?

Log in

No account? Create an account
 
 
22 February 2008 @ 12:28 pm
Fandom: Obviously T'aint Workin' (OTW)  
Having read a number of both pro and con posts concerning the Organization for Transformative Works (OTW), I must say that my initial support for the organisation has shifted from oh yeah, that's cool!!!" to blasé to polite indifference to finally no way in hell!!!

There's not been any one thing that has cooled my original enthusiasm, rather it's been a number of little things that when taken together are worrisome.

  • An Archive of Our Own: On paper, this remains the most attractive proposal to come from OTW: an archive that won't arbitrarily delete stories. Of course, things are never quite that simple.

    OTW's goal is to establish itself as a non-profit entity, which will provide it with some autonomy and protection under the law. However, the law in whatever state in which they do ultimately register (and let's be honest, OTW is extremely US-centric) is going to have a lot to say about its content and the age under which such content can be viewed. For adult content, that age starts at 18. Minors may be welcome, but their access to content and their ability to post such content will likely be limited. (ETA: I have been corrected below that text has no age restriction on what can be viewed. However, as I did state "content", there still may be things -- like art -- which may necessitate age requirements.)

  • The Public Face of Fandom: While I certainly don't agree with or appreciate the current depictions of fans in the media, how is OTW prepared to change that view? How exactly does one argue the positives of a furry-chibi-loli-watersports-snuff-fic to a public who already views fandom as an aberration?

  • Entitlement: Fandom is a privilege; it's not a right. How often does that need to be repeated, because it's certainly not been absorbed by a lot of fen. TPTB allow us our fun, provided we don't seek to profit in someway from it. [Most of] our works are not transformative; they are derivative.

  • Legal Bullseye: It's all well and good to discuss the anticipated legal showdown between fandom and TPTB; it's another thing to fling the gauntlet. At a time when media conglomerates are bleeding money as they try to predict which direction their already fragmented audience is going, it's not a good idea to antagonize the 800-lb. gorilla. Does anyone doubt that the outcome of Big Media Corp. vs. Suzy Q. Fan is not going to favour "transformative work", especially under the Roberts court?

  • Fandom(s): Fandom is a lot more than the current flavour of the month. So far, OTW gives the appearance of only representing the largest media-based fandoms. There's a lot of fen out there in small, tiny, comatose and it's dead, Jim media-based fandoms; not to mention fen in wrestling, anime, furry, comics and sports fandoms. How do they expect equal representation in an organization whose board will be comprised of BNFs from the largest media-based fandoms?

  • BNFs: We've already seen one person who is currently on the board of OTW use her power to threaten other fen with lawsuits; thereby ending negative discussion about her BFF. We've already seen that member abuse her power by refusing to aid a non-affiliated group when they were being harassed by another of her BFFs. We've already seen that member's fangirls swarm to attack her opponents; whether at the member's urging or not is irrelevant, as the member did nothing to stop the onslaught. (ETA: I have been corrected below that this person is on the Legal Committee, and not on the Board.)

    What steps has OTW put in place to keep its board members and staff from behaving like any other bunch of fanbrats should disputes arise?

  • Money: This is the one that has worried me the most. Fandom, in all its manifestations, is a multi-billion-dollar business. While FanLib came into it without any understanding of its culture or history, they definitely knew that it was an exploitable asset. When I look at OTW's board of lawyers, businesswomen and acafen, my radar starts pinging: are these the folk who are going to profit the most by the activity of the natives? Are they doing it for the benefit of fandom, or are they doing it for their own benefit? Money, fame and power have transformed even the best of intentions, and I can't shake the feeling that there's a whole level to OTW that we peons know nothing of.(ETA: The OTW FAQ has allayed a number of my concerns regarding this project.)


I wish I had higher hopes for OTW. Maybe when online fandom was smaller, just post-UseNet days, such an organization might have worked. Now, fandom is too large, too diverse and too fragmented to be easily placed under an umbrella.

Cross-posted to my JF.

ETA #1: This post has made Metafandom. Should I be proud or worried?

