The Three-Puppy Problem 4/24

aka, We, in Some Strange Puppy’s Employ, Move on a Rigorous Line

Today’s roundup brings back Eric Flint, George R.R. Martin, Deirdre Saoirse Moen , Damian G. Walter, Alexandra Erin,  and Steve Davidson, introduces Ciaran, J. T. Glover, Jack Heneghan, and Chris Barkley, and launders a few talking socks. (Title credits go to File 770 consulting editors of the day, NelC and Brian Z.)

 

Eric Flint on The official home page of author Eric Flint

“More on the Hugos from a Dark, Dark Place” – April 23

The best estimate that you will usually encounter of how many people in the U.S. regularly read science fiction and fantasy is five million. There are probably three or four times that many who read F&SF occasionally, and there are certainly fifty or sixty million who enjoy science fiction and fantasy in the dramatic form of movies or television.

So. My solid fan base consists of about one percent—that’s right, ONE percent—of the solid mass audience for F&SF. It rises to perhaps two percent—yeah, that’s right, TWO percent—if we measure everyone who’s occasionally read something of mine against the occasional audience for science fiction and fantasy. And it falls back closer to one percent if we measure my name recognition against the entire audience (including movie-goers and TV-watchers) for our genre.

In other words, the difference between Resplendent Popular Author Me and Pitiful Literary Auteur Whazzername is the difference between tiny (one percent) and miniscule (one-tenth of one percent).

Yes, that’s what all the ruckus is about. The Sad Puppies feel that they have been wronged because Their Tininess has been downtrodden by the minions of the miniscule.

Give me a break. No matter who gets selected for awards by the comparatively tiny crowd of a few thousand people who show up at Worldcons and nominate writers for Hugo awards, they will always—and inevitably—diverge from the broad preferences of the mass audience….

Okay, now I’ll make my second point, which is briefer….

I don’t propose to eliminate any of the existing awards for short fiction. I have no objection to them, in and of themselves, and I have no desire to make those writers who concentrate on short fiction feel slighted in our genre. I simply think that the category of “novels” needs to be expanded into at least three and preferably four award categories.

 

George R.R. Martin on Not A Blog

“Fanageddon” – April 24

What’s even more unusual — though perfectly understandable in context — is that this huge upswell is for SUPPORTING memberships, not attending. In other words, these are people who want to vote on the Hugo Awards, but have no actual interest in attending the worldcon.

But who are they? Are these new members Sad Puppy fans, signing up to vote the Torgersen/ Correia slate to victory? Are these the Rabids, the lockstep legions of Vox Day? Or is this fandom, gathering to defend the integrity of the Hugos? Pronouncements abound, but no one really knows, and no one is likely to know until the envelopes are opened. This will be the most dramatic Hugo night in worldcon history. But not in a good way.

Myself, I think it’s All of the Above. Fans on both sides — or all three sides, if you want to draw a line between the Sad Puppies and the Rabids — are laying down their money to cast their vote. I also think the votes may be way closer than some of the people on “my side” think. I am sensing way too much complacency from fandom. The Puppies dominated the nominations by mustering 200-300 votes for their slate, out of 2000; the fans seem to be counting on the “other” 1800, the voters who scattered their own nominating ballots, to outvote the Pups. And yes, 1800 beats 200 every time… but that does NOT account for all these new members.

 

Ciaran on Geek Ireland

“The Hugo Awards and Puppygate” – April 23

The current day controversies over diversity and identity politics largely come in three flavours. There’s the, you should probably let women and black people into your golf club flavour, which is generally only opposed by those for whom Pepperidge Farm Remembers memes evoke actual nostalgia. Then there are the horseshoe progressives or leftists, who tend to become so insular and extreme that they end up effectively supporting gender and racial segregation. Lastly, there are the reactionary conservatives, who believe that all they hold dear is about to crumble around them because Asami and Korra are bisexual. Both of the latter are as shallow as they are pervasive in these debates, particularly, and hilariously so, the reactionary viewpoint.

 

Damien G. Walter

“SF & Fantasy Publishing needs Industry Awards” – April 23

The Eisner’s announced their shortlists today which, low and behold, managed to be interesting, diverse and relevant to the comic book industry they represent. The Eisner’s are in actuallity what the Hugo awards are often assumed to be – an industry award. The main purpose of the Eisner’s is to serve the comic book industry in the ways such awards do, primarily by raising the profile of the industry’s best work and expanding the audience for the medium overall. On a much larger scale, the Oscars have been fulfilling this role for the film industry for decades. So why doesn’t the SF & Fantasy field have a proper industry award?

The main reason is that the Hugos, and alongside them the Nebulas, come very close to being an industry award without quite fulfilling that role. The Hugos could do, and many people seem to be working to get them there, but they won’t achieve that without becoming much more international and overhauling their voting system.

