Skepchick go approval seeking from ‘White Male Privilege’


So having gotten roundly called for her shameful behavior at TAM (The Amazing Meeting), Amy ‘crying over a T-shirt’ Roth from Skepchick has gone approval seeking! Not from female bastions of the secular community like Harriet Hall (who clearly was distancing herself from folks like the evermore erratic and fringe Skepchicks), but ironically from what under almost any other circumstances the Skepchicks would call the ’white male privilege’ of the secular community.  However in reality she has not actual got any! NONE!

Ronald Lindsey, Dave Silverman and Nick Lee have all ‘spoken out against hate directed against women’ on Skepchick.


Y’see this is one of those ‘dissent from Darwin’ type stunts that the Discovery institute would pull.  For those who don’t know the dissent from Darwin thing was done to create the appearance of dissent when in fact essentially none existed, just like skepchick are suggesting that there is all this ‘hate against women’ when in fact essentially none exists (beyond criticism and/or trolling).  So how did the Discovery Institute and Skepchick achieve such a remarkable feat? Why by using language so broad that anyone and everyone, including myself, could agree with it.

In the case of the dissent from Darwin the statement was basically that all theories including evolution should be subject to critical scrutiny (well of course! who could disagree?), and in the case of Skepchick it’s ‘speak out against hate against women’ (well of course! who could disagree?).  Now firstly, if someone had asked me this question, my immediate response would be ‘why is Skepchick embracing sexism on this issue? Shouldn’t we be against all hate, irrespective of gender?’  Indeed at least two of the respondents actually elucidated to this. Kudos to:

Dave “American Atheists stands by all its members, supporters, and allies, and we will not tolerate hate directed at any of us. Period” Silverman, and Ronald “Hate-filled invective has been directed at many different people, male and female” Lindsey.

Then of course my second question could be, ‘why are you asking me such loaded questions?’  Really what do you expect me to say? is there ANYONE who would disagree with that position?  I mean if these people had been asked to speak out against hatred against males? or blacks? or puppies? how would they have responded? “No hatred against all of the above is obviously okay”?, of course they wouldn’t.  It’s such an obviously manipulative question.  Thankfully most of the respondent gave measured answers not far off where I would have planted my banner.

I would have started with the obvious and fair first question.

“do you think there is a real problem with ‘hate against women’ in this community? “

I’ve got to say I’ve seen essentially NONE.

I’ll tell you what I have seen, I’ve seen people get called idiots for saying and doing stupid things, y’know stuff about elevators (Rebecca Watson) and T-shirts (Amy Roth), although it is very conspicuous to those who can read what is obviously not said, that NONE of those who speak out against ‘hate against women’ actually specify that they think either Amy Roth or Rebecca Watson had a valid grievance in either case.

Indeed, while Amy Roths introduction to Nick Lee was glowing, if she had actually bothered to read what he wrote, she might have found precious little support for either her or Rebecca Watson.

“Not every flirtation is unwelcome attention, until one side announces it is, and then it should stop.”

So according to Nick there was nothing wrong with what happened to Rebecca Watson in the elevator. NOTHING.

“It is also complicated by the right of people to say what is on their minds even if it makes us feel uncomfortable.”

And there’s Amy ‘crying over the T-shirt’ Roth CLEARLY rebutted in the very next sentence.

Calling someone an idiot for acting like an idiot does not become ‘hate against women’ simply because the person in question was a woman.  This is one of the two general categories of the ‘hate against women’ that Skepchick encounters.  Look it’s obvious, how would people respond if I ‘embraced victim-hood’ like the Skepchicks.  That is any time anyone said anything ‘nasty’ against me I simply claimed that this was just sexism and misandry?  Yup, I would expect exactly the mockery that the Skepchicks get.  Far from sexism, this treatment represents equality in the secular community in that these people (the Skepchicks) are being judged on what they say and do, rather than on their gender.

The second general category of ‘hate against women’ Skepchick encounters is people trolling them.  Now it’s my reckoning that of the three ‘leaders’ Skepchick have thus far got to ‘speak out’ on this, two probably have no idea what trolling is.  Trolls do not hate anyone; they just get off on how easy it is to control people, particularly people who are hypersensitive on an issue (e.g. feminism) by pushing the right psychological buttons.  Skepchick is grade A trolling material and are seen to be some of the most easily puppeteered people on the webs.  What trolls will do is type some manipulative reactionary shit into a comment box and then laugh as those being trolled dance like puppets on strings.  With experience it’s easy to spot most trolls.  To be honest it is shameful that the Skepchick are so easily trolled as it shows their grotesque naivety to the interwebs.  So how can I be so sure that the Skepchick is just getting trolled?  Well it’s very easy, unless you actually think that there are really hundreds of atheists who are looking to rape Rebecca Watson (in which case the atheist community would have a huge fractional population of folks intending to be rapists and the ‘leaders’ response would be ENTIRELY inadequate), SHE’S BEING TROLLED!  Her ‘rape threats’ are exactly as valid as the ones I got on my first video that addressed this,

I’d just like to say thunderf00t should be raped, and I want to rape thunderf00t so he loosens up a little bit, and also thunderf00t is too ugly to rape.
Oh Noes, I’ve got multiple rape threats.  Where are all the atheist leaders speaking out against hate directed against men in the secular community?

and to be honest her parading these around like a ‘trophy proof’ of misogyny in the atheist community at conference after conference makes her, and anyone else who is taken in by it look as stupid to the new internet savvy generation of atheists as Oprah and the 9000 penises that she was worried a pedophile syndicate had ready to rape children.

Really leaders, you are showing your age in the internet generation to be taken in by this sort of thing.  There is only one way to win against a troll.  DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS.

Skepchick do not only openly violate this law, they put up glowing neon signs saying ‘we seek out and feed any and all trolls’.  On the internet this is almost as bad as feeding the gremlins after dark then throwing them in a lake Superior, then complaining about the gremlin infestation, it’s the equivalent of putting a big sign on your own back saying ‘kick me’ then crying about the ‘sexism’ of those who kick you.

Ana from the Young Turks pretty much calls it like it is on this segment.

Other than that, where are these people who ‘hate women’?  Does anyone actually have any evidence for this ‘hate against women’ that is NOT someone being calling out someone for saying or doing something outrageously stupid, or being trolled, or some mixture of the two?

In which case I have to ask these Leaders, who exactly are these people that they talking out against?  Where are they?  If no one actually knows, then why are they speaking out against a problem that doesn’t exist?  Inquiring minds need to know!

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384 Responses to “Skepchick go approval seeking from ‘White Male Privilege’”

  1. Marlo Rocci Says:

    What frustrates me about this conversation is I can’t say one thing, no matter how reasonable and civil, that does not get labeled misogynist if it disagrees with anything Watson says.

    PS: We’ve never actually heard from “elevator guy” and I am now convinced he never existed.

    • hannanibal Says:

      Sorry to say mate but it’s probably best if you don’t say anything. Those people are a lost hope.

    • Mike De Fleuriot Says:

      Lets be honest here, RW’s “reveal” of elevator guy was excellent, only she hear him, and only she presented what he said. She had all the cards with which to make the points that she wanted to make. She did good in setting this up and allowing it to run. I for one would like to hear elevator guys side of things and I am sure most of the rest of us would like to hear it as well. But Jesus and Bigfoot.

      • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

        As conjuring tricks go, pulling a non-existent misogynist out of an elevator was as poorly executed as a 7 year at Christmas with their first “Magic Tricks for Kiddies” box set, performing to bored relatives.
        It didn’t fool anyone, save the senile or drunk.

        • oolon Says:

          Mike saying “don’t do that” is not equivalent to “you are a misogynist”. Only the senile and possibly drunk could make that leap… Your resemblance to Father Jack does not go unnoticed 😉

      • Marlo Rocci Says:

        If the guy came out and said “I didn’t ask her to my room for coffee, I asked het out for coffee”, that would be far more believable than her story.

      • dougal445 Says:

        i’m beginning to think Thunderf00t was elevator guy!

    • Andre Says:

      I am sure he is real… To be blunt if he was fake she would have had a much better story then “guy asked her out then walks away”.

      • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

        This is exactly what the theists say when it comes to the lame and contradictory and mutually inconsistent fables about Jesus.
        “It is so absurd, that NO-ONE could invent such a pile o crap!, therefore it MUST be true”.
        Watson has pulled the second oldest con-trick on the planet over you Andre, sad to say.

    • Girl 7 Says:

      Elevator Guy Comes Out.

      Looks legit?

  2. scordova Says:

    Oh, man. Why’d you have to spoil the fun. 🙂

    I had nothing but the highest praise for you over at UncommonDescent. I tipped my hat to you at least a couple times.

    You had to bring up my friends at the Discovery Institute.

    I still think you’re an awesome guy though. You rock!

    PS
    I’m not a moderator at UncommonDescent. If I were, I’d be happy to dialogue with you there. But, thank you for your hospitality in letting me comment here. Please accept my apologies in advance if the powers that be over there will hinder reciprocation. You can try to comment if you wish. You might get through (Nick Matzke gets through). Nonetheless, thank you for letting me comment on your website.

    Regards,
    Sal (aka scordova)

    • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

      E’s not pinin’! ‘E’s passed on! This ID is no more! He has ceased to be! ‘E’s expired and gone to meet ‘is maker! ‘E’s a stiff! Bereft of life, ‘e rests in peace! If you hadn’t nailed ‘im to the perch ‘e’d be pushing up the daisies! ‘Is metabolic processes are now ‘istory! ‘E’s off the twig! ‘E’s kicked the bucket, ‘e’s shuffled off ‘is mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisibile!! THIS IS AN EX-ID!!

      Shoo away, Sal!

  3. Mike Says:

    Did a skepchick dump you or what? Thunderf00t is the Glenn beck of atheism.

  4. Jeff Says:

    You’ve left out an obvious point, which may have even been intended. The objective of the “skepchicks” is not to actually fight hate directed by trolls, it is to become victims of an imaginary offense to recruit white knights (PZ Myers) and to promote the feminist agenda. Parts of the atheist “movement” are already turning into feminist activist groups, which is a total disgrace. This is a common tactic in feminism. To invade predominantly male spaces and promote female victimhood at every turn (see comic con, for example). Anyone who gets behind the hilariously and ironically named “skepchicks” is not thinking critically within the realm of reality.

    • bricewgilbert Says:

      Really? Looks who’s playing the victim here. Someone bitching about an event like Comic-Con no longer being a men’s club?

      • Jeff Says:

        You’re either being obtuse or I’m not communicating properly. I’m NOT talking about women at comic con, I’m talking about the feminist agenda showing up at comic con after years of it being a predominantly male event. The more women at comic con, the better. But having a group of feminists show up, demand a booth, then yell and scream about sexism in video games, cosplay, artwork etc is rage inducing.

    • Notung Says:

      The movement shouldn’t be a ‘predominantly male space’ though. I don’t support the ‘skepchicks’ (as a result of the way they try to demonise those who disagree with their methods) but I can at least agree with their stated goal, which is to promote diversity.

      • Jeff Says:

        I agree with you, and do you see any obstacles for them to overcome to be part of the movement? I don’t. That is not the skepchicks objective. On a side note, I realize you used the words “stated goal”, but feminism is not about diversity or equality, and despite what feminists will tell you, you CAN be against feminism without being against women. It’s that tired old argument the religious use. If you hate theism you hate theists! It’s nonsense.

      • Cattlehunter Says:

        The idea of gender diversity makes no sense within an egalitarian environment. You’d have to show that it’s not egalitarian to have any legs to stand on; personally I’ve not seen any reason to believe anything other than that women are at an advantage within the community; highly important as it is to hang on to the precious commodity that they now apparently are…

        I would like to go on about how ironic it is that the rhetoric both complains about sexism AND, in the same breath, makes women sound like they barely have agency – if they have any at all – and inherently estimates a person’s value to the community based on their gender, but it’s impossible to talk about any of this without drowning in irony by this point and if someone hasn’t noticed it by now they probably are never going to anyway.

      • Michael Says:

        Only that their behaviour probably will have the opposite effect.

        But hey, it’s the thought that counts, right?

      • MinionJoe Says:

        ‘Diversity’ is an entirely different kettle of fish than ‘equality’. The brand of feminism that supports diversity is not the brand I support.

        I’m all for equal pay for both genders. I’m for men and women both being allowed FLMA when a new dependent enters their household. Enforcing diversity is a commendable goal.

        But enforcing diversity… If an atheist group is predominately male, should non-atheist women be allowed to join if no atheist woman are available? Should men be allowed to join ovarian cancer support groups in the name of diversity?

    • Michael Says:

      Myers is no White Knight, he’s just a shameless opportunist who has aligned himself with Watson and neither him nor anybody else on her side can actually withdraw from this without looking like a complete idiot.

      This is what will keep this going. The egos of Watson & Myers and whoever else they have managed to drag along. The whole SGU band has pretty much lost most of my respect for their self-congratulatory promotion of Watson’s “plight”. Skeptics, my ass.

      • Jeff Says:

        Whether he’s a white knight or not, he’s acting like one whatever his reasons are. I can’t believe these people, who have been calling out others for this EXACT SAME NONSENSE, have now become immune to evidence or logic. I’ve also unsubscribed from all of them and have stopped watching, because I can’t deal with the hypocrisy.

        • Michael Says:

          The most positive explanation I can conjure up for Myers is that he actually did believe Watson initially and by the time he may have come to his senses he had hung himself so far out of the window that there was no retreat possible without looking like a dolt. I don’t think he has the character to owe up to mistakes, he’s too used to be right.

          The whole thing is interesting anyway, there is a clear split between European and North American skeptics as well as age seems to play a role as well. Amusing if it wouldn’t be so sad.

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            You’re being far too kind Michael. You assume that these key players have an innate goodness that just needs to be brought to the surface. You need to be reminded exactly how vicious these folks can be. Repeatedly, they have attacked people’s offline realities, often attempting to directly jeopardize their employment and privacy. I have no such illusions – this is clear ethical and moral bankruptcy from sociopaths devoid of conscience or empathy. This is not about social justice; this is a business model. It does not matter who is harmed along the way.

          • Michael Says:

            Well, I used “conjure” for a reason I don’t really believe at all that this was the case. Myers, like Dawkins, are dogmatic. I am certain he got behind Watson because it tickled is moral fancy and so he threw his weight around.

            On a side note: This whole “debate” reminds me of the path Feminism has taken in Europe vs. the US and I think the same split can be seen here too.

            In Europe Feminism grew out of a generational conflict. The first post-war generation vs. the “old guard”, while in the US it came out of the civil rights movement. The difference? The moral question in Europe split along an age line but across society, while in the US the civil rights movement dealt with individual groups. No clear delimiter outside of the individual groups. No “together” but rather an underdog fight vs. the masses.

            This same logic seems to play out here as well. At times I realize just how different Europe is from North America.

          • hannanibal Says:

            This.
            he has come this far he might as well see it out to the bitter end. I can’t wait for the bit where she stabs him in the back and he writes his first blogpost bitching about her.

          • brainfromarous Says:

            “This is not about social justice; this is a business model. It does not matter who is harmed along the way.” (DT)

            May I offer a revision?

            This is not about social justice. It’s about ideology and party-line dogmatism.

            Part of their whole schtick is to claim a monopoly on virtue and attack anyone who disagrees with them of misogyny, etc.

            After all, if you’re not on board you must be some kind of sexist creep, right?

            All good people agree with them… because their side is where all the good people are… because… you get the idea.

            As far as they’re concerned, it’s Open Season on critics – not because of a business model but out of an Us vs Them mentality and genuine pleasure in hurting “heretics.”

          • Namefag Says:

            I am reminded of a quote. I don’t know the original source, and it is fairly widely used and often mashed up but I think it fits.
            The only way to prove you have a mind is to change it.

      • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

        …without looking like a complete idiot.

        Which has failed spectacularly!

        The Skepchick

        • exsumper Says:

          Its never an edifying sight. When a middle aged man’s mental faculties are short circuited by the flattering attentions of young women. Cigar anyone?

  5. kennykjc Says:

    The biggest disappointment for me is the people I used to have so much respect for, like Matt Dillahunty and PZ Myers – who used to have zero tolerance for petty made-up dramas within the movement (like accomodationalism) don’t apply the same common sense to this subject.

    My skeptical heroes are dwindling ever since the accomodation debates and now this extreme feminist bullshit which doesn’t look like it’s gonna go away. I am sure they are glad that “women hating” folk like me dont subscribe to them anymore or listen to their podcasts or read their blogs.

    • Jeff Says:

      Same with me. I think this is a serious problem that the movement probably won’t come back from. A lot will be lost in the wake.

      • oolon Says:

        Yeah it’s game over man cos a woman said ‘don’t do that’! Millions of atheists across the world are contacting the discovery institute right now to find out how to sign up to creationism. Bigfoot is coming out of hiding as all is forgiven and women all over the world are picking in the ashes to retrieve what is left of their bras. Damn those Skepchicks did they learn nothing from Pandora!

        • brainfromarous Says:

          I don’t know about “game over,” Oolon, but it has shown that some otherwise-eager and articulate “Skeptics” become noticeably gun-shy when certain subjects appear on the firing line.

    • juju2112 Says:

      I agree, Kenny. I have listened to hundreds of hours of The Atheist Experience. They helped convert me to Atheism. And now I can’t listen to them because of this nonsense. It’s just disappointing.

      Anyway, thanks for saying what I’m not allowed to say, Thunderf00t.

      • oolon Says:

        You cannot listen to someone any more because you do not agree with some of the things they say… Sort of implies you have to agree with everything someone says to be able to listen to them?

        In the meantime I’m off to ERV to enjoy her post on malaria, I bookmarked it earlier and now it’s time to have a read. Just have a look around and see how much I am on the ERV side of the feminism debate. Closed minds learn nothing.

    • LightninLew Says:

      Same here, I enjoy listening to a bit of the Atheist Experience when I’m working or just bored and grew to respect Matt. Then I saw his comments on here and Twitter. My butthole clenched with anger so tight I nearly imploded.

    • hannanibal Says:

      Dillahunty, as epic as he was in the good ol’ days, has lost my respect. Same goes for Russell Glasser and Martin Wagner. It happened sometime around last year when they had the old blog and a certain incident involving an elevator came up.

      Dillahunty said “it doesn’t matter whether this incident actually happened or not this sort of thing DOES happen”. *Facepalm* Just the level of critical analysis I’d expect from an ex-minister.

      Wagner threatened to ban anyone who “didn’t get it” . *Facepalm* If all else fails delete the opposition.

      Russell Glasser wrote a blogpost on Elevatorgate saying it was all a question of “social graces” and that asking girls out in elevators is incredibly impolite. *Facepalm* maybe it is impolite but your argument is somewhat hypocritical when every dissenting voice in the comments section is called a dickhead, a buffoon, an asshole. a rapist, a sociopath etc. etc. and you agree with those insults.

      The blogposts are still up on the webz.

      • Notung Says:

        Yes, I remember it well! This:

        Your myopic, privileged oversimplifications demonstrate that you don’t get it…my question is, do you even care to TRY to understand, or are you just going to keep up the mansplaining. If it’s the latter, there’s no need to post.

        …is my favourite Elevatorgate comment, from Dillahunty to you on the threads you mentioned. He used every cliche in the book, compressed into a single marvellous comment!

        • hannanibal Says:

          I totally remember that quote! I couldn’t believe it was THE Matt Dillahunty saying it. Not because I wanted my ego stroked but because it was so out of character to the “think critically” advice they espoused on their show.
          Instead it became “shut up! we are telling you how it is and if you don’t get it you will be banned!”

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          An alarming and disturbing baneful “fall from grace”, from my viewpoint.
          Hero to Zero</I in one "facts don't matter" phrase.
          Matt, of all folk, would know the origin of 'feet of clay'.
          It was always a puzzle to me as to how these folk could suddenly gain wisdom, (more profound than those who are smart enough to be immune from birth), after having been suckered-in by the basest and most obvious of frauds such as Christ-insanity.
          Yet somehow the opinions of those who de-convert from a cult are held in higher esteem than those who had the mindset to see these Carney Tricks as the stupefyingly asinine infantile con-games that they are.

          • Michael Says:

            Oh that’s easily explained: “We shall overcome”.

            There is this “David vs. Goliath” thing again. The struggle of the underdog against the dogma and winning. “Of course we need to hold these people in higher esteem, they thought and they won. Who are you who never had to endure their plight? How could you understand the struggle and pressure? Now listen to the man, he has gained wisdom in his travel and don’t you dare disagree with him, his life is already harsh enough as is.”

