Marvel's Axel Alonso Addresses Harassment Of Valerie D'Orazio By Chris Sims

x-men-92-111328Earlier this week, Bleeding Cool ran a number of Valerie D'Orazio's statements regarding Chris Sims in the light of the announcement of his X-Men '92 series for Marvel Comics. We reached out to Sims, and published his response.

Since then, the website that Sims is most identified with since he is a writer for them, Comics Alliance, posted an article that recognised D'Orazio's issues with Sims, but stated it was related to a conspiracy against the site, with CA EIC following up with,

Ex-EIC of CA who hired Sims in the first place, Laura Hudson, also made similar comments. Reaction was, to put it best, mixed, with a number of sites adding their commentary, observations and memories with Sims adding more in his own column, Ask Chris.  But this seemed to be a common criticism,

And Valerie replied,

People I talked to at Marvel as this was developing said that they were seeing this as a disagreement between two Marvel writers but were waiting to see how it played out. Tonight Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Axel Alonso addressed the issue on CBR saying,

We had no knowledge of what transpired on the Internet between Chris and Valerie. We have since come to understand that several years ago both were active voices in the comics community — both were bloggers and Valerie wrote a couple of stories for Marvel, including a "Punisher" one-shot that I edited — that some sort of bad blood developed between them, and that Chris crossed lines in his treatment of Valerie that were indefensible, as he himself acknowledged. In his formal public apology, Chris took full responsibility for his actions. Some believe Chris is sincere — Comics Alliance wrote an editorial supporting him — and some don't. While we condemn Chris' past actions, we see his strongly worded apology as evidence that he now understands that verbal bullying and harassment of anyone is totally, unequivocally wrong.

Valerie certainly doesn't seem to see it that way, that Sims simply admitting that his behavior was wrong is enough to atone for the damage he may have done, but she now expresses more concern regarding younger people like her receiving similar treatment from others.

One thing that has been expressed privately to me a number of times is, even if one is not doubting the genuine nature of Sim's apology, has he apologised to everyone else aside from Valerie, for similar actions in the past? Considering he was virtually forced into making this particular apology long after the events in question by media attention, that seems unlikely.

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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