion and bring it up to those who like me, haven’t given it a second thought? Absolutely. But it’s not representative of how violence against men is portrayed. And therefore, is not a good comparison to the images on Facebook.

You, and those that feel as strongly as you do about this issue, have to be pragmatic. Those websites that I saw when I looked up “why is castration funny” are very hostile to women. If you want more mainstream support, you can’t alienate 51% of the population and declare them vile human beings because they don’t see what is obvious to you.

Some feminists take great pains to explain how changing patriarchal culture to one that is equal for both sexes is a win-win situation. That men also benefit, and have benefitted, from the gains of feminism in numerous aspects of society, both in the workplace and at home.

Some feminists say that if you’re against feminism, then you’re against full equality of 51% of the population and therefore a horrible human being.

Which argument would be more convincing to you?

So you need to make a choice. Are you talking about castration? Or are you talking about violence towards men.
—-

That is one of the most bizzare things I have ever read any remotely sane person would know castration is violence towards men, there for by talking about it I am talking about violence against men.

Because there is a huge difference between rape/assault/violence/murder against men, and how that’s portrayed in the media, and how castration is portrayed in the media.
—-

Yes, when it comes to castration women tend to lose all sense of dignity and crack out a laugh about it as opposed to murder which is treated seriosuly, ever seen a talk show laughing about a death?

Castration is not representative of how violence against men is portrayed in the media at all. It’s completely different.So you can’t take castration and hold it up as an example of how violence against men is portrayed in the media because it is an anomaly among violence directed towards men.
—-

Castration is extreme violence which results 100% of the time in life long disfigurement and profound consequences both emotional and physical to the victim, how this extreme act is portrayed in the media tells us a lot about how men are portayed and viewed by society. In America and the UK acid attacks are an anomaly, if several mens rights and equality advocates were to mock a female victim of this violence on national tevevision and none of them were fired or faced Any consequence, were giggling when they said sorry..we did not mean to offend anyone, in what world could we say their unpunished actions accepted by all do not represent the way violence towards women is portrayed in the media???

Would you say “while acid attacks are violence they are anomaly among violence directed towards women, there is a huge difference between rape/assault/violence/murder against women and how that’s portrayed in the media and how acid attacks are portrayed so you can’t take acid attacks and hold it up as an example of how violence against women is portrayed in the media”..??

If its an anomaly or an every day event is irrelevent, that it took place and went unchallanged shows its acceptable to portray male victims in that way on national tv, while feminists are running around losing there minds about pink and blue in the toys section plus some crap pictures that come from no source of authority in the dust bins of facebook.

That is the difference, a young women can see those pictures on facebook and think “an idiot made that” they arent accepted in the main stream and they are created by juviniles. A young man sees famous tv hosts laughing at one of the worst things that can happen to him and hes dumbfounded at the inability of so many women to see the victim and by default him self as a human being.

This attitude is accepted whilst in the same arena he sees men being fired for pointing out a female worker is not up to par, that really goes a long way towards him cultivating an attitude of respect and fairness to women huh.

I ask how common it is, because it’s not something that I’m familiar with outside of the John/Lorena Bobbit story. I also ask how common it is, because – let’s say I was in charge of some men’s sexism organization. How do I direct my time and resources? I’d want to make the biggest bang for my buck in societal impact. How much time should be devoted to talking about castration humor? What I’m asking is, how important is this to men? To you? Especially when taking into account things that are much more prevalent.
—–

You are in charge of some sexism organization,news reports concerning a young lady who was drug tied and torturted are current, the victim had her breasts removed and destroyed and was mutilated so badly in other areas she could never have an intimate relationship again. This took place only because she asked her husband for a divorce, in the aftermath 5 male rights tv hosts hysterically laughed at her situation on live tv, how do you best direct your time and resources? Should you devote any time to talking about the actions of these public personalities especially when taking into account other forms of violence are much more prevalent?

Answer those questions to your self and then imagine how little you would have to care to instead laugh as oppossed to taking the actions you answered with, then you have the answer of how much femanists and groups really care about men because in response that is exactly what they did.

Or is it the way that it’s laughed at which makes it that much more of an issue?
—–

Your perception is so toxic and twisted on this point its almost an illness, the way in which its laughed? Such as on national tv at 11 in the morning broadcast to millions? At the end of the day one can choose who they associate with there for one can choose the attitudes of those around them, if some sad individuals are corrupt enough to find it funny thats their issue it reflects upon them but when those individuals are main stream personalities using mainstream tv to broacast there gender hate and they go totally unchallanged, there is a problem.

