#19) Someone on Tumblr has started a 'bad MLP OCs' thing where they're identifying bad OCs and putting them up. I'm scared my OC might end up on it. What should be done?
Answer: You can start by giving less of a fuck about some stupid Tumblr account. Do people really have nothing better to do than go around and point out OC designs that they think suck? It's really pathetic behaviour, especially when you consider that they're just doing it to make people feel bad while at the same time making themselves feel better by illustrating their obvious superiority complex. The owner of the blog better have a good OC in order to justify their criticisms, is all I'm sayin'.
You could go ahead and ask them to take it down, although I imagine that the sort of person who is running a 'bad MLP OCs' account on Tumblr isn't the kind of person who cares about offending others. You could also cross your fingers and hope that you don't end up on their account, if it bothers you that much – there are thousands of OCs out there, and so the chance of them finding yours is slim.
However, I would prefer to entertain the whole 'give less of a fuck' argument. Tumblr has its upsides, but it also breeds a bitchy pony-environment where people can just badmouth each other constantly, hiding behind the wall that is Tumblr. I run this series in order to attempt to diffuse argumentative stances; on Tumblr, a lot of what gets posted is to spark a reaction without any form of remedy, and that becomes a problem when people are making needlessly critical blogs like the one that has you spooked.
They're only ponies, and I'd like to think that someone who makes an OC works hard on its design. Those people who moan, "Alicorn OCs are retarded!" or, "That design is so shit!" are forgetting that people who make OCs are presumably doing it because they like the design. Bitching about someone else's OC via a Tumblr blog is the equivalent of seeing someone walk by on the street, turning to your friends and then giggling like an idiot because you've seen someone who doesn't meet your expectations.
Why people even care about other people's OCs will never make sense to me. It's cool to like a design, and it's also fine if you don't like one - that's where it should end. I get really annoyed by the constant OC-bashing; even if something looks like turd, you don't have to point it out to the person who made it. Internalise your damn thought process; getting elitist about My Little Pony is something that could only happen on the internet.
Don't be afraid that your OC might be put onto this blog thing. If it is, embrace the fact that someone has seen the OC, and relish upon knowing that you've sparked that much of a reaction from someone with too much time on their hands. It's only a random Tumblr account that you don't even have to click, and their opinion is about as useful to you as any other meaningless words on any other blog.
...Except for this one, obviously.
#20) Christian bronies - they're everywhere! And they're ruining the show for me! For instance, one got into a whole rant with me about being a clopper, even though I'm not one, telling me I would go to hell unless I repented! It's a kids show; why are they using it as a vessel to spew their religion?
Answer: I have only ever made contact with one radical Christian brony; he told me that he disliked me for my conjecture and struck me most frugally with his faith. He was an advocate for keeping ponies kid-friendly, which I agreed with, although we differed in other key areas. So, the question: what should be done with Christian bronies? I imagine that you could forfeit the 'bronies' part and still get much the same response. People believe in what they want to believe in, and, in order for society to function neatly, we have to accept religious beliefs as long as they aren't doing anyone else harm.
These bronies asking you to repent should be prioritising different things. Wanking over ponies should be frowned upon even from a secular viewpoint, and so I'm hardly surprised when evangelists attempt to neuter clop material. I'd join them in that pursuit myself, although not for religious reasons. I do rather support their anti-clop stance, although their methods and reasoning - burning in hell? - are curious at best.
It seems to be a case of attacking anyone who isn't a part of their cult, as far as I can tell. I can't see why else they'd be calling you a clopper, unless you gave them reason to believe that you like to draw tits on ponies/see Pinkie Pie having a party in your pants. Perhaps you were approached having commented on an image that may have been regarded, at least in their eyes, as inappropriate? Just having a Christian brony pounce on you unprovoked sounds hard to believe, although stranger things have happened.
