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paporomantic

Our attitudes to AVEN

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This thread can serve as a containment for all kinds of musings about AVEN.

 

It arose as a continuation of the discussion that was started in the thread 'Anyone Who ISN'T Aro?' However,

 

On 6/5/2016 at 11:12 PM, paporomantic said:

Welcome, Punable , enjoy your time here! :icecream:

 

The forum is open to everyone who adheres to the ToS, including 'totally romantic' people, so don't worry, there will be no fight.

 

That said, romantics are indeed at risk of becoming bored here because discussions are either about the aro spectrum, or organizational, or off-topic.

 

But just out of curiosity, what's making you unhappy about AVEN if you don't mind my asking?

 

.

 

 

On 6/6/2016 at 0:19 AM, Punable said:

Oh, nothing, I just heard that this was a website with a similar structure and everything in AVEN's a little hectic ^_^'

 

On 6/6/2016 at 0:42 AM, paporomantic said:

If you mean the AVEN server overload, yes, Arocalypse is running within capacity and smoothly so far; however, I have no idea about how many extra people (in terms of the order of magnitude) can start hanging out here without collapsing our server (let Blue Phoenix Ace inform us about this). Arocalypse is not really keeping its gate but I guess the capacity was chosen to fit the expected size of the aro spectrum community (which is likely smaller than the size of AVEN), hence the absence of subforums about asexuality (and about dating as/with a totally romantic ace in particular) here.

 

I agree that romantic aces deserve a good server as much as aros. The thing is that everyone is free to start a community for discussion of whatever legitimate topics (and I reckon that ace forums independent from AVEN might arise and gain popularity soon if AVEN fails to fix its tech issues*), and that Blue is the one who's paying for the piper (the forum software and hosting) here, and it's at his discretion what discussion topics to encourage here.

 

* Actually, since AVEN is now incorporated as a non-profit, its server upgrade is becoming nearer and nearer as donations are flowing in. I'm going to contribute to this cause significantly myself soon, after I sort my real life out a little bit and become more solvent.

 

On 6/6/2016 at 4:17 AM, Blue Phoenix Ace said:

As far as I know, we aren't putting any stress on my web host. They'll let me know if I'm hitting too much bandwidth or whatever, but these forums should be fairly light.

 

I could potentially start a subforum specifically for our romantic allies, or romantics in relationships with aro/greyro folks. Does anyone think that romantic people are turned off and leave because there is no such subforum?

 

On 6/7/2016 at 4:52 AM, morallygayro said:

I've been on there, and there's a lot of homophobia, transphobia, intersexism/interphobia, misogyny, ableism, and racism. Not to mention the founder was really homophobic and sexist and he abused his wife, and there's a lot of elitism and slut-shaming. Once there was a topic where non-aros called aros who weren't ace horrifying, disturbing, sleazy, and predatory.

 

On 6/7/2016 at 0:04 PM, paporomantic said:

 

[citation needed]

 

On 6/7/2016 at 6:37 PM, morallygayro said:

 

On 6/7/2016 at 7:13 PM, paporomantic said:

 

I don't see a conclusive proof DJ's homophobia, sexism or abuse in the two articles mentioned there [in the Tumblr post to which your first link leads]. What DJ stated in the interviews is:

 

His relationships with men never went beyond kissing - he's just more attracted to the female gender romantically than to males.

He didn't desire his wife (or previous date) sexually - this doesn't mean he didn't respect them.

 

He deliberately got into relationships with sexual women even when he knew he was an ace, and his attempts to have sex with them were just experiments - I do question the morality of aces getting into 'ships with sexuals (because the sexuals don't seem to fully realize the potential psychological consequences of such a 'ship), but the thing is that those sexuals are consenting adults and there's no physical harm so the aces can't be held legally responsible for this. In some mixed-orientation couples, the 'ship works well; in some, it ends in divorce or an invitation of a third partner. Bear in mind that there was no developed market of asexual dating in the mid-2000s so DJ had to do such experiments to get the romantic action (high energy cuddles etc.) that he needed. Anyway, how aces do romance is beyond Arocalypse's scope, is AVEN's business.

 

I'll read the 'sexual aromantic' thread now. 

