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i'm not sure if this has ever been mentioned on here before, but i just thought of it because i was thinking about distros and all their guidelines. i'm not sure what to think about saying "no racist, sexist, homophobic, etc etc material will be accepted". i mean aren't zines supposed to be the one place where you can say what you want? is this just some other form of censorship? surely everything written is offensive to someone right?

i just feel really censored and uninspired right now, like i can't really say what i want to say without hurting someone's feelings and that really sucks. i mean, the distro thing doesn't really bug me, but just the fact that their are so many rules even in zines, just makes me irritated. can i really be offensive if i am talking about my own experiences? sometimes i want to write about types of people that annoy me or things they do, but then i'm racist or sexist or whatever. i'm not really sure i'm explaining how i feel properly. oh well.

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i think when distro's say that they are just protecting themselves from putting more hatred out in the world. it's one thing to write it. if you want to write it do it. it's all about responsibility for what you are putting out or helping put out in the world. personally i will read/ listen to anything but as far as what i actually put out i am very conscious about how it might make others feel.
everything is offensive to someone. just write whatever you want and if someone doesn't want to carry it that's their problem not yours.
as far as wanting to see that kind of stuff...i don't know. i feel the same way sometimes. in the underground d.i.y. (punk) community it tends to start sounding like fundamentalism with all of the rules. if you ever feel like this look up some white supremacy sites on the internet or some christian gay hating right wing sites. i think this is why d.i.y. culture tends to lean heavy in the rules. because the end of the hatred spectrum is so loud that in order to fight it we feel we have to be just as ridiculous in our own rules. all of a sudden there is no grey's or rational thought it all becomes knee jerk reaction to what a small group of assholes are saying really loud. we become what we hate just with a different face.
but i'll read anything so if you want to make that zine i'll read it!
i'm not even sure where i want to go with my writing right now, i'm not planning some big "i hate gays" zine, but yeah i understand what everyone is saying about censorship. i once found this zine at my old school before i even knew what zines were and this guy was talking about all the different types of girls he'd fucked, and he classified them by racial stereotypes like "asian girls are the tighest and they just grip on to your d---" and it got me so fired up and i'm not even asian. i just wanted to write him a letter or find him and beat his ass for being so sexist, you know? but he can write whatever he wants, and sometimes i just want to write to get people fired up. i'm not trying to get my ass beat, but i just want to have permission to say what i want, and that guy surely was saying what he wanted.

for the record, clementine's zines are pretty damn perfect. i'm just saying.

anyway, in a perfect world, i'd be able to say and write whatever i want, but i think one of the reasons i'm feeling irritated more now is because i moved to the midwest and the midwest is not the seattle area. i miss my little slice of liberalism. minnesota is no place for me. perhaps my next zine will have a piece on why minnesota sucks ass so bad.
I don't think distros having these "rules" are censorship at all. You can still write and put out whatever you want in a zine, it's just that these particular distro owners (myself included) have personal values in that we don't want to read that shit or put it into the hands of others.

You don't HAVE to use a distro.
You could always start your own too...

NicoleIntrovert said:
I don't think distros having these "rules" are censorship at all. You can still write and put out whatever you want in a zine, it's just that these particular distro owners (myself included) have personal values in that we don't want to read that shit or put it into the hands of others.

You don't HAVE to use a distro.
I don't see a problem with distributors having guidelines as to what they will accept. If you have something to say that one distro won't take, there are others that will. I'm not easily offended by anything, but some people are. They should have the right to be protected from seeing and reading things that might be offensive.

Now, if I want to read about Polish Dwarf Porn (strict analogy) I know where to find the source. What I'm into may not be fit for everyone so it's good to have different distros who handle different material.
no such thing...really...it is just a matter of BIAS...usually political...
except among muslims where you get murdered when you go against
their doctrines...or if a woman wanting 'freedom' you will get murdered
too.............but with run-of-the-mill zinesters and zinester-ism that
i've seen among these 2,000 + folk,,,,,,,,,,,,,,ain't nuthin except a
few...FEW...touchy creep-etts and creep-ohs...:):); also some very
veeeeeeeeerrrryyyyyyyy SHALLOW POLITICAL CORRECTNESS!!!!
like i said already i don't use distros for a lot of reasons. the thing about distros is that they all claim to be so different and they all have the same zines in them. how many zines can there really be about feminism, childbirth, anarchy, and some chick being depressed because she isn't skinny enough. it just gets really old really fast. at the risk of offending a few people, distros all carry the same "shit".

i can write whatever i want, it's just that nobody is ever going to carry it because my values differ from what someone considers to be politically correct? nice. what is the cutoff point for being racist? like as a black woman is it racist for me to say i hate when white girls fling their hair in my face and appear to be always chasing black guys because they think brown babies are so much better and they think black guys have bigger dicks? to me that seems about right but is that racist? depends on who you ask. but can you really not say what you want simply because it might offend someone? you're missing the whole point of zines. isn't the point of them to say what other people aren't saying? except a lot of the zines are saying the same exact things.

i'm actually doing quite well without being part of a distro right now. to each their own i guess.

