heidi: (DH Archive)
We are on the schedule for Comic Con again this year! Who'll be out in San Diego for all the fun?
(I'm officially not allowed to share the date yet, but as of now we are not on the schedule for the end of the day on Sunday, but earlier!)

(And hey, I'm trying the Related Posts feature with this - let's see how it works!)
heidi: (Bothering Snape by PotterPals)
Cover of tomorrow's Sunday Times. Read more... )
It's on their Twitter account right now and it's a little early for April Fool's Day, so we assume it's true.

Hypable has a more extensive piece on it.
In a new interview conducted by Emma Watson, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling drops a bombshell: She regrets putting Ron and Hermione together.


The shocking revelation came in the new issue of Wonderland which Watson is a guest editor of this month. The comments were obtained by The Sunday Times.

Rowling says that she should have put Hermione and Harry together in the Harry Potter series instead of Hermione and Ron.

“I wrote the Hermione/Ron relationship as a form of wish fulfillment,” she says. “That’s how it was conceived, really. For reasons that have very little to do with literature and far more to do with me clinging to the plot as I first imagined it, Hermione ended up with Ron.”

“I know, I’m sorry,” she continued, “I can hear the rage and fury it might cause some fans, but if I’m absolutely honest, distance has given me perspective on that. It was a choice I made for very personal reasons, not for reasons of credibility. Am I breaking people’s hearts by saying this? I hope not.”

Watson didn’t seem shocked by these comments and agreed with her. “It think there are fans out there who know that too and who wonder whether Ron would have really been able to make her happy.”

Rowling also says that Ron and Hermione would have needed “relationship counseling.”


IN OTHER WORDS I JUST CANNOT EVEN.
PLEASE, DISCUSS.
heidi: (legally)
Crossposted from Tumblr.

Amazon is working with WB to publish (read: sell) fanfiction from the Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars and Vampire Diaries 'verses. And they said that more "worlds" will be announced soon. 


Basically, fanfic writers will be able to sell their fics - formatted for Kindle - via Amazon, and the restrictions are not as massive as you'd think!


No crossovers. 


No excessive product placement for non-show brands. 


No porn


But here's the thing about porn! Amazon says they don't allow porn to be sold on their site, so as long as your fic content is no more explicit than anything that's on Amazon's site today (see: 50 Shades and anything in the erotica category) then it won't run afoul of Amazon's content restrictions - and if they say it does, then the Internet will stand behind you as if you were a Nutella fan barred from celebrating its wonderful tastiness. 


HOWEVER, each World Licensor will be providing "Content Guidelines" for their specific 'verse - and I can't find those anywhere. THAT might make a significant impact on what types of fanfic one can and cannot sell, but until we've had a chance to look through them, we can't determine the specifics. 


I don't think it's realistic to be concerned that the existence of Kindle Worlds will mean that tv show/film/book creators will stamp out freely given fics. At this point, Kindle Worlds will only accept things over 5000 words, anyway, and the longstanding laches issue that protects fics posted elsewhere and given away will still hold. 


However, it does mean that people who write in the fandoms covered by Kindle Worlds and sell ebooks of those stories outside of the Kindle license may find themselves dealing with cease & desist letters. But there was always a chance they would because of the commercial aspect of that action. 


Also, this will leave fandom with a lot of questions on issues other than legality be on fan-created gift culture, commissions, fundraising for charity, or even the ability of pro writers to write in other universes> 


Does this further "legitimize" fan creativity (which I think has long been a pretty legit hobby), will it just create an additional outlet for story distribution, and what other fandoms will WB add? 


I wouldn't be shocked if they bring Tomorrow People into this as the show launches in the fall, but what about things that are ending their runs like Nikita, or shows with massive fanbases and almost a decade of fan creativity, like the behemoth that is Supernatural?


Oh, and here't the royalty-related info: 




  • Amazon Publishing will pay royalties to the rights holder for the World (we call them World Licensors) and to the Fic Author. Fic Author's standard royalty rate for works of at least 10,000 words will be 35% of net revenue.

  • In addition, with the launch of Kindle Worlds, Amazon Publishing will pilot an experimental new program for particularly short works (between 5,000 and 10,000 words). For these short stories—typically priced under one dollar—Amazon will pay the royalties for the World Licensor and will pay authors a digital royalty of 20% of net revenue. The lower royalty for these shorter works is due to significantly higher fixed costs per digital copy (for example, credit-card fees) when prices for the entire class of content will likely be under one dollar.


heidi: You're busy blogging! (Busy Blogging)

Crossposted from LJ:

Your main fandom of the year? I was as multifandomish as I've been in any recent year, but I was probably mostly Avengers-focused, except for a brief Hunger Games moment.


Your favorite film you watched this year? AVENGERS! I saw it in theaters three times in two and a half days, in two different states, and managed a total of twelve times in theaters before it wrapped up. And I squee-ed every time!


