Anime and Manga

  • OTW Fannews: Fandom Misunderstandings

    Von Kiri Van Santen am Sonntag, 20 Juli 2014 - 5:28pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Banner by Lisa of a street sign that has been knocked down and is pointing arbitrarily.

    • Attack of the Fanboy put a spotlight on gender segregation in gaming tournaments. "Keeping a few tournaments specifically aimed at females is not an ideal situation, but it does allow a woefully underrepresented part of the population a chance to compete on a professional level. To use the IeSF’s own justification for the initial segregation, many major sports use this method as well. Technically women are allowed in the NBA, but due to various reasons none have been placed on a team. That is why the WNBA exists, to allow a group who would be left out, a chance to compete professionally."
    • While some companies recognize their sport is 'for girls', at The Globe and Mail, Amberly McAteer discussed how many just don't get it. "It’s not just professional baseball that thinks women need extra motivation to support the home team. An official women’s T-shirt from the Pittsburgh Penguins went viral on Twitter because it declared that the wearer 'wants the stick' and loves to 'puck.' Because, of course, women are sex objects. Thanks for your sexist contribution, hockey. The Jays Shop, too, carries mildly insulting women’s gear: sequined tanks, 'meet you in the dugout' deep-vees. The only jerseys available in women’s sizes are indeed the players widely believed to be 'cute,' while the men’s section offers exponentially more."
    • A theater company in Charleston, South Carolina created a play about "the dark side of Twilight fandom". "'Kate & Sam Are Not Breaking Up' is a darkly humorous send-up of Twihard culture and celebrity obsession, with a side of gunplay and a dash of Stephen King's Misery thrown in...The lights come up on Kate and Sam waking from unconsciousness, bound and helpless in the apartment of a crazed superfan named Bill (Andre Hinds). It quickly becomes clear that Bill wants tween America's favorite couple to get back together, and he won't let them go until they do. But the situation really goes to hell when 15-year-old Becky...moderator of the fansite ghostforest.net, shows up and starts laying down the law."
    • A CNN report on manga brought about a heated reaction from fans as well as The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. "As Japan prepares to implement a new law which bans the possession of child pornography but exempts manga and anime, CNN released an over-the-top sensationalist video report this week that demonstrates a profound lack of knowledge about the formats. Much of the report by Tokyo correspondent Will Ripley is devoted to undercover footage of an Akihabara manga shop, which Ripley calls 'a place that caters to young people.' (In fact manga is read by people of all ages.) Over mostly-blurred footage, Ripley describes “magazines and videos so graphic, so sexually explicit, we turned our undercover cameras off.' ...at least one of those blurred-out covers that was too much for CNN’s delicate cameras actually wasn’t pornographic at all.”

    What troubling fandom issues have you come across? Write about them 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 Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Legal Confusion

    Von Kiri Van Santen am Freitag, 18 Juli 2014 - 5:17pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    • The Washington Post was one of many media outlets covering the U.S. Trademark Office's decision to cancel the Redskins trademark registration. "The 99-page decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board said the team’s name and logo are disparaging. It dilutes the Redskins’ legal protection against infringement and hinders the team’s ability to block counterfeit merchandise from entering the country. But its effect is largely symbolic. The ruling cannot stop the team from selling T-shirts, beer glasses and license-plate holders with the moniker or keep the team from trying to defend itself against others who try to profit from the logo."
    • The Wisconsin State Law Library pointed to a book about trademarks and fan-created content in the wake of the Klinger v. Conan Doyle Estate decision. The book in question is about trademarks and fan-created content from the perspective of trademark owners which doesn’t really acknowledge fans’ rights to make fair uses— but instead is about “tolerating” use. It’s an older work, and an example of the way that trademark owners used to assume that they were always the ones who got to decide how their works would be received.
    • io9 put a spotlight on a study about filk. "Women in the filk community are more likely than men to create original melodies to accompany their lyrics, while women are only somewhat more likely to borrow from others' lyrics than are men. Because filk is often viewed as an imitative culture, the tendency of women to depart from that ethos in creating their own melodies seems significant...female respondents were much more likely to define fair use as not profiting from others' work, and somewhat more likely to define it as giving credit to the original author and making private as opposed to public use of a protected work."
    • The YALSA blog posted about Fandom and Fair Use but made some problematic claims. For example, it does not actually discuss what fair use is and provides questionable examples. Crunchyroll claims to be fully licensed and even Disney has now embraced user-generated content. Instead what the YALSA post demonstrates is an example of copyright confusion: people think that some things aren’t “allowed” when in fact either fair use law or licensing is on their side.

