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Duality Quests: More Context
First, users brought up the issues regarding how Mori and Nori were portrayed so this brainstorm thread so born. If you look at the date, you can see it was created well over a year ago and users brought it up before that. It's unacceptable that we took so long to address this. While yes, our team is small and incredibly stretched thin, it shouldn't have taken us the amount of time it did. We as a team have a problem with breaking tasks up into smaller things; we always want to do everything at once. In this case, we really thought it made the most sense and was the most respectful to get everything changed at once. It was clearly not the right way to go about things, and I personally want to apologize to those I put off with my "we're working on it" generic comments.
Now, what was the issue with Nori and Mori?
"Mori and Nori as well as items relating to them have been changed due to the use of terminology that is offensive to those with Dissociative Identity Disorder. While they were not meant to be a direct representation of the disorder, many users have voiced their concerns that the inherent nature of her backstory alongside it being painted in a negative light opened up a lot of opportunities for offensive language being used throughout the site. Since Mori and Nori are such an accessible and essential part of the site, having things like this at the forefront may reenforce the thought that the usage of these terms is acceptable and normalized, which is not what's wanted at all in a site that seeks to be inclusive and diverse."
This was beautifully said by user fun who has experience with DID and has been a champion for educating the staff and users. I asked them to sum up what the problem for users without having to read the entire suggestion thread.
We've updated the text for the Mori and Nori quests (the intro text, the turn in text, the failed quest, the reward text), the quest shop text, the subetapedia main entry about the two as well as the quick facts listed in the quest givers list, and various items around the site. We've also renamed the achievements associated with Mori and Nori. Did we miss something? Please ping me (Amber) so I can adjust it.
In the future, I will actively try to not offer excuses ("our team is small" "our focus is on a holiday") and will do my best to work with users to get things updated in a timely manner. This isn't always possible, of course, but I personally could have done a lot better job with this particular issue.
Why does this all matter?
Like fun's quote says, we really do strive to be inclusive and diverse. We don't want to have things on site that upset users in a negative way like this. It's one thing to not like an item because you think spiders (or something similar) are scary, it's another to have to deal with an item promoting negative stereotypes to a mental health disorder you may have. By not addressing user concerns about Mori and Nori in a timely matter, we as staff made part of our user base feel unheard and unimportant which is never what we want. We've adjusted items with a quick turn around before (Algonquin Plushie comes to mind) and the fact we took over a year to make these changes was plain wrong.
Why post a new news post instead of just adding another comment to the earlier post?
The users who brought up the issue with Mori and Nori, continued to fight for the change, and actively tried to educate users and staff deserve this post. They deserve to be publicly acknowledged for the work they did.
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