    • Dangermouse Says:

      Man you are so fucking stupid. These guys you used to respect for not tolerating accommodationism? They’re treating you like shit for the same reason they used to treat other people like shit and impressed you – they don’t accommodate stuff they don’t agree with – and they don’t give a shit about representing it fairly.

      PZ doesn’t think science and religion can coexist – so ALL accommodationists are shitty religious bigotry apologists who are too SCARED to tell THE TRUTH tm to the theists. It’s not possible some genuine smart atheists could have a reasonable difference of opinion to him so they MUST be shit.
      PZ supports X brand of feminism – so ALL atheists who support any other feminism/have ANY questions or objections are shitty sexist bigotry apologists who are too MISOGYNIST to be able to intuit the truth without demanding evidence (the horror!) It’s not possible that some genuine smart atheists could have a reasonable difference of opinion to him so they MUST be shit.

      Can’t you see the fucking pattern? Being a giant abusive intolerant arsehole who doesn’t bother to understand objections and just generalises ALL objections/differences of opinion no-matter-how-mild as the same as the WORST objections/different opinions was the problem!!

      You couldn’t see the problem when it wasn’t directed at you – now you’ve tasted the delights of his shitty irrational approach to arguing – and you can’t see the forest for your hurt feelings. He’s a shitty debater, and intellectually dishonest in his characterisation of opposition and THAT’s the problem – not who he was directing his shitshow at – he was shit then he’s shit now.

      • brainfromarous Says:

        Dangermouse,

        I don’t think people were/are ‘stupid’ so much as not WANTING to see what the situation was.

        It’s quite delicious to watch Creationists, Moon Landing Conspiracy nuts and suchlike get smacked around by actual biologists and astronomers.

        It’s so much fun, in fact, that you don’t want the party to stop. You don’t want to notice that the some of the emcees are actually a vicious, petty, self-aggrandizing clique who will similarly lash out at ANYONE who doesn’t kiss their rings or nod at everything they say.

        The fun stops once you stop clapping and laughing in sync with their monkeymass of followers and sycophants. Then, like Neo in the Matrix, you wake up and realize you’ve been unconscious and submerged in slime. 🙂

  6. rouey Says:

    I’ve been asking the question thunderfoot stated in so many words from the first moment I stumbled into this whole mess: Just what the heck is this all about?

    And asking it in the wrong places, apparently makes me a misogynist, rape apologist and what-not.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      It is about a few talentless frighteningly narcissistic parasites having discovered an effective business model that pays their income, without them having to lift a finger:
      Manufacture a stream of non-troversies and invent a never-ending stream of nebulous non-existent boogy-men, then suck on the sap provided by blog-hits.
      McCarthy had this down pat, although he chose reds under beds rather than non-existent elevator denizens.

      It is both for the income, and the ego-stroking.
      Power.

    • oolon Says:

      Read Richard Carriers post on sexual harassment – both sides seem to agree it is good -http://freethoughtblogs.com/carrier/archives/1567
      And have a look at skepchick.org, I winced at the name of the site the first time I went there but there are some good articles.

      I’d say make up your own mind on what it is all about and try not to get too obsessive. Quotes from Strakh on the other post should serve as a warning to all of the madness that lies in that path 🙂
      https://thunderf00tdotorg.wordpress.com/2012/07/24/skepchick-embrace-victim-hood/#comment-4735

      • Strakh Says:

        Go away, oolon, the adults are talking.
        Your prevarications are showing yet again, you trolling piece of shit.
        I love the irony of a piece of shit troll commenting on a site about piece of shit trolls.
        You have assumed every position possible on this non-troversy, you’ve excoriated those too intelligent for you to understand, and now you drag my name around as a trophy of some sick and perverted pride you have over the subtle aroma of the PZ’s shit ringing your lips.
        You destroyed any chance of being taken as anything more than a piece of shit of shit troll on the last thread.
        You are so much like Laden, so shameless in your slithering, slimy shittiness you are a sight to behold.

        • oolon Says:

          Wow this is the most coherent thing you have written – not the content – but the grammar and sentence structure is almost that of a sane person. I must have had some good effect on you.

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Oolon, when are *you* going to provide substance? You’re a liar and a fraud, just like the shit stains whose boots you lick.

  7. kyle Says:

    Thunderf00t, I love how your detached, objective, and well-backed-up arguments are nearly always impossible to legitimately refute.

    Every criticism I’ve seen of one of your arguments has been a case of, “your putting me in touch with reality made me feel bad, so I don’t like you”.

    Please don’t ever stop.

    As someone who loves reason and strives to know the least-wrong theory in every field, it concerns me greatly when people use the banner of skepticism to hide in-group, cult-like or religious behaviour, or worse, rely on taboo subjects where they know the opposition will self-censor due to fears of breaking political correctness.

    Thank you for calling them out on their bullshit.

    • Michael Says:

      “Every criticism I’ve seen of one of your arguments has been a case of, “your putting me in touch with reality made me feel bad, so I don’t like you”.”

      Actually this is what this entire thing is about. Watson didn’t like to be approached and thus felt violated. The entire thing comes down to Watson feeling uncomfortable (or so she claimed on her half hour diatribe on the SGU podcast last year) and then turning it into women hating and “almost getting raped”.

      The whole “Sisterhood of the oppressed” nails it, the violence of the reaction to it by the usual suspects just confirms it.

      • oolon Says:

        Citation for “almost getting raped” please? You did put it in quotes after all 🙂

        • Michael Says:

          Listen to it. The tone in which she retold it was quite clear. That seemed to go a bit too far for heir “compatriots” as well as she quickly started rowing back from that and then suddenly clarified that it “just” made her uncomfortable.

          • oolon Says:

            Duh tone is not clear – so you have no citation and lose rather a lot of credibility.

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Oolon: Cite this you toilet slug – “cunt kick”

            http://greylining.com/2011/11/10/morphology-of-that-comment/

            No one ever has.

          • Michael Says:

            Oolon,

            cute, maybe you can bring some evidence for all the sexual harassment that is supposedly happen at these conferences against women? No? Well, go and suck up to Watson and her minions a bit more.

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Michael Says:

            Oolon,

            cute, maybe you can bring some evidence for all the sexual harassment that is supposedly happen at these conferences against women? No? Well, go and suck up to Watson and her minions a bit more.

            Given the ubiquity of cellphones to capture photos, sound and video, the absence of ‘evidence’ is startling. These folks are the equivalent of paranormal ‘investigators’. “I have evidence, but the file won’t open”.

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            These folks are the equivalent of paranormal ‘investigators’.

            Exactly.
            One arrive at the firm conclusion that it is either overblown histrionics, witless confabulation, or genuine fibbing.
            In fact, one of these self-appointed skeptics, Hayley Stevens, is also a semi-pro but failed ‘ghost hunter’. (And another one who conflates skepticism and feminism).

          • oolon Says:

            Fail… Definition of, see above. No citation but lots of bluster.

            Towelie – your link to a stupid Pharyngulite quote – big deal I said I’ve had some run ins over there myself. Not sure why you lot find it so telling there are people saying stupid things on a blog on the internet, you’d think the internet was all new to you or something. I like the bit at the end of that article – jealous of FtBs popularity much? Might explain some of the vitriol 🙂

            Evidence – read the skepchick hate directed at women series more of the contributers are giving real examples of harassment from first hand experience. Anyway why do I need to give evidence? I never said it was definitely happening… Anywhere!

            However Father Jack above knows it is histrionics or fibbing with no evidence whatsoever. Years of drinking and creeping senility have taken their toll.

  8. Kevin B Says:

    Elevatorgate is just the tip of the iceberg. A movement that began with Rational Discourse is now foundering in Ad Hominen attacks, Strawman attacks and Groupthink. There is no need to agree on everything, yet that is the attitude becoming rampant within this “community” One must now toe the line of face a Mormon style shunning as displayed by Myers. It will become increasingly harder to argue that the Secular Movement is NOT a Religon as Dogma takes hold.

  9. scordova Says:

    Regarding the trolls, supposing I were a Dad or close friend or relative of Rebecca Watson, I’d say, “Rebecca, call the police if you feel you’re being stalked. And please stop tweeting to the world your whereabouts.”

    And, if the threats are serious, she should be concerned to stop these would-be assailants from harming others. Are there any reports of what she actually has done to these ends? Which police department has she called?

    She might be able to enact a policy on her website that commenters must have traceable e-mails and IP addresses etc.

    Granted, we can’t call the authorities for every threat made against us, but any threat deemed credible should be pursued. Also, a powerful deterrent is simply announcing to the world who and whom made the treat as a matter of public record.

    And if Rebecca owns the website, there may be measures that can be enforced so that only commenters who will sufficiently identify themselves can comment, etc.

    These measure aren’t perfect, but if Rebecca really feels threatened, that’s something she ought to try, if not for herself for the sake of those that love her and for other women who might be themselves victims.

    I like to take people at their word, but a cynical view suggests she has some vested interest in perpetuating the narrative that herds of rapists are knocking at her door.

    Sadly, I know of one skeptic girl who confided to me she was raped once upon a time. I don’t know the context, I was reluctant to ask her more details. But as a matter of observation, being raped, being under the threat of rape isn’t something that I’ve seen women openly talking about, much less broadcastimg to the world as Rebecca has done. I also had an aunt, who was raped and brutally murdered. To this day, we can hardly talk about it in the family. My much older sister, while a nursing student was threatened by a patient, but she managed to escape. I didn’t know about it until years later since it happened while I was too young to understand. But again, it’s not something that is talked about, much less broadcast.

    I hope for Rebecca’s sake, all these threats are essentially fabricated by trolls. Ironically, any of us here who actually hope these threats are faked by trolls are in effect wishing for something that would actually entail Rebecca’s safety, not harm. And if it is all or mostly fake, this is trivializing and dehumanizing real victims. For that reason alone, that should be motivation for Rebecca to stop feeding the trolls.

    • Jeff Says:

      Without having a gender debate, there is a much more significant problem with rape, domestic violence, and sexual abuse against men because men who talk about it are either openly ridiculed or called liars. Everyone agrees rape is wrong, and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law, but feminists have shaped legislation to make rape against men legally impossible. Also, equating “a guy asking you out in an elevator” or other totally non-issues with actual rape by calling it a “rape culture” is more offensive to people who have actually been raped than anything else.

      • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

        Not to mention that in the USA at least, real brutal males rapes are occurring hourly in prisons & the military.
        But the Skepchunks don’t factor those into their self-serving agenda.
        In fact, male rapes in the US may well outnumber those of female rapes.
        But again, even suggesting as much renders one an outcast in the FfTB Cult.

        • Jeff Says:

          ALL violent crime is perpetrated against men more than women. A factor which is completely ignored by feminists, or more gallingly, explained by “The Patriarchy”. This magical, invisible structure that has men sending themselves to prison in droves, raping themselves in record numbers, committing suicide 4x as often as women, being beaten by women without the ability to defend themselves, losing custody of their own children in 80% of divorces, paying immoral alimony and child support, etc. Yeah this certainly sounds like male privilege to me… lol

          • oolon Says:

            Jeff do you think you could demonstrate how you “rape yourself” and post it to youtube? I honestly think you would be doing the mens rights movement a great favour…

  10. Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

    (Subscribing)

  11. Seymour Says:

    You unbelievers, have you lost your faith in the great PZ?

    Actually I suspect he is just getting old and is upset that he never made the 1st team, he sees his life slipping away and wants to make a big splash.

    Some of the girls at FtB claim to have a list of male speakers who are bad men, but it’s a secret ’cause they daren’t publish it. I’m sure they’re talking to organisers to get the men they dislike banned from speaking based on their secret list.

    Openess and discussion don’t have a place in their agenda when innuendo and attack and trawling for sympathy of their sad plight will do. Silly, spoilt brats

    • Jeff Says:

      Feminism left unchallenged in this community will destroy this community. Irrational claims should be challenged wherever they are. We shouldn’t just say “ah well, just ignore them and they’ll go away”. They won’t. Everyone is taking sides, and unless SOMEONE speaks out for the rational, the atheist “movement” will be a feminist movement in no time.

      • oolon Says:

        Don’t be so daft – if you really think *you* need to challenge any view point whatever it may be or the community *will* be destroyed then you are not the rationalist you claim to be. By all means stand out and be counted against prejudice where ever you see it but atheism has been going since Epicurus, Democritus and Lucretius and does not need you to save it.

        By Jeebus I see a number of what *in my opinion* are the stupidest rational-atheist-sceptics I’ve ever encountered. Do I think the ‘movement’ is in any danger of destruction… At all…? Nope. Get over yourself and get some perspective.

    • Jeff Says:

      Sorry I responded to the wrong post 😦

  12. Theresa Ellen McClain Says:

    I miss your science videos, Thunderf00t. I think you’re making this too black and white; we do still deal with sexism. I think there are shades of gray that you might not be considering.

    The real problem is that while this might be a worthy fight, we’re missing out on astronomy, physics, chemistry, or even FPV with your RC plane. I’m tired of reading about this issue; I want more of that other stuff. It’s more interesting and fun.

    I disagree with you about the sexism issue; however, I really didn’t subscribe to you for this kind of drama. I learned how to swallow my pride, and even when I know I’m right, agree to disagree when I was a child. Please find a way to get past this so we can get on to more of the fun stuff?

    What about the transit of Venus? I want to see more videos about that! What about more stuff like your potassium series? I’d settle for a timelapse of the sunset at this point.

    • LightninLew Says:

      I think you are at least partially missing the point. TF is not saying there is no such thing as sexism or that there are no grey areas. It is actually the ‘Skepchicks’ that made it do black and white with their “you’re with us or against us” mentality, equating ring asked back to a hotel room with a near-rape experience and such.

      Although I do agree that this is becoming a stale topic, we can’t just leave it alone. That would be like ignoring gangrene and hoping it gets better. The reason this it has got to this point is because people just ignore the complete absurdity of the ‘Skepchicks’ points to avoid being branded a rape enthusiast of some sort.

      • Theresa Ellen McClain Says:

        I read the article again, and I agree with you. I still want more science and less drama like this.

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          You are free to start your own blog, unless I am mistaken.
          Or become a scientist.
          Or both of the above.
          When you achieve that, let me know what you think about random distractors informing you of what you should be doing.
          I’ll give you points for using your real identity, though.
          Seriously.
          (Who’d have thought that it would come to the point where folk would need to be congratulated for being a normal adult? Apart from Skepchick, Pharyngula and many other FfTB blogsites, of course)

          • oolon Says:

            Yeah don’t be a random distractor – that way lies madness!

            Mike here spends a large amount of his free time obsessing over FtBs and Skepchick to such a degree he contributes to phawrongula – a site totally devoted to nit-picking and documenting every little thing that his hate-figures have done. Nothing created, just nit-picking over his perception of the mistakes of others.

            So honestly Theresa just enjoy the good stuff that Thunderf00t creates as many moons ago Mike got a little bit annoyed and that evolved into a massive chip on his shoulder.

          • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

            No nit-picking there. Just plain, linked, supported evidence of double standards, lies, history-revisiting and other bullshit spewed by a so-called “freethought” blog conglomerat. Rebute it or ignore.

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            Don’t worry, Mr. Giordana (non-coward).
            The anonymous Oolon (coward) is “on the ropes” and she knows it.
            It lies and fabricates and distorts and twists reality to suit the Pharyngula agendum like a sadistic Spanish Inquisitor.
            That I choose to fervently seek to eradicate hypocrisy seems to jar with Oolon’s personal goals, that much is sure.
            You are quite correct in elucidating the fact that “Pharongula”, even if on occasion juvenile, is quite the most researched & referenced site devoted to Oolon’s supported hypocrisy.
            That may go some way to why she is so incensed about its existence as to ad hom the contributors.
            10, 9, 8, 7, Oolon, is that a “pax”, I hear? 6, 5, …

          • oolon Says:

            Wow there are a fruity phalanx of fucked up fools on phawrongula (Hows that for beating your sesquipedalian alliteration Mike?)

            Incensed at its existence? No Mike, not really – for one it gave me the best laugh of the week when you were doing your ‘Don’t you know who I am!’ thang. Also I think given it’s entirely possible you lot are incapable of actually creating anything it is probably a good way of keeping you off the streets.

            Phil Giordana I think I said below SWIOTI etc… Even if it is a set of evidence it mainly speaks for your lack of ability that all you can do is document other peoples mistakes. Why don’cha get off yer arse and actually create something – maybe you are worried someone will criticise you 😉

          • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

            Creating something.. Hmmmmm, yeah, I might just do that…

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            Oolon:

            Phil Giordana …
            Why don’cha get off yer arse and actually create something – maybe you are worried someone will criticise you

            You DO know who Phil is, and what he does for a day job, surely?
            Plainly not.
            His successful band have more creativity in their plectrums than you will ever have in your underemployed intellect.
            That single remark marks you as a dunderhead of dramatic proportions.
            A bit of googling would inform you of Phil’s boundless creativity.
            And yes: you can google his output as he is not a cowardly like you very clearly are, and posts using his REAL NAME.
            PZ and Watson have eaten away at your faculties more than you know, that much is obvious to the outsiders of your toxic little Jonestown cult.

          • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

            MKG: thanks for the kind words. I actually LIKE being criticized (well, my work, at least). That is, when the critic is fair and informed.

            Oolon: the Phawrongula wikia is just a place where things are referenced, Thoroughly, I may add. And it can get somewhat goofy at times, because the Lulz…

            The real gitch of the argument was at Abbie Smith’s (now deleted to avoid NatGeo being pestered by Laden-like trolls) multiple thread with OVER 9000 comments. These days, you can find “the works” at the Slymepit. Google it, lurk on it, post anonymously and without registering if you like.

            We don’t bite, we argue…

          • oolon Says:

            Still no point to all that lovely work documenting other peoples wrongs then? What is the mission statement Phil?

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Oolon = sophistry

            You have a long way to go being a fraud like your masters.

          • oolon Says:

            So you have given up totally now Towelie, thrown the eponymous towel in? You cannot even attempt to come up with a short meaningful description of the point of the phawrongula wiki beyond ‘proving’ some people you don’t like to be ‘wrong’ about some thing?

  13. BathTub Says:

    FFS seriously? Another round? Yeah, they are being lame, so don’t take the bait and move on.

  14. Branjo Says:

    Feminism has no choice but to give way to individualism, because when those who practice feminism like it was “revenge”, can rest assured that they are part of the problem not the solution.

  15. Moira Kearney Says:

    I wish you’d go back to slamming creationists instead of acting the drama queen on a low-traffic blog.

    You know, I was trying to pinpoint when exactly you began to be more about 4chan style internet drama, and I think it can be traced back to the point you decided to appear in your own videos.Even though I was ecstatic the first time you showed your face (handsome and intelligent? fantastic), it seems the efame has gone to your head.

    Replace object with argument and this is what Tf00t’s like now :\ http://i.imgur.com/7klnX.jpg

    • Time Kitten Says:

      In reply to an article in which his face does not appear?

    • MangaKun Says:

      It’s easy to beat dead horses like creationism. Some can say “CREATIONISM IS NOT DEAD”… yeah, if you live in a town filled with rednecks. But if you living in non-redneck area… you never will see Creationist trash in the University or majority support for creatard nonsense…

      But, this is not the case with feminism. Feminists pretty damn actively infiltrate various movements (the atheist community aside, they even started to infiltrate the gaming community. This resulted in game censorship and division between the genders)

    • Quawonk Says:

      So slamming one kind of irrational nonsense (creationism – which has been done to DEATH) is acceptable, but attacking another kind (feminism – which few have the balls to even touch) is not? That’s called hypocrisy/selective reasoning.

      Skepticism and rationality should be applied to absolutely everything without restraint. Those who don’t want people to talk about a particular issue, are insecure in their beliefs. If they were secure, they’d have no problem giving us logic and evidence that supports their side. But they don’t. Creationism has a 2000 year-old book, and the skepchicks have hearsay and paranoia.

      If an idea is rational and based in reality, it survives, if not, it dies.

    • scordova Says:

      I’m sure Thunderf00t will go back to slamming creationists like me, but unfortunately, the skepchicks are making creationist look relatively rational by comparison.

      Given that Thunderf00t mentioned the DI dissent list, I posted a few weeks ago about one creationist nuclear chemist, Jay Wile, that is part of that dissent list and compared him to Rebecca Watson. It should be evident what an embarassing blight the Skepchicks are to the skeptic community.

      http://www.uncommondescent.com/creationism/from-atheist-to-creationist-nuclear-chemist-jay-wile/

      Furthermore, there is on the DI dissent list one of Thunderf00t’s colleague’s at his university by the name of John Sanford whose gene guns influence was so ubiquitous that at one time almost all genetically modified organisms were the result of his gene gun. So the irony is that almost every one who has eaten a GMO (evolutionist included) were eating food that was the product of a creationist since Sanford is a Creationist. The Skepchicks make creationists like Jay Wile and John Sanford look downright respectable by comparison.

