PDA

View Full Version : Perhaps reconsider the purpose of the board (regarding m/m, straight or gay)



GoForTheLaugh
11-09-2006, 10:47 PM
Note: The mods will not be criticized in this thread, as they do not deserve to be criticized. If anything, their posts are a welcome relief among the many abusive ones.

Instead, I am going to use this post to set up an explanation for what I see as a problem and then make a suggeston.

It has been close to a year since I posted, but I have been thinking of this board of late. The last time I looked at the board (a few months ago?), someone had posted a m/m story and, as usual, many in the peanuts gallery just had to say how disgusting and perverted it was, this despite the fact that it was clearly labelled and those who do not wish to see m/m had no business opening the thread.

I guess this site is as homophobic as ever. :(

That's why I stopped posting in the first place. It would have been impossible for me to remain polite on the board, and I would have lapsed into abusive attacks that would have probably gotten me banned. As it was, the board frustrated me to no end, and I think my last posts and private messages reflected that. As I always do, I used writing to try to understand my own thoughts and see what others had to say; I got this homophobic medley in response: http://www.ticklingforum.com/showthread.php?t=58697

Honestly, I came to this site a year and a half ago to try to understand why this odd fetish appeals to me. I ended up so turned off by the people here that I put stories and pictures I had been saving since I was a teenager in my paper shredder. Having seen the nature of people with this fetish, I find tickling a turn-off. The desire is still there, but I won't even poke friends playfully as I did in the past.

In contrast, when I came out of the closet as a gay person many years ago, the support from other gay people--even people I had just met--was incredible and life-changing. Here, there is no support unless one is heterosexual. A number of the people who contacted me by private message wanted only one thing; when they discovered they were not going to get it--I don't engage in sexual one night stands, which means I also won't indulge in fetish play with strangers--they cut me off, this after a long and interesting correspondence with some (one I had really needed given how weird I felt and still feel about my fetish). How ironic that I was nothing more than a sex (fetish) object for some straight guys. What a reverse of the stereotype.

There were also abusive private messages. What a crime: I am a member of a sexual minority, a gay person. Wait... Isn't this a board full of people who are sexual minorities because they really, really like tickling?

You know, I responded to each message, asking for dialogue and promising to listen. Not one person wrote back. Seems people want to hurl abuse but not communicate. (Back then, I forwarded one of those messages, along with my response, to Mimi so someone among the moderators could see that I was not making this stuff up.)

Isn't dialogue the purpose of this board? Why would someone who hates dialogue join a message board? You people know who you are, and you should be ashamed.

The suggestion: I think the mods might want to reconsider the purpose of this board. Does the board exist to attract anyone who wants to be here and thus be the largest tickling board in the world? If it does (as I believe), that is fine. People have the right to believe what they want. I am as liberal as they come, but I would not want to see someone excluded for being conservative. Conservative beliefs are not inherently anti-anything, and I agree to disagree with my own conservative friends. Nevertheless, the conservative camp (actually, the extremist conservative camp) is where a lot of offensive comments (and not just ones directed at straight m/m or gay people) come from.

For this reason, there should be a disclaimer before new people join that lets them know how homophobic the atmosphere here is; there should further not be any claim that this is a safe place for m/m discussion. It clearly is not. Had I seen such a disclaimer, I would not have joined in the first place, and I would have saved myself quite a bit of verbal gay bashing and pain.

Some have told me that any abuse I have suffered has been my own fault, as I should be discrete about my sexual orienation since I know what some of the members of this forum are like. To that I respond that I am only as loud about my sexual orientation as all of you are about your interest in tickling. Telling me not to be open about who and what I am is the ultimate hypocrisy on a board like this.

If, on the other hand, the mods want a very diverse board--When I joined as an openly gay person a number of people talked about how a more diverse board was desirable--that is also a good thing. However, I do not believe you can have a safe spot for diversity when any loudmouth in America with a computer can come here and berate others.

At the very least, if the mods do want diversity, then there should be a separate m/m section, as many had suggested back when I was a regular poster, and a zero tolerance policy for abuse of that section should be rigorously enforced.

Of course, that calls for extra work on the moderators' part, and I can understand why they may not want to do it. But, as I have already stated, then there should be no hope for diversity, and the board should be honest in stating that it is only for m/f, f/f, and possibly f/m.

It's sad, but it's also the nature of the beast.

Myriads
11-10-2006, 02:47 AM
Over the past months we have taken a stronger line on posts that are made in m/m and f/m threads that are simply made to be insulting.

They are removed, and the posters are warned to stop such actions or loose forum access. Several accounts have been banned for repeat offenses.

We do rely on users to REPORT these violations to us. We do not see every thread, and often only are aware of issues when they are reported. Sadly users rarely report issues.

Did you report any? I don't remember seeing any reports tagged by you. It seems you chose to fight this battle silently without asking for staff support. That's your call, but we were/are here to help with such. The forum has policy on this and has acted on it regularly. Your experience is one that that has had no staff support. It might have been very different had you called us in. We can't help if we don't know.

Regarding harrassing PM's. Forward them to me. Action will be taken. The TMF is not a platform that tolerates hate acts. Once again, we can do nothing if we are never informed of the issues. I have no magic way to know that some member x has written hateful things to person y in PM unless one of them CC's me.

As to putting a warning on the forum. Respectfully, no.

If I add yours. I also need to add one that says:

"Warning, if you are female be prepaired to be mail bombed the second you post by horndogs that have desires you may be offended by"

and

"Warning, unless you meet the exact standards of personal perfection now being sold by the media you will get possibly hurtfull PM's from clods."

and

"Warning: sometimes people on this forum discuss other sexual topics that may offend you. Hell, even the different take on tickling they have may offend you. Some people will crawl up your nose because you gaffed and said that you hate to tickle toes."

The world is full of ugly stupid behaviors. The forum sees its share. I like to see our members as adults as rule from the start. I like to think they are aware the world can and does suck. I hope and pray they behave accordingly (ie: ignore the asshats and) report the issues and let us act.

Homophobia is real and ugly and yes, here. So is sexism, and other isms.

That sucks. But we are doing our best to deal with it as it appears. I regret that your experience on the forum was soured by a handful of people who for whatever reason have chosen to be prefrencial nazis. As I said we do our best, and do act when informed.

The TMF remains a place for all people who enjoy tickling between consenting adults of any gender combination to gather and discuss.

Are we perfect? No.

Are we working to get better? Every day.

Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-10-2006, 01:24 PM
I had to think carefully about my response, as some of what you wrote (blaming the victim) rubbed me the wrong way. I in no way wish to offend you, the other mods, or the members; it is your board, not mine, and you are the one who foots the bill.

I will write very carefully so that I can discuss the issue honestly yet still remain in good taste.

About suffering in silence (i.e. it is my fault that nothing was done because I supposedly did not say anything):

Actually, I posted regularly on the board about the homophobic abuse I suffered, and many people, including moderators, posted in those same threads. Some people even responded to me in those threads, calling the homophobic behavior unacceptable. In addition, some of my former signatures also reflected the issue (and in letters as large and colorful as my present signature). So, no, I did not choose silent suffering, as I am not a masochist.

I dealt with the situation up front. Tattling behind people's backs so Alpha Males can do the dirty work behind the scenes is not the sort of behavior I feel acceptable. It would feel like being a helpless little boy bullied in schoolyard, a boy who never learns how to defend himself and instead runs to some beefy guy to protect him and thus fight his battles for him.

Despite my proactive stance, I have never once posted offensively nor attacked others in private messages. When I realized it was becoming harder to adhere to The Golden Rule (as you yourself call it in your sticky in TMF Announcements), I did the proper thing and left the board. Members of your board may call me a fag, but I know that I am the real man while they embody the qualities they attribute to fags.

You're right; I never asked for your help. At one point, though, I did break down when I saw some pro-gay posts from Mimi, and, as I mentioned, I sought her help with PMs. She said there was not much the mods could do, and I fully understood and respected her position. She remains one of the few on the board I truly like and respect.

So... If there isn't much the mods can do, it seems I followed the best course: leaving.

Now, as for the warnings...

I think there should also be warnings advising women of the predatory nature of some of the men here. I have not gone into it in this thread, but last year I posted many times about the sickening way people on this board look upon women as mere objects. (Mind you, it is just as wrong when fellow gays look upon men as mere objects.)

Women are human beings with as many needs, desires, and emotions as men. They deserve respect by virtue of their existence. Any man who calls them the usual sexist words should stop to consider exactly where he came from.

I am a long-term member in good standing on two other message boards, and these issues rarely arise. Granted, the boards have nothing to do with sex or fetishes, but my being gay is not an issue. In addition, what few sexist posts there have ever been were promptly dealt with.

I understand that you are working to make the board better, and that is why I have voiced my disappointment and made suggestions. Warnings, a m/m space, and a women-only space would help the board enormously.

TMF Jeff
11-10-2006, 02:07 PM
personally I would rather just crack down on the anti-gay crap than start segregating the forum based on sexuality.

Mimi
11-10-2006, 03:08 PM
I think you misunderstood me, GFTL. When you PM'd me, it had been in regards to a harassing PM you had received. I had told you there was not much we moderators could do in terms of PM exchanges....we have no proof of what actually transpired and forwards can be altered to ones advantage. So our advice in terms of PM's is simply to put the harassing user on ignore, and you will receive no more PM's from them. It's a problem a user can solve for themselves.

If that same person, or any other person, were to flame or harass you on the open forum, all you need to do is report the violation via the report post function, and we will take care of it asap. We do NOT allow the open abuse or harassment of members on this forum for any reason, least of all sexual orientation. Every member of our staff is very welcoming and supportive of any and all partner preferences, and will stomp on anyone who attempts to make someone feel uncomfortable over said preferences.

We are more than happy to help you out, and to make the TMF a welcoming atmosphere for all members regardless of sexual orientation. The last thing we want is for anyone to feel uncomfortable expressing their stance on such topics. But we need you to help us achieve that.

GoForTheLaugh
11-10-2006, 04:20 PM
I appreciate the responses--I really do--but I think I have to restrain myself and not post another lengthy one. I feel as if we are on two different tracks and I cannot be heard.

I am not blaming you moderators for what happens on the board; rather, I am just posting in the suggestions forum.

Fighting the anti-gay stuff would be nice, but, as long as Joe Country Bumpkin is allowed on the board, you'll never win. It's either allow everyone (and alienate minorities) or support diversity (and alienate the cultural Nazis).

That being said, it would be perfectly acceptable for you to decide that you do not want gays on the board; it is, after all, your board. Anyone who tells you that you must include gays or any other community knows nothing about privately-owned boards.

However, if you do want diversity (at least, that's what a number of people said when I was active on the board last year), then you need to understand where gays are coming from. Doesn't it strike you as odd that, on such an incredibly large board, you can count the number of gay people in under five seconds? Krokus is an incredible person to whom I give much credit, but what other gay person would join a board filled with so many hateful posts? As a regular poster who logged in close to three hundred posts in my time here, I left for the same reason other gays keep away. My life, like the lives of everyone, is hard enough. I came here to let off steam and relax, not be hated.

