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Subject: BGG needs a LGBTQ forum similar to the Women and Gaming forum rss

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Vanessa Lopez
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MWChapel wrote:
mamapapillon wrote:


Our EXACT requirement is simply to allow for a truly PUBLIC space that will allow our conversations to happen organically and safely. So that disruptive people are not welcome and we are able to talk about our experiences with gaming. If you don't agree, cool. You don't have to agree. But the precedent has already been set with the Women and Gaming forum & guild. We want the same. We're not reinventing anything here.


I totally agree that you should have a place for these kind of discussions, and I am telling you BGG ALREADY HAS THAT ABILITY. Guilds are PUBLIC.


We disagree on that exact point. Guilds are not public. You have to search for them. You have to change your settings to see them.

I am a member of the Guild for Women by Women. I also actively participate in the Women and Gaming Forum. The activity in the guild is a tiny fraction of the activity in the forum. The forum gets much more participation because it is public by default. When we want to have discussions that are more sensitive or that may invite problematic people to engage, we move those discussions to the guild - because the guild is more private.
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DragonsDream wrote:
Guilds does not fit that criteria. Guilds are not *by default* public.


That is not correct. Guilds are *by default* public. Anyone can post in them AND Guilds give the owners moderation powers. Something you will not get in general forum listing.
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Octavian wrote:
This is the same reason I am against having a separate forum for such discussions. There already is a forum for this - if it is an issue relevant to gaming then it is appropriate for General Gaming.
You probably aren't intending to, but this is illustrating exactly the very problematic arguments explained in the OP:
DragonsDream wrote:
The anti-LGBTQ crowd often makes 2 opposing claims about why we don't need an LGBTQ forum
1) they don't want to divide the community further
2) they don't want to see/deal with/talk about LGBTQ issues
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Dylan Thurston
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Question for the administrators participating in this thread: what percentage of active BGG users customize their front page at all?
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mamapapillon wrote:
But the precedent has already been set with the Women and Gaming forum & guild. We want the same. We're not reinventing anything here.


W&G "precedent" was exactly why BGG Guilds were created in the first place. It was the answer to the issue. You are trying to reinvent them, the ability is already in place. Use it.
 
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Vanessa Lopez
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MWChapel wrote:
DragonsDream wrote:
Guilds does not fit that criteria. Guilds are not *by default* public.


That is not correct. Guilds are *by default* public. Anyone can post in them AND Guilds give the owners moderation powers. Something you will not get in general forum listing.


I'm not exactly sure why you continue to argue this point. I'm not sure we have the same understanding of the word *default*.

I'm also not sure why you seem so invested in arguing against what we want. How will this affect you?
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mamapapillon wrote:


I'm not exactly sure why you continue to argue this point. I'm not sure we have the same understanding of the word *default*.

I'm also not sure why you seem so invested in arguing against what we want. How will this affect you?


I'm not sure why you keep arguing the point, when your solution already exists.
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Vanessa Lopez
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Question for Admins:

We are clearly asking for a forum. How does that happen? What do we need to do to make this happen?
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Matthew M
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mamapapillon wrote:


But by locking the discussion, you've given the disruptive folks what they want: to silence us.


By removing it from the forum we'd be doing the same.

Quote:
We need a space where we can have these conversations. Where those trying to disrupt and derail get booted out and we can continue the conversation.


And the moderation policy would not change regardless of the forum it is in.



As I said in our private message exchange, the more public these kinds of discussions are, the more inevitable it is that it will draw attention from people with deplorable opinions. But that shouldn't deter us from having these discussions in public places.

The best path forward is to continue raising important issues as needed, give them room to breathe, and then lock the thread when things get pulled too far astray.

Eventually the derailers will learn that they lose posting privileges if they keep trying, or will be suspended for so long that it doesn't matter. And eventually culture will catch up to the point where these are not controversial topics, and ideally they will eventually not even be necessary topics.
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MWChapel wrote:
mamapapillon wrote:


I'm not exactly sure why you continue to argue this point. I'm not sure we have the same understanding of the word *default*.

I'm also not sure why you seem so invested in arguing against what we want. How will this affect you?


I'm not sure why you keep arguing the point, when your solution already exists.
Perhaps those who want the forum don't like the solution you are suggesting?
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Vrooman wrote:
MWChapel wrote:
mamapapillon wrote:


I'm not exactly sure why you continue to argue this point. I'm not sure we have the same understanding of the word *default*.

I'm also not sure why you seem so invested in arguing against what we want. How will this affect you?


I'm not sure why you keep arguing the point, when your solution already exists.
Perhaps those who want the forum don't like the solution you are suggesting?


Well, then good luck. Just giving you the answer you will get.
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Matthew M
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mamapapillon wrote:
Question for Admins:

We are clearly asking for a forum. How does that happen? What do we need to do to make this happen?


Guilds are how you make custom forums with stricter moderation policies than the existing forums.

