Star of Alderaan

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The Star of Alderaan was a symbol chosen by Star Wars fans to protest the actions taken in the late 1990s by Lucasfilm (and later by Viacom and Paramount) against fan websites on the Internet.

Many of these sites included content pertaining to X-Files, Star Wars, Star Trek, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer fandoms.

See Viacom Crackdown for more.


The initial campaign began at The Sabacc Homepage in April of 1996. That site's creator, Dave Sanborn, was concerned about a 'cease and desist' order that another Star Wars site creator (Jason Ruspini) had received, and he felt that writing letters of protest to Lucasfilm would be the best way to reverse a potentially ugly precedent for how companies should handle fans use of IP on the web.[1]

From Who Owns Our Culture by Sue Clerc:

In 1996, prior to the creation of its own official site and the release of the Star Wars Special Edition tapes. Lucasfilm called the creator of one of the most popular Star Wars fan web sites and asked that he remove all logos, trademarked images, and sounds from his site. Jason Ruspini's Star Wars Home Page at UPenn received approximately 40.000 hits a day and when Ruspini posted excerpts of the conversation [with Lucasfilm] on the web site the response from other fans was immediate. They began a protest campaign with a symbolic name that fans of the series would recognize as a touchstone of resistance to authority, the Star of Alderaan. Supportive fans with web sites of their own posted Ruspini's story and an image of the Star of Alderaan. Fans were encouraged to write to Lucasfilm and protest the company's actions. [2]

From The Boba Fett Home Page:

According to many Star Wars sources, the Star of Alderaan is the highest honor awarded to heroes of the Rebel Alliance. It was created in memory of the millions killed when the Imperial Death Star destroyed their planet.

For these reasons, the Star of Alderaan has been chosen as the symbol of protest against Lucasfilm. One web site has already been shut down, and many more will follow. Sites that choose to display the Star of Alderaan will acknowledge the memory of these sites, attesting to the creativity of Star Wars fans, and also show Lucasfilm that their policy hurts the fans, and ultimately, the Star Wars franchise.


Alternately, if you don't have a web page but still want to show your support, there are other ways for you to do so. If you happen to come across a Star Wars related web page without the Star of Alderaan, let the site maintainer know how he can show his support for the campaign. In addition, you may send e-mail showing your displeasure with Lucasfilm's actions to lucasfilm. Nearly everyone is upset with Lucasfilms' new policy, but please keep all correspondance with them civil and level-headed. Flames and insults will only deepen the rift between us.

With any luck, we'll let Lucasfilm know that we aren't about to take this sitting down. May the force be with us...


A few weeks after the campaign started, Lucasfilm issued a statement clarifying their position on fan-created web sites (they had no desire to shut down either Jason's site, nor any other fan sites), apologized for the wording of their original statement (which they attributed to an overzealous employee), and also offered a set of guidelines to help fans produce their own Star Wars-inspired content, without running afoul of the law.[1]