Myriads
11-10-2006, 11:42 PM
I am a long-term member in good standing on two other message boards, and these issues rarely arise. Granted, the boards have nothing to do with sex or fetishes, but my being gay is not an issue. In addition, what few sexist posts there have ever been were promptly dealt with.

Congratulations, you have identified one of the qualities that makes the TMF a different experience then your other online message boards. And why things happen here that don't on those other happy places.

We are a sexually oriented forum.

Stop and thing about that for a sec.

No really. Think about what a hot button topic peoples sexualities are. How people guard, get nurotic, and weird about their OWN sexualities.

Think about what part that sexualized environment plays in what happens here.

It's important.

Here ones sexuality DOES have a weight on things. Why? Because people are irrational about thier sexualities, and when they encounter other sexual elements in this envoronment they are extra sensitive to them. This leads to bad behavior from some. It's not correct nor is it acceptable but it is not something that can be swept under the rug either. It's an ugly side to our yet unfinished social growth.

It's human. And like taking a shit it's not pretty. But it happens often.

We hope that our members always flush and wash their hands. But for those that do not, we try to encourage them to join the majority opinion. For the party hardy sorts that like to take a dump on the coffee table each and every party they loose their invite to the party.

Yes, I'm having fun with anologies. But go with it, I'm cheerful tonight.

Your possible solution to this issue is: Fighting the anti-gay stuff would be nice, but, as long as Joe Country Bumpkin is allowed on the board, you'll never win. It's either allow everyone (and alienate minorities) or support diversity (and alienate the cultural Nazis).

How do I ID the 'country bumpkins'? Perhaps I need some form of test to tell how people think about things? Perhaps if they show a certain set of prefrences they should have less rights then others? They should be punished for what they may do, how they may think? Even before they even act?

I'll be honest I wouldn't want to run a community that operated like that.

It's sad that you think that we'll 'never win'. It means that you have given up on discussion, education and the slow long process of changing a populations mind by consistantly showing how we feel they are incorrect.

Human systems don't change fast. They change slow. Changes dictated at the point of a gun last only as long as the threats do. And behind closed doors away from the threat surface in secret.

But if only I could wipe out bigatry and sexism and whatever with a wave of my tzars wand. I can't. They are embedded in the society and will only pass one mind at a time. We've changed several minds here. That's progress.

Here is a piece of info that may surprise you. The TMF has a higher female membership and participation then almost any sexually oriented forum on the web that I have seen (and I've seen a lot of them) That was not true six years ago. We took steps to make the place welcoming to woman and they came and stayed. Did we stamp out all the sexism? nope. We couldn't. But the women... the wonderful women quickly IDed the idiots in the group and as a mass ignored them. And soon most of the men did also. They faded to gray. Are we clod free? Nope. New ones pop up. But they rarely find a happy home here and either change thier actions or go.

Dealing with the m/m issue is much the same. Have we gotten it right yet? Clearly no. But we are working at it. And the answer is not limiting our membership to some 'right thinking' group.

This forum is always a work in progress.

That being said, it would be perfectly acceptable for you to decide that you do not want gays on the board; it is, after all, your board. Anyone who tells you that you must include gays or any other community knows nothing about privately-owned boards.

Where do you get the idea we don't want gay people here? I (and other staff) said in the posts above the TMF is a forum that welcomes ticklers of all sorts, so long as thier tastes are consensual and legal. You seem to have some interest in painting the forum and its staff as holding some form of bigotry. Is that your intent?

About suffering in silence (i.e. it is my fault that nothing was done because I supposedly did not say anything):

Actually, I posted regularly on the board about the homophobic abuse I suffered, and many people, including moderators, posted in those same threads. Some people even responded to me in those threads, calling the homophobic behavior unacceptable. In addition, some of my former signatures also reflected the issue (and in letters as large and colorful as my present signature). So, no, I did not choose silent suffering, as I am not a masochist.

I dealt with the situation up front. Tattling behind people's backs so Alpha Males can do the dirty work behind the scenes is not the sort of behavior I feel acceptable. It would feel like being a helpless little boy bullied in schoolyard, a boy who never learns how to defend himself and instead runs to some beefy guy to protect him and thus fight his battles for him.

We who mod assume that if a post is not reported that it is acceptable to the average user that has replied to it. We assume that you as a user have felt the post was not offensive enough to warrent a rules action. That the behavior while not 100% correct, was neither serious enough to warrent an action.

Look at it like we may. I'm reading a thread and Clod A says something that makes me go... "Hmmm thats out of line I think" but right below it there is a member of what I expected to be the offended minority posting away. So I think "Hmmm perhaps it was not so bad if the person replied. Perhaps I don't have a proper read on what IS a problem in this specific sub community on the forum". So I move on.

If you feel the atmosphere is not good, then tell us! We respond to reports based on the number of people claiming an issue, and number of reports.

I had to think carefully about my response, as some of what you wrote (blaming the victim) rubbed me the wrong way. I in no way wish to offend you, the other mods, or the members;

At no point did I 'blame the victim'. That is an offensive claim. I said that if you are troubled by a post report it. If you do not, then how are we supposed to know there is a problem?

You spoke of your troubles but you didn't show us where these troubles were, or WHY they were troubles. Yet you expect us to understand the problem and issue and act to fix it.

I wish we were that good.

Regarding special gender subforums: Ghetto forums don't solve issues. They isolate material into pens that become easy targets. They make it easy for people to pretend that everyone is just like them. That's not building a community. It's building a series of pretty prisons.

Women go there. Hetro men here. Gay men over there. Bi men... well go to both of these places. Bi women, every one loves you! Go everyplace. And so on... a place for all and all in thier place.

No not here. You are all our members. You all like tickling. That's what joins us, and is the best way for us to bridge our other differences. That's the strength we build on.

Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-11-2006, 11:49 AM
I really don't want to fight you; as a moderator, you deserve my respect. However, once again, I feel I am not being heard.

I don't think you understood some of my remarks within the context I created for them. Where did I say that the staff does not want gays here? Go back to my previous post and look at the context. Speaking hypothetically, I said that you had the right to deny access to gays if you chose since it was your board. In other words, gays are here because you allow them to be here. It is the same with every person on this board; being here is a privilege you grant, not a right. The board is private property.

Then, in the next paragraph, I spoke about the board's desire for diversity, something that I wrote about in other posts on this thread. If I am writing about the mods' desire for diversity, I cannot also be writing about their desire for there to be no diversity (unless I am engaged in some incredible leap of logic).

I also did not ask you to identify 'country bumpkins'. Again, look at the context for my remark. My bumpkin remark backs up a remark in a previous post by saying that allowing everyone means alienating the people under constant attack. Running a more exclusive board on which many have been denied access means far less (perhaps no) attacks, with only the attackers being alienated.

I don't necessarily approve of the idea of denying people access to this board: See my remark about conservatives in an earlier post. It would be wrong to deny anyone access based on group affiliation; nevertheless, you have the right to do so if you wish since it is your board. (The sentnece that follows the semi-colon is hypothetical.)

The whole point of this thread is my saying that you cannot have your cake and eat it, too. All-inclusive is an oxymoron, as you must then include those who exclude others. For example, all-inclusive would mean including neo-Nazis despite their agenda of non-inclusion. It is very, very admirable but also idealistic to think one can be fair to everyone. The reason you struggle so hard to babysit on this board, I believe, is that you are being to nice to everyone--and that will only be thrown back in your face. You can choose to alienate the attackers of the attacked, or you can maintain the status quo and spend your time as a policeman instead of enjoying your site. In the end, that is not fair to you. Since it is your site created for your purposes, your needs come before those of anyone else.

I have no doubt that you have improved conditions for women here. Some of your mods are women with a vested interest in being safe here; moreover, the males here want to see women participate since their fetish involves women. But do you honestly think most people here care whether or not gays are treated well? Sure, there are a small number of politically correct members, the mods included, but the state of women on the board and the state of gays on the board is an apples and oranges comparison.

Gays have not won any rights out of compassion and goodwill, and all the Stonewalls and marches on Washington amount to nothing. The only reason we have any rights at all is because many gays boast huge spending power since they don't have to put aside income to support families. Less-homophobic corporations want that disposable income and thus support gay issues and take out ads in gay periodicals. Gays with power and influence then use their economic clout to continue to affect change.

On this board you have only the power of persuasion, which means no power at all. Economics is not a factor here, as the members of TMF are not out to profit from gay dollars. That is why I said you will never win. Human greed always wins, and as long as gays have money, they will gain more rights. I, however, am just barely middle class and, like too many gay people, am struggling. I don't have an economic base to affect change on this board.

Further, in addition to a full-time job, I do volunteer work (in the heterosexual community, I might add, since I do care about others), help take care of my parents, and live in a conservative/Republican/homophobic neighborhood. When I come to a forum like this, I just don't have any energy left and simply cannot deal with the hate of your members. I have limits, and I just cannot be part of a site where I am not accepted as the person I am. In order to function in the real world, I cannot be on a board like this.

Again, I am not blaming the moderators, and I am not trashing your board. I am trashing a large number of selfish people who care about getting off and nothing more, however.

Myriads
11-11-2006, 04:17 PM
On this board you have only the power of persuasion, which means no power at all. Economics is not a factor here, as the members of TMF are not out to profit from gay dollars. That is why I said you will never win.

Economics is a huge factor here. The people who advertise here have a vested interest in things, and over the years, the number of producers that have begun to do f/m and m/m clips has been growing. MTJ has been very successful with a line of /m publications. These folks pay attention to the forum and it's members wants VERY closely, and respond.

The fact that the amount of /m material is growing each year tells me that some segment (and a previously unserved one) of the membership is flexing it's finacial muscles. And I'm sure that the segement will continue to grow. You know it is when you see the larger producers now doing /m stuff on occasion, and the number of new /m clips4sale storefronts is huge.

With numbers comes strength. Your demographic is growing here. And in the six years that we've been about there has been a lot of growth towards acceptence. Is it instant? No. But it is progress.

You may have given up on us. The majority of your demographic has not.

Further, in addition to a full-time job, I do volunteer work (in the heterosexual community, I might add, since I do care about others), help take care of my parents, and live in a conservative/Republican/homophobic neighborhood. When I come to a forum like this, I just don't have any energy left and simply cannot deal with the hate of your members. I have limits, and I just cannot be part of a site where I am not accepted as the person I am. In order to function in the real world, I cannot be on a board like this.

The spending of ones free time should always be a net plus, not a minus, and I can clearly understand why you'd choose to not waste your energy on battles here that you face in the real world. That you face such here is very regretable.

No one can create the form of online community that you wish without building a closed system first. What you seem to want is a by invitation yahoo style group. You get vetted by a member and get acceess, and only those with keys get in and post and interact. As everyone is known, things go swimingly.

