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Posted by Kiri Van Santen


Official banner from the Ink Stained Fingers archive, of spilt ink

Ink Stained Fingers, a haven for Harry Potter slash and femslash fan fiction and fan art, is moving to the Archive of Our Own (AO3).

In this post:

Background explanation

The Ink Stained Fingers archive was created at a difficult time in fandom. FF.net had just outlawed explicit slash, and several Harry Potter fandom archives had to impose strict limitations on stories allowed to their sites because of their host’s regulations. Open archives were also receiving Cease & Desist letters from publishers and closing. At the same time, writers in the HP fandom were expanding their horizons with stories featuring mpreg, non-con sex, BDSM, kink, bestiality, and explicit slash and femslash. A decision was made on the Snape-slash mailing list to locate a host platform that would accept a no-holds-barred slash archive, and to create that archive for everyone to use. Over the next 10 years, over 3,300 stories would be uploaded to this archive.

Fast-forward to 2014, when the web-world is much different. Small and medium single-fandom sites with less accessible search capabilities are giving way to large multi-fandom sites where every kind of story and pairing is allowed and searching is easy. Fandom itself is more accepting of stories that push the edge. During the last year, only 2 stories have been uploaded to ISF, primarily due to the age of the posting interface and the lack of new readership. It was either time for a face-lift, or time to move our stories elsewhere. After polling the readership, it was agreed that moving the collection to AO3 was the way to best serve the Harry Potter fandom, to preserve these stories for the future, and even lure in new readers.

Open Doors will be working with Diana Williams to import the Ink Stained Fingers archive' into a separate, searchable collection with its own identity. We will begin manually importing works from Ink Stained Fingers to the AO3 collection in January 2015.

What does this mean for creators who have work on Ink Stained Fingers?

This is the part where we ask for your help!

1. If you already have an AO3 account and have posted your ISF works there, please contact Open Doors with your ISF pseud(s) and e-mail address(es), so that we won’t import your stories. (For instructions on mass-adding stories to the new collection on the AO3, InkStainedFingers, please see the Open Doors website.)

2. If you don’t already have an AO3 account but would like one to import your stories yourself, please contact Open Doors with your ISF pseud(s), and the preferred e-mail address to send the AO3 invite to. (For instructions on importing works and adding them to the InkStainedFingers collection, please see the Open Doors website.)

3. If you don’t already have an AO3 account but would like one, as well as assistance importing your works, please contact Open Doors with your ISF pseud(s), and the preferred e-mail address to send the AO3 invite to. (Once your account is set up, let us know your AO3 name, and we can transfer your works to you.)

4. If you would NOT like your works moved, please contact Open Doors with your ISF pseud(s) and e-mail address(es) so that we will not add them. (If you would not mind them being preserved but do not want your name attached to them any longer, please let us know that too—we can orphan your works instead of leaving them behind to be deleted.)

All works archived on a creator’s behalf will be attributed with the creator’s name in the byline of the work. As we import works, we will e-mail notifications to the address associated with the work.

All imported works will be set to be viewable only by logged-in AO3 users. Once you claim your works, you can make them publicly-viewable if you choose. After 3 months, all unclaimed imported works will be made visible to all visitors.

If you no longer have access to the email account associated with your Ink Stained Fingers account, please contact Open Doors and we'll help you out. (If you've posted the stories elsewhere, or have an easy way to verify that they're yours, that's great; if not, we will work with Diana to confirm your claims.)

If you still have questions...

If you have further questions, visit the Open Doors FAQ page, contact the Open Doors committee, or leave a comment on this post and we'll respond as soon as we can.

We'd also love it if fans could help us preserve the story of Ink Stained Fingers on Fanlore. If you're new to wiki editing, no worries! Check out the new visitor portal, or ask the Fanlore Gardeners for tips.

Ink Stained Fingers has been delighted to serve the Harry Potter slash community and looks forward to a future as part of the AO3--and we're equally delighted to welcome this archive aboard!

- The Open Doors team


Git Security Vulnerability

Dec. 20th, 2014 10:01 pm
fu: Close-up of Fu, bringing a scoop of water to her mouth (Default)
[staff profile] fu posting in [site community profile] dw_dev
A critical security vulnerability has been announced for Git which affects Windows/Mac. Make sure you update your clients!

