Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bleeding Hypocrisy

I've recently left the Bleeding Cool forums. I'm not trying to bring all of that here.

What I will bring is that, in defense of the criticism he received from myself and others, Rich Johnston took a swing at Newsarama:

As long as I'm happy with the article, yes. I can only write Bleeding Cool for an audience of one, that's how I've always worked. Once I start doing Top Tens you know I've stopped. 
Sometimes I do write articles to wind people up, but only because they are bad jokes. Bendis' Dialogue Tics for example.

Funny that.

Ten Horrible Histories Songs
Top Ten Couples In Comics (contributor, posted by him)
Top Ten Superhero Teams (contributor)
Top Ten Most Ridiculous Movie Posters At Cannes This Year (contributor)
Top Ten Best Films Of All Time, According To Hundreds Of Film Directors And Critics (contributor)
Top Ten Horrific Reasons To Love WonderCon
Top Ten Comic Girlfriends… And Boyfriends (contributor)
(Top Ten) Best Reviewed Films Of 2011 Vs. The Most Pirated (contributor)
John Waters Top Ten Favourite Films Of 2011 (contributor)
Tom Huxley’s Top Ten Comics Of The Decade (contributor)
Bleeding Cool’s Top Ten British Comics Of The Decade
Top Ten Tips To Blag Your Way Into San Diego
Top Ten Picks For Frightfest, With Trailers (contributor)
Top Ten British Christmas Telly – Rich’s Choice
Grace Randolph’s Stacktastic! (Top Ten) Death(s), The Gift That Keeps On Giving (contributor)

I think that's more than sufficient back up (and that's not counting the (at least twice monthly) sales charts). While not all are his, Rich is the king of content on that site: if he didn't want Top Ten lists, they wouldn't be there and, indeed, he has directly published a number that he didn't write.

The knock on Top Ten lists is that they're lazy click bait. Everyone employs them from time to time. No one judges a site if they're rare, so long as you don't pretend you're above it.

I can't find a context for what Rich is saying he will have stopped once he resorts to Top Tens, but it's obvious that, whatever it is, he stopped years ago.

Oh, and lest it be misinterpreted: I'm not defending Newsarama. Despite knowing and respecting several people there, I don't believe Mark Waid was off the mark when he pegged them as the new Wizard. Sad how the once mighty continue to fall so far.


  1. Firstly, I'm not the king of content of Bleeding Cool. I am a paid employee of Avatar Press. Most of those were not by me, a number of which are not to my taste. But you are right, over three years I did write a few, but they were occasional, not regular content which was probably what I was trying to get at. And when I wrote that post on BC, it was very late at night after a very long day smack bang in the middle of the school holidays with my wife at work, so I probably didn't make myself as clear as I'd have liked. Sorry about that.

    And I meant I will have stopped writing for an audience of one. It's right there. That at least, I hope, is as clear as I meant it.

  2. So, are you saying that Grace supplies content that you distaste? And that, despite all previous implication that Kotler contributes at your pleasure, you have no say on what else is published, even when the site says you're the one who pushed submit on the entry?

    Was Grace forced on you? Because Grace has made quite the habit of it. Or that Huxley entry? Did you not solicit or select it?

    If these top tens are something you disdain and the perception (that I believe you've cultivated) is that it is your site that Avatar merely funds, please feel free to clarify the matter. Are you now disavowing control over the content?

  3. I always value other people's voices. Often if they express opinions or tastes different to my own. I seek out people with differing, distinct opinions to my own and let them write what they wish. Kate and Grace are two, Adi, Eliot, Aaron, Louis, Cameron, Heather, Irene, Alex are many others. Phil Hall is the only one I've had to stop when he was making serious criminal allegations against someone that I couldn't back up.

    But I generally don't like the Top Tens and think they are lazy space fillers. Any time I've used them, I hope I'd either had an actual point I wanted to make with them, or maybe it it's anniversary, fin de siecle stuff they have a place when people, including me, are getting reflective.

    Avatar owns Bleeding Cool. They employ me. They employ Brendon. They employ Mark.

