The World That's Coming

October 30, 2012 Writingthoughts

“Usually, People Get Paid for Endorsements, Right?”

I sure as hell won’t miss getting requests to participate in articles where you list all of the Marvel NOW! books you’re looking forward to and why. Oh, not a rundown of all of the titles and what you think of each. No, just what books you’re looking forward to! Because it’s a fun article! And it’s only fun when it’s positive and pretty flowers and free advertising for the largest comic publisher in North America! I don’t know if I’d like it more or less if money had been offered. I guess getting paid to participate in an article like that would be more honest. I mean, it’s a fucking ad for a bunch of comics — an endorsement! And, usually, people get paid for endorsements, right? Then again, it’s not like this is Marvel asking that this article happen, it’s just something that someone came up with, because it’s a ‘fun idea.’ How sad is that… ‘Fun’ equals ‘free promotion.’ Not actual balanced content — not even the illusion of it. Hey, if you genuinely love something, then shout it from the roof. I’ve never shied away from that. But, this… this is shilling pure and simple. Sucking Marvel’s cock and pretending it’s journalism.

From here, where Chad Nevett writes about his decision to step back from writing for The Comics Internet and explains why. He’s not wrong, but I’m still surprised that this saw print on ComicBookResources itself, simply because it’s… I don’t know, pulling back the curtain a little bit too much for comfort, maybe? I can’t imagine that there aren’t as many CBR writers who’d see this and think “I am a sell out” as there will be people reading it and thinking “I KNEW IT!” (This isn’t just something that is restricted to CBR, by the way; Newsarama and iFanboy and other comic sites do it just as much, too. And, yes, I write for many of these comic sites, and I sometimes contribute to this type of thing, for the purposes of full disclosure). Nonetheless, I’m really glad he wrote it; I think it’s smart and passionate and needed to be said by someone who actually has experience in this field. I just wonder what the reaction will be, both privately and publicly, is all.

…Somewhere in my head are thoughts about “fun articles” and positivity and the way in which they do serve a purpose beyond shilling or cowering to publishers/creators/whatever, but they’re nowhere near well-formed enough to actually write into anything coherent yet. One day. I still have to write about being on television last week, too.

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