Why J.K. Rowling Dislikes Harry Potter Adult Fan Fiction

I must admit, I’ve received a lot of comments and spoken quite a bit with people from the Harry Potter porn fan fic community since my post on how underage Harry Potter fan fic is immoral and borders on pedophilia. That is my opinion on the subject. As a result, I’ve been blasted across the Harry Potter porn web community for daring to tell people they are wrong for something.

Honestly, I care little for the opinions of those who appear to lack the creativity to develop their own stories and characters. These people are stealing copyrighted material, which is copyright infringement, and quite frankly they don’t care. It shows a lack of respect for the author, their work, and the characters these individuals claim to love so much. Of course, my opinion on this matter means little as I am just some writer with a blog (or twelve). However, shouldn’t the opinion of the author matter? Shouldn’t they have ultimate say in what is done with their characters?

Copyright Infringement: Laws & Information

First, let’s examine copyright infringement laws. I’ve looked up specific rules when it comes to fan fic in particular. Here’s what I’ve learned and can share with you when it comes to copyright infringement.

Chilling Effect writes: “When authors write stories featuring characters from other stories, movies or TV shows in new situations or adventures, these works of “fan fiction” may run into legal challenges because the borrowed characters, scenes or plots may be protected from unauthorized use under intellectual property laws.”

The site goes on to say: “copyright owner can stop someone else from (1) copying, (2) distributing, (3) performing, or (4) displaying the characters without the permission of the owner. The owner also can stop someone from (5) creating “derivative works”. A derivative work is a new work based on someone else’s intellectual property.

Based on this assessment of copyright laws, it would stand to reason that any type of fan fic, whether it is porn or not, is a form of derivative work. Therefore, the person writing the fan fic can be liable if the author wishes to pursue legal action to prevent them from using their characters and/or storylines in any type of written work available online or offline This does not prevent anyone from actually fantasizing at this point if it is not written out, but you would think it would be preventative in the actual writing and distribution of such stories.

I should add that in relation to underage fan fic and the like, in the United States specifically, there is little to no protection for this work under the First Amendment. Chilling Effect notes a case, which attempted to discuss this in relation to child pornography in fan fiction.

“Child pornography and obscenity are not protected by the First Amendment. In Miller v. California (1973), the Supreme Court, in a 5-to-4 vote, ruled that material could be banned as obscene if it met a three-part test:

1. The average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest;
2. The work depicts, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law;
3. The work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.

Material that meets all three parts is obscene and outside of First Amendment protection. Under the decision, only “ultimate sexual acts” could be forbidden, and relevant community standards were local, not nationwide.”

Additionally: “Both “indecent” material and material “harmful to minors” can be regulated to some extent by the government. Indecency is defined as language or material that, “in context, depicts or describes in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory activities or organs.” Action For Children’s Television v FCC, 11 F.3d 170, 172 (D.C. Cir. 1993)

“Harmful to minors” means any written, visual, or audio matter of any kind
that :

1. the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find, taken as a whole and with respect to minors, appeals to a prurientinterest in nudity, sex, or excretion, and
2. the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find depicts, describes, or represents, in a patently offensive way with respect to what is suitable for minors, ultimate sexual acts, normal or perverted, actual or simulated; sadomasochistic sexual acts or abuse; or lewd exhibitions of the genitals, pubic area, buttocks, or post-pubertal female
breast, and
3. a reasonable person would find, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors. Ginsberg v New York, 390 U.S. 629 (1968).”

What is Copyright Anyway and how does it apply to Fan Fiction?

A.T. Lee discusses fan fiction completely in relation to copyright at Copyright 101. Through the guide, which is written as a specific copyright guide for fan fiction authors, the various types of copyright laws are examined and dissected.

Lee lists the following copyright laws:

1. The Copyright Act of 1909
2. The Copyright Act of 1976
3. The Universal Copyright Convention (“U.C.C.”)
4. The GATT Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs)

Lee defines copyright as, “Copyright is a bundle of exclusive intellectual property rights granted to “Authors” for a limited time. A creator of any copyrightable work is an “Author”.”