 

On 6/7/2016 at 7:30 PM, Dodgypotato said:

Nothing in there is evidence that he is homophobic or sexist. They are really grasping at straws there. Oh yes, how dare David Jay be cisgendered. **sarcasm** How dare the founder of AVEN not be transgendered or genderqueer. He's a 'cishet' dude? No, he's asexual. Not heterosexual. I think those people on there just really hate him for some reason.

 

There was about two posters on that thread that called sexual aros bad people. The majority were just saying things like, "yes they probably exist."

 

On 6/7/2016 at 7:34 PM, paporomantic said:

 

Yeah, that [the 'sexual aromantic' thread on AVEN to which morallygayro's 2nd link is] was a thread with terrible attitudes indeed. I don't know the history of Arocalypse that well, but I reckon that it (the old board) was created indeed as a protest movement against AVEN and a safe haven for aros (aro (grey-)sexuals in particular).

 

As the thread was written in 2010 except for the necro and closure posts, it's hardly possible to retrieve if there were disciplinary actions taken at the time with regard to posts #2 and #3 of that thread. I'll have to check who was the mod then.

 

Anyway, I think the posts related to our attitude to AVEN need to be split into a separate thread because the derailment that I'm guilty of :$ is going far beyond.the initial idea of the thread.

 

On 6/7/2016 at 7:48 PM, morallygayro said:

He talked about his sex life with thousands of people without his wife's consent, and mysteriously we never see her side of the story.

 

On 6/7/2016 at 7:54 PM, paporomantic said:

His ex-wife is not a public person (or is she?), maybe she's been OK with not telling her side and there was nothing too bad happening in their marriage. There are even sexual males who can't help their wives experience orgasm and end up divorcing peacefully and quietly.

 

Don't forget about the presumption of innocence. How do you know is she consented or not?

 

 

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I think on any forum, you'll see the occasional jackass posting something offensive. Like the post about sexual aromantics that shames them. Posts 2 and 3 are bad, but you can see post 4 is defending them. (Sciatrix FTW) Recall that, that post was from six years ago. Aromanticism is still fairly new and not well known and it's possible those posters have since reversed their positions.

 

There's a very delicate balance when it comes to moderating a forum. If you are too harsh and delete too many posts, then people will feel censored and unwelcome to express any strong opinions. On the other hand, delete too few and some of your members will get turned off by being offended too much.

 

There are obvious cases where a post should be deleted, but those that are near that fine line are really tough to decide. For those type of posts, your best defense is you. Put up a counter-argument (as Sciatrix did) and express your own viewpoint. After all, one function of a forum should be about expressing varying points of view so you can learn from others, and also influence other people's opinions. If everybody here agreed on everything, it would be like eating chocolate ice cream every day for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Sometimes you just want some vanilla.

 

As for David Jay's prior love life, I wasn't there. I didn't experience any of that. Let's say he also had sex with women to experiment. Are we saying that there aren't any confused asexuals out there who haven't done the same? For DJ especially when asexuality was not yet a public concept, he was more likely to be confused than anyone who visits these forums, because we are now armed with knowledge.

 

Did he cheat on his wife? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe he has atoned for that, maybe he hasn't. I really can't say. Does that diminish what he's done for the asexual community? I don't think so. If he was there trying to nudge AVEN in a direction that encouraged cheating and experimental sex with hundreds of women, then I would disagree. But I'm not sure he's much involved with the site anymore.

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As with a lot of forums, especially one as large as AVEN, there are going to be people with unpopular opinions. One person that posts something unpopular doesn't equate to an entire forum agreeing with them. And, if I'm not mistaken, there is a clause somewhere on AVEN stating that the opinions of any member doesn't reflect AVEN's stance, or anyone else's for that matter.

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The criticism of David Jay's talk of sex with his wife is kinda pointless since we don't know if she's OK with it or not. It's entirely possible she consented to it. Also, the interview I read, he called sex weird. But he didn't actually comment on his wife's behavior in the bedroom, but rather his attitudes towards sex. Then again, I don't know much (or anything) about him, so I can't say what he has or hasn't done.
Anyway even if he was a raging asshole, that doesn't really change the ace community as a whole. Any community is going to have assholes, and almost all leaders and activists have been problematic in one way or another. That doesn't mean their entire movement is somehow pointless, but rather that we need to talk about the problematic aspects of the community.

