New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

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New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Shroom Man 777 » 2017-10-30 04:59pm

With Lady T's permission, and to continue some constructive discussions in that thread that got derailed...
Simon_Jester wrote:Literal jocks, maybe not so much- but I bet you can find a fair number of feminists on social media who would make pretty good 'queen bees' of their high school social scenes. The basic point remains that bullying nerds is a popular pastime that can easily distract from dealing with a real problem. Though you do have a point that there are some categories of intensive Internet debate that basically only nerds would even participate in, such that if you see intensive Internet debate, you can reasonably suspect the role of Dark Side nerd-ery.
What's the differentiation of taxonomies and intersections, though? There'd be queen bee and white knight nerds shitting on misogynistic nerds in nerd culture.

I think the terminology is skewered because there's old-ass "nerd culture" that we can say we're in, but nerd culture's expanded... that goes multiple ways, the toxic aspect of nerd culture as a boy's club treehouse expanded and absorb fratboy douchebros as things "normalized," on the other hand females and LGBTQA+s and people of color and activist circles also cross-pollinated with nerd circles, and so we're seeing manifestations of conflict between Nerd Identity and supposed ownership of it.

The toxic macho aspect of nerds we're seeing is so much the same as jock culture anyway, so that's another conundrum to boggle our brains.

NERDS HAS CHANGEDS
Sure, but at that point you're reprising a class of argument we can see a lot when talking about minority politics. When a group that is marginalized elsewhere in society gets people attacking the nastiest sliver of the group, they are vulnerable. When a group with a lot of mainstream power gets that kind of attack, their numbers and status provide protection.

Liberal Christians in the US don't have to fear what can happen to their social status because of Richard Dawkins, let alone a bunch of Internet atheists. They just don't have that kind of social muscle. Liberal Muslims in the US DO have to worry about people singling out and aggressively going after "Muslim terrorists," because they are fewer in number, and therefore more vulnerable to being tarred with the same brush.
Nerd/game culture's become mainstream now though. New Atheists probably aren't mainstream, at least in meatspace... but it's cross-pollinating.

I get that what you're saying is akin to the dangers of say Muslims being generalized and targeted because of a handful of extremist clerics. That's what those redpill lunatic alt-right nerd/atheist personalities are, anyway, the secular equivalent of fundie clerics.
I do get what you're saying about a lot of this criticism being nerd-on-nerd; it's this exact article that's concerning me because I view "go after the nerds" as a deeply troubling angle of attack for reasons that have little to do with the content of this exact article.
OK, I get that... it's the... belligerent general angle, even if it's not the exact content itself. Hurm... there's a difference between Mein Kampf that your analogy was going, versus a secularist or liberal Jewish person critiquing hardcore Orthodox loons and conservatives and Netenyahus in modern Israel. I think we're in modern Israel now. But sure, it's like akin to how say a minority making jokes about his/her own group CAN be misread and misused by others into something ugly - like Chapelle's comedy.
Extending this to social issues, a very large social institution has a lot of resistance to being berated and having a horrible little sliver of the original group that gets targeted and bombarded. The Catholic church has a constant stream of people throwing rocks at it over pedophile priests to the point where this is basically a meme throughout the developed world... but the Catholic Church isn't going away any time soon. It's so big that any one scandal has negligible effect, and no reasonable number of scandals can fully discredit the institution.

Meanwhile, if some exotic minority religion that a lot of people already think of as a cult developed a reputation like that, it would suffer very heavily in very short order.

In the US, mainstream Christianity has this kind of protection. No number of secretly gay homophobic preachers and corrupt televangelists will discredit the whole religion across the board.

Nerd groups, as a whole, do NOT have this kind of protection, or have a lot less of it. It's a lot easier to imagine a series of Gamergates convincing everyone to stop listening to male gamers, than it is to imagine a series of pedophile scandals convincing everyone to stop listening to bishops.
The comparison to ethnic groups (Jewish people) or religious groups may not be as applicable towards "nerd" though because "nerd" is more nebulous/less-distinct and more prone to cross-pollination - we see it evolve and grow and normalize in ways that's not the same as Jews/Muslims/Christians converting people or reproducing more.

I mean, if we were talking about harshly critiquing sports culture or locker room culture, (notwithstanding whether in your analogy the sports scene counts as mice or whales) would you still be using this same analogy?

If we're talking about harshly critiquing fashion scenes, modelling scenes, the film scene, theatre scene, etc. would this apply?

If there was an incendiary screed against Hollywood protocols because of Weinstein and Kevin Spacey, etc.?

I think the taxonomy or whatever, phylogeny(?) of interests/hobbies like "nerd culture" or fashion or sports or certain arts is... not as cohesive or as concrete in the way that religious/ethnic/etc. identities are. I think they work differently. Especially with the profusion of "nerd culture." I don't think the whale analogy could even be likened to say the scorn on the emo scene or whatever bickering there is between various music scenes.
TheFeniX wrote:I find these people are actually more of a problem because the morons have greater numbers and normalize this type of behavior. "Nerd Culture" (fucking dumbass phrase) didn't become popular because nerds suddenly became cool. It became popular because it was co-opted by the masses and turned into what it is: people buying up gaming T-shirts and thick-rimmed glasses at Hot Topic.

I'm over-simplifying here, but it only takes one asshole to cause a wreck on the highway, but it takes hundreds to thousands of rubber-neckers to turn it into a gridlocked shitpile.
Perhaps in that sense this mass furor is precisely because "nerd culture" is now really starting to be owned by so many people so it's becoming this Culture War lightning rod... growing pains? Taking it a sign of growth and politicizing, akin to how everything else is politicizing due to interconnections... now that's something.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-10-30 06:48pm

Shroom Man 777 wrote:
2017-10-30 04:59pm
Perhaps in that sense this mass furor is precisely because "nerd culture" is now really starting to be owned by so many people so it's becoming this Culture War lightning rod... growing pains? Taking it a sign of growth and politicizing, akin to how everything else is politicizing due to interconnections... now that's something.
How are they owning anything? Posting memes on facebook while wearing thick-rimmed glasses with no lenses doesn't expand the culture. It cheapens it. (Yes, that's a cheap shot on my part.).

