Ethan Van Sciver blocked me on Twitter

Last week Ethan Van Sciver, the glorious leader of Comicsgate blocked me on Twitter. The reason? He’s good at throwing insults, but not so good at hearing the truth.

It started when I commented on someone’s tweet about a donor to Richard C. Meyer’s lawsuit campaign. Meyer is suing comic book writer Mark Waid for slander and tortious interference. When Waid started a legal defense fundraiser on GoFundMe to help pay for his lawyer, Van Sciver responded by starting a similar fundraiser for Meyer.

Waid’s list of donors reads like a who’s who in the world of funny books. Meyer’s list of donors, not so much. One of Meyer’s donors is someone named Nancy Balbutin-Collins. She donated $11,000 to help Meyer sue Waid. She’s now the third highest donor to Meyer’s fundraiser.

Who is Nancy Balbutin-Collins?

Renfamous, Comicsgate’s number one enemy and one of the best people to follow on Twitter, googled Nancy Balbutin-Collins’ name and the first result was a real estate agent in Northern California. Renfamous then posted a screenshot of her real estate agent page, minus her contact information along with a funny comment.

Ethan Van Sciver blocked me on Twitter - Bent Corner

The screenshot was interesting because it showed Nancy Balbutin-Collins is not the type of person one would normally associate with comic books, let alone something as toxic as Comicsgate.

Comicsgate supporters responded to Renfamous’ screenshot by claiming it doxxed Nancy Balbutin-Collins. As you can see from the above tweet, this claim is not true. Nancy Balbutin-Collins chose to give to the fundraiser with her full name. She could have donated anonymously. When someone googles that name, the see her real estate agent page. If that’s doxxing, than Google and Ask Jeeves dox people every single millisecond.  I tweeted something to that effect.  This prompted Ethan Van Sciver to insult me by claiming I used to have ethics.

Who does Van Sciver think he is to comment about my ethics?

That was… strange. I have many weaknesses and flaws. A lack of ethics is not one of them. I’m a very ethical person. I responded to his insult about me, not with an insult toward him, but some much-needed truth about me.

Minutes later, Van Sciver responded with more insults.

How rich that he would dare accuse anyone else of engaging in a harassment campaign. He is the undisputed leader of Comicsgate, a group of people who constantly harass people. And what in the hell is a “lickspittle“? Did someone buy Van Sciver a Dennis Prager word-of-the-day calendar?

Conservative smarty-pants, Dennis Prager.

Not only have I never heard that word used in a sentence, but I’m also quite confident I’ll never hear it used ever again.

I pointed out to Van Sciver that he’s in no position to criticize and insult my ethics.

Ethan Van Sciver should feel embarrassed to insult someone’s ethics when he clearly has a problem in that area of his life. Part of being an ethical person is paying your debts. It’s unethical not to, especially when you have the means to do so.

Before the emergence as Donald Trump as the face of the Republican Party, most Democrat voters thought Mitt Romney was kind of a jerk. In retrospect, Mitt Romney is a wonderful and decent guy.

Remember, according to Mitt Romney, the candidate Van Sciver supported for president in 2012, corporations are people. When you stiff a corporation the money you agreed to pay them, you’re stiffing people.

Van Sciver responded a few hours later.

Van Sciver fails to realize foreclosure records are not private. They are public records. Nobody stole them. Too bad for him he didn’t consider that when he decided to simply not to pay his mortgage.

I found it ironic he called me a “piece of shit” yet of the two of us, I’m the one who pays his debts. Ethan Van Sciver does not. I was going to reply to his tweet, but then immediately after saying “fuck you” and calling me a “piece of shit,” he blocked me.

The only time I heard about Ethan Van Sciver’s foreclosure was on his own YouTube channel

I didn’t learn of  Van Sciver’s foreclosure from an SJW unless he is an SJW. I learned about it from him. He talked about it on two of his YouTube live streams. Van Sciver deleted one but left the first one on YouTube. He begins talking about his foreclosure at around the 21-minute mark.

According to Van Sciver, in 2015 he owned a house in North Carolina and didn’t want to live there anymore. He wanted to return to New Jersey so he could be with his now current wife. She couldn’t move to North Carolina because of a child custody situation. According to Van Sciver, he owned more on the house than it was worth, so selling it was out of the question. He said he was advised to walk away from the house and rent for the next three years.

Ethical people pay their debts

Van Sciver didn’t say who advised him just walk away from a house he still owed money on, a house he could afford to pay. Is walking away from a house because you don’t want to live in it any more unethical? When you still have the means to pay for, one hundred percent yes.

