Real life gender always seems to be a topic of hot debate, especially for those with something to hide. But even though there are those who always say that gender just does not matter, there are times when it does without a doubt. So how do you detect the gender imposter?
First let’s send away the argument that RL gender does not matter. Sometimes it may not, but other times it does unmistakably. Motives behind males masquerading as females can be scary enough, or even predatory in nature. Lesbian women in particular struggle with protecting their rights to congregate in a safe environment. There is an odd and sexually-charged fascination certain men have with women in same-sex relationships. Lesbian women need the space to fully experience and keep their relationships in a harassment-free environment.
Lestastic Lesbian Club, owned by Liz Jardberg, voice verifies its members before giving out a VIP group tag. All other group members are welcome to wear the ‘member’ group tag. “We strive for tolerance, and have many events open to everyone with compassion towards LGBT issues. But we do voice verify our VIPs to give many of our members confidence that they can express their personalities with one another.”
For some, voice verification doesn’t end the debate.
WardKaye Oakleaf is a host at Sweethearts Jazz Social Club, and married last year to his SL wife, Dawn. As a host at a destination popular for romantic connections, Ward sadly has seen his share of gender impostors. “Yes, some people unfortunately think it’s funny to charade as the opposite sex.” The Enquirer thought he would have the perfect answers to detect gender impostors. “Gosh. How can you really determine that? Unless they cam with you. And if they don’t, just trust your instinct.”
Jim McVay has his own … shall we say, ‘unique’ sense for detecting gender, but inevitably also relies on basic instinct. “A woman can keep a man erect for hours. A man is short-lived.”
Wow!!! Now that begs further details to tell! LoL.
“I role played a shape shifter for years,” says McVay. “It took me a while to figure out who I was dancing with, but once the rule came to light I was always accurate.”
Red Junge is a woman that goes on trust and intuition. “Sometimes you can tell a woman from a man … to me it depends on the age of the Avi and how they are dressed. I am not saying that every man dresses a horrid woman, but given the age and how they are dressed indicates that a man is a woman Avi. Most men that dress newbish, being 6 years old tells me it’s a man. Understand? LoL.”
Elizabeth Marie Blackburn gets more technical with her own intuition, and relies a lot on linguistic cues. “Usually, it comes up in conversation, or I can gather from context clues in the conversation itself. I've learned the gender designator of pronouns tend to be *really* helpful in a text-based conversation.”
Presumably because as women we are taught from an early age to be little ladies, it’s a widely held fact among linguists that women’s speech patterns tend to be more polite than men’s. Watch how you use your pronouns, dears!!!
As much as we love, love, love the Internet, it has also made asking a stereotypical and tacky cocktail of feminine interview questions ineffective at sniffing out the cloaked male wolf in female sheep’s clothing. ‘What beauty products does Paul Mitchell make?’ or ‘When do you eat the top of your wedding cake?’, are things that can be very easily answered after typing the question into Google.
So there we have it. What works and what does not work. From Cam to Voice. From instinct to science. We have the subtle and not so subtle means to sneak out the gender impostor. To many of us, this matters greatly. To others such as Idris Darwinian, a wonderful free-spirit, the subject does not matter. “So many men playing women - if you want to have fun - then why worry - if they are bad at it then move on.”
Ultimately that is a decision left for each one of us. However, one last word of interest if you think this article is dramatically biased towards finding men veiled as women, it’s really for good reason. It is fascinating to note that during this Avi poll research by the SL Enquirer, it was actually very hard to find the opposite – women displaying male avatars under false pretenses. Now perhaps THAT is an article to ponder in the future!