ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Education and Science»
  • School & Classroom Etiquette & Social Skills

Little Timmy And The EverQuest Pervert

Updated on November 8, 2008
 

So there I was, clinging to the spire atop one of the busiest buildings in the Plane of Knowledge, feeling like a pervert. I knew I wasn't a pervert...but the fear that somebody else might think I was one, or even worse, that I was being tested by some undercover officer with bait more befitting the entrapment of a pedophile...made me feel old and somewhat worried about my maturity level.

In my own defense, I can only say...how was I to know? There I was, playing the popular MMORG Everquest one summer afternoon...minding my own business. My lovely little high elf wizard, Finnyinye, was taking a well earned break from adventuring, sitting in the grass by the bank, practicing a few new spells and ignoring the world around her when out of nowhere this nasty little rogue comes up and smacks her in the head. It was a challenge I could not ignore.

He was a fleet-footed little devil, but his skills were no match for mine as I chased him round and round the central city. As I imagined my fingertips closing around the collar of his shirt, the crafty beast swallowed a levitation potion, forcing me to use one of my spells in order to follow him. Like Santa's reindeer, we flew from rooftop to rooftop...bouncing off trees and walls...and somewhere in the midst of all of that...I realized...I was actually having a lot of fun.

I had spent so much time in this game, chasing monsters around and blowing them up, dying and cursing every time I lost experience points that I'd forgotten just how much fun some of the game's basics could be. How amazing it was to just fly...

And that's how I ended up plastered to the side of the spire with my toes barely perched upon a small lip of masonry, looking over at the instigator of the event, laughing and saying "Wow! I'd forgotten just how much fun it could be to act so silly!" It was at that moment, my little rogue friend turned to me and without premeditation, delivered the kiss of death...

"I'm ten years old btw...how old are you?"

My fleeting bubble of child-like bliss withered instantaneously from a sweet summer grape to the last stale raisin in the Sun-Maid raisin box. I had assumed that my companion was an adult, like myself, who simply enjoyed acting like a child. Confronted with the genuine article, I felt guilty of deceiving him and for a moment I didn't know what to say. Resigning myself to the inevitable change in our relationship, I just typed in a direct answer to his query.

"I'm forty."

I'm not sure exactly what reaction I expected, but it certainly wasn't...

"I wish my mom was as cool as you are. She hates this game. You are a girl right?"

While I was relieved that my age seemed to have no impact on his perception of me as a friend, I was rather mortified by my own reaction. As an adult interacting with a child, my previously carefree attitude was suddenly tempered by such thoughts as responsibility along with a strong maternal instinct.

He was a kid! Running around a game with all sorts of perverts, which of course I wasn't, lucky for him...but what if he bumped into one of those? And now...look, his potion has worn off and he's sliding down the spire to certain death. Without hesitation, I slapped a levitation spell on his ass and was rewarded with a smile and a "Thanks Finny! I ran out of potions."

As far as the rogue was concerned, we were now best friends for life and like an eager to please puppy, he frolicked at my dignified heel keeping up a stream of non-stop chatter. I learned his name, where he lived, what school he went to, how he was doing in school, what his favorite subjects were and the fact that both of his parents worked so he was alone a lot of the time. Either he was totally oblivious to the fact that giving out so much information was dangerous or this was the sloppiest pedophile sting operation in history. Yes, I'll admit, I was a bit paranoid. This "boy" could easily have been one of those undercover agents you hear about that is constantly policing the games making sure it's a safe place for little Johnny or little Suzy to play in.

Well...since I wasn't one of those perverts, I didn't have anything to worry about, right? Wrong.

As luck would have it, my friend, Timmy, and I were invited into a group for some adventuring action. He may have been only ten years old, but his rogue was the same level as my wizard...so in gaming terms we were peers. I noticed, to my dismay, that the biggest slut in the game had been invited along in the group and with avaricious glee she laid her eyes on little Timmy.

"Oooh, Finny...what do we have here...a delicious rogue! I love rogues!"