Just because I watch the Cowboys play (and lose) games and buy a jersey (on sale) every once in a while doesn't make me a football fan on the level of my tailgating friends who live and breath that shit. That would be insulting to actual fans. Or how New Trek is awesome because it's mainstream now and the movies can actually be called "Blockbusters" even though they have near nothing to do with Star Trek other than names.

Yea, I think making Star Wars without Lightsabers is stupid and cheap. That's just me: I think giving up everything that made Trek, Trek, just for ticket sales was shit.

I'm not even saying THAT PART is necessarily all that bad because even you allude to: "it happens, deal." But, as for video games nerds, there's a reason why advertisement budgets are ballooning, development budgets are dwindling, and games are offering less and less for more and more money. The "expansion" has essentially completely co-opted the players with any kind of knowledge about the system in favor of the new $60 shiney about to be released. That well is actually starting to dry up, and that's why there's another shift into...... lootbox gambling.

That's because they don't need "nerds" anymore. They haven't for quite some time.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Shroom Man 777 » 2017-10-31 12:37pm

TheFeniX wrote:
2017-10-30 06:48pm
How are they owning anything?
They *think* they own it. It's like "owning" a nation or a land. It's another facet or front of idpol - so no wonder it connects with identity issues bubbling in film, in sports, even in cuisine and fashion, etc.
That's because they don't need "nerds" anymore. They haven't for quite some time.
That is then the contention of some nerds who think they own it and are being edgelord shitpieces towards those they regard as "unworthy" or "undesirable" of being in that nerd-culture-space that they think they lord over for forever.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-10-31 01:16pm

Shroom Man 777 wrote:
2017-10-31 12:37pm
That is then the contention of some nerds who think they own it and are being edgelord shitpieces towards those they regard as "unworthy" or "undesirable" of being in that nerd-culture-space that they think they lord over for forever.
True. I should get my ducks in a row better, because this leads into a point I left out earlier. At least when it comes to video games, these neckbeards, these poopsocking loosers: they got nothing but nerd rage. They aren't paying out for Core Gaming, they aren't paying monthly MMO subs, they aren't buying expansion packs for the Sims, or Horse Armor for Oblivion.

They are pirating mostly everything, maybe paying out a few tokens here and there for indie titles and imports. They factor in a big [NULL] in video game development, publishing, and advertisement. The point is to keep them as quiet as possible, or maybe even action them for other reasons as they can be loud on the Internet while having little actual power in the industry.

But they make great scapegoats. Like when we ask "why aren't there more female characters in video games?" We point to them. Why? They aren't the ones buying BroShooter: Next BroShooting of the BroShoot 6. They aren't pre-ordering "QTE Game: The Movie." They aren't pre-ordering shit. They aren't doing about anything but yelling on the Internet. They aren't shouting sexual and racial slurs online because they aren't playing online, at least not the games that have been labelled as mostly toxic. They sit in their little boxes and rage, coming out of that box to attack targets they feel most deserving of their ire.

But it's easy to blame them for gaming becoming shit because blaming the group of people we actioned with Halo and CoD might cost publishers money. I mean, the median gaming age keeps going up, more and more men and women are playing video games, and things definitely don't seem like they are getting any better. Why? Because neckbeards yell into the void and people are dumb enough to listen to them? That's not an answer: you follow the money.

I don't even buy too much into Simon's argument that wanting to "beat up (white male) nerds" is a big danger to them in particular. My annoyance is that focusing on them does nothing but distill a complex social issue that affects near every. fucking. aspect. of society into "It's Simple, we kill the neckbeard."

If I had to tl;dr this shit: these are not the people Ubisoft wanted to avoid offending when they nixed a female PC for AssCreed. These are not the people MS was sanctioning with their new reporting system. No, to this day. Here's who I think of when a developer/publisher has to fight off shit-stain attitudes: Off to youtube.

That about sums up normal people on the Internet for me.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Shroom Man 777 » 2017-10-31 01:34pm

TheFeniX wrote:
2017-10-31 01:16pm
They are pirating mostly everything,
Is this a fact? Just curious...
But they make great scapegoats. Like when we ask "why aren't there more female characters in video games?" We point to them. Why? They aren't the ones buying BroShooter: Next BroShooting of the BroShoot 6. They aren't pre-ordering "QTE Game: The Movie." They aren't pre-ordering shit. They aren't doing about anything but yelling on the Internet. They aren't shouting sexual and racial slurs online because they aren't playing online, at least not the games that have been labelled as mostly toxic. They sit in their little boxes and rage, coming out of that box to attack targets they feel most deserving of their ire.

But it's easy to blame them for gaming becoming shit because blaming the group of people we actioned with Halo and CoD might cost publishers money. I mean, the median gaming age keeps going up, more and more men and women are playing video games, and things definitely don't seem like they are getting any better. Why? Because neckbeards yell into the void and people are dumb enough to listen to them? That's not an answer: you follow the money.
OK, yes the few "notable" horrible personalities AREN'T the mass demographics of CODBLOPER HALO REACH RAAAAH AWESOME BRO!!! guys, it's impossible or else it'd be so normalized that it's terrible.

You're right, the shittiness is because in the low-key biases or enablement or just "eh it's fine who cares"-ness of the general crowd.

But I don't think it's mutually exclusive, these don't exist in hermetically sealed and separated spheres or zones. Casuals with casual bigotry or casual prejudices or casual bad taste or just casual complacence for general shitness in games/comics/films/etc. DO intersect with the loonies - this happens by degrees. Kind of like, the casual racist uncle or joe isn't the same as a Milo Yourmomopolous or Richard Spencer or whatever, but they might watch a few vids and nod their heads and have their shit reinforced, or they might not even know these toxic niche personalities exist, but I think it's just a matter of degrees, of where in the chain of dominoes they are. Eh.