Your favorite book read this year? I started the year reading Beth Revis's Across the Universe, and I can't wait for Shades of Earth next month! (And no, I didn't finish Casual Vacancy; I got strep when I was around a third finished, and wasn't able to concentrate on anything. Hope to finish it during travels in the next month or two.)


Your favorite album or song to listen to this year? iTunes tells me that my most played song that I first listened to in 2012 was fun.'s Some Nights (Intro)/Some Nights, which is one spot ahead of the fun. cover of Call Me Maybe. The original of Call Me Maybe is only a few spots back! So, basically, Top 40 Pop!


Your favorite tv show of the year? Doctor Who's Pond sequence ended wonderfully, with solid episodes, and I loved the three Sherlock eps from back in January. I'm still watching SPN but cannot get used to the Wednesday timeslot and tend to watch it on Friday mornings, still.


I really enjoyed Political Animals (except for the plane crash concept in the final episode) and wish it had been renewed for another season. It worked as a standalone series, though.


Oh, and does UP! With Chris Hayes count? 


Your best new fandom discovery of the year? Does Cabin Pressure count? It made flying actually fun, and funny, and my kids have become fans of it, too. Yellow car!


Your biggest fandom disappointment of the year? Elementary not having a military background for Joan Watson, and not having time to watch either The Hours or Teen Wolf. Political Animals and Leverage not being renewed.


Your fandom boyfriend of the year? Still Tom Hiddleston, unless Neil Finn counts because of the song on the Hobbit soundtrack. (Please, give this man an Oscar nom!)


Your fandom girlfriend of the year? Surprisingly, because I didn't adore her in IM2, I found Natasha utterly awesome in Avengers.


Your biggest squee moment of the year? Going to the sneak preview of Avengers in NYC early in the morning of April 14, almost completely unspoiled (Coulson! Rag-Doll!Loki! Shakespeare in the Park!).


The most missed of your old fandoms? I still miss Heroes S1/2, when it was really good.


The fandom you haven't tried yet, but want to? Teen Wolf looks fun, from the gifs I've seen, but I want to have the time to focus on it rather than have it in the background.


Your biggest fan anticipations for the coming year? LOKI TWO. Ahem. THOR TWO. Also IM3. More Sherlock, and hopefully something about the DW 50th Anniversary shenanigans!

heidi: (Booze 8)
Your main fandom of the year?
I was as multifandomish as I've been in any recent year, but I was probably mostly Avengers-focused, except for a brief Hunger Games moment.

Your favorite film you watched this year?
AVENGERS! I saw it in theaters three times in two and a half days, in two different states, and managed a total of twelve times in theaters before it wrapped up. And I squee-ed every time!

Your favorite book read this year?
I started the year reading Beth Revis's Across the Universe, and I can't wait for Shades of Earth next month! (And no, I didn't finish Casual Vacancy; I got strep when I was around a third finished, and wasn't able to concentrate on anything. Hope to finish it during travels in the next month or two.)

Your favorite album or song to listen to this year?
iTunes tells me that my most played song that I first listened to in 2012 was fun.'s Some Nights (Intro)/Some Nights, which is one spot ahead of the fun. cover of Call Me Maybe. The original of Call Me Maybe is only a few spots back! So, basically, Top 40 Pop!

Your favorite tv show of the year?
Doctor Who's Pond sequence ended wonderfully, with solid episodes, and I loved the three Sherlock eps from back in January. I'm still watching SPN but cannot get used to the Wednesday timeslot and tend to watch it on Friday mornings, still.

I really enjoyed Political Animals (except for the plane crash concept in the final episode) and wish it had been renewed for another season. It worked as a standalone series, though.

Your best new fandom discovery of the year?
Does Cabin Pressure count? It made flying actually fun, and funny, and my kids have become fans of it, too. Yellow car!

Your biggest fandom disappointment of the year?
Elementary not having a military background for Joan Watson, and not having time to watch either The Hours or Teen Wolf. Political Animals and Leverage not being renewed.

Your fandom boyfriend of the year?
Still Tom Hiddleston, unless Neil Finn counts because of the song on the Hobbit soundtrack. (Please, give this man an Oscar nom!)

Your fandom girlfriend of the year?
Surprisingly, because I didn't adore her in IM2, I found Natasha utterly awesome in Avengers.

Your biggest squee moment of the year?
Going to the sneak preview of Avengers in NYC early in the morning of April 14, almost completely unspoiled (Coulson! Rag-Doll!Loki! Shakespeare in the Park!).

The most missed of your old fandoms?
I still miss Heroes S1/2, when it was really good.

The fandom you haven't tried yet, but want to?
Teen Wolf looks fun, from the gifs I've seen, but I want to have the time to focus on it rather than have it in the background.

