Links: Saturday, October 4th

October 4, 2014 Links 1

A looping animated gif of cats squeezing through a round hole in a red wooden door outside.

Cat Portal

Today’s Links:

  • Ethical Conflict: When My Principles Collide – SonomaLass talks about the problems many of us have with GoFundMe (especially how they’ve profited off the murders of black men and boys by hosting defense fund campaigns for their killers) and links to ways to donate to Jane’s fund without using that site.

    Most of you who visit my blog are probably well aware that publisher Ellora’s Cave is suing Dear Author, and Jane Litte, for defamation because of her blog post reporting on the publisher’s business difficulties. I agree with Sunita that this lawsuit is intended to scare bloggers and authors, and I greatly admire Courtney Milan’s #NotChilled responses. It’s been amazing to watch the community of romance readers, bloggers, reviewers, authors, editors, et al., come together in amazing support of Jane in this.

    One recurring theme in all of the support has been a request for Jane to accept help towards the legal bills that fighting this lawsuit will entail. A lot of us want to be part of that, and today Sarah Wendell of Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, announced a legal defense fund for Jane through Go Fund me. Last I checked, the donations were more than $30,000. In less than 12 hours. That’s how strongly people feel about this. And while I think that’s terrific, I haven’t been able to push that donate button, because I have been boycotting Go Fund Me for a while now.

  • Lawsuit Claims Author Nicholas Sparks Is a Racist, Anti-Semitic Bully – Sparks always seemed like a jerk with how he never missed an opportunity to sneer at romance, but this is quite the story.

    In the words of a former employee (and the 47-page complaint that employee filed on Thursday), Sparks is a raging homophobe, an anti-Semite, a racist and a bully, who willfully kept minority students out of the North Carolina private school he founded in 2006, warned employees against publicly associating with blacks, banned students’ exposure to non-Christian religions, and discouraged faculty from assisting bullied LGBT students.

    The plaintiff, Saul Hillel Benjamin, was hired as headmaster of The Epiphany School of Global Studies in February 2013, under Sparks’ instructions to “take our little school and make it amazing, global and open-hearted.” Upon actually making efforts to diversify the school’s student body, however (only two of Epiphany’s 514 K-12 students were African-American as of August 2013), Benjamin says he was met with a “veritable cauldron of bigotry toward individuals who are not traditionally Christian, and especially who are non-white” from the school’s Board of Trustees and from Sparks, who allegedly told Benjamin that “black students are too poor and can’t do the academic work.”

  • Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow. – Dodai Stewart was the last remaining Jezebel writer worth reading. I hope her new job is wildly successful.

    Friends: Today is my last day at Jezebel.

    In late 2006, I was, as a friend once put it, “languishing” at a teen magazine. The work was fun, but I was no longer happy and I really wanted to work online. There was a post on Gawker requesting “magazine-obsessed” writers for a “special project”; the copy stipulated that applicants not send a resume, but instead, a short email proving magazine obsession. My email to specialproject@gawker (or whatever) was written addressed to Anna Wintour; the body of the missive contained a serrated critique of everything I hated about Vogue: lack of diversity, focus on prohibitively priced couture, fetishization of thinness, dedication to nepotism and cronyism, etc. I believe the email ended, “But I still buy it. Love, Dodai.”

    I had no idea, when I pressed send, that the recipient of that message would be Anna Holmes, with whom I’d worked briefly at Entertainment Weekly — and that the special project was to be called Jezebel. The site launched in May 2007; I started in July 2007.

  • List of ethical concerns in video games (partial) – Leigh Alexander responds to #gamergate whiners who insist they’re standing up only for better ethical standards in games journalism with an actual list of ethical issues.

    A list of real ethical concerns in video games:

    Video games are used to covertly advance the political agendas of arms manufacturers.

    The aggressive marketing of capitalist war games is an inspiration to the U.S. military, which could take a page out of games marketing’s book in order to push unpopular ideas on the public.

    Games like Littleloud’s Sweatshop or Molleindustria’s Phone Story are forbidden from Apple’s mobile storefronts, because they question (arguably deservedly) the ethics of manufacturing operations in impoverished areas.

    Developers who invest in design and publishing on mobile storefronts can expect to have free, unsanctioned clones of their games steal their revenue and come ahead of the original on charts with no action taken from the companies that own those storefronts.

  • Just a chance – Maria Camacho writes about trying to break into sports radio as a woman and how getting engaged affected her experience. Men are a problem.

    I’ve recently gotten the amazing chance to pursue my dreams. I decided to go to Radio school and chase the idea of having a voice in the sports community. Now, I always understood that it was a pretty tall task. It’s a hard industry to get into and there ratio of men to women is not even close. However, I always believed in my skills, in my potential, in my work ethic and I knew that if I went to school I could be successful in the industry.

    During the summer, just before classes started, I got engaged to my fantastic boyfriend and I honestly thought that my life couldn’t possibly get any better. I wasn’t expecting what was coming for me. When I started school I was in the perfect place in my life and everything changed. First of all, the moment people found out that I was engaged, everyone changed. Guys stopped talking to me as much, they weren’t interested in my opinions or anything about me. It was odd, I really have been used to attention always, but hey it is what it is. Then things got worse. I was shut down of different projects because “women can’t possibly love and know as much about sports as guys” or “advanced statistics aren’t that important, I know hockey.” After that conversation, I never got a chance. I never got to be part of the learning opportunity they all get to be a part of. I didn’t get a chance to share what I know and love, because I have a vagina. Not just a vagina, but one that they can’t have.

  • Flyers’ handling of Ice Girls situation leaves more questions than answers – Travis Hughes has a great article about the Flyers’ decision to reinstate their “ice girls” after fans booed the all-male ice crew at their preseason games. I reiterate: men are a problem.

    But whether it was the public shaming of the Ice Girls’ working conditions, or concerns from other fan bases that scantily-clad Ice Girls are the perfect example of the objectification of women in sports, or some other reason, it was enough to make the Flyers get rid of them this season.

    That didn’t last long. After just two preseason games, the team announced that after “evaluating the program,” they’ll be holding tryouts and bringing back the Ice Girls for the first game of the season.

    But the damage is already done. By getting rid of the Ice Girls in the first place, the Flyers already have made a tacit admission that there was a problem with their existence. After all, why would they have made changes if there were no issues?

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An ice hockey fan from north of Boston and the genre's most beloved troll, Ridley enjoys reading contemporary and historical romance, as well as the odd erotica novel. As someone who uses a wheelchair, she takes a particular interest in disability themes.

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One Response to “Links: Saturday, October 4th”

  1. Nu

    That Leigh Alexander blog is great. I remember that one expose on gun manufacturers licensing images on conditions, i.e. dictating to games developers such things as “only heroes can use the guns in the game.” But no, feminism is the bigger threat to games creativity.