I do get your point, and I agree - just shitting on "these crazy hyper-nerdy lunatic personas" isn't radical enough of an approach IMO, and yeah I'd agree with an approach that encompasses the general population's casualized malfunctions would be far more comprehensive and far more radical.

But I guess it's a problem of bandwidth. How can an article encompass all of that without becoming some thesis or textbook? How can a person connect all of that and articulate all of that? Unless we get a design bureau or something and work in an organized manner to delineate the taxonomies... but yeah, the problem is so multifaceted so articulating their intersections and conjunctions is just gonna be so damn hard. Especially since we don't have that much time or resources, and it already takes so much time and resource and effort just to be familiar with ONE facet of the shitshow (kind of like how, for example, a specialist in fish populations will spend so much time on fishies and can't have room to get familiar with the other aspects - climatological, toxicological, etc. - affecting his/her field and other fields as well... the paradox of multi-disciplinary analysis...).

(I guess the nerd culture idpol analysis has to be combined with progressive/lefty economic dissections of the economics of nerd niches - games, comics, etc. - and how that combines, synthesizes, into the huge feedback loop of shitness from the neverending CODBLOP HALOIDS or shitty DC MAAARTTTHHHAAA caped comics and the need for more indie games and indie comics and films that aren't Transforminators or whatever.)
I don't even buy too much into Simon's argument that wanting to "beat up (white male) nerds" is a big danger to them in particular. My annoyance is that focusing on them does nothing but distill a complex social issue that affects near every. fucking. aspect. of society into "It's Simple, we kill the neckbeard."
Agreed. I don't think these are mutually exclusive. But yeah, sure, examining a tree shouldn't take away from examining the whole damn forest. Or whatever that idiom is.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-10-31 02:21pm

I can only go off what I read and I can't account for straight lieing, but in the "trash" sites I troll, the amount of demand (and it being supplied) of pirated material is staggering. And, whereas it's not hard, pirating pre-release titles take a bit more "neckbeard" than "normal person" know-how.

Denuvo, and it's cracking, is a huge source of posting and shit-posting on these sites. They want this stuff, either because they really DO want to play it or they just want to shit-talk it afterward. But a fairly large portion of them seem totally unwilling to purchase it. Like I said, it's word of mouth (from the horse(s)), but tracking illegal downloads isn't all that easy.

As for the rest, I hate to distill it down, but I'm picking out one big question: "How can an article encompass all of that without becoming some thesis or textbook?" because this IS such a "wide" issue. Here's my answer: take a swing at (what I view) is the largest problem "White males in the Core Gaming area and the publishers that continually enable them."
Spoiler
Shit, going further, take a swing at ALL the normal men and women dropping $4 here and there on RNG and Pay-to-play bullshit. Make them feel like idiots for doing so because they are part of the problem. Why create "well written <anything>, much less a woman" when you can just shit out another cash-grab bullshit EA game to bolster their war-chest? If you keep buying "Sims Packs" for ridiculous prices, even if only a couple bucks, they are going to keep making them.

And there's already multiple men and women doing this. But they don't get tickets to E3 or pre-release copies of the latest heap of code. They get ostracized while all the mainstream journos continue to beat up on easy targets to make them feel good about themselves while accomplishing nothing. In fact, they are actively hurting the medium.

If movies were like video games, we wouldn't get Avenger 2. We'd get Avengers now with New costumes. ADD THE X-MEN TO YOUR MOVIE-GOING EXPERIENCE? In 2016, we'd then just get the ability to buy a box that MIGHT contain a new costume.... or just the original ones because "gambling is a fun thing to teach kids."
I'm spoilering this, because I know you're more interested in the Toxic culture, not just video games. On that note, I have to say that I don't believe a lot of people got into video games to change it. They found a system where they could act how they wanted and have fun. So they embraced it. The amount of racism and sexism, at least in Core Gaming, has not died down? Why is that? In 20 years, gaming has grown damn near exponentially. There's billions of dollars involved in what used to be millions.

Men and women, generally, went two different directions. Men because they prefer one content. Women, the same, except they feel excluded from another. What makes them feel excluded?

Do we have more strong women in games? Hey, we got Samus.....um... LARA CROFT.... shit. Well, her boobs are smaller now. I mean, that's progress right? Because self-sufficient badass women with huge knockers are awful but tank-top Lara getting her ass kicked for 40 hours is empowering....

It's a fucking smoke-screen, like how we're over racism in Hollywood these days and yet the only leading black man is still WIll Smith, who isn't that leading these day. Hmmm.... no boogy-men to blame there. Oh shit, we have to actually admit the money-men in Hollywood itself and the people who dump the lion's share of money into it are the problem? Fuck.

Oh wait, video games are shit? Neckbeards.

NOTE: I'm not being dismissive to you. I'm just doing my best (not good enough) to make my point. Video games are for the masses now, but whenever the shit hits the fan, the people dumping the most money into like to think they aren't part of the problem. They are. In fact, the bigger one IMO. They need to know that.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Shroom Man 777 » 2017-10-31 02:49pm

TheFeniX wrote:
2017-10-31 02:21pm
I can only go off what I read and I can't account for straight lieing, but in the "trash" sites I troll, the amount of demand (and it being supplied) of pirated material is staggering. And, whereas it's not hard, pirating pre-release titles take a bit more "neckbeard" than "normal person" know-how.

