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Some Housekeeping

I’ll be back with a post later this morning. However, I wanted to comment on something here first. Mad Genius Club has never made a secret of the fact that, even though this is a writing blog — or at least a blog by writers — we are readers as well. Each of us have different tastes in what we want to read and when we want to read it. But there is one thing that is a constant between us. Unless we are researching something, and that can mean reading non-fiction for fun, we want our fiction to entertain. As writers, we prefer making money for our work over suffering for our art. After all, we all like to eat and have a roof over our heads.

We have done our best to make MGC a place where folks can come to discuss the issues that concern writing and publishing. Unlike other sites, we don’t take glee in banning people and we bend over backwards to avoid doing so. We give warnings and then we warn again. In all the years of MGC, I can count on one hand — and still have fingers left — the number of people we have banned.

However, we have learned over the last few years that whenever we come to Hugo time, we get a few folks who come over with the sole purpose of condemning anything that doesn’t have to do with Fandom. We anticipated it would happen when the Dragon Awards were announced and then when the winners were named. What we didn’t anticipate was that one of the prime suspects would continue to ignore the warnings and then accuse us of doxxing them because we told that person that the only way they would be allowed to continue posting here is if they posted under their real name.

Yes, this person came back and accused us of trying to dox them.

Yes, that person’s comments have been deleted because they were told that was what would happen if they posted again under an alias.

Here’s the thing. When this person showed up, casting aspersions and making thinly veiled accusations against the Dragons, I did some checking. With only a very few exceptions, they had only commented on Hugo-related posts. This person — because it isn’t hard to find out who they are — is someone who does not tolerate what they see as dissenting opinions on their own social media pages. This is a person who has attempted, and on occasion, succeeded in having people kicked out of cons for being wrong-thinkers. I could go on and some of the others here may.

However, here’s the thing. It takes a lot to get a bunch of writers to get together to discuss what should happen on a blog, even a joint blog. The fact that this person took the majority of us out of writing and work to do just that says a lot. So, before you see it on Vile 770, yes, we did delete comments here. This was done after warnings — which you can find still in the comment sections on at least three recent posts. Did we like doing it? No.

We want free discourse here. As writers, we hate silencing discussion. But that isn’t what happened here. There was no discussion. There were thinly veiled attacks on a new award and why? Because it didn’t go the way certain parts of Fandom apparently thought or wanted it to. It’s not enough that they have turned the Hugos from a fan award, something it was founded as, to a Fan award. Now these folks are trying to tear down a new award because it let everyone vote — without paying for the privilege to do so.

So there it is. A very infrequent commenter was warned and chose to ignore the warning. That person then chose to use inflammatory comments to accuse us of something we were not doing, specifically of doxxing them. That person is no longer welcome at MGC unless and until they follow the rules as set out first by Dave and then reiterated by several others of us. But to accuse us of doxxing, when we are asking nothing more than to post under a real name, a name many of us already know, is disingenuous. We are not the ones with malicious intent.

And that is more than enough on this. Now to find more coffee and then figure out what the real post for the day will be.

96 Comments
  1. Respectfully, your blog, your rules.
    If the party involved can’t take a hint, then that’s on them. Cheers. Dan.

    September 6, 2016
  2. emdfl #

    Come on guys, it’s your house; one doesn’t have to allow a****les in ones’ own house.( Well, unless they practice a 7th century religion and you’re afraid of being called “racist”.)

    September 6, 2016
  3. Now I am somewhat wondering what I missed.

    September 6, 2016
    • Christopher M. Chupik #

      Me too.

      September 6, 2016
      • Andrew #

        Don’t be. It’s time better spent reading a Dragon Award winning book.

        September 6, 2016
      • Chris Chittleborough #

        It was boring and tedious trolling. The MGC admins have done everyone a favour by removing it. They also did me a big favour by removing my response to the troll. Thanks, guys!

        September 6, 2016
      • I think I caught some of it, then thought “eh, that stuff again? Yawn” and started skimming. It was more annoying than anything, lots of repeated stuff, old arguments, and then the whole “that’s doxxing! That’s doxxing!” bit. As Tim said downthread, the individual was playing fast and loose with some things. Kind of reminded me of the guy in the Ole Miss game who had a blatant pass interference, and then pointed at himself saying “Who, me? I was just inviting him to Sunday School, Ref, honest.”

        September 6, 2016
      • The Other Sean #

        Me three. And it sounds like I should be glad.

        September 6, 2016
      • Not much. Tedious time-wasting troll, flinging accusations, never answering reasonable questions, ignoring repeated requests, finally ignoring warning. No loss.

