Wednesday News: Tor v. Irene Gallo, Warner Bros. v Friends fans, social benefits of birth control, and a language tree
I STAND BY IRENE GALLO – So Irene Gallo, creative director and associate publisher for Tor, made a strongly worded comment about the Sad and Rabid Puppies on her personal Facebook page. Afterward, she clarified that the comment was personal and not said in her capacity as a Tor employee. The Sad/Rabid Puppies got mad and then loud about it. Which resulted in Tor publisher Tom Doherty
standing by Gallo publicly condemning Gallo and basically apologizing to the Sad and Rabid Puppies. I figure the fact that I agree with Chuck Wendig on this is an indication of how gross this situation really is.
Regardless of whether or not you agree with what she said, the fact remains: her publisher publicly rubbed her nose in the mess, then threw her under a bus, then threw her body to a pack of wolves. Again: publicly. Not privately. Perhaps this was all part of some legal stratagem or even a legal necessity — but what it feels like is an entreaty by the publisher to appease folks who believe and opine about really horrible things. And any time you want to make sure that your “inclusiveness” includes the most awful amongst us, please understand you’re not creating a safe space for anybody but the abusers. It’s like putting up a sign in your flowerbed: POISON IVY WELCOME.
I stand by Irene Gallo because she is a person who has the right to air her personal sentiments, regardless of whether or not we find them disagreeable. She has that right without being smacked across the nose by her employer in a sanctioned public shaming. I do not agree with Tor’s posturing on this point because it represents a double-standard of sexism and favoritism. I do not agree with Tor because they are opening the tent flap to the worst among us. The publisher is cultivating an invasive species with a letter like that. They are lending them space on the debate floor, turning this whole affair into a clownish, brutal, and bullying mosh pit.–Terrible Minds
Warner Bros. Fined a Fan $20 for Pirating the 31st-Best Friends Episode – In another episode of internet WTF-ery, Warner Bros has apparently hired Rightscorp to send letters to people who have downloaded an old episode of Friends via BitTorrent, magnanimously offering them a $20 “settlement” for their egregious actions, which have resulted in substantial damages to WB. WAY more than $20, y’all. For downloading an episode of Friends, the show you can still watch at almost any hour on any day, somewhere on tv.
What are the alleged damages to Warner Bros? The cost of contracting a company to email alleged pirates of a show about delightfully quirky white New Yorkers with unrealistically huge apartments?
Rightscorp represents a couple of large clients in Warner Bros. and BMG Music, but its business model is apparently not working out especially well. In an SEC filing last year—(“The One Where The Company Has Not Yet Established an Ongoing Source of Revenues Sufficient to Cover Its Operating Costs and to Allow It to Continue as a Going Concern”)—Rightscorp disclosed net losses of $6.5 million since it was founded.
That might explain why it’s digging deeper into its clients’ back catalogs than before, and going after 20-year-old episodes of Friends. –Gawker
4 ways birth control has completely changed how you live – So in better news, here’s an interesting piece on some of the socially beneficial outcomes from the landmark Supreme Court case, Griswold v. Connecticut, which was decided on June 7, 1965, and which held that women, especially unmarried women, have a constitutionally protected right to privacy in purchasing and using birth control. What “privacy” in this case means is that individuals have a right to acquire and use birth control, free from governmental interference (e.g. laws limiting this right). Of course, in many ways it seems like women are still fighting for this right. Maybe that’s why I tend to get frustrated when Romance protags don’t discuss or use condoms (including for STI protection) or other forms of birth control.
1. The wage gap is smaller thanks in part to birth control.
Women earn $0.78 for every dollar a man earns, but research indicates this wage gap would be even greater if it weren’t for birth control. An analysis [PDF] co-authored by Martha J. Bailey, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, estimated that the pill accounts for 10% of the narrowing wage gap in the 1980s and 30% in the 1990s. –Mashable
The Tree of Languages Illustrated in a Big, Beautiful Infographic – And now for something completely different, I leave you with Minna Sundberg’s beautiful language tree illustration. –Open Culture
Re: Irene Gallo. I agree with Chuck Wendig too.
Me, too. There are so many ways Tor could have handled this, privately, but the flogging was clearly meant to be public. I hate this.
Well, I was distantly wondering why I hardly read any TOR books, and only read posts by Gallo, Walton and some of the other female bloggers on Tor.com – I guess I’m not the target audience. Thank god for other publishers and independents.
Man, I really want to like TOR, there are some good things about the imprint, and they try new things… and then they pull stuff like this and I just want to facepalm forever. Depressingly emblematic of the state of the sf/f genre.
Are you supportive of small businesses that don’t want to cater a wedding for two people of the same sex getting married. Or do you think they should be shamed and or punished? I’m actually interested in your response
I read the Tor piece and Wendig’s piece as well as a few others. It is so glaring that Gallo was singled out because she is female. Ugh.
(For shits and giggles I read some of the comments and had to LOLOLOLOL when I saw someone had seriously posted that Gamergate is about “ethics in gaming journalism”. I’m still laughing about it.)
@Kaetrin: I don’t know what’s sadder – that they expect anyone to believe that, or that they clearly do themselves.
@Ann Somerville: yup
Do you always consider it a public condemnation when a corporation makes clear that an employee does not speak for them?
For example, did the royal society “publicly rubbed [Tim Hunt’s] nose in the mess, then threw [him] under a bus, then threw [his] body to a pack of wolves” when they distanced themselves from his sexist joke?:
Was he “being smacked across the nose by [his] employer in a sanctioned public shaming”?
Funny , You seemed to think defaming writers and readers is strong comments. It is quite a bit more than that. Plus I have seen a lot of public shaming done by the LGTB community . Plus loss of business, homes and massive fines. Ms Gallo trashed TOR writers and readers plus others . Dissing the customer is usually grounds for firing.
I recall Jim Zumbo was fired before he could get to a phone by Remington when he trashed their customer. The head of Remington was in Europe and in order to save their business from outraged customers they had him fired within hours.
I stand by Irene Gallo too. Her words about the Puppies are the simple truth. And given that Jim Frenkel’s far worse behavior never called for an apology from Tor, I don’t see why Gallo’s would…
Oh, wait. Frenkel is a man. Gallo is a woman.
@RAH: “It is quite a bit more than that.”
No, it’s nothing like that. Not even close. If you’re going to regurgitate Vox Day’s talking points, you can’t expect people to take you seriously.
MariaVonIt’sATrap, you can’t distinguish between a comment on someone’s personal facebook, and an invited speaker at a conference honoring women scientists, deliberately making comments he knew in advance were offensive?
The only reason any Tor ‘customers’ know about Gallo’s remarks is that Vox Day deliberately broadcast and promoted them. If any harm is done, he’s the one doing it. Tim ‘Rhyming Slang’ Hunt was speaking to a large group of women, where he knew his words would be reported.
There’s your difference.