I should note, depending on who owns the copyright, it can be extended past the initial time an author is given the copyright for their work. So, how long is that? Lee also lets fan fiction authors know how long copyright lasts, so there should be no question about whether their work is copyright infringement or not.

“For works created on or after January 1, 1978: Single Author:

-single term of life + 50 years
-Author has the right to terminate any transfer of copyright after 35 years”

A.T. Lee’s thoughts on fan fiction based on interpretation of the laws of copyright are as follows, and considering J.K. Rowling holds copyright pretty much around the entire world, this applies to all areas where copyright law applies.

“Well, you can’t derive your work from someone else’s work or copyright her work without her permission. Therefore, technically, all fan fictions, which are derivative works, are copyright violations. While many copyright holders turn a blind eye to such works (like our TPTB), they don’t have to be so nice about it. In the end, it’s completely up to the owner of the copyright to decide whether or not to enforce her rights, and prosecute the infringers.”

In relation to international laws on copyright Lee also notes that “there’s no such thing as international copyright that would provide worldwide protection to an Author’s work. Nevertheless, most countries have copyrights laws that would provide protection to the works of foreign authors.

Many countries nowadays are either signatories to the Berne Convention or to the U.C.C., both of which would provide National copyright treatment.”

What does this have to do with J.K. Rowling?

I fully admit that I am not a J.K. Rowling fan. I am not fond of her writing or her stories. I can, however, respect her for her development of her own characters, world, and story. I can respect the fact that J.K. Rowling owns the copyright to Harry Potter, Draco Malfoy, Sirius Black, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, and the list goes on. Furthermore, I respect her right to take legal action against those who are infringing on her copyright, and it is no secret that J.K. and her agent, Christopher Little, has taken action against sites writing adult Harry Potter fan fic before.

In one instance, J.K. Rowling and Warner Bros. (who own the film rights)’ attorneys refer to those who write non-adult fan fiction as “true and genuine” Harry fans. This is to imply those who write adult fan fiction are not true fans and are not genuine in their intentions when it comes to Harry and the other Harry Potter characters.

Chilling Effects has the letter from her attorneys to a specific online website, which states, “In addition, our client Warner Bros, which owns the film and merchandising rights to the children’s series of Harry Potter books, is concerned to protect the integrity of its Harry Potter properties. For the avoidance of doubt, our clients make no complaint about fan fiction written by genuine Harry Potter fans.”

It goes on to say this in relation to why they do not approve, condone, or warrant the writing or use of adult fan fiction. I believe I’ve pointed this out as one reason on why adult fan fiction should not be condoned on the Internet.

“There is plainly a very real risk that impressionable children, who of course comprise the principal readership of the Harry Potter books, will be directed (e.g. by a search engine result) to your sexually explicit website, which you will appreciate most people would consider wholly inappropriate for minors. Plainly the warnings to the effect that children under 18 should not access your website do not in fact prevent minors from doing so. Indeed such warnings may well serve simply to entice teenagers to your site.”

Their request was simple. “In the circumstances, our clients therefore request you to remove all such material and cease making it available lo the general public on the internet or by any other means.”

I don’t understand why those who write adult fan fiction do not get the fact that authors do not like their characters being used in such ways. It’s simple to understand when it’s written so clearly in black and white. So, what authors are against fan fiction or adult fan fiction? I’ve compiled a small list of those I know.

Guy Gavriel Kay – Against fan fiction due to issues of copyright. Information on this found on another writer’s blog.

Anne Rice: Is against all unauthorized use of her characters including roleplay and fan fiction according to posts on her official website.

Teresa Nielson Hayden & Patrick Nielson Hayden – For fan fiction though I’m not sure what their stance is on adult fan fiction. This is posted on their blog.

J.K. Rowling: Is against adult fan fiction, and views those who write it as non-genuine Harry Potter fans. Fine with fan fiction true to how she wrote the characters. Information on this was found in letters from attorneys to a site in violation of copyright infringement.

Laurel K. Hamilton: Willing to turn a blind eye, as long as she does not find the work of fan fiction, though appears to be not overly fond of it. This was according to her assistance in an email I received when asking her take on fan fiction.

Stephen King: No official stance, but believes in thinking up his own ideas. Most sites, do not allow Stephen King fan fiction so I’m assuming this means he is against it. Please note that this is only an assumption.

