June 6, 2017

"Although the majority of our regular opinion writers are white men, we found that those who experienced the highest levels of abuse and dismissive trolling were not."

"The 10 regular writers who got the most abuse were eight women (four white and four non-white) and two black men. Two of the women and one of the men were gay. And of the eight women in the “top 10”, one was Muslim and one Jewish. And the 10 regular writers who got the least abuse? All men."

From "The dark side of Guardian comments."

IN THE COMMENTS: Freeman Hunt said:
They have a section where you mark comments as Allow or Block to see how your moderating would compare to theirs.

This revealed, in my opinion, that their methodology is flawed. Take this for example, which they mark as "sexist" and block worthy:

“THERE IS NO GENDER PAY GAP! Just more feminist crap portraying women as victims and men as perpetrators. Even worse is the lie we live in a rape culture with one in five women raped over a lifetime. Sure if you re-define what constitutes a rape including a drunk girl gives consent but regrets it next day.”

It may be be wrong. It may be off topic. It is not, however, sexist.

They did this study by tallying up comments they blocked. If they're blocking that kind of thing, I'm not sure that their data is particularly meaningful.
The study might ironically show that The Guardian is sexist. It may be that The Guardian thinks it's necessary to protect female writers from vigorous pushback but sees the male writers as able to sustain attacks and defend themselves. 

63 comments:

AReasonableMan said...

Go figure.

rhhardin said...

I'd suppose commenters engage somebody who believes their stuff first hand rather than, say, beta males and muslim apologists.

Owen said...

Of course, the abuse level does not correlate with what these writers wrote. It's all about those so-very-dominant characteristics that distract readers: color and gender. Which somehow bleed onto the page and excite bad behavior.

MikeR said...

Been there, done that: http://michellemalkin.com/2008/09/03/the-four-stages-of-conservative-female-abuse/

Fernandinande said...

It sounds like the naughty white men (redundant, I know) wrote the least-stupid columns. But that's impossible and hocking.

Fernandinande said...

Shocking, nothing to do with horse legs.

Freeman Hunt said...

"Although the majority of our regular opinion writers are white men, we found that those who experienced the highest levels of abuse and dismissive trolling were not."

What are the majority of their readers? Do the demographics of their trolls match the demographics of their readers?

Freeman Hunt said...

They have a section where you mark comments as Allow or Block to see how your moderating would compare to theirs.

This revealed, in my opinion, that their methodology is flawed. Take this for example, which they mark as "sexist" and block worthy:

“THERE IS NO GENDER PAY GAP! Just more feminist crap portraying women as victims and men as perpetrators. Even worse is the lie we live in a rape culture with one in five women raped over a lifetime. Sure if you re-define what constitutes a rape including a drunk girl gives consent but regrets it next day.”

It may be be wrong. It may be off topic. It is not, however, sexist.

They did this study by tallying up comments they blocked. If they're blocking that kind of thing, I'm not sure that their data is particularly meaningful.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Correlation does not necessarily imply causation.

Just because the writers who write the columns most deserving of abuse are women and minorities does not imply that they write columns most deserving of abuse because they are women and minorities.

Though that is the most likely explanation.

fivewheels said...

When you hire Jessica Valenti, it's going to skew your results.

The Drill SGT said...

eight women (four white and four non-white) and two black men. Two of the women and one of the men were gay. And of the eight women in the “top 10”, one was Muslim and one Jewish.

Perhaps the "minority" writers expressed views that were not supported by the majority of the readers?

lgv said...

People who read the Guardian consists of an oversampling of racists and misogynists. It's the only possible explanation.

Unknown said...

I think I would have to see the content. For example if Eugene Robinson (I think that is the guy) isn't talking about racism, he isn't talking.

Tiresome, redundant, DNC talking points, over and over and over. He deserves lots of criticism.

Original Mike said...

I bet all 10 were moderates.

Real American said...

In other words, the affirmative action hires wrote columns that were perceived as inferior to more commenters.

Sebastian said...

