Just say “Bugger off”: dealing with clueless dudes on social media

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Copyright © 2014 Corey Harper
Corey Harper Books

 

Bill Maher once said, during the Brett Favre debacle, “No woman in the history of the world has ever wanted to look at a guy’s cock, cold. The first cave painting was a cock; after that, it was all antelopes and sunsets.”

I say, “Sometimes you girls are just too darn nice.”

Given the group that is likely to be reading this article, I will clarify that Maher’s comment means unsolicited pictures of some random dude’s junk, because I know for a fact that quite a few of the adorable little horndogs of my acquaintance do enjoy viewing a nice male member on occasion.

But the difference is, it is their choice.

People who know me, know I tend to get peeved about a few things, chief among those things the way women are treated. And one of the top three irritations I feel about the way women are treated is the way clueless dudes treat them online.

As you might imagine, I know a few kinky lasses. Many of them are quite open about their kinks, and about being submissives in general. For some reason, this affirmation on their part has an odd effect on much of the online male population: when they see “submissive”, they think “hooker”. (Just typing that pisses me off.)

Jeebus, even a hooker gets—or should get—some respect. I think so many of these guys spend their days and nights typing with one hand in their laps—quite possibly in their moms’ basements—that their vision of basic humanity has become skewed.

So why am I ranting about this, this week? Why didn’t I put up a nice new excerpt of sexual congress from my books? Well, the books are all released, and for the moment that’s enough. But the main reason is something that occurred last week on dear old Facebook, Ground Zero for time-suck dramas.

And the reason I’m writing about it, is that it happened to me—but more importantly, to my little.

Quick digression: For those of you just tuning in to HarperWorld, you might want to read this article on Daddy Doms and little girls/babygirls for a quick primer, in case you are not familiar with this aspect of the kink community.

Those of you who have known me for awhile know that I am not even remotely a “protocol” Dom. But I always respect it in others, and there are a few basic rules to this world that you just do not transgress.

Poaching or sliming on happily attached subs, for one.

I’m going to illustrate this with the Facebook comment sequence from what occurred last week. Names have been obscured for privacy.

The way it began was this: my little posted something for me, a bit of cute writing she found, written by another little to that little’s Daddy. Here’s what that other little wrote:

Comment 0

Adorable, yes? I made some appreciative comment, and my little replied that she wanted to give herself some “wiggle room” with me by posting this (also very adorable). So do note that my comment—with my name—was first in the comments sequence.

Here’s where it gets interesting. While we of course always welcome our friends to comment on our public posts, it should go without saying that respect should be given to the attachment bond between any Dom and his submissive; from my perspective, that bond is sacrosanct.

Apparently someone didn’t get the memo. This was the reply to my little’s “wiggle” comment:

Comment 1

I wish I could say that this is the first time this person had said something like this. Sadly, it has been a long-standing pattern with them, and this person actually has claimed to be an experienced member of the BDSM community. This person was a Facebook friend with my little, and by her account was nice in IM, but this sort of comment to her—and many others—was common. And she had told this person that she was attached, in a relationship, and to whom. My name was two comments above this lovely bit of poetry.

You can imagine my response when I saw this:

Comment 2

I inserted the pejorative on purpose: in the past, every time this person had committed one of these faux pas with my little, they would later apologize to her in IM when she called them on it. This time, I wanted her to see their true colors. I did hope they would realize their error and apologize to her, but instead:

Comment 3

Apparently I’m a wannabe. Who knew? Needless to say upon seeing this, my little immediately unfriended and blocked this person. Their response to her on their timeline the next day:

Comment 4

 

So… wow. Where to start? This person wanted my little to speak up for herself, but the moment she did, and it went against the person, something was then “wrong” with her.

Now you may be wondering what the point is of all this. “Why the fuck is Corey airing his dirty laundry on his blog?” It’s a fair question. First of all, I’m not doing this to embarrass anyone; no names have been mentioned, and indeed, with this person’s long-standing pattern of behavior and their response to being called out, I seriously doubt embarrassment would be an issue anyway.

I’m using this incident because I have firsthand knowledge of it, and all the ugly little moments that make it what it is. But I have heard from other women—more times than I can count—that this sort of thing happens on a near-daily basis to them. That they become upset by it. That it affects them as they go through their day.