Sitting in front of my monitor, I began to bang my forehead against my desk wondering how much worse my day could get. Why hadn't I just ignored the head slapping thing? I could be sitting nice and happy in the Plane of Knowledge, still blissfully practicing my spells instead of feeling this odd compulsion to beat the ever loving snot out of this horny hag trying to defile a ten year old boy.

"Back off," I snarled, "he's a kid."

"Finny, it's okay," said little Timmy, "I don't let it bother me."

Well it bothered me, especially when despite my warning, the tramp still persisted in flinging sexual innuendo at Timmy. To his credit, the boy remained silent during all of her baiting...and I had to admit I was in total admiration of his restraint. Then again...would this have really been an issue if I hadn't pointed out his age? Probably not...

Obviously Timmy had been playing the game for a while and had managed to be judged not by his age, but by his ability. So who was the hypocrite? That's right...yours truly.

Wizards, however, aren't known for their restraint. As I teetered on the brink of snapping completely, she opened her mouth one time too many and I simply had no choice. Within seconds, I conjured a flaming ball of whoopass and unleashed my fury onto her hormonal butt, reducing her to cinders.

A Parents Guide to Fighting Online Predators

Acronyms - Help Delete Online Predators (English Version)

As Timmy and I went off in search of a new adventure, I promised him that I wouldn't tell anyone he was ten years old ever again. In return, he promised that nobody ever needed to know I was old enough to be his mother. There were times when it was very difficult not to become over-protective when every instinct urged me to step between him and harm's way. I have to admit, Timmy was one very cool kid since he was very patient with my chronological handicap.

It's ironic that it took a fantasy game to teach me a valuable life lesson. With the ability of computers and games opening new doors of opportunity for our children, they're entering the world, albeit a fantasy world, earlier and earlier. There are so many hidden dangers, and not just of the pixilated monster variety, that it's right for a parent to be wary and concerned.

However, if parents aren't going to become involved in their child's recreation, merely expressing a distaste for the game and then allowing them access to it anyway, the welfare of that child becomes the responsibility of the adults in the game. People like me...or people that might not have your child's best interest at heart...like the pile of ash I left in my wake.

Personally, I don't mind. Especially not with a kid as sharp as Timmy turned out to be. And once he and I had the talk about being more careful about giving out so much personal information, I felt confident in his ability to be safe with his hobby. I'm not an advocate of denying our children the right to explore this almost limitless medium we call the internet or the computer games that have been developed for entertainment...however, please...please...take the time to give your children a healthy dose of self-preservation before sending them off to play.

This guy has a lot of good ideas...but try not to miss the chat if you can

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Heather Smith 5 years ago

      Thank for posting this Spryte. I do play online games. I like dragon nest. MMORpg games are not suited to ages 12 and below because they will not fully understand the game.

    • Mrs Hozey profile image

      Mrs Hozey 8 years ago

      Excellent article. I play Wow and there's always a rush of panic when I find out the player I'm interacting with is 13. I wish these kids wouldn't advertise their age like that, though. But, it definitely makes me think twice when I'm tempted to blow up trade chat with obscene shouting at idiots. ;) There is a kid in our guild who is nine but his dad is always on when he's on and I think that's how it should be when kids play RPGs online.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      jdh351 - I swore off Warcraft for a few months...and then the new expansion came out. I now have a nearly level 73 warlock, a 71 rogue and one of those new death knights...level 59 nearly 60. Wait til you see it...it will knock your shoes off. :)

      The servers are crammed from what I hear and they are offering free moves to less busy ones. So far mine (Norgannon) is still tolerable).

    • jdh351 profile image

      jdh351 8 years ago from Chicago, IL

      World of Warcraft player here. Not that actively anymore, I haven't bought the expansion yet but will welcome it when I have the money.

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Hey Spryte, I am trying to get CR to get that group shower going again if I can find him.

      https://hubpages.com/relationships/Party-Time-Is-O...

      You can come help persuade him if you would like to.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      LOL, you have come back on form haven't you Spryte. Well, you can always join me on the https://hubpages.com/religion-philosophy/antichris if you want to. A long but fascinating read with loads of nutty comments amongst the sane ones :)

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Misty, Christoph and Crazy MM:

      Of course you should be able to counter-attack nasty commentators! I was thinking we could give Shadesbreath a dictionary in one hand and a thesaurus in the other...and he could slam them together to squish anyone he wants. We'll have to think of a good term for this ability...like...hmmm..."When Words Collide". :)

      Misty...you should have one of those ink pens with the feathery plumes at the end. This way you could write them off or tickle them to death...whichever you prefer. We could call this ability "Dressed to Quill."