50 years of feminism, and all we get is one interminable whine.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I think a little affirmative action is in order.

Lets everyone make a point to troll and abuse their white male opinion writers more.

Liesl said...

The problem is that the shit that it real is being constantly undermined by the shit that is not, and by the folks claiming to be fighting for the real shit. So nobody takes any of it seriously.

bagoh20 said...

There is a long-running, widespread, systemic, and culturally accepted effort to discredit a race of people that is pure bigotry, hatred, and greed, and it's aimed at white men. For better or worse, no group is less prepared to fight such a thing due to their own standards on victim-hood and activism.

Nonapod said...

This raises far more questions than answers. We're only looking at one variable here: the gender of the writers. Other variables to include:

- The topics of the articles. Do some writers generally chose inherently controversial topics while others less so?

- The writing style and tone of each writer? Are they accusatory? Are they mocking? Do they seem fair minded? Are they more personal in their writing style or are they more clinical and objective?

- The gender and race makeup of the online commenters.

If you wanted to test the effects of the gender of the writer on online comments, maybe isolate just that. Put up an article and attribute it to a bunch of different writers (so the writer would appear differently to different readers) then maybe you could draw some meaningful conclusions.

Big Mike said...

@Drill SGT, I can't express that sentiment more succinctly than you have. Well written, sir.

(Thought the Guardian would assume that I'm agreeing with you because gender and sexual orientation, not because -- mirabile dictu! -- you and I actually agree about it.)

Big Mike said...

Though I might add that it's possible that the Guardian hired some writers (like Jessica Valenti!) who take very extreme positions because of the Guardian's diversity considerations.

I got this from Wikipedia: "In the October 2016 Wikileaks release of John Podesta emails, it was revealed that the Hillary Clinton campaign had said they were working with Valenti to write a post criticizing Bernie Sanders in his primary campaign against Clinton. Days later, Valenti began publishing anti-Sanders op-eds in her column in The Guardian, the first being titled 'Bernie Sanders must deliver more than platitudes about abortion.' In response to the email leaks, Valenti issued a statement saying there had not been collusion, stating: 'Like many reporters, I talk to campaign officials but don't coordinate with them.' " (emphasis mine)

Yeah, sure, Jessica.

eric said...

Only the reasonable men amongst us think they have a point.

These are the same people who laugh heartily and think Obama has a really good argument when he says, "If 99 doctors tell you you have diabetes, and 1 says you don't, who ya gonna believe?" Climate change is right! Because Obama!

Achilles said...

""Although the majority of our regular opinion writers are white men, we found that those who experienced the highest levels of abuse and dismissive trolling were not.""

So the leftists that read the Guardian are racists. We already knew that.

AReasonableMan said...

bagoh20 said...
There is a long-running, widespread, systemic, and culturally accepted effort to discredit a race of people that is pure bigotry, hatred, and greed, and it's aimed at white men


Whiny.

For better or worse, no group is less prepared to fight such a thing due to their own standards on victim-hood and activism.

Claims to be uniquely non-whiny.

mockturtle said...

Maybe it had more to do with their opinions than with their gender/ethnic status.

Todd said...

As a random comment, does anyone (or at least most ones) that comment against a post or article care all that much if the author is male/female/other and/or what race/religion they are or are most folks simply responding to the content? I know I do. I could care less if the author is a 48 year old male from India or a 21 year old black, trans-gender, transitioning, lesbian. It is the content "stupid". If a specific group or person gets an abundance of "push back" against much that they write, just maybe it is what they are writing?

cubanbob said...

""Although the majority of our regular opinion writers are white men, we found that those who experienced the highest levels of abuse and dismissive trolling were not.""

The Guardian can run a clever experiment: have those writers post their work under the whitest Brit male names possible and have their real white male writers post using the minority names.
Then see the comments.

Big Mike said...

If only ARM knew something about statistics. He'd be able to look at their methodology and would be laughing for days.

exiledonmainstreet said...

mockturtle said...
Maybe it had more to do with their opinions than with their gender/ethnic status.