ETA #2: Not exactly certain why this post was linked to at FanLore. However, I would greatly appreciate not having any of my personal journal posts linked there. Thank you. (31 Oct 2008)

ETA #3: This journal respects the privacy of not just the commenters to it, but all fannish participants. Do not use quotes or subject matter from this article, and attribute them to real-life names. Take your fannish conflicts elsewhere. (28 Mar 2009)
 
 
 
Bounce!partly_bouncy on February 22nd, 2008 10:53 pm (UTC)
Trolling on in from a search on Google blog search.

I can't shake the feeling that there's a whole level to OTW that we peons know nothing of.

That would be my feeling too. Their journal seemed to be nothing but a vanity press. The people who were known to be affiliated with the project, with their names on it, were academics who aren't big names in their field. They don't have much standing. It seemed like an easy fail.

And then when they officially announce, they have on board all the big name academics. It felt like it came out of left field. Where was this? Where did they state that they were going to try that? Why not state who they were going after?

They claimed they weren't going to work with projects run by individuals. So it was no to all the people who contacted them, including Fan History, Ma href="http://www.fanworksfinder.com">FanWorksFinder</a> and FanWorks.Org and their latest announcement says they'll be working with the Fore Smutters project. They're on record having said they would do just the opposite.

They said they'll be open about the whole process. When pushed on their finances and the honesty regarding that, their level of honesty amounts to releasing tax documents. They couldn't name who paid the rename token, who paid for the domains, etc. I've seen wank over money, remember the AFF.Net thing go down just recently. I've repeatedly stupidly heard rumors about other various fannish projects of fans skimming donations for their site, conventions, projects to go to personal enrichment. The lack of accountability and willing to be accountable just rubs me the wrong way.
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on February 22nd, 2008 11:57 pm (UTC)
Welcome. I'd been reading a lot of your past posts and comments over the last few days, which prompted me to write up my own post. So, you can claim to be my inspiration. ;-)

I can't understand their reticence in reaching out to fans and/or accepting help from fen who have created, built or maintained sites that already do what they're attempting to do. The wheel doesn't need to be re-invented anytime someone in fandom has a new idea; our goals have always been to build upon what's in place. Was it you who wrote that one way this could be done would be through a webring? Those sites could continue what they're doing and be linked to OTW.

While I hope I'm certainly wrong, the only thing that keeps coming to mind about their decision is "proprietary rights". Ergo, OTW intends to be owned and controlled by a small coterie, with a rotating board made up from among the same group. "Outsiders" need not apply.

Anyone who's been in fandom a while is well aware there is money to be made. Most of us are here for fun, but there's always been a small subset willing to exploit their fellow fen to turn a buck. The existence of FanLib is proof that TPTB are trying to create a new revenue stream; their failure was in not recruiting from inside fandom. For me, OTW is giving off vibes of being FanLib V.2: they know the lingo; they know what appeals to the natives; they're presenting themselves to outsiders with their PhDs and JDs all nice and shiny. What better way to gain corporate favour and support, while at the same time steering fandom in whatever direction is best for the bottom line? Like you, there's just something not adding up.

