Offensive Language

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Offensive Language
Post # 1
Greetings everyone!

When I first came to this site I was confused by the term "Fluffy" that is often used in chat and in the site's ranking system. Prior to coming here I understood it to be derogatory term for heavy people, popularized by the comedian Gabriel Iglesias. Being obese is not a joking matter and I have lost several family members to its related health problems.

However, it seems to have a different meaning here. The way it is used here denotes people who:

1) Role-play
2) Express controversial views on magic and spirituality

I don't see the need for a special term for these two groups of people.

Being overweight myself, I have been teased for it even though I strive to maintain a healthy weight with proper diet and exercise. Fat-shaming is language that alienates people because of their weight, and is best avoided even where there is no offense intended. This language does not help people get thinner, and the stigma it creates does more damage than good. One could easily misconstrue fluffy's different usage on this site to be fat-shaming, which reflects badly on the community as a whole.

I don't fault people who are unaware of this meaning associated with the word or how it makes people feel. However, as members we should work toward fostering a hospitable community by avoiding use of language that singles people out. I also urge Petrarca and the moderators here to remove this word from official use and promote sensitivity to those struggling with health problems.

Thank you all for listening. I am interested to hear your thoughts, and would like to know if there is language people unintentionally use that makes you feel ostracized.

Re: Offensive Language
By: / Novice
Post # 2

Personally I agree with this statement, but not for the same reasons. Although you bring up a very good point, the term "fluffy" is used as a cruel label on this site.

People throw it around as an insult, I personally left this site for over a year because I was constantly insulted for being fluffy simply because they misread my bio.

It is used as a derogetory word that is hung from peoples profiles without them knowing, and personally I think it should be removed completely. Anyone under the term "fluffy" is simply someone who needs guidence, they do not need insults to be thrown at them from other members.

I understand the reasoning behind only knowledgeable and above seeing it, it is a way to guide those that need the most help, but honestly it is an insult and many people leave because of it.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 3
Well, the only other term that I've come across for a person who would role-play or act like they are something better and more powerful was "Mary Sue." However that term was more specific to a person who was melodramatic yet perfect in every way. Any other term, such as, flake, sparkly-poos, etc., more or less just mean a conceited fool.

The purpose of SoM's use of "fluffy" is to cover all those areas of habitual lying and conceited behavior, and they have tried their best to separate the term from fat-shaming to conceited individual which is why they wrote that long list of popular jargons to noobs.

It is word with many meanings, all of which have a negative connotation, but until someone can find a better term, I fear we may be stuck with it.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 4
Fluffy in this case isn't being used as a offense to bigger people. This could be referencing how animals fluff up to make them look bigger and stronger, when really they are not. Anyway, roleplays can make some people get confused on if it is real life or not ;Especially the younger people on here. The other one I don't see why they don't people allow not to talk about different views on magic.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 5
" Fluffy?- also known by many other names is the worst label a member can have, usually this behavior especially repeatedly can result in being gagged or banned. These members are classified as people who give the serious members who are here to learn and share the true meaning and values of what magic really is and what it can do a bad name. They do not necessarily do bad or objectionable things but rather they can frequently be conceited, overconfident, poorly informed, immature, and sometimes exhibit a sophomoric humor. They refuse to learn or accept other peoples opinions and beliefs, and they think there can never be a possibility that their ever wrong."

The above text was taken from the SoM survival guide. There are many misconceptions on what a fluffy is and what constitutes someone being named the term. This usually happens when you do the above mentioned things in the forums or public chatter. If you don't see reason to what is said, then the people of SoM won't be forgiving.

It is true that there are individuals who are wrongly termed a fluff, and it has nothing to do with a weight issue. I personally think this happens when people are quick to judge and the said fluff who is not really a fluff stays away from the environment they would be named that, never being able to prove that they are otherwise, until they eventually leave the site.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 6

" conceited, overconfident, poorly informed, immature, and sometimes exhibit a sophomoric humor"

So what new and helpful information does the label Fluffy provide when these are perfectly valid ways to describe someone's behavior?

Did the person pretend to be a vampire in chat? say something rude to someone? whine about a fake spells on the site? intentionally annoying other members? Who knows?

Fluffy is one person's ambiguously negative opinion of another. I often see that misbehavior quoted from SoM survival guide from people who do have knowledge about magic and religious traditions, so having it at the opposite end of a spectrum from Adept makes little sense. Lumping all these different things under one umbrella insult along with a mean word for large people does nobody any good.

All those labels really do is tell a small group of members that someone isn't liked by someone else. Since the rank is invisible to 99% of members, why not just get rid of it and save everyone the angst over it?

Those who support the fluffy label need to show some maturity themselves and recognize that it is childish namecalling.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 7
I suffer from body dysmorphic disorder EDNOS and several other issues that correspond with my weight but I have never taken offense to the word Fluff or Fluffy. It was originally Fluffy Bunny which was used to categorize people claiming to be some supernatural being or force when they obviously are not and this was also used to categorize the type of spells they would commonly post about turning yourself into a vampire or mermaid and it was eventually rephrased as Fluff. The reason most of us use this term is because the majority of children joining this site are claiming to be sons, daughters of demonic forces or even Lucifer himself and this does get immensely annoying and they honestly believe they are what they claim to be. So we just started hearding them into a category to keep their "magical" butts away from those of us who are actually trying to teach and learn actual level headed Magick.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 8
I feel the need to express I did not mean to cause further dispute, only to shed a different perspective. If you think about it, we could call people we don't like here idiots, instead there's a 'term'. Either way, Pet had his reasons for making the reputation, and I think if there's an issue, try talking to him.

I resign from this discussion.

God bless,

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 9

Brooklynn, I too find these people tiresome when they interrupt learning and teaching level headed magic as you say. It happens where there is an interesting conversation in progress, then someone pops in claiming to be the daughter of Lucifer or whatever and suddenly everyone jumps on that and chat becomes an episode of Jerry Springer until a mod puts a stop to it, then the original topic is long gone.

I still don't see how labeling them Fluffy and "hearding them into a category" that most people can't see has helped anyone. Maybe you can explain how it has kept "their "magical" butts away from those of us who are actually trying to teach and learn" If that is really the goal, then the fluffy tag seems about as effective as the war on drugs.

Re: Offensive Language
Post # 10
It's just become something everyone hoped would work. We have used this for too long to stop it cold turkey. I mean, what else could we say? I have heard of some people even being offended by some "fluffs" just being on here (I wouldn't say I've been offended because truthfully I find some of them hilarious. Like the kids who say they want no friends and no one to talk to them but they have a huge friends list) so they left the site for good. I just wish there was something we could do to get rid of these members who are basically spamming the site with ridiculous profiles. What I honestly want to know, who do these kids think they're fooling? Who is dumb enough to believe these people are demons, shapeshifters or whatever else they claim to be. Its crazy.

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