Your quote:

People (and you) are more susceptible to media than they would like to think. People (and you) are influenced by what they see and read.

Your quote:

Or is it the way that it’s laughed at ( whilst on tv ) that is much more of an issue.

Also, a few people on a talk show, feminists or not, does not equal all feminists. Surely you can see that? You have no idea what all feminists think. I have no idea what all feminists think. Nobody does.
—–

The feminists response to it tells us exactly what they think, in the same manner the femanists response (destroying his career) to a man saying a lady on a football pitch did not know what she was doing told us exactly what femanists think even though the vast majority of those who came out against the individual did not and would never have viewed the football game live, yet we have a tv show aimed at females and the response…

Your views are to all over the place to continue with, all I would like is a society in which gender hate is not acceptable to broadcast on tv, what I have is a society that allows women to mock male victims on any media platform whist destroying male speakers for any slight none of which ever approach that of the females, and femanists who are dumbfounded how it could be a problem.

If you want equality that means when a any person from each gender steps out of line in these ways they face the consequences, you can blame standards or what ever you want at the end of the day its your lot who will rise to end the career of a football presenter and stay seated with a smile at laughter about genitile mutilated, nothing makes that happen but personal choice and personal choice tells us what groups are about.

So much for subtlety,

When you answered Natalie (#66), you seemed to make the same argument I made: it is not fair to experience being bullied by people using their free speech to stigmatise you to effectively intimidate you or others into silence or even self-abasement.

Conversely, you are also arguing to me (#65) that using free speech to protect people in such a situation is wrong because it constitutes a form of censorship that you do either experience or imagine to be even more oppressive.

You or I cannot prove which form of bullying / counter-bullying is experienced as worse either way. One person may be more sensitive to the negative impacts of stigmatising groups and someone else to the sense of loss people feel when they are not allowed to undermine other people’s value. I get the sense that you are sensitive to both, but by focusing on just one you can call me a shrinking violet and I can call you a shrinking violet for fearing for different types of totalitarianism.

It may be simpler to just ignore one anothers’ fears as too easy to fake or as a rationalisation for some other evil agenda. But would you agree both fears are worth considering in each case, and your posts show me you do understand both dangers, even though you can’t prove any more than I can which is the bigger problem objectively.

@onbe

The pictures on Facebook contribute to an atmosphere in which domestic violence and rape are made a joke. Which contributes to a culture in which both are fairly common, and the victims shamed into not reporting it or getting help. As if it were their fault for being in that situation in the first place. And then perpetrators are not punished. That goes for both male AND female victims.

Laughing at castration, is not contributing to a culture in which castration happens regularly, or at all. It’s rare. So rare that the entire world knows about it when it happens. The John/Lorena Bobbit story happened in 1994 and it’s still known. That’s why I ask you about the importance of the issue. And about a theoretical men’s activism group allocating money. I would want to devote my time and resources trying to prevent the violence, and changing a culture in which perpetrators roam free because victims are shamed into not reporting the violence at all for fear of how they’ll be treated by friends and family, society, the media and the judicial system.

In this regard, castration is an anomaly among violence towards men because the way it’s laughed does not promote a culture in which castration is used against men. Why is that? I don’t know. But while making light of other violence does promote a culture where that violence is common, castration doesn’t. It’s an anomaly. 1 case out of 30,000 and the one which causes so much mocking has nothing to do with when/if the next castration will happen.

And that’s also why throwing acid is different. If a victim of acid was mocked on TV, and the perpetrator lauded and interviewed, it would promote a culture in which acid would be used against people, and it would become more common than it is now. I don’t even know how common it is in western countries, I usually hear about it happening in societies where men are mostly free to abuse their wives/daughters with little repercussion. If at all.

Why is it different from castration? I really don’t know. And so, castration jokes are an anomaly. It’s not a horrible joke that perpetuates actual violence, it’s a horrible joke.

And the other thing, you really don’t know what a feminist is. This talk show you mention but don’t cite here with a link, you claim it’s a feminist talk show. On what basis? If you don’t know what feminism is then you can’t say these women were feminist. You cant say that the talk show was feminist.They were women.

Not all feminists find castration funny. Not all women find castration funny. Not all women are feminists. Not all men who are feminists find castration funny.

