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Representation, Part II

Posted by Sumiki , in BZPower, BIONICLE/LEGO, Rants, Not Essays!, Writing Apr 21 2014 · 212 views

Specifically, with regards to the gender imbalance in modern media:
 
I'd like to see a story where, during the writing process, the characters are completely fleshed out and developed. Genders would be assigned at random at the end by computer generation, so as to avoid any unwanted author-based prejudices.
 
Obviously this example refers to a book, but the same process could go for anything.
 
(I was going to say more, but I think this pretty much speaks for itself.)



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On Representation

Posted by Sumiki , in BIONICLE/LEGO, BZPower, Rants, Not Essays!, Writing Apr 17 2014 · 354 views

BZPower is the only place on the Internet where I feel as if I can truly state what I feel without fear of someone seeing half a sentence and assuming something terrible about what I'm trying to communicate. I take a middle-of-the-road approach and try to see the good in people, and I feel as if BZPower is the only site that won't blow up in my face when it comes to moderate viewpoints.

- - - - - 
 
Well, the latest firestorm of drama hit BZP earlier - this time on representation in media. It's a change of pace from what these flare-ups are normally about, but that doesn't mean that it's not an important and hot-button issue.
 
My three major points are bolded.
 
There is no excuse for not having female characters in modern media.
 

None whatsoever.
 
First, though, let's look at what representation really is.

 
Representation is, for the most part, determined from capitalistic tendencies. Once the media gets in its collective head that the men are the people they should be focusing their energies and spending their money on, the vicious cycle begins. This goes for race as well - I was watching an episode of the brilliant late '90s sitcom 3rd Rock from the Sun the other day and the main characters - aliens in the show's narrative - said that they'd chosen to be white because that was the color of everyone on TV. While a throwaway gag in the context of the episode (one which poignantly highlighted the inherent absurdity of racism), it stuck with me.
 
Women make up half of all the people on Earth, so it's much easier to explain a male-dominated media as an offshoot of a patriarchal society. But if we defocus the issue from one of representation of women and into representation as a whole, things get quite a bit dicier. 
 
People of all races, genders, and orientations exist. I mean, there are over seven billion of us now, so even the most minor of minority groups have significant numbers. One would think that what would follow would be representation for every group equal to their number.
 
Unless you've been living under a rock, however, it's clear that it hasn't happened.
 
So ... why?
 
Some point to internalized prejudices. While this could account for some media behavior, I harbor serious reservations that it accounts for all media - and all media are affected by this. What, then, is the most logical explanation?
 
Like I said - by following the money.
 
If you're a member of a group, you're going to want to get a cut of the majority. In America and much of the West, this means white people. If you're the biggest ethnic group, people who want to market stuff to the mainstream will probably market it towards you, because that's where the money lies.
 
If you're a member of a minority group, I think it's only fair to have media representation for you. The culture that led to the situation we're in has to change.

 
When minorities appear, they are often in token form. I shouldn't have to explain why this perpetuates stereotypes, but if we look at this from the broad view that I keep trying to get at, then we see that the smaller the minority, the less of a chance that a character from that minority will appear in media. Why? Again, money. If you're a studio executive and you want to make a movie sell, would you include characters that the perceived "majority" would relate to?
 
Most of them answer "yes," because it's the easy way out. Only now are we started to see the inklings of a fundamental change. The more bits of media that have minorities that are successful, the more that the people who are in charge of the media will see the fundamental error of their ways.
 
Here's another thing to keep in mind here: Representation does not always mean positive representation.

 
Let's take The Big Bang Theory. Among its quartet of protagonists, a trio represent some sort of minority: asexuals, Indians, and Jews. All of which are, at some point, played for laughs - or for whatever the writers think is funny. (It's not funny.)

 
When the most prominent asexual character in modern media is Sheldon Cooper, you know something's gone off the rails somewhere along the line. While gay characters are on the rise, a lot of them are accompanied by harmful stereotypes. Don't even get me started on bisexual erasure and the dearth of pansexual characters.
 
Hypothetically, every movie and book and TV show could change tomorrow to one where women outnumber men, but yet the women are always portrayed with harmful stereotypes. Let's imagine the same with sexual and ethnic minorities. You'd have more representation, but if it's with even more sexism, racism, and homophobia, how is that better? Mathematically speaking, it's actually worse.
 
Let's not support mere representation. Let's support good, positive representation. Let's prove to the media that they don't have to follow where they think the money is, but rather, where the moral thing to do lies.

 
I welcome discussion on these issues, but I am not afraid to defend myself if I see something I wrote taken out of context.


