Voting hasn’t quite closed for the Dragon Awards as deadlines were extended to accommodate withdrawals. Meanwhile, there is a last minute appearance by a new player in town: The Red Panda Fraction.
File 770 has the scoop on the musteloidean agitators:
“The anonymous “Red Panda Fraction” sent out a tweetstorm criticizing how the Dragon Awards are run.”
Their Twitter page describes themselves as:
“Leftist fans of SF/fantasy/horror lit & film, gamers, & comic book nerds who discuss & promote leftist, LGBTQ+, and feminist cultural works in SF/fantasy/horror”
(They also seem to have a Facebook page but it doesn’t have much on it: https://www.facebook.com/redpandafraction – I sent them a friend request)
It is an interesting development.
I should say upfront that I’ve no idea who they are. Their motives seem clear and their critique of the Dragon Awards is sound. However, I’m not sure of their tactic of a recommendation list.
Firstly it is a bit late in the day to have any real impact.
Secondly, while their list is neither against the rules or (current) spirit of the Dragon Awards it still has the problem of effectively co-opting authors into a culture war whether they want to or not. Challenging the alt-right and the crypto-fascists of pop-culture is a worthy quest but it isn’t for everybody and even those who do want to be engaged in such conflicts need to be able to pick and choose their own battles. While the Red Pandas aren’t saying the authors of the works on their list are endorsing the Red Pandas, that is a side effect of adding somebody to a partisan list. I’m reminded of Kary English’s essay about becoming a football in the 2015 Hugo Puppy Kerfuffle. BUT I don’t actually know that they haven’t spoken to the authors they listed – maybe they did and the authors said ‘OK’, in which case please ignore this paragraph!
I’ve not seen any reaction in Scrappy Doo land yet. It may take awhile for the existence of this new group to filter through. Jon Del Arroz is doing his own thing and Brian Niemeier is currently busy failing basic reading comprehension of a comment by Greg Hullender from weeks ago (the original comment being here https://lelaebuis.wordpress.com/2017/08/11/update-on-the-dragon-awards-drama-2017/ )
The good news is that now I may have enough locations for a new map…