Continuing the discussion of marketing glamourpuss, this week’s letter was Dave responding to me when I wrote to him about a kerfuffle at the old Cerebus Yahoo Newsgroup (chat group), in which someone named Mike B. decided to have a go at me personally because I supported Dave in his views about women. When Mike did that, I decided (since there had been a lot of such people doing that at that time), to respond, and it quickly devolved into a “flame war”. I decided to tell Dave about the “flame war” and asked him what he thought about it. What follows is his response.
22 July 08
Hi Jeff -
What I think:
- I don’t know if this is common on the Internet, but someone “going postal” like that demonstrates to me that these environments are a waste of time for thinking people. However, given that there are people who fundamentally disagree with that (and given that you appear to be one of them):
- The best thing to do is to return to foundational premises, since the person isn’t actually “going postal” but is just covering for their own inconsistency/ies by using the literary equivalent of automatic weapons fire, counting on the fact that you will tire even in contemplating refuting half of the scattershot insults and accusations and, therefore, they win the argument by attrition:
- Ask: “Mike? How many female cops do you think there would be if females had to meet the same high standards that men have to? I’ll answer your various calumnies against Dave if you’ll give me a simple range ratio of minimum and maximum numerical percentages. But, let’s face facts: If your number is anything less than 50%, then you agree with Dave and I that feminism is a foundationally fallacious premise and if your number is anything more than 3%, then you have to accept that you are, by any logical standard, seriously deluded as to the nature of self-evident reality... and your histrionics here serve to reinforce rather than refute that fact.”
- Followed by: “To anyone reading this far who considers themselves a fan/supporter of Dave and his work, there is a program of people, gpv’s -- glamourpuss volunteers -- who are posting advance artwork for the series to as many comic book websites as possible. We have nine days in which to reach as many people as possible with preview artwork of issue 3 before the solicitation period for issue 3 comes to an end. Right now, we have very few volunteers and very many websites to ‘hit’. We aren’t doing this because we are Dave’s worshippers or Dave’s robots or Dave’s sycophants. We are Dave’s fans. When did ‘fan’ turn into such a pejorative as to validate using commentary you couldn’t justify use against a dog here on the Internet? I don’t know. I don’t think that Mike B’s commentary falls anywhere close to being a fan of Dave Sim and, so, I would respectfully suggest that Mike B. is in the wrong message board destination. Instead of wasting his time slagging Dave here, why doesn’t he go to some message board where there is a creator whose work he is interested in supporting and do something positive there?”
- “In conclusion, let me say that I don’t see anything positive happening in this environment soon and I would like to apologize for letting my sentimental attachment to what the Newsgroup USED to be blind me to what the Newsgroup has BECOME. Dave told me that he understood that my holding down two jobs over the summer would make it difficult for me to find time to serve as a volunteer. Having taken a good, hard look at my own situation, if I have enough time to waste engaging in a discussion with someone who is just going to ‘go postal’ on me, I can certainly find five or ten minutes to download images from gp #3 and post them to one of the many websites that hasn’t been ‘hit’ in the nine days that remain to do so.”
- [Parenthetically, let me add that, in doing so, I resolve to monitor whatever commentary surrounds that posting and will address whatever commentary surrounds that posting and will address any basic informational questions... but that I also resolve not to get into any ‘discussions’ there about Dave Sim personally, since I don’t know Dave Sim personally, having spent maybe a grand total of five hours in his company over a period of years -- and I sure wouldn’t want anyone claiming to know me who had spent that pitifully limited amount of time in my company at a series of public events. And, I further resolve to answer any questions about Dave Sim’s ‘misogyny’ with the female cop question... and then leave it at that.]
- I’ll also continue to read posts here as time permits but unless and until the Newsgroup goes way, way, way, way back to what it used to be and stops being what it has become, those posts will be very few and very far between.
That’s what I think.
I noted that the fax from Dave was time-stamped as having been sent at 03:25--3:25 in the morning. Thus, I noted on my copy, at the bottom, “Wow! Late at night, you get really cranky, DON’T YOU!?!” I don’t recall whether or not I actually sent that response to him, but later that day, at 9:22 a.m., Dave sent the following by fax, amending his earlier fax. He but an asterisk just after the penultimate sentence, “very few and very far between.*
*...and concerned primarily if not exclusively with correcting misinformation such as Mike B. was spreading in this forum suggesting that the gap of three months between issue 1 and 2 of glamourpuss wasn’t intentional and wasn’t done to give the retailers time to assess their first issue orders before ordering the second issue.
I don’t THINK this will or would work, but that’s the reason that I don’t have Internet access and why I haven’t looked at what’s going on on the Yahoo Newsgroup since before SPACE.
This letter from Dave left me nearly completely nonplussed. I had been trying to keep him updated as to what was going on but he, in a fit of pique, decided to hold me to the fire for not being more proactive in doing what he wanted his volunteers to do. At the time, I had very, very limited Internet access, as well as extremely limited knowledge of comic book stores and their web addresses, so participating in the “hitting” of various comic store websites, let alone downloading images to them (something that, to this day, I don’t really know how to do -- and that’s eight years on, when it’s actually easy), was beyond my purview.
I should add that I’m pretty sure that I did not send the above words to Mike B., as I would have then, and now, taken exception to allowing someone else to put words in my mouth. I may have paraphrased some of it and posted that, but I honestly don’t recall. If anyone who has access to the old Cerebus Yahoo Newsgroup Archives wants to look it up, knock yourself out.
Also, I was just a little bit (well, slightly more than a little bit) put off by Dave’s point number six, as I have never considered myself to be a “friend” of Dave’s. I may have written that I knew him personally, which is true, since I have met him in person and had corresponded regularly with him, at that point, for four years, but that doesn’t mean that I knew or know him “personally” in the sense that Gerhard or Sandeep Atwal or Dave Fisher or Deni (whatever her last name now is) do or did.
All I’m doing here is reprinting the correspondence, as it occurred, as accurately as I can, with a few typographical errors fixed along the way.
‘Cause that’s what I does.