PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE TAKING ANY ACTION.
These suggestions help ensure that contact with people and organizations is professional, courteous, respectful and businesslike. It is much harder to dismiss a polite, direct message than it is to dismiss a profanity-filled rant. Following these rules maximizes the impact each contact will have precisely because it is businesslike and professional. Furthermore, try to apply these suggestions if you choose to engage others who disagree. Remaining calm, reasonable and polite while other people curse and rant makes this position seem even more reasonable by comparison.
- Absolutely no insults. Comment on behavior and actions. Do not comment on people. DiDio’s remarks have been appalling. He is not an appalling person. His behavior and actions reflect poorly on Time Warner and his abilities as an executive. He is not incompetent.
- Absolutely no swearing. Be polite, professional, respectful and courteous.
- Organize your thoughts. Make a point, then move to the next point. Don’t beat a dead horse.
- Deal in facts. It is a fact that the percentage of female DC creators has decreased from 12% to less than 2%. It is a fact that a number of female creators who have won Eisner and Harvey awards once worked for DC, but do not work for DC now despite DiDio’s claim that they hired the best. It is a fact that a number of Eisner-winning female creators have never worked for DC, despite DC giving a substantial number of men who have never won an Eisner or Harvey award or worked for DC an on-going title.
- Quantify the impact. If you remove 12 DC titles from your pull list, note that you paid DC $35.88 per month (amounting to $430.56 per year) for however many years. Subscribing to 12 DC titles over the past three years alone totals $1,291.68. Those numbers add up. Make sure to tell Time Warner, the publicly traded company which answers to shareholders who expect profit, how much monthly or annual revenue was lost as a direct result of DC executives’ behavior and comments.
- Do not deal in emotion. Do not ask anyone to feel something about this. Already, articles have appeared which portrayed these events as an outgrowth of fan entitlement instead of legitimate concerns about gender bias in hiring. Appeal to Time Warner and its stockholders to deal with behavior which is directly causing lost revenue and lost customers, thus directly harming shareholder value. This is about money and how DiDio’s actions are directly resulting in decreased shareholder value. Ask Time Warner shareholders to keep their mind on their money and their money on their mind.
- His public comments and the ratio of female to male creators suggest that DC’s creator hiring policies may be affected by gender bias, leading to the potential for a lawsuit initiated by people affected by it. Such lawsuits, whether valid or invalid, always harm shareholder value because they must be defended or settled. DiDio has provided the appearance that an environment of gender bias exists at DC by asking which women he should have hired, when DC has published work by a number of award-winning female creators and sufficiently recently that he should remember their names. If women do not want to work at DC, that suggests that the environment is not simply biased against women but also actively hostile toward them.
- If you own Time Warner stock, note that in the letter. At that point, you aren’t just a customer, you’re a shareholder and your financial interests are being directly affected by this behavior.
- Make sure to check your spelling and grammar. Proper grammar and spelling make it more difficult to dismiss your concerns.
In other words, communicate in ways that you would be okay with your parents or children or English teachers seeing. These letters will draw attention to DC’s leadership, especially if the DCnU doesn’t result in significant sales increases.
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