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Quick question here... why would Photoshop reset to default settings on it’s own? I’ve got CS6 and just completely out of the blue when I loaded it up today, everything reverted back to the default settings. All my brushes are gone. I have no recent history listed. My scratch box settings back to default. And yet... my customized pallet swatches and patterns are all still here.

And here’s the puzzling thing to me... I haven’t touched CS6 to make it do this. I haven’t deleted any files or anything on my computer to prompt it to do that. I didn’t accidentally click on a setting to restore the defaults. I haven’t rebooted my computer. I rarely, if ever, turn my computer off. There have been no recent automatic software updates according to my log. Literally I used it yesterday just fine. Closed the program. Went to bed. Woke up. Opened the program and BAM... old settings.

This isn’t the first time it’s happened either. This seems to happen once every few years for seemingly the same random reasons. I cannot pin down a correlation cause and effect explanation for why it does this.

So I am just asking here... do any of you have any explanation for why Photoshop CS6 would reset itself like that? Please keep in mind I have a MAC, not a PC, and that I haven’t deleted anything since I closed the program yesterday and re-opened it today.

I ask because this is incredibly frustrating for me. I had everything set to the perfect settings for how I work, and now I gotta go through and reset everything again. It takes time away from when I should be working because invariably I’ll miss a setting and not realize it until it’s too late and will ultimately have to redo my work till I get it right. And I want to prevent that from happening again.
  • Mood: Frustrated
  • Listening to: Daft Punk - Harder Better Faster Stronger
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Marvel Puzzle Quest
  • Eating: Hamburgers
  • Drinking: Water
I am always amazed at what ends up being “controversial” in my artwork. While with some works I KNOW it’s going to be controversial (such as any time I bring up politics or religion), there are often a lot of times where I just make a gag strip and think nothing of it... only to come back the next day and see people writing up ESSAYS on why it’s the worse thing ever.

Granted, I have the undesirable position of having a lot of people following me who insist on inserting drama where no drama really exists. So part of that is just the fact that I’m semi-famous on the internet. And still... It just baffles me how quickly people feel the need to see the worse in everything.

Right now, the past couple of NSYAC strips featuring Emily and Jade have gotten some... interesting responses. There seems to be this strange perception that Emily MUST conform to some arbitrary standard of a righteous educational achiever simply for the fact that she’s going to college. Any indication that she’s a person with her own wants and desires that don’t run 100% concurrent with the classes she takes is seen as a SIN, and not potential character development.

And while I kinda get the idea that we should always put our best face forward and she’s not a real person and can be whatever I make her to be... it just seems so god-damn BORING to make her go along with whatever the college throws her way 100% with no reservations or qualms.

And Emily isn’t the first time I’ve had this problem. On my Alex Ze Pirate series I got in a lot of trouble over the way I portrayed Atea. Because Atea is not only black but also gay, a lot of people were offended (rightly so) with how I portrayed her as being overly zealous in trying to get with her unrequited love (Alex). It sadly fed into a negative and outdated stereotype that gay people will try to force themselves even on straight people.

And while THAT part of my portrayal of Atea was badly handled (and something I am making an effort to clean up and fix in my newer works), I never fully subscribed to the belief that Atea was meant to represent the ENTIRETY of gay culture. Yet a lot of people seemed to think that’s what her purpose was and chastised me for not making her a better role model to the LGBT community. “How dare a gay character NOT be perfect and respectable at all times!”

That part always confused me. I admit that the way I portrayed her wasn’t the best... but she was NEVER meant to be a physical embodiment of LGBT progressiveness and culture. She’s not a symbol. She’s a character. A troubled character, clearly, but a character nonetheless.

I guess what I’m getting at is that it bothers me when people confuse a character for an ideal. It seems like a lot of people want characters to be symbols for something. Atea to be a perfect embodiment of LGBT’s. Emily to be the perfect embodiment of a A+ college student. And the very HINT that they may NOT completely follow those ideals to a T... seems to piss people off into frenzies rages.

In the case of Atea, I see the problem and I am trying to fix it. There are over 300 pages to the Alex Ze Pirate series, so yeah I can see how her personality wasn’t the best and at worse a little troubling. But NSYAC? There are literally only 21 strips. Only 3 of which actually feature her in class! My point is it’s gonna take a while before you see any sort of character growth. People do not just get a talking to and change into perfection overnight. It takes time.
  • Mood: Irritated
  • Listening to: Daft Punk - Harder Better Faster Stronger
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Pikmin 3
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
Xbox Sales Double, But for the Wrong Reasons
It’s been reported that XboxOne sales have doubled since June 9th. You know what also happened June 9th? Kinect no longer being mandatory. I don’t often like to draw the “cause and effect” parallels, but this is too much of a coincidence to ignore. Also hilarious too, considering how adamant Microsoft was in keeping Kinect despite consumers telling them they don’t care anymore.

Sorry Microsoft and Xbox fans, but I can’t help but laugh at this piece of news.

The Falcon is the new Captain America
While Thor becoming a woman was loudly proclaimed, this news titbit seems to have slipped under the radar. The Falcon, Sam Wilson, will be taking over the role of Captain America after Steve Rogers loses his super strength. So, yup! New Black Captain America.

Like I mentioned before, while I don’t have a problem with shake ups like this, I do worry about their longevity. Sam Wilson will be Captain America, but someday down the road Steve is gonna get his super strength back and will return as Captain America again. Same with the female Thor. She’ll take over while Thor is deemed “unworthy,” up until the point where he’s deemed “worthy” again and resumes the role. At least with Sam Wilson he can go back to being Falcon, I suppose...

Also... what’s with all the shake ups lately, Marvel? Usually this level of mainstream character swapping happens during an “event” or a “crisis.” Thus far I haven’t seen any correlation between any of the storylines. No build up, no tension. Marvel is supposedly using these shake-ups as a jumping on point for new readers... but is that really a wise move? Get new readers to like B character then supplant them with the original A character?

It also makes me curious about what they’re gonna do next in terms of shake-ups...
  • Mood: Zest
  • Listening to: Daft Punk - Harder Better Faster Stronger
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Pikmin 3
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
Fantastic 4 Reboot Film Has No Relation to the Comics
Remember how pissed off everyone got when they found out the studios cast a black actor as the Human Torch and a white actress for his sister Sue Storm? Well there apparently was good reason for them not clarifying why this brother and sister duo are bi-racial. That’s because nothing in the movie has anything to do with the comics. Period.

Apparently the director has thrown everything about the comics out the window. There likely won’t be any fancy costumes, the characters won’t be called “The Fantastic 4” in the movie itself, and no part of the plot is going to be related to ANY prior comic storyline. The actress for Sue Storm asked if she should read any of the comics to get caught up and the director told her “don’t bother.”

So, yup.... this is gonna be shit. At least we have an explanation now for the strange casting choices though.

Source: www.escapistmagazine.com/news/…

Thor is a Woman
Another rather shocking unveiling this week was the announcement from Marvel that Thor is going to be a woman now. Announced on The View yesterday, a new female character is going to enter the series, be deemed worthy to wear the Thor armor and wield the hammer, and take over Thor’s role after he’s unceremoniously cast out as being unworthy.

“This is not She-Thor. This is not Lady Thor. This is not Thorita. This is THOR." - Ryan Penagos Executive Editorial Director of Marvel

So technically Thor ISN’T becoming a woman, but a woman is coming in to take over his role and will be called Thor in his books as the main character.