The TMF was not founded on a principle of exclusion. It was designed to be as open as possible. We wanted anyone to be able to come and say what they had to say regarding tickling and it's part in their life. In fact we chose to make it easy. The result is a living growing community that is one of the webs largests specialty fetish sites. We have an activity rate that mainstream sites like Howard Sterns envy. Posts are answered here. People see what is said. You can reach people here. If we were not an adult content site we could be making life-changing sized piles of cash from ads. Alas, as an adult site we don't get that smiley option.

That level of activity is what we wanted back in '00 when the place was opened. We knew that there would be problems and troublesome users. I average one death threat a week just because I run the place. That was a surprise. But people take their sexuality and access to free porn very very seriously. One shrugs and moves on.

We are fully aware that we cannot create some tickling utopia. And people can and do get banned. But at the same time I'm not handing out bans just because a member thinks a specific way.

A member is free to believe and discuss things here as long as they stay within the rules for interaction as we have defined them. If they cross them, and we see that, they can and do loose access.

It seems from your posts, that your view, is after a long day of real world crap you come to the forum to relax, and once here you sadly find people who have ideas which you rightfully dislike. They poison the atmosphere for you. And after that long day of slogging through crap you lack the energy and desire to hold your nose here as you relax. I can gronk how that would annoy. And see why you'd split.

You are as offended by them as they are of you. But you both have the right to be here. I have gotten letters from many hetro users saying they were leaving because of our "gay-friendly'" agenda over the years. They, like you, always have the right to walk. I wish you all well. I'd like all folks to stay but it's not always possible.

You face a harder path in life simply because of who you are.

That sucks.

But as a fellow adult I'm sure you've come to know that big swaths of life suck. It's how one uses the parts that don't that make the real difference at days end.

It sounds as if the TMF fails to meet your needs in those parts. I regret that. But I fully realize that we cannot be everything to all. We just do our best to be as much to as many as we can.

Along the way we work to make all the good numbers bigger. Perhaps in another six years we'll be more to yoru taste. We'll see.

Again, I am not blaming the moderators, and I am not trashing your board. I am trashing a large number of selfish people who care about getting off and nothing more, however.

We have over 40,000 users. Well less then 1000 are active as posters. The others (not all) are here often for one thing. Getting stuff to get off on.

That's a big reason why we are here also. Making it simpler for people to find the jack (or jill) off material of personal taste easily. Many of us come from a time when we could count the number of pieces of tickling porn we had seen or owned on one hand. I had a member write to me and say "If I had seen the TMF's Story forums in 1978 I'd have lost my mind on a weeks long porn binge that may have incapcitated me for life". That made me smile. It reminds me of how the world has changed.

Only having the desire to get off is not selfish.

To try and stop others from getting off, or relaxing, with the material of their own choice is selfish. That we work against.

Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-11-2006, 06:16 PM
Death threats because of a tickling website? Although I am not surprised, I think it is sick. I am not surprised because I know atheists with websites on atheism who get death threats. You should see the foul language Christians use when writing to them. As a gay Christian friend once said, I wonder if they also speak that way to their kids in church?

I do feel for you.

The idea that people belonging to a sexual minority (heterosexual tickling fans) would leave this board because it is has a supposed gay agenda is equally ridiculous. Don't those people realize that they face the same prejudice as gays, that the religious right would love to deny them their economic security, their children, and their church memberships unless they "repent" of their "perverted" sexual ways? They live in the closet, the way many gays do. How many church elders or good old boys have they told of their love for tickling? And why haven't they? Rhetorical questions, of course.

What it boils down to is their shame in being tickle fans, and their need to find people they think lower than themselves. That is what they are using your site for.

I don't live in a closet, and I would rather leave this board and never engage in tickle activities than go back into a closet and deny who I am.

Let me stop for a moment. This is important.

While I am happy to continue this discussion since I find it interesting, I don't want to waste your time. I think each of us is coming at this from a different version of real-world experiences, and I doubt that either of us will be swayed to the other's opinion. If you are interested in this discussion, I will continue. If, on the other hand, I am taking you away from running the board and other real-world pursuits, I will not think badly of you for bringing it to and end.

Back on track...

In the end, I don't see how I can be part of a board that stresses me out more after a stressful day, and I am glad that you understand that. Even if I could put my political concerns aside, how can I possibly enjoy the board?

You have implied again that I want to deny others freedom of expression. I wonder, though... Would you be as willing to accept the loudmouths on this board if they were denying African Americans or Jews or m/f fetish fans the right to exist and enjoy the same Constitutional freedoms as other Americans? Yes, I would deny those loudmouths freedom of expression on a board if I owned one, and I am neither African American nor Jewish nor a person who engages in m/f fetish. Again, it is a choice between alienating attackers or alienating the attacked. I just don't see a kumbaya board where everyone gets along as a possibility.

In the end, what you do or don't do is your call since it's your board. You don't have to agree with me, and if we were friends in the real world we would simply agree to disagree and get on with our friendship. It isn't my right to show any public emotion regarding your decision about your board, but as a person with gay pride, I must choose not to be part of it for reasons stated earlier in this post.

About standards of behavior...

There are no gay tickling boards like this one, but there are some small sites (like Foot Friends) on line that I looked at in 2005. Straight men who identify as straight are treated very respectfully by the gay majority, and the one time some yokel had something negative to say about straights on the board the other gays let him have it en masse. One person even wrote that we are no better than those who hate us if we close the site to straight people.

I have also read (granted never seen, as I have never practiced this fetish apart from a few pokes here and there) that the straight guys who go to largely gay m/m gatherings are made to feel comfortable; it is also understood that if someone, gay or straight, says no sexual contact, that is the rule.

That is the very standard to which I hold this board--a realistic standard based on real-world behavior instead of pie-in-the-sky ideals.

But, I recognize that I am being unfair, as your life does not revolve around policing this board. I don't know what else I can say, other than that I regret not being able to participate.

Economics...

Well, you know the board better than I do, and I am in no position to dipute your claims. Still, in 2005, when I was active on the board, I did not see any gay person other than Krokus and some random guy who sent me a private message to announce his being gay because a moderator asked him to.

But if the m/m community is indeed growing here, then it may be in your interest to recruit more m/m practitioners, both gay and straight. If I continue with this thought, I will merely repeat my first post in this thread.

Then again, I think you will profit more by selling to the loudmouth m/f only homophobes instead of a few guys who like f/m or m/m, so perhaps it is not in your interest to recruit more m/m at all. I have absolutely no idea. You are not corporate America, and I understand that you have to go where the search for profit takes you.

RobAce
11-13-2006, 04:21 AM
GTFL,
I am not a mod...oboviously, but I and many others see me as a moderating voice here in the forum and I reading this thread I can see where there is a diffrence in understanding.
First off let me say that of the many boards I am a member of (mostly non-fetish related, but there are a couple of others I do go to) this is the best ran and most non-flammed forum of any fetish forum on the web. Jeff and Myraids have a right to be proud of that.
I am sorry that you have taken so many out-of-whack and out-of-touch persons opinions so personally to even get upset about what people say.
This forum is a LARGE communtiy filled with every segment of society. Where in certain discussions this is a good thing, in other very sensitive subjects such as homosexuality it can be a bad thing.
A personal crusade is not easy to undertake, alone or with a few friends. It takes a group to make any real changes anywhere.
I know you are sick of seeing every M/M thread getting hijacked and assisine statements being made in them. But as you have the right to see M/M and enjoy M/M, people have the right to voice their opinions against it.
You are asking for your voice not to be silenced but for their voices to be silenced. Not a very open way to handle things, but I digress.
I know you have seen (as have I) many threads with ill statements towards M/M tickling, but to be honest with you Ive seen more threads with insulting comments about people who believe in god or have a true belief in religion. Those people are ridiculed more than those posting M/M threads.
While neither is warranted this is a board for discussion, whether we like the discussion or not.
To ask there be some sort of "warning" when people join is just bad for the board and bad for the members, current and future. To lump this entire board as being "anti-gay" is very unfair to the Mods and others who have agreed with you or stood beside you and even people like me who have no real opinion on the subject other than "whatever floats your boat dude"

Myraids has the best suggestion. If you see a unwarranted post, flag it. It will be deleted and dealt with. If the yokel does it again, further steps are taken.
Ultimately Myraids and Jeff are the law. What they say goes. And if the past is any indication on how they act, then they will act accordingly and as quick as possible. But with 40,000 members and only like 12 or less Mods, they expect that we as young adults, adults, or old fogeys in Venray's case (LOL, I hope Ven doesnt see that.....), they expect that we can police ourselves to a degree. If you want to make a diffrence in getting rid of the intolerance then be the bigger person and be the example. Stay on, report the miscreants, perhaps start a yahoo group, or even a PM circle with others that believe as you do.
You dont have read every post, if something is going to offend you, skip over it, flag it and move on.
On this forum we all have to have a bit of personal responsibility.
Creating another sub-forum wont help either, people will go there to be idiots just to be spiteful. Thats just the way it is. Besides the idea is to mesh togeather this community not segragate it.
Your personal feelings and expierences have tainted your expierence here and I wish you had not had these issues, but they are going to happen and to ask that the TMF post a disclaimer...as I said before...is an insult to myself and all the others that have worked to keep this board flame-free. Myself, I havent put in the work that the MODS have but I have done my fair share of thread killing, reporting and being a moderate tone to otherwise heated discussions. I dont agree with everyone but I can understand their POV. I understand your POV and can agree with it, but is punishing everyone for the actions of a few REALLY the best solution?
I dont think it is.
If you are really concerned, again I advocate that you take the challenge and spend time while looking at the M/M threads to flag and report all those who post in a M/M thread something off-topic or insulting.
Where everyone has a right to express their opinion, they should create their own thread to do so, and not post in someone elses how disgusting or immoral their thread subject is.

The only suggestion I would make on this matter is perhaps (I dont know all the preferences of the MODS) is that perhaps we need a MOD who is gay and whom would be looking at M/M threads more often. Or perhaps a MOD whom is not gay but is objective to take all flags from those posts and PM those making the hijacking posts as well as deleting the posts. Perhaps a single dedicated MOD to be on constant "hijack watch" could be not only a great addition but a good compromise as well.

But that just my dollar and two cents worth.
Sorry to get involved if its not my place Myraids or Jeff, but I was reading it and I felt maybe I could contribute something constructive.
And GFTL, I also am sorry if I got involved without your permission and if my posting here was in anyway incorrect or over-the-line, please accept my apologies. Just trying to help.

Thanks all.

Rob

Myriads
11-13-2006, 02:48 PM
While I am happy to continue this discussion since I find it interesting, I don't want to waste your time. I think each of us is coming at this from a different version of real-world experiences, and I doubt that either of us will be swayed to the other's opinion. If you are interested in this discussion, I will continue. If, on the other hand, I am taking you away from running the board and other real-world pursuits, I will not think badly of you for bringing it to and end.

No one gets to waste my time but me. No worries.

Would you be as willing to accept the loudmouths on this board if they were denying African Americans or Jews or m/f fetish fans the right to exist and enjoy the same Constitutional freedoms as other Americans?