        September 6, 2016
    • Uncle Lar #

      “Now I am somewhat wondering what I missed.”
      Much wailing, gnashing of teeth, and cries of “it didn’t turn out the way we wanted so you all must have cheated!!!”
      In other words, typical response from butt hurt babies.

      September 6, 2016
      • “But all I was doing was asking a question! Why are you so mean to me? Wahhh!”

        September 6, 2016
      • Fair enough. And she’s probably gleefully squeeing to her coterie about how horrid we are. (Saw the reference to who it was below.)

        September 6, 2016
        • I actually figured that the behavior was deliberate, so s/he/it could run back to Vile770 happily screaming that she finally got banned.

          I’m wondering how many Clamps-mimickers we’re going to get now.

          September 6, 2016
          • Meh. I have a ban hammer…

            September 6, 2016
          • Patrick Chester #

            …and pretend “oppression” when in really it was them being an obnoxious jerk? Ah well.

            September 7, 2016
  4. Some of the Outrage Drama Warriors have a very flexible definition of doxxing, depending on who’s doing it to who. They probably don’t even think they’re being disingenuous.

    September 6, 2016
  5. It’s funny–in a “funny peculiar” not “funny ha ha” sense–I fit the profile of what the Puppy Kickers claim to want, and what they claim that the Puppies are trying to eradicate and yet I find Mad Genius Club to be a very comfortable place for discussing ideas and File 770 to be openly hostile on the few occasions that I have tried to join into discussions there.

    I am unapologetically New Wave, and I prefer Delany, Disch, and Dick to Asimov, Clarke and Heinlein. My own writing owes more to William Burroughs than to Edger Rice Burroughs. In this I am often in the minority in the comments–sometimes even a minority of one.

    And yet, the mood here is one of civil discourse. When people disagree with me they say what they are disagreeing with, why they feel that way, and keep the comments on the subject. We can talk about the craft without making personal attacks.

    I don’t come here looking for a fight. I read and comment on this blog because this blog has some of the most serious and practical discussions of writing and the publishing industry that I have seen anywhere.

    September 6, 2016
    • Christopher M. Chupik #

      Diversity: they obsess about it, we practice it.

      September 6, 2016
      • because we really couldn’t care less about what is so diverse about Misha on some sort of checklist.
        They demand diversity only in prescribed manners of narrowly defined forms.

        September 6, 2016
        • Misha behaves like a decent human being and participates in the discussion in an interesting way. That’s all we need to know about him.

          September 6, 2016
          • prezactly

            September 7, 2016
          • Xenophon #

            I completely agree about what we need to know about him. That said, I’ll add one more thing: I’ve rather enjoyed at least one of his books. Which I read and enjoyed long before encountering Misha here at MGC.

            September 7, 2016
  6. Sorry you had this problem. Hopefully it will go away. I much enjoy your posts on writing. My recent writing effort was spending a day proofreading The One World before its somewhat late paperback availability was launched.

    September 6, 2016
  7. emily61 #

    c4c

    September 6, 2016
    • B4

      September 6, 2016
      • snowcrash #

        Everytime I see these, I think that it would make an awesome game of Battleships.

        September 6, 2016
  8. Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard #

    Grumble Grumble

    I’m still seeing that Troll’s Posts (they were emailed to me). 😉

    Note, I was expecting the “ban notice” a day ago.

    September 6, 2016
    • I didn’t get the ones where s/he/it complaining about ‘doxxing.’ – not sure why, and I was rather surprised to wake up not seeing a lot of comments to catch up on over breakfast in my email (since I’m asleep at the most active periods for US based blogs.)

      September 6, 2016
  9. aacid14 #

    I’m taking a guess it was mostly ballot stuffing allegations. Admittedly I am looking forward to ballot numbers from Dragon to gauge how first year went. But until we see numbers in the range that could be Gamed, tie goes to the runner. All the allegations do at this point is throw mud to obscure whatever we find later. Print the allegations in bold above the fold, retract and correct on D26.

    As for the trespassed, argument by repetition is not discussion. Your house, your rules. Other than fish offal I can think of very few occasions where any unrequested (by post author) censoring has occurred. Pretty much all were the argument by repetition.

    On a more positive note, I will say most commenters here self police themselves, avoiding hot buttons and tend to be very civil…if not typically tongue thru cheek. Very enjoyable lil clubhouse/lecture hall/coffee house/nuthouse here. Thanks to all of you

    September 6, 2016
    • As currently constituted the Dragon Award is *stuffable* – trivially so – but that by itself does not imply it was *stuffed*. I very much doubt that much, if any, dodgy voting occurred as the result matched my expectations based on a shenanigan-free vote.