I gotta say... I’m confused about this decision. On the one hand, I am thrilled they’re giving female characters more meaty roles and allowing them to be front and center like this... but on the other hand it’s just... ODD to cast out the main character of his own book to be supplanted by a female doppelgänger. I mean, her NAME is not Thor. Thor’s name is Thor. Thor is not his job title, that’s actually his NAME. So yeah, it feels weird to have a female character who isn’t Thor coming into his own book, taking his place, and calling herself Thor instead. That would be like if a woman took over Iron Man’s armor and called herself Tony Stark.

And of course part of me knows that this isn’t a permanent thing. She isn’t going to be Thor forever. Eventually the real Thor is going to get his powers back, and return to his place as the main character of his own series again. So... why go to all this trouble? If they wanted a female Thor, why not have her own series that’s separate? The whole thing feels like a shameless gimmick, and that rubs me the wrong way.

And then there’s the possibility that this is all an awkward attempt to give Todd McFarlane the middle finger. See, way back in the 90’s Neil Gaiman created a character known as Angela for Todd McFarlane’s Spawn series. Under contract agreements, Neil got to keep the character rights to anything he created, even if it was for someone else’s book. But when Neil asked for the rights, Todd kept refusing to give them back. After many legal battles ensued, Neil finally won back the rights to use Angela from McFarlane and worked with Marvel to reintegrate her into the Marvel canon as Thor and Loki’s long-lost sister. So there is a good chance that this new female Thor is actually Angela, and this whole publicity stunt is Marvel giving a big public “FUCK YOU” to Todd McFarlane.

If you’d like to know more about the whole Neil Gaiman/Todd McFarlane debacle, you should watch MovieBob’s 3 part series on the subject:
Part 1 - Comics in the 90’s What Happened? www.escapistmagazine.com/video…
Part 2 - Marvel Mess www.escapistmagazine.com/video…
Part 3 - Miracle, Man www.escapistmagazine.com/video…


Of course that might not be the case. The info we’ve gotten about who the woman is is kinda sporadic and unclear. Some sources saying it’s someone Thor rescued and saved, others saying it’s an entirely new person. So who knows what’s truly up. We’ll have to wait for this whole thing to play out this October.

Source: time.com/2987551/thor-marvel-w…
  • Mood: Confused
  • Listening to: Daft Punk - Harder Better Faster Stronger
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Pikmin 3
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
Your Princess Is In Another Castle
I know this is a little late, but it’s still an excellent read. This article that came out after the sorority murders in California a few months back details pretty succinctly the problem I and others have with how Nerd Culture treats women.

The article touches upon the narrative that a lot of nerds internalize, the idea that women are prizes to be “won” after a series of persistent attempts. The idea that jocks are dumb and nerds are smart, which is a concept even I bought into until fairly recently.

In fact, if I may, I would like to apologize for this strip from 2011: syacartoonist.com/things-i-wil… and any others that I’ve done over the years that depict “jocks” as dumb brainless animals. It’s a narrative belief that I bought into and now understand isn’t as true anymore today as it was when I was in high school some 15 years ago.

But anyway, the article itself deals more with how nerds perceive women and how our culture keeps reinforcing this belief on them and how they basically need to “grow up” and realize that we (nerds) are the problem, not them (women).

You can read the article here: www.thedailybeast.com/articles…

Dreamwork’s Apollo Software
Recently Dreamworks came out and shared their new 3D animation software called Apollo, which was used on “How to Train Your Dragon 2.” Remember that Disney short “Paperman” from a few years back which was so revolutionary? This is kinda like that. Apollo allows artists to use their tablet pens to actually manipulate the characters in real time as if they were just drawing on a sheet of paper. Just by clicking on a face and with a flick of a wrist, you can adjust the expressions and positions instantly.



It’s truly amazing software and of course it’s only going to get better as time goes on. It’s honestly remarkable that 3D animated films have been made using such outdated and old fashioned techniques for such a long time. Basically, up until HTTYD2, all 3D films have been made with the same slow methodical techniques that Toy Story was using back in 1995. Now we have a program that allows unparalleled amount of control and ease of use.

I wish we had this stuff when I was studying to be an Animator in college. See, I can animate 2D stuff, but when it comes to 3D stuff I get lost. There’s so many controls and buttons and numbers and it’s so complicated and cumbersome and mind-numbingly slow... I just couldn’t get into it. I need the ease of a pencil to quickly gesture and sketch my work out and refine it. That’s how I work. And it looks like this sort of program is almost specifically tailored to me!

Animation Paper
Speaking of animation interfaces, an animator has taken it upon himself to help design new easy to use programs for 2-D animators. He’s crowd-sourcing the project over on indiegogo.com and the program is called Animation Paper.

You can check out the program and it’s features here:
www.indiegogo.com/projects/ani…

There are a lot of 2D animation programs already out there, but there’s something incredibly quick and easy about the way this one looks that I find quite appealing. It’s still being worked on, and it’s estimated to be finished around April 2015, but it looks to be an interesting program all the same. If this helps revitalize 2-D animation by making it easy for people to get into, then I’m all for that! Sign me up!

Pixar + Dreamworks’s  Illegal Wage-Fixing Cartel
So... chock this up to a HUGE surprise and a big let down. It’s been revealed through court documents that Pixar Animation and Dreamworks Animation were key players in an employee wage-fixing cartel. Pixar’s own Ed Catmull, George Lucas, and Steve Jobs were revealed to be principal players in creating the cartel.

The wage-fixing cartel, it seems, was used to keep employees from switching companies due to better paying offers and work. Pixar managed to rope Dreamworks into playing along, but this 20+ year cartel was overturned when Sony entered the playing field and refused to cooperate. In 2010, the Department of Justice’s antitrust devision entered the arena and it all came out.

Sooooooo yeah... that’s a THING that happened. It’s pretty sick and depressing that these corporate big-shots were basically preventing competition and job opportunities and growth to HUNDREDS of working professionals in the industry. Maybe now things will get better? I dunno... this is just a REALLY short summary of events. If you wanna dig deeper into it (and a lot of the e-mails used in the court case are available publicly now) you can do so at the following links:

Source: www.osnews.com/story/27836/Pix…
pando.com/2014/07/07/revealed-…
pando.com/2014/07/10/revealed-…
  • Mood: Pity
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Pikmin 3
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
It seems like every week there’s a new convention going on, and this was no different. DashCon (purportedly the largest gathering of tumblr uses to date), was happening this weekend and... well... it fell apart in many gloriously horrible ways.

First there were accusations of scamming, as the convention owners crowd-sourced $17,000 to secure the venue (which should’ve been done MONTHS in advance). All attempts to contact the hotel have resulted in the hotel saying there was no need to raise that money and that they never received any of it.

Then there were the cancelations. The Welcome to Nightvale people were flown in, but then told they weren’t going to be paid till AFTER they performed for everyone (which is already suspicious) and also told they weren’t getting reimberesed for the hotel, flight, food, etc. So sadly WTNV had to cancel at the last minute, resulting in the convention owners refunding patrons with “an extra hour in the ball pit.” The “ball pit” being a child’s inflatable pool filled with rubber balls. Pretty... pathetic.

There were other incidents as well, and luckily tumblr, twitter, and a couple news sites have picked up on reporting the growing disaster that is DashCon. Sources for those will be listed below in case you’re interested in seeing how messed up things got.

For me, personally, I just want to extend my sympathies with all the patrons who were cheated out of the $65 entry free to attend this farce. I’ve been to bad conventions before, and I can tell you it’s not fun. Heck, I’ve been to a convention where literally NO ONE SHOWED UP TO because the convention people held it at the last minute, held it tucked away behind a hotel where no one knew it existed, and didn’t advertise it. I’ve been to shitty cons, and it’s awful. No one should have to put up with that level of incompetence.

