14
Nov
Reading up on a lot on social media on how the comic industry treats female creators as a whole (Terribly, according to the majority of comments). Since you are a seasoned vet in the comic book world and you come off in person as such a knowledgeable person, what are your thoughts on the subject? Is it getting better or worse? Is it really as bad as some of the stories I have read? Or is it just one a few isolated incidents here and there?
— Anonymous

I’m not really sure how to begin to answer this (and that’s not helped by the fact that it’s asked anonymously).

To say that the comics industry in the US is sexist isn’t news. To say that harassment of women, both professionals and fans, occurs is sadly not news, either.

My honest opinion? The only thing that I really think is getting better is that more people are talking about it, and more people are pushing the matter into the light. Awareness is the first step, but not, by far, the only one required. The fact is, the ratio of women to men working in the industry itself is still grotesquely low. There are corners where efforts are being made to improve this. It’s not, in my opinion, enough.

Sexism is part of our culture, both outside of comics and within it; it’s exacerbated exponentially in comics because women have been excluded and/or marginalized for so very long. And I suppose that is the answer to your question as to whether or not it’s “really as bad as some of the stories” you’ve read. No, it’s not that bad. It’s worse. It’s endemic. For every story you’re hearing, there are ten that you’re not. For every instance of poor behavior you’ve heard of from and editor or a creator, there’s another twenty stories about convention trips to strip clubs for “meetings” and the like.

Whether it’s better or worse today than ten years ago, I genuinely cannot say. My sneaking suspicion is not that it’s better, but that the men who are capitalizing on the situation are doing a better job of hiding their behavior.

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