"So, you guys snuck out early?"
I just read your post about the whole Zach/fanfic fiasco and I just wanted to say I thought you wrote a thoughtful and well-presented discussion and anyone who gives you hassle for it is silly <3
Thank you, cxptnrogers! I was pleasantly surprised to find that little hate came my way after posting (and none directly, actually). I’m sure that’s because I took the fine advice of the folks at The Bar and turned anon messaging off though! ;)
answered 20 hours ago
with 14 notes
21 hours ago
with 395 notes
pinto??? nah what a fucked up- [trips] [hundreds of thousands of pinto edits spill out of jacket] w-what a bad fucking ship- you shouldn’t- real people- these arent mine im just [gathering them up frantically sweating] listen i just listen fuck [thousands of pinto headcanons and fic scatter across the floor] shit fuck im holding them for a friend just listen
Where do I begin? There are so many things I want to say about the portion of the HP interview I’ve posted above. And I have no doubt that posting these things will lose me followers, gain me hate mail, and who knows what else. But I feel this is something that needs to be said.
It’s clear from watching the HP interview that Zach is not comfortable answering this question. At all. However, he gives it a shot and is vague and eloquent enough to appease the masses (as well as his and Franco’s publicists, I’m sure). Unfortunately this is fandom and we are not the masses. In fact, we’re often made up of the minorities (sexual, social, spiritual).
My initial take away (and initial point of anger) was the impression that, for ZQ, it’s okay for someone like James Franco to use a creative medium to explore and generate dialogue about gay sexuality, but it’s not okay for people like us to do so. And I must admit, as a recognizable member of a community that ZQ himself has publicly shamed on several occasions, this impression is not okay.
Why is it a ‘warranted’ provocation for James Franco, yet an abhorrent and pathological fetish for us? Why is my exploration of sexuality in a safe and anonymous community (an exploration which has allowed me to gain valuable insight, foster fulfilling relationships, and move towards becoming more content in my own life) so blatantly appalling, while Franco’s voyeurism and trolling are commendable?
Though it may not appear so to outsiders, this is a community that engages in constant open discussion and introspection. We are not blind to the opposition that has been shown to us, nor are we immune to some it ourselves. Those contributing to the dialogue are predominantly individuals who openly identify as women or non-binary, most of whom are highly educated, intelligent, and open-minded, with sexualities falling over every length of the spectrum. We are critical and able to appreciate the views coming from of all sides of the debate. That is, until they shame us.
And in my experience it’s been clear that when we’re publicly shamed by celebrities, those around us then think it’s okay to shame us as well.
Personally, I no longer give a damn what ZQ thinks about fanfiction or the idea of Spirk. It’s nothing I’d ever have any desire to ask him about, and I’m content knowing that aside from the occasional awkward question, he doesn’t give the matter a second thought. It’s completely outside of his experience, and that’s more than fine by me.
However, as his fans we share numerous spaces with the rest of his fan base, which like most other fandoms, is made up predominantly of women. We are connected, and we are in constant conversation. But many of these other fans seem to think that it’s okay to threaten, to belittle, and to shame our communities. As someone who has been on the receiving end of numerous hate filled messages I can tell you that such remarks are hurtful, ignorant, and insulting. People with little to no understanding of our communities come in to pass judgment, and attempt to shame us out of existence.
For many, especially those who identify as women or non-binary, getting to a place where they were able to explore and discuss sexuality is difficult enough without then being shamed by a greater and more vocal fandom sect. Those who do so may not realize it, but with every comment, hate message, and eye-roll, what is being conveyed is the shaming of women, by other women, for using a creative outlet to learn more about sexuality, gender, and themselves.
"But I think it’s about what you do with the dialogue once it’s generated that becomes important to our culture."
This. Right here. THIS IS WHAT WE ARE DOING. And I’m not just talking about Trek RPF or Spirk, I’m talking about what we in all fandoms, as a fandom, as fic writers and artists and consumers are already and have been doing for decades. I think it’s important for these actors themselves—who perhaps reluctantly became part of that— to be willing to embrace, to a certain degree. Because while they are the catalysts, they can also be the platform for that discussion. Some of them already have, and that’s really important. But we need more of them to.
(Many thanks to PiL for a really excellent essay, and especially to Suede for seriously nailing it with insightful commentary once again.)
I just want to add some context for the questions quoted by PiL because I haven’t seen that put clearly anywhere so far. Those questions refer to ZQ working with James Franco on the movie “Michael”.
The movie “Michael” is Real Person Fiction.
The movie “Michael” is Real Person Fiction with sexual content and a canon slash threesome.
When ZQ refers to playing scenes in which he was told to put out for his pretend beebee James Franco, he’s refering to scenes that portray a real sexual relationship of a real person.
So what’s the big difference between Franco and his movie “Michael” and your average RPF writer?
Well, Franco is a man.
And Franco gets paid for it.
I find this particularly frustrating because I’ve been saying this forever, ever since Zach’s comments came out about fanfiction. But I’m glad someone else is saying it now. Every single time someone shames you for fanfiction, be aware that it comes down to dollars and dicks.
I have so, so many issues with this whole discussion, and I have been contemplating whether or not I should chime in, and after seeing ZQ basically be called a misogynist and hypocrite, and the non-Pinto ZQ fanbase being misrepresented as a group that shames other fans, I felt like I had to say something.
