Fascist Feuding Fuels Further Fuss

Links to the other posts 1, 2, 3, 4

Yes, yes, I should kick the habit of writing about what Vox Day is up to as on the whole it is mainly repetition of the same stunts but still, somehow this is my allocated fate.

So the crappiest Gate aka ComicsGate has been rolling on for a bit now mainly shouting about their victimhood and harassing people they don’t like (mainly women). The harassment and general nastiness has been around for awhile but the specific ‘movement’ coalesced around various crowd funded projects. That same far right angst/grift around comics also fuelled Vox Day’s vanity publishing house to move into its own brand of alt-right comics. Vox Day has generally been a bit sniffy about ‘ComicsGate’ as a group because I guess he wanted to be in charge but people find his anxiousness to be boss a bit creepy.

Fast forward to today when Day announces an additional imprint for his publishing business: http://boundingintocomics.com/2018/09/03/exclusive-vox-day-announces-new-comicsgate-imprint/

In effect, Day has gazumped the name “ComicsGate” and slapped a trademark [eta: not sure now if he as actually trademarked it] on it. In the process metaphorically stabbing the non-Vox aligned ComicsGaters in the back.

(Archive version of Vox Days blog on the issue here)

Ethan Van Sciver, the comic artist behind a lot of the ComicsGate nonsense, is apparently furious about this (oh and just to ensure everything connects in a giant heap of awful ‘EVS’ drew the illustrations for Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life).

So, lots of shouting and threats and angry macho posturing. As always when the far right feuds we can hope that the in-fighting at a minimum keeps them to busy to do damage elsewhere

21 thoughts on “Fascist Feuding Fuels Further Fuss

  1. IANAL but as I understand it from copious previous examples, he can’t trademark a word in isolation. He can trademark the word with respect to a particular usage (comics publishing) and he can copyright the logo etc. If someone wants to argue or troll or fume about comicsgate the shitstorm, they can continue to do so. All he’s done is associate his imprint with an inane hate campaign that has been widely denounced.
    It’s like him trademarking ‘faeces’ for the same purpose. And with the same effect.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I assume he’s trademarked it as the name of the imprint but I doubt he wants people to stop using the term because they’ll in effect give him free advertising. As for ‘faeces’, well he’s cornered the market on people who want to bu shit 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. If he doesn’t stop them from using it in that context, though, the trademark would be pointless (and he’d be likely to lose it).


      2. A brand identity that includes the phrase ‘ComicsGate’ along with distinctive graphics and potentially other ‘trade dress’ (distinctive visual appearance of a product or its packaging) would, in my interested-amateur opinion[1], tend to make for at best a weak trademark, regardless of whether it is only common-law or (in the alternative) registered.

        It’s just not very distinctive, not to mention there probably being gobs of prior art. (I’m guessing on the latter point, comics not being generally my cuppa.)

        [1] Obviously, anyone in a real-world legal conflict should hire a competent attorney, and not heed net.randoms’ views. FWIW, I studied trademark law (mostly USA variety) on account of being thrust into a trademark dispute in 2003-4. Also FWIW, my group won.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Lpl, Beale learned from Chuck Tingle outsmarting him. Remember when Tingle registered the Puppies’ domain names for satire because they all didn’t think to do it? Beale decided he’d do the same thing to the Comicsgate crowd and snatch their money grift. And this on the same day a bunch of them tried to argue to Neil Gaiman that he didn’t know how his own career started. It’s like a really bad version of Game of Thrones.

    You might enjoy this account if you don’t follow it already, CF:

    Liked by 3 people

      1. I didn’t realize that it was going to print more than just the link there, sorry for that. But it’s an interesting account because apparently that person went undercover with the Comicsgate crowd and has all sorts of awful group DM cap shots of the horribly bigoted things they said about what they are doing. Not that you really need the undercover stuff, since they are pretty open about it, but it is fun that the person can whip out a trail for every occasion when they try to backtrack.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of people, I wish them well in their future endeavours.

    (I bet you saw the story about a different CGer recruiting Dave flippin’ Sim, presumably to prove that their misogyny has a heritage)


    1. Yeah, damn there’s a book to be written about Sim somewhere. Actually genius eaten from the inside out by misogyny – it’s like he was patient zero for something that went epidemic a few years later.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Sim seems to have had a nervous breakdown and lapsed into schizophrenia in the midst of writing ‘Cerebus’, which really makes the whole thing tragic.


      2. I was actually talking about Sim with some friends a couple of days ago. People tend to forget that his ex-wife, Deni Loubert, had most of the business sense of the pair and had been the one most involved with building Aardvark-Vanaheim into an actual imprint that published other books as well, such as Flaming Carrot and Journey. When the two of them broke up, she started up Renegade Press and walked off with all the non-Cerebus titles.

        Yeah, there is definitely a book to be written about Sim, how central he was in a good chunk of the black and white boom and in the whole ‘creators rights’ fight in comics. And how he hollowed out a lot of the support around him.

        Liked by 3 people

    1. that’s the problem of the right in general, I’d say.
      Just consider all the right-wing nationalist groups in Europe at the moment, they can’t cooperate with each other because then theyre base would get angry at them, after all if I’m a strong supporter of nationalism in my own country, I don’t want someone from another country telling me what to do.
      Ultimately, this will be the reason why the right fails, because they care only about themselves, I just worry how many people they will take down with them.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A trademark is a limited-scope monopoly over commercial use of a brand identity (i.e., the impression of a specific product, as designated by the use of certain stylings and words to identify it) within a specific trade or industry. In USA and UK law (not sure about elsewhere), such a brand identity can be established by usage alone, in which case it’s called a common-law trademark, and is enforceable (to suppress unauthorised competing business’s use) in the local vicinity of that business. Going beyond that and registering the trademark gives nationwide geographic coverage and enforceability against unauthorised use by competitors in commerce. (It also serves as constructive notice to third parties.)

    All of this is wildly misunderstood by most commenters — partly because, as Cory Doctorow points out in the linked article, it serves the interests of trademark stakeholders for people to greatly overestimate what power a trademark (assumed valid) has.


  5. Because I was curious about the origin of the term, I went back to look at the Twitter timeline of its usage. You can find it used as early as January, 2011, with the Comicsgate Twitter account, but it isn’t associated with anti-diversity stuff till September of 2014.

    I hadn’t been following this until the last couple of days but the amount of convulsive froth it’s eliciting from its participants is staggering.

    I’d love to read a biography of Dave Sim of the sort you’re discussing – I loved Cerebus back in the day and then things seemed to go so very awry.


    1. Cerebus was something else but I’m not sure its readable anymore – the character’s misanthropy was funny & ironic but now it would feel like it was the ‘real’ Sim just hating.


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