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So remember when I was going to do a daily scans-a-palooza throughout October? I liked that plan. That was a good plan. *sigh* Oh, life, always getting in the way of what's truly important: fandom. Ah well, I'll get back to that mission tomorrow.

So anyway! Though I've already talked about Catwoman #1 (2011) twice now, and I do have further in-depth thoughts on the book that I haven't yet addressed, part of me really doesn't want to keep beating that dead horse. The majority of my brain is pretty much over it, but if I'm being honest with myself, there are still parts of me that aren't yet satisfied with the critique.

(Because if you make it your mission to evaluate things critically for better or worse and haven't taken something genuinely awful out to the woodshed, beaten it, flayed it and then ground its bones to dust, you're just not doing your job, damn it.)

The rest of the internet seems to be in about the same place I currently am. The majority has put it aside and moved on to new anger-inducing things (like the problematic imagery and objectification of Voodoo #1), but the kerfuffle is far from over.

You all remember the cover to the first printing of Catwoman #1, yes?





I think the best possible criticism of the cover, aside from the Batman mock-up above, is the following from Bleeding Cool:

"We've known for a while that the cover to the Catwoman reboot has the character lying on her back barefoot with her legs in the air, baring her cleavage and pouring sparkling white droplets over her boobs. It’s very tasteful. It sets the tone. She’s a thief, you see, and that’s what thieves do; at the end of a long day of thieving they lie on a rooftop and throw diamonds away. Erotically."

The whole illuminating article can be found right over here. I highly, highly recommend it.

Tomorrow, we return to our regularly scheduled scans-a-palooza, with the purple suit era Catwoman #6 & #7! Stay tuned.

on 2011-10-07 05:52 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] surrealname.livejournal.com
but this is what bruce wayne actually does at home for kicks and sick jollies. he's a fucked up guy. with violence issues and a pederast life-style. he's also a multi-billionaire. ofcourse he drops diamonds on himself.

ya know what, i wish that they would not allude to what the diamonds look like and just flat out say that they look like semen. sparkling white droplets of semen. why do i wish this? well, you know me, i hate tact.

on 2011-10-07 05:54 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] surrealname.livejournal.com
men's hips don't work that way. nor do our stomachs.

just saying is all.

on 2011-10-07 06:06 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] thehefner.livejournal.com
Well, maybe yours don't...

--Henchgirl

on 2011-10-07 07:21 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] surrealname.livejournal.com
no man's hips work that way.

on 2011-10-07 09:38 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com
Yeah, well, Catwoman's boobs should really be hanging in her face at that angle. Neither of these images is big on anatomical realism... :P

on 2011-10-09 02:23 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] lego-joker.livejournal.com
Evidently, your Capullo-drawn team-up with Batman has taught you nothing. Bruce just needs someone to understaaaaaaand. XD

on 2011-10-07 07:43 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] neo-prodigy.livejournal.com
I'm really okay with pic 2. ;-)

With that being said. I think your point still stands.

on 2011-10-07 09:43 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com
Honestly, despite being bi, I find neither of these images particularly attractive (which should probably indicate how much DC missed the mark with making Catwoman hot), but I'm glad somebody can get some enjoyment out of at least one of them from a non-ironic standpoint! :D

on 2011-10-09 07:19 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] d-mononoke.livejournal.com
As far as the cover art goes, I see it as a way to portray the basic familiar presentation of Catwoman without putting too much into it. Sure the cover art and among others has a more sexual tone to it with certain characters of the New 52 books, but then again, these books are still geared towards the majority of readers, who are men, and so of course, you're gonna see certain emphasized poses and sexual tone when it comes to the opposite gender.

If the situation was reversed with the majority of the readers being women, I believe you would see the same treatment being given to the men because it would be gearing towards the female majority and it's not just men that like hotness in the opposite gender.

I've seen illustrated works of men done by women and comic-books (mostly romance) that are geared towards women. Check out the yaoi and shoujo manga books like Sailor Moon, Rose of Versailles, Cardcaptor Sakura, and other examples. You will see a noticeably difference between the males and females portrayed. The males are portrayed in a tone that is the popular ideal fantasy of most women, an attractive soft face, a lean but athletic build, and traits that are geared to bringing what most women want with men, to be romanticized.

