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I know we've had a bit of discussion about this topic in this thread, but I think recent developments really need some discussion. Long story short: apparently Hasbro asked WeLoveFine to remove all "Derpy" merchandise. I checked and, instead of yoinking it all down, they simply removed all instances of the word "derpy" in their products. This more or less confirms that Hasbro has contacted them regarding this matter -- and it probably gave them a little increased business on the side as some folks might snap up some Derpy merch.

Personally I'm trying to figure out where to angle my thoughts on this. My first reaction is to be absolutely livid with the people that thought it was okay to respond to Derpy's inclusion in The Last Roundup the way they did, with hatemail, petitions, and a loud and clear message that they were very offended by Studio B's treatment and presentation of the character. My first fear was that Hasbro would react in some way, though I was hoping it would just blow over. Without trying to appear like an alarmist, I'm scared that this event with WeLoveFine could be the first set of many things that could happen to Derpy.

To be fair, people are entitled to their opinions regarding matters such as ableism and whatnot, but nothing is worse than a vocalized opinion made in pure ignorance, which I think has happened in this situation.

If Hasbro is moving so far to ask WeLoveFine to rename or pull their Derpy merch, it could mean her future exclusion from FiM itself. If so, I'm very disappointed, and I really hope it does not come to this. The poor choices/reactions of the few will cause consequences for the many, and possibly the removal of a character that was, more or less, our hand in the series itself. I think this negative precedent is alienating the fandom from the company that provides FiM, and the fandom is 100% to blame.

Please, discuss.

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I think if the developmentally disable community is offended, we ought to at least listen to that. Anything less reveals us as privileged feedbags. I don't know what it's like to be one of them. All I have to go on is what they tell me.

As for Derpy's ultimate fate, I think she could be reworked. Few seemed to have a problem until she sounded like she had Down's syndrome. And I know that wasn't the VA's intent, but nevertheless, it seemed to hurt some people. A rework and some future caution seems adequate to me.

And heck, Ditzy Doo is a better name anyhow. Let 'em roll with that. It wouldnt be that hard to correct with a redub.

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Well if petitions are what caused this, in theory more petitions could reverse it....

(Though I still say that she dosen't really sound like someone with down syndrome)

But if the way her voice sounds is the problem they could just raise the pitch of those lines, they wouldn't even have to redub anything, but her voice is higher after the first few seconds anyway (Actually more than anything her voice makes me think of this one "Rudolph" Christmas special....)

Now, I apologise in advance if I sound a bit sharp toungued saying this, but is this whole upset: The letters of complaint the having Derpy related merchandise removed or renamed, all or this....it seems a bit much for a minute or two of footage that could potentially be offensive if interpreted the wrong way in a series that to date has had over 40 episodes that are the exactly opposite....It sort of reminds me of that inccident a few years ago where some stores were insisting their Santas say "Ha-Ha-Ha" because of some slang term that was used at the time

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Here's a bit more chimney think: Isn't the perceived stereotype that developmentally disabled act that way worse than the perception that Derpy's behavior/voice was insulting it? Think about it. The very thing people are up in arms defending is actually perpetuating that very attitude.

I've worked with developmentally disabled people of different age ranges for over a decade, and I can say with absolute certainty that Derpy didn't give me even an inkling that she was mentally disabled, or making fun of anyone with any condition, period.

I think there was a lot of mob-like bandwagoning with this situation too, and a lot of folks sent complaints before understanding the rhyme or reason behind what people found offensive about it.

For some perspective: "I'm going to mail Disney and tell them that Goofy offends me because the way he walks reminds me of someone with cerebral palsy."

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Let me be quite frank.

I have not one, but TWO family members that suffer from mental disabilities.

I saw Derpy, and I DID NOT feel offended. In fact, I loved her character. I thought not of offense, but rather of beloved, slow characters from cartoons like Ed from Ed, Edd, n Eddy. Or Patrick from Spongebob Squarepants.

I just CANNOT see how people find Derpy offensive. What I find offensive, however, is how people can INTERPRET that she's offensive. It's uncalled for. And frankly, at this point, I'm somewhat ashamed to call myself a Brony right now.

After all, we brought this on ourselves. Not only the SMALL minority that complained...but rather the people who made it APPARENT that there was some problem with it...

...However, I stick to this fandom. After all, I love this fandom too much to leave it behind.