And not all people who find castration funny are women. Or feminists. Male comedians had a field day with the Bobbitt story. And the people laughing were… Male. The media, which portrays castration as as something to laugh about has predominantly male producers, directors and screen writers. Guys seem to think that castration is hiLARious. Some of the sites which I saw when I looked up why is castration funny and weren’t rabidly hostile to women were put up by guys trying to be funny. 100 ways to be castrated. (Lorena Bobbitt made it on that list) And I have no idea if these people self-identify as feminists.

Why am I saying this? Not to justify laughing at what is ultimately a horrible mutilation of the body (not 100% irreversible as you say, John Bobbit had his successfully reattached), but to say that I don’t think you understand anything at all about the issue. You don’t understand why people find it funny or who finds it funny, and you haven’t thought about the consequences of people finding it funny on society.

Furthermore, youre upset by the lack of a reaction to the treatment of this castration victim. Anyone can write an article or film a piece analyzing why castration is so funny. And I’d be interested to read any psychological analysis for why our society (notice I said society, not women or feminists) treats it differently than other forms of violence or mutilation. Feminists aren’t stopping anyone from doing so.

What you’re doing is using how castration is treated in the media as a weapon to bludgeon feminists with (without knowing what feminists are) and using that to negate concerns they have over issues that have actual effects on violence.
The way castration is portrayed in the media, and the numerous jokes and websites made to laugh at castration have zero effect on castration being performed. And so it’s not comparable to what’s going on with Facebook at all. It’s an entirely different issue.

Warning Graphic picture:

http://www.streetcombattraining.com/images/knifeattack.png

Over seen it in the corner of my neices facebook profile this morning, it was for an advertisement peice about self defense.

Laughing at castration, is not contributing to a culture in which castration happens regularly, or at all. It’s rare. So rare that the entire world knows about it when it happens.

So it would be acceptable to you for males to laugh on tv at rape victims as long as it was not contributing to a culture in which rape happens often? Understood. If there had been two cases of rape against females in the last 100 years and the first case from 1994 was still well known, infact mocked to this day, the perpetrator claiming fame and being a guest on tv shows for no other reason than his crime, while the second bought about hysterical laughter from a panel of male tv hosts, you are actually expecting us to belive this would not be an issue for females femanists or you, infact you would struggle to wonder about the importance of the issue whilst devoting your resources else where…

Considering stating females do not know the offside rule contributes nothing in anyway shape or form in the way of violence towards females, the outrage among the femnists community towards the male presenter who made the claim seems fairly bizzare doesn’t it now, he was seen unfit for the position due to this comment to such a degree he lost the position..how odd.

In this regard, castration is an anomaly among violence towards men because the way it’s laughed does not promote a culture in which castration is used against men. Why is that?

Again blantent sexism bordering on the side of sadism is completely acceptable to you on any platform as long as it does not promote that particular violent act in culture? The rights to dignity of the male victim in this case are completely irrelevent to you.

But while making light of other violence does promote a culture where that violence is common, castration doesn’t.

Laughing at an act of violence does not promote That act of violence in society, if all it took to promote or discourage specific behaviour in society was laughter or negativity in response to it we would live in a very orderly society in which every one paid their taxes. Rather, laughing at a violent act makes it acceptable, its acceptable because the reaction to it is laughter, not negativity. A women does not kick a man in the balls because she thinks it funny, she does it to hurt him and she faces no consequence because its seen as acceptable/funny.

There is a difference between something being acceptable and something being promoted, something that is acceptable to the degree of laughter will not make an individual who is not that way inclined commit that act just because it is being laughed at, an individual needs to be prone to acting in that manner which is why despite the massive amount of negative response to rape it still happens regardless, the difference is violence towards the male in that example is accepted by society while rightly violence towards the female is not. Mocking a male victim of that violence is acceptable whilst mocking a rape victim is not.

Considering a big part of confronting sexism concerns fighting discrimination, any form of discrimination deemed accetpable by society or individuals towards one gender I would again say the discrimination against men that leads to hysterical laughter on live televevision when one loses his penis to the hands of a women is a big issue, a much larger issue than the self generated media of 14 year olds hidden away on facebook.

You claim its not, its an anomaly, a sports presenter pointing out a female does not know the offside rule is much more of an anomaly and in no way serious in comparison yet when he lost his job femanists claimed it was “A victory for women’s rights” so what in the hell are you talking about.

And that’s also why throwing acid is different. If a victim of acid was mocked on TV, and the perpetrator lauded and interviewed, it would promote a culture in which acid would be used against people, and it would become more common than it is now.

