Fanlore:Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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Help us out!

If you've had a look around and read through our pages, and there are still things you'd like to know (or that you envisage others might want to know), please feel free to add a question to this list of FAQs by editing this page as you would any other on Fanlore.

We'll take it from there - whether it's by answering your question in our final FAQ document, or by making things clearer elsewhere in Fanlore pages.


Frequently Asked Questions about Fanlore

What is the difference between a user's User page and a normal wiki page about the same person?

The User Page gets created immediately as you make an account on Fanlore; structurally and functionally it's like your Profile Page on LJ. It signals "there is a user on the system (ie Fanlore) called YourName"; it also allows people to see what you contributed to the wiki, since Fanlore cannot be edited by anonymous users and all edits are made by logged-in, identified people. User pages need to be added to the category Fanlore Contributors, and only to that category.
The other page has to be willfully created by someone who thinks you are notable enough in fandom that you need to be presented/listed on Fanlore.
The User Page is yours to do with as you please. The PPOV of Fanlore DOES NOT APPLY. you can write pretty much whatever you want there, in whichever "tone" or technique (caveat: you are not supposed to treat the User page like a personal blog-on-the-wiki or a fic-archive). You can write in first person or use the royal we if you prefer. You can link directly offsite to everything you do that's relevant to fandom; write out your fandom history (this is encouraged); state your personal opinions on the existence of fandom wank, the term BNF and the lack of smarm in the SG:A fandom. YOU ARE THE ONLY PERSON WHO CAN EDIT IT (besides admins, because admins need to be able to remove ad hominem attacks, fangirl outing info or other horrors in case there's a need to).
The other page is a page like any other People page, and will be categorized as such, as well as in the relevant subcategory (Fans, Academia, etc.. Preferably, you will not be the creator of the page about you (you're not the best person to decide if you're noteworthy for fandom at large), though that in itself is not a problem - it is not forbidden. The copy on that page needs to respect the PPOV; it can be edited by anyone; it's not supposed to please you particularly and describe you the way you'd rather be described. If you did notable things in fandom that are unsavory, well, there remains every chance they get listed there. Say there's a page about me, then stuff I, anatsuno, might have preferred not be there can appear, like "anatsuno founded DL_A and was kind of mean to MsAllegro for a long time" or "anatsuno is a member of the omg Cabal" or the like. You have control on whether your real name figures on the page about you or not (outings are forbidden, and anyone can write to the Fanlore admins to ask outing info be removed from the wiki if some vandal put it there), but basically that's all. If a range of diverse people have stuff to say about you, they're welcome to put it there under the PPOV: "some fans have expressed the opinion that anatsuno thinks too highly of herself [citation/link]" - etc.

What content can I put on the wiki?

Any content which is relevant to Fanlore's mission, and does not contravene our Identity Protection policy.
Insofar as copyright goes, please see Fanlore:Copyright, but in summary: you can add any original content which is not in copyright (i.e. material you wrote). You can also quote, with attribution, from copyrighted material. In some cases, you can upload copyrighted images for illustrative purposes; see Fanlore:Image Policy for details.

Are there guidelines for completism/relevance/triviality of information?

Fanlore aims to create a historical record of fandom: rather than documenting the objects of fannish attention, we're interested in how fans have organized ourselves, how we talk, play, create, and consume! As an example, an article about James T. Kirk exists not to chronicle the minutiae of Captain Kirk's canonical appearances, but to discuss how fans have reacted to, responded to, and talked about Kirk.
Fanlore will take a stance on whether or not material is relevant to fandom, but we prefer to leave the relevance of topics within fandom up to the members of that fandom and individual editors.
For example, Fanlore is willing to determine, hypothetically, that olives are not of great import to fandom, and do not require an article. However, we would prefer not to make a determination on Character X's cat. The Fanlore committee is not as familiar with your fandom as you are, and you and your fandom know the things that are important.

Can I host my meta essay(s) on the wiki?

The short answer is no. But! You are welcome to distill your meta positions into statements such as "Some fans feel that /issue-idea here/" and add them to the relevant pages, though. For example, if you have written extensively about the inherent misogyny of the SPN canon, you can certainly make a short statement about this on the page for the show/fandom. Fanlore is not your personal website though, and neither is it a repository for individual meta essays. The collective, collaborative nature of the wiki is used in Fanlore to reach collective, collaborative forms of documentation / information.

What if I don't want anyone to edit my work?

Then you probably should not contribute to Fanlore. Contributing to the wiki hinges on understanding and accepting that your work will become integrated into a collective body of work.

Can I re-use/duplicate the content on the wiki elsewhere?

Under certain circumstances, you can. Check the license on our Copyright page to learn more.

Why does this wiki exist?

Sources of fan history by and for fans exist, such as the fandom_wank wiki, but our aim is to provide another source which incorporates the broadest range of viewpoints possible. Our Plural Point of View policy is an attempt to work toward this.

Who is the audience of the wiki?

Fans, academics, journalists, and other curious people.

Who can contribute to the wiki?

Anyone who chooses to create a user account.

What if I want to remove content from the wiki?

The Fanlore Committee will consider good reasons for page deletion, but under normal circumstances, the solution is to post your concerns to the article's talk page and/or edit the page for Plural POV.
If it is an Identity Protection issue, the page can be edited to remove the identifying information, and a gardener or committee member will hide the edit history.

Who gets to decide if content is appropriate or not?

If you believe that there is material on a page that is clearly inappropriate for the wiki, we'd encourage you to let the committee know about it. But if you're wondering whether particular information is relevant to a given article, we suggest that you discuss your concerns on the talk page for that article.

Some of the information I've seen on the wiki is incorrect. Can I correct it?

Yes, please!

Who runs the wiki? Who decides on what goes on it?

Fanlore is run by a Fanlore committee, but editors decide on most of the content. The gardeners are editors who do a lot of the day-to-day work of the wiki, and who make many of the decisions regarding pages, along with the editors of particular articles. Where a dispute arises that can't be reconciled, or if a policy question has to be resolved, the Fanlore Committee will resolve the issue.

Will my work be attributed?

Any edit you make will be recorded on the page's edit history with your username attached. However, Fanlore articles are edited collaboratively and are not signed.

Fandom is international. Why is this wiki only in English? Are other languages welcome?

If someone wants to start translating the wiki into another language, they are more than welcome. The Fanlore:Fanlore Committee is in talks about the best way, technically, to get the translation ball rolling.

WIP: We're working on this admin article!