• OTW Fannews: Fandom Influence

    By Claudia Rebaza on Wednesday, 23 September 2015 - 3:20pm
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    Banner by SoyAlex of concentric circles with 'Fandom Influence' emerging from the center

    • At Destructoid, Laura Kate Dale discussed how the fandom's version of Sonic the Hedgehog prevailed over various canon changes. "[A]n element of consistency to the image of Sonic did remain among the core gaming audience, fueled largely by the actions of a very small section of the fan community. Sonic remained his consistent edgy aspiration figure online for years in very devoted parts of the Internet, oft mocked by those in the wider gaming scene who came across them. DeviantArt original Sonic characters whose names alluded to preteen angst and rebellion, very visible fan-fiction communities and heavy romanticizing of anthropomorphic characters remained a consistent aspect of the mascot's visible face, only becoming more visible with the increased prevalence of the Internet."
    • Tech Insider posted an article pointing out how valuable fanworks can be beyond the texts themselves. "Since Todd's work started gaining popularity, a Wattpad representative says they've seen reads of these stories increase on the platform. Thanks largely to Todd, Pride and Prejudice currently has over 3.5 million reads on Wattpad and Wuthering Heights has just over 1 million. Staggering numbers, when you consider this is a platform best known for fanfiction stories about Disney princesses and Justin Bieber."
    • Writing at The Guardian, author AL Kennedy discussed writing a Dr. Who tie-in novel and perfectly described the exhilaration of fanworks. "It’s sad that so much of the air has gone from literary endeavour, that academic theorising and categorising have come to decide which novels are acceptable and reviewed, that literary publishing has squashed itself into more and more predictable boxes more and more often. Storytelling, company, human solidarity – they never go away, but they do seem to be moving away from the mainstream. It will be the mainstream’s loss. Readers will always go where they can find the joy they knew in childhood, the joy they deserve."

    How have you seen fandoms and fanworks influencing canon? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Altering Reality

    By Janita Burgess on Sunday, 19 July 2015 - 5:32pm
    Message type:

    OTWFannews Banner Altering Reality

    • Geek and Sundry suggested that Gaming Led Us All to Genderbending. "There’s a great deal of imagination and creativity behind genderbending in fandom, fan art, and cosplay, and it can help us identify more strongly with those characters we love. But where does it really come from? Where did we even get the idea to imagine our favorite fandoms with this random character change? While the interest in genderbending can come from a lot of different places, I think gaming had a huge part of making it more widely understood."
    • Eventbrite's latest fandom study examined con attendance and cosplay. "Con-goers are split almost half and half by gender, with males representing 48.7% of fans, and women making up 48.9%. Taking a closer look at these nearly-equal slices of the population pie, we see that single fans are divided by gender almost evenly as well: 50% of singles are male, and 47% are female. But while male singles head to cons alone (29%), the single ladies travel in groups (18%), and go for the cosplay."
    • Malaysian Digest reported that 1 of every 6 K-pop fans is male, but they're often quiet about it. "'I was showing to a friend a music video of Super Junior’s ‘Sorry Sorry’. I was expecting comments like 'wow cool dance moves' or 'it’s catchy', but NO, instead he said, 'why do you listen to this. It’s not like you understand a single thing that they say. Plus they look kinda gay. Are you gay?'...What I don’t understand is why does liking another music genre has got to do with sexual orientation?"
    • Attack of the Fanboy discussed the battling petitions related to the development of Metroid Prime: Federation Force and linked to a video highlighting the fan rage being expressed. "In just under four minutes, Mega64 skewers the mentality behind the Federation Force petition by taking it to an extreme that incorporates elements of Anonymous threat videos with a terrorist-lite militia. It looks like a hard sell on paper, but the over the top nature of every passing second works well on video."
  • OTW Fannews: Balance of Power

