Update: Dropping a Reference


#1

Hi folks, Matt here with a quick OOC update. A couple of players have mentioned an in-character joke doing the rounds about Urizen characters making love through a hole in a sheet. I can appreciate the humour of the joke and understand why people have made the joke given the Urizen brief, but I am asking everyone to drop this joke please.

For those (like myself) who were not aware of the original context for this joke, it comes from a fairly unpleasant real-world myth about Orthodox Jews (https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/sheet-dreams-are-made-of-these/). I am absolutely confident that no antisemitic intent was meant and I want to stress that nobody - including those making the joke - are being accused of that. Everyone understands that this was purely accidental.

Where practical, we avoid anything that smacks of antisemitism in Empire for the same reasons that we avoid things that can imply that racism or other forms of real-world discrimination are part of the game environment. Prejudice and discrimination are important themes in Empire - but that is precisely why it so important to ensure that any prejudice is based only on in-character traits and that we avoid including any real world elements - even by accident.

Some antisemitic or racist tropes like this one are incredibly easy to wander into by mistake. Racism has a long and varied history and if you’re not familiar with the context (as most of us are not), then it’s easy to miss the unpleasant history connected with these kind of motifs. Fortunately that is a problem that is very easily fixed - it just means dropping the reference when it’s identified.

We want a game where everyone will feel welcome to attend - hence why I’m requesting that everybody support that goal and drop this reference.

Thanks everyone.