What’s the difference between gossip and informing communities of potentially hazardous individuals?
When do I have responsibility to share what I know about boundary violators, harassers, and sexual predators with the community?
When does silence become protecting harassers?
When does community protection trump the confidentiality rights of the victim?
What is the obligation of a convention in dealing with third-party reports of harassment?
Think on it:
You, reading this, right now — do you know of any unreported instances of harassment, assault, rape, or boundary violation among people you know? How many friends-of-friends in your social circles are known to you as committing acts of questionable judgment and motivation? How many people do you see at every convention who you know to have committed rape or assault?
What do you do with that information?
Do you know all the facts?
Do you know whether they’ve been reported or not?
Do you know who the victim is, and what they want?
Think on it:
Does the victim’s right to privacy trump the safety of future victims?
Does the safety of future victims trump the privacy of those victimized in the past?
If you have all the facts, all the knowledge, do you get to make that decision? Do you get to tell the concom, the police, the internet?
Are you responsible for the publicity horrorshow that happens to the victim when her or his name and story become public because you said something?
Are you responsible for the next victim’s pain down the road because you said nothing?
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