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My Mood Tonight

Posted by Sumiki , in Insane Online Convos, Other Stuff, twiggy Apr 08 2014 · 130 views

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There are only three people in the world who understand the context behind this, and I am one of them.


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General Update: The Next Six Weeks

Posted by Sumiki , in BZPower, Life, Music, Other Stuff Apr 02 2014 · 108 views

Alright, so I'm going to have to finish up being sick, play baseball thrice a week until May, prepare for the end-of-season awards day/roast for the team (I'm in charge of making dumb videos for the roast portion), and finish up my course work for this semester.
 
I was going to compete in a piano competition in Charlotte but that fell through - even though I passed the regional with flying colors, the state tournament conflicts with a home game for us against the toughest team we're due to face. This sucks, because even though I didn't care about the competition (Béla Bartók said "competitions are for horses, not artists," and I agree), if I'm going to put off learning tough repertoire that I want to learn in order to play stuff I don't care for and have now overplayed, I was hoping to get some mileage out of them before I went into "I'd-rather-give-myself-a-papercut-with-the-sheet-music-than-play-it-again" territory.

 
Oh, and I'm composing a set of 23 short piano pieces for a legally blind prodigy, as well as a longer piece to be played by myself for my honor society's graduation ceremony, which, last I heard, they were trying to move to a Friday specifically so they could accommodate my playing because people really liked what I threw together last time apparently. This piece might end up being for four hands, which I really hope works out. Because of reasons. (she's cute)
 
By now, you all should know what happens when May rolls around, so I'll try not to spoil anything there.

 
The things that could have been put off have been, I'm sorry to say. I'll try to get around to writing more for Rise of the Rookies (which is still a thing that I haven't forgotten about) as well as do THAT ONE THING which none of you know about except for Pablo. At the moment I'm swamped, but I'm still kicking.


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On Attaining Goals

Posted by Sumiki , in BIONICLE/LEGO, BZPower, Life Mar 31 2014 · 99 views

I have been a member of BZPower for nearly seven and a half years. Every time speculation on new spinnies arises, I am there on the front lines campaigning for :spinsmile: to become an official spinny.
 
Today, my fellow members, I am proud to say that I have succeeded in this illustrious endeavor.
 
I came to this web site with a mission, and now that mission is complete.
 
Spin on, my friends.
 
Spin on.



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VampireBohrok on Sumiki's Dad

Posted by Sumiki , in Insane Online Convos, Other Stuff, Sumiki's Dad, twiggy Mar 26 2014 · 123 views

Sumiki's dad is a surreal experience.




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MOC feedback feedback with Brickeens

Posted by Sumiki , in BIONICLE/LEGO, BZPower, Insane Online Convos, MOCing, Other Stuff Mar 25 2014 · 94 views

[9:32:29 PM] Brickeens: oh yes, the little bits that do the thing are great




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Ray

Posted by Sumiki , in BZPower, Other Stuff Mar 21 2014 · 118 views

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Happenings

Posted by Sumiki , in Life Mar 13 2014 · 146 views

The past week or so has been absolutely mad. I won't try to list all the crazy things that have transpired so I'll just kind of condense it:
 
Our washing machine began to go bad and broke, so we got a new one, only for the delivery to be delayed because of store-side incompetency, ice, etc. Our mailbox decided to bite the dust around the same time, although getting a new one was relatively simple.
 
The high school baseball season was slated to start last week, but our first game was sleeted out with two out in the top of the first inning. Bad conditions also forced the cancellation of a doubleheader that Saturday, which meant that our first game was last Tuesday. (We won decisively, despite the lack of practice.)
 
The weather has been absolutely brutal. Multiple rounds of ice left many trees weakened, including a massive Bradford Pear tree in our front yard. It was over two stories tall and was the first thing that many visitors pointed out. Key word here being "was" - three massive pieces broke off, leaving the last quarter standing. If that had collapsed, we wouldn't have a front porch. As it was, much of Tuesday was spent attempting to clear out what we could with a rather limited tool supply, so we could use the driveway.
 
If the downed trees were specific to our own yard, we wouldn't have had a problem getting some folks to come out and knock down the last part before it collapsed onto the house. As it was, though damage was significant in our area, we didn't lose power while the ice was knocking out lines left and right. In our city, we were in the 20% of people with power when the ice hit.
 
Then last night, a cold front blows through at about 60 miles an hour. The straight-line winds were knocking over more trees than the ice, and the rain was so thick I couldn't even see outside. As strange as it was, it lasted no more than about a minute, as it was a thin band and whipped right on through.
 
