A Simple Test to Determine if You're Too Online
We're all too online.
It’s Friday, so let’s keep it light.
But first, real quick: here’s the part of the newsletter where I ask you to consider signing up for the free version if you’re new here and ask existing free subscribers to consider upgrading to the paid version.
So yesterday, Southwest Airlines posted this to the company’s Twitter account:
To which a bunch of right-wing Twitter accounts responded…
If you’re a normal human being who doesn’t keep up with the mad rantings of Twitter’s billionaire owner and the conservatives who echo his every statement, you may be unaware of his recent extended tirades against Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives. Specifically, the Emerald Mine man-child has been entertaining hypotheticals that involve the idea that airlines and hospitals may prioritize diversity over skill when that’s not how these programs work.
The result is prominent conservative accounts rage-tweeting at Southwest for a fairly standard, “Yay, girl power!” type of tweet that brands do with some regularity. Like, come on, guys. Brands are always tweeting stuff. It’s just content. Not some mission statement.
The whole thing is so dumb.
It caught my attention because of how closely it paralleled an equally dumb controversy in the world of comics.
The year was 2017. Then-Marvel Comics editor Heather Antos tweeted a photo of herself and some of her coworkers getting milkshakes. “It’s the Marvel milkshake crew! #FabulousFlo,” it was captioned.
In the days that followed, Antos was buried in a mountain of weird hate from people who seemed to think she was trying to flaunt that there were so many women working at Marvel (and that was a bad thing? and that they were not qualified?) and that women at Marvel didn’t have to do work? Or something? It didn’t make sense. It was tangential to something called Comicsgate. It basically just boiled down to “Lady! Bad!” A lot like the stuff with the Southwest post.
All of this is to say that as so many others have said, everything is Gamergate, everything is Comicsgate. Nothing ever changes. We’re all way too online.
That’s it for me this week. Thanks to everyone for reading. Also, hello, new subscribers. I’m glad so many of you enjoyed Steven’s piece from yesterday. I do hope to be able to have more freelancers publish at TPA this year. That’ll depend on what I’m able to budget for that. :)