So yeah. I’m sorry DashCon patrons. I hope you at the very least got to meet some cool people and make some friends while you were there. And here’s hoping that if there is ever a DashCon2015, the staff bucks up and actually takes their responsibilities seriously. If you’re starting off a new convention with a bad reputation, it’s going to take a lot of hard work and effort to win back the trust of all the people you want to attend.

Take DashCon as a textbook example of what NOT to do for a convention.

Sources: thegeekiary.com/dashcon-disast…
vedinamel.tumblr.com/post/9164…
www.escapistmagazine.com/news/…

PS: If you attended DashCon and want to elaborate on some of your own horror stories, feel free to do so down below in the comments section.
  • Mood: Pity
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Count Duckula
  • Playing: Pikmin 3
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
So here’s the thing. Ever since my “stop doing sexist things” joke in SYAC a while back, there have been a number of parody comics about me and my views floating around tumblr and DA. Granted, parody work of my stuff has been there since the very beginning of SYAC, but these are actual comics themselves not just reskins of my own art.

And you know what? That’s perfectly fine. While I will flag work that takes my actual artwork and just changes the text to be derogatory, if you actually make the work yourself... then it’s fine. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. And while I may block people for being assholes to me or my fans, that doesn’t mean I actually want to “censor” their right to speak anywhere else on the internet.

In the past I have tried to use the law to take down certain things. For example, I tried to get KnowYourMeme to remove their user article about me, because it was obviously a carbon-copy of the Enclyclopedia Dramatica page uploaded by a hater for lulz purposes, not because it actually had accurate information about me as a meme. KYM took down what they felt was inappropriate, but left the rest up. And that’s fine.

But these days I really don’t have the time anymore. It’s so much work to track down the original file being used as a parody, report it, link the information, look up user names, potentially risk seeing really horribly written things about yourself in the process, all to wait 2-3 months for someone to actually get off their butt to do something... just to have the user create another account and do the whole thing over again and again and again and again...

Here’s the thing though. While I don’t give a crap if you wanna make fun of me behind my back... I draw the line at trying to shove it in my face. If you feel the need to post on my frontpage, or facebook, or my own websites with links to these so-called parodies... Yeah I’m gonna report that as spam and probably block you too. That's called being a dick. That’s unnecessary attention that I don’t want to deal with and an obvious attempt of harassment. So please, don’t do that.

And if you (my fans) see parody work and feel that it’s a bad representation of me or clearly insulting? You can report it if you’d like. I give all my fans that permission. Just don’t bring it up to me because I honestly have more important things to worry about than dealing with someone who doesn’t understand the concept of sexism making parody comics.

So yeah. That’s my stand on parodies. Make ‘em if ya’ want. Spread them all over the internet if you feel so inclined. Just don’t shove ‘em in my face, ok? You stay in your corner, I’ll stay in my corner, and we can all just get along happily, alright? Alright.
  • Mood: Angsty
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Bob's Burgers
  • Playing: Pikmin 2
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
I’ve been saving up a bunch of topics I wanted to talk about, but for some reason haven’t been able to stretch out into full journal discussions. So I’m just gonna lump them all together here in one big “junk drawer” journal to get them out. I’d like to think that these aren’t “unpopular ideas” at all, and just common sense. But as I’ve learned about the internet just believing that women are people is considered a “controversial opinion” so... I’m just gonna lump these all under the idea of “potentially unpopular musings.”

Being 100% Objective is Impossible
If there’s one myth I wish I could dispel, it’s that criticism is suppose to be devoid of bias in favor of being objective. While this is a nice sort of unobtainable Buddhist enlightenment concept... it’s just not technically or realistically possible. Everything around us affects our mood, disposition, opinions, thought process, etc.

Should a film critic lock themselves in a grey empty room so that their visual senses are completely devoid of outside influences for when they sit down to watch a movie? Or should a food critic subside on nothing but vanilla wafers and purified water so that their taste buds remain perfectly neutral before they critique a dinner?

The best anyone can do is explain their reasons for why they like or dislike something. If you disagree, then that’s fine, make a post/video/blog/etc about why you disagree. But don’t hate on the person if they actually give their explanations. Remember when Polygon wrote that article about Dragon’s Crown? They gave reasons and explanations, and everyone jumped on them because they were the ONLY video game news source that didn’t fall in line with the “10/10 perfect game” report. And while you might’ve disagreed with their reasons, at least they gave their reasons for you to consider and weren’t just “this sucks.”

Removing Toxicity =/= Hiding from Criticism
I’ve gotten this a lot over the years. Some users start harassing me by being overly critical of my art, I end up blocking them after dealing with their shit, and then they turn it around on me as if I’m “unable to handle criticism.” But the thing is, my blocking them has nothing to do with criticism. It’s to do with how toxic and awful of a person they’re being either to me or my fans.

And this is something I’ve never quite understood. In real life, if you’re in a group of friends and someone there just rubs you the wrong way, or hurts you, or affects you very personally to the point that you don’t want to deal with them anymore... it’s perfectly acceptable for you to cut them out of your life. I know many people IRL who have cut family members or friends out of their life because they’ve said or done something unforgivable.

But doing it online? Why is this perceived as such a bad thing? If a person makes a new account, and ONLY uses it to harass another user... why should blocking them be seen as “unable to handle criticism” and not just “not dealing with toxic behavior?” We’re sort of creating a world where if you’re on the internet you’re not allowed to block people out of fear of being told you’re “censoring” someone’s opinion or that you’re “unable to handle criticism.” It’s weird to me that if someone shows obvious signs of aggressive hateful toxicity, that we’re suppose to make an exception and allow them to continue to be abusive.

In my opinion: blocking people who are toxic isn’t a form of “censorship,” it’s just called “looking out for one’s own mental health and safety.”

It’s Just the Internet
This is another thing that’s been bugging me a lot lately. The dismissive phrase “It’s just the internet” whenever anyone brings up any sort of issue or problem. Maybe 10 years ago that would’ve worked, but in this day and age the internet is integral to our everyday lives. Social medias like Facebook, YouTube, tumblr, twitter, Reddit, DA, etc. We’re more connected than ever before. To assume that just because you said or did something wrong “on the internet” it has no affect on anyone is just... absurd now.

This is why a lot of companies freak out over bad internet press. Their public reputations are incredibly important and companies can be ruined now with a click of a button. It’s one of the few times I think that public outcry actually DOES have an impact. If y enough people raise hell about something online, news stories will be picked up and spread that to even more people. Eventually the company will become aware of what’s happening and usually will change things to appease the masses. Remember Mass Effect 3’s shitty ending upset people and how the uproar forced EA to create a new ending?


And it’s not just companies. It can get very personal too. If you tweet about how you hate a certain celebrity, there’s now a real good chance that celebrity will actually SEE that tweet now. There have been numerous stories about how mass groups of people harassing a single individual resulted in that individual either disappearing entirely online, or even worse... doing something to themselves in real life out of despair and fear.

The internet is not just the internet anymore. What we say and do here, DOES affect what we say and do IRL.

Epilogue
Ok that shouldn’t have been TOO offensive, right? Now I wanna hear from y’all! What do you think about these various topics and subjects? Do you agree? Do you disagree? Do you have a different opinion altogether?
  • Mood: Pity
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Bob's Burgers
  • Playing: Pikmin 2
  • Eating: Pene + Chicken Noodle Bowl
  • Drinking: Water
Past couple journals have been a little heavy. Let’s look at some fun stuff!