      Let's see...Christoph. Hmmm...a squirting ink pen is a good idea, but it needs a cool name. "The Inkonator" perhaps...or..."I Ink, therefore I am."

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Or like an Octopus or Squid you mean :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Ok. I want my weapon to be a lever-filled ink pen, so I can squirt ink in their eyes just like the Three Stooges.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      LOL MM, you are slightly crazy aren't you??? :)

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      Oh goody! Does this mean everyone gets to have a new World of Hubcraft name too? And weapon of choice?

      Sounds like the energy level's rising again, just as I have to dash off for a bit myself. But I will leave you with this:

      "Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." (Ephesians 6:13). Go get em, hubsters! Wah hoo wah (Indian-- oops, I mean Native American -- whooping sound)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Ooooohhh, what a great game :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Thanks so much for the explanation. Just remember, we are real people avatars, and they are fake people avatars. Don't ever blur that distinction. Sweet of you to comfort me in my time of Spryte need. I hope your appearances here are not all that rare. Peace and Love (I'm on a hippie thing today.)

      Now THAT is an online game I will play. Especially the killing part. Yes, Misty, you MUST be able to kill commentors! That's spot on.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      'World of Hubcraft', sounds like fun to me. Can we kill bad commenters too? :)

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Christoph - *HUGS*  :) 

      *waves to Misty and Aj*

      I'm alive...although Warcraft really sucked up all of my weekend time.  Blame the new expansion that came out on Thursday.  Of course, all I've heard for the past few days is "Chumana (my name on Warcraft)!  Where have you been for the last three months????"  Then I had to explain hubpages to them...and I felt like an adulterer...

      Perhaps I need a new venue...World of Hubcraft...where you level by writing and you can kill bad writers with an enchanted pen...or something like that!

      I'm so glad y ou have a working puter AND hot water! Yay!

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Misty: Thanks. I didn't get the message.

      ajcor: Thanks. I just saw that on her hub.

      All of you showed concern for me when I went missing (although it turned out to just be computer problems) and I was just doing the same.

      Thanks everybody!

    • ajcor profile image

      ajcor 8 years ago from NSW. Australia

      christoph - just saw your comment and I saw that Gwendy has an unwell sister and she has gone to visit - hope all is well with her and hers. cheers

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Spryte's off playing the new 'World of Warcraft' with her Husband for a few days. Said she may not be on as often for a while.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Spryte: Where are you? I finally get back and now you are gone! Gwendy is MIA too. I hope you guys are OK?

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Hi Para! Good to see you here of course. I've played online chess before with some friends, even hooked up a separate voice IP system so that we could gloat at each other in real time. :) Haven't done that for a while though...but I remember how much fun I had. Whenever I'm feeling the need though, occasionally I'll hop onto some old sites and play a rousing game of Hearts or Cribbage with others. Thanks for dropping in and commenting.

    • Paraglider profile image

      Dave McClure 8 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

      Spryte - This is excellent stuff. Not my field at all. The only online game I've ever played is chess. I enjoyed the look into a new world.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      CW - Sorry, I was corrupted by World of Warcraft so I'm not one to speak for EverQuest these days :)

      As for the food...get your cute little butt in the kitchen and rustle us up some grub!

    • Constant Walker profile image

      Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

      Really!  I know that I, personally, was extremely dissented (just made that up!) over the treatment of this poor defenseless game!  Where's the advocate for this misunderstood technology?!

      Where's the fattening recipe hubs?  All this touchy-feely stuff is making me hungry...

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Melissa - Thank you! I always try to keep in mind not to assume that others can see things from my perspective and it's nice to know that occasionally I succeed! And thanks for complimenting the "grape to raisin" analogy...I was especially proud of that one myself! LOL! No worries about the dissenters on the comments though...it actually promoted this hub and brought it to the attention of readers, so I can't be upset with that! Thanks again for reading this and commenting!

