What determines the harassment in sexual harassment episodes?

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justme
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What determines the harassment in sexual harassment episodes?

Post by justme » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:33 am

I was wondering just how such things are determined as I have heard, more than once that they are more likey to happen when two people are alone.

Also what can be done to differentiate outright stupidity for intentional events.(I don't know any other way to say that)

I was also heard something about business people might be so afraid of having anything like sexual harassment in the work place that they would refrain from hiring women in certain positions or regulate the duties they perform to exclusive areas to reduce interaction with men. Could there3 be a seperate but equal guidelines be in the future for businesses fearing being sued?

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Ozymandias
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Post by Ozymandias » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:41 pm

Harassment is really just where one person makes the other feel uncomfortable in a work context. That can be sexual but needn't always be. I was once accused of "harassment" for making a student solve a physics problem on the chalk board in front of her peers.

I occasionally have to take a refresher course on harassment (i.e. how to recognise it and avoid it). I was surprised in my most recent one to find out that a student asking a fellow student out for a drink at the pub is considered harassment if done while in class. The reasoning here is that the "victim" can't avoid the questioner without leaving the class.

I am also aware that I have become much more reserved when interacting with students in recent years. Any time they want to ask me a question in my office, I make sure the door stays wide open. I never ask personal questions and I am very careful to only direct positive feedback at the actual work done and not the student him- or herself. If a student comes to me to ask advice on a personal matter I inform them that I am not qualified to give them advice on non-scientific matters and refer them to the student advice centre.

I have also switched away from using the university gym (which is actually very good and much cheaper than private gyms) because I would be uncomfortable meeting students there.

I never go to parties or social events which are likely to have people from work (either students or staff). I have even left a party when a student that I was teaching turned up unexpectedly.

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:54 pm

It's an interesting question to ask, when is the downside (eg teachers being reluctant to comfort a child by putting their arm around them) worth paying for the upside (eliminating harm or offence)?

Or indeed the issue that justme raises, about the workplace and possible (unexpressed and probably illegal) reluctances to put people in certain situations then affecting things like job appointments.

In some cases, it seems clearer than in others.

In the adult world, to be accused of inapropriately touching someone's knee, coupled with sending them a 'come-on' text, even if both are unwelcome, doesn't seem to me to warrant even discussing a resignation, for example, and may even imo diminish more serious infringements such as rape (if memory serves, I saw a news program on tv where an item about the former preceded the latter for some reason, possibly because the former involved a higher-ranking person).

That said, I'm prepared to be told otherwise, or that context matters.
Last edited by ruby sparks on Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:30 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Jobar
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Post by Jobar » Thu Nov 09, 2017 3:56 pm

IMO it should come down to the intent of the accused harasser; and that can be a mighty hard thing to determine.

Of course someone may feel harassed even when there is no intent. I do think that anyone who feels harassed needs to say so first thing, before any sort of official report is made, and certainly before any official investigation or action is taken.

But if there's a pattern of abuse, and clumsiness, cluelessness, and simple miscommunication can be ruled out, then there's cause for official action.

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Politesse
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Post by Politesse » Thu Nov 09, 2017 11:36 pm

[quote=""ruby sparks""]It's an interesting question to ask, when is the downside (eg teachers being reluctant to comfort a child by putting their arm around them) worth paying for the upside (eliminating harm or offence)?

Or indeed the issue that justme raises, about the workplace and possible (unexpressed and probably illegal) reluctances to put people in certain situations then affecting things like job appointments.

In some cases, it seems clearer than in others.

In the adult world, to be accused of inapropriately touching someone's knee, coupled with sending them a 'come-on' text, even if both are unwelcome, doesn't seem to me to warrant even discussing a resignation, for example, and may even imo diminish more serious infringements such as rape (if memory serves, I saw a news program on tv where an item about the former preceded the latter for some reason, possibly because the former involved a higher-ranking person).

That said, I'm prepared to be told otherwise, or that context matters.[/quote]

This teacher says, always. Student rights acts like Title IX and FERPA make my life inconvenient, but I don't think not having them would make false accusations less likely. As the population grows more conscious of harassment but instances of harassment do not appear to grow any less frequent, such laws protect both parties, one against abuse and the other against the accusation of abuse.
"The truth about stories is that's all we are" ~Thomas King

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Ozymandias
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Post by Ozymandias » Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:44 am

I have been inappropriately touched several times and sexually propositioned by students, but I confess it never even ocurred to me to report it because I am male. In fact, I don't think I even mentally registered it as harrassment.

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Rie
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Post by Rie » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:17 am

Got it in ONE... and Jobar I do believe that the 'intent' of the molester is clearly contained in the act itself!
If a person says 'Stop that'... ? Where's the problem with acknowledging that it is an invasion of another's privacy?
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justme
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Post by justme » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:27 am

I am a complimentor as it is my philosophy spread joy. I once on a phone call asked the person answering it, "How she was doing with her wonderful self" and got a response like, "The human resources dept says such and such." It was the only one I have come across, but it upset me that anyone could have taken what I said as anything other than positive.
Am I to be complete void of human kindness in dealing with people just to keep myself from getting in trouble.

