Links roundup for 4 May 2012

Here’s a roundup of fan activity stories that might be of interest to fans:

  • Erik Kain writing for Forbes discussed game mods being created for Game of Thrones and declared, “I think that this, and really the entire modding community, is living proof that games are much more a participatory medium than most other forms of entertainment. Sure, fans write fan-fiction all the time for popular franchises like Star Wars, but there’s something more impressive about a community of gamers banding together to create a gaming experience using tools that developers of popular games have made available.” While not explaining what the key differences are, Kain concludes, “With the question of a new or alternative ending still very much on many of our minds in light of the Mass Effect 3 ending controversy, many critics of the critics have posited that a game is a work of art and can’t be changed due to fan pressure; that this sets a dangerous precedent and cheapens artistic integrity. Does a mod of a game like Mount & Blade or Skyrim or Half-Life 2 threaten its artistic integrity as well? The art is being changed – and not just due to fan pressure, but by fans themselves. The modding community is taking a work of art and changing it, distorting it, and making it in some ways a new work. Their own work.”
  • The Mass Effect 3 fans would not be the first to get a reworked ending. As author Elle Lothlorien tells it, her readers already got her to change her second novel’s ending. “‘The whole shift from paper publishing to e-publishing has allowed a whole new relationship between the readers and the author, so when fans began to contact me about the ending, it was odd at first. I realized that I can take this to the next level. I rewrote Sleeping Beauty and collaborated with CreateSpace to publish the alternate ending.’ Lothlorien pointed out that a traditional publishing model would have made re-publishing the book with an alternate ending nearly impossible, especially given the time delays and marketability concerns of the industry as a whole. By utilizing print-on-demand, the author was able to conceptualize the alternate book and bring it to a physical print edition in a matter of weeks.”
  • Of course, regardless of how popular the canon ending is or isn’t, fans don’t necessarily stop creating. Despite the last Harry Potter film being released, Wizard Rock is continuing on. In an interview, members of wrock band Harry and the Potters discuss the origins of their fandom and the future of their work. “‘We were casual fans. We had read the books once, but we weren’t involved in online message boards discussing Snape’s sex life or anything,’ [guitarist and keyboardist Paul] DeGeorge said. ‘We just thought it would be a cool way to re-contextualize these stories, turning them into rock songs.'” The band continues to have enough gigs lined up to keep them busy, and they aren’t alone. A recent article on the upcoming off-Broadway opening of the UK production Potted Potter notes it has been going on, in one form or another, since 2005, and name drops another recontextualization of Potter, A Very Potter Musical, starring the (now well-known) Darren Criss, which continues to add to its over 8 million views.

If you are a Harry Potter, Game of Thrones fan, if you mod video games or are a creator of fanworks, why not write about it in Fanlore? Additions are welcome from all fans.

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