    • Melissa G profile image

      Melissa G 8 years ago from Tempe, AZ

      Wow, Spryte--you definitely have a way with words! Even though I'm not a gamer, I could almost imagine the virtual world you were describing, and I felt my face flush when you mentioned your fellow gamer's age! :) I also especially loved your reference to the sweet summer grape transformed into the last stale raisin - HA! Sorry to see the messy turn the comments took... you never know what kind of characters you'll encounter online. ;)

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Just_Rodney: What double comment? I don't see any double comment! :)

      There is no harm in being sure and educating children to be aware of the danger and how to react accordingly. Some would say that it promotes hysteria or fear in a child that is unnecessary...I believe it reinforces the fact that an adult cares and that a child should have faith in themselves when they sense something "is not right." We can't just teach our children to respect adults without question...because that is what a pedophile preys upon.

      Thanks for dropping in and leaving that comment Just_Rodney :) I didn't know anything about the statistical jump in missing children before events and I'll have to take a peek at that.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Just_Rodney, well worth repeating!

    • Just_Rodney profile image

      Rodney Fagan 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      As the Irish in me would say just to Be sure to Be sure.

      Sorry double comment not double vision or that I think it should be repeated.

    • Just_Rodney profile image

      Rodney Fagan 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Misha, and all, it is not even a negotiable, peodofiles exists and walk, stalk, prey on any child that IT can lay he has hands, the internet, like cell phones, bulliten boards, game rooms, playgrounds, church groups, scout groups, sports and recreation centres, the list is endless.

      Any place that children can and do have access to, are at riisk. They need to be educated, made aware off, and given some means for them to blow the whistle on these predators. Knowledge of them and there ploys is a first line defence, we need to be able to do more.

      Else we will see them on the backs of Milk Cartons.

      This is a real problem that the number of kids disapearing before an international event, such as world cups, escalates a year or to before in the host countries. South African is experiencing similar statistics at present, and the Fifa wold cup is set for 2010.

      Dont hide your head, worry about it.

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks Spryte, I got your response and sent mine.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Got it and replied...on it's way to you sweetie.

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      I just sent you an email. Let me know if you got it.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Hahah...ask away and I will deny it afterward. As long as you don't mind it being public for a few moments?

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      yes, or I can just gwendy the questions, either way is good for me.

      LOL!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      were you reading my mind. I'd written the comment and had to change it to this!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Want to email me?

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      sorry, yes we are, and it's so very fun!

      Hey Spryte, I just got done reading that unpublished hub I had you read. Wow, I was really a mess. I hadn't read it since I wrote it. I wish we had a chatroom now, because I have a few questions I'd like to ask you.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      LOL Aggie - I never kicked him out. :) Troublemaker!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Why don't you invite Misha back I do so enjoy a good debate?

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Gwendymom - We're like magical little elves sneaking around hubs in the night.... :)

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      MM must you use soap? oh and my foot?

      Froggie will never be the same.It was all over before he got there. Sort of like the virginal teenage boy?

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      That hub that we hubjacked last night is on the second page.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      LOL, not sure really, I grew up hearing the expression. It means 'really pleased', but not sure why. :)

      This might help: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What's_the_meaning_of_Ch...

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      Ag -- I guess I'll just soap up your toes then, and let you insert the foot into the mouth. Two birds with one stone or something like that.

      Misty: Chuffed to bits. What a fab expression. What is "chuffed"?

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Aggie - And to think I thought this hub would slide past unnoticed. I'm "chuffed to bits" as misty says. I hope Christoph's stay up there long enough for him to see it.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I noticed that too, I bet he will be chuffed to bits, and yes, he does deserve it :)

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      spryte,So its the coffee withdrawals?

      Congrats to you as well, this Hub is coming up third on my computer!

      MM you would have to pick the right time with the soap and my mouth, that's usually reserved for my foot! :-[)

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Dang, I am happy for him, he deserves it.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I was checking a few minutes ago...

      CR has THREE hubs on the first page of the hot hubs. Wooooohoo!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Dang it all...my coffee mug is empty. I am powerless...to...write...without...it.