 

J. T. Glover

“The Hugos: Shenanigans & Unpopular Opinions”  – April 24

But politics are a dirty business! So indeed. The best, most thoughtful comments I’ve read along those lines come from Nick Mamatas. I have not (God help me) followed every corner of this debate, but I do think his points about “next steps” are good. Likewise, I strongly agree that the sword cuts both ways. You can’t engage in politics and then squeal when someone out-politics you. And make no mistake: “eligibility posts” are a form of campaigning, and saying anything less is hypocritical sophistry (even if one thinks, as I do, that they help to shed light on underrepresented people who and works that otherwise get lost in the scrum). Charlie Jane Anders argued after the awards were announced that the Hugos have always been political, and now they’re only political, and I very sincerely hope she’s wrong… but put three people in a room and you have politics.

Is this the end of the Hugos? I can’t count the number of people I’ve read dolefully and/or gleefully saying that this is The End for the Hugos, or that it’s The End under X or Y condition. This is nonsense. If you want it, fight for it. The Puppies figured out a way to mobilize, and so can anyone else, particularly given how few people have historically voted in the Hugos: 40-ish percent near the high water mark. Thousands of votes that don’t get cast are sitting there, ripe for the motivating/wheedling/convincing/mobilizing.

 

Steve Davidson on Amazing Stories

“How I’ll Vote the Hugo’s, Part 2” – April 23

The cabal of troublemakers and malcontents are campaigning strenuously against the No Award option, lumping all three variations together under a nuclear option rubric, and claiming that anyone who endorses it are guilty of discrimination, being tools of the SJW cabal, stifling the diversity of the field.  At least one full round of daily discussion has been devoted to the utter chutzpah of this last claim.  It’s truly mind boggling.  Apparently we’re not allowed to push for true diversity in the field until after we honor fake diversity by giving it a bunch of Hugo rockets.  Pointing out that this is pretty much the way things have worked up till now doesn’t really seem to penetrate.

So here’s an argument in favor of voting No Award (whichever methodology you choose) that I’ve not seen presented before:

Just as the slates proved that the Hugo award nomination process had a flaw that made it vulnerable to manipulation (but only when people who don’t care about the system get involved) voting No Award proves that the final found of voting still works, and works well and as intended.

Voting No Award not only sends a message of displeasure and rejection of nomination campaigns, it also sends a message that the awards system itself is healthy and has worked exactly the way it was intended to.

 

 

Chris Barkley on Facebook – April 24

Under the current Constitution of the World Science Fiction Society, you may nominate a work for a Hugo Award if you are a current member OR an attending or supporting member of the previous Worldcon. This amendment was passed to encourage a continuing number of members to vote every year, regardless of their status.

So, this morning I found out that some people who attend the WSFS Business meeting are floating an idea to discontinue this practice and restrict nominations and… voting only to members of a current Worldcon.

Oh, HELL To the NO!

Are you kidding me? Voting on Hugos has gradually gone UP since this amendment was ratified and now, when some idiots come along and upend our applecart, should we cringe in fear change the rules because we’re afraid they’re going to do it again?

NO, this is how the Sad/Rabid Puppies win; we conform to their actions, we react to demands and THEY WIN.

The benefits that the expansion of voting have provided FAR outweigh the risks. We, the relative sane fans who want to uphold and continue the Hugo Awards, are stronger and better than than these Puppygate (insert appropriate expletive here).

 

Jack Heneghan on exempli gratia

“My Disclaimer” – April 24

I should note that while I am interested in what is going on with the Hugos and would like for the Final Ballot to represent the best of SF for the previous year, I do not participate in the nominating process myself. My backlog of reading material is several decades long and I actually use the final ballot, or short list, to provide me some guidance for reading material for the current year. If I am able to get to a number of items on the list then I will participate in the voting in the appropriate categories.

Looking at the Hugo winners and runners-up over the years will give you good guidance to selecting a reading list. (My problem is not getting to them until the voting is well over.) It will also give you an idea of which authors were consistently honored by the community. (I am really surprised to see that Iain M. Banks only had one nomination in his career. Be sure to put Iain M. Banks on your reading list. To be confused with Iain Banks.)

 

Vox Maximus

“SJWs, a Podcast, and a Special Kind of Lie” – April 24

Because I like to amuse myself, I recently listened to the Nerdvana Podcast on the 2015 Hugo Awards (a two-part series with Part 2 being located here). Minute after minute, I listened to these individuals converse about Vox Day. They mused about his motives. They psycho-analyzed him. They called his family members “stooges”. And they just talked, and talked, and talked about Vox in quite a bit of detail (they also cried–seriously–when they thought about what Vox was “doing” to the Hugo Awards). But do you know the one thing that they did not do? TALK TO VOX DAY HIMSELF. That’s right, these individuals used up precious time speculating about everything from Vox Day’s goals to his potential financial fixing of the Hugo Awards themselves. And yet, they did not talk to him. They did not send him an e-mail with questions. They did not try to contact him on his blog. In fact, they did not even quote anything from his blog or his writings (or a bad paraphrase or two was included). Now it is their podcast, so it’s their decision whether to speak to Vox Day or not. But the point is this: How seriously can you take a bunch of people that speak about one particular individual—an individual who is readily available for comment—without even trying to speak to the actual individual himself? How genuine are the calls for “dialogue” and “understanding” when the people calling for dialogue and understanding don’t actually dialogue with the person that they are talking about and don’t seek to understand that person either. In fact, in my view, talking about Vox Day in such detail without allowing him to speak for himself is just a special kind of lie; a sort of lie of omission, for they omitted to include the very person that they were speaking of even though he would most likely have readily appeared upon request. And this just adds weight to what Vox Day says:  One way or another, SJWs always lie.