Your biggest fan anticipations for the coming year?
LOKI TWO. Ahem. THOR TWO. Also IM3. More Sherlock, and hopefully something about the DW 50th Anniversary shenanigans!
heidi: (texting)
Things To Do While Tumblr Is Down:
1. Book a Flight to @wincon (now I just need to book a flight home, too).
2. Catch up on LJ & DW
3. Read all the two-days-on posts about why Obama didn't mention the 47% Video during the debate and see that they all finally realized that at least a portion of it was because Romney obviously had a step-it-back paragraph memorized, and there's no justifiable reason to give him an opening to give that schpiel in front of a Live Studio Audience and massive viewers at home.
4. Save Big Bird!!
5. Watch the world spin.
heidi: (texting)
Things To Do While Tumblr Is Down:
1. Book a Flight to @wincon (now I just need to book a flight home, too).
2. Catch up on LJ & DW
3. Read all the two-days-on posts about why Obama didn't mention the 47% Video during the debate and see that they all finally realized that at least a portion of it was because Romney obviously had a step-it-back paragraph memorized, and there's no justifiable reason to give him an opening to give that schpiel in front of a Live Studio Audience and massive viewers at home.
4. Save Big Bird!!
5. Watch the world spin.
heidi: (Good and Bad)
But I am today, when online registration closes for the final HPEF fancon.

For those who didn't know, HPEF and our first event, Nimbus - 2003, stemmed out of discussions on the HPForGrownups Yahoogroup in 2002...

About ten years ago, a group of HPfGU members decided to organize a fancon in Orlando, Florida. Our plans became Nimbus - 2003, which was the first of so many fantastic fan-created, fan-run, not-for-profit events where Harry Potter fans could gather to discuss the books in person, in formal programming sessions and in casual meetups in restaurants, bars, Starbucks cafes and Common Rooms.

We've played Quidditch in ballrooms and in the water, we've dressed in costumes on the streets of Hogsmeade, we hosted the first Wizard Rock concert and saw Chris Rankin kidnapped by Death Eaters in 2005 and Dementors in 2008. We Wrocked Around the Rock, had Christian Coulson write in our diaries, liveblogged analyses of geography, alchemy, nomenclature, spells and whether Snape loved Lily (granted, that was in 2003 - we did not know yet!

We mourned Sirius Black and Albus Dumbledore and Dobby - and Snape - and watched deleted scenes from Chamber of Secrets while sitting in inflatable armchairs. We sat on the floor to watch Team StarKid acoustically perform Going Back to Hogwarts despite all the ladies in the cast being absent, and we toasted with Butterbeer made with liquor, or whipped cream, or soda in all the years before the WWoHP opened.

Every wrock concert, formal programming session, pick-up Quidditch game, costuming event, craft faire shopping experience, HP film cast member autograph session, Common Room meetup, Art Gallery viewing, sponsor-hosted reception, fanfilm, fanvid, fanfic reading, fan-performed show (except WXWXW) and dance is included with a Full registration - and so are our two feasts! If you missed the menus when we posted them earlier this week, you can check them out here - http://hp2012.org/?p=2820 - but we can't be responsible if you read them while you're hungry!

We're looking forward to Ascendio with a sense of joy - and with some sadness as it'll be our final HPEF fancon. Some of us started working on our first HPEF event ten years ago this month, when we started planning Nimbus - 2003, which took place in Orlando in mid-July of that year. As we close the door on this aspect of our Harry Potter fandom experience, we want to share it all with you.

Most of you that I've met in person, I've met at fandom events - HPEF cons, or PoAIMAXNYC in 2004 or at Phoenix Rising in 2007. Those of you I haven't met yet, there's still events and trips and the WWoHP and Leavesden Studios and moments we will have. I can't wait to see so many friends this summer, and in all the summers and winters and springs and falls yet to come.

And isn't this mood icon perfect?
heidi: (No Actual Spoilers)
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] pinkfinity at Submit to Ascendio by Leap Day!
We've extended the Ascendio Programming Proposal Submission Deadline of Deadlineyness! It's a Leap Day thing, now!

As it always is at HPEF cons, Ascendio programming is by the attendees, for the attendees -- so we need YOU to submit proposals for our formal programming slate! We’re seeking proposals of all shapes and sizes, to discuss/probe issues in Harry Potter and beyond.

Our formal programming deadline has been pushed back to February 29, in order to give everyone a little more time to work out their schedules, topics and panels, BUT! All proposals submitted by the original deadline of February 1st will be considered by our vetting committee right away. Ascendio plans to begin accepting proposals in mid-February (while still allowing proposal submissions until February 29 -- we're nice like that! XD)

What kinds of things should you propose? Here are just some examples:

  • Content for our Quill Track: writing workshops, e-publishing how-tos, hot topics in publishing & YA.

  • Workshops, including but not limited to crafts, fanart & writing techniques (knitting, crocheting, drawing characters, jewelry making, scrap-booking...)