      (brb)

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Where is CR? I am ready to get the party started before I have to go watch the world series of poker final table event, and If any of you already know who won, don't tell me I have been trying to avoid it all day.

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      No matter how hard we try, we just can't seem to get away from talking about the birds and the bees (and ducklings coming from mama ducks). Ag -- I wouldn't swing my soap on a rope at you. I might wash your mouth out with it if you got too fresh (although believe me, there are hubbers ahead of you in line for this "punishment")

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Maybe I should go get lessons from Misha? He seems to have all bases covered?

      (OK mama ducks, to avoid being hit by soap on rope)

      Hi Gwendymom Tim tams are choclate coated biscuits and featured on Oprah when she interviewed Nic and Hugh about the new movie "Australia"

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Roflmao, you are right Spryte, they do come from mama ducks.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I'm not worried...Aggie is standing in front with his cup on. ;)

      Aggie...ducks do not come from soap on a rope. They come from Mama Ducks.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      MM , nice to see you back to you old fiesty self. (ducks from soap on rope)

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      LOL. Even if they are below the belt, right?

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      LOL!

      Physical blows will not be tolerated...or will be returned with interest. Other types of hits either Pro or Con will be accepted graciously.

      There...my disclaimer.

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      Hi guys. By "hits" I assume you mean external hits from concerned parents. Not the kinds of hits you were suffering last night:-) Ouch! That smarts!!!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Evenin' Aggie!

      Today was a beautiful day here in AZ too! Veteran's Day...so very little traffic heading into work...slow day at work....early out! Gotta love days like that.

      I hope this hub gets a lot of hits too Ag :)

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      spryte, good mornin' to you and all others I noticed when I got up the sky had not fallen in , the sun had risen and I was still breathing. 3 out of 3 not bad Eh!

      A topical comment : on our tv news last evening a "school teacher" has been charged for pocession of child pornography and other? offences. Names and locations cannot be published because of the age of the victims.  (and so it goes') Keep up the good work!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Amanda: Wow! It's nice to see a parent that has a great handle on their kid's online time. Kudos to you! It seems you definitely have a rational outlook on the dangers and reactedin a proactive manner by educating your son and daughter. I'm impressed and heartened. Thank you!

    • Amanda Severn profile image

      Amanda Severn 8 years ago from UK

      Hi Spryte, I just got to this hub, and I can see that it's primed some hot debate! My nine year old plays one of these on-line games, but luckily for my peace of mind, he's very reticent about any form of written communication (too much like school!) so I don't think he's a worry at the moment. I do know, however, of one of my daughter's twelve year old friends being chatted up on-line in an inappropriate manner. The child in question is quite clued up about these things, and she told her mother who reported the incedent. The trouble is that the internet is so anonymous yet so personal at the same time. A bit of a contradiction really, and it's easy to get caught up in the moment.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      It did seem rather heated in here last night, but hope it is all over now and there are no hard feelings :)

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I don't think we ever stopped being friends...at least I hope not. :)

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Phew, glad things have finally calmed down and all is well again. Can I assume we are all back to being friends as usual now??

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I've heard of this thing called unconditional love...but unconditional forgiveness?

      *ducks and flees*

      Just kidding, don't hurt me...don't hurt me! LOL!

      I knew I should have stayed up and kept an eye on Shades...all that talk about food must have wound you up.

      Dineane - Thank you :)

    • dineane profile image

      dineane 8 years ago from North Carolina

      "We can't protect our children from something we don't understand ourselves. And let's face it...not all adults are as comfortable with computers as you and I might be. " Good point...and again, I like your hub and the spirit of your "gentle nudge."

    • KT pdx profile image

      KT pdx 8 years ago from Vancouver, WA, USA

      Comment duly ignored, Shades. Chalk it up to my life experiences. I agree with you on that, in an altruistic world. :)

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      Just putting my two cents on that. I confess to being a bombastic windbag, so I do say stuff like that sometimes. I like my forgiveness like I like my love... freely given and without qualifications or aftershocks of the pre-forgiveness circumstance. But, that's the kind of crap bombastic windbags say. Please ignore me. :)

    • KT pdx profile image

      KT pdx 8 years ago from Vancouver, WA, USA

      :P Who are you to judge my concept of forgiveness, Shades? Don't even bother.

