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8-11-2011 @ 8:04PM
You can protect him from injury, but you can't protect him from life. Nor should you. There ARE ignorant and hateful people in the world, whether we like it or not.That's reality.
8-11-2011 @ 8:19PM
The issue is that online communities have a much higher prevalence of this kind of hateful speech then the 'real' world. They aren't a proper representation of the real world and exposure of exaggerated online communities to a young child could affect them. There is a difference between preparing a child for the real world as opposed to just putting them out there unguarded.
8-11-2011 @ 8:22PM
It doesn't matter if there are more or less in the "real world." You can't hide in la-la land forever, sadly. Talk to the kid and explain why the behavior is wrong, but don't expect to find a place where it never happens.
8-11-2011 @ 8:25PM
I'm guessing you don't have kids....Parents (good parents, anyway) try to limit their kids exposure to "reality" to levels that are appropriate to age and maturity.
8-11-2011 @ 8:26PM
@ Professor OrcIt's about the same in the real world, it just that more people are just in the closet about it.
8-11-2011 @ 8:27PM
I think that's besides the point. From what I've seen in the mother's letter...she's just worried and hopeful that her "9 year old son" (insert italics there for added emphasis) who is already at the mercy of a cruel hand dealt to him is able to enjoy a wonderful fantasy game without the ugliness that only ignorance can color an experience with. I really don't think it's too much for her to ask; indeed, I think your comment's bitter tone speaks to a loss of innocence that kids these days think of as being commonplace and the norm, which is incredibly tragic, and as Mr. Gray has adeptly pointed out, incredibly sad. Let the kid enjoy his childhood...there is plenty of time to deal with life's cruelty when he comes of age...at the very least, let the poor thing hit puberty!
8-11-2011 @ 8:44PM
I'm sorry, but I encounter this attitude in so many places.I think I'm entitled to an environment where I don't hear racial an homophobic slurs. I hear them often irl for free.I think that people don't have to listen to that sort of language, and they can seek advice and places where they don't have to. It's not la-la land, and I find this type of attitude dismissive.
8-11-2011 @ 9:02PM
Saying that this is just the real world is bunk. This is the world as internet socialites would have you believe. When you are sitting in from of a screen, alone, the anonymity alone is often enough to embolden people to say things they might not normally say in civilized conversation. The problem is inherent in the medium of conversation.By saying that a 9 year old needs to learn to grow up and face real life is not only calloused, but dismissive of the concerns of a parent. You are, of course, entitled to your own opinion. However, this type of rhetoric is simply a symptom of the issue I mentioned above. It is easy to be rude, cruel, or vulgar without someone standing in front of you cracking their knuckles.
8-11-2011 @ 9:07PM
Jill, I totally understand where you're coming from. I believe the same.However, there comes a point where the child starts to see that it's the norm and ok, not that it's NOT. It becomes tiresome for the parent to constantly have to tell their child, "No, it's not ok to use that language, even though you see it here." Most of the time, you (the parent) just don't want to have to worry quite so much about it.There's reasonable exposure so the child isn't sent into shock when he encounters the situation, then there's overdoing it.<3
8-11-2011 @ 9:15PM
I don't know why this was down-rated as much as it was. Most kids I've known who were home schooled and coddled by "well meaning" overprotective parents ended up ill prepared for the real world once they left the nest and went to college, etc. There are social norms that you simple have to learn the hard way. I think we've try to shy away from that in modern society. For all we know, the parent in question may be referring to "medical problems" as "I keep my kid jacked on Ritalin because I can't deal with him being loud."Flame on, Ritalin kids.
8-11-2011 @ 11:16PM
A child needs to be protected from some of the vastness of the "evils" of the real world while they develop their own senses of "norms". Yes, children need to be raised to go out on their own once they are reaching adulthood, but there are times and places as a child grows for them to "see the real world". Otherwise they end up entering our "real world" thinking that bashing people for their color, creed, or beliefs is the popular norm of society.The game is rated "T" for teen, but regardless of that the BANNABLE content that people regularly post in public areas in game are very prevalent. Recently I saw a blue responding to a poster complaining about a similar issue where it seems the gms have become more lax in how they police such things, to which he responded that Blizz has changed nothing in how they handle such complaints. So either that was wrong, or people as a whole just report slanderous speech far less than they used to.
8-12-2011 @ 1:32AM
@Lowlight: I think I can safely say that you have no idea what you're talking about.
8-12-2011 @ 2:39AM
This is the fact of the matter. World of Warcraft has an ESRB rating of T for Teen. This is the equivilent of an MPAA rating of PG-13. There's violence, sexualy suggestive themes, Alchohol Abuse, strong language, and crude humor, and that's in the game by itself. Then you've got to take into account the people that inhabit the game. You might think that you're shuttling your kid off to entertain himself in some sort of Mario Bros.-esque fantasy land, when in fact what you're doing is closer to sending him off to watch Mortal Kombat in the theater, by himself. 9 year olds should not be playing WoW. I don't care how precocious you think your kid is. It's rated 13+ for a reason. Ignore the rating at your own peril.
