Winter Sunlight

A public service announcement for those of you in SFF circles

[Note: this is a repost of a post that was locked. I decided I needed to post it publicly after all, but people commented on the original post in the understanding that it was private. Hence the repost.]

I know there are people who follow me who are either pro writers or active in mainstream SFF fandom. This is a PSA for you guys.

There's a sci-fi and fantasy writer who goes by Benjanun Sriduangkaew, aka Winterfox, aka Requires Hate, aka a number of older pseudonyms. If you are active in SFF circles you have probably heard of her in some context, because in addition to her having stories in a number of venues, SF writer Laura Mixon won a Hugo this year for an investigative journalism blog post documenting Sriduangkaew's long history of bullying, stalking, trolling, harassing, blackmailing, and otherwise threatening and abusing people.

I haven't had any personal run-ins with her, but I know from multiple accounts from people I trust that she is BAD NEWS. The reason why I'm posting this now is because a) she recently went after a friend of mine again and FUCK THAT SHIT, and b) I noticed that after Mixon's post dropped off people's radar last winter, there was a lot of semi-successful effort on the part of Sriduangkaew and a handful of her friends to rebrand everything as a smear campaign against her because she is a queer writer of color. That's bullshit. Or perhaps I should say, either dozens of people (including people I know and like and trust) are lying about her AND someone keeps hijacking her Twitter to post smears against her favorite bully targets, or she is a lying piece of scum. I know which one I'm going with.

She has a history which includes attacking, harassing, and smearing people for years after a single thing gets them onto her radar (including things like: defending one of her other victims, writing a book she doesn't like, etc). There are also reliable reports, described in Mixon's post and also things I've heard from people I trust, of her blackmailing people into supporting and helping her, using personal details they shared with her in email before realizing she wasn't a safe person to be friends with.

She's not your friend. She's not your ally. She's not your defender. She's a person who seems to get her kicks by attacking and hurting people, which lately she has dressed up in the language of social justice (before that, she was a notorious troll, under several pseuds, on various social media going back a decade). Eventually she figured out that people would give her more credibility if she co-opted the language of feminism/anti-racism/the LGBT rights movement for her own ends. And she was right. She was so very right that she was, and to some extent still is, able to harass and stalk people openly for years (most of them female, queer, and/or PoC; she doesn't often go after anybody with abundant social capital to spend, at least not with a comparable level of vitriol).

Mixon describes her methods like this:

BS/RH begins chatter about a writer or a social-justice topic on her blog, a forum such as LiveJournal, or on Twitter. She uses increasingly obscene and insulting language against her target(s). This is done to goad the target (or their supporters, or a particular community) into responding sharply. [....] Often BS/RH will then begin to pursue the person she has decided to target, issuing multiple vituperative posts or death threats on blogs they frequent, and/or on Twitter, and/or in the online forum where she first targeted them.

She is doing this RIGHT NOW on Twitter -- dangling insults against specific targets (none of whom have approached her, bothered her, or had anything to do with her in years) to see if she can get anyone to take the bait. So far, no one has, because thanks to Mixon and the victims who were willing to come forward and allow their abuse to be documented, people are now wise to her tricks.

But once this dies down and more time elapses, people will forget, and start saying the community should forgive her and let bygones be bygones, which was also the case this spring. Pay attention to her behavior right now, guys. She hasn't stopped, she hasn't changed; she's just backed down from the worst of it for PR reasons.

And for the love of God, don't try to make friends with her, or let her try to make friends with you. I would be extremely wary of anyone who interacts with her a lot, too, or at least try not to tell them anything personal that could be used against you someday.

This entry is also posted at http://sholio.dreamwidth.org/1027387.html with comment count unavailable comments.
Tags:
I am not even in this community but I've heard of her through other sources online. Brrr!
I'm actually glad to hear word is getting around. That kind of toxicity thrives in the dark, but the more people who know about it, the less damage she can do.
I don't have anything new to add to this discussion, but thank you for writing and posting this!