Denuvo, and it's cracking, is a huge source of posting and shit-posting on these sites. They want this stuff, either because they really DO want to play it or they just want to shit-talk it afterward. But a fairly large portion of them seem totally unwilling to purchase it. Like I said, it's word of mouth (from the horse(s)), but tracking illegal downloads isn't all that easy.
Hurm, yes piracy is pretty prevalent, I don't know about games but torrenting is normalized now for film and serieses - hell, people even stream stuff while at the workplace, at least during my last place of employment :lol:
It's a fucking smoke-screen, like how we're over racism in Hollywood these days and yet the only leading black man is still WIll Smith, who isn't that leading these day. Hmmm.... no boogy-men to blame there. Oh shit, we have to actually admit the money-men in Hollywood itself and the people who dump the lion's share of money into it are the problem? Fuck.

Oh wait, video games are shit? Neckbeards.

NOTE: I'm not being dismissive to you. I'm just doing my best (not good enough) to make my point. Video games are for the masses now, but whenever the shit hits the fan, the people dumping the most money into like to think they aren't part of the problem. They are. In fact, the bigger one IMO. They need to know that.
I think that the discussion is kind of dependent on how loud or visible certain aspects of it are, things like producer issues or moneymen are kind of invisible, whereas the mass normalized bullshit of the mass casual market demographic you mentioned are invisible by virtue of just... sheer saturation. So that's why media and articles and discussion, with the foolish human tendency of focusing on the sensational or the most visible, tend to focus on the outrageous neckbeard outliers.

But I don't think the bigger problem is as intractable as you make it out to be, I think people ARE getting wiser and the sheer economics of things - other demographics getting purchasing power - IS leading to a shift. That's why this discussion actually exists, that's why people are getting loud and irate, and I think it will morph and gain more direction - be more aware of the issues you've mentioned - and lead to more changes down the line.

It's working to a degree with the comics scene, with Image comics gaining ground on Marvel and DC, or at least with Image existing and being financially viable and having more people from more scenes publish new tales. I believe this can apply elsewhere.

And hey, Will Smith ain't in Black Panter. :wink:
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-10-31 03:45pm

Shroom Man 777 wrote:
2017-10-31 02:49pm
I think that the discussion is kind of dependent on how loud or visible certain aspects of it are, things like producer issues or moneymen are kind of invisible, whereas the mass normalized bullshit of the mass casual market demographic you mentioned are invisible by virtue of just... sheer saturation. So that's why media and articles and discussion, with the foolish human tendency of focusing on the sensational or the most visible, tend to focus on the outrageous neckbeard outliers.
If I can't expect so-called journalists to dig through the trash and give me the real story: what good are they?
But I don't think the bigger problem is as intractable as you make it out to be, I think people ARE getting wiser and the sheer economics of things - other demographics getting purchasing power - IS leading to a shift. That's why this discussion actually exists, that's why people are getting loud and irate, and I think it will morph and gain more direction - be more aware of the issues you've mentioned - and lead to more changes down the line.
But every. single. step. into the new economics of video games has been a net negative for the consumer. I can't think of a single genre it isn't affecting.

These steps are painful, even in recent times as there are STILL areas of gaming for them to break into. And it's.... ugh. Normal people getting into nerd shit are just... fucking terrible. When Skyrim mods came to Xbox... oh god. Just... Google ANY of it. If ever there was a "neckbeard" scene in video-games, it would have to be the mod scene. Only thing possibly "worse" would be speedrunning, especially the TAS stuff. But man, give a console user a whiff of mods for his TV and it's gimmie gimmie gimmie. And the harassment (and theft) from Beth.net modders. The response of Bethesda: :crickets:

This has/had (Creation Club coming bitches!) potential to destroy the entire Elder Scrolls modding scene. It was so bad, even the creator of The Nexus (possibly the largest modding site out there) said something to the effect of "Even the forum that hosts the most perverted mods for Skyrim has much more polite and respectful users than the people demanding mods on Beth.net." That's just.... fucking sad.

I would personally apologize for every shitty thing I ever said about Counter-Strike players over the years if the current crop of people dominating this hobby were to just fuck off.

EDIT: I got off ranting. But my point was "I see toxicity coming from a totally different area. And 'neckbeards,' while on the list, aren't as high as you might think they would be."
It's working to a degree with the comics scene, with Image comics gaining ground on Marvel and DC, or at least with Image existing and being financially viable and having more people from more scenes publish new tales. I believe this can apply elsewhere.
Sadly, I find the nature of movies and comics and many other entertainment mediums protect them from what video games have and will continue to deal with. You can't exactly sell a comic with all the frames of Power Girl blanked out and then sell a pack containing her at a later date. But man WB loves this with their fighting games.

Video games continue to evolve as a medium even today and that evolution is awful no matter how you look at it. Because it's all about the money. It's not special there, but there are just so many ways to shake-down video game players when compared to most other entertainment mediums and publishers are experimenting with them all.
And hey, Will Smith ain't in Black Panter. :wink:
While funny, and I get your point: it's still Black Panther. Will Smith has so many movie roles that fit an "everyman" category.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Shroom Man 777 » 2017-10-31 04:15pm

Okay, the games industry's bullshit is quite confusing and a lot of that's outside of my ken. :D :P
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by TheFeniX » 2017-10-31 04:49pm

Yea, sorry. I can't offer you much of anything in the Atheist, or really "non-entertainment nerd shit," culture area. I keep myself fairly well insulated from social media that isn't video game related because I got my own shit going on. But I can offer some general bullshit that's smacking around in my head: I have the feeling that the far-right found a lot of support because "normal people" who rode the Facebook wave onto the Internet and found something that "clicked" with them. They may never have bothered to look for anything in their real lives, but following a couple links off some pseudo-science racist/sexist bullshit that fit with their world-view might have started them down the rabbit-hole.

8 years of a black man "telling them what to do" possibly didn't help. That and the similar rise of other opposing voices: minorities and women can also use the Internet to find like-minded people and made their opinions heard. If your social group contains like-minded people (such as a small to large group of white friends), culture shock can kick in as you take issue with people wholly unlike you being on equal footing and responding to you in kind.

Then you have to wonder, if these people just took over the whole thing. After-all, they are louder and more numerous.