    What confusing legal fandom issues have you come across? Write about them 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 Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Investigating Fandom

    Von Janita Burgess am Mittwoch, 16 Juli 2014 - 4:48pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Describe the image in this space for the visually impaired

    • At Research Hazel Robinson discussed how fandom works. "Everyone behaves slightly differently online. So in the same way that a blogger might be more confessional on the internet than they would be in their office, fans will be sillier, more obscene in the privacy of a secluded online spot. The specific behaviours of fans will vary a lot from medium to medium though. Some fans might be quite coy on Twitter, as that’s often used for more cross-fandom/experience discussion and feels more public, whereas they’d be very open and in-depth about their fandom on a specific message-board or community."
    • The New Republic posted about fandom ethics in relation to the World Cup. "Objecting citizens may be overlooking the fact that students all over the world are learning about Brazilian arts, letters, and philosophy due to the attention brought upon the country by the World Cup. For example, this past semester, a student in my course on Latin American thought at Brooklyn College argued that the World Cup in fact represented a serious threat to democracy, given the authoritarian policies installed to organize and realize the Cup. He cited Leonardo Boff, a Brazilian theologian and philosopher, as a source for his concept of a just, participatory democracy...trying to track down all the consequences of buying a ticket from FIFA, coming to Brazil, and participating in the business surrounding the World Cup is impossible and does not get to the heart of the matter."
    • GMA News Online posted about KPop fans and stans. "'Fandom is a fuel of trade,' said Catherine Deen, one of three scholars who spoke about the hallyu phenomenon in the forum 'The Hallyu Mosaic in the Philippines: Framing Perception and Praxis' at the Ateneo Initiative for Korean Studies Conference...last week. In their studies, Deen and fellow speakers Patrick Capili and Gilbert Que surveyed hundreds of fans and major KPop fanclubs in the Philippines, categorizing the fans based on their activities and level of affinity with their idols."
    • The Ogiue Maniax blog discussed American anime fandom. "Historically, anime has not needed its American fanbase. Sure, there have been a lot of viewers, but anime’s domestic market is Japan, and it also finds success around the world, in Europe, South America, and Asia. The US certainly has an online presence when it comes to anime discussion and enthusiasm, but over the years it’s been easy to get the impression that this fandom is a paper tiger, especially when it comes to popular shows among the internet fandom not translating to home video sales...Now, however, not only are American viewers tuning in to catch Toonami and its latest anime, but the shows people are most interested in are also the ones that have developed large fanbases online as well."

    What parts of fandom history do you remember? Write about it 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 Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • The censorship problems faced by anime and manga fans

    Von Claudia Rebaza am Freitag, 11 Juli 2014 - 4:09pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Banner by Erin of a spotlight on an OTW logo with the words 'Spotlight on Legal Issues'

    The following post was written by Fanhackers chair Nele Noppe.

    For fans of manga, anime, and other Japanese media, pointing and laughing at inaccurate mass media portrayals of Japanese pop culture has been something of a sport for decades. A few weeks ago, however, things took a slightly more serious turn.

    The ball got rolling when early in June, the Japanese House of Representatives approved a long-overdue law banning the possession of child pornography. Up to now, creating and distributing child pornography was as forbidden in Japan as anywhere else, but “simple possession” had not yet been criminalized. The new law applies only to “real” child pornography and leaves alone completely fictional depictions of underage characters in sexual situations in manga, anime and other media. This exception came about after vocal protests from manga publishers, creators, fans and free speech rights activists. The story was widely reported in non-Japanese media. However, most of these reports focused on handwringing about Japan's “failure” to clamp down on sexually explicit manga. Most shared was a CNN article filled with outrage about how the new law supposedly permits Japanese bookstores to fill their shelves with shocking cartoon porn about children.

    As the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF) pointed out in a scathing reaction post, CNN’s report was highly misleading and uninformed, misrepresenting manga in general as pornographic and painting the “freedom of speech" arguments against the new law as no more than the lobbying of a large industry bent on making profit from icky virtual child pornography. The comments section of the CNN article quickly filled with anime and manga fans fact-checking the text and refuting its arguments.

    Their support, and that of the CBLDF, was of some small comfort to Japanese creators and activists who were aghast at their portrayal in Western media. Simple complaining about "Japanese cartoon porn" is, by now, no more than sadly familiar. Sensation-hungry Western news outlets have been creating miniature moral panics out of that ever since they realized that in Japan, comics and animation are media that are used to express not just "kiddy stuff" but every kind of content, including pornography.

    This uproar went further in the sense that it represented manga creators and free speech activists as money-grubbing child pornographers. CNN and other news sources seemed unaware that in Japan, unlike in the United States, laws that restrict depictions of sexuality in media actually are a very serious freedom of speech issue, and have been so since immediately after WWII. Japanese creators and publishers of sexually explicit material who yell about free speech rights are not just demanding the right to do whatever they like; they are continuing half a century of protests against arbitrary and outdated censorship laws.

    A look at Japanese legal history

    Japanese authorities have used and continue to use laws against “obscenity” to attempt to control what gets published in the country. Before and during WWII, such laws were among several used to suppress any speech that did not support Japanese militarism. After the war, freedom of speech was guaranteed in Japan’s new constitution, but still restricted by only one remaining bit of pre-war legislation: Article 175 of the Criminal Code of Japan, which prohibits the sale or distribution of materials that contain “obscenity” (waisetsu).