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Dylan Thurston
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MWChapel wrote:
W&G "precedent" was exactly why BGG Guilds were created in the first place. It was the answer to the issue. You are trying to reinvent them, the ability is already in place. Use it.
Can I hear more from the women who use both about the utility of both the guild and the public forum? It's obvious to me that if I were a women and there were only the "Women in Gaming" forum, I would want something more, because when I browse threads there they frequently get derailed by misogynistic threads (right?). But I gather than the "Women in Gaming" forum remains useful?
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Vanessa Lopez
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dthurston wrote:
MWChapel wrote:
W&G "precedent" was exactly why BGG Guilds were created in the first place. It was the answer to the issue. You are trying to reinvent them, the ability is already in place. Use it.
Can I hear more from the women who use both about the utility of both the guild and the public forum? It's obvious to me that if I were a women and there were only the "Women in Gaming" forum, I would want something more, because when I browse threads there they frequently get derailed by misogynistic threads (right?). But I gather than the "Women in Gaming" forum remains useful?


I posted my experience with both a few posts earlier:

Quote:
I am a member of the Guild for Women by Women. I also actively participate in the Women and Gaming Forum. The activity in the guild is a tiny fraction of the activity in the forum. The forum gets much more participation because it is public by default. When we want to have discussions that are more sensitive or that may invite problematic people to engage, we move those discussions to the guild - because the guild is more private.
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Vanessa Lopez
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Octavian wrote:
The best path forward is to continue raising important issues as needed, give them room to breathe, and then lock the thread when things get pulled too far astray.

Eventually the derailers will learn that they lose posting privileges if they keep trying, or will be suspended for so long that it doesn't matter. And eventually culture will catch up to the point where these are not controversial topics, and ideally they will eventually not even be necessary topics.


Respectfully, I disagree. As a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, diluting our conversations within the general gaming forum is not an inclusive policy.

If BGG is serious about being inclusive, a loud, clear, and public sign of this is to create a public space for us. Public = Forums. Not conversations within the general space, but a dedicated space for us and for our allies.

I just counted over 120 forums. Some are geographically specific, some are for photography. There's DIY section, a Women & Gaming section, a Gaming with Kids section, a Games in the Classroom section, and on and on and on.

It could be argued that all of these conversations could be had in the General Gaming section. But they're not. They've been given their own space, understanding that it's the best way to get others interested in those types of conversations to participate.

We are not asking for anything out of the ordinary. We want a space specifically for us and for our allies. We want that space to be in a public forum.
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Matthew M
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mamapapillon wrote:


It could be argued that all of these conversations could be had in the General Gaming section.


I agree...the current forums are a bit of a mess in part because they are an artifact of the site's growth over the past 17 years. They would be much different if we were to restructure everything based on how we know the community uses things today. Most of those changes would involved condensing and eliminating many of the forums and transferring others to the Guild format.

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It seems like creating an LGBT guild is the first step and see what happens and how that community grows. Who knows?

Not being the first thing you see when you hit the site might not be a bad thing. I definitely want people to know that this is a safe and inclusive place to hang out, but high visibility may also attract more hateful, bigoted voices, too.

By not being super visible, it puts more of the onus of building, maintaining, and protecting that community on us, the users. Again, maybe not such a bad thing.

I am an active member in the guild: Depression, Anxiety and Gaming (Support Group). When I see threads and comments pop up in the general forums about mental health issues, I often post or GM a link to the guild. I think the act of inviting people into a space they didn't necessarily know was there is part of building community.

Regardless of how this evolves, I am excited that this idea is gaining some traction. I think it is super important.
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dthurston wrote:
Question for the administrators participating in this thread: what percentage of active BGG users customize their front page at all?



Whatever answer you get, probably quadruple it ....
 
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I think this continues to be the struggle that BGG has.

It's a database (although, one where the data isn't readily available/customizable to users). Then, it became a social media platform (but not really, because there's a HELLUVA lot more moderation and locking threads than *sny* social media site).

After last week (when someone posted a thread about how he had a "Trump GameNite" (and listed about 3-4 games they played ... with *no* commentary on Trump, per se; and the thread was moved (and, I believe, eventually locked (with the admin saying, "the first post was enough for it to be moved"), I realized that any sort of intelligent conversation I'd want to have with people from BGG would have to take place *off* BGG.

But, I can see all the empty punches sprues with the "Hey! Guess which game I just punched!" threads I want. Never get tired of those whistle Sigh ......
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Vanessa Lopez
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Gee Whiz wrote:
It seems like creating an LGBT guild is the first step and see what happens and how that community grows. Who knows?

Not being the first thing you see when you hit the site might not be a bad thing. I definitely want people to know that this is a safe and inclusive place to hang out, but high visibility may also attract more hateful, bigoted voices, too.

By not being super visible, it puts more of the onus of building, maintaining, and protecting that community on us, the users. Again, maybe not such a bad thing.

I am an active member in the guild: Depression, Anxiety and Gaming (Support Group). When I see threads and comments pop up in the general forums about mental health issues, I often post or GM a link to the guild. I think the act of inviting people into a space they didn't necessarily know was there is part of building community.