Van Sciver didn’t say he couldn’t afford the mortgage. He said he just didn’t want to live there anymore. It’s unethical behavior like this that makes it difficult for normal, honest people to get a mortgage. I would never walk away from my mortgage because I wanted to live somewhere else. It’s unethical and irresponsible. Van Sciver has no business accusing me of being unethical. I pay my debts. He does not.

Just to be absolutely clear

I do not have a problem with Ethan Van Sciver blocking me on Twitter. It’s not like I place value in what the man has to say. Not anymore. What I took issue with was how he did it. He sought me out to insult me. He implied I’m not ethical. I corrected him. He insulted me again with the same disparaging accusation. I pointed out that he was in no position to insult my ethics. I told him why. He then told me “fuck you” and said I was a “piece of shit.” He then immediately blocked me so that I could not respond.

What makes his behaviour even more outrageous is that I am his customer. I paid $35 for his 48-page CyberFrog comic back when I supported Comicsgate. He knows this. And I thought Comicsgate was about comic book professionals treating customers with respect.

Is Ethan Van Sciver a “real man”?

I block people on Twitter, but I don’t block people after I instigate trouble with them. I don’t instigate trouble with anyone, not on Twitter or anywhere else. Unlike Ethan Van Sciver, I don’t seek out to create drama. I don’t like drama.

Top artwork by the great Aaron A Alvarez.

Richard C. Meyer files lawsuit against Mark Waid

Richard C. Meyer, the man behind the Comics & Diversity YouTube channel, filed a lawsuit in federal court against comic book writer Mark Waid. He claims Waid committed “tortious interference of a contract” upon him. This relates to the incident when Meyer announced Antarctic Press was going to publish his comic Jawbreakers: Lost Souls only to have the publisher back out of the deal that same day. Meyer alleges it was because Mark Waid contacted the publisher and forced them to cancel the deal.

Richard C. Meyer also claims Waid defamed him. Meyer is seeking damages exceeding $75,000.

I don’t see the point of this lawsuit. What could Mark Waid say that would defame Richard C. Meyer more than he’s already defamed himself? Meyer has a bad reputation in the comic book community because he’s worked hard at earning it. He has hundreds of videos on YouTube where he says terrible things about people. Meyer refers to this activity as “roasting.” He focuses much of his roasting on women and minority comic book professionals, particularly members of the LGBT community. This roasting seems disproportionate considering most comic book professionals aren’t women or minorities.

Had Antarctic Press spent any time watching Meyer’s more disturbing videos? If they had, they probably would not have wanted to do business with him.

Where are the damages?

Because Meyer could not find a publisher to publish Jawbreakers: Lost Souls, he focused on selling the book solely through Indiegogo at a minimum of $35 per book. So far he’s made $397,104 on Indiegogo. That’s far more than he would have made if he found a conventional publisher such as Antarctic Press to publish the book. The book can still be purchased on Indiegogo for $35.

Part of the book’s appeal is the claim social justice warriors (SJWs) don’t want people to read the book. As one of the leaders of Comicsgate, Meyer complains vigorously on YouTube about the evils of SJWs. He claims SJWs are ruining comic books and causing comic book shops to go out of business.

If Mark Waid caused Antarctic Press to back out of its deal with Richard Meyer, he should thank Waid, not sue him. There’s no doubt Meyer has benefited greatly from publishing the book himself. Furthermore, what would Comicsgators do if they didn’t have SJWs to bemoan about?

Where’s the GoFundMe campaign?

Now that news of the lawsuit has been made public, I’m sure Meyer will start a GoFundMe campaign so Comicsgators can help pay for the lawsuit. That’s what leaders in Comicsgate do when they want to sue someone, they create a GoFundMe campaign and ask people to give them money. Perhaps Mark Waid will create a GoFundMe campaign. Comic book Internet drama fans can then see which campaign raises the most money. Considering how many comic book professionals Meyer has maligned and insulted, my money’s on Waid.

I supported Comicsgate until I didn’t

For a while, I’ve had some strong opinions about comic books. My biggest concern is that comics cost too much. The average price of a monthly comic book is $3.99. That’s too much for the amount of entertainment you get. Considering that it takes less than 10 minutes to read a 22-page comic book, it’s the most expensive form of entertainment I enjoy. In comparison, I pay $14.99 a month for an Audible membership and for that, I get one audiobook. I get hours and hours of entertainment for my $14.99. Currently, I’m listening to a book that’s over 17 hours in length.