    By Kiri Van Santen on Tuesday, 14 July 2015 - 5:43pm
    Message type:

    banner by Tea Berry-Blue of a balance scale

    • Gamasutra hosted a post about the preservation of gaming history. "The second event – the most relevant and sadly the one that got less coverage – was that EFF made a petition to the U.S. Copyright Office, requesting an exemption to allow for games abandoned by their companies – such as MMOs that no longer have servers online – to be legally maintained by the fans. That is a fantastic thing both for consumers and for the preservation of our history – either companies keep their servers up, or they are giving permission for others to do so. So it doesn't come as a surprise that the Electronic Software Association also contacted the U.S. Copyright Office, pressuring them to deny EFF's request, supported by their buddies, the Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America – yes, those two also contacted the Copyright Office to pressure against the preservation of video games."
    • A post at Fansided suggested that it's not only the entertainment industries that don't have the best interests of fans at heart: technology companies also have an effect on fannish practices. "Look, if you’re watching the game at home by yourself...split your attention between your TV and your tablet/smartphone/laptop/whatever...But if you’re out in a public space that’s clearly meant to encourage a communal viewing experience, then put your phone away and be present in the damn moment." Exploring the pluses and minuses of tech use, writer Stu White adds "[Y]ou are told that by not participating in this second-screen culture, you run the risk of isolating yourself, of becoming an outsider, of becoming somehow deficient. Fears regarding outsiderness run deep, thus they are easy for brands to capitalize on. Are you worried about being isolated from the world? Then buy our product! We are the only viable path to connectedness and community."
    • On the other side, fans' loyalties may lie in interpretation. Writing about the new novel in the Fifty Shades of Grey series, The New York Times focused on how much 50 Shades fanfic is out there, as well as how much more satisfying readers might find it. "At this point, Ms. Fougner, who has published the equivalent of five novels totaling some 3,500 pages, has written far more about Christian and Anastasia than their creator has. 'I prefer her writing to E. L. James’s writing,' Ms. Brueggemann said...Another one of Ms. Fougner’s devoted readers...said that she read 'Grey' when it came out on Thursday and found it lacking compared with Ms. Fougner’s version. 'I know ‘Grey’s’ going to be a letdown for me...I’ve already read it through Emine’s eyes, and I honestly don’t think E. L. James can touch her version of Christian.'"
    • Trek Movie was among those who interviewed a fan who pitched their TV series idea to Paramount. "Michael Gummelt, owner of (formerly and creator of the fan concept of the same name has been invited by Paramount to pitch his idea for a new Star Trek television series to the network, an unprecedented opportunity rarely (if ever) afforded to non-industry professionals. The concept, now titled Star Trek Uncharted, has been in the works for 20 years and takes place several decades after the time of Captain Kirk and the original Enterprise."

    What cases of fan and entertainment industry interaction have you observed? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Paying Court

    By thatwasjustadream on Sunday, 12 July 2015 - 3:59pm
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    banner with lines suggesting an envelope and a postal stamp and the words OTW FANNEWS

    • OTW Legal Staffer Rebecca Tushnet was among those interviewed for the new fandom documentary, Fanarchy. Fan Film Follies reported that it will premiere on July 19th, 2015 on the network Epix. "Fanarchy explores the rise of fan culture and the ways in which modern fandom is challenging the Hollywood system by becoming a creative force in its own right. Questions are raised about copyright, intellectual property and the concept of originality in a re-mix culture."
    • Another fan documentary premiered recently on the BBC. In When Pop Ruled My Life: The Fans’ Story "[t]he presenter’s murky past helps this enjoyable documentary explore the question of what drives small fanatics, but the beauty of the programme lies in its affection for the fans. Take, for instance, the Iron Maiden devotees – now white-haired men – who named their children after band mascot Eddie and now chuckle about their wives leaving them. Or the Bay City Rollers extremists who still turn up to reunion shows in tartan Rollergear, with the word 'Les' embellished on their backs in diamante."
    • Movie Pilot released a post highlighting the many fanart responses to the character of Yarny in the new Electronic Arts game, Unravel. "[P]erhaps due to the cuteness of the character alone or the excitement and nervousness of its director Martin Sahlin, the internet and video game community immediately fell in love with the little guy."
    • Entertainment Weekly promoted the MTV fandom awards, noting the new categories this year. Eligibility for at least one of them, "Fandom Army of the Year" would seem to be dependent on having a recognizable fandom name. Perhaps this is why celebrities seem to be increasingly involved in these choices, either by weighing in on different options or outright soliciting official descriptions.

    What forms of fandom recognition have you seen? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Giving Some Credit

    By Pip Janssen on Friday, 22 May 2015 - 3:18pm
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    Banner showing a cartoon figure holding a book that says I Wrote This!