It's not like the L, G, B and T communities haven't had their share of racism, sexism, ableism, and so on. Those are serious problems but once again that doesn't discredit the whole community.

 

AVEN is a massive site, of course there are going to be some people with hateful opinions there. As others have said, other members then stepped in to correct those views. And some of the examples honestly looked more like an ignorant and not a hateful person. They can be hurtful too, of course, but seems like AVEN is a site where those kind of confusions are explained pretty quickly.

 

AVEN also needs more server space. That much is true. :P

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Something that hasn't been addressed here is the reason why I needed to stop going on AVEN (for the foreseeable future)

 

Theres a lot of aromantic hate in the aromantic topics. A lot of them are just places where people want to vent/discuss being aromantic and there's a couple of repeat offenders swooping into these kinds of posts and starting fights with/getting offended by aromantics voicing their opinions and experiences in their own space.

 

I could just avoid those forums but they were basically the only reason I was on AVEN. I just can't relate much at all to romantics on AVEN who constantly talk about romantic relationships and celebrating representation that preaches "but we can still fall in love!"

 

But now that I've found this wonderful website, that's not a problem for me anymore; still, I felt like sharing.

 

Also here's an example http://www.asexuality.org/en/topic/133056-do-you-consider-your-aromanticism-a-curse-or-gift/page-3

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Yeah, that's horrible @aussiekirkland. I had to report that person, that made me mad.

 

It also annoys me about all the people saying on there "but we can still fall in love!" as you pointed out. They say it as if they're making excuses for something. As if not being able to feel romantic attraction makes you less human or something. I hate that.

 

Having said all that, there are good people on AVEN. It is a good place a lot of the time. And it has helped me, and a lot of others, out a lot. Arocalypse probably would not exist without it. Or at least, the population would be a lot lower.

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Wow, I have never been on AVEN and now that I have seen some of these pages, I don't feel like going there at all!

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The reaction to aromanticism on AVEN is interesting, it seems like half the aros have horrible experiences and the other half have had no problems at all.
But then again, I guess it depends in which subforums you hang out. I'm mostly in JFF and I've found a bunch of really awesome people.

 

Ugh I hate the "we can still fall in love" argument. It's important to point out that not all aros are ace but the way it's said often feels like the person is saying "at least I can fall in love, not like those aros!"

On the same note, I hate those pictures that say things like, "It doesn't matter who you love, only that you love." Though that's not an AVEN thing so kinda irrelevant to this topic. :P

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Imagine that I liked your post 5 times, Vega. And I didn't even accidentally almost report it, either.

 

Yeah, I haven't personally ran into any trouble on my own. But I don't spend a looott of time there... But there's always going to be some people like that.. :/

 

You're seeing the worst of AVEN here, Ugh.... It usually isn't that bad.

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3 minutes ago, Dodgypotato said:

Imagine that I liked your post 5 times, Vega. And I didn't even accidentally almost report it, either.

 

Yeah, I haven't personally ran into any trouble on my own. But I don't spend a looott of time there... But there's always going to be some people like that.. :/

 

You're seeing the worst of AVEN here, Ugh.... It usually isn't that bad.

Yeah, I'd imagine people in JFF are more likely to be relaxed. Even though we've got extremely intense convos sometimes but maybe it's because I feel like I've made a few friends there.

 

On the other hand, I've also heard some romantic aces also describing problems they've had on AVEN. And I guess sometimes an aro will say they find romance pointless or disgusting and then a romantic person will imagine them to be talking about all romantic people and then drama...

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Yeah, misunderstandings easily take place. A lot of the time on AVEN particularly. That's what happened on the thread above, but the person in question took it completely out of hand.

 

But I've heard loads of ace people say that they find sex disgusting, and nobody ever finds anything wrong with that? It's just a particular person's feelings about something. I mean, it's not as if they are saying it is disgusting, just that they find it disgusting. A slight difference, but a significant one. Hmm. I don't really know what to say. Just... Perhaps if people were a little less aggressive on AVEN, it would go a long way?

