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Open Letter
From: Tina Henry, Marty Siegrist, and Don Calderone
Addressed To: subscribers to Warped Space, members of The Michigan State University Star Trek Club, and general fans
Date(s): July 12, 1978
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS
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The Other Side Speaks: THE DEBT THAT NEVER SHOULD HAVE OCCURRED IN THE FIRST PLACE is a 1978 open letter written "with regard to the current controversy between Lori Chapek-Carleton and the MSU Star Trek Club."

The authors were Tina Henry, Marty Siegrist, and Don Calderone. All three were officers in the The Michigan State University Star Trek Club.

The letter addressed the controversy regarding Michigan State University Star Trek Club vs. Warped Space.

The Letter

Dear gentlebeing:

If you just received the latest issue of Warped Space, or if you were a subscriber back in the Fail of 1976, you've probably just received a small circular from Lori Chapek-Carleton and T'Kuhtian Press. Entitled Important Personal Statement from T'Kuhtian Press and Lori Chapek-Carleton, it exhorts the readers and subscribers to leap to their typewriters and write devastating letters in support of the T'Kuhtian Press position to the MSU Star Trek Club, care of the Assistant Dean of Student Affairs, to show that all Right Thinking Fen are solidly behind, T'Kuhtian Press (after all, "might makes right"). It also exhorts these same fen to leap to their checkbooks to make good the amounts which the MSUSTC has thus far refused to turn over to the Good Guys.

Okay. Now, we're sure there's a wide spectrum of opinions out there, ranging from those who are sick of hearing all the bickering emanating from Moo U to those who are very curious as to what can possibly be going on around the East Lansing area. To those of you who belong in the former category, we apologise for cluttering up your mailbox with this; if you're part of the latter category, please read on if you'd like to hear what the "villains of the piece" have to say about what's going on right now.

One comment with regard to Lori's request for money from all subscribers, on the grounds that T'Kuhtian Press cannot afford to continue printing Warped Space unless She receives the money now allegedly owed to her by the MSU Star Trek Club: Since we were all intimately acquainted and versed in the techniques and costs involved in printing Warped Space while it was still under club direction, and since we still are well aware of printing costs in the area, we find it ludicrous that T'Kuhtian Press should be losing money rather than clearing a handsome profit for the publishers.

Live long and prosper,

Tina Henry, Teasurer, MSUSTC

Marty Siegrist, Assistant Treasurer, MSUSTC

Don Calderone, President, MSUSTC


That's how it's phrased in the circular sent out by T'Kuhtian Press [in Warped Space #37], and aptly so. Lori is correct. The debt should never have occurred (there is some question as to whether it actually has).

We're sure most of you have been aware of the fact that Warped Space, official fanzine of the MSU Star Trek Club (MSUSTC), has been taken over by Lori and T'Kuhtian Press. We wonder if it has occurred to anyone that it's a bit strange for an individual to take off with the official publication of a thriving (well,it was at the time) organization. Warped Space was the official club zine—if you don't believe, check out the editorials of the first couple of issues—and would still be were it not for its takeover by Ms. Chapek-Carleton, a takeover which was allowed only because no one had any concrete ideas as to how to prevent it.

At the time, proceeds from the sales of Warped Space were the means by which the club was paying off the infamous Ourcon debt (another long story), and virtually all club money—including the advance subscriptions in question—had been applied to the debt and to printing costs for the zine. (As anyone who's run a zine knows, the reason for taking in advance subscriptions is to help handle present costs.)

At any rate, Lori had been threatening to take the zine for some time, claiming that it was and had always been hers (leaving us to wonder why she originally set it up as a club fanzine). So she went ahead and did it, despite having been told that it would be some time before the club would be able to make good on the advance subscriptions, since Warped Space was the club's only steady source of revenue. This warning didn't daunt her at the time; apparently she's changed her mind.

As far as Lori's dismay at our nonrecognition of T'Kuhtian Press is concerned, we are fully cognizant of their existence. However, if Warped Space in fact belongs to Lori as she claims, it would hardly be right for us to contract to give it away to someone else. We'd be leaving ourselves wide open for a (gasp) lawsuit! On the other hand, if, as we believe, Warped Spade is indeed the club fanzine, we don't feel we should injure the club further by giving it away to anyone.

The statement in the circular that "T'Kuhtian Press has...fulfilled the promise of the delivery of those issues" is somewhat misleading, since they haven't—at least not to several of the people on her subscription list.

Yes, it's true the MSUSTC has been silent on the subject of alleged debts. There are several reasons. It was thought that the whole matter could be settled quietly, without ruffling fandom's feathers. As has been seen on various occasions in the past, those of the Trek persuasion often turn on those who would tell them that everything in Fandomland is not all Sweetness and Light—ask anybody who's brought unpleasant facts to fannish attention. We didn't want that kind of sentiment directed at the MSUSTC and its officers for having dared challenge the actions of a Well-Known Fan.