      I don’t so much mind that Thunderf00t would label creationists “laughable”, because he’s at least trying to be equitable in calling out the Skepchicks. Of any opponent I’ve encountered, he’s been the most fair. He’s willing to state the truth even if the truth doesn’t reflect well on his comarades in the skeptic community.

      His honesty, therefore, deserves a lot of respect.

    • Namefag Says:

      >you began to be more about 4chan style internet drama, and I think it can be traced back to the point you decided to appear in your own videos.
      What? In case you are new to the internet and not retarded 4chan is anonymous. I think on the basis of anonymity alone an argument could be made that TF’s style was less 4chanish once he began to show his face.
      There is no efame for anonymous, your thinking is back to front.

  16. hannanibal Says:

    I don’t think we will ever see “David Silverman:- Speaking out against T-shirts and late night flirting in elevators.”

  17. Alan Says:

    Oblivious thunderf00t is Oblivious

    … at lest when it comes to seeing the difference between trolling and bulling,

    It doesn’t matter what my position is on feminism, I stand with Watson and Roth against the bulling that they have received. Thunderf00t calls this behaviour “Trolling”.

    So the “kitchen” and the “make me a sandwich” shit is being done for the Lulz? Are the rape “jokes” sent directly to them, humour? I say bullshit. It’s vile, it being done to torment and harass. Classic bulling.

    I doesn’t mater what bat-shit crazy stuff one believes or says. (and I’m implying nothing) Personal belief is irrelevant to the point. There is never an excuse for bulling behaviour.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      I stand with Watson and Roth against the bulling that they have received.

      And what bullying might that be, please?
      Where do you stand in respect of their bullying of others?
      Next to them?

      • Alan Says:

        No bulling. In the places I hang out, hope I have the courage to stand with the target not the bully. (and wisdom to know which is which)

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          You answered my former question by a complete reversal of your previous statement, with no admission of error, and made such a hash of the rest of your reply that I can only assume that this was a failed attempt at a ‘deepity’.
          I repeat:
          “Where do you stand in respect of their bullying of others?
          Next to them?”
          1) By them.
          2) In opposition to them.
          Might I remind you that you penned:

          There is never an excuse for bulling behaviour.

          Then, surely, there is no excuse for either Watson’s nor Roth’s documented bullying behaviour.

          My mission is merely to battle hypocrisy where I see it, and you appear to be committing it in spades.

          • Alan Says:

            The harassment of Watson and Roth which is clear and everywhere- I condemn. Clearly it’s bullying.

            The “aledged” bullying by Watson and Roth – I condemn. What they have “aledged to” have done, does also fit my definition of Bullying.

            The scare quotes around aleged are there becasue the evidence for which i have not followed. I hope you will forgive me for not paying full attention to the minutia of this whole drama.

            Btw failing at a “deepity” is good right? 🙂

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            The harassment of Watson and Roth which is clear and everywhere

            This is the key.
            It is NOT clear to me, nor “everywhere”.
            They claim that the harassment that they are imaging is SEXUAL HARASSMENT specifically, not just any old harassment, to which you appear to have morphed it.
            I have seen no independently documented evidence of sexual harassment (using the actual meaning of the word), nor it being “everywhere”.
            You do not help your flimsy premise by the employment of outrageous false hyperbole.

            That is also, coincidentally, what Thunderf00t is strongly implying.
            Do you know what sexual harassment is?

          • Michael Says:

            “The harassment of Watson and Roth which is clear and everywhere- I condemn. Clearly it’s bullying.”

            What bullying? That people disgree with them and call them out on their BS? Her claims of rape threats etc. seem to be lacking any proof, just because she keeps repeating it doesn’t make it so. If she has gotten these threats then she should report them to the police, but I have not heard her, or anybody else for that matter, actually say they have done that.

            At this point all of her claims of harassement I take with a mountain of salt because of the way the whole thing started. Disagreeing with her childlike view of the world and the associated behaviour is not bullying. Somebody like the Skepchicks who have no problem waging an all out war including scorched earth policies should be rather quiet when it comes to complaining about bullying by others.

    • Michael K Says:

      “at lest when it comes to seeing the difference between trolling and bulling,”

      – Where do you differentiate? Are you sure about this? Bullying is intentional harassment.. Trolling is just trolling (stupid but harmless).

      “So the “kitchen” and the “make me a sandwich” shit is being done for the Lulz?”

      – Yes.. Cheap lulz, but harmless. I’d be ok with the “broken male gene”-joke, if they would stop being so tight-assed about sandwich jokes.

      ” Are the rape “jokes” sent directly to them, humour?”

      – No, that’s childish trolling, and I’ll gnaw my own testicles off, if any of them ever was raped by one of those sending those comments. That means: Not gonna happen!

      “It doesn’t matter what my position is on feminism, I stand with Watson and Roth against the bulling that they have received.”

      – What bullying?? I see trolls.. Lots of them.. How about Watson and Amy responded to the hundreds of valid criticism they received, instead of only telling about the “rape threats”

      If you can’t handle vile bullies and/or trolls: Stay away from the Internet debate.

      • Alan Says:

        “Where do you differentiate?”

        Troll and bully overlap. One can be both. But the difference lies in the intent behind the messages. Our opinion, on the reading of said intent behind may legitimately differ, yet does that matter to the target? Must we split this hair before condemning a bully (er or is it troll)?

        • LightninLew Says:

          How also you plan to “condemn” an anonymous poster in a blog’s comments, or email?
          These “bullies” are probably kids giggling at how they can influence someone to look like a complete idiot in front of thousands by typing a few simple words from his bedroom.

          • Alan Says:

            “How also you plan to “condemn” an anonymous poster”

            You got me there. I can’t do much at all. You speculation of kids doing this, gives me those _Lord of the Flies_ type creeps.

            The individual, is weak against this type of group attack bullying, which is why it is so insidious and hard to defend against.

            I am and saying it’s wrong, and yes I do feel pretty much powerless to stop an internet hate horde. There is nothing to be done, other than saying you stand by the target and hope that takes some of the sting out.

            The problem is easier to deal with at a convention or forum with moderators, where there is a leadership structure that is in control.

            It’s not acamemic anymore, I really hate that there is a pressing need to police “rational” people at conventions and on forums, but fuck, I hate it– that’s where we seem to be. I so want to be wrong on this point.

        • MinionJoe Says:

          I agree that trolling and bullying overlap. The difference between the two is that bullying is an active and repetitive act by one person against another. Your typical troll will simply drop a post, draw a reaction, and move on.

          There’s no doubt in my mind that Ms. Watson has been trolled. But of those trolls, have any actively and repetitively threatened her with rape? If so, then bullying exists in this instance.

          Personally, I’m a troll. I purposefully drop inflammatory posts in order to invoke reactions in the reader. I do this in the hope that the reaction will cause the reader to THINK about WHY they reacted in that way. Sometimes, it works, and a greater understanding is the result.

          But the only “person” I have ever bullied was Electronic Arts.

    • Seth Says:

      >>So the “kitchen” and the “make me a sandwich” shit is being done for the Lulz? Are the rape “jokes” sent directly to them, humour?<>It’s vile, it being done to torment and harass.<< Which is p. much what trolling is, isn't it? I say something that torments you, which I know will make you feel harassed and hurt. Ofcourse you will try to defend yourself and this is where it get's bloody darn funny for me as a troll: You'll lash out in defence. You will try to fight back but all you're fighting is a ghost since any statement made doesn't actually repressent what the troll thinks, does, believes or even condones. You are just dancing for his amusement.

      Trolling IS a form of bullying. It's just not bullying for the sake of accomplishing anything it's just for the lulz' sake. If you do not know that or if you are insterad thinking a troll is somebody who just made a statement which you (yes you specifically) think is idiotic you spent to much time on skepchick or FTB. Yes I know it's pretty much what they describe a troll to be but it might explain why they are so piss-poor at recognizing a troll if they see one.

      • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

        Trolling IS a form of bullying.

        You debase the word ‘bullying’ to an alarmingly trivial degree, and to the point of insulting those who have suffered from very REAL and ACTUAL physical & psychological bullying.
        Shame.

        • Seth Says:

          “You debase the word ‘bullying’ to an alarmingly trivial degree, and to the point of insulting those who have suffered from very REAL and ACTUAL physical & psychological bullying.
          Shame.”
          I like how you can’t be bothered to actually make an argument and just try to shame me into submission.

          But ofcourse you are right. Nobody could suffer actual psychological damage from excessive trolling. Nono. Ofcourse not. Trolling can’t be a FORM of bullying since you know- it’s different because the trolls do it for the amusement. And someone who only wants to have fun can not possibly do any real damage to someone else.

          Makes perfect sense.

      • Patrick Says:

        Although there can be some overlap, there’s a clear difference between bullying and trolling.

        Wikipedia’s article on trolling:
        “In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.”

        And bullying:
        “Bullying is a form of aggressive behavior manifested by the use of force or coercion to affect others, particularly when the behavior is habitual and involves an imbalance of power. It can include verbal harassment, physical assault or coercion and may be directed repeatedly towards particular victims, perhaps on grounds of race, religion, gender, sexuality, or ability.”

    • Muzer Says:

      Trolling is *not* humour, as is made quite clear in this post. It’s people saying things to get people angry because they like getting a reaction, nothing more. I don’t know where you get the idea of humour from. Trolling is stupid, but harmless and impossible to fight except by ignoring it. I can tell you’re new to this whole internet thing.

      • Alan Says:

        “harmless”

        If we assume for the purposes of civil argument that the intent of these messages is malicious as the tone, this is clearly non-physical bullying by almost any definition of bullying you chose. While there is little anyone can do about the anonymous coward, we all should be taking a stand against bullies where possible. People, are being bullied. So I’m saying so! Let’s not be so jaded calling this behaviour harmless.

        Some may take the position that these people are (alleged) bullies themselves and it’s just deserts. To me that’s a cop out. The choice is between accepting bullying or stand by and do nothing.

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          While there is little anyone can do about the anonymous coward…

          Well:- you could reveal your bona fide identity, for a start.
          Or would that be too anti-hypocritical for your tastes?
          You seem to me to be “all over the place” when it comes to consistency and probity.

        • oolon Says:

          Alan don’t fall for Mikes – you are anonymous I’m not, so I’m more right than you shtick.

          Anonymously threatening someone is in a totally different league and he knows it. You are anonymously presenting reasoned arguments and they stand on their own with no respect to your anonymity.

          I choose to anonymously take the piss out of Mike and his pals. Especially since when he goaded me about anonymity I looked him up and found he appears to be a retiree who spends his spare time not just criticising all things FtBs and Skepchick – he has the right to – but methodically documenting all the little wrongs committed by his hate figures on a wiki called phawrongula. An example of SWIOTI http://xkcd.com/386/ that we can all learn from.

          Also don’t be put off by his eponymously named ‘blog’ with no content – all he ‘creates’ is criticism of what others do ‘wrong’.

          • Strakh Says:

            Oh, does that really bother you?
            People who claim they’re right getting shown to be wrong?
            Or do you really respect it?
            Which position, oolon, you piece of shit?
            Which day is it?
            Or are you more methodical than that?
            Do you behead a chicken and wait for the body to land on today’s opinion so you can troll yet another thread you obviously cannot comprehend?
            You lost any credibility to speak on anything, you piece of shit troll.
            Have you, in the end, no shame?

          • oolon Says:

            You are so boring when not shouting mangina… I’m thinking of changing my handle to ‘man hating dicktwat’ but was waiting to see if you could come up with something better. I guess the anti-psychotics are kicking in…

    • Quawonk Says:

      Do you think it’s vile when sent to a man? Do the skepchicks think so?

      • Alan Says:

        To answer the question, bullying by a woman against a man, is just as vile.

        Permit me to speculate for a moment– Just as “honkie” doen’t have the same sting as “spic” or “nigger”, it’s harder to make a slur sting as much against a man as it does against a woman, simply because of perceived status of the groups in the society to which the indivduals belong.

        As a practical matter, it may be harder perform a reverse attack of this type in online forums.

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          Just as “honkie” doen’t have the same sting as “spic” or “nigger”

          Once again, it becomes transparent that you know no other world than that of the USA, and thus your arguments are specious, as they disallow any opinions other than yours.

        • Quawonk Says:

          And my second question?

        • eikonoplast Says:

          Actually, Alan, it’s clear you’ve lived a sheltered life.
          “Honkle”? Really? Do you get that from a DVD box set of “The Jeffersons?”. Somebody really call you that? Just “Honkie”? Not “Jive Honkie?”

          You came here from the ’70’s, didn’t you?

          Until the last 5 years, I’ve lived in places some might call the “hood”. When a black man starts calling you “peckerwood”, “cracker”, “elvis”, or any other such slur, and you are standing in line at some convenience store, buying a pack of marb reds, paying no mind, tell me about the sting of a slur, bud.

          That sting is that you are in the wrong place, according to the one calling you that slur, and you get pretty conscious of the fact that you are in the minority there, and your blood can flow out onto the ground just as easily as anyone elses.

          This, to echo other comments, speaks to the idea that there is a difference between the real world, and all it’s many varied places, and “the intarnets”, where it seems that words are treated with the force of fists. That somehow, they can hurt you badly enough to damage you in real life. Which, if you spend any time in real life, is bullshit.

          Words are still just words, here or in meatspace. And that’s why trolls get away with what they do, and even exist. Because in meatspace, a troll would find themselves in hot water, legally, financially, physically, or otherwise.

          Now, if Rebecca Watson were to, say, find these “rape threats” written on scrap paper under the windshield wiper of her car, or slipped under her hotel door, then I would believe she had a real threat to deal with. Otherwise, she’s being trolled.
          And this “power imbalance thing” doesn’t really play on the internet. Being bigger and stronger and male doesn’t get you anywhere here. Because “on the internet, nobody knows you are a dog”. You have the force of your arguments and the willingness to keep at it, and that’s the measure of your “power” on the internet.
          Unless you’re comcast and verizon, but that’s a different conversation.

          • Alan Says:

            “Now, if Rebecca Watson were to, say, find these rape threats written on scrap paper under the windshield wiper of her car”

            One time late at night at a Science Fiction convention I attended, a very pretty young woman asked me to walk her to her car on what later realized was pretence. She said she had written a fanzine and wanted to show it to me. She found a note on the windshield of her car and when she got it she did something very strange. She just snatched it and put it in her pocket without even glancing at it. She must have known what it was about. She didn’t want to discuss it, but I could tell that it frightened her. I didn’t press the issue.

            It was then I found out that she just wanted someone with her when she went to retrieve her car, and there was no fanzine. We made smalltalk then she left. That’s all I know about it. I don’t know if it was a “man” related thing or what.

            Very good, you are correct. I have, been lucky enough to live a sheltered life. I would say there was only one time when I was mugged and stranger stuck a gun up my nose, that I have felt that kind of fear.

          • brainfromarous Says:

            “Honkle”? Really? Do you get that from a DVD box set of “The Jeffersons?”. Somebody really call you that? Just “Honkie”? Not “Jive Honkie?”

            *****

            LAWLZ. That made my day.

            Hey, in a few years it’ll be the early 80s and he can be accused of buggin’ and illin’

            Somewhere Kurtis Blow is crying.

  18. eikonoplast Says:

    I wonder if any of the skepchicks ever explore the notions of “rights”, where they come from, what they are claims to, etc. Anybody read in the constitution of the U.S.A. is aware of the first amendment, and it’s declaration of the rights of free speech, but I wonder if the concept that it’s a “liberty right”, and what that entails, enters into their thinking.
    I also wonder if they realize they present their rights to be free from moral offense as a “claim right”, and that it’s not constitutionally protected.

    I also wonder how much thought they put into the mechanics of a system whereupon they institute such claim rights? Little girls got grown people put to death in Salem beneath a cultural umbrella of religious fear, under such a reciprocal double bind proposition: I have a bad feeling, it comes from you because you (are a witch/are a rapist/rape culture supporter), and now, you have to prove you are not.
    Joseph McCarthy made a political career grandstanding on the common American fear of Communism, and upon going on the offensive, destroyed peoples careers and some people committed suicide. The message there is: You are evil, and what you believe makes you our enemy, and only if you capitulate, and tow our party line, will we permit you to have a life.

    Ostensibly, the harassment policy they wish to present, in combination with the behavior they have displayed (namely, a clumsy proposition for a date is sexual harrassment, and a t-shirt is a terrifying threat) smacks of something not unlike the mechanics of above. Of course to say that it would be like Salem or the McCarthy hearings is dramatic hyperbole, but I’m not talking about content and specific ends. The form is present, though, and when you let somebody lay claim to what you can and can’t say, (not what you’ve actually done) through fear of being branded a “harasser”, and ousted from forums and events, you create a cocktail for the destruction of a important movement that needs all it’s robust energy right now.

    • Moira Kearney Says:

      You took a really long time to say almost nothing – be concise.

      At any rate – have you ever gone to an anime con (like Otakon)? Professional con (AAAS, ACS etc) ? Game con (PAX etc) ?

      I could go on and on – but you know what they all have in common? They all have harassment policies, and none of them have become the Salem witch trials with McCarthy as judge and jury.

      Some of you need to take a deep breath and resist the temptation to post from the emotion-box in your brain. Real skeptics would gather empirical evidence – like studying conventions with harassment policies, instead of babbling hysterically about the-end-of-freedom-as-we-know-it.

      • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

        Moira Kearney Says: Real skeptics would gather empirical evidence – like studying conventions with harassment policies, instead of babbling hysterically about the-end-of-freedom-as-we-know-it.

        Oh, I see. “Real skeptics”. Well, you know what’s missing here in all of this? It’s any actual evidence of “harassment”. Plenty of whispers, rumors and spook stories, but not one drop of actual evidence. You see Watson and her hangers on don’t like that one bit. Too easy for it to blow up in their faces – as they found out recently having lynched the alleged upskirt camera guy. That’s right – the whole thing turned out to be nonsense fuelled by the kind of hysteria Watson et al. have been whipping up.

        You also conveniently omit that “empirical evidence” was what Grothe tried to get. What happened when he brought some of it to the table? Accusations of “victim blaming” and comparisons of TAM to Nazi Germany.

        So how about you Moira, instead, try insisting on Watson providing some actual evidence. All we have is voodoo stories frightening credulous children to ever more irrational heights.

        “Skeptics” my ass. Practice what you preach missy.

        http://www.storyarts.org/library/aesops/stories/boy.html

        • Moira Kearney Says:

          It is far more reasonable to assume that harassment does take place, based on the number of and diversity of prominent skeptics asserting that they have experienced harassment at cons, than it is to assume that fairly vanilla harassment policies would suddenly turn every skeptic con into McCarthy witch hunts where unsuspecting con-goers are “lynched” for perceived wrongs…especially since, as I’ve stated, almost all professional and non-professional cons already have harassment policies in place, and strangely people keep going!

          So, cupcake, you might want to give the ever-spinning outrage hamster a break and use some evidence based thinking. For instance, linking harassment policy adoption with drops in attendance, rise in expulsion or false claims…or any other negative consequences.

          • hannanibal Says:

            Chill babes. I know you are pissed that nobody gives you any attention but try to keep the squawking to a minimum eh?

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            “cupcake”.
            The shibboleth of a Pharyngulite.

          • eikonoplast Says:

            I think you missed this part of my argument:

            “Of course to say that it would be like Salem or the McCarthy hearings is dramatic hyperbole, but I’m not talking about content and specific ends.”

            Which would, if you had read it, mitigated my examples, and from what I’ve read of your responses, left you with less to say.

            Also, who are these prominent skeptics, numerous and diverse, that say they’ve experienced harassment, and what was the nature of the harassment? Where is your data? And what, in your lofty opinion, constitutes the minimum criterion for harassment?

            As for your snide dismissals of the concerns on this thread:

            The primary issue is not a harassment policy, it’s the scope of such a policy. The contention here is that there have been recent occurrences (involving Thunderf00t and Freethoughtblogs, for one; Rebecca Watson and one nameless elevator harasser, as well as long and chronic expressions of her celebrity bringing her unwanted attention; and lastly, (or not) Amy Roth and a t-shirt… on a woman) that point to a trend in moral control.
            Instead of by theists, it’s by a small group of gender feminists, of which you clearly are. And given the esteem you show for those here, we shouldn’t be worried.