Many of the folks involved in OTW and its supporters are well-known and highly regarded in fandom. A lot of fen are going to take them at their word that what they're doing is laying groundwork for the next evolution in fandom. While I admit that I'd like my hobby not to elicit sniggers, I'm not in fandom to impress others. I'm here to have fun -- with others, alone or however I feel like playing today. If I can't be an outsider in RL, I can at least play one in cyberspace, and for that, I don't need an organization to give its imprimatur on my derivative works.
(no subject) - dinpik on February 23rd, 2008 12:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 12:47 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dinpik on February 23rd, 2008 01:28 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 01:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 01:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dinpik on February 23rd, 2008 07:28 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - dinpik on February 25th, 2008 06:34 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 01:27 am (UTC) (Expand)
Part 1 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 01:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 02:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 1 (OR WHY CAN'T I BE BRIEF?) - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 02:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 1 (OR WHY CAN'T I BE BRIEF?) - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 03:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 1 (OR WHY CAN'T I BE BRIEF?) - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 03:40 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 2 (MORE TEAL DEER) - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 02:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 03:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 03:25 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 03:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 03:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - hector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 05:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 01:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - hector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 02:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 04:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - hector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 06:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 06:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - ext_77294 on February 24th, 2008 06:51 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 06:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 1: Part 3: Demographics - ext_77294 on February 24th, 2008 07:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 08:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - ext_77294 on February 24th, 2008 08:29 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 08:37 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - ext_77294 on February 24th, 2008 09:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 09:35 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Real Person, Fictional Person, fandom - hector_rashbaum on February 25th, 2008 02:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Part 2 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 01:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 2 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 02:50 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 2 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 03:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 01:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 03:05 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 03:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 04:08 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 04:31 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 04:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 12:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 06:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 01:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - blktauna on February 23rd, 2008 04:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 04:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - blktauna on February 23rd, 2008 05:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - pfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 05:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - blktauna on February 23rd, 2008 05:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 12:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - blktauna on February 23rd, 2008 02:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - blktauna on February 23rd, 2008 04:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - hector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 05:50 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - partly_bouncy on February 24th, 2008 01:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Part 3 - hector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 02:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - countess_baltar on February 24th, 2008 08:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Weighing in on copyright - khellekson on February 24th, 2008 03:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Weighing in on copyright - countess_baltar on February 25th, 2008 06:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Weighing in on copyright - khellekson on February 25th, 2008 01:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - carmarthen on February 24th, 2008 06:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - khellekson on February 25th, 2008 01:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 25th, 2008 01:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - khellekson on February 25th, 2008 01:51 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Bounce!partly_bouncy on February 23rd, 2008 02:31 pm (UTC)
Real Person Fic
This came up in an AIM convo discussing regarding my comments here so quickly going to tag on:

Real Person Fic is exclusive because it defines the only acceptable activity as fiction. It excludes other things like vidding, fan art, tribute bands, etc. It also seems to be, for me, coded speak that says "this activity as an extension of media fandom." "Real Person Vidding," "Real Person Fan Art," I don't hear those terms. So the use of real person fic, for me, is pretty narrow in that it understands only one type of activity that is part of broader fandom.

The Quizilla issue was more of an issue of yes, lots of those users don't use and understand the term. That's more of a marketing/identity issue. If you're going to represent people, it helps to understand the terms they use and embrace them.

And in a rush so not as well stated as I wanted.
a pang of indescribable profundity: dead wronghector_rashbaum on February 24th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC)
Re: Real Person Fic
I think where I got confused is right here:

Which for me, just reinforced that they didn't get it (because most people I know on Quizilla and FanDomination.Net would NOT call it RPF. They'd call it music fandom or fan fiction)

You specified they'd call it "fan fiction" so I was under the impression you were specifically discussing fiction.

And as I said in AIM...blanket terms exist for a reason. So I guess my question is how far do they need to go to define terms that are reasonably easy to understand - is "Real Person Fiction/Fandom" really not self-explanatory enough? "Media fandom" the way they initially used it wasn't, because any given user would have to understand by "media fandom" they meant not "fanworks-producing fans of media" but "fanworks-producing fans who gain information about their source through media, or are fans of media".

But should they really be accused of being exclusionary for not explaining that real person fiction is fiction about real people, or that real person fandom covers fanworks produced about real people? There comes a point where you have to expect people to put SOME effort in to learn the terminology of the culture.
Kelpie: Rockfic.comkelpierocks on February 23rd, 2008 06:01 pm (UTC)
Here via a link from partly_bouncy. Just wanted to say thanks for the interesting discussion, and it's very good to see people like me (as I consider myself a part of a fandom but don't necessarily like to shove my fandom activities out in the public eye) who are concerned about OTW.

And I like Obviously T'aint Workin'. Heh. May I icon that? ;)
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on February 23rd, 2008 07:02 pm (UTC)
Welcome!

Just wanted to say thanks for the interesting discussion, and it's very good to see people like me (as I consider myself a part of a fandom but don't necessarily like to shove my fandom activities out in the public eye) who are concerned about OTW.

Partly_bouncy is really responsible for most of the discussion. I just posted my own concerns from having read the pro and con meta on it, and realizing that, when the wrapping came off, something that I thought was an originally great idea was not really all that shiny to begin with.

And I like Obviously T'aint Workin'. Heh. May I icon that? ;)

Sure. May I get a copy of it as well?
(no subject) - kelpierocks on February 23rd, 2008 08:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 24th, 2008 12:44 am (UTC) (Expand)
blktauna on February 24th, 2008 03:43 am (UTC)
JF isn't letting me post to you,

I guessed right about the example. There's always one, and I only hear about her, I've never been in the middle.