So long as they follow the rules of posting and behavior they are allowed here. We do not ban individuals for the thoughts/opinions they hold. We ban people for breaking our posting rules. You can believe anything you like as long as you don't cross the clear lines we've drawn.

Once more it seems your issue comes down to an atmosphere issue. It's not just what these people say that troubles you, it can be as simple as that they are allowed in the same room as you, and thier ideological stink makes you wish to not be about.

We have a set of rules for atmosphere issues. If a members actions consistantly lead in our opinion to creating an atmosphere here that we see as detrimental to the other members enjoyment of the forum then they can (and have been) removed.

This is not a form of moderation that is easily seen. As the member who is the issue simply... stops. But it's done as needed.

As the member above pointed out, personal responsibility is what we ask of our members. That does not only include not being a jackass with ones posts, but helping us solve problems if you see them, and not going vigillante on them which makes for more work for us. Reporting issues lets us clear them, and ID problem users for possible action. Through that the board (and in turn its atmosphere) improves. Yes, it's a reactive structure. That's because I don't believe in thoughtcrime. An action is needed before we act.

It isn't my right to show any public emotion regarding your decision about your board, but as a person with gay pride, I must choose not to be part of it for reasons stated earlier in this post.

Actually it is a right that you have here. I've always been open to feedback, and emotions are clearly among the accepted forms that it can take.

As to your choice, that of course is always your own. Leaving because you don't wish to face the same crap you see in the real world every day when you are trying to relax is very understandable. As I said earlier while the TMF tries to be the right place for all, we of course cannot be.

I just don't see a kumbaya board where everyone gets along as a possibility.

Nor do we. We DO see a board where people get the chance to try to get along though. Strength in diverse opinions, life experience, and tastes. We ask that people work to be positive members of the community as a rule, and tolerent ones at worst, when they cannot manage that. Sometimes in life you just need to hold your nose.

it may be in your interest to recruit more m/m practitioners

We recruit no one. People come to use the forum by their own choice (much as you have) as they do they find the parts they like and add or read as they see fit.

In our years we went from being 100% /f content, to having several members step forward and discuss how they enjoyed f/m and post about their experiences at gatherings and clubs. Did they see crap for doing so? Yes. And we dealt with the people who 'poisoned' the atmosphere for them, and slowly the posts they made received less and less flack. Today m/m is starting to be discussed. It faces some of the same issues. And like before we are working to solve them.

Take care,
Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-13-2006, 06:47 PM
Thank you for posting, Robace252. I am glad that you did. Since only moderators had been posting here, I was wondering if anyone else cared (or even read this thread). You are hardly over-the-line, and should not apologize for anything. This is a civil discussion, after all, and I wish the good ol' boys who hijack threads could emulate it.

Myriads and the other mods in this thread are just as civil. I don't mean to imply that this forum is badly run; let me make that clear right here. I also do not recall calling the board anti-gay. There is indeed homophobia here, and I called a spade a spade back when I was active in 2005 just as I am doing right now. That does not mean in any way that the board is inherently anti-gay or that the mods are anti-gay (as I am pretty sure they are not--and was equally sure in 2005). Nevertheless, I am not comfortable being here for reasons I have mentioned. The section in which this thread appears is for suggestions, and I am making one.

The mods do not wish to take it, and that is fine. I have stated my opinion, but I claim no monopoly on truth. I believe I am right, and maybe I am. Maybe the mods are right. Maybe we are both a little right and a little wrong.

I agree with you that religious people are wrongly attacked here. In 2005 I did post once about how I, an atheist, found the attacks on Christians distasteful and not in keeping with the spirit of tolerance that this board stands for (ironic considering what I am posting now). Anyway, I cannot find this post...

----------------------------

EDIT: I searched again, and I found it. It's post number 22 on the second page of the following thread:
http://www.ticklingforum.com/showthread.php?t=62270

----------------------------

...but I did find the thread I started in which I wanted to understand why people were open about expressing Christianity on a fetish board. That was my way of trying to accept and understand. You will find that I remained respectful to all even though I have been personally and viciously hurt by Christians in and am an ex-Fundamentalist. In fact, you yourself posted in that thread a year ago: http://www.ticklingforum.com/showthread.php?t=64706

I do not like Christians all that much, but I will not tolerate their being attacked. Further, (despite my young age) I teach in a university, and my students are not allowed verbal attacks on Christians for the same reason they are not allowed verbal attacks on atheists, racial minorities, white people, women, men, gays, and so on. They can discuss feelings of discomfort, however, as a way to open dialogue, and they can always say they disagree with someone's stance.

Now... Why do people have a "right" to voice a negative opinion about m/m? They have the right to ignore it; they have the right to */f threads without any */m discussion in them; they have the right to say they would never engage in m/m and don't like to see it. But, they signed up for a board that allows m/m fans on board. That means they must at the very least tolerate its being here whether or not they like it.

That is what I meant by the board's needing to make a choice about its purpose. I should never have joined, and indeed I would not have had I known what was in store. I am hardly a perfect person, and I have my shameful (even heterophobic) moments, but I do not deserve to see what I like demeaned by people every chance they get. I cannot enjoy myself on this board when that nonsense goes on.

When I said that people were selfish if all they did was come here to get off and Myriads rightly called me on it, I realized that I should have worded my statement better. I did not mean that it was selfish to ignore discussions and others on the board because one was here only to get off (although that is how my poorly worded sentence sounds). Instead, I meant that people were selfish if they cared only about their own sexual affairs to the point that they had to kill the fun for everyone else. (In addition, much straight m/m is horseplay practiced by people without a tickling fetish and is thus not sexual at all, but that is another story...)

There have always been many things on this board I do not like, but unless someone is abusive I do not feel the need to voice my disapproval. As you said, "Whatever floats your boat."

There was a time back in 2005 when I said something nasty about BDSM and was called on it. http://www.ticklingforum.com/showthread.php?t=60997 I admitted that my remark was uncalled for and reflected a prejudice on my part; for that reason, I started a thread about BDSM tolerance (even though I do not practice BDSM). http://www.ticklingforum.com/showthread.php?t=61298&highlight=bdsm

So, yes, I can be prejudiced and I can say things I should not. But I can also say I was wrong. I have yet to hear even one person who attacked me say anything civil to me.

This sounds horribly self-righteous, I realize, and I admit that self-righteousness is part of my personality given some of the events in my life over the years. Nevertheless, it is the unedited version of how I feel.

I'd love to take you up on your challenge, but I just don't have the energy. I recently brought down my blood pressure, which had been borderline, and have kept it 120/80 for more than a year without any medication. It was just a matter of eating better and reducing stress. (I had already been exercising regularly for many years). Being on this board ought to be a stress reducer, but for me it is the opposite.

You wrote "Perhaps we need a MOD who is gay." Good idea. I remember that Krokus was very, very busy in his personal life, however, and I am not a known quality. In addition, I am still iffy about this fetish, so I would not be a good candidate anyway. Well, so much for the two gay men on the board. Are there any available lesbians? Any available straight m/m fans?

----------------------------------

To Myriads:

I respect what you wrote, and I fear that I would merely be repeating myself if I responded at length. Yes, atmosphere is a real issue, and it is not just about groups to which I belong. I have no problem with m/f, but if I did I would not take it upon myself to hijack threads about it. That is just wrong behavior, and I do not feel I should be given the "right"--yes, "right"--to express such venom here. All members of this forum have the right to enjoy whatever they enjoy as long as the activities are among consenting adults and no one is hurt physically or psychologically. Allowing me to poison m/f threads--a hypothetical situation--is enabling me (to use the psychological term).

I am not sure if I agree with your analogy. The people who like f/m are perceived as heterosexual (which most of them are, although I am sure there are also some gays who practice f/m or m/f). Those who practice m/m are perceived as gay (and many are, although on this board there are clearly some heterosexual males who practice m/m and a number of heterosexual females who like to watch or fantasize about m/m). Similarly, the largest demographic for Showtime's Queer as Folk was not gay men; it was heterosexual women, some of whom had their husbands or boyfriends watch with them.

No, you don't want me showing too much emotion here. Trust me on this one. I have quite a temper, but you will never see it on this board. The main reason I left in the first place was my fear that I would no longer be able to hold in the anger I felt when I read some of the posts here. As a user, I am required to be civil even if others are not. Further, as a gay man, it is in my interest to show that I am better than my detractors.

Bottom line: I am glad that you have allowed me to post honestly. I am also glad that many of you have a good board with a family feel. (The sense of friends-as-family and mutual support is very important to the gay community, and I have heard that it is iequally mportant to the tickling and BDSM communities.) I regret that I have been unable to be part of the TMF family, and I say that with no malice or self-righteousness.

GoForTheLaugh
11-18-2006, 02:56 PM
Have to add one more thing:

As I cited in my previous posts, I defended Christians, BDSM practitioners, and women when I was active on the board even though I do not belong to any of those groups. I find it very sad and telling that the only people who responded to this thread were three moderators (who may or may not have been merely covering themselves since I criticized their board) and one member. And my last post doesn't even get a response. I guess I am not surprised.

Clearly, most people on this board are concerned only with getting off. Well, that is their right. But how interesting that heterosexuals with this fetish look on gays with disgust; they project themselves onto gays and dehumanize them--and then hijack threads with any sort of m/m discussion.

isabeau
11-18-2006, 03:16 PM
Have to add one more thing:

As I cited in my previous posts, I defended Christians, BDSM practitioners, and women when I was active on the board even though I do not belong to any of those groups. I find it very sad and telling that the only people who responded to this thread were three moderators (who may or may not have been merely covering themselves since I criticized their board) and one member. And my last post doesn't even get a response. I guess I am not surprised.

Clearly, most people on this board are concerned only with getting off. Well, that is their right. But how interesting that heterosexuals with this fetish look on gays with disgust; they project themselves onto gays and dehumanize them--and then hijack threads with any sort of m/m discussion.

i'm not interested in getting off..i've been reading this thread for some time now..and i read through that link you provided as well..i don't understand why people can't have a disagreement without calling names and getting personal..it's not my way..i also feel that m/m clips should be treated with as much respect as all other types of venues..

good for you for defending Christians, BDSM and the like..i hate gay bashing..i was at a comedy club the other night, where the comedian was telling gay jokes..everyone was laughing except me..i don't find those things amusing at all..

Myriads
11-18-2006, 04:52 PM
Clearly, most people on this board are concerned only with getting off. Well, that is their right. But how interesting that heterosexuals with this fetish look on gays with disgust; they project themselves onto gays and dehumanize them--and then hijack threads with any sort of m/m discussion.

Or you may have posted your thread in one of the forums lowest viewed subforums. Not many people tool at S&F unless they have an idea to suggest. So very little discussion happens here.

Not everything is a sweeping breeder plot. Sometimes more generic reasons cause stuff to happen.

You are bringing preconceived ideas about what you will find here, then supporting them with reasons as you 'discover' them.

