Fandoms will rule the world!
Ever wonder about the “what ifs” of your favorite shows, books, and animes? What if Grissom and Sara of CSI didn’t get married? What if Aiden of CSI: NY didn’t die? Will it be Danny and Aiden instead of Danny and Lindsay? What if Ichigo finally killed off Aizen of Bleach? What if J.K. Rowling kept Sirius Black and Professor Dumbledore alive?
Somehow, all of us wondered what would have happened if stories took another turn other than what really transpired on the show or the book.
Or maybe we could have just wanted to put some meaning on some interesting tidbits that the original writers left hanging.
These “what ifs” have prompted the creation of fanfiction, its authors and authoresses, and the fanboys and fangirls who have been all too happy in reading alternate twists to the original plot.
But what are the issues on fanfiction? There’s the usual copyright infringement and intellectual property arguments and all the other stuff that come along with them.
Then again, if these issues are so serious, and authors and producers are hell bent on preserving their precious copyrights, then fanfiction.net and fanfiction communities on Livejournal should be long gone by now. And yet they are not.
But I guess that’s not the right argument to preserve the existence of fanfiction.
As a fanfiction writer myself, of course I have a deeper motive for wanting to keep fanfiction alive, but I think that the following arguments still hold true.
1. We’re not seeking profit from writing fanfiction. The best compensation that we could ever have is to let our imaginations run free and for other people to enjoy our works with us.
2. We may be leeches off of the creations of others, but we also add to the hype of the fandom. Instead of looking at us as threats, how about treating us as really appreciative and really dedicated fans who go to the extent of letting the characters and storylines run through our heads and actually exerting creative effort even when the show is off air or even when we set down the book or the manga.
3. Having fans write fanfictions about the show/book/manga/anime/what-have-you is actually a measure of effectiveness. The more fics written about the show/book/manga/anime/what-have-you, the bigger the fanbase. It means that the fans are so involved that they continue to imagine and speculate about the original work.
4. The original writers can leech off of us as much as we leech off of them. Actually, we’d love it if they’d finally come to their senses and see that this pairing is so much better than the original one or that they’d actually feed off of our imaginations.
5. Share the creativity! Writers can share and collaborate with us by just simply reading our fanfics. Maybe they can get inspired for the next season or arc.
6. Because of the Internet’s quality of being such a free space for all, it’s virtually impossible to censor and shut down every fanfiction site. We’ll find more and more places to share our love for fanfiction. This is not a threat. It’s a fact.
7. The biggest benefit: Show loyalty. Brand loyalty. That’s it.
See, not all “copyright infringements” are bad. In today’s age of the Internet and sharing and collaboration, staying clammed up is not the way to go. It’s just about finding a balance with everything.
Visit http://www.fanfiction.net to read fanfics on your favorite shows/books/anime/manga/what-have-you. It’s a fun place, promise.
You can also search for fanfiction communities on http://livejournal.com, and perhaps even join one.
Love goes out to Precky Kwan (causticmonologue.wordpress.com) and her speech for giving me a topic for this post.