The Otter Apologizes to the Fanfiction Masses

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Title: The Otter Apologizes to the Fanfiction Masses
Creator: The Humbled Otter
Date(s): July 23, 2004
Medium: online
Topic: Fanfiction
External Links: The Otter Apologizes to the Fanfiction Masses, Archived version
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The Otter Apologizes to the Fanfiction Masses is an essay by The Humbled Otter.

It is part of the Fanfic Symposium series.

Part of a Series

The Essay

A little over 24 hours ago, I wrote a column in a fit of rant that was supposed to only target a small group of people. Unfortunately, it got out of hand, and a lot of people were offended. My email was, literally, flooded with letters of every kind. Mostly, though, they were extreme hate letters, one person told me to go die somewhere. However, in the jumble, were some really heartfelt and professional emails of people who were genuinely saddened by what they called, misconceptions. These were people not meant to attacked but ended up getting hurt by what I said.

I did not (I repeat) did not intend to target or hurt the majority of fan fiction writers and people who are kind enough to actually take time from their lives and aid in the editing process. But sadly, I did.

And for that, I am truly sorry. My intended audience was misled by my zealousness to belittle something we obviously all enjoy.

And while I’m still a little spooked that my opinions caused such an outcry, I’m willing to step up and admit my fault in this.

I can only hope that those who were hurt can look to forgive me, and I can also hope that those whom inspired my ranting nonsense, can look to themselves and use caution when giving people reviews and critiques. Be polite and do what I didn’t do, and that is remember that there is a living, feeling, thinking person on the other side of that fan fiction.

As for the folks over at . I’m sorry the nicer folks got caught up in that. I did not visit the site with the intentions of being an ass. But I respond badly to negative vibes. And unfortunately, that forum is littered with it. So.. I’m sorry to several people for that. Don’t worry, I have no plans of returning. That site brought out the worst in me and I don’t want to subject myself or anyone else to that.

Thanks for your time. Again I am sorry.

Reactions and Reviews

Thanks for clarifying your intentions. I suspect we still don't entirely agree on a number of things, but context never hurts in understanding each other. [1]
Tres amusant. What this amounts to is an apology for getting spattered with some of the mud she was flinging onto others.

I'm not any more impressed with her second missive than I was with her first. Though, I am just as amused by it. Both reek with self-absorption and the signs of a deep persecution complex. And both are just as determined to single out and insult a group of people the author has decided are unfit and distasteful. "Oh, but not to worry!" her faux apology assures the reader, "YOU don't belong to THAT nasty lot! I never meant to include YOU. So, naturally, WE can be bestest friends!"

In other words, it's perfectly all right to belittle a group of people and subject them to ad hominem attack, so long as you convince your immediate readership that *they* are not members of the despised group.


I thought this sort of playground psychology was dispensed with after the 6th grade. But it would seem that for some people, childhood is truly eternal. [2]
Here's the defense..that you are demanding.

I made a rant...purely based on my experiance and observations. I don't know any of you personally and since this is the internet, I ranted in my own special alter-egoistic way. You guys are not the first people to get smacked by me...just ask the Petards and young republicans. I made one of probaly dozens of rants here, that I have made in the past 3 years. Unlike this situation however, most people take what I say with a grain of salt and move on with their lives.After all, if we took everything some of us say,personally, we'd all be slitting our wrists. The comments and hate mail I have read is nothing compared to some things I have gotten,...for instance, I have no YIM messenger. Why? Because I have recieved death threats before..and those get annoying after awhile.Now you are probably wondering, who I offended to get death threats. I'll leave that to your imagination.

HOWEVER! After reading some rather sad emails from people,who chose to write me in a polite and professional manner, I actually felt bad for what I said. So bad infact, that after 3 years of making these kinds of comments, I made a public apology. I admit, that this time, I truly screwed up with my insensitivity and crassness.

It was SINCERE! and one of the reasons that I know it was sincere is because I NEVER,until earlier today,EVER apologise for what I say online. To me..what happens online,stays online..I say what I want and keep going.

I know I was sincere and whether or not you choose to believe it, is now on you. Why? because from this point's over. It doesnt exist. I screwed up, I apologised(quite politely) and now I am ready to drop it.

Hopefully you will do the same thing.

PS...for all you guys who have been talking about how I'm "banned" from certain sights...that's ok..because whatever sites have heard about me and want nothing to with me..I have never heard of anyways and would never visit.So thanks for banning me from where-ever.

