During our marathon 3-hour “Blogger Battle of Axanar,” Australian Trekzone.org blogger MATTHEW MILLER and I discussed many things, including telling the truth about Axanar…something that I noted the detractors seldom do. It’s one of the reasons I spend so much time correcting the record here on Fan Film Factor, because if I don’t, and the lies get told over and over without challenge, they can insidiously supplant the truth.
One such example came early in Part One of our podcast debate when Matthew asked me about “most” of the main cast and crew leaving after PRELUDE TO AXANAR when ALEC PETERS decided to build a studio. I challenged Matthew’s choice of the word “most,” as that’s one of those lies that’s been told and retold so many times it’s taken on urban legend status. So I counted the people who left and those who didn’t. The final score: 5 people left and 15 stayed. So “most” actually stayed. Matthew admitted in the discussion that I had “schooled” him. But really, I just stated the truth and backed it up with facts.
Which brings us to this past Wednesday, and the latest Axanar lie…this time directly from the mouth of Matthew Miller himself. It came at the end of an re-edit of our 3-hour discussion, awkwardly trimmed down to 26 minutes of “best of” clips taken mostly out of context. This was followed by a two-minute editorial wrap-up where Matt ended with a massive false statement regarding Axanar and Alec Peters. It was such an obvious lie that I had to rewind and listen a second time to make sure I hadn’t misheard…
“Irrefutable fact,” huh? In what alternate universe? Did Matthew not watch this video tour of Industry Studios…?
Did he not see the Vulcan Scene…?
But according to Matthew, the $1.5 million went towards neither [the studio nor the film]. Really, Matt? None of it??? It was WTF time…!
Congratulations, folks, you’ve made it to Part 3! I’m assuming you’ve already sat through Part 1 and Part 2 of the debate about all things AXANAR between myself and Australian blogger MATTHEW MILLER of Trekzone.org. The first two parts have received a few hundred views each, with lots of comments made on both sides of the Axanar controversy. But now it’s time to wrap things up with some of our most controversial discussions yet…
We begin by shifting our focus from CARLOS PEDRAZA and Axamonitor to Matt’s own Trekzone.org blog? Is he providing fair coverage, or does Trekzone suffer from the same skewed “telling only half the story” that Axamonitor (and some would say Fan Film Factor) suffer from?
Then we move onto one of the most controversial hot-button questions: have the Axanar detractors gone too far in their stalking and cyberbullying? How far is too far? And is the behavior just as bad on the supporter side, or is that sinply the false equivalency of “what aboutism”? And what does coffee have to do with anything?
Of course, we spend a little time debating whether ALEC PETERS paid himself a salary or just reimbursed himself for out-of-pocket expenses. And did other folks like VIC MIGNOGAM or JAMES CAWLEY ever earn anything personally from money paid by donors?
Moving on to the future of Axanar, we discuss the USS Ares bridge set. After hundreds of thousands of dollars in fan donations and out-of-pocket payments by Alec himself, and after thousands of man-hours in labor…will the bridge ever be used to film any scenes of the Axanar story?
And finally, even if Axanar never gets made, does Alec still deserve credit for making it as far as he did…despite all of the headwinds, a year-long lawsuit from two billion-dollar corporations, a move across country, and the almost constant attacks by dozens of detractors?
And what if Axanar does get made? What will it take to get a positive comment out of a detractor like Matthew Miller or Carlos Pedraza?
Is there ANY common ground to be had? Find out as the Blogger-Battle of the Axanar concludes…
Last Wednesday, we debuted Part 1 of a three-hour discussion and debate about all things AXANAR between myself and Australia-based Star Trek blogger MATTHEW MILLER. We both have very strong feelings about the Axanar project and its show-runner ALEC PETERS, and we’ve never been particularly shy about sharing those feelings and opinions in various public forums.
But now we’re doing in it the same forum at the same time, voicing our disagreements directly to each other to see if there’s any common ground…or if the two sides of this controversy are destined to simply never come together.
Last time, we primarily discussed the building of Ares Studio, followed by some brief commentary about the fan film guidelines. And just before ending Part 1, we left off having just scratched the surface of our next (BIG!) topic: the copyright infringement lawsuit.
In Part 2, we’ll be discussing the lawsuit in much greater depth, including…
Should Alec have fought the lawsuit as intensely as he did, or should he have just settled and moved on?
Did CBS and Paramount offer a settlement when the lawsuit was first filed? If not, when did they first make a settlement offer…and what were their terms?
Why did Alec and CBS/Paramount finally decide to settle the lawsuit two weeks before trial?
Were the final settlement terms more favorable to Alec, to CBS/Paramount, or pretty much even?
What would have happened if Renegades, New Voyages, or Star Trek Continues had been sued instead of Axanar?
Then we shift gears to the Axanar supporter/detractor conflict…
Why have things escalated so much over the years?
