The webcomics blog about webcomics

Things That Are Disturbing

In no particular order.

  • Not getting into comic shops even with a Xeric grant. Correction time, kiddies! Box Brown contacted us to let us know that Diamond are hold Xeric winners to sales order minimums, but

    If the book doesn’t quite meet the minimum they will take it into consideration because of its status as a Xeric Grant. But, there is no hard and fast number. It’s mostly going to be case by case basis I would imagine.

    Translation: tell your local comic shop you want a copy of Love is a Peculiar Type of Thing.

  • Listening to your own voice; Brian Carroll of Instant Classic goes musical, taking the lead as Author Donathan in a singalong installment. Along the same lines, watching yourself on video is also disturbing — I say “uh” way too much in this video from NEWW panel #1 (more panel video without my verbal stumbling at BDC).
  • Being afraid for your job because you do a webcomic. Check this out (author’s name and webcomic name redacted):

    My webcomic is my 5th-grade-potty-humor-and-dick-jokes outlet, and I love being able to share the things I create or find funny with the world; however, I’m employed by the US Government.

    I’m sure many employers would look down upon a site or comic like mine which proudly displays my name, and the Government thinks it much worse. No one who is offended in power has seen my site yet, but it just takes one higher-up to see what I’m doing and either fire me or force me to make a change.

    I’ve contemplated going back and re-signing my comics with a pen name so I can feign ignorance, and I’ve even thought of taking the site down completely. Neither of those ideas sound fun or fair to me. I was wondering if any persons familiar with law could help me figure out how to distance myself from edgy material for work purposes while still being attached to it creatively. Can they legally force action upon me? Will a click-through EULA (I hate those things, but if it works) protect me? What about a link to an EULA that informs people that by viewing the page, they agree?

    It would be wonderful to find help with my situation, and I think it’s interesting to think about how something like comics can affect people who still work at a desk job for a living.

    We’ll preface this with the obligatory I Am Not A Lawyer, and note that anybody that relies upon me for legal advice/expertise is probably even more boned than they thought. That being said, my understanding is that there’s not a lot you can do. Over the past decade or so, protections for individuals expressing personal opinions or creative works vis-a-vis their bosses punishing them for such opinions/works have been … eroding. The fact that you work for the government may actually work in your favor, though, as the Bill of Rights is specifically written to describe relations between citizens and the government (as opposed to citizens and business). A’course, to get to the point where that distinction actually helps you could require years of lawyers and court dates.

    If you’re really worried, adopting a pen name might not be a bad idea (c.f.: “Clay” vs “Hard” — various identities used by the creator of the now-gone Sexy Losers in response to perceived risk of doing things under his own name), if only for peace of mind. It’s a fine line, though — you’ll probably take another job at some point in your life, and employers know about Google, too (as luck would have it, there’s more than one “Gary Tyrrell” in the world, and one of the other guys is more famous than me).

    That being said, nothing’s ever gone from the internet and there’s no way to retroactively wipe those pages, what with the Wayback Machine and all. The best advice I can think to give you is, if you feel that doing your webcomic leaves you open to sanction, be sure that you never update on contribute to it from work, and can document it (i.e.: keep your server logs). Don’t even visit your own site during work hours. Good luck with the dick jokes, and if anybody reading this actually is a lawyer, feel free to provide advice that’s actually worth something.

  • To wrap on a happy note, how about one thing that is the opposite of disturbing? In Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport/Aéroport International Macdonald-Cartier d’Ottawa (at least at the terminal that sends you to Merica after pre-clearing Customs & Immigration) you will find a cardboard stand in the RELAY magazine shop, chock full a’ BONE color volumes. This cheered me immensely and actually makes me feel generally good about the future (or at least the future of those travelling through gates 1-13 of YOW).

[…] Gary Tyrrell is corrected on Diamond’s view of Xeric winners: […]

I didn’t use “Kris Straub” for a long time because there’s a professor with that naem somewhere in the midwest. She shows up on Amazon under feminist/gender studies.

[…] creator that I believe said Diamond was going to guarantee the distribution of Xeric -winning book may now be saying that such books will be given consideration on a case by case basis with the fact that the book […]

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