sexuality and message boards

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sexuality and message boards

Postby TerraFrost » Sun Mar 27, 2005 7:38 am

i'm currious - do you think sexuality is a subject that should be censored from message boards? i, personally, think it is.

as an example, most companies will do background checks of prospective employees. sometimes this can even include a google search. if a google search reveals that you actively discuss sex on message boards and the person doing the hiring is a prude, then that probably isn't a good thing.

likewise, what happens if prudish parents do a google search for their kids name or online nickname and find posts talking about sex? i doubt that'd be a good thing, either.

if you're going to post about things that you'd rather your friends / family not know about, or if you're going to participate in communities that you'd rather someone you know not know about, then you ought not do it.

doing it, but not droping clues about who you are, is kinda a solution, but it's not a perfect one. for one, the manner in which you don't drop clues might well say "i don't trust you" and how can you have a community with people who think you distrust them? for two, i don't think keeping secrets burried from people is exactly healthy to your relationship with the people you're keeping them from.
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Postby tsian » Sun Mar 27, 2005 8:13 am

and the person doing the hiring is a prude, then that probably isn't a good thing.


And what if they take exception to you being a Democrat or Republican?

Lots of things can be censored. If you want to not have it connected to your real life then keep your real-life (somewhat) censored... in the send that you just don't link it to your online ID
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Postby TerraFrost » Sun Mar 27, 2005 10:11 am

And what if they take exception to you being a Democrat or Republican?

Then you don't have much to worry about. The fact is that sex and politics are seen in very different lights in the public eye. Deviant sexual practices are arrestable offences while deviant political views are simply things to be laughed at. Attempts are made to dumb down sex ed classes while no such attempts are made for government classes. Why do you think all this is? I think it's because those who would take exception to sex are far more motivated to take extreme action than those who would take exception to politics. As such, I'd say that someone taking exception to your political leanings is cause for far less worry than soemone taking exception to your sexual leanings.

Lots of things can be censored. If you want to not have it connected to your real life then keep your real-life (somewhat) censored... in the send that you just don't link it to your online ID

For many people, anonymity doesn't come easily, and when that which doesn't come easy is required for any given board, then the solution is quite easy - don't post - don't contribute to the community in any way. This may work for the individual, but it doesn't work for the community.
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Postby Roadkill » Sun Mar 27, 2005 1:36 pm

`i agree with tsian -- just don't link yourself to online identity.

Also, most message boards will have this section put off into a restricted area -- members only, that meet a certain requirement. for some its age/maturity. For others, its simply how long you've been a member. for some, its both. Employers cant get to thee sections without extensive research. Maybe in the south they would cut you, but in th enorth people are more likely to laugh at it than destroy you for it.
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Postby tsian » Sun Mar 27, 2005 5:08 pm

Besides, to be perfectly blunt, I operate on the principle of if I tell one person, it is quite possible that everyone I know will eventually find something out.

So, basically, the best thing to do would not to keep many secrets that you wouldn't want your employer finding out :p
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Postby TerraFrost » Sun Mar 27, 2005 6:55 pm

Also, most message boards will have this section put off into a restricted area -- members only, that meet a certain requirement. for some its age/maturity. For others, its simply how long you've been a member. for some, its both. Employers cant get to thee sections without extensive research. Maybe in the south they would cut you, but in th enorth people are more likely to laugh at it than destroy you for it.

That's actually sorta what I'm defending - that, as opposed to letting people talk about it in the open, where guests can see it.
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Postby Exalted Ugu » Sun Mar 27, 2005 7:05 pm

The fact is that sex and politics are seen in very different lights in the public eye. Deviant sexual practices are arrestable offences while deviant political views are simply things to be laughed at. Attempts are made to dumb down sex ed classes while no such attempts are made for government classes.

heh. Maybe government classes aren't a target for censorship because they're already censored? Be honest, did you have any real discussion of the operation and theory of socialism or anarchism in high-school or elementary civics courses? Moreover, deviant sexual practices as you frame it are generally not arrestable, except where they cause harm to others. But i think you'd find that being a communist is just as much a bar to high office as being gay, probably more. I don't think that people should censor anything online, if you don't want people to know what your views are, either don't express them, or separate your online identity from your personal life.

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Postby Roadkill » Sun Mar 27, 2005 8:24 pm

the best way to deal with a boss that will look down on "deviant sexual practices" is to produce a counterattack, and laugh at his "deviant" sexual practices. :-p
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Postby TerraFrost » Sun Mar 27, 2005 10:33 pm

As far as the "separate your online identity from your personal life" suggestion is concerned... like I said, I don't believe most people want to do that. If they feel they have to do something they don't want to do to contribute, they won't contribute.

As such, if you want a community that's large enough to be self-sustainable, I believe that censorship is definitly the way to go. Doing that which is right isn't necessarily the same thing as doing that which leads to success.

heh. Maybe government classes aren't a target for censorship because they're already censored?

