“Even if someone makes something terrible—like the music the Insane Clown Posse makes—at least they’re doing something that speaks to them. And they kept going even though people told them it was terrible. And they found their audience, and now they built a community around their work. Look, you couldn’t pay me to listen to their music, but I still feel like I have more in common with the Insane Clown Posse than I do with someone who just sits on the sidelines and shits on other people’s work and who never puts themselves on the line.”—Tom Scharpling in Mike Sacks’s Poking a Dead Frog
“Tyler Durden does not exist to embolden the men of his generation as much as to chastise them. These are a group of whiny, boring, nobodies, looking for someone to blame for the manner in which society has failed them, and Tyler’s prophecies become a way for them to blame society as a whole. Never do they truly look inward, and are instead content to rally against IKEA for feminizing their lifestyles, rather than doing any self-actualization. It’s violence over thought, as they embrace the “fascistic” new world order Tyler calls for, barely realizing that they are just becoming a part of another homogenized collective.”—What we talk about when we talk about ‘Fight Club’
[Community] creator, Dan Harmon, had us write these things called ‘spit drafts,’ which is basically an outline for your script. It’s the shape of that script. You write out the script scene by scene with dummy dialogue that you’ll later replace with actual jokes. For instance, the character of Jeff walks into the room, and Jeff says, ‘Here’s the point where I say that we should all go get a sandwich.’ And then the character of Annie will say, ‘I don’t want to do that.’ And then another character will say, ‘I have a joke here.’ You can have them do whatever you want, but you just have to get through the scene and have all of what needs to happen in that scene baldly stated.
If you can’t get through a script that way, then chances are your story doesn’t work. If you’re stuck and you feel like you have writer’s block, this is a really helpful method because it distinguishes between, ‘Okay, do you have story problems or are you having a hard time writing the dialogue?’ Also, when you write really quickly, you end up writing really good jokes anyway; it’s almost as if you trick your brain into thinking that it doesn’t matter.”
— Community writer Megan Ganz in a footnote, a goddamn footnote, in Mike Sacks’s comedy writing book Poking a Dead Frog.
Content warning: This post contains graphic language, slurs and triggering content
This article is heartbreaking. And true.
There is a reason I throttled back on doing a lot of creative gaming content a few years ago. And why I still avoid taking some jobs in the gaming world when they’re offered to me. And why, when we have a female host on any of our Geek and Sundry gaming shows, we have to monitor the comments on YouTube extra, to remove the many comments that are offensive and pollute our community’s spirit of equality. Because I hate that shit.
There is an endemic acceptance in the gamer world that “well, it comes with the territory” when a woman receives threats and harassment and the hateful anonymous internet dialogue is focused on her body and whether they would “do” her or not. I don’t know why this became okay. It’s a vocal minority that has been given way too much power over the industry dialogue, and I am so happy to see more and more articles like this shining the light on what reasonable gamer men and women have been conned into accepting as a given.
NOTHING is a given in this world. And frankly, it taints the art form we so love and keeps it back from becoming more respected and more diverse to not at least TRY to fight it. Gaming deserves more than complacency in this area.
Even posting this link will cause me to receive hateful Tumblr PMs. I can always tell when something I write gets linked on certain places on the internet (like 4 Chan or a few other forums of troll-hood), because I’ll immediately get dozens of hate mails along the veins of what is posted in this article.
Well, I’m a lucky one to be prominent enough to have 10 supporters for every hater. I mostly feel sorry for girls and women who aren’t in my position, who may just give up on gaming when they’re too beaten down to fight anymore.
We have to change that. For the good of what we love doing, gamers! Okay, back to work :)
Reminder: Harassment is not something that “comes with the territory” in any field. Do your part to make anyone who harasses women feel unwelcome. As a user, downvote and report harassing/hateful comments, and leave positive ones.
If you run a blog, YouTube channel, etc, moderate the comments so assholes aren’t encouraged and no one feels unwelcome because of their race, gender, or orientation. Especially if you’re lucky enough to be a straight white male. Cracking down on shitty people is a pain in the ass, but it’s your job as a non-shitty member of a privileged group.
“Watch an episode of Siskel & Ebert, and pay attention to the hosts’ hands, how they grip their knees for emphasis and raise their arms to exaggerate shrugs. Occasionally, they will perform a cutting or sawing motion using a rigid open palm, which signals disagreement or an interjection. These are invented habits, which were honed over the course of the three shows—Opening Soon At A Theater Near You, Sneak Previews, and At The Movies—that preceded the duo’s most famous program.”—I killed At The Movies · The A.V. Club: A first-person analysis of the decline of Roger Ebert’s most famous franchise
The thing about Thor is that his power is in Mjolnir and anyone deemed worthy can lift the hammer/possess the power of Thor. Wonder Woman and Superman have done that in crossovers and Captain America too. It's happened quite a lot actually. It's not clear how it's going to happen, though. How the current Thor will me deemed unworthy. We'll have to wait and see.
Wait so this is really a comic about Mjolnir the Hammer and whoever happens to wield it? Does Thor have any powers as a god that don’t stem from his hammer?
I get that in the canon of the series, he’s not a superhero modeled after the Norse god Thor, he is the Norse god Thor. But Asgard is just a planet, not a spiritual plane? So he’s an alien?
And so if the new Thor is a woman, is the old Thor a mortal now? Is he not the first Thor? I’m, like, barely caught up with how there have been multiple Robins and once there was a different Batman I think.
Great case study of a tweet by writer Chris Scott that went multi-platform viral—often with the credit stripped. (via Rachel)
It’s a frustrating and likely unfixable phenomenon: While you might get a lot of attention for a breakout joke on Twitter, you will also have your joke anonymized and stolen: both by users on Imgur, Tumblr, and Facebook who view other people’s work as “belonging to the internet,” and by online celebrities who will steal your work for their own “brand.”
Since I make a living by getting people to look at jokes I wrote (or published for people also trying to make a living), this shit drives me crazy. So far, I’ve seen no compelling way to change audience behavior. Every major platform makes it easier (and provides more incentives) to steal. My main solution has been to switch to videos, which are easier to embed than to steal (though Perez Hilton once went out of his way to steal my video “Shit People Say About Shit People Say Videos”).
BUT a lot of the virality, even on other platforms, included credits to Chris Scott. And of course this article will help him get his deserved attention (I’ve been following him for a while and he’s very funny). And none of that was possible before. So all the downsides are still just downsides YAY
“Writing isn’t a thing you figure out—ever. My favorite things I’ve ever written, I hate. That might sound like a weird thing to say. But anything I’ve ever written that I felt was really great, I inevitably will look at two years later and think, ‘Oh, God, this is so amateurish and terrible.’ But that’s a good thing.”—Mike Schur, The Office writer and Parks & Rec co-creator, in Poking a Dead Frog
“I think he had a complicated relationship with all of pop culture. He told me a great story about when he was teaching at Illinois State and he was given an audio tape of a band that he fell in love with, and he came into his graduate seminar and said, ‘I might be crazy, but I think this band is great and you all need to hear this right now.’ He then played for his students ‘Nevermind’ by Nirvana. It was about seven years after the album had been released.”—Parks & Rec creator Mike Schur on David Foster Wallace, in Poking a Dead Frog