Following Marvel writer Dan Slott’s recent policing of a fan’s Twitter activity, wherein he blocked and scolded said fan simply for following various ComicsGate-affiliated accounts, the current Fantastic Four helmsman has doubled down on his bullying, going on to take issue with the fan’s discussion of and demanding he delete tweets related to the incident.
Shortly after Slott’s passive-aggressive attempt to enforce an ideological purity test was brought to widespread attention by Bounding Into Comics, said fan, YouTuber Joshua Quirk, was invited to discuss his unfortunate interaction with the Marvel author in an August 24th livestream hosted by YouTube channel I Love Comics.
Appearing on the show, Quirk explained to host Engletine, “I don’t even see myself as someone who’s a part of the culture war. I just…I got accused of something and then I was like, ‘Wait, hold up, I’ve gotta defend myself.’”
Given that he and his interaction with Slott were the focus of this story, Quirk eventually went on to share links to both Bounding Into Comics’ reporting of the story and his own appearance on I Love Comics to his Twitter followers – a pair of decisions that would once again lead to him being the target of Slott’s ire.
As seen in direct messages exchanged between Quirk and Slott, provided to Bounding Into Comics by Quirk himself, once Slott took notice of Quirk’s sharing of the two aforementioned pieces of media coverage, the Marvel author charged into the YouTuber’s direct messages and bellowed, “Oh for f–k sake. Why is that the first AND third post on your feed? WHY?!”
“[Engletine] asked me to talk about the article, I stuck up for you and said you were actually a good guy, I really did, you can watch it,” defended Quirk. “And the [third] post is me saying “Oh Boi” because it’s the sh–ty website [Bounding Into Comics].
“Dan, I’m not an a–hole man,” the YouTuber reasoned in conclusion.
However, Quirk’s explanations were, yet again, unsatisfactory for Slott, who proceeded to assert, “Engletine IS a Comicsgate guy,” and confirm that “The WHOLE reason I originally said I was blocking you was because you were following Comicgate [sic] people.”
“And you were like ‘I didn’t know that’,” he falsely continued, as Quirk never denied knowledge that some of the people he was following were ComicsGate affiliated. “And you’re giving them a boost on your site and getting their word out there.”
Though Quirk affirmed that he “even came on here to tell you about it,” in an attempt to assuage Slott’s anger, the writer chose to instead lecture Quirk on his own personal belief that “Comicsgate is a hate group.”
“This isn’t a both side things,” he said, repeating his argument from his initial argument with Quirk. “This is a group that came into existence by harassing LGBTQ+ members, POC, and women working in comics. I can link you to dozen [sic] of mainstream press articles that break this all down.”
“NO Matter what BS Comicsgaters like to spin–they’re a HATE group,” Slott further exclaimed. “They have a member on their livestreams who’s associated with the Proud Boys (a reference to Lady Alchemy: Mutus Liber creator Martina Markota’s various appearances on podcasts hosted by Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes). This isn’t rocket science, man.
Slott continued, “You don’t balance that out by ALSO following Chip Zdarsky and John Siuntres.”
“This isn’t some kind of Algebra equation where it somehow makes it okay to “reach out” and have “conversations” with members of a full on hate group,” he asserted in his rant. “I don’t know how to explain it any simpler than that.”
In conclusion to his rant, Slott demanded, essentially, obedience from Quirk, stating, “Let me rephrase an earlier DM: Why are those STILL the first and third posts on your feed?” in a repeated attempt to have Quirk delete his tweets.
After linking to a number of heavily-biased and poorly-researched articles on the subject of ComicsGate from the Miami Herald, the Washington Post, and Inverse, Slott finally gave Quirk a chance to interject, at which point the YouTuber told the Marvel writer, “I’m not into that side of comics.”
“I’m actually quite ignorant on Comics Gate besides they are a cult,” wrote Quirk. “I’m friends with John [Siuntres] btw had him on my channel, he will say I’m not into that crap.”
Noting that he never had the chance to delete the tweets because he had been actively speaking with Slott, Quirk asked “What do I have to do to make you believe me? Dan, I’m a fan, I really am, please don’t make me have a bad experience with you.”
As Quirk followed-up his plea with the confirmation that said tweets were “gone now,” Slott mustered a “Thank you,” in response.
In messages sent to Bounding Into Comics, Quirk explained that he chose to reach out and share his private correspondences with Slott because “I’m actually really upset about it and he shouldn’t get away with this.”
When informed that staff would set out to write a follow-up article on Slott’s behavior, Quirk told Bounding Into Comics, “Thanks, I used to think you guys were crazy but I think I was wrong about that.”
Once again choosing to take the passive aggressive route, Slott followed up his exchange with Quirk by tweeting to his followers, “A hard to learn lesson of social media: Talking about awful people and bad faith arguments gives them oxygen. If you try to shine a light on a bad actor, you’re actually giving them a signal boost and extending their reach.”
Criticizing himself for deigning to speak of ComicsGate, Slott concluded, “And, here’s the even more frustrating part…If you talk ABOUT not talking about something on the internet… …you’re STILL talking about it.”
What do you make of Slott’s further attempt to bully Quirk? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!