 

Alexandra Erin on Blue Author Is About To Write

So, Let’s Talk About The Hugos: A Puppy Primer – April 24

So, Why Do I Care?

Simply put, when I see people making claims based on the most tenuous of intuitions and calling it hard evidence, that bothers me. When I see people trying to police what other people are allowed to write, read, and like while pretending that this is being done to them, that bothers me. I am disturbed at the idea that someone can take such exception to the fact that other people like other things for other reasons that they would reject that in favor of a conspiracy theory and then take drastic action to overturn the supposed cabal.

Basically, I don’t want to read and write in a world when a man who equates the existence of books he doesn’t approve of to false advertising is able to set himself up as some sort of tastemaker-in-chief because he throws a big enough tantrum whenever a book or author he disdains gets too popular for him to make sense of.

The original Sad Puppies initiative predates Gamergate by a couple years, but they’re both powered by the same sense of aggrieved entitlement cloaking itself in phony virtue. Some people, rather than acknowledging that an entire medium/genre will not always reflect their own personal tastes, decide that the relative success of anything they don’t like is a kind of cheat, and by golly, they’re going to do something about it!

So the stakes here are, we either label this nonsense as what it is and find a way to work around the tantrum-throwers, or we just sort of give up and give in.

 

 

Deirdre Saoirse Moen on Sounds Like Weird

“Hugo Awards: Blocs, Slates, Lists and Milliscalzis” – April 24

One of the questions when faced with bloc nominating in the Hugo Awards is this: when is something bloc voting/nominating? When isn’t it?

….So, given that Aidan [Moher] and I hang around in the same milliScalzi hood, I feel I can say about how much influence he had this year. Let’s put it this way: it only took 23 nominations to get on the fan artist ballot, and his nomination didn’t make it onto the list.

More Compelling Reasons I Don’t Consider Aidan’s List a Slate

  1. Aidan didn’t highlight his own work. Do I need to explain how the puppy slates differed in that regard?
  2. Aidan posted it on March 9th (though he’d posted novel thoughts earlier), and nominations closed less than a week later. The Sad Puppies 3 slate was posted at the beginning of February. While I could also see a case being made for people just nominating without reading, I believe the extra lead time is a significant factor.
  3. A slate with little to no effective conversions (in the marketing sense, by which I mean people taking action) is not a slate. Given that the fan artist influence didn’t push his candidate up and over, I think the “slate” argument is truly a non-starter.

 

Marsultor13 on Mars Is

“In which this ignorant ass redneck attempts to fisk one of them genius professorial types” – April 24

One such indyvidual goes by the name of Philip Sandifer. And not only is Mr Sandifer powerful annoyed at us yokels not staying down on the farm, (or trailer park as the case may be) he also happens to be a jen-U-wine professor of that there litrature. Now I did try and read Professor Sandifer’s overly long post about why I aint the write type of fan to be voting in them thar Hugo’s rewards, but wouldn’t you just know it? Afore I could even get halfway through that there know-vella I started to notice that a lot of what he was saying just dint make no damned cents.  And given that I reckon I could always use more traffic at this here blog, I decidered to take a page outta Mr. Correia’s book and do me a good old fashioned fisking. As Mr Correia always says, My words will be in bold, his’ins’ll be in eye-talics.

 

Joshua Dyal in a comment on Vox Popoli – April 24

It would be an event of deliciously hilariously irony if all of the nominations for Best Short Story 2016 were parodies of “If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love.”

 

108 thoughts on “The Three-Puppy Problem 4/24

  1. rcade- If you are referring to me as a Day sock puppet, you are mistaken. At best I feel some small bit of goodwill for Day and Torgersen for getting Butcher on the ballot.

    I’m posting for many reasons. The 3 most dominant are:

    Positive- I like Butcher’s work. I would appreciate it if he’d win. Alternatively, avoid placing below No Award.

    Negative- I’ve never met THN or Scalzi. But having read their posts, I don’t care for them. That small group is likely responsible to the SJW theory coming about. I would enjoy seeing their heads (metaphorically) exploding.

    3. Curiousity- I’m curious how this will play out this year and next. So far, I think Day and his group are ahead and I don’t see signs of that changing anytime soon. I’d like to find out if my analysis is correct.