    • A post at Polygon disagreed with fans' protests about game mods being sold on Steam. "Over and over, it’s been shown that when great content is rewarded with cash, better content flows forward. Of course, more crap will also flow in — but Steam has spent years improving its Workshop system to let the best content filter to the top. Modders will now have a reason to finish their work, and the best modders will find reward in the social aspects of the modding scene — as well as monetarily. The idea that adding a layer of real-world rewards will somehow stifle content is absurd."
    • Notwithstanding the lure of cash, game publisher Bethesda listened to fans and reversed its decision, even refunding earlier purchases. "[W]e underestimated the differences between our previously successful revenue sharing models, and the addition of paid mods to Skyrim's workshop. We understand our own game's communities pretty well, but stepping into an established, years old modding community in Skyrim was probably not the right place to start iterating. We think this made us miss the mark pretty badly, even though we believe there's a useful feature somewhere here...Even though we had the best intentions, the feedback has been clear - this is not a feature you want. Your support means everything to us, and we hear you."
    • wrote about the contest run for Mad Men to reproduce its first episode. "Similar fan-made cuts of other movies have taken the internet by storm, including Star Wars Uncut, a project to remake the Star Wars films. That project began in 2009 as a lark by a then-20-something programmer and later went on to win an Emmy for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media. Few of these types of crowd-sourced remakes, however, have gone on to be recognized in an official way or aired for millions on TV. This makes Mad Men: The Fan Cut a smart move on AMC’s part to rally Mad Men junkies as the show winds down, allowing them to re-enact favorite scenes and put their efforts back on the same screen that captured their imaginations seven seasons ago."
    • The Media Industries Project "examines the profound changes affecting media industries worldwide, focusing especially on creative labor, digital distribution, and globalization" and looks at what they call connected viewing, which they define as "any product or service that augments the entertainment experience by integrating Internet access, game play, and/or social networking." They look at various changes in entertainment consumption, including "How is connected viewing transforming the relationship of viewers to media content and access?" However, the MIP looks at the issue more in terms of how it challenges entertainment producers than in the relationship between audience and creators.
    • One area where the relationship between audience and creators continues to fail is in fanwork ambushes. Nerd Reactor posted about the latest display of fan art on a TV talk show. While acknowledging that "[s]ome fans have commented on the trend with criticism, saying that it is a way of shaming fans and making celebrities uncomfortable" the title of the article points out the real issue involved -- the lack of participation by fans. If the creator of the fanwork isn't known, it's probably because the media outlet in question failed to make any effort to contact them for permission, as well as failed to credit them on air.

    What sort of creator and fan interactions have been a win or fail in your experience? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: For the Benjamins

    By Claudia Rebaza on Tuesday, 28 April 2015 - 4:50pm
    Message type:

    Banner by Sidhrat of U.S. $100 bills floating in the air with the title 'OTW Fannews: For the Benjamins'

    • PC Gamer discussed a Half-Life fan's job offer after releasing a popular mod. "Transmissions: Element 120 is a "short single-player" Half-life 2 mod that equips players with a new kind of gravity gun that enables them to leap over buildings and fall from great distances without suffering damage. Taking place after the events of Half-Life 2: Episode 2, it challenges players to figure out where they are and why they've been sent there. On the technical side, it boasts custom levels, code, models, sounds, and a number of upgrades to the Source Engine, including enhanced dynamic lighting, improved support for complex structures, and better AI. And it was all created by one guy."
    • Los Angeles magazine instead suggested that fan films could be personal vehicles. "Fantasy author and captain’s hat aficionado, George R.R. Martin, famously hates fan-fiction based on his Game of Thrones universe, but it’s an uphill battle for Martin, judging by the popularity of his characters amongst online amateur writers with a penchant for sword fights, dragons, and magic. And it’s not just the literary kind Martin has to worry about. Now, fan made videos that either recreate scenes from certain episodes (“The Red Wedding” is a favorite) or spin-offs that feature new characters and plot lines but are still set in the world of Westeros are popping up on YouTube. Some are predictably terrible and a lot like Jack Black and Mos Def’s attempts at recreating their favorite movies in Be Kind Rewind but others are downright genius."
    • There are certainly more commercial projects that are creating spaces for readers to join in with their own contributions. But publishers are also on the lookout for anything that's getting popular. Kidscreen reported on HarperCollins offering a contract to a fanfic writer for his Minecraft series "that’s been making the rounds in middle schools across the US. Wolfe wrote at the first part of the trilogy at age 16 and then self-published it on in January, 2014."
    • Meanwhile Supernatural actors Rob Benedict and Richard Speight, Jr. are creating a show based on their convention appearances. The "crowd-funded show called Kings Of Con — a fictional series that follows an exaggerated version of Rob and Richard...will follow their experiences during their 15 annual international cons, in which the fans aren't the only crazy ones — but the cast is as well."