  • Discussions of fanfiction and shipping (both het & slash pairings)

  • The real-world implications of Harry Potter, transformative works and fan culture (LGBTQ, religion, politics, feminism, privilege, etc.!)


Want to know more? Check out the Call for Papers, or jump right here to submit your proposal!

And if you have any questions, you can always email us or ask us on Facebook , Twitter or here on LJ!
heidi: (Fair Use)
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] zia_narratora, who showed me how to include the Post To Your Own LJ button on my earlier post about the SOPA bill. You can now reblog it to your own LJ easily - and I tweaked the content a bit, to make it more universally relevant, too.

There's an interesting look at the law on Time Magazine's Techland, which includes this quote:
On the margin…DNS filtering will no doubt reduce piracy. But what we have to ask ourselves is, at what cost? And that cost is legitimizing government blacklists of forbidden information… The result could be a virtually broken Internet where some sites exist for half the world and not for the other. The alternative is to leave the DNS alone and focus (as the bills also do) on going after the cash flow of rogue websites. As frustrating as it must be for the content owners who are getting ripped off, there are some cures worse than the disease.


The thing is, they're ignoring the impact that the law would have on sites that host discussions, reviews, parodies, Fair Use-works, fan creativity, photographs, and more. The revenue streams of rogue websites? SOPA says that a site that hosts a Fair Use-protected fanwork is the same as a site that hosts a rip of a Blu-Ray film and all its extras.

It's not.

I haven't seen much discussion of the specific impact that SOPA could make on fansites of all types - sports, books, films, niche groups. Look to the portion of the law that deals with blocking revenue. Many smaller, "noncommercial" sites (those with very little ad/associate revenue) are funded by the users, who donate monthly or annually to keep the sites online. PayPal, AmazonPayments, Google Checkout - those services allow these niche sites to thrive and focus on smaller communities and interests. And sometimes, the costs for the servers can be hundreds of dollars a month if there's enough discussion going on, or if people are sharing fan-created works that fall under Fair Use. How many of those sites will be cut off because The Powers That Be don't like a topic or a discussion taking place on the site? We saw what Righthaven did these last two years, using the DMCA to bully sites; SOPA - as it ignores the concept of Fair Use - is just a sop for IP rights bullies to shut down discussions that they don't agree with.

Imagine you're the fictional university of Nepp State, and you don't like people using your uniform or logo to criticize the systematic abuse and cover-up by coaches of the Quodpot Team. You hold a trademark (it doesn't even have to be registered) in your logo and jersey design, so you use SOPA to complain to PayPal and GoogleAds about the sites that have icons showing the "ghostbusters" symbol over your jersey design. Under SOPA, PayPal and GoogleAds would have five days to cut off the site's account, payments, and ability to accept donations from its users and the trademark holder can go to the Justice Department to ask that the site's DNS be blocked - while there's a provision that allows the site to remove the content in those five days, that's in the realm of censorship. Gigaom touches on these issues as they pertain to activists like OWS.

I don't normally link to RedState but their summary of the situation and its impact on free speech is well-put.

And here's the perspective of some engineers at DSLReports

The EFF writes about the impact of SOPA on Flickr, Etsy and Vimeo. Did you know that buildings are protected by copyright and sometimes trademark? Take a photo in front of one and put it on Facebook or Flickr (or YouTube, or a print you're selling at etsy) and you're putting yourself and the site at risk.

What will you stop doing if SOPA becomes law?
heidi: (Fair Use)
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] zia_narratora, who showed me how to include the Post To Your Own LJ button on my earlier post about the SOPA bill. You can now reblog it to your own LJ easily - and I tweaked the content a bit, to make it more universally relevant, too.

There's an interesting look at the law on Time Magazine's Techland, which includes this quote:
On the margin…DNS filtering will no doubt reduce piracy. But what we have to ask ourselves is, at what cost? And that cost is legitimizing government blacklists of forbidden information… The result could be a virtually broken Internet where some sites exist for half the world and not for the other. The alternative is to leave the DNS alone and focus (as the bills also do) on going after the cash flow of rogue websites. As frustrating as it must be for the content owners who are getting ripped off, there are some cures worse than the disease.


The thing is, they're ignoring the impact that the law would have on sites that host discussions, reviews, parodies, Fair Use-works, fan creativity, photographs, and more. The revenue streams of rogue websites? SOPA says that a site that hosts a Fair Use-protected fanwork is the same as a site that hosts a rip of a Blu-Ray film and all its extras.

It's not.

I haven't seen much discussion of the specific impact that SOPA could make on fansites of all types - sports, books, films, niche groups. Look to the portion of the law that deals with blocking revenue. Many smaller, "noncommercial" sites (those with very little ad/associate revenue) are funded by the users, who donate monthly or annually to keep the sites online. PayPal, AmazonPayments, Google Checkout - those services allow these niche sites to thrive and focus on smaller communities and interests. And sometimes, the costs for the servers can be hundreds of dollars a month if there's enough discussion going on, or if people are sharing fan-created works that fall under Fair Use. How many of those sites will be cut off because The Powers That Be don't like a topic or a discussion taking place on the site? We saw what Righthaven did these last two years, using the DMCA to bully sites; SOPA - as it ignores the concept of Fair Use - is just a sop for IP rights bullies to shut down discussions that they don't agree with.