  4. I'll ask again: are you disavowing control over the content?

    Brendon's main domain is the movie side. You overrode his coverage of the Firefly presser by pushing Kotler's through and, when it ended badly, he was the one apologizing to the readers.

    Mark's domain seems to be general administration and handling the forums, but you step in when you like to act in ways that contradict how they're run day-to-day.

    I called you the king of content at Bleeding Cool, to which you objected. But you've implied at any other time that you decide who contributes and what gets published. Kotler indicates she answers to you, whether it be her coverage or, apparently, what she does with free swag she obtained at a convention she covered for you.

    Again: I call you the Bleeding Cool "king of content" and you protest. Are you not the primary decision maker on content? Have you had a contributor forced on you? Do you get overridden on content decisions?

    I mean, that's not even getting into the debate over the accuracy of the ownership versus funding argument.

  5. Brendon also posts on the comic side, depending on the story. Mark publishes independently, Keith published independently, a number of people do publish through me, but generally I'm hands off on that. They send it in, I publish it.

    There are equal decision makers on content at Bleeding Cool, I just seem to write more of it which may give you that impression. I don't know about forced, but there's plenty of content and contributors that I have nothing to do with. And yes I have been overridden on content decisions. It's rare though.

    I have no idea what Kate does with free swag, that's down to her.

    Avatar Press own Bleeding Cool and pay me to write for it. How is that not accurate?

  6. Why is it inaccurate? Because it is being used to paint a picture of your not having full control of content that is NOT what you claimed earlier in the history of your site, when it suited you. When people expressed concern that one particular publisher was bankrolling your endeavor and that it might present undue influence in what you'd cover (beyond plugs), much was said to make clear that they pay the bills and stay out of the way. But now, when I point out how your site does plenty of the thing you tweaked another site for while claiming you wouldn't participate in such (which, admittedly, the particular "thing" isn't a big deal), you claim much less autonomy on what the site does. If it is accurate, it is a change that went without note along the way. Of course, you may be referring to where you were overridden due to a liability concern, which would be technically true, but knowingly misleading (as we're talking about content you consider lazy being posted for hits).

    Equal decision makers? Sure...I believe several people under you are equals in that matter, which could be all you're saying, despite framing it in a way that implies other. When you overrode Brendon (and left HIM apologizing for your judgment), that sure didn't seem like equality.

    The bottom line is that you've expressed much closer to monarchistic control in the past, as have people speaking of your setup with some knowledge of affairs, until today. I, also, happen to find it odd that I can't seem to find anywhere on your site a statement of ownership or copyright. Everything has your name and info spread through it (like the ABOUT page being entirely you). If only there were another Rich Johnston out there to press Avatar for comment on exactly who has control of what over there...

    I don't think I'll get a satisfactory explanation of the scenario and by no means are you obligated to give one. I tweaked your nose over the hypocrisy of acting like you were above the top tens when you (to a lesser extent) and your site (to a greater) have liberally sampled in the practice (albeit not to Newsarama levels). Even if the issues your defense of it brought up are far more important, I feel silly arguing those details with you when they were borne out of discussion of such a trivial item.

  7. Earlier in the history of the site, I was the site's only writer. The site has grown, the site has changed. You seem incapable of understanding that things change with the passing of time and circumstances.

    I didn't override Brendon. In fact I'd like to see me try. He is not under me, he reports to Avatar. He are old friends though, and I recommended Avatar hire him from /Film.

    Avatar owns Bleeding Cool, they employ me. They have control over everything. How is that not satisfactory?

  8. hola.

    just thought i'd pop in to say, kevin, that this conversation makes it look like you're making quite unrealistic demands on something that (to be fair) you don't really have a say in.

    it comes across very attacky, which doesn't take in to effect that there is a real life out there, and not everything is spread across the interwebz.

    in real life there are many more shades of grey ... and they aren't all used for soft porn books ;-)

  9. Rich: It's not satisfactory because I believe you're giving answers that are technically true, but misleading given the clear meaning and intent of the question...much like you selectively ignore points in your responses.

    If you don't call publishing Kotler's Firefly trainwreck, after Brendon wisely didn't, a case of overriding, I believe we're employing two disparate definitions of the term.