You have zero evidence to make this claim yet regardless if it promoted violence or not this behaviour towards a real life victim has no place in our society from those we empower to have a voice, castration is different you say, whys that? Because its a male victim? Ah..

Why is it different from castration? I really don’t know. And so, castration jokes are an anomaly.

The exact curcumstances of Baby P were an anomaly and jokes on tv would not promote it, what a delightful person one would have to be to be ok with that.

And the other thing, you really don’t know what a feminist is.

I can say these women are femanists on the basis that they do..as the femanist community did not come out against them with even 0.001% of the backlash mr offside rule received guess who they represent? Even if none of them were femanists and the femanists who claim to be in pursuit of real equality between the sexes did not treat them exactly as they would men if the situation was the other way around it means the same thing.

Not all feminists find castration funny. Not all women find castration funny. Not all women are feminists. Not all men who are feminists find castration funny.
And not all people who find castration funny are women. Or feminists. Male comedians had a field day with the Bobbitt story. And the people laughing were… Male.
The media, which portrays castration as as something to laugh about has predominantly male producers, directors and screen writers. Guys seem to think that castration is hiLARious.

Surely you mean *some* guys seem to think its halarious? Obviously not all women find it amusing, people can like whatever they want to in there own minds/homes/social groups but when they take it on tv and go unchallanged we have a problem. Male producers and writers dominate in this area that did not stop the pressures of femanism removing a presenter from a male dominated game in a male dominated industry for a single unhurtful comment though did it.

But to say that I don’t think you understand anything at all about the issue. You don’t understand why people find it funny or who finds it funny, and you haven’t thought about the consequences of people finding it funny on society.

I dont understand anything about the issue you say, its not ok to mock anyform of violence towards females on tv because that would promote it, but its ok to mock violence towards males on tv as according to you there is no consequence, there is no increase!

I understand its not ok to do either, I understand some individuals find sick twisted things funny because they are fucked in the head and that alone does not bother me, people have a right to their dysfunction it becomes a problem when its projected onto society and even more of a problem when accepted as the norm. I also understand the consequences of societys belittling of male victims and male issues in this manner, it baffles me that feminists can not see what it creates.

Furthermore, youre upset by the lack of a reaction to the treatment of this castration victim.
—-

Your upset about mock up images on facebook of no victim.

Anyone can write an article or film a piece analyzing why castration is so funny. And I’d be interested to read any psychological analysis for why our society (notice I said society, not women or feminists) treats it differently than other forms of violence or mutilation. Feminists aren’t stopping anyone from doing so.
—-

“Anyone can write an article create a picture or film a piece analyzing why rape and male on female domestic violence is so funny.” I would not be interested in reading any psychological analysis for why some immatuture mostly juvinile fools treat it differently than other forms of violence or mutilation.

Feminists are trying to stop it even though the group of offenders are an anomaly in society and the most advanced platform they have gained to spew there toxic filth is a facebook page.

Thanks for terming it as “castration is so funny” as oppossed to “why some find castration funny” and showing us what you beleive on the issue, when I said your case was weak it was for a reason.

What you’re doing is using how castration is treated in the media as a weapon to bludgeon feminists with (without knowing what feminists are) and using that to negate concerns they have over issues that have actual effects on violence. The way castration is portrayed in the media, and the numerous jokes and websites made to laugh at castration have zero effect on castration being performed. And so it’s not comparable to what’s going on with Facebook at all. It’s an entirely different issue.

What you are doing is having an emotional reaction to pictures that belittle violence towards your own gender in self generated media and demanding it be removed whilst due to your complete inability to understand things beyond your own gender claiming that females mocking and laughing at a male victim of genitile mutilation while he still lays in a hopspital bed is “different” “because” it does not increase the overall number of castrations.

I have news for you, fully functional human beings do not put people who mock the pain of others in there place to stop “the promotion of violence in society”. They do so out of respect for eachother as human beings. Wanting to stop further violence is high on the agenda but unlike your logic which totaly discounts just about every right and dignity of an existing victim, if its a male of course, the victim is still a human and any uncalled for abuse directed towards him especialy from those in places of authority should be delt with swiftly.

Abuse from the underclass of society who lurk on the corners of the internet is to be expected, thats why they are called the underclass, you target them and ignore the abuse of main stream personalitys no matter how extreme as long as its not aimed at your gender.

