Recent drama and controversy here on DeviantArt regarding what is and is not Mature and/or Explicit Content has been... troubling to say the least. DeviantArt's rules make it difficult to investigate the situation, gaining a better understanding of it from all sides, and the interactions between numerous artists and writers falling into one camp or another do not help. I've been seeing overreaction from- Well, I won't say "both sides" because there are more than two viewpoints, but many reactions back and forth, especially in comment sections, have struck me as childish and willfully ignorant, incapable of seeing things from any perspective but their own. This disturbs me as much as any attack on artistic expression.
There is a lot of art on here I do not care for and there are things that offend me, but I won't spend my limited time hunting those things down, passing judgement, and making trouble for the artists who create them. Likewise I'd hope they do the same because what appeals to me is my business as what appeals to them is theirs. It's only when these things cause real, physical harm to another human being that any of us have the right - an obligation even - to say something and/or take action. I would include "criminal" in that definition of harm, but DeviantArt is worldwide and there are conflicting laws just between states in the U.S. nevermind international differences.
The righteous indignation you've seen from me regarding one of my portraits being targeted has been directed only at those who deserve it - as best as it can be directed since they are protected by anonymity. No one else has really weighed in with an opinion opposing my views, but if they had I'd have responded courteously. I'd even welcome it. What I would not do is use whatever block or ignore feature is in place here just because someone disagrees with me. I would rather do my best to change a person's mind using facts and whatever passion I have for those facts. And if I can't, if you can't, then we should at least agree to disagree without later attacking each each other indirectly through deceitful means. I've never used an ignore feature for any reason, not even in an MMO like World of Warcraft, which I've played since release day November 23rd, 2004. That's a long time full of many encounters with unpleasant and disagreeable players. And beyond that: slandering people who disagree with you, spreading lies and false information about them, does no service to you or any cause you represent. If anything it makes you no better than you imagine them to be.
I'll tell you: this drama, dealing with its effects on me personally, and trying to investigate how it's affecting other people and what brought it on - trying to get to the facts of the situation - I honestly feel like I'm dealing with a classroom of children. This is where I would tell my own kids, "If you can't get along you both lose. You go to that corner and you go to that one, and both of you think long and hard about how you got there and if it was really worth it." I also take away whatever toys caused the fight. I want no part of drama that includes childish insults, misplaced anger, and paranoia. If any further controversy comes my way I'll deal with it, but after this journal entry, after the render I've been working on in support of a suspended author is finished, so am I. Hopefully...
There is one more detail related to this topic that concerns me: it's been said that the same definitions of Mature and Explicit Content that apply to visual art are applied to writing - to the short and episodic stories people upload here. If that's true I completely disagree with it. They are not the same thing. With a painting, drawing, or whatever someone can glance at it briefly and that's all it takes to determine if there is nudity, violence and gore, or ideologically sensitive material on display. With writing, however, in reading someone's fiction, you have to take time to decipher the words, their context, and their meaning. You have to actually get involved and if you think you might not like what's happening you have to make a conscious decision to continue. That is on you, the reader, not the author - especially if it was already flagged as Mature Content. I mean, wow! By these standards I could never post one of Ysabel's stories here. I couldn't post Deshret's either. Maybe some of Layla's...
Listening to: Man of Steel
Reading: Nothing. My books are still at the old place.
Watching: Batman vs Superman
Eating: Too much. I miss smoking.
Drinking: Coffee. The usual Colombian.