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      "Forgiveness" is best given without a follow up statement. :P

    • KT pdx profile image

      KT pdx 8 years ago from Vancouver, WA, USA

      Misha: Forgiven, but just remember that others might have a reason for what position they're taking, just as much as you have a reason for yours.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Awww Ag, thank you :) I'll tell him that tomorrow morning...just like I do every day! LOL!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      spryte your husband is a very smart man, he married you.

      I've got your back with Misha he won't be babysitting my grandkids any day soon!

      His arguements no longer make any sense so I just hope he isn't just playing dumb!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Dineane - Being an online game, it also required some form of payment...which would naturally fall to the parents for a child of that age. So obviously, they'd bought and paid for the software and its use...and then washed their hands of it.

      I remember though, a couple of times, his mother chased him off the computer to do his homework or to get to bed...so she wasn't completely absent or unaware of his useage. And that's what this piece is for...more of a gentle scolding or nudge to educate parents so that they in turn can safeguard their children. Although I'm not trying to excuse the lack of parental guidance by this little boy's parents, it's quite possible that they just never suspected there was danger lurking.

      We can't protect our children from something we don't understand ourselves. And let's face it...not all adults are as comfortable with computers as you and I might be.

    • dineane profile image

      dineane 8 years ago from North Carolina

      10 years old, and his parents work, so he was alone a lot of the time...and he told you his name and where he lived. There is a very big disconnect there to me, even given what economics are.

      I don't advocate kids living in fear, but you would not have had this article to write if his parents were spending a bit more time with him. My daughter knew much younger than 10 not to share name and address on the internet. Yes, risk can be good, but I don't think Timmy knew the consequences, potential consequences, based on what you have described in this hub.

      No hard feelings here either - but I don't think Misha has earned that kind of "Uncle" status.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Au Contraire Misha - You have not spoiled anything.  I don't happen to agree with your position, but you have managed single-handedly to draw attention to this hub and for that I'm grateful...still. 

      I don't think Shades was agreeing with you on the "imaginary dangers" though...since I think we've all proven, even if just to ourselves that this is not an imaginary crime.  I tip my hat to your stubborn ability to maintain your position though, despite the proof.

      Dineane - Actually I found no fault with Little Timmy's parents in this...especially in regard to both having to work.  Economics are what they are.  However, they should have cautioned their son about freely giving out too much personal information.    Other than that, he certainly was a very sociable little kid...and I enjoyed his sense of fun immensely.  He certainly was smart...and to my knowledge understood that being practical did not mean living in fear.  I had no wish to instill that in him...my mother did a pretty good job of doing that to me growing up, so I know how debilitating that fear can be.  However, as my husband says...there's nothing wrong with risk, just as long as you are aware of the consequences and do your best to keep the odds in your favor.  My husband is a very smart man...and there aren't too many men that impress me with their level-headedness, but he's one of them.

      There are no hard feelings in any of this.  As far as I'm concerned, it's perfectly fine to have dissenting opinions.  However, if I had children...they wouldn't be visiting their Uncle Misha anytime soon.  :P 

      :)

    • Misha profile image

      Misha 8 years ago from DC Area

      Thank you Cindy, you are the only person on this thread who actually provided links relevant to the question. So we have at least a handful of cases when such things did happen. Trying to figure out how bad it actually is looks impossible under current circumstances, so I give it up :)

      Thank you Shades, you got my point :) Yes, all defense comes at price, both freedom/convenience and resource wise. Our resources are limited, and if we spend all our resources on imaginary dangers, we are left naked in face of real ones...

      Thank you Gwen, Marian, Ajcor, Shirley, Dineane, and especially KT for staying cool :)

      Sorry for spoiling your hub Laurie, I promise never again any serious questions on my side :)

    • dineane profile image

      dineane 8 years ago from North Carolina

      "I wonder if Misha is comforted knowing he is standing side by side with the molesters, making their arguments for them. "

      Wow, I think that's a bit unfair, and I hope Misha appreciates Shades' interpretation of his position.