Sailor Moon Crystal
While I like the more manga consistent character designs and animation... I just can’t help but fall back on the 90’s cartoon. It’s not just nostalgia talking either. The 90’s cartoon had much more personality and energy and conveyed emotions far better than the remake so far. Something tells me it’s gone take a whole ‘nother reboot before that mix of the old and the new finally gel into something truely awesome... kinda like the new Nickelodeon TMNT cartoon.

Don’t get me wrong, both the 90’s cartoon and the new version have its merits and you’re entirely free to enjoy whichever you like. Personally I just like the simpler more expressive designs of the 90’s, that’s all.

Count Duckula
Speaking of 80’s, there’s going to be a new Danger Mouse cartoon soon. This announcement prompted me to look up some old Danger Mouse episodes on YouTube and... I gotta say... it didn’t age well. Disheartened at how BAD the series was, it got me thinking about other british cartoons run on Nickelodeon when I was a kid and that brought me to look up Count Duckula. To my amazement, Duckula actually holds up better than I remember.

While the animation is still pretty dreadful, it’s leaps and bounds above Danger Mouse’s and the writing is most definitely what saves it. The humor is actually quite snappy and fast. It’s incredibly witty and dry (the way only British humor can be), and I actually found myself laughing at a lot of the puns and jokes and digressions so many of the conversations took. Strongly recommend looking it up.

Minecraft Updates
If you’ve got Minecraft Pocket Edition, then you’re in for a treat! Infinite worlds is FINALLY coming to the handheld version, along with caves, additional monsters (like endermen) and a better crafting UI. I’m honestly really excited about this. I got into Minecraft through the pocked edition WAY back when it just had a creative mode. In a weird way, I got into Minecraft the same way others did when the game originally was first created on the PC... just... like 2 years later and on a handheld since the handheld version has always lagged behind the PC version. Ok that analogy didn’t really go anywhere... blah.

Look for the new update on the 10th!

But yeah... more complete Minecraft experience on a handheld. Shame we’ll never see Minecraft on a 3DS though... For that we’ll just have to play Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley: www.joystiq.com/2014/06/18/har…

Mighty No. 9 Gets a Cartoon
I don’t think it’s gonna be a full cartoon series like the new Sonic the Hedgehod or anything, more or less just bonus shorts. But yeah, Keiji Inifune is having another crowdsourced fundraiser to make money to put towards an animated series of shorts involving the Mighty No. 9 characters. None of the money from THIS fundraiser goes towards the game, as the game is already funded just fine.

Honestly, after seeing gameplay footage I’m not all that impressed by Mighty No. 9. It’s the same reason I never really cared for the SNES Mega Man or any of the 3D ones really. The animation is way too over the top and the hitbox detection is not as easily defined as it’s NES counterpart. Mega Man is one of those series that I just don’t think really works in any other format besides the 8-bit sprite type. And yeah I know this isn’t Mega Man, but c’mon. You know it is. Inifune left Capcom cuz Capcom was being dicks with Mega Man and he was tired of it. Mighty No. 9 is a spiritual successor to Mega Man, so comparisons are always gonna be present.

Then again, there still isn’t any finished gameplay, so who knows. Maybe it’ll be fine tuned before it’s released. I’ll probably pick it up on the 3DS when it’s released anyway, so they’ve already got my money.
  • Mood: Cheerful
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Bob's Burgers
  • Playing: New Super Mario Bros 3D Land
  • Eating: Cheeseburgers
  • Drinking: Water
I started seeing the “not all ___” retort when it came to feminism. The response was “not ALL men,” usually as an argument to derail any discussion about how badly women are generally treated by the male gender. Since then, the phrase has started to apply to pretty much ANY sub culture/group. “Not ALL Bronies,” “Not ALL gamers,” “Not ALL comic artists” etc, etc. And most recently I saw it when I stated that I didn’t like 4chan because of how vile and vitriolic the website generally is. “Not ALL 4channers” is the gist of the argument. And I think this nonsense needs to stop.

OF COURSE we know that “not all ____” is true. I don’t know anyone who actually believes that ALL men, ALL gamers, ALL 4channers, ALL bronies, etc are evil or bad. But guys... all those things have a reputation, and if that reputation is generally negative then you need to step up and correct it. And to correct it you need to actually confront the problem head on instead of pretending like you’re not part of it.

Saying “not all ____” in defense of your favorite group of people doesn’t actually help anything. All it does is derail the conversation by trying to distance yourself from the bad eggs in your group, rather than actually, ya know, trying to eradicate the bad eggs from your group.

I am a gamer. I’m also a comic artist and fan. The reason I talk so much about politically charged topics like women’s rights is because I see women getting treated horribly in my circle of sub culture. Of course I know not all gamers are bad. Of course I know not all comic artists are sexist. Of course I know that not all cosplayers get sexually harassed. This is called generalization. Trying to nitpick that apart just so you can feel better about yourself despite knowing there are bad people in your group isn’t helping prevent the bad people from your group become the sole representations the public sees.

When public opinion starts to say things like “oh gamers AREN’T whiny 8 year olds with potty mouths” or “oh 4chan is actually a site of progress and open minded individuals” or “oh Bronies AREN’T just a bunch of trilby wearing man-children,” THEN you’ll know you’re making a difference.

If you genuinely use the “not all ____” argument anytime ANYONE points out a problem within your particular wheelhouse, then you’re actually part of the problem. Knock that shit off and actually DO something. Fight back against the bad eggs who are ruining your favorite group’s public image. Do nice things for other people in the name of your group. Spread awareness and clean up the bile and filth those bad eggs spread. Instead of saying “not all ____,” actually do something to PROVE that it’s not really all ____.

It’s not easy. Hell it’s not even fun. But the end result is definitely worth it. And then you won’t have to keep trying to vindicate yourself because of a couple of bad eggs. You could actually be proud of who you are and what groups you associate with. And that’s the kinda progress I want to see.

To go back to the 4chan example from earlier: Maybe 4chan ISN’T a bad place full of the “scum of the internet,” but you’ve gotta prove it to me first before I’ll change my mind. Support charities. Denounce the trolls. Actually work to prevent shit-storms like the 4chan/tumblr wars from actually happening. Actually DO something instead of yelling at me for having an opinion based on a terrible reputation that precedes you.

And that goes for all other groups too. Bronies, gamers, geeks, nerds, comic artists, professionals, amateurs, etc. All I really want is to have safe environments for fans and groups of people to enjoy. Is that really so much to ask?
  • Mood: Sympathy
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Bob's Burgers
  • Playing: New Super Mario Bros 3D Land
  • Eating: Cheeseburgers
  • Drinking: Water
4chan v tumblr
I mentioned it briefly yesterday, and thanks to some people filling in the blanks I didn’t have at the time I feel the need to update this with more information for everyone’s sake.

Apparently what happened is that a couple feminists on tumblr (most sources only mentioning on average 4 people) tried to start a “let’s take down 4chan” campaign. 4chan (the source of some of the lowliest, filthiest, scummiest people on the planet), didn’t like that. So they’ve retaliated with a “take down tumblr” campaign. Please bear in mind that there is no real evidence to support this and it might all just be 4chan stirring up shit themselves for the lulz.

4chan users created multiple accounts and then proceeded to spam the popular tumblr tags with excessive amounts of gore, porn, child pornography, and have been taking “selfie” images of underage tumblr users and photoshop them into porn. They've also got some false information floating around encouraging people to report 4chan's IP address, but it actually results in reporting tumblr's own IP address instead.

Chances are if you’re on tumblr you won’t see any of this shit. But if you happen to want to search for something popular, like doctor who, and went to the #Doctor Who tag to find art, users, or people to follow... you’re gonna run into this stuff.