8-12-2011 @ 3:02AM
I won't say that I'm not guilty of... perhaps "spreading the hate" in the game, whether it's an aggressive response to PUGs and general/trade posters alike (Idiocy, incompetence, laziness, etc).Nor am I in agreement of unleashing a child upon the cesspool of the internet when the child is not mentally developed/capable of handling such environment.The general internet has turned into nothing short of a warzone. There's idiots spewing aimless hate speech. There's "sophisticated" idiots trying to educate the masses with their flaccid chain of thought. There's Godly servants from heaven who will defend and assist anyone in need, and there's casual users who just doesn't give a flying rat's ass. No matter how you look at it, however, the environment is definitely not a safe place to raise or educate or entertain a child properly.World of Warcraft is still a part of the internet, and that still seeps through to the game by way of interactions with other players, because, after all, this game IS a Massively MULTIPLAYER ONLINE Role Playing Game. Note that I've emphasized MULTIPLAYER and ONLINE in the last sentence.By allowing a child of young age to initiate contact with potential savages is pretty damned close to sending your child down a slum for an errand. Whether you walk him to the store (parental supervision), send him off with a bus (Guild), or on his own (Solo/RDF), he's still bound to see the ugliness of the ghetto. Not to mention, if he's out on his own, the other denizens of the slum (RDF Pugs) will either have to babysit him (due to his lack of skill) or deal with him in their own way (made apparent by the instances provided in the post). By letting a young child play, you would essentially add the burden of babysitting to other players, and as we've noticed... Not many people are willing. I personally cannot blame them. In addition, it's complete and total strangers doing it... And I wouldn't feel safe, at all, to do so.This, of course, can be avoided or mitigated to some degree by limiting his interactions, but what's the point, then? The game was clearly not meant to be played exclusively solo, and if he were to be, then he might as well play other long RPGs like Fallout 3/New Vegas, Final Fantasy, or even Dragon Quest. (Off the top of my head. There's hundreds of others.)If you're still hellbent on letting your child play, the only suggestion I can give you is to literally become his guardian. Play with him at all times. Protect his innocence from the filth-ridden grasps of reality. If you're not willing to do that... then you have no right to object to the game's society. They're wrong, yes, but that won't make you right.
8-12-2011 @ 3:15AM
DragonFireKai, I 100% agree with you. A 9-year-old should not be in WoW. I often think young teenagers shouldn't be, either, but that's a different discussion :-)
8-12-2011 @ 12:16PM
I actually heard someone use the word "faggot" in public the other day. It was really quite jarring. It's honestly not something you see every day. These guys are right...there's a huge difference between keeping your kid in a bubble and putting them in a situation where anti-social behavior seems acceptable or the norm. If we're going to turn this into a real life argument, then I ask this: If you were standing in line at the store, and someone called their cashier a "nigger" because they were checking them out too slowly, would you honestly just "/ignore" the situation and think to yourself, "Oh, that's just life." I would hope not. I would hope you'd be shocked, speak up, and cheer when that person was kicked out of the store and told never to return.It's silly to suggest that the behavior in-game could or should be considered some kind of preparation for real life. It's also silly to suggest that a parent can't have their own timeline in mind as far as how early they think their kid should be exposed to some of the harsher realities of life.As far as solutions go, I always, always try to have at least one ticket open at all times. Those idiots who spout racism, aggressive profanity, or other hate speech think it's OK partly because nothing ever happens to them.The simple truth is that we, as a community, have allowed this stuff to become rampant. People, so often, shout empty threats of "REPORTED!" to people in an attempt to scare them out of their behavior, but fail to realize that this only encourages it when punishment fails to actually materialize. Next time you see someone /yelling the n-word, take 10 seconds out of your day and put in a quick ticket.Blizzard won't tell you what they do to these people, but I can tell you with fairly great certainty that they do action them. Blizzard's new system keeps records of all your tickets on battle.net. I recently went through and armory'd all the people I've put tickets in about, and with very few exceptions, all of these people could be seen getting achievements and looting purples on a daily basis until a sudden 1-3 day gap in their play starting on the same day my ticket was answered. In one case, the player's activity stopped altogether.Ignoring is fine, I guess, but keep in mind that this doesn't help the community get better. Actually teaching these miscreants that there are consequences for their actions is much better for everyone in the long run.
8-12-2011 @ 1:09PM
@(cutaia) That was a PERFECT answer to resolve the issue of the post. Blizzard can only stop the behavior if they are aware of it. When I see people behave like that in public, I usually step in with a comment like, "...apparently someone didn't pay attention in Kindergarten".As to the author 'A Mom', my advice is to listen to (cutaia)'s proactive advice and follow the old adage, "Do not suffer fools; better to instead make fools suffer".
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