      I often feel momentarily guilty that I've never monitored my daughter's online activity as much as many parents think I should. But the truth is I've raised a pretty level headed kid so far, and I do worry more about car accidents than her becoming a victim to internet stalking (especially now that she has her learner's permit!)

      That's not to say that we shouldn't teach our kids to be careful, to be smart, but the truth is strangers are not as dangerous as "Uncle," "Neighbor," or "Coach" Molester, in general.

      I liked your hub, Spryte, and I do think awareness is always important. Maybe English as a second language has a little contribution to the heat Misha's comments have instigated? I understand, I think, part of what Misha was trying to say. In your example, Spryte, Litte Timmy's parents were apparently leaving out a lot of life lessons - not just how to protect yourself on the internet. And that is really the bigger problem. Kids who are left home alone learning no real-life social skills are probably also the most vulnerable on the internet.

      To me the best message we can all take from your hub is to look out as much as we can for neglected children everywhere, but good parents, parents in tune with their kids, probably don't have a lot to worry about from their kids' online activity.

    • Eric Graudins profile image

      Eric Graudins 8 years ago from Australia

      I'm off too - like a sack of prawns in the desert.

      Got a new internet empire to set up :-)

       

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      See you all later guys :)

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      I myself have to go forth and be educated. See you later!

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      LOL Agvulpes, I'm going to agree with a wink and head off to class. I'll check you people in six hours or so.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Shades I thought that spryte, and a few others of us did actually declare ourselves on the statistical side. But there we go having this nice reasoned debate.

      Just goe's to show you can't have reasoned debate with an someone that will not listen to reason!

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      I'm heading out the door from the office atm...but will jump back in later this evening. Thanks Shades, Christoph, Aggie, Gwen and Misty for taking it down a notch :)

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      The smart move was to recognize the statistical point wasn't working and let it go.  Numbers are worthless in an emotional exchange.  You can't place a stastical value on one traumatized kid any more than you can put a monetary one on it. It's one of those things where, just because you are "technically correct" doesn't mean you're right.

      And yes, Agvulpes, that's my take on what happened.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chris trust you to go for top shelf, enjoy its a nice drop.

      Shades,OK I think I can see where your coming from, maybe we misunderstood just what Misha was trying to say and the more he said it the deeper the shit pot was getting. Would that be fair to say?

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Well, the hub was about looking out for kids in the world of online gaming, period. Misha drove it into this area himself and there was no reason to go there. He wanted to start this conversation so I don't think it can be said he was "railroaded" into anything when he was the engineer on the train. He came back over and over with absurd accusations and conclusions.

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      No, no, I'm not saying we should allow victimization.  I'm trying to separate Misha's statistical evaluation of Spryte's statistical evaluation from the "common sense" parenting vs. teaching our kids to be afraid of their world too much issue.  There are several sub-issues here and they're all being slopped into one yucky pile which is making me tense.  I like for friends to debate, but as hackles raise, I just want to jump in and try to point out stuff I'm noticing as underpinning the tension.

      Misha being stubborn isn't helping, but perhaps I've been able to excise his actual point from the one he's been accused of and even railroaded into defending, and which I don't believe he ever meant at any point.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      I can't speak for shades, but since I've had lots of Fosters, I'll try a Crown.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Shades nice to see you enter the debate.

      I for one did not detect a note of hysteria, I thought we were having a nice quite discussion. 

      What you seem to be saying is that we should wait until the stats show a more alarming trend. What would you suggest, say 10%???. You would know that you can make stat show whatever you want them to!

      Now come on man, tell us what you really think?

      So Fosters or Crown?

    • gwendymom profile image

      gwendymom 8 years ago from Oklahoma

      Sorry I missed out guys. I had been away talking to my sister about my other sister, and nayway I apologize for showing up late.