            A harassment policy could be a “cure worse than the disease”. Especially if it is so written that it could be used punitively as a proxy agent to kick out or intimidate someone that an alleged harassment victim didn’t like.

            When white people suspect black people of malevolent behavior from otherwise harmless situations, it’s racism. When the Skepchicks suspect malevolent behavior from men in otherwise harmless situations, they call it more than it is, and, apparently, expect everyones agreement.

      • John C. Welch Says:

        “real” skeptics also look at polices AS WRITTEN, along with the intent, and analyze the wording to help avoid potential problems, rather than dismissing all criticism via the “YOU’RE JUST GOING ALL MCCARTHY” ad hominem.

  19. Graus Says:

    Frankly its quite disgusting how certain groups try to hijack the movement for their own dubious agendas. Do we really need more people who speak out against reason, trading logic for emotions and political correctness? I dont think so
    Skepchicks are foremost feminists, who probably reject the man in the sky because he is a male rather than because it makes sense.
    It would be great to have some more reasonable women in the movement but those chicks we can do without..

  20. Notung Says:

    Worth noting that one of the leaders ‘speaking out’, Ron Lindsay has been involved in a scuffle with the Skepchicks and FTB before: http://www.centerforinquiry.net/blogs/entry/about_free_thinking/

  21. tradamtm Says:

    Your article is good, your overuse of images and image-macros is not.

    Writing and blogs are different from videos, you need to tone down your dependency on visual representation of what you want to say.

    We are intelligent enough to understand the content of your post without the pictures, its very distracting from what you write and seems increasingly infantile.

    Other than that, good read.

  22. TheDickster Says:

    My penis does not forgive and it does not forget Thunderf00t. We’ve got your address and we know where you are, sleep with one eye open lest you receive the anal bumming!

  23. Lionel Deygas Says:

    What I appreciate about TF, is that he’s not a diplomat. He’s not trying to please people. He’s just telling things as they are, whether you like it or not.
    So rock on TF!
    You’re the one who keeps all of us honest.
    You lead by example.

  24. aleph squared Says:

    Once again, we see that thunderf00t is incapable of reading a simple argument. Observe:

    “Not every flirtation is unwelcome attention, until one side announces it is, and then it should stop.”

    So according to Nick there was nothing wrong with what happened to Rebecca Watson in the elevator. NOTHING.

    Now, Nick’s statement is pretty simple: if one side has announced that a flirtation is unwelcome, it should stop. Thunderf00t claims that this indicates no wrongdoing in the elevator. But in reality, all he demonstrates is his lack of knowledge about the affair.

    (1) Rebecca Watson gives a panel talk in which she talks about how uncomfortable being hit on and propositioned makes her at these cons
    (2) Rebecca Watson stays up late talking about this and other issues at a bar, a conversation elevatorguy was present at
    (3) Unless elevatorguy is completely incapable of understanding basic English, it seems to me that Rebecca Watson has already, preemptively, fulfilled Nick’s condition: that one side announce that flirtation is unwelcome.

    Congratulations, thunderf00t! You have, once again, managed to demonstrate that you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    • Michael Says:

      You know what the biggest problem with the whole elevator story is? Where it happened, that is: In Europe.

      Ever heard “When Rome do as the Romans do”? Yeah, exactly. Simply put Europe in general isn’t quite as obsessed with rape culture as most North Americans are. Now we could spent hours arguing as to why that is but it is.

      So the expectations that Watson had were completely misplaced, simple as that.

      Oh, and after the whole thing broke and I was scratching my head as to what exactly the guy did wrong I passed Watson’s video around to pretty much all females I know, they range age wise from their mid 20s to their 50s and asked them what they made of the story. the reply I got from all of them was a: “Huh? What’s the problem again?” attitude.

      So if I had any doubts in thinking that Watson completely overreacted (and now milks it for all it’s worth) it was pretty much gone after receiving that feedback.

      Simply put: Watson and her entourage need to grow up, learn to admit mistakes and then shut up about it.

      But of course that’s not what is going to happen, instead they will continue to escalate this BS accomplishing the exact opposite of what they claim their goal is.

      You go girl!

      • aleph squared Says:

        I’m not debating Elevatorgate again. My comment had a very specific point: that thunderf00t’s interpretation of the relevance of Nick’s comment to elevatorgate was incorrect.

        You have utterly failed to address any point I raised, which makes me wonder why this comment is in response to mine?

    • LightninLew Says:

      You’re implying that asking someone if they’d like coffee is a sexual proposal. It isn’t. She suspected that a sexual proposal would follow and put an end to it, and he left it at that.
      Unless he specificied in this conversation with him that she considers offering hot beverages brutal sexual harassment of the worst kind (let’s be honest, it is practically rape) then she did not fulfil Nicks condition. She fulfilled the condition when she replied to his offer and left the elevator. There was no harassment, there wasn’t even a proposal.

    • John C. Welch Says:

      however, there are a ton of assumptions here that just don’t work, even if Elevator guy is real, which is still kind of shaky.

      (1) Rebecca Watson gives a panel talk in which she talks about how uncomfortable being hit on and propositioned makes her at these cons

      I can see that, I HAVE seen that, (albeit not with her) and I agree with her that the relentless OMGAGIRL shit is a bit much.

      (2) Rebecca Watson stays up late talking about this and other issues at a bar, a conversation elevatorguy was present at

      This one bugged me for a few months, until I had a chance to test something. I went to a bar with a friend of mine, and while we were talking, and I was paying attention to her, I tried to listen in on a conversation that was happening about a meter away, maybe 2/3 of a meter.

      It was effectively impossible. There’s too much background noise to track conversations you aren’t directly paying attention to. Keep in mind, I used to work on strategic bombers, I have a LOT of experience and practice in handling conversations in astoundingly noisy environments, while wearing hearing protection. I’m skilled at it, but keeping track of multiple convos with a lot of background noise, while engaged in a conversation with someone isn’t something you’re just going to do.

      So unless EG was *actively* listening to rebecca when she talked about this, he could have been rather close and still not been able to hear anything. The assumption of “he was in the bar, so he must have heard everything she said” or “he was in the group, so he must have heard everything she said” or even “he was at the table, so he must have heard everything she said” isn’t one that you should be making.

      (3) Unless elevatorguy is completely incapable of understanding basic English, it seems to me that Rebecca Watson has already, preemptively, fulfilled Nick’s condition: that one side announce that flirtation is unwelcome.

      that requires (2) to be “EG was there AND was actively listening to everything rebecca said. In a bar situation, with a decent crowd of people, as the pictures of that night show, unless he was actively focused on everything he said, you simply cannot, can. not. assume he actually heard what she said when she said it.

      A rather large part of EG being guilty of anything more than bad timing rests on some rather unproven assumptions, and so there must be an allowance for the probability that he actually didn’t hear what she’d said, and it must be not some ridiculously low probability.

      • Badger3k Says:

        She also said (or implied) that he had been at her talk and heard her presentation that day. Of course, this is with her mysterious ailment that prevents her recognizing faces (how is that by the way? I haven’t heard anything about it since then? Was she cured?). If she couldn’t recognize him, how does she know he was at all these things? Were his clothes that distinctive that she remembered that after a night of drinking? That’s some memory.

  25. hannanibal Says:

    1) How do you know Eleavator Guy was at the panel talk?
    2) Watson made no claim that Elevator Guy was present when she up late talking about this. In her original comments she just said some guy came up to her in the elevator.
    3) See above. You assume the guy knew her. She never indicated this at all.

  26. Za-zen Says:

    And aleph is the perfect example of someone who gets their facts from fox news “well duh they said it on the news”.

    Aleph what you just recited is the story painted by the crazys, i’m surprised you didn’t throw in the potential rape element of the elevator ambush. This means you are the fox news stooge, or you areone of the crazys, either way you are not a skeptic, so stop conflating the fucking skeptic movement with the fucking nutbag movement

    • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

      The history of the constantly mutating story painted by the crazies, including all the post facto embellishments and multiple narrative changes updated to reflect whatever the new reality was at whatever point in time, have been archived here –

      http://phawrongula.wikia.com/wiki/TAM_2012_T-Shirt_Manufacturversy

      – with links to original sources, including screencaps of purged materials. Fancy that? Have you ever seen Skepchick or freefrom thoughtblogs do this? Of course not – they weave so many deceptions even they can’t keep up, so reality has to be continuously edited and contrary evidence destroyed for the GreaterGood. It’s the Ministry or Truthiness.

      • LightninLew Says:

        If it wasn’t the tshirt that made her cry, and she doesn’t want to say what made her cry then why the hell is she making a big deal about it. And why was the tshirt the central point of her first post And the clarification. The mysterious tears also featured heavily in both.
        Did she expect people to just think “oh she was crying, let’s feel sorry for her and eat up whatever bullshit she follows her tears with!”?

        • Za-zen Says:

          She cried because shes a human bean.

          But mainly because some people don’t love her, and DJ Grothe didn’t do anything about it!!!! And she’s like a hot babe who wants to be a skeptic, and makes stuff to sell, and DJ didn’t call those horrible people into his office and tell them to be nice to her.

          And they had staff actually looking for any real evidence of harassment! How fucking horrible is that! I mean she couldn’t just make shit up and scream about it, because TAM might have had actual documentation on what actually happened!!!

          They just don’t get it!!!!! It doesn’t matter if it actually happened, what’s important is if a skepgurl thinks it happened, do you know how traumatic thinking something happened to you can be? You can have like tote nightmares, and DJ Grothe would be to blame for that.

        • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

          Don’t forget Sulky Amy’s self-penned blurb on skepchick –

          Amy Davis Roth (aka Surly Amy) is a visual artist who resides in the heart of Hollywood, California. She makes Surly-Ramics and kicks ass on a daily basis.

          Hear that? She kicks ass on a daily basis. How dare Harriet hurt her feelings so? She must be such a monster.

      • oolon Says:

        Oh no Towelie is involved in phawrongula as well as Mike and John Welch! Finding that was the highlight of the comments on the previous post for me – not only are you and your mates so butthurt that PZ banned a few of you idiots you have spent time documenting all the wrongs inflicted on you by FtBs and the Skepchicks. And you are proud of it! Maybe in your sad dreams you imagine a Nuremberg trial where all your ‘evidence’ is used to ban PZ and the Skepchicks from the internet – whereas you are carried on high to be adored as the true community leaders.

        Or probably more likely you have nothing better to do than obsess over some bloggers who disagree with you.

        • Michael Says:

          From zero to Goodwin in one post. Good one.

          I did check out the wikia and although I find the tone at times quite a bit childish, the timeline at least is quite useful.

          Maybe some people less emotionally involved can clean up the language though.

        • John C. Welch Says:

          And oolon wins the “actual ad hominem” award: “You don’t like PeeZus or Skepchicks, therefore nothing you say about them of a critical nature can be valid.”

          Way to go dude.

          Way to go.

        • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

          oolon Says: not only are you and your mates so butthurt that PZ banned a few of you idiots you have spent time documenting all the wrongs inflicted on you by FtBs and the Skepchicks. And you are proud of it!

          Oh you sensitive and delicate little soul. Here’s a thought – if you think the content is wrong, how about you point out why and correct it? This is not FfTB where it has an Iron Curtain and a Ministry of Truthiness dynamically updating reality to suit the purpose of the moment. Anyone can correct it – the most prolific author is “a wikia contribotor”. You will of course have a problem – your corrections will have to be grounded in fact that can be independently verified. This is a huge spanner in the works for any of you baboons. Such infinite cruelty – not being allowed to just make shit up! So instead, tacitly acknowledging that the wiki information is correct without stating so, you fall back to your baboonketeer roots and instead fling snarky dung bombs that don’t add anything to the debate. Then pat yourself on the back for feeling clever. Awesome dude. The world trembles at your every dictum…

          And herein lies the difference between the baboon world and the wider atheist / skeptic community. Fairy tale vapor versus actual observable reality. The baboons are a cult – and nothing more. This is now evident to most observers. You can’t do anything about it and it burns. Haha. Good to watch.

        • oolon Says:

          @Michael – it is Godwin not Goodwin. If you think a timeline of some minor disagreement on the internet is useful in any way try getting a life. Reference again: SWIOTI http://xkcd.com/386/ John and his cohorts have no answer to why this is a useful exercise other than getting at the ‘other side’ or proving them ‘wrong’. They have convinced no-one as amply demonstrated on Skepchick with the current series of leaders stamping on them hard. They have no answer to that either other than bizarre conspiracy theories about suppression of free speech. So double fail for them – waste of time – no one convinced.

          @John C Welch misses the target by a mile while demonstrating he does not understand ad-hominem. I did not say what was on there is not valid – I’m sure most of it is true if a ‘little’ biased (You’d probably agree with that!)…. My point comes below with my reply to the fluffy one.

          @Towelie — Content! There is no fricken content… If you think a court recorders transcripts are content then you are sorely mistaken. If I was very generous I’d say what you have created is a bland statement of the facts surrounding a playground dispute with a bit of swearing thrown in.

          Please leave it up – every minute wasted there is a goon usefully employed digging holes or cracking rocks in the chain gang.

          You and your pals know what the ‘true’ feminism is and FtBs and Skepchick are toting a poisonous version of reality. You need to fix this… So how to do it?
          –> Learn feminist theory at university and contribute to journals arguing your lot with the rest of the feminist thought leaders in academia? No too hard.
          –> Create your own blog or set of blogs toting a more consumer friendly version of feminist theory like FtBs or Skepchick.org? No too hard.
          –> Obsess over one set of blogs and document everything you think they say and do that is ‘wrong’ in your opinion while contributing nothing yourself. Yes that fits with your level of mental capacity very well.

          … And John et al have no answer as to why that is the right way to promote their view of the world.

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Oolon: @Towelie — Content! There is no fricken content…

            Thanks Oolon, but there really is no need to clarify precisely how your mind works. Facts verified by data and meticulously referenced links are not “Content!” to you. Most folks have realised that neither you nor any of the baboons you rub glands with would ever consider that “Content!”

            Most also know your idea of “Content!” is to throw all that stuff out as worthless, decide what your desired conclusion is, then reverse engineer reality to suit and fill it all in with hearsay and chinese whispers of what may have happened to a friend of a friend. You are in the business of ideological editorial and you seem to think this is acceptable as fact – and anyone that disagrees with twisted idiocy and whatever poisonous snake oil you push is either a rapist or a gender traitor. This is what “skepticism” is to you knuckleheads.

            Thanks for the self-portrait – but again, doesn’t look like it was really necessary for most of the folks here.

          • rjmx Says:

            @oolon: I think you’ll find it’s SIWOTI, not SWIOTI as you claim. Read the page at the link you so helpfully posted.
            Unless, of course, you think you’re Yoda this week (was it Napoleon last week? I’m having trouble keeping up), and you read it as “someone wrong is on the Internet”.

          • John C. Welch Says:

            nonsense Oolon. If what I have to say is valid or invalid it is that regardless of my biases. The ONLY thing “bias” influences here is my willingness to comment.

            Note that you never actually talk about anyone’s argument here, you just bag on them for their sides on various issues, then use that as a basis to imply that because they are biased in a way you don’t approve of, that their arguments must be invalid.

            In fact, the comment i replied to stated the only reason I’m commenting here is because of some ‘desire’ to be a ‘community leader’. In my case, that’s ridiculous. I’ve never had any desire to be associated with TAM or Skepticon or the rest of that drivel. If I did, I’d have laid down the dosh to go.

            I don’t even go to CFI meetings in my city, because I find them, along with TAM et al to be little more than intellectual circle jerking. So why would I want to be a ‘leader’ of something I don’t want to be a part of.

            But you don’t actually care about that. By painting our sole motivation in saying ANYTHING against FTB or Skepchick as some form of revenge, you are trying to relegate everything we have said, are saying, or will say on any related topic to instant invalidity, because boo-hoo, PeeZus doesn’t like us.

            That’s ad hominem dude.

          • oolon Says:

            Interesting… No answer to why you create nothing… That is what I meant by content free Towelie – and you proved my point nicely. Facts verified by data and meticulously referenced links –> to other peoples content! I said it before and I’ll say it again – everything you have put on the wicked wiki may be completely correct. Where is the point? Where is the argument? All you seem to be saying is they are wrong therefore…. Err nothing, sorry.

          • John C. Welch Says:

            oh oolon, trying the YOU DO NOTHING BUT YELL AT PEOPLE.

            That’s patently idiotic, as a few minutes of search my name in places like Amazon or even google will show. But there’s no point in arguing that kind of idiocy, because no matter what I show that I’ve done, you’ll dismiss it via any one of an infinite number of vectors.

            It’s like the story of the indian medicine man, who was confronted by two young men in his tribe. They asked “We have heard the chief say you can see things other men can’t. So am I holding a bird behind my back or not? ”

            The medicine man smiled and said “There is no answer to that question. If I say no, and you have a bird, you will release it, just to prove me wrong. If I say yes, and you have one, you will crush it and then drop it in the brush behind you, just to prove me wrong. Since one of my answers could result in the death of an innocent creature, and there is no way to answer the question you won’t dodge out of, I refuse to play the game.”

            Also oolon, you need to practice a bit. your tactics are too obvious to win against any but the thickest opponents. Perhaps you should stop hanging out at FTB, it’s killing your edge.

          • Michael Says:

            Oh noes, I made a typo. Quick, call the Grammar Nazis.

            As for the timeline: Considering how much this seems to have taken over almost any blog / site I have visited over the last year (not to mention podcasts), yes indeed. I think the timeline is quite useful as it shows the breath of the…. well, whatever you want to call it.

            “They have convinced no-one as amply demonstrated on Skepchick with the current series of leaders stamping on them hard. ”

            I read the series and I am not quite sure where you read “hard stomping”, what I do read is, with many more words, “Umm, yeah, sexism baaaaaad”. As others have pointed out, what did you expect them to say? “Go to hell!”?

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            oolon Says: Interesting… No answer to why you create nothing… That is what I meant by content free Towelie – and you proved my point nicely. Facts verified by data and meticulously referenced links –> to other peoples content! I said it before and I’ll say it again – everything you have put on the wicked wiki may be completely correct. Where is the point? Where is the argument? All you seem to be saying is they are wrong therefore…. Err nothing, sorry.

            Oolon – Care to define what wikipedia (as an example wiki) should to be? According to you, it is a collossal failure – because it does not offer preaching and ideological editorial. Just facts. BOOORING.

            Please stop. More than enough evidence for the prosecution that you’re a moron. The case rests.

          • oolon Says:

            OK so a lot of hot air and still no description in plain english of what phawrongula is trying to achieve…. Towelie thinks it is comparable to Wikipedia! Again I hate internetisms, but ROFL!

          • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

            Reality is your enemy. Be honest for once in your miserable, pain killer fuelled life.

          • brainfromarous Says:

            “Learn feminist theory at university and contribute to journals arguing your lot with the rest of the feminist thought leaders in academia? No too hard. (Oolong)”

            I’m all for education, Oolong, but I gotta wonder how useful this would really be.

            Anyone who’s been within a county mile of American higher ed since the late 80s can tell you that nowhere is intellectual rigor on social/gender issues more embattled than in “Feminist” curricula.

            Most of these courses are straight-up indoctrination. (As an ex-Catholic, I know dogma when I see it.)

            If some fellow with a PhD in, say, Marxism claimed that made him expert in sociology or economics, I would have a hard time not laughing. Because he didn’t study those things… he studied one particular ideology’s take on them.

            And for as long as academic Feminism remains more catechism than scholarship, we have the same problem.

          • oolon Says:

            Brainfro – please point me to the article or articles where you saw the study(s) on the decline in feminist teaching? Or maybe you have studied multiple degrees/doctorates at many universities and colleges across the world and are speaking from personal experience?

            Or are you speaking from the orifice not a country mile away from your arse?

            Seriously a friend of mine teaches at a red-brick university in the UK and will probably soon get a professorship in politics – some large parts of his course are equality and feminist theory, his speciality. I’m sure he would be interested in knowing where he and his academic field (Just one of the academic discipline’s that cover feminism) are going wrong from one so knowledgeable.

          • brainfromarous Says:

            “Seriously a friend of mine teaches at a red-brick university in the UK and will probably soon get a professorship in politics – some large parts of his course are equality and feminist theory, his speciality.” (Oolong)

            You just happen to have a friend who’s not only a prof-to-be, but has special expertise in… exactly the topic under discussion here.

            How timely.

            And because it’s not actually you, we can’t directly challenge Professor X on anything you claim he says.

            How convenient.

            Can we look forward to hearing from your other academic friends, Oolong.. the medical school prodigy, the post-grad economics whiz, the law school ace… depending on the subject of future T-Foot posts?

