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Creator: CiCi Lean and commenters
Date(s): September 4, 1998
Medium: online
Fandom: The X-Files
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REGARDING XAPEN: IMPORTANT, PLEASE READ! is a 1998 Usenet post by CiCi Lean. It concerns the TOSing of Lean's websites and the reverberations.

The Post

Due to the permanent TOSing of my XAPEN addy by America-Online after being reported by an individual for "the dissemination of obscene and vulgar materials" (i.e. NC-17 X-Files fanfic and my web sites), I've been forced to abandon the current address for the mailing list.

I apologize profusely to my list members for this inconvenience, but please be assured that it is a minor one. I will need time to regroup my resources, but the XAPEN -will- go and be better than ever.



Basically, I just have to find a new, safer and more convenient addy for the XAPEN. I'm looking into "Makelist" and other free addys. The method of distribution will remain the same, you'll mail the fiction to me, and I will distribute it to the list. I had been looking into an easier method of distribution anyway for some time now, so this will just speed up the process. AOL was by no means my only ISP (I mean, I'm dumb, but not THAT dumb... {g}), so that will make it very easy to regroup.

I am hoping that this will take approximately a week to set up. If it will take longer, I will let you know.


When the XAPEN is up and running again, I will be happy to distribute any backlog piece and we will have a Feedback Saturday to make up for any lost feedback. Again, I apologize, but this was an unforeseeable event.


Unfortunately, all that I can ask for is your patience, understanding and hope that you will remain members of the list when I get it up and running again. My commitment to the XAPEN has not wavered, and my commitment to this community will NEVER be destroyed by malicious individuals no matter how hard they try.

I'm like a beauty mark, boys and girls. You may think I'm lovely, you may think I'm just a goddamn wart, but either way, you can't get rid of me. {g}

And, for my morale purposes, Pendrell smut of any flavor will keep my spirits up indefinitely. Please mail all of it to {huge grin}

I am also letting you know that I've received an offer of pro bono legal assistance to fight AOL on this, and I am taking it up. I have lots of time, and since the lawyer in question is a fanfic author and reader, she and I believe it's in our best interests to find out the "who's," "why's" and "how's" of this situation. This is important to ALL of us, as readers, archivists AND authors, and I intend not to let the community down until I've gotten answers. As this lawsuit goes on, I will keep the community informed via The Acid Desk.

Also, if anyone has any private information they'd like to share with me, please write.

Confidentiality is guaranteed.


They are gone as well, but again, this is temporary. I had the foresight to move all my pages to Geocities during the week (this includes The Acid Desk) so the world will once again be graced by my lovely rancor (which will be sure to grow even MORE rancorous) in less time than it takes to say "TOS'D!"

For the time being, please be aware that all links to my pages will need to be changed. If you have any questions about this, please write to me at


Once again, I implore your patience and apologize in the best manner I know how for this inconvenience. I thank every one of my list members, my authors and readers alike, for their contributions to my list, for the past year.

I do not intend to let ANYONE ruin what so many fine people have joined together to create.


CiCi Lean


[Amy]: I will add my voice to this as well. While putting a slash

fanfic site on AOL *might* not have been the best choice, ::g:: the mail she sends, if solicited by the recipients, should not be enough to get her kicked off. Harassing e-mails, and spam, yes, I could understand if they did it becuase of that. It is always possible that one of the list members is underage or something and their parents opened their e-mail that day...or it is possible that someone did it to be mean. The parent, I could understand, but to do something out of spite? That is beyond childish. I disagree with someone doing that even more than I disagree with CiCi at times ;D

There is the argument that the TOS was violated by the slash site, and therefore reason enough for them to get rid of her altogether, who knows. The legality of 'cyber-property' is complex beyond my understanding of the law, that is for sure. What is legal may not always be what is right, that we all know.

You are right, the average NC-17fanfic is no worse than the average Harlequin that I used to read when I was 12. In fact, some of those romance novels were pretty darn graphic, and the public library let me rent them all byself without so much as a glance. I say that if parents don't care enough about what their children see to have Net Nanny, (or something like it) or can't be bothered to supervise on-line time (being in the same room would even be helpful) than frankly, they have no room for complaint. I would rather have my 12 year *reading* about sex than *doing* it, as so many are today. But that's just me, I guess.

Good luck in your endeavors, CiCi. Taking on a major corporation does take guts, pro-bono or not.
[WestShore]:Please don't miss the larger picture here.

AOL "TOS-ed" all of CiCi's sites. This has little or nothing to do with the fact that *one* of them was a slash site.

The larger ramifications are thus:

*All* NC17 material is AOL TOS-able. I know because I worked for AOL before dumping them because I was fighting a losing battle against obscene spam that AOL blithely let wander into my e mail. (Grand irony, eh what, CiCI?). Point being that lots of MSR stories meet the TOS criterion as well.

If AOL slaps CiCI the way it did because of one lone whacko's complaint, it ***HAS*** to acknowledge that all similar materials will also have to be shut down on AOL sooner or later.

Going beyond X Files Fanfic, AOL is also home to many, many fanfics from other shows (Star Trek-- which started the slash trend years before X Files, BTW, -- Highlander, Xena -- to name just a few). And many of those fanfic genres (including their slash and romance genres) have TOS-able material in them as well.

The short-sighted, vengeful person who did this has opened a "Pandora's Box" for lots of fanfic readers and writers from many different sources. This same non-thinking person has also given a useful tool to anyone who is mean enough to use it again against *any* authors or archivists with whom s/he is in disagreement, for reasons personal, philosophical or religious.

And once AOL is through "cleaning house", you can bet prodigy, earthlink, compuserve and a host of other servers will be next, snapping at writers and archivists.

So please don't lay it at the feet of "slash" material.

This is a bigger cancer than anyone thought, least of all the sick moron who started the problem because she had a personal difference with someone.
[stev]: west-y's right guys... slash isn't to blame for this dumbassedness... in fact, i've read some plain old hetero NC17 that was a whole lot worse than any slashfic i coul imagine. augh! disturbing!