    Other countries at the time also attempted to legally curtail “obscene” media, of course, but Japan’s anti-obscenity law turned out to have bigger teeth than many others. For instance, in the 1950s and 1960s, the US, Britain, and Japan all held separate trials about obscenity contained in the D.H. Lawrence novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover. In the US and Britain, the trials ended in acquittals, greatly reducing the subsequent relevancy of obscenity laws for media in those countries. In Japan, however, Lady Chatterly was judged obscene. The victory of the prosecution in this first postwar Japanese “obscenity” trial was an important precedent, because it confirmed that obscenity laws were a stick that authorities could beat publishers and authors with whenever they were displeased with the direction Japan’s creative sector was going in. Lady Chatterley was the first in a series of protracted and much-publicized “obscenity” trials that covered many different media, from books to film to photographs to manga. (See Cather for in-depth analysis of censorship in Japan.)

    Far from being discouraged, the Japanese media industry made dodging of the censors into an art form. Manga creators, for instance, got very creative in figuring out ways to depict naked bodies and sex without showing pubic hair (long a no-no) or genitalia. Article 175 and related laws and local ordinances were applied so rarely and so inconsistently that the creators and publishers who did end up getting charged were usually very surprised to be singled out. Still, many of the obscenity trials turned into platforms for broad swathes of Japan’s literary world and media industry to try and wrestle back their right to publish freely from the state. Many feel that bureaucrats and police have no business deciding what people are allowed to read in order to protect a vague and constantly-shifting idea of "public morality".

    No matter how rarely used, laws against obscenity, and (especially since the 1990s) a mushrooming multitude of local ordinances against “harmful” media, do influence what can get published, what can be on library shelves, and what people can write and draw. The chilling effect of even potential legal troubles was - and still is - considerable for authors and publishers. Only weeks ago, a new manga by an assistant mangaka working on the popular series Attack on Titan was cancelled because its publisher feared that it might run afoul of a local ordinance in Tokyo aimed at curtailing the spread of “unhealthy publications”.

    The fandom effect

    Censors’ attention turned to manga and fan culture after 1989, when a serial killer turned out to possess large amounts of sexually explicit anime and be a participant in Comiket, Japan’s largest convention for fan manga (doujinshi). This led Japanese media to engage in what fans called "otaku bashing".

    Although stigmatization of fans as socially maladjusted and possibly dangerous loners has lessened much since then, its effects are still felt. The most recent high-profile “obscenity” trial, a five-year legal battle that ended in 2007 with a guilty verdict from the Supreme Court of Japan, was about a manga (more on that trial). Commentators and scholars argue that manga has become a target for censorship, at least in part, because anime, manga, and Japanese fan culture in general have been gaining much attention and acclaim overseas. The Japanese government has been trying to turn that attention into money with various “Cool Japan” campaigns aimed at promoting Japanese media products and tourism to Japan.

    Polemics in foreign media about the less photogenic parts of Japanese pop culture, like adult manga, are then unwelcome indeed. Some warn that with the Tokyo Olympics coming up in 2020, local and national authorities in Japan may get even more sensitive to foreign handwringing about “Japanese cartoon porn”. However valid that fear may or may not be, last month’s new flap about manga and anime highlights how uninformed many media outlets still are about Japan, and how little any articles about non-English fandoms in the mass media can be trusted. Shallow and alarmist reporting by major and (somewhat) respected news sources like the BBC and CNN reinforces orientalist stereotypes about Japan and its people being somehow lacking in sexual morals. Clearly, it also does great harm to the cause of activists who are fighting to keep bureaucrats and police from gaining tools to control what can be published by the Japanese media, professional and amateur.

    Last month’s incident also highlights the growing importance of free speech rights to fan communities. Laws against “obscenity” or so-called “virtual child pornography” are still low on the radar of many English-speaking fans, especially compared to copyright woes. However, the example of Japan shows that these laws can and do have a very direct impact on what fans can make and distribute.

    Past and recent cases

    In Japan, the extremely popular fan-made manga called doujinshi have to follow the law just as much as commercially published manga. Fans are free to draw what they like in private, but if they want to distribute their fanworks in any way, they have to apply censor bars or mosaics to anything that might possibly catch the attention of censors. Just like with professional manga, the law is applied only rarely and inconsistently, but anti-obscenity laws have still led to legal troubles for individual fans and disruptions of fan activities and fannish infrastructure.

    For instance, in the midst of a “harmful books” polemic that followed the arrest of the “otaku” serial killer in 1989, “police confiscated thousands of doujinshi from merchants in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward and arrested several shop owners” (Japan Times). In 1991, doujinshi convention Comiket was forced to move out of its convention site Makuhari Messe because police had received complaints about the fanworks being distributed there (Comiket welcomed over two hundred thousand visitors around that time and hosted 11,000 fanwork creators). Doujinshi conventions began to enforce anti-obscenity measures and check every fanwork on sale to make sure it followed guidelines about obscuring genitals and warning buyers of sexual content on the covers. Still, in 1994 and on several other occasions, further conventions had to be cancelled or moved because of complaints about possible "harmful material" being distributed.