The Github announcement has a bunch of useful links to clients. If you're on a Mac and use Homebrew, that one has also been updated. I believe macports has as well, but double-check to be sure.
yvi: picture of Faith's face (Buffy - Faith)
[personal profile] yvi
By now, I have pretty much been sick (with various stuff) for three out of the last seven weeks. I also haven't really seen the sun since... Sometime in mid-November? I pretty much only left the house for working and out of these seven weeks even that wasn't the case for 9 days of sick leave. This is getting me down big time and while watching Netflix can be nice (currently binging "Call the Midwife" and "30 Rock") I am getting what in German we call Lagerkoller. Cabin fever.

Gah. I need to go for a walk later. First step : shower and get dressed.
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Posted by Racialicious Team

Following in the footsteps of trailblazer Melissa Harris Perry, two more braincrushes just launched shows on MSNBC’s Shift streaming media brand.

Maria Teresa Kumar, co-founder of Voto Latino with Rosario Dawson, is now anchoring “Changing America.

And Janet Mock, the queen of Redefining Realness, is set to launch her progressive pop culture show this week. We will update here when the clip is available.


The post Janet Mock and Maria Teresa Kumar Launch MSNBC Shows appeared first on Racialicious - the intersection of race and pop culture.

OTW Fannews: Small Scale Fandom

Dec. 18th, 2014 06:34 pm
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Posted by Janita Burgess


Banner by Rachel of a generic Newspaper banner with the OTW logo and the words OTW Fannews

  • The Baker Orange featured a campus fangirl who discussed her fannish history. "Although she chooses to forget about her fangirling over the Twilight series, she says it was the show that 'started it all.' When she went to the midnight premier for the first movie, the atmosphere of the event really turned her on to the idea of being a fangirl. 'It was a bunch of fans getting together. I think thats what made it so much fun because everybody was there because they wanted to see the movie the second it came out... Then I realized that there were fandoms for tv shows and books, all the fun stuff... It’s really easy to get so involved with it when your on social media. It makes it a lot easier to freak out with people who understand."
  • Wisconsin Public Radio's Central Time show featured a fanfiction discussion in which a few guests and callers discussed being fanfic writers. Asked if there were interactions with her readers one writer said, "There is and sometimes it's not always an equivalent exchange, because once you post something it's out there whether or not you want critique or commentary, once it's out there you're going to get that critique. If it's something where I'm working with someone because I do co-write with a friend, we do a lot of give and take. Or I may post a snippet and say "I'm stuck with this idea...if you were writing this what would you do?" (No transcript available).
  • ZeeNews India was among several sites discussing an upcoming documentary on Rajinikanth fans. Said co-producer Rinku Kalsy, "Joyjeet Pal...who is also the producer of the documentary, used to tell me how small kids in Rajini's state are affected by his stardom... They aspire to be like his characters portrayed in the film. How they look up to Rajini and parents are also happy with their children's decision of becoming like him. So, we thought we should explore this further."
  • AV Club wrote about a Super Heroes vs. Game Heroes video on YouTube. "It’s essentially a fan film with deeply committed cosplayers mixing it up and uttering various catchphrases or obvious dialogue for their characters, but the clever conceits (one of the Minecraft bricks being the Tesseract, dimension jumping, and the resolution of the fight) elevate it beyond most fan creations. The special effects are especially impressive for this short film, with many aspects of the games and movie versions of these characters being perfectly replicated by a much smaller studio."

What details about fandom make it personal for you? 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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Posted by Guest Contributor

By Guest Contributor Priya R. Chandrasekaran, special to Racialicious

A month or so ago, I got into a debate with a friend at work about racism in the podcast Serial.

Serial, a widely popular production of WBEZ Chicago, follows journalist Sarah Koenig week to week as she investigates a fifteen-year old case in which an eighteen year-old Korean American girl was found strangled after she went missing. Her then eighteen year-old Pakistani American ex-boyfriend was charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping. He has been in prison since 2000, all the while maintaining his innocence.