NicoleIntrovert said:
I don't think distros having these "rules" are censorship at all. You can still write and put out whatever you want in a zine, it's just that these particular distro owners (myself included) have personal values in that we don't want to read that shit or put it into the hands of others.
You don't HAVE to use a distro.
nicole said it. distros have the right to carry things they like. but you can write whatever you want. anyone can. there are lots of racist/sexist/homophobic zines out there, though not usually called "zines". but literature.

you can write about those things from your perspective, and people will take it in different ways. some times people write with the intent to offend, and some times i like it and other times not. but the best zines are the ones where people are honest, with themselves and others. i've felt racist feelings, i think everyone has. i've felt sexist and homophobic things, as well. we're human, we experience things. but if you are aware of what you're feeling, you can deal with it. just because you had an experience or thought that might seem racist, that doesn't make you an overall racist person. does that make sense? sorting out and dealing with these complicated issues is part of learning to be human.

my point is, write whatever you want, and i'll buy a copy. ha.
awesome. i actually don't care if people think i'm racist or not. racism has a lot to do with power and i don't really have a lot of it but if people think i'm racist or prejudiced or whatever, it's cool.

anyone is free to buy my zines. i'm not really sure when i'll actually put another one out, but the ones i already have are for sale.

Billy Da Bunny said:
nicole said it. distros have the right to carry things they like. but you can write whatever you want. anyone can. there are lots of racist/sexist/homophobic zines out there, though not usually called "zines". but literature.

you can write about those things from your perspective, and people will take it in different ways. some times people write with the intent to offend, and some times i like it and other times not. but the best zines are the ones where people are honest, with themselves and others. i've felt racist feelings, i think everyone has. i've felt sexist and homophobic things, as well. we're human, we experience things. but if you are aware of what you're feeling, you can deal with it. just because you had an experience or thought that might seem racist, that doesn't make you an overall racist person. does that make sense? sorting out and dealing with these complicated issues is part of learning to be human.

my point is, write whatever you want, and i'll buy a copy. ha.
I gave up on working with small distros years ago. My problem is that very few would actually carry my zines because it didn't "fit" their idea of a zine. The zines I do (SYNDICATE PRODUCT) are usually compilation zines based around one theme, like packratting, or technology, or television. I've had distro owners tell me that what I do isn't a "zine", which frankly, irritated me beyond belief. Gee, the print run is 150 copies, it doesn't have a barcode, I do all the layout and editing myself, and I can't see Barnes & Nobels rushing to carry it anytime soon... if it's not a zine, what the heck is it? Sure, it's not a "perzine", but hell yes, what I do is a zine. It's more in line with what zines were like in the 80s, early 90s.

The only places that would carry some of my titles were the (now closed ) Loop and Pander. Microcosm carries a few of my zines as well (but they might be sold out by now). Parcell Press did for a while, too.

And I've gotten burned way too many times by people who thought it would be "fun to run a distro", gave up, and never paid me or returned my zines. I just don't want to deal with the drama anymore. So, I just sell through Etsy, and only deal with 4 actual brick-and-mortar stores anymore.

So yes, I totally understand wanting to avoid working with distros.

CocoaPuss Zine said:
like i said already i don't use distros for a lot of reasons.
this from an asshole-thug from chicago...

"Don't think we're not keeping score, brother."

Now, that is not 'offensive' in a Democracy, is it???
"like as a black woman is it racist for me to say i hate when white girls fling their hair in my face and appear to be always chasing black guys because they think brown babies are so much better and they think black guys have bigger dicks?"

not at all. now, if you were to say "I hate all white girls because of when certain ones do this-" then that wouldn't be so cool. feel free to hate the ones that are being hair flingy and stereotyping. I don't like them much either.

I've been feeling the same way a bit lately. it's really hard to get up the guts to write about your own experiences sometimes when you feel people are going to try and relate it to their experiences without realizing that it's YOURS and it really has nothing to do with what they feel is offensive or "right."

at the same time, if I had a distro, I probably wouldn't carry anything I considered racist or sexist. I just don't need anymore hate in my life.

it's a complicated issue, I'm not entirely sure where I stand on it. just remember, you're writing for yourself, not your audience. you can't make everyone happy, and if you try, you're just going to be unhappy yourself. someone's always going to be offended. but unless you make a blanket statement like "I hate all redheads" or something, I can respect that it's your experience and not necessarily... the full story, I guess? I find it hard to judge any zinester. we're complicated people sometimes.

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