    “Obscenity” issues were shown to be connected with copyright problems in 1999 when a a female creator of sexually explicit doujinshi for the popular children's game and anime series Pokemon was arrested for copyright infringement, apparently after someone complained about the explicit material to copyright holder Nintendo. In 2007, a doujinshi creator was arrested and eventually fined because his self-censorship of his works was not sufficient. This lead doujinshi conventions (and online doujinshi shop DLsite) to tighten enforcement of censorship regulations, and the Japan Doujinshi Printing Group to issue self-censorship guidelines for all fans who wanted to have their doujinshi printed by its member printing companies. Later in 2007, a building which had been used by several doujinshi conventions was closed to conventions that feature sexually explicit doujinshi. In 2009, the manager of a doujinshi shop shop was arrested on suspicion of distributing obscene material (NSFW link). Today, various links in the creation and distribution chain of doujinshi - doujinshi printers, conventions, and doujin shops - continue to impress upon fans the importance of “self-regulation" (jishu kisei, in practice “self-censorship") when distributing fanworks.

    Unsurprisingly, censorship issues are at least as important as copyright issues for Japanese fans. Around 2010, for instance, Japanese fan communities were actively involved in a battle to defeat a local ordinance in Tokyo that attempted to forbid the distribution of material containing sexual depictions of ill-defined “nonexistent youths” (more in this TWC article).

    Worldwide effects

    Japanese laws are not the only ones causing problems for fans. Outside Japan, several fans have gotten in serious trouble because the manga they love were considered “child pornography” by authorities. The CLBDF has been particularly active in chronicling these cases and sometimes providing legal support to fans. In 2010, for instance, a U.S. manga fan was sentenced to jail because manga in his collection contained “drawings of children being sexually abused". Also in 2010, another U.S. manga fan was arrested at the Canadian border for similar reasons, at least the second time this sort of arrest happened in Canada. Several more fans have reported online that they were questioned at the Canadian border because they were carrying manga. In 2012, there was a small victory as Swedish manga translator Simon Lundström was cleared of child pornography charges brought on by several manga on his computer.

    This string of worldwide incidents surrounding manga, and the uproar in Western media about Japan’s “refusal” to criminalize “virtual child pornography”, shines a light on how little attention most countries outside Japan have paid to the question of whether it makes sense to extend anti-child pornography laws to depictions of entirely fictional children. Some countries, like Australia and Canada, do extend their definitions of “child pornography” to media that contain absolutely no real children, only fictional characters. In the US, this cannot be prosecuted as child pornography, but it can be prosecuted under general obscenity laws if it meets the standard for obscenity (as judged by community standards, patently offensive sexually explicit depictions that lack literary, artistic, political, or scientific value).

    However, these laws mostly passed with very little public consultation or debate (see McLelland). There was often no serious inquiry into the question of whether “virtual child pornography” is actually harmful to anyone, and why it should be banned while fictional depictions of other crimes are fine and dandy. Objections about a lack of scientific evidence to link “virtual child pornography” to real harm, and objections about potential censorship, are easily brushed aside in the midst of moral panics about “protecting children”. According to Kotaro Ogino of the Japanese free speech organization Uguisu Ribbon Campaign, this problem is occurring in Japan as well, leading to the constant battles about potential criminalization of “virtual child pornography” that are taking place there today (personal communication).

    Also problematic is that, unlike in Japan, many citizens of these countries are not aware it may be illegal for them to make fictional depictions of sexual situations involving minors. Many fandoms such as Harry Potter or Attack on Titan have thriving shipping communities around underage characters. In theory, that puts some fan creators in the crosshairs of anti-child pornography laws. The fact that laws against “virtual child pornography” are rarely or inconsistently enforced does not mean they are harmless. The outcome of the constant fight that Japanese fans, mangaka, and publishers are waging against censorship laws may turn out to be very relevant for non-Japanese fans as well.

    For more information

    More news and information about censorship problems that impact Japanese and non-Japanese fans of anime and manga can be found on the CBLDF website, the blog of translator Dan Kanemitsu, Anime News Network, and in the articles tagged with “censorship” in the OTW’s fan studies bibliography.

  • Events Calendar for July 2014

    Von Angela Nichols am Dienstag, 1 Juli 2014 - 5:30pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    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 July! 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 Events, Fan Gatherings, Legal Events, OTW Events, or Technology Events taking place around the world.

    • The Almost Human fandom believes that Fox's decision to cancel Almost Human was disappointing, but they want to send the boys out in a blaze of creativity! The Almost Husbands Fic Challange is a mini Jorian fic and art challenge, with open posting throughout July. Slash and close friendship pieces welcome.

      More about Almost Human on Fanlore

    • Westercon is the "West Coast Science Fantasy Conference" held annually in the western part of the United States. Westercon 67 will take place in Sacramento, California from 3-6 July 2014. In addition to workshops and panels, the program features special guests, a masquerade and costume ball, an art show, musical events, and a writers workshop.