Specifically, my friend and I had different responses to an article by Jay Caspain Kang accusing Koenig of “white reporter privilege.” She felt that Kang was too quick to read an exoticizing impulse into Koenig’s reactions when, for example, Koenig was probably startled by how “normal” a young woman’s diary seemed on the eve of its author meeting a violent death. Also, she said, Koenig the storyteller has to make her characters relatable to her listeners. But “relatability” is precisely what Kang problematizes, I replied, it assumes an underlying “colorblind ideal” that “reads ‘white.’” I brought up Julia Carrie Wong’s charge that Koenig “fail[s] to draw an distinctions between…. a first-generation Korean immigrant [experience] and [a] second-generation life in a Pakistani-American family,” and that she gives her subjects “model minority treatment.” But then… the descriptions Koenig uses were offered by the people she interviewed, not ones she coined.

So is she accountable for them?

A colleague joined in: Koenig probably assumes her audience has racial sensitivity.

I disagreed: Kang is right that the journalist comes “from the same demographic as her ‘intended audience’” in a context where “staffs of radio stations, newspapers, and magazines tend to be overwhelmingly white.”

But if being white is the fact of her experience, this colleague said, do we hold it against her?

As I walked home in the Brooklyn cold, I was thinking about this, and thinking hard. I thought about it when I passed a block away from the hospital where I was born. It was where my parents first worked when they immigrated to this country in the early 1970s, and it played an important role in the once poor neighborhood that was mostly African American, Dominican, and Puerto Rican until it was shut down because of urban disinvestment; now it’s an apartment building housing mostly white tenants on a block with skyrocketing rents. And I kept thinking about it throughout that week.

Then at a conference on the Black Radical Tradition and Cultures of Liberation, Cedric Robinson, historian and author of Black Marxism, said he believed that just because playwright Eugene O’Neill was white didn’t mean he couldn’t write about African Americans because “race is a fiction [though racism is not], while humans are incredibly complex.” In other words, questions of ethics or solidarity might have less to do with categories of identity than with what activist-scholars Gina Dent and Angela Davis suggested the next day – how you go about your work, the “questions you ask,” and your positional “reflexivity.”

The conversation with my friend made me consider Koenig as a person with a daunting project and good intentions. But I also remembered how, years ago, this same friend sent me a speech called “To Hell with Good Intentions.” It was almost fifty years ago when Ivan Illich had stood before an audience of US Peace Corps volunteers and students in Mexico and basically said, come to learn or to face yourselves, but don’t come to help. Remembering Illich made me realize that what is troubling about Serial is only partially encompassed by Kang’s and Wong’s critiques. Illich was disrupting a narrative that appeared innocuous and good even as it perpetuated social and economic hierarchies. On a far smaller scale, Serial is such a narrative.

It’s not the details in Serial per se, but how these details function in combination with what is left unsaid that unsettles. Koenig and her team do not play a thoughtful role in mediating the effects of their production on their audience and their subjects. Koenig seems largely unaware that people’s observations aren’t just objective or subjective, but shaped by ways they have internalized circulating stereotypes.

This brings me back to a few years before the tragic events of this podcast, to a suburban high school in Long Island, New York, and to a sociology teacher calling a brown girl – me — to the front of the room. He then asked the mostly white class, “Who’s her closest friend?” With hardly any debate the class came to consensus that it was another South Asian girl. Someone I couldn’t stand.

My teacher’s using me to illustrate his point made a bigger impression than his subsequent lecture about stereotypes. Or rather: together these two elements comprised a masterful lesson on how to use someone’s “difference” while simultaneously speaking about equality and “sameness.” I don’t think my teacher meant to humiliate me. He was trying to create a narrative and, in his mind I guess, needed to insert me into it to move along the plot. But that he chose me out of everyone in the class and didn’t ask me beforehand is no coincidence. And his having chose me had consequences.

In Serial, even initial observations of friends, acquaintances, and teachers were likely shaped by model minority tropes; but Koenig doesn’t acknowledge that. If my teacher used me as a kind of teaching tool, it feels like Koenig uses a teenage girl who died as the necessary victim in her mystery plot. The problem isn’t that Koenig doesn’t tell the audience more about her (she does try to pepper in a few details), but that she doesn’t lead the audience to imagine that there is. As countless writers, musicians, artists, directors, journalists, etc. have shown: rendering someone human isn’t about making them “relatable” through sameness; it’s about tapping into the complex, contradictory, fullness of someone’s being.

