Fanfic Haters Anonymous

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Journal Community
Name: Fanfic Haters Anonymous
Date(s): 2004-2009
Moderator: graceskies, sashwizzled, my_flip_side, sock_it_up
Founder: graceskies
Type: Livejournal anonmeme
Fandom: Pan-fandom
URL: http://fanfic-hate.livejournal.com/

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Fanfic Haters Anonymous was one of the first anon memes, where people could safely criticize (or bash) popular fics without fear of retribution from the author.

From the first post:

Hate threads are beautiful. But they don't go far enough.

It's time to take on the really overrated fics.

We know you're out there. You've been seething, wondering why The Fic is garnering raves. Every gushing review, every rec, every swooning fangirl of The Fic fills you with a deep, righteous indignation. Because you know it's terrible. You know The Fic sucks.

Now your time has come.

Tell the world why The Fic deserves to be burnt.

Spread the hate. [1]

The first post was multifandom, but later posts focused on single fandoms or genres. Though the activity on the meme never really took off in most fandoms, many threads attracting only few dozen comments (or none at all), the X-Files thread remained active for several years (last comment is from 2009) and became more of a general purpose anonmeme for the X-Files fandom.

Popular threads

Reactions/Reviews

The majority of the discussions surrounding the community took place in the first few months of 2004. The venom expressed in the LotR thread (created 2 July 2004) was probably the inspiration for the LJ comm fanfic_hats, founded by Tolkien fan Altariel on 22 July 2004.

Disapprobation:

"What's the deal with this Fanfic Haters Anonymous bullshit? I went in out of curiousity (sic) and left in a hurry. Don't know if my name is in there becaue (sic) I didn't look, but I did see the name of a friend who I happen to love, and it pissed me off to the max!

I'm all in favor of anger when there's a righteous cause (like this one! *winks*). And, God knows I've been angry on this LJ more than once, and loudly angry too. But to express HATE and viciously slam people you don't even KNOW over something as subjective as whether or not you like the story they wrote?? What the fuck is up with that??

If you don't like... DON'T READ! If you think the author sucks.. keep on stepin' when you see their name."[2]
"Looks like the fanfic_hate folks are getting around to BtVS authors. The whole thing weirds me out. I can see the point of A) ranting in private about something/someone who drives you buggy, or B) the general concept of an anonymous critique list, because fandom is so close-knit that it's very difficult to do honest critique or analysis of a story without the fear you'll hurt the author's feelings and they'll hate you forever. But this seems to be..well, neither of those things. More like the equivalent of leaving a burning bag of poop on someone's porch and running away. Besides, if there's one thing I've learned about the internet, it's that it's public. Even when you think you're private, you're public. So think twice before saying anything you wouldn't be willing to say in person. I don't think I'll check it out in detail, since if I'm on the list it will be depressing, and if I'm not on the list it will be even more depressing. >:)"[3]

Critique

"If the ultimate goal is to improve the quality of writing, and constructive criticism falls on deaf ears, does anyone really believe that the mockage will get through? The very fact that it is mockage allows the target to dismiss it as petty jealousy from someone who's not as well-known as they are. And if the ultimate goal is just to piss the mocked-upon writers off, then it may be fun, but I don't wanna play that."[4]
"This is why I say, I won't speak out against fanfic_hate. Everyone has a right to say and believe what they want. Everyone else in turn, has the obligation to evaluate what they're hearing or reading and weigh it accordingly. And I say obligation because I believe that your mind is something incredibly precious and should be used as much as possible.

