The Toxic Competitive Community for Women

General Discussion
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In all the long years I've been gaming there have only been two instances of females getting harassed and they two were being incredibly toxic in the community server we played on so they deserved every bit of it and they both eventually got perma banned from the server.

As for Overwatch, in all the time I've played OW I've played with a lot of females who used voice comms and never once did anyone harass them. Everyone had a blast winning or losing, because winning is nice and if we lost we just talked about the random stuff from food, pets to Overwatch itself while we queued for the next game.
04/18/2017 10:15 PMPosted by Fraardvark
They don't harass you because you're a girl, they use the fact that you're a girl as a way to harass you. People who feel like harassing will use whatever they can against you. Accent, voice, gender, rank, etc. I know the online game environment isn't always great for women, but harassment isn't endemic to female players.


Exactly that. People are gonna be a*sholes to each other regardless of who they are dealing with. Although on the contrary, I had slightly different experiences, and while I'm no girl, I have met a good amount of them in competitive matchmaking and really, it ain't that bad. People are as toxic as you'd expect in higher ranked matchmaking (or maybe even worse than in lower, because you run into toxic tryhards alot more often), but I don't remember many instances of people behaving like animals when there is a girl active on the voice chat. In fact I noticed that at least in Overwatch and at least in my matches the presence of a girl on the voice chat seems to have some kind of soothing effect on other people. Everyone really stays cool when there's a girl around. Maybe it's a coincidence, cause OP clearly has a different experience, but from my perspective things look a bit better.

Not that there aren't blatantly sexist people out there of course, but so far I've mainly seen them in other games - I remember this one time about a year ago when I queued up in CS:GO with a full premade team. We were losing pretty badly, which seriously triggered my teammates. When they found out that there's a girl on the enemy team, they went full apesh*t, from insulting everyone to focusing just on that girl for the entire match - although she didn't seem to care about it, I felt so embarassed that I went ahead and added her on Steam after the game just to apologize. Seriously, I wouldn't remember that match by now if it wasn't so bad - easily one of my worst experiences in gaming, despite the toxicity not even being aimed at me. In Overwatch though I've yet to see people who would attack another person like that with so idiotic motives.

If you want my advice, there are two ways you can go about it, and it applies both to your regular toxic a*sholes and to the kiddos who annoy you just for being a girl.

-One, you can mute and report them. Boring.

-Two, but this one is hardcore, whenever someone on your team is being toxic, just be as polite to them as humanly possible, make calls and PTFO while being nice all the time - not only it may calm the general atmosphere among teammates, it may also help you win - I have no doubt that it helped me win more matches and climb from Diamond to Master. I know it's tough, because sometimes you just feel like every cell in your body makes you wanna tell them to f*ck right off, but if you can keep the angelic patience and remember that after the match they'll be gone forever, it can really improve your time with the game. Of course it's not gonna work every single time - some lowlifes can't be helped, but more often than not, it's gonna work wonders if you play it right.
04/18/2017 10:27 PMPosted by Hexrgon
I see a lot of people saying to grow thicker skin and to continue report/mute/blocking. I know that if I would like to continue playing for right now that's how it has to be, but I would like to think that things will hopefully be different in the future. Knowing Blizzard and how they like to be at the forefront of the gaming community, I would hope that they have some sort of plan to change the way things are now.

What do you expect them to do, though?

There's a reason why online communities haven't figured out a way to eliminate toxicity, and that's because it's probably impossible. For every !@#$%^- that Blizzard bans, 10 more take his/her place. The very nature of the internet makes it a hive for people who just want to be anonymous *!@#$%^s, and there's no way to fix that without fundamentally changing the nature of the Internet and online communities.

I'm not saying we shouldn't try to moderate the community, but for now, finding a way to kick the -*!@#$%s out is little more than a pipe dream.
until you have had half your team telling you to kill yourself for maining weeb characters you do not know the true meaning of toxicity
04/18/2017 09:59 PMPosted by Hexrgon
Hello,

I've only been playing in competitive fairly recently, but I've noticed and obvious issue with how women are treated when they use their microphones. As a woman, I've recently been hesitant to even join the voice channel. It's not every game, but at the very least it is 1 out of 5 of my games. The reaction is usually anywhere from calling me horrible names to reducing me to a sexual object. I've been reporting them, but I feel like it falls on deaf ears. It makes me sad to know the only ways I can avoid getting berated is to either stay off the voice channel or have a six stack of trusted players. I just want to know if there is anything the company is trying to do to prevent the mistreatment of their female players. I know quite a few women that refuse to play competitive now, and I'm almost at that point myself. I love this game, I'm just at a loss of what to do.