    I would like you to point to where on your site the ownership is made clear. I'm not incapable of understanding that things change; you seem incapable of understanding that, despite what you're saying, your site hasn't changed to match what you suggest is the reality. Little to nothing on the site suggests the configuration you're insisting upon here.

    MMM: What demands am I making and what am I suggesting I have a say in? The blog entry was to point out that his site participates in the same common practice of Top Ten lists that he was mocking, when all previous indications from him over the years (and when specifically when addressing any conflict concerns with Avatar bankrolling it) that he had control over the content. That it changed when the site expanded its breadth was never communicated to the reader that I can find. Everything I can find from insiders (including Rich in the past) and interested observers indicated that Avatar is the financial interest behind the site, but he had autonomy.

    When Bleeding Cool won an award recently, here's the acceptance speech that was given:

    "I've been writing about comics online for twenty years now. This is the first proper award I've had for it. I look forward to another in another twenty years time.

    I'd like to thank William Christensen at Avatar Press who saw an opportunity and has paid out a lot of cheques, to Mark Seifert for supporting the site and keeping it up, to Jim Kuhoric for amending the worst of my typos, to Brendon Connelly for giving me a modicum of respectability, to my wife Janice for putting up with the long hours and demands of a 24 hour news cycle. Oh, and ad agency Radioille for firing me from my last job which forced me to do this."

    Awards aren't necessarily addressed to ownership, but they are directed at the person with the most control over its content. Rich thanks the guy listed as the EIC on the site for fixing his typos, which puts a fine point on why I don't think many people actually think he's giving Rich assignments or directing the content more than Johnston.

    BTW, that real life comment...could you elaborate?

  10. I am giving true answers, not technically true answers. I am not trying to hide, mislead or misdirect, these aren't politicians's answers. I also don't mean to ignore certain points, please tell me which points I have ignored.

    I didn't know Brendon hadn't published, I just cut and pasted Kate's piece because we were in the same room at the time and Brendon wasn't. This was also in the middle of San Diego, where we were publishing articles every ten minutes, It was fast and furious.

    I don't know where on the site the ownership of Bleeding Cool is made clear, I don't even know why it should. I can tell you that Avatar owns Bleeding Cool, they hired me to write for it. And that has always been the way. They've just hired more people since the beginning when it was just me. The reason I had autonomy then was because I was the only one posting on the site. That is no longer the case. Brendon Connelly alone posts about a third of the content and that doesn't go through me, unless he asks me to post something because he can't get online.

    Jim is not directing the content more than me. But I do get assignments from Jim. And the typo thing was a joke.

  11. Rich, I don't believe that you're oblivious to how your answers are finessed here, but admitting to it would defeat the whole purpose, anyway.

    I brought up who posted or published an article earlier only to show that your direct fingerprints were on several top ten lists that you didn't personally write, despite your concerns about the practice. Whether you physically publish any of the other work doesn't argue for or against you being the "king of content", as whoever has supposedly killed your decisions previously doesn't hit the button on the articles, either.

    But you seriously don't know why your site, asserted as owned by a professional publishing company, should have a copyright notice published on it somewhere? Your...ahem...Avatar's site still (as of this comment) has absolutely zero mention of them in the ABOUT page:

    If I have to explain to you the merit of the most basic of transparency...when you already had to address that in less permanent ways in the past...then it just underscores how little can be accomplished by further discussion.

  12. “Rich is the founder and editor-in-chief of Bleeding Cool”

  13. Also, I wonder how Avatar feel about employees using the site to enrich themselves by posting links to Amazon via a personal affiliate account?

  14. Anon, I meant to get around to the Amazon advertisements dressed up as articles and payable to him, but (whether Rich or MMM believe it or not), I had thought that might be nitpicking and getting into a smaller detail that doesn't really impact the conversation.

    But thank you for pointing out the language that adds to an impression that Rich is adamant about being incorrect. That entry does contradict Jim Kuhoric being labeled as EIC on the Contact form. I've reached out to him for comment about Bleeding Cool's current organization.