  27. Greg Laden Says:

    According to Thunderfoot, everyone in the world but he is doing it wrong. This is a great perspective to have as a blogger because it means you no longer have to think about your content.

    Most bloggers grow out of that after a few weeks, though.

    • hannanibal Says:

      Failing to address any of the points in the blogpost again. Well done Greg you are becoming quite the expert at that.

      • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

        Greg has, most sadly, discredited himself on many levels. Can’t wait to see him back on FTB! Should make very nice comment sections as to why the fuck he’s there at all…

    • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

      Says Greg Laden – the only guy to have a blog post on FTB removed for harassing a woman and then being thrown off FTB for threatening a fellow blogger AND pissing on him for being a military veteran. Yes Laden, your opinion is ENTIRELY credible and valid. Shouldn’t you be writing letters to get people fired and spreading rumors that they get off on torturing animals instead while you wait for Walmart to open? That’s more your speed. At least, for once, your not spamming for hits on your other piece of crap blogs.

    • LightninLew Says:

      Just because ThunderF00t blogs about things he disagrees with and wants to debate does not mean he thinks everyone other than him is wrong. It just means he can see how boring it would be if he wrote a weekly blog responding to people he completely agrees with.
      I think this format would get old fast:
      [Quote from another blogger]
      TF: I totally agree!
      [Another quote]
      TF: Couldn’t have put it better myself!
      [Another quote]
      TF: I think you get the point.

    • Za-zen Says:

      YaY it’s RamboLaden. Who you going to kill today tough guy?

      All that time spent bashing people on blogs has actually left you thinking you are capable of bashing someone for real!? You need help, like serious head doc help, before that vacuous excuse for a Human brain of yours explodes.

      And you can no longer fantasize about killing dead things.

    • John C. Welch Says:

      Shouldn’t you be hanging out at an army base triggering PTSD episodes and kicking soldier-boy ass?

      Or are you too busy stalking graduate students and washing off the browntongue you get from PeeZus and Watson to do that anymore?

      Man, it must suck to not even get the FTB google juice anymore.

    • Strakh Says:

      Greg, you are a known bully and harasser of women.
      Why are you opening your mouth?
      You fucking hypocrite.
      And it’s obvious YOU don’t think at all, especially when you pop the ball gag out of your mouth long enough to make a statement so bizarrely stupid you make a sure case for YOUR OWN brain damage.

  28. Tezcatlipoca Says:

    I deeply resent your metaphor of throwing gremlins in to Lake Superior. We already have enough trolls under da bridge eh!

  29. Jim in AZ Says:

    Okay,

    So one of the skepchicks sends emails to all these male “leaders” of various organizations asking them for a statememnt about sexism, etc.

    And of course, as Thunderfoot expalins, they make very innocuous statements to the effect that “sexism in my organization is not welcome”. Of course! Of course it’s not! Ever! Anywhere.

    Here’s my question though: What would have happened if each of these male “leaders” did not respond to the request for a statement?

    Honestly, most of these “leaders” are unknown to me. As a skeptic/atheist, I am not wont to join organizations to make me feel better about myself. I really don’t need their support structure for me to go on.

    So let me answer my own question from above, not that it was meant to be rhetorical; Those organizations/l”leaders” would’ve have subsequently been trashed. So of course they are going to feel pressured into making some sort of statement. And I am not implying they don’t believe what they wrote, just that they are probably all thinking, “This. Again?”

  30. Greg Laden Says:

    I find the idea that Thunderfoot claims the Skepchicks to be trolls, when Thunderfoot is clearly the trolls, to be laughable.

    • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

      Greg Laden. No one will give him a job because they can’t afford his genius.

    • LightninLew Says:

      Where did TF call the ‘Skeptards’ trolls? He called them stupid couple of times but he only called the people making rape threats trolls (because they clearly are).
      What about ThunderF00t’s post makes him a troll?

    • Seth Says:

      Are you trying to get reinvited to FTB by crawling deep enough in their collective ass Bin Laden? Try adressing the post for a change. That’d be nice.

    • Phil Giordana FCD Says:

      Reply button, Laden. learn to use it.

    • John C. Welch Says:

      I find the idea that you can’t even troll worth a fuck to be even more laughable. You gonna try to get T-f00t fired too? Or are you only a Baaaad Man when it comes to women?

      My wife was right, you are every bit the misogynist you accuse everyone else of being. (http://www.bynkii.com/archives/2011/11/i_love_my_wife_so_much.html for background on that one.)

    • Aj Says:

      Look Laden, while everyone knows the closest you’ll ever come to the truth is hiding outside its bedroom window at night, sobbing against the glass and masturbating into the shrubbery; but even you should have the basic reading comprehension to understand that TF accused the Skepchick of deliberately feeding trolls, not of being trolls.

      Also, that should be either “… when Thunderfoot is clearly the troll” or “when Thunderfoot is clearly a troll”.

      Those degrees aren’t going to get you anywhere if you write like a cretin.

    • oolon Says:

      Shouting at a Greg shaped space when Greg is long gone… But then you all apparently like wasting your time 🙂

      • Nocheinbenutzername Says:

        Some people think, that commenting on what other people are saying is worth their time.

        Evidently you do to.

      • Ringo Polygon (@DanceLikeABrick) Says:

        Wow, do you have some way of telling exactly when someone left a webpage and if they will ever return? How? I’m intrigued.
        How is the time you spent writing this comment (and a lot of others on here) any more wasted than these? You seem to enjoy pointing at people and saying “hah you done goof’d you did something that doesn’t entirely line up with my views! LOLRETARD!” I’m finding it very difficult to see a situation in which this is useful or productive.

      • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

        Says the non-comment flooding ubermeister. Do you have any kind of self-awareness oolon? Or just type whatever crosses your mind in a continuous stream with no QA checks?

  31. Jaygray Says:

    Your credibility is vapour, Mr. Laden. Toddle off now, there’s a good chap.

  32. Sadie Heilemann (@NagasakiOsada) Says:

    I’m a skeptic and a chick but not affiliated with the organization. A commenter above (waaay above) noted how real rape victims might be pissed off about the “belittling” of the real threat of rape inherent in shrugging off the masses of trolls who make empty rape threats. As a rape SURVIVOR, I can speak to my own subjective view of this phenomenon. No, I do not feel belittled when trolls stir up tempests in teapots. But, in any civilized society, there is a need to evaluate threats. One can look at masses of empty threats and call “trolling,” but in reality, you never know if one of them really means it.

    We must learn discernment and circumspection when it comes to threats that could be interpreted to be possible future assaults. Harassment policies can provide such a filter. But that filter has to be fine-tuned to avoid throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Hysterical “crying wolf” incidents make this filter harder to apply, and thus it is harder to figure out who is a threat. Being made to feel unwelcome is quite different than fearing for your life. I know the difference, having faced the latter as well as the former. It is dangerous to women’s safety to conflate them.

  33. Greg Laden Says:

    “So according to Nick there was nothing wrong with what happened to Rebecca Watson in the elevator. NOTHING.”

    What does Dr Mason think Rebecca said about the guy in the elevator? Precisely?

    • John C. Welch Says:

      Greg, look man, I have a much better game for you:

      1) Take 3 Advil PMs
      2) Try to masturbate before you pass out

      Assuming your hand hasn’t rejected you as well, you’ll get more rest and perk up your sex life as well.

    • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

      Assuming you’re still falling for there actually being an EG. The story has had so many post facto embellishments and changes, as well as having whole chunks debunked, that many, many people are now more prepared to believe there was, in fact, a wolf in the elevator and not a “guy” at all.

      Laden, your grovelling and shit-licking displays to be reaccepted into the FfTB baboon troop are nauseating. More so since you have on numerous occasions committed despicable acts to harm Watson snake oil critics that truly make any imaginary EG, no matter how demonicly enhanced, look positively trivial.

  34. Privileged Male Pig Says:

    I’m not inclined to say that trolls are immediately obvious based on their behavior, but I would say that the social climate on Reddit versus that at TAM! is different enough to say it is most likely the case that these Reddit idiots are trolls. If she is this frightened by empty threats on the internet, I shudder to think what might happen if Rebecca ever discovered 4-Chan.

    The danger at TAM! just isn’t there. For the second year in a row, there has been absolutely no reported incidents of harassment at TAM! (I’m willing to bet that the other TAM!s have been equally safe), and the best that the Skepchicks have been able to come up with is a social faux pas in an elevator and a t-shirt.

    It’s sort of like the anti-vaccination movement, in a way. The danger, if there even is any, is blown way out of proportion. Data suggesting that danger is non-existent is ignored and countered with fear and emotion. And if Rebecca isn’t smart enough to understand the correlation here, then she has no right calling herself a skeptic. It’s exactly the same behavior.

    What the Skepchicks can’t refute is that nothing happened at TAM! worth getting excited about, and the women there who felt welcomed and safe left without incident. NOTHING HAPPENED.

    …except that an adult woman cried over a t-shirt.

  35. Michael K Says:

    How to get something out of nothing :

    Lawrence Krauss had an hour long speech on this topic.

    Rebecca Watson simply stepped into an elevator.

  36. Greg Laden Says:

    I assume that since Dr. Phil has not objected to Matt Dillahunty’s commentary that it is approved for acceptance by the Dr. Phil Hive Mind. http://skepchick.org/2012/08/speaking-out-against-hate-directed-at-women-matt-dillahunty/

  37. Greg Laden Says:

    BTW, I rewrote and updated this to include some more recent events: http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2012/07/31/guys-crossing-the-street-rabid-dogs-and-elevators/

    Enjoy.

    • Michael K Says:

      Greg Laden: Personally upping the statistic percentage on violent threats against other ppl since 2011.

      *hurray*

      Aren’t you just the role model for Internet good behaviour 😉

    • John C. Welch Says:

      Oh look, there’s greg, personally ensuring that all women are thought of as helpless.

      Your skating reference was a joke. I volunteer for a local derby team. If you think you’re going to do them damage, ON SKATES? I hope your insurance is paid up

    • Jaygray Says:

      A great link is always worth repeating:

      http://phawrongula.wikia.com/wiki/Greg_Laden:_Man_of_Mystery

    • Strakh Says:

      Again, I have to ask:
      Greg Laden, known harasser of women, do you think that because you harass a women you are the last word on it?
      You harassed a women because she’s better than you, smarter than you, and likely, even on her worst day, is still more manly than you will ever be.
      Again, Greg Laden, you are a known harasser.
      What, if anything, do you think you have to offer, but shame (which you obviously don’t have)?

  38. bhoytony Says:

    Does Laden ever visit any comment thread without blogwhoring his shitty site?
    We know your FfTB income has been terminated, but wouldn’t it be more dignified to get a job or even do some real life begging in order to feed your trailer park tribe?

  39. Namefag Says:

    http://skepchick.org/2012/08/speaking-out-against-hate-directed-at-women-matt-dillahunty/
    “When someone expresses a concern that something is making them feel unwelcome, we need to address it. Period. We need to seriously consider their complaint, make every effort to understand it and then decide what sort of action can and should be taken to alleviate it.”
    Deepity
    Can someone from the discovery institute please expresses a concern that atheism is making them feel unwelcome, because Matt will address it. Even if he has his period 😉
    Or maybe some people are – being trolls, outright crazy, unrealistic, professional complainers, or attention whores and we are able to reject their hollow concerns. Consider that there may be some silly concerns that we really don’t need to address.

    “We need to make sure that people who express their concerns are treated with respect and compassion and that we make reasonable efforts to either alleviate their concerns or clarify why we can’t or won’t.”
    If you want my respect is earn it… Well Mat has my respect so here goes..
    >I got threats and harassment from people online
    Welcome to the internet. They are called trolls. Please don’t feed them.
    >Sometimes I feel uncomfortable around men
    Welcome to life. I know that feel… I think most people know that feel… The good news is you have several options. 1) Go away. 2) Deal with it. 3) Change every male into a female.
    Option 1 would be a shame for you and your friends so I think we can rule this out.
    Option 2 is what most people opt for. The problem is usually dealt with it in our early to late teens. For most people like me it never entirely goes away. There are several social and mental strategies that you can use to deal with your feelings. I think my strategy was to remind myself that I was being irrational, but to be honest I dealt with most of my uncomfortable feelings around the opposite sex so long ago I can’t remember how I did it.
    Option 3 is something that I find distasteful. Adopting this strategy will backlash and I Will Not Have It.
    >A t-shirt upset me
    For fucks sake.
    Confirmed for professional complainer.
    All of your concerns now loose value.
    >People are not taking my concerns seriously
    Yep, and did you know that 9 out of 10 people enjoy gang rape. 😉

    • Badger3k Says:

      But we have been telling them why we won’t kowtow to their whims. They just tell us we’re wrong, or misogynists, or MRAs, or rape-enablers, and continue talking the same shit.

      Also, who’s standards of respect and compassion is he using? To me, respecting someone is treating them like an adult and talking to them as adults, not children. That means talking in plain language, not baby talk.

      • Namefag Says:

        The cry for respect is the cry of the desperate. I hear it from the religious “Respect my beliefs”, “Respect my religion” when they feel that are under attack. I have seen the “respect me” cry from the “powerful” people when they find themselves without a legitimate case.
        The thing about my respect is that you must earn it. There is no default respect from me, it is quite easy to earn a little of my respect but also possible to earn my contempt.
        Here is one of my favourite sceptical websites addressing the demand for respect.
        http://www.sillybeliefs.com/respect.html

        Here is the other sentence where Matt uses the word respect.
        “They’re not just misinformed or mistaken, they’re malicious little thugs who are lashing out in response to the fear that someone might actually expect them to treat another human being with respect.”
        Now this is just silly. There is a difference between politeness and respect. From me you get politeness by default not respect, and once I hear what you have to say you get some respect or some contempt. I do not have any respect for Kent Hovind and further people who do have respect for Kent Hovind earn a little contempt from me. I am fairly sure that Matt would not have respect for Kent Hovind either and treats him with the contempt he deserves.
        When I read what Mat wrote this is what I see.
        >Give people respect you scared bunch of dirty assholes and retards (Insult people then demand respect).
        Surprisingly this tactic does not work it just gets peoples backs up.

  40. Acathode Says:

    I’m pretty new to this whole atheism blogs and cons thing, got here from youtube recently, and just a few weeks ago learnt about “elevatorgate” and that whole drama…

    I have to say, my impression of this whole “new atheism” movement hit rock bottom after learning about it. The absence of rational, sceptic thinking in favor of ideolic dogma and “us vs them” thinking is just so… dissapoiting! You where supposed to be better than this!

    (to keep this comment somewhat on topic)
    Just look at Greg Laden and his recent comments on TFs various posts. He is blatantly trolling, just doing some driveby posts which basically boils down to “TF U SUK LOLOL!!!!”.

    Are you telling me this clown is someone who actually get to speak on those cons? Who actually used to be “one of the big bloggers” on FTB?! Just what part of this guy have anything to do with scepticism, rational thinking, science, free thinking, or anything else that might make any rational human beeing even consider spending time listening to him?

    In short, why the hell is a guy like him, or the other trashbloggers at FTB for that matter, allowed to become more than just “some guy in the crowd” in this so called “new atheism movement”? Is the standards really set that freaking low?

    • Acathode Says:

      oh, and one more thing. If I understood the whole drama correctly, much of the whole underlying reason for the drama was supposedly because they wanted to make women feel more welcome at these cons, in an attempt to increase the number of female attending.

      You know what? If there’s anything scaring away people from the atheist movement, it has to be the people at FTB. I’ve never attended a con, but after TF made his posts there, and seeing the reaction of pure, unadulterated hatred in the comment section, and the extreme hostility towards anyone with even the slightest deviation from the official party-line…

      I now know I have no interest whatsoever to spend time IRL even in the same room as those kind of people. Most religious people I know come across as more tolerant and friendly than those loons!

      I can only think of the damage these people causes if they are the first contact of someone completely new to atheism who happen to try to seek out others like him or her.

      • Michael Says:

        You know what? If there’s anything scaring away people from the atheist movement, it has to be the people at FTB. I’ve never attended a con, but after TF made his posts there, and seeing the reaction of pure, unadulterated hatred in the comment section, and the extreme hostility towards anyone with even the slightest deviation from the official party-line…

        Yep, I never had a lot of use for the “new atheists”, way too cultish even South Park new a few years ago:

        http://www.southparkstudios.com/full-episodes/s10e12-go-god-go

  41. Randy Says:

    Thank you Thunderf00t. I liked your post. But I’ll like your Venus Transit video more. It is coming, right? Or did I miss it?

  42. hannanibal Says:

    From Matt Dillacuntys latest drivel (courtesy of Skepchchik blogs):

    “When you hear a complaint that someone has raised, you might think that they’re expressing an irrational, emotional, over-reaction to the situation. You might even be correct – but it doesn’t matter, and here’s why:
    You don’t get to decide what someone else finds offensive.
    You don’t get to decide what someone else finds uncomfortable, unwelcoming, disconcerting, stressful, harrassing, troubling or painful.
    You aren’t the world: everyone isn’t exactly like you.”

    Well Matt that all sounds well and good but I and thousands of others noticed you never applied such inspirational politeness and social empathy toward the billion muslims you purposely (and rightly) offended when you took part (and encouraged people to take part) in “everybody draw Mohammed day”.
    You are advocating that EVERYBODY panders to the neuroses and paranoia of any given individual and it’s ridiculous. If we applied your shitty, eye-wateringly bad logic to any situation you wouldn’t get to braodcast your TV show you fucking moron.

    Once again Matt your bullshit hypocrisy shines through. I tell you what, why don’t you just ban people from your blog when they call you on it like the jumped up shit head you are?
    Oh yeah and lose some weight. I’d hate to see you lose a leg through diabetes.

    • Za-zen Says:

      Dilahunty’s arguments are jaw droppingly bad. Special pleading combined with dismissing those who don’t agree with his religion as beneath contempt!! Matt you need to break free of the bible thumping indoctrination you underwent, because you obviously haven’t. That is what i find most amusing people like dilahunty have gained a reputation for being critical thinkers because they are able to disect the bs of xtianity.
      But this is not a difficult thing to do, most of us did it when we were pre puberty.

      Now dilahunty and the crybabies are engaged in creating monsters under the bed, because they don’t have a fucking argument. Where the fuck is this “hate directed towards women” in the skeptic movement?! It doesn’t exist Matt. Cite a fucking case that you built your argument on, instead of being a blowhard. His whole fucking rant is built on a monster under the bed they’ve created in order to further their own political agenda.

      • hannanibal Says:

        Dillahunty obviously wants more skeptical women to come forward and be part of the movement (if you can call it that) and that’s admirable. The more the merrier! But when we have to make special rules to accommodate EACH persons individual take on what is considered offensive then you are going about it the wrong way!
        I cannot believe Matt is saying painfully obvious shit like “you don’t get to decide what’s offensive”…WELL DUH! I do however have the right to BE OFFENSIVE if I think it’s the right thing to do (like draw Mohammed day, calling theist beliefs fairy tales, saying the Elevator/T-shirt situation was blown out of proportion etc.) .

        I’m cynical about Matt’s real reasons towards this pro female membership drive and his accompanying attitude. After all more members is more money for the ACA.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      Out of the Friar, and into the Crying pan.

    • Ringo Polygon (@DanceLikeABrick) Says:

      I could easily use his logic to justify religious indoctrination, circumcision, and religious terrorism. You can probably all see it anyway, but shit that’s stupid.

    • Privileged Male Pig Says:

      “You don’t get to decide what someone else finds offensive,” says Matt Dillihunty, host of an atheist cable access show, on which he seems to be able to dictate that Christians ought not be offended by the theory of evolution or gay marriage.

      Actually, on that point, I would agree with Matt, but you see, Mr. Dillihunty is well known for having double standards. He wants to have his cake and eat it, too.

      If Christians don’t have a right to not be offended (and they DON’T) then neither to feminists. You can’t have it both ways, Mr. Dillihunty.

      • Acathode Says:

        Actually, in some sort of defence for Matt, he clarifies this in the comment section.

        It’s not that Matt thinks that feminists have the right to not be offended, it’s just that he thinks that he has the right to exclude anyone who do offend them from “their” cons and community.

        So what he is basically saying is that anyone who doesn’t adhere to ftb/sceptichick’s particular brand of feminism (their kind of feminism is not the only kind), is a person he thinks should not be welcome to the various cons and to the community.

