Chelsea Cain, the writer of Marvel's recently concluded "Mockingbird" series, has deleted her Twitter account, citing multiple instances of online harassment. This comes in the wake of "Mockingbird" ending last week with the series' eighth issue, and her subsequent call for more female-driven comics at Marvel in a series of Twitter posts, which are no longer online.
In addition to Cain's plea, artist Joelle Jones' cover for the final "Mockingbird" issue, which reflects the ongoing feminist message of both the author and the series, also sparked harassment on social media:
In light of Cain's exit from Twitter, many fans and creators showed support for the writer with the hashtag #StandWithChelseaCain, posting the "Mockingbird" #8 cover and sharing original artwork inspired by the "Ask Me About My Feminist Agenda" message on the title character's shirt.
Marvel Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso expressed solidarity with Cain on Twitter, writing, "I stand w/ Chelsea Cain, condemn online harassment, and think the MU, and the industry, benefits & grows from diverse creators & characters."
Apart from her work in comics, Cain is a celebrated author of multiple acclaimed novels, notably the New York Times-bestselling "Heartsick" series of thrillers, which debuted in 2004. Cain made her comic book debut with 2015's "Mockingbird: S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary" which preceded her work on the "Mockingbird" ongoing series.
Cain noted in a tweet that she never blocked anyone on Twitter until she started writing a relatively low-profile comic book series, never having to in her years as a novelist selling millions of books. Cain subsequently expressed that this type of harassment is a problem specific to the comics industry.
The departure of Cain from Twitter is part of an ongoing issue. With the rise of social media and accessibility of authors online, there has been increased visibility of harassment in the comics industry, which is frequently targeted towards women -- both creating a platform for new instances of harassment and highlighting systemic problems that have persisted for decades. As former Image Comics Director of Trade Book Sales Jennifer de Guzman wrote in two tweets, "[Chelsea Cain] has been driven off Twitter by misogynists in comics. There are women who have been driven out of comics entirely. Comics, you're a problem."