I've just been on the Internet a long time. So, when I hear people talking about general Internet bullshit and how they see it, all I can really say is "You're on the outside, looking in. I fucking live here. Have for years." And this toxicity they talk about? Really started coming about around the early 2000s. I'm sure 9/11 didn't help when everyone had an opinion to share. This is also around the time myspace and XBlive made their appearances.

And it's just become worse and worse. The culture is bad enough, but then new people join. They either accept the culture and usually become a part of it, or they bail on it. So, the culture just kind of reinforces itself.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by SolarpunkFan » 2017-11-17 06:01pm

If I may point out an irony. A a fair bit of the New Atheist criticism towards religion(s) used examples of extreme oppression of certain groups.

And now you have quite a few big-name New Atheist types (especially on YouTube) who... think women are mindless semen receptacles and that "Jews are destroying western civilization".

Huh!? :wtf:

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-11-17 07:19pm

The first question you have to ask yourself is, is it the same New Atheists?

If so, we may have a hell of an anomaly to explain, which is not to say we can't explain it.

If not, though... well, not much to explain. There's no reason you can't have one group of atheists saying "oppression of minorities by religion is bad, also there is no God" while another says "oppression of minorities if awesome and religions should let us in on their racket, also there is no God."
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-20 09:10am

SolarpunkFan wrote:
2017-11-17 06:01pm
If I may point out an irony. A a fair bit of the New Atheist criticism towards religion(s) used examples of extreme oppression of certain groups.
Wasn't the criticism always, "Religions are bad because they require people to lie about things that they 'know,' and some religions are bad because they promote views of morality which are repugnant to humanity?"
And now you have quite a few big-name New Atheist types (especially on YouTube) who... think women are mindless semen receptacles and that "Jews are destroying western civilization".

Huh!? :wtf:
Like whom?


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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-20 11:41pm

SolarpunkFan wrote:
2017-11-20 09:29pm
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:
2017-11-20 09:10am
Like whom?
Thunderf00t and TheAmazingAtheist are two off the top of my head.
Thunderf00t and TheAmazingAtheist have stated that "Jews are destroying western civilization?" Can you provide those videos, please? Those must be pretty wild.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by K. A. Pital » 2017-11-21 07:42am

PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:
2017-11-20 11:41pm
SolarpunkFan wrote:
2017-11-20 09:29pm
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:
2017-11-20 09:10am
Like whom?
Thunderf00t and TheAmazingAtheist are two off the top of my head.
Thunderf00t and TheAmazingAtheist have stated that "Jews are destroying western civilization?" Can you provide those videos, please? Those must be pretty wild.
I don’t know if the latter said what about Jews, but he certainly did about black people.
“TJ Kirk” wrote:If I hate anything about black culture, it’s that it’s such a victim culture. Almost a victim cult—“Our Lady of Perpetual Victimization.” Every unfairness that exists in your life is the fault of white people or society stacked against you. You might as well tattoo, “It’s because I’m black, isn’t it?” to your fucking forehead.
“Almost a victim cult”? Yeah right. Lol.

I think he also “joked” rape victims should be raped again, but not sure if that was him or some other asshole from the smelly putrid hole known as the Men’s Rifle Association.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-21 11:38am

K. A. Pital wrote:
2017-11-21 07:42am
I don’t know if the latter said what about Jews, but he certainly did about black people.
“TJ Kirk” wrote:If I hate anything about black culture, it’s that it’s such a victim culture. Almost a victim cult—“Our Lady of Perpetual Victimization.” Every unfairness that exists in your life is the fault of white people or society stacked against you. You might as well tattoo, “It’s because I’m black, isn’t it?” to your fucking forehead.
“Almost a victim cult”? Yeah right. Lol.
Ummm... you can disagree with his assessment, but criticism of a culture is not the same as criticism of a race. It's certainly not a statement that they're destroying western civilization.

And I hope you recognize the irony: claiming that there is some "New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture" which you criticize shouldn't be equated with race-based discrimination, either.
I think he also “joked” rape victims should be raped again, but not sure if that was him or some other asshole from the smelly putrid hole known as the Men’s Rifle Association.
I don't exactly make a habit of watching... any of his videos (in fact, the exact opposite - the less time I spend seeing his stuff the better). He's a part of a Men's Rifle Association? wtf?

But... a joke is kind of a joke. If it's not a statement of his actual position then it's hard to take that as an actual moral failing.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by K. A. Pital » 2017-11-21 12:20pm

A joke is not always a joke, as we've learned thanks to neo-nazis trying to push their discourse into mainstream politics through jokes.
Ummm... you can disagree with his assessment, but criticism of a culture is not the same as criticism of a race. It's certainly not a statement that they're destroying western civilization.
Such broad statements painting the entirety of another culture as a "victim cult" are, in fact, arguably touching race itself. If the culture is a cult, then by being a part of that culture, you are part of the cult (the implied "solution" to this "problem" is what, for black people to renounce their culture and become a part of white culture - :lol: ?)
And I hope you recognize the irony: claiming that there is some "New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture" which you criticize shouldn't be equated with race-based discrimination, either.
"Black culture" is the culture of black people. "Nerd culture" isn't the culture of a race or nationality, or a group of nationalities. So they aren't comparable.
He's a part of a Men's Rifle Association? wtf?
MRA = men's rights advocates. I'm just using a name I find appropriate for the sorry bunch.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-21 02:01pm

K. A. Pital wrote:
2017-11-21 12:20pm
Such broad statements painting the entirety of another culture as a "victim cult" are, in fact, arguably touching race itself. If the culture is a cult, then by being a part of that culture, you are part of the cult
The culture doesn't reduce to the race, though, nor the race to the culture.
(the implied "solution" to this "problem" is what, for black people to renounce their culture and become a part of white culture - :lol: ?)
Yes. The solution to a problem with a particular culture is to not take part in that particular aspect of that culture.

