• Was Tauriq Moosa harassed off Twitter?

    I don’t have the answer to this question yet, one way or another. Pharyngula claims he was harassed, as do The Mary Sue and Inquisitr. Oddly enough, none of them provided examples of any harassment, much less the “torrent of racist, misogynist harassment & abuse” which has been alleged.

    Whether a games writer was being harassed or not has nothing to do with skepticism or freethought, at least not directly, but both skepticism and freethought are fundamentally grounded in a free and open exchange of ideas—which cyberharassment surely hampers or prevents—and also upon the idea that it is good to ask for evidence when claims are put forward.

    I am not the only skeptic who is curious about these harassment claims:

    There may also be some reason to believe that Moosa may be overdetecting for harassment, judging by his reply to previous criticism.

    Notice that Moosa was not being contacted here, nor pelted with abusive language, but he still replies defensively, as if being both contacted and abused. Regardless of one’s views on “PC Master Race” or the problem of tokenism in game design, it is difficult to see how this level of criticism warrants this response. “Please leave me alone” should not be synonymous with “Please stop disagreeing with me in public” but it feels like that is the gambit being played here. (Incidentally, this tactic has become common enough that it probably deserves a name.)

    I remain open to the possibility that the evil hordes of GamerGate harassed Tauriq Moosa off of social media, but as a skeptic I am not required to “listen and believe” but rather obligated to ask exactly when and how that happened. Until the offending tweets are put forward by those making the accusations, we cannot begin to discern whether they were fair play in a public medium, unethical abuse, or fall somewhere in the grey area in between.

    Category: Atheism Plus

    Article by: Damion Reinhardt

    Former fundie finds freethought fairly fab.