I can only hope...somehow...deep inside Hasbro...they're re-considering their decision...

Hasbro....PLEASE don't do this...Derpy is THE BRONY EMBODIMENT.,..

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I'd just like to add myself to the list of people who were unoffended. the elementary school I grew up in was a school where kids with mental disabilities can learn and socialize with kids without mental dissabilities. for my first six years of school, all my friends had some form of mental disability, and I never made any connection between them and derpy until other people brought it up.

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I don't see where people got mentally disabled. Nothing about Derpy's character was mentally disabled, from voice to actions... NOTHING. I think people are pushing their personal perceptions of mental disability, which is really nothing more than ignorance. However that ignorance is pulling on a sensitive cord, and that is not good.

My mother is a special ed teacher, and I have seen and met her students, as well as my second cousin is has mental retardation due to being asphyxiated at birth, and Derpy they are not. I think people need to grab a DSM IV and read up on these conditions and see what mentally disabled actually means. Because apparently the fanbase has no idea, and that is a shame. Derpy was an endearing slow type character. Hell, I have known people that were like derpy and were EXTREMELY intelligent. They were just clumsy and a bit slow in normal situations. One of my professors research fellows was possibly more destructive and derpy than Derpy. And yet he graduated undergrad with a 3.95 and went on to a Ph.D program in an Ivy League college for BioInformatics IIRC.

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I think the bigger issue here is that the way Hasbro reacted was unprecedented, especially since (they might) have responded to the screaming minority in this case. I'm hoping very much this won't mean that future episodes (and the series as a whole) end up sanitized by this ridiculousness, as well as Hasbro's policy on handling its "bonus" audience.

This post was recently put up on EqD that highlights some of the facts surrounding this situation.

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I'm still slightly confused about this whole situation. I've heard people saying two different things about the Derpy issue. So, some clarifying would be great. These points are:

1) That the use of the name 'Derpy' is somehow problematic.

This is the least repeated, but I've seen it said before. Many assume that calling her Derpy has somehow gotten some fans up in arms. Now, whether it's about the name itself as a fan creation and the first user wanting some recognition for this (likely a monetary thing) or if they believe it to be offensive toward the developmentally disabled. Which brings me to the second point.

2) That Derpy is offensive toward developmentally disabled individuals.

Much like starswirl, my mother works with developmentally delayed students. With this in mind, the thought didn't even cross my mind. There are many other fictional characters who are portrayed as being slightly slow, but none have received such a vocal protest. Honestly, I'm just confused by this whole issue. It's a children's show. If people were offended, especially if they are developmentally handicapped, I can understand and respect that as being their view on the subject. However, I'm more of the opinion that the main reason for this removal of the Derpy name is that Hasbro is worried about backlash from this minority hurting their reputation, which could be very bad for them.

I'm not sure if that made much sense, but in summation, it probably stems from a corporate action taken to protect Hasbro from coming under fire by those who were offended. Let's just hope this is resolved without too much fuss because personally I thought it was a cute shout-out to the brony fandom that we should appreciate, not fight over.

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Let me be quite frank.

I have not one, but TWO family members that suffer from mental disabilities.

I have a mentally retarded aunt, and she sounds nothing like Derpy/Ditzy. Also, I'm not offended by it either. Yeah there are those who perpetuate ignorance and don't know what derpidity actually is, and Hasbro may very well listen to them for possible business related backlashes, but aren't there other nods to bronies, like Equestrian Girls and the whole Ponyville being nudists thing? Either way, I think we'll have other acknowledgments, and it may be a difference of the times when it comes to past cartoons with similar characters...possibly why we aren't offended by it.

It is interesting how they refuse inclusion of all types of people (whether it was their intention or not) by excluding/censoring them from a show...kind of antithetical of the general message of the show, as well as not trying to expose children to something they will encounter at some point in their life anyways, but I think I put more than 2 cents in so I'll shut up.

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I think the bigger issue here is that the way Hasbro reacted was unprecedented, especially since (they might) have responded to the screaming minority in this case. I'm hoping very much this won't mean that future episodes (and the series as a whole) end up sanitized by this ridiculousness, as well as Hasbro's policy on handling its "bonus" audience.

This post was recently put up on EqD that highlighted some of the facts surrounding this situation.