This is exactly the same as the example that I provided you. If there's a problem with the "New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture", then the solution to that is to not take part in that aspect of the culture.
"Black culture" is the culture of black people.
Only if you're a fucking racist who views culture and race as inseparable and then takes the additional step of assigning the failures of a culture to each person associated with that culture - irrespective of whether they personally exemplify the particular failure or not.
"Nerd culture" isn't the culture of a race or nationality, or a group of nationalities. So they aren't comparable.
So if there were a society of nerds, somewhere, then you would agree that this was a racist sentiment? You can't be serious. We're clearly talking about different things: you can be black but not be a part of black culture. You can specifically be black without specifically subscribing to any "victimhood cult."

I guess let's try and refocus, though: do you agree that there are black people who fall into something of a "victimhood cult" or not? Because if you do, then you can reduce the criticism that you're saying AmazingAtheist offered into a criticism of the victimhood cult without loss of his perspective. Right? Edit: I suppose that even if you disagree that such people exist, you can still imagine an AmazingAtheist who believes that they exist and simply disagree with this premise of his criticism.

And if read that way, then it's self-evident that his criticism is not racist because it's a specific criticism of the "victimhood cult" and not of black people.

Or am I missing something because I watch none of his videos and know of none of his ideas? [Edit: at least, I haven't in many years - basically since I first learned of his existence].
He's a part of a Men's Rifle Association? wtf?
MRA = men's rights advocates. I'm just using a name I find appropriate for the sorry bunch.
Is this the same group that is the subject of the Red Pill movie, or is this a distinguishable group? Because the Men's Rights Advocates in that film don't seem a "sorry bunch" - they seem to include a substantial number of women in their number and a large fraction of them are well-to-do men and women.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by K. A. Pital » 2017-11-21 03:28pm

PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:The culture doesn't reduce to the race, though, nor the race to the culture.
Nor has the contrary been claimed. However, attacks on national culture of others have been used by racists, nationalists and nazis as foundation for their arguments of either their own superiority or the inferiority of others.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:Yes. The solution to a problem with a particular culture is to not take part in that particular aspect of that culture.
I thought the solution would be the advancement of culture, but sure, go on.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:If there's a problem with the "New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture", then the solution to that is to not take part in that aspect of the culture.
I thought the solution would be to make said culture less toxic and more welcoming. Otherwise the problem is not solved.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:Only if you're a fucking racist who views culture and race as inseparable and then takes the additional step of assigning the failures of a culture to each person associated with that culture - irrespective of whether they personally exemplify the particular failure or not.
No, it does not require being a fucking racist, just taking words at face value. If someone uses the term "black culture" in a derogatory fashion, what does he intend to achieve?
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:We're clearly talking about different things: you can be black but not be a part of black culture. You can specifically be black without specifically subscribing to any "victimhood cult." I guess let's try and refocus, though: do you agree that there are black people who fall into something of a "victimhood cult" or not?
I don't think that there is a victimhood cult at all. That's the starting point.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:Or am I missing something because I watch none of his videos and know of none of his ideas?
I'm not so convinced that you don't watch and don't know.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:Is this the same group that is the subject of the Red Pill movie, or is this a distinguishable group? Because the Men's Rights Advocates in that film don't seem a "sorry bunch" - they seem to include a substantial number of women in their number and a large fraction of them are well-to-do men and women.
If you understand my ridicule as being directed towards them being a part of the lower class or poor, it is a mistake, plain and simple. Yes, humans whose views I find repulsive are a 'sorry bunch' to me, but it is not a matter of their wealth.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-21 05:51pm

K. A. Pital wrote:
2017-11-21 03:28pm
Nor has the contrary been claimed. However, attacks on national culture of others have been used by racists, nationalists and nazis as foundation for their arguments of either their own superiority or the inferiority of others.
That doesn't mean that someone who criticizes a culture is a racist, nationalist, or Nazi, though. That's the whole point. That's what you claimed when you said that these statements he made supported the view that he thought Jews were destroying western culture.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:I thought the solution would be the advancement of culture, but sure, go on.
"Advancement of culture"? Are you some sort of Marxist, or how are you viewing this? Advancement has two meanings, here, one of which is acceptable and one of which is decidedly bad in this context: it either means the further development of a culture (perhaps out of this) or it means the promotion and expansion of that culture more broadly - which is decidedly bad in this context but is the one in which it is typically used in the United States.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:If there's a problem with the "New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture", then the solution to that is to not take part in that aspect of the culture.
I thought the solution would be to make said culture less toxic and more welcoming. Otherwise the problem is not solved.[/quote]

So your solution is exactly the one that AmazingAtheist is claimed to have tried to implement: criticism of the aspect of the culture that he's trying to get rid of has to be the first step to getting rid of it, in your view.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:No, it does not require being a fucking racist, just taking words at face value. If someone uses the term "black culture" in a derogatory fashion, what does he intend to achieve?
He obviously intends to "advance" the culture to the point where it no longer has the specific feature that he's criticizing.

Again, this is not racism. He is not criticizing black people. He is complaining about a specific behavior within a broader social group which he labels "black culture."