Imagine you're the fictional university of Nepp State, and you don't like people using your uniform or logo to criticize the systematic abuse and cover-up by coaches of the Quodpot Team. You hold a trademark (it doesn't even have to be registered) in your logo and jersey design, so you use SOPA to complain to PayPal and GoogleAds about the sites that have icons showing the "ghostbusters" symbol over your jersey design. Under SOPA, PayPal and GoogleAds would have five days to cut off the site's account, payments, and ability to accept donations from its users and the trademark holder can go to the Justice Department to ask that the site's DNS be blocked - while there's a provision that allows the site to remove the content in those five days, that's in the realm of censorship. Gigaom touches on these issues as they pertain to activists like OWS.

I don't normally link to RedState but their summary of the situation and its impact on free speech is well-put.

And here's the perspective of some engineers at DSLReports

The EFF writes about the impact of SOPA on Flickr, Etsy and Vimeo. Did you know that buildings are protected by copyright and sometimes trademark? Take a photo in front of one and put it on Facebook or Flickr (or YouTube, or a print you're selling at etsy) and you're putting yourself and the site at risk.

What will you stop doing if SOPA becomes law?
heidi: (Fair Use)
I've been dealing this week with annoying dentistry, weirdly scheduled PTSA meetings, clients whose credit cards are not appreciated by the PTO website and the fun of trying to figure out what type of entity to be for INTA next year, and, of course, re-reading reviews of Philosopher's Stone that were posted in FictionAlley Park a year ago today (well, a year ago this month as some people saw it early) but I needed to take a few minutes today to address the SOPA act that's currently being debated* in committee in Congress, for clients, and in a post that's going up on FictionAlley this afternoon.

This is a slightly revised version of that post (Updated on November 17, 2011):

You may have seen this image on the internet today:



And you may wonder why a site like FictionAlley cares about an act designed to stop piracy; FictionAlley doesn't allow links to downloads of the Harry Potter books or films!

But the thing is, the "Stop Internet Piracy Act" is written in such a way that it gives any owner of any copyright, trademark right, right of publicity or other intellectual property rights the ability to shut down a site's ability to accept donations made via credit card companies, PayPal or Amazon, or bar a site from hosting Google or Groupon ads or being part of the WBShop or Amazon Affiliate programs just because they think that one icon, one User Profile, one piece of fanart, one fanvid or one fanfic infringes on their content - regardless of whether that story, icon, vid or art is transformative, or created pursuant to fair use.

"Fair use is a lawful use of copyright." That's what the Northern District of California said in Lenz v. Universal Music back in 2008. So much of what we do on fansites - from the discussions and reviews to art and fic and vids we host and link to - is fair use, but there's no Fair Use provision in SOPA.

"Think about this for a second: think how many bogus DMCA takedown notices are sent by copyright holders to take down content they don't like," writes TechDirt's Mike Masnick. "With this new bill, should it become law, those same copyright holders will be able to cut off advertising and payment processing to such sites. Without court review."

Donations are vital to fansites; if they can't accept financial support from users and visitors, many will not be able to keep the site online; it costs between $20 and $1000 per month for servers at fansites of various sizes. Ads are vital to other sites - Googleads, the BlogHer network, store associateships, etc.

If SOPA passes, and one copyright-holder who doesn't agree with the law of Fair Use complains to PayPal or Google or Amazon, it is likely that at least some sites will lose the ability to accept donations from users like you, and many will be unable to use ad revenue to keep the sites online.

And fandom-run sites are just a small portion of the internet, in the grand scheme of things. YouTube hosts fanvids, parodies and reviews, Tumblr and LiveJournal host every type of content that can be created, and Google links to everything. One person can choose to abuse the provisions of SOPA and damage each of those sites for everyone - or the sites themselves may curtail certain services, or limit what they allow people to share, discuss and distribute.

That's not an Internet that any of us would recognize.

If you live in the US, please send a letter to your Representative, or click here to visit the EFF's website and have an email automatically sent to your representative.

*Not the right word when only one of the six entities testifying before Congress is an Internet-purposed company!

ETA: More discussion here; this post is also on Tumblr.


Creative Commons License Feel free to use any of this on your own LJ/DW/Blog and link back if you wish (but it's not necessary).
heidi: (Fair Use)
I've been dealing this week with annoying dentistry, weirdly scheduled PTSA meetings, clients whose credit cards are not appreciated by the PTO website and the fun of trying to figure out what type of entity to be for INTA next year, and, of course, re-reading reviews of Philosopher's Stone that were posted in FictionAlley Park a year ago today (well, a year ago this month as some people saw it early) but I needed to take a few minutes today to address the SOPA act that's currently being debated* in committee in Congress, for clients, and in a post that's going up on FictionAlley this afternoon.