Your sweeping statements are just that. Sweeping. As recently as early this week there was a m/m discussion thread in TK Dis that was proceeding with no flames, or issues. And it was generating some good talk.

You seem to have made up your mind about the TMF and it's members. That we are wanting in the areas you care about ,and that we'll never get better. My regrets.

Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-18-2006, 05:30 PM
For an explaination of psychological projection--what goes on here--see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection

I made up my mind when the members of this board made it clear to me how unwelcome I was. That was in 2005, and what people here honestly believe still stings. I have already discussed that at length.

I also tried to handle it in 2005 in a polite, proactive manner. Nothing worked.

Since you are not gay, it may be hard for you to understand where I am coming from. Not being accepted because of my biology is hypocrisy any way you slice it.

Are the members of this board in danger of being gay bashed? Do they find themselves without a constitutional right to marry? Are they denied the right to walk down a street holding a loved one's hand? Have they grown up being told how disgusting they are? Were they thrown out of their churches under the notion that "God hates gay"? Were they tossed into the street by their parents? Did they live their youth in fear, afraid of themselves and afriad of what would happen to them if they came out?

Then, did they come here and face the same crap all over again?

I really have been attacked for being gay in my real life, and I must for my own survival view all heterosexuals with extreme caution. That's reality, not idealism. It's not what I want, but it is what is. In contrast, heterosexuals never have to view gays with extreme caution.

If you think I am sweeping, fine. You're not in my shoes. There are also many heterosexuals in my life I care deeply about, and I know them well enough to know that I am in no danger from them. There is no one on this board for whom I have any feelings, though, as I have never been given the chance to know anyone. I am the faggot of the board, after all, the one who is different.

It is amazing that I am "sweeping" and all the others on the board are not, though. And I did not use the word "breeder," which is as offensive as "faggot." You chose the word. There are some choice things I am dying to write in this thread, but I am keeping my remarks clean in the interest of trying to make myself understood, something that looks more and more like a hopeless battle. Perhaps I should have just cursed all of you out and been done with it. That is certainly what I am itching to do. Instead, I am doing my best to maintain civility and continue what is proving a frustrating discussion.

Again, to restate my original point: This is a board for heterosexuals. Your claim of a flame-free board and open discussion of m/m lured me here. I think other people who are not heterosexual have the right to be warned before they join; that way, they can make an informed decision. I was denied an informed choice because I did not know what to expect, and really thought, based on your claims, that I could be accepted here and finally understand my weird fetish. I am bitter because even after all this time I still cannot discuss this fetish in safety with other people who have it.

Think back to your own period of doubt and feeling uncomfortable with your fetish. Now imagine joining a "flame-free" space only to be flamed and made to feel even worse about your fetish. That has been my experience.

Am I judgmental about this board? Of course.

If there is a thread about m/m with no flames now, that is terrific. But it is just one thread. I'd have to see a lot more like it over a long period of time to be convinced that this board is safe for gay people. In fact, if it is so safe, where are all the gays?

Finally, this is the section for suggestions, and I posted to make a suggestion. Where else would I post it? And don't people who click on the command to see the most recent posts or the day's posts or whatever see everything, this section included?

GoForTheLaugh
11-18-2006, 06:48 PM
I have just taken a look at "males tickling males what do you think?" and, aside from the remark about its being 'fruity' on page one, I was pleasantly surprised by the maturity of the discussion. I have no problem with people who say that they don't like or want to watch m/m--provided they do not judge others.

That thread is a step in the right direction, but it is hardly typical of what I experienced last year. And I cannot forget the things people said then. Even a year later, I am still posting defensively and tensing up simply by being on this board.

But, I admit that, when Myriads mentioned the thread, I did not think it would hold up. Part of my motivation for checking it out was to prove him wrong, and, in the case of that thread, I cannot.

---

Didn't see your post until now, Isabeau. Glad you posted here.

Myriads
11-19-2006, 03:49 AM
Since you are not gay, it may be hard for you to understand where I am coming from. Not being accepted because of my biology is hypocrisy any way you slice it.

I'm not female, nor many other things, and while I cannot know a persons feelings as I'm not a specific 'type' of person, I tend to be savy enough be able to see things through others eyes. I took a bat to the head protecting a gay friend once. I've more then two decades as a grief/suicide councelor under my belt, and the number of gay/women/minority/whatever people who I've heard discuss the issues that have impacted thier lives to drive them to grief has tended to leave an impression.

You are arguing a viewpoint that makes any progress impossible. You are saying that because I am not like you, I cannot know what you suffer or have felt. That I cannot understand. And since I cannot, you dismiss any opinion or thought I might have on the topic as 'uninformed'. And since I can never be informed, I can thus never speak to the topic at all with any weight. That kills discussion nicely.

Well I tend to see us both sharing the characteristic of being human. And in the condition of being human I tend to understand the idea of being hurt, excluded, treated poorly for not being like other.

Your argument views things as 'us' and 'them'. That's not a point where progress can hope to take root.

And I did not use the word "breeder," which is as offensive as "faggot."

Chosen to be an offensive term. I know it's weight. You are upset because you claim that all here see you as 'the faggot of the board'. As you seemed in your earlier posts to feel that you can speak for everyone here's opinion of you, I saw no harm in characterizing how you seem to see all of us with a term that reflected that feeling well.

You write off everyone with your statements. You leave no room for the people who do behave well, or simply don't care about the issue in total. Because the forum (and the world) is not a place that is as we all wish, and hope it should be, you write off the very people who ARE working to make it closer to the place you desire. Tossing away their efforts so casualy is insulting to them. So we might as well just insult them directly no?

Again, to restate my original point: This is a board for heterosexuals.

And your point is dead wrong. It's a board for everyone. It's not perfect, but it's moving in the right direction.

Your claim of a flame-free board and open discussion of m/m lured me here. I think other people who are not heterosexual have the right to be warned before they join; that way, they can make an informed decision. I was denied an informed choice because I did not know what to expect, and really thought, based on your claims, that I could be accepted here and finally understand my weird fetish. I am bitter because even after all this time I still cannot discuss this fetish in safety with other people who have it.

That you were not accepted by ALL seems to be the root of the issue.

I will not defend the bad behavior that you experienced here. It's not acceptable. And as such, when we see it we act on it. But that behavior represented a very small segment of the forums population. And you place all your judgement of the forum and its users on that small handful of people, and none on the ones that make the place better, and have discussions that build understanding.

You want perfection. We don't have any in stock. We do have a big pot of 'Our Best effort'. Doesn't taste as good, but it's there.

I'll also make the point that the exploration of your fetish is not predicated on the gender that you like to tickle, or be tickled by. There are huge aspects of it that you can explore without any gender notation. The words 'Ler' and 'lee' are gender neutral. One can take almost any post here and by placing those terms into it, have a gender free exploration of tickling. No you can't touch every area this way (for example talking about ticklish dicks or ticklish breasts) but a lot of ground is open.

It's not about f/f, m/f, f/m, amd m/m its about Ler/lee at its core.

If there is a thread about m/m with no flames now, that is terrific. But it is just one thread. I'd have to see a lot more like it over a long period of time to be convinced that this board is safe for gay people. In fact, if it is so safe, where are all the gays?

Good question. Perhaps many of them have not chosen to make thier sexual prefrence the sum basis of how they identify themselves here. I'm aware of at least two dozen gay members off the top of my head. And thats just from reading profiles as people registered. They are about.

Finally, this is the section for suggestions, and I posted to make a suggestion. Where else would I post it? And don't people who click on the command to see the most recent posts or the day's posts or whatever see everything, this section included?

Very few people view the forum that way. Most simply click on the areas that they are interested in and scan the posts. Given that the forum has several threads withnew posts every day, most things get lost in such view methods.

While your post was a suggestion, and properly placed here. The debate that has followed would work nicely in TK Dis also.

That thread is a step in the right direction, but it is hardly typical of what I experienced last year. And I cannot forget the things people said then. Even a year later, I am still posting defensively and tensing up simply by being on this board.

That which happend to you here is deeply unfortunate and I've apologized for it in previous posts. But the fact, that regardless of our improvement, that we keep working to be better does not count, speaks to the reality that your reactions are reflections of the greater badness that has happened in your life as a result of being yourself. The world has hurt you badly and wrongly, and that's saddening to me. You have a natural suspicion that's a rational response to your life experience. Sadly that suspicion condems all of us along with the handful of idiots that rightly deserve it.

To you we need to 'prove ourselves'. This will sound harsh. Most people will look at that request and say. "Oh? What do you have that's so great which will make it worth my time and hassle?" Just to interact with you it seems that I need to jump a dozen hurdles to prove I 'understand' and can relate.

I have to work to get to the point where I can have the pleasure of a disagreement.

Most humans don't have the time or energy to spend so lavishly.

So you'll always see the handful of idiots that insult and attack. And rarely see the ones that don't, because you've made it so darn hard for them to approach. Those walls protect you well. But they isolate also.

We are all not out to get you.

With respect,
Myriads

GoForTheLaugh
11-19-2006, 03:46 PM
I'm not female, nor many other things, and while I cannot know a persons feelings as I'm not a specific 'type' of person, I tend to be savy enough be able to see things through others eyes. I took a bat to the head protecting a gay friend once. I've more then two decades as a grief/suicide councelor under my belt, and the number of gay/women/minority/whatever people who I've heard discuss the issues that have impacted thier lives to drive them to grief has tended to leave an impression.

First, I think it is admirable that you took a bat to the head for a gay friend. I start with that because I don't want you to think I am dismissing it. There are not many people, straight or gay, who would do that.

O.K., if we choose to continue this discussion (up to you--as I said, I do not want to waste your time), I will try to be less "us vs. them."

Yes, I do have an 'us' vs. 'them' mentality. The second I sign on I tense up and feel defensive, as I remember what happened last year. When I first came to this board in the spring of 2005, my posts were very positive and supportive; I really wanted to be part of the community. Progressively, my posts (and my signatures!) became more defensive and aggressive as I found that I could not be myself and still be safe here. I am human, and I cannot forget. I have had a lifetime of homophobia to learn what others think of me.

I hear what you are saying, and I don't deny that you may have greater sensitivity than others in the areas you mentioned--but that is not the same as knowing what it is to be part of another group. I do volunteer work with the mentally ill (as I mentioned) and am good enough at it to be in demand for more hours than I can possibly volunteer, yet I will never know what it is to be mentally ill. I have defended African Americans, women, Jews, Christians, and others on a number of occasions, yet I will never know what it means to belong to one of those groups either even if my own experiences give me more sensitivity than others. Similarly, I will never know what it is to be a heterosexual male, which means that, no matter how hard I try and how many heterosexual male friends I have, there is only so much I can know about your life experiences.


That kills discussion nicely.

If you've learned anything about me from this discussion, it is how stubborn I am and how I will stick to my guns when defending any group, my own or not my own, when it is unjustly under attack. If I wanted to kill the discussion, I would not still be posting here. That I am here means that I think you are worth talking to. I don't say that about many people. You can bank on that.