        This raises a few points, the first and maybe most important one, is that he is openly tying “his” community to an ideology.
        You’re no longer welcome to the “new atheist” movement just because you happen to be an atheist. Unless you happen to be a feminist atheist who agree with him, Myers and Watson, don’t bother going down to El Arroyo to have dinner with them, your not someone they want to have at their table.
        As someone living in Sweden, I’m kinda amazed at this attitude. I got the impression that atheism in USA was under pressure, that you guys needed to stick together, so you could fight for the separation of church and state, and so on. Can your movement really afford to exclude everyone who don’t happen to follow the Myers/Watson party-line?

        Second point is, that reeks of taking the first step on a slippery slope. “New atheism”@2022 = only liberal, pro-choice, eco-friendly, feminist, anti-war. science literate, pro gay-marriage, etc etc people welcome? Not that I wouldn’t sign myself under most of those labels, I still thought that the whole sceptic/free thinking/atheism thing had the space and the level of maturity to handle different opinions?
        Just as everyone is welcome, no matter if you’re black, white, gay, straight, trans, female, male, or in-between, shouldn’t you be welcome even if you’re a republican pro-war atheist who don’t do not agree with much of what Watson and Myers are saying? Isn’t that sort of diversity of opinion supposed to be one of the strengths of this whole movement thing you have going?

        Third, and last point, is that how much of the community is really “theirs”? Just looking at who the fematheists have picked a fight with the last year or so, there’s a long list of highly regarded people that it seems is not welcome. Dawkins is out, and so is Harris and Krauss. Harriet Hall is out as well, obviously, and many many other ones.

        From what I’ve seen, the FTB/sceptichick faction and their supporters does not make up the large part of the actual community. They get “reduced to tears” when a t-shirt reminds them of that fact, but it’s still a fact.
        I don’t know how most other atheists feel, but Dawkins and Harris are speakers that would be a large reason for me to ever attend a con, Myers, Laden and Watson speaking? I wouldn’t even go if it was free. Just how interesting would “their” cons be, if they banned all the atheists Myers, Watson & Co have fought with?

        • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

          All well and good, save for the clear fact that these folk are actually ANTI-feminist.
          They seek to render females as lacking agency, and requiring of external support. (Mostly from “sympathetic” males).
          The less personal agency, the better, according to this lot.

          • Acathode Says:

            Yes, this is why I was careful to specify that their particular brand of feminism is just one among many.

            The feminism movement is very much like Christianity, there are sooo many variations, and quite a few of them will label the other ones as “not true Christian”.

            I completely agree with your assessment that what they are actually doing is painting women as weak creatures that need external support and are unable to take responsibility for their own actions, etc. I also agree that this really isn’t very “feminist”, but still, it’s a school of thought that is pretty widespread within the feminist movement, so we still have to call these people feminists.

            Really, it’s just another example of how feminism is not the same thing as egalitarianism or a strive for equality, and serves as yet another reason to not put the adapt the feminist label if you are truly someone who cares about equality for everyone.

        • brainfromarous Says:

          “You’re no longer welcome to the “new atheist” movement just because you happen to be an atheist. Unless you happen to be a feminist atheist who agree with him, Myers and Watson, don’t bother going down to El Arroyo to have dinner with them, your not someone they want to have at their table.” (Acathode)

          “Second point is, that reeks of taking the first step on a slippery slope. “New atheism”@2022 = only liberal, pro-choice, eco-friendly, feminist, anti-war. science literate, pro gay-marriage, etc etc people welcome? Not that I wouldn’t sign myself under most of those labels, I still thought that the whole sceptic/free thinking/atheism thing had the space and the level of maturity to handle different opinions?” (Acathode)

          ****

          Pardon me for quoting myself, but here’s my take on it from previous TF post comments:

          For various reasons, most having to do with the entrenched deference to religious traditionalism in Conservative ideology, American atheist and Freethought-style movements have historically found a greater welcome on the political Left.

          This has led to some expressions of Secularism/Skepticism being nothing more than re-branded 1960s-style New Leftism with anti-clericalism brought to the fore.

          Adherents thereof assume that since they’re not marching to mainstream God & Country type drummers that this places them outside of ideology and politics. They see themselves as more akin to referees than players.

          Like fish oblivious to water, they don’t regard their politics AS politics. Their views are just how every clear-thinking, modern, scientifically-minded person sees the world.

          They’re Johnny on the spot when it comes to calling out foolishness or malevolence from denizens of their rogue’s gallery: social Conservatives, Republicans, foreign policy hawks, Libertarians, devoutly religious folks… you know the list.

          But they are wholly vulnerable to subversion of their principles from other precincts on the Left: cultural Marxists, victim-politics hustlers, PC “sensitivity” totalitarians, MultiCulti and PoMo equivocators… and in this case, personality-cult Feminism.

          They don’t perceive such attacks as attacks because…. well, they’re from the Left. Therefore they must be long-overdue internal corrections and “reform.” All the genuine dangers are on the Right, right?

          “Pas d’ennemi à gauche,” as the Popular Front famously declared. And so it seems here.

  43. Marlo Rocci Says:

    Here’s what I think is really happening overall. Recent polls show the word “feminism” is losing favor, and increasingly women do not want to be called that. This is due to the increasingly radical requests made by feminists.

    So to survive, feminism needs to hook on to another cause for life support, hence the skeptic community. However, what they failed to account for is one can be a skeptic of religion AND feminism at the same time.

    The fact that I do not believe in god does not mean I agree with the current feminist agenda. And I really don’t have time for a person who suggest the men should “just go have sex with dolls” just because we disagree with her.

    More importantly, not agreeing with the skepchick community DOES NOT mean I hate women.

    • Za-zen Says:

      Ahhhhhh you are not a feminist!!! Ahhhhh you hate women!!!! Ahhhh you aren’t a decent human being!!!! Ahhhh ban him! Burn him!!! Burn him!!

    • Acathode Says:

      The big reason for the feministic movements stagnation and waning support is twofold, the most important reason is that they actually “won”, much of the seriously bad stuff that they fought against 100, 50 and 30 years ago has been addressed and often fixed. Sure, there are still stuff to be done, but the big war is over, most people today agree that men and women should have equal pay for equal work, same opportunities in education and careers, and the same legal rights.

      In short, they just don’t have those obvious injustices of the past to rally the troops under, instead, they are forced to invent new ones. Unfortunately, the new ones just doesn’t work as good, it’s easy to rally troops under “equal pay for equal work”, it’s harder to get people to get really riled up about their hypersensitivity to “sexist” language, where people aren’t allowed to, for example, use the word “hysterical”. It just doesn’t do the trick.

      The other problem is what you already menationed, the radcial feminists really do scare everyone away. In Sweden, where I live, the feminist movement saw their chance to go into politics for real a few years ago, not just by influencing important politicians this time, but as a real feministic party.
      They had some decent support too, until it was time for their first congress. They pretty much managed to completely kill the Swedish population’s support for feminism in those 3 days.

      For example they had a music group who, to much cheering from the congress attendees, went on stage singing about how they were going to hunt down and rip men to shreds (very much inspired by Solanas). They barred men from ever becoming board members or any sort of higher member in the organization. One of the leader figures, Tiina Rosenberg, was quoted saying “women who have sex with men are gender traitors”. Just to mention some of the controversies.

      After that, feminism in Sweden was mortaly wounded, they managed to make it crystal clear that feminism was not the same thing as equaliy to the whole Swedish population.

      Today few swedes will call themselves feminists, even thought Sweden is one of the most progressed countries on the gender issues. Many of the few feminists that still can be found, often artists and art journalists, are open in their praise of for example Solanas and her “Society for Cutting Up Men”.

      To call yourself a feminist today is to associate yourself with these man hating crazy people. And why do it at all? The name “feminism” is a really, REALLY bad label to put on yourself if you’re actually fighting for equal rights for everyone (MRA is equally bad btw).

      And yes, latching your movement onto another movement is usally only something you do when your own movement can’t stand on it’s own feet.

      • Marlo Rocci Says:

        That’s why I mentioned “current feminist agenda”. According to the bureau of labor statistics, the equal pay war has been won. You do the same work as a man, you get paid like a man. The current agenda is more “own group politics”, which seeks to pull benefit from government in the form of laws that give special protection to one group. The current agenda would be called racist if you substitute women for any racial group in the laws proposed.

        The predominant response from men is quite interesting. They aren’t joining MRAs in any large numbers. Those are still fringe groups. I’ve checked the view counts on MRA videos, and they’re really low for the daily posters.

        Instead, they’re killing marriage. They’re quietly withdrawing from the needs of women on going on with their own lives in peace. The death of marriage is the most dramatic event in our country’s history since the birth of the women’s movement. Unlike feminism, it’s a quiet action. Joining an MRA group may be damaging to your career, especially as women now rank very high in managerial ranks, but no one can force you to get married, very few would even ask if you are. “Marriage of convenience” is an obsolete term.

      • eikonoplast Says:

        Halla!

        I watched the controversy around Julian Assange (of wikileaks) quite closely and was blown away by the charges brought against him in the attempt to extradite him to Sweden (where it would be easy to then extradite him to the U.S.). It was my first taste of how bizarre a world run by Feminism could become.

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/dec/17/julian-assange-sweden

        Just before I was aware of the problem with Thunderf00t being banhammered from Freethoughtblogs, I watched this little gem:

        It’s long, but hearing you say what you have, you’ve ratified what this video documents.

        Feminism’s sole unhinging, to me, is to base a woman’s claims on her feelings. Under an older pre-feminist cultural paradigm, this may have worked, since a woman was viewed primarily as a creature of feeling and whim (“it’s a woman’s prerogative to change her mind”). Feminism claims that women can do whatever men can do, and when it comes to reason, that can be demonstrated, copiously. No issue there.

        But somehow, “feelings” are a warrant for 3rd wave Feminists as strong as reason and fact. I object to that. And I object to any paradigm that elects to ensconce that claim-right to dictate rules based on the subjectivity of feelings. “Those who sell liberty for safety deserve neither” as it were.

        I think the problem is mixed. There are “chauvinist” cultures, like theist culture, that expect paternal dominance, and then there are secular cultures, like skeptics, that have formerly embraced Feminism in the past. I was raised in a secular way, and took no issue with Feminism, until I saw how there seem to be no attendant responsibilities attached to rights Feminists claim. I hate the lies of chauvinist thought and religious dogma, but I also believe that the “new boss is the same as the old boss.”

        I sincerely hope “feminism” is on it’s way out. In my heart, of course i want a woman to have equality. I don’t see how the current philosophy of feminism will carry out anything but female dominance, though.

    • Michael Says:

      Not surprising it’s falling out of favour. Social movements tend to follow a bell curve. North American feminism has probably been past it’s peak since the mid ’90s and is rapidly losing the last moderate ones.

      What’s left are the old radicals who got it started and will never see the fight finished and some new ones who see it as a way to “stand out”.

      Give it a generation or so and they will have either died off or pounced on something else.

  44. secular Steve Says:

    Rebecca “rape threat” Watson can’t even see she’s being trolled. Does she really think she’s cock candy for the skeptic movement?

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      You misjudge her awesome perspicacity.
      She thinks no such thing.
      But she does know that every falsely fibbing fabricated tale of woe, she gains an extra-lazy parasitic income stream.
      Watson is one sharp operator.
      She knows exactly what puppet-strings she creates, and then pulls.
      An expert.
      Anyone who says that “Beccy is dumb” is way outta line.
      Watson is whip-crack smart.
      Pity that she uses her wits to wallow in a short-term parasitic life-style, that is rapidly coming to an end.
      (Sob.)

    • Marlo Rocci Says:

      I’ve heard Watson on the conference panel videos, and I keep asking “why is she there?” All she does is parrot things other feminists have already stated, much of which isn’t even true. She hasn’t actually acheived anything in her life other than be a college student. Harriet has done something with her life and I will listen to her. Show me a respectable woman and I will respect her. All Rebecca has done is fuel hate speech, which is the easiest thing to do.

  45. wimpymind Says:

    I would not be surprised at this point, if TF got arrested for rape at one of the next few events he goes to, or even during every-day life. Remember, the burden of evidence is on the man to prove he did not do it.

    rape charges are a very effective weapon.

    please be very careful TF.

    • Marlo Rocci Says:

      I really don’t expect TF to be allowed to attend any convention at this point. I expect he will be banned for “insensitivity towards women”. I know I won’t be attending any.

      The biggest mistake they’ve made is having volunteer activists handle the “security”. If security was really the issue, security professionals would have been hired. What you will probably see is the activists enforcing own group politics. No one will be protect from sexual harassment, that was always a red herring and not the goal of the skepchick community in the first place. It was to become the police force of the atheist community.

  46. CanuckGuy Says:

    What I find very sad about this entire affair is the damage that has been done not only to our movement but to the cause of women in general. I don’t know any women who subscribe to this hysteria. So now we have women who are afraid to attend Atheist conferences lest they be attacked by the “hundreds of atheists” RW refers to. The latest example with Amy and TAM only serves to point out how ludicrous this has become.

    • Marlo Rocci Says:

      There’s also the group slandering of men. I’ve never seen a group of men more sensitive to the rights of women as the men of the atheist movement. And yet from Watson’s perspective, we’re all a bunch of rapists.

    • Ringo Polygon (@DanceLikeABrick) Says:

      I think this was part of her plan. Create fear that atheist men are all out to rape all the women we see, then when she has her hooks in (like she does with so many at FTB) she will start to change her attitude. She will act as though she has saved the atheist “movement” (I don’t really know how atheism is a movement but everyone’s saying it so what the hell) and be the hero who taught atheists that women are not sex toys. Then she’ll try and steer the atheists in whatever direction suits her agenda. I haven’t really figured out what her agenda is.

      Maybe I’m just thinking too much into it and she really is an idiot who thinks “fancy a coffee” means “I have a sex dungeon in my hotel room. I’m going to shackle you to my sink and make sweet sweet love to your asshole.” I don’t know.

      • Michael Says:

        People like her eventually overreach and then self-destruct. There are very few people who don’t.

        Look at the right pundits. Two examples: Glenn Beck & Bill O’Reilly.

        O’Reilly clearly is the intelligent AND cunning one. He understands what pays for his meals and he’s smart enough to push the line but not cross it.

        Beck? He started believing his own Bullshit and went down in flames. I see Watson going the same way. She gets this sense of support from people like Myers, but as Myers will find himself eventually marginalized so will Watson. I bet her reaction to that will be to go on the offensive and then complete implode.

        She’s already gotten shriller over the last year.

        • Marlo Rocci Says:

          Much like th Chick-Fil-A deal, if we fail to appear at conventions where skepchicks appear, maybe they would not get invited?

          • Michael Says:

            I don’t think that would really work per-se. There will be enough people who are blissfully unaware of it. I only noticed / heard about it because of her stunt on the SGU podcast and the spat with Dawkins, for many it will probably never materialize.

            No, I think she’ll go down in flames eventually because she will get shriller and shriller in order to keep the attention flowing, probably resulting in some kind of verbal diarea that will spray so many people / holy cows at once that people will get really pissed.

      • wimpymind Says:

        more likely its just a paycheck to her.

        like most of the religious right, they are just in it for the money, knowing full well its bullshit.

        she does this because it creates attention, which she can turn into cash.

  47. John H. Says:

    I was just reading the comments from: http://skepchick.org/2012/08/speaking-out-against-hate-directed-at-women-matt-dillahunty/

    I saw something funny. This is one of Rebecca Watson’s comments:
    “Note: I’ve banned “real horroshow” in part for this: “The threats of rape and violence you mention. Who has made these threats and to whom? Have the police been informed? If not, why not?”

    At this point in the game, it must have taken them quite a bit of effort to avoid seeing all the well-documented rape threats and to avoid 10 seconds of Googling in this case, just to try to troll a little longer. Bonus banning points for the subtle victim blaming.”

    Asking for evidence of rape threats is victim blaming now.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      A sreeenshot of the original (polite) request is archived here:
      http://www.slymepit.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=73&start=4300#p5496

      • LightninLew Says:

        She just gets more ridiculous! Asking a perfectly reasonable question means you don’t deserve to speak to her now? Even though there seems to be no credible evidence for her claims she could have just put something there. Ignoring questions like that will just make her seem suspicious to those who don’t already know how crazy she is. She really isn’t as good at this as I thought.
        How did this kind of logic fool all these supposedly smart, rational people at FTB, and at these conferences she gets invited to speak at? This just boggles my mind.

    • hannanibal Says:

      I read the comments he made and I was shocked he was banned. he was genuinely polite and inquiring until he was insulted to oblivion and eventually banned by the free-thinking-skeptics. Seriously, ban *trolls* if you must but banning inquiry??? DUH….For fucks sake! How can anyone expect to progress without questions every now and then?
      If these people are like this with a blog imagine if they had real power……

    • real horrorshow Says:

      Another ‘red badge of courage’. I expected nothing else, but thought it was worth a try. Perhaps I should have used a name other than my Slymepit handle, but I doubt the result would have been different.

    • SH9999 Says:

      Ban people who request to look at the evidence. Now that’s scepticism taken to a whole new level.

  48. The Devil's Towelboy Says:

    The High Council expels thunderf00t

  49. JamieD Says:

    The “sexual harassment” at conferences trend has now crossed into the world of hackers. Valerie Aurora of the ADA Initiative wrote a blog post on Wednesday about sexual harassment against women at the DEFCON hacker conferences, describing one incident where a girl at a bar had some guy reach between her legs from behind and grab her crotch, but when she turned around he was gone. She also mentions a “brogrammer” atmosphere that surrounds the DEFCON conferences.

    https://adainitiative.org/2012/08/defcon-why-conference-harassment-matters/

    Her wishes are exactly the same as the Skepchicks (she even mentions atheist / skeptic conferences in her post), she wants conferences to enact an anti-sexual harassment policy. From the examples she gave though, there seems to be one trend – Alcohol. I’ve been to quite a few clubs in my time and I know how much of a jackass a person (yes, person, a man or a woman) can be once they knock back one too many. I saw one guy grab a girl’s chest one night in a nightclub here and I’d say about 5 seconds AT MOST later he was grabbed by a bouncer and thrown out. They take that stuff seriously when they are TOLD about it, or they witness it themselves.

    However, I was slapped across the face by a drunk girl one night for nothing. I wasn’t even speaking to her, but when the bouncer came over, he grabbed ME by the scruff and asked me “What did you do to her?”. When I said I did nothing, he tried to talk to her about it and then realized how drunk she was, and that she was in a very bad mood, but even at that he didn’t throw her out, he was looking around for her friends, or from what I could tell, some other woman who was willing to look after her, or maybe a female staff member who might throw her out.

    One guy who grew up with my brother, (name is Owen) was fired many years back from his job after a sexual harassment claim was made against him. In reality, what had happened is he was in a friendly slagging match with a female co-worker, and it was all fun and games, with plenty of sexual innuendo included. She commented that he probably has a “small dick” and that he couldn’t get it up anyway, so he replied something like “I definitely couldn’t get it up for your body anyway!.” People laughed, as they had been laughing through it, and she didn’t complain about it. The next day he was told by HR that he was being let go due to a sexual harassment complaint made by her in which he apparently said “I couldn’t get it up for you.” Two of her friends had backed her up, and they didn’t even give him a chance to get any of his friends (male and female) to tell his side of the story, and even his union didn’t back him. When he threatened legal action, HR told him that if he brought legal action it would stain his name, even if he won, but that if he didn’t bring legal action, it would “be like it never happened” when he was applying for another job elsewhere. He was absolutely distraught about it.

    Of course, this is anecdote to all of you, and I’m sure there’s countless people who were somehow punished under sexual harassment policies too that deserved it, but these are examples of how such policies can also create problems. Because a woman assaulted me in a drunken state, a bouncer nearby automatically assumed I had done something to her, and when he realized his mistake, he was even afraid of throwing her out, yet he would have probably used my head to open every single door on the way out, and then thrown me on the ground (as ive seen them do in this club countless times) if I had even said something provocative to her beforehand.

    A genuinely good guy lost his job for no good reason, and couldn’t even fight it because if he tried to take another job and they did a background check on him, the allegations alone (even if he had won) would make him undesirable to an employer. What if I went to DEFCON, TAM or COMIC-CON and I was chilling in a bar afterward and got into a similar slagging match with a woman who brought up my sex organs and I brought hers up, and then either she, or some nearby woman, decided I harassed her and demanded that I get thrown out and/or banned from ever attending again? I write online for a living.. what if the news got to my employers that I was chucked out of a conference for sexual harassment? Who do I sue in that case, because trust me, I would sue someone. Is this really what we want to open conferences to? (particularly when these incidents seem to, by admission, occur AFTER conferences at bars etc., where the organizers of the conference have no business – outside the realm of a concerned citizen – even interfering).