6/6/17, 10:34 AM

Exactly. I think Sally Kohn is one of the dumbest most annoying commentators in existence. It has nothing to do with her gender and everything to do with the fact that she says a lot of dumb stuff.

Char Char Binks said...

This gives me the sadz. :(

AReasonableMan said...

Big Mike said...
If only ARM knew something about statistics. He'd be able to look at their methodology and would be laughing for days.


It is the psychology of old men that is the main topic of interest here. A topic on which I have received advanced training thanks to my participation on this site. Who knew there were so many resentments amongst the relatively well off?

Drago said...

Shorter ARM: please don't analyze the article too deeply as the premises for the narrative might fall apart.

Richard said...

In other words it is racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. to criticize anything written by a black, woman, gay, etc.

Levi Starks said...

Ok, I'm gong to try and explain this.
When opinion writers are protected from abusive (negative) comments then it's only natural that they will continue to produce the content that garnered the blocked comments I the first place. Which is to say that the negative comments have no power to moderate what they write. They become stuck in a favorability feedback loop, when their words are shielded from reality.
On the other hand straight white men know in advance that they can expect no such protection from abuse, and as a result they become self moderated, because they want to be able to continue to do what they do, even if it's in a watered down fashion. Because some impact is better than no impact at all.

Drago said...

ARM: "Who knew there were so many resentments amongst the relatively well off?"

LOL

Anyone listening to Hillary and her minions.

Martin said...

A big nothing unless one crosses the race/gender information with the content information. They say conversations about, inter alia, cricket, were respectful, but ones about inter alia, Israel-Palestine or gender issues, were not.

Unless you cross the columnists with the topics, and do an even deeper analysis of what they wrote, there is nothing here. Even if you do that, there is a world of other possibilities, including trolls and flame wars where one commentor inflames another, whose response goes over the top and is blocked. At most, all this says is that some issues (Palestine) are more contentious than others (cricket), which we already know. As for prejudice against certain writers based on sex or race--not much here.

Frankly, I was impressed that only 1.4% of comments were blocked, that seems like a very civilized space compared to a lot of what I am seeing.

Drago said...

Richard: "In other words it is racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. to criticize anything written by a black, woman, gay, etc."

Well, yes. But it depends on what group you belong to as well.

For instance, a feminist is not allowed to criticize a muslim, as muslims sit higher upon the lefty Victim Totem Pole.

For the left, "truth" is completely dependent upon your specific demographic background and has nothing to do with actual reality.

Scott M said...

If it were the other way, we wouldn't hear about it.

Drago said...

Scott M: "If it were the other way, we wouldn't hear about it."

The surveys will be repeated and "modified" as required so that it will never be "the other way".

Unknown said...

Drago, I would add that the caveat to the "Ye shall not criticize a black, woman, gay, etc" is trumped (hah!) by politics: the unwritten exception is "Unless they are not a leftist, in which case they aren't human and you cannot insult or demean them enough, in any fashion."


You can use the "n-word" against Clarence Thomas all you want and people like ARM and Inga will call you tolerant and worthy. Clarence Thomas isn't a human, since he's a Conservative, so he doesn't get things like being respected or tolerated.

--Vance

Bill said...

Every Jessica Valenti piece I see may as well be subtitled KICK ME.

karlpopperghost said...

Here's an amusing parody site that gives a feeling of what The Guardian is all about:

https://twitter.com/SoMuchGuardian

The Guardian's entire agenda is about condemning the sins of racism, sexism, homophobia, islamophobia, colonialism and British imperialism.

That's about it. Maybe add some pro-vegan articles as well.

So the Guardian's complaint is that their in house paid trolls, known as columnists, are being trolled.

OK, but who is getting paid? The Guardian has hired black and female and gay and muslim troll columnists to write ridiculous, politically correct racist, anti-White, feminist, anti male, Islamo-appologist etc articles on a regular basis.

Nobody is preventing the Guardian from hiring serious, intellectually sophisticated non-PC bigot writers who are black, gay, female or muslim.

