Lesson #9: Your way is not always everyone else's way.
A couple of things should be said before I start: Yes, I know this is a game, but I have a great deal of respect for principles, wherever they may be applied. Yes, I also know that this happens all the time, every day, and people just ignore it and move on. In this case, I think this story bears repetition.
I decide after I log today, with a couple of hours free before I have to pick the kids up from school, that I will go take a look at the New and Improved Ony on the Hunter. I respond to a LFG in trade and go get my gear inspected, which I pass and I'm in a group with another Hunter, who we will call Joker. Some predictable 20-summat male-type banter ensues in Raid on the trip to Theramore which I ignore, and we get into the Instance. That's when the whispers start.
'Why the **** are you Marks, your spec sucks.'
And so it continues, through the trash (which is HARD but yields 10-15 Rugged Leather per skin), both in Raid and privately. You suck, your dps sucks, your talents suck, your pet sucks (I bought my bear for tanking, as inevitably I assumed in a PuG I'd end up with whelps) Part of me quietly assumes I'm being deliberately baited in the hope that I'll leave, making sure he's the only Hunter, thus ensuring all drops to him. After a while I find myself thinking that actually, this guy has no idea, he's just generally objectional.
Oh and I use the word suck coz my son reads this Blog. Feel free to insert abusive language of your choice.
The PuG is, predictably, a farce but we do at one point make it to P2 (LOTS of whelps, hitting for 1500-2k each, yum): however by that point the Hunter has given up baiting me in whisper (as I tell him pointedly I play for myself, not for anyone else) and has started berating the Raid Leader... this hunter only does 2k, I strongly sugegst you replace him (^^) I have a Recount with me third on the meters doing well over 4k (changes to Volley, we salute you) but by then the die is cast, because I'm already quietly betting the Hunter's whispered a mate and is pushing the RL to have me canned.
Sure enough, I am ejected from the group.
A quick dialog with the RL ends up with me putting him on ignore. I find myself staggered that, after three years, I can be bullied out of a Group by one person's arrogance. I know it's happened before, I know I've ignored it before, but this is different. Joker was horribly offensive, rude and dismissive, and something inside me snaps. I tell my children that they should stand up to things like this, that being different is not wrong, it's a right and they should be proud. So this time I decide I'm going to do something about it.
Fortunately Joker belongs to one of the older Raiding Guilds on the server, a Guild in which one of my fave ex-Guildies resides, so I throw him a whisper and ask him what he thinks of Joker. His reaction makes me believe this is probably normal behaviour for this guy and most people just ignore him, so I feel confident to proceed with some complaint when I hear officers seem to be fair and open to discussion. So, I speak to an Officer at length. I don't care if Joker does more dps than me, I don't care if I was thrown out of the raid, what bothers me is that this guy thinks it's ok to be like this because there will never be any comeback. People get scared, the same way they won't challenge people in real life because... well, you just don't know what might happen.
The first step to stopping any kind of bad behaviour is to have the guts to stand up and challenge it. The reason WHY it matters, whatever environment it happens in, virtual or otherwise is if you don't things NEVER get better. Things never change unless you have the will to make them. Eventually, all these small acts of defense do add up to something, they really do. You just have to hold the belief that saying something matters, and that people will listen. It matters for something.
So, I reported him, and I've also prepared a GM report with screenies. Frankly, people like this need to be made to understand that abuse is not just buying gold or botting, it covers all sorts of areas of bad and unacceptable behaviour. I have the right to play the way I want, and I don't think it's up to anyone else to be as abusive as Joker was in telling me otherwise.
More news as I have it :D