      I just wanted to say that when I first started using the internet my online name was gwendygirl, I changed that name very quickly because I could not go into a chatroom or play online games without being harassed by someone wanting to know my age, where I was from, etc. etc. The funny thing is that when I decided to change my online name to gwendymom, I was not getting harassed at all. There are people out there who are looking for young children to tajke advatage of. Being naive enough to think that the world is filled with people who won't harm children is just insane. The phrase better safe than sorry applies here. I would never let my children on the internet without knowing not to give personal information and the tricks that these kind of people use to lure and extract that kind of information from them.

      Misha, I am not sure why you do not believe that there is a real danger out there for kids in the online community but there is. I hope that your children know how to be safe online.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      It would be a dreadful shame if this escalates too much further and we end up falling out with Misha. Like the beers idea Shades :)

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 8 years ago from California

      Well, while I agree that there is enough evidence out there to prove that pedophiles are in fact a very real danger to our kids; I think Misha's point was that the amount of alarm is disproportionate statistically to the number of kids abused.

      His point being, I think, that the statistical likelihood is statistically "insignificant."  Statistical insignificance is any percentage under 5%, and I think that's what Misha was driving at.  Using the 1500 people in that original survey and the 2 cases that did occur - if we assume they were actual for the sake of argument - that would bring the percentage in that theoretically representative survey to 0.00133 of 1% or a little over one one-thousandth of one percent, far below statistical significance. Meaning, in a room of 1300 strangers, there is one stranger your kid should not talk to and 1299 of them that would help him or her out in a bind. Statistically speaking, talking to strangers is actually not something we should prohibit entirely.

      I agree that one kid in a billion is too many, but I think Misha's point is that the level of fear we project onto our kids is disproportionate to the actual threat.  If we calmly teach our kids to be wary, and if we watch out for others kids (as Spryte did with Timmy and as I and KT have done in MMORPGs as well), then the hysteria that is accorded this issue can be abated some.  While some kids remain ignorant of the threats, others are rendered timid and fearful.  This whole thing is encompassed by studies done on the "CNN Effect" some time ago.

      So, bottom line is:  I don't think Misha is as villainous as he's being made out to be, although he is being stubborn as hell (because I think he's been pushed into a corner in part by stubbornness and in part by the CNN Effect driving a few people into a bit of an emotional furor).  So, everyone needs to play nice now.  I suggest beers around the room.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 8 years ago from Australia

      Chis of course you are right I just could not let Misha off the hook quite so easily.

      at least now he has something that will eat away in his subconcious!

      If he chooses not to believe, that now is his problem, we have done our best to educate him!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

      Cindy Lawson 8 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      LOL, Awwww thanks Spryte, I adore you too :)

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Shibashake - Oh for sure!! Although I've met some really bratty kids online, the majority of them are just absolutely incredibly sweet. It makes me want to hug them they're so adorable.

      I had the same experiences regarding the concept of "old"...until I met the oldest EQ player alive (I think). He was in his 70's....LOL!

      Shirley: Thank you! I'm keeping my fingers crossed...and I'll let you all know if my request for submission yields anything. Constant also gave me a great link to a source for publication...so we'll see.

      Misty: Have I told you today how much I adore you?

      Christoph: Well...we did have one person complaining about lethal coconuts and seagulls dropping oyster bombs. :)

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 8 years ago from St. Louis

      Ag: You are right, but a "healthy argument" assumes a healthy contingent on both sides - not just one lone turnip that you can't squeeze blood from. All of these people with their blood boiling (hey, mine boiled over at the beginning of the whole thing, you can go look) and no place to direct their anger and frustration, so it just simmers and festers. I wonder if Misha is comforted knowing he is standing side by side with the molesters, making their arguments for them.

    • spryte profile image
      Author

      spryte 8 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Aggie - No need to apologize. You know how I feel about this particularly subject as well.

      Actually, I'm probably in the "shocked as much as Christoph" category. At first, I thought Misha was just taking the opposite side to bring more interest to this topic and I was rather glad. The more interest, the more people become aware of an issue.

      But I don't think he's arguing for arguing sake anymore. And that is what is puzzling to me. I simply cannot understand a person that closes their eyes tightly despite proof to the contrary and it makes me wonder why.

      It could be for a lot of reasons. Fear could be a good reason. Sometimes people who feel that nothing can be done will deny that there is even a problem...and I can understand that, oddly enough.