NeoGAF Implodes


#201

Well, she picked you, so count your blessings. :)
Looks aren’t everything. Some women actually go for men with other redeeming qualities.
Thankfully, I found one of those women as well.
Also, that goes both ways. Some men don’t actually require a high-fashion model for a life partner.


#202

For whatever reason, this thread reminds me of more stupid things I did when I was younger. Or in this case, didn’t do, because I was an utterly clueless teenager. I remember this time I was in a record store, and this girl who worked in the shop came up to me while I was browsing something or other and said, You have cool hair. Now this is such a no-brainer, this girl just walked up to me out of the blue and paid me a compliment. All I had to do was ask when her shift was over, did she want to grab coffee or Sprite or whatever the hell teenagers drink. But I remember thinking what the hell? I don’t have cool hair! Clearly, this is a crazy person. And I said something like, Uh thanks, then I went about my business. That’s right - as big an idiot as you may think I am today, it was oh so much worse back then.


#203

She has terrible eyesight, so I’m always a little nervous when she gets a new prescription on her eyeglasses.


#204

“Operational Risk Management in Dating and Socialization”

Could be a great book.


#205

I relate to this anecdote so much.

I remember times when I was alone with a girl and we’d talk and listen to music together for a long time or whatever and then at the end she was basically pissed because I hadn’t made a move on her, and was like “what the hell are we doing here?”

I said, “I dunno, talking?”

I seriously have no idea what I’m doing.


#206

I can empathize with this. I’m solidly in my mid-thirties, but can count on my fingers the number of dates I’ve been on–successful or otherwise.


#207

Hey, I think you’ve identified part of the problem set here.

Women seem to rely on men to be the initiator, and consider “hinting” to be the green light. This sets up several bad scenarios. How can we tell if she actually thinks you have cool hair, or she’s saying “this is your signal to ask for my number, bro”? Confusing and frustrating, at a time in our lives when we’re already at maximum social confusion and frustration.

Let’s look at the interaction between Han Solo and Leia in Empire. You know, the kiss on the Falcon. Is he sexually assaulting her by kissing her without consent to shut her up mid-argument… or is she baiting him to anger, in order to get what she wants but isn’t socially allowed to admit directly?

Harrison Ford again in Blade Runner. This kiss scene is a hell of a lot more aggressive and violent. Plus it has direct dialogue where he’s forcing her to “admit it, you want it”.

I’m a little uncomfortable with the message in both of those. However, that’s the way Hollywood instructs us that is “how it’s done by the heroes”.


#208

But now we’re learning that seemingly all the guys involved in making those movies are a bunch of rapists and shit.


#209

#210

If I could redo my College years, I would have has a better time with the ladies. But, bad as I did, I did meet my fiance there, and I would not have wanted to ruin that.


#211

Also,

@Nesrie I was frustrated, and you weren’t the deserving target of that venting of it. I’d like to explain where it came from so it can be a constructive incident.

Things were heading in a direction where I felt some Alinski methods were being employed by multiple responders. Specifically “We’re going to personify the problem as you personally. Anything sensible you say will be interpreted as negative, and in support of the problem. The goal is to make you defend yourself rather than debate the idea, and provoke you into an outburst so we can declare your opinion invalid.”

Maybe you’re not familiar with that play-book. This is relevant to the neoGAF discussion in particular because it is the very essence of “why lots of people don’t like GAF culture.”

There’s a definite movement in liberalism that where the marketing message is “unity through diversity, let’s all unite and work for betterment” the actual practice is a radicalist undercurrent that effective change can only be achieved through conflict. So the real mechanism of change has to be division. Identify a target, isolate the target from supporters, then attack relentlessly while messaging that the target is deserving, irredeemable, and the true source of the problem.

It exists because it is effective. Having an external “other” to blame and assault creates group cohesion, because there is a common and easy enemy. In order to keep that enemy universally accepted as such, you don’t let them talk about their view of the problem - you make them defend their personal innocence instead. It’s very distracting to their attempts to introduce their point of view for consideration, and makes it easy to declare irrelevant regardless. This is called “silencing dissent”, and it aids group cohesion because nobody who tries to call for the group to self-reflect on their own course will last very long.