She'd have a reason to lawsuit me as I'd have to give her a good smack.

They're showing up on IJ as well. I'm rarely on LJ as their business practices disgust me (although I did spam your thread) and despite the efforts of certain people Pros is still mainly mailing list based, so is S&H and The Sweeney is a fandom of me so I don't really need to deal with it. That and I'm a firm believer of having my own archive website for my screengrabs, fiction and soundbites/video. Why leave your stuff in the hands of others?

That's another of my philosophies that makes me leary of OTW. Why on earth would I trust a third party to host my work? Mirror, yes but I don't understand the fan mentality of choosing non fan third parties and giving them power over fan activity? LJ being the perfect example.

Most fannish things I deal with end up on specialised fan run BBS systems and it works beautifully.

but I'm off on a tangent.
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on February 24th, 2008 09:45 pm (UTC)
I guessed right about the example. There's always one, and I only hear about her, I've never been in the middle.

I know people who aren't involved in online fandom and know all the stories. I've only been an observer, thankfully, and have always been gobsmacked by it all.

That's another of my philosophies that makes me leary of OTW. Why on earth would I trust a third party to host my work? Mirror, yes but I don't understand the fan mentality of choosing non fan third parties and giving them power over fan activity? LJ being the perfect example.

That part I do understand. Unless you have talent like you and can design and implement your own page, it's simply easier to upload a fic to a site like FF.net, LJ or DeviantArt. There's already a system in place for leaving reviews.

I've purchased a book on CSS and am trying to learn the language to create an LJ format I like. But code is just something I don't have a facility for. (It took me two years to remember the code for creating a link; at that rate, I'll have CSS down by 2015.)
(no subject) - blktauna on February 26th, 2008 12:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 26th, 2008 02:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blktauna on February 26th, 2008 02:36 am (UTC) (Expand)
she's a tramp, she's a tramp, she's a vamp: fanfictacky_tramp on February 24th, 2008 05:48 am (UTC)
the law in whatever state in which they do ultimately register (and let's be honest, OTW is extremely US-centric) is going to have a lot to say about its content and the age under which such content can be viewed

There are no laws in the United States regarding minors accessing written material. A 10-year-old can check Anais Nin out of a public library, and a 10-year-old can legally read erotica online. If OTW's archive decides to put porn behind an age-verification, it will not be a legal decision. (And it will lose them my support.)

Fandom is a privilege; it's not a right.

That's your interpretation of copyright and trademark law. OTW's legal team has a different interpretation. We won't know for sure what our rights are unless there's a court case specifically about noncommercial fanfiction, vidding, fanart, etc.

it's another thing to fling the gauntlet

I don't think OTW is planning to "fling any gauntlets." They are, however, planning to throw C&D letters and takedown notices in the trash, which could lead to them getting sued. Then they will react accordingly.

one person who is currently on the board of OTW

I'm not happy about her presence on the board, either. However, I trust Naomi and the other board members to keep things reasonable. Their wank-record's pretty clean.

fandom is too large, too diverse and too fragmented to be easily placed under an umbrella

