More interesting for the moment is the conversation that EllenBeth Wachs (semi-famous in US secular circles, longtime fan of PZ, longtime not-really-a-fan of l'uberfeminist) had with some other PZ Myers fans.
Some things to keep in mind when reading this:
- The thread can be sometimes hard to follow because EllenBeth Wachs often quoted her detractors
- This is not a unique story - many people have enjoyed PZ Myers' blog in the past, before they found out that it is written by douchebags for douchebags. Read and it will all make sense.
It seems her first comment was the 284th of the particular thread:
EllenBeth Wachs writes:
I have not seen one person saying Adria deserved the response she got. As a conference organizer myself, I will just note, taking a picture and tweeting it is not an approved method of reporting an instance of harassment.
Should she have been fired? Of course not. The man shouldn’t have been fired either. There has been major overreaction everywhere. Gee, where have we seen this before?
Let me make a prediction. Donglegate will be going on two years hence and people will be screaming for Adria’s head and photoshopping her.
[Emphasis added] EllenBeth Wachs points out the obvious - absolutely no one is defending all of the responses Adria Richards received.
A rather measured response. Who is going to find much at fault in this?
Immediately, EllenBeth finds herself subject of criticism.
Comment 341 authored by EllenBeth Wachs (EBW from now on):
@307 Beatrice, I am not sure how you get that I have only made it about how the woman needs to behave better.
@289 Thumper most people generally don’t find me “nuanced” I am usually accused of being to blunt. So here it is.
I support Adria for what has occurred in the aftermath of the tweet. I do not agree with her decision to tweet this. I thought that was rather clear. By doing so, she involved many bystanders unnecessarily.
Were the guys out of line? Yes.
Did they deserve to have a complaint filed? Yes.
Does Adria get a pass for doing it in an inappropriate manner because she’s a woman in a ragingly sexist environment? No.
Did she deserve to get fired. No.
Did the guys deserve to get fired. No.
Does she deserve rape and death threats? Well of course not.
In Comment 370, EBW finds herself arguing with PZ Myers...
@345 JAL just because you say it is irrelevant doesn’t make it so. Also, I get that you think the way she handled this is acceptable. I disagree. See how that works?
PZ, this isn’t about assigning blame to Adria because she is a woman. She made a misstep in not reporting the men appropriately. Conferences have adopted harassment policies for specifically this reason. It seems we have set ourselves up for a situation in which a woman, therefore, could never be blamed for actually doing wrong. I don’t accept that.
I had a harassment complaint filed against one of my speakers at my last conference. Had she tweeted the complaint rather than bring it to me directly as done, I would have been rather perturbed and my speaker would have been within his right in filing a counter-complaint. After discussing this with her, she chose to withdraw the complaint. Now had she tweeted it, it would have done irrevocable damage.Then EllenBeth Wachs started receiving a great deal of insults.
Comment 392 [EBW]:
"Why do you keep focusing on what she did wrong, unless it is to imply that she was asking for it?"
Reading comprehension- get some. Look at what you quoted from me. Not only am I not implying she was asking for it, I stated quite clearly she doesn’t deserve the fucked up response.
Comment 419, EBW becomes more direct with her critics:
@ 413 Blitzgal
"Oh, I understand you just fine. You are officially against the rape and death threats, but it’s vitally important that we all hear again and again and again and again and again and again exactly what Adria Richards did wrong. Your emphasis on how wrong she is makes your intentions crystal clear.."
My intentions? Okay Kreskin, care to tell me what exactly they are?
Comment 426, EBW goes the "let he without sin cast the first stone" route:
Is there anyone in this comment section that hasn’t made an inappropriate remark (joke) at an inappropriate time? Would you like to have it tweeted to thousands instead of having the opportunity to explain or apologize?
While it may have been Adria’s choice to make the tweet and not the conference organizer’s, ultimately the conference also paid a high price for her choice.
Seriously??? Are you reading the same responses from Matthew Best that I am?
They are quite coherent and rational in the face of blistering vitriol. WTF?? Why are you calling for his banning? Because he disagrees?
@442 JAL lol- at chill girl. No, how about you don’t assume that I think it’s just because he’s a man he’s being calm and rational, m’kay?
Frankly there’s quite a few men here that aren’t being calm and rational so shove that theory.
and @440 Diane, I didn’t just reference conferences, did I? thanks
PZ – You are presuming guilt. In this country we have the presumption of innocence. The conference organizers have the obligation to determine the facts. Thus the need for the harassment policy and the various ways to report violations.Comment 464 - now profanity is being thrown EBW's way...
FFS, now I’m an apologist for misogynist behavior? Are you fucking kidding? And I’m getting called a “dumbfuck”
Caine- I will need your real name so you can be sure not to be involved with any of my conferences. It’s terrible I treat people fairly.Comment 494 contains a realization...
Oh FFS, people, it was made snarkily.
and Kate Waters? I suggest you get your facts straight.
I can see what happens with merely disagreeing here. It’s too bad.
@496 Kate Walters
"My facts? That you’re a victim blaming, misogynistic “chill girl” who lacks basic reading comprehension? The facts you yourself have presented in this very thread?"
Yes, you clearly know me so well. Next you will tell me you are an FBI profiler. Hey kids, this has been fun. Go on to your next target.
And this is quite fitting, for it is glaringly obvious that Kate is a professional 'feminist'.
Comment 544 from EBW tries to clear things up for the especially dumb Pharyngula crowd:
Okay, let’s be very fucking clear. I, at no time, suppressed a harassment complaint. I do not want this lie being spread. I asked the person multiple times if she wanted to file it. She did not.
I have not spent all my time in this thread defending sexism misogyny and victim-blaming.
I simply gave an observation that I didn’t like her tweeting her complaint FFS.
Kate Walters writes:"Anyone in her position ought to know you shouldn’t even discuss those matters outside of the complaint process or the administration of the organization unless you have express permission to do so, or until such a point as a formal complaint has been made within a system where it is clearly understood that such actions will be made openly and publicly"
Say, like TWEETING IT??
Comment 592, EllenBeth checks out of Pharyngula:
@Stacy, thanks for the assist. I apparently am the devil today here and can’t do or say anything right in commenters eyes. No worries. This “chill girl” won’t be back. You’ve ensured that.
Was EllenBeth Wachs just asking for it, PZ Myers?