This past weekend was loaded with action on Twitter. Several players were DQ’d from high level play. Plenty of players complained about the state of the current Standard format. Champions were crowned. Let’s start our Twitter review with one champion in particular: Star City Games Seattle Legacy Open Champion, Feline Longmore.
Longmore masterfully piloted High Tide to defeat all who dare oppose her in the land of the Mothership. Yet, when I logged on to check the winners and results, I didn’t see blue mages gloating or other mages complaining about blue as one may have come to expect. Instead, on SCG’s Facebook page and Twitter feed, I saw hateful comments about Longmore’s gender orientation and appearance.
Like most people, my life has been a mix of good living and bad beats. I was blessed with a loving family and supportive friends. I have generally been unlucky in love and being a single mom is not the plan I had in mind when I imagined my life as a young girl. Things have been looking up, though, recently in that department. Generally, I wake up every morning, say hello to the day and get on with living life. I count myself lucky because I know who I am and I am accepted by the people around me as just that: me.
Not all my friends are that lucky. I was blessed to be born into the body I wanted. I’m a woman, I feel like a woman, I love being a woman and I have a woman’s body. I have never had to wake up in a world that thought I was a man, called me a man and looked at me like I was a man. I never had to walk around with parts I knew didn’t belong to me. I’ve never had to have intense conversations with complete strangers about why I feel I have the right to wear a dress, lipstick, or perfume. I just get too be a woman because I am one. Well, guess what? Our champion is too. A beautiful woman who is playing mean Magic.
Yes, you have the right and the freedoms to be hateful, make mean and distasteful jokes at her expense, and just be a dick in general. I will be right here as well, expressing my right to call you out, name you in public and let you know that your opinions have been heard and found ignorant. When a woman accomplishes such a task as taking down a Legacy Open and all we are talking about is her gender and not her mad Magic skills, we all lose. In these situations, all are punished.
As if That Wasn’t Enough
The short little tweet above sent Twitter into an uproar on Sunday. Several people watching SCG Live from home and following along on the official #scgsea hashtag complained to various Wizards Employees about this tweet. When Wizards responded by stating the matter would be looked into, the hoopla went into overdrive. When a company receives a complaint, even if it might seem superficial, the normal course of action is to investigate the complaint. This is called customer service. Just because something (or 1,000 somethings) are investigated doesn’t mean actions will be taken. It just means a company is listening to its customers. All of them.
Countries have denied visas to people wishing to visit because of tweets/blogs and simple words spoken. Casinos have denied entrance to their property and use of facilities because players have tweeted @ them stating that they have a gambling problem. The players have latter claimed to be joking, but what is the Casino’s liability if they did not take them at their word and allowed them to lose their rent money? They are not willing to take that chance. It is true that no one “owns” hashtags, but when you use an official hashtag promoted by the organizers of an event which also shows up live on stream, then you should not be surprised when an event organizer sees your message and responds.
This is not about racism, meanness, bullying, sexism, or any other controversial moniker you come up with. This is not about freedom of expression. The internet is being integrated into the very events themselves. Millions of people are participating and sharing experiences at the same time. I understand a generation of people who thought the internet would be an alternate universe where you can say what ever you want to whomever you want and there would be no consequences. Those days existed, but they are long since gone. You can tweet whatever silly, funny, mean, hateful, disgusting, loving thing you want. But, when you use an official hashtag because you want the thousand-plus people in the event to see what you say, don’t be shocked by the fallout. Big Brother is not watching you passively. You tweeted @ Big Brother, then yelled foul when he saw you.
@pvddr I think it's more the blatant display of racism than anything. Just not a fan of letting those people represent your game/product.— Mark Sun (@AllSunsDawn) November 18, 2012
@helenebergeot It begets the same outcome: ppl still wary of WotC repercussion with social media. If it was said on site, different story.— Brandon Large (@largebrandon) November 18, 2012
Racism isn't ok. That doesn't mean you should be able to get punished bynone law enforcement. Especially in USA, with 1st amendment right.— Michael Perry (@TankofJank) November 18, 2012
.@helenebergeot The DCI shouldn't be trying to clean up Twitter. Its not tournament magic, shouldnt be referred to them.— Matt Sperling (@mtg_law_etc) November 18, 2012
Guys, I feel like this is pretty simple: WotC isn't policing Twitter. They're policing abuse of the hashtag.— Nina Illingworth (@CardboardWitch) November 18, 2012
Jesus christ I would rather have to deal with a MILLION haters then the DCI any day. So fuck your twitter social media police force— Richard L. (@AgentofDimir) November 18, 2012
@largebrandon watch calling people douches on twitter. Big brother is watching....— doctoroctagon (@dr8sides) November 18, 2012
@cardboardwitch they are setting a dangerous precedent that says anything you say can be used against you if someone doesn't like it.— Richard L. (@AgentofDimir) November 18, 2012
Lol, umm I disagree? If only b/c ppl using the hashtag know full well their comments will come up on the coverage screen?— Nina Illingworth (@CardboardWitch) November 18, 2012
People don't understand the differences between Freedom of Speech and the consequences of speech.— PrimevilDingus (@PrimevilDingus) November 18, 2012
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