Fantasy Faction

Fantasy Faction => Fantasy Book & Author Discussion => Topic started by: ScarletBea on March 28, 2019, 08:11:26 AM

Title: This open letter on the main site
Post by: ScarletBea on March 28, 2019, 08:11:26 AM
http://fantasy-faction.com/2019/dear-sff-community (http://fantasy-faction.com/2019/dear-sff-community)

If I ever doubted that here on the FF forum we live in our own little nice and friendly bubble, that just goes to prove it. That's the first time I hear about the story, the situation around Ed. Poor Ed.

The world has lovely people, but also some pretty rotten apples :(

I'll continue to live in this bubble, please.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: DrNefario on March 28, 2019, 01:21:15 PM
Yes, I didn't know anything about it until I saw the fallout on Reddit yesterday. Sometimes it's kind of nice not to be very well connected.

I read Blackwing earlier this month, and I'm glad I didn't have my experience coloured by these phony allegations.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: CameronJohnston on March 28, 2019, 03:31:40 PM
Yeah it's absolutely awful, and I can't imagine the over-stressed state of his nerves right now.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Skip on March 28, 2019, 05:13:05 PM
This goes to a point that I've discussed quite a bit with friends and family: to what extent do we separate the art from the artist?

At the one extreme, we wind up insisting to know all about the moral character and personal history of every author, director, actor, painter ... and so on. In fact, why stop with artists? It becomes absurd. It gets to the point where you don't trust anyone outside your own little church, and mistrust most within.

At the other extreme, we wind up permitting books filled with hate, images that deliberately lie, and so on.

I'm not even sure there are only two extremes (I shy away from swinging pendulums and all other implications of a truth that lies between; truth is quicksilver). But this case with Ed McDonald shows how vulnerable we all are to a campaign of lies.

It's not unprecedented. People have used radio and newspapers. They've manipulated mass media. Before that, there was the gossip that could ruined lives as painfully delineated by 19thc authors. Because this is a new form, we haven't got it figured yet. Heck, I'm not sure we've got gossip figured.

But this business of condemning the artist because of something in their personal life, or their personal beliefs, and then using the power of social media to ruin them financially, it really does have me going. I carom all over the place, not between various opinions but more like trying to get my arms around the question. I certainly don't have any answers, though I keep trying them on, like clothes in the fitting room.

Meanwhile, the unlucky few have to deal with the question on a practical level. Mr McDonald can count himself lucky, I suppose, in that the allegations have been driven out from the very places they were planted. One hopes the attacker(s) will be identified, lest they come back from another angle.

I do wish the open letter had provided a few specifics. Even something like "search on Reddit" or some such. I really had to work at it to find out even the bare facts. The letter as it stands reads something along the lines of "there's this guy, and this bad thing happened, and it was done by some other guy or guys, and ain't it awful". It brought to mind ScarletBea's observations about how we all live in a bubble. Evidently I don't live in the same bubble as Mr Mathews.

The times we live in.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Peat on March 28, 2019, 07:26:53 PM
I believe part of the reason that there's been so few details about what's happening is that people do know who is behind it and they don't wish for anything to happen that would prejudice the coming law suit.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Ned Marcus on March 28, 2019, 11:17:26 PM
Does anyone know what motivated the online attacks?
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Skip on March 29, 2019, 12:53:15 AM
I believe part of the reason that there's been so few details about what's happening is that people do know who is behind it and they don't wish for anything to happen that would prejudice the coming law suit.

Yep, I sort of inferred that after doing the research. Still, a sentence would have done the trick. We aren't providing any details because there may be a law suit or other prosecution, but if you want to see more background, look here and here. Something like that. I also recognize that the missive may have been written in a high emotional state, and the finer points of rhetoric wouldn't have seemed all that important. I don't mean to criticize, only to explain my own reaction, wondering if others reacted similarly.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: CameronJohnston on March 29, 2019, 08:20:16 AM
From what I gather, there were many horrid allegations from seemingly different 'people'...seperate accounts that had been set up for a year or more with this specific purpose in mind, all with backstories and web footprints and whatnot to make them seem genuine. A lot of work went into this plan to slander him.

And yeah, people know who did it, but Ed is not mentioning it for various legal reasons I imagine.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Eli_Freysson on March 29, 2019, 08:40:39 AM
From what I gather, there were many horrid allegations from seemingly different 'people'...seperate accounts that had been set up for a year or more with this specific purpose in mind, all with backstories and web footprints and whatnot to make them seem genuine. A lot of work went into this plan to slander him.

That is a bizarre amount of effort to put into vicious slander.

God, what an ugly matter.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Justan Henner on March 29, 2019, 12:50:22 PM
From what I gather, there were many horrid allegations from seemingly different 'people'...seperate accounts that had been set up for a year or more with this specific purpose in mind, all with backstories and web footprints and whatnot to make them seem genuine. A lot of work went into this plan to slander him.

