BuzzFeed News finally released their hit piece on Ethan Van Sciver and ComicsGate in general and it might be one of the worst pieces of journalism I’ve ever read. We previously released the questions they sent to Ethan Van Sciver and the answers he provided them.
The piece written by Rachael Krishna might be one of the laziest pieces I’ve read in awhile, plus it wildly contradicts itself a number of times.
Krishna begins her article by using typical political buzzwords to define #comicsgate saying they “use racist, sexist, and sometimes threatening language to intimidate people they call ‘SJWs’ – or ‘social justice warriors,’ essentially anyone they believe is advocating for diversity in the industry.”
This is a patently false statement and anyone who has done a lick of research into this subject would see through it. One of the main targets in the hit piece is YouTuber and comic critic Diversity & Comics. Just browsing his YouTube channel you can see he doesn’t target “anyone [he] believe[s] is advocating for diversity in the industry.”
It took me all of 30 seconds to find this video where he positively reviews DC Comics Silencer. The book features “a person of color from the South Pacific, of Polynesian descent,” as described by artist John Romita Jr.
From my experience in the #Comicsgate community they seem to want just really good comic books without hamfisted political ideology from either the left or the right. There’s a reason why Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns is a beloved comic. The book puts politics front and center, but it provides a number of differing opinions and more importantly it tells an awesome story outside of the political arguments.
In fact, Sean Gordon Murphy’s Batman: White Knight also touches on a number of political issues and features a wide variety of DC Comics characters, and it is one of the best books on the market right now.
What’s even more interesting is Krishna actually uses a quote by a comicsgater that debunks her entire theory, “Can we just get off of feminism and social justice and actually print stories?” It’s literally right there in the quote that comicsgaters want good stories not political agendas.
The article goes downhill from there. Rachael Krishna tries to bring up G.I. JOE writer Aubrey Sitterson. However, she mislabels him as an artist. BuzzFeed would eventually issue a correction, but even the correction is still wrong.
The correction reads:
Aubrey Sitterson wrote G.I. Joe, and he was not brought back on to write Strike Force. A previous version of this post said Sitterson drew G.I. Joe, and that it was canceled.
This is false as well. Aubrey Sitterson’s G.I. JOE comic was cancelled due to low sales resulting from an extremely insensitive 9-11 Tweet. However, Sitterson would then be put on Scarlett’s Strike Force. That book would also be canceled because of poor sales.
This is just simple fact-checking that was not done for this article at all.
Not only does Rachael Krishna just get basic facts of her report wrong she also uses deception to paint Ethan Van Sciver and Diversity & Comics in a poor light.
As an example Krishna reports “Van Sciver denies any affiliation with Comicsgate and he has denied that his posts on social media are meant to dog-whistle Comicsgate supporters.” But just a few paragraphs later she’s associating Ethan Van Sciver with Comicsgate, “a fight like this catches the eye of a bigger personality in the Comicsgate universe — like Van Sciver.” She literally wrote Van Sciver denies any affiliation and then affiliates him with Comicsgate. What?!?
Then Krishna decides to claim Ethan Van Sciver harassed Darryl Ayo. Her evidence is literally Ethan Van Sciver asking Darryl Ayo to come onto his YouTube. Asking someone to a debate appears to be harassment in Krishna’s mind.
Krishna claims Van Sciver started a harassment campaign because “According to a sample of Twitter accounts reviewed by BuzzFeed News, the majority of the abuse against Ayo was coming from people who followed Van Sciver.”
Man, that’s some strong evidence there. Not. In fact, Ethan Van Sciver has literally told his followers to “respect people who are different from you in this hobby.”
In this day and age, actual kindness, not virtue signaling pablum, is precious. Reach out to, or simply respect people who are different from you in this hobby.
Talk about comics with them. Respect yourself and you’ll respect others easily. #MoveTheNeedle
— Ethan Van Sciver (@EthanVanSciver) March 21, 2018
Rachael Krishna then goes to become Kieran Shiach’s mouthpiece as he whines about “harassment.” Her evidence of this harssment is “trolls have attempted to set up accounts mocking him, as well as sporadic Facebook messages and YouTube comments.”
We’ve previously reported that Shiach has campaigned vigorously to try and get Ethan Van Sciver fired from his job at DC Comics and he has the gall to complain about harassment which includes sporadic Facebook messaged and YouTube comments. Wow! Tell me who is harassing who again? Oh, I forgot to include that Shiach has also demanded that Howard Chaykin also be fired.
BuzzFeed News and Rachael Krishna should be ashamed of this shoddy report. It’s full of flat out false statements, misleading accusations, and just lazy research. No one should take this piece seriously and it should be roundly rejected.