What feminists are in effect saying is dont rape us, dont hurt us, dont make fun of our discomfort or pain but if your wife ever cuts your dick off you are open ground to be hysterically laughed at by females live on tv and we wont stand up for your right to be treated as an equal human being at all because statistics show this behaviour does not increase the overall numbers of castrations.

In what world can someone be concerned that pictures on facebook will promote the rape of and violence against women in culture and then go on to tell a person the mocking of a man losing his manhood on national tv, as a main stream accepted attitude towards men is different, without consequence, and that they have not thought the issue through.

I suppose being a femanist you will soon have a conversation with someone about how rape is all about power not sex *ha ha! that man got his penis cut off and men are so worthless and powerless in society his life destroying sexual assult is open season on national tv for a laugh* I suppose you will one day talk about domestic violence and how some males seek total dominance over their partners lives, you will likely attribute it to them feeling so powerful that they just have to remove her freinds from her life and control everything she does…

Not everyone in life is strong or matures to a point at which they can deal with the attitudes of those around them and society as a whole, dysfunctional individuals have always been with society,pressures present or not…but your right….its different…how one of the most extreme things that can happen to a mans identity is treated has no reflection on how men are treated across the board…there is no consequence…until one smacks you in the face and you become another statistic, one of those ones thats actualy relevent to society eh?

Back to the start of my post, I am fairly shocked at the backlash against facebooks user generated content when it comes to violence because I see zero mention of graphic pictures displaying the result of extreme violence against men thats actualy placed on the site by facebook, not its users, to advertise…trained violence against men..

The worst kind of sexists are those who arent even aware that they are, I am yet to find a man who can hold the same degree of bias and blind spots as a women, why is that?

Is that because women are inherently programmed by nature to be provided for and take from others? So seeing both sides of things would inhibit their ability to focus on self?

Not all women of course, I know many who are disgusted at whats been mentioned and will understand the position a human is in regardless of their gender, they are all without exception the most self actualised independent and confident within the world of the women I know.

You hate freedom and you cannot lie
All you fascists can’t deny

I don’t know Onbe. Your post is all over the place. I don’t seem to have explained myself well enough because you haven’t understood what I’ve written.

Castration jokes are in the same realm as things like the Darwin Awards. Jokes in bad taste making fun of the loss or misfortune or death of others. Some find them offensive, some find them funny. They don’t promote a culture of victim shaming or a culture which makes light of the offense which allows perpetrators to go unpunished and crimes unreported. Like the pictures on Facebook.

You still haven’t understood this concept otherwise you wouldn’t have posted the picture of a knife attack which isn’t even remotely an example of anything we’ve been talking about.

You’re still hung up on men vs women and still haven’t realized that fighting to take these facebook pictures down helps male victims too in that its another step towards a culture in which this kind of violence is taken more seriously.

86. Churm Rincewind

@ 85 Natalie:

Though I’m broadly supportive of your posts, I’m rather nonplussed by your latest message.

You say that jokes which make fun of the “misfortune or death of others…don’t promote a culture of victim shaming or a culture which makes light of the offense which allows perpetrators to go unpunished and crimes unreported”.

I had taken your previous arguments to be the exact opposite of this.

Castration jokes are in the same realm as things like the Darwin Awards. Jokes in bad taste making fun of the loss or misfortune or death of others. Some find them offensive, some find them funny. They don’t promote a culture of victim shaming or a culture which makes light of the offense which allows perpetrators to go unpunished and crimes unreported. Like the pictures on Facebook.
—-

Jokes about female circumcision, some find funny some find offensive but they dont promote a culture of victim shaming and allow people to get away with it there for to you they are in the same realm as dawin awards and not sexist or revelent at all.

You still haven’t understood this concept otherwise you wouldn’t have posted the picture of a knife attack which isn’t even remotely an example of anything we’ve been talking about.
—-

Yes, its ok in your eyes for an 8 year old girl to see an accident and emergency picture of a male with skin deep slash marks all over his back when she is on facebook but heavens forbid she sees exactly the same fake picture the site owner has used for this article should it have “lol” written across it.

You’re still hung up on men vs women and still haven’t realized that fighting to take these facebook pictures down helps male victims too in that its another step towards a culture in which this kind of violence is taken more seriously.
—-

Violence and sexism against women is taken extremely seriously, violence and sexism against men is not, to the point femanists say mocking a male victim of a serious sexual mutilation assult live on tv is not sexist and has no consequence, feminimis is all over the place and it would not be tolerated with any other group.