Just like most women like to be romanticized, most men like to be seduced.

It's all a matter of knowing genders and catering to the majority.

It's not really wrong with it because in the end, its just business and DC wants to make a buck.



on 2011-10-10 02:53 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com
*sigh*

(Not sighing so much at you, but the fact I've had this very conversation several times already in the past few weeks (: )

Okay, setting aside everything else, since I don't even need toget into the sexism argument here, let's think about this cover from a business perspective, since that's a defense for it I'm seeing pretty often.

a.) DC's mission with the New 52 is to draw in new readers.

As a business, it's an incredibly stupid practice to actively try to appeal to only a portion of your customers, and using the old standby method of metaphor, I'll tell you why:

If a coffee shop sells nothing but soy lattes, even if many of their customers like soy lattes (I shall call it Soy Latte Land!), they will not only lose the business of the people who want mochacinos, but anyone who comes into the shop who doesn't particularly like soy lattes will never come back. Further, people often get bored with the same thing over and over again. Even if, at one point, they ran the soy latte fanclub, they'll probably eventually get tired of it.

Soy Latte Land might stay afloat for a few years, but eventually, its customers will drop off, and competition--a shop that carries tea and coffee and pastries and Italian Sodas--will move in down the street. What happens then? Soy Latte Land goes out of business.

Appealing to one customer is stupid if you could just as easily try to appeal to ten. And it's especially stupid considering how few readers comics have nowadays. Did you know that after Tim Burton's Batman came out, the first issue of Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight sold nearly a million copies? After The Dark Knight--which made more money, was seen by more people, and broke more records--came out, the first issue of Batman and Robin sold only a hundred sixty thousand?

That's nearly a tenth of the audience, in less than twenty years. And the first issue of the new 52 Batman? It sold sixty thousand copies less than that.

If DC wants to stay in business, they can't cater to the soy latte lovers and only the soy latte lovers. Catwoman is one of only a handful of titles in the DC New 52 led by a female character; with so many of the other titles designed to appeal to men (since they have straight male characters as their protagonists), why was it necessary to make her book appealing to straight guys and only straight guys? Haven't they got enough books like that at present?

Wasn't that like...shooting themselves in the foot? Here was a primo opportunity to give a strong female character a title that would make people who aren't heterosexual guys give it a chance, and they completely blew it.

There were so many women looking forward to the New 52 as evidenced by all the bloggers who were made angry by the first issue, why did DC have to alienate them?

The easy answer is: they didn't have to. By making the conscious decision to appeal only to their straight male readers, they chose to. That's bad business practice.

(cont.)

on 2011-10-10 05:11 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] d-mononoke.livejournal.com
I honestly don't think that's the case here.

You don't realize it but you're kinda going back to the sexism issue when it considers what the audience's sexuality is and I really don't see just straight guys getting attracted to the art since even women, not going to say what sexuality, can get attracted to the art even if the tone had some sexual elements. I really don't see a business in the 21st century going out of its way to just to appeal only to straight men. That sounds a bit farfetched considering that we have comics that now appeal to women also like Wonderwoman, Batgirl, Batwoman (who is a lesbian), Birds of Prey, etc and I've even heard that Teen Titans was now featuring a gay superhero named Bunker. We do have variety in the new 52 comic-books. Even though the art in Catwoman may have had more sexual elements than one is used to, it's not like its not out of character when it comes to the basic concept of Catwoman. Catwoman as a character is one that is very at home with her own sexuality and skin so I don't see her being always shown in the typical action and on-the-go pose you see on the covers considering how sensual she is.