Ultimately, a lot of Christians like to make other people into Christians: it's just how religion works. It's no different in principle to bronies trying to make other people into bronies, and so I'm not going to criticise the sentiment behind the action. I am, however, going to say that preaching to the converted is a bad idea, and that the whole 'burning in eternal hell-fire' thing is pretty hard to take seriously nowadays. I'd either say that people were just messing with you – nobody seriously behaves that way, do they? - or that they're delusional. In any case, I clearly advise you to go and recite three Hail Marys*, you bad brony: maybe that will satisfy the extremists.
*Find out if they're a Catholic first.
#21) What is it with this god-damn fandom and its tendency to add negative aspects to the context of the show? I mean, take Berry Punch, for example. In one episode she drinks from the punch bowl; there's nothing wrong with that. But, because of that, everyone now thinks she's an abusive and neglectful alcoholic piece of trash.
Answer: Never underestimate the capacity that the brony fandom has to turn a tiny scene into a full-on character-defining moment. Bronies do it all the time: seeing Lyra and Bon-Bon standing together is seen to mean that they're lesbians; noticing the appearance of that one pony has given her the fan-name 'Colgate' and the occupation of a dentist. With Berry Punch, people obviously like the design of the pony but, because there's nothing else to her character, they've decided to really ride with that single action in that one episode in order to shape an entire back-story and personality for her.
It's not really that surprising, considering that this fandom likes to obsess over minuscule details. If that one punch-drinking scene is all that people have seen of Berry Punch's character, then they're naturally going to seize upon it. I object to the idea that 'everyone thinks that she's an alcoholic piece of trash', though. I know quite a few bronies who like the character's design, and the fan-depiction of her as well. Personally, I have absolutely no interest in such a minor character, but I'm no fan of any of the fan-interpretations of the characters.
Octavia and Vinyl Scratch and plenty of others have all received the brony treatment in terms of shaping their personalities. In terms of many of these qualities being 'negative', I suppose you could argue that it makes things more interesting/potentially realistic. Nobody is flawless, and so to focus on a negative rather than a positive is something that more people can relate to.
If you're writing a fan-fiction or drawing a picture and you want to portray an alcoholic, Berry Punch is something of a universal symbol for that. It just makes sense now that the fandom has decided that Berry Punch's character is like that. You don't have to like fan-interpretations of personalities; personally, I think it's funny that people sometimes get shouted at for portraying these nondescript background ponies differently to the general fandom consensus. If there's no character in the first place, you can do whatever the hell you like with it. If you want to write a story where Berry Punch is a die-hard alcohol prohibitionist, there's nothing stopping you.
I would, ultimately, equate the personality generally applied to Berry Punch to being a manifestation of bronies having too much time and, at the same time, wishing to explore a particular theme (and a running gag, I suppose you could say) that plenty of people will be able to identify with. The fandom clearly gives way more thought to the background ponies than the people who make the show, and sometimes you could argue that they go too far with it. However, I put the 'negative' focus of these characters down to people being interested in seeing cute ponies in a less-than-cute light; it's just the way that some people work, and, if I were you, I'd just ignore it. If a person wants to make Berry Punch into an abusive and destructive alcoholic then the joke's on them: chances are that alcohol abuse runs in their family, anyway.
A new project that I'm starting in collaboration with artists. It's an advice column, in the simplest of terms: I want you to send me notes if you have any problems, secrets or comments on the pony fandom of any nature. It doesn't matter how embarrassing, offensive or vicious they might be: if you want someone to comment on them in an unbiased way, send them over. Maybe there's something within the fandom that you particularly despise, or perhaps you're feeling sad and need to hear some friendly advice? Whatever the motive, send a note with your comment or question.
I'll then respond to them with advice and commentary and post the answers up in future installments. Users will remain anonymous, so you don't need to worry about your feelings and thoughts getting out onto DeviantArt. You may find that some of the things that you've personally been feeling will be addressed.
Feel free to note me if you would like your questions and observations to be answered in an upcoming edition. Every edition will be engaging with three issues. The above three featured today were submitted by anonymous deviants.
