sqbr: (mod hat)
2019-09-22 08:23 pm
Entry tags:

[sticky entry] Sticky: Things you should know

This is my Serious Business journal. Are you perhaps looking for my fannish/personal journal [personal profile] alias_sqbr?

My comment policy.

Absolutely anyone is welcome to read/subscribe, and noone is under any obligation to give me access.

This is the stuff I assume you know about me.
sqbr: (genius!)
2016-05-12 05:13 am
Entry tags:

seeingcolorcomm: Characters of Colour Fic and Art exchange

[community profile] seeingcolorcomm, currently open for nominations.

I haven't felt like signing up to exchanges lately but will definitely keep an eye out for pinch hits and treats.
sqbr: (up and down)
2016-05-10 09:19 pm

A decade in online fandom social justice

In which I try to tease some sort of narrative out of the ridiculously long and rambling unabridged version. It's still pretty long, and still very subjective. And I'm still open to criticism and other points of view! Especially since I'm as prone to subconsciously editing history as anyone else.

The tl;dr version is that fandom used to actively stifle discussions of social justice, and then slowly started caring about it. Unfortunately, when fandom cares about something it uses it to attack other fans with different tastes, and social justice has been no exception. I still think things are better overall.
brief mentions of rape and abuse )
sqbr: (dirty fork)
2016-05-07 04:39 pm

Looking back on a decade in online fandom social justice: unexpurgated version

This is an incredibly subjective and personal account, with no clear moral or narrative, because that's how it wanted to come out. I then poked at things some more and wrote A decade in online fandom social justice: Abridged, which is a bit more structured and not quite as ridiculously long.

I've been inspired to write this by seeing other fans trying to sell their own, equally subjective narratives that contradict mine as The Objective Truth, and it annoys me. The most recent example is this deeply flawed essay by Franzeska. Here's some criticisms by POC: a thread on ffa wherea POC looks back on their own experiences of lj fandom and Fans Of Colour Are Not To Blame For Fandom's Erasures: A response to That Meta.
brief discussions of rape, death, and abuse, lots of discussions of bullying, lots and lots and LOTS of words )
sqbr: Expressing my femininity with an axe (femininity)
2016-05-07 04:04 pm
Entry tags:

Since I don't want to tack an implied coming out onto a post I'm about to make

I now identify as genderfluid! It's still very new but feels really right and happy making. Not changing my pronouns or anything for now, so, I don't require you guys to do anything differently. Just letting you know where I'm at.
sqbr: (up and down)
2016-05-05 05:36 pm

Dating sims and the gender spectrum

So, a question that's come up in a game I'm working on, and is likely to come up again in future: how do you combine allowing the player character (PC) of a dating sim having a spectrum of gender identities available with having love interests who aren't all bi/pan?
Read more... )
sqbr: Expressing my femininity with an axe (femininity)
2016-05-04 02:15 pm
Entry tags:

Gender expression and female protagonists

The comments to my last post on the subject made me realise I hadn't expressed myself very clearly, so I've been waiting until I felt clear headed enough to lay out my argument properly, and here we are.

My point: female protagonists are almost always the least invested in feminine presentation compared to other female characters in the story.

I'm not saying there's no such thing as major sympathetic female characters who care more about feminine presentation than other female characters in the story. There's lots of those. I am strictly talking about protagonists.

In most cases the main character is the best at looking pretty, but that's not the same as being the most invested. A common trope is the protagonist being forced to dress up prettily and looking fabulous with no effort on her part. Another common trope, especially on tv, is her looking fabulous and fairly girly despite explicitely "not caring". As many butch women have pointed out, mainstream fiction actually portrays women as being, overall, much more invested in feminine presentation than they are in reality. You almost never see genuinely butch women, instead many female protagonists SAY they don't care about feminine presentation but clearly LOOK like someone who cares a great deal.

I'm not saying that these stories are neccesarily sexist, especially not something like Fun Home which explores the generally ignored experiences of butch women. I just think it's notable that female protagonists are so limited, and want to poke at it.
Read more... )
sqbr: (train)
2016-04-29 07:59 pm
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Captain America: Civil War

My review

This was exactly what I expected from the trailer: a well made, entertaining superhero film with great fights, nice character moments and utterly repulsive political subtext. On the plus side it abandons it's pretense to ~realism about halfway through and becomes purely character/explosion driven, at which point I stopped thinking "bloody Americans" every five minutes and was actually able to enjoy it.


