DC comics artist Ethan Van Sciver finally had his live show with Marvel comic book writer Dan Slott on his ComicArtistPro Secrets YouTube show. I didn’t watch it live. I wasn’t planning on watching it at all. Dan Slott blocked me on Twitter. It was not for anything I did, it was because I follow Diversity & Comics on Twitter. Dan Slott employs a Twitter block bot that automatically blocks any Twitter user who follows people he doesn’t like. In this specific case, Diversity & Comics.
The episode on YouTube lasted two hours and twenty-five minutes. The discussion didn’t turn to Dan Slott’s use of a block bot to ban fans until two hours and twelve minutes in.
Here’s a transcript I made of Ethan and Dan talking about Dan’s use of a block bot.
Ethan Van Sciver:What about people who are sad that you’ve blocked them because, I mean you know, there’s who the whole thing about, and this I think this is the number one thing people have been asking, about block bots and people who feel like, “Boy they’d really like to have access to the things you say and also the things say, Diversity and Comics and the people who follow that channel.
Dan Slott:I don’t care. I honestly don’t care. It’s social media. It’s one aspect of… it’s one facet and I’m gonna if you were following some site that and I’m not saying it’s that’s if you were following a site and that site aggressively went after one of my friends and I know the full story of that friend and the person who was running that other site didn’t and they were saying things I knew to be false and things I knew to be lies and things I knew to be hurtful I am perfectly fine shutting that site off and not having anything to do with it and if I see people promoting that site and helping that site and encouraging that site, I don’t need to talk to them either. My friendship with the other people are more important that’s real life.
Dan Slott: I don’t care about little pixels on a screen. At the end of the day, a lot of people are pixels on a screen. They choose a screen name. They choose an avatar. They’re not being who they are in real life. They’re being a persona and I don’t worry about hurting the feelings of a persona, you know? I’m not worried about that. I’m worried about my friend over there that terrible things have happened to because of things online. To me it’s such a distinction that it’s weird for me for people to have such strong feelings about this Internet persona and not about this real person. So it’s yeah don’t care, okay.
Pixels on a screen? My Twitter handle is my real name. The avatar I use with Twitter is a photo of me. I’m not a persona, I’m a person.
Dan Slott uses a Twitter account with a Spider-Man logo as an avatar. It also has a blue check mark next to his name indicating Twitter verified him to be the same Dan Slott who writes for Marvel Comics. He then uses this verified account to block Marvel Comics customers because of who they follow on Twitter.
Does he ever go through his block list to see how many of the blocked pixels are real people with real names?
I’ve never engaged with Dan Slott or his friends, yet I’m on his block list. My only crime is following Diversity & Comics on Twitter. Everyone not named Ethan Van Sciver who follows Diversity & Comics has been automatically blocked by Dan Slott.
I don’t understand why Marvel Comics allows Dan Slott to do things like this. If he wants to have a Twitter account where he can block Marvel Comics customers because of who they follow, he should have to do it from his own personal, non-verified account.
Dan Slott’s actions make me want to never buy Marvel Comics ever again. I wonder if the other 9,000 people blocked by Dan Slott because they fallow Diversity & Comics feel the same way?
When I discovered Dan Slott blocked me because I follow Diversity & Comics on Twitter, I went to the Diversity & Comics Patreon page and signed up for $5 a month. If I’m going to be put on a special list for supporting something, I might as well actually support it.
I don’t support people who put me on a list because of who I follow on Twitter.
Was Ethan Van Sciver interview of Dan Slott a success?
If I had it to do over with, I wouldn’t have listened to this interview. I had a feeling Dan Slott was an obnoxious jerk. This video only confirmed it. I found it depressing to see how one of Marvel Comics’ most prominent writers could be such an anti-consumer asshole.
I discovered yesterday that I’ve been blocked on Twitter by yet another person, Melissa Morgue of The Feminist Fangirl YouTube channel. Since I’ve done nothing nefarious towards her or anyone else for that matter, I can only assume she’s using a block bot and blocking anyone who follows Diversity & Comics.
I was able to subscribe to her YouTube channel yesterday, but I noticed this morning that I was no longer subscribed. Either there was some kind of glitch that removed me as her subscriber, or she manually unsubscribed me. I’m assuming YouTube content creators can do that, unsubscribe people.
Even if a YouTube content creator can block people from subscribing to their videos, why would they want to? I’m assuming Melissa Morgue has a message and she wants that message to get out to the public.
