Archive for April, 2014

There has been a lot of talk at my Facebook News Feed about date rape culture and feeling safe lately. First as people were defining safety and how to feel safe at roleplay-conventions, and lately as ferry company Tallink’s head of personnel and development implied that it was women’s fault if they get drunk and are raped.

Of course most of the conversations over both subjects have been clever and thought-provoking. Defining safety is always needed on social environment, where there’re a lot different-aged people present, may there be booze or not. Doesn’t imply just for our dear hobby, but on many other situations as well. (After working almost 12 years at fast food restaurant that’s open until 5 am and also next to Finlands most popular night club for straight singles 30+, I have unfortunately a very sober view of the stuff what happens after the bar closes.)

There’re some opinions on these conversations, that I’m a bit worried. Most common that I don’t share is that best way to prevent rapes is for *women* to drink less. I’m not really into that victim blaming thing. What I’m how ever more concerned is that some of my acquaintances are very angry about these cases, where woman has been willing to have sex on the evening, but calls it rape next morning after sobering up. I know those are horrible situations for both parts, and that’s why I would hope people would recognize their responsibility to think behalf of both (and also occasionally behalf of others on same parties), if the other one is too drunk to know what’s happening. No is no, and if sober no changes to very drunken yes, it’s probably not because they have secretly fancied you all time, and just needed booze to be able to admit it.

That’s for my personal viewpoints, now the roleplay-related problem. I organize larps that have usually after game parties just after the game at the game location. Usually those parties include drinking. Most people drink a sauna beer or two, but of course usually there’re some people that are more drunk. And I’m not really feeling comfortable with having people there, who don’t share my personal views of this safety issue.

Technically I have three options: I can either ban the booze, or the people in question, or do nothing. This do-nothing-thing would be logical as nothing that way bad has ever happened at larps organized by me. How ever that do-nothing has never worked quite well with me, as I regret more stuff I’ve not done, that stuff I’ve done. Okay, as some of those persons are good larpers in the sense that their larping performance had been praised and I’ve also enjoyed playing with them, it would make sense to just ban the after game booze to make a game better. On the other hand, I don’t really see why I should tolerate idiots on my spare time. When we choose players to larps, we anyway choose them by many criteria. Do we believe they could enjoy the game, make believable performance, do they have a history of cancelling at the last minute or do they always forgot to pay the gaming fee, are they our close friends, do they nag about everything and so on. Why couldn’t general douchbaggery be one of the criteria.

Speaking of general douchbaggery, I feel that the circles where I have larped during the last 15 years forget and forgive too easy to people who do something stupid. During the last 15 years, there have been cases of “sexually approaching” (I don’t really know better english word) a sleeping person, some jealous persons breaking into their exes email or FB accounts, some people have went into larps (to get) blind drunk, some have hit for real “as they were so immersed” etc. And they’re tolerated. Because standing up against that kind of behavior might end up you not getting into their cool games, and it besides was kinda was your own fault. And could you be less girly and concern on real problems. And besides they didn’t mean anything mean, they’re just little socially awkward but they don’t mean anything bad. Yeah right.

After a long talks with a couple of persons who I regularly co-organize larp-related things, I guess I could make the stand that in my larps there’s not space for douchebags: There’s no space for people who I know to have done something REALLY stupid either repeatedly, or without showing regret. Or who have expressed viewpoints on certain issues that are STRONGLY against what I believe, and that might affect either my or other’s experience.

Be that change you wanna see in other people and so on.


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