  15. So many of the recent problems boil down to one simple thing: Rich's apparent inability to just say "Oops. I was wrong. Sorry about that." From spoilers (yes, it was a spoiler) to improper bannings, a little mea culpa goes a long way.

  16. My answers are far too quick to be finessed. This is conspiracy talk.

    I don't understand your second paragraph.

    And no I don't. Maybe it should be in the About page, maybe I'll add it. You're the first person who has mentioned it. It just hasn't been an issue. I don't think I even wrote the About page, I'll go and have a look.

    Avatar have registered the domain name. They hire the servers. They designed the site. They run the site. They program the site. They make every decision about advertising, the advertising revenue from all the banners and stuff goes to Avatar, I get a cheque every month from Avatar, which has remained the same every month until last year when I got a raise, and they buy my ticket and hotel rooms to go to the Comic Cons that they decide I go to.

  17. It's never been an issue, I did the same thing when I wrote Lying In The Gutters and no one accused me of owning CBR. Brendon Connelly does it too.

    I frequently apologise, correct things and say I'm wrong. I just have to be. And I don't own Bleeding Cool, or have any ownership in it. Maybe I should, but I don't.

  18. Rich, Avatar's interest in the site should be somewhere permanent on it. For all the shots you might want to take at Newsarama or Marvel exclusives you want to grab from CBR, their ownership and copyright is published on the site where it is clear and easy to find.

    My second paragraph? The one pointing out the uselessness of saying that Brendon publishes his own articles as if it answers my contention that you're "king of content" at Bleeding Cool?

    And conspiracy talk? First you have a quizzical definition of "overriding" and now you think that talk about a single person's shifty answers where there's no implication of the involvement of others can be referred to as "conspiracy talk"? Were you perhaps reaching for paranoid and grabbed the wrong word?

    As Anon pointed out, your site lists you as founder and editor in chief, but you try to shirk ultimate responsibility for the content on your site. I think we're definitely at an impasse.

  19. I don't believe you spoiled stories on the front page of a website with the title of an article and the accompanying blurb while at CBR. And I must say that your attempt to drag Brendon under that particular bus with you is not your finest moment.

    Brendon provided a spoiler on the front page through title and blurb, but argued that it wasn't a spoiler and refused to apologize for that? I find that hard to believe, as he apologized for your and Kotler's mistake with the Firefly article he had nothing to do with.

  20. Well it is now. Like I said, first time it's been raised. I wasn't taking shots at Marvel exclusives. I probably was taking at shot at Newsarama, old habits die hard. I've actually liked a lot more Newsarama content of late, probably down to Graeme McMillan.

    Is that what you meant? Well, it does answer that. How can I be the king of content if I don't see a third of articles before their published. Often, not even then, because they're about films I often have no interest in.

    I have not given any shifty answers. To have overridden his content, I would actually have had to have been aware of it, no?

    If content goes up without me and I haven't seen it, on a website that I don't own but am employed to write for, then yes, I don't see how I can have ultimate responsibility for everything on there. I do however take responsibility for what I write. Always have. What's your current employment situatrion, Kevin, maybe we can draw an analogy with your work history.

    I am not dragging Brendon under any bus. I don't spoil stories on the front page through title and blurb.
    If I had, I would have apologised and made amends. I take full responsibility for that story. That doesn't mean I have to agree with you.

    I did once spoil the death of Hawkeye at LITG, but not intentionally.

  21. Just to clarify for anyone in the peanut gallery who doesn't get where I'm coming from on this:

    1. Started with trying to point out that he's slagging others for a practice he employs.
    2. He tried to claim "not it" to a large extent, as only four or so of the listed were his direct work.
    3. I pointed out that he is the most influential presence over there on content. It has been directly stated in the past that he had autonomy over his own work and implied (if not outright stated) that he's responsible for bringing anyone new in (regardless of who signs any checks (which aren't often involved, anyway)).
    4. He indicated that isn't true and, along the way, said I'm incapable of realizing that things change.
    5. Which resulted in it being pointed out to him that his site is what anyone has to go on, where the About page is all about him (physical address, phone and everything) and the Contributors page lists him as Founder and Editor-in-Chief.