Even though it would be good to see the old Catwoman from Pre-flashpoint, would the character really hold the same interest even though so much has happen to that Catwoman to the point that her character got stuck in limbo after what happened in the Hush issues, GCS, and Final Crisis with Bruce? Even though some won't think so, but to me, the relationship between Catwoman and Batman lost it's mystery and appeal when now both of them know who the other is behind the mask and that Catwoman as a character looked like she was on the verge of considering whether or not knowing if she should pursue crime anymore because of this new knowledge that Batman is Bruce. It looked as though the Catwoman character had reached her end of the story with her prize at the end of the tunnel and was now considering how to un-wrap her gift. Since Batman obviously loves Selina and still wants to pursue a relationship with her, it would only be a matter of time before the thoughts of them making the decision of taking their relationship to a new level as Bruce and Selina would pop up since both of them are anything but weak when it comes to martial arts and facing danger on a regular basis.

My point is, a new story needs to be told about Catwoman with an outlook that hasn't been already been done because to me, it looked as though the story of Catwoman the cat burglar had reached her technically happy ending pre-flashpoint and any story featuring this version would now have more chances of predictability since there are only very few paths that Selina can take now that both Batman and her shed their masks.

on 2011-10-10 02:23 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] bitemetechie.livejournal.com
I just...I can't...

Look, I know you're probably really young and new to all this, but if I try to reply right now, I'm going to blow my stack. You've missed the point by such a wide margin I'm not sure you even know it's there. :/

Have you read this yet? I mean really read and comprehended it? http://dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com/58989.html

You keep using 'sexy' as a defense, not knowing that sexy doesn't HAVE to be sexist.

Ruminate on that; I'll get back to you when my temper cools down a little.

-Dr-Von-Fangirl

on 2011-10-10 06:23 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] d-mononoke.livejournal.com
Now I don't understand. How did I use sexy as a defense when all I said was that there were more sexual elements in Catwoman than usual but it's not like it's all that out of character?

Sorry if I got your hairs on end over this but I didn't think you'd be this mad with an opposing opinion that you'd be blowing up.

Now for your and my sake, can we PLEASE agree to disagree before these comments get too emotional to the point that we will really be flat-out arguing? It's not my way to create bad blood over something as a difference in opinion over a fictional character.

on 2011-10-10 07:29 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] bitemetechie.livejournal.com
...I'm getting frustrated because--not only do I have a really exhausting three month old baby and am currently incredibly sick with the flu and therefore running really short on energy, kindness and patience--whether you realize it or not, you're bringing sexism towards both genders into a blog where the rules pretty clearly state not to do that, okay?

As it says on my [livejournal.com profile] dr_von_fangirl profile: PLEASE don't bring your gender/race/class/sexuality/religion-based bias to my doorstep.

Stereotyping fits that description. Why? Because the definition of sexism is as follows:

Prejudice, stereotyping, or discrimination, typically against women, on the basis of sex.

Stereotyping is a form of sexist bias, and it's not welcome here, as the rules pretty clearly state. The fact that I've been calm and TRYING to engage you politely isn't really something I owe you after breaking those rules, so you should probably be thankful I didn't come down on you with the wrath of fucking GOD for it. Because believe me, I was--and still am--really, really tempted to do just that. Stereotyping hurts people, it hurts me and it hurts my readers, both male and female. That's why I don't want it here, and that's why I'm feeling very, very short tempered with you right about now.

Now. You seem to be under the impression that by saying DC has lost business because people are seeing sexism in Catwoman #1 is the same as giving you a lecture about that sexism. It's not.

FACT: Many, many people of all sexes and orientations are pissed off by Catwoman #1. Read any number of industry blogs, the comments in those blogs, the posts about it on tumblr, the posts about it on LJ, facebook, anywhere, really. There are legions of people who hated it, and not nearly as many who liked it.

FACT: Those individuals are pissed off because they see a sexist, shittily written portrayal.

FACT: It's not unreasonable to think that just as many people who'd never read a comic before the New 52 came out felt the same way upon looking at the book, and in fact, many on the interner have said so.

FACT: DC has lost the business of all those people because of it, gained their ire, scorn and scathing criticism.

FACT: DC could have easily made different choices in regards to the writing and the artwork that wouldn't have alienated those people. They didn't.

CONCLUSION: What DC did with Catwoman #1 was ultimately bad for business.