That it fucking disrespects them.         

A submissive is a human being. She is not a whore. She is not an object. She is not a toy.

Some of you might be thinking, “Well, sometimes I like those things.” Of course you do. When you have given consent to be treated like this. My little never gave consent for these comments at any time, and neither have any of the other women I’ve spoken to about this.

And point of order for any sex workers who may read this: you all deserve the same goddamn respect. Your consent is given in receiving remuneration for agreed-upon activities. Agreed-upon.

This is the crux that the person in the screenshots above—and so many others, mainly male—do not seem able to comprehend. I have seen far too many naughty Tumblr blogs that submissive girls put up, and in their “About Me” feel it necessary to say, “I’m a submissive, but I’m not your submissive.”

Bloody fucking hell. It breaks my heart they have been so jerked around that they feel they have to write these disclaimers.

I know that, as a big, hairy, grumpy male Dom, I can’t fully imagine what it feels like to have this near-constant—and unwelcome—bombardment. I can’t imagine opening my email, or IM, or DM, and seeing that some tweezer-brain has made what he thinks is a clever comment, or worse, sent a picture of his junk to some unsuspecting female just because she had the audacity to express herself online. Or in the case of many of my female friends, write romance stories that have (shriek!) sex in them. Obviously they are all women of loose morals.

Bollocks. A lady is a lady. I don’t give a fuck if she lives in the Hamptons, or wrestles alligators in the Everglades in a G-string and pasties. She’s a lady, and all ladies deserve to be treated as such.

Yet with this bombardment, I sense an ennui, a resignation, on the part of the victims. (And yes, they are indeed victims of unwelcome visual assault.) I get that. So what to do? The answers aren’t easy, but the first step is to do what packs of wolves do when one pack member is unbalanced.

Ostracize.

Drive the unbalanced member away. Once that pack member has shown itself to threaten the stability and happiness of the pack, it’s gone. There’s no “Tell me how you feel about this,” no attempts to reason. Because when a pack member is so far gone that they threaten the stability of all, they cannot remain.

Don’t try to reason with them, because you can’t. They might make noises like they get it, but 90% of the time they will be right back at it the next day. I’d like to say that the person in the above screenshots was a 14-year-old who just hadn’t learned how to talk to girls yet, but sadly, my understanding is that it is a retired person in their fifties. Far too old to be maintaining this behavior. You cannot reason with them. You cannot talk them out of it. No matter how many times you try, no matter how many times they apologize, they will just do it again. And they will think that you are the one with the problem.

“Corey, people aren’t wolves. And what if I can help them?”

I sense doubt on your part. You may think that if you talk to them, you can help them. You can’t. Remember at the top of this article, when I said you girls are sometimes too nice? Yep, that. My little has a sweet and loving nature, and not a malicious bone in her body, and she tried to reason with this person many times. Quite obviously, to no avail.

I want to digress here briefly and speak more to the concept of consent; specifically: implied consent.

Implied consent can be tricky, dangerous waters to navigate, and requires a separate article to address thoroughly and well. For myself, I require explicit consent—i.e. the phrase “I consent to doing [many delightfully horrible activities] with you”, or an unmistakable equivalent.

To avoid a shit-storm of disagreement from the kink community, I will repeat: this is my preference. Others may do it differently—and that’s where misunderstandings can arise. Now if a Dom requests that a submissive insert her butt plug, and she happily rolls over and does it without a word, is this implied consent, or is it explicit? She did not say, “I consent”, so which is it?

I’m pretty good at role-playing verbal abuse/humiliation, and in the past have had a sub or three come and specifically ask me to role-play this way with them. Again: implied, or explicit?

In these two instances I’ve given, I would term them explicit for this reason: Each sub took specific action of her own free will to either comply with my request, or to request on her own some action from me. In neither case did I assume consent had been given prior to witnessing the specificity of her free-will action. And at each step of the way I check in again with the submissive (at least until I know them well), because they may have occasion to change their minds but feel too shy or intimidated by a large, aggressive Dom to speak up.