I do believe there are overly sensitive people out there who look to be offended by just about anything that isn't completely a mechanical response from anyone.

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Ozymandias
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Post by Ozymandias » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:59 am

[quote=""justme""]
Am I to be complete void of human kindness in dealing with people just to keep myself from getting in trouble.
[/quote]

The point isn't that you should be "void of human kindness". It is that you should know when expressing "human kindness" is appropriate. It is not appropriate to display any type of affection to people you don't know well because you don't know whether or not they will be offended by your affection. Even when you know someone well, it is a good idea to negotiate some ground rules to decide what is appropriate.

In your example, the person on the phone may well have felt insulted and violated by your description of "wonderful self". Just because you would like to be called in that way doesn't mean that they do.

I think our larger society is starting to realise that everyone is different. We are such a diverse bunch that nothing about us should be taken for granted, whether that is gender, sexuality or just simple differences in social interaction. This realisation is a good thing. For too long we have lived in a fantasy world of empathy, thinking we can place ourselves in our neighbour's shoes to understand how they feel. Now we realise that this is impossible because the outward expression of an individual has little correlation to their inner self. And so, we must throw away empathy entirely, and instead treat each other with formal dignity unclouded with emotional pseudo-connection, until we are able to have a negotiation about how we should mutually interact.

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:04 pm

[quote=""Ozymandias""]And so, we must throw away empathy entirely, and instead treat each other with formal dignity unclouded with emotional pseudo-connection, until we are able to have a negotiation about how we should mutually interact.[/quote]

I agreed with you (and still do) up until this. :)

Too radical. Possibly counterproductive (throwing the baby out with the bathwater as regards the richness of human experience) and quite possibly impossible.

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Ozymandias
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Post by Ozymandias » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:09 pm

Damn. The last part (that you quote) was the bit I was leading up to with the earlier stuff. I thought I had reasoned my way there quite nicely...

I do think it is where we are heading though. That is, the making of no assumptions when we meet people. I am sure we have all been asked which personal pronoun we would prefer when meeting someone new at a party.

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:24 pm

[quote=""Ozymandias""]Damn. The last part (that you quote) was the bit I was leading up to with the earlier stuff. I thought I had reasoned my way there quite nicely...

I do think it is where we are heading though. That is, the making of no assumptions when we meet people. I am sure we have all been asked which personal pronoun we would prefer when meeting someone new at a party.[/quote]

I think what I mean is....empathy (the ability to understand and share the feelings of another) does not necessarily involve assumptions. When you ask someone what they feel and they tell you, empathy can help you to get it closer to right? So maybe we can throw away (at least many) assumptions, but not necessarily empathy.
Last edited by ruby sparks on Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:31 pm

I can still see where you're coming from. Empathy is arguably just part of your system's (your) best guess about what's going on in another person (system) and you shouldn't ever blithely assume it's right. It's probably useful in evolutionary terms though, even if flawed.

Fwiw, I also tend to think that we don't or can't easily even tell what's going on in ourselves either. :)
Last edited by ruby sparks on Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.

dancer_rnb
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Post by dancer_rnb » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:03 pm

You also don't know how often a person has already heard a similar comment that day from people who were less well meaning.
Another situation where empathy can be applied.
There is no such thing as "politically correct." It's code for liberalism. The whole idea of "political correctness" was a brief academic flash-in-the-pan in the early 1990's, but has been a good conservative bugaboo ever since.

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Jobar
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Post by Jobar » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:58 pm

[quote=""Rie""]Got it in ONE... and Jobar I do believe that the 'intent' of the molester is clearly contained in the act itself!
If a person says 'Stop that'... ? Where's the problem with acknowledging that it is an invasion of another's privacy?[/quote]

If a person says 'Stop that', then they've clearly expressed their offense at whatever is being done to them- and if the offender doesn't stop, then they have a valid complaint of harassment.

But my point was that it's possible to offend without intending to offend. Lots of clumsy or clueless people out there, not so? But as long as they quit when told they're offending, I wouldn't want to call them a molester.

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Post by subsymbolic » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:24 pm

Might this help?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7Nii5w2FaI

British enough for you?

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:47 pm

Image

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:50 pm

And on a slightly different if related topic:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51-hepLP8J4

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Ozymandias
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Post by Ozymandias » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:50 pm

[quote=""subsymbolic""]Might this help?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7Nii5w2FaI

British enough for you?[/quote]

Not really. There is a lot more to harassment than just sexual consent. For example, it is harassment (in particular circumstances) to ask if someone wants sex, irrespective of whether they would or would not give consent. Indeed, there are many very clear circumstances where it is not OK to have sex with someone even if they have consented to it that are not covered by your cute video.

