It’s Time to Take Back Geek Culture

Take Back Geek Culture.I meant to write this post awhile ago, but I had to first derage and then we had so many other awesome things to write about that it got pushed to the background. But a few months ago I logged into Facebook and saw this thread:

Innocent Question: as a Star Wars fan, what do you want to see at a Star Wars fan convention?

…A few normal answers….

Boy 1: Unique things. Not the same old stuff. Also 2000% more slave leias.
Boy 2: [Link image of Slave Leia pillow fight.]
Boy 3: Boy 1, if I may be so bold as to edit your response… *2000% more QUALITY ` Slave Leias.
Boy 1: Boy 2, Good point sir. I should have been more precise. That being said maybe a “fat” slave Leia blaster (read paint ball) target range with prizes.

…A couple more normal answers trying to get conversation on track…

Boy 4: Princess Leia gold bikini made of paint. Quality over quantity. More Steampunk variants.
Boy 5: Boobs and a full size rancor.

The only thing that surprised me about this interaction was that it was on Facebook, next to the name and pictures of the boys making these statements instead of some semi-anonymous web forum. And no, no matter what you tell me I won’t believe they’re just saying these things “for the lolz.”

Claire and I have both written posts about the sexism we see in our culture. It might be the Fake Geek Girl meme. Or a condescending comment in a comic shop. Or how it feels at times to be a geek girl. It might be the way we’re leered at when we go to conventions. Often, it’s the more subtle things, like putting “geek girl” in quotes when criticizing someone (for example: “Here’s another “geek girl” trying to tell us we’re sexist). It’s not the majority of people in geek culture for sure, but its enough to be off putting.

MacManus Brothers

I certainly don’t want them upset with me. (Image from

Most people in geek culture are awesome. The majority of men aren’t chauvinistic pigs. But the ones who are, are very loud. So it feels like they’re everywhere. And the good guys, the majority of us, do nothing. We cannot do nothing anymore (what would the MacManus brothers think). It’s time to take back geek culture. But how?

The answer is so simple, that I’m surprised we haven’t thought of it until now.

“Not cool.”

That’s it. Out at a con and someone makes a lewd comment about a cosplayer simply say “Dude, not cool.” On reddit and someone makes a “make me a sandwhich” comment – “Not cool.” Hear some comment about “all females” just reply, “Not cool.” Someone harassing a female player the lobby of your game, “Not cool.” Don’t antagonize. Don’t downvote to oblivion. Don’t white knight. Just simply tell them “not cool.”

It’s simple. It’s not personal. It doesn’t make a big deal about things (so no troll feeding here). It just establishes that that kind of behavior is not acceptable. It’s not funny. And its not cool.

5 Responses to “It’s Time to Take Back Geek Culture”
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