I'm hopeful for a response,

Hexrgon


Report/ block/ move on.

My frustration with many of these threads is this weird idea that 1) Its only women who suffer any kind of abuse in voice chat, and 2) The abuse they suffer is somehow objectively worse than anyone elses.

Yet most of us who have suffered 'abuse' simply use the tools provided to us and move on. We dont let it get to us. We dont create threads complaining about "I just hate all this abuse being slinged at me because Im 'X'."

!@# holes will exist. No one is denying that. Its annoying AF. No one is denying that either. Would this game be better if a handful of people werent dicks? Sure. But a contention point is that this isnt nearly as widespread an issue as its being made out to be, and it typically devolves into an issue of "Women are the only ones suffering and because of this, special deference needs to be given." And before someone suggests "well Sexual harassment is the worst!", you do realize that people who are looking to get under your skin will use exactly the things that they know will get to you. For women, it will be typically sexual harassment. For men, its going to be threats of actual violence, demeaning comments about their masculinity, questioning their sexuality, and a whole slew of other stuff. They look to say the things that they think will cut deepest.

Look, I hear you that it sucks to get $%^- slung your way, but grow up a bit. Its words, not fists. Its a bunch of nobodies and randoms youll never meet in real life. What they say to you shouldnt mean anything because you dont know them, and as such, their crap is worthless than crap. The problem you are having is one where you ARE giving to much thought and consideration to the opinions of a bunch of nonamed faceless *!@ holes. The problem is that you are (and this is speculation) feeding into by reacting to their crap. The problem is you coming to the forums and saying "Im upset and hurt by these words. Please address this." Because every single one of these threads merely shows that their harassment works. That its having its intended effect. That it IS getting to those of you who are posting. And as a result, will KEEP doing it.

You want to get back at these people? You want to shut em up or shut em down? Be the best on your team is a good way. Build up your wit and throw it back at them. Or do the most childish of things that infuriorate them, such as saying "k" and agreeing with every single thing they say in the most flat voice possible. They call you a ho, say "yep Im the ho-iest ho ever." and keep playing. Or just mute them or block them if you dont have time for that.

Honestly, rather than sit here and whinge about how blizzard needs to somehow fix this problem (which would likely end up with them cracking down and squelching chat in general, making it oppressive to even talk lest someone may get banned), why not be proactive in yourself and your games? Takes work, but it gets the job done. Simple as that.

Now time for the downvotes because "Im not sympathetic enough" and "Im defending trolls".
Wow a 14 hour, 16 page controversy.

That stated, I'm probably reiterating something already but don't sweat them too much. Make your plays where you can and be your own competitive self. If you come up with a plan, relay it before the round starts. That's where the discussion about you being a girl will obviously come in though, this will also give you an idea of the people you are going to be playing with the entire match. Not everyone is toxic and communication is important with the team if you as well as them want to win. And if they are being toxic at the very beginning of the match, then adapt, don't mute yourself or fight back as that's just going to cause problems the whole match. If you need to, mute them, that way you can still talk to your team. At least the cooperative ones. Also, pinging and communication not using voice chat works very well.

Either way, Competitive matches are known for try hards so they will use any excuse to show they weren't the reason they are losing or lost. Don't let them cause you to lose hope, and I mean, there isn't anything wrong with playing with a group of people you know or trust right? :)

Anyway, gj to this post as it's prolly going to get ignored in the next few posts anyway x)
I feel like this problem is really easy to solve. All you have to do is actually review the reports you get, and if someone is using racist / sexist / homophobic / whatever language in chat or voice comms, just ban them. Once the word gets out that people are being banned for it, it should stop or at least be significantly diminished.

I suspect you'd find that at most 2-3% of the total playerbase does this garbage, but they have a significant impact to the experience of other players. Just get rid of them.
04/18/2017 10:15 PMPosted by Fraardvark
They don't harass you because you're a girl, they use the fact that you're a girl as a way to harass you. People who feel like harassing will use whatever they can against you. Accent, voice, gender, rank, etc. I know the online game environment isn't always great for women, but harassment isn't endemic to female players.

