The Orca Spoiler - Time to let it go? (was Re: Proof Mario is Alive?...)

Mon Dec 5 11:15:17 PST 2005

At 10:59 AM 12/5/2005 -0700, you wrote:
>umm  so what you are telling us is that you are ok with being the guy in
>line to see Revenge of the Sith who tells a 7 year old that Aniken is Darth
>Vader and that his son in gonna be Luke Skywalker.

No, I wouldn't spoil a movie to a kid that's in line to see it.  But 
remember that part of my opinion on this issue is the venue where the 
spoiler discussion is taking place.  I'd get pissed if someone gave away 
the ending of any movie to people about to see it.  However, I wouldn't 
have a problem with someone not putting spoiler warnings on "Aniken is 
Darth Vader" comments posted to a Star Wars discussion group.  I think part 
of someone's participation in a discussion group is the implicit 
understanding that they're fairly familiar with the material. If I met 
someone who hadn't read the Vlad books yet, I wouldn't tell them the Orca 
or Issloa spoilers, but I'd also tell them that they should probably read 
the books before discussing them on this mailing list.

Aside, I don't think that's the best counter-example as Lucas use the Darth 
Vader image as Ani's shadow in the posters for Episode I. and the wikipedia 
article on Aniken/Darth doesn't feel any need to spoiler protect it 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darth_vader>.  Your Lord of the Rings example 
below is better, ad I comment more on that.

>I don't think that the fact that I have known a spoiler for 10 years makes
>it any less a spoiler for the audience yet to read the various pieces out
>there.  Heck at this point I'd think it's safe to assume that there were
>children being born when Orca was released that may, in 6 years or so, get
>to that book.  I think it'd be nice for us to leave them the magic that we
>all came to on our own.

True, but again, it's the venue.  I'm not talking about going out and 
shouting the Orca spoiler from the rooftops, I'm talking about not 
spoiler-protecting it in a place where people do nothing but talk about 
these books.

And if your PoV is valid, why are we only protecting the Orca and Issola 
spoilers.  Most posts to this list contain some spoiler elements to some of 
the books, whether it's a reference to Adron's Disaster, Cawti and Vlad's 
relationship, or the recent discussion about Sethra the Younger's motives 
in Yendi (which are a significant spoiler to what's going on in that book 
if you haven't read it).  Who polices the importance of spoilers and says 
that these are the one's we have to protect and these other ones's 
aren't.  Isn't everything on this list a spoiler to one degree or another.

>Or one more view on it - Had someone spoiled the Hobbit or the Lord of the
>Rings for you before you read them?  Did you know Gandalf would die, or that
>he'd get better?  I didn't and I am damn thankful that there was not, when I
>first read those books, (books that were 30 years old at that point) someone
>at my side, or in my e-mail telling me about pivotal plot points.

A better example.  However, yes, I did know that Gandalf died and came back 
before I read the trilogy.  It didn't ruin my enjoyment of them, and I 
wasn't particularly bitter at having known it.  [Interestingly, my wife 
read the books after seeing the first film and while she did not know that 
Gandalf was coming back, it didn't surprise her at all as she'd read enough 
other fantasy fiction to recognize the conventions of the genre].

But again, I wouldn't spoil LotR to someone at the movie theater or in a 
bookstore thinking about picking them up, but I'd have no problem with 
people not putting a spoiler warning on Gandalf's death & rebirth in a LotR 
discussion group.  Now if I hadn't read LotR yet, how would you feel about 
having just "spoiled" it for me by mentioning that in a non-Tolkein group?

To be fair, I'll mention a place where I did get annoyed at this.  I had 
the ending of The Sixth Sense spoiled for me by one of the comic-reporters 
on The Daily Show less than a year after the movie's release.  I still 
enjoyed the film, but felt that it was inappropriate of them do reveal the 
big spoiler of the movie in a public forum so soon after it's release.

And another example of where I think this is silly.  I remember having this 
same discussion 13 years ago on the rec.tv.prisoner newsgroup when people 
were putting spoiler warning about the final episode of The Prisoner, which 
had then aired 25 years previously, on a newsgroup where people did nothing 
but discuss that show.

>Just my views,

And mine are mine.  It's not that I don't want to protect good reveals / 
spoilers from novice eyes, it's just that I think this mailing list isn't 
meant for people who haven't read most of the books.


>-----Original Message-----
>From: dragaera-bounces at dragaera.info
>[mailto:dragaera-bounces at dragaera.info]On Behalf Of Charles Sumner
>Sent: Monday, December 05, 2005 10:16 AM
>To: dragaera at dragaera.info
>Subject: The Orca Spoiler - Time to let it go? (was Re: Proof Mario is
>At 11:35 AM 12/5/2005 -0500, you wrote:
> >>>[Spoiler] that indicate she believes Mario is still current and active
> >
> >>Shouldn't we "spoiler" these bits? I don't think everyone on the list has
> >>read all of the books.
> >
> >Isn't the mailing list the final stage of total Brust addiction? How can
> >you have considered getting on this list until you have read all of the
> >books and are impatiently waiting for the next?
>Next month will be the 10th anniversary of the release of Orca and I think
>it might be time to let that particular spoiler go.  The Issola spoiler is
>4 years old this month (3 years if you want to count from the paperback
>publication) so I don't mind hanging on to that one, for now.
>Yes, I do know that there are some people on this list who haven't read all
>of the books, but I still think it's a bit silly for us to still be using a
>spoiler-warning for a book that's 10 years old on a list designed to
>discuss these books.  If this was a general-purpose, SF mailing-list, then
>sure.  But the Orca spoiler is central to many of the discussion on this
>list, as I suspect the Issola spoiler will be when Dzur comes out.
>Can we put something in the sign-up email that says something to the effect
>of, this mailing is for the discussion of Steven Brust's Dragaera novels,
>be warned that you might see spoilers if you haven't read them all yet.
>Charley Sumner
>An open mind is one thing, letting geese run around in there is completely