Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week

Category: Current events

Furry con staffer James Lovell Thompson accused of degree fraud, defends with fake diploma

by Patch O'Furr

James Lovell Thompson, AKA Keanu the Red Panda, was formerly known for representing the Anthro Southeast furry convention before a series of disgraces. In March 2020, Keanu spread bogus health info about the Covid-19 pandemic. He was accused of doing it with claims of a PhD. degree he doesn’t have.

Degree fraud (pretending to have credentials and authority) is often seen with professional cheating, lying on resumes, gaining licenses without merit, medical quack scams, identity theft, and other crime. It’s like stolen valor for academics. It damages trust and safety for victims, organizations and communities.

In response to the accusation, Keanu dropped out of social media activity for months, only to re-emerge with an elaborate defense. Keanu put out a video that repeats his PhD. claim while he shows off a diploma that is not genuine. Proof is in this Google doc, newly shared after months of seeking evidence.

Keanu Red Panda’s “Microbiology PhD.” — 8 reasons the diploma is fake.

 

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Weird Portland, Pepper Coyote and a Sleestak are a perfect match for the dumpster fire of 2020

by Patch O'Furr

Two stories this week are an antidote to a year full of doom, gloom, fire, fury, and not nearly enough hugs and smiles.

First: Possibly some of the peak publicity furry music has ever gotten! Then, a scaly monster stalks the streets of Portland… here’s hoping he does a Q&A for us.

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Furries support independent art with $14,000 and $15,600 fursuit auctions at The Dealers Den

by Patch O'Furr

Sweet success for MixedCandy and Beauty of the Bass

Beauty of the Bass, a Britain-based fursuit maker and performer, felt the love from fans when a commission auction sold for £10,700 this month. That’s $14,025 USD at current exchange rate, and over three times the full fursuit price quoted on her website.

There’s no suit yet. The winner gets to have it created. Her auction lists some conditions — certain tech options aren’t possible and “I prefer to work on scary, creepy, odd, gory and crazy designs” — but there’s one benefit only an auction winner can get. No denial. Direct commissioners may not be accepted depending on the maker’s discretion for what she wants to make; but this winner enters the queue unconditionally after current customers.

An auction like this makes a premium option for artists and customers who really want their work. The price proves the demand. It’s near the highest records for any fursuit auction, which was $17,017 achieved by MixedCandy in July 2018 (beating a $13,500 auction by Made Fur You in January 2018.)

MixedCandy herself received a new $15,600 price just days after this $14,000 price for Beauty of the Bass. These outstanding prices can help to show the state of the Furry Economy and its artists.

Of course this isn’t a fursuit-selling competition. It’s support that lets makers keep directly serving fans, a rare and special opportunity to go “pro fan” as a career. That’s not get-rich-quick work, and there can be a lot of turnover. (Many makers serve commissioners with smaller wallets). Fursuits aren’t really investments either — they’re functional art that adds photogenic magic to events for all furries. You can have an open fandom and well-supported artists too.

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Take the Furry Fandom 2020 Survey from author Tea Krulos.

by Patch O'Furr

If you’ve ever had to explain to an outsider what furries are, you might be a little weird. Or as I prefer, lovably eccentric. There’s a writer who gets the lovable part, and he wants your help to learn more about furries. You can be part of the research:

Click here to take the Furry Fandom 2020 Survey.

Tea Krulos is a freelance journalist and author who covers subcultures, weird news, and strange personalities. He also writes about local art and entertainment for a bunch of magazines and has his own weekly column. His books are about the Real Life Superhero Movement, monster hunters who chase Bigfoot, ghosts and UFO’s, cryptozoology and more. It makes me want to visit a whole book store just for that stuff — and help him make a new book.

