So i'm not going to get into the... exactly who, what, when, where or why i'm vaguely alluding to just now, but there have been... several pretty serious recent instances of harassement in the rp community that have made me and others feel unsafe, so i'm just going to drop this here for the moment because until things get sorted it seems like a pretty important discussion to open up.
I'm going to get all nerdy and talk for a second about the history and basic principles about rights. Inherent to the principle is the idea that rights come with corresponding responsibilities to uphold alongside bearing those rights. Some of the most simple examples i can think of include things like: The right to live, the responsibility not to murder. Alongside the right to own property, the responsibility not to steal from others. Alongside the right to speak, the responsibility to not deny speech to others.
Rights don't exist in a vaccum, if they did they would be meaningless. So into this i'm going to bring up something that should be really obvious, but apparently isn't. As roleplayers, with the freedom to use our characters as we see fit in order to satisfy our own enjoyment and better out own mental wellbeing, we also have the responsibility to not recklessly endanger the enjoyment and mental wellbeing of other players in order to service what *we* want. I'm not talking about just... poor quality roleplay, that's inevitable, and even acceptable. What i'm talking about is IC behaviour done in such a way as to translate to reckless mental abuse of a real person. For those wondering what i'm dancing around, i'm talking about sexual harassement, the really nasty kind of sexual harassement, not the low level everyday bullshit that one can reasonably accept in roleplay, but the really awful stuff. You should know by now what exactly i'm talking about, and why i'm uncomfortable to name it outright on this board.
The cop-out i've been hearing is that people have the right to play their charahters however they like, and that no one is forcing you into that kind of roleplay, you can bow out at any time. This is not enough, this is not acceptable, this behaviour is traumatizing people. This is the sort of thing that if you're going to do, you *explicitely* lay out consent before-hand, no excuses, no exceptions. Obtain consent, or don't do it, because once you've initiated without permission, you've already done the damage. Wether people drop out immediately, you've still hurt them, wether they sit there shocked at their keyboard while you march onwards with the rp, you've still hurt them. Wether you've struck some real primal chord of fear in them, and they even try to respond IC, even with their discomfort, you've still hurt them.
We have responsibilities to one another, alongside our rights, we cannot forget that. Those in the Kink community are in the know on this. Safe. Sane. Consensual. Don't be a dick.