GreenReaper (greenreaper) wrote,

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Reporting on the fandom

Earlier today, I posted a story about a convention. Some feel the article is great. Others never want to speak to me again. Here's why I ran it:
  • The organization used its power to deny an individual or group something of value that most have - in this case, membership, but it could have been the ability to vote for their chosen candidate.
  • Several factual allegations cited as the basis for the organization's decision appeared either misleading or downright incorrect. If published, they might well have attracted a charge of defamation.
  • The organization's reasoning for their action appeared to cross the line between "clear relevance to the event" and "expression of personal preference away from the event."
  • The individual's actions had - arguably - contributed to society. The police learned law they should have known; an invalid law was nullified - The Examiner felt this worth noting. The organization appeared to discourage such acts.
  • The organization seemed to be saying that only concealed carry was appropriate in the state of Pennsylvania. It was unclear how anyone could open carry and not be at risk of being banned.
  • The individual came forward, exposing their privacy and worsening their relationship with the organization, because they felt they had been unjustly treated.

I'm very much aware of the danger of letting "cranks" on air. That's why I wrote it myself. I spent a lot of time on the article because I wanted to do it right. But I wouldn't have written it at all if I didn't think it was worth discussing.

Some just think I got it wrong. That I misinterpreted the organization's statements. All I can say is "this is honestly what I understood from the sources available to me." I asked for clarification on the exact meaning of several points because I did not want to misinterpret anything, and I did not get it.

Should anyone feel I am "anti-convention", I urge you to read my coverage of Anthrocon and Further Confusion on Wikinews, and the last three years of WikiFur News articles. Certainly, I have reported on contentious issues (Foxmas, cub art, etc.) where I felt it was justified, but these are precisely the ones worthy of public discussion.

Many of the people I write about on Flayrah (or WikiFur) are those I consider friends, to a greater or lesser extent. This places me in a difficult position. When I am writing an article, I have to put that friendship and any other affiliation aside and report based on the published sources and my own conscience. If I did not, I might accurately be accused of favouritism.

Given all that, why do I do it? Because I think it's useful. It's my contribution to furry fandom. I'm no artist. I don't write fiction. I can't sew. But I can write news, and it's something the fandom lacks. I try to do the best job I can.

As for who gave me the right to report or comment on such issues . . . well, nobody. I have only my own reputation to rely on, as determined by my work. If I don't do a good job, nobody will give a damn what I say — and rightly so.

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