In my line of work, I lurk… I mean, I follow a lot of YouTubers, Gamers, Cosplayers and other nerdy celebs on Social Media. I like to keep up with their latest works, see what cons they’ll be attending, and everything in between. In doing so, I get to see a vibrant community who supports these individuals. I also get to see some things that upset me.
It’s come to my attention that maybe it’s time to do something about it. Maybe it’s time for us to do better.
These are just a few of the places that I feel we can all work on since it seems like they are easily obtainable (and common sense) things.
- Stop degrading and objectifying female nerds on the internet.
I see this one happen far too often, and it really gets to me. A cosplayer will post a very attractive photo of them in a new cosplay and some dude feels like they have to remind them that they have “Great tits” or let them know all their deepest sexual fantasies. I don’t want to hear that, so I’m pretty sure that the cosplayer who probably doesn’t even know you exist wants to hear that as well. Cosplayers are not some gods or goddesses dresses up as your favorite characters. They are living, breathing human beings who don’t deserve that sort of behavior and language. Show some respect. AND STOP SENDING UNSOLICITED DICK PICS OR OFFERING TO PAY THEM FOR DATES / SEX WHILE YOU’RE AT IT. One of my good friends who is an up and coming cosplayer has had many men offer her money to just have a “date” with her. Seriously? There’s no shame? These hardworking women are not here for your sexual pleasure and they are certainly not objects you can buy. I’ve even had these friends disclose that they receive a handful of nudes each and every week. No one wants to see that… Put it away!
- Stop shaming others.
We all know being nerdy is the “in thing” now and some might even be pretending to be nerds in order to hop on that $$ train. (We might be a bit jealous on that money train.) But just because 1 in maybe 1,000 people might be a “fake nerd” it doesn’t mean that you have to treat everyone the same way. They’re humans, just like you and me… I know, shocker. While some may be passionate about gaming, at the end of the day a major part of them sharing that with the public is for their own enjoyment. Unjustly name calling or having a nerd dick measuring competition isn’t going to prove anyone to be more “nerdy” than the next. Same goes for cosplayers, YouTubers, etc. Blanketed statements of “Well, so and so did it better” aren’t helping anyone. How is that constructive? No one asked for your opinion. It takes a lot of guts and hard work to do all of this, and no one needs that negativity in their life.
Story time! One of my friends recently dressed up as Jaina Proudmore and had numerous people feel the need to comment on how she wasn’t “the right body shape” for the role or screaming “boobs” because of the outfit. Pardon my language, but put them out there. Seriously, cosplayers are people, too. They have feelings and pour blood, sweat and tears into their work. If they want to show a little boob, who cares? If they want to adapt a cosplay to fit their body better, who are you to police them? Don’t crush their efforts. And especially, don’t mess with my friends.
Sorry to burst your bubble, but you don’t sound fancy. No nerd wants to hear you call them “M’Lady” and mean it. This isn’t YE OLE ENGLAND so just stop. It’s annoying and it makes you look like a giant tool. Whatever you think it’s doing, it’s not. You’re not the knight riding in to save the Princess.
- Respect the posts of creators, streamers, and even your friends.
This should go without saying, but it’s something I’ve seen over and over again. Everyone on the Internet wants to have an opinion… Even when they are better off NOT throwing that nonsense into the void. Creators ultimately want engagement on their posts, but coming back to a post with 500+ comments and 90% of them being people arguing between one another isn’t helping anyone. Respect your community, and don’t turn a solid discussion into some petty fight. And if someone is disrespecting your friend, favorite cosplayer, etc. feel free to defend their honor. However, keep it in the back of your mind that the idiot trolling is looking for that reaction. And if he or she doesn’t get it from you, they’ll just move on to another post.
It’s not that hard, guys (and gals). While you may not think some of these things are offensive or rude, you may want to consider who’s on the other side of the screen. I hear about it all day from friends and many others within my close circle in the nerd community, and it’s a constant burden on them to deal with this. So, the next time you’re thinking about sending a random dick pic or complimenting someone on their ‘TNA’ — please try to remember that they’re human, too.
And if you can’t simply do that, at least try to remember Wheaton’s Law… Don’t be a dick.