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Censorship at Aeclectic Tarot
Tarot--the highly-symbolic set of cards that serves divination, meditation, pathworking, inspiration, creativity and illumination--is a "fringe" practice that, to some extent, is becoming more mainstream...just like Paganism in all it's diverse, vibrant expressions.
And because both expressions are "fringe" (meaning we tend to be objects of ridicule, exclusion and/or marginalization), we need to support one another.
She'll list digital decks, Majors-only decks, OOP print decks--even oracle decks.
But she not only refuses to list our decks and my books--but her aggressive Moderators will delete any mention of our work most times, especially links to our website. I'm even banned from the Forum for unknown reasons.
This happened well over five years ago, an polite inquires to Kate have went ignored.
There are theories. One, is that after I reviewed Nigel Jackson's Rumi Tarot deck (I didn't like it and shared why at length), he attacked me on the AT Forums. I stood by my review and it angered Nigel fans. My theory is that Solandia banned me from AT, and refused to list our decks, because I used to review for her, for free, on her site. When I realized that she only wanted to post glowing reviews on AT (presumably, to generate more kickbacks from affiliate sales--because negative reviews may equate to a "no sale"), I asked her to remove ALL my reviews from her site...including the cards I meticulously scanned for her.
So why write about this now?
Well, we recently sold a Snowland Deck to someone and, as usual, I asked her where she found out about us (I'm always fascinated at how people discover our work). She remarked that she seen a mention on AT about seasonal decks. I tried to look for it, and did see a mention--with a Moderator saying that "many" had a negative opinion of me in the Tarot world (!). And the moderator, of course, removed the link to our site so others could investigate on their own. (I'm surprised he left the mention on there!).
The buyer JUST emailed me, saying:
"I received the deck today! It's just perfect. Our family celebrates the winter solstice each year and I always do a reading for anyone that wants one. The deck fits our holiday theme like no other deck in my collection. A winter deck is almost impossible to find, so I am very appreciative of your creation. My sincere congratulations for a deck well done!"
So, here we are--a husband and wife team who have self-published decks, doing everything ourselves...having our work prohibited from discussions. And not listed in the biggest Tarot directory and forum online.
It's one thing if one or more people don't like me, my objective reviews or personality. A ban from the Forum seems bizarre and partisan, but it's happened before. Just ask James Battersby, artist for the Simply Deep, King's Journey, Chinese Cultural Revolution Tarot AND the Twisted Tarot Tales deck and book. You can read about his experience on his post Aeclectic A$$hol** and Dodgy Lamas here, as well as comments about the Moderators' questionable behavior. I really don't care about that, since they don't seem like the people I'd like to spend time with, anyway.
But to refuse to even LIST a body of work in the database? And to refuse to reply to polite requests asking why the blackballing? And to delete any discussion ABOUT the deck?
Shameful, in my opinion. (Fortunately for James and his creative partner, Christine, AT actually listed their new Twisted Tarot Tales deck! You can see all his decks here).
Now that the Winter Solstice, Yule, Hannukah and Christmas is almost here, I can't help but think: how many MORE people would discover our deck and find it a joyful addition to their collection...if Aeclectic Tarot would at least list our deck and allow people to discuss it (good or bad)?
When you put your heart, soul, blood, sweat and tears into a creative project (hubby Ron Boyer painted evenings and weekends for TWO solid years, and I provided the creative/scholarly guidance for the images...as well as wrote the companion book, formatted our deck and all social media posts)...it stings when a supposedly "objective" database won't even LIST a work (even if it's controversial, as James and Christine's self-published China deck is to some people).
If you're as disheartened as I am--or perhaps even angered at this gross censorship--you can contact Solandia/Kate Hill directly at http://www.aeclectic.net/tarot/contact.shtml
Thanks for reading,
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