Since we got to see it earlier than a lot of other places, and I know I was curious to know if the politics were going to be as annoying as they seemed from the trailer. tl;dr: they are.
sqbr: Expressing my femininity with an axe (femininity)
2016-04-23 11:59 am

Not Like Other Girls

Can anyone think of sympathetic female protagonists who are shown caring about their physical appearance and/or actively trying to look more feminine and pretty more than some/all of the other women in the story? Not sympathetic side characters where it's seen as a forgivable flaw, but protagonists.

I'm conflating "trying to look good" with "traditionally feminine" a bit here, I realise they're not the same thing and if people have examples which poke at that I'd be interested too.

EDIT: I'm looking for PROTAGONISTS, not secondary characters/non-main parts of an ensemble, and they have to be EXPLICITELY MORE into dressing up etc than other female characters in the same story.
Read more... )
EDIT: some examples from further thinking/other people:

  • Buffy from Buffy
  • Elle from Legally Blonde
  • Aisha from Aisha and Cher from Clueless, both modern retellings of Emma that turn Emma's advice to Harriet on being more upper class into fashion advice
From memory, Legally Blonde is the only one that really treats caring about fashion etc with much respect. With Aisha and Clueless I think it's an artifact of "being upper class while female" translating most easily into fashion consciousness, and it could be argued that it's still more about class than gender. But Buffy and Legally Blonde are explicitely designed to be stories about the kind of girl who never gets to be the heroine.

EDIT: Followup post.
sqbr: (genius!)
2016-03-09 11:50 am
Entry tags:

Help with writing: Older wheelchair users

I don't know if any of you guys can help with this, but if nothing else writing it all out will help me get it straight in my head.

So! I like to put wheelchair users in my games, because nobody else is going to. I feel reasonably confident writing/drawing people in my position: in a powerchair due to relatively recently acquired fatigue. Thanks to online research I also feel moderately confident with the Default Wheelchair User Character: a young, otherwise healthy paraplegic or amputee in a manual chair. The protagonist of SOON is this kind of character.

But I'm having trouble researching wheelchair using characters of other sorts, especially older people.
Read more... )
sqbr: Nepeta from Homestuck looking grumpy in front of the f/f parts of her shipping wall (grumpy)
2016-01-08 01:14 pm

The importance of power in discussions of media

I feel like I almost have a grip on this idea but lack the words to express it. Let's have a go anyway.

So! Fandom discussions have become very social justice tinged of late. In some ways I think this is great, I'm old enough to remember the dark wasteland of "why are you bringing race/gender/etc into it??" fannish dicussions before about 2006, and continue to be delighted by some of the positive changes I've seen in media and fandom over the last decade or so.

But! As is increasingly obvious there are some serious issues with the way social justice is approached in fandom, beyond the unavoidable flaws created by the conversation having people in it. And part of this is the erasure of the relative power position of the people being criticised. None of this is entirely new, but it's gotten worse. Nb I am primarly talking about online female dominated Western fandom, generally on dreamwidth and tumblr, but this happens other places too.
Read more... )
sqbr: (up and down)
2015-11-26 02:46 pm

Rough Notes for a Panel on Diversity in Gaming

For the Perth Gaming Festival this Saturday. I have a bunch of copanelists, so this is just points I want to hit, not a strict plan.

Description:
More people are playing and making games than ever before, and as the community has grown so too has the call for games that represent a wide range of human experience. This panel explores the importance of diversity in games, with discussion of ways developers can make more representative games, of how both players and game makers can be supportive of diverse voices, and will include examples of games featuring positive identity representations. Our panelists will speak from a wide range of perspectives, including disability, the LGBTIQ spectrum, and culturally diverse backgrounds.

My notes:
Read more... )
sqbr: (up and down)
2015-11-14 03:41 pm

Smug Anti-ableist "Allies" and the Complexities of Accessibility

So I think it's great when people pay attention to disability. But I don't like the way a lot of people (generally ablebodied/neurotypical) frame it. Namely, they divide actions neatly into acessible/"good for disabled people" and inaccessible/"bad for disabled people" then are smug about how
(a) This is good for "disabled people" in general
(b) This is easy and any decent person could do it. Sometimes with an added condemnation of the bad people who don't do these "simple things" and clearly don't care about disabled people.
(c) They are a good Ally to disabled people doing everything that can be done.