    This started out with tweaking him about a small bit of hypocrisy, but snowballed into being about shifty answers and putting the blame on others (his site and his own previous, uncorrected representation of affairs at BC is evidence of my being "incapable of understanding that things change").

    As it was with the forum moderation issues.

    As it was with the front page spoilers issues.

    As it was with the Kotler incompetency issues.

    As, it appears, it shall ever be.

  22. A king doesn't see a third of their subjects (or more, I'd assume), but they still answer to his rule. Which is to say a constant string of Top Ten lists from a contributor only occurs because you approve of it (tacitly or otherwise). Which was to point out that they're perfectly fine for your site, just not for others.

    And I didn't say you were slagging off on CBR...just snatching their exclusives.

    And, again, Rich, there's a difference between spoiling a story on the front page (still dying for you to show where anyone else has agreed that it wasn't a spoiler, rather than just not a huge one) and doing so in the body of a gossip column where folks more-or-less enter at their own risk.

    Feel free to respond or not, to me or any other comments left here. I can't promise that I'll answer, as this doesn't seem to be a productive conversation, but I will read it.

  23. Brendon does not answer to my rule. Keith Davidsen does not answer to my rule. Mark Seifert does not answer to my rule. Jim Kuhoric does not answer to my rule. Adi Tantimedh does not answer to my rule. Grace Randolph does not answer to my rule. Etc etc etc...

    I have told you I have no problem with contributors putting up stuff that I do not like, agree with or condone. It would be a more boring site otherwise. I don't edit Grace's stuff, I don't edit Kate's stuff, I don't edit Adi's stuff, I value their individual voices. And I'm not going to drop them because they run a Top Ten list.

    I was not snatching CBR's exclusives. I was just working out the pattern of announcements. Anyone could have done that.

    On the Bendis board, a hostile place, there were people agreeing that it wasn't a spoiler when they'd read the comic in question - same thing happened with the League a month or so previously. And plenty of people on CBR discussing the story without even considering it as a spoiler. It was news.

  24. Apparently forum members answer to your rule however, since you can ban them on a whim in contradiction to the established moderation practices of your colleague (not underling) Mark Seifert and the moderation team.

  25. Really, I think it behooves you to dispel the myth of Bleeding Cool as The Rich Johnston Show, if all you are is a staff writer.

    At least do it for Kotler, who seems to believe you're actually in charge over there.

  26. Shades of grey, Kevin? I don't particularly want to go in to it, no (but reading the below I think I might’ve, hah!).

    Suffice to say, I didn't come here to 'defend Rich' or anything, mainly because I don't see how he has anything to be answerable to you for.

    But I did come here to kind of say that what you're saying is looking like you not having your expectations fulfilled. That's fine, as is voicing them.

    But to have expectations is to demand, or at least, that’s how I was using the word (see how subtlety is lost online?). To initially point out what you would seem to be defining as inadequacies in Rich's reporting, that's basically saying you would like that to not happen. Or to point out that he is doing things that he said he wouldn't do ...

    Guess what, I said I wouldn't ever kiss a man when I was 15, and I've tried it a couple of times as experimentation and for shits and giggles. The reasons for doing things and the way things pan out are not always as clear cut in life as we might want them to be. Positions change, viewpoints change, humour exists, jokes are done, baiting exists, parody of others and one’s self exists on sometimes the ‘minutest’ of levels .... there's never a hard and fast rule to what we say and do in life and to hold people to the things that they say one day is somewhat silly sometimes. Even in politics.

    Now politics, you can say you might deserve something out of their assertions, but let’s say that you were a democrat against gay marriage, and you supported Obama with this as one of your main support points. “...attitudes evolve, including mine...” Suddenly times/moods/outside influence/whatever has made Mr. Obama change his views. Well, you should immediately not believe anything else that he’s said since or before, as he isn’t sticking to his guns!

    I’m not comparing this to gay marriage, but I’m using that as an example of how people change (or don’t) and not always are all the reasons on the table, and nor should they be.