In the incident involving the screenshots above, my little had never given any sort of consent to that person, either implied or explicit. And this is the danger: clueless dudes assume an implied consent if the girl continues to talk to them after their initial inappropriate comment, but it’s all in their heads, regardless of what’s happening in reality. For these types, a woman should not have to run away screaming to get the message across that she isn’t interested. But it seems if a girl is kind to these guys at all, if she tries to see something in them beyond their classless remarks, it’s perceived as “she totally gave me the green light, bro”. (I imagine we’ve all had that “one” friend in our lives who just didn’t get it.)

It’s one thing to express interest in a woman online, in a dignified, respectful way. Lots of people meet online and end up very happy together. But initially, the dude doesn’t know her, so making assumptions based on her stated nature or kink is just fucking disrespectful. If the woman does not reciprocate, then move on and leave her alone.

That last paragraph will be the most difficult for clueless dudes to understand, because once they fixate on a woman, they almost always think that woman is interested in them and is receptive to whatever they have to say, as the second-to-last screenshot above proves.

Yes, there is the occasional submissive (I use this term in the generic sense of someone liking things done to them by someone more aggressive; there are many granular levels and numerous terms to describe those with specific kinks, but a jargon lesson would muddy the waters for the purposes of this article) who enjoys verbal abuse and smarmy comments right out of the gate. Most of them state this in their “About Me” section. In that case, they have given consent for random guys doing their random thing to them, because that is their kink. But that is an exception.

“Corey, I’m not convinced. I really think I can reason with this clueless dude, because he’s so nice otherwise.”

Oh dear. Are you a Facebook-douche fixer-upper? Do you think you will change their minds, their behaviors, their outlooks on women? Any time you continue to talk to a guy like this—any time—in his mind you are encouraging him to do it more (to be clear: it’s in his head; you aren’t doing anything wrong). Because any attention these guys get from you, they take as a green light to keep at you.

Trust me on this. Being a Testicular-American myself, I know how guys think.

I’m going to tell you a big secret about this now. I’m going to tell you why this happens, and why clueless dudes become so relentless. No one really talks about this in this way, because it isn’t considered “nice” talk for polite company. Fuck that; everyone knows I’m not nice or polite. You ladies need to know what’s going on in these guys’ heads so you can understand and steer clear.

Here’s the secret:

Somewhere along the way, they saw a picture of you, a profile, a comment you’ve made, your blog, or maybe just the fact that you write erotica. “Woo hoo, Goober! Open season!” And they get their hands in their laps and start jerking off. I’m not joking. And they work it up in their heads that they have a connection to you. Maybe that you are the love of their life. The more they jerk, the more inflamed they get about you. The more inflamed they get, the stupider they become. And the stupider they become… Well, the unsolicited comments and junk pics in your email/IM/DM are the result of that.

“Lookit me, girl! Look how hard I am for you! Don’t you love it? Don’t you want to fuck me now?”

Are you creeped out yet by nameless guys jerking off to you? Good. I want you to be creeped out. I want you to know what’s going on, so you don’t give these assholes the time of day. Did I mention:

Ostracize?

The person in the screenshots above has friended quite a few different women on Facebook. Some of them feel too sorry for this person to unfriend them because they are nice otherwise. Most of them have experienced comments similar to that aimed at my little. And I suspect that person’s response to any commentary I might make on that is—as they already stated above—“They are kinky. They asked for it.”

What does that sound like?

The first word that popped into your head was the correct one. Doesn’t matter if it only happened online. When a clueless dude is so clueless that he decides what a girl not attached to him should have—and not her—we have a word for that. Doesn’t matter if he’s nice after, or apologizes.

I realize ostracizing won’t work in every situation. You can’t, for example, stop random emails of guys’ junk. You can block their email addresses, and that may discourage some, but others will just get a new email address.

But on Facebook, and Twitter, and any of the other social media where such user controls are possible, you must do this immediately for unwelcome attention:

Unfriend, and block.

Anything less, and the clueless dudes win.

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12 thoughts on “Just say “Bugger off”: dealing with clueless dudes on social media

  1. Perfectly expressed. I’ve been blessed in that 90% of the time I am treated with respect in the kink community. But when I’m not? Sheesh. I want to think those individuals didn’t mean to be offensive. I just turned the other cheek and pretended it didn’t hurt to be treated so lowly. Now, I think I will try the Corey Harper Unfriend and Block method to deal with the clueless.