Regardless of how this evolves, I am excited that this idea is gaining some traction. I think it is super important.


It sounds like this may be our only avenue going forward. There is a guild btw. Board Gaymers - it was created in 2011. Sadly, the name isn't very inclusive. Although I do like the word play. The BGGer who created it hasn't logged in since the summer, hopefully they'll come back soon. But we're currently trying to clear out the cobwebs and activate the community.
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Lemur wrote:
I think this continues to be the struggle that BGG has.

It's a database (although, one where the data isn't readily available/customizable to users). Then, it became a social media platform (but not really, because there's a HELLUVA lot more moderation and locking threads than *sny* social media site).


It's interesting that you say that. In my experience, BGG is much more lax around moderation than other social media sites I engage in. And I'm all for moderation. Intelligent conversations can be had, with respect.

I see BGG as more than just a database. It's a community. I've loved being a part of this community. And would love to see it grow. But that growth has to be inclusive in nature.
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Octavian wrote:
mamapapillon wrote:


It could be argued that all of these conversations could be had in the General Gaming section.


I agree...the current forums are a bit of a mess in part because they are an artifact of the site's growth over the past 17 years. They would be much different if we were to restructure everything based on how we know the community uses things today. Most of those changes would involved condensing and eliminating many of the forums and transferring others to the Guild format.


there are hundreds of guilds. many with only a single member. Guilds require work to sort through. They are messier than the forums are. Shunting all LGBTQ discussion to a guild is a way to hide it away. It buries it among 2 person guilds of "war gamers from East Nowhereistan" and "Anarchists for Buddha" It's dismissive.

The current forum structure makes it quite easy to find significant, relevant discussions.

In "Gaming with Kids" discussion can be refined and specific to the topic at hand, that is "gaming with children". No one is going to come into that forum and derail a thread with "why would you even want kids let alone game with them?" And if some one did, they are going to be immediately moderated out of existence.

Currently, in General Gaming, a discussion about LGBTQ visibility (or hell, even something less controversial like female visibility) will be immediately derailed by people (and lets be honest, by "people" we mean "straight white males not affected by the topic at all who have no reason to participate other than to be disruptive") with little to no rebuke and nothing from the moderators because "all sides must be allowed" as if "we don't want to hear about you at all" is a valid side.

If you insist on leaving such discussions in "General Gaming" then the moderating needs to be much better, much stricter, and the official BGG stance needs to be "discussions of LGBTQ topics is allowed in General Gaming without being disrupted by homophobes" Right now, it's not.

Something needs to change otherwise this issue will keep coming up. The current status quo is simply not acceptable to the LGBTQ community here.
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It seems like there is a bit of a Goldilocks argument here ("not too hot, not too cold"), and I suspect that would be impossible for a moderator to hit the correct temperature. Though I understand and broadly agree that front page visibility would have its purpose, from occasional lurking in the Women in Gaming forum, everyone should be prepared for endless posts stating "this forum is unnecessary/discriminatory/offensive/silly etc." because quite frankly some people just can't help themselves, and there are a lot of those people. I also suspect a guild would be the place to start. Best wishes on your quest.
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DragonsDream wrote:
there are hundreds of guilds. many with only a single member. Guilds require work to sort through. They are messier than the forums are. Shunting all LGBTQ discussion to a guild is a way to hide it away. It buries it among 2 person guilds of "war gamers from East Nowhereistan" and "Anarchists for Buddha" It's dismissive.

The current forum structure makes it quite easy to find significant, relevant discussions.

In "Gaming with Kids" discussion can be refined and specific to the topic at hand, that is "gaming with children". No one is going to come into that forum and derail a thread with "why would you even want kids let alone game with them?" And if some one did, they are going to be immediately moderated out of existence.

Currently, in General Gaming, a discussion about LGBTQ visibility (or hell, even something less controversial like female visibility) will be immediately derailed by people (and lets be honest, by "people" we mean "straight white males not affected by the topic at all who have no reason to participate other than to be disruptive") with little to no rebuke and nothing from the moderators because "all sides must be allowed" as if "we don't want to hear about you at all" is a valid side.

If you insist on leaving such discussions in "General Gaming" then the moderating needs to be much better, much stricter, and the official BGG stance needs to be "discussions of LGBTQ topics is allowed in General Gaming without being disrupted by homophobes" Right now, it's not.

Something needs to change otherwise this issue will keep coming up. The current status quo is simply not acceptable to the LGBTQ community here.


YESSS! To all of this! Well said! *standingovation*

This is why I agree with having a forum alongside having a guild. It's worked really well for the Women & Gaming conversations.

A forum is more inviting. Easier to find. But can be well-moderated. And it would be a clear message to all BGGers that BGG supports and respects its LGBTQIA+ members.

The bigots will come. We know this already. But when it's happening within a forum called LGBTQIA+ BGGers (or whatever name we come up with), it'll be much easier to deal with them.
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Why not just start a thread and see what happens?
 
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