I'm not sure what disconnect there is here. If you liked it? Great! That's really nice for you! More power to you! I don't agree, but whatever.

But a lot of us didn't. Trying to tell us that this is just how comics are, or that we shouldn't expect anything else, or that it's totally okay is really epically missing the point. We buy comics. We didn't like this because we see sexism in it. DC has lost our business because of it. There are many, many, many of us.

You're not mad? Yay! The less anger in the world, the better! But others really fucking are, and honestly, I'm more angry at the people telling me I have no right to be annoyed, and justifying all the things about the book that annoyed me than I am at the contents of the book itself.

I have to go back to bed, because I am seriously about to drop dead, but I really hope you understand now.

(deleted and reposted because of a typo or twelve)

on 2011-10-10 02:53 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com
b.) Comics primarily appeal to men

Well, okay, the majority of comics fans are straight males, but that's because girls aren't often encouraged to read superhero comics at a young age, and even those who do are often harassed when they enter a comic shop, or go to a convention.

(If you're female and haven't had your ass grabbed by a sexist fanboy or been aggressively hit on by one or been treated like a second class citizen yet, I can pretty well guarantee if you keep reading comics and going into comic shops and going to conventions, it's going to happen at least once. I've been pinched black and blue at so many cons, I may haul off and hit someone next time.)

But let's ignore that. Let's think about this, again, from a sales standpoint.

How many straight male Catwoman fans do you know? Any? A couple? Comparatively, how many female fans can you think of?

Not only did DC choose to make a female character's book appeal only to straight male readers, they did it with a character who has many female fans, even casual ones, and is one of the most well known. I wonder how many women who've never read a comic book heard all the buzz about the New 52 and decided to give it a try? I wonder how many of them chose to look at Catwoman because they like her and are familiar with her? How many do you think put the book back on the shelf after skimming through it and being offended, or just turned off, or bored?

Making Catwoman into a spank book was a stupid business move from so many angles I can barely count them. I don't even have to bring the sexism aspect into it, because it's stupid from a rational business perspective: choose to appeal to only one kind of customer, lose everyone else's business.

on 2011-10-10 05:49 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] d-mononoke.livejournal.com
Not to sound stereotypical but most girls aren't even interested in superhero comics unless they contain romance because that's what attracts the female reader the most and I don't see a lot of romance being shown in superhero comics besides obviously Catwoman and sometimes Harley Quinn when she's featured in a one shot or a few issues. But personally, romance is not my cup of tea unless it's done uniquely.

Okay, sorry to point this out but you're beginning to take this issue away from business when you say things concerning about how most women would be offended by the book but, assuming these are new readers, they are only reading the first issue of the monthly series and have yet to even know of Catwoman and how she works yet.

These 52 books will have stories that must attract the reader enough to make one wonder what happens next or why did so-and-so do what he/she did. It's all on leaving the stories at cliff-hangers enticing enough for the reader to want to get curious for the next one.

Can we agree to disagree on this one?

on 2011-10-10 03:32 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] big-wired.livejournal.com
... good lord, you're just not getting this are you?

They have overly sexualized women for years now! Even good writing like Gail Simone's original run on Birds of Prey was marred by the cheesecake art of Ed Benes, a guy who often thinks that a woman's breasts are EACH bigger than her head and who can't draw black women for shit!

And it's arguable to say that most women aren't interested in superhero books because they're written by emotionally stunted man-children who can't seem to draw women without making them into spank material! They don't know the difference between sexy and sexualized and neither do you!

You want another example of stupid stuff being done? Take when Supergirl was put out, drawn by Michael Turner. From what I read and saw, it was well-written but it was drawn terribly, and everyone after always drew her in hyper-sexual tones!

THEN when the inconsistent writing, the stupid artwork all combined to lower sales to below 20k readers a month, Eddie Berzernger came out telling women to read Supergirl just because it had GIRL in the title! He ignored ALL critiques about the writing, the artwork, everything it was not until Jamal Igle and Sterling Gates came in and started treating Supergirl as an actual character with depth that sales improved.

