Links roundup for 20 January 2012

Here’s a roundup of stories on the attention paid to fandom that might be of interest to fans:

  • The creators of Jersey Shore are turning their attention to fans, sending out a casting call for a new unscripted show. “According to a press release, the new reality show “is going to profile eight people obsessed with the sci-fi culture in some shape or form.”” In the meantime, another series has already launched focused on toy collectors. “Toy Hunters” recently premiered on the Travel Channel. Its host noted “”I have a real love affair with pop culture, nostalgia and vintage toys,” he says, rattling off a series of prized toys he’s had that includes everything from GI Joe figurines to Star Wars replica X-Wings. The stigma behind the fanboy identity is waning, Hembrough maintains.”
  • While not a show about fans, the TV series Portlandia filmed episodes having to do “with fans of silent expressionist horror classic The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and of Ronald Moore’s supermodels-in-space reboot of Battlestar Galactica.” Producer Carrie Brownstein claimed writing about BSG turned her into a fan. ““For film and television, it’s interesting how fans feel that their particular ways of manifesting their affections are the correct ones,” Brownstein said. “It’s not just about being a fan, it’s about how you perform your fandom. That’s always been interesting to me.””
  • Many publishers, producers, and news sites host fan fiction contests these days as a way of promoting the canon product, usually with tight restrictions on form and content. Explanation site Ehow suggests other ways to get one’s fan fiction read. While they begin with the sensible suggestion of “Choose a Popular Niche” they conclude with a less than helpful legal advisory: “Include a disclaimer at the end of your work that states that you do not intend to use the fan fiction for commercial purposes.” . They do raise the issue of fair use though they misunderstand how fair use works. “Fair use is a statutory exception that protects fan fiction as long as the fiction is not used for commercial purposes and doesn’t negatively affect the commercial success of the original work. The fiction must transform the creative work and add new things to it.” (In fact, commercial uses can also be fair uses; consider a case like the novel The Wind Done Gone, which rewrites Gone With The Wind.)

If you write fan fiction, are part of Battlestar Galactica fandom, or have something to say about fandom and profit why not contribute your fandom experience to Fanlore? Additions are welcome from all fans.

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