I've read the comments over at fanfic_hate. There are some fair points being brought up over there but IMHO, most of the people posting there are cowards. They freely admit that they don't want to be harassed over their opinions while they get to harassed and make fun of other people. They're like the jealous, petty kids in the school yard who can't figure out why they aren't owed the same recognition that other people are, so they stoop to writing on the bathroom walls. *insert eye rolling*

Cowards and petty jealous people don't sound like the kind of people that I would take seriously whether or not they loved or hated my fics."[5]
"Why would anyone need a community fanfic_hate? I think the strongest negative reaction I had to fanfic so far was appalled nausea that an author would write things like that (prominent example in my mind for that category is that TS story I partly read that used a poorly researched holocaust setting in a concentration camp as romantic plot device), usually more because of the topics and settings than because of the usual pet peeves one has, like characterization one disagrees with or spelling problems or whatever. But beyond a certain point in my reactions I don't care about the feelings of the authors, I mean, the person who wrote that "romance" drivel in a concentration camp setting had far worse coming as far as I'm concerned than anything I wrote publicly, and shouldn't be surprised."[6]

Squee

"OMGOMGOMG

I AM ON fanfic_hate

<3333333333333333333333333333333

I love you little anon posters you :X"[7]

Cynicism

"You didn't hear this from me, but I strongly suspect that authors are posting there anonymously, about their OWN fic, as a way to pimp their stories."[8]

Amusement

"I recently discovered fanfic_hate, which has been a good way to pass the time. People often air their pet peeves regarding fanfic in general or in some particular fandom, and many are quite witty about it. ^_^ I love how they froth at the mouth when an author manages to combine about five different peeves in ONE fic."[9]
"Well, I see that everyone's got their hackles up over fanfic_hate lately. Personally, I think the whole thing is rather hilarious. Between the weirdos who post fake flames about fake fics and the people who are attacking all the anonymice for being anonymous the fun just never stops. Also buried in there somewhere are some valid criticisms of certain popular ficcers that I agree with and some that I don't. And to top it off, all this activity has pushed the Buffy thread over 1400 posts, which blows all the other threads on the journal so far out of the water. *wipes away a single perfect tear* I'm so proud of my fandom. It's teh wankiest one evah! Well, okay, maybe second wankiest since the LoTR fandom obviously has us beat in the insanity department. ;)"[10]

Snark

"Bitching under a pseudonym is like pulling on a balaclava to moon the vicar on the street. Yes, no one knows it's you but it upsets the vicar and many people are going to wish that the cold would give you dangly bulbous piles the size of plums."[11]
"I'm still not on fanfic_hate. *sigh* And I've had no offer for a beta on my X-men story. And Tammy has taken nearly two months on my Anya story. Nobody likes me, no one even hates me, I'm gonna eat some worms."[12]

Support

"I want to know why people hate "fanfic_hate" so much. Yeah, I know lots of the people there are asses but I'm the sort that gets off bashing bad fics and nothing would give me greater pleasure than to bash along with others. I know, I know. They're young writers. Criticism won't help them, it will just crush their hopes and dreams. Response: Nobody writes that bad unless they don't really understand the English language and I give them a benefit of a doubt. If you speak the language and you write drivel that makes me want to point at you and laugh, I have every right to mock you to the full extent of my power. Grammar nazi, you bet. Self-righteous bitch, RIGHT ON! But I still stand by my belief that if you are going to write something in quickest, laziest way possible, you don't honestly care enough about your work to get that upset if I laugh my head off at your badness."[13]
"Getting a lot of pleasure out of the discussions that fanfic_hate has produced on a variety of LJs. But then again I happen to think that "knock-down, drag-out intellectual fights" are a participatory sport and make entertaining viewing for bystanders."[14]

Meta

references

  1. untitled first post, June 12th 2004
  2. OK My Question Would Have To Be dated June 16, 2004; reference link.
  3. post dated June 14, 2004; reference link.
  4. post dated June 23, 2004; reference link.
  5. My own little musings on FOF and alias fic dated August 4, 2004;reference link
  6. comment in the On Hate Memes post dated June 13, 2004; reference link.
  7. squee! dated June 18, 2004; reference link.
  8. Suspicious Look at fanfic_hate dated June 22, 2004; reference link.
  9. post dated Nov 6, 2004; reference link.
  10. post dated June 24, 2004; referek
  11. post dated July 14, 2004; reference link
  12. Random Rumblings dated June 23, 2004; reference link.
  13. Your fic makes my eyes bleed dated June 27, 2004; reference link
  14. Fanfic_hate dated June 16, 2004; reference link.