Any one of us could be an impostor! *Dun, dun dun!*


It's not me though. Justan Henner is a real name for sure.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: ScarletBea on March 29, 2019, 12:57:22 PM
^ If you remember, I've talked with you on skype once, so I know you're real and not a bot :P ;D
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: DrNefario on March 29, 2019, 01:07:19 PM
Yeah, you never know. I might not even be a real doctor.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: CameronJohnston on March 29, 2019, 02:14:41 PM
^ If you remember, I've talked with you on skype once, so I know you're real and not a bot :P ;D

Hmm, I'm pretty sure @ScarletBea is a bot...
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: ScarletBea on March 29, 2019, 02:41:31 PM
^ If you remember, I've talked with you on skype once, so I know you're real and not a bot :P ;D

Hmm, I'm pretty sure @ScarletBea is a bot...
The hamburger I ate in your presence denies that. If I was a (ro)bot I would have been sipping a can of oil ;D
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: CameronJohnston on March 29, 2019, 03:27:03 PM
That was a fun day :)  Hmm a very advanced infiltration bot I grant you...or maybe that was me...
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Peat on March 29, 2019, 08:21:51 PM
I believe part of the reason that there's been so few details about what's happening is that people do know who is behind it and they don't wish for anything to happen that would prejudice the coming law suit.

Yep, I sort of inferred that after doing the research. Still, a sentence would have done the trick. We aren't providing any details because there may be a law suit or other prosecution, but if you want to see more background, look here and here. Something like that. I also recognize that the missive may have been written in a high emotional state, and the finer points of rhetoric wouldn't have seemed all that important. I don't mean to criticize, only to explain my own reaction, wondering if others reacted similarly.

Ah yes - and indeed that sentence was in statements by the two book bloggers who initially raised the allegations they'd heard. I'd probably have been as nonplussed as you if that'd been my first introduction to the story.

I also believe they've stated that they don't want to give the individual/s any more publicity and recognition than they've already been given. I believe you could probably work out at least one person with a wee bit of research based on what's been said but, personally, I agree with not wanting to publicise it.

I think I'm gonna buy McDonald's first book as a birthday present to myself. Seemed a nice chap when I met him.

Just like Bea seemed a very nice meat eating robot. Robot I says!
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: xiagan on March 29, 2019, 09:39:56 PM
I didn't get the whole picture but I know that one of the r/fantasy mods was highly involved in the slander which means that the r/fantasy-subreddit with it's 500k subscribers was compromised and subsequently shook at its core. That person has since deleted their account but I can picture what that does to a community.

We're much, much smaller of course, but imagine one of our mods or regulars would provide lots of evidence about the bad behavior of an author, would present victims and would make it all look incredibly plausible. And we later found out that it was all fabricated with malicious intend... 

It was/is a horrible experience for Ed, no question, I'm glad he is (dare I say it?) exonerated. But I think the relatively small and tight-knit fantasy community (not only reddit) is hurt as well and I'm glad that blogs all over the world wide web post letters like the one from Geoff, that we're able to admit and talk about mistakes and, hopefully, learn from them.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: ScarletBea on March 30, 2019, 03:23:06 PM
I think I'm gonna buy McDonald's first book as a birthday present to myself. Seemed a nice chap when I met him.
I just did!
Bought it for myself, I mean.
And when's your birthday, @Peat? You're not on the list!

Quote
Just like Bea seemed a very nice meat eating robot. Robot I says!
8)
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Peat on March 31, 2019, 10:41:27 AM
I think I'm gonna buy McDonald's first book as a birthday present to myself. Seemed a nice chap when I met him.
I just did!
Bought it for myself, I mean.
And when's your birthday, @Peat? You're not on the list!

Quote
Just like Bea seemed a very nice meat eating robot. Robot I says!
8)

In just over 13 hours.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: S. K. Inkslinger on April 01, 2019, 10:04:52 AM
I think I'm gonna buy McDonald's first book as a birthday present to myself. Seemed a nice chap when I met him.

I read that the thought you were getting McDonald's hahah. (I'm hungry lol) ;D

As for the issue at hand, all the best luck to Mr. Mcdonald through this calamity! I've heard a lot about his book as of late, I think I'll have to get my hands on a copy of it soon (once my TBR list dwindled somewhat, haha).
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Rostum on April 04, 2019, 04:55:17 PM
So Ed was publicly vilified by multiple (fictional) sources and various influencers within the SFF became involved as did his publisher. Potentially career ending stuff and I am not just talking about his writing. meanwhile there is speculation within the community as to the nature of the allegations.
Luckily evidence was found to exonerate him or at least cast doubt on the validity of the allegations, and if it hadn’t been?
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: G_R_Matthews on April 10, 2019, 01:16:50 PM
Hey all,

I hope the letter on the main site made sense - you'd have seen it on other blogs too, at least a similar section  of it - each blog took their own style (mine in our case) to write around it.

Sadly, there is necessity of vagueness about some aspects as there are potential law cases and we do not want to interfere or prejudice them. it is natural that people want to know - and if you followed the r/fantasy fall out then you'll know some are quite vociferous in their desire - though they were also subject to an invasion from and InCel group who went after some people - horrible situation.

Every blog was presented with a lot of evidence and a statement. I feel sorry for everyone involved - it has only hurt people.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Eli_Freysson on April 10, 2019, 05:09:56 PM
I've been told again and again that an indie author needs to be heavily involved online. Shit like this is one of the reasons I'm not.
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Skip on April 11, 2019, 04:24:27 AM
I've been told again and again that an indie author needs to be heavily involved online. Shit like this is one of the reasons I'm not.

But isn't this online? This forum here? And Fantasy Faction also has a Facebook group. There are limits, and we all find our own. As the forum philosopher once said, moderators in all things. :)
Title: Re: This open letter on the main site
Post by: Bender on April 12, 2019, 03:24:33 AM
One of the problems with social media is that it's easy to gather a group with virtual pitchforks. Many are easy to be convinced of or take offense themselves without taking time to look for authentic sources or try to get additional proof. Internet is judge, jury and executioner all within span of days if not hours.