I agree with this 100%. Fortunately, OTW's not trying to speak for all of fandom. It's trying to provide a few resources that its members believe a good number of fen will want to take advantage of.
alchemiaalchemia on February 24th, 2008 06:15 am (UTC)
Ditto on all of those... although for the last point, I think OTW needs to carefully rewrite it's mission statement and faq's, but I'll wait for this, given they're all volunteer and I know from experience that can take a while. looking up fandomhistory, and my entry in it, and other fen I know thru fandom, and these entries missing what said fen are best known for, i'm much less impressed than i am with otw. I'd rather see broad brush strokes that are maybe not 100% accurate than fine brush strokes that are grossly inaccurate. And if OTW's board profits (which I doubt they would personally in any significant way) i don't mind as long as they are giving back to fandom.
(no subject) - georgedollie on February 24th, 2008 06:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 24th, 2008 06:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 24th, 2008 09:04 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 25th, 2008 04:41 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - partly_bouncy on February 25th, 2008 01:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 25th, 2008 01:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 26th, 2008 12:31 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 26th, 2008 01:20 am (UTC) (Expand)
Khym Chanurkhym_chanur on February 24th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC)
About the "legal bulls-eye" point, OTW's argument seems to be that that fanfic falls under "fair use". If they stick to that argument in a lawsuit and the judge disagrees, I don't think that fanfic writers would be in any worse a position than they are now, since I find it difficult to imagine that there are any copyright holders out there who would like to prevent fanfic based on their works yet aren't even trying because they're afraid they'd lose in court. They'd only get fandom in trouble if they tried a defense like that being used in "Lexicongate" and won, which would cause copyright holders to crack down on fanworks in order to defend against the newly minted "copyright dilution" legal doctrine.
Dinpikdinpik on February 25th, 2008 06:31 am (UTC)
And yet, despite OTW's stated interest in expanding fair use, they can't wrap their heads around why people would think that'd be a Bad Idea.
(no subject) - khym_chanur on February 25th, 2008 06:48 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 25th, 2008 01:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dinpik on February 26th, 2008 12:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 26th, 2008 12:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dinpik on February 26th, 2008 12:42 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Anonymous) on February 24th, 2008 06:20 pm (UTC)
However, the law in whatever state in which they do ultimately register

It's already registered, although I forget which state.

(and let's be honest, OTW is extremely US-centric)

I would note that any organization is going to be [insert-country-here] centric. "International" organizations generally have individual organizations in their countries of operations--international law being what it is, truly international organizations don't really exist.

For adult content, that age starts at 18.

This is true for visual content. There are no U.S. laws that I know of that apply to textual content. Fandom's been very CYA about that (which I don't necessarily think is a bad thing).

Minors may be welcome, but their access to content and their ability to post such content will likely be limited.

We don't know whether OTW plans to do this, but out of curiosity, why would this be this a bad thing? It's not at odds with not randomly deleting stories, and it's consistent with general societal values (which not everyone agrees with personally, but they are at least community-determined).

When I look at OTW's board of lawyers, businesswomen and acafen, my radar starts pinging: are these the folk who are going to profit the most by the activity of the natives?

I think a lot of people, myself included, would be bothered by your suggestion that fen with jobs in law and business and academia aren't "natives" of fandom. What kind of jobs are "native" fen allowed to have? I'm pretty sure many of those fans were fans before they got their current jobs (or are acafen tainted from birth?).
Carmarthencarmarthen on February 24th, 2008 06:23 pm (UTC)
Sorry, forgot to log in. That was me.
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 24th, 2008 09:35 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 25th, 2008 04:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 25th, 2008 01:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - partly_bouncy on February 25th, 2008 02:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lydiabell on February 27th, 2008 01:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - elfwreck on February 26th, 2008 12:55 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pfeffermuse on February 26th, 2008 01:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - franzeska on February 26th, 2008 04:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - partly_bouncy on February 25th, 2008 01:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Franzifranzeska on February 25th, 2008 02:07 am (UTC)
ETA: This post has made Metafandom. Should I be proud or worried?

Worried, definitely. ;-)
grime and livestockcofax7 on February 26th, 2008 07:06 pm (UTC)
a few comments
I'm not going to try to talk you out of your position that OTW is not for you. But (speaking as someone who is not a member of OTW), I'd like to clear up a few misconceptions.

Wank potential
heidi8 is not on the Board of OTW. She has never been on the Board. She's on the Legal Committee (and not in charge of it, either), yes, having volunteered to help with the incorporation papers. Which is useful, given how much preparing such materials can cost: the organization got that work done pro bono by an attorney in good standing. (I'm particularly tetchy about this business regarding her position on the Board because it keeps getting repeated across fandom, and it's so easily disproved.)

People may think the distinction between Board and Legal Committee is meaningless: they would be wrong. The committees answer to the Board, and the Board sets policy.

BNFs
The FAQ pretty clearly sets out the organizational structure, with regards to how often the Board turns over. Each term is three years and then the member must be re-elected. Everyone who pays the $10 membership fee can vote in the elections, and anyone who's served on a committee for a year can stand for election. While BNFs are likely to have a stronger following in such elections than lesser-known fans, I'm not aware of any way to avoid that effect, which is a social artifact of fandom. It's not necessarily evil to be well-known in fandom, after all: people tend to become well-known for providing fannish services such as archives, stories, or meta.