This is a slightly revised version of that post (Updated on November 17, 2011):

You may have seen this image on the internet today:



And you may wonder why a site like FictionAlley cares about an act designed to stop piracy; FictionAlley doesn't allow links to downloads of the Harry Potter books or films!

But the thing is, the "Stop Internet Piracy Act" is written in such a way that it gives any owner of any copyright, trademark right, right of publicity or other intellectual property rights the ability to shut down a site's ability to accept donations made via credit card companies, PayPal or Amazon, or bar a site from hosting Google or Groupon ads or being part of the WBShop or Amazon Affiliate programs just because they think that one icon, one User Profile, one piece of fanart, one fanvid or one fanfic infringes on their content - regardless of whether that story, icon, vid or art is transformative, or created pursuant to fair use.

"Fair use is a lawful use of copyright." That's what the Northern District of California said in Lenz v. Universal Music back in 2008. So much of what we do on fansites - from the discussions and reviews to art and fic and vids we host and link to - is fair use, but there's no Fair Use provision in SOPA.

"Think about this for a second: think how many bogus DMCA takedown notices are sent by copyright holders to take down content they don't like," writes TechDirt's Mike Masnick. "With this new bill, should it become law, those same copyright holders will be able to cut off advertising and payment processing to such sites. Without court review."

Donations are vital to fansites; if they can't accept financial support from users and visitors, many will not be able to keep the site online; it costs between $20 and $1000 per month for servers at fansites of various sizes. Ads are vital to other sites - Googleads, the BlogHer network, store associateships, etc.

If SOPA passes, and one copyright-holder who doesn't agree with the law of Fair Use complains to PayPal or Google or Amazon, it is likely that at least some sites will lose the ability to accept donations from users like you, and many will be unable to use ad revenue to keep the sites online.

And fandom-run sites are just a small portion of the internet, in the grand scheme of things. YouTube hosts fanvids, parodies and reviews, Tumblr and LiveJournal host every type of content that can be created, and Google links to everything. One person can choose to abuse the provisions of SOPA and damage each of those sites for everyone - or the sites themselves may curtail certain services, or limit what they allow people to share, discuss and distribute.

That's not an Internet that any of us would recognize.

If you live in the US, please send a letter to your Representative, or click here to visit the EFF's website and have an email automatically sent to your representative.

*Not the right word when only one of the six entities testifying before Congress is an Internet-purposed company!

ETA: More discussion here; this post is also on Tumblr.


Creative Commons License Feel free to use any of this on your own LJ/DW/Blog and link back if you wish (but it's not necessary).

Stop SOPA

Nov. 16th, 2011 03:15 pm
heidi: (Fair Use)
I've been dealing this week with annoying dentistry, weirdly scheduled PTSA meetings, clients whose credit cards are not appreciated by the PTO website and the fun of trying to figure out what type of entity to be for INTA next year, and, of course, re-reading reviews of Philosopher's Stone that were posted in FictionAlley Park a year ago today (well, a year ago this month as some people saw it early) but I needed to take a few minutes today to address the SOPA act that's currently being debated* in committee in Congress, for clients, and in a post that's going up on FictionAlley this afternoon.

This is a slightly revised version of that post:

You may have seen this image on the internet today:



And you may wonder why a site like FictionAlley cares about an act designed to stop piracy; FictionAlley doesn't allow links to downloads of the Harry Potter books or films!

But the thing is, the "Stop Internet Piracy Act" is written in such a way that it gives any owner of any copyright, trademark right, right of publicity or other intellectual property rights the ability to shut down a site's ability to accept donations made via credit card companies, PayPal or Amazon, or bar a site from hosting Google or Groupon ads or being part of the WBShop or Amazon Affiliate programs just because they think that one icon, one User Profile, one piece of fanart, one fanvid or one fanfic infringes on their content - regardless of whether that story, icon, vid or art is transformative, or created pursuant to fair use.

"Fair use is a lawful use of copyright." That's what the Northern District of California said in Lenz v. Universal Music back in 2008. So much of what we do on fansites - from the discussions and reviews to art and fic and vids we host and link to - is fair use, but there's no Fair Use provision in SOPA.

"Think about this for a second: think how many bogus DMCA takedown notices are sent by copyright holders to take down content they don't like," writes TechDirt's Mike Masnick. "With this new bill, should it become law, those same copyright holders will be able to cut off advertising and payment processing to such sites. Without court review."

