Slashcity: Hosting K/S Online
|Title:||Slashcity: Hosting K/S Online|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: TOS|
|Topic:||Star Trek: TOS, Kirk/Spock, web hosting|
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The topic: the web host SlashCity.
Where does K/S go when it goes online? Everything has to be somewhere, right? Where is it between your monitor and your printer?
Yes, it goes to some ultimate computer not in the sky, but right here on earth with laws and regulations, where copyright owners monitor for improper use. Even now that K/Sers and Paramount have settled into a comfortable accord, the owners of servers hosting Web sites may not know what is fair game to present on a fan site. It was not uncommon, and depending on the host and their terms of service, it still isn’t, for a Web host to refuse to maintain derivative material or adult content. Having had personal experience with K/S site deletion in 2005, your humble Internet editor can assure you that it is still a concern. This is what Robin S., of SlashCity Web hosting, has to say, “Hosts follow a delete first policy when it comes to most complaints, be they about copyright infringement, prohibited adult material, or other prohibited or questionable material. Most hosts provide their services to large numbers of clients and rely on volume for their income. They don’t have the staff or the inclination to investigate complaints for validity. One or two sites a month lost to possibly prohibited content is not a big deal to them, and they’d rather lose a few customers here and there rather than take the time and expense to have staff look into claims.” Looking back at the roots of SlashCity in 1997 as a Star Trek slash site shared with friends to cut down on expenses, Robin adds, “Those were the days of a constant worry about having our sites deleted by our Web hosts. The common theme in discussions about our sites was what to do to avoid having our sites disappear overnight, victim to a Web host’s fear of being sued or the host’s hostility toward our subject matter. “That was the primary driving force behind SlashCity hosting more and more fans on our site, and seeking out hosting solutions that would minimize that risk. We were a safe haven for other slash fans, and our choices and the ways in which we grew were all with that purpose in mind. “The explosion of slash fans that came with The Phantom Menace in 1999 served to create additional awkward feelings of slash being in the spotlight, which fed the fears of site deletion, and made us at SlashCity all the more resolved to be a place where those fears could be put to rest by acquiring our own servers. Two of us had worked in Internet technology fields, and decided we could teach ourselves what was needed to host. “Most hosts have the policy of delete first and ask questions later. Our policy was—and still is— to actually examine the veracity of any complaints and fight for our Web sites. We serve a niche, and out of love rather than money, so every single site is important to us and we’re motivated to do right by our site owners. “By the end of each year, SlashCity has never run a profit, though some months give us a littlecushion for the slower months. All of us involved in SlashCity have outside sources of income, but we’re lucky enough that our outside work has allowed us time and access to devote to SlashCity. The sites we host are done as a labor of love.”