Do you not understand the difference? Moreover, how can you be "taking words at face value" if you then immediately leap to assumptions about the speaker's intent by (apparently rhetorically) asking "what does he intend to achieve?" Do you not understand how your actions here could be easily construed as poisoning the well and attempting to shut down a discussion with a willing partner under the guise of labeling such a person as a "racist" "Nazi"? Is this really the best way to understand other peoples' perspectives?
I don't think that there is a victimhood cult at all. That's the starting point.
Okay, well, he obviously disagrees. I don't know why that makes him a Nazi.
I'm not so convinced that you don't watch and don't know.
What? Am I supposed to show you my YouTube history, or something to provide evidence of a negative that I don't watch that guy's videos or have any contact with his media of any kind?
If you understand my ridicule as being directed towards them being a part of the lower class or poor, it is a mistake, plain and simple. Yes, humans whose views I find repulsive are a 'sorry bunch' to me, but it is not a matter of their wealth.
Oh, okay, so this is just more derisive labeling of people you don't like in order to avoid having to address what they're actually saying. Obviously if you clairvoyantly decide that they intend to harm others then you don't have to show that anything that they're doing actually promotes that harm.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by K. A. Pital » 2017-11-22 03:31am

PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:
2017-11-21 05:51pm
That doesn't mean that someone who criticizes a culture is a racist, nationalist, or Nazi, though. That's the whole point. That's what you claimed when you said that these statements he made supported the view that he thought Jews were destroying western culture.
I noted that while I do not know if the latter has said anything about the Jews, he was mentioning a national culture in a derogatory context, desribing it as a victim cult. Though I will grant that the overall repugnancy of people like TJ Kirk, who attack rape victims and make jokes about how they’d rape women, might have influenced my judgement. I acknowlege that I am operating with bias against the person in question. I’m human, after all.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:"Advancement of culture"? Are you some sort of Marxist, or how are you viewing this? Advancement has two meanings, here, one of which is acceptable and one of which is decidedly bad in this context: it either means the further development of a culture (perhaps out of this) or it means the promotion and expansion of that culture more broadly - which is decidedly bad in this context but is the one in which it is typically used in the United States.
Advancement is the development and improvement of a given culture. Yes, I am a Marxist. Promotion and expansion of a culture do not necessarily contradict its simultaneous advancement, either.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:So your solution is exactly the one that AmazingAtheist is claimed to have tried to implement: criticism of the aspect of the culture that he's trying to get rid of has to be the first step to getting rid of it, in your view.
Usually national cultures are being developed from within, not from the outside, though outside influence plays a role. In this case, we have a rather questionable white individual offering his view on “black culture” suffering from being a “victim cult”. Pardon me if I don’t find this a honest attempt to improve black culture, but simply an attack on black culture similar to the ones used by racists and nationalists.
PriestAtopthePyramid wrote:He obviously intends to "advance" the culture to the point where it no longer has the specific feature that he's criticizing. Again, this is not racism. He is not criticizing black people. He is complaining about a specific behavior within a broader social group which he labels "black culture." Do you not understand the difference? Moreover, how can you be "taking words at face value" if you then immediately leap to assumptions about the speaker's intent by (apparently rhetorically) asking "what does he intend to achieve?" Do you not understand how your actions here could be easily construed as poisoning the well and attempting to shut down a discussion with a willing partner under the guise of labeling such a person as a "racist" "Nazi"? Is this really the best way to understand other peoples' perspectives?
The speaker does not belong to black culture. If his intent was to advance or help, starting with a blanket insult against “black culture” by calling it a victim cult is hardly furthering it. However, it is very likely to score points with the white alt-right audience that circulates around the men’s rights advocates, to which said person belongs. Once again, I acknowledge my bias, but to me it seems as if the person was scoring points with audience and insulting black people, rather than trying to improve anything. Even as a person hostile to religion, if I need to show my point to a religious person, I would go great lengths to not insult the entire group by calling them, say, a cult of irrationality. I may offer this opinion among like-minded atheists to show my frustration with religion, but I don’t think insults lead to the improvement of the situation. Just showing the difference.
Okay, well, he obviously disagrees. I don't know why that makes him a Nazi.
I do not think he is a Nazi. As to whether he is a racist, or caters to a racist or nationalist audience by using far-reaching insults against national cultures, the question remains open. Many racists in history claimed that the disliked nationality was culturally inferior, so they concentrated on culture quite a lot.
What? Am I supposed to show you my YouTube history, or something to provide evidence of a negative that I don't watch that guy's videos or have any contact with his media of any kind?
No, but you’ve just appeared to defend him and other MRA members in this thread. A bit suspicious, heh.
Oh, okay, so this is just more derisive labeling of people you don't like in order to avoid having to address what they're actually saying. Obviously if you clairvoyantly decide that they intend to harm others then you don't have to show that anything that they're doing actually promotes that harm.
I can address what they are saying, although I feel that it would be a waste of my time. To make things clear, I reserve the right to mock people who joke about rape, attack and insult rape victims and women, or use rape insults in a debate. I find these people reprehensible as human beings, and as I am human, I have my own sympathies and antipathies.

Moreover, I reserve the full right to be even more biased against members of the MRA group which allow themselves statements like that:
“TJ Kirk” wrote:I will make you a rape victim if you don't fuck off.
“TJ Kirk” wrote:I think we should give the guy who raped you a medal. I hope you fucking drown in rape semen, you ugly, mean-spirited cow.
After one makes such statements, he should not be surprised that his morals and his intent in other statements and actions as well would be questioned, and he himself may very well be disliked, hated or confronted with feelings of disgust.
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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by SolarpunkFan » 2017-11-22 08:54am

I was mostly thinking of the degrading of women when I replied, though the "[x] culture is destroying us" thing seems prevalent in certain places as well (neoreactionaries anyone?).

Also, did a person on this thread really use the "I don't hate blacks, I hate black culture" defense here? :wtf:

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by Ziggy Stardust » 2017-11-22 10:57am

Yeah, I'm finding some of PriestAtopthePyramid's arguments to be a bit alarming, in a racial dog-whistle kind of way. It is pretty astounding to try and separate "black culture" from "black people" in any situation; even more so when the basic criticism of "black culture" is that it is a "victim culture", i.e. that the "black culture" being attacked is specifically about identifying as black in the face of a history of slavery, segregation, and oppression. It's one thing to criticize aspects of "black culture" that have nothing to do with identifying as black (e.g. relatively prevalent misogyny, homophobia, etc.), it's another thing entirely when the very facet you are criticizing is the one that has specifically to do with black identity and history. In fact, it's a classic white supremacist rhetorical technique aimed at trying to normalize their hideous views.

