I’m not industry, for me this event is much more family oriented and an opportunity to learn about an industry that we make a part of our day-to-day.
As we all know, these Cons do not only focus on video games, tv, and movies.
They focus on words and illustrative narrative as well. That’s why there is a heavy presence of publishing houses, indie publishers, and creators and purveyors of comic books at these events.
As I love to read, I decided to sit in on a couple of panels: Illustrative Narrative and Non-Fiction, Social Media and the Author, Black Heroes Matter, and Archie: Riverdale Revealed.
One wouldn’t initially think that there would be a common thread weaving it’s way throughout all these panels? There was one.
This term describes the ways in which oppressive institutions (racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, xenophobia, classism, etc.) are interconnected and cannot be examined separately from one another.
Representation is the key.
Being represented in all types of media and being accepted by all types of media is the goal.
Blerdgurl mentioned feeling like she was always the only one in the room, an African-American female. As she is an editor and will have her own show on Syfy wire, she has had to make it her job to force people to take her seriously in an industry where diversity is not top of mind.
This is evident in the content presented to the masses.
Only 10 percent of movies have a non-white lead as a hero.
But, we need more so that kids will grow up with content that represents them and make them feel like they matter.
This is not only an issue of racism, throughout the panels the question of why some types of work are relegated to sub-genres kept popping up.
When an author, like Alisha Rai, informs the audience that publishers tell her and other authors like her that if her characters were changed from whatever ethnicity they are initially in her book to something else and as a result it would receive more advertising opportunities. You have to stop and wonder why this type of bias still exists.
Publishers, like Archie Comics, are heralded for having a comic book like Life With Kevin and characters like Toni Topaz and Jughead which fills that gap of positive LGBTQ characters in the comic universe.
There is no doubt that the present political climate does not help matters. However, it is you… the person who buys the books, comic books, tickets to movies, and subscriptions to watch shows that can make the change.
We need to teach advertisers and the industry that change needs to happen.