Lets apply it to religion:

Mocking the torture of christians because they are christians does not promote a culture in which violence towards christians is increased, you cant tell when the next christian will be burned to death or face violence because the last was mocked on tv so its not an issue, but you cant draw cartoons about muslims..

Any one who promotes double standards does not deserve to be treated well, sadly the consequences of these double standards are faced by a lot more than just those who promote them, your call femanism.

88. Robin Tudge

Facebook’s a private company and its primary interest is in making money and not upsetting advertisers.
Why does anyone think there is any onus on Facebook to uphold free speech or that being on Facebook warrants individuals an entitlement to say what they like?
It’s not the Internet.

Hi Churm, it’s a bit out of context which is probably why it seems like it doesn’t
Mesh with what I’ve said previously. I was referring to the Darwin Awards as an example of a joke that ridicules people for the way they died because they did something stupid (or sometimes just incredibly unlucky). Like using ridiculous amounts of lighter fluid for a grill and then dying of burn injuries. Things of that nature.

And then someone writes it up in a way to make people laugh. But ultimately, we’re talking about the death of a human. With friends and family, maybe kids. It’s tragic. Someone dies, or is maimed, or suffers a misfortune, and depending on the circumstances it could supply a ton of comedic material. But while offensive, joking about a guy who killed himself by using too much lighter fluid isn’t going to promote a culture of people dying from using too much lighter fluid. Like joking about castration. It doesn’t promote a culture where people castrate.

Some people think that a person dying from using too much lighter fluid is funny. Some people think castration is funny. I’ve heard jokes about princess Diana’s death that I doubt would go over well in England where she was so loved. Some people think these are taboo subject matter for jokes because it’s too offensive and hurtful.

Sorry, submitted too early.

None of these subject matter for jokes, while offensive, promote a culture in which those things happen. Contrary to the Facebook images.

Onbe- you still dont understand the concept Im presenting to you. Part of your post is just rehashing your point about castration – which started this whole discussion 70 comments ago – as if nothing has been said since then, and the other part is just examples that show you’re missing the point.

You can understand the concept and still disagree, at least then we could have a fruitful discussion. But at this point, there’s not much else to say. I don’t know how I can explain it further. I’m glad that other people have been able to read this discussion.

@Onbe. With reference to your point about castration, I really want to try another way to explain what, I think, Natalie means. Natalie, personally would not find such a TV programme about castration one bit amusing, (although clearly some do) and she may even find it offensive, as would I, but, she doesn’t think that it added to or promoted an already existing problem whereby millions of people, every second of every day, are castrated. It’s not happening! This is her point.
We also know that some men are abused by women, and we also know of the problems that these men face – being laughed at, by other men and women, for example, obviously equally wrong and (we) think not at all humorous. Feminism (equality for men and women) is a movement for change, from the patriarchal society that we have to a fairer, equal society that benefits both men and women.

But, going back to the original point of this debate: The images shown on facebook do add to the culture of rape and abuse of women (occuring every second of every day, somewhere in the world). Rape of women and girls seems to be an accepted part of the tactics of war (but is castration?)

As an example, when impressionable young people see these images they may accept as the norm that this is how woman are treated. No-one, I doubt, will accept that castration is the norm – it’s still such a rare occurance that if it ever happens, it’s talked about widely for many years. So, whilst I (and Natalie) appreciate that castration is a horrible and violent thing to do and there is no way that I, as a feminist, would find that in any way amusing, it did not, however, promote a culture of something that was already happening. That is the point of Natalie’s argument.

I do hope that I have clarified this Onbe and not added to the misunderstanding.

I have been away for a few days and was surprised to see that this discussion on castration had not moved on (or back on to the original topic for discussion!)

Onbe- you still dont understand the concept Im presenting to you.
—-

I am sorry perhaps I was a bit blind to your point, allow me to try and understand from your perspective. Pictures mocking violence and rape on facebook contribute to a culture in which it happens regularly. Real images of actual beaten women were posted, this not only shames the victim but contributes to a culture of victim shaming and a culture which makes light of the offense which in turn allows perpetrators to go unpunished and crimes unreported.

Look, I understand sexism exists. It always will because men and woman are not equal in terms of strength or capability and thats due to nature, no two individuals are ever equal in this respect either but we are a civilised society so we seek to treat all equally despite the fact that we arent, it does not matter how far society goes in its efforts to end sexism it will continue because its coming from a place of lack. When an individual feels threatened by others, has low self esteem, does not feel capable or accomplished, when they feel discredited worthless and powerless in comparison to others they look within for inherit strengths that others do not have and they project those strengths over others, putting those who do not have these strengths down, this is how people gain a sense of power to counteract their self esteem and worth issues.