      What they will do in future votes is an interesting question.

      September 6, 2016
      • “What they will do in future votes is an interesting question.”

        Only if you consider who wins a book award important, for financial and/or political reasons. Absent that, how votes are run is entirely uninteresting. Its a book award, not a statistics class.

        September 6, 2016
        • 🙂 Everything is a statistics class for me Phantom.

          September 6, 2016
        • tomas #

          How votes are run is very interesting. Even for book awards. If anything, the “trivial” elections let you play around with the rules more to see what might happen – with how conservatively the rules for “serious” elections are treated, there are very few natural experiments in voting theory.

          September 6, 2016
          • Very true – experiments in collective decision making are important.

            September 6, 2016
    • Ah, yes. Must’ve been ballot stuffing. Yup. No possible alternative explanation, such as, oh, I don’t know, Larry Correia having metric craptons of fans.

      I saw Kameron Hurley crowing over on Vile770 about her advances going up to $20,000 after winning a major award.

      Meanwhile, Larry Correia is buying a friggin’ mountain.

      Based purely on that, I leave it to the viewing audience to decide which of the two is likely to have more actual sales (and actual fans).

      September 7, 2016
      • Son of the Black Sword by Larry Correia, Kindle edition. Released October 15, 2015. Amazon sales rank: #5,194.

        Empire Ascendant by Kameron Hurley, Kindle edition. Released October 6, 2015. Amazon sales rank: #297,019.

        Definitely ballot stuffing. Definitely. 🙂

        September 7, 2016
      • Looking back at my advances in the 80’s, she’s not even keeping up nwith inflation.

        September 7, 2016
      • aacid14 #

        Advance vs total profit. Lil difference there.

        I am hopeful for a healthy start (yes I voted and yes for Larry, wholeheartedly).

        September 7, 2016
      • Larry was ridiculously happy that he won- and surprised I gather- because he won versus Jim Butcher. Then Jim goes and says he voted for Larry becaause he honestly felt that SoTBS was a better book.

        September 7, 2016
  10. But wait a minute, without our concern troll how will we know when to be unhappy! Seems like a terrible risk. You’d better install some trigger warnings. How about, “Warning, unwarranted joy may occur at any time. In case of emergency break glass with hand, yell ouch and bleed profusely.”

    September 6, 2016
  11. I saw the comment in email this morning, and was about to reply “That’s not doxxing, she’s *asking* you to identify yourself” when I noticed it was deleted.

    Ah well, they seemed to be not-so-concerned with facts; I caught them playing fast and loose with the comparison numbers they wanted to use.

    September 6, 2016
    • Once upon a time, way back when (in Elf Life forums iirc likely for Winger) I started using the name I give folks when we meet when a leftoid accused me of being brave while hiding behind my screen name. So I gave them name and city (and with my name, you are not going to find multiples) and low, they never came clean themselves.
      This is my shocked face.
      okay, no it isn’t.

      September 6, 2016
  12. c4c

    September 6, 2016
  13. Matthew #

    Not that I care all that much, but I’m mildly curious. Was it the Camel?

    September 6, 2016
    • No, ’twas a kitten.

      September 6, 2016
      • Christopher M. Chupik #

        Oh, well, that makes sense then.

        September 6, 2016
      • The one in question is most definitely not a Jellico Cat.

        September 6, 2016
        • Sorry that was supposed to be Jellicle Cat. For some reason I keep getting the name confused with a mountin on the TN/KY boarder. 😉

          September 7, 2016
    • If you mean me, then apparently not.

      September 6, 2016
  14. Draven #

    c4c

    September 6, 2016
  15. One could argue that a lot of us are here under fake names. Then again, most of the moderators here also know me with my real name, and I expect they also know the IDs of most of our regulars as well.

    September 6, 2016
    • Anyone with a lick of sense uses a fake name these days. SWATing is a thing.

      September 6, 2016
      • But the thing is, as I noted, discussing the topic. Not sidestepping, goalpost moving, etc.

        September 6, 2016
      • That, and potentially being the victim of a catfishing is why I am very careful to not reveal my current location. The most that folks will get out of me is state, at best. Otherwise, ‘Australia.’

