Dirty Old Broad

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Synonyms: DOB
See also: Slash Slut, Porn, Smut
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Dirty Old Broad is a term that was used in early Star Trek: TOS fandom to describe a female fan who writes or draws erotica or porn in fanfic.

The term was very likely coined by M.L. "Steve" Barnes and was published, along with a detailed explanation, in the mass market book Star Trek Lives!, published in 1974. Ms. Barnes provided much of the commentary on the place of sex in Star Trek fan fiction.

Some fans brought this term over to other fandoms to which they had migrated. Some examples of its use can be seen in Starsky & Hutch letterzines.

An Original Three

In September 1985, in a tribute to fan writer M.L. "Steve" Barnes, writer/editor Judith Brownlee said: "Stevie, and Carrie and I thought of ourselves as the original DOB's (Dirty Old Broads)." [1]

Examples of Use

The publishers of the adult Star Trek zine, Grup, called their press, D.O.B. in reference to the term.

A reviewer in 1975 commented on the fourth issue of Grup in specific reference to the story, A Fragment Out of Time and used the term as well:

  • Diane Marchant wrote an article on the Kirk/Spock homosexual love affair premise that’s been buzzing around fannish conversations for at least a year. The idea is an interesting permutation, but Diane’s argument fails to convince because she failed to document her evidence thoroughly, and there’s a tone of 'dirty old broad getting her rocks off, heh heh' that distracts from the argument and debases the premise."
  • The editor of Grup writes in issue #6: "I, personally, want to thank all the people who have supported this zine by submitting material and by subscribing to it. You are all Dirty Old Broads."
  • From Between Friends #3 (1984): A fan writes a short bio. She lists her marital status, her job, her fandoms, and concludes with “Oh, yeah. Am a DOB… aren’t we all?”


  1. ^ from Datazine #37