By adding your name to the pledge, you are committing to uphold and support it in every quest quested, flag captured, and gold pile duped. So what, exactly, does that mean? Below you will find those answers, and, if you don’t, contact us and we’ll be happy to help.
If you’re curious to know what the organization’s goals are beyond the pledge, or what will be done with the pledge, check out our Gamers Against Bigotry Action Plan infographic.
Also, read this great interview at The Mary Sue with Sam, the founder of GAB. It will likely answer all the questions you may have had, and then some.
What is the purpose of the pledge?
The pledge is meant to be a source of external reinforcement for positive behavior. I think we can all agree that games would be more fun for folks if various aspects of their identity weren’t tirelessly targeted and attacked, but we can all probably also agree that it’s hard to break a bad habit.
Bigotry isn’t part of gaming culture, and never has been; it’s just unfounded hatred, masked by anonymity. It’s something we need to get rid of.
Think of the pledge the same way you might think about a swear jar: it’s here to reinforce positive behavior, and hold you accountable for slip-ups. Also, if you would like, you are encouraged to create a “GAB Jar” and donate the proceeds to us as they accumulate.
So I’m not allowed to swear?
Actually, you can swear all you want. That “swear jar” stuff was just an analogy. The pledge doesn’t preclude you from making sailors blush, provided you’re making them blush with non-identity-specific four-letter words. Trash-talking (or “sledging,” a term we’ve learned from our international friends) and swearing in frustration are not things we’re taking a stand against — indeed, they are things many of us (the GAB staff) engage in.
Gaming gets heated — and it can’t be healthy to bottle in all that passive aggression. Let it out!
Okay, so just none of the racial/ethnic/identity slurry stuff?
Yep. If you’ve never looked up the word “bigotry,” you should. It’ll give you a really solid sense of what we’re doing here. We’re taking a stand against targeting individuals based on immutable aspects of their identity (e.g., race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, disability) and using language that stems from a history of intolerance.
Intolerance is ugly no matter where it happens, and the anonymity and safety of one’s couch seems to bring out the worst of it. Penny Arcade nailed it with this comic oh so many years ago.
That’s what we’re trying to put an end to.
Let me get this straight: you’re okay with angry gab, just not angry bigoted gab?
Nailed it. We are a complex organism, get over it. Now will you sign the thing already?!