Final Fantasy XIV Master Feedback
For the record, I have always thought it was rather weird that the officially encouraged (and only) way to actually provide feedback regarding GM interactions is by making an extremely public post on the site about it. I mean, it's great when people are like "Yay!
It can get a little awkward highlighting what is very clearly very poor handling. I don't want to be a jerk and make any sort of fuss. But I do want to ensure that people aren't abused with impunity and that the policies you have in place are correctly interpreted to this end.
And since the issue here was a troll, as much as I endeavor to redact his identity, this still seems likely to feed the troll. But it's either that or effectively giving up on the concept of consistently acceptable support.
I will also spare the world the verbatim (and offensive quotes) and just go with synopsis:
1. Troll starts trolling in novice network with escalating levels of obscenity and sexual topics.
2. Troll doesn't get desired level of attention.
3. Troll then starts attacking the Lalafell race. Yes, this is just a fantasy race. Of course this is not a violation of the terms of service. Not exactly nice, but not our concern.
4. Troll then explains that this is because they're short. Continues to discuss short people in an offensive manner.
5. I ask troll to stop blatantly insulting short people.
6. Troll becomes even more vulgar and proceeds to directly and personally attack and mock me in novice network.
7. I kick troll "mentor" for three hours. Everyone seems happy (or apathetic) to see him go.
8. I know kicking someone from novice network doesn't actually get any GM follow-up by itself, so I do a report to ensure that a GM tells him "Hey, trolling real world demographics like race/religion/etc. (and yes, height, too)" is not cool. Stop that please."
9. But then GM Dorxenore contacts me and instead tells me that he was just talking about lalafells and that's okay. And just doesn't even respond to any of the simultaneous obscenity reported. So all I can really do is thank him for his time and come here to encourage Enkrateia or whoever to take a look at it. So, Dorxenore, if you read this, I still really do appreciate your time and efforts. And I get that this isn't as super obvious as if he was trolling about any of the less-ignored bigotry in the world like sexual orientation or ethnicity.
This is definitely nowhere near the worst hate speech we've seen. Obviously. But that's beside the point. Bullying, mocking, or otherwise picking on any real world demographic is not acceptable in this game.
GM tells don't play by the same rules as regular players. You CAN send GMs tells in dungeons. You just need to actually type "/tell gm [name of gm]" yourself to manually change the chat mode.
As for blacklist, while that is a common suggestion, it's not actually a solution. In fact, while we're on the topic of feedback for GMs, the suggestion - with all due respect - indicates a complete and utter lack of understanding of the situation. The issue is not this player sending me tells. The issue is not this player talking to only me. In fact, once kicked from the novice network, to his credit, that was the last I heard from him (probably not forever, but for that night at least). The issue actually is the effect he has on the public chat channel; the issue is a troll dominating a chat channel to the extent that its intended purpose of being a place where new players are comfortable and encouraged to seek advice is warped and twisted into a representation of the worst of humanity (again, obviously, I'm not saying this actual situation was by any means the worst we've seen - but it's in precisely the same vein). Ignoring such harassment just encourages it and lets it run rampant. It would actually have a more negative impact on you than the comments did in the first place as you are unable to even understand a conversation involving the person. You would only see seemingly non-sequitur responses and references that leave you confused. This is precisely what a troll hopes for - that the people that actually do care can be bullied enough to give up, /blacklist them, and let them turn the novice network into whatever they want with impunity.
So I would encourage people to access the novice network and do their best to help ensure it succeeds at doing what it was meant to do. This incident was a small blip in an otherwise very positive and helpful network.
And, yes, of course, if you elect to /blacklist anyone or leave the novice network, that's certainly your choice and there's nothing wrong with that. But it's most definitely not my choice.
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