Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Twigasm closes the curtain on Fandom Bullying

Alright, this is a post to pretty much inform you that we here at The Twigasm have had it with the fandom bullying going on in the fandom!  The Twigasm admins are going to share with you what fandom bullying means and what we plan on doing this week about it.  

The admins here at The Twigasm are deeply disturbed by the many episodes of bullying and ill-will that has been occurring in the fandom.  It's something that has to stop! 

The whole point of the fandom is fun, but when readers and writers leave the rules of common decency to the side, using the shield of the internet and anonymity to couch hateful behavior, it is a disservice to all who are involved. We are all individuals, each bringing our own perceptions and understandings with it when we enter the fandom, either as a writer or a reader.  If there is something we dont like, we need to remember that doesn't mean everyone else feels the same way. We all have the right to walk away without leaving hateful comments that do nothing but breed discontent with them.

When there are issues, its not necessary to broadcaast them all over the place, not when there are ways to handle things quietly, via PMs and DMs, available on Twitter, FB, and  Instead, people who feel they have an axe to grind have resorted to public slurs and name-calling, dragging in other readers and writers, to the detriment of the fandom as a whole.

 In the long run, what does it really accomplish? People's feelings are hurt, our writing is affected, the readers lose access to stories they have come to love.  Its time for the fandom to apply the Golden Rule of Life to what we do here, too. Do unto others as you'd have done unto you. Would you want someone dragging you through the mud, insulting you in a public forum, getting others to castigate you through emails, reviews, and public posts? If not, why would you do it to someone else?

 A special message from someone that isn't a admin here, but busymommy got her permision to post this.  It's from a note that was posted on facebook.

Here is solostintwilight's note
so call it a rant, an Author PSA... a request etc....

There seems to be a frenzy occuring with reading FF. A chapter updates and an author is begged/cajoled/pushed to update as soon as possible.

For some, that's easy. Many pre-write their stories and have buffer chapters... some don't, they enjoy posting with a fresh chapter, because hey... we enjoy the thrill the readers get when they read something we put our hearts in.

But, just like the stress and pressure of getting a work presentation or a homework report done, it takes time. It can add to the pressure to get it out there for the masses.

And frankly, as much as we as writers LOVE the love and excitement, I think we all need to look at how much work goes into these works, how it takes time away from Real life, family, our health, our work. And when there is the pressure to get the next chapter out there because the masses NEED it now... it can be a vicious cycle to keep up.

So, as a writer AND a reader. I want to lay a friendly reminder to folks.

Writers in FF do this for free. do this for the love of it. Do it to entertain their friends. They put their heart into these stories.

So let's be mindful of that. They don't HAVE to update twice a week. They don't HAVE to update weekly or bi weekly... And if they go a month or so... don't assume they've abandoned. LIFE happens. The world happens.

We trust that people will do what is in their heart. Sometimes that means taking a step back. Sometimes that means slowing down.

So when we leave those reviews- "OMG YOU NEED TO UPDATE NOW!" or we stalk or bribe our fave authors- think about what you are asking- and think about how the writer interprets it.

We know you love the story, we know you are waiting with baited breath. But remember we have lives too. And that takes precedence. Over it ALL.

We are blessed with some tremendous stories out there. Let's not push our friends away by pressuring them to get that next chapter out until it is ready.

My love goes to those authors I follow and read, I love what you create- I love that you care to give us that spark inside you head. And i support you in whatever you give us.

My love goes to my readers, who follow and read, and who understand what it takes to provide a chapter of words not just strung together, but sculpted and formed to entertain and offer you a place to escape.

Let's be mindful of one another. Walk in each others shoes, and show a little patience when things get rough.

I see my dear friends stress over getting the next chapter out- get sick over it- or walk away from our fandom completely because of the pressure that is unnecessary for something we all do out of love.

Those are my thoughts. be upset, be happy, by confused. But remember- we are all here to have fun and share. It shouldn't cause us stress or unhappiness....

I tagged a bunch, not because I am preaching, but that perhaps we can remind our friends, our readers and fellow writers about this... Much love


So with all this being said, this week we, The Admins here at The Twigasm, will not be posting a single post this week!! From right now till next Sunday we will not give you any recs, no teasers, nothing! We want you all to stand with us and stand against Fandom Bullying!