Also? The members of the Board are absolutely "natives of fandom". That's why they're on the Board, why they are volunteering so many hours to build the organization: because as fans, they expect to benefit from having a stable fan-owned archive and the other projects.

Financial benefit
501(c)(3) nonprofits have to meet IRS requirements regarding financial benefits for staff/board members and conflicts of interest, in order to avoid losing their status. And misuse of funds would be fraud, which is prosecutable. As is also stated in the FAQ. And given the wank-potential of any fannish project even vaguely associated with money, I find the likelihood of anyone on OTW gaining direct financial benefit to be pretty small. YMMV, of course.

I recommend reading the entire FAQ, especially the "Additional Questions" at the bottom; that section has served to reassure me in several ways about the perceived exclusivity of the project. I would still prefer more pan-community outreach and some transparent public goals-setting (and I'd love to have a gen writer on the Board), but I don't have any concerns about the good intentions of the enterprise.

Edited at 2008-02-26 07:09 pm (UTC)
Bounce!partly_bouncy on February 26th, 2008 07:18 pm (UTC)
Getting a spot on the board
Everyone who pays the $10 membership fee can vote in the elections, and anyone who's served on a committee for a year can stand for election.

Can I ask the percentage of representation from existing committees from fandom situation outside of LiveJournal and academia?

Are Quizilla, FanFiction.Net, FanDomination.Net, DeviantArt, TokyoPop, MediaMiner.Org, Usenet, AdultFanFiction.Net, FicWad, FanWorks.Org, Nifty, Xanga, MySpace, FaceBook, Yahoo!Groups, harrypotterfanfiction.com are part of OTW's intended audience? How long have any representatives from those sites been involved with those sites and in what capacity? Is there a list available which details this information?

If they are not represented but they are part of their intended audience, is OTW doing outreach to ensure representation on various committees so that they can have representatives eligible to run for the board? What sort of outreach is being done?

I think the BNF fear is partly fueled by the lack of dialog elsewhere regarding the site, the community only being represented, public dialog wise, on LiveJournal. There isn't much talk about outreach and representation, nor has there been much done to define the marketing for the site. If the site isn't intended for Quizilla users and CSI fans on LiveJournal, then the BNF issue is not so important and yeah, probably overblown and over stated by people like me who are not so impressed with OTW.

If OTW is intended for those audiences and folks representing those sites and services that don't have representation, then what you've said pretty much confirms that they're locked out for four years.
Re: Getting a spot on the board - cofax7 on February 26th, 2008 07:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Getting a spot on the board - partly_bouncy on February 26th, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Getting a spot on the board - loligo on February 27th, 2008 01:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Getting a spot on the board - jacquez on February 27th, 2008 12:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: Getting a spot on the board - franzeska on February 28th, 2008 08:37 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - pfeffermuse on February 27th, 2008 12:42 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - amireal on February 27th, 2008 12:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - pfeffermuse on February 27th, 2008 01:12 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - amireal on February 27th, 2008 01:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - cofax7 on February 27th, 2008 01:28 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - jacquez on February 27th, 2008 03:38 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - cofax7 on February 27th, 2008 03:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - jacquez on February 27th, 2008 04:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: a few comments - cofax7 on February 27th, 2008 06:04 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Dash O'Pepperpfeffermuse on February 27th, 2008 01:01 am (UTC)
Re: Via MetaFandom
Are you asserting that the OTW (board) cannot be trusted because of the nature of their professions? That their motives are suspect because of what they do in RL? (Not meaning to sound accusatory in ANY way, so if it comes across like that I apologize.)

No, certainly not, and I certainly apologize if that's the impression I've given. (And I don't think you're being accusatory.)
(Deleted comment)
(Deleted comment)
Re: Via MetaFandom - pfeffermuse on February 27th, 2008 04:01 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
カシイちゃんkashiichan on March 5th, 2008 06:21 am (UTC)
I have been corrected below that text has no age restriction on what can be viewed.
In the US maybe. Australia has laws about that.
Franzifranzeska on March 7th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
Well, sure, but the archive will be operating under US law since the OTW is incorporated in the US. It is up to individual people to know the laws of their own countries and to follow them.