Just report and move on. I'm not going to say 'toughen up" or anything, because that would be implying toxicity is fine. But there's no efficient way to prevent it, unfortunately. When toxic players gather enough reports, they're bound to get what's coming to them at some point.

Don't let people get the best of you. Let the best of you get to people. I know this make no sense, but still don't let people get the best of you.
We had a way, but Blizzard removed it. #BringBackAvoidPlayer
04/19/2017 12:36 PMPosted by Terotrous
I feel like this problem is really easy to solve. All you have to do is actually review the reports you get, and if someone is using racist / sexist / homophobic / whatever language in chat or voice comms, just ban them. Once the word gets out that people are being banned for it, it should stop or at least be significantly diminished.

I suspect you'd find that at most 2-3% of the total playerbase does this garbage, but they have a significant impact to the experience of other players. Just get rid of them.
There are 25 million people playing Overwatch, @ 2% or 3% you're dealing with 500,000 to 1,000,000 people who you'd theoretically get a reports on, have to individually review the report before deciding if a ban was warranted.

Algorithms will only get you so far, and they aren't likely much help for voice chat, at some point you'll have to hire people to do the review, and 1,000,000 entries is a LOT to go through by a finite number of people.

Conceptually the solution is easy, but when you're dealing with such a large scale problem, actually doing anything about it is near impossible.
04/19/2017 09:05 AMPosted by Kanaya
04/18/2017 10:19 PMPosted by Crybaby
It's not really a gendered issue. This happens to anyone who sounds different. Gay, high-pitched, have a speaking problem/stutter, whatever; you get toxicity for it. I'm a gay dude. In no way do I sound even remotely straight. I've been harassed a bunch for it, both sexually and nonsexually.

The only thing you can do is report, mute, block, and move on.

Edit
Am I getting thumbed down because I dared to challenge the notion that online sexual harassment is a gendered problem? Because it isn't. If that's hard for you to swallow, I don't know what to tell you.


I mean... it absolutely IS a gendered problem. There is ALSO a problem of homophobia and racism, but just bc it happens to more than just women doesn't meant she's wrong to say they are picking on her for her gender.
Unless you sound like a straight, adult, white man then you are likely to get harassed and it needs to stop.

Comms are supposed to be a way to help the team win, but players like this are removing functionality and making other players not want to go competitive bc of how they sound on mic.

While the answer may unfortunately only be as good as "block, report, move on", if we just tell everyone having a problem with it to "toughen up" instead of making the people doing it cut it out, then it's just going to keep happening.


It is absolutely not. This is what other women, gay men, and black men in this thread have been trying to explain. It's not an issue of sexism, racism, and homophobia. It's an issue of trolls latching on to trigger points to send these groups of players into a frenzy. I know this, because I've been on the receiving end of these !@#$%^-s insulting me, and then as soon as I say something on the mic, it suddenly is about me being gay. It's only happened 3 times in OW to me, but it has happened numerous times in other games. These people are trolls who will latch on to anything to insult you. If they even have the faintest inkling you are not a straight white male, they'll tailor their insults to what they perceive you to be, because they want to prove dominance over everyone.

We don't get worse insults. We get different insults.
This is what happens when snowflakes invade or enter predominantly male-spaces.

They told you to go outside and get a life when...
-you locked yourself up with video games
-you were on AOL punting your buddies and sharing music
-you were busy putting your face into that Lord of the Rings book
-you joined the Boy Scouts
... and so on.

Now...
-they're playing video games
-they're on social media like Instagram taking selfies all day
-they're saying nerdy is sexy
-they're selling Girl Scout Cookies

Is there anything they don't complain about when they invade other spaces? They feel a compelling need to make everything revolve around them for the sake of their vanity. Sexual harassment, bullying, verbal harassment, and the list goes on and on. Anything they can say or do to make it just about "them".
I know it sucks to hear this because I fully and naturally respect and love women, and I don't act like a kid who has never seen a woman when I hear one using her microphone.