That's something I hadn't considered, heh. Although that said, I think that not talking about contraceptives in a sex ed class is far more egrigious than not talking about socialism or anarchism.

Moreover, deviant sexual practices as you frame it are generally not arrestable, except where they cause harm to others.

If that were the case, then why would sodomy be an arrestable offense (or is it, still? there was a court trial about it, iirc), as opposed to rape? Rape is what causes harm - sodomy isn't. Likewise, statuatory rape only causes harm if it's coerced through illicit means, despite the name (which I think is rather misleading). And what about indecent exposure?

But i think you'd find that being a communist is just as much a bar to high office as being gay, probably more.

I think that'd only be true in political office - in other environments, being communist isn't something that I suspect would come up, whereas being gay could.

Incidently, I'm actually reminded of a recent Sienfield ep I saw where George Costanza was fired for having sex with the cleaning lady on his desk late one night. If he had been cursing the president at that time at his desk, I'm not really so sure he would have been fired.
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Postby tsian » Mon Mar 28, 2005 1:18 am

I think that not talking about contraceptives in a sex ed class is far more egrigious than not talking about socialism or anarchism.


Perhaps more immediately noticeable to a teenager, but if excluding talk on other forms of government leads to widespread ridicule and dismissal of alternative forms of government (to the point where Canada is called extremely socialist, for example)...

I think that'd only be true in political office - in other environments, being communist isn't something that I suspect would come up, whereas being gay could.


How so? And really, does this mean gay people should just hide that fact?
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Postby Neerowolf » Mon Mar 28, 2005 2:53 am

I HAVE SEX WITH STRANGERS

Okay sorry.

Well, I don't like discussing sexuality on message boards, but it's funny to joke around like that, as long as people know you're not serious. :)
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Postby TerraFrost » Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:03 am

How so?

I don't how - I don't know why. I'm not a sociologist - these are just observations I've made - that deviant sexuality is much more of a stigma than deviant politics. You've heard of voter apathy, haven't you? If people are apathetic to candidates political views, then why do you think they'd care if someone was a communist or not? As for why sex might come up when politics doesn't - I don't know. Again, I'm not a socialogist, nor do I wish to be one. Regardless, it does seem that sex makes for much better office gossip than politics does.

And really, does this mean gay people should just hide that fact?

This thread is about message board policy - not about personal policy. What people want to reveal about themselves or whom people want to associate with is up to them. However, and the point I have been trying to make, is that if a message board discusses sex openly, they alienate potential members (because talking about sex openly and casually is, itself, mildly deviant). Is sex really more important than new potential members?

Now, I'm sure you'll point that sex is but one of many reasons why people may not decide to post, however, what, really, does sex add? Are people going to start participating on a message board simply because some of the links on that message board have pictures, on them, of penises? I doubt it. As such, all I really see sex doing is driving (some) people away.

In contrast, other things that might drive (some) people away might also bring some people in. For example, some people may not like the fact that FJ has a blue theme to it, however, other people might like that fact.

Also, I can see (some) existing members leaving out of upset that they were censored, but they'll have already given this board a chance. The ones who dont post because no censorship takes place won't give it a chance.
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Postby Roadkill » Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:27 am

:lol: terra, that's just funny.

I am registered on just a bad forum to model. Of course, you have to be a member for atleast half a year before you get to the part of it where you see these things, and most short term, or even regular members "not-of-age" don't know that.

Porn thread is over 2500 pages long, and new porn threads popping all the time. Sex and related topics constitue probably 70% of the discussion. The rest is the stupid crap of life -- ripping veggie jokes of shiavo. Some would probably consider this corrupt or anarchy, but really, its just youth life, uncut. No polical correctness about it. If that doesn't encourage you to stick around, i don't know what will. its funny as crap.

however, considering the polite attitude we like to keep in this forum, and i hope the quick bans that would come to those who violate this tone, no, pornography would not improve our forums ratings, because of the genreal atitude of the addicts, which you would ban, and you would then eventually ban such topics as so to keep people like this away.

Also, considering the number of virgins on this board, it would hardly acheive any practical results from creating such a thread.
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Postby tsian » Mon Mar 28, 2005 4:27 am

and the point I have been trying to make, is that if a message board discusses sex openly, they alienate potential members (because talking about sex openly and casually is, itself, mildly deviant). Is sex really more important than new potential members?


Really? I thought your point was not to reveal stuff about yourself for fear of what potential employers or other acquiantences might think.

Now I can understand censoring sexually explicit material... but censoring sexuality? So where do you draw that line in an attempt to placate new members? If I say I'm gay? If I say I like someone? If I flirt with someone? If I post a picture of someone in lingerie? What crosses the acceptability line and why are you so concerned about it possibly offending people who have yet to come here? It seems quite a departure from your initial statement which worried about what potential employers might think!

Now, I'm sure you'll point that sex is but one of many reasons why people may not decide to post, however, what, really, does sex add?


What does any of the forums on FJ add? I'm sure there are people who would me mortally offended by some of the views expressed in this forum,shall we lock it up?