Again, if I have not made this clear, I do not blame you or the moderators. Beyond the suggestions I have made (a warning and/or a seperate section), I see little that you can do. I have also posted in the thread you cited to show you that I read it and was impressed by the lack of homophobia there. I said that you were right in it; in other words, I admitted to being wrong on that issue. I don't often do that. Bank on that, too.



You write off everyone with your statements. You leave no room for the people who do behave well, or simply don't care about the issue in total. Because the forum (and the world) is not a place that is as we all wish, and hope it should be, you write off the very people who ARE working to make it closer to the place you desire. Tossing away their efforts so casualy is insulting to them. So we might as well just insult them directly no?

There are indeed people on this board and people in the world beyond who have no bias or prejudice where gays are concerned. Some of these people are my friends in my real life. Some are colleagues at my paid job and in my volunteer work. But, sadly, most of humanity hates gay people--and that will most certainly be reflected here. Perhaps the most regular posters are the ones more open to diversity, but verbosity does not mean that they are the majority. One only has to look at how huge the membership is to realize that.

When I discuss projection or transference, I am not talking about those who have not attacked me. I hope that is obvious. "People on this board..." or "Members here..." does not mean everyone. My us vs. them does not include all of "us" or all of "them," and I did post critically about the gay community back in 2005.



I'll also make the point that the exploration of your fetish is not predicated on the gender that you like to tickle, or be tickled by. There are huge aspects of it that you can explore without any gender notation. The words 'Ler' and 'lee' are gender neutral. One can take almost any post here and by placing those terms into it, have a gender free exploration of tickling. No you can't touch every area this way (for example talking about ticklish dicks or ticklish breasts) but a lot of ground is open.

It's not about f/f, m/f, f/m, amd m/m its about Ler/lee at its core.


That's what I thought when I joined. I would have said the same thing.

Let me be honest about why it was so important for me to be openly gay here(and all this appeared on the board in 2005): First, gay pride demands no less. I will not hide who I am.

Second, I want to know how this fetish relates to gay identity. I want to know about gay people who have it. I want to know what the scene is like (even if I do not participare in it). I want to know what oppression we have faced. I want to know about gay tickle fans in ancient history, in art, in literature (if indeed there even are any). These are not questions most heterosexuals can answer. There may be a small number who can, I grant you, but it would be so much more liberating to read it in the e-mail of another gay person who has the fetish just like me. Someone like me. I know absolutely no one like me (gay + the fetish). Is that such an unreasonable desire?

That's why I joined the flame-free forum where one could discuss m/m.

Third, I am not at all comfortable with the idea of "play" with a heterosexual male who happens to like m/m tickling. I would be too tense and scared given what some heterosexual males have done to me.

If I ever try this fetish--That's an "if" and not a "when"--it must be with a gay male. I waited a long time after I came out to choose my first sexual partner carefully way back when, and that is why it was a good experience. There are plenty of gay and straight tickle fans who will "play" together non-sexually, and I think that's wonderful. I will be the first one to stand up for straight guys who like m/m (as I did a number of times in 2005) or anyone else who likes any kind of */f or */m. But, just as there are guys here who do not like m/m at all, and just as there are straight guys who have posted on the small m/m tickling sites (the few that exist) that they only want other straight guys for m/m, I am very, very uncomfortbale with my fetish, and I do not feel I could relax with anyone but another gay man. I mean, I would not expect a guy who only likes */f to participate in m/m. He has the right to do what makes him comfortable--and so do I.


Good question. Perhaps many of them have not chosen to make thier sexual prefrence the sum basis of how they identify themselves here. I'm aware of at least two dozen gay members off the top of my head. And thats just from reading profiles as people registered. They are about.

I am aware of only one other gay male on the board, and I certainly went out of my way advertising myself in 2005 so I could talk to some others by private message or e-mail. Mind you, I don't even want to meet any of them in real life or "play"--at least not yet (if ever). I just want to talk, the way I did when I first came out of the closet and the way I do for other gays who come out and need someone to talk to.

All I can say is that Krokus is man for being open on the board. I have absolutely no respect for these two dozen men you cite. What is the point of coming out if you have to hide on the board like a scared little boy?


That which happend to you here is deeply unfortunate and I've apologized for it in previous posts. But the fact, that regardless of our improvement, that we keep working to be better does not count, speaks to the reality that your reactions are reflections of the greater badness that has happened in your life as a result of being yourself. The world has hurt you badly and wrongly, and that's saddening to me. You have a natural suspicion that's a rational response to your life experience. Sadly that suspicion condems all of us along with the handful of idiots that rightly deserve it.

To you we need to 'prove ourselves'. This will sound harsh. Most people will look at that request and say. "Oh? What do you have that's so great which will make it worth my time and hassle?" Just to interact with you it seems that I need to jump a dozen hurdles to prove I 'understand' and can relate.

I have to work to get to the point where I can have the pleasure of a disagreement.

Most humans don't have the time or energy to spend so lavishly.

So you'll always see the handful of idiots that insult and attack. And rarely see the ones that don't, because you've made it so darn hard for them to approach. Those walls protect you well. But they isolate also.

We are all not out to get you.

I don't expect you to keep apologizing. You did earlier and I accept and appreciate it. In addition, you did not create the homophobia on the board.

It seems to me that when I was active in 2005, people appreciated the things I wrote. There was a suggestion made that my defense of Christianity become a sticky. Another person wrote that the board needed more people like me since my take was so different from everyone else's. Both of these posters were men, but there were also many women who liked what I had to say (particularly when I challenged the nasty posts about how female lees had to be young and gorgeous and could not be fat). I do not deny my own pettiness, stubborness, and self-righteousness, but, clearly, I had something to offer here, and that is what makes me worth others' "time and hassle," to use your term. I never stuck only to my own needs or issues, as I saw the board as a community with diverse needs.

I am posting now with more of a hard-core edge and more of a wall than I did before, and that is because I will not let anyone on this board attack me again. That is not "us vs. them"; it is not allowing myself to be homophobes' punching bag. Again, that is why I left in the first place.

I never have to get so defensive on the two boards on which I have posted for many years, and most people on them are heterosexual. As you said, this is a sexual board and those are not.

This is ending on a more negative note than I had wanted. Remember the more positive sentiments at the beginning of my post; they still hold.

Is anyone else besides the mods and two members actually reading this? In other words, is there any chance that I am getting out the message that gay people with tickle desires need--yes, need--to talk to other tickling fetish people, too.

HisDivineShadow
11-19-2006, 05:11 PM
I find it very sad and telling that the only people who responded to this thread were three moderators (who may or may not have been merely covering themselves since I criticized their board) and one member. And my last post doesn't even get a response. I guess I am not surprised.

Clearly, most people on this board are concerned only with getting off. Well, that is their right. But how interesting that heterosexuals with this fetish look on gays with disgust; they project themselves onto gays and dehumanize them--and then hijack threads with any sort of m/m discussion.
I have been watching and reading closely this thread and the opinions expressed herein. However, Myriads has done an admirable job of expressing my own personal feelings, thus negating any need to reply, I felt (Up until now). I'd like to reinforce one thing that Myriads and others have said. You've made mention of how having those on this board who are openly hostile towards homosexuality and how removing them is the only way to go. I am against that. Segregating oneself from one's enemies is no way to solve a problem. Yes, they are offensive and often downright despicable, especially with attacking something so deeply a part of you. However, I firmly believe that the best thing to do is be better than them and, after perhaps one message attesting to the fact that what they are doing is wrong and you don't appreciate it, simply ignore them. There is an ignore function on this board, after all. I personally feel excluding one group, even one quite offensive to another group, merely institutes forced diversity. That is no way to live and it is no way to run a forum. If you have a forum catering exclusively to one group, say homosexuals, then fine, that's what that forum is for. However, if you have a forum like the TMF that caters to all tickle lovers of all stripes and lifestyles, then how can you exclude some, even if those some have beliefs that cause tension? It is artificial. It is forced. It is not reality. You merely create for yourself a bubble, keeping all the bad out. I understand (Well, I cannot truly understand since I've not lived your life) that you are deeply hurt by the actions and words of some here. Unfortunately, this world is full of such people. I personally believe avoiding them does nothing, just as repressing or blocking out emotions or bad events does nothing and, in fact, can often do harm.



I am aware of only one other gay male on the board, and I certainly went out of my way advertising myself in 2005 so I could talk to some others by private message or e-mail. Mind you, I don't even want to meet any of them in real life or "play"--at least not yet (if ever). I just want to talk, the way I did when I first came out of the closet and the way I do for other gays who come out and need someone to talk to.

All I can say is that Krokus is man for being open on the board. I have absolutely no respect for these two dozen men you cite. What is the point of coming out if you have to hide on the board like a scared little boy?
I personally am bisexual. I enjoy all the various combinations of f and m. I also feel no need to advertise my status with flashing neon lights. I freely and willingly admit my preferences to any who would ask. However, I have and do not anticipate having any desire for a relationship of any kind with anyone, be it a simple PM or IM chat partner or something more deep. As such, I see no need to advertise my status. I am a misanthrope and dislike conversation. So don't assume those of us who are gay/bisexual/etc are hiding; we simply may have no desire to converse with others like us. It is enough for me to have the minimal conversations I have here about that subject that binds us all together: tickling. I've never needed to talk to other persons who are bisexual, and in that, perhaps, lies why I may not understand your frustration why so few other gays are advertising here.

EDIT: Permit me to amend this with a note that my being bisexual may be and very well is different from your experience being homosexual. My knowledge of your situation (Stemming from my own viewpoint) may thus be inaccurate.

Cheers,
HDS

Bugman
11-19-2006, 09:57 PM
I have read every word in this thread GoForTheLaugh,and i am sorry you have not felt welcome here.Homophobia is a fact of life in our world,and you must deal with it the best you can.I am a straight man but i am not a threat to you or any gay person,male or female.I hope you will think again about leaving the forum,you cannot affect change here if you do.The number of bigots here is very small i think,and we can overwhelm them with the scorn they deserve if we band togeather.Feel free to p.m. me anytime if you would like to talk.

ChosenofMystra
11-20-2006, 01:09 PM
I also have read every word in this thread and offer my condolences to how you were treated in the past. I myself have been luckier; I am a gay male as well and have been treated with nothing but respect since joining these forums. I cannot say that the homophobes and narrow minded people are completely gone (I can think of a few names in particular actually) but I also have rarely seen open displays of hostility either.

As another poster said, if someone is giving you shit through PM's, just put them on your ignore list and forward it to one of the mods. I know you don't like to come off as a snitch or tattletale, neither do I. But think of reporting it to Myriads as a way of keeping the peanut gallery in check from doing this to you or other homosexuals/bisexuals on the forums.

I don't know if my comments will help, I tend to ramble and get off track sometimes; but know also what Bugman said rings true, if we band together we can overcome these problems.

Feel free to PM me anytime friend if you need to talk. :)

Chris

Myriads
11-20-2006, 01:40 PM
I do not want to waste your time

You cannot waste my time. Only I can waste my time.