As for the GAFFERS...I did feel bad for what I did to you...but after reading,not only some of the creepy and obsessive posts on your site and the sweet emails you sent...I recant my apology from you. If the site owner could please remove me from the member list,that would be fantastic...and I would sooner shove rusty nails in eyes,then ever again read your insipid whining or visit your lame site. Take your sporks and sit on them. At that folk, is something that I WILL SAY AND WALK AWAY FROM. TAH TAH! ADIOS! GOODBYE!

as for the non-GAFFERS. My apology still stands as genuinely as before and as you want to take it.Like I said it is on you now. My conscious is clear.

Have a nice life folks...and to Lucy (Cetera) Thank you for posting both are a wonderful will always be cool in my book, I love your new icon,love the site, love your work..have fun baby!

The naughtiest mammal on the net, The Cynical and Elitist Otter. [3]
Hey, Otter. have you taken a look to see what you're actually saying?

You're calling people elitists then saying that you never apologize, implying that you're too good for it.

You're getting mad at people who critique fanfiction, then posting huge rants at why you hate them. This is after your short stay at GAFF where you repeatedly tried to start flames and did a very obvious trolling.

You say you apologized politely, then try to tell everybody to forget it ever happened. it happened. You screwed up and you ticked a lot of people off majorly. Live up to it.

So you say that all the GAFFERS are bad? When have they ever attacked an entire forum of diverse people? If GAFF is anything like it used to be, there's probably close to a 1000 members. You're saying that you're better than all of them and that they're all scum?

Seriously. I've been a GAFFER (not as much as I'd like to but life sometimes gets in the way of that) I've never seen a situation where they weren't willing to own up to their mistakes.

basically, all you did was go there, tried to start trouble and as soon as people saw you for what you are, a mean spirited petty little troll, you ran off and posted a huge rant about how you hate all of them. Then because other people who DON'T go to GAFF fit the description, you back peddled and claimed that "oh no! It's not any of YOU fine people! It's GAFF and just GAFF, they're the scum of the earth! They're horrible horrible bitter angry losers with no life and little morals,"

Just remember, YOU were part of GAFF and your whining wasn't even welcome there. In the end, you're just another person on tne net sayining telling anyone who will listen how bad they are. [4]
My conscious is clear.

Your conscience is clear, eh?

So, you concoct a strawman argument in that you abuse a particular group of people without clearly identifying them and without producing evidence that they hold the beliefs you accuse them of holding. You then post it to a semi-related public forum where they may (or may not) see it.

The strawman argument is so loosely constructed that it could apply to various groups of people, and all of them take an interest and ask you to back up your views.

Surprised and upset by this, you partly withdraw your comments, but in effect say, "If the cap fits, wear it."

And your conscience is clear.

I see. [5]
My dear, if this is your "defense", I submit you'd best hire out for a rep, next time. Because you are truly your own worst spokeswoman. I'll not even bother with the rampant, almost aggressive, errors in spelling and grammar. Which, despite your silly rant, DO matter. Not only do these things clue the reader in as to how educated an author is, they let the reader know how much care and craftsmanship an author puts into her work. In your case, the answer would be: Next to none.

The really sad thing is, if I'm left with commenting on the *contents* of your infantile, near-incoherent riposte, then I've little more to suggest to you than a competent psychiatrist, a program of anti-depressants and a new hobby, as this one is obviously not bringing you any particular joy.

Get help. Get it soon. You need it. [6]
We're all meant to feel better about your hypocritical bile existing in the universe because it wasn't aimed at us specifically? You're doing to GAFF what you'd rather they didn't do to you. [7]
The only reason you're apologizing is because people called you on your whiney bullshit. Usually I stay out of crap like this that happens on GAFF, but even I get tired of the immature stuff that crops up every now and then. Like your little rant. And please, if you're going to do something like that, get your facts straight. Amoung all the other misguided crap, Mary Sue wasn't made up by disgruntled college kids or whatever... the term comes from a GA Star Trek fan novel with a perfect character named Mary Sue. [8] [9]


  1. from cerata; WebCite, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 23, 2004.
  2. from Anonymous, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 23, 2004.
  3. from Cynical Otter/The Humble Otter, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 24, 2004.
  4. from mikeieller, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 25, 2004.
  5. from lexin, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 25, 2004.
  6. from Anonymous, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 25, 2004.
  7. from orange852, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 23, 2004.
  8. No, it doesn't. See Mary Sue. Also see Turnabout.
  9. from the_indy, LiveJournal comment posted to Fanfic Symposium Discussion Site community, July 23, 2004.