I’m seeing this narrative pop up that Sad Puppies is calling for a boycott of Tor, but that is simply not true. Speaking as the guy who started the Sad Puppies campaign, I’m not calling for a boycott of anything. I’m not asking anyone to do anything. As far as I’m concerned this mess is between Tor and its customers. I’ve said very little about it so far, but I’ve been clear about that much.
The Sad Puppies Campaign is NOT calling for any boycotts.
But as we’ve seen time and time again, what I actually say doesn’t matter. It is just whatever narrative they can get to stick. I’m seeing lots of people on Facebook who should know better saying this is Sad Puppies declaring war on Tor. Nope. I’ll explain what it is.
Back in April when some high ranking Tor employees were making some pretty outlandish accusations, I put up a blog post asking for SP supporters not to blame Tor.
https://monsterhunternation.com/2015/04/11/last-sp-post-for-the-week-to-my-people-dont-yell-tor/ I respect Tom Doherty. I’m friends with a bunch of Tor authors. I explained how the company was a big outfit with a lot of employees. I told my supporters don’t blame them.
And in the intervening months several Tor employees had to go and make that really hard. A few Tor employees were extremely vocal with some very asinine criticisms, and still, I kept telling my supporters not to blame the whole company.
For this recent dust up, this is how I see it. Tor editor Irene Gallo posted some obviously false, slanderous nonsense, and she did it in a post representing her company’s products. It went viral.
Personally, I am used to being lied about. I volunteered for this. Lots of industry people have been insulting us, or regurgitating lies without question, since this started. It’s been a pattern for years. One of the goals of my original campaign was to expose the political bias that existed in this system, so this particular post didn’t come as a shock.
Only this time Gallo screwed up and tarred not just me or other SP leaders, but she slandered the fans who agreed with us and some unaffiliated authors (some of whom write for Tor!) with some pretty vile stuff.
For many people that was the straw that broke the camel’s back. They got angry. It turns out regular folks don’t like to give money to people who call them Nazis. They started contacting Tor and its parent company, Macmillan. Tom Doherty himself issued a statement that I personally liked. I’m glad he did that. I’ve been told that Tor has implemented a new social media policy, so that when its employees are calling its customers names, they need to make it clear they are speaking for themselves and not their employer. That is pretty standard in the rest of the corporate world.
Then Gallo issued a half assed, ‘I’m sorry you got upset when I called you all racist nazis’, pseudo apology. No retraction. Many people didn’t think that was good enough, so they continued to send emails to Tor. When it leaked that some Tor staff were dismissing all those emails as bots, and not real human fans, that riled them up.
The person who set the Friday deadline for a real apology is author Peter Grant. Let me tell you about Peter. He’s not one of the Sad Puppies organizers and wasn’t involved in the campaign, but I’ve known him for about fifteen years.
Do you know why Peter Grant took great personal affront to being labeled an unrepentantly racist, neo-nazi? That is because he literally fought and bled against neo-nazi terrorists in a blood soaked African civil war so brutal that most pampered Americans can’t even wrap their brains around it. He had many friends murdered, black and white both. He saw real terrorism. He still suffers from the physical injuries and nightmares. So he takes his culture war accusations very seriously.
Those accustomed to knee jerk bitching and bloviating about every possible outrage and trigger warning, quickly dismissed Peter’s taking umbrage against Gallo’s comments with their usual racist/sexist/homophobe accusations. Because obviously, anyone who disagrees with them is guilty of some ist or ism, evidence be damned. Their idea of social justice is forming Twitter mobs. Peter Grant got blown up protesting Apartheid.
After being a soldier, Peter hung up his guns and became a man of God. SJWs are saying that he’s a homophobe because he agreed with Sad Puppies, while in real life he volunteered at a colony for homosexuals who had been forsaken by African society, dying of AIDS. When I first met him, Peter was a prison chaplain, trying to help the fallen and broken, and victims of things you can’t even imagine. Basically, he’s an honorable man who puts his money where his mouth is, and now he’s offended.
Peter asked for a retraction from the Tor editor who flippantly dismissed thousands of fans as unrepentant racist neo-nazis. I don’t believe he’s calling for anything beyond that.
Again, this is between Tor and its readers who feel insulted, not the Sad Puppies campaign or the people who ran it. Yes, those Venn diagrams overlap, but sorry, you can’t blame this one on me. Many normal fans agreed with what Sad Puppies was trying to do, and shockingly enough, they eventually got sick and tired of employees of one of their favorite publishing houses calling them names. I’m not calling for anything, though I can certainly understand why some people are.
If any individual who felt insulted is satisfied with Tom Doherty’s statement saying that his employees don’t speak for his company, good for you. If any individual is unsatisfied and demands further action, that’s also up to you. I’m not going to tell anybody what to think.
For the other side who are saying that Gallo is the real victim here, and she was only speaking truth to power… Yeah, you guys run with that. Anybody with two brain cells to rub together can see she her comments were nonsense. The only thing she is a victim of is arrogance.
To the SJWs saying Tom Doherty is a hateful misogynist because he isn’t letting his employees libel people on the clock anymore? Double down. There might be some people left out there who haven’t realized I was right about you yet.
To the Tor authors I’m seeing post about this, the Sad Puppies campaign is not calling for a boycott. If you are upset why people are angry take it up with your art director about why she’s insulting your customers.
To the Sad Puppies supporters, do what you think is right. All I’m asking is that whatever you do, try to be as civil as possible in your disagreements. Stick with the facts. We’ve got the moral high ground, and the great moderate middle of this debate has seen we’ve been telling the truth all along.