The “model minority” myth to which Wong alludes didn’t appear out of thin air, and it was a sharp turn from how, for example, Chinese factory and railroad laborers of earlier eras were racialized.

The term itself began to circulate in media and political discourse just around the passage of the 1965 Immigration Act, which wedged open a door to immigrants from the “darker nations.” That this legislation even came into being had to do with the tremendous effect of the Civil Rights Movement on challenging and broadening who could be deemed “American” and what it meant to claim that identity.

However, it wasn’t just motivated by progressive thought, but also by “professional” labor shortages (particularly in urban areas in part due to white flight into suburbs after desegregation) and efforts to forge geopolitical alliances with countries like Pakistan during the Cold War years. In the initial waves, many new immigrants had class or social privilege in their home countries and institutional connections here. My parents, for example, were given labor contracts to be medical residents and their flights were paid for as a salary advance; if they started on the ground and without money in their pockets, they were also given a ladder and the security of a paycheck. Like my parents, many post-1965 immigrants initially lived in close proximity to minorities who came from lineages of slavery, segregation, lynchings, exploitation, subjugation, and/or exclusion within the US only to find that hard-won battles like school desegregation wouldn’t initiate change without more struggle ( the Baltimore Superintendent maintained de facto segregation after the mid-1950s through districting). If democratic antiracist and antiwar upsurges within the US connected with anticolonial struggles in some of the very countries from which new immigrants came, racial divisions could also be exploited by harnessing the various prejudices and insecurities new immigrants brought with them (in part an effect of colonialism) and the way in which the Korean and Vietnam Wars, Japanese internment, and decades of excluding Asians from entering the US imprinted the psyche of differently positioned Americans just as national, state, and municipal governments were setting on devastating course of disinvestment from public infrastructures and launching a highly racialized “War on Drugs” (consider here, the main witness’s fear about being arrested).

In this churning cauldron, “model minorities” became a foil for “bad minorities.” Media promulgated “success stories” insinuated that class mobility was the product of hard work and the right attitude – not made in the trenches of history.

I don’t expect Serial to take all this on. But – dates, names, and a few exceptions aside – it’s like the podcast could have happened almost anywhere. Been about almost anyone. Taken place at almost any time. It portrays a world of relationships that don’t have social and historical density, a world in which these aforementioned events never happened – but for the way the consequences of their having happened surface unreflexively.

Moreover, in Serial, “model minority” descriptions are also “good girl” images, with unexamined misogynistic undertones. What does it mean that our shock about a murder of a teenage girl depends upon her seeming “normal” (to an imagined white middle/upper middle class audience)? Women and girls, as well as people who contest boundaries of gender and sexual “norms” in this country and beyond are habitually persecuted for acts of violence perpetrated on them. This is why it’s dangerous to hitch your audience’s sense of injustice to tropes of “relative innocence” – to borrow a term from Geographer Ruth Wilson Gilmore. At one point, Koenig uses a clip to illustrate a potential juror’s prejudicial beliefs about how Muslim men treat women. But she never touches the fact that violence against women and intimate murders such as this happen all the time in the United States across every kind of demographic; it is as “American” as pie.

What Kang calls “white reporter privilege” I call weak storytelling. This weakness is accompanied by ethical oversights. I have wondered many times what it’s like for this girl’s loved ones to be subjected to widespread serial speculation about her death by people who don’t really care about her. Or what it would be like for them to walk by someone wearing a tee shirt from the subreddit Serial “community?” No doubt, addressing miscarriages of justice can hurt victims’ families, and this is not a reason to turn the other way. But it can and should frame how we take on such projects – both content and form. I stopped listening to Serial a while ago, in part because of my discomfort with how my sense of suspense and entertainment was predicated on (and simultaneously dissassociated from) people’s real pain. (I recently listened to the last few episodes in one stretch in order to update this commentary).

In our conversation, my friend had reminded me that the UVA Innocence Project is now investigating the case (friends and family of the accused attempted to solicit them earlier and failed) and that there are literally thousands of people who have signed an online petition to “free” the convicted ex-boyfriend. Now there is also a crowd source webpage to solve the crime. And listeners on reddit are raising funds for a scholarship in the victim’s name (without asking her family about using her name). I will be heartened if good comes out of these campaigns, but I am not heartened by what compels them.