If we can't accept donations from FictionAlley's users and visitors, we won't be able to keep the site online; it costs about $3000 per year to cover our servers, domain names and other related expenses, and we appreciate all the help you give us in covering those costs. If SOPA passes, and one copyright-holder who doesn't agree with the law of Fair Use complains to PayPal or Google or Amazon, we may lose the ability to accept donations from users like you.

And we're just a little site in the grand scheme of things. YouTube hosts fanvids, parodies and reviews, Tumblr and LiveJournal host every type of content that can be created, and Google links to everything. One person can choose to abuse the provisions of SOPA and damage each of those sites for everyone - or the sites themselves may curtail certain services, or limit what they allow people to share, discuss and distribute.

That's not an Internet that any of us would recognize.

If you live in the US, please send a letter to your Representative, or click here to visit the EFF's website and have an email automatically sent to your representative.

*Not the right word when only one of the six entities testifying before Congress is an Internet-purposed company!
heidi: (prey)
When JKR said in a Radio City Music Hall reading/event that Dumbledore was gay.

On twitter today, a friend of mine asked about how society had changed since then, and I started thinking about how fandom had changed since then - or actually, since 2000/2001.

I found an essay by Tinderblast (different pseud now, but I won't link to it unless she says it's ok) written in 2000 or 2001 about slash and the HP fandom - you can read it here. It says, in response to the flames many slash writers were receiving:

All right, then, let's take a look at the most oft-cited justifications of the flames, and see what they say.
...
2. Slash pairings are out of character.

When you think about it, no fanfic is completely in character, simply because the fic writers aren't writing the characters as the author originally planned - so what J.K. Rowling was thinking when she wrote the books isn't really an issue until she tells us straight out about the leanings of the characters. And how many POVs are the books told from? One. Harry's point of view. Not having seen the inside of most of the characters' thoughts, we can't say for sure which ones are homosexual, which ones are het, and which ones are bi. Okay, sure, having seen the Yule Ball, we can say that the majority of the characters, if not all, are heterosexual. But that doesn't eliminate the possibility of their being bisexual. In fact, Harry might be bisexual, too - people don't always realize they have homosexual leanings the moment their hormones start working.

While we're at it, how is Remus and/or Sirius having a long lost girlfriend/wife any more plausible then their having been lovers in the past? We have no evidence pointing either way - they could have sworn themselves to celibacy, for all we know.

Putting the last two paragraphs into two words, prove it.


Well, that's certainly an argument that hasn't been made in the last four years. From 2000 through 2007, though, it wasn't uncommon for people to say that if JKR had intended for there to be gay wizards, she would have said so and since she hadn't, there weren't any.

There were threads like this one on FictionAlley, and two vendors at Nimbus who were shocked SHOCKED at the drawing in the Program of Harry and Draco embracing, so much so that they were harassing our attendees, and were asked to leave the vendor room (yes, we refunded their fees).

So today, there was a story on the news that 53% of all Americans believes that there is nothing morally wrong with being gay, and that's a number that's significantly higher than any from 2000 or 2004 or even 2007. Did Dumbledore make that much of a difference? No, probably not in the wider world - but perhaps in fandom? Is it possible that some Harry Potter fans who thought that there couldn't possibly homosexuality in the wizarding world, who thought that to see that some characters in the books were, or might be, gay or bisexual or transgender was to inherently misread and defile JKR's stories... is it possible that some of them have, since October 19, 2007, changed their minds?
heidi: (prey)
When JKR said in a Radio City Music Hall reading/event that Dumbledore was gay.

On twitter today, a friend of mine asked about how society had changed since then, and I started thinking about how fandom had changed since then - or actually, since 2000/2001.

I found an essay by Tinderblast (different pseud now, but I won't link to it unless she says it's ok) written in 2000 or 2001 about slash and the HP fandom - you can read it here. It says, in response to the flames many slash writers were receiving:

All right, then, let's take a look at the most oft-cited justifications of the flames, and see what they say.
...
2. Slash pairings are out of character.

When you think about it, no fanfic is completely in character, simply because the fic writers aren't writing the characters as the author originally planned - so what J.K. Rowling was thinking when she wrote the books isn't really an issue until she tells us straight out about the leanings of the characters. And how many POVs are the books told from? One. Harry's point of view. Not having seen the inside of most of the characters' thoughts, we can't say for sure which ones are homosexual, which ones are het, and which ones are bi. Okay, sure, having seen the Yule Ball, we can say that the majority of the characters, if not all, are heterosexual. But that doesn't eliminate the possibility of their being bisexual. In fact, Harry might be bisexual, too - people don't always realize they have homosexual leanings the moment their hormones start working.

While we're at it, how is Remus and/or Sirius having a long lost girlfriend/wife any more plausible then their having been lovers in the past? We have no evidence pointing either way - they could have sworn themselves to celibacy, for all we know.

Putting the last two paragraphs into two words, prove it.


Well, that's certainly an argument that hasn't been made in the last four years. From 2000 through 2007, though, it wasn't uncommon for people to say that if JKR had intended for there to be gay wizards, she would have said so and since she hadn't, there weren't any.

