• On Racism in the Fandom, and Equestria Daily Going Forward

    As most of you have probably heard by now, The Atlantic did a piece on the fandom a few days ago about a underground movement of Nazis and general alt-right pony fans who lurk in the shadows of our little online pony world here. This has sparked a lot of justified outrage, with many demanding that imagery involving their movement be removed from the biggest sites in the fandom. Stuff that has slipped through the cracks over the years as parody or just generally lost in the flood of content that happens due to our humongous creative side.

    For the sake of not bumping regular pony stuff off the front page, I'm throwing the break in here. If you want nothing to do with this, I understand. For many in our fandom, pony is an escape from the troubles of real life, and keeping it pure is important. Know that while we will continue to post art and celebrate content that champions good causes, the site itself will not be turning into a world news site. We post ponies, and that will always be the focus.

    Anyway, continue reading below.

    So... evils in the Brony fandom. 

    I personally completely flopped with the initial Atlantic article about it. I spend a large amount of time every day digging into the actual content being created to post here on the site and keep you all informed on what is going on with the official show and fandom projects, but when it comes to exploring the discussions, causes, and mumbling going on behind the scenes I haven't ever been very attentive.   "Does Seth even talk on Discord?" is a pretty common phrase, and it's true. I'm not involved in much on that side of things. I have my tight artist communities and the like, but we rarely discuss what is actually happening in the fandom in favor of sticking to just sharing cool content and critiquing that. Politics in particular are something I never cross my pony streams with, but this has moved on past the world of simple politics. 

    Needless to say, I never realized the actual racism was so prevalent. That the jokey World War 2 OC's that occasionally pop up on my Deviant Art subscriptions had gone from parody to actual shoutouts to fellow like-minded racists. I knew there were some people that took it too far, but it has evolved into a disturbing little movement that we obviously want no part of here on EQD.

    Even I, back in the early days, got a kick out of "Aryanne", an OC Nazi pony that was used more as a slapstick Inglourious Basterds or Jojo Rabbit style parody than anything.  Looking back, it is definitely a black mark on my overall fandom record and something I regret. Especially now that she has essentially become a mascot to the current hate breeding in our community.

    Acceptable and cute 4chan OC - Source

    While the wild west that is 4chan tends to be the place stuff like this is assumed to be coming from, it's not entirely to blame this time. We've received numerous reports that there are entire alt-right Brony Discord groups that regularly share and promote racist ideologies. Convention parties with Hitler flags and Nazi salutes, which sounds like the most bizarre thing ever coming from a fandom about colorful talking horses of all shapes and shades. Here we are though, and it's something that we need to grapple with going forward.

    For Equestria Daily, we already stopped posting Aryanne and the various other nazi ponies ages ago, and I want to assure you all they won't be coming back. While I have always been a champion of free speech especially in art, due to how much pain these characters cause people, we simply don't feel it worth promoting in any way shape or form. There are places to explore that art if you want it. They aren't welcome here though. She has slipped through with her butt symbol hidden a few times due to the sheer flood of art we get, but if it ever happens in the future, know that I or any of the others on the site are just an email away for quick removal.

    As for the people involved in this, they are out there. Your best bet is to avoid supporting them in any way. In the end, these types will always find a hole to conduct their business from. The internet has millions of them. Enjoy the pone, and keep supporting good causes and good creators.