Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Empire Strikes Back

However would the world keep spinning, were it not populated with a sufficient number of demigods to keep the rabble in order? Who knows what might happen? Things might break out in free expression. Right here in the U. S. of A.! We can’t have that ladies and gentlemen. Some things must be avoided at all costs. Lucky for us, there is a diligent group of dedicated Stormtroopers prepared to do battle on our behalf over on The Fuselage.

It seems that an evil society of rebels who call themselves Skaters are attempting to subvert the tranquility of the threads of The Fuselage by (OMG, I’m not sure I can say it) actually declaring their admiration and allegiance for (can you believe it?!) someone OTHER than Jack and Jate!

I know, I know, it’s shocking, but I assure you, it’s true. These arrogant upstarts not only pledge their support to Skate and that most vile of villains, Sawyer, but they have actually had the audacity to take their treasonous prattle to holy of holies! The sanctified VIP threads!

I bring you the following examples, directly from the front lines of this ugly battlefront. See for yourselves how you are protected by the valiant efforts of Empress Karri Palpatine, Darth Halfrek and her loyal Stormtrooper forces.

New regulations have been put in place and enforced recently in the VIP section, and it is up to every truly loyal citizen of the Fuse to refrain from overstepping these arbitrary and yet abso-frakking-lutely necessary additions (if you don't have a clue what these new restrictions are, shame on you). 'Character Advocacy' and 'Poster Speculations' gag rules have been especially effective in silencing the evil rebel scum from getting their message heard.

Here is an example of a nicely sanitized entry, unfortunately it had to be removed because it was inciting discord. Apparently the original poster asked why their post was hacked to pieces and was told not to pursue their heinous character agenda:

Can’t link to it, it was removed after massive edits --


I have a question. In the past posts you have mentioned that Sawyers good deeds will be acknowledged (or atleast come to play in some way). I truly hope this happens,**MOD edited to remove request for spoiler info. no Gregg cannot answer this for you**

** MOD edited to remove character advocacy comments**

**MOD edited to remove another request for spoilers**. I'm sorry, but im sick of Jack being the hero all the time. **MOD edited to remove character advocacy posts and other character bashing** Kate needs to open her eyes and see what Sawyer has sacrificed for her. Its not just Jack who does the sacrificing. Will this really be addressed? **MOD edited to remove request for spoilers**

I never wrote to you before , Gregg. It would thrill me if I could hear from you. Would love to hear your thoughts on this subject.


Another rebel scum post:

From blondee
Hey Gregg so you write the recaps for the ABC site, I have a beef with the SIASL one because you have somehow stated as fact that Sawyer was right about Kate sleeping with him because he was going to die, I get that to an extent because of their situation being as it was she may have thought it was a now or never situation!

However it can also be taken that you were impling that this was the ONLY reason she did it & I respectfully have to disagree because from how hurt Kate looked when Sawyer accused her of this **MOD edited to remove poster speculations**-- it shows that there were real genuine feelings behind the whole situation & I don't think we should be lead to believe otherwise because an argument can be made that it happened faster than it may have had they not been in this situation but I don't think Kate's feelings for Sawyer should be in question in this whole scenario!--

Thanks for your time Gregg!
Hope that was not to harsh!

These are but two recent examples. More posts have been edited to death and even deleted completely (some of which have been referenced on my journal).

It has been brought to my attention from several sources, that there have been some posts which have curiously slipped through the policing process, completely unedited or unmodified in any way. I would be remiss if I didn't bring these to the attention of those in charge so that they too can be summarily hacked to pieces and/or deleted. Strange that they haven't been already, but then again they support Jack and Jate, so I guess they got a Galactic Empire free-pass -- warning may be long-winded (despite some entries being edited down for brevity), scroll down if your attention span is that of a Gungan's:


Angry Disappointed...
Not exactly the cliffhanger I was expecting...loved Pickett though. This was really disappointing and frankly after two years, I expected better. Kate's character has been prostituted this season. Pity sex with Sawyer for ratings? Ewwww. The writers have beaten down the characters so much this season and seperated them for so long, that the fans feel beaten down as well and the ratings have dropped this season. It is obvious to me that the writers chose to punch the Jaters in the gut with this episode. I don't know how you can expect your fanbase to return months later after this episode. I don't know that I feel like taking it much longer...don't know that I'll still be "lost" in February. Guess I can just watch the good old days from Season One (and even most of Season Two) when the writing was better and the character development made sense.

Very disappointed, but only one of many...

FB Reasons: Character bashing. Writer bashing. Ship Advocacy.