    Let’s also get one thing straight her, grabbing a girl by the crotch at a bar is not sexual harassment, it’s sexual assault. If that guy had been caught, he could have been arrested for that if this lady decided to take it that far, he could have wound with a record for it, and it would be his own fault. I would never personally grab the crotch of any woman like that, unless she was my girlfriend and I knew she was cool with it, as all my ex-girlfriends since I was a teenager have been, but even at that I wouldn’t bloody grab them in a public place, and not “out of context”, shall we say. You will find that I’m exactly the same as 99.9% of conference goers in that respect. In every crowd, there is always going to be weirdos, creeps (genuine ones, not guys who look a second too long…) and even criminals, that’s what statistics will tell us.

    But ye, I’ve gone on too long here so I’ll leave it at that.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      Phantoms in the knight.
      No evidence of any of this sexual harassment occurring, let alone assault.
      If it were either: report it to the competent authorities.
      If the conference staff have shown disdain to act, then report them too — to the next highest agency, such as the Police!
      It is not rocket science.
      But the ‘giveaway’ is that rather than reporting it the appropriate authorities, they choose to whinge, whine, bitch, and complain about in public blog posts.

      This raises an immediate red flag to utterly ensure that such complaints are baseless, and amplified merely in order to raise the ‘victim cred’ of the accuser at the expense of the likely non-existent perpetrator, such as the fictional Elevator Guy.

      It is histrionics, pure and simple, designed to garner sympathy points from females who wish to have zero agency for themselves, and 100% agency from males.

    • LightninLew Says:

      If she was actually grabbed like that, why would she be calling for a sexual harassment policy? Does she think that crotch-grabbing is currently considered socially acceptable unless the people running the event say otherwise? I don’t think a policy on sexual harassment would stop things like this that are already illegal.

      • hannanibal Says:

        HaHa! Good point. Lets have a policy to stop stabbings and theft too.

      • JamieD Says:

        Well in the blog post (which I link to) she says it was a friend who had her crotch grabbed, not herself. But yes, I agree with you, there’s no point in making the law clear at a convention. People there know its not OK to grab someone by the crotch, and anyone who wants to is not going to be put off by a sexual harassment policy.

        On that thought too, why do they make such a big deal out of what trolls say? For example, Watson seems to take all of the “rape threat” e-mails she gets seriously. If she can’t understand trolling, she should at least understand that if someone really did intend to rape her, THEY AREN’T GOING TO E-MAIL HER ABOUT IT FIRST!!

      • Marlo Rocci Says:

        Yet another problem with the policy: inserting another layer of authority for something that should only go directly to the police.

    • Karl Johanson Says:

      “…describing one incident where a girl at a bar had some guy reach between her legs from behind and grab her crotch, but when she turned around he was gone.” This is a serious and criminal incident. However, why is the perpetrator described as “he”? It’s rather like saying, something like, “The black mugger put a bag over my head from behind, so I have no idea what they look like.”

  50. The Devil's Towelboy Says:

    Kafkatrapping. Forgot to mention it –

    http://esr.ibiblio.org/?p=2122

  51. Albatross Says:

    So, this has been bugging me throughout the entire debate. Thnderf00t was a victim of sexual harassment himself, and he wen’t so far as to ask youtube to intervene on his behalf: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=837h-Cxls1A

    But when the folks at Skepchick discuss the rape threats they’ve received, well, they’re just feeding the trolls because they like being perceived as victims.

    • hannanibal Says:

      One of the differences is that we have all received the odd rape/death threat from some knobhead on Youtube and a lot from pharyngula. They take 5 seconds to write and are designed to inflame or intimidate the receiver. Ignoring them is the best course of action unless you fancy a massive flame war.
      That doesn’t condone the behaviour nor does it put the behaviour *in the same league* as photoshopping somebody into porn and uploading the images onto a porn site under their name. There is a genuine level of personal vendetta when that sort of situation occurs and I will be the first to say, if it ever happend to the skepchicks, that it should be dealt with. It is “crossing a line”.

      It’s the difference between shouting “the referee’s a wanker!” at a football match and phoning the referee at his home to call him a wanker.
      Just my thoughts.

      • Albatross Says:

        I would argue that the sheer volume of rape threats puts it in the same ball park. It’s the diffidence between someone shouting “the referee’s a wanker,” and an entire stadium shouting it.

        • hannanibal Says:

          When the entire stadium shouts it (and it usually is at least one entire section of the stadium and never solely an individual) do the police (or anybody) act? No. It’s dismissed because it’s not a real threat.
          When it becomes as personal as phoning the ref’s home to abuse him then it’s taken up to another level.
          This whole “it’s harassment when twenty individuals say the same thing once on separate occasions” is bullshit. We are not responsible for anyone but ourselves and if 19 other people have asked the same thing without my knowledge then so fuck?
          If I ask a girl out and she says “no” it’s not my fault simply because she has already refused 30 other offers that day. I’m guilty of harassment if I personally asked her out 29 seperate times and wouldn’t take “no” for an answer.

    • LightninLew Says:

      Uuuhm, how is that sexual harassment? TF didn’t say he felt he was being sexually harassed once in that video. I’m not speaking for him but I’d guess that at no point did TF feel that he was being pressured into sex, about to be raped, or that he was being hit on in an inappropriate way.
      Also, these “rape threats” are not sexual harassment either, and neither is someone talking to you in a lift. The rape threats are emails from trolls on the internet, I’d wager that a large chunk of them aren’t even on the same side of the planet as her, and are about 15.

      • Albatross Says:

        Regardless of what TF calls it, photoshopping someone into porn constitutes sexual harassment, as does threatening to rape someone (regardless of the credibility of such a threat). Any instance in which sexual images or language is used to attack or intimidate an individual is sexual harassment.

        • hannanibal Says:

          Slapping a co worker on the arse is sexual harrasment and so is sending unwanted messages, notes and gifts to a persons home as well as phoning them constantly. The difference between the two is massive as is the difference between the two situations mentioned above.
          TF00t is not saying sexual harrasment doesn’t exist nor is he saying you should just ignore it BECAUSE it’s sexual harrasment. The gist I get is to stop making mountains out of molehills and stop trying to conflate random, blatant troll comments (written solely to wind someone up) as an skeptic-community-only problem.

          We have all had threats, sexual and non sexual from the internet community and some are more legitimate than others. Such as personally hijacking someones identity and making obscene videos about them.
          tl;dr Photoshopping someone into porn and uploading it onto a porn site in their name because they are a personal enemy>anonymous threats from trolls out for lulz.

        • LightninLew Says:

          A real rape threat is much worse than sexual harassment. These are not real rape threats, they are no different to the death/violence threats you would get if you visited the YouTube comments sections.
          “language is used to attack or intimidate an individual is sexual harassment.”
          Exactly. These stupid “threats” aren’t intimidating or attacking her. If she was really intimidated do you think she would share her location on twitter, attend cons she thinks are full of people who want nothing more than to rape her, and post them on her blog for monetary gain rather than contact the authorities?

        • JamieD Says:

          It’s like this. if Rebecca Watson has a catalog of rape threats that she believes are credible, then REPORT THEM TO THE FBI. People are not as anonymous as they believe they are on the Internet. Even if most of these trolls aren’t stupid enough to use their personal e-mail accounts that could be easily traced to their identity, I’m willing to bet the vast majority of them didn’t make any attempt to mask their IP address, which is easily retrievable from e-mails. With just that information, a rape threat is a serious enough crime that the FBI can force an ISP to hand over subscriber information, so they can investigate. It’s really that simple.

          Just look through ANY popular YouTube video, go to the comments and scroll through and count up the racist remarks, personal insults, threats of harm etc. The Internet is FULL of trolls. Look at Twitter, look at the tweet responses to some of the users. Footballer Wayne Rooney for example, check any of his tweets for responses from Twitter and see the sheer level of hate directed at him by petty trolls. Not once has he made a big deal out of it.

          When it comes to threats, hardly any are credible. It’s like the news stories that you always hear about Obama receiving more death threats than any President, but the fact is if somebody really had his assassination in mind, they aren’t going to make a bloody threat before they make an attempt. It’s the day the FBI or some other law enforcement agency contacts YOU and tell you that they have information on a credible threat against you or your family (something experienced by Christopher Hitchens), then you know a threat is really credible. But if you get some sick e-mail talking about how they want to rape you, you are the victim of some juvenile little prat trying to get a rise out of you. If Watson did contact the FBI and they did track a bunch of the e-mails back to a subscriber account, I wouldn’t at all be surprised if the culprits were predominantly teenagers who hang on forums like 4chan.

          Where Watson loses a lot of this community is where she appears to suggest that there’s an epidemic of misogynism in the skeptical movement in particular. Her own words are that she has received loads of rape threats from “atheists.” In the panel discussion before the elevatorgate incident, I read that Watson said that misogynism is a problem and instructed the men in the audience to watch what they say and try to root out any biases within them. Now what if I was in the panel discussion and I said that overreaction and power plays are endemic among women in the skeptical movement, so maybe they should all watch what they say and try to root out any biases within them? I’d be called a sexist pig.

          For that reason, in my mind, people like PZ Myers are the true sexists. Myers’ bent-over-backwards defense of Watson after Elevatorgate and his silencing of dissent suggests that he views the women in the movement as inferior, weak beings that require his manly protection. It’s totally OK for Thunderf00t to attack creationists in any and every single way, but he should NEVER dare to even disagree with a female “skepchick”? It’s nonsense.

        • The Devil's Towelboy Says:

          Albatross Says: Regardless of what TF calls it, photoshopping someone into porn constitutes sexual harassment, as does threatening to rape someone (regardless of the credibility of such a threat). Any instance in which sexual images or language is used to attack or intimidate an individual is sexual harassment.

          Hypocrite. Moron. Baboon. Congratulations, a trifecta –

          http://phawrongula.wikia.com/wiki/The_Michele_Bachmann_Hotdog_Incident

          • hannanibal Says:

            I love how PZ withdrew into his shell after uploading that blogpost. “Oh I iz so sowwy. It would have been hilarious if I wasn’t called on my hypocrisy”
            Fair enough he took it down but meh. He still thought it was some funny shit until he was called on it. The fucking hypocritical snake.

  52. The Devil's Towelboy Says:

    “The evidence is out there, google it!”. The cry of the creationist, conspiracy theorist and antivaxxer.

  53. Zachary J. Adam (@zaxtonbooks) Says:

    Dr. Mason,

    You’re busy and so forth, I’m sure, but I thought it best I should leave this here for you to read it: it is impolite to offer a criticism of someone without giving them a chance to respond – in this case, a fully unmoderated comment feed. http://auditorandagentleman.blogspot.com/2012/08/drama-for-her-own-sake.html

    -AudGentleman

    • Strakh Says:

      @AudGenleman:
      Why, how gentlemanly of you!
      And snidely passive aggressive.
      In case you haven’t really noticed, you are commenting on a “fully unmoderated comment feed” right here, Sherlock.
      All are free here to comment, criticize, or just plain vent their frustrations.
      Frustrations like wondering why an openly “spiritual” person thinks he has any valid criticisms for a working scientist.
      Your trolling style is very common, Snidely, and very tiresome.
      It’s the old, “I’m just a curious fellow, don’t you know, I don’t have any axe to grind, just would like to know a few things, etc.”
      Then slowly, oh, so very cleverly (you think, while being childishly obvious to the rest of us) you steer the conversation to how “misguided” poor Thunderf00t is, and “while not actually ‘wrong’ per se,” he is “just not quite ‘right’ about the more important, underlying aspects” and on and on.
      Heard it all before and read over fifty of your threads on your blog to see what kind of “oh so gentle guide for the poor, unenlightened masses” type you are.
      (Just for your info, your threads on spirituality read like a junior high child’s ideas – long on touchy-feeling, completely absent of any worth.)
      Of course, I could be wrong.
      You might just be fishing for hits, that too has been done.
      That’s why I’m not addressing your sophomoric ramblings on your site but here.

      If you really DO have anything to challenge Thunderf00t with, why not do it HERE, on HIS site, in front of everyone?
      That way, if you actually do find something worth saying, we’ll have have the benefit of your …. ‘wisdom.’

      • Zachary J. Adam (@zaxtonbooks) Says:

        So passive aggressive that even I can’t feel the aggression! I really have elevated it to an artform.

        The post was to be written, frankly, whether or not I had realized beforehand that you don’t need a wordpress account to comment on wordpress blogs. As it happens, I don’t have anyone one particular axe to grind, and throwing that in double quotes doesn’t make it any more true that I said it – an academic should understand the distinction between the two different icons mapped to that key. What being (openly or otherwise) spiritual has to do with one’s fitness to comment on another’s writing style and content is a mystery to me, particularly when I said that this particular “working scientist’s” work, in the scientific realm, is fantastic.

        It very much would have been impolite to write that and not make Dr. Mason aware that the criticism existed, and, frankly, pointless – to the extent that holding a debate in vacuum is always pointless.

        I’ll go so far as to say you’re wrong about the trolling. Fishing for hits is certainly a motivator – until you factor in that the readership here isn’t the target demographic. There are, by and large, two main types of commenter here: those who pursue science to the absence of other academic disciplines, and those who believe in a Young Earth and are outraged, absolutely outraged, that Mason is speaking at all.

        Yes, fishing for hits seems like a worthwhile endeavour here, and I would have as much luck in recruiting frequent readers from the College of Cardinals as I would from among the readership here. The only difference between you and me is that you happen to be agnostic atheist, where I am (on good days) agnostic theist. I mean, you aren’t claiming to be a gnostic atheist, are you? No, I doubt it. That would be just as silly as the inverse.

        Thanks for the reading. I’m sure you must have skipped over most of the recent stuff, because it had precious little to do with science or spirituality – unless you consider tea and metaphysics inextricably linked.

        Cheers Mate,
        -AudGentleman

        • Nocheinbenutzername Says:

          Regarding the gnostic/agnostic-theist/atheist part, it depends on which gods we are talking about.

          Are we talking about the interacting gods in the religious texts, or are we talking about the non-interacting gods that possibly exist outside spacetime?

        • Strakh Says:

          Holy jumping Jesus on a flaming stick!
          Where do I begin?
          (After I scrape the condescension off the screen….)

          1) You have your own blog. Unless someone created it and runs it for you, pleading ignorance of the site you’re on is just…. disingenuous at best, frank bullshit at worst.

          2)Your grinding axe is apparent to anyone who can read, or did you honestly think you were so clever no one would have the mind to notice? Let’s look at the edge of that axe, shall we?
          The paragraph that begins with: “Now, I appreciate that Dr Myers…” You then patronizingly suggest that what Tft is doing has turned “something that is a reasonably valid concern….”
          You are wrong.
          It is not a valid concern and that has been the WHOLE point of Tft’s postings and videos: there is NO reason to suspect that any woman at any of these conferences is going to be all but gang raped by rabid atheists. In fact, the ONLY instances of ANYTHING happening is Watson’s alleged elevator incident and Crying Amy’s breakdown over a shirt worn by a woman who is widely respected as being a skeptic among skeptics, regardless of her gender. You superciliously finish this thought that Tft is making this “into something more ridiculous” than it already is.
          How, I ask HOW, can you UTTERLY miss the point Tft has and is making? He was booted from FTB for the very reason that he pointed out how ridiculous it is to spend any time on this non-troversy. Yet, in YOUR esteemed opinion, HE is making it MORE ridiculous by pointing out how ridiculous it is. Way to miss the mark, buckwheat.

          3)Since you consider yourself so, shall we say, learned, have you ever read “Arrowsmith?” In it, young Martin states: “I only know what I observe.” You should try that philosophy, instead of supposing you know more than you do. There are FAR more commenters than “those who pursue science to the absence of other academic disciplines” on this site. I observe that you are making a judgement about we commenters, meaning you must have read our comments. If you had read them, you would know that we are a HUGELY varied bunch, with MANY interests besides science. Why, some of us even have degrees “in other academic disciplines”! One of us has his own band, for pity’s sake. You reveal your condescension with such patronizing statements, and thus reveal why you are unqualified to criticize a man who can back his statements up with fact.

          4) You reveal more of your inability to grasp what is going on by your ridiculous assumption of me: “you happen to be agnostic atheist”. How could you claim to know that? Are you not even aware the phrase makes NO sense in the English language? You appear to be in love with stringing together lots of really smart-sounding words and phrases, but only show yourself to be ignorant not only of we commenters, but of the very subjects of which we speak.

          5) And while I realize it must titillate you to write the word “metaphysics” in such a pseudo-intellectual manner, you again show either an obtuseness of almost biblical proportions or you are exactly what I called you: another troll. I won’t even bother to explain any further. Frankly you’ve been a waste of time so far.

          6) If this is TL;DR for you, I’ll sum it up for you with an FTB favorite:
          “Concern Troll’s concern is noted, now, do you have anything of value to contribute?”

        • Strakh Says:

          Nope, he didn’t.
          I will hand it to you, ‘spiritual’ one, you at least had the sense to shut the hell up when you were called out.

  54. Rachel Johnson Says:

    I have been called on my lack of knowledge on a few issues, and scolded, but never threatened to be raped. Not even by trolls. But if I was threatened, it better be backed up with enough info to actually cause a scare, otherwise I am just going to laugh, and ignore it. That is what the trash button is for.

  55. Marlo Rocci Says:

    I think virtually every man to goes to these conferences is opposed to harassment. What I am opposed to is the expantion of the definition to cover any male female interaction and the insertion of an incompent layer of authority to handle the issue.

  56. Patrick Says:

    I’ve noticed that some of your subscribers/commenters don’t like the fact that you’re talking about feminism rather than science, while others see it as an important issue. I reckon you could satisfy both audiences by making videos debunking the anti-scientific claims that feminists sometimes make. I don’t think you’d have enough material for a series like WDPLAC, but there’s certainly enough for a video or two.

    Many feminists claim that there are NO differences whatsoever between the male and female brains (or that they are so small as to be irrelevant), and they’ll shout you down if you claim otherwise. What I find funny is that Greg Laden claimed that the male brain is “damaged by testosterone” and yet I don’t see them haranguing him!

    • Acathode Says:

      There’s all kinds of feminists. There are a ton of completely sane ones, and there’s a ton of completely bat shit crazy ones, and a then you have a whole lot of feminists in between.

      The problem though, is that unlike Christianity, you don’t have a wide label under which most of the bat shit crazy ones sail. There’s no “creationist” group to really attack, so it becomes a bit like fighting fog, even if you completely shred some of the crazy stuff the more radical elements come up with, your attack wont “connect”, even the bat shit crazy feminists will just slink away like fog.

      • John Hancock Says:

        I think it’s fair to say that they all want equality. He could focus the videos on why forced equality (except for legal) is immoral.

        • Acathode Says:

          Simply put, no. It’s certainly not fair to say that [b]all[/b] feminists want equality, if you had actually bother education yourself about feminism this would be rather obvious.

          It does not take much time to google yourself into the more radical feminists sites where statements about how they (the radfems) want to kill all men, enslave all men or castrate them is rather common and easy to find. On many of these sites or subgroups, hate against males are seen as something completely normal and is often encouraged.

          This isn’t something new either, Valerie Solanas is rather infamous for trying to murder (but “just” maiming) Andy Warhol and writing her “Society for Cutting Up Men (SCUM)”-manifesto where men are described as being lower than animals, only walking dildos, biological mistakes, and so on.

          The problem with your idea to attack equality is that “equality” is such an extremely vaguely defined term when it comes to feminism.

          Some feminism believe equality is only achieved when there’s a 50/50 representation of females to males in higher career positions like COEs, some feminists define equality as “paying the men back for the thousands of years of oppression”, ie. enslaving all men, who get to do all the physical labor while the women rule the world.

          The same goes for many terms often within the feminist movement, the terms are vaguely defined and often if you manage to point out inconsistencies and hypocrisy in how they are used, you often get “but I’m not exactly that kind of feminist, that’s not how _I_ define that term”. Even if terms have specific definitions in “sciences” like gender studies, you will find that they are seldom or only selectively used according to their definition.

          It reminds very much about arguing with religious people, “I’m not that kind of Christian, that’s now how I interpret that passage/word”.

          When it comes to feminism, it’s seems a far better tactic to simply call BS when we see it, and attack real statements and claims from FTB, Watson, and so on. There’s certainly enough BS coming from that direction to have more than enough material.

          • John H. Says:

            Obviously not “all” feminists will agree on any single position. Similarly, I doubt you think I should “bother education” myself on the topic or “google [myself] into” anything. /endtwattery

            I wouldn’t waste my time trying to convince the radical feminists, such as the ones you mention, that their position is wrong; I doubt any reasonable argument will dissuade a radical. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t think their views should be attacked, but rather that a different approach is required, one that I’m not currently interested in.