But Blizzard cannot feasibly and possibly cure immaturity and disrespect. Especially not considering that the majority of video gamers are, of course, males. And that within that crowd a lot of them (if not the majority of them) will be immature in the comfort of their anonymity. There's also the strange phenomenon I've observed on how apparently Overwatch itself seems to bring and provoke the absolute worst out of people in general, be it in text form in general or team chat, or via microphones.

So yes, unfortunately, the only thing you can do to 'safely' and regularly avoid such immature behavior is to play with trusted friends you know won't insult you or act like brainless retards in the presence of a female, or simply never use your microphone. It's definitely not the "positive" and hopeful response you might have wanted to read but this is the reality and the truth, and the truth is usually not fun to hear so there you have it. Not much will change and Blizzard themselves can of course try to act upon the received 'reports' but you'll definitely never think more beyond the "feel that it lands on deaf ears" idea, because it's just factually impossible to educate and calm all those kids and adolescents and failed adults out there playing the game by the thousands.

I truly wish I would have been able to give you a much better answer than this but alas, it's the way things are.
04/18/2017 09:59 PMPosted by Hexrgon
Hello,

I've only been playing in competitive fairly recently, but I've noticed and obvious issue with how women are treated when they use their microphones. As a woman, I've recently been hesitant to even join the voice channel. It's not every game, but at the very least it is 1 out of 5 of my games. The reaction is usually anywhere from calling me horrible names to reducing me to a sexual object. I've been reporting them, but I feel like it falls on deaf ears. It makes me sad to know the only ways I can avoid getting berated is to either stay off the voice channel or have a six stack of trusted players. I just want to know if there is anything the company is trying to do to prevent the mistreatment of their female players. I know quite a few women that refuse to play competitive now, and I'm almost at that point myself. I love this game, I'm just at a loss of what to do.

I'm hopeful for a response,

Hexrgon


competitive is only toxic if you let it be!
1. Pick who you play with
2. mute people
3. don't solo que
4. don't play like sh1t an expect people to not rage

Toxicity in this game is NOT gender specific.

I have a slight lisp and you should hear the stuff people say to me! I just don't let it bother me and mute them to not feed the troll.
I seriously don't understand why this Is a problem , you shouldn't harass people, and especially not because of there gender. I wish people would work on being less volatile, and actually form a strong community. Good luck in the future, for now just try to stay positive :)
You don't have to talk into the mic.

Also I'm not sure, but the US servers seems to be a lot worse than the EU servers in this regard (at least what I gather from this forum, I dont play on US). Of all the games where I've had women talk on voice-chat, not once have anyone gone "are you a girl?" or started berating them because of it. Having played online games for a very long time, I'm surprised by the amount of women who joins voice-chat and talks, as it's been a rarity every since I started playing online-games.
Download clownfish voice changer (system wide) and use that on a really low setting so people can't recognize your gender, lol.

I'm sorry, but this is what happens when you give immature prepubescent males a way to anonymously speak to other people.
The behavior I'm having problems with, is the one that can't really be reported.
'Are you Single?' 'Where do you live?' 'How old are you?' 'Can I add you on facebook?'
Or just constantly having so many friend requests, which I don't even dare to accept anymore, because of some men/guys keep whispering in chat about 'why won't I add them on facebook', 'why won't I speak with them on skype'.
The conversation with one of them ended in me blocking them and hoping they did not come to my house. This was a guy that lives in the same country as I am, who kept asking to add him on facebook, to which I kept saying no I don't add strangers, I just want to play overwatch with him, because he plays good. Which ended up with him going half tantrum, saying he found me on facebook, and he would find out where I live, and he would come to my house.
I removed him from my friendslist. And now I don't want to add anyone as a friend anymore. Quite sad for a game that is so much more fun with friends, and is so much more satisfying with communication to succeed better.
I'm not saying this isn't an issue but I've luckily never heard any of this when their is a female on my team, and I've had a lot of games with females. Maybe it is different at different ranks though.
I have never had this happen. Not even once. I don't honestly know if I should be offended or not. It's starting to bother me.
The only I've gotten about my gender when I used my mic is "You soun like an actual gamer girl." which was said by what sounded like a pre-pubescent boy. Most people don't care if you're a boy or girl; they only care how well you play. If you say that all or most of your games are filled with sexist trolls youre either exaggerating or very unlucky.

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