    Who am I to “demand” ( :-p ) transparency on site ownership?

    The blog entry was to point out that his site participates in the same common practice of Top Ten lists that he was mocking, when all previous indications from him over the years (and when specifically when addressing any conflict concerns with Avatar bankrolling it) that he had control over the content. That it changed when the site expanded its breadth was never communicated to the reader that I can find. Everything I can find from insiders (including Rich in the past) and interested observers indicated that Avatar is the financial interest behind the site, but he had autonomy.
    Just to ask why would you say *any* of this, including the blog, unless you either felt the site had something to do in your eyes? Equally, coming so soon after your exit, it seems a little churlish, to be fair. I'm just struggling to see what you hope to get out of this, since you've left the site.

    And then, if you *are* hoping to get something out of it ... well ... isn't that some kind of expectation ;-)

    I will say that I do think, however, that there are ways and means to effect/affect change to the forum/site, and I'm pretty sure that all the employed staff are all geared up to do whatever they can (within time/budgetary constraints) to have that done. It’s not a democracy, though, and we all have a hand in making it as good as we can ... whilst we’re there.

    I want you to come back, but this all seems a little unlike you, that's all.

  27. --------------------------
    Any mod can do that.
    AND I DO!

  28. Incidentally, Kevin, I'm obviously not 'getting in to this' ... but I just want to try and promote a 'deep breaths' about the whole thing.

    I'll stop pestering your blog!

    (only clarifying that I'm stopping because I'm not logged on with anything official ... so ... frankly anyone could comment as me after this!)

  29. Spam!

    Turns out I have an account here.
    Either way, if it ain't from this account, it ain't me!

  30. Cheerio Kevin,

    Just read your article and the whole back and forth between you and Rich.

    I do think that while your argument is valid, that you do get a little over the top regarding the whole top ten stuff.

    Other stuff like Kotler's Firefly fiasco or the way he suddenly shifts around to imply he is not the big head honcho over on BC, or the way he swings his banhammer around suddenly, banning people to his left and his right for no obvious reason (as they have done nothing that they haven't been doing for years), are far more important.
    Of course that's just how I see it.

    Another point that's been nagging me is the terrible editing and the appearant inability to use something akin to a spell check. Seriously for a site of this size, that is just lazy and shows a disregard for the people who keep it alive via the forums.

    dieter aka die-yng

  31. MMM: I genuinely appreciate and admire the level of sharing you used to illustrate your point. I don't have much to say in response, as I wouldn't endeavor to change your view and you've made it known that you'd prefer not to continue here.

    But I have to say: demand is *not* a subtle word. ;)

    Dieter: the thing is that I don't actually care about top ten lists. As I said originally, I didn't intend to bring the whole drawn out topic of why I left the site here.

    Instead, I brought the lighter topic of his mocking Newsarama in defense of his own work when it wasn't entirely accurate. I've mocked Newsarama over their practice before, but it's all about the frequency and trick of drawing it out over several clicks and...see...I'm getting sidetracked again. ;)

    So I went with the light-hearted point (albeit with the heavy-handed image) and stumbled into Rich suddenly claiming to have no control of the site outside of his own writing, despite claiming an award for the ENTIRE site as being his own that others merely supported him in getting, an About page all about him and a Contributor page that called him the founder and EiC. Somehow, I'm just unable to understand change, despite the fact that this change has allegedly been in place for quite some time and he only mentions it when it is a convenient way to dodge even the slightest responsibility for a trivial item.

    Rich: BTW, I poured over the thread at BenBo again and a total of one person uttered a phrase that it wasn't a spoiler, but the completion of it was: "as soon as that pair was announced I was waiting for the breakup." So they say it isn't a spoiler because they knew it was going to happen. Not quite what you're trying to suggest, especially since you thought it was newsworthy. You felt it was shocking that they'd undo it without fanfare after having hyped the marriage to no end. It was news to you because there was a surprising element of some sort to it, yet you argue at the same time that you spoiled nothing.

    It's asinine, as was thanking publicly the folks that supposedly apologized to you through PM, which derailed that thread into questioning whether any such poster existed. At least we know where Kotler got her idea to blog that someone at BC asked her to plead Joe's case to you.