 

People also tend to read between lines that aren't there.

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I guess since it's mostly ace people there, we can sympathize better with that view. I'm sure if we said that in the wider world, people would get pissed.
Well, that, or think we're either repressed or super religious or whatever..

 

I think a little less aggression everywhere on the internet would be good. It is admittedly really hard to read meaning in text and forum posts, since we don't get any of the emotional context and most of the people posting are strangers so we don't know anything about the way they think.

 

Oh yeah, I agree the thread linked above got pretty awful.
Generally going into a "what do you love about being aro" thread and then being pissed when someone says they don't like romance is kinda iffy.

Most of the posts on that thread were fine but then a few people turned it into a mess which always sucks.

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I'm not ace, so I don't really have an insight to actually form an opinion on the issue. I don't really read AVEN, except for a few odd posts on aromanticism.

 

22 hours ago, Vega said:

Those are serious problems but once again that doesn't discredit the whole community.

 

No community and no individual is spotless. I'm not saying people should not be held responsible for their problematic behaviour, but also this polarized thinking, mob attitude and the constant witch hunts can be quite damaging to all.

 

If we really want, we can find problematic things anyone's online activity.

I guess I have done similar, wrote about my personal life online in intimate detail (although it would be hard to trace it back, as I did not include names. But you know, if you dig, you will be able to guess who it is). I also did some stuff I'm not proud of, and I decided to share it with people because maybe that way I can help others to avoid the same mistakes. I guess people do this to help themselves to cope with the guilt.

 

 

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41 minutes ago, Cassiopeia said:

 

If we really want, we can find problematic things anyone's online activity.

I guess I have done similar, wrote about my personal life online in intimate detail (although it would be hard to trace it back, as I did not include names. But you know, if you dig, you will be able to guess who it is). I also did some stuff I'm not proud of, and I decided to share it with people because maybe that way I can help others to avoid the same mistakes. I guess people do this to help themselves to cope with the guilt.

 

 

 

I admit to that- even if the incident in question was years ago, and long before I was on tumblr or AVEN. It eventually helped me relate to one of my now favourite franchises (been part of that fandom for over 2 years now)

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1 hour ago, Cassiopeia said:

I'm not ace, so I don't really have an insight to actually form an opinion on the issue. I don't really read AVEN, except for a few odd posts on aromanticism.

 

Much the same. I've seen AVEN as primarily an ace site with a useful reference to the concept of romantic orientation.

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Some of the stuff on AVEN is offensive and really doesn't give us aces a good name, but not EVERYONE'S like that on AVEN. I get mad sometimes when people assume stuff, y'know?

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There is a cure for members that post things that don't violate the ToS, and you can't ever seem to reason with. In the upper right corner highlight your name and pick "Manage ignore prefs" and add that member to your list. I know what you're thinking:

 

1. But I shouldn't have to do that! (Tough, sometimes people say stuff you don't like)

2. But then the rest of the thread makes no sense! (If the thread is that derailed and making you upset and you feel powerless to change anybody's mind, then why are you still reading it?)

 

The feature also exists on this site. ;)

 

I find myself spending a lot less time on AVEN than when I first learned about it. Back then most of the topics were new information to me. Now, it's a lot of repetition and I can just skim the new topics to see if anything catches my eye. I do like to respond to posts where someone is looking for advice and there isn't already a high post count. I also find that I really don't have much in common with romantic aces. OK, we don't want sex, but you want a romantic relationship that I don't and that's a pretty big difference. It has a huge influence in our lifestyles and comes with a host of new problems and blessings that I just don't relate to.

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I don't really have too many strong feelings towards AVEN. I don't have an account and can't join in on any of the conversations, so I don't really care about what people are saying. I've been lurking on there for well over a year and half and don't really see the point in making an account at this stage. And besides, I feel more a part of the community here than over there.

 

EDIT: I also like green more than purple :P

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There are some... pretty... odd opinions on AVEN. I've seen a few threads that kind of jumped the cliff, but mostly just on Hot Box, which you can avoid if you don't like that stuff.

 

I like to use it overall as a way to meet other people who are similar, just like here. There's a lot more on there, and chat is usually a fun place unless someone starts a fight or talks about a topic that isn't necessarily unanimously agreed upon.