List of Tags
If you search any of these tags, please be warned you might see something you didn’t want to see.

#Feminist #Feminism #Fat Acceptance #Womyn #Womyn Of Color #Patriarchy #Misogyny #Unleash The Dragons #Unleash The Dragon #Food #Yummy #Cute #Stare Rape #Rape Culture #Ableism #Love #Peace #SJW #AOT #SNK #Attack On Titan #Free! #Sherlock #Supernatural #SPN #Doctor Who #Avengers #Homestuck #LGBT #Asexual #Pansexual #Pride #Transsexual #Demisexual #Polysexual #Otherkin

Thank you ScribblePrincess56 for providing a list of some of the tags in the previous journal.

Continued Assaults
From what I understand (as a non tumblr user) it’s died down quite a bit since yesterday, and a lot of tumblr users fought back by posting positive things in those same tags. But there are rumors that this is going to be a re-occurring organized attack thing every 4th of every month. There are other rumors that this is only the beginning and that 4chan plans to up the efforts by hacking into accounts. But, like I said, this is only a rumor for now. I am not gonna try to go to 4chan to verify if it’s true or not.

Be Safe
So yeah... please be safe everyone. tumblr has it’s issues, but this really seems like sending a swat team to take out a kid with a toy gun. 4chan had nothing to fear, and their retaliation has been despicable, disgusting, and completely overboard. All this retaliation has done is to reinforce the belief that 4chan is a terrible place full of some of the worse human beings on the planet. So I guess... kudos 4chan? You got what you wanted??

Anyway, I’m not on tumblr and I want no part of 4chan either. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want my fans or friends to have to suffer through this childish nonsense either. Do not try to go to 4chan to harass them, as it will only result in more of this shit. The best way to deal with 4chan is to pretend they don’t exist and let them fester and rot in the hole they’ve dug themselves in.

So please consider this just a safety PSA to be on the lookout. Be careful. Exploit tumblr savior if you have it. Report accounts if you come across anything bad. Block people if you notice them harassing or spamming. Don’t start fights with any of these spammers. And just in general... be safe.
  • Mood: Worried
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Fireworks
  • Playing: New Super Mario Bros 3D Land
  • Eating: Cheeseburgers
  • Drinking: Water
Happy 4th
I wanna start off somewhat positive, because things are going to get really bad really quickly in this journal. So Happy 4th of July everyone! Happy American Independence Day! Hope y’all have had some fun watching fireworks or being out with friends and family cooking and grillin’!

Now then... on to the more serious stuff.

Skyler Page Fired for Harassing Women
News broke over the week that voice actor, creator, and story writer for Cartoon Network’s “Clarence” has been fired for his treatment of female co-workers. Tweets about his harassment started surfacing earlier this week culminating with such damning evidence of his raunchy behavior that Cartoon Network stepped in and fired him.

Apparently outside voicing Clarence himself, Skyler has had little to no impact on the creative and writing team behind the cartoon itself, so the show will proceed to be produced without him. Skyler was also a writer for Adventure Time prior to creating Clarence.

This is truly a shame since Clarence is still such a young show. To have such a terrible association so early on does not bode well for it’s continued success, but I certainly hope that the rest of the team can continue the show without him.

Source: www.buzzfeed.com/kateaurthur/c…

tumblr Issue?
In a somewhat related note, I’ve been informed that something is going down over on tumblr regarding some guy named Psyguy. Right now, rumors and all sorts of drama is flying around, and I’m trying to figure out what’s happening. All that I know is that this Psyguy is somehow related to brentalflossthecomic.com, since a screen cap of the website being down was posted in one of the threads about this guy.

It’s incredibly dangerous to form opinions or react without information, so since I don’t have a tumblr account (and since tumblr users in general are very hateful of me), I was wondering if I could employ some of you to look this stuff up for me and help me sort through the mess. Any links or summaries of events would be helpful. From what I can tell it might involve sexual harassment, but like I said, I don’t know. I’ve never met or heard of this user before now, and I don’t understand what sort of connection they might have to me or brentalfloss.

I also don’t want anyone to tread into this lightly. This is some very serious business. Anyone who wants to help, be warned, there’s a possibility you might have to see or read some really disturbing things. Please don’t just jump into the tags looking for stuff if you’re not prepared to possibly see stuff you didn’t want to see. I guess you could call this a “trigger warning.”

On top of all of this 4chan has decided to tag spam against feminists this 4th of July holiday too. So if you’re on tumblr, please be careful.

Be Safe
Wow, that was pretty dark for a journal on a holiday, wasn’t it? I’m sorry about that. I hope the rest of you have a safe and happy holidays and try not to let these news articles prevent you from having a wonderful time this weekend.
  • Mood: Worried
  • Listening to: Fireworks - As Sung by Jon-Tron
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Fireworks
  • Playing: New Super Mario Bros 3D Land
  • Eating: Cheeseburgers
  • Drinking: Water
Women segregated in eSports to “legitimize” the sports
I personally think that eSports is kinda a silly idea. The idea that video game competitions should be treated with the same respect as the Olympics is just... head scratching to me. But just because I personally don’t “get it” doesn’t mean I can’t support others who DO actually want to legitimize their hobbies or activities into being real things they can compete in.

However... if your way of “legitimizing” your eSport is to SEGREGATE WOMEN... you’re kinda shooting yourself in the foot. Earlier this week the International e-Sports Federation announced that it was going to separate it’s competitions into “male only” and “female only” groups... an act defended by the IEF as being (and I quote) “part of our effort to promote e-Sports as a legitimate sports”

Naturally, this ended up pissing a LOT of people off. And this is where righteous indignation on the internet actually DOES GOOD. Because of the hatred and outrage people had over the IEF’s decision, the IEF has reconsidered and REMOVED their segregation. Men and women can once again compete together.

It is head scratching how on earth they felt that segregating women would somehow “legitimize” their e-Sports. I’ve been racking it through my brain trying to find a thought pattern that makes sense, and I can’t, outside the depressing possibility these were just a bunch of guys who didn’t think women played enough video games to compete and thus weren’t worthy of consideration. That’s an incredibly depressing thought and I hope it’s not the case.

But whatever. The internet did something right and the IEF (to their credit) did issue an apology and retract their rules. You can read more about this debacle in the links below:

www.escapistmagazine.com/news/…
tournaments.peliliiga.fi/summe…

About Social Justice Warriors
I’m growing increasingly tired of the term SJW being used as a dismissive insult towards anyone who brings up a legitimate argument about... well... anything. Originally Social Justice Warrior was used to insult the vast majority of tumblr users who cry foul at every tiny minuscule social injustice, and the hatred and fever that gets churned up no matter how petty or unimportant said injustice actually is.

But lately the term SJW is being thrown out at ANYONE who brings up ANY injustice or issue. It’s getting to the point that SJW is starting to lose any meaning or purpose it might’ve originally had. Now it’s just a buzz-word to actively dismiss anyone you disagree with. They’re pro-gay? SJW! They’re pro-life? SJW! They’re pro-choice? SJW! It doesn’t matter anymore.

All SJW has become is a quick way to ignore the problems and to dehumanize someone trying to raise awareness about an issue. It simultaneously vilifies the victim, and reaffirms your own preconceived biases. It’s a “get out of argument for free” card employed by people who are too weak to follow through with having an actual thoughtful discussion and possibly learning and growing as a person.