YOU are just as ignorant and mired in sexism in seeing absolutely nothing wrong with that cover. I've seen PORN that's less blatant than that, you know, the actual spank material that people whack off to.

And if DC is intent on not actually changing anything, on making one step forward with titles like Batwoman and Wonder Woman but taking three back with shit like Catwoman written by stupid hacks like Judd Winnick, then sales are going to suffer and new and old fans alike are not going to stand for it and leave it the hell alone.

Plus, women? NOT A FUCKING HIVE VAGINA. They don't all think and act and believe the same things because they're people and people all have different opinions.

Is there a giant dick hive mind? Do ALL men cars and football and action and can't stand talking about emotions? NO, so why the hell is DC sticking to the stupid hive vagina idiocy?

Or are you just going to not think about this and bring in some strawman argument about how I'm taking this too personal. Because come on, I've been around, I've heard my fair share of excuses for not putting any effort into a product.

on 2011-10-10 07:44 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] d-mononoke.livejournal.com
Wired, I'm going to let you know something.

I don't have anything against anyone on this site at all. I have no problems with anyone. However, just because I'm a newb on here when it comes to conversing and debating with fellow comic book lovers does not give you the right to talk down on me like I'm a goddamn child and spitting fire at me just because my opinion is not the same as those as most. I'm 22 years old. I assumed that since we are all adults that we can handle different views and still keep things civil. Oh and by the way, you barely know me to be making those ridicious accusations like I think women are nothing more than hive vaginas. FYI, I'm a damn woman too.

I'm not gonna entertain or submit to people's beef just because they think they can be better than the people that are actually in the damn industry and made the damn work you decided on your own accord to consume and support with your own money. I'm like this. You think you can do better? Either make your own comic-book company and give DC a run for its own money or submit your writings/art portfolio to the people and make change on the inside. Don't bitch about change, be about the change. Walk the walk. You think you can top Winnick? Then work your ass off to be a damn good writer and make it be your goal to get to the top.

Swear like a damn sailor if it makes you feel better but it's not like that's gonna win you points on maturity. You can talk about me on your blog or social networking site however you want don't pull that troll bs with me when I'm trying to damn civil on an issue. Believe it or not, I will not be hesitant to check you.

Let me tell you something. ALL comic-books or illustrated works whether Manga or American or French will always exaggerate the human body and the environment just enough to keep the reader interested and mimic a different view on our world. That’s not discrimination, that is reality. Art is based solely on the preference of the artist and the people looking at it! If the art offends you, don't get it! It's not like you're gonna hurt the artist's feelings anyway because he/she likes what he/she does regardless of what other people think and there will always be other people will like it even if you don't. Like the saying goes, one man's trash is another man's treasure.

If the art is attracting you just enough to make you buy it’s product, then it is doing it’s job. And this type of treatment is not just aimed at women, it’s with men also.
How many men do you know who has a very defined six-pack, abs and bulk on their bodies? Very few.
And keep in mind that this is only my opinion, but it’s completely ridiculous to think that DC has something against the female audience when the body type for men in comic-books is also exaggerated.

Personally, I've seen anime, manga, and porn that looked 10 times worse than what the cover looks like so I really don't know if I can take your commment seriously. I've been in the anime and manga world for 10 years and even used to occupy hentai sites. I'm telling you. I've seen worse pictures and illustrations than that cover art of Catwoman. If you think that her position looks like porn now then you've honestly seen nothing yet.

If you think I'm gonna waste my time seriously arguing with a stranger that's literally asking for a confrontation over something as shocking as a fictional character, you'll have to just stay angry with me because I got prioties in my life that are more important than creating unnecessary and ridicioius drama over something so trivial!

I refuse to entertain you over something that is suppose to be an issue discussed in an adult and civil manner. \

Good day.

on 2011-10-10 08:17 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] big-wired.livejournal.com
And congrats on derailing by bringing in the tone argument AND double points for saying you're a woman so there's nothing wrong.

It's pretty obvious you're seeking more and more excuses than actually discussing how DC could have conducted its business better. Basically, anything more was covered by bitemetechie earlier.