    Whether projects about fans or projects by fans, is everyone going commercial? Write about those events in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: The Mirror Writers

    By Claudia Rebaza on Friday, 10 April 2015 - 5:32pm
    Message type:

    Banner by Alice of a fountain tip pen dragging away from a mirror

    • A number of media articles have recently mentioned fanfiction in relation with the pro side of writing. One was in TIME where Rhys Griffiths discusses the continuation novel. Describing various works not written by the original authors, Rhys calls them an attempt "to obscure the act of literary ventriloquism that is occurring. The continuation novel differs from fan fiction (also enjoying a purple patch, which is unlikely to be a coincidence) chiefly in its ‘official’ nature. The books are commissioned by the deceased author’s estate, written with its approval, and marketed using both author’s brand associations."
    • A more direct example of 'literary ventriloquism' appeared in Flavorwire, which posted about fiction ghostwriting. "In this respect, both the YouTube megastar and the self-effacing ghostwriter are weirdly analogous to the writer of fanfiction and the self-published author, both of whom publishing has gone to great lengths to exploit in recent years. The now competing self-publishing models of Apple and Amazon point to an automated future...of a 'consumer' driven model that relies on upvoting." The article concludes that "The fact that the reader gets to choose 'precisely what she wants to read before any work goes to press,' neutralizes the dream of alter what we think is possible. It becomes nothing but a magic mirror that reaffirms our prejudices."
    • It is writers' prejudices that concern Jordan West, who gives advice on diversifying characters in fanfiction. "As much diversity as there is in fan communities, it shouldn’t be difficult for people to find reflections of themselves in fic. Fan works aren’t restrained by the same conventions as mainstream media, so we can’t blame editors or producers for telling us what we’re allowed to write. The go-to feeling for reading a fic should be based on whether you like it, not gratitude that it even exists."
    • Games Radar profiled tie-in novelist Karen Traviss, who discussed both the freedoms and restrictions of being paid to write for a gaming franchise. "One guy told me he'd proudly showed the first novel to his family to demonstrate that the game that had kept him working almost 24/7 for the last couple of years was something that had an existence beyond gameplay, and that a novelist, an 'independent' arbiter of its worth in a way, had seen the same magic in it that he had. I thought that was very touching, and I don't use the word touching about the industry very often."

    Where are the lines you see between fanworks and their pro counterparts? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: It's Your Fault

    By .Lindsey D on Wednesday, 8 April 2015 - 4:59pm
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    OTWFannews banner with text It's Your Fault and a hand with a finger pointed forward

    • A post at GQ focused on a documentary about the making of a fan film tribute to another film and decided that fanworks have become too common for notice. "[T]he genre's been so co-opted by the mainstream that it's now part of the marketing playbook. Cultural gatekeepers are now enlisting us to submit our footage for their projects. Take the Ridley Scott-produced documentary Life in a Day, or EMIC, Google Play's recent collaboration with Christopher Nolan to promote Interstellar. In a weird way, people look at you funny if you're not filming something for your YouTube channel, or figuring out how to conquer Vine. These days, it's almost more audacious to say, 'No thanks—I'm just gonna be the audience.'"
    • Nintendo Life didn't get the memo, and instead wrote about a Zelda fan film. "The Zelda Project is a fan run website based in Los Angeles, California that focuses on recreating various scenes and locales from the Zelda series via photography, film, and art. Player Piano is a YouTube channel run by Filmmaker Tom Grey that primarily focuses on classically-trained musician, Sonya Belousova, recreating video game music on a piano. Both of these groups appear to be quite talented, so this fan-film could definitely be worth a watch when it's completed."
    • A number of outlets wrote about the implications of the all-female and all-male Ghostbusters remakes. Salon decided that the fault doesn't just lie with a sexist culture but that the blame also lies with fanworks. "[S]tudios are actually listening to their customers, and remakes are what you want. It’s what you’re making, after all — and by 'you' I mean the vast majority of people out in the indie fan world that supposedly serves as our alternative, our escape from the moribund studio system. What has the Internet been spending all this time making? Fan fiction, fan art, fan films. It’s hard to tell at times if the people making 'gritty reboot' trailers are parodying Hollywood or unironically creating something they want."
    • The author of Vulture's recent piece on fanfiction was interviewed by New Hampshire Public Radio, and asked if she thought there was great fanfiction available. "I found fanfiction that was ok and every once in a while something that I thought 'Oh, that's pretty good'. But I's really more the writing and the reading and the sharing than the end product...Every single piece of fanfiction is like a work in progress...and it's such a sort of group experience that it's difficult to apply a term like 'great' to it. That's like saying 'Is there a great fairy tale', I mean there isn't a definitive version of any fairy tale, there's just a million different tellings." (No transcript available).