        September 6, 2016
        • I have a lot of land, a neighbor with a backhoe,and very practical laws.. Anyone wants to find me…

          September 7, 2016
          • The laws around here are less practical, because Canada, but with long sight-lines and a backhoe…

            …I still go with the fake name. Because I’m lazy. 🙂

            September 7, 2016
    • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard #

      Nod, but most of us aren’t being Jerks. 😉

      Of course, how many people here have met me?

      Note, Sarah Hoyt has. 😀

      September 6, 2016
      • Paul I’m fairly sure I’ve met you. 🙂

        September 6, 2016
        • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard #

          Did I tell you that you snore?

          If I did, I’d be lying. 👿

          September 6, 2016
    • And you guys discuss the topics, even when you don’t agree. The person involved — nope.

      September 6, 2016
    • Xenophon #

      I’m definitely here under a fake name. I started posting/commenting under this name maybe… 20 or so years ago. It’s probably not difficult to trace it back to me even if you’re not an admin who has access to my email address.

      I used to occasionally post and comment under my real name too. But a couple of jobs ago I worked at an FFRDC, in a position where any public comment I might make could maybe (possibly, somehow) be twisted into some remote semblance of something that might resemble something that might become official gov’t policy, maybe. I was actually a bit more remote from policy than that. Nevertheless, the job came with the requirement that I refrain from any public comment on anything (except politics, oddly enough), to avoid any possible semblance of impropriety. Said requirement carried no consequences in terms of the legal system, only consequences regarding continued employment.

      Since then, I’ve been in the habit of using my screen name only. It provides just enough distance to avoid work-related issues without actually preventing anyone who cares from finding me. And if any of the admins care, they have only to ask.

      September 7, 2016
  16. Amanda, you can borrow this if you want: http://phantomsoapbox.blogspot.ca/2015/02/the-iron-finger-of-deletion.html

    Just hose it off when you’re done.

    September 6, 2016
  17. Arwen #

    Heh. I am fortunate in that my real name sounds like a fake name.

    September 6, 2016
    • Ironically so does mine but it is very real. Not my birth name but what I changed it to at 18.

      September 6, 2016
  18. My real name is a fake name. Eh. I yam who I yam…

    September 6, 2016
    • Popeye o marinheiro!

      September 7, 2016
    • emily61 #

      Your name is not really Hoyt?

      September 7, 2016
      • Paul (Drak Bibliophile) Howard #

        IIRC “Sarah” wasn’t part of the long name she was given at birth. 😉

        September 7, 2016
      • It is Hoyt. It is also legally in the US Sarah. BUT Portugal never RECOGNIZED either the name change or the citizenship change (though I mailed the passport back, as I was told to) so… it’s complicated. And it’s not the name I was given by my family. Eh.

        September 7, 2016
        • snelson134 #

          They didn’t recognize it? I’ve heard of that at the nation level, but not at the individual….. unless they’re convinced you are in fact a head of state (Beautiful but Evil Space Princess).

          Bureaucrats….

          September 10, 2016
          • Portugal is just terminally disorganized. They also haven’t recognized my marriage yet. 😀

            September 11, 2016
    • kentuckydan #

      I have had the same user name for almost 20 years and it has yet to be rejected on any website because anyone was already using it put kentuckydan into google you will not have any trouble finding my real name,

      September 7, 2016
      • emily61 #

        I googled kentuckydan and found several dans.

        September 7, 2016
  19. Uncle Lar #

    Point may be moot. I understand that kitteh in its other persona is actively attacking Breitbart operatives and anyone else making rude comments on HRC’s health issues.
    That’s gotta take a good bit of time in and of itself.

    September 6, 2016
    • BobtheRegisterredFool #

      Some people would vote for a major party if they were certain that party’s candidate were terminally ill.

      Health of the candidates is relevant, but I think discussion may ultimately be pointless. Both are seventy. Historically, the stress of the presidency has seemingly aged office holders much faster than normal. Perhaps not giving a fuck can avoid that issue. If not, dying of natural causes before the term expires isn’t at all impossible for any of them.

      I haven’t looked up HRC’s doctor. IIRC, Bornstein doesn’t take medicare, which may imply relatively little experience with elderly patients. His practice may not have given him the experience needed to best make that call.

      September 8, 2016
  20. Perhaps as an act of tact and politeness, even if you do not think it is deserved or earned, File770 might not be referred to as Vile770. Or perhaps you think that the evidence shows that they have earned the name.

    September 7, 2016
    • George, I’ll be honest. I think they have earned it. I, as well as many others here, tried being tactful and polite where they are concerned. What we got in return is the sort of name calling and false accusations you can find in the comments there. Mike Glyer might like to represent the site as being open to everyone but it isn’t. Ask anyone who is an identifiable Sad Puppy supporter and who has gone there to comment. Ask any of us who have had our posts linked there and then been eviscerated in the comments simply because we aren’t the right sort of fans. Believe me, calling it Vile770 is a lot nicer than what I could call it. Shrug.