  2. “And if he’s ever up for the Hugo as best blogger, ding away.”

    Well, he is up for editor. And all I can say is if the works he edited are like that *after* he edited them, I hate to imagine what they were like *before* — if he added enough quality to them to make him a Hugo-nominee quality editor. 🙂

  3. I want to posit, just for a sec, that an _enormous_ amount of what is written by the left we view as “boring and stupid”. And you know what? We still read it. Why? Because we believe in actually understanding the other side.

    I have to admit I didn’t like Vox’s formulation of “rabbits” but the more I read on here the more I believe him.

  4. Mr Not-Chesterton, that seems an exercise in masochism as well as futility. Since the task is apparently thankless, and it doesn’t yield a good understanding of the other side, I suggest you spare yourself the aggravation. It just makes for grumpiness and ill will.

  5. You know, “how are puppies not about politics”, you will notice others here use pseudonyms but from the host all the way on down you attack only certain people. Why is that?

    And, if you will remember, our goal was to select good stories no matter the background. Which we did. Then you’all (and yes you can protest it wasn’t your side doing it all they want when the nominees talk about the stress of the politics it sure wasn’t us attacking our own nominees) you tore down the nominees them based on being associated with…Vox. Which they weren’t. So yes, politics.

    Then you threaten to burn down the award by no voting (which you did to our entire contingent last time too…and the time before…). So, as I’ve mentioned before we aren’t allowed to like our stories. But whatever, you’ve proven the Hugos are a lie.

  6. “I suggest you spare yourself the aggravation. It just makes for grumpiness and ill will.”

    No it really doesn’t. There are some on the left that I enjoy greatly if I don’t agree with their premises. I practically grew up with Robin Williams, didn’t agree with him, and still enjoyed him.

    But, again, we are used to you “sparing” yourself. You don’t even try.

  7. GK Chesterton — “Because we believe in actually understanding the other side.”

    Oh, dear gods, I think I damaged my nose snorting at that!

  8. GK Chesterton — Many of us use les noms de nette, but few are pretentious enough to swipe the names of famous writers and philosophers. If only because we don’t wish to invite comparisons with the original and be found wanting.

  9. @anembarassmenttotheauthorwhosenamehe’susing:

    “And, if you will remember, our goal was to select good stories no matter the background.”

    Then the rabid puppies, at least, did a terrible job at their goal.

    “when the nominees talk about the stress of the politics it sure wasn’t us attacking our own nominees”

    And we get back to the whole “If you don’t let us do what we want, all consequences are *your* fault.” It’s OK if we slate-nominate, but if anyone objects to that, the stress coming from it comes not from the slate, but from the objections to it!

    (And I will point out that people object to slate nominations, not just to right-wing slate nominations)

    “you tore down the nominees them based on being associated with…Vox. Which they weren’t. So yes, politics.”

    Given that the nominees who have withdrawn have said they weren’t pressured to do so, your assumptions are showing. And, funny that, they’re political ones.

    “Then you threaten to burn down the award by no voting” — No. People said they’d “No Award” ahead of a slate. Other people said they’d “No Award” above anything they felt didn’t deserve on the ballot. And the people who gamed the ballot, playing within the letter, but not the spirit, of the rules, began claiming that other people playing within the letter of the rules were “burning down” the award.

    That, sir, is the cast-iron pot calling the herd of cats, be they Siamese, calico, albino, black, tabby, or what-have-you, black.

    “So, as I’ve mentioned before we aren’t allowed to like our stories”

    I didn’t realize that you weren’t allowed to like things that didn’t win Hugos. What a narrow reading list you must have.

    And if you can’t see the difference between “liking your stories” and “co-ordinating a campaign to get them an award, and then whining when some people co-ordinate because they don’t think they deserve an award, or dislike your methods”, you are even further gone than I thought.

    ” But whatever, you’ve proven the Hugos are a lie.”

    As I believe it was NelC above pointed out, what is it about the various Puppy-apologists/relateds who put “honesty” as a virtue above all else? Because there is nothing inherently more “honest” about getting all your friends together to vote for an award than making a judgment about whether or not the nominated work is award-worthy.

    And, in other responses: “But, again, we are used to you “sparing” yourself. You don’t even try.”

    I believe the point being made was that, given the level of understanding of the “other” side — hint, there are many more than two sides in this discussion — you display (which is, to say, a paltry one), your efforts were clearly futile, and should be abandoned.

    I, for one, have spent quite a bit of time reading, arguing with, etc., VD, JCW, TK, et. al. — and feel I have a good understanding of them. If nothing else — even if you disagree with that point — you cannot in good faith deny I haven’t *tried*.

  10. Incidentally, that notion of Vietnam veterans being spat on?

    As per Will Shetterly, here —

    it didn’t happen.

    {Puppy’s Guide to the Galaxy! Puppy at the End of the Universe! SO LONG, AND THANKS FOR ALL THE PUPPIES!}

  11. “So, as I’ve mentioned before we aren’t allowed to like our stories. But whatever, you’ve proven the Hugos are a lie.”