Also important to group cohesion is that individuals in their midst who display a tendency to consider the enemy as a non-object, with explainable motives for their divergent point of view, are dealt with before they cause dispersion or induce conflict internally. This is called “toe the party line” and you learn that expressing sympathy or compassion for the target will result in becoming identified as the same target, cast out of the group, and accused of all the same offenses.

At this point you have a well intentioned group who wants to create positive change, but in order to do so requires conflict, and demands intolerance of divergence. It’s easy to accept this because it’s the only effective way to create change, versus yelling at the wind or wishing upon a star. Being part of the group also give assurance that you’re not at fault in the situation, and in fact are a brave hero like your comrades who are sacrificing their personal safety and normal inhibitions to engaging in aggressive behavior in order to wield the sword of justice and make the world a better place.

This is why I know I can pick up the phone and in one short conversation create a protest of thousands of people anywhere in the country overnight. It’s simple to do, and the people are frustrated with their inability to effect change as individuals. God knows, we all know how things SHOULD be, and they COULD BE if only the people who profit from oppression would just get the fuck out of the way and let it happen.

The problem is that in order to become a solution, you have to create an organization that embodies all the things you want to liberate people FROM. Intolerance, violence, targeting of individuals for harassment, class and race division, all of it.

Look at where “the movement” has been for the last decade, and most acutely since the election. You don’t need me to point out incidents of all those unfortunate realities being created by the people who carry the banner of unity and diversity. The saddest part is that generally we’re on THEIR SIDE. We want the same changes. But we see the mechanism of creating that change as a very dangerous weapon that can create permanent unintentional harm to the very people it wants so desperately to assist.

Once someone has gotten “the religion” of neo liberalism, they start to express their understanding of the world in more us/them, victim/predator, good/evil terminology. You can tell cultural context of a discussion by the terminology used. If we’re talking about physics, math, religion, known catch-phrase terms to express bigger ideas are used. Thus, when someone starts employing neo-liberal terminology like “triggered, oppressive, problematic, toxic individual, rape-culture” and such, everybody in the room is going to identify them as a member of that culture instantly.

So, the result is that when someone comes into a discussion employing that terminology, it creates a knee-jerk reaction that “they’re using the terminology, making me the target, about to try to silence my ideas instead of discuss them, and won’t dare to deviate from script because their friends are watching to make sure they’re not a sympathizer.”

That’s not an accusation about anybody, it’s an observation made about our entire cultural transformation in the last decade+. It is an explanation, however, for why people feel threatened, cornered, and aggressive as soon as they hear “problematic toxic phraseology patterns” enter the conversation - because they assume they’re about to become the victim of best intentions.

“The elitist jerk culture at neoGAF” is a polite way to say “Those intolerant fascists who cultivated a toe-the-party-line echo chamber at gunpoint people at neoGAF, and then tried to force the entire industry to toe their party line or face their wrath”.

Now that this is out of the way, I’d like to ask what could happen in society beyond awareness - because we are fucking aware - to alter the behaviors of men and to some extent women to greatly reduce this obvious long-term problem with humanity’s instinctive and learned behaviors? I have a lot of thoughts, but I’ll save that wall of text for later.


#212

It’s simply human nature. We are tribal, in our base psyches, in our blood. You protect the tribe, and socially isolate and ostracize those who deviate from expected behavior norms. The reach of the internet simply amplifies this natural impulse-- see Chinese public shaming for a great example of this. That isn’t specific to their culture. It’s in our DNA.

Not to pivot to politics in non-P&R, but politics are a great example of this. You identify with a party, not their politics. Republicans pushed conservative principles of free-trade, open borders, lowering the deficit since Reagan years then elected a president that ran specifically counter to all those things and their views on them changed literally overnight. That isn’t because they’re all disgusting people and hypocrites, it’s because the issues never really matter to most people. Belonging matters.


#213

Belonging matters. There’s a lot of neoGAF and political correctness compressed in those two words. The party has determined what is inoffensive to the party, and you will now act accordingly or your “belonging” is terminated. In fact, you join the ranks of the people we are aggressive towards so it’s far worse than just not belonging. Toe the line.

