I Done Did A Streamin’!

As announced over on Pharyngula, our very own Spider Professor ran a stream today reading and reacting to the comments on his previous video on trans people and the complexity of defining ‘sex’. Crip Dyke, Sarah, and I joined him for this, and here it is:

A small confession: Barring a couple of not widely viewed D&D game videos from a few years ago, this was actually my first livestream! I would like to think it does not seem like it.

Double Dactyl: Fuck Twitter

Twitter's logo, a stylized blue silhoutte of a bird, under a red circle-and-bar 'NO' icon.Flibberty Bibberty
Twitter’s engagement scheme
Spreads around viral memes
And with them, hate

Since nothing can redeem
This vicious spite machine
You should vacate

In the last few days I have changed my Twitter habits from “multiple times a day” to “almost never look at it”, and experienced a huge upward spike in my mood and mental health. I am on the fence about whether to delete outright, I might, but I have to recommend quitting the damnable thing as an act of self-care.

How Fanbros Stifle Critique

A screenshot of The Simpsons in which Comic Book Guy stands behind his shop counter telling Bart "Without a doubt the worst episode ever"[Possible indirect spoilers for ‘The Rise of Skywalker’.]

Here we are on the Internet in the year 2020, so I’m going to take the leap that my readers do not need a primer on toxic fandom and the entitled fanbros who engage in it. We’ve seen Gamergate rise and fall and be subsumed into the Alt-Right and Trumpists; heard the howling shrieks about “Fake Geek Girls“; and seen them gatekeep everything from Sherlock Holmes to Steven Universe with weird trivia demands. They are the ones I tend to think of as the ‘acquisitive’ fans, who care immensely about canon and trivia and feel like they can take ownership of the act of liking a franchise, in contrast to the ‘creative’ fans who create art and fanfiction and tend to use their fandoms as a joyous jumping-off point for other work.

We’ve also seen them absolutely shit themselves trying to shut down any critique of the things they love (and believe therefore are Objectively Excellent). We’ve seen them scream “feminism is cancer” at Anita Sarkeesian until their throats are bloody with hate. In this respect, how they stifle critique is obvious and direct, and even outright stated as an objective. This is not the kind of stifling I’m going to talk about; instead, I want to examine the subtler stifling of critique that happens if someone in part agrees with them. [Read more…]