Monday News: Did Sony pirate books on hacking; some history on the Hugos; comics and “casual” fans; and a bigger market for manga
For the sake of thoroughness, I went to the O’Reilly website and tried to buy Inside Cyber Warfare and Hacking the Next Generation. I bought Hacking, but passed on Carr’s Inside Cyber Warfare because Sony’s copy was the first edition, and I could only buy the second edition.
After an hour of eyeballing the two versions of Hacking, I can’t find any evidence that would show that Sony’s copy was any less legal than my copy. Sony’s copy was slightly larger (7MB vs 6.47MB) and had not been modified since it was produced in 2009. My copy had been modified in 2013. –Boing Boing & Ink, Bits, & Pixels
Ever since science fiction coalesced as a distinctive fan community in the late 1920s (as a result of the efforts of editor Hugo Gernsback), it has been a white boys’ club. The virtual absence of non-white writing in the field was paralleled by the near invisibility of women writers. For many decades, the most successful female writers had to cloak their identity with initials, ambiguous names, or pseudonyms (C.L. Moore, Leigh Brackett, James Tiptree, Jr.). Even the women writers who didn’t disguise themselves as men adopted a male point of view in order to get their fiction published. “Writing was something that men set the rules for, and I had never questioned that,” Ursula K. Le Guin noted in a Paris Review interview. “The women who questioned those rules were too revolutionary for me even to know about them. So I fit myself into the man’s world of writing and wrote like a man, presenting only the male point of view. My early books are all set in a man’s world.”
The history of the Hugo Award, created in 1953 and named after Gernsback, is telling. In 1968, Anne McCaffrey became the first woman to win a Hugo for fiction. Between 1959 and 2014, the fiction nominations went to women 22 percent of the time (this statistic is complicated by the fact that one of these female nominees, James Tiptree Jr., was during some of this period widely assumed to be a man). In recent years, the percentage of female fiction nominees has shot up, reaching roughly parity levels between 2011 and 2013. –New Republic
There is a problem of attribution on Tumblr: art lifted, reblogged bereft of credit, edited, mis-credited and plagiarized. There is an even wider problem of broken telephone: facts repeated, mis-repeated, straight up falsified, and not sourced. It’s impossible to control the dissemination of information on platforms like Tumblr (like the internet). And sometimes, in the case of speaking truth to power, that’s a good thing. Other times, in the case of bullying, hoaxes, or IP theft, it’s frustrating in the extreme.
There is not, however, a Tumblr-specific problem of fake fans who can’t be converted from casual appreciators into enthusiastic consumers. Artists are owed credit for their work and payment where it is requested or required, but they are not owed customers or engagement in their preferred mode. Let’s unpack. –Women Write About Comics
In an effort to expand the North American manga market, publishers are adding a variety of new products to their lists, among them tie-ins to popular franchises, light novels (prose works based on manga and anime series), manga-themed tabletop games and even explicit, sex-positive manga series.
In 2014, Yen Press, Hachette’s manga and graphic novel imprint, launched Yen On, a dedicated imprint for light novels. Kurt Hassler, publishing director of Yen Press, was so pleased with early returns, “we quickly made a decision to double our release plans for 2015.” Said Hassler: “We have six light novels slated for publication in April, half of those being new series.” This includes Log Horizon, The Devil is a Part-Timer!, and No Game No Life. –Publishers Weekly