He does seem to have a creepy, kind of stalking thing going on with the women in his life, but I suppose if they didn't always deceive him he wouldn't have to resort to such obsessive behavior.

Why do the writers continue to make Kate look like a dingy, flighty, basket-case of a woman? What kind of woman stands there and listens to a comment like that and doesn't respond one way or another? If Sawyer's accusation weren't true a woman with some self-respect, not to mention some sense would've immediately been up in his face letting him know just how far off the mark he was and if it were true she would've shown some class or dignity and offered up an explanation or an apology, but not our Kate, she stands there like and some clueless, timid, helpless woman and says nothing.

Why? Oh, and while she should've punched him for sending away their best chance at locating the Other's and Jack in a timely manner, she also should've thanked him for offering her a way out if that's what she wants. Sawyer finally does something that could be considered somewhat noble by letting go of the woman he loves if that's what she wants and the woman stands there looking dumbfounded.
Are the writers ever going to allow Kate to grow up and take responsibility for the things she does?

FB Reasons: Incredible level of character bashing....which at least Gregg took note of, even if the mods were too stupid to notice. Character Advocacy. Not to mention the part that excused and therefore advocated stalking and violence against women.


From jate4evr

I know we can sometimes seem frustrated (sorry about the trouble you've been given about your ABC synopsis! Personally, as a Jack/Kate fan, I didn't mind it at all)

I also loved the Jack/Kate scene in Not In Portland. I don't know if it's the fact that Evangelline and Matthew are just such amazing actors, or because the storyline between Kate and Jack is so compelling (probably both!), but I'm just so drawn to those two characters and their relationship together. Without sounding TOO shippery, I have to say I am a huge fan of theirs, and had been (before Not in Portland) pretty bummed that the episodes had them seeing each other very little (and that Kate and Sawyer got it on.... ), but after this episode, my faith in the two of them as a couple was totally restored - it was clear to me from their "walkie-talkie counting to 5" scene that those two are just meant to be... sure hope
their relationship will continue to grow and surprise us down the line.

FB Reasons: Both ship advocacy and ship bashing.


Why Now?
In regards to the Kate/Sawyer situation, I have to ask, why now? ... Even in season three, Kate spent most of her time rolling her eyes at Sawyer and rebuffing his advances, so I’m completely confused at her decision to just have sex with him in a cage in broad daylight, no less. I’m just wondering if there is something else that I should have picked up on in regards to Kate’s feelings about Sawyer. Personally, I think Kate made a major mistake in a very traumatic situation, and it’s going to take a very long time for me to ever look at her character in a positive light again. I just feel like this triangle resolution could have played out in a way that didn’t destroy her character to this extent, and I felt like it was completely unnecessary for Jack to have to see it. I didn’t think I could feel any worse for him after his flashbacks this season, but this has topped that.

...Jack and Kate’s story had an innocence that is severely lacking on tv right now (with the exception of The Office’s Jim and Pam), and it’s sad to see that disappear with one scene.

FB Reasons: Character bashing, Character Advocacy, Ship Advocacy.


About Jack...
About last night episode, I don't understand it & wish that if this was the way the writers wanted to go they had either started it sooner (meaning last season) or not given us so much Jate growth last season, at this point its ask too much from an already overwhelmed fan base to still want Kate with Jack after what happened, it will never be the same again, so even with the finale, the triangle did end to most of us, after the pain and hurt the lastest episodes caused its not worth it anymore.

It seems everytime the writers creat a romance for Jack later on they sacrifice it for another history. That is alienating us Jack fans and is making he look like pathetic in the general fans eyes ,and he is supposed to be the hero, the leader, a character to admire, not to find "pathetic". And I hate seeing Jack in pain. It seems like he is always being hurt by those he loves. I hate this, Jack dont deserves this. So will Jack finally get some real, honest love ? - instead of emotional games and one that WONT sleep with Sawyer?

FB Reasons: Ship Advocacy, Character Advocacy, Asking for spoilers.


Ouch. I get it. At least I think I do. She made her choice & as tptb have forewarned us it's definitive & real. But I just wonder if it was necessary to pour an extra amount of salt into the wounds of those who were hoping for Jack & Kate? I may not agree with her choice or frankly understand it, but I accept it. I just wish that it didn't have to come at such a brutal expense.

I am trying to enjoy the show as a whole now rather than being so heavily invested in the relationship between Jack & Kate.

Perhaps that will become easier once we get back to the main land. I had hoped that my feelings towards Kate choosing Sawyer would have healed by this point, but they haven't. I don't really understand it even though I know and appreciate that there is a large fan base out there for them.

There was something so beautiful about these two characters that has been somewhat tarnished for me. But there are so many fans here that again what I see and feel is often exact opposite of so many others.