I will never know what it is to be a heterosexual male, which means that, no matter how hard I try and how many heterosexual male friends I have, there is only so much I can know about your life experiences.

This is true. But it's a subset of a greater truth. None of us can know what it is to be another. Period. We are all islands unto ourselves in this respect. Each the product of a unique path. But we cannot allow this inability to 'know' to stop us from trying to understand. It's one of the basic tools a human needs to have. Empathy. An abiltiy to reason anothers position based on observation. To listen and learn to build multiple viewpoints.

If I throw up my hands in defeat because I cannot know in toto what it's to be another, then it's time to stop interacting with anyone.

No, I cannot know and see exactly as you do as a homosexual male. But I do know and see pretty well as a human. This does allow me to have some insight and understanding of lives that are not my own.

Contrary to what some folks would like us to believe you are not from planet Bzitgl. You are just gay. Human. You are knowable, not alien. Not 100% knowable, but not an opaque blank spot either.

Your life experience has imparted the lesson that most people will not try to look or understand. But do not assume that all do not, and that the great mass who couldn't care less one way or another are so 'other' that they cannot relate.

You cut yourself off from a massive amount of support and potential understanding once you do.

The second I sign on I tense up and feel defensive, as I remember what happened last year. When I first came to this board in the spring of 2005, my posts were very positive and supportive; I really wanted to be part of the community. Progressively, my posts (and my signatures!) became more defensive and aggressive as I found that I could not be myself and still be safe here.

With respect, you are on a huge internet forum with a false name and enough of an IP general enough to ward any but the most dedicated traces. You can't be any safer.

The only way you can be hurt here is if you choose to allow yourself to be hurt.

Now this 'choice' may not be one that you have mindful control over. I belive your life experience has left you in a place where you always feel a need to be on guard and are very sensitive to any and all things that read as threat. It's how you survive.

People can make your visits here unpleasent. But they cannot directly harm you. One of the joys of the web is that you can be yourself with little risk. Sadly most choose to be things they are not with this power, but the web is one of the safest places to be oneself out there.

Again, if I have not made this clear, I do not blame you or the moderators. Beyond the suggestions I have made (a warning and/or a seperate section), I see little that you can do.

The fact that the way we have chosen to handle users who create a bad atmosphere here is a reactive and slow way to progress toward the final image of the forum we hope for seems to be at the basis of a lot of what you say.

Because these negative elements are here, then there is no way for you to be also. Regardless of how well we deal with the issue. Because it can happen here the forum is not 'safe' for homosexuals.

Let me ask this: You are out to dinner with some friends at Applebees (Or TGiF's, or California Pizza Kitchen) and while you are eating a group at a nearby table gets into a loud and boorish anti-gay discussion. You are never under any physical threat, but it's derogatory stuff and sure makes your meal a lot less fun to hear. The manager hustles out and tells the people to chill out or have to leave. Quietness resumes.

So now is Applebees (or any of the others) a place you can never go again? Do you just stop? How much of your life do you give up on based on the fact that idiots exist in the world, who do stupid ugly things, and those that disagree can only do so much to limit them before they do it?

I've said in the past that ones recreation should be just that. Fun. And that one should not face ugly battles when one tries to chill. But I'll hold that with our current level of moderation we are not unlike the restraunt I describe above. We do well in an imperfect world, and reduce the stuff that happens to annoyance level.

The world is pointy. More pointier for some, then others. It's not a fair world. But its all we have.

But, sadly, most of humanity hates gay people

Oh? from what I read and see the majority of humanity is indifferent to gay people. They don't care one way or another. They assume that it's not their business to care about, and continue on with their lives. Sadly this great majority also doesn't get off it's ass and vote much or do much then gripe about what others do. Highly charged and motivated polarized groups do vote and have an impact far beyond their tiny sizes.

The '04 election is a great example. Kerry had the youth vote sewn up. Massive registration drives put several million new young voters on the roles. In the expected tight election it was believed that these new voters would swing the election for him. And they would have. Sadly almost none of them went to a polling place on election day.

People do hate homosexuals. But they are not the majority. They are just the loudest.

Don't expect the worst from the majority. Most of them just don't care. Heck look at the forum around 1000 people post. The rest silently drift along. Human nature.

I want to know how this fetish relates to gay identity.

In the context of what I offered, you are correct that switiching to a genderless viewpoint will not answer your questions. They are unique to your sexuality, and demand that you proceed with the pronouns of your choice.

In many ways you face the exact same issue that all the members of this forum faced in the past. The first posters on usenet wondered if there were others like them. Dig back into the trully old parts of the Discussion forum, and see how many people talk about the desire to know what others thought, and how they wanted to know others were like them. They all have so many questions.

Like those early users you are faced with building a community that will answer them. The real life communities of homosexuals that gathered in the village and the tenderloin faced as much crap as the Irish, Balck and Itallian communities did in their own eras. Time, work, and riches gave them a voice. The same works here. A gay community will form. Perhaps here. Perhaps on a new specialty forum. All we can offer is the promise that we will do our best to make the forum a place where such a gathering is possible with the minimal number of issues.

All I can say is that Krokus is man for being open on the board. I have absolutely no respect for these two dozen men you cite. What is the point of coming out if you have to hide on the board like a scared little boy?

We, the staff, all quite like Krokus. If you get a chance ask him what part the TMF played in his choice to be open and how it supported him during that process. I'll hazzard a guess that his opinions of the forum are rather positive.

As to the other folks. I believe that they simply have chosen to put their sexual prefrence second to their fetish here. They come find some media that pokes the go button, and go do as they will. Every forum member uses the TMF in their own unique way. Some live in the Silly Stuff forum, others post only in reviews. Some seek out mainstream clips or mentions of tickling and bring them here for others to enjoy. Still more use the clips forum as a giant sample bin to help choose what they will spend their money upon. You had a specific idea on how you wanted to use the TMF. Sadly I believe that you are a dot early to get that use. You may well become an architect of the homosexual community here if you choose to invest your time and effort though.

Other users have begun to reply to your post. Hopefully you will find the discussion you like.

I remain here to continue the talk as needed/desired.

Myriads

Strider
11-20-2006, 04:29 PM
There's a lot of jackasses in the world, this forum is no exception. My advice? Ignore them, you've got better things to worry about than some fool harassing you over the internet.

GoForTheLaugh
11-24-2006, 02:34 PM
I am pleasantly surprised that there are others reading this thread; it makes it harder for me to stick to my guns.

I am especially impressed by the courage HisDivineShadow and ChosenofMystra have shown in this thread. In addition, there is a more mature vibe here than I had previously experienced, and the people in this thread like some of the others on the board are not jumping down my throat.

Sadly, though, I did not come here to rejoin (although a part of me would very much like to, and that is the reason for the delay in my response). Instead, I came here hoping to find closure given my extreme anger over what happened here and to make people aware that gays, too, may have this fetish and may need to talk about it. If I had succeeded in getting my point across, other gays could have joined and, in a better atmosphere, would not have been made to feel like perverts for daring to be males who like m/m--the way I was.

I wish I could affect change, as Bugman implies, but it is the right of the moderators to run the board as they see fit. It is not my board, and I have no right to do anything beyond making suggestions. In the end, since only the converted are reading this, what does anything I say really matter?

If I rejoin after stating my case but not getting it across, am I not putting my wishes to understand my fetish ahead of the needs of the gay community? Every time someone posts against gay people, he or she makes bashing, discrimination, and other forms of hate a little more possible. I have been told to ignore it here by many of you, but didn't Jews in Germany originally feel that they could simply ignore Hitler's rhetoric because "It could never happen here"? Haven't some of my gay friends already moved to Canada because they cannot stand American bigotry any longer?

Would you tell Jews to ignore anti-Semitic remarks on this board? Would you tell African Americans to ignore racist remarks?

I don't feel safe here, and it is not a matter of being anonymous on a message board (as Myriads states). When I am not accepted, it is not good for my mental health. And if I stay on the board despite the nonsense that goes on, I am saying that it is all right for people to abuse me.

It is not all right. I have more pride in myself than that.

I also have pride in the queer community.

I have one option only: Leaving in pride, refusing to be the object of scorn, not taking part in the bashing of my community.

With respect (and with thanks to those few who are not bigots and a special note of appreciation to Myriads for being an incredible human being), I request that you delete my membership.

IrishTickle
11-24-2006, 03:55 PM
Every time someone posts against gay people, he or she makes bashing, discrimination, and other forms of hate a little more possible.

Everytime you walk away you make it even more possible. Everytime you do nothing you make it more possible. But everytime you fight it, you make standing up against it possible.

In all honesty, I can only guess at how hurt and angry you are, but giving up is not really setting a good example for anyone anywhere. You're not the only gay person in the world, and certainly not the only one here. You did a good job at speaking out, but giving up only lets everyone who said anything bad about you win. And it may not be the last time.

As my old English teacher told "Never let the b*stards drag you down!"

HisDivineShadow
11-24-2006, 04:19 PM
Would you tell Jews to ignore anti-Semitic remarks on this board? Would you tell African Americans to ignore racist remarks?

I don't feel safe here, and it is not a matter of being anonymous on a message board (as Myriads states). When I am not accepted, it is not good for my mental health. And if I stay on the board despite the nonsense that goes on, I am saying that it is all right for people to abuse me.

Whether you return to read this or not, I have one addendum. I administer the TickleTheater community with Mistress Valerie and Nessonite. I am also the longest-serving Staff Member aside from Noeyes and TickleTheater himself. In my time in those positions, I have seen what Myriads has stated here previously: the staff cannot be everywhere. The TickleTheater has and has had vastly less activity than the TMF. Even so, I and the other Staff cannot catch every issue. We see some, but often only after they have blown up. We rely heavily on users reporting actions that break the rules. One of those possible actions can and has been what you think we wish you to ignore: hate speech/general anti-gay sentiment done in an expressly offensive way. Myriads and the rest of us don't ask that you and others like you ignore these remarks: Myriads asks (And I suggest) simply that you report infractions. Rule breakers are dealt with, but only if they come to light. Additionally, to reuse an earlier example, if a moderator sees such a post and then a post by someone like yourself, who is openly gay, right after taking no notice of it, they think all is well. I suspect that TMF staff, like those of us on the TickleTheater staff, dislike deleting posts without cause. Someone reporting a post as offensive gives them that cause. We cannot stop the hatred without the help of those who are affected by it. By reporting violations of what is here called "The Golden Rule," you help the Staff clean up the violations and give them notice that if the offender posts similar messages in the future that they should take action, knowing how earlier messages hurt.

My earlier comment about the ignore feature was merely a suggestion of an additional weapon, not a replacement for reporting hate speech. No one should ever have to ignore what breaks the rules. They merely have to, as I said, report the breach. Then it can be removed and the violator warned. Repeated violations lead to banishment, as those who break the rules for any reason time and time again are not welcome in a place such as the TMF.

