Friday, July 22, 2011

Google Plus Kink Minus Me

I have a Google Plus account. You can find my profile there under Wendy Silver. Not SilverDreams as most people know me. That’s because of a little “name issue” that google hasn’t quite gotten the hang of yet. I say you can find my profile (what I left of it) there, but you won’t find “ME” there. I’ve given up on G plus for the foreseeable future.

I’ve spent a lot of time on social networks. I fought against joining Facebook because of the serious privacy concerns I had. But Septimus was able to help me figure things out enough to lock things down. However, when they added facial recognition, I removed my kinky profile from Facebook. I now use it solely to interract with our families and vanilla friends. It’s too bad, because my real friends were the ones on my kinky profile. They were the ones I had things in common with, and they were the ones I “socialized” with. Not my family or co-workers. I had a MySpace profile, also recently removed (I hope), I have a Twitter account and a Fetlife profile, so I’m not completely a “social network”newbie. I’ve been using them heavily for a few years. I’m just not convinced that GooglePlus is for me. Being kinky and all.

Google wants “real” people, with “real content” having “real conversations”. I’m not sure what a “name” has to do with that, but it’s their playground. I’m just a visitor and don’t get to make the rules. But this is only ONE of the reasons why I’ve dumped Gplus for now. I don’t agree with this policy. Neither does almost everyone else. Why is hiding a real name so important? If you have to ask that, then I can’t help you. There’s too many reasons why. But if you’d like to read about the kinds of people who might be harmed, READ THIS
I’m not a fan of a site that hides behind a corporate shield while making their users “prove” that they’re really the person they say they are. Their users are guilty until proven innocent in the name department. And finding out that someone with whom I’ve actually HAD a conversation with had suddenly disappeared overnight, along with their posts, is frankly NOT a way for me to waste a whole lot of time having those conversations over there. Instead of believing that people will find their service pretty cool and use it accordingly, the googlites have obviously decided that everyone will act like a douchenozzle and that the only way to prevent it is to require that the douchenozzles use real names. I’m not even going to get into the fact that nearly everyone I’ve seen so far isn’t using their legal name- but some sort of variation of it.

But what I see Google Plus as doing with the name thing is that they want “certain types” of people and conversations. Things that can be indexed on google without running into the religious right pointing fingers at google and telling the world they’re running a PORNOGRAPHIC site! THINK OF THE CHILDREN will be the next refrain, I’m sure. It always is. Once those darned little minors start finding GooglePlus, we’ll have to protect them. And I guess the way to do that is to require a “real name”.

But I’ve spent a few years building my reputation under my SilverDreams name. People read my opinions and talk to me, knowing that I AM the REAL SilverDreams. They’ve heard me speak, been in my classes, read my blog and talked with me as SilverDreams. Fuck Wendy Silver. I’m not her. I don’t know who she is yet.

But as I said the name game is only one of the reasons why I’m not convinced that Google Plus is the best thing since ice cream (it’s really hot here today, shoot me). The list is long, but here’s the salient points:

It’s difficult to find things. I tried to delete a photo and had to jump through so many hoops, I almost gave up. If I wasn’t motivated enough to keep trying, I’d still be wandering around the “help” section.

It’s difficult to wake up in the morning, find out that dozens of people that I don’t know have started conversations about things that I have absolutely NO fucking interest in and they’re all being regurgitated on my stream. AND that they’re now “sharing with me”. (isn’t THAT special) I know, I can mute the posts, block people, and change circles, but why is it so difficult for any social network to get the fact that I want to be social with people I KNOW, and not with people posting crap about their dogs and/or latest meals? If something’s important, I have a wide enough base of people I interact with they’ll fill me in, I’ve not a doubt. This whole “sharing thing” just cuz someone circles me is like having to listen to that guy on a bus sitting next to you, talk about his boring life as a Walmart greeter, his complaints about his girlfriend not wanting to have sex with him or his mother’s facial wart. Sure, I can get up and move, but my chair was perfectly comfy before he got there.

I know people are saying that the interface is “cleaner”. It may very well be, but what I don’t like is how things I read a week or more ago, keep SHOWING BACK UP on my damned stream EVERY SINGLE TIME another new person finds Violet Blue’s lollipop post. Hello? Yesterday’s news isn’t news and if I wanted to be in that conversation a week ago, I would have been. Having it constantly popping back up, is annoying.

And finally, one of the last reasons why it’s not for me is because I know, talk with, and love many of my friends under their “business names” or “alternate names”. People like PapayaPam, CineKink, ThatToyChick...all people I know and love on Twitter, who are prevented from having a profile under their “business name” Do I know their “real names”? Sometimes I do. I’ve actually MET around 90% of the people I follow on Twitter.

And every time I DO meet someone from my tweetstream, the usual thing they say to me is “I KNOW YOU! You’re SilverDreams! I love to talk with you on twitter!” (OK, so I also say something similar to them pretty frequently too).

For now, Googleplus won’t let me be who I am, converse with those I like, and doesn’t really want “certain conversations” happening. So I’m back on Twitter. Where having conversations takes some work, but where I can be me.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Funny, You Didn't ACT Like a Dominate Mistress

I'm pissed. But since I find blogging rather cathartic, I'm writing this one just to get it the fuck out of me before I explode with the rage I feel.