I do hope that even though she made her choice, the relationship, the bond that Jack & Kate shared from the very first moment they met, will at least be kept alive in some small fashion. It would be such a waste of great chemistry and terrific story telling. I would truly miss it if it were gone forever.

FB Reasons: Ship advocacy and bashing.


I know I'm probably talking about little things that just some people may notice,but I think that if you look hard enough,you can totally see how much Jack influences Kate.How much those two are into each other (how to forget the amazing scene through the glass..?)

I think it's proof of the inexplicable and irrational 'thing' that K&J have between them.It's not just a matter of 'love'.I belive that what Kate has with Jack,is something bigger than love.Something deeper than attraction,care,or passion.They've been able to change each other.And,as the beautiful walkie talkie scene in NIP showed so amazingly,if Jack has in some way fixed and saved Kate,I belive now it's HER turn to save him.Kate is not the same girl who crashed on the island anymore. It's been great so far,to see her fighting her demons. Obviously her redemption is not complete yet,but she'll get there. Loving Kate,I can't help but liking the healthy effect,that Jack has on her. And being a Jater,I obviously loved how determined Kate was to bring Jack back.She didn't waste a second.She changed her clothes and she headed off into the jungle.No matter if she has something going on with Sawyer,if she's exhausted,or happy to be 'home'.Her mind is just on one thing.Her priority is going back,to Jack.It's like a suicide mission,but she doesn't seem to care.She's not even scared to face the Others again.Probably 'cause the idea of not saving Jack, scares her a lot more.

WOW..this is becoming a pretty long post! Did I have a point? yep,my point was that even though Jack&Kate are separated since..(the beginning of times..? )and Jaters should receive an Oscar for the patience it's beautiful to see how much these two characters are the same,at heart. it's good to see how much Jack is able to effect Kate,how much fire he's able to bring out of her even when he's not (physically) with her,and how much she's been able to change herself THROUGH him.And once more,It's good to see KATE back,it's good to see how Jack-ish (or should I say Kat-ish? )she is lately! I can't wait for her rescue mission to succeed. God only knows how much Jack deserves to see that Kate has not abandoned him.

As always,thanks for your time Gregg! Thinking about it, I guess you could even steal to the Jaters their 'Oscar for Patience' You gotta have plenty of it to answer to all our posts!

FB Reasons: Massive amounts of Ship Advocacy, Poster speculation up the wazoo.


I'm Sulking -- But I'll Get Over It

Plus, it seemed weird to be back on "our" island with no Jack.

A question, though: why did Locke and Sayid tell Kate that she was right when she said they hadn't been motivated to look for Jack? (They told her she was wrong about them not knowing where to look.) Wasn't it Locke who, just a few, short episodes ago, made a speech about organizing a search party to look for all three kidnapped Losties? Why the sudden apathy in regard to Jack's whereabouts and safety?

Stupid Locke.

Also, when can I look forward to Paulo and Nikki being killed?

FB Reasons: Character Advocacy, Character bashing, Asking for Spoilers.


These are just a tiny sample of the kind of posts which have been allowed to stand with no Mod intervention in the VIP section. It seems to me that the process of determining what is acceptable and what is not is far more arbitrary and SUBJECTIVE than the Stormtroopers would have us believe.

A Lone Voice in the Wilderness:

Well respected Lost citizen Leah Kate was concerned about these new regulations, and apparent bias and wrote a very eloquent letter to the Fuselate Senate:

I'll admit, I don't post here at the Fuse very often, because I don't find it to be a very open atmosphere for discussion. I do, however, enjoy reading the posts to Gregg Nations and his responses to them, since he's the only VIP who regularly interacts with viewers here. This morning, I read a post asking about the possibility of Sawyer being recognized for his heroic actions, and complaining about how Jack seems to receive all Kate's admiration while Sawyer's sacrifices go unnoticed.

Later, I saw that this post had been mod edited to a bare fraction of the original, with only a few sporadic sentences left in place. Some of the reasons are the common ones - edited for asking about spoilers (though it seems that Gregg Nations is a big boy and could probably decide for himself whether he wants to reply to such questions, without needing to be protected from them); edited for character "bashing" (though I don't recall any bashing in the post, and it seems odd that this rule applies to Jack, but not to, say, Kate when she's labeled a prostitute, in a post that was allowed to remain as it was).

