All this stuff about Jontron and feminism and stereotypes and defending yourself and getting shit on (or off) has reminded me how I took advantage of my position as a creator in the latter days of Allan, and I’d like to apologize.
As a child I was inclined to think of myself as infallible, or if I was fallible, I could simply say I was joking. I always had an out, and when I didn’t, I had friends who would back me up regardless (and who outnumbered any who claimed offense). To those claims, I am truly sorry, and if I could I would go back and do everything to accommodate those who I wrote-off.
We artists tend to mean well with our work, which is perhaps why we become defensive. Nowadays, artists can instantly interact with their fanbase. We are shepherds who tend a valley, and the sheep graze there by choice. But for the naive shepherd, one injured sheep in a flock of thousands is easily ignored. This is naievity, though.
In the more-recent past I’ve lectured some of my fellow internet cohorts on how to stop turning their fans into numbers. People who “want” followers tend to stop looking at fans as people and instead “Followers” become one more penny in the artist’s ego pocket. Every. Single. Person. Fan, reader, backer, follower, friend, etcetera, is important. Recent events have only reinforced this idea.
I know this may not reach far, but I would like everyone who has been unapologetically hurt by a creator to know that we feel terrible about it. Maybe for some it is not on the surface, but deep down in the pit of our stomachs (that’s where I felt it, anyway), it lingers. It sticks with us. And sometimes, when we don’t have the maturity, know-how, or ego to own up, it might take some festering, some loss, and some more people to speak up. I hope you all get the empathy you deserve—you’re all remarkable, unique individuals.
Thank you for your support.