I still say ignorance is the root of the problem. Instead of reacting like that, they should have sought to educate and defend their property.

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Oh gawd, now I'm reminded why I dont miss reading comments on ED...

A few things I want to point out that were addressed there:

1. The bit about "this is the end of derpy!" likely wont happen. They've already drawn ALL of season 2 and part of Season 3, they cant change that. *technically* they can edit her out, but given that she's usually just in the background I doubt they'll bother.

2. Renaming her. This I expect. Personally while I was overjoyed I was also shocked that they named her "derpy" in canon because they cannot and © that word. Likely even in the mildest, she will become Ditzy Doo again, or more likely something 110% unoffensive (I want to make a joke here about naming her "Ditzy doo" is offensive to "Scooby Doo" but I cant muster the snark) I fully expect that they will get Alshleigh Ball to re-record Dash's line where she names Derpy (or splice in another one, but same difference) and if the DVD ships with the original line, it will become a "blooper" edition worth a small fortune and clips of the original line will be forever circulated on youtube and similar sites.

3. "There will be no more fan shout-outs!" again, S2 is complete, S3 partly so, we still have plenty of shout-outs ahead, though they may be toned down through editing, they are still there. I dont think anything severe will happen, it's not like they're calling for the end of the series...

4. "This is the end of the series!" Pure Horseapples! Nobody, and I mean NOBODY has called for the end of the series! The only thing that might end is Derpy (which is unllilkely) at the absolute worst is loss of an episode they probably didnt/wont make plus some editing to completed ones. This just goes to PROVE how popular the series is and renforce Hasbro to keep making it! If enough people saw it outside of the relativly tiny number of parents of kids who happen to subscribe to The Hub and happen to watch it with them, that there was this kind of reaction, hasbro will know it has a CASH COW and will milk it dry! (Now wheather it will age gracefully or quickly jump the shark is yet to be seen, though I have faith in the writers to be able to make at least 5 seasons without jumping the shark)

That said, I admit I didnt *love* derpy's um... derpyness... I mean it was classic loony tunes (specifically Porky Pig imo), which I'm not a huge fan of. But I didnt see it as offensive at all! Just my $0.02

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This isn't the first time that a character in FiM has come under fire. Rainbow's sexuality has been topic for debate before. Does her rainbow mane offend gays? I suppose nerds could find Twilight offensive. Maybe her social awkwardness or like of books? I think illiterate people might find her offensive. Or maybe dyslexics.

I think this situation has caused so much stir because Derpy really is our character -- it feels terrible having Hasbro backpeddle her after the true introduction we got two weeks ago. I'm sure there are plenty of reasons that they decided to do this, it just feels very unjust.

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Here it is!

The leave Derpy as she is petition:

http://www.change.or...nge-derpys-name

:P Please sign it

I did and typed out a reason for signing. Really this is ridiculous, and needs to be stopped.

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Sending the message that it's not actually okay to make fun of disabled people is more important than the representation of adult fans of the show. This isn't a minor backlash like the perennial accusations that Celestia's royal guards are racist or that every male character on the show reinforces the patriarchy. This is, apparently, a lot of real people who are very upset about what just happened, because of how it affects a lot of other real people.

This isn't "South Park". This is "My Little Pony". The largest audience for this show is young children. Everything that goes into the show needs to be viewed in that light. The adult references in the show are great, but that's not what the show is about. We are not the target audience. Our "needs" will and should always be secondary to those of the real audience. How many of the letters to Hasbro were from the parents of children who watch the show? Those are the voices that Hasbro will pay attention to over ours, and rightly so.

It is nice to know that neither the writers nor the actors meant any harm by the portrayal. In fact, I never doubted that. I have nothing but admiration for the people who provide us with this amazing show, which teaches such good lessons. This was entirely an accident. The writers wanted to do something nice for the fans, and happened to pick the bit of fanon that had a hugely problematic following attached to it. There's no blame to be laid for it (except at the feet of the fans who created this interpretation of the character in the first place). Sadly, though, it happened, and it would have been better if it had not happened.

This fandom has latched on to a lot of the show's background characters, and the writers are acknowledging this. I think SSCS6k made it pretty obvious that the writers are catering to our interpretations of background ponies, with Berry Punch and Doctor Whooves making noteworthy appearances in line with their fanon characterizations. We don't need "Derpy" in the show to feel like the writers are paying attention to us - they are.

