An artist fights to reclaim his character from the alt right in 'Feels Good Man.'

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/08/29/an-artist-fights-to-reclaim-hi.html

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I only know Pepe as a symbol of hate but it must be heartwrenching to see a character you have created be misused by these people.

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all-things

Allie Brosh has made me laugh so many times.

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“Tell us about it.” —Buddhists, Hindus, Navajo, countless others…

buddha

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I recently saw a business truck with two frog head cartoon stickers on the back, and the business name on the side. Similar enough to Pepe but with small plausible deniability differences. A perfect dog whistle. Considered posting a pic on yelp but figured it would only give more business from the babies who can hear dog whistles.

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I think I will probably still forever cringe when I see that frog though.

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Hey, man, it’s just a mash-up. Copying isn’t stealing, after all.

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i was a fan of Matt Furie before Pepe became a rightwing mascot. I desperately wanted him to take it back. i went to comic con in new york several years ago and found some cool boys club enamel pins and was wearing them in defiance. then that asshole nazi Richard Spencer that got punched, well right before he got punched he was bragging about his pepe pin just like mine. I gave up then. i have that pin in a drawer somewhere almost afraid to misplace it as if its one of those Totenkopf nazi skull pins that might fall into the hands of someone who actually enjoys it for the exact wrong reason.

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Good on him. It must really suck to have your work co-opted by creeps.

Which reminds me of a weird article I read once: this guy who was into conlangs (constructing new languages for fun) found that he was getting a serious spike of interest from Russia. He ended up flying over there to meet what he expected to be a cluster of language nerds, only to discover that his work had been adopted by a bunch of mystical neo-nazis. That sort of thing must put a dent in your day.

Disclaimer: I don’t remember any of the names associated with this story, so I’ve probably got the facts wrong as well. Just treat it as something you read on the internet.

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I miss her funniness so much and I really hope she’s doing ok wherever in meatspace she is.

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Same :slight_smile:

Link for those that haven’t read her comic:

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It appears so, to some degree at least:

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Also, her new book “Solutions and Other Problems” will finally be released on September 22. Yay, Allie!

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I’ve so been looking forward to her new book. I don’t mind not having her web presence putting out new content if I can just purchase that new content, in book form, from her instead. Truly one of my favorite internet era content creators.

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I wish the left didn’t run screaming every time a message board suggests a new random thing is a nazi symbol. The whole “surrender and run screaming” method doesn’t work well. It makes normal people start to think that you are crazy.

The most obvious example I’ve seen of this in my life is the “OK” symbol. My little brother picked up from his college fraternity the “circle game”. The dumb game was basically that if you got someone to look directly at you making the “OK” symbol somewhere subtle (like at your hip), they had to drink. Absolutely zero nazi connections.

So, my family ended up picking up the practice in a more light hearted version. Get someone to look at your dumb “OK” sign, and it’s a “I got you!”; a kind of a visual Rick Roll. It would manifest in stuff like someone throwing a OK symbol subtly in a picture that you only notice way later. It was a cute game my family played with each other.

Then some dipshit on the internet decided to completely make up that it was a Nazi symbol, and some stupid mother fuckers on the left believed them and ran around screaming at the top of their lungs to everyone about it, spreading the message like the usefully stupid plague bearers that they were intended to be. How much more obvious can someone be about loading up a mememetic package for you to go spread, handing you that package, and then saying “Go spread this stupid thing that makes you like like a moron. I want you to do this because it it will hurt you!”, and a bunch of useful idiots on the left said “Yes sir! We are fighting Nazis!” and dutifully ran around “warning” everyone with a pulse of this new and and terrible threat… and thereby spreading it.

I hate how gullibily stupid my side is sometimes.

Anyways; good on the Pepe artist for not being a part of the problem, and instead working to be a part of the solution. We need more people like this.

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The Rule of Goats applies here. If Nazis pretend to use the OK sign as a Nazi symbol to own the libs, the OK sign is a Nazi symbol.

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Do we really know it was “the left” here that bears the blame? I’m honestly skeptical of ALL internet phenomenon at this point. Hear me out. Let’s pretend I am a Nazi and I want to look popular and also rational compared to others. Personally, I would then start a rumor that all OK signs were a secret Nazi handshake. Achieves my goal and the “other” side looks crazy. This is the way disinformation works, it’s the way media is used to manipulate messages because of optics… and it works. It also doesn’t have to be planned in any way. Enough opportunists and a general low trust environment like the internet can create distortions like this organically, which can then can be used opportunistically by literally anyone.

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What “side” do you think you’re on?

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The side that likes liberal democracy with a minimum of violence, a functioning political system, an open and liberal culture, a non-corrupt police forces that is vigorously policed, relatively equal outcomes by race, the end of mass incarceration, healthcare for everyone, and general prosperity all around.

Did you think I was on the side of nazis and racist because of my wildly deviant and ultra conservative opinion of “don’t let right wing internet trolls control you, and don’t deliver memetic payloads for them. It hurts you”?

Huh.

Interesting perspective.

The last part of your comment is irrelevant to me; this is bigger than just you and your opinion.

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