I was at a picnic today. It was a picnic held by a munch group, in a vanilla park, but with kinky people in attendance. That's fine by me. I don't have to watch my reference points when talking to my friends at places like that. Don't scare the muggles, ya know?

Septimus hadn't attended. These were sort of "my friends" from where I used to come from, and besides- he had work to do. We sometimes do things separately- we're not joined at the hip. And sometimes I prefer to be around my friends without him. That's not a bad thing. We both have lives that interact, but at times not intersect with each other. It gives us something to talk about at dinner :)

Anyway, I arrived early to the picnic and started a conversation with a friend I hadn't seen in some time. There were only six of us there and the conversation turned to jobs, geekery, macs v. pcs, commutes, and various other innocuous and vanilla topics, when this woman looked over at me and asked if I wanted to go to a "tea" with her. Since you can be darned sure that most male doms that I know don't "do tea", I figured she was a female "dom".

I just smirked and said that I wasn't a femdom.

To which she replied "but you don't look like a submissive". I smiled down at the table, trying to hold the laughter in, and told that I was indeed a submissive. When this fact was backed up by my friend, she just looked at me, somewhat flabbergasted and said "you could have fooled me, you don't act like it".

WHAT. THE. FUCK?!!!

I tried to explain the difference of being submissive to JUST Septimus and not to anyone else, that everyone else got the regular old bitch me, but the nuances of that seemed to be beyond her understanding. But I'll have to admit, I was so freaking amused by this, that I started tweeting about this little exchange. It was too funny- I couldn't BE submissive because I didn't look or act like one? At a picnic? With vanillas? Seriously?

As they say...BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

But as if that wasn't bad enough, after I told her that yes, I was indeed my boyfriend's submissive, her next question put me over the edge. She, this person who didn't think I "looked or acted submissive" upon finding out that I was, asked me if I wanted to go anyway and "serve".

OY FUCKING VEY. I had to stop from beating my own head on the picnic table.

My sexism got in the way, I'll admit. If this was a guy talking to me like this, I'd have cut his balls off with a couple of choice phrases. But a woman?! Talking to another woman like that? My head was exploding. This "dom" who couldn't even be BOTHERED to get to know me, talk to me, or find out anything about me, made assumptions that were not only wrong, but insulting. If I'd assumed because she was a female that she was automatically a submissive, I'm sure she'd have been just as annoyed. I don't make those assumptions about people and I find it pretty distasteful that someone of her age, experience and time in the scene does it.

While struggling to find out what I was obviously missing in the department of exactly WHAT a submissive should look or act like, I couldn't figure out what the fuck bothered me so much by her words. So, I did what someone with lots of friends does when having a problem- I talked with a friend, who just so happens to be a femdom.

We spent a lot of time talking about preconceptions. Entitlement. Service. And a great deal many other things relating to female domination. We talked for a long time and we were having a great conversation about service and learning to accept service when I looked up at her and asked the question that was foremost in my mind (and not without some great deal of irony)

"Exactly WHAT is a submissive supposed to look and act like?"

We chewed over this for a while, other people got into the conversation, and then, because the question itself was so silly, we starting making up all sorts of shit. Submissives should always wear corsets, even in the middle of summer at a vanilla party; with high heels. Submissives should always wear dresses with no underwear; Submissives should kneel all the time, even when we're in the park, pinecones and rocks; and dozens more stupid ideas of what a "twue submissive" looks and acts like, when I mentioned that I knew the definitive answer:

Submissives should always wear pony tails because it makes a great handle for pulling.

What I didn't know when I said that, was that the aforementioned clueless female "dom" was standing behind me and had heard my words.

That's when she pulled my pony tail.

My reaction was not at all submissive, I'll admit that. What I DID was backhand her with my fist across her stomach. I hadn't been THAT angry in a couple of years. I, the little non-submissive-looking girl with the ponytail, wanted to beat the living shit out of someone. I screamed in very un-submissive-like words, stood up, slammed my chair shut, looked at another friend and said "if I don't leave right now, I'm gonna hurt someone". He did the only thing he could- he told me to take a walk.

I spent some time kicking my car tires and calming down. I didn't want to leave the party, but I'd be damned if I was gonna start a fight with some idiot who couldn't keep her fucking hands, or her judgment of me, to herself. I'm not really sure which irritates me more right now- that I'm apparently "fair game" to this person because I'm submissive, or that somehow I'd gotten myself in another situation where some "dom" thought that BEING submissive to anyone, makes you fair game for everyone.

On the ride home, my anger abated somewhat. I explained to Septimus what happened (who felt some guilt that he didn't come with me to begin with); and looked at him, not wanting to ask the question that really HAD bugged me all the way home.

Why is it that people seem to find it OK to touch me without invitation, consent, or apology?

And being the level headed guy he is, even when faced with my still pretty hot anger, he told me that the problem is not mine; that most people do NOT do this sort of thing; and that idiots will be idiots-no matter their title. It was not my fault that yet another "idiot dom" forgot about boundaries or courtesy....or how to apologize for not exercising either of them when they should.

The irony of my smacking this woman is not lost on me. After all, SHE was the one that told me that I didn't look or act submissive. She should really have remembered what I'd told her about the rest of the world getting the bitchy me.