      More about Westercon on Fanlore

    • Readercon is an annual conference or convention devoted to "imaginative literature" — literary science fiction, fantasy, horror, and the unclassifiable works often called "slipstream." Readercon features over 150 writers, editors, publishers, and critics, attracting prominent figures from across the U.S., and international. They are joined by some 600 of their most passionate and articulate readers for a long weekend of intense conversation. Readercon 25 is 10-13 July 2014 in Burlington, Massachusetts.

      More about Readercon on Fanlore

    • Wolf's Bane The UK's second Teen Wolf convention, will be in Birmingham 11-13 July. The weekend will be complete with Guest Talks, Photo and Autograph sessions, Evening Entertainment and lots of fun! Guests include Holland Roden, JR Bourne, Daniel Sharman, Adam Fristoe, Seth Gilliam, Charlie Carver, and Max Carver.

      More about Teen Wolf on Fanlore

    • DashCon is an event on where Tumblr fans can gather and meet. Tumblr is a community so full of love, support, and creativity, and DashCon will be a place where they collaborate and connect outside of their laptops in Chicago 11-13 July 2014.

      More about Tumblr on Fanlore

    • System Administrator Appreciation Day is held to show appreciation for the work of systems administrators and other IT workers. It is celebrated on the last Friday in July. The first System Administrator Appreciation Day was celebrated on 28 July 2000. There are many suggestions for the proper observation of the holiday, the most common being cake and ice cream, so if you're reading this, thank your SysAdmins!
    • Comic Con International returns to San Diego, California for its 45th year. This mult-media, multi-genre, multi-fandom convention features panels involving celebrities, entertainers, and creators from a diverse range of entertainment. Special events, autograph signings, an exhibition hall, and screenings of films and television episodes occur throughout the 4-day event. San Diego Comic-Con will run from 24-27 July.

      More about Comic Con International on Fanlore

    Calls for Papers this month come from:

    • “Manga Futures: Institutional and Fannish Approaches in Japan and Beyond” Manga Studies is now emerging as an important field of scholarship and criticism within Japanese Studies and Cultural Studies. Today’s students are not simply consumers of manga. They live in a convergent media environment where they occupy multiple roles as fans, students and “produsers” (producers + users) of Japanese cultural content. Many students are engaged in “scanlation” and “fansubbing” sites as well as the production and dissemination of dōjin (fan-produced) work. These practices contribute to manga’s global appeal, influence and ease of access, but also raise ethical and legal issues, not least infringement of copyright.

      Invited proposals include, but are not limited to, the following themes: Fan appropriations of and contributions to manga culture in Japan and beyond, Ethical and legal challenges in the production and consumption of manga, Institutional support for or criticism of manga culture, The use of manga in Japan studies and Japan language pedagogy, The future of “manga studies” – theory and methods.
      Due date for proposals: 13 July 2014

    Help out a researcher!

    This month we have received a request for research participation from Barbara Galiza, a masters student of Digital Culture & Society at King's College London. She is writing a thesis on the evolution of digital platforms used for fandom and is looking for participants to answer a survey. Her study was approved by the college's Research Ethics Office.

    If you have any questions about her research, she may be contacted at barbara.galiza [at] kcl.ac.uk. Her supervisor is Btihaj Ajana who may be reached at btihaj.ajana [at] kcl.ac.uk and by telephone at +44 (0)20 7848 1011, or by mail at:

    King's College London
    Room 222, 26-29 Drury Lane
    London WC2B 5RL

    The research results will be presented at the Digital Research in Humanities and Arts conference in September and her completed dissertation will be published online and shared with the OTW.

    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!

  • Events Calendar June 2014

    Von Angela Nichols am Sonntag, 1 Juni 2014 - 4:10pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Event Calendar Icon

    Welcome to our Events Calendar roundup for the month of June! 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 Events, Fan Gatherings, Legal Events, OTW Events, or Technology Events taking place around the world.

    • Archive of Our Own is the site for the Crossovering Challenge. Crossovering is a multi-fandom crossover exchange. It’s your opportunity to request crossovers between your favorite fandoms and to write them too! Sign ups are open June 4-13. If you do not have an AO3 account and would like to participate, please let the mods know before sign-ups and they can get you an invitation.

      More about Crossovers on Fanlore

    • Alpha Con on June 6th is an unofficial Teen Wolf & Vampire Diaries Convention in Vösendorf, Austria. At AlphaCon fans will have the opportunity to meet your favourite actor/actress first-hand, attend Q&A panels and themed parties, get autographs and photo shoots and participate in a few more surprises!

      More about Teen Wolf on Fanlore
      More about The Vampire Diaries on Fanlore

    • Sinpozium, aka “Sinpoz” is a multifandom Sydney slash gathering. It is a fan-run, not-for-profit weekend-long slash slumber party! Activities will include discussions, fandom pimping, games, vid watching and more. Sinpozium is open to programming ideas. You must be 18 or older to attend.