My dad and I went out and beat each other senseless at a local fencing club, then returned to find the house without any power - even though the neighborhood through the woods behind us had light. We also got into the precarious position of having had to jury-rig one of the emergency releases on the garage door during a previous inexplicable power outage, and so had to re-jury-rig it just so we could get the car in
 
This morning, although the power was on, we realized that the folks who had put the washer in the day before had somehow, gotten the hoses reversed; "cold" was hooked up to the hot water line and vice versa. My dad got behind the appliances with a set of tools, but despite his best efforts, water went everywhere. Fortunately our veritable towel collection was able to mop up the mess. This was later fixed after calling the store, and the tree people came out to saw up what remained of the Bradford Pear.
 
Long story short: if I've talked with you or promised you assistance in something over the past few weeks, then I apologize for my sudden inactivity. I've was swamped, and then swamp, quite literally, froze over.








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He's the lord of all strangeness. - Ignika: Nerd of Life

How awesome is Sumiki on a scale of 1 to 10? - Waffles
42. - Black Six

[He's] the king of wierd, the prince of practicality, the duke of durr! - Daiker

Sumiki is magic. - Cholie

Sumiki says, "Do I creeeeeeep you out?" Yes, he does. - Waffles

Sumiki is a nub. He's cool, but he's still a nub. - Ran Yakumo

 

"What is a Sumiki?" You may ask. But the answer to that is still unknown, even to the Sumiki itself. - Daiker

Ah, Sumiki. - Electric Turahk

 

LISTEN TO SUMIKI - Cholie

 

Sumiki is best snickerdoodle. - Takuma Nuva

 

BZPower = Sumiki + McSmeag + B6. And Hahli Husky. - Vorex

 

What's a Sumi? Does it taste good? - Janus

 

I would have thought Sumiki wanted to reincarnate as a farm animal. - Kraggh

 

EAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH - Kakaru

 

Sumiki: the horse_ebooks of bzp - VampireBohrok

 

Everything relates to Sumiki. No really, everything. - Daiker

 

He's in worse mental condition than I thought. - Obsessionist

 

I'm just wondering why I'm looking at some cat dancing ... I suppose the answer would simply be "Sumiki." - Brickeens

 

I was like a beast, screaming through the mind of Sumiki at the speed of sound. I.. I wasn't strong enough to stop myself. What I saw was the end of infinity, through which one can see the beginning of time, and I will never be the same. - Portalfig

 

I imagine the 13th Doctor will be rather like Sumiki, at the rate we're going. - rahkshi guurahk

 

I was quite sure Sumiki had another set of arms stashed somewhere. - Bfahome

 

Note to future self: don’t try to predict Sumiki, he’s unpredictable. - Voltex

 

Let's be honest, I would totally have picked my main man Sumiki to lead my goose-stepping night killers anyway. We tight like that, yo. - Xaeraz

Sumiki
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Every week, I post a new "Tuesday Tablescrap", a small MOC not worthy of a topic, but something to post and inspire me to build more.

10/25/11 - Duplo Flower
11/1/11 - Slender Man and Masky
11/8/11 - Bizarre Black Spaceship
11/15/11 - 2001 Monolith

11/22/11 - My Little Slizer 50
11/29/11 - Punching Bag
12/6/11 - Thunder and Escorts
12/13/11 - Three Concepts
12/20/11 - Kaxium Alternate
12/27/11 - None (Christmas Break)

1/3/12 - Daiker
1/10/12 - None
1/17/12 - Volant
1/24/12 - Nidman's Chute Shoop Shop
1/31/12 - None (Brickshelf down)
2/7/12 - None
2/14/12 - Atomic Lime
2/21/12 - Spearhead
2/28/12 - Glatorian Kahi
3/6/12 - Seeker
3/13/12 - Skyscraper
3/20/12 - Microphone
3/27/12 - Toa Vultraz
4/3/12 - Flammenwerferjüngeres
4/10/12 - Umbrella
4/17/12 - Lime Beetle
4/24/12 - Special - Flame Sculpture
5/1/12 - None (BZPower down)
5/8/12 - Purple Ninja
5/15/12 - The Original Sumiki
5/22/12 - 7/24/12 - None
7/31/12 - Tahu
8/7/12 - None (BrickFair)
8/14/12 - Special - Chess Set
8/21/12 - Heavily Armored Wasp
8/28/12 - Spaceship Drill
9/4/12 - Scuba Vehicle
9/11/12 - Orange Guy
9/18/12 - Strange Flying Thing
9/25/12 - Goblet
10/2/12 - None
10/9/12 - Aim .............................. Down
10/16/12 - Gold Bot
10/23/12 - Teal Mech
10/30/12 - Special - Teal Mech (#2)
11/6/12 - Bits and Pieces
11/13/12 - Two Spaceships
11/20/12 - TARDIS Interior
11/27/12 - Christmas Creep
12/4/12 - Toaraga
12/11/12 - Fireplace
12/18/12 - Abstract Duckling
12/25/12 - None (Christmas)
1/1/13 - Black Bot
1/8/13 - 1/22/13 - None
1/29/13 - Handheld Rhotuka Launcher
2/5/13 - 8/6/13 - None
8/13/13 - The Hinklebot
8/20/12 - Special - Post-Apocalyptic Piyufi

