I have been a member of DeviantART for just over 11 years. My time here has been rather quiet and has gone without incident. I can even count on one hand the number of trolls that have looked my way but cant recall why. And not a single one of my images was considered offensive or needing a mature tag. That all changed earlier this year however. For the first time ever I received a report that one of my images needed a mature tag. I appealed that and won. Several weeks later, another image was reported as needing a mature tag. So I appealed that one too and won. Little did I realize that those were the red flags going up. But I had no idea what was about to happen next.
On August 27th 2018, 173 of my images were DELETED
anonymously by a staff member, and my account was suspended for 2 months. They blanketed the whole act by claiming it was all done for violation of policy, that my images were depicting underage girls in a sexually explicit manner. But the images they took down are no different than the ones they left behind. In some cases, two images of the exact same woman, in the exact same outfit but in different poses, had one taken down and the other left behind. Images of fully clothed women and portrait shots from the shoulders up where you can see nothing were removed while images of the exact same character wearing see-through clothes, was left behind. And the biggest WTF, is they left behind the image "The Girls Dorm" rendered in 3Delight but removed the newer version rendered in Iray. So if this was an act of enforcing policy, I have to wonder, how on earth do the images that were taken down magically violate policy and the ones left behind don't? This however was not an act of enforcing policy. Instead I will call it what it is, a brutal and malicious hate crime against myself and my artwork!
I will admit, I was originally going to fight the banning but several things quickly occurred to me. If this person has that much power and can abuse that power as they please in this way, what is stopping them from coming back and doing round two by axing the rest of my artwork and even deleting my account? And even if I did appeal the matter and won, no one on DA can give me back the years worth of comments and likes on all my artwork from fellow artists. And how can I participate in a web site where there is NO clear line as to what is considered right or wrong. How can I even upload new artwork and not wonder if it too is going to be deleted. So I decided not to appeal this matter and have chosen to move on. As a result, I will no longer be using DeviantART to share my artwork. I will not close my account either but simply leave it as is. Those who wish to continue following my work can find me over at Artstation under the same name - www.artstation.com/mattymanx
To everyone here who I follow and who follow me, you will all be greatly missed. The one thing I have always liked the most about DeviantART is the wide variety and diversity of artists and artwork from all around the world. Being amazed and inspired by the wonderful works of others and yet humbled by the kind comments from those who appreciate my own. This to me will be the biggest loss of all.
To the person responsible, I don't know who you are or why you did this, so I will simply forgive you and leave it at that. Perhaps your life is full of hurt and hurting others is the only way you can find any kind of temporary relief. If you continue in this manner however, you will not be remembered as some sort of hero or savior, but instead the only artistic merit you will ever be remembered for, is the way you built DeviantART's coffin!