    How are you not allowed to like a story in any way shape or form? I like books by several people whose political views I disagree with regardless (and dislike many by thought whose views I do align with), such as the Monster Hunter International books by Correia. They’re fun! I liked them even though I think the guy has a persecution complex a mile long. Whether they’ve ever been the best books of any year they’ve been published isn’t something I’d agree with though. The only person who is telling you that you can’t enjoy a book is, well you.

    If the Hugos are a lie then they don’t have any value and then no Puppies of any sort should have a problem with No Award winning. If they’re a lie then man, all the Rabid and Sad slates were sort of pointless as they’re trying to get specific authors an award that’s a lie. Sort of seems self defeating for any Puppy to claim the Hugos are a lie and yet so desperate to make sure they’re given to only certain people.

  12. “Given that the nominees who have withdrawn have said they weren’t pressured to do so, your assumptions are showing”

    Given the nominees also said that it was the public stress, no. They can walk it back all they want to give you cover.

    Look, we have your side on record saying they wouldn’t read. We have you on record posting fake amazon reviews. We have you on record consipring in the press (Scalzi’s congrats on the non-interview was…pathetic). So no, we played by the rules and got our stuff nominated. Y’all threw a hissy fit. Well ok then. We’re still going to vote.

  13. GK: Believe me, I read plenty of VD before I reached my conclusion that he was boring and stupid.

    I don’t reach conclusions without evidence. In VD’s case, he’s given us enough. I suggest it’s time we close the case.

  14. GK Chesterton — FFS! What is this with all the paranoid association of everyone who disagrees with you being lumped into one vast group conspiring against your “side”? There is no conspiracy, never has been. What there has been is a bunch of people with widely differing views on what’s good in SFF and politics talking openly about Correia’s campaign to game himself a Hugo instead of, you know, writing himself one, and how VD hijacked that scheme for his own purposes, and what to do about it all.

    Openly! It’s not a conspiracy if it’s all out in the open, and especially not if no-one agrees what to do. Maybe you handle the conspiracies you’re involved in differently, but generally to qualify as one they need to be secret and have a plan.

  15. Mr. I’m not a Chesterton but I play one on the Interwebs:

    Picking good stories no matter the source as long as they don’t have any of the ideologies that have been winning too many Hugos lately is in fact an ideological filter.

    Also, being put on a slate and then having a lot of people you like and respect saying that slate voting for the Hugos is bad would of course be stressful If you are a decent person. That’s not the same thing as being personally pressured.

  16. Again. Fake reviews. Fake journalism. And of course you are lambasting your side? I note that Mike didn’t even post the twitter calls for fake reviews here. So yes. Your side.

  17. It’s interesting that GK is willing to believe people up until they do something he doesn’t like.

  18. GK Chesterton — Links, please? The briefing packet from the conspiracy ring-leaders hasn’t got to my inbox yet.

  19. “Look, we have your side on record saying they wouldn’t read. We have you on record posting fake amazon reviews. We have you on record consipring in the press (Scalzi’s congrats on the non-interview was…pathetic). So no, we played by the rules and got our stuff nominated. Y’all threw a hissy fit. Well ok then. We’re still going to vote.”

    I notice you carefully ignored my comment about there being more than one side. Welcome to why it’s important.

    I don’t approve of people posting fake amazon reviews. Of course, by the same “If someone closer to you does it, you’re responsible” I presume you also approve of harassing people out of their houses and speaking engagements, as people who claimed affiliation with #gamergate, which is now supported by people on “your side” did?

    “We have you on record consipring in the press”

    As opposed to flat-out asking people to bloc-vote, as VD did? I fail to see why “conspiring in the press” (since you don’t even specify what that is) is any worse, if it is.

    ” We’re still going to vote.”

    I’m not denying you the vote. However, it’s “your side” that has claimed that if they don’t win, they’ll try and destroy next year’s Hugos in whatever category they don’t win this year. That it’s “Let us win or we’ll break your award”.

    So, if you really want to draw up two sides, and make it an Us vs. Them, and I look around and see GRRM, Scalzi, Stross, the ghost of Iain Banks ;), David Gerrold, et. al. on my side, and Larry Correia, Brad Torgerson, VD, JCW, and TK on your side, I not only know I’m on the right side, I know I’m on the side with the better writers and the better human beings.

    Of course, I’m not the one who’s trying to make it “Us vs. Them”.

  20. Hey, it’s Mr. Beale! I do agree that it was a bit peculiar of Garcia, Starkey, and Standlee to not get any comment from you on, well, you, but I have serious doubts that they have any moral obligation to consult someone who’s literally and seriously spoken of destroying the award.s

    And I speak as someone whom you just gossiped about behind his back. Hypocrite much? But I don’t mind you having done that; I just note the double-standard. If you think you’ve been slandered by the three podcast guests, you know where the courts are; that would be amusing and enlightening. But I suspect you prefer wounded victimhood on Web sites.

