How often would you get this kind of opportunity?
A year ago, I reposted a comic from Calamities of Nature, created by Tony Piro, one that achieved a certain amount of notoriety (not due to my efforts by any stretch.) This wasn’t a humorous comic, nor did it involve exaggeration, misstatement, caricaturization, or many of the other things that people could take offense at if they, you know, had too many hangups to take humor as humor. Instead, it was an observation listing simple facts that was satirical in the usage of a pious scene from a well-known christmas special. Bringing facts into the matter always pisses off a lot of people – something to remember, by the way.
Anyway, the comic went around a lot, without proper attribution, with changes to the words, and so on. This is, not to put too fine a point on it, copyright violation, and intentional too – the proper attributions are embedded in the image, so they would have to be removed willingly for it to appear without them, not to mention that changing the words is simply stealing the artwork. As Tony points out:
My use of the Peanuts characters, in a comic that I drew and wrote myself, is allowed as a parody. But when people grab my art, change a few words, and label it as their own, it amounts to theft.
Quite simply, if anyone wanted to do their own parody, they could draw their own artwork. I’ll leave it to you to contemplate how many good religious folk were the ones stealing the image for other purposes. I’m sure it wasn’t many…
This year, in response to the various uses of the comic, Tony has a simple deal: Link to the original comic directly on his site, and he’ll donate $1 for every 500 page views to Doctors Without Borders.
If you’re one of them good christians, this is also my gift to you. Get enough of your friends together, and you can drive Tony into the poorhouse! It’s really okay, since it’s not about you being nasty, it’s god acting through you, and giving that heretic exactly what he deserves! [Did I nail those internal rationalizations down? Should I have used a different term than “nail”?]
Or draw your own comic, and give $2 per page view to Whining About Respect or some other. I’m sure there’s some organization that helps support the self-righteous when the real world intrudes into their fantasy. I mean, besides churches.
Otherwise, celebrate the holidays as you see fit, and have fun!