Are people going to start participating on a message board simply because some of the links on that message board have pictures, on them, of penises? I doubt it. As such, all I really see sex doing is driving (some) people away.


Again, your definition of sex is unclear. While at first I thought you simply meant explicit images, now I'm not so sure what your definition encompasses.

What's your view on violence?

For example, some people may not like the fact that FJ has a blue theme to it, however, other people might like that fact.


Thats really not an applicable analogy, I don't think, and it's rather disengenous to equate them.

Also, I can see (some) existing members leaving out of upset that they were censored, but they'll have already given this board a chance. The ones who dont post because no censorship takes place won't give it a chance.


That indeed is an interesting philosophy and again raises the question of where you draw the line and, for that matter, why you value potential members over existing ones.
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Postby TerraFrost » Mon Mar 28, 2005 5:56 am

Really? I thought your point was not to reveal stuff about yourself for fear of what potential employers or other acquiantences might think.

Really? Why would I then say stuff like...

i'm currious - do you think sexuality is a subject that should be censored from message boards?


As such, if you want a community that's large enough to be self-sustainable, I believe that censorship is definitly the way to go. Doing that which is right isn't necessarily the same thing as doing that which leads to success.


Further, why would i use conditionals (my emphasis)?

if you're going to post about things that you'd rather your friends / family not know about, or if you're going to participate in communities that you'd rather someone you know not know about, then you ought not do it.


As far as the "separate your online identity from your personal life" suggestion is concerned... like I said, I don't believe most people want to do that. If they feel they have to do something they don't want to do to contribute, they won't contribute.


If I was saying that no one should reveal stuff about themselves because of what potential employers or other acquiantances might think, then why would I say "if"? Just to make the sentance look pretty?

Now I can understand censoring sexually explicit material... but censoring sexuality? So where do you draw that line in an attempt to placate new members? If I say I'm gay? If I say I like someone? If I flirt with someone? If I post a picture of someone in lingerie? What crosses the acceptability line and why are you so concerned about it possibly offending people who have yet to come here? It seems quite a departure from your initial statement which worried about what potential employers might think!

The third statement in my initial post clarified what I meant:

if you're going to post about things that you'd rather your friends / family not know about, or if you're going to participate in communities that you'd rather someone you know not know about, then you ought not do it.


Again, if I had intended this to apply to everyone, I would not have used a conditional. Further, if the first sentance fully expressed the thoughts I was trying to convey, then why would I even bother with a second or a third?

As for where the line should be drawn - I really have no opinion on that. However, the fact remains that a line should be drawn, for the benifit of the community.

What does any of the forums on FJ add? I'm sure there are people who would me mortally offended by some of the views expressed in this forum,shall we lock it up?

To go through a few forums...

Tower of Babble: Provides people an outlet to discuss current events in their lives or in the world. Talk of current events in the world may offend some people but it can also bring people who are interested in discussing current events.

Twilight Zone: Provides an outlet for people to debate the decissiosn of others, or whatever else might be debatable. It brought LarryTCG, Tetrafrost (who doesn't post anymore), and others (as evident by the fact that that's the only forum they post in). It may well have driven people away, too, but the fact remains that negative effect is counterbalanced atleast somewhat by the people it's brought.

Rougue's Gallery: Provides a creative outlet for people. I don't know why people wouldn't post because of the content contained there-in, but I think that which it provides is a far greater asset than it is a liability.

What does casual sex add / bring / provide? Pornography may bring people, but what does a single errant picture of someones breasts do? It makes people umcomfortable who wouldn't have otherwise been umcomfortable. However, I serriously doubt it'd bring anyone.

Roadkill's example I don't think applies as it sounds like sex is the main thing that's discussed there. Dedicating yourself to one topic will attract people who are interested in that topic infinitily more so than casual references to that topic will. A message board dedicated to star wars is more likely to attract star wars fans than this board is for it's loan star wars tread. Likewise, a message board dedicated to sex is far more likely to attract people than a message board with only casual references.

So if a message board isn't going to attract people with its casual references but risks turning people away, why do it?

Again, your definition of sex is unclear. While at first I thought you simply meant explicit images, now I'm not so sure what your definition encompasses.

Pursuant to an earlier comment I made in this post, I don't believe my definition is relavent. The fact is that examples can do quite a lot for clarifying ones position, so although I have no opinion as to where the line should be drawn, the examples I give are places that I think others are likely to draw the line. If they don't draw the line at that point, then I suppose I could try a more explicit example. However, doing that might make it harder for others to understand it, as well. I mean, an hour long video of someone being violently raped is so past the line, I should think, that it hardly constitutes a casual reference. So what is a universal casual reference to sex that is past everyone's line? I don't know. If you have any ideas, tell me.

Thats really not an applicable analogy, I don't think, and it's rather disengenous to equate them.

I don't see why it's disengenious, but whatever. See the above analogies. Or are they disengenious, too?
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