    • Sadly, Kellee, clueless dudes generally think they are being clever, not hurtful, but as I demonstrated in the article, are nearly impossible to enlighten. Block and move on; your time, and emotions, are far too valuable.

  2. Gah. My only “serious” comment to your post is 1) sorry this happened; and 2) http://failblog.cheezburger.com/work/tag/i-can-typing . Fucking internet. I’m on it all the time for business and all, so yeah, I know, I know. Oh, and fuck people, too, in general, while I’m at it.

    I’m glad you did this as a crawl post, too, for a purely “selfish” reason: I never wanted the crawl to be “just excerpts” and cover reveals and self-promo. It’s OK TO COLOR OUTSIDE THE LINES, people. Read the FAQ.

    Also, I laughed out loud at “Ground Zero for time-suck dramas” and a few other of your bon mots. Again, sorry this happened.

    • Thank you, Sheri. I hear stories similar to this all the time, and a commentary has been on my to-do list. The personal nature of the incident helped spur me to bring this particular to-do to the top of the list.

      Having a little who is jaw-droppingly gorgeous makes these sorts of incidents not unexpected, but no less welcome for their crassness. Indeed, she got yet another classless comment the other day–from someone who should know better–that just made me shake my head.

  3. I see this all to often in other online communities as well. Even as you described this as it relates to the BDSM scene, I could have replaced any of it with “gaming” and the story would have been the same (and is why I game as a male character).

    You’re right. There’s no reasoning, there’s no ‘talking it through’, and I see it destroy friends and my loved one. It’s very frustrating to not get that resolution of being understood, because it’s a reasonable request to want that respect. But walking away, pushing them out and blocking them, is the only option.

    • Right, Allyson, and that’s why I wrote it. I used myself and my little for illustration, but she is by no means alone in her efforts to try to enlighten these clueless dudes. From my observation, they simply cannot be educated, not by the object of their desires, anyway. They just don’t think they are doing anything wrong, and they’ve convinced themselves that women like this kind of talk. While as I said, there is the occasional exception who does like it, those women generally are pretty clear about asking it be done to them.

      The rest… well, I see these sorts of comments several times a day on Facebook, in reply to a post that women have put up. Despite the female poster not directly engaging in response to the comment–“hey, baby, I’d like to feed you some protein”–these guys are undeterred.

  4. Hi Corey, I understand your frustration, but there will always be jerks in the world. Unfortunately you can’t change their behavior, only your reaction to it. It’s all about boundaries. You teach people how to treat you and by not blocking this person the first time they acted like this the message to him was that his behavior was okay. If you don’t a behavior from someone on social media you have the power to block them. Hooray for that.

    • Exactly the crux of my thesis, Normandie: block the first time it happens. I don’t spend my valuable time trying to educate these types. My message was to those women–very nice, kind, loving women–who do try to educate and enlighten these guys. There’s absolutely no point, and as I said in the commentary, talking to them only encourages their behavior.

      My goal in writing this article was to give those very kind women the knowledge of what is happening from a male perspective, in hopes that they would not waste any more precious moments–or emotions–on theses clueless dudes.

  5. Awesome post! And I have much respect for you for taking the time to put it out there and defending your little! I think this person’s comments clearly show his lack of understanding and respect for the culture. I’m sorry about what happened to you both, and as you said, it happens too often. I have little patience for such things–it always results in a quick block and no looking back.

    • Thank you, Skye. Believe it or not, that was not the most offensive post that person ever sent to my little–she told me they once said something about feeding her “protein”. Ugh.

      And yes, from my vantage, I saw absolutely no evidence of this person’s claims to be experienced in the kink world. Consent is always key, IMO.

  6. Unfortunately, these creeps will continue to slither around. It’s usually the attention they are after – and your advice is solid to cut them off quick. Thanks for posting and sharing your experience, Corey.

    • And thank you, Shelly. Yes, my point was that if everyone blocks them immediately–a zero tolerance policy–then they won’t have as many places to slither. The point of ostracizing is to remove them from the general population as thoroughly as possible.

      Just think how much you can relax after removing one of these guys from access to your feeds. :)

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