There were threads like this one on FictionAlley, and two vendors at Nimbus who were shocked SHOCKED at the drawing in the Program of Harry and Draco embracing, so much so that they were harassing our attendees, and were asked to leave the vendor room (yes, we refunded their fees).

So today, there was a story on the news that 53% of all Americans believes that there is nothing morally wrong with being gay, and that's a number that's significantly higher than any from 2000 or 2004 or even 2007. Did Dumbledore make that much of a difference? No, probably not in the wider world - but perhaps in fandom? Is it possible that some Harry Potter fans who thought that there couldn't possibly homosexuality in the wizarding world, who thought that to see that some characters in the books were, or might be, gay or bisexual or transgender was to inherently misread and defile JKR's stories... is it possible that some of them have, since October 19, 2007, changed their minds?
heidi: (No Actual Spoilers)
Ascendio would love to meet you this summer, as we gear up for an amazing evemt at Universal Orlando from July 12-15, 2012.

if you're coming to LeakyCon or live in or near Orlando, and want to learn more about Ascendio, register, meet some of the con team or be thanked for registering, join us at Jake's American Bar on the groud floor of the Royal Pacific on Friday, July 15 from 3:30-5 for margaritas and nibbles. If you can't make it then, we'll be sticking around a little later than that, and hanging out in the Orchid Court late Saturday afternoon, too.

You don't have to be registered for LeakyCon - or already registered for Ascendio - to stop by and say hi to us - and in September, we'll be at Dragon*Con, too, with some fan table and bar-side festivities! More info about location/dates coming next month.

See you there!
heidi: (No Actual Spoilers)
Ascendio would love to meet you this summer, as we gear up for an amazing evemt at Universal Orlando from July 12-15, 2012.

if you're coming to LeakyCon or live in or near Orlando, and want to learn more about Ascendio, register, meet some of the con team or be thanked for registering, join us at Jake's American Bar on the groud floor of the Royal Pacific on Friday, July 15 from 3:30-5 for margaritas and nibbles. If you can't make it then, we'll be sticking around a little later than that, and hanging out in the Orchid Court late Saturday afternoon, too.

You don't have to be registered for LeakyCon - or already registered for Ascendio - to stop by and say hi to us - and in September, we'll be at Dragon*Con, too, with some fan table and bar-side festivities! More info about location/dates coming next month.

See you there!
heidi: (No Actual Spoilers)
This is a fanvid, a fan-made trailer, a love letter, a compendium, a wish and a hope.

There are spoilers for all eight Harry Potter films (including clips from the June 16, 2011 trailer). It's set to DJ Earworm's mashup of the top 25 US hits of 2010, and the songs are listed below, behind a cut.

I don't know about you, but I couldn't watch the final trailer without bursting into tears, both for the content and for the sheer fact of it. It's the *last* Harry Potter film, and no matter what's on Pottermore, no matter what panels I go to at LeakyCon or Ascendio 2012, the fact remains that the books and films that have impacted almost every day of my life since the summer of 2000 when I joined HPfGU are coming to a close. I've loved them, and I'll miss them - but I won't miss the fandom, because it is and will always be, and it will always be a part of me (no matter how many fandoms the friends I made in HP have scattered to).

All the friends I've made, all the friends I haven't met yet - we will always love the books and the films and the fan-created content, and introducing newbies to one or the other whenever we can.

LONG LIVE MAGIC and ACCIO JULY 15!

Watch the vid )

You can also go to it on YouTube at this link.

Coming soon to MegaUpload in ipod form; downloadable avil avi is here.

Song list behind this cut )
heidi: (No Actual Spoilers)
This is a fanvid, a fan-made trailer, a love letter, a compendium, a wish and a hope.

There are spoilers for all eight Harry Potter films (including clips from the June 16, 2011 trailer). It's set to DJ Earworm's mashup of the top 25 US hits of 2010, and the songs are listed below, behind a cut.

I don't know about you, but I couldn't watch the final trailer without bursting into tears, both for the content and for the sheer fact of it. It's the *last* Harry Potter film, and no matter what's on Pottermore, no matter what panels I go to at LeakyCon or Ascendio 2012, the fact remains that the books and films that have impacted almost every day of my life since the summer of 2000 when I joined HPfGU are coming to a close. I've loved them, and I'll miss them - but I won't miss the fandom, because it is and will always be, and it will always be a part of me (no matter how many fandoms the friends I made in HP have scattered to).

All the friends I've made, all the friends I haven't met yet - we will always love the books and the films and the fan-created content, and introducing newbies to one or the other whenever we can.

LONG LIVE MAGIC and ACCIO JULY 15!

Watch the vid )

You can also go to it on YouTube at this link.

Coming soon to MegaUpload in ipod form; downloadable avil avi is here.

Song list behind this cut )

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