Editorial: Election Politics in the Entertainment Industry
The 2012 Presidential Election is approaching in The United States, and everyone is talking politics – except me of course. I’m an entertainment journalist, so I don’t have to. That isn’t to say the job is always cake, even in the entertainment world there are sometimes legal issues, people’s health issues, and other serious things that have to be reported on. There are also plenty of opportunities to take on scholarly work, historical pieces, and even to tackle real world problems like addiction. Still, it’s work that can very much be play, and if my most heated discussions were about Superman’s red trunks, then I can say I’ve had a pretty good day! Sure, the election gives me a chance to segway into fun hypothetical topics like what Superman’s political party would be, or the implications of the Mutant Registration Act, but that’s my prerogative. I don’t have to get into the nitty gritty of Republican and Democratic campaigns, or sift through their policies unless it’s to help me determine how to vote. My political leanings are strictly between me and my internet service provider! At least they should be, but it’s not quite that simple. When you work online, your fun social networking sites also become tools of your trade. They’re part of your advertising and promotion strategies. The world is watching, unless you intently scrutinize every privacy function available to you. That means your boss, and all of your editors, know every time you like a campaign status, or post “lol” on a photo mocking a candidate. Your audience will learn all about you too, and may judge you for it. Am I being too self conscious in worrying about damaging my brand? Should I just assume the best in people, and hope they wouldn’t let themselves be influenced by my feelings on the election? I’m not offering any answers here, just bringing up questions. How should I handle politics in the comic book workplace?