OTW Fannews: Honoring fanworks

  • Fan films tend to be a particularly difficult and time consuming type of fanwork given their collaborative nature, whether they are animated or live action. At least for some gamers though, the best sort of fanwork is that which creates new games, though having projects shut down after so much time and effort are always a concern. Perhaps this was why the site EuroGamer had to clarify an earlier story that suggested Microsoft was barring fanworks from utilizing Halo content. “The majority of everything the community makes currently is fine, as long as they are not basically running a big Halo-based business or using Halo as if the IP was its own property. That isn’t a change to our policy, simply a clarification and update of the dry legal language, and as we’ve mentioned, even that ‘new’ language was actually updated months ago. We don’t have squads of lawyers waiting in the wings to go after folks making machinima, or showing off their skills in Halo.”
  • Discussions such as these, which focus on content owner permission, tend to crop up with other fanworks as well, such as this take on a brand designer’s house sigils for Game of Thrones. “Crescenzi’s finished product, which comprises some 42 crests on a poster, is undeniably beautiful. However, he is selling them as prints, which somewhat alters the project from being a labor of love to a vehicle for profit. That makes us very curious to see GoT author Martin’s take on them, as he is famously prickly about fan fiction, particularly where it concerns profit.”
  • Yet fans, too, can be concerned about focusing on creators, even when discussing other fanworks, such as this one on podfic vs. written fanfiction. As one fan quoted by the Daily Dot stated “‘I wonder how the fic author feels about the fact that the podfic is apparently oh so special and famous (with the fic itself being apparently unimportant compared to the reader’s performance)’.” Meanwhile, “Fans of podfic, feeling battered by arguments likening them to unoriginal plagiarists and bad cover artists, rallied with a podfic appreciation meme, where appreciative readers and other podficcers could praise podficcers in comments. ”
  • Another often unappreciated fan creation, albeit usually outside of fandom, is slash. At least one site though, After Elton, decided that it should be celebrated. “We were blown away by the internet explosion that was the Ultimate Slash Madness Tourney, and it occurred to us that a regular weekly column on the subject of slash might be a great fit for AfterElton. The name for such a column was easy: The Shipping News. The only catch was who to write it?…Even after reluctantly eliminating a dozen impressive submissions, we we’re [sic] still left with five great people we wanted to work with. The happy solution we came up with was a weekly column penned by a rotating roster of slash experts.” And the appreciation wasn’t only by the AE site. As one of their contributors noted in the inaugural column, “Can we just take a moment to appreciate how many celebrities pimped their show’s fave pairings in the AfterElton Ultimate Slash Madness Tourney? In addition to Misha Collins, Colton Haynes and the rest, we had John Barrowman and David Hewlett urging their fanbases to vote. Gone are the days when fans were on one side of canon and creators, producers, and actors were on the other.”
  • At least one fanwork that definitely got a place of honor recently was the AO3, which has had its kudos icon memorialized on a user’s skin. Consider us chuffed!

If you’re a slash lover, a fan film maker, a gamer, or have your own OTW-related tattoos, why not put together an entry on 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 roundup post, and inclusion of a link doesn’t mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.