Ok, here's where we get a little serious for a moment. I need to get my 2 cents out:
The new episode of Briz 31's 'The Late Nite Show; which I was fortunate to be a guest sparked me to have some thoughts I needed to get off my chest. Why I'm even bothering to talk up against a very tiny minority I don't know. But, it speaks to 2 of my dislikes: Bullies, and internet "trolls". I feel like I can say something here, because the episode in question, I was a part of. And, I am friends with the people through the show, brought about from my toiling in comics. They have shown me nothing but kindness, so it strikes me odd the things that I have read, and feel I need to say something to clear the air and my opinion on the matter. My opinion is my own, and from what I can see, the people attacked seem to be fine and "shrugging it off". This doesn't mean that what was said is OK Anyway, enough lead in, you'll get the jist as I go.
The new addition to the sidekick roll the Late Nite show coped a bit of criticism from a handful of vocal people online via Twitter and via Youtube. Though it's extremely suspect that the comments have come from newly made (and from all appearances, "anonymous") accounts on both fronts, positive and negative feedback and the freedom of speech and opinion is absolutely fine. In most cases. And, I accept the fact that anything in the public eye is free game. It's important that constructive criticism and viewer feedback exists in all media. We live in a forward thinking democracy after all, right?
However, though I support and am thankful for the kind words I, and others, received from people in the lead up and aftermath of the show, some of the comments directed at the host, the cast and the cast's immediate family and friends has been downright disgusting. And I'm not dramatizing either. In much of the commenting, this isn't simply a case of the old "fake Geek Girl" vs the "Perceived Gatekeepers of Pop culture" (an absurdity in itself. Who are you to judge a person on what they like and HOW they like it?). This went far beyond that.
(I'm not going to repeat the comments, taking into consideration the wide age of readership the Soldier has. And, any more attention to the perpetrators is undeserved.)
It takes a hell of a lot to make me care what people think in this fashion- I deal with enough confrontation and, frankly, "****", to let silly stuff bother me. But what I've read was different. Potent, venomous, hurtful and crude. Some things I read bordered on pathological hatred. And for what? A mass murderer? A rapist? No. Actually, a guest on a volunteer community television channel. If I've missed the mark here, and there's more to this story, then I apologize in that respect only. If they've wronged you in some way, fine. Venting in public is not the way to deal with it. Judging by your barrage, let me assure you too, Adolf Hitler wasn't on the program that night.
It absolutely boggles the mind that a small handful of people could dredge up that much hatred and negativity over something so minor in the grand scheme of things. Seriously, if you're a "proud" internet troll, take a look at yourself. Ask yourself while you're patting yourself on the back after that last message: Would your mother/wife/girlfriend/partner be proud of the comments you wrote directly to a young lady and her family and friends? Honestly, it takes a lot to shock me. I was blown away. Personally attacking someone's appearance, your perception of their personality, your perception of their sexuality and insulting them and their family and friends in such an aggressive manner is not on at all, let alone doing it in such a cowardly fashion: anonymously via the internet. Considering the media and public furor over insensitive comments made by celebrities, media personalities and politicians in recent months, I would have though more common sense would have prevailed. I am sadly mistaken. The comments I read were absolutely terrible, and I questioned the motivation behind simply "not liking the choice a program made".
Again, I'm not one for confrontations and threats. One of my jobs, I get paid to have confrontations. My chosen sport IS confrontation. I'd rather a decent reason to have one, rather than pettiness. If I sense someone is going to do the wrong thing by me, I simply minimise the time I have to spend having them in my existence. Life's too short to suffer fools. I deal with enough headaches simply trying to get all my commitments accomplished over the course of months, leaving me with very little free time, or patience for fools. But, as thankful as I am for the lovely feedback I receive in my uphill endeavours to be relevant in comics, and for all the help, love and support I receive from the people around me and those who give a damn, I would risk my reputation to deadset uppercut any person who deemed it appropriate to berate, bully, name call, sexually harass or verbally assault a friend or professional colleague for no given reason.
Don't get me wrong here, folks: I am willing to discuss this in person at any time with trolls; please feel free to bring your concerns to me- I'm visiting almost every capital city in Australia this year; there's no excuse. I don't threaten. I simply give an opportunity for offended parties of my particular opinions stated here to give their reasons why they deem it appropriate to taunt and torment a young lady and her friends with horrible comments. I am willing to listen. And at least you'll gain a speck of respect from me for doing it in person for a change.
I think I've been reasonable and respective, yes? It's about time people learnt the meanings of those words.
It's 2013. Put your manners back in.
We Soldier on.