    Has the spread of fanworks reached a tipping point? Write about your evidence in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • Events Calendar for April

    By Jennifer Rose Hale on Wednesday, 1 April 2015 - 1:26pm
    Message type:

    Banner by caitie of curtains opening to show a stage with the words OTW Events Calendar

    Welcome to our Events Calendar roundup for the month of April! The Events Calendar can be found on the OTW website and is open to submissions by anyone with news of an event. These can be viewed by event-type, such as Academic Conferences, Fan Events and Fests, Legal Events, OTW Events, or Technology Events taking place around the world.

    • Eastercon: Dysprosium. Held every Easter weekend since 1955, Eastercon is also known as the British National Science Fiction Convention. This year's event is April 3-6 in London, England. Guests of honor are Jim Butcher (Dresden Files author), author and filker Seanan McGuire, steampunk artist Herr Döktor (Ian Crichton), and longtime fandom contributor Caroline Mullan. The event also includes the Dalekdrome, in which competitors first making over a remote-controlled Dalek and then running it through an obstacle course.
    • It's the second run of the Hobbit Big Bang, with artist claims opening April 4. Crossovers and AUs are allowed, but stories should focus on The Hobbit (books, films, or RPF). Posting runs from May 10-24. (Share your experience with big bangs on Fanlore.)
    • Nullus Anxietas V, April 10-12 in Sydney, Australia, is a fan-run convention for fans of the Discworld novels and other works by Sir Terry Pratchett. The program has several events that appear each time such as the Gala Dinner, "Maskerade," Charity Auction, Guest of Honour Interview, and "Terry's Bedtime Stories." The conventions regularly feature large attendee-run groups that have been known variously as Guilds and Sects. There are also smaller events such as interviews, games and competitions, guest klatches, and other activities.
    • Star Wars Celebration is an event for all ages. The celebrations began in 1999 and have been held all over the world! The con, April 16-19 in Anaheim, California, contains exhibits, an interactive show floor, screenings, merchandise, celebrity guests, panels, and autograph sessions. Costuming workshops, academic discussions, behind-the-scenes insights, fan films, and sneak peeks at the future of Star Wars are all elements of Celebration as well. (Find fan experiences with Star Wars Celebration on Fanlore.)
    • For 30 years, Studio Ghibli has produced some of Japan's most popular and profitable films, and yet, beyond the work of famous film director Hayao Miyazaki, many of Studio Ghibli's achievements remain unknown outside of Japan. Spirited Discussions: Exploring 30 Years of Studio Ghibli is a one-day conference, the first of its kind, and aims to investigate the meanings of Studio Ghibli, and its significance to Japanese and global culture. It is April 18 in Cardiff, Wales.
    • There are several roles to play in After Camlann: A Big Bang Challenge for BBC's Merlin, and all signups are open now--for writers, artists, betas, and "cheerleaders." The writer signup deadline is April 20, artists should sign up by May 30, and posting will take place in August.
    • Figments & Filaments, April 24-26 in Kansas City, Kansas, is a celebration of "costuming & cosplay in all of its various genres and applications."
    • Interested in historical RPF? History Fest, a first-ever prompt fest for "fanworks about historical figures," is accepting prompt fills through April 30. Fills can be fanfic, fanart, or mixes, and there is no required minimum level of historical significance. (Learn more about RPF on Fanlore.)
    • Free Comic Book Day 2015 will take place Saturday, May 2. This is expected to be the largest FCBD ever, with over 5.6 million comics given away to visitors at 2,100 participating comic shops.
    • Shatterdome Seattle, May 3 in Seattle, Washington, is the only Pacific Rim fan convention on the Pacific Rim. It is a one-day event featuring a private showing of the movie, cosplay and trivia contests, and panel discussions. The convention is for fans by fans. Go Pacific Rim on the Pacific Rim! (Discover more about Pacific Rim fandom on Fanlore.)