The truth about Comicsgate

I learned over time Comicsgate was about all sorts of things I didn’t agree with. These things included:

Anyone who doesn’t agree with Comicsgate is called names. If you’re not down with Comicsgate, you’re a social justice warrior (SJW). Men are called cucks, soy-boys, radical leftists, or some other derogatory name. Women are called cum dumpsters, fake geeks, diversity hires, or worse. Since most supporters of Comicsgate hide behind fake names, they throw these insults towards people while protected by anonymity. I take a dim view of fake name people attacking real name people.

Comicsgate supporters claimed to want politics out of comics. That turned out not to be true. They were fine with politics if it was Trumpian in nature. I’ve watched live streams on YouTube with Comicsgate people and they never grow tired of bashing Hillary Clinton or anyone critical of Donald Trump. I reluctantly voted for Hillary Clinton and I’m critical of Donald Trump. When Comicsgate creators bash Hillary Clinton supporters and people critical of Trump, they’re bashing me.

Comicsgate supporters wanted comics to be more affordable until they didn’t. Everything began to change for me when the leaders of Comicsgate, Richard C. Meyer, Ethan Van Sciver, and some of the others began asking people to help fund their independent books. These books cost more than traditional comic books. A lot more.

Comicsgate related books

Jawbreakers: Lost Souls, Richard C. Meyer, 112 pages, $25 + $10 shipping.

Cyberfrog: Blood Honey, Ethen Van Sciver, 48 pages, $25 + $10 shipping.

Red Rooster: Golden Age, Mitch and Elizabeth Breitweiser, 40 pages,  $25 + $10 shipping.

There are others, but these are the most popular books in Comicsgate. They describe these books as graphic novels. Most people associate graphic novels with five or six issues of a floppy comic that have been bundled together into a book. Most graphic novels have at the very least 120 pages (5 floppy comics). The graphic novels offered by the Comicsgate crew have fewer pages. In some cases, a lot less.

What I find to be especially obnoxious is the $10 shipping. Since these books are only available through the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform, the only way to get one is to have it shipped to you. The price should then be rolled into the cost of the book.

Have Comicsgate creators never heard of Amazon?

These creators could have used Amazon to fulfill orders, allowing Amazon Prime members to pay nothing for 2-day shipping. I’m currently listing my old graphic novels on eBay. It costs only a couple bucks to send a graphic novel U.S. First Class Mail. If it’s too heavy for that, I send them U.S. Media Mail.

I supported Comicsgate until I didn't
Padded envelopes.

I ship them in padded envelopes I purchased in bulk at Sam’s Club. I can do this because the books I’m selling are actually graphic novels. Most of the graphic novels sold on Indiegogo are not really graphic novels so they need something more substantive than a padded envelope. I imagine at the very least they will need to be bagged and boarded and sent in something more rigid than a padded envelope. That’s what I do when I ship a single floppy comic.

Since the buyer is paying to ship when they buy a graphic novel from me on eBay, I make it as cheap as possible to send it to them. I get the impression these Comicsgate creators never even considered making the shipping as affordable as they could. They seemingly just don’t care.

Indiegogo is a terrible place for the consumer to buy comic books

I supported Comicsgate until I didn't

This IndieGoGo business model is beyond stupid. These books are far too expensive even without the extortionate cost of shipping. Any success these creators enjoy will be short-lived. Show me a consumer willing to pay $35 for a 40-page comic and I’ll show you a consumer who will probably never do it again.

I know I won’t.

By charging $35 for a 40-page graphic novel, these Comicsgate creators are making comics even more expensive than they are now. They’re also being rude to the fans. Charging $35 for a 40-page comic is rude. Comicsgate followers don’t realize how poorly Comicsgate creators are treating them.  That doesn’t mean they’ll never realize it. Just wait for them to get their wafer-thin $35 “graphic novels” and begin to realize what they could have bought on Amazon for $35.

The attack on Jeremy Hambly

Jeremy Hambly

Jeremy Hambly is a person who makes Magic: The Gathering videos on YouTube. Wizards of the Coast, the makers of Magic: The Gathering, banned Hambly for life over videos he made attacking, insulting, and harassing people in the Magic: The Gathering community.

During the early morning of August 2, 2018, in Indianapolis, Indiana,  Hambly was attacked outside a bar. He was in Indianapolis for GenCon, a massively popular tabletop convention starting later that day. Hambly didn’t know his attacker. His assailant attacked him without provocation. Fortunately for Hambly, he was unharmed in the attack.