Tea and I did an hour interview and he told me about his research. It was just before he led a weekly walking ghost/history tour. Last time I did one in New Orleans, I was happy to have a trusty guide to lead me on a leash. (It kept me from slipping in ectoplasm or Mardi Gras barf.) I think Tea’s research will make him a trusty guide like that. The survey is sociological and asks about a few debated topics, but I know there’s nothing wrong with writing about them from someone who is just learning and being into the same stuff as me. He says:

Hello furry friends — my name is Tea, I’m a freelance writer and author from Milwaukee, WI. As an eccentric punk rocker, I’ve always had an interest in subcultures, social movements, and fandoms and have written about them several times (including roller derby, paranormal investigators, Real-life Superheroes, music cultures and more) and I always approach the people I’m writing about in a respectful (but truthful) way.

I’m working on a future book that examines a variety of subcultures/ social movements that focuses on the years 2015-2020 under the Trump campaign/ administration. To write it I’m doing a lot of interviews and also surveys directed at different groups of people.

I’ve created a survey for the furry fandom that takes about 5 minutes to complete. Your personal info will not be shared. Surveys like this are helpful in getting some idea of who the group is and if their answers are mostly in agreement or split on issues. I hope you participate (and help share) and the last entry asks for contact info if you wish to talk further.

Thank you and a big thanks to Patch for his insight on the survey questions and for helping me spread the word. Hope you’re all well in this crazy year.

— Tea Krulos
www.teakrulos.com

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Texas civil rights activist murdered by right-wing extremist with furry fan background

by Patch O'Furr

Months of protest and two killings

Michael Ramos was a Black and Latino man killed by Austin police in April 2020. Since April, hundreds of concerned citizens have been organizing demonstrations as the Mike Ramos Brigade to protest police brutality and call for justice.

This week, their member Garrett Foster was killed while supporting the cause. A video from the scene had a witness report of how they were attacked by a reckless driver who drove into the crowd and shot at them from inside the car. Foster’s killer drove away, but they got his license number.

Garrett Foster died on Saturday, July 25. He was a military veteran and had been pushing his disabled fiance in a wheelchair on another one of nearly 50 days of protesting together. “Garrett’s death painfully reminds us of Heather Heyer’s death in Charlottesville when a pro-Nazi white supremacist deliberately drove his car into a crowd of protesters.”Mike Ramos Brigade

From the car plates, the killer was identified as Daniel Perry. His lawyer admitted he was the shooter.

BREAKING: Investigation Exposes US Army Sergeant as Murderer of Garrett Foster. (Archive)

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Harvest Moon FurFest: New BIPOC-led furry convention comes to Maryland in 2022.

by Dogpatch Press Staff

Written by @Mac_TheWolf

There will be a live Q&A about the event on YouTube from 3 PM EST on Saturday, July 11.

In light of recent events regarding the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the police, activist movements have tried to raise awareness of the racial injustices which are still happening in today’s society. The issue of racial inequality has once again been brought to light by these events, and many people believe we have a long way to go until people of color feel safe in our communities.

Fandoms from science fiction to furry haven’t always been as diverse as they could be. As fandoms grow, previously overlooked members see each other and want to be seen. Now one group of furry fans from Maryland are aiming to take things into their own hands by running a convention mainly with the help of those from BIPOC communities.

Harvest Moon FurFest, which is set to take place on a 200-acre campground in Maryland, is the newest of a plethora of furry conventions that take place around the globe. However, unlike most, Harvest Moon FurFest’s main goal is to build the convention from its original foundation by people of color and of other marginalized groups. The board is mainly run by those from black communities, but the CEO of the con has assured those with concerns that people of all backgrounds are free to attend, volunteer, or apply for staff at the event.

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Help, My Fursona’s Dick Is On National TV!

by Patch O'Furr

OwO What’s this? *A million people notice ur bulge*

Imagine trademarking ‘UwU’ & ‘OwO’. Here’s a story about owning and using ideas.

Original fandom art can be an oxymoron sometimes. The topic started with one furry’s story about John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight:

My fursona’s dick was LITERALLY on national television. — (Reddit)

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The Fandom movie: Furry paws seize the media

by Patch O'Furr

Premiering JULY 3, 2020 at thefandomfilm.com.