    Calls for Papers this month come from:

    • The Third Annual Fandom and Neomedia Studies (FANS) Conference, in Dallas, Texas, in June, is issuing a call for papers on all aspects of being a fan. Abstracts are due April 30.
    • The Fans, Videogames, and History anthology's editors invite proposals for chapters addressing historicising game fandom; fan contributions to game history; and methodological reflections on studying historic game fandom. The deadline is April 30.
    • Intensities: The Journal of Cult Media invites papers that will interrogate the film adaptation of the 50 Shades of Grey novel series from "a plethora of new perspectives including industry, text, and reception analysis." Topics may include fans and fanfiction; kink, BDSM and sexual politics; and social networking and the blogosphere. Papers are due April 30.

    Help out a researcher!

    This month we have received a request for research participation from Jean Drzyzgula at St. Mary's College of Maryland. As part of her thesis for an undergraduate degree, she is conducting research on *fandom and identity exploration* under the oversight of Dr. Iris Ford.

    The purpose of this research study is threefold: to understand the role participation in media fandoms has on the development of personal identities for young MOGAI (LGBT, Queer) people; to understand the extent to which participation in media fandoms has impacted participants’ identities; and to understand how these trends impact individuals participating in them.

    Note that survey participants must be at least 18 years of age. You can find the survey online; a consent agreement is included on the main page.

    Contact information is jadrzyzgula [at] smcm [dot] edu and Icford [at] smcm [dot] edu.

    The final paper and any future works will be shared with the community, and some limited portions of the data set collected may be available depending on if it is judged to not impact confidentiality (and with advisor approval).

    If you have requests for research participation, please view our policy for inclusion at our website.

    The OTW encourages anyone to submit an event that's not already listed, and to check out the calendar throughout the year!

  • OTW Fannews: For the Fun of It

    By Janita Burgess on Tuesday, 24 March 2015 - 5:00pm
    Message type:

    OTW Fannews banner by Robyn with the text that reads for the fun of it in rainbow tie-dye colours

    • featured a 12 year old boy who has published Minecraft fanfiction. "The book is presently available in Kindle format...Scott said he hadn’t set out to pen a novel. Rather, he merely doodled the story for fun, something for he and his friends to look over...It wasn’t until his mother encouraged him to continue it that he began to seriously entertain the possibility of a book." While his success has so far been small, it's still been important. "'It’s an awesome experience to know somebody other than my parents liked the book,' he said."
    • Apparently the Cosmo girl is now a fanfic writer. For those yet unpublished fanfiction writers, Cosmopolitan pointed the way to success in fanfiction writing. Included in their 8 steps were "Don't spend too much time coming up with Most Original Story Ever. Just start writing" and "Prove you're a true fan by incorporating Easter eggs."
    • Some have noticed the thin line between gossip and fanfiction, but Tablet Mag offered a look at religion in fanfiction. "[T]hough I am generally dismayed by fanfic about real people (our intern Gabi pointed me to a clueless and shudder-inducing fantasy in which Harry and Louis of the boy band One Direction are a Jew and a Nazi getting hot-n-heavy in a concentration camp), who could object to a wee tale about Jon Stewart inviting Rachel Maddow, Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper, and Keith Olbermann to his Seder? Meanwhile, in Hanukkah ficdom, I was utterly tickled by “Chag Sammy-ach,”...that gives us Sam and Dean Winchester, the demon fighters of Supernatural, battling the titular monsters of the award-winning children’s book Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins."
    • The Guardian interviewed author Susie Day about her short story centered on Sherlock fandom and LGBT protagonists. "It’s fair to say, not a lot of research was required for the Sherlock side of the story. And it’s true, Shirin and Candy could’ve been brought together by their mutual love of a cricketing Time Lord and his favourite ginger schoolboy, or quiffy John Smith and his Mister Master… or Sunnydale witches… muppets in space… Spooky and Dana… Dean Winchester and his car…I’m fascinated by reception history: the way that when and how we watch impacts on how we ‘do’ fandom. The Reichenbach Fall was a unique TV event, the agonising wait that followed even more so. For 717 days, continuing that story (how Sherlock did it, what happens when John finds out he’s alive) belonged to fandom."

    Which fandom worlds do you know the most about? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

    We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, podcast, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent OTW Fannews post. Links are welcome in all languages! Submitting a link doesn't guarantee that it will be included in a Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.


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