I don't think Derpy's appearance in "The Last Roundup" is the end of the world. I don't think it's a disaster, but I think it was a step in the wrong direction, and some children will take the wrong message from it. I don't know how many will. But if they'd given a similar scene to Lyra or Bon-Bon or Doctor Whooves (copyright nonwithstanding), then the adult fans would have been just as happy and we wouldn't have this problem. We can do without any more appearances of that nature, because we neither need nor deserve them.

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I have a fair understanding of why people why find this "offensive". However, there is no true evidence of her actually having disabilities, or mocking anyone who does. She's supposed to be a silly, dumb character in a kid's show, not some kind of mocking joke. I mean, if people find this Offensive, why don't they find Patrick from spongebob or Cosmo from the fairly odd parents offensive? They are much more commonly used than Derpy, and they are much, much, much more mentally dumb than Derpy. But, I won't argue with any haters. They do have a right to hate I guess, I just don't agree for explainable reasons.

Edit: Or Ed from Ed, Ed, N Eddy. He actually was said to HAVE MENTAL DISABILITIES in the show. Really. The creators said they made him with that in mind, so....

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I agree with SirShadowdeath. If it was the kind of depiction of Derpy that would lead people - and more importantly, children - to think 'Oh, ha ha, mentally disabled people sure are funny!' then yes, it'd be more than reasonable to have a problem with it. The way she was predicted was just adorably clumsy, and that's all kids are going to see in the character too. As for the name Derpy, if that's what's causing the problem, someone from Hasbro only has to type it into Google to see that it means goofy and clutzy rather than anything else. Then again we're assuming that someone at Hasbro actually knows how to use Google...

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Somehow I knew this would happen. There are always those who seek to find malcontent even with the most innocent things. Do these protesters honestly think that Derpy's appearance and mannerisms were a blatant insult to the developmentally disabled community? Somehow I think only a small core of them do, while the rest simply want to cause strife.

I've known many true mentally-disabled friends/classmates/associates in my lifetime, just as many of the rest of you have. While some of them have indeed acted in the manner in which Derpy behaved during "The Last Roundup," the way our favorite background pegasus was portrayed seemed to be intentionally more, for lack of a better word, "ditzy" than anypony I've met with the aforementioned problems. When did the line blur between those who are truly silly and uncoordinated and those who are mentally-handicapped? Apparently when these champions of the down-trodden decided it was so. For years, foals' shows have had similar characters without such backlash.

Honestly? Some ponies love to white knight even if those they're defending don't see a problem with anything. You can create a problem out of nothing, and I unashamedly admit that this is my own opinion here, but that is a glaring problem of society today. We have enough true issues without neighsayers adding more that had no real substance of their own. In fact, I would go so far to say that by causing this much commotion about innocent happenstance, those offended parties are actually drawing negative attention toward those who truly do have the problems Derpy supposedly mocks.

I apologize for the long post, but I'll end with this: If mares and stallions are protesting for their foals against a nod to bronies, over a foal's show, do they honestly want to ruin the experience for them? I can almost guarantee that none of the target audience thought anything similar to the protests that are going on, it's older ponies, just like us. How hypocritical of them to claim that our opinions shouldn't matter on the show, when theirs should. If they claim that they're acting in defense of their foals or the greater good, I should like that they provide true proof of malcontent before they are given such a lofty, righteous position. They could very well be teaching the young ones that the world is out to judge them, to mock them. How cruel a lesson to give to such a new life.

Post Script: I realize that the continuity and logic in my post might be slightly skewed, I'm a little under the moon today. Forgive me :)

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Yes, this definitely has me raising an eyebrow. I have met a few mentally disabled people, and one of my friends during elementary school was a child with Downs Syndrome. Never ONCE did it cross my mind that Derpy was meant to be an underhanded jab at that at all. I can also guarantee St. Germain did not intend for the character to be like that. The voice for Derpy only comes out as "slow" in her first line while she's bouncing on her cloud. For every other time she spoke, Derpy's voice reminded me of a good friend of mine, who isn't bright but is not mentally disabled at all (in fact this friend is basically the male version of Derpy. A bit clumsy, a little on the slow side, and walleyed, but a great guy nonetheless). Hopefully Hasbro realizes they're making a problem out of nothing, and recants on this.