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The arguments agenst David J are really lose. Being is cis not a crime, saying you only had sex with girls and not guys does not make you a homophobe, and the way he explain sex as "im not into sex it but I tried it and I'm fascinated by it" does not make him a bad person or a abuser. 

He explained his experience with sex and honestly it would be hard in his caise not to talk about it since he was amount the first to make asexual awareness and a lot of the questions he got was around sex. the thing is when you are a public person then you may mention people without mention them it's really difficult not to. 

(not to mention that the "evidence" is articals which are "okay" but not the best since articals are alot more edited than ex videos.) 

----

Going back to AVEN the problem is that AVEN is not and was never meant for aromantic people. 

AVEN is for asexuals so everything is linked towards asexual people. It's called "meet up section for asexual meet ups" not for asexual and aromantic. "It's for asexual and intersectionality" not intersectionality for ace or aro people. That is sure confusing for where you should post something if you are aro. The only place aros can post is in the romantic section but even that is not build for aromantic people but included all romantic orientations which means aros don't have much of a safe space to debate without alloromantics interrupting or feeling offended. So in short aromantics are the minority on AVEN and allosexual aros are twice as misplaced cause they are both not ace and also don't have much space as an aro.

 

 

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@Natkat These are all good points from the viewpoint of an aro-spec sexual. As an aro-spec ace-spec, I prefer to converse in both communities but about different topics (asexuality at AVEN, aromanticism at Arocalypse).

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These things are never really going to change because of different websites: we don't agree on everything, OK; some of us have strong opinions, OK?; every website that's more than 2 years old has a dark side and/or a 'bowels' archive, out of anyone's control; rabbit-holing is easy with the right search of webpage or forum post linking to some rabbit-holes, oh well.

 

Also I never made an AVEN account because I didn't think asexuality needed discussion. I later found out the difference between not wanting sex (which ends up happening in one place for a short while) and not wanting romance (very much a way of life) and that's why I signed onto this site in the first moments of regaining Internet in April.

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I haven't spent much time on AVEN. I made an account there rather recently before migrating over here...

 

I didn't really encounter any problems on AVEN, but I also didn't dig very far. You're always going to find some pretty unsettling stuff on any website, especially one that's been around as long as AVEN (those posts from 2010, oh jeez)! To me, while I do try to involve myself in the ace community, I have always felt like the aro community has always been a much... warmer place to be. Maybe because, like you said @Louis Hypo, not wanting romance is more of a way of life, and it's almost like I personally feel like I relate more to other aromantics than to other asexuals.

 

Not to say I don't still love the ace community in its own right. It's just bigger, and especially on AVEN, just gets a little crazy, and sometimes a little isolating.

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&I'm not going to lie, I owe figuring out my gender issues to AVEN (and I have a pretty close group of internet friends in the gender subforum), but I'd have to agree that the romantic orientation subforum is a mess. There are some threads that just get horribly derailed for no reason like the example linked to a few posts ago, and there are some discussions that come up again and again and never end well (e.g. venting about amatonormativity, coming up with a definition for QPRs, anything involving sapiromanticism or alterous attraction) that I've learned to just avoid on principle because sooner or later they're going to get ugly. 

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On 8.6.2016 at 1:02 PM, aussiekirkland said:

 

I joined AVEN shortly before I joined Arocalypse. I only knew about AVEN back then. I saw an aromatic sub-thread so I joined. But this person from the above thread pretty much managed to drive me away rather quickly. I know it's just one bad apple, but I seemed to have had bad timing, because when I joined, she was kind off everywhere... I remember getting in a big discussion with her on another thread, prior to this one (one about romance repulsion), which was exhausting.... 

I just wanted a place were I could talk to Aro's about our orientation and not a place were one had to constantly defend said orientation against one very vocal romantic, who'd take offense at almost every word uttered by someone aromantic...

Sure, she could be reasoned with... but that's not really what I joined for. 

 

So once I read about this place over on AVEN, I switched over pretty quickly and I'm very happy with that decision =D I'm sure AVEN can be a great place for a lot of people and it's not defined by one bad user, but seeing as I'm not Ace, this forum suits me way better =) 

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