This happens with issues of gender, wealth, mental ability, it happens with just about every quality trait and situation thats attributable to being human. *I have it, you dont, there for I have more value than you so I can discriminate against you and in the process deal with my own issues.*

Discrimination does not come from balanaced individuals with a high sense of selfesteem and as a society we know this, we have sought to protect individuals and groups from their actions and attitudes. Religious groups are protected, homosexuals and groups of differeing sexualitys are protected, age groups are protected, we protect these groups from the bigoted and disgusting attitudes of others not because these attitudes promote a culture in which these attitudes are common, if that were the case we would have never stepped in to stop them in the first place, the reason we protect groups from discrimination is simply because it is wrong.

Females are also protected from the unwarrented attitudes and discrimination of others, in the work place in the courts in the media, just about every where, to such a degree that a tv host who stated a female does know the offside rule lost his career and the means he supports his family with as a result.

This is taking place in a culture where feminists constantly lecture both sexes about how misogynist men and society are yet these same feminist make a hero out of and turn a blind eye to other feminists making a hero out of a vile individual who sexually mutilates a man.

Lets look at the issues you as a feminist have concerning these images on facebook:

> They contribute to a culture which promotes violence against women.

> They shame the victim and contribute to a culture of victim shaming.

> They contribute to a culture that makes light of an offense and allows perpetrators to go unpunished and crimes unreported.

Lets look at the reasons there was no backlash at the time and you as a feminist have no concern about internationaly known female media personalities mocking a male victim of genitile mutilation live on tv:

> Laughing at castration is not contributing to a culture in which castration happens regularly.

Now lets quote your words but replace the group:

Laughing at soilders who were beheaded by extremists on London streets is not contributing to a culture in which these beheadings happen regularly, or at all. It’s rare. So rare that the entire world knows about it when it happens.

In this regard, the beheading of British soilders by extremists is an anomaly among violence towards men(only) because(it does not happen often)(and)the way it’s laughed at does not promote a culture in which beheading is used against men. Why is that? I don’t know. But while making light of other violence does promote a culture where that violence is common, beheading doesn’t. It’s an anomaly. 1 case which causes so much mocking has nothing to do with when/if the next beheading will happen.

How many day time talk show hosts jobs would that rationalization save? Who around here would decide a freind is still worthy of association because they gave that rationalization as the reason they were mocking the victim of this case?

You keep saying I am rehasing castration, I am pointing out an example of the absolute height sexisim and discrimination against men has reached in our society, while you have to go to the self generated content of teenagers on the internet to find a case and ask with hand on heart “what impact does it have on a young lady when she sees photos of this nature” a young man only has to turn on the tv.

Appareantly its ok, laughing at male victims does not promote the specific act of violence in culture, your daughters wont be influenced and most likely will never castrate anyone and the number of males who lose their penis stays about the same.

I understand that you are to stupid to ask, what impact does this savage disdain of mens feelings rights and suffering have on young boys and men? To what degree do attitudes towards men have to be degraded in society for this discrimination to actually happen? Personaly I think I would have killed my self if I was subjected the degree of shame that that man was on tv after his assult, the shame alone being enough never mind how worthless I would realize I am to society as the issue went unchallenged.

Its not the most fruitfull enviroment to be in, never mind to grow up in. Every one has the right to self esteem and the respect of others if they behave accordingly, society acts as if men do not have this right and that impacts men as it would impact any group. The younger ones are the most liable to quickly understand and resent how men are treated in society, being young they tend to fire back with a blanket judgement at those they see as they cause.

It would be funny would it not to find out how many young men have created or laughed at these kind of images on facebook simply because they no longer care, in response to the vile attitudes they see being directed towards men in their society.

Whats not so funny is the amount of men who had a tendency towards violence and controlling behaviour to start with picking up on and feeling the effects of this kind of discrimination towards their gender in society, then it fueling their dysfunction, especially the younger ones.

They will most certainly be in the same age group as your daughters, so you keep focusing soley on facebook images portraying women with black eyes as funny, dont even think twice about the number of forces that cultivate the kind of attitude required for those pictures to be created in the first place, toodle loo.

She doesn’t think that it added to or promoted an already existing problem whereby millions of people, every second of every day, are castrated. It’s not happening! This is her point.