    How’s your grasp of Norwegian Storting political parties coming? Worked your way past praising Breivik as a national hero and comparing the children he murdered to Vidkun Quisling?

    For the record, I have always found you to be cordial on your Web comment forums when I’ve posted there, and was impressed at your very fair and respectful treatment there of my wife Deirdre Saoirse Moen when she broke the MZB child-abuse story. So, genuine points to you on that.

    Rick Moen
    rick@linuxmafia.com

  21. @ Fred Davis

    I think a lot can be learned by not just dismissing people as trolls.

    I was not assuming that anyone wished to engage Vox. I did so for a specific reason relating to the MZB matter, where I felt that there was a larger issue at stake. One where we happened to agree (and disagree).

    There are things I agree with him about. As an example, I have seen people exaggerate, misquote, or seemingly make stuff up about what he’s said when the words are right there to read. I…don’t get that. It’s one thing if one genuinely misunderstands, but that’s not what seems to happen. I know how much it peeves me to have people call me out for positions I don’t hold, so I can’t fault him for feeling the same way.

    Doesn’t mean one has to (or should) engage, of course. I was merely offering my insight as preparation should one wish to do so.

  22. Fred Davis: Sometimes Mr. Beale has quite worthwhile things to say, and it is fair to note that. Therefore, to quote the great philosopher Barbara, I am disinclined to acquiesce to your request.

    I find it worthwhile to converse with a very broad variety of people. You might want to try it some time.

    Moreover, Deirdre’s post to which you replied correctly described Mr. Beale’s ground rules for his comment forums, which he seems to scrupulously observe and strike me as worth knowing. I would imagine that your response ought to have been ‘Thank you’ rather than shunning-advocacy on the theme of ‘Don’t feed the trolls’.

    You’re of course entitled to my opinion. Whoops, yours, I mean. (But mine’s better.)

    Rick Moen
    rick@linuxmafia.com

  23. Rick Moen: Every time you find a new rock to throw at Vox Day (please consider me as not asking for an explanation of Norwegian Storting) you succeed in making these comment threads more indistinguishable from a typical thread at Vox Popoli. Do you find this a desirable result?

  24. ” I do agree that it was a bit peculiar of Garcia, Starkey, and Standlee to not get any comment from you on, well, you, but I have serious doubts that they have any moral obligation to consult someone who’s literally and seriously spoken of destroying the award.s”

    I agree. I’d go even further. They have no moral obligation to talk to me at all. But it is strange that people are so fascinated with me, my beliefs, and my activities that they will write novella-sized posts attempting to psychologically analyze me and trying to guess what I think and want when they could simply ask.

    “And I speak as someone whom you just gossiped about behind his back. Hypocrite much? But I don’t mind you having done that; I just note the double-standard. If you think you’ve been slandered by the three podcast guests, you know where the courts are; that would be amusing and enlightening. But I suspect you prefer wounded victimhood on Web sites.”

    I’m sorry if I gossiped about you, but I honestly have no idea what you’re talking about. And I don’t think I’ve been slandered by the three podcast guests, I haven’t listened to the podcast, I don’t know what they said, and anyways, I don’t care what they said.

    “How’s your grasp of Norwegian Storting political parties coming? Worked your way past praising Breivik as a national hero and comparing the children he murdered to Vidkun Quisling?”

    I think the wars that are in the process of coming to both Europe and America are going to be far more horrific than anyone can presently fathom, including myself. I’ve expected things like Breivik and Charlie Hebdo for years. And when you’re forced to choose, I expect you’ll choose Breivik’s side yourself. History may not repeat, but it rhymes.

    “For the record, I have always found you to be cordial on your Web comment forums when I’ve posted there, and was impressed at your very fair and respectful treatment there of my wife Deirdre Saoirse Moen when she broke the MZB child-abuse story. So, genuine points to you on that.”

    Thank you. I thought your wife did an excellent and sensitive job handling a very difficult subject that many in the field would still like to sweep under the table.

    “I…don’t get that. It’s one thing if one genuinely misunderstands, but that’s not what seems to happen. I know how much it peeves me to have people call me out for positions I don’t hold, so I can’t fault him for feeling the same way.”

    It’s about narrative control and disqualification, two routine rabbit tactics. It doesn’t upset me at all, I expect it as a matter of routine. I’ve been dealing with it since my op/ed column began in 2001. I’d be astonished if it didn’t happen now.

    The one thing I do find frustrating is the near-total inability of some on the other side to learn anything from the past. The entire Dread Ilk knew without being told that I was going to respond to being falsely accused of gaming the 2014 awards in some dramatic manner. They all know I’m going to vivisect David Pakman for his ambush video and lying about what I wrote and didn’t write. They all know I don’t care what the other side calls me.

