Featured User Group: The Escapist Gay-mers

Matt Kuliani | 30 Jul 2010 18:00
- RSS 2.0
image

It's always great for us at The Escapist to see that we have a diverse community across all attributes. The Escapist Gay-mers is the perfect example of this; they represent a group of LGBT members and the people that support equal rights for the LGBT community.

In a gaming society where the term "gay" is a derogatory word used when something unfair happens to you in a game, it's wonderful to see that there is a place/gathering of gamers that practice tolerance of such inappropriate terms. Their steeled pride in in the face of intolerance towards sexuality is legendary. Here are the answers of their founder and two admins to our interview questions:
image

  1. Why was The Escapist Gay-mers founded?

    SharPhoe:
    I had the idea not to long after the Escapist groups were first created. I noticed some of the groups being made to start with, and thought about starting one for the LGBT community, since no one else seemed to be jumping on that hand grenade. I was hesitant at first, but after some strong support from other users, I just went for it. Almost a full year down the road, I don't regret my decision one bit.

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    I'll have to defer this question to SharPhoe. I'm not sure what his reasons were, and I probably wouldn't have founded it myself.

    Mookie_Magnus:
    It was originally founded as a place for the many gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or any of the other myriad sexual orientations that don't fall under the umbrella term "straight" to talk, meet, and get to know each other. It was eventually expanded to welcome heterosexual supporters into the group.

  2. What do you see as the future of the group?

    SharPhoe:
    That's really up in the air right now, but I'm hoping that more people will catch wind of us and join in on the conversation.

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    I don't know...
    I have been a member since day one, and if there's one thing I do know about the group it's that frequent posters come and go with the wind.

    Mookie_Magnus:
    Things have changed over time with this group. While things may have slowed down from earlier this year, I still see Gaymers as a fun place to talk to interesting people, and get a little bit of insight about the LGBT community that isn't a stereotype portrayed in popular media.

  3. What do you think other users could gain from the group?

    SharPhoe:
    Well, let me put it this way: Over the months, we've helped at least three people come to terms with their sexuality, and several members are now in a relationship with someone else they met in the group, myself included. So would it be too much to say "quite a bit"?

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    A friendly place to chat, away from the forums.

    Mookie_Magnus:
    For users suffering from any sort of doubts or confusion about their sexual identity, the group provides a long list of people, including myself, who understand those feelings, and can relate. We understand, and can help them through the difficult times ahead.
    For users already firm in their sexual identity, whatever it may be, we offer a wide range of conversation ranging a vast number of topics, and a generally lighthearted and accepting atmosphere.

  4. What sets you apart from other user groups?

    SharPhoe:
    Other than the obvious, you mean? Well, I guess you could say that we've had our moments all over the spectrum;THere have been times of hustle and bustle, times of simple heart-to-heart discussions, fun times, serious times, INCREDIBLY serious times, we've laughed, we've cried... I think that what makes us unique is that, even though we're all miles apart, I feel as though the regulars are like a second family to me. There's a level of personal intimacy that you just don't get elsewhere.

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    Subject matter. And, I suppose, we're one of the few groups which isn't topic-specific and doesn't have a prerequisite silliness level.

    Mookie_Magnus:
    A couple of things... One of them is that SharPhoe and the rest of our Group Staff actually care about the members of our group. I'm not saying that other groups don't care about our users, but more often than not, you will see our users expressing a genuine concern for how you are. SharPhoe and myself are quite notorious for sometimes 'caring too much' about our little makeshift family.
    That's the other thing. We consider our little group as an extended family of misfits. We comfort each other when feeling down, and share in the joy and pride when something goes right. We love and care for each other like a family should.

  5. If you could improve one aspect of the User Group area, what would you improve?

    SharPhoe:
    Only that certain group ideas that already exist really don't need to me remade to fit one user's fancy, really. Too many ingredients spoil the pot, as they say. What's the point of making a group that one but you will understand or be interested in, y'know?

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    Better integration with the forums. For example, making an elongated version of the profile panel which appears above every other area of the site and using it to replace the small "Welcome, [user]" banner in the forums. It would take up extra vertical space, but it would also allow users to see which of their friends are online and when their User Groups were last updated - all without navigating away from "Interesting Thread Du Jour."

    I would also like to create a new position position called Moderator. Basically, Admins can only post news and delete posts, whereas Moderators can do that on top of banning/kicking users.

    Mookie_Magnus:
    Honestly, I'm horrible at suggestions on how to improve things. It seems fine to me.

  6. Anything else you would like to add?

    SharPhoe:
    I believe I've said my piece. And I know DH and Mookie like I think I do, I'm sure they'll have something far more poignant to add than I could muster. Great guys, the both of them.

    Diagonal Horizontality:
    When the chips are down and you don't want to walk all the way to the store to buy more, use iSpamaway 2.0 for all your non-sequitur needs!

    Mookie_Magnus:
    Don't be afraid to check us out. We'd love to see you around. You straight folks don't have to worry... We won't try to convert you. That's not how sexuality works.

If you would like to nominate a user group for an upcoming Featured User Group, feel free to let me (that is, Kuliani) know through a PM!

RELATED CONTENT
Comments on