Don’t preach to the choir, preach to the wretched heathens who don’t agree with you
From the title of her channel, I’m almost certain she and I disagree on some issues. There’s nothing wrong with that. I can listen to people who don’t agree with. In fact, I like to listen to people with views that don’t mesh with mine. It helps confirm my own opinions or if presented with enough persuasive evidence, it forces me to change my mind.
I try to base my opinions on the available evidence. When presented with new evidence that I find persuasive, I’m not only willing to change my mind, I want to change my opinion.
Back in the early 1990s, I was in the Air Force and stationed in upstate New York. I’d listen to The Rush Limbaugh Show each and every day at work. I didn’t agree with most of what Limbaugh had to say, but I enjoyed the high production values of the show. I appreciated hearing contrary opinions to my own. The night of the 1992 presidential election, I went out and cast my vote for Bill Clinton. I probably listened to Rush Limbaugh that very same day. Nothing Limbaugh said on his radio show swayed me into voting for George H. W. Bush. Rush Limbaugh failed to change my mind. I voted for the sexual predator from Arkansas.
I think I would be the perfect audience for Melissa Morgue’s content. I’m more than willing to give her the opportunity to change my mind about things. I gave Rush Limbaugh that opportunity. Who does she want as an audience for her content, only people who agree with her?
That seems like a massive waste of time on her part.
I am not an anonymous troll
I make a point of treating people on Twitter the way I want to be treated. My twitter account not only contains my full name, it even has a current photo as my profile pic. The same is true on YouTube. When I post comments on YouTube, I post them as me. I am not anonymous.
I think that’s why it bothers me when I’m blocked on Twitter. I’ve done nothing to deserve it. If you feel the need to use a block bot on Twitter and you’re blocking someone like me, you’re doing it wrong.
Dan Slott blocked me on Twitter for following Diversity & Comics. At least that’s what I assume. A lot of people who follow D&C can’t follow Dan Slott or even read is tweets. We’ve all been blocked. If I want to read a Dan Slott tweet, I have to fire up Firefox, not log into Twitter, and go to his Twitter feed. Since I normally use Google Chrome, it automatically logs me into Twitter.
Quick Twitter trick
If you want someone to unfollow you, but don't wish to block them:
If Dan Slott were a plumber and not one of Marvel Comics’ top writers, he wouldn’t be able to tweet from a verified account. You see the fancy blue check mark next to his name? That means he’s been verified by Twitter. The Twitter blue check mark is a badge of privilege and honor. You only get a Twitter verified account check mark if you’re famous and deemed worthy by the folks who run Twitter.
Milo Yiannopoulos, the obnoxious conservative writer formerly from Breitbart, had a Twitter account. Twitter shut it down because he posted mean things about Saturday Night Live actress Leslie Jones. Before Twitter gave him the boot, he had a verified account and then he didn’t. Twitter removed the verified account check mark from Milo Yiannopoulos’ account to punish him. I think he was mean to someone else before being mean to Leslie Jones. I don’t remember what it was or who it was against. I’m feeling too lazy right now to look it up on Ask Jeeves.
If the Twitter blue check mark was, in fact, a tool for verification, why then would Twitter punish Milo Yiannopoulos by taking it away?
If Dan Slott were a plumber, he wouldn’t have a blue check mark next to his name. His Twitter account would have just as much clout and privilege as every other Twitter account. In other words, it would have no clout and no privilege. If he wanted a large follower count, he’d have to build it the old-fashioned way, by posting interesting content.
Because he’s a top writer for Marvel Comics, he automatically garners followers. People follow Dan Slott because they’re interested in the books he writes.
How does Dan Slott use this privilege given to him because of who he works for? By posting stuff you’d expect to see in the comment section over at Daily Kos. What’s even worse is all the retweeting he does. It’s bad enough to read his political opinions, it’s even worse to read the opinions of others.
Did you know Dan Slott doesn’t like Donald Trump?
Pregnant Gold Star widow two days after her husband was laid to rest, while Trump was on his 75th golf trip since becoming President. https://t.co/59vYDle8kX
We get it. Dan Slott doesn’t like Donald Trump. If we all agree to this as a stipulation of fact, can he then move on and use his verified Twitter account to talk about the comics he writes? The verified Twitter account with a Spider-Man logo as the avatar?