      More about Sinpozium on Fanlore

    • VuPop2: An Academic Conference Where YOU are the Hero: Interactive Fiction in Print and Online For several decades gamebooks like Choose Your Own Adventure and Fighting Fantasy have been finding ways to directly involve the reader in the narrative of the book and to encompass multiple possibilities within a single volume. Computer games and other digital media have brought fiction into new and infinitely variable realms. On 9 June in Villanova, PA VuPop2 conference will examine the evolution of interactive fiction and discuss ways in which it can be studied and used pedagogically.
    • Supanova is Comic-con, Australian style!
      Supernova is where the adoring public comes face to face with Supa-Star celebrities and the creative talent that inspire their imaginary worlds under one big roof. The event includes comic books, animation, science-fiction, TV/movies, toys, gaming, fantasy, technology, books, internet sites and fan-clubs, the result is an amazing atmosphere tailor made for expressing your inner geek and where getting into cosplay obvious thing to do! Notable Guest include Jon Heder, Michael Rosenbaum, Robin Hobb, and many more! Supanova will be in Sydney June 13-15 and Perth June 20-22!

      More about Supanova on Fanlore

    • EyeCon is well known for bringing our attendees the absolute most "personal" time with the stars is announcing their first ever convention devoted to the fandom surrounding the epic, ultra popular MTV series Teen Wolf! Meet and mingle with Tyler Posey, Tyler Hoechlin, Adelaide Kane, and more! at Q&As, Autographs, parties, and more in Atlanta, Georgia on June 13-15.

      More about Teen Wolf on Fanlore

    • CON.TXT on June 13 in Silver Springs, Maryland id a place to gather and celebrate the joy of slash fandom. Indulge in endless conversation about your favorite guys (or girls), debate metaslash topics of great import, and squee over the pretty, all in the company of like-minded folk.

      More about CON.TXR on Fanlore

    • Cakebang: The Supernatural and Supernatural RPF Podfic Big Bang Cakebang is open to podficcers and artists. Podficcers can submit 10,000 word minimum for the Mini Bang and/or a 20,000 word minimum for the Big Bang. Artists may check out the claims post and claim any available podfic. If you wish to create art or can sign up and make note that you would like to be alerted when a new podfic is added to the list. Cakebang will be accepting new sign-ups until Friday, June 13 with posting scheduled to begin Monday, June 16.

      More about Big Bang challenges on Fanlore
      More about Supernatural on Fanlore

    • Join tens of thousands of fans as they converge on the Pennsylvania Convention Center June 19-22 at Philadelphia Comic Con to celebrate the best in pop culture. Philadelphia Comic Con brings it all - Movies, Comics, Toys, Video Gaming, Games, TV, Horror, Wrestling, MMA, Original Art, Collectibles, Anime, Manga & More! Guests include Cast from Marvel Films, Doctor Who, the Whedonverse, The Walking Dead, and more
    • Days of the Wolf Join Teen Wolf fans from around the in celebrating this fantastic MTV hit show on June 28-29 in Chicago. Join guests Tyler Hoechlin, Holland Roden, JR Bourne, and Linden Ashby for on stage events, Cosplay, Music Video Contest,Gala Party, Trivia and more!

      More about Teen Wolf on Fanlore

    Calls for Papers this month come from:

    • Manga Futures Postgraduate Workshop Manga Futures is hosting a postgraduate workshop entitled, “Research and Career Futures in Japanese Popular Culture Studies”. Postgraduate students who are currently working on topics related to contemporary Japanese popular culture and are looking for an open space where they can share their knowledge and experience in their respective fields are welcome to submit a proposal on the following themes: Commonalities and differences in fandom-based creation and criticism between Japan and other countries, Ethical and legal challenges in the production and consumption of manga, The use of popular culture in Japan studies and Japan language pedagogy. The due date for proposals is 13 June 2014
    • Intellect's Fan Phenomena book series is now seeking chapters for a new volume on fandom and James Bond. Phenomena: James Bond is aimed at both fans and those interested in the cultural and social aspects of James Bond. As such the book is intended to be entertaining, informative, and accessible to a broad audience. Suggested topics include: Bond as lifestyle icon, Bond merchandise, memorabilia and collecting, Bond fans’ use of different media to create community, etc. Please send a 300 word abstract and a short bio by 30 June 2014 to be considered.

      More about James Bond on Fanlore


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

  • TWC's Top 10

    Von Claudia Rebaza am Donnerstag, 8 Mai 2014 - 5:00pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Partial view of the TWC word cloud

    One of the OTW's projects is Transformative Works and Cultures (TWC), an open-access academic journal dedicated to fandom and fandom studies.

    But don't think that just because it's a peer-reviewed, scholarly quarterly with a bibliographic listing in the MLA bibliography of journals that the contents of TWC aren't for fans like you to enjoy!  Check out this sampling, ranked by number of DOI resolutions:

    1) "Why we should talk about commodifying fan work", by Nele Noppe. How would legalizing fanwork influence the question: should fan work be free?