The one that made me pause in surprise, though, was one I don't recall seeing before: mod edited for "character advocacy." What exactly does this mean? I'm familiar with the long-standing rule about not advocating relationships (another issue of some curious double-standards in enforcement), but character advocacy? The reason most people watch the show and become invested in it is because of the characters. Are we now forbidden to express our support and enjoyment of our favorites for fear of "advocating" them? On a website that was specifically designed for the purpose of providing a viewer pipeline to the creators of those characters, no less? And it's also strange how the advocacy ofJack never seems to be much of a problem for the mods. I've seen posts from supporters actually asking for more of "The Jack Show" left untouched. So how is that not considered advocacy, yet a post supporting storylines where Sawyer's deeds are recognized is?

I'm aware that the mods retain the right to do just about whatever they want in terms of editing, and are not required to offer any justification for their actions. But I still wanted to at least express how saddened I and many others are at the fact that on this site, one of the only sites of its nature that I'm aware of, our honest and forthright opinions, criticisms, and concerns about Lost are edited in such a seemingly arbitrary manner to be turned into shiny happy propagandistic blather.

My brother was browsing through my web bookmarks a few days ago, and when he came across the Fuselage he read the description and said, "Wow, you actually get to talk to the people who make the show and tell them what you think? That's so cool!" My only response was, "You would think so, wouldn't you?"

Darth Halfrek's reply:

Thank you for pointing out the post was over edited, it should have been removed as we usually do with any post that is mostly asking for spoilers. That oversight has been corrected. As for the Kate comment, when you see something like that, shouldn't you do your part and report it so that it can be corrected? The moderators of this site can't be everywhere and rely on posters to report things that need removal or editing. If you see something like that, then it should be reported.
It is true, that one would think that you could interact with the VIPs and tell them what you think about the show. However, that only happens if they follow the very clear rules. It is the posters that continually push the limits, slam the moderators and generally trash the site that complain the most about the way things are done here. The site rules are very simple. They have been newly revised in the last 3 months to address a few things like character and TPTB bashing.

Again, let me state, the rules for posting in the VIP section:
don't ask for spoilers.
no shipper info requests or attempts to sway the VIPs to pick one ship over another
Lobbying a VIP to change the direction of the story to suite your idea of a character. You may express your appreciation of a character but not tell the VIPs how the character and show should be. (That is character advocacy).
I think that about covers all of your comments.

It is true, that one would think that you could interact with the VIPs and tell them what you think about the show. However, that only happens if they follow the very clear rules. It is the posters that continually push the limits, slam the moderators and generally trash the site that complain the most about the way things are done here. The site rules are very simple. They have been newly revised in the last 3 months to address a few things like character and TPTB bashing.

I would like to point again to the examples I gave above which clearly contravene the rules as listed by Darth Halfrek. Darth Halfrek's response of 'report it if you have an issue' seems reasonable at first glance. And yet who can forget the massive public spewing of vitriol which resulted after someone presumably did try to report some posts which they felt broke the rules:

all right, i have just about had enough with this shipper war and rudeness when reporting posts that the SKATERS seem to think are over the line.

so i bring you a case study. pay attention class.

show me where in this post where there are vile insults?

In regards to the Kate/Sawyer situation, I have to ask, why now? For me, there was a window of opportunity during season two where a relationship or hookup of sorts between them would have been acceptable and believable to almost everyone. I really expected it after Sawyer got back from the raft, but things changed after “The Long Con”. Kate and Jack grew closer, and Kate showed little interest in Sawyer through the rest of the season. Even in season three, Kate spent most of her time rolling her eyes at Sawyer and rebuffing his advances, so I’m completely confused at her decision to just have sex with him in a cage in broad daylight, no less. I’m just wondering if there is something else that I should have picked up on in regards to Kate’s feelings about Sawyer. Personally, I think Kate made a major mistake in a very traumatic situation, and it’s going to take a very long time for me to ever look at her character in a positive light again. I just feel like this triangle resolution could have played out in a way that didn’t destroy her character to this extent, and I felt like it was completely unnecessary for Jack to have to see it. I didn’t think I could feel any worse for him after his flashbacks this season, but this has topped that.

what? no vile insults? wow! maybe that is why it was left?

please note the following in regards to the above post:

* lack of insults for the opposite ship
* lack of persuading comments to sway the VIP to their ship
* lack of rude comments directed towards TPTB

still not sure why was it left and not edited? for a few reasons above that are quite clear really when you stop seeing it as OMG shipper post and see the post as a post.

