Saturday, November 03, 2007

Why This Is Notable.

Not that I'm above beating a dead horse but I really wasn't going to bother with this Wizard thing again.

Except for the large amount of people who don't seem to understand why Wizard magazine feeling comfortable enough to brand itself on the cover specifically as a "Men's Pop Culture Magazine" should piss anyone off.

For those of you shrugging your shoulders, I'd like to bring two comments to your attention.

First, Papervolcano at Blog@Newsarama:
What I am concerned about is Wizard-the-organiser-of-Cons. I’m not sure how separate the two are, but is this attitude going to be translated to the various Wizard-Worlds? Are women going to be explicitly unwelcome there too? God knows Cons can be iffy places for women at the best of times, but if the Wizard Worlds are emblazoned with the “Number 1 Men’s pop-culture convention!” banner, that’s going to exacerbate a lot of problems.

Floundering though they are, they still set a lot of the tone of the industry.

Personally, I haven't spent money on Wizard in over three years, but the easiest major convention for me to attend is one of theirs.

As a person who no longer reads the magazine it doesn't really bug me, but as a regular convention-goer I'm a bit out of sorts here.

Second, Rachel in her livejournal:
It's relevant because it's visible, and because it markets itself as the comics magazine. Also, it owns a huge number of other comics periodicals and many major conventions.

So the fact that it's now advertising itself as a men's magazine says a good deal about its attitude toward women in comics and sets the tone for a LOT of affiliated industry coverage and events.

As Rachel says, they are visible and for years they have been the superhero fandom magazine. Its a little irksome that they don't feel they have to even pay lip service to potential female readers.

Dumb as the magazine is, insignificant that this blurb may be, you can't blame people for being pretty pissed. Its more of the "girls don't like superheroes" shit and I know I'm not the only one sick of hearing and reading that idiocy.


  1. I understand that people are upset by it and I do understand why. However, I am not upset by it now that I know it was one alternate cover, which might've been a marketing ploy to see how sales were of that cover. But as long as the mag was the same inside as usual and there was a cover I liked, I don't have a problem with that.

  2. Rachel is right. :( A lot of dismissive ppl are the same ppl in many types of genres and subjects who dismiss negative press from mainstream sources or dismiss mainstream sources in general as being stupid, watered down, a joke, etc... and dismiss casual followers/fans/whatever as being not worth caring about. :(

    And then they wonder when they become a niche genre, or everybody looks down on them and their subjects, or nething else. :\ All of my non comics knowing friends who just follow casually, who know and respect the core superhero characters and LIKE superheroes and will watch the movies and stuff, will read Wizard b/c it's still easy and accessible for them to find and it's been around since they were kids so it's familiar. And this affects them and how they see comics and this is why there's this whole thing that a lot of my friends will just pick it up, see something ridiculous and be like "I'm glad I dun read comics nemore, it looks awful". :\

  3. Another desperate attempt to grab onto a rapidly shrinking market in order to forestall inevitable suspension of publication.

  4. I don't buy Wizard, but I do read it--I get comp copies at work, and I review them because it's part of my job to follow the tone and content of media coverage of the industry I work in. I also work with the PR department on press releases and articles, which often translates to working, directly or indirectly, with Wizard.

    And I'm doubly frustrated by this whole "men's magazine" decision, because in addition to the extent to which they set the tone of the industry and media, Wizard doesn't have to suck! There are a handful of really good reporters on their staff; they've run some damn solid work, and they've always been a pleasure to work with. They could be a terrific newsmag.


  5. Nobody buys paper magazines anymore. The only ones that sell are Maxim/FHM and the other mens magazines and celebrity gossip crap. Since Wizard couldn't very well go with the later, they went with the former.

    The decision was likely down to appeasing a vocal minority or losing a bunch of money. Money wins.

    Believe it or not, just because the word "men" has been added to the top of a magazine almost everyone recognizes as insignificant these days doesn't mean women are suddenly banned from reading comic books. In fact it doesn't even prohibit you from buying said magazine! And guess what? If you go to a Wizard convention with money in your hand I'll bet they let you in.

  6. Monroe -- Y'know, I regularly run across posts and such that I can't read all the way through or comprehend.

    I at least have the decency not to comment, as opposed to saying something idiotic like suggest that a person who is thoughtful over the social complexities of officially genderizing a previously "neutral" piece of entertainment that already suffers from problems with sexism is only upset because she believes the periodical police will arrest her for picking up something "for men."

    I've been trying to find a way to measure the difference between a troll and a casual commenter who disagrees. There's a feeling with a troll you don't get with the casual disagreement.

    I get that feeling with you. I think its the jumping in to twist my viewpoint into an easily mockable extreme rather than considering the point and merely saying "I don't see it."

    I can't quite quantify it, but I have a strong suspicion from your two comments on posts relating to this subject that you may indeed be an ass.

  7. Gee Monroe, you REALLY think Wizard will still accept money if it comes from women? Thats a shocking insight! Its like how I hate morons and try to make as uncomfortable and hostile for them as possible but am still willing to take their money. Because, hey, I like paying my rent. I never would have realized that if you hadn't come along to tell everyone...

    Thanks Monroe!

  8. The only magazines that sell are celebrity gossip magazines and men's magazines? Really? Because I look at this list and I see Reader's Digest, Newsweek, Time, Sports Illustrated, Better Homes and Gardens, National Geographic, Family Circle, Ladies' Home Journal, Woman's Day, Prevention, Cosmopolitan, Souther Living and Guideposts all outselling Maxim. Which sells about the same as O. The only "men's" magazine which outsells Maxim is Playboy, which has well-written articles and naked women, instead of the frat boy crap and pandering teases you get in magazines like Maxim.

    Oh look, Wizard doesn't even crack the list. Seems to me, if selling better were their goal, they'd try to make themselves more of a general interest magazine, rather than try to narrow their appeal.

  9. When I saw that blurb on the cover, my only real issue was that it wasn't calling itself a comic magazine, but a pop culture magazine. Which, really, is a complaint I have been having with them for a while now. less comic stuff, more gaming and other stuff. I don't care about the new Xbox game coming out, i want to see mre comic previews and reviews.

    However, I do see where you are coming from with this and I have to say I agree.