If you’re a comic book professional and you’re doing things correctly, I should have no idea what political ideals you hold. Comic books, when done right, are a form of escapism. Comic books allow the people to take a break from the real world and enjoy a few minutes of entertainment.
If Dan Slott wants a personal Twitter account, he should create one. He could use it to post his political opinions. People who are interested in his fresh takes on Trump could then follow that personal Twitter account. He then could use his verified Twitter account to post about his books and the books of other comic book professionals. He should also stop blocking people from his verified Twitter account.
How can you promote your work to someone you’ve blocked?
Comics artist Ethan Van Sciver has a YouTube channel, ComicArtistPro Secrets. One of the things he does on his channel is to show how to draw. He normally draws superheroes, but my favorite video is where he showed how to draw disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein.
Van Sciver’s videos are pretty awesome. Not only is he a phenomenal artist, he has a way of speaking that is very relaxing. Watching an Ethan Van Sciver video is like watching Bob Ross drawing the Flash after you take a couple Xanax.
Diversity & Comics
I found out about Van Sciver’s channel from another YouTube channel, Diversity & Comics. Richard C. Meyer, the host of Diversity & Comics, recommended people check out ComicArtistPro Secrets. I did and I liked it.
A lot of what Meyer does on Diversity & Comics is roasting bad Marvel Comics books. The comics he roasts are the books steeped heavily in social justice politics. Thor is now a woman. The Hulk’s human counterpart is Asian. Iron Man is now a 15-year-old African-American girl. Ms. Marvel is a teenage Muslim girl. Iceman is now gay.
The reason I like Diversity & Comics is the videos remind me I’m not alone in my opinions. Not everyone loves the far left turn taken by Marvel Comics. I say this as someone who voted for Hilary Clinton this past presidential election and voted for Barack Omaba twice.
I’m not against more diverse characters. I’m against turning existing characters into diverse characters.
Ethan Van Sciver posted the following tweet on Twitter:
Dan Slott has a verified Twitter account. There’s a blue check next to his name. He has a verified account because he’s a famous comic book writer for Marvel Comics. He uses his Twitter account not to promote his comic books, but to virtue signal and argue politics. His politics are somewhere to the left of Bernie Sanders, Ho Chi Minh, and a random anonymous Daily Kos commentator.
Since I’m blocked from reading Dan Slott’s tweets, I have no easy way of knowing what he’s been up to on Twitter. I’d have to log out of Twitter before going to his Twitter feed. I guess I could pull up his Twitter feed in Firefox or Microsoft Edge. That seems like too much work. If he doesn’t want me to see his tweets, I won’t look at his tweets.
I’m not an animal.
Did Dan Slott block me because of my post about signing that petition? I doubt it. The petition was a parody and was not at all serious. If Marvel Comics cared what Dan Slott tweeted about, they could find out for themselves. They wouldn’t need a petition to guide them. Plus, it’s not like Dan Slott reads my blog so he would have no way of knowing that I signed the petition.
I’m certain Slott blocked me because I follow the Diversity & Comics Twitter account. That’s what he does. According to some people, Dan Slott uses a Steve Shives-like bot. It blocks anyone who follows certain Twitter accounts.
How many of Van Sciver’s subscribers starting watching because of Richard C. Meyer’s recommendation? How many subscribers started watching because of Dan Slott recommendation?
Ethan Van Sciver is doing a disservice to his fans. If someone is blocking his subscribers, not because of anything they did, but because of who they follow, maybe that person shouldn’t be his first YouTube live guest.
To be clear, Ethan Van Sciver is free to invite anyone he chooses for a YouTube live feed. Also to be clear, I’m free to unsubscribe from his channel anytime I choose.
The former gray lady of comic book journalism, Bleeding Cool, published an article about a joint venture between Marvel Comics and Northrop Grumman. Bleeding Cool described Northrop Grumman as an arms manufacturer and a maker of weapons.
From the article:
Northrop Grumman is an aerospace company
Not once did the word “aerospace” appear in the article. That’s funny, because that’s what Northrop Grumman is, an aerospace company. They make airplanes.
Here’s a list of some of the aircraft produced by Northrop Grumman:
A-10 Thunderbolt II
B-2 Spirit Stealth Bomber
F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet
F-35 Lightning II
The way the article reads, you’d think Northrop Grumman uses child slave labor to manufacturer AK-47s.
Also from the article:
The article was written by Jude Terror, one of Rich Johnston’s bosses over at Bleeding Cool.