#20, this is a crazy world out here today, sinners are everywhere. And beware those that are pure fanatics, one wrong move and you'll provoke the hornet's nest. Look at the whole "Innocence of Muslim" controversy, I bet that some director have pulled off this stunt just for the lulz, if I were the judge, I'll give him the death sentence. So for this case, let's face it, God gives freedom to all of us, don't take it too seriously if someone clops, people have their needs of course. Sin is everywhere, you can't expect yourself to be a God and tell everyone to follow the way you like it to do good, you're just another human being like me. Don't forget that Adam & Eve was seduced by Satan and then they founded sin.
#21, Berry Punch is just a joke, why take it so serious? Same case for Derpy, we got other wacky characters before her, we got Ed in the 90s and 00s, before that is Disney's Goofy in the 90s and much earlier after Disney was formed. If Season 3 might feature Derpy speaking again, the haters can screw themselves, let them refresh their memory on the Ed & Goofy examples I just spoke about. Derpy only got 1 speaking role recently compare to the other 2, so why want to hurt her? All for what? Spongebob is even worse, he is so childish and he has a child's soul inside an adult's body and that's NO JOKE. All in all, Ed, Goofy, Berry Punch and Derpy are just jokes. Why so serious, man?!
20. Religion... no, just no. You can state your beliefs but when you start telling people that they will burn in hell, be reincarnated as fly, or any of the other things that are religious punishments, you've gone too far. And I don't think that just because I'm anti-religion, I used to be a hardcore "do as me or burn" Christian, and I saw just how wrong it was to think like that. Religion, just like some fandoms (Love and Tolerate) are nothing more than a way to make yourself feel better and superior to most people. Very few actually embrace the teachings and only hide behind it or strive towards some prize (heaven/reincarnation as a higher being/eternal life) for being 'good' in life.
But I digress, everyone is entitled to their own opinion.
I would like to say a lot, but I think I need to address question 20 most importantly.
I am a christian myself (if my signature didn't clue you in), and I find this obtrusive behavior quite offensive.
Our doctorate does not state to be a hideous jerk to "sinners", but rather to confront them lovingly... And really only to do this when someone else tells us that this person needs to be talked to (in example, they're destroying themselves or others around them).
Also, as more of a personal preference, I only share my opinion when asked of it. I always try (that being the key word) to put logic behind my arguments, and back them up with fact and reason, When invited to share. (I may have a lot to learn of this technique, seeing as I've already made some others heaping mad without knowing what I did wrong.)
However, this being the internet, I've observed opinions to be amplified exponentially, and logical argument to be stripped of them. This is largely due to the Anonymous state of the internet, and just like everyone else, Christians are effected by it as well.
"Hellfire and Brimstone" is a weak argument on atheists anyway. They don't believe in Hell, so why would they believe you if you went out and told them they're going there? The best a Christian can do is to lead by example. Then, when someone who doesn't believe comes up to ask "Why are you acting so nice?", they can tell them!
Excellent job as usual, Cudpug! I love this series!
You say that you only share your opinion regarding religion when asked about it (if I'm understanding you right) but the fact that you overtly suggest in your signature that you're religious somewhat counters that. Nevertheless, I'm glad you see that it's flawed behaviour to tell bronies that they're going to Hell. Thanks for the praise every issue!
Guilty as charged! It never occurred to me that the signature held any place in this argument. However, When speaking my mind on opinions in GENERAL, I still try to follow this rule. ...I think... (I suppose I should change my signature for courtesy's sake... NAH.)
Well, to be fair on Berry Punch, the drunk interpretation was bolstered by the storyboard artist Sabrina Alberghetti coming out and saying that was kind of what she was after when adding that short scene, and how she thought every town needed a town drunk. She even said she wanted to add a burp at the end of the scene, but Hasbro said no. But that's an exception to usual fan characterisations of characters that have no personality or any history whatsoever from which to draw from. Some work, some don't, some are just eh. I don't get all too worked up over this stuff in either case. Heck, I've even written fanfics on characters with little canon information or personality profile to go by, so I'm not one to talk.
Oh, and fanatical Christians are funny. They generally tend to be annoying, but usually fairly harmless. Like this guy who equates the music of Hans Zimmer to Jesus being crucified on the cross: [link] I usually just laugh at their self-important shit.
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