What role have CARLOS PEDRAZA and his Axamonitor blog site played in exacerbating the tensions? (Carlos tells us himself!)
Are Carlos’ blogs telling only half the story and thereby reinforcing pre-existing detractor biases?
Does Carlos rush to publish negative blogs and purposefully avoid reporting positive Axanar news like Axacon (which still hasn’t been covered on Axamonitor after six weeks)?
And what about Fan Film Factor? Am I telling only half the story, too?
And now the Blogger-Battle of Axanar continues…
And check back Wednesday at 2:00pm Pacific Time for Part 3!
Okay, folks, it’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for! (Well, maybe not ALL of you…but at least a few hundred, I’m sure.) Earlier this week, I revealed the “origin story” of this two-way interview where blogger MATTHEW MILLER from Trekzone.org and I discuss and debate all things AXANAR. Now it’s time to put our money where our mouths are (Australia and Los Angeles, respectively).
Today in Part 1, after a friendly introduction and a brief discussion of some of what we both feel are the inherent strengths of the 2014 fan film Prelude to Axanar, we jump right into some of the most controversial questions regarding this polarizing fan production, starting with the creation of Ares Studios with donor money…
Did “most” of the principal cast and crew abandon the project after ALEC PETERS decided to use crowd-funded money to build a “for profit” studio? Or is that just a rumor-turned-urban-myth?
What exactly is a “for profit” studio anyway? Is someone gonna go out and buy a 60-foot yacht with all the cash that comes in?
Was the decision to try to turn a Valencia warehouse into a soundstage a mistake in the first place?
Did CBS ever tell Alec (before the lawsuit) not to create a studio or not to make more Axanar?
Did the Axanar donors know (back in 2014) that they were donating to build a soundstage, or were they misled to believe they were donating only to produce a fan film?
And we finish up Part 1 with a couple of other hotly-debated topics…
Was Alec Peter sued by CBS and Paramount because Axanar was “too good?”
Were there “unpublished” guidelines for fan films before June of 2016?
Were the guidelines, once they were announced, intended to stop Axanar…or were they targeted on Renegades and the other “arms race” fan productions?
Sound intriguing? Well, strap in for Part 1 of the Blogger-Battle of Axanar…
Come back for Part 2 on Monday and Part 3 next Wednesday.
These days, I don’t typically engage directly with the AXANAR detractors. There’s no point. I’m not gonna change their minds, and they’re certainly not gonna change mine. Any “discussion” we get into quickly breaks down into all the old beating-dead-horse accusations and rumors and criticisms—often with a generous helping of vitriol and vulgarity—and frankly, it’s just a waste of my time.
And yet, in just three days time, I’ll be posting (in conjunction with Trekzone.org) an epic 3-part discussion and debate between myself and noted Axanar detractor MATTHEW MILLER…and I do mean epic! Take a listen to the teaser that Matthew just posted…
When we set out to have our across-the-globe (Matt’s in Australia) audio “smackdown,” we had no idea how long the discussion would last or how heated it would get. There were no rules and only a loose outline of topics/questions to guide us. Our intention was to keep things civil, and for the most part, we did…although not completely.
When all was said and done, we’d managed to go at it for nearly three hours over the course of two days of Skype calls! On the second day, I’d caught my son’s cold, and if you listen carefully, you’ll probably hear from my voice the exact point when the day one conversation ended and day two began.
What makes this interaction between me and Matthew so interesting and enlightening (and dare I say “fun”?) is that we actually interview EACH OTHER. Matt’s done scores of interviews with notable Trek people, as have I. So rather than simply having one of us interview the other, we ask questions back and forth…and tough questions at that! And best of all, unlike the recent pay-per-view Michael Hinman/Carlos Pedraza podcast on Alpha Waves Radio, this one is not only presenting BOTH sides of the controversial topic (rather than a simple echo-chamber), but it’s also absolutely FREE to listen to!
So how did this whole “Blogger Battle of Axanar” come to be?
The interview also addresses the confusion and misinformation currently circulating about whether Axanar is behind the SMALL ACCESS campaign…which it is not. While I happily support Axanar and write this fun blog on the Axanar website, I’m way too busy with FAN FILM FACTOR and SMALL ACCESS to run everything past Alec Peters, and he’s way too busy to micromanage me. So we’re two ships in the same fleet fighting the same enemy, but Alec has his battles, and I’ve got mine.
Anyway, here’s the full interview for your viewing pleasure. Let me know what you think…
Now that the SMALL ACCESS campaign has grown to nearly 1,300 members and 85 packets of the Focus Group Report have already been mailed out to CBS and Paramount executives, it’s time to try to spread the word far and wide…or at least try my best to do so.
And thus was I pleasantly surprised and excited to get the following e-mail from Matthew Miller of Trekzone in Australia:
Hi Jonathan, just wondering whether you’d like to join me on a Trekzone Spotlight podcast to discuss Project Small Access?