Obsessive scrutiny of whether or not this young man is “guilty” of this crime circumscribes a paper thin vision of justice. It hinges on how Koenig, her team, and their listeners should stand in judgment of a Muslim American man in a post-September 11, 2001 era of rampant surveillance of Muslim Americans. It articulates with representations of dark people as strangers who white people (or “good Americans” of all fabricated “races”) must recognize, fear, or save. It depoliticizes and individualizes major social problems, and suggests the relationship between truth and justice is simply subjective at a time when private prisons are expanding exponentially and more people are caged in the United States than anywhere else on earth.

And they are predominantly people of color.

An article in Bloomberg Business Week estimates that Koenig probably paid about $2500 in phone bills to Global Tel-Link, a company which preys on incarcerated people and their families to make a profit. She doesn’t once contexualize her calls in this reality, and yet every episode opens with a recording that states the company’s name, in essence giving it free advertising. The problem isn’t that Serial centers on an individual case but the myopic manner in which it does so. When Koenig, to her credit, finally gives examples of how racism, Islamaphobia, and problems with the defense might have led to a false conviction, she brackets these details with a statement (at the beginning) that she doesn’t “buy” that racism was a determining issue even if it “crept in” and the comment (at the end) that “maybe he’s a sociopath.” In this episode, she chooses interview clips that reinforce Islamaphobic stereotypes without doing the work necessary to destabilize them.

Moreover, an episode that “deals with race” in a series whose metanarrative relies on using, scrutinizing, individualizing, and judging people who aren’t white is kind of like the difference between my teacher’s words and his real lesson.

The limitations of Serial’s narrative-ethical scope has led listeners to dig intrusively into other people’s Facebook accounts and posit speculations. The impulse to free someone might seem like an uncomplicatedly good thing.

But, many of recipients of humanitarian “aid” have spoken about the negative consequences of “good intentions” when givers don’t understand the social situation into which they are intervening. Furthermore, Michael Brown’s parents in Ferguson, Missouri or the parents of a fourteen-year old child killed in by US drones in Zowi Sidgi, Pakistan might remind us that just knowing who did it – who killed the child you raised — does not mean you get justice.

It might mean you get more injustice.

What can we make of Serial’s incredible fanfare at this particular moment in the history of race in the US? On the one hand, the non-indictment charges for policemen Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri and Daniel Pantaleo in Staten Island, New York have sparked protests throughout the country about state violence on black and brown bodies, as well as a wider public conversation about the need for systematic change. On the other hand, “Band Aid 30” has just put out a new version of “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” that presents an image of black people and “Africans” as frightening, contagious, and deathly in order to raise funds to stop the spread of ebola in Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Liberia (thirty years ago it was about famine and “poverty” in Ethiopia): “There’s a world outside your window – and it’s a world of dread and fear/Where a kiss of love can kill you – and there’s death in every tear.”

In the midst of this – as a subsequent conversation with my friend helped me to see – Serial has seized upon a general disillusionment in this country with the (political, economic, justice) system and the desire of people with privilege to keep that world “of dread and fear” outside their windows. After all, change is hard.

So I guess it’s not a surprise that Serial has been hailed as innovative. Most truly innovative things today are labeled crazy, impractical, or too…something. That is, if they rise above the economic impediments to see the light of day. “Innovative” has somehow come to mean a new way of packaging what writer Amiri Baraka called the “changing same.”

Serial is innovative in how it invites listeners to feel sympathy, antipathy, and the desire to prove what they have figured out.

But innovations in ethical thought and action reside elsewhere – as theorist Judith Butler reminds us in the movie Imagined Life – in sites of discomfort, uncertainty, and internal struggle.

The post What’s the Verdict? Racism and the Case Against Serial appeared first on Racialicious - the intersection of race and pop culture.

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December 18th, 2014next


– Ryan

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Posted by Racialicious Team

Something else happened that day. I realized that I really liked being an anonymous kid on a street corner in L.A. I realized that I really liked not giving a solitary fuck about what anyone was doing, not even myself. I realized that in some way it was my natural state.

Two days later, I started dressing differently.