    Why does “your” side keep doing the exact same stupid things over and over and over again? It’s not a problem, it’s just very hard to believe. For the most part, I don’t attack people who don’t attack me or mine. I have no reason to do so. And people really don’t like being attacked by me… and yet they do it anyhow.

    Leave me alone, I’ll leave you alone. It’s pretty straightforward.

  25. Just a general comment that I’ve made before and I may need to keep making (and I appreciate Theo’s quotation marks on ‘side’): People hassling nominees aren’t my side. People leaving bogus one-star reviews on Amazon for ideological reasons aren’t my side. People besieging the ‘suits’ at game-publishing firms to force alteration of games to require satisfying a character-trait checklist, or to cancel games they don’t like, aren’t my side. People trying to get an online commentator fired from his/her jobs on account of not liking that person’s views aren’t my side.

    All of these sorts of chickenbleep behaviour, where it exists or even where it is only claimed and unconfirmable, aren’t my ‘side’ in any way and do not speak for me. I condemn them when I encounter them, which is seldom. (This is why I recently went to the effort of debunking the ‘throwing acid’ claim often advanced against Mr. Beale, for example.)

    Internet low-life behaviour (usually from behind fake names raising the obvious question of who’s trying to give whom a black-eye) is a background fact of the modern age, and claiming it’s a characteristic part of any named collective effort — any effort, including any of Mr. Beale’s, and most definitely including the Hugo Award — without a great deal more than just drive-by guilt by association, is obvious bullshit, and I condemn that too.

    My ‘side’ is claimed to be doing stupid things over and over, but my side isn’t. My side is just trying to run Worldcons.

  26. VD — “But it is strange that people are so fascinated with me”

    Why would you find it strange? You work so hard to be noticed, not to mention hated. You proclaim that you’re going to destroy the Hugos, that you’re going to wreak awful revenges for ten-year-old slights, announce that every possible counter-move has been calculated in your master plan, then express surprise that anyone would be interested.

  27. And when you’re forced to choose, I expect you’ll choose Breivik’s side yourself. History may not repeat, but it rhymes.

    No.
    I have friends and people I’ve met for fleeting moments from all over the world. I will choose their side.

  28. “All of these sorts of chickenbleep behaviour, where it exists or even where it is only claimed and unconfirmable, aren’t my ‘side’ in any way and do not speak for me. I condemn them when I encounter them, which is seldom. (This is why I recently went to the effort of debunking the ‘throwing acid’ claim often advanced against Mr. Beale, for example.)”

    I appreciate that sort of integrity. And it sounds like you’re not “the other side” as far as we are concerned. We distinguish between the left (opponents, not enemies), the neutrals (neither friends nor enemies), the moderates (allies), and the SJWs (enemies).

    We don’t care about anyone except the moderates and the SJWs. We try to respect the wishes of the moderates as long as they don’t get between us and the SJWs. We go after the SJWs anywhere and everywhere and always. And we don’t have anything against the left or the neutrals, they just happen to sometimes get in the way or be mistaken for SJWs.

    I don’t think many people understand how pissed off a lot of people are. We’re talking decades-worth of anger that’s been building up since the first idiotic diversity lecture we were subjected to in college. I suspect #GamerGate is only the spark and the cultural reaction going to hit every cultural institution in the next 3-5 years.

    “You work so hard to be noticed, not to mention hated. You proclaim that you’re going to destroy the Hugos, that you’re going to wreak awful revenges for ten-year-old slights, announce that every possible counter-move has been calculated in your master plan, then express surprise that anyone would be interested.”

    I don’t work hard to be noticed at all. I turned down a media whore career. I shut down my syndicated column because I was tired of it. I regularly turn down media requests.

    I’m not surprised people would be interested. I’m surprised they’re interested enough to spend so much time hypothesizing when they can simply ask. The problem is that the actual information tends to fly in the face of the narrative.

    This isn’t my life, it’s just a part of it.

  29. I was not assuming that anyone wished to engage Vox. I did so for a specific reason relating to the MZB matter, where I felt that there was a larger issue at stake.

    *eyeroll* Of course Fandom had to involve neo-nazis in the Breendoggle, it was the only thing missing from that clusterfuck!

  30. VD:If you don’t work hard to be noticed you are doing it wrong. And the people slightly to the left of the wacky anti-sufrragettes are not actually considered moderates by most people in the US. Even less so, world-wide.

    Just saying.

  31. I’d be interested to read a reasonably objective article tracing the origins of the SFF culture wars.

    Who fired the first shots? RaceFail 2009?

    When did academic-style identity politics jargon become standard in SFF fandom/ the blogosphere? You know, “safe spaces”, “trigger warnings”, “micro-agressions”, “tone policing”, etc.

    There are SFF sites that cover the field (io9, tor.com, etc.), but it all seems to be commentary, and not actual reporting.

  32. VD — “This isn’t my life, it’s just a part of it.”

    Don’t be so modest. Just because it’s a hobby, doesn’t mean you have to pretend you don’t put any work into it.