The Guardian hires trolls to troll the trolls and get website hits. Then they play the victim and cry about it.

They need to hire Gloria Alred or her daughter Lisa Bloom to go after these deplorable trolls.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Who wants to bet that the white male opinion columnist wrote very few opeds that criticize women and minorities, while the female and non-white male columnist wrote plenty of opeds that attack white men?

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Comanche Voter said...

Dang its that old white men gang again. Oppressing the oppressed.

ALP said...

My first thought was: is the white dude writing about finance, business or some other boring topic that doesn't draw as much attention/controversy?. I found the graphics too headachy and wonky to see if that info was there.

n.n said...

Correlation with authors, not content. This sounds like a [class] diversity methodology, which has a known principled alignment with The Guardian's ideology. Twilight fringe, indeed.

urbane legend said...

Unknown said...
For example if Eugene Robinson (I think that is the guy) isn't talking about racism, he isn't talking.

Tiresome, redundant, DNC talking points, over and over and over. He deserves lots of criticism.

You are correct.

bagoh20 said...

"Whiny."

Do you see the different way you process a complaint by the white male? Would you call a minority complaint "whiny"? I happen to think it's whiny either way, but why does the culture only dismiss the white male complaints? Do we think the minority can't handle it? Do they need coddled? Soft racism of low expectations. The minority writers probably make more easily disputed arguments becuase they have been allowed to do so during their development by parents, friends and teachers. Anyone who did dispute them could be dismissed as biased.

Achilles said...

bagoh20 said...
"Whiny."

Do you see the different way you process a complaint by the white male? Would you call a minority complaint "whiny"? I happen to think it's whiny either way, but why does the culture only dismiss the white male complaints?

You are making arguments in good faith. ARM is making arguments in bad faith.

It is impossible to discuss these topics when one side is operating in bad faith. He is only good for mockery.

Freeman Hunt said...

"The study might ironically show that The Guardian is sexist. It may be that The Guardian thinks it's necessary to protect female writers from vigorous pushback but sees the male writers as able to sustain attacks and defend themselves."

Yes, and it may also be that The Guardian mostly hires women and people of color to write about women and people of color, leaving regular, less controversial topics to white males. That would be another possible form of discrimination.

AReasonableMan said...

Achilles said...
ARM is making arguments in bad faith.


Troll.

n.n said...

The study might ironically show that The Guardian is sexist.

[class] diversity is a progressive cause with liberal principles. Give them credit for seeking the politically correct balance of colors and sexes.

Char Char Binks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Virtually Unknown said...

Remember when ARM enlightened us about how calling somebody a troll is the classic tactic of a troll?

Char Char Binks said...

"For example if Eugene Robinson (I think that is the guy) isn't talking about racism, he isn't talking."

That's the guy, unless the guy is Leonard Pitts, Charles Blow, or ARN. They all look the same to me.

Big Mike said...

@Virtual Unknown, why yes I do. How time flies.

AReasonableMan said...

Virtually Unknown said...
Remember when ARM enlightened us


I am using the hostess's criteria as an act of courtesy.

Unknown said...

Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean people are out to get you. When women and minorities see all sorts of ordinary things as oppression, there is no objective measure of "getting abuse". We have seen students claiming that wood paneling "erased" them, that chalk was violence, that wearing a red hat is violence, that a boy looking at the girl is assault. Words have lost their meaning.
I would also bet that some of the female writers whine, call all men rapists, and don't bother to check their facts. That might generate some nasty comments.

Drago said...

ARM: "I am using the hostess's criteria as an act of courtesy"

Yeah.....troll courtesy.....

AReasonableMan said...

Drago said...
troll courtesy


Calling Althouse a troll seems discourteous to me, but I am an old fashioned conservative in these matters.

walter said...

mockturtle said...Maybe it had more to do with their opinions than with their gender/ethnic status.
--
That's racist and sexist. Repent.

Doug said...

Maybe women, minorities, and "writers of color" are whiny bitches who only write to complain about one goddamn perceived slight after another?