When the media shows furries, do they get it right?

It’s a constant furry worry. In 2017 it was announced that CNN was making a show about them. Backlash rose about sensationalism, but few critics gave a fair shake to the producers of This Is Life with Lisa Ling. Then it came out and it was a flat-out advocacy piece on behalf of Furry“, said Joe Strike, a fan since the 1980’s who wrote a book that covers the subculture’s run-ins with bad media.

Joe Strike’s Furry Nation is the essential fandom history book.

Positive response didn’t satisfy every critic. Some asked why the 3 fans featured by CNN didn’t include more diverse people. But the show (with an asian-american woman journalist) got backlash while asking volunteers to raise their paws and be counted. That seems like damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

In answer to this, The Fandom is a documentary made by the fans. It features outstanding writers (like Joe), artists, animators, musicians, costume designers, event organizers and founders. It celebrates the roots with pro quality and appeal for outsiders who might not have given a fair look before.

For decades this subculture has thrived despite adversity. Bad media is one kind, but not the only kind. Some is internal. Some is homophobic. Some is happening right now with this screwy year. There’s even a villain to tell you about.

$10 million worth of trouble

Anthrocon is the 2nd largest furry convention, led by Uncle Kage (Dr. Sam Conway), the longstanding CEO and fandom public relations figure. It was due to bring $9.9 million to Pittsburgh’s economy in 2020. Now it’s among 70 furry cons canceled by COVID-19. The movie is launching anyways on the con’s dates, without opportunities that could have won distribution. (No film fests either.)

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Capital City Fur Con’s Nitro-powered crash and burn

by Patch O'Furr

Contact-starved furries are having a bad year. Only a few conventions opened before COVID-19 made so many cancel and cut off the hug supply. (Quick, send emergency plushies before the furries go rabid for hugging anything that moves! Or set them loose in riot zones and tell them the cops need hugs.)

Capital City Fur Con was among the few that happened successfully, and it was a first-year con… so months later, it’s extra noticeable to see it blow up with a mushroom cloud of absurd drama. At least it makes a show. It also makes a lesson about a fandom full of DIY power. Uncritical nerdy love is good for starting your own art, stories, or even a sexy furry news site — but not just any dummy should start a con.

The dummy of this story is CCFC’s (ex-) chair, Nitro. He may now be hiding out in a luxury yiff bunker, with hopes to be forgotten in the furor about a pandemic/recession/uprising, because he allegedly took thousands of dollars for charity but failed to give it to them. That’s illegal.

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Oldest science fiction book store burns in Minneapolis uprising, fandom feels the heat

by Patch O'Furr

Dr. Peter Venkman This city is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions.

Mayor What do you mean, “biblical”?

Dr. Raymond Stantz What he means is Old Testament, Mr. Mayor, real wrath of God type stuff.

Dr. Peter Venkman Exactly.

Dr. Raymond Stantz Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling!

Dr. Egon Spengler Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes…

Winston Zeddemore The dead rising from the grave!

Dr. Peter Venkman Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!

Mayor All right, all right! I get the point!

– Ghostbusters (1984)

Can you feel it? The Covid-19 pandemic makes it dangerous to give hugs (the furry handshake.) A new Great Depression might be on the way with millions unemployed. People are rising for justice while cities burn.

Uncle Hugo’s burned. It was a book store in Minneapolis, the oldest independent science fiction book store in the USA. One of the furry fandom’s original members worked there since it opened in 1974. Ken Fletcher was co-founder of Vootie, the voice of “The Funny Animal Liberation Front”, which helped to launch the furry fandom. He’s out of work for now (and might do a Q&A with me soon).

Directly south of the store, nine blocks down Chicago Street, was where the fire got a reason to start. On the corner at East 38th, Officer Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd. Viral video of the incident showed bystanders begging for help while other police stood in the way. It spurred national outrage against a white-on-black power flex. Soon, nothing could hold back the wrath of half a city rising against injustice, and burning a police station and more.

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