    2) "Book Review: Boys' love manga: Essays on the sexual ambiguity and cross-cultural fandom of the genre"by Nele Noppe. "The focus of the book remains squarely on the fans of boys' love manga, which makes it relevant to anyone interested in fan studies."

    3) "Women, "Star Trek," and the early development of fannish vidding", by Francesca Coppa. This paper discusses how early female Star Trek fans structured the practices and aesthetics of vidding, in order to heal the wounds created by the displacement and fragmentation of women on television.

    4) "'The epic love story of Sam and Dean': 'Supernatural,' queer readings, and the romance of incestuous fan fiction," by Catherine Tosenberger. Tosenberger examines the literary, cultural, and folkloric discourses of incest and queerness as invoked by the show in order to argue that "Wincest" fan fiction is best understood not as a perverse, oppositional reading of a manly dudebro show, but as an expression of readings that are suggested and supported by the text itself.

    5) "Endless loop: A brief history of chiptunes", by Kevin Driscoll and Joshua Diaz. Driscoll and Diaz explore the confusion surrounding what chiptunes is, and how the production and performance of music connected to 80's electronic video game soundtracks "tells an alternate narrative about the hardware, software, and social practices of personal computing in the 1980s and 1990s."

    6) "Stranger than fiction: Fan identity in cosplay", by Nicolle Lamerichs. Lamerichs argues that "costuming is a form of fan appropriation that transforms, performs, and actualizes an existing story in close connection to the fan's own identity," and that "cosplay motivates fans to closely interpret existing texts, perform them, and extend them with their own narratives and ideas."

    7) "Repackaging fan culture", by Suzanne Scott. Scott argues that "the strategic definition of fandom as a gift economy serves as a defensive front to impede encroaching industrial factions" like FanLib and Kindle Worlds, and examines "the Seinfeldian roots" of the social taboo of "regifting," relative to fan culture.

    8) "Thirty political video mashups made between World War II and 2005", by Jonathan McIntosh. The creator of the famed Buffy vs. Edward remix vid explores subversive pre-YouTube remixes.

    9) "Book review: Spreadable media: Creating value and meaning in a networked culture, by Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford, and Joshua Green", by Melissa A. Click. "Readers with stakes in the tug-of-war between fans and industry will likely enjoy, and be invigorated by, the authors' arguments about spreadability."

    10) "The Web planet: How the changing Internet divided "Doctor Who" fan fiction writers", by Leora Hadas. Hadas explores how evolving participatory culture clashed with traditional fandom modes and came to a head over one Whovian fanfic archive, using the conflict there to argue that "the cultural logics of fandom and of participatory culture might be more separate than they initially appear."

    And if you want to move beyond the Top 10 articles on TWC, here's a word cloud of the most frequently used words taken from the titles of every article that TWC has published in its 6-year history.

    Would you like to help us generate even more words? Head over to Fanhackers to see how you can celebrate acafandom, meta, and more with us—or check out the TWC Submissions Guidelines for submitting your research or essay to the journal!

  • OTW Fannews: Fandom Changing & Changed

    Von Claudia Rebaza am Dienstag, 22 April 2014 - 4:10pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Banner by Bremo of Pikachu dancing in excitement while a horde of other Pokémon characters look on in annoyance.

    • Slate was among several sites which wrote about the fanfiction-writing, Avengers-loving Ms Marvel. However, Slate also pointed out the important role fandom had in launching her. "A diverse and exuberant fan community, the Carol Corps, emerged almost overnight and began tweeting, blogging and cosplaying their love for both the character and DeConnick. (It’s worth noting that in addition to offering sharp writing and great stories, the new series let Carol trade her revealing leotard and domino mask for an actual body-covering uniform.)"
    • As The Daily Dot points out, fans will also appropriate existing heroes to address current concerns. "Most of the time, fandom’s remix culture is about taking a particular detail from a book or movie, and expanding upon it until it tells the story you wanted to hear in the first place." Captain America is an interesting example of this treatment. "There’s even an ongoing debate on Tumblr over just what aspects of Cap’s backstory would support the widespread headcanon that Steve Rogers is a feminist, socialist, socially liberal guy."
    • At Reflexive Horizons, Laz Carter writes about Pokémon and a Fandom of Nostalgia. "[T]the very ‘franchise’ model propagated by Pokémon – wherein one can consume the Pokémon universe through not only film but also animated television series, videogames, comics, trading card games, theme parks, merchandise and a plethora of other Poké-paraphernalia – means that any attempt to usefully separate one medium from the rest remains a futile endeavour that does not benefit any serious study." Carter argues that "When examining examples of ‘franchise fandom’, one must account for the fact that a consumer’s experiences of any given aspect of the product will affect their appreciation of the remainder...I argue that 2014 has seen a revival of ‘Poké-mania’, albeit a different brand of the fervour which had been evident during the peak of Pokémon’s success."
    • kpopstarz also looks at changing fandom, specifically Idol Fandom. "The beginning of 1st generation idols, H.O.T, was labeled the 'teen's idol.' However, idols are no longer the exclusive property of teen fans. As the idol market grew, idol fandoms have been overtaken by fans in their 20s and 30s...These adult fans are nothing to be trifled with, and are showing great influence. Now idol groups must not only target teens, but also focus on catering to the 2030 fans." However, these new fans show a very old pattern of behavior. "Upon conducting a survey, it was found that many fans in their 20s keep their activity on fan sites a secret. In many cases their identity as a fan was kept a secret to everyone except maybe some family members or close friends."

