Creep

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In the book “A Steampunk’s Guide to Sex”, KC Crowell contributes a chapter entitled “How to Deel with, and Not Be, a Creep”. In a few pages, she offers great advice. So, we’ve decided to quote extensively from her text, in order to avoid uncomfortable situations for our readers.

KC Crowell studied journalism and philosophy at San Francisco State and worked in publishing. She currently works as operations manager at the Long Now Foundation.

Crowell defines a creep as “a person who, intentionally or not, makes you feel uncomfortable or violates your personal boundaries. Creepy behavior can be anything from unwelcome touching to unsolicited sexual comments. Creeps might be well meaning, or they might also have more sinister ulterior motives.”

As for dealing with creeps, she offers a three-step process:

The Three Steps

“First step: Disengage. When approached by a creep, the easiest way to avoid contact is to simply smile and excuse yourself. You should feel no expectation to endorse someone’s bad behavior with your company.”

“Second step: Engage. There are a few simple phrases that you can use to engage and diffuse creepy behavior. “Please do not touch me” or “I do not feel comfortable with this conversation” can serve as handy verbal stop signs for unwelcome attention. If they don’t work the first time, firmly repeat them until you get the desired effect”.

“Third step: Contact a staff member. Convention staff are there to facilitate your positive experience, not harbor creepy or abusive attendees. If there is someone bothering you, bring it to the attention of a convention organizer.”

Likewise, she offers three principles for not being a creep:

First, “never, ever assume that convention attendees are there for your personal entertainment or benefit.”

Second, “always ask permission.”

Third, if you’re called a creep, “don’t flip out. Everyone makes mistakes. Getting called a creeper is not the end of the world, and the worst thing to do in this situation is to dig yourself deeper by loudly proclaiming that you did not do anything creepy, or worse, that the accusing party was somehow “asking for” unwanted attention. Never underestimate the power of a humble apology over righteous indignation.”

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