Oh, and way to repeat Didio's counter-argument: "If you don't like it, write something else."

And I'll believe that the male bodies in DC are exaggerated when all the artists draw men like Rob Liefield does. Even though, his drawing is stupid, not sexualized.

on 2011-10-12 03:56 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] thehefner.livejournal.com
You think you can top Winnick? Then work your ass off to be a damn good writer and make it be your goal to get to the top.

Are you implying that he should do that because that's what Winick did? Are you? Are you seriously? Judd Winick, the guy who became famous solely because he starred in the most famous cast of an incredibly-popular reality show? Is that what you consider working your ass off? Is that your standard? Because that doesn't take SKILL, that takes being already famous and having connections. And I can't blame Winick, because you know what? That's pretty much the only fucking way to get a job in comics anymore.

And even if he did get through due to sheer talent and hard work... even if he did work his way up to the top by honing his skills, fighting adversity, getting better and better until he became a master storyteller and only THEN landing prime gigs at DC... the whole "You think YOU can do better?" argument is utter bullshit. Why should [livejournal.com profile] big_wired have to "do better" to validate his own arguments and criticisms to you?

Why don't ALL of us, including you, just shut the hell up if we happen to not like some comic until we can go ahead and write a better one ourselves? Does that make sense to you? And really, if you really believe that no one should be allowed to express a negative opinion, no one should be allowed to express a positive one either.
Edited on 2011-10-12 04:00 am (UTC)

on 2011-10-12 04:48 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] captaintwinings.livejournal.com
The argument that male physiques are also exaggerated is a common one, but it really doesn't hold water. Male bodies are exaggerated in ways that emphasize strength, power, action. Men in comics are there to be ideal heroes. Women in comics are often given barely enough muscle tone to stand upright, much less fight/commit crime, and the parts of them that are exaggerated are the parts that heterosexual men like to look at. Men act. Women are objects. This is a problem not because women are opposed to sex and human bodies, but because in this day and age we have the right to be more than decorative.

Also, are you really going to claim that women don't like superhero books because there's not enough romance? And then say that you don't believe in the hive vagina? Because my vagina loves superheroes and hates romance. And I'm not the only woman who feels that way. If you like romance, bully for you, but you can't speak for everyone. That's what "hive vagina" means: the erroneous assumption that all women feel the same way about anything.

I know you probably feel like everyone is ganging up on you, but remember that attacking what you're saying is not the same as attacking you.

on 2011-10-12 07:24 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] eyeofthedivine.livejournal.com
I actually feel angry looking at that picture :( I feel like its so overly sexualized and I don't see the point of it. I haven't read this yet and from what I'm seeing I'm not sure I want to.

I mean why are they making her boobs so big? I don't think I've ever seen a woman that thin with boobs like that. I mean she hasn't got an inch of fat on her why would her boobs be that big?

However I like the parody under it that made me laugh lol!

on 2011-10-12 07:54 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] dr-von-fangirl.livejournal.com
There's honestly so much about it that makes so little sense. I mean, even if you ignore the fact that her breasts are far too large for the amount of fat she's carrying on her frame, there's still the whole "throwing away diamonds" and "barefoot on a rooftop" thing. How do those things make sense for a cat burglar who presumably put a lot of effort into the theft of those gems and may have to flee at any moment? Furthermore, with that in mind, why the heck is her mask--which would conceal her identity from, say, any circling news copters--gone?

Very, very silly.

on 2011-10-12 08:14 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] eyeofthedivine.livejournal.com
I dunno maybe they are trying to give her a more hedonistic feel? but even that makes no sense to me because that just isn't her when it comes down to it that's money she is just throwing away when she could use it to I dunno eat or something (whatever she does in her free time lol) Also yes good point what incentive would she have to remove what is essentially her safety net that protects her identity I have no clue :(

STUFF AND NONSENSE

This is the back-up account for what I hope will be the Ultimate Catwoman Fan Blog--Dr. Von Fangirl on LiveJournal. You should go check it out over there. I much prefer the original article.

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