And I’m bringing this up in tandem to the IEF debacle because I just know that someone somewhere in the comments is going to say that the IEF was “bullied” into appeasing the SJW’s. Guys... that’s not what happened. When someone does something sexist or hateful or wrong, and you call them out on that? That is not being a “social justice warrior.” That is being a human being who has ethics and morals that are actively being compromised by people in power. Pointing that out and hoping that they will change their mind after they realize how wrong it was, is not SJWing.

I’m honestly not even really sure the term SJW should even continue to exist. While there are some people who take their social justice outrage to the extremes, the vast majority of us do not. By perpetuating this idea that anyone who speaks up about anything is a bigoted “SJW,” all you’re doing is preventing dialogue from happening and keeping the discussion that we should be having to a standstill.


SJW is a term that exists so that people who don’t want to be held accountable for their shitty behavior never have to own up to it or change, despite the fact that the rest of the world around them is leaving them in the stone age.
  • Mood: Pity
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - We Are Giants
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Sequelitis
  • Playing: New Super Mario Btos 3D Land
  • Eating: Nachos Flander's Style
  • Drinking: Water
Woo-hoo! Sequelitis finally updated! In case you’re not aware, Sequelitis is a YouTube series that critiques sequels to video games and shows both the things they do right and the things they do wrong. The series is produced by Egoraptor, whom you might recognize as Arin Hanson from the earlier Game Grumps series. Sequelitis is a great series... but it’s taken a long time to update. Case in point, this is the 4th episode. To give you some context on how long we’ve been waiting for a new episode, the 3rd episode debuted 2 years ago.

But whatever, I understand how it can take a long time to get around to things. Arin has been pretty busy in that time (he was, after all, voted onto the Sony webshow “The Tester” for a while, and was doing Game Grumps with Jon Tron). Personally, I don’t mind how long it takes to produce a show as long as the show continues in some fashion eventually. And boy howdy! This was definitely worth the wait!

A Link to the Past VS Ocarina of Time!


I’ve always said that Ocarina of Time has been unduly placed upon a pedestal by fans of the Zelda franchise, and finally here’s a guy who can go through and explain why Ocarina of Time (while not a bad game) isn’t a great sequel to the brilliance of A Link to the Past. And he can do it while being funny, whereas if I do it it just looks like a “crybaby hissy fit.” So yeah! Enjoy this video that goes into all the details I wish I could’ve conveyed better.

Sorry, I hope I don’t sound like I’m gloating, because I’m not. It’s just really exciting to see someone with some internet clout vindicating an opinion you’ve been unpopularly espousing for the past DECADE. Ocarina of Time is a great game, but I’ve never felt it deserved the amount of praise that fans have lavished upon it over the years, going so far as to give it credit for introducing stuff that previous installments of the Zelda franchise introduced first.

Plus it’s funny and Egoraptor is an amazing personality.

PS: By the way, if you haven't already, please go back and watch the other 3 Sequelitis videos if you have a chance. They're well worth the watch and are good demonstrations on good/bad game design!
  • Mood: Pride
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - We Are Giants
  • Reading: Minecraft: The Story of Mojang
  • Watching: Sequelitis
  • Playing: New Super Mario Btos 3D Land
  • Eating: Nachos Flander's Style
  • Drinking: Water
Alex Ze Pirate Still Going!
Just a monthly plug. Alex Ze Pirate is still going on! New pages going up every 2 days. The current storyline is explaining how everyone came together and met. You can read from the beginning of this arc starting here: alexzepirate.com/beginnings-pa…

Get it Back or Geek Out Trying
Likewise, it’s the 1st of the month, so that means new Retail Riot comic! “Get it Back or Geek Out Trying” starts today! New strips will be going up every day this month! andysartworks.com/get-it-back-…

About the NSYAC outlines
So I started bringing back New So You’re A Cartoonist (NSYAC for short) with Emily and Jade by whipping up a couple of them in a single batch. However I screwed up the proportions of the image, and they ended up being much smaller than I normally work, resulting in thicker outlines. So for that I apologize. The outlines for the first 4 strips of this return to NSYAC are gonna be a little wonky. I didn’t catch that I had made the mistake till after I had finished and uploaded them, and I really don’t have the time to go back and re-do 4 comics in a row.

So I’m sorry, but the first 4 strips are gonna be a little... thick lined. I promise you that once the 4th strip airs later this week it will go back to looking much better with thinner outlines and more space to construct and form the characters properly. My bad.
  • Mood: Neutral
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - We Are Giants
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: Pikmin 2
Orcs Must Die Developer Likes “Toxic” Players
Orcs Must Die developer Jerome K. Jones told Polygon recently:

“There’s probably something good about the toxic players showing up and sticking with your game. It's holding their interest, it's keeping them around. It's making them passionate enough to give a damn. You need those people there. They're driving the game. They're giving it longevity. They're giving it passion. And when they find something about your game that they love, they defend it to the death. Those are the same people that can go to bat for you. I don't think those are bad people. You just gotta do your best to deal with them in whatever manner seems to work the best.”

I... would beg to differ. I think what he’s referring to is passionate players, which is entirely different from toxic players. Toxicity in gaming culture is a serious problem that many game studios are trying to find ways of correcting. The negative aspects of gaming culture is giving the overall impression that that culture is a dangerous harmful place to coexist in. And I think that’s entirely different from players who are passionate about their games and love them and will defend them a lot.

I’m sure there’s some overlap, of course. But I think eliminating toxicity in gaming culture is a step in the right direction. I want gaming culture to be a place that’s inviting and welcoming and one where anyone of any age or experience can enjoy without fear of suffering the wrath of “toxic players.” So, I’m sorry Jerome K. Jones. I disagree, and I hope more developers take action to prevent toxicity from infecting their brands and games.

4D Cinemas
So, they’re technically just cinemas that show 3D movies but also include “immersive experiences.” These “immersive experiences” include having rumble seats that vibrate and shift, wind machines, temperature controls, and rigs that spray fog, rain, or specific scents into a theater’s auditorium.

These so-called 4D cinemas are apparently very popular and successful in Korea, China, and Mexico. The companies that makes them are hoping to expand into the US with the first two of these types of theaters already open in Los Angeles. Plans to make them compatible with upcoming movies is already underway and are set to include Guardians of the Galaxy, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and TMNT.

Of course if you’ve ever been to Walt Disney World in Florida and checked out the Muppet Vision 3D show, you’ve already experienced a theater like these. They’ve existed for quite some time, they’ve just never been able to mass produce and market them successfully before. And, of course, this extravagance comes at a slightly higher ticket price. So I dunno... it seems to me like a way to gouge movie audiences even more.

What do you guys think?

Duet
Let’s end this journal on a positive note, yeah? If you’re familiar with Disney at all you’re probably familiar with artist Glen Keane, animator of Aladdin, Quasimodo, Beast, Tarzan, and was largely responsible for Tangled’s overall animation style. He has a short film which he animated entirely by himself called “duet” about two people growing up and interacting with each other from birth to adulthood.



It’s quite strange to watch this, because at times you can see his Disney heritage come through. The babies interacting are very much like how the kids moved The Rescuers and the climbing sequence is strongly reminiscent of Tarzan. Overall it’s an amazing piece and just goes to showcase what an exceptionally talented artist Glen Keane is. Enjoy!

PS: This version of Duet is a theatrical version. There will be an interactive version released by Google that runs in 60fps, and involves moving your phone around to see the film take place in real space. Keep and eye out for that version!
  • Mood: Neutral
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - We Are Giants
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: Pikmin 2
Sims 4 won’t Have Toddlers and Pools
The industry is at it again. Remember how Ubisoft said “women are too hard to animate” when pressed about why there were no female characters available for Assassins Creed 4’s multiplayer mode? Well let’s add babies and inanimate objects to that list of “too hard to animate” things in video games!

