jmtorres: Rhade and Beka from Andromeda. One true universe. (AU)
jmtorres ([personal profile] jmtorres) wrote2010-04-06 12:56 am

fandom quiz

[personal profile] echan and I have spent seriously, like, three hours, discussing fannish categorizations of material as it strays further and further from canon. We are interested in your opinions on the following:

In reference to vidding:
What constitutes canon (or nonviolation of canon)?
What constitutes an AU?
What constitutes constructed reality?

Where are the lines between these categories? What separates them? What rationales and characteristics can you use to differentiate between them?

Where does crossover fall in this scale?
Does the use of secondary sources make a vid fall into one category or another?

Second verse: would you care to tackle the same questions (as relevant) wrt fanfiction?

If you're very good, I may post my own thoughts on this matter when I am less drunk.
ratcreature: RatCreature smokes Crack (crack)

[personal profile] ratcreature 2010-04-09 10:35 am (UTC)(link)
The same can be true for AU fic though. Take for example the "X has a secret in their past/is secretly a..." type of fic. You can certainly write one that is very close to canon, like a secret that explains some behavior and fits both technically as well as in tone with the canon, or you can write something that might be possible with the canon but adds a type of angst unlikely to be seen in canon (secretly a hooker, horribly abused as a kid etc), or you can add something that technically may not contradict canon in any way, but is highly unlikely and not really in line with the universe (like someone is secretly a shapeshifting dragon and on the run from their people, therefore never shifting into dragon form also dragons hide from the public so the other characters don't know about them... or some scenario like that). Most people would label the last AU but not the first, but inbetween there is sliding scale where you could label it AU or you could say it's canon fic.
Edited (typo) 2010-04-09 10:37 (UTC)
katta: Photo of Diane from Jake 2.0 with Jake's face showing on the computer monitor behind her, and the text Talk geeky to me. (Default)

[personal profile] katta 2010-04-09 11:24 am (UTC)(link)
Most people would label the last AU but not the first, but inbetween there is sliding scale where you could label it AU or you could say it's canon fic.

I guess I have a stricter definition of AU than most, then, because I wouldn't call any of those things AU, as long as they don't directly contradict canon. Otherwise, wouldn't all fic be AU?

But yes, you have a point - fic AUs can be hard to define too. I guess the difference to me is that with fics, the author states something upfront and the reader can go "Well, that's not canon." With vids, unless source is taken elsewhere, everything is from canon, and the context makes it CR or not - but vids always consist of clips in new contexts, so it really depends on the viewer seeing the same narrative as the vidder. (Or indeed any narrative at all; not all viewers do.) So it's harder both to create an AU and to make it appear as such.
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[personal profile] ratcreature 2010-04-09 12:33 pm (UTC)(link)
I think most people count the implicit assumptions a universe makes as canon too, e.g. that Criminal Minds and CSI do not have hidden magic because they are procedural cop shows, even though in plenty of urban fantasies magic is not known by everyone either. The only instances where I have seen that kind of thing not labelled AU was in crossovers, because it is canon integration that leads to the premise shifting.

So you wouldn't call a story that works with everything we saw on screen but twists CSI into some kind of urban fantasy and has for example Nick Stokes secretly as a shapeshifting dragon who hid that fact from his colleagues AU?

I can't really say anything about vids because I watch very few, and usually I don't understand them, unless they are either funny or have a very clear story.
Edited 2010-04-09 12:34 (UTC)
katta: Photo of Diane from Jake 2.0 with Jake's face showing on the computer monitor behind her, and the text Talk geeky to me. (Default)

[personal profile] katta 2010-04-09 01:04 pm (UTC)(link)
I think most people count the implicit assumptions a universe makes as canon too, e.g. that Criminal Minds and CSI do not have hidden magic because they are procedural cop shows

But if so, any fic that wasn't in the same genre as the canon would be an AU. A Leverage ghost story, or Golden Girls angst story, or Gilmore Girls mystery. The genre already sets the tone, why unnecessarily use (and thereby weaken) the term AU as well?

So you wouldn't call a story that works with everything we saw on screen but twists CSI into some kind of urban fantasy and has for example Nick Stokes secretly as a shapeshifting dragon who hid that fact from his colleagues AU?

I would probably call it crackfic. Unless it was meant to be taken seriously, in which case I suppose it'd fall under "genre: supernatural" or something like that. Or just labelling it "urban fantasy". Things like wingfic are usually labelled with their particular trope, after all.

I'm not even entirely happy about elseworlds being mixed up with AUs, but since I can usually figure out what kind of story it is from the summary, I don't bitch too much about that.

I can't really say anything about vids because I watch very few, and usually I don't understand them, unless they are either funny or have a very clear story.

...I thought vids - in comparison to fics, admittedly, but still - were the topic discussion at hand?
ratcreature: sorry! (sorry!)

[personal profile] ratcreature 2010-04-09 01:14 pm (UTC)(link)
yeah, sorry, the conversation drifted. It's just that I watched maybe three constructed reality vids that I remember (one was Closer, and the other that SPN vid that has them as bankrobbers, and that SGA Rodney/Ronon vid that merges Ronon into scenes he wasn't in in canon), and these were pretty much what I would call AU in fic, so I've always more or less thought that constructed reality was just a word vidders use to call their AUs, like some fandoms call AUs something different.
katta: Photo of Diane from Jake 2.0 with Jake's face showing on the computer monitor behind her, and the text Talk geeky to me. (Default)

[personal profile] katta 2010-04-09 01:23 pm (UTC)(link)
One thought that occurred to me is that comedy vids are kind of hard to categorize in that respect. For instance, is a LotR vid set to the Muppet Show theme song (authentic example, btw) a constructed reality in which the LotR gang are putting up a show, or is it "just" a silly commentary on their behaviour in canon? It could be seen as either...