      September 7, 2016
      • I call it File5150. Them folks is got conditions.

        September 7, 2016
      • I thought it was worth asking, but I will take your word for it.

        September 7, 2016
        • George, thank you and thanks for asking. Most of us — and probably on both sides of the debate — would prefer if we could just talk about the merits of the work and not let it devolve into politics, etc. But the rhetoric by a few on both sides has made it almost impossible to have a non-heated discussion. An example of this is what is happening on FB right now in a thread about the Dragon Awards. Someone asked members of this particular forum if they had been aware of the Awards before going to DragonCon. A couple of others instantly went on the attack, accusing Sad Puppies of being racist, stuffing the ballot box, etc. No proof behind their accusations and no attempt to back their positions with facts when asked.

          September 7, 2016
    • Andrew #

      Go there under a different username.

      Identify as a Puppy Supporter.

      Then come back and tell us whether or not Vile770 is accurate.

      September 7, 2016
    • Christopher M. Chupik #

      They’ve earned it many, many times over by now.

      September 7, 2016
    • georgephillies said: “Perhaps as an act of tact and politeness, even if you do not think it is deserved or earned…”

      I do believe this one falls under “what goes around, comes around,” george. I mean, have you -read- some of the stuff they say?

      September 7, 2016
      • Yes.

        September 7, 2016
        • Yet you come here to take issue that some here call them “vile770” – which is rather tame as insults go, and *very* tame compared to the insults thrown in MGC’s direction. Which you know, because you admit to having read them.

          And you still come here to ask *us* to rhetorically disarm.

          September 7, 2016
          • Conservatives are supposed to back down Jeff. That’s the deal. They advance a step, we back up a step. If we don’t back up fast enough, we get a lecture on tact and politeness.

            Kinda done with backing up, myself. I think I’ll take a step forward instead. They’re going to scream anyway, let them scream because I’m up in their face, standing on their toes.

            September 7, 2016
            • I raised the issue, and am happy with the answer. Of course, I am not a conservative, not a neocon, and not a liberal. I have read only parts of 770, and must have missed the really bad stuff.

              My feeling was more that Vile770 was a bit less than profound.

              Profound? As opposed, say, to doing a serious comparison of a book by an author of that side, to be named by someone else, with say, Twiford’s Sown in the Darkness AD 2000, making favorable reference to the latter. For those of you fortunate enough to be unfamiliar with the latter, it’s Military SF as written in 1939, complete with the 250 foot long tanks. If you have played Invasion America! in the SPI or plastic figure versions, you know the military plot. And it had some clever predictions: good depiction of women’s bathing suits, electric power generation by banked wind turbines and wind kites, not to mention typewriters with good voice-to-text.

              You may correctly assume I am saving a “feature” for the end.

              The author was –said one of my sources — a Grand Dragon of the KKK, and you may correctly assume that his solution to everything is segregation forever.

              September 7, 2016
              • How does this work? you are making clear who are the real racists.
                Of course, you have to find a book for which the comparison would be honest.

                September 7, 2016
              • snelson134 #

                Considering that a number of colleges are in the process of bringing back separate segregated facilities for various Official Victim Groups, George Wallace may be owed an apology for predicting “segregation forever.”

                September 10, 2016
  21. It seems after http://www.tor.com/2015/06/08/a-message-from-tom-doherty-to-our-readers-and-authors/ the kicking Puppies group have moved their comments from Makinglight forum(Patrick Hayden’s site) to File770. It probably gives them some separation. I also think Patrick Hayden would like to become TOR’s lead editor when Tom Doherty(80+) retires.

    September 7, 2016
    • I doubt there will be a TOR left for Mr. Hayden to lead when TD retires. The staff have been working assiduously to drive it into the ground for some years now, and they may yet succeed.

      September 7, 2016
      • Sam L. #

        Eating the eggs of the Golden Goose, is the indirect way of having no more Golden Goose.

        September 7, 2016
    • Dav #

      “I also think Patrick Hayden would like to become TOR’s lead editor when Tom Doherty(80+) retires.”

      I suspect Mr. Doherty’s daughter will have a larger say in that decision than Mr. Hayden wants her too.

      September 7, 2016
      • How? Tom doesn’t own any part of TOR as far as I know. He sold it years ago.

        September 7, 2016

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