    I didn't intend to respond, but that was for Dieter. I couldn't let him down and pass a chance to say something *not* about a Top Ten. ;)

  32. Nothing supposed about it, I am not lying to you but the not way I think you'd believe it is if you'd come round to my house and watch me work and even then you'd dismiss it as an elaborate trick. Brendon accepted the award. And if I'd talked about Cyclops, Spidey or the Rasputin twins, that would have been a spoiler for the comic, this was not. People who'd read the comic realised that, the reaction was from people who hadn't read the comic and feared it was a spoiler. But it wasn't, and I take full responsibility for that article.

  33. By the way, you have an open invite to come round and watch me

  34. Brendon gave YOUR acceptance speech for the award. Pardon the technically-off, accurate-in-spirit phrasing.

    You keep making this statement that THOSE WHO READ IT ALREADY didn't consider it a spoiler without any obvious sense of irony. Or acknowledgement that it's just not accurate: only one person uttered the phrase, and their reason for not considering it a spoiler was they had known since the marriage that it would be ended. Others who read it said that, while it may not have been a HUGE spoiler, it was, indeed, a spoiler. That was your "hostile crowd" that supposedly had a worthwhile number of people agreeing with your stated position. Arguing that there were bigger spoilers is only an effective defense in your mind, sir.

    For the record, I don't attribute any malice or ill intent to your mistakes, just to the tactics used to try to avoid owning them. As you might notice from my discussion of Kotler and the man running Image, accountability and a lack of overt hypocrisy are rather important items to me.

  35. BTW, I appreciate the invite. I don't even doubt the sincerity of it, despite the fact that you know it would most likely require that I be independently wealthy in order to afford the time and expense of a trip to the UK specifically to watch you work. The expense being the divorce proceedings when my wife leaves me for wasting our vacation on watching someone cover the comic book industry.

  36. ========================
    BTW, I appreciate the invite. I don't even doubt the sincerity of it, despite the fact that you know it would most likely require that I be independently wealthy in order to afford the time and expense of a trip to the UK specifically to watch you work. The expense being the divorce proceedings when my wife leaves me for wasting our vacation on watching someone cover the comic book industry.

    Kevin, might I suggest that you guys hug it out?


  37. Well meant, but not bloody likely, TripMs. ;)

  38. my respects, Kev.

  39. Kev, I reckon you're being every bit as disproportionate in pursuit of this as I think Rich was in banning Joe in the first place.

    Plus, I'm not even sure what 'this' you're pursuing.

    Rich, you've got a shedload of people telling you the Panther headline pissed them off, whatever you firmly believed or believe... Maybe that's worth learning from?

  40. PJP, you know I love and respect you...but, however disproportionate my pursuit, I'm not negatively impacting others directly and, when Rich expressed his problems with what I wrote, I answered it in a timely and direct manner, rather than ignore it and go to...let's say...The Outhousers to address whatever comment they may have had and ignore his. ;)

    Like I've said about five times above: this entry was intended to tweak his nose about the hypocrisy of his unnecessary dig at Newsarama whilst deflecting criticism on BC. When, out of nowhere, he claimed to not have the influence over content at BC that he had previously claimed and his site still indicated, and said that I was incapable of accepting that things change, it became about questioning the veracity of his claims, the blame-shifting timing of them and his attempt to suggest I was the one in the wrong for going on what his own website said his powers were.

    If we have a minor debate where you employ faulty logic, infuriating tactics and try to blame me for believing something you said, you can be sure I'll vent about it somewhere on the 'net and not back down for as long as the behavior continues.

    People keep conflating my continuing the argument with some level of assigned priority or importance when that's all in their head. C'mon, Peter, I've watched your back and forth with Knut on Alan Moore, but you'll never see me claim that you're being disproportionate in your pursuit. ;)

  41. Out of nowhere? It's been three and a half years. You seem to be mistaking incompetence for maliciousness. The website copy written three years ago no longer reflected the changing nature of the site. And I haven't said you're wrong about going on about anything. I'm certainly not blaming you. You're ascribing motivation to me that I don't have.