Well, what if I chose to belong there because I do feel that at the surface the group’s values align with what I consider good, or at lest better than my other options? Or maybe I came to the group because of reasons having nothing to do with their politics - just to have a troll-free place to talk about games. But once you’re in, surprise, toe the line.

Yes, humans are primates and tribal by nature. Race and geography and language are the traditional separators. Now that we have a digital interaction that doesn’t identify geography or race, and most people write english, you can’t tell those things - or even gender. So now tribalism is about ideas, and communities.

Tribalism with ideas is a lot like tribalism with physical people if you consider a “bad idea” to be equivalent to a virus. When the europeans came to North America, they shook hands with the natives, transferred the plague, and killed off 80% of the native population unintentionally. (oversimplified, let it be so) So there are reasons that people have built-in tendencies to guard their group against external infection. Like, don’t bring your toxic ideas to my group or you’ll make us sick.

One really nice thing about digital anonymous interaction is that two people who would normally have bigotry towards the other based on some physical attribute can be admirers and friends online, then be shocked to realize one day that their assumptions about “those people” were complete bullshit now that they’ve interacted without the influence of preconceptions. It’s really hard to maintain hate of “the other” when you find out your online friend is one of them. Changes your perspective, and that’s what the world needs to get over this shit.

Another thing that is instinctual is human sexuality, which is “why we’re all here” (pun intended)

Ok, a great number of people seem highly resistant to the observation that humans are animals that developed rational thought and language, and then “all of this” is the result. I don’t know if my dog or your pet monkey sits around pondering their existence all day or not, but they can’t discuss it with me or others of their kind, so they never advance. Once we could turn to the other monkey and say “You know, I’ve been thinking…” humanity began as we know it.

I think maybe it’s perceived as “accepting evolution means disavowing religion and I refuse on those grounds.” More like “I"m afraid I won’t be able to maintain religion if I let that toxic thought infect me.” But we’re back to tribal groups vs. ideas now, aren’t we? Keep that shit out of my church, because it will make us sick with divergent thoughts.

When I am witness to such bullshit as a medically licensed doctor who has turned into a congressman attempt to explain that “Abortion isn’t necessary because the female body will reject the fetus if it’s legitimately rape” then I just throw my hands in the air and wail in despair for us all. He’s full of shit, and he’s obviously educated to know he’s full of shit, and yet he says that to justify a non-divergent behavior. Otherwise, he’d be letting toxic ideas get traction in his tribe.

When you look at tribalism within the tribe, let’s think back to highschool - at least as I knew it. There was “boys circle” and “girls circle” and inside those were social tiers. But male and female were separate tribes and very much structured to limit interaction by covering it in so much mystical dogma that a lot of formal ritual was required to do so. Rules of engagment. Don’t talk to that one. Don’t let my friends see this one talking to me, or I’ll have to suffer for it. Don’t talk to her because she’s already talking to him. Think about it. It was very much like two tribes who were desperately curious about each other - because they wanted to “trade” but had been trained from birth that interaction was DANGEROUS because you might catch sex, which is the worst thing that could happen.

Yes, if you were too liberal talking to the other tribe, you might get friendly and forget that there is a STRICT tribal prohibition about sex. In fact, don’t talk about it. Don’t ask about it. Don’t even dream of formally discussing it as part of education, or you’ll risk fucking up the holy seals on the taboos that we’re all indoctrinated with. Once the walls keeping the sex out come crashing down, we’re going to lose the entire society, so whatever happens do not let the tribes intermingle or sex will become normal and it’s all over.

Well, there are evolutionary reasons for trying to keep pre-marital sex suppressed. Society has a problem when it has to adjust to dealing with non-nuclear family units, or people who have more children than they can support. That transfers the burden onto the tribe as a whole, and you collapse from being unable to feed all these kids. But if we have a two-parent system, they’ll control it. But we have to permanently pair them before kids are acceptable to produce. So let’s normalize this family model, and fortify it using super taboos about sex outside of it.