In a recent blog post on the Sim’s official website, it was revealed that toddlers and pools are being excluded from the Sims 4 because, in the words of the developers:

It's not possible for us to include every single feature and piece of content we added to The Sims 3 over the last five years

Ok, I get that. Just because it’s a new game doesn’t mean it has to be a retread of the previous games. Totally understandable. But you know what’s not understandable? Why toddlers and pools? Why wouldn’t those be included? Last time I checked, those were kinda vital key aspects of the franchise that everyone enjoyed. It would be like having a new Zelda game but minus the Master Sword. Sure, it’ll still play fine, but it’ll feel a little incomplete too.

The Sims is THE biggest video game franchise in history. It’s a little disappointing to hear they’re excluding features that, honestly, should be a given. I mean... when your sims have children shouldn’t they begin as a toddler? Why take out such a crucial part of human (or sim) development in a game ALL ABOUT human development and interaction?

I doubt people are gonna be “outraged” over this as Ubisoft’s last blundering, but it does just kinda go to show that the industry is either 1) bad at managing their resources or 2) just flat-out lazy and is lying to you. Just file this under “I should be aware of this situation.”

Source: www.escapistmagazine.com/news/…

Pacific Rim 2
Now for something more positive. Pacific Rim is getting a sequel. While that might seems like a foregone conclusion, please remember that Pacific Rim didn’t do very well in America (primarily making up for it in overseas markets), and Guillermo del Toro recently said that he had a script ready to go, but that there was no indication that any Studio was interested.

Well that’s all in the past now because Pacific Rim 2 has been greenlit and the movie will be coming out in 2017. The movie will apparently also not be a prequel, but a direct sequel to the first movie. In the meantime since 2017 is kinda far away, we will also be getting a comic book series based on the franchise AND an animated TV series.

Guillermo del Toro is a fantastic filmmaker who frequently seems to be given the shaft by studios and audiences. While his movies are extremely well done, imaginative, and usually review with positives... audiences tend not to see them and they struggle in the market. Del Toro has also been forced to give up making a big screen adaptation of “In the Mountains of Madness” because of “Scott Pilgrim”’s financial failure at the box office, and he was kicked out of the director’s chair on The Hobbit during MGM’s financial collapse. It’s kinda frustrating watching a good director keep getting bumped or pushed aside for other issues, so it’s refreshing to see that Pacific Rim was such a hit overseas that we’ll be getting more of it!

Kudos to you, Del Toro! You certainly deserve it! And plus WE get to see giant robots fighting! And you can never go wrong with that!
  • Mood: Neutral
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - We Are Giants
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: Pikmin 2
Fake Commission
Recently I found out that one of the commissions I undertook a while back was, in fact, a setup. It was hired by forum members of Encyclopedia Dramatica, one of whom I actually use to talk to and have good discussions with. They pooled their resources to pay for it, sent me the info and money, and then proceeded to sit back and document everything I did or didn’t do per their highly specific criterias. The user in question then posting a lengthy take-down (though through a disclaimer on the top of the journal it’s clearly not a takedown! lulz!) here on DA.

Here is the commission:
Samus V Ridley by TomPreston

The journal in question talks at great length about my seemingly lack of transparency. IE: that I don’t communicate every little facet of what I’m doing to them, such as the number of commissions I have, what my “job” is, what my home schedule is like, etc. And honestly? This is WHY I’m not transparent. Things like this are why I don’t talk about my personal life, especially not to my clients. Because, frankly, I can’t trust anyone. Nor is it really anyone’s business what I’m doing in my private life. I’ve been trying very hard to keep my professional and private lives separated, and it’s kinda hilarious that these uses are angry because I won’t freely divulge information anymore about my situations.

The user also goes into length about how my commission methods are “flawed,” but curiously the fact that I was getting happy responses with what I was producing gets ignored. While there were a few suggestions to fix thing (some of which I did, some of which I didn’t per my own artistic aesthetics) there was never any outright demands or insistence that what I was producing wasn’t to their liking. Most of the time when you commission an artist to draw something, you give them a bit of free reign to draw however they want. Had I known that this was going to be judged on a stricter level I would have worked with them a lot more. So I can’t help but feel like the whole point of this was to set me up to fail, and that they deliberately went out of their way to achieve the desired results they set out to get.

The End Result
I could go further into detail explaining or arguing with the user and debating their journal but... I really don’t want to. It’s done. It’s over. I got paid. I finished the job to what I thought was a mutually satisfactory conclusion. The only reason I’m even bringing this up now is because there’s likely to be an influx of hateful comments coming from Encyclopedia Dramatica forum users, and I feel the need to, at the very least, address the fact that this happened so that my fans don’t run blindly into those threads.

So yeah... I was duped. I don’t like being tricked, even though I think the end result was still one of my better works that I’ve produced in a long time. I already have trust issues because of dubious behavior because of guys like them, and this clearly isn’t going to help me get over those issues anytime soon. I have about 4 commissions left to finish, and now with this latest incident I don’t know if I really even want to take commissions ever again. Could I use the money? Absolutely. Is it worth the effort never knowing if it’s just another scam for trolling purposes? I don’t think so...

PS: I am not linking to the DA journal in question because, frankly, I don’t think the users who tricked me deserve the notoriety. I’m also going to respectfully ask that if you are familiar with the journal that you don’t link to it here on my page. By all means do so on your own pages, or discuss it with them on their journal... but please do not bring that stuff here.
  • Mood: Shame
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - Shatter Me
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: New Super Mario Bros. Wii
This is going to be a little bit of a longer read, and for that I apologize. There’s just a lot to discuss.

The Downside to Internet Fame
This has been a topic on my mind a lot lately, especially over the recent Phil Fish controversy. In a lot of ways I find myself in the same shoes as Phil. My “reputation” online is not a very good one, and it often precedes me. No matter what website I go to, if I make an account and comment anywhere on the internet... those that dislike me will find me and make their presence known.

Part of the problem with being “famous” on the internet is that if you want to have a semblance of a normal life again, you essentially have to give up EVERYTHING that everyone else online takes for granted. I essentially have to give up twitter, Facebook, tumblr, DA, Pinterest, SA, YouTube, and pretty much any other website where I’m allowed to have a presence.

If I comment on someone else’s art, I risk bringing the haters to their work and starting a fight with me just because I commented. Anything I say or do, no matter if I later regret it, or said something out of anger or gut reaction, will be recorded via screen caps and posted on hate blogs for “posterity.” Going to conventions means opening myself up to the possibility of being physically attacked, verbally abused, or to have my image photographed or recorded to be used in mocking “parody” responses. Doing livestream sessions where I draw tend to get hopelessly overrun with trolls in the chat sections. Even when I don’t try to interact with anyone at all, people go out of their way to send me links to hate blogs, parody art, and response videos about me.

I really can’t... DO anything online without expecting some sort of backlash, and I imagine that for a good majority of people who use the internet, these are not concerns that they have to worry about at all. To have a normal life again, I would essentially have to give up everything that makes life normal now for everyone else.

And it’s not like I’m TRYING to force myself into people’s homes. I have no PR help. I have no one else but me to account for. I primarily post on my journal here on DA, and occasionally make quips over on twitter. I post my comics on DA and on my websites, and to my Facebook pages... and that’s about it. I honestly don’t do anything else to promote myself. The vast majority of my “reputation” wasn’t earned through hard work or kick-ass artwork... but because some people disliked what I said or did and decided to bestow lavish amounts of hateful attention on me. I never asked for this sort of “fame.” It was never a goal for me.