I cut my own hair into a weird nappy mushroom top. I took this goofy trench coat I had and sliced it at the waist with a pair of scissors. On the chest I sewed the patch that I earned in a middle school spelling bee. I wrote graffiti on the sleeve in Sharpie. I took to wearing pajama bottoms and black chucks.

In short, the combination of Parliament and Hollywood had instantly funked me out.

And it worked, because the first time I left the house in this new uniform, I experienced something that I never had before. You might call it freedom. Abandon. Cultural immunity. I had a self. It was adolescent and awkward and trying too hard. But it was my very own self. It was a me that was all mine. It didn’t matter what anyone thought about it. For a brief moment in time, I simply didn’t give a fuck.

And that’s an important thing. When you have come to regard your very skin color as an insufferable disease, when you have to punch other people in the mouth just so you can be ok with who you are, not giving a fuck is the single most divine experience you can ever have.

- Carvell Wallace, “How to Raise Hell in Three Steps: on RUN-D.M.C, Parliament, Blackness and Revolution,” Pitchfork

The post Quoted: Carvell Wallace on Run-D.M.C. and Personal Revolution appeared first on Racialicious - the intersection of race and pop culture.

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Posted by Janita Burgess


OTW Nylon toteOTW Black Zippered Tote

2014 is almost over, and all of us at the OTW are grateful for the tremendous support shown by our members and donors this year. If you've been thinking about donating to the OTW but haven't done so yet, you may want to take a look at your finances and see whether it would be to your benefit to do so before December 31. Donations to the OTW are tax deductible in the United States. And if you're employed, please find out if your employer offers matching donations! Every dollar you give could be worth two dollars to the OTW.

If you donate US$50 or more, you can choose to receive a thank-you gift, such as our Nylon or Black Zippered Totes (pictured above).

If you have questions about donating, please check out our membership FAQ or contact us.

Thank you for your support, and we wish everyone a good 2015!


International Fanworks Day is Coming

Dec. 15th, 2014 05:11 pm
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Posted by Kiri Van Santen


Banner by Ania of various fanworks including cosplay, text, and visual art

International Fanworks Day will take place on February 15, 2015! The OTW is making plans to celebrate, but we also want to know what you will be doing!

What is International Fanworks Day?

A day to promote fan creativity in all of its forms, all over the world. Whether in text, image, audio or multimedia, and whatever their nation or language of origin, we use fanworks to express love for our fandoms and forge our own communities and traditions. On International Fanworks Day (IFD), we want fans everywhere to show how important fanworks are to them.

So how do we celebrate it?

Here are some ideas -- and we'd love to hear more from you!

* Post a fanwork to the International Fanworks Day tag at the Archive of Our Own or add the tag to wherever else you host your work.

* Participate in the drabble challenge we'll be holding across our OTW News sites.

* Link to five fanworks where you've left feedback in comments to our IFD post on February 15th.

* You tell us!

Look for further announcements as we get closer to February 15!


OTW Fannews: Profiles in Marketing

Dec. 14th, 2014 06:32 pm
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Posted by Claudia Rebaza


Banner by Erin of Barbie working at a computer with the OTW logo on it, with two adults looking on in the background. The banner reads 'OTW Fannews: Profiles in Marketing'.

  • An increasing number of companies are marketing toward girls and women in tech, but not every attempt to capitalise on the trend is well-executed. NPR covered widespread criticism of Mattel's Barbie: I Can Be A Computer Engineer. “‘It starts so promising; Barbie is designing a game to show kids how computers work,’ said Ribon. […] Brian and Steven take over — and, at the end of the day, Barbie takes credit for the boys' work.” OTW Legal staffer Casey Fiesler, whose feminist remix went viral and was featured in the NPR story, took to her own blog to explain why non-commercial remix is allowed under US copyright law. "It is so amazing how many people care about representation of women in computing, and I’m thrilled and humbled that something I created helped to expand this conversation. I wrote a piece for Slate about the process and the ideas behind Barbie, Remixed, but something I wanted to discuss in more detail was the act of remix itself rather than the critique behind it."
  • TribLIVE reported on a new TV network focused on fandom. "When Pop, a cable network most people probably refer to as TVGN, launches Jan. 14, it will do so with programs that celebrate the continuing ability of such, well, institutions, as New Kids On the Block and 'Everybody Loves Raymond' to cut a swath through popular culture."
  • UK site YouGov researches audiences to determine the characteristics of people with particular interests or fandoms. By using their profiler you could discover that Good Omens fans are more likely to be 40-59 year old males who work in IT, are left leading when it comes to politics, and also are fans of John Barrowman, Stephen Fry, James May, Nathan Fillion and Patrick Moore.
  • The publishing industry is among those wanting to target fans, and a recent conference on the children's book trade included a panel on fanfiction. Meanwhile Wikia is declaring itself "the ultimate source for powerful and relevant pop culture, entertainment and game expertise" and is producing a video series on fandom in 2014 along with Disney's Maker Studios. The idea is to create amateur/professional partnerships. "The partnership has already resulted in some quirky combinations, including one pairing of a devotee of the AMC period drama Mad Men with the creator of the Drinks Made Easy YouTube channel. 'We hope to continue to define projects that allow for creators and super fans to come together and be in the spotlight.'"

