In the replies of new Black folks on here discussing the harassment they’ve faced, and slurs they’ve had thrown at them, I’ve seen white users respond with suggestions that they should move to better moderated instances – I even saw one guy say ‘you should just move to a black instance’. The usual line they take is to (patronizingly) talk about how the protocol lets you move instances, and so you can just find an instance with policies that suit you.
IMO, this behavior is (and should be more widely seen as) anti-Black; users should be reporting it, and instance admins should be banning for it.
Firstly, it shifts the blame for the abuse solely to the recipients – ‘it’s your fault for not picking an appropriate instance!’ It also makes the commenters themselves feel all smart for knowing the ins and outs of the protocol (even when they often have no idea what they’re talking about), which is honestly just annoying as fuck.
Secondly, it sweeps the fedi’s historical + continuing anti-Blackness under the rug by making racist abuse into a technical discussion rather than a cultural one. It serves to assuage the consciences of those making such comments, because they can just point to the safeguards that are *technically* there, allowing them to forego self-reflection.
Cumulatively, the effect of these kinds of comments is to push Black users off the fedi, or onto instances that can be blocked/marginalized/attacked by white users. This is segregation, plain and simple, and it’s absolutely shameful.
SO! Fellow admins, I’m gonna be reporting such behavior + suspending accounts that do it from instances I moderate. I’m gonna encourage users to report this shit too so that I can take action. How about you?