Please let us know what you think about this! We want to hear from you, share your experiences and let us know how that made you feel. (no naming anyone, though. If you do I will delete the comment)
Just remember we are all here for the same have fun and lately it hasn't been to much fun for a few of us! Which is something that is really sad.  I know I (Lady Ali) has been in the fandom for over three years and have loved almost every minute of it.  I wouldn't trade it for the world, but lately I have wanted to leave it all behind me because of things that have been going on. So stand with us and show the bullies what we think about it.  

(Also make sure you check out a post that will be posted right after this one from another one of our admins.  It will tell you all about how she feels about this topic.)  



I think that there is nothing wrong with a reader asking an author to update as long as they are polite. I would think an author should be thankful that people care enough to want the story updated. If a reader doesn't like a story they could care less when or if it updates. If they are enjoying a story then it is only natural they are anxious and excited wanting the next update. Does that make a reader ungrateful or a bad person? I personally think some authors (certainly not many) are extremely ungrateful at times. They want and even beg for reviews then get upset if those reviews aren't to their liking. I know that some people are demanding and even rude about it. Those readers are wrong. However just telling an author that they want an update or asking an author to hurry up and update isn't a bad thing. I would hope that it would be flattering to someone who is working hard on a story that there are people out there waiting and going a little crazy waiting for the authors next dose of brilliance. I hope that authors remember that when you put yourself out there you open yourself up to lots of things. Not all of those things are positive. Please, though, cut the readers who only want more of your work a break. They only want more because they like it.

I am a pre-reader for a few authors and a beta for a few too. I see what the authors go through, I have been in calls and chats with authors who are stressed out. I also say that in my reviews I leave I write that I can not wait for an update. To tell someone they need to update is asking them to take time away from their family. I like that you all taking the time to focus on this issue. We as a fandom have lost a lot of great authors due to the meanness of other. We as readers and reviews and I do say WE as in everyone need to say THANK YOU more to our authors that give us the amazing stories.

I've done the whole beg for an update thing but just as a way of letting an author know how much I love the fic...not too add any pressure. Being a fledgling author right now, I'd be ecstatic if someone begged me for an update...maybe that changes or something for those that are able to write stories that become popular? I believe in the do unto others rule, but maybe in this case, it doesn't work since some of us just don't know what its like to be begged for updates..

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@ the other two Anons:

Did you actually read the full post before going off on a rant?

They aren't complaining about ppl begging for more story or updates.. They are talking about bulling and effects of putting down ppl in the fandom for the sake of going out of their way to be mean to them.

I think this is something that has needed attention for awhile and appreciate their efforts to bring it light. Hopefully, some good will come out of this blackout and it will not just be another drop off piss in the bucket of life

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(sorry I had to delete the post before b/c of an spelling error oops lol it was driving me nuts lol)

We weren't saying that asking for an update is wrong in any way. But updating is hard for some people, writers are being threatened when some people are asking for updates. But the main point of this blackout is to talk about bullying in the fandom not the posting of stories.

Our main thought on this is to show everyone that being mean on comments, on fb or even twitter is hurting the fandom and its turning out to be nothing fun at all.

I'm tired of people being cruel to people in the fandom, I'm tired of people pushing others around. Its got to stop! A writer will post when they are ready, a group will post when they are ready, a blogger will post when they are ready. The fandom is supposed to be fun and its not fun when you are being lied about, or being talked about on other groups! Its ridiculous actions that we would see kids doing, but we are adults and these actions should be stopped.

Readers ask for updates most of the time because they just love the story and are excited about it. I don't see anything wrong with that as long as it's not rude. I'm grateful and happy when people leave these types of reviews.

As far as bullying. Unfortunately, as long as the "BNA"s are the ones doing it, and their minions are supporting them blindly, it's just gonna keep on happening. True story. From experience. And the only real option is grow a back bone and move on, ignore them or hope that their "minions" begin to see them for what they really are.

Yeah, not gonna happen, so, thicken your skin up and block or unfollow or do whatever you can to just pretend they don't mean anything because in the end, they don't.

Good luck and thanks for the post. It's nice to know some people see what's happening.

I love this. It's so true that bullying is getting out of hand. I think it's insane how people can get so irate that someone does something they don't agree with in a story. Who cares? It's the author's turn to tell the story!

As for the begging for updates? Most readers do that as a way to let the author know how much they loved the story. Ali and the others aren't talking about that though. There are readers out there who will continuously post on a chapter saying things like "I want the next chapter"; then two days later "Where;s that chapter. I have to read it!" Hounding like that is crazy and unnecessary.

I love that the Twigasm is taking a stand against such actions. I fully support you and I think it's wonderful!


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