  42. Wow, Rich...really? You've not made any indication of these changes until you were called on it here, including your website apparently leaving inaccurate information up for a matter of years, but the objection is to my calling it "out of nowhere"?

    To each their own, but when you indicate such changes all at once (regardless of when they occurred) without prior communication, I stand by qualifying it as "out of nowhere".

    If your claims are accurate (it should be noted that Jim Kuhoric didn't return a request for comment submitted through your site's webform), then your site remained inaccurate until the middle of this discussion.

    You put the onus on me by saying I was demonstrating that I was incapable of accepting that things change, when I was simply accepting what your site still said was the case at the time I claimed it. You were very much claiming I was the one in the wrong (and responsible for that wrong), when I was merely following what your own site said.

  43. Okay, so I have to come HERE to stalk you and hope for some witty silliness and silly wittiness in response to something inane I've said?
    *SIGH* I guess so...

    Oh, sorry, carry on with your fighting. I didn't read the whole thing because I saw a My Little Pony covered in glitter then ate some cheese, and why are you only here again?

  44. Khux, this is Lou from the BC forums--miss you, guy.

    Been following this back and forth, head spinning these days (my LCS store owner and friend of nearly 20 years died on Saturday, leaving the future of a comics store in a big part of northeast CT in doubt--have no easy substitute without having to travel great distances), so forgive me if I'm simplifying some things.

    It would seem to me that part of the problem seems to be that the tagline on most comics stories on BC state "Written by Rich Johnson" when that isn't necessarily true. Rich may not have written it, and may not have even posted it online--it's like my stepping away from my desk at work without securing my computer, and someone coming up and sending emails out in my name that I haven't written and may not even agree with. In some cases it states in the beginning of a piece that it is written by someone else (such as Manoulis' comics reviews), other times not.

    It would seem to me that some of this could be alleviated if either the main page showed the actual author below the title link and / or on the actual page. Maybe on the actual page not only showing who the author is, but also who posted it--I'm sure in some cases it's not the same person. That way there could be some accountability that could be backtracked to as need be, instead of trying to guess who may have written what.

    I guess it comes down to the authors and / or posters each having their own ID that shows, and not sharing that with anyone else, like any other company (I work for a major insurance company in Hartford, so this is where I am coming from).

    If I'm wrong in any way, let me know. I'll shut up now.


  45. Evilwilma: You're a funny dude. ;)

    Chris (who had their comment disappear for reasons I do not know): Miss you and the gang, but think the way you plan on dealing with it is sound. Please feel free to repost something (especially plugging the site you'll be publishing your writing on).

    Lou: Oh, Lou...might heart goes out to you on the developments with the owner of your LCS (for the loss of life, more than the inconvenience for shopping, obviously).

    While BC could do a better job sometimes of indicating who actually contributed an article, I don't think I've ever mistaken who wrote it. When I wanted to give him a hard time about the number of Top Ten lists published on the site and he objected to my attributing such a high level of control over the site, it opened up this debate.

    When he made the misunderstanding my fault, when so many of these other contributors are literally published under his login, he made Brendon's hiring seem like his decision in the past (rather than suggestion), the site still called him the EiC in places and the most noticeable regular comics-side contributor with any other credits (Kotler) expresses a deference to Rich that suggests she'd risk a bladder rupture rather than urinate without his set me on a mission. Which ended with his suggestion that he fixed it on the site now. If he hasn't done a good enough job in remedying that, someone else can hold his feet to the fire. I kept checking one or two threads where the leaving thing had played out and finally felt comfortable the last of the two was dead 2-3 days ago, so I'm not looking to give BC any further traffic.

    More individual accounts or posting everything from a Staff account (unless done by someone who rates their own account) would prevent any inaccurately attributed influence (or greatly reduce it).

  46. Lou: oh, and I obviously miss you, too, sir. ;)


It is preferred that you sign some sort of name to your posts, rather than remain completely anonymous. Even if it is just an internet nickname/alias, it makes it easier to get to know the people that post here. I hope you all will give it some consideration. Thank you.