MOO-cows Mailing List Archive


[SOCIAL-SUMMARY] Gender RL vs. gender in-MOO


 I posted two questions on the subject about 10 days ago,
so now I'd like to summarize the answers and try to reach
some conclusions.

The first question was :

   Do you have any policy that enforces that the gender
   people use in your MOO must match the gender they
   have in Real Life ?

 There is a consensus that somebody's RL gender is hir own
business, and that no MOO ever does or did concern itself
with ensuring that the .gender property has any relation 
with RL.

The very idea of such a policy is actually perceived as

-stupid : why bother with gender matching, if we are not 
 going to deal with age, religion, marital status, ecc. ecc.

-useless : why would anyone want to do this ?

-impossible to enforce : how can you check the gender of someone
 who is on the other side of the Atlantic ?

and even downright obnoxious. made the point

 This is probably the closest chance many guys ever get to feeling how
 irritating it is to be pestered sexually on the basis of so arbitrary an
 issue.  Why remove their opportunity to step into someone else's shoes and
 learn what a hassle it can be?  Or for that matter, the opportunity of a
 woman to step out of her conventional role and interact for a while
 without the "benefit" of such attention.

and wrote that:

 I think that playing a character of the opposite sex would be an amazing 
 RP challenge.

 So, it seems that among MOO administrators more or less everybody thinks
that the idea sucks (BTW I agree).

 Now, why did I ask that ? Some weeks ago I felt like socializing and
chatting, and so I logged on an unmentioned talker. I picked the 
F gender pretty much at random. Several happy connections followed,
and everything was fine (I got occasionaly pestered, of course).
 Later on, it happened that one of the wizards realized that I am 
male. All Hell broke loose. 

 I was really surprised to see my character erased by the same wizards
that had been quite friendly up to that moment. It has been a painful
moment, since I try to observe etiquette and netiquette.

 Now, I don't give a damn about that place. The funny thing is that
nowhere in the player registration section they said that they do have
such a policy. It turned out that to them it was "obvious".

 Since in my MOO there is no such a policy (I usually change gender
at least once a day, and I even become plural when I feel really grand),
I wondered what was the norm. Thus the question. 

Conclusions: There are users and administrators out there that believe
that players in MUD-type environments must have the same gender that
they have in RL. I'd advise everybody to put some sort of warning in
the player registration process, and explain what to expect.

 Followups to this discussion should go by email only, since it has
been pointed out that this list is not appropriate for social issues.
(Question: where does one discuss social issues in MOOs ?)

Thank you,

-- Tuo ehi o'ccabbolario e 
tossu ehi oli ti scienza.Ten thousand clouds on the ceiling/and the taste
of gasoline. sao ko kelle terre per kelle fini ke ki kontene ...
GCSd?-p+c++++!lu+e++m++s++/++!nhf++g+w+t+r-y* [Now at CMU/CMT] -><- 

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