I am sorry you have decided the TMF is not for you. Myself, I believe it is a mistake to leave. I've not been here forever and, indeed, by the standards of many "oldbies" I am a greenhorn, a newcomer. However, even this newcomer knows a good thing when he sees it. He also sees that, like any good thing, the community that enjoys and finds good in it must band together and help keep it good for everyone. Smokey Bear says "Only you can prevent forest fires." Well, the message here is similar: "Only you prevent forum flaming." The moral is simple, the purpose clear: report a flame and give the staff the opportunity to snuff out that flame before the hatred within it reaches out and scalds us all. One person burned means we all are burned. One for all and all for one. :)


Cheers,
HDS

Bugman
11-24-2006, 06:04 PM
I'm sorry you have made that decision also."The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" Edmund Burke.

ChosenofMystra
11-24-2006, 06:21 PM
I'm also sorry to hear you are leaving. Its a pity that things couldn't have worked out better for you.

Good luck in life my friend!

No government has the right to tell its citizens when or whom to love. The only queer people are those who don't love anybody. ~Rita Mae Brown

Strider
11-25-2006, 01:19 AM
Would you tell Jews to ignore anti-Semitic remarks on this board? Would you tell African Americans to ignore racist remarks?

Actually, I would (and I'm Jewish), but I'm something of a free-speech absolutist in such matters.

Anyway, I don't know you, so I don't know why this is bugging me as much as it is, but you really shouldn't leave. It'll accomplish nothing, other than to reinforce your own sense of alienation.

Myriads
11-25-2006, 01:59 AM
If I rejoin after stating my case but not getting it across, am I not putting my wishes to understand my fetish ahead of the needs of the gay community? Every time someone posts against gay people, he or she makes bashing, discrimination, and other forms of hate a little more possible.

The needs of the gay community? You are a gay man, but they are not going to revoke your membership card if you do not succeed in defeating every instance of bashing that you encounter. And being the object of such does not degrade the gay community by 'making it more acceptable' It makes you the object of a act that is not allowed here. And one that will will be handled if it's reported.

Your 'community' mostly needs you to be a responsible person who represents the best qualities that any human can possess. In doing so you show that you are just like all others. Human.

Any community that expects more is expecting too much.

You have intelligently and respectfully stated you concerns and have successfuly done so. In response to your 1st post in this thread, I and many have replied. You have heard from other members of the forum directly, and have seen threads on topics progressing with respect and candor.

By your last post you admit to seeing the improvement in our community that has happened in the short time since you were first here.

It seems the TMF and its members are doing pretty good, and have made a major dent in the issues you faced on the site before.

Yet it's not good enough. You have damed us for the past and there is no redemption. From my side that could be a real good excuse for saying 'why bother' to try anymore. We can't win, so why play? Nothing will be good enough ever. How depressing. Written off. Personally I see you as a win for the rude folks. They have successfuly radicalized you with their actions, and alienated you from those who do listen and respect.

You seem to be looking for a battle here. And to your surprise, the war never started while you were away. There are drive by shootings, but even then your fellow community members report that they are well handled.

You've played your part in the fight, and I have no doubt that should you stay, you will continue to. Members like you are always appreciated. And you have more then earned the right to look to your own personal questions and needs.

I don't feel safe here, and it is not a matter of being anonymous on a message board (as Myriads states). When I am not accepted, it is not good for my mental health. And if I stay on the board despite the nonsense that goes on, I am saying that it is all right for people to abuse me.

If this is the case then the issue is not one that the TMF has, it's an issue that arises from your life experience, and applies to a lot more then just the TMF. I note that you didn't reply to the Applebees question that I presented above. It is very applicable to this instance. It sounds as if you are easily made uncomfortable in a situation, and that saddens me. For it might mean that many places are easily ruined for you by the actions of the very few.

I know few places that can ever be 'good enough' to never have the possibility of being offensive to you. In my eyes you face a life of having memories and locations ruined by the crude few. Til you are reduced to a small circle of places you feel 'safe' in.

I'm sorry to see that.

Abuse is a factor that will pop up everyplace. Hell, a random person driving down the street shouted something rude at me and a friend a few nights back that implied that 'a man like me' couldn't be with a woman 'like her' without paying. What's up with that?

Should I not feel safe outside my local shopping mall now? Perhaps avoid it so I don't let down my community (ugly middle aged males)?

That's silly. I was living my life, and some asshat chose to be rude to me. I dealt with it (by ignoring it, other then sharing a 'what the hell' look with my friened) and moved on.

Once you alter your life because of things like that you have given something up.

It is not all right. I have more pride in myself than that.

I also have pride in the queer community.

I have one option only: Leaving in pride, refusing to be the object of scorn, not taking part in the bashing of my community.

We are all targets at times in our lives. In being a target you don't dishonor your 'community'. Why? You clearly do not allow yourself to be a victim. So you have no loss of pride.

Leave or stay. It's an option that will always be open. We don't delete accounts here. Your's will remain.

Myriads

venray
11-25-2006, 06:36 PM
"I made up my mind when the members of this board made it clear to me how unwelcome I was. That was in 2005, and what people here honestly believe still stings. "


This troubles me my friend to the point where I must ask....How many individual members here made it clear to you?

How many individual members out of the thousands that visit here have pm ed you or made derrogatory remarks in your threads?

I only ask this to put your remarks in proper perspective.... I would tend to believe that the actual number is small and the percentage miniscule....

I have found a great deal of tolerance for all lifestyles here on the forum over the years, and as Myriads has said, it is not perfect but it is getting better....

Do I believe that you should have to tolerate ANY such remarks or PMs? No I do not, but in life we all have our "crosses to bear" so to speak.....

Reporting and ingnoring the dweebs of the world make it easier to rejoice in the friendship shown by others......

Best wishes to you whatever you decide, but as I said to you once before you left us the last time...Giving up because of a few means they "win" and sets back progress....

Sticking around in spite of the asswipes makes us all stronger as a community.....

Be well and know that you DO indeed have far more friends here than those few small minded souls that dont know how to function in society....


Ray

maniactickler
11-25-2006, 07:23 PM
Goforthelaugh, i think your making a mountain out of a mole hill. there are people in this world who are going to dislike and pick on all kinds of different minorities. who gives a crap. thats the way it is and always will be. just deal with it. believe it or not, life will go on!

Krokus
01-08-2007, 10:33 PM
So much to be said here. Unfortunately, I don't have the time right now, since I'm not on my PC. Next week I'll have my connection back, and then I'll post my thoughts. I have quite a few of them, regarding this thread. =P

Krokus
01-18-2007, 06:36 AM
All I can say is that Krokus is man for being open on the board. I have absolutely no respect for these two dozen men you cite. What is the point of coming out if you have to hide on the board like a scared little boy?

We, the staff, all quite like Krokus. If you get a chance ask him what part the TMF played in his choice to be open and how it supported him during that process. I'll hazzard a guess that his opinions of the forum are rather positive.

Myriads


GFTL, my friend, let me tell you. I can't put into words how much the TMF helped me. I consider the year that I came out, to be the most difficult year of my life to date. Everything and everyone around me changed. In my personal life, I had people stab me in the back, whom I would have never suspected. I was constantly provoked by my stepdad, and I was mocked by my distant family. My former girlfriend, whom I had been engaged to, despised me, and for good reason. I lied to her, and then broke her heart when I came out to her. She hated me for awhile, but she eventually forgave me. Honestly though, it was harder for me to forgive myself, than anything else. It all came to a head with me being assaulted outside of a nightclub, although I am fairly certain that I was jumped for my leather jacket; whether or not me being gay had anything to do with it, I couldn't say.


I must admit, my first few years here at the TMF, I was an asshole. I won't lie, I was an ASSHOLE. I made horrible remarks, and homophobic slurs. (Just ask shiningice, and I'm sure Myriads remembers as well) ... The point is, I was pissed off ALL THE TIME. No matter what I said, or did, the feeling never went away, or got any better. I created an image, of a homophobic asshole. Looking back, that was my way of "coping", so to speak. I knew what the truth was, but I was too ashamed and angry to face it. I lashed out at everyone around me as a way to deal with the inner struggle.


Then, I started to talk with some of my good friends here on the TMF, and they helped me realise that it was OK to be gay. They helped me realise that it wasn't worth it to deny what I am, and to act as if I am something I am not. They helped me find the strength to face what I thought I would never be able to. For the first time in my life, I felt as though I had been "allowed" something... That sounded weird, but you get the point. Now, it didn't happen overnight, and lemme tell ya, it WAS NOT easy, but I have no regrets. Coming out, and being open, has been the most liberating experience of my life. I have the TMF to thank, for giving me my life. Thanks to this little corner of the web, I am finally living my life.


Of course, from time to time, you get the occasional "You are going to hell" speech. You know what? If God is up there, and he is watching over me, he knows the life I lead. He knows that I do my best, and that I help people, and that, to the best of my ability, I am my brothers keeper. He knows that I try to follow Christ's basic principle: Love one another. So, when I die, if I am destined to burn in an eternal lake of fire, simply because I have sex with men, then quite frankly, he's not a God I want anything to do with.


I can't imagine how you could have been treated so badly on this site. I'm not calling you a liar, I'm simply saying that I had such a positive experience, in regards to coming out here, thats it's difficult for me to comprehend. Either way, with all due respect, I think you need to change your attitude. If you go around with the mentality of "All straight people hate me" ... Then I feel sorry for you. If I had thought that way when I came out, hell, I would have slit my wrists. My best friends in life, are ALL straight (with the exception of my boyfriend, obviously) ... There IS hope, man.


Make a decision. You can either fight, and not back down, and not let anyone drive you away, or you can lie down and die. The choice is yours.



I know for a fact that there are many gay men on this site. I do not judge them for not being "open" on the site. I made a decision to be open, I do not expect them to follow. I respect anyone who doesn't prefer to talk about their sexual orientation, or "advertise" it, so to speak. I simply chose to do so, in the hopes that I could meet fellow gay men on this site, which I have succeeded in doing. Contrary to popular belief, the world is truly a beautiful place.


I'd like to talk with you on a more personal level, GFTL. Feel free to PM me, should you wish to do so as well.

tickler_n_black
01-18-2007, 12:14 PM
I am the faggot of the board, after all, the one who is different.

???

You don't want people to call you that ... yet you keep calling yourself that. My advice is don't tell them you are what you don't want to be called, it just confuses people. Just a thought that might help you be less anxious over this issue.

Bugman
01-18-2007, 06:07 PM
Krokus,one hell of a post.You have overcome a lot as i can see,and you should be proud of that.If you ever find youself in K.C. give a holler,would be glad to crack a cold one or three with ya.And welcome back,glad you got your puter issues resolved.

Krokus
01-22-2007, 02:59 PM
Krokus,one hell of a post.You have overcome a lot as i can see,and you should be proud of that.If you ever find youself in K.C. give a holler,would be glad to crack a cold one or three with ya.And welcome back,glad you got your puter issues resolved.


Thanks man. If I ever am in KC, I'll give you a shout!