As an example, when impressionable young people see these images they may accept as the norm that this is how woman are treated. No-one, I doubt, will accept that castration is the norm – it’s still such a rare occurance that if it ever happens, it’s talked about widely for many years.
—-

If it promotes a specific problem is not relevent, if a women was raped by aliens from planet zonk in the middle of time square and this was the only time aliens intended to visit planet earth, mocking this women on national tv does not suddenly become acceptable. Shes a human, she has rights, those from her gender are impacted as much at the treatment of her and there for their gender if its a one off event or routine and the level of degradement in attitudes towards her gender for this to happen in the first place are extreme.

So while there is not a women being mocked on tv daily for being raped by aliens, the negative attitudes and discriminations though out society that form the base of what made it possible for her to be humiliated on tv with no consequences for those who did it are alive and at work, and like it or not shaping the attitudes of those who are susceptible.

If femanists think removing pictures mocking women with black eyes from facebook helps both men and women, maybe you should have a long hard think about adressing the out right injustices from any gender mocking male victims in the media, I could never ever justify or explain how a panel of males mocking a female victim of a seroius but rare mutiliation is different, it would not be a case of if I was offended or not, they would have to Go and face the consequences for their actions. They are vile bastards, and if they do not go this tells me that the society I live in accepts this as the norm.

If you think young females wont see how this extreme act towards men is treated and build her perception of whats acceptable towards men in terms of attitude and violence, you are wrong. If you think a young man wont see this and build his perception of his genders worth to society, what level of abuse towards him is acceptable and tolerated by all then again you are wrong and there is massive consequence to both.

I have said it several times but that is all I have left to say on the issue.

Well facebook is not only removing the Rape and violence stuff against women but also BDSM pages like I have because of bondage pics. In our community we don’t support violence against women at all. But if a female submissive enjoys being tied up and spanked or whipped with a flogger then that isn’t violence. Just because some don’t understand it doesn’t mean you punish the people that do.

I found this article while researching for a college speech class. My subject is misogyny. As I’ve read through the comments, I have found a couple of patterns. I acknowledged that I have not read every post, only about 20.

The free speech issue, in regard to the portrayal of violence against women, is pushed more by men, though it is acknowledged by some women. The picture most being cited is the chloroform photo, which is the least graphic of them all. No one appears to want to discuss the images that portray more graphic violence.

People are entitled to their opinions in the US. They may be looked down on by some groups and perhaps even ostracized for them, but as of yet we do not have thought police. However, if the portrayal of violence against one group is accepted, when the same type of images of violence toward other groups is forbidden, then we have a problem. I am not condoning violence against anyone. Nor, am I condoning the portrayal of such violence in any form. My problem here, with the comments being made, is the double standard there appears to be. I would guess that this is what precipitates much of the outrage from certain groups. If Facebook, or any other media, allowed all forms of self expression, regardless of how violent and/or disgusting, then there would appear to be equality. Of course, many would avoid the site entirely.

It is easy to sit back and say that one is in favor of free speech no matter what form it takes, when one’s own gender, sex, race, religion, or other group (affiliation) is not being targeted.

Personally, I commend Facebook for finally taking a stand against at least some of the photos being circulated, even if it did take a full on campaign to accomplish. Facebook is supposed to be a place for all ages and genders.

But, this is much bigger than Facebook. It’s a problem across the world. Hate and violence has always existed and always will. It’s the human condition. “I hate you because you are different than me and I can’t control you”. It is pervasive. Perhaps we could learn a thing or two from the Bonobos.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy: Facebook admits mistake over images of violence against women, after campaign | moonblogsfromsyb

    […] via Sunny Hundal Liberal Conspiracy http://liberalconspiracy.org/2013/05/29/facebook-admits-mistake-over-offensive-images-on-violence-ag… […]

  2. Facebook forced to respond to violent sexist images | Only Tech

    […] While I don’t think it’s appropriate to share many of the images featured in the Everyday Sexism campaign, if you want to see examples of the kind of demeaning rubbish these morons think is funny, I encourage you look at its twitter image feed, or this blog post by Sunny Hundal. […]

  3. Facebook forced to respond to violent sexist images | Uni-za.com site for your Life.

    […] While we don’t consider it’s suitable to share many of a images featured in a Everyday Sexism campaign, if we wish to see examples of a kind of demeaning balderdash these morons consider is funny, we inspire we look during a chatter picture feed, or this blog post by Sunny Hundal. […]





Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.