What marketing efforts utilizing fans have you spotted? 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.

momijizukamori: (dreamsheep | styles)
[personal profile] momijizukamori posting in [site community profile] dw_dev
Not dead! Just busy with life. But Fu is in the process of converting the widgets on /customize to something less ridiculous, which gives me time to prod some of the problems that have been stumping me.

1) Preserving search results
The order of actions to generate a page of results from the advanced search, as I have it right now, goes like this:
User checks boxes to indicate choices -> user presses 'search' button -> button triggers POST actions -> a query is generated as one of these actions -> query goes to worker -> worker performs search -> worker sends back a list of theme ids

The problem is that POST data is lost on reload/page change, so when you click to see the second page of results (if there are more than one page), all of the query and the results vanish. Most of our other ways of grabbing a set of layouts (by base style, by designer, etc) append the query string to the URL, which is then hidden from the user via routing, but even just the list of search elements has the potential to get unwieldy fast (and the return list is worse)

2) The auto-categorizer
I don't have this working yet because it's not necessary for the new search, just... nice, given we have almost fifteen hundred themes (!!!). The script needs to pull hexcodes out of the style layers (which is all text to the perspective of anything not the S2 compiler). That seems to say 'regex' to me but I don't know if that's safe/the best way to do it.
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Posted by Janita Burgess


Drawing of spotlights withtext in the style of the Hollywood sign that reads OTW Fannews Celebrities and Fandom Risks

  • Discussions about celebrity fandom have popped up on various sites, such as The Guardian's article about the lessons learned from allegations against Bill Cosby. "Before the internet, when the shroud of celebrity mystique was easier to maintain...fans felt less complicit in continuing to swoon over and patronize icons who were rumored to have done heinous things...But now, with bystanders always on hand to serve as amateur chroniclers and distributors of celebrity missteps and misdeeds, it’s hard to obscure or deny to fans what they’ve seen with their own eyes."
  • At SB Nation a similar discussion took place over social issues and sports fandom. "At times, hero worship of sports stars, or even teams as a whole, reaches a point where it can be described as something eerily similar to a cult of personality. That's a culture that can preclude educated opinions on and well-informed public discourse of serious issues involving said star or team. Examples of worst-case scenarios, like those at Steubenville and Penn State, which involve crimes that should still churn stomachs upon reflection, not only harbored such evil acts, but also led to their attempted cover-ups."
  • The Queen's University Journal explored why a connection with celebrities seems to exist. "Spitzberg co-authored an article and study titled 'Fanning the Flames of Fandom: Celebrity Worship, Parasocial Interaction, and Stalking'." In a 2001 study "[s]eventy-five per cent noted they’ve experienced 'strong attachments to more than one celebrity'...'[Parasocial interaction is] the idea that we develop relationships with people who we experience in the media, in much the same sort of way that we experience relationships with people in real life.'"
  • Fandom can be risky for many in more physical ways, whether for Russian women in football fandom or Chinese fans in slash fiction fandom. "'The law doesn’t differentiate between dan mei and gay fiction in any way,' says a 28-year-old writer who asked not to be identified by name. In his view, crackdowns are a function of political whims, 'so if the government decides it’s going to crack down on gay-related content, it’ll just cast a wide net and go for dan mei, too.'"

What aspects of fandom have troubled you? 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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