ComicsGate at one point was a journalistic reaction to youtube critics being harassed by professionals — threatened and targeted at conventions.
It’s changed a lot in the last couple of years under the influence of a former comic pro Ethan Van Sciver, with a group of youtubers banding together and using outrage marketing to try to sell products which wouldn’t be able to compete in the general market otherwise, plagued by general low-quality storytelling and incredibly long delays, and in the case of a recent admission for a book called Detective Dead, a book which is never going to come at all.
Once the power became consolidated, youtube subscriptions and views began to level off or drop, and backers and sales began to go down for the books, the big “professionals” of the group decided to create a perpetual clickbait outrage marketing scam to get attention to their books.
People have weird identity hangups with the hashtag ComicsGate and who is or who isn’t, who’s disavowed or kicked out, which isn’t really relevant because all of these embattled former Marvel/DC pros and the major youtubers who hang around them operate the same way. This includes people like Mike Miller and Doug TenNapel, even though it’s tribally fractured at this point and they don’t use the term. The concept applies.
The strategy involved looks like this, and until you see what they do and understand it in real time, it’s tough to see what’s happening and easy to get caught up in the emotion and “outrage” they peddle in the moment. It looks like this:
- They Launch An Attack On A Creator – Mike MIller did this to me last week making a hate youtube stream ranting about me for an hour like a nutjob and riling up his dwindling audience against me.
- They Launch A New Book – Within 24 hours of the clickbait attack on youtube of me, Miller launched his new kickstarter.
- Repeat as necessary.
You can see the pattern as it develops. Sometimes it works, othertimes it doesn’t. There’s not a ton of value in attacking and harassing a small indie creator like me, Mike Miller has found out, but when they’re unable to gin up any real controversy for bigger clicks, this is what they do.
You’ll note Van Sciver did the same recently with a staged internet fight with The Quartering, a large youtube channel.
All of these incidents are disingenous. They do it just to get sales because they understand the writing and concepts of their books aren’t compelling and they fear fan reaction just based on the merit of books.
Understandably so, as there’s been so many hyper-late books, cancellations, quality control issues, lack of writing skill. It’s been a real trainwreck to say the least.
Back when this started, it was supposed to be about great books, but market fears have caused this group to act almost identically to the SJW industry they pretended to rebel against — which makes sense in retrospect, because these are creators from those same companies. Of course they’d act the same.
It’s made it harder to cut through as an indie book and get seen, as good books get blacklisted from major channels just like we’re blacklisted from major outlets. They can’t compete with classic and fun superhero storytelling like Dynamite Thor, so this is what they resort to.
But we’re still chugging along and doing our own thing, releasing good books nearly quarterly at this juncture. If you’re here for real comics, you’ve come to the right place. Back Dynamite Thor today and let’s set the culture right with the new counter-culture revolution. Make Comics Great Again!