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Sending the message that it's not actually okay to make fun of disabled people is more important than the representation of adult fans of the show. This isn't a minor backlash like the perennial accusations that Celestia's royal guards are racist or that every male character on the show reinforces the patriarchy. This is, apparently, a lot of real people who are very upset about what just happened, because of how it affects a lot of other real people.

This isn't "South Park". This is "My Little Pony". The largest audience for this show is young children. Everything that goes into the show needs to be viewed in that light. The adult references in the show are great, but that's not what the show is about. We are not the target audience. Our "needs" will and should always be secondary to those of the real audience. How many of the letters to Hasbro were from the parents of children who watch the show? Those are the voices that Hasbro will pay attention to over ours, and rightly so.

It is nice to know that neither the writers nor the actors meant any harm by the portrayal. In fact, I never doubted that. I have nothing but admiration for the people who provide us with this amazing show, which teaches such good lessons. This was entirely an accident. The writers wanted to do something nice for the fans, and happened to pick the bit of fanon that had a hugely problematic following attached to it. There's no blame to be laid for it (except at the feet of the fans who created this interpretation of the character in the first place). Sadly, though, it happened, and it would have been better if it had not happened.

This fandom has latched on to a lot of the show's background characters, and the writers are acknowledging this. I think SSCS6k made it pretty obvious that the writers are catering to our interpretations of background ponies, with Berry Punch and Doctor Whooves making noteworthy appearances in line with their fanon characterizations. We don't need "Derpy" in the show to feel like the writers are paying attention to us - they are.

I don't think Derpy's appearance in "The Last Roundup" is the end of the world. I don't think it's a disaster, but I think it was a step in the wrong direction, and some children will take the wrong message from it. I don't know how many will. But if they'd given a similar scene to Lyra or Bon-Bon or Doctor Whooves (copyright nonwithstanding), then the adult fans would have been just as happy and we wouldn't have this problem. We can do without any more appearances of that nature, because we neither need nor deserve them.

I have to agree with you that it's important for the parents of this show to feel comfortable with the content and the messages it sends to the target audience, and those are definitely the voices that Hasbro will listen to. The scary precedent this sets, however, is that it happened all wrong, and the ignorance and justification behind it were all wrong. I also believe that the complaints sent were in the minority, as I have seen parents equally delighted with Derpy's portrayal in the episode at large than I have with parents truly upset by it. Outside of any hard data, however, we're sort of blind, which only adds to the frustration.

As I have said before, and this needs repeating: The people who took offense toward Derpy (in name or behavior) specifically because they thought her existence was making fun of people with mental disabilities is perpetuating their own stereotypical perceptions of that group, but they feel justified in doing so because they think they are defending it. Is Derpy really how they see or think about developmentally disabled people? Really?

The non-target audience of this cartoon may not need or deserve any of the special appearances from popular, background, or fanon-spawned characters, but I think that they are an important part of our community culture. To bring something innocent like Derpy into question brings our whole audience into question, and I am personally fearful that Hasbro will start to hold us with more skeptism and a healthy amount of suspicion when making choices about letting the creative-powers-that-be do things for the group -- or allowing things we like and create to exist.

Examples: "We're receiving complaints that Equestria Daily has content on the site that might offend group X Y Z. Please take down the site or we'll make you take it down." "We are afraid that Bronycon might feature content that might offend some parents, so if you run that convention, we'll sue you."

Also...yeah, parents teaching their kids that it's okay to judge people off those sterotypes seems even more scary to me.

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i have to stop and wonder why people are becoming upset at our Derpy when other similar characters such as Ed (Ed, Edd, and Eddy), Patrick (Spongebob), Billy (Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy), and Peter Griffin (Family Guy) have gone by without any real fuss from the public.

Do you think they're just discriminating agaist Bronies?

I know they say that it's her voice, but come on. You're telling me that those characters don't have similar voices and mannerisms?

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i have to stop and wonder why people are becoming upset at our Derpy when other similar characters such as Ed (Ed, Edd, and Eddy), Patrick (Spongebob), Billy (Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy), and Peter Griffin (Family Guy) have gone by without any real fuss from the public.

Do you think they're just discriminating agaist Bronies?

I know they say that it's her voice, but come on. You're telling me that those characters don't have similar voices and mannerisms?

Different shows made in a different time...one of those even being a more adult show...the brony hate is unlikely imo

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