Except it's very rarely that simple.
Read more... )
sqbr: (up)
2015-11-08 07:54 pm

Disability Zine starting up!

See [community profile] bitesizedorg. Right now they're figuring out things like compensation and name etc.
sqbr: (racism)
2015-10-31 12:48 pm

Sent him an email instead!

Because it's a complex topic and I didn't want to get into a public conversation with the bigots buzzing around him.

And looking at it again now I see a silly spelling mistake /o\ Also JUST after I sent it [personal profile] mooreeffoc pointed out that you can't "fail" an IQ test. But if I'd kept editing much longer I'd have wound myself into an anxious ball and never sent it.
Read more... )
sqbr: (racism)
2015-10-31 07:22 am

Considering sending John Scalzi a tweet

He said "Your Halloween reminder that blackface is an IQ test, and if you wear it, you've failed." and my reply would be:

Blackface is awful, but equating low IQ with racism/moral failing is unfair. Esp given it's history http://www.racismreview.com/blog/2007/11/27/the-pseudoscience-of-%E2%80%9Cintelligence%E2%80%9D-testing/

(I found the link via quick google)

But idk, it feels weird bringing it up as a white non American. And while I'm disabled I have a pretty high IQ. Plus of course it could open me up to trolls, unless I send it as a private message.

Hmmm. Will ponder when more awake.
sqbr: (up and down)
2015-07-01 11:54 am

Actually ok with the Facebook filter thing

I've seen a lot of mogai people expressing discomfort/disdain for the plethora of rainbow filtered icons on facebook, and I don't mean to tell them they're wrong for their personal reaction, but I like it. I'm tired so here's my reasons in dot points.


  • rainbows are pretty
  • I can still see who people are (this is why I never participate in memes where everyone uses the same picture. Too confusing!)
  • I now know those people are at least basically ok with same sex relationships! This does not go without saying for everyone I follow.
  • Everyone who follows those people knows it too. This normalises mogai acceptance in general and marriage equality in particular. Since most people I follow are Australian and marriage equality hasn't been legalised here, that's not insignificant. And this is the case even if the people with the filters are doing it because of peer pressure/fashion.
  • It's nice to feel part of a global celebration of civil rights (yes, of a United States specific event). Especially because rainbows are so festive!
  • it's a really mild, ambiguous way for me to express my sexuality in a situation where I'm not 100% out.
  • On my feed at least it's NOT all straight people, in fact I'd say it heavily skews lgbt. And the fact it's popular with straight people means the rest of us aren't unambiguously outing ourselves by using it.


I think that's about it! I know there are arguments against it, I'm not saying it's an unalloyed good. But it felt like a lot of people were assuming that the ONLY people who like it were straight and nope.

Here's two contrasting articles about it I came across via Facebook:
More than 26 million people have changed their Facebook picture to a rainbow flag. Here’s why that matters.
If you’re straight you need to stop using rainbow profile pics.
sqbr: Expressing my femininity with an axe (femininity)
2015-06-20 01:57 pm

There is no such thing as "The Feminist Narrative"

There are certain sexist narratives media present to us. It's good to try to subvert them. But it is usually impossible to subvert all of them at once.

One of the narratives we're fed is that there is a single path of Good Womanhood. This path is inconsistent and impossible for any real woman to follow, and because it's so inconsistent parts of it show up in all sorts of attempted subversions.

One of the other narratives we're fed is that women should sacrifice our own enjoyment for The Greater Good. Thus letting ourselves enjoy the narratives we enjoy, no matter how "problematic", is itself in some ways subversive. (This doesn't mean we shouldn't try to avoid being actively sexist. Or for that matter racist etc)

Saying that there is a single Feminist Narrative all female characters should fit into supports this idea that there is a single Good Way To Be A Woman. Also, chances are there is some way this "feminist" narrative ends up supporting part of the typical Sexist Narrative, or is just not to everyone's tastes. Telling women that they are unfeminist if they don't like The One Feminist Narrative buys into the idea that women should sacrifice their own enjoyment for the greater good.
Read more... )
sqbr: (up)
2015-06-12 04:37 pm
Entry tags:

Disability Fest

Disability Fest is a tumblr for fannishness about canonically disabled characters, they have a fest coming up in July and some nice posts in their archive.

Going to see if there's stuff I can organise for it! You just have to tag it "disabilityfest" in the first 5 tags.