* the post was completely accepting of what happened in the show.
* they just didnt happen to like the events

nowhere in there did that post go against the RULES for posting shipper posts to the VIPs.

perhaps the poster that reported that post NEEDS to read the Rules again? or at least take off the glasses that they are wearing so that they can see things without the spin that they seem to read everything on this board with.

shipper posting rules for the VIP section:

* we have no problems with any group saying that they are disappointed in a storyline.
* there is to be NO lobbying the VIPs to change the story line in their favor or whatever.
* it is not okay to be whining about lack of your favorite ship/character on screen.
* it is okay if they want to say that they are happy with the way things are going
* the poster should not ask for spoilers. that includes seeking any info about the future of a person/ship/storyline.
* they may not make rude comments about any other ship or storyline.
* it is NOT okay to start with the conspiracy theory posts about the ships/characters and why it doesnt "work" for them personally. doesnt matter if it is about their favorites or other less favorite character/ship.
* it is NOT okay to be reporting every post that mentioned Kate (or any other woman) and some man in the same post that is not the pairing of their choice. ie: Kate/Sawyer, Kate/Jack, Jack/Juliet. (these have been the most troublesome pairings lately)
* it is not okay to be gloating over a storyline at the expense of another group/ship/character.

now onto why MOST of the Skater posts seem to be edited or removed.

well that is easy b/c MOST of them insult the other ship, insult the shippers, insult TPTB, insult the storyline. most of the time the posts are rude and derogatory. if the Skaters would take time to compose a letter that wasnt "in your face" to the VIPs then it would be left...unless it broke any of the points listed.

in conclusion, to the person that reported this post:

the comments in your RP were totally uncalled for. (they will be forwarded to Karri for review in addition to your rude accusatory PM to me.) if you READ the rules again and actually READ the posts you would then see why they were left. it has nothing to do with a bias for Jate and against Skate, it has to do with them actually following the rules, being respectful towards the VIPs, and not rude towards others. something that the posters in this ship could certainly stand to learn.

you can whine all you want to about the imagined bias but most of the time it is a group effort and not one that i do alone. maybe you should take that into consideration before you decide to accuse this mod of being biased or unfair.

Rumor has it that the poster who dared to speak up, and who sparked this particular rant was BANNED for life. Note the condescending tone, the confrontational and totally rude way the 'lesson' was laid down.

They encourage reporting and then penalize those who do? Is it any wonder that Skate citizens are reluctant to come forward and report anything at all?

Final Thoughts:

My fellow Lost citizens, you may have by now realized that I too am one of those cursed rebels who will not sit down, shut up and accept being kicked in the teeth again and again. While I have never had an account on the Fuselage, I do read the threads there, and have many friends who post regularly and who keep me updated on the state of the Empire. I am now getting daily PM's from people who are turning to me to comment on what is happening, simply because I abhor censorship and believe in the right for people to air their opinions, no matter how unpalatable or non-party line they are and they feel frustrated, upset and discriminated against without any recourse to protest or ask why.

I can only conclude that a more sinister purpose is at work here. That of Fuselage Ship cleansing. That's right, these erstwhile rebels are being systematically made to feel unwelcome, to feel like they have no voice at all with which to express their equally valid opinions and ideas. They are being muzzled, simply because they support a lead character and different ship than the other side. You have seen the evidence of bias, hypocrisy and bullying tactics yourselves.

These so-called guardians seem to have more regard for their own feelings of self-importance and righteousness than the ORIGINAL purpose of the board, which is to give ALL fans a place to discuss their feelings and opinions openly about the show and with the VIPs. They are actively driving Sawyer and Skate fans away from their board, and one can only assume it is a deliberate, calculated and intentional act.

Are not all Lost citizens to be treated as equals? I have seen the Empire bend and contort themselves silly to cater to the Non-spoiler folks, or the whining Jaters who take offense at the mere mention that Skate is canon and yet....where is the attempt to make Skaters feel at home, to listen to their concerns or at least to let them have good old positive fun (Avi debacle comes to mind)? You may think it is only I who is aware of this glaring imbalance. I have written about it before. But more and more 'rebels' are seeing the light, recognizing the Fuselage for the nasty, biased place that it is and are speaking out on other forums where they are not treated like misguided insurgents. The truth is spreading. The Fuselage is a joke and the sooner it cleanses itself of its vindictive attitude towards certain sections of fandom, the sooner it will regain some credibility as a haven for ALL devoted Lost fans.

If any of you loyal citizens are truly dissatisfied with the service of these 'hosts', and 'facilitators'. If you feel victimized or discriminated against and despair that you no longer have a voice with which to address your complaints at the Fuselage itself, then I urge you not to remain silent. Speak out against unfair treatment. Let other people know what goes on. Register your protest where it might actually be heard and acknowledged for once:

J.J. Abrams
c/o Bad Robot Television
500 South Buena Vista Street
Building 23, Suite 26
Burbank, CA 91521

Snail mail too slow? How about this ...
fax: 818-560-6325

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