Initially, I was supportive of Hambly, but then more and more “facts” about the incident came out or were changed, I began to question what really happened. Hambly was not only changing his story, but he was also deleting videos he initially made about the attack. It was then I began blogging about this incident with a more critical eye. These are the posts:

I did not know Jeremy Hambly was a leader in Comicsgate

Unbeknownst to me, Hambly was a leading figure in Comicsgate. I was unaware of this fact because I never watched a video of his where he talked about comic books. That didn’t matter. He was against Social Justice Warriors (SJWs), cucks, soy-boys, and “waamen” he deemed to be whores who were invading male-dominated hobbies.

It was then I began to get harassed by members of Comicsgate, even though I still considered myself a member of Comicsgate. I was harassed on Twitter and in my blog’s comment section. I actually had to shut down the comment section here for a while, the first time since 2006. It was bad. I’m no stranger to Internet bad actors, but what I was seeing directed towards me was a lot worse than the trolling I ever saw on Usenet.

I suddenly realized exactly what people were talking about when they spoke of being harassed by Comicsgate. I only wish I understood it before.

I also realized to be looked upon as a leader in Comicsgate, one doesn’t even need to be into comic books. What’s more important is your stance on women and men deemed to be radical leftist soy-boys. In other words, men who didn’t vote for Donald Trump.

The straw that broke the Comicsgate camel’s back

I supported Comicsgate until I didn't - Bent Corner

The thing that finally did it for me was watching a video by Richard C. Meyer “roasting” comic book writer Kwanza Osajyefo. In the video, Meyer was reading tweets from Osajyefo and used an effeminate “black” voice to impersonate him. Kwanza Osajyefo doesn’t sound anything like that. To assign an effeminate “black” voice to Osajyefo is racist and dishonest.

I’d watched these videos before, but they never registered with me as this video did. It made me feel ashamed I supported Meyer and Comicsgate.  I was also ashamed that Meyer’s degrading treatment towards Osajyefo never bothered me before.

It should have.

I can only imagine the harassment Meyer’s supporters directed towards Osajyefo after each of these “roast” videos.

I won’t associate myself with a hashtag movement ever again. Although I have beliefs, I’m perfectly capable of expressing those beliefs without the aid of a hashtag. I’m very much pro-consumer, so much so that I look at the Indiegogo campaigns of Comicsgate creators as nothing more than blatant cash grabs, preying on their followers.

The New York Comic Con is an harassment free zone

The New York Comic Con 2017 starts today. ReedPOP, the event’s organizers, have a strict rule about harassment. What is comic convention harassment? This is how it’s defined on their website:

  • Stalking
  • Intimidation
  • Offensive Verbal Comments
  • Physical Assault And/Or Battery
  • Harassing Or Non-Consensual Photography Or Recording
  • Sustained Disruption Of Panels, Signings, And Other Events
  • Bathroom Policing
  • Inappropriate Physical Contact
  • Unwelcome Physical Attention
  • Hate Symbols

I have never seen harassment at a comic convention

I’ve never seen harassment at a comic book convention, in that I’ve never seen any of the above take place. Then again, I haven’t been to a comic book convention in some time. Things may have changed a lot since the last time I went to one.

Also, I’ve never been to a comic convention B. Clay Moore, Isaac Goodhart, Kelly Thompson or Taylor Esposito were appearing. They are members of a super-secret Facebook group for comic professionals and in the group, talked openly about wishing to visit violence on Richard C. Meyer, the man behind the Diversity & Comics YouTube channel.

B. Clay Moore wrote, “The last thing Meyer is going to do is get violent at a con. But I’d love to follow him around trying to goad him into throwing a punch.

In response, Taylor Esposito wrote, “I’d love to yell “one punch” after you level him.

One punch? Looks like Esposito and I like the same kind of anime.

One Punch Man (Photo: Geek.com)

Time and space

The best defense against anyone wishing you harm is time and space. Put as much time and space between you and the person wanting to do you harm. The last thing you want to do is stand your ground and square off against someone.

Fighting is hard work. It takes a lot of energy to fight someone. Again, the best thing to do is put as much distance between you and your assailant. It doesn’t matter if it’s at a comic con or a Walmart parking lot.

Richard C. Meyer doesn’t have anything to worry about. He’s a six-foot former Marine who’s fought in two desert wars.

If you haven’t subscribed to the Diversity & Comics YouTube channel, you really ought to. You don’t know what you’re missing. He’s probably the least pretentious, the most down to earth person you could hope to meet. He made me interested in comics again, something I didn’t even know was possible.

Update

You should not subscribe to Diversity & Comics. Richard C. Meyer is a bigot, lazy, and dishonest. Sometime’s I’m wrong and when I recommended his YouTube channel, I was dead wrong. I was so wrong, I could not even see right if I climbed a water tower (to compensate for the earth’s curvature) with a high-powered telescope.