It's pretty similar to the homophobic arguments we used to see a lot, along the lines of "I don't hate gay people, I just don't want them to shove their gayness in my face by acting all flamboyant". It's a pretty easy argument to dispel, since there's no justification for it that doesn't somehow boil down to just hating gay people and not wanting to acknowledge their existence.

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Re: New Atheist + Toxic Nerd Culture Discussion, continued...

Post by PriestAtopthePyramid » 2017-11-22 11:07am

K. A. Pital wrote:
2017-11-22 03:31am
I noted that while I do not know if the latter has said anything about the Jews, he was mentioning a national culture in a derogatory context, desribing it as a victim cult. Though I will grant that the overall repugnancy of people like TJ Kirk, who attack rape victims and make jokes about how they’d rape women, might have influenced my judgement. I acknowlege that I am operating with bias against the person in question. I’m human, after all.
Well, fair enough. I don't like him at all, either, but I'm challenging the notion that a culture is indistinguishable from a race for the purposes of evaluating racism. Can someone not be opposed to a specific aspect of a culture without being biased against people of a race? For example, if someone is opposed to Islam's theological acquiescence to sexual slavery, is that person automatically to be treated as racist against Arabs? I'm trying to use an easy contemporary example, but if this is too sensitive to you then do you think that someone who takes moral issue with the Moche use of religious torture should automatically be considered racist against Moche?
Advancement is the development and improvement of a given culture. Yes, I am a Marxist. Promotion and expansion of a culture do not necessarily contradict its simultaneous advancement, either.
I never claimed otherwise. I claimed that in this context, one of the meanings is perfectly reasonable but uncommonly used, and the other is not reasonable but commonly used.
Usually national cultures are being developed from within, not from the outside, though outside influence plays a role.
So? You point out, later, that Amazing Atheist isn't part of this culture. Does that mean he just has to be silent about a problem he thinks that it has?
In this case, we have a rather questionable white individual offering his view on “black culture” suffering from being a “victim cult”. Pardon me if I don’t find this a honest attempt to improve black culture, but simply an attack on black culture similar to the ones used by racists and nationalists.
I'll grant you, again, that this guy seems entirely distasteful. I don't understand how that means that he has to be silent about if it that means that he has problems with it. If some entirely detestable person thought that there was a problem with the criminal justice system, for example, would he just have to shut up about it on the basis that he's neither a prosecutor nor a criminal?
The speaker does not belong to black culture.
So?
If his intent was to advance or help, starting with a blanket insult against “black culture” by calling it a victim cult is hardly furthering it.
So how should he have done this? I'm genuinely interested in seeing what you think are acceptable methods of extra-cultural criticism and critique.
However, it is very likely to score points with the white alt-right audience that circulates around the men’s rights advocates, to which said person belongs.
Okay, two problems here:
1. I don't think that you're using "Men's Rights Advocates" correctly. You seem to be using it to label misogynists, even though the two seem distinguishable to me. I asked you to clarify this, earlier, and it might have been missed, but I think this is a terminological issue.
2. How does this make him a Nazi? Again, you specifically stated that this criticism of black culture makes him a Nazi. You can score points with Nazis in all sorts of ways: for example, by arguing that the government should control the means of production. That doesn't make you a Nazi.
Once again, I acknowledge my bias, but to me it seems as if the person was scoring points with audience and insulting black people, rather than trying to improve anything.
Again, how would you try to improve this without engaging in any criticism of a cultural trend that you think you have detected?
Even as a person hostile to religion, if I need to show my point to a religious person, I would go great lengths to not insult the entire group by calling them, say, a cult of irrationality. I may offer this opinion among like-minded atheists to show my frustration with religion, but I don’t think insults lead to the improvement of the situation. Just showing the difference.
And you think that you would become a Nazi if you didn't go to these "great lengths?" Seriously?

Being a Nazi and a racist are not about methods but about ideas. You can be a closeted racist, for example, and still be a racist even if your behavior is nigh-indistinguishable from anyone else's. Right? Nazis (for example, fascistic control of the government) and racists (for example, Jim Crow sundown laws) did have overt methods that they used, but the use of those methods is not what defined them as Nazis and racists.
I do not think he is a Nazi. As to whether he is a racist, or caters to a racist or nationalist audience by using far-reaching insults against national cultures, the question remains open. Many racists in history claimed that the disliked nationality was culturally inferior, so they concentrated on culture quite a lot.
Again, so? This means that your proferred point did not rise to the level indicated by the earlier post.
No, but you’ve just appeared to defend him and other MRA members in this thread. A bit suspicious, heh.
... Says the avowed Marxist?
I can address what they are saying, although I feel that it would be a waste of my time. To make things clear, I reserve the right to mock people who joke about rape, attack and insult rape victims and women, or use rape insults in a debate. I find these people reprehensible as human beings, and as I am human, I have my own sympathies and antipathies.
I can understand that on a human level, but I think you need to be more careful about throwing around insults that you don't actually support - especially when they serve the function of closing off discussion with others.
Moreover, I reserve the full right to be even more biased against members of the MRA group which allow themselves statements like that:
“TJ Kirk” wrote:I will make you a rape victim if you don't fuck off.
“TJ Kirk” wrote:I think we should give the guy who raped you a medal. I hope you fucking drown in rape semen, you ugly, mean-spirited cow.
After one makes such statements, he should not be surprised that his morals and his intent in other statements and actions as well would be questioned, and he himself may very well be disliked, hated or confronted with feelings of disgust.
Admittedly, these sound terrible and the guy making them is clearly a misogynist, but again I asked you earlier to explain what you meant by a Men's Rights Advocate. Men's Rights Advocates, to me, seem like feminists in that they're concerned with gender-specific issues. They're not (at least by definition) misogynists. These are distinguishable groups, and labeling the one as the other is an issue because a non-misogynistic Men's Rights Advocate is being smeared with positions that that person doesn't necessarily endorse.

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