    What fandom developments have you been seeing? Write about them 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 an OTW Fannews post, and inclusion of a link doesn't mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

  • OTW Fannews: Fandom milestones

    Von Claudia Rebaza am Freitag, 14 März 2014 - 12:26am
    Nachrichtenart:

    Banner by dogtagsandsmut of a black & white highway with the OTW logo and ribbons across the post title of Fandom Milestones

    • On March 1, Three Patch Podcast released an episode with Development & Membership Chair, Kristen Murphy, as a guest. They discussed the formation of the OTW and the AO3's million fanwork milestone. Asked about the AO3's popularity she replied, "I think there are a lot of different factors that have helped it become popular. One is that a lot of people just like the features of the Archive, which is awesome! I think another factor is the way fandom has spread out to new platforms, some of which are not very conducive to posting fanworks. Like, if you mostly interact with other fans through Twitter, but you’re a fic writer, you’re going to need someplace other than Twitter to post your fic. There’s something really cool about the fact that fans are spread out in all these different places — Twitter and Tumblr and journals and forums — but there’s this place in the middle where so many of us come together to share our work." (No transcript available).
    • The OTW wasn't the only one celebrating a big milestone in February as Japan's online art community Pixiv passed 10,000,000 registered users. Crunchyroll reported on their celebration activities and listed the top tagged fandoms on the site.
    • RocketNews24 looked at how artists were responding to the gold medal won by figure skater Hanyū. "[F]ans are having fun making their own Photoshop creations including “Hyōjō no Prince-sama”(Prince-sama on Ice)."
    • The music group Emblem got some attention for promoting a fan's story about them on their Wattpad account which Just Jared dubbed 'official fan fiction.' "The guys – Wesley and Keaton Stromberg, and Drew Chadwick – each have their own stories written about them and will be updating it every week!"
    • As Vintage Books was announcing that Fifty Shades had passed the 100 million sales mark, Wired asked if a new publishing model was at hand when it comes to fanfic. "For decades, it was understood that fanzines and amateur press associations were where writers—particularly in genre fiction and comics—got their chops...It’s easy to argue 50 Shades of Grey is an outlier, that its success isn’t indicative of a larger trend. However, since its publication in 2011, the lines between literary and fan publishing have continued to blur."

    What fandom milestones have you seen? Write about them 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.

  • OTW Fannews: Cross-border fandoms

    Von Claudia Rebaza am Mittwoch, 26 Februar 2014 - 8:25pm
    Nachrichtenart:

    Banner by Robyn of two stick figures saying 'Fan' and 'Fiction' to one another while standing on a split color square

    • The Manila Standard Today featured some articles on fanfiction, dubbing them "The other side of the fandom." The features explain types of fanfic and their locations online, concluding "Writers are not paid when they write fanfics. They all do it for the fandom, for their readers, and for themselves. Thus for consolation, reading the comments of their reader, knowing someone appreciates their work and waits patiently for the new chapter are enough for them to keep on writing."
    • A spate of stories on Sherlock fanfiction writing in China show a certain surprise about slash but there is also a focus on the significance of it within Chinese culture. "The other part of that equation is that the cultural landscape has shifted, attitudes about gay men, gender roles, and sex have shifted and women have seen this...In a country where gay men are in marriages they don't want to be in, where people are told to act straight, and where gay men and lesbians are even entering fake marriages to get people off their backs and live their lives, the Fu Nv represent an improvement in the country's attitudes toward the LGBT community, even if it is by way of raunchy Curly Fu-Peanut fan fiction."
    • In France some have decided to crowdfund a Sherlock fanfic adaptation of a young Sherlock and John meeting. Asked about the motivation for the project, director Naomi Javor replied "To quote the author. “You don’t need to be gay to like someone the same sex as you. [You must be] In love.” This is the message that spoke to me and inspired me...[I] want the viewers to feel like it gives [sexual] minorities an opportunity to be represented as well. It differs from mainstream media because I don’t need to worry that my network will shut me down."
    • The Fandom Post looked back at 2013 to pick out The (Lighter Side of the) Year in Anime. "Before the first month of the new year is over, we’d like to make some additions to The Year in Anime Awards, which we presented a short while ago. It’s not all just about serious awards for worthy shows. No, the review staff of The Fandom Post also knows when it’s time to kick back and take a less reverent look at the year just passed. Here, our staff members present some individual or specialized 'awards' for outstanding…something or other."

    What fanworks have you seen crossing boundaries? Write about it 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.

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