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Formerly known as the Bring Back Teal Club, the Unused Colors Society is a club that serves to promote colors that are little-used or discontinued, such as teal, old purple, or metallic blue.

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Leaders:
Sumiki
Waffles

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
Members:

ChocolateFrogs

ToM Dracone
xccj
Uzmakikunai
Novek
Nukaya
Overlord
Kaymac
(((DARKNESS)))
lunaticCircuitry
-Toa Lhikevikk-
DeepFriedZombies
Dirk Strider
GUYUGKUYG
Toa Flappy
Lime Paradox
McSpit
RotationalBasis
Mesonak
chunkeh!
Toa Robert
The X
Nuparu574
Dave Strider
Akuna Toa of Sonics
Commander Helios
Popup2: The Camel
~Shadow Kurahk~
Luna
Rho
~System Of A Down~
Kohrak Kal17
Brickeens
Jackson Lake
Thunder on the Mountain
McBobby
Ackar's Follower
Rahkashi
Bitter Cold
Tobi
Vinylstep
Nidman
Doc Scratch
Mendicant Bias
Eyru
Kagha
Darth Eryzeth
Millennium
Tschurtlschnatchen
kopakakid
Toa of Vahi
~Legoman~
noob
Makuta GigaDon
WORT WORT WORT
~Toa Drokonas~
Kwydjybo
Progenitus Worldsoul
Toa Kuhrii Avohkii
-Morgoth-
Bohrok Kal
Toa Neya 2011 Edition
~prisma son of dawn~
Nidhikiandco
.: WoLVeRINe :.
Zokau
DragonxFlutter
Lebon
ChocoLvr13
Uzumakikunai
Dokuma
Carnifex
Xetra
Metrongana
Alternate Velika
HercuLesss
Absol'd
SquishyFrog
Ynot
qUESTIE
SonicBOOM XS
Tavakai
Schnee 1
Brickeens (again!?)
Kakaru
The Great Forgetter
Kylus
Thomas the Tank Engine
Roablin
Aho-Chan
Jonah Falcon
~MatoroIgnika~
Vocals
Oh my miru
Element lord Of Milk.
e=mc^2
Lexuk Toa Of Insanity
Michael J. Caboose
GlatorianJaller
knuckles chaotix
The Bean
Kyronex
Lord Kaitan de Storms
Jaicho
Toa of Dancing
/Got_Your_6/
ZamorBob
Daiker
Toa Arzaki
The Oncoming Storm
Darkrylles
Lego Obsessionist
Toa of Pumpkin
christo1096
Unit#phntk#1
Teal Armada
Toa Zehvor Blackout
Mr. M
Chibinuva
Vohon
Mylo Xyloto
Lord of Ice
Celu
Architect
Rix
.:ENCRYPTION:.
~~Zarkan~~
TornadoToad
Fantasia
Gamzee Makara
Zarayna: The Quiet Light

Paleo

Xaeraz

Vorex: Keeper of Time

Roablin

Toa of Smooth Jazz

fishers64

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Dual Matrix

rahkshi guurahk
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If you learn one thing in life, learn this:

You should never, ever question why demons would possess a soda.

just a heads up - Cthulhu would probably eradicate mankind before bringing back Bionicle
 
so yeah, all I'm saying is, please think twice about this okay

nothing gets democracy flowing like erratic capitalizatION

[the NSA] couldn't say no when I offered them an ostrich farm in exchange

Sumiki -- nice try but we all know Toa Mata Nui stuffs its bra

 


 


 


You have a great understanding of history, but don't forget, war, murder and other poor decisions are also huge characteristics.

Also a long line of really great hats.

Shhh, I'm trying to focus on the negative to justify my dislike of history.

have we mentioned hats

To be fair, I am the one responsible for the invention of Mafia in the 1320s by seventeen bored italians locked in a mine shaft.
 
It's a long story.

 

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