British Comic Awards - and lamest 'Twitterstorm' ever

The first British Comic Awards were pretty cool.

Here's a good write up from FPI: http://forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/2012/british-comic-awards-2012-the-ceremony/

A really good shortlist was put together and some quality winners chosen. I personally might not have selected the same shortlist - I'd have thought maybe 'Dotter of Her Father's Eyes' or something from 2000AD might have been worthy of inclusion somewhere, but hey, tastes vary, and everyone involved seemed to have tried really hard at doing something good for UK comics. I certainly don't envy anyone having to make those decisions.

Subsequently, there has been various suggestions of CONTROVERSY. There has been claims (http://www.newstatesman.com/culture/2012/11/where-were-all-women-british-comic-awards) of a public "Twitterstorm", a "war of words" surrounding sexism and aggressive responses from the organisers and all kinds of madness.

Intrigued, like a lot of people, I tried to see what had gone on and, for convenience, thought I'd provide links for anyone in the same situation.

As far as seems publicly visible, this is the entirety of the "Twitterstorm":

Someone implied that the lack of female creators on the shortlist seemed like sexism from the organising committee (https://twitter.com/PhilippaRice/status/265464052719947778 and http://forbiddenplanet.co.uk/blog/2012/thoughts-from-thought-bubble-philippa-rice/) and that if the committee (who selected the shortlist) had had more women on it, then it would have been fairer - https://twitter.com/PhilippaRice/status/273184844564033537.

[Really? Are people that shallow and self-interested? I think everyone wants to see diversity in comics. It's a pretty universal and excellent medium. Suggesting that the gender make-up of the selection committee is so closely linked to the selections themselves seems pretty absurd, and a massive slight on the women and men on this year's committee.]

Then it starts to kick off. I say 'kick off', but given the propensity for the internet to kick off to a massive extent about pretty much everything, I guarantee you will be disappointed. You can see pretty much the whole conversation here:


Yep, one of the organisers says that accusations are not constructive criticism, the reply suggests they're being a bit defensive, another organiser suggests that it is manipulative phrasing of a tweet to suggest defensiveness (and presumably by extension guilt) and also that they're a bit irked at the public implication from a friend that he's a sexist. That's pretty much it.

Someone else (unconnected) then says how unbelievable this all is (and is further disappointed when someone suggests that maybe the initial suggestions of sexism were not a great way to start constructive debate):


And then writes the article for the New Statesman undermining the BCAs, and generally fuelling all the inaccurate stereotypes about comics that the mainstream media seem to love to hang on to.

Congratulations, you're now up-to-date with how pointlessly self-destructive the UK independent comics scene can be.

Do read the comments on the NS article though, they're pretty good.