First of all, there is a difference between Spirk and Pinto. Zach has NEVER bashed Star Trek fanfic, or Spirk. I am so sick of that quote from last year being through back out about him. All he said is he has no interest in it. Which is fine. People don’t have to be interested in fanfic; it doesn’t make them bad people. The only thing he has openly showed opposition to his Pinto, and that’s fine too. That’s his real life, and he’s allowed to be uncomfortable with people sexualizing a relationship between him and his close friend. If he thinks it’s disrespectful, then it IS disrespectful. The person is bothered by something is the one who is allowed to decide if something is bothersome, not the one doing the bothering. Sure, some actors don’t mind the RPF. But Zach does, and his fans should respect that.
Comparing the movie “Michael” to RPF is a hug stretch in my opinion. As pointed out by canvuljan in this post, there’s a difference between RPF and a biographical film. Namely, that the people whose lives are portrayed gave EXPRESS permission for their lives to be portrayed. As far as I know, neither Zachary Quinto or Chris Pine have given such permission. Particularly as a biography is factual, whereas RP is a completely fictionalized version of someone’s actual life. I honestly don’t see how people cannot see that distinction. It has nothing to do with James Franco being a man.
On the subject of shaming the Pinto fandom: I will not, and have not done this. It is not my job to police any fandom, and I certainly will not tell people what they can and cannot do with their fandom life. But I’m allowed to have an opinion, and it is my opinion that Pinto RPF is disrespectful to both Zachary and Chris. Why? Well, Zach has said himself that he finds it disrespectful, and that’s honestly all I need to hear, as it’s his life that is the subject of these fics. And I’m not going to shy away from stating that opinion. That is not shaming anyone, it’s just a different viewpoint.
The point about exploring sexuality and forming connections with others in fandom is a valid one, but I don’t see why that cannot be done without basing your stories on real life people (especially when one of those people is so obviously uncomfortable with it). Why not just stick to fictional characters? As many have pointed out, Spirk is the original slash pair. What better way to begin discussions on sexuality? I don’t see how Zach or Chris has to come into the equation at all.
And finally, since Zach has been such a huge disappointment to so many beans, why not pick another actor to cast in your RPFs? It certainly can’ be fun not liking, and in some instances that I’ve seen, actively disliking, one half of your OTP. If you hate Zach so much, MOVE ON. Nobody is forcing you to be his fan.
"the non-Pinto ZQ fanbase being misrepresented as a group that shames other fans"
You mean basing opinions of entire fandoms on the actions of a small handful? Gosh, I don’t know where I’ve seen that before…
“Zach has NEVER bashed Star Trek fanfic, or Spirk”
The comments I was referring to in my post had nothing to do with his feelings on fanfiction (as I said, I don’t care one way or the other), it’s about his obvious negative judgement of the people who read and write it, which HAS happened on multiple occasions.
"The only thing he has openly showed opposition to his Pinto"
Not that I’m saying he isn’t, in fact I’m sure he is. I’ve just never seen this blatant “I HATE PINTO” comment of his that people continue to reference. I’ve only ever known comments to be mixed in with Spirk (ie that hella awkward moment at Fan Expo that should never have happened). If there is something out there that I haven’t seen I would genuinely be interested in seeing it.
"Sure, some actors don’t mind the RPF. But Zach does, and his fans should respect that."
Again, this is something that even we in the community agree with. We dislike it when the subject is brought up, and firmly believe it is not something that should ever be thrown in his face. Those people who ask the questions, send the tweets, and post on Instagram are acting in an incredibly disrespectful manner.
But in the community we must agree to disagree with your sentiment that our interest in RPF is disrespectful. The “real people” we talk about are the public persona’s of Zach and Chris. And I in no way believe that those persona’s represent the actual people. The Zachary Quinto I watch and read in interviews is not the Zachary Quinto that exists in his private life. I know next to nothing about the real Zach and Chris, and I’m fine with that. Of course they’re not dating. Of course the things that we read and write in stories are fake. It’s fiction, and we’re certainly not claiming otherwise.
Zach and Chris are private people, and for anyone to think that they “know” these actors as anything more than the masks and attitudes they wear out in public is simply naive. Sure, I know a handful of facts about them, but at the end of the day that’s meaningless. I can say that I know a handful of facts about eserei27 but that doesn’t mean I know anything about her as a person.
"And I’m not going to shy away from stating that opinion. That is not shaming anyone, it’s just a different viewpoint."
Unless you’re one of the people sending messages to my inbox telling me you hope I die, calling me “disgusting” or “delusional” or “shameful”, along with lovely names like “cunt”, “bitch”, or the like, than it is not your opinion that I’m speaking of. Everyone is entitled to an opinion. They are not entitled to engage in behaviour that is threatening and bullying.
"I don’t see how Zach or Chris has to come into the equation at all."
As I’ve said in the past, all ships (character or rpf) are based off the connection a fan feels to the individuals being shipped, and the chemistry between those individuals. And, in our community, we all felt a connection to the Chris and Zach’s public persona’s and the chemistry that lies between them. For me, this doesn’t feel any different than how I came to ship Mulder and Scully. I feel a connection to them, and they have great chemistry. //Boom. Shipped//
"If you hate Zach so much, MOVE ON"
I’m sorry, but you’re clearly finding it difficult to differentiate between disliking someone and disliking a thing that that person did. I adore the Zach that we get to see, and have never once stated otherwise. I don’t like the judgement he passed on people like myself who read fanfiction, but I certainly wouldn’t stop being a fan of his for it. Hell, I started a Quinto only blog as I was starting to annoy people with my posting of him on my primary one.