Friday, 21 June 2013

I'd Tap That - what were your experiences?

As a follow-up to my post on Wednesday, "When Allies Aren’t Allies- My Experience With I'd Tap That", I'm posting a general call-out to participants of I'd Tap That/ Crush events, good or bad. If you want to send your experiences to them directly and not here, that's cool, you can email them here.

You can post anonymously in the comments, and I'm turning moderation off to let all comments through so all sides who care to weigh in can be heard. (I'll be keeping an eye on comments, though, because this is the internet). The reason I'm open-posting this way is that I know that sometimes there can be barriers to us feeling safe enough to bring concerns directly to organizers/ staff themselves.

I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty pissed off with the organizers of I'd Tap That and their response so far. They've lied, gas lighted, and responded to serious concerns with disingenuous PR Mad Gabs. But if there's an opportunity for them to improve their events to protect their participants, it's worthwhile to take it. So, let's try to bring these issues out into the daylight and see if they have any intention or ability to actually address them.

12 comments:

  1. I know that I haven't had the best experiences with the organizers. They have a tendency to get right in your face with cameras without asking permission first either to take or post the photos as they see fit.

    One time when I and my partner were kissing, our experience was disrupted by these series of bright flashes. My partner later told me that they resorted to flipping them off so that they couldn't use the photos.

    After the event, we found one of the clean photos posted on the site with the caption of "sexy!" or some other sort of comment. It bothers me that they would have to go through a series of unusable photos to find one they could use, even though were were clearly not consenting.

    Not as bad as other experiences, but it still just wasn't cool.

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  2. I empathize with that situation. At the only event I was at, to be frank, I became intoxicated.
    Photos were taken of me with a person that I barely recall and definitely did not consent to have a photo taken of, and posted online on a public site. Organizers need to be aware that not all photos of intoxicated patrons should be posted even if they're not tagged. It made me alarmed enough that I decided not to attend future events.
    Events such as Strip Spelling Bee have a no photos rule, why not Crush? Or why not inform the patrons at the door? You're using photos of them to promote the events, they should be made CLEARLY aware of this in advance.

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  3. As a former organizer for these events, I am horrified at the things that have transpired over the last few weeks, but unfortunately not that surprised.

    I was one of the original co-founders of I'd Tap That and was asked to leave last fall due to my "lack of enthusiasm" and inability to get on-board with many problematic aspects of these events. I felt unable, in good conscience, to stand behind these events with my name and reputation -- and therefore was asked, very unceremoniously and unprofessionally, to leave the group with no notice.

    Unfortunately, the organizers have a history of not believing survivors. After one of our first events, an assault was reported to one of the other co-founders, who then relayed the information to me and added that she did not believe that the accuser was telling the truth. It was through this situation that I suggested the idea of having "safety people" at the parties. I'm unsure if this procedure has been kept in place, but clearly it has not curbed any potential violence and I'm disturbed that no other steps have been taken to prevent assault at these parties. Simply posting rules on the wall is not going to sway someone who has bad intentions.

    My politics and perspective on the "sex-positive" movement have changed drastically since my parting with I'd Tap That, and I'm afraid I don't have any positive advice to offer. I am sincerely sorry for the poor experiences that people have had at these events, and I can't help but feel partially responsible for encouraging the beginning of these events -- even with the knowledge that they could potentially be a hotbed for people with less-than-ideal intentions.

    I feel conflicted putting all of this out there, as I have been happy to have kept as much distance as possible between myself and this group, but I was horrified to learn of this situation and felt it was important to speak up. There are no excuses for protecting accused rapists (even when you have romantic history with them!) and I sincerely hope the group feels ashamed of the way they have conducted themselves around this situation. Protecting rapists and shitting on survivors is not feminism. It is rape culture.

    Thanks for providing a forum to do this safely.

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  4. Thanks very much for sharing this, Ness. Would you be ok if I reposted this to call them out on feigning ignorance of these issues?

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    Replies
    1. I already responded privately, but in case others see this, I am comfortable with you reposting this. While I am afraid of the backlash speaking up against them might cause, I am willing to be accountable for my words.

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    2. Thanks very much. I appreciate you putting your neck on the line.

      Delete
  5. I went to a Crush party and my breasts were groped multiple times without consent by various people at the party.
    It was not clear to me who the safety people were and when I did find a safety person they were completely intoxicated.
    I sent a very respectful email bringing these issues to the attention of the organizers.
    I was completely ignored.

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  7. I've been to a couple of Crush events and ended up not feeling very welcome by any of the participants there. Worse than that, though, I remember seeing a post on their Facebook wall earlier this year warning attendees that a known physical abuser named Declan Dennehy had started attending the events and that he had caused a girl to need 16 stitches. Rather than remove him from the event to ensure others' safety, the post was deleted and called "personal drama." Wish I could find the original link, but it sounded like a serious situation that was completely blown off by the organizers.

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  8. Sadly, this isn't the only "sexy event" I've heard of in Toronto where the organizer downplayed someone's concerns for fears of disrupting the proceedings. The worse part is, the person who voiced the concern was one of the hired participants of the event.

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  9. I have horrible asthma and had an attack that was triggered by a smoke machine at one of the ITT events. I contacted one of the promoters and asked, in the name of accessibility, that they please refrain from using fog or smoke machines at future events.

    I haven't been to an event since, because even THAT was apparently too much to ask. That says a lot about how much they actually believe in making their events accessible to as many people as possible.

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  10. A friend of mine was grabbed and forced to make out with two guys during the only Crush she attended. She said no, they didn't stop, and though the organizers know who one of them is they are still invited to events.

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