  33. “Good stories” – ye gods… you wonder why the stuff you ‘like’ wasn’t getting voted for? I’ve news for you, you don’t have to be politically inclined nor an SJW to have a modicum of taste.

    Butcher? Read 2 or 3, never felt the urge to read another – then again, that kind of fantasy crap doesn’t float my boat as an SF fan. Wright? Did you read the quasi religious nonsense in the Hugo noms, I didn, crap. Or rather, tedious anyway. Best I can say, not as bad as the Vox Day story last year. Brad T? If you like badly rewriting a Harrison classic and sticking the ending, well good for you. MilSF? Leckie’s better than Kloos. Neither hold a candle to Banks, IMO.

    Good stuff from the left doesn’t win Hugo’s either, how Iain Banks wasn’t selected last year for The Hydrogen Sonata is beyond me. But stop whining that you’re being opressed and grow the hell up, please. Get out of your tiny little genre puddles and read some more fucking stuff will you?

    Sheesh.

  34. @VD: “I don’t think many people understand how pissed off a lot of people are.”

    I suspect you’re right about that, so far as the statement goes. I also believe you’ve misinterpreted the direction of that particular vector.

  35. Daveon: The Dresden Files series was a bit pedestrian (but IMO engaging) through book #3. I’ve cross-checked with a number of people I respect, and the consensus seems to be that the series started being exceptional with volume 4, Summer Knight.

    Which is unfortunate for people considering the series, but certainly a familiar problem for, say, Pratchett fans. In all honesty, The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic are pretty ho-hum, and (pardon the phrase) the magic didn’t begin until some volumes later.

  36. @Clack, I feel you can do no better than Will Shetterly’s free-of-charge 2014 ePub, How to Make a Social Justice Warrior. Although Will is a Marxist, and is first to admit that he sees class implications in things, he does not push that in this recounting of a series of online ruckuses at from my perspective I would call ‘at the online fringe of SF fandom’, hence eminently ignorable for the most part and having little or nothing to do with Worldcons and Hugo Awards. He talks about the origin of identarians (a more accurate term for this ‘SJW’ concept) and the concept of ‘intersectionality’ in academics Derrick Bell and Kimberlé Crenshaw, which lead to ‘privilege theory’, to the confusing omnishambles called ‘Racefail ’09’, and to various other noisy donnybrooks that the rest of SF fandom felt happy to have nothing to do with. I’m pretty sure the ePub will be worth your time, but at minimum have a look at the article he wrote to accompany its release.

    Disclosure: My wife Deirdre (who is among other things a professionally published SF author) got considered a double-plus bad person by some of the identarians in question for refusing to cut off relations with SF author/editor Will Sanders (discussed in the book) and with Will Shetterly himself. (To my knowledge, I’m not yet on anyone’s hate list, but give it time. ;-> E.g., tell ’em about my pinko-liberal self and my wife going shooting with my BiPuppy nominee friend Eric S. Raymond. That ought to do it)

  37. @Rick Moen — thanks, that’s an interesting perspective : that the indentarians are but marginal figures in the SFF scene with no chance of making their ideology the mainstream one, and that the Sad Puppies are fighting against an enemy that looms larger in their own minds than in reality.

  38. Clack- Us that a reasonable supposition? Last I heard it didn’t take a huge number of votes to win a Hugo. So if identatarians or any any other group want a work nominated and, maybe, to win, it is not an insurmountable task. Especially if no one is paying attention or if it is in one of the less frequently voted on categories.

  39. Steve Moss — it doesn’t require a huge number of lock-stepping slatists to capture the nominations, because there are so many options available. Capturing the winner from five nominations requires a greater group; at least 20% of the voters. Also, there tend to be fewer nominating voters than second-round voters in the Hugo ballot, so sweeping victory in the first round doesn’t easily translate to victory in the second.

  40. Rick: as large a Pratchett fan as I am, and I’ve signed first editions of everything up to about Jingo. I never voted for him for a Hugo as, for the most part, I don’t think series like that really should count.

    But I’m a big ‘space ships and ray guns’ space opera type and watching Brad T go on about that as if that’s ‘owned’ by the puppies when most of what they’ve pushed is fantasy, urban or otherwise, is pretty galling.

    I’d be more impressed if they had a wider net which included some of the great SF writers working in ‘big’ SF at the moment. But they apparently only count loud mouthed oafs with blogs as being ‘real’ writers.

  41. NelC- Yeah, I got that.

    I’d be very interested to find out where all of these supporting memberships game from. I read a lot of sites (recently) and it appears both pro- and anti- Puppy readers are signing up. Also I see some Butcher posters have also signed up. Based on my personal observations and a assuming they’re truthful, the split is pretty even.

    Another question is GG. Have they made an appearance or not? Other than Vox Day’s site I have no way to estimate.

    Assuming most of the attendees go anti-puppy, it will be interesting to see it play out. I will be watching from the web.

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