I get it. But the product is that you end up with young adults who are homonal tornadoes of reproductive urges with no outlet, and worse NO EXPLANATION of how to deal with them. Vulcan pon far, 24x7 for years. But there’s also a grand taboo about rubbing one out yourself to relieve it. And whatever you do, don’t talk about it with the kids or they’ll think it’s ok to do it. Don’t dare explain that the taboos serve a purpose beyond causing agony, and don’t teach kids about emotions or that because of their internal chemistry turning reproductive-focused their emotions are going to be hell on earth for a few years.

So you end up with young adults who are pretty fucked up, weird about sex, weird about the other gender, and have instead of come to understand the other gender as equals, instead completely objectified them as “the goal” they need to acquire ownership of. We set this shit up ourselves, and perpetuate it.

What if everything was just gender neutral and people were raised from birth with no taboo or mystique about the other gender. They’re not the “forbidden pleasures of the flesh” but just people like themselves. You get over the whole objectification thing pretty immediately. Girls are no longer some puzzle box you have to figure out how to open - they’d actually be well known to us as 50% of our buddies.

Hey, maybe that’s the good side of the gender equality stuff. Like in Starship Troopers where the soldiers - half of them women - are all showering together and nobody is awkward about it, or really too overly interested in anybody else’s nakedness - because it’s not a big deal. And that scares the hell out of people who are invested in traditional taboos.


#214

What is the significance exactly of ‘owning’ a site like NeoGaf? I didn’t go there much, but I don’t recall many ads. Did NeoGaf make this guy rich? Famous? Influential? Does a guy like this show up at important cultural events and rub shoulders with those types? Does a guy like this stand up at TED talks and sit down at venture capitalist meetings? I saw that pic with Obama while scrolling down, but I know at least enough to know that doesn’t necessarily mean much.


#215

According to Malka, he was offered $5 to $10 million for it before.


#216

The problem with forums is they have lots of users with very high engagement durations but are incredibly challenging to monetize because everybody reads them for hours and nobody clicks on ads. So owning and controlling a popular forum like NeoGAF or 4chan offers a tremendous amount of control and influence but not a heck of a lot of money.

At least hosting costs are crazy low these days so you aren’t pissing money into the ground. Forums used to just eat money back in the late 90s/early 2000s.

I mean, $10m is nice chunk of change, but NeoGAF was really popular. REALLY popular.


#217

Ditto for here which is why we do Patreon + Amazon Associates links now. They could do the same.

Though as pageviews go up a lot you could maybe do old school ads for anon users only.


#218

Yes that’s the general answer, but they don’t pay particularly well compared to a well-monetized site. Tons of influence, not tons of filthy lucre.

And to be honest, I betcha both the $5m and $10m offers were bullshit that he made up. I’d be surprised if the site netted over $250k/year. Which is chickenscratch for its influence and usercount.


#219

I will admit I had trouble trying to figure out a way to respond to this. Thank you for the clarification I guess is a good start. We all have, what I was told is a lizard brain response now and then. I am no different. I don’t know much about the intricacies of politics and group cohesion of forums outside of this one I guess. QT3 gets accused of being an echo chamber now and then, but it’s simply not true.I avoid most gaming sites like the plague.

I don’t know what the answer should be, exactly, or what it could be. I don’t believe educating women is the answer though since it kind of implies we’re not that educated and a number of them are. I also don’t think it’s a reasonable ask to tell women to study up on the latest and greater how to take advantage of women techniques.

I lean more towards the same approach that I suggest to do with racism. Don’t be silent. These douchebags have friends and family. We’ll always have monsters in our midst but if there are men attending seminars or group gatherings on how to take advantage of women, they should be shamed. And clearly, women shaming them does nothing… they already objectify them and won’t value that feedback at that point. The term boys will be boys… needs to be laid to rest too.

I have a younger sister, in her 20s. She’s gone through a a fair amount of scumbag boyfriends. She’s not going to listen to data points, she didn’t listen to me. Each and every one of these men had fathers who thought their actions, sometimes violent behavior, was acceptable and just what men do.


#220

You were SUPPOSED to say “But I don’t have cool hair,” and then she’d lean in and murmur “I meant your PUBIC hair.” Modern chicks love to be the ones in control, see?