            I’m more interested in convincing the average, equality seeking, egalitarian type feminist that their position is immoral, and by extension, anyone else that holds those positions. Your criticism that equality is too vaguely defined is precisely a reason why it should be attacked. More importantly, however, is the fact that no matter how it’s defined, so long as it’s consistent, it will be immoral for the same reason. That is to say, when you force equality, it must, necessarily, be at the expense of someone else. In the case that their definition is inconsistent, we will have another front on which to attack it: [il]logical inconsistency.

            “Feminism” is a meaningless thing to attack on a practical level, for the reasons you pointed out. That’s why I suggested that we take a prevailing idea, such as equality or egalitarianism, and dismantle it. Other topics could be patriarchy, the hypocrisy in demonizing men’s rights activists, or the glass ceiling myth.

          • Acathode Says:

            @John H.
            Sorry for lashing it, I’m just a bit “allergic” to statements that makes feminism and equality the same thing, I live in a country (Sweden) where many high profile feminists have made it crystal clear that it’s not and are not afraid to say so in public, and I got extremely disappointed with the whole feminist movement when I found out. Few things bother me as much as hypocrisy and double standards.

            I guess I agree with most of what you say, but I would focus more on the feminists within the skeptic movement instead of feminists in general.

  57. Mike De Fleuriot Says:

    By us playing with these ‘radical” feminists, we are highlighting the absurdity of the positions each side claims to hold. But when push comes to shove, we will be there for the real oppressed. Think of is as a form of peer review, the bad views get exposed to the light, so that everyone has a chance to discard them.

    That I think is the best we can hope for from this go round, guys will learn to think a bit more about women and women will learn that not all guys are rapists out to harm them.

  58. dougal445 Says:

    i think your really going astray here thunderf00t.
    While im no fan of Scepchick, or agree wirh them on much, i took a quick look at one of your links and Lindsey quite clearly endorsed the fact that hate speech was present and rising and was disprortionatly directed at women and was intolerable. Isn’t that pretty much the skepchick line?

    • dougal445 Says:

      Crying over a teashirt,
      . Agreed, ridicul. Agreed, ridicul. Agreed, ridicul. Agreed, ridiculous.
      Conflating trolls with real threats and implicating average members of the community. Agreed, wrong.
      Ridiculous amount of invectibe generated around on the subject. Agreed, shamefull.
      Do we need harrassement polices? Meh, argueable.

      Time to let this one go

    • dougal445 Says:

      well that comment got screwed up somehow!

      Missed off near the end:
      you’ve made some good points and others not so.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      Did he give examples?
      If not, then: YES, that *is* the Skepchick line.

      • Dougal445 Says:

        Not sure what your getting at Michael. But in case my point was misunderstood. . . .
        Thunderf00t claims Skepchick had no endorsement from these people, while my reading of their comments seemed like a very clear validation to me.

        • Ringo Polygon (@DanceLikeABrick) Says:

          They only got validation on the fact that sexual harassment is wrong and that people should treat women equally. Not that a woman wearing a tshirt which says she isn’t a ‘skepchick’ and a man asking if you want coffee in a lift are forms of harassment, never mind sexual harassment.

          • dougal445 Says:

            No. They got validation that they are receiving a disproportionate of unacceptable female targeted hate speech.

          • Dougal445 Says:

            No! They got validation that they do get a disproportionate amount of unacceptable female targeted hate speech.

          • Dougal445 Says:

            Sorry. duplication not intended.

          • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

            No. They are CLAIMING, without any evidence whatsoever, that they are receiving credible targeted hate speech.
            No credible evidence at all. At least none that a a grown adult would believe.
            The bogus ‘validation’ has been revealed for the extortionate threat that it is.

          • dougal445 Says:

            michael.
            Calm down dear!

            So do i understand you correctly?
            Where thunderf00t thinks lindsey does not offer any support for the skepchick line at all and i think he pretty clearly supports the skepchick line, you think lindsey supports the skephick line, but he’s lying?

  59. SH9999 Says:

    Flirtation may or may not be unwelcome, but what Rebecca Watson and her followers fail to understand is that you don’t know for sure if it is unwelcome until the other person has stated that it is. She just assumes that people should know this anyway, probably through telepathy.

    Also, expressing opinions and thoughts that might make someone offended or uncomfortable, is allowed. I wonder if the Skepchicks are aware of that? And that a message on a t-shirt is not harassment.

    • mrmikerogers Says:

      “Flirtation may or may not be unwelcome, but what Rebecca Watson and her followers fail to understand is that you don’t know for sure if it is unwelcome until the other person has stated that it is.”

      And more importantly, what gives Rebecca Watson the right to decide the rules for when and where she may be asked out for coffee?

      “…a message on a t-shirt is not harassment.”

      Exactly. If someone feels “threatened” or is brought to tears by a t-shirt, they need psychiatric help.

  60. piranhaintheguppytank Says:

    The New and Improved Free Thought (TM) Blogs…

    Now with more faux outrage!

    Free Thought (TM) is a registered trademark of Free Thought (TM) Blogs. Free Thought (TM) Blogs reserves the right to define Free Thought (TM) anyway the hell it pleases and if you should disagree then FUCK OFF TROLL! (TM)

    FUCK OFF TROLL! (TM) is a registered trademark of Free Thought (TM) Blogs.

    * * *

    The FTB motto:

    GroupThink. You’ve either got it or you don’t.

  61. Marlo Rocci Says:

    I don’t think hate speech against women is the issue. Skepchick called us a bunch of rapist and misogynists and all we’re doing is calling bullshit on this name calling.

    • Anonymous Says:

      you are right, the issue is that most of you are a bunch of loser nerds never got any real contact with a member of the female sex during high school (and most likely since) so this is how you lash out to get even.

      nerdrage ftw?

      • elevator guy Says:

        Love your nails. You must be a Libra. Would you like to join me for a coffee honey?

      • brainfromarous Says:

        Well, that explains why I first heard about Watson and the Elevator Thing from my girlfriend. Oh wait, no it doesn’t.

        As a happy, partnered hetero, let me share something I’ve learned about women and what they think of men:

        Men who nod like bobbleheads at any claims made in the name of “Feminism,” no matter how extreme or dishonest, will not be well regarded or desired by any woman worth knowing or loving.

        See, nobody can really respect those who won’t stand up for themselves. Such are properly seen as bad matches in friendship, romance, etc.

        When the discourse about issues like sexism and social behavior jumps the tracks of sober reason and veers into hyperbolic slander and reckless generalization (“Rape Apologist!” “Woman-hater!”), the WORST thing a good man can do is go along with it.

        Remaining silent – or worse, joining such a shrieking harpy chorus – does not signal to women that you are “an Ally” or “aware of your Privilege.”

        It signals that you are a pitiable coward… a creepy kind of gender masochist. That you have no sense of honor, positive masculinity or even basic personal boundaries. That you will countenance even the most vicious slander in order to show your attackers that you “Get It.”

        Even women purporting to approve and support your New, Improved Anti-Sexist Consciousness will be inwardly grimacing in disgust at your lack of self-respect.

        “Nerdrage?” No, I save that for the Star Wars prequels.

      • Nocheinbenutzername Says:

        I hope you are just trolling.

        • elevator guy Says:

          What, me attempt to annoy an anonymous poster who (like an errant puppy) barks, dumps its mess and then runs away? However can you think it?

          • Nocheinbenutzername Says:

            The reply was for the anonymous poster.

            If I had replied to you, the post would have been in the spot where “brainfromarous” made his post.

          • elevator guy Says:

            Apologies, those vertical line are confusing after a few layers. 🙂

          • Nocheinbenutzername Says:

            No problem at all.

            The lines do get confusing after the paragraphs mount.

      • John C. Welch Says:

        Greg, just because you couldn’t get laid with a rented dick, don’t be bitter.

  62. Marlo Rocci Says:

    One final word. I became a fan of the atheist movement because I am an atheist. Not to have accusations or guilt trips for things I didn’t do thrown at me. As far as the conferences are concerned, I’m out. I’m not going to any one of them. Nor am I joining any organization as those are clearly targets for radfem activists. I’ve stopped watching the ACA and stopped reading FTB. They can find someone else to beat up on.

  63. I can't believe it! Says:

    There’s a new chapter in the ongoing saga:
    http://skepchick.org/2012/08/a-cult-of-quantity/
    Now the lack of concrete data is addressed.
    And of course JAQing?!?

    • hannanibal Says:

      Bloody hell what a pile of shit! It all boils down to “be skeptical of the skeptical”.
      This is getting so crazy. People who label themselves skeptic are coming out with shite like this?
      Judging by the paroxysms of joy in the comments section you would think he had discovered the meaning of life but no, he has basically reprimanded people for not taking the skepchick’s word as absolute fact.

      • I can't believe it! Says:

        “Judging by the paroxysms of joy in the comments section you would think he had discovered the meaning of life but no, he has basically reprimanded people for not taking the skepchick’s word as absolute fact.”

        Indeed, despite his attempt to obfuscate with talk about qualitative research/narrow depth, quantitative research/shallow breadth etc, that’s basically what he does.
        Horse hockey that’s what it is.

        They’re on a one-way-street to nowhere, still hoping to get somewhere.

  64. wicknight Says:

    It would be an interesting experiment to see if you could get a series of 10 or more prominent female leaders in the sceptical community to write an article each denouncing the problem of false rape claims made by women against men and urging all women in the community to face up to this problem and the role they may play in facilitating it. This is after all something that does happen in society, women do make false rape claims against men, so there is a problem there, that cannot be denied.

    In response they might refuse and point out that while false rape claims is a phenomena that does happen it is perhaps not such a significant problem in this community that it necessarily warrants such a large and specific series of denouncements (after all is it not a given that such a thing is condemned?).

    That such a high profile series in a prominent sceptical publication may give the wrong impression to men that they have a significant high risk of being falsely accused of rape or sexual assault by a female member of the sceptical community, when so far no evidence for this as a wide spread trend has been produced suggesting that is the case. That this may discourage men from attending community events based on a fear of being falsely accused of rape and that this will hurt the community as more and more men disengage without any clear statistics that they are actually not safe from these accusations.

    And that without such data supporting such a suggestion it is some what insulting to a large number of women in the sceptical community who would not only never dream of producing a false accusation of rape against a man but also do not feel they need to be educated to the fact that this is wrong based on some assumption that because they are women they would be prone to ignoring or even supporting such behaviour.

    Of course if they say all that you accuse them of misandry, lol

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      Unlikely to fly, as they are a religious cult, and that flies against their received dogma.
      Realistically, I’d like to see a slew of condemnations (by feminists) of the massive, and very real & violent, incidence of male rapes that are occurring every minute in prisons and the military.

      Also unlikely, as these feminists are blind to male rapes.

    • brainfromarous Says:

      You will likely never see this, for the same reason the now-infamous ”1 in 4” rape statistic, which has never been confirmed by any serious criminologist who has ever investigated it, still gets quoted and counter-quoted in Skeptic blogs, magazine pieces, etc.

      I suspect the folks loosing these arrows care less about the facts and frequency of sexual assault than they do about the political uses to which the issue can be put.

      1 in 4? 1 in 20? 1 in 50? Fewer? I admit I don’t know.

      But here’s the kicker: Neither do those throwing terms like ”rape culture” around. They just want it, need it, to be as frequent as possible in order to have maximum Agit-Prop utility.

  65. Anonymous Says:

    Compare comments on TF00t’s videos, where around 10% of responses are vehemently negative and a significant proportion are very shades-of-grey, to the unwavering support found in the comments section of the so-called ‘FreeThoughtBlogs’ and Pharyngula. I’ve invented a new game – ‘Spot the Censorship!’

    • Volzi Says:

      I have NEVER been Censored on FtB this is the type of negative ‘spin’ that is making this whole argument worse.

      Well and Thunder’s, Escalation, all around tantrums isn’t helping either.

      • Dangermouse Says:

        What are you talking about you stupid fuckstick? Anonymous didn’t say “I’ve invented a new game ‘Spot the Censorship of Volzi” did he?
        FTB censors heavily, this is a well known fact, if you go around to blogs lying about it, (or pretending that your comment that it’s never affected you is relevant somehow) you’re not making FTB look any better, you’re just making it look like it’s populated with lying zealots.

        • Volzi Says:

          “What are you talking about you stupid fuckstick?’

          Really? does my comment warrant such a harsh response? NO…

          I was simply pointing out that I have never experienced ANY censorship on FTB, I have never SEEN any censorship and to claim there is inherently dis honest especially without evidence.

          You claim this is a well known fact, well show the evidence, preferably some other source besides TF. because at this point we can definitely show bias.

          Pony up foul mouth!

        • Volzi Says:

          yeah that’s what I thought…

  66. Van Says:

    Oh shit! Thunderf00t is a troll! You got me, man, this whole time I thought you were having real stupid tantrums over shit you made up, arguments that were not made and strawomen you imagined! Damn, that was a good one. You totally pass the Turing test! You sounded like a genuine whining asshat, no cognitive dissonance. Thanks for clearing that up!

  67. Lee Says:

    More trolls, more rage, more TRAFFIC. Blogs want what? Traffic. Feed the trolls, reap the rewards.

  68. F. Bacon Says:

    So, is there such a thing as freewill, or are people just that way? It is of little worth for Watson to gripe that someone isn’t doing it her way. To impose that radical feminist agenda is against the very foundation of freethought.

    • Michael Kingsford Gray Says:

      Oh dear.
      You make the basic error of assuming that what Watson says, is what she intends.
      Watson has zero interest in furthering the feminist agendum, nor any other worthwhile political cause.
      She is only interested in manufacturing an endless stream of dramas that will keep her parasitic income ensured.
      She has no interest in Freethought, save when it co-incides with her petty fame or short-term income.

  69. franz Says:

    I think we should all remember whats important. Skepchicks believe in homeopathic medicine. That alone should disqualify anything they say from being called reasonable. That they put stock in a medicinal just because its natural; means we should ruthlessly vet every blasted thing they say. Why? Because on the skepchick blog they just get ‘so smart” when they say dandelion fluff can stop a headache. They dont back it with a reasoned argument or with scientific evidence.

    FTB & the skepchick blog are not places of reason, for that they deserve to be forced into confronting that. Good on you Thunderfoot.

  70. Jordan G Says:

    The truth is, I’m pretty late into the game for all of this. In fact, I only read about Watson’s experience yesterday in an article on Slate. I can’t really comment on the whole Atheist-Plus/PZ Myers/SkepChick community rift, because I’m not really a part of that community. I don’t attend conferences. I rarely go to the forums. For the most part, I stopped my online atheist activities after VenomFangX took his year-long (forced) sabbatical. I don’t really have a dog in this fight.

    And yet I still can’t help but be disappointed in your behavior Thunderf00t and the community’s response to Watson and others. Tf00t, I came to your videos at a point in my life when I started thinking about things differently. I realized, among other things, I didn’t have a good reason to feel homosexuals shouldn’t marry; that woman were unclean during certain times of the month (a teaching of orthodox Judaism); that people were predestined to being poor; that an almighty dictator chooses winners and losers in life. Throwing off religion was a liberating experience, and I understood, for the first time in my life how religion–my own beliefs in particular–were used as a means to tell undermine groups of people–women in particular.

    So, your argument above is flimsy. Whether Watson, Skepchick, or any other person for that matter frames this discussion in broad language and loaded questions is incredibly irrelevant. Watson and others have real examples of incredibly vitriolic and horrible things said to them; not from trolls, but from people who go to conferences with them; not from creationists, but from…you. Is she taking these comments too seriously? Maybe, but why does that matter? Does her overreaction really warrant people release her docs? sending her messages about what they would do to her? In your videos, as I recall, you’ve talked about the nasty things sent to your inbox. I’ve seen the awful stuff said in your comments. The community’s response (at least, for my own part on YouTube) was to rally in support of you, to show that these threats won’t stop your videos. But when Watson exposes literally the same types of terrible things sent to her, your response is….this blog post? That she’s making a big deal out of nothing? Weren’t you also making a big deal out of nothing then?

    I don’t think you were. But hey, that’s the internet, right? People say mean things all the time, don’t they? I guess. But why then go after VFX for his comments on DPRJones? You guys literally laid down the law on him. And, in Watson’s case, at least some of the unwanted comments sent Watson’s way probably do break some state laws on cyber-bullying (in case you think your experience is different because VFX allegedly did something illegal). I’m wondering at the end of the day your cause is more righteous, more serious, more truthful than hers. Do you see where I’m going with this? Please: why is it when mistreatment toward Watson is exposed do you compare her to creationists? Why don’t you consider your reactions to VFX, to YouTube’s censoring your videos, to SkepChick (as in this blog post) a butthurt overreaction? I’m seriously interested in why you feel your reactions are somehow different than hers.

    Finally, I don’t really love using the actions of creationists as exemplars of everything I don’t like (other atheists apparently love this), but you did it so what the heck. The response, “hey if you’re really against sexism why just focus on women, why not speak out for all genders” is an argument similar to “creationism is just a theory like evolution, so why not teach both?” Creationism isn’t on par with evolution the same way that sexism toward women is not the same as what is experienced toward men. And your response to this point, “Shouldn’t we be against all hate, irrespective of gender?” is truly reminiscent of your own argument against SkepChick. Most everyone will, of course, agree with the sorta broad language you’ve presented, that all genders should be treated equally. But that entirely misses a very real point: sexism directed toward woman is often worse (you know this, as explained below), and the Atheist community, which should be first and foremost leading the charge to expose it has decided to do what everyone else does: blame the victim.

    And the real problem with all of this is that you actually know, for a very real fact, that sexism toward woman is much worse. You know this because you’ve spoken out against religion for a significant portion of your life, so you know how religion has been used as a way to control people, women very much included. So, I think, what bothers me most is that this blog article is something you actually very much disagree with. The problem is you’re wrong, and you actually know it.

    • Mike Says:

      Jordan G wrote: “The response, “hey if you’re really against sexism why just focus on women, why not speak out for all genders” is an argument similar to “creationism is just a theory like evolution, so why not teach both?”

      The two are not the same, nor even similar. There is sexism against men and women, whereas the theory of creationism is provably false. Not just a little bit, or open to interpretation, but flat-out provably not true.

      However, there IS sexism perpetrated against men (not just women), and this is fact, not theory.

      So why wouldn’t any human being, regardless of gender, want to eliminate sexism, not just against women but against men too?

      Why not? Why is the idea of eliminating sexism regardless of gender a reasonable idea?

      I’m not in favor of women’s rights or men’s rights…I’m in favor of human rights.

      • Jordan G Says:

        Whoa, I totally forgot I posted this until I logged into wordpress a few days ago. I’ll respond – because I think you raise some points that should be met head on – even though this argument is probably already dead.

        Mike, I understand your argument, but it misses the point. It’s true that creationism is demonstrably and scientifically false, but that observation is irrelevant to my point above. The comparison I’m making to “Teach the Controversy” concerns the way creationist attempt to present their theories as having equal merit as evolutionary science. Creationists like teaching the controversy because they believe that evolution can only be taught at the exclusion of creationism. By leveling the playing field, they make every argument appear to have equal footing.

        Concerning Teach the Controversy, does it really matter if creationism is false whereas some arguments (like that men have experience sexism in this world) have some factual basis behind them? No: that’s ridiculous. Some creationist theories actually do have a shred of scientific truth to them, but that doesn’t mean we should teach them. A very small number of smart climatologist do not believe global climate change to be caused by humans (and they have arguments based in fact), but are you suggesting that because their arguments aren’t “flat-out provably not true” that presenting them with same urgency as climate change evidence is warranted? God (if he exists), I hope not.

        Listen, “I’m not in favor of women’s rights or men’s rights…I’m in favor of human rights.” is teaching the controversy. Perhaps it’s not your intention, but that’s what you’re doing. Your pretending that sexism against women as presented by Watson et al. can only be argued at the expense and exclusion of a push toward a universal end to sexism. I don’t know why you think this, but you do (and so does tf00t apparently). How does admitting that women (not just Watson in particular) receive worse sexual harassment than men hurt the expansion of Human rights? Explain it to me. How do Watson’s actions in any way, shape, or form show she does not favor human rights? Are you really suggesting that Women shouldn’t talk about harassment unless it also includes a conversation about harassment toward men? Teaching the controversy.

        Seriously, you talk of facts, so here they are: Women have had it way worse than man, historically, especially when it comes to religion. That’s a fact. As an atheist you should know this first hand. So, when you peanut-butter spread harassment over all of Humanity, you systematically deny the factual basis upon which we can rightly claim that Women receive more frequent and severe harassment than men. That’s teaching the controversy, dude.

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