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ruby sparks
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Post by ruby sparks » Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:57 pm

[quote=""Jobar""]
Rie;680192 wrote:Got it in ONE... and Jobar I do believe that the 'intent' of the molester is clearly contained in the act itself!
If a person says 'Stop that'... ? Where's the problem with acknowledging that it is an invasion of another's privacy?
If a person says 'Stop that', then they've clearly expressed their offense at whatever is being done to them- and if the offender doesn't stop, then they have a valid complaint of harassment.

But my point was that it's possible to offend without intending to offend. Lots of clumsy or clueless people out there, not so? But as long as they quit when told they're offending, I wouldn't want to call them a molester.[/QUOTE]

I agree.

But might add....slightly along the lines of what Ozy said....that the person not saying no (for a hundred different reasons, including being afraid to for any reason)...might not be enough to say it's not harrassment. Or closer to what Ozy said, it might be harassment even to ask, in certain situations.

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BWE
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Post by BWE » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:24 pm

[quote=""Ozymandias""]Harassment is really just where one person makes the other feel uncomfortable in a work context. That can be sexual but needn't always be. I was once accused of "harassment" for making a student solve a physics problem on the chalk board in front of her peers.

I occasionally have to take a refresher course on harassment (i.e. how to recognise it and avoid it). I was surprised in my most recent one to find out that a student asking a fellow student out for a drink at the pub is considered harassment if done while in class. The reasoning here is that the "victim" can't avoid the questioner without leaving the class.

I am also aware that I have become much more reserved when interacting with students in recent years. Any time they want to ask me a question in my office, I make sure the door stays wide open. I never ask personal questions and I am very careful to only direct positive feedback at the actual work done and not the student him- or herself. If a student comes to me to ask advice on a personal matter I inform them that I am not qualified to give them advice on non-scientific matters and refer them to the student advice centre.

I have also switched away from using the university gym (which is actually very good and much cheaper than private gyms) because I would be uncomfortable meeting students there.

I never go to parties or social events which are likely to have people from work (either students or staff). I have even left a party when a student that I was teaching turned up unexpectedly.[/quote]

I met a former student at a pot store. She was working behind the counter. That was one of those really weird episodes life gives.

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subsymbolic
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Post by subsymbolic » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:30 pm

[quote=""Ozymandias""]
subsymbolic;680235 wrote:Might this help?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7Nii5w2FaI

British enough for you?
Not really. There is a lot more to harassment than just sexual consent. For example, it is harassment (in particular circumstances) to ask if someone wants sex, irrespective of whether they would or would not give consent. Indeed, there are many very clear circumstances where it is not OK to have sex with someone even if they have consented to it that are not covered by your cute video.[/QUOTE]

It wasn't meant to be exhaustive. I'm sure I could refer you to the IFFOR resources if you wish, but I doubt you do.

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Post by Aupmanyav » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:13 pm

https://www.oneindia.com/india/not-phys ... 74870.html

"All physical contact cannot be termed as sexual harassment and only a physical contact or advances which are in the nature of an "unwelcome sexually determined behaviour" would amount to sexual harassment," the court observed.
'Sarve khalu idam Brahma'
All things here are Brahman (physical energy).

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subsymbolic
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Post by subsymbolic » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:28 pm

[quote=""BWE""]
Ozymandias;679760 wrote:Harassment is really just where one person makes the other feel uncomfortable in a work context. That can be sexual but needn't always be. I was once accused of "harassment" for making a student solve a physics problem on the chalk board in front of her peers.

I occasionally have to take a refresher course on harassment (i.e. how to recognise it and avoid it). I was surprised in my most recent one to find out that a student asking a fellow student out for a drink at the pub is considered harassment if done while in class. The reasoning here is that the "victim" can't avoid the questioner without leaving the class.

I am also aware that I have become much more reserved when interacting with students in recent years. Any time they want to ask me a question in my office, I make sure the door stays wide open. I never ask personal questions and I am very careful to only direct positive feedback at the actual work done and not the student him- or herself. If a student comes to me to ask advice on a personal matter I inform them that I am not qualified to give them advice on non-scientific matters and refer them to the student advice centre.

I have also switched away from using the university gym (which is actually very good and much cheaper than private gyms) because I would be uncomfortable meeting students there.

I never go to parties or social events which are likely to have people from work (either students or staff). I have even left a party when a student that I was teaching turned up unexpectedly.
I met a former student at a pot store. She was working behind the counter. That was one of those really weird episodes life gives.[/QUOTE]

Were the pots half price?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGhJMdmj3Y0

Bwahahahaha

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Hermit
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Post by Hermit » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:49 pm

[quote=""subsymbolic""]Might this help?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7Nii5w2FaI

British enough for you?[/quote]
"And on that note I am going to make myself a cup of tea." Image

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