The Upside of Internet Fame
All that said, however, there have been positives to being “famous.” I’ve met a lot of really amazing artists I normally wouldn’t have been able to meet. I’ve had the opportunity to work on collaborations with people I admire and respect. I was given the opportunity to travel to another country to promote my work. And while there is clearly a vocal minority of people who scream as loud as they can on my work, I have a very dedicated group of fans who support me silently from the sidelines and who sometimes send me lovely thoughtful notes and messages.

A lot of the times the messages I get are about how they were having a shitty day and seeing my comics pop up helped them cheer up and get through it. I’ve had a couple notes from people who said that they read my work because it makes them happy and it gives them hope that they too can make art and gain a following one day as well. 9 times out of 10 I’m so use to getting hateful messages that these genuinely positive ones take me back and I don’t know how to respond to them. They are the reasons I keep making artwork and sticking through the worse the internet has to offer.

On the Expectations of Being Famous
One of the things I dislike about being famous on the internet is the impossibly high level of expectations that people have of you. It can be downright frustrating at times being held back by these perceived ideas of who you “actually” are as a person. Any small slip-up can come back to haunt you, and I’m still facing repercussions for stupid things I did over a decade ago when I was less experienced and able to manage my temper. A bad word choice can be nitpicked to death and become the sole reason why you should “never be taken seriously” as a person. Likewise, the expectation that EVERYTHING you produce MUST be of a certain high-standard level of quality all the time. The belief being that your sole purpose is to produce high rates of FREE artwork for the criticism and benefit of everyone else around you. And so on...

But the truth of the matter is that I (and many others in my situation) am just a person. Prone to the same mistakes, hiccups, and brain-farts as everyone else. I make comics and art because I enjoy doing it. Sometimes I just wanna throw together some stupid doodles and post them, but I often refrain from doing so because I fear people will attack me for “not putting effort” into my artwork if I did.

Many of the expectations people have are an even higher level than most professionals actually working in the field... yet they tell me I’m clearly not a professional and am only an amateur. If I’m just an amateur, why hold me up to such lofty expectations? Why am I not allowed to have FUN making my art and posting shitty doodles and jokes whenever I want? Why must everything I produce be demanded to be at some absurd level of skill that I haven’t reached?

I’ve been pondering this over recently not only because a recent batch of comics with mere “suggestions” on things to do in comics has blown up into a hot topic kerfuffle, but because I’ve been seeing the way the internet reacts to internet personas “becoming famous.” John Green (the Fault in Our Stars) has a movie based on his book out in theaters now. Watching him go through the struggles of being a YouTube celebrity to a “mainstream” celebrity is fascinating... and a little scary. People are demanding he act and respond a certain way just because of a movie that he didn’t have any say on came out. He’s even mentioned several times that although he got paid for the movie rights, he was not paid a cent for the production of the movie, and he won’t be getting any of the ticket sales from the movie either. He is still the same person he was before the movie came out... but the internet is treating him a lot differently.

It kinda scares me to a degree. If that’s the sort of stuff one can expect to have to deal with just because they’re “famous” then I don’t want that responsibility. I don’t want to be in the public eye so much. I share about my life (and even then I censor what I share quite a LOT) because I think my fans would be interested in hearing what’s going on with me. I do not do it to “gain attention.” Frankly I don’t really WANT that sort of attention anyway. I make comics and talk about my political beliefs because I want my voice to be heard and I want things to change for the better.

More or Less
It’s times like this when I’m pondering about Internet Fame that I am reminded of this quote by the aforementioned John Green:

“What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person.”
~ John Green


His book, Paper Towns, deals so much on how people project their own ideals and beliefs onto other people and how very dangerous that can be. Much like how people assume they know everything about Phil Fish’s personality from just watching a documentary. You’re only seeing a piece of a puzzle. One where the final piece that fits everything together is not accessible except to those closest to them. No matter how much I talk online about stuff, no one really knows me as a person except those whom I’ve allowed to get close and be my friends.

Some people deal with Internet Fame better than others. Some people are able to brush off negative comments and focus a lot on their fans. Others, like me, have a more difficult time doing so. Sometimes I just wish that I could just ignore the haters and not focus so much time and energy internalizing their hateful rhetoric. Maybe I’m too empathetic? Maybe it’s because I was bullied as a kid that I’ve developed a desire for people to listen to me and be taken seriously?

My experience with internet Fame hasn’t always been positive, but it has had it’s ups and downs. As the old song goes:

I'm inclined to believe
If we weren't so down
We'd up and leave
We'd up and fly if we had wings for flyin'
Can't you see the tears we're cryin'?
Can't there be some happiness for me?


Your Thoughts?
That’s pretty much all I have to say on the matter right now. Like I said, it’s been a topic that’s been on my mind for a while and with every rage-filled backlash flareup that I endure, I think about this subject a great deal. Weather it’s really worth the frustration or not.

What about all of you? What’re your thoughts on the subject of internet fame? Do you notice yourself or others treating other people differently if they start becoming more famous? Should famous people be upheld to high standards, even if they never anticipated being famous or wanted exposure? Please let me hear what y’all have to say on this subject, I’m curious.
  • Mood: Winter Downs
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - Shatter Me
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: Phoenix Wright
  • Eating: BK Whopper
  • Drinking: Hot Coco
Frustrated
I never know what’s gonna tick people off. I thought making a comic poking fun at how fed up my bear “character” has been lately would be a nice transition to “New SYAC” strips with Emily and Jade. Turns out it was one of those strips that just rubbed people the wrong way and now I’m getting inundated with “if you’re so fed up, then why don’t you leave?” retorts.

That’s. The. Joke. Guys.

It still amazes me that people can’t separate fact from fiction, even when my “character” is a grumpy carebear. I don’t know if I should be laughing or crying over the unironical “why don’t you leave” responses.

Perhaps I could’ve chosen a better news article for the strip, since the actual article I picked was one about women who ARE fighting back. I thought the fact that women even have to fight at all would be enough to carry the joke, but I guess not. My bad. If that’s one of the reasons so many people are getting up in arms, then I am sorry and I sincerely apologize.

Anyway...

I bumped up the release of the first NSYAC strip because of the backlash I was getting over the leaving strip. My plan was to have them release every Tuesday and Thursday, but now the scheduling is kinda messed up. I’ll try to get it back on track but there’s a lot of new stuff coming down the pipeline.

Scheduling Conflicts
I’m actually having a little trouble scheduling things right now. I don’t want to go into the nitty-gritty of it all, but suffice to say some of the websites I upload content to do so in different ways that can easily throw me off. If I release too much content at once, not only does advert revenue sufferer, but full strips can sometimes get lost in the shuffle. So I’ve been trying to juggle releasing content across about 5 different websites in such a way that none of them overlap one another and... well... it’s hard.

That’s all I suppose... I’m just frustrated at the disappointing responses to the last strip, frustrated that I had to move stuff up to compensate, frustrated that my websites won’t schedule content in unison, and just... frustrated in general. I’m trying to not let it affect my mood.

Over on my Website
I’m gonna be posting a lot of stuff over on my website that I won’t be posting here on DA. Right now there’s 2 new pics and comics up so... enjoy!

Zero Suit Samus VS Ridley Commission: andysartworks.com/zero-suit-sa…
New Danny and Spot comic: andysartworks.com/illegible
  • Mood: Winter Downs
  • Listening to: Lindsey Sterling - Shatter Me
  • Watching: King of the Hill
  • Playing: Phoenix Wright
  • Eating: BK Whopper
  • Drinking: Hot Coco