I’m sure there are more, but these are just the big ones I know have stances. Please let me know if you know the stances of other authors, by leaving a comment.

Chilling Effects Clearinghouse. Fan fiction and Copyright. URL. Accessed on August 21, 2007.

Chilling Effects Clearinghouse. J.K. Rowling’s Letter from her Attorneys. URL. Accessed on August 21, 2007.

Lee, A.T. (1998). Copyright 101: A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO COPYRIGHT FOR FAN FICTION AUTHORS. URL. Accessed on August 20, 2007.

[tags]adult fan fiction, copyright infringement, minors, J.K. Rowling[/tags]

31 Responses to “Why J.K. Rowling Dislikes Harry Potter Adult Fan Fiction”

  1. Leva Cygnet says:

    Man, you’ve got a vendetta against fanfiction.

    A couple of things you should be aware of –

    Anne Rice is, frankly, nuts on several levels. And her work is, frankly, pornographic itself. Have you *read* Anne Rice? If you’re squicked by underage or gay sex, or sexual abuse of minors, I would suggest not doing so … I wouldn’t cite her in this vendetta against adult material, at any rate. Because she writes pornographic material, her work is accessible to kids, and when I was in high school, it was pretty popular pornographic material to boot. I checked her stuff out of the library to read it. I was a young teen at the time.

    Quite honestly? There are few fanfic stories that top what’s in her published fiction.

    If you’re trying to argue that Anne Rice’s stance against fanfic is a point in your favor in your vendetta against adult-oriented fanfic … you’ve got a logic problem there.

    Additionally, the information you have about Rowling is old. JK Rowling links or has linked to fan sites from her personal Web site, including those with fanfiction on them. Including adult fanfiction.

    The information you have posted about the legality fanfic is also debatable. I’ve seen it argued both ways, by lawyers familiar with the publishing industry. There has never been a legal test case. I don’t think either the fanfic writers or the IP holders *want* a test case.

    If you’re trying to estabish that writers and publishers are against fanfic, you’ll have to try harder. I could add one or two to your list who don’t like it, but I have seen far, far more professional writers either publicly state they don’t mind fanfic or outright defend fanfic writers.

    More than a few publishers defend it as well. Teresa and Patrick Nielsen-Hayden and James MacDonald (you do know who they are, right, since you run a literary site?) have rather strongly defended fanfic. Publicly. On their very well read blog. With some rather big name writers chiming in, in its defense.

    http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/

    And back to Anne Rice — her publisher actually inked to fan sites with adult fanfic on it before she went round the bend.

    Look — the internet isn’t a kid safe place. Neither is the fantasy section of your local public library, for kids who aren’t ready for stories with sex in them. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. If you don’t want your kids reading it, keep them off the ‘net or monitor what they’re doing.

    And if you’re going to write an editorial, please try to do a little more research into the subject matter …

    Leva Cygnet

  2. [...] News Recent Comments Why J.K. Rowling Dislikes Harry Potter Adult Fan Fiction (1 comment)Last comment by: Leva Cygnet on 2007-08-21 22:43:48Good Riddance You Sad Little Wizard [...]

  3. Dominick says:

    #1 – Everyone knows Anne Rice is a fruitcake. I’m not a fan of her books though I read a few of them a long time ago. Long incessant drivel pretty much sums up her books. I wouldn’t say they are pornographic though unless you speak of the Beauty series, which was supposed to be.

    The Mayfairs had an incest-loving, underage slut in it, but there was more description about the curtains (pages and pages!) then her wooing ways and was only a small part of those atrocious books. As for the vampires, they couldn’t have sex according to Rice. So, unless you are referring to the eroticism associated with feeding on blood, that’s going to be any vampire book.

    That being said, I didn’t use her to add for or against my argument. I added any author (and she technically is a best selling one whether you like it or not) that I knew had a stance for or against fan fiction. I’d love to add more, once I see proof of them saying they are for or against it. If you know others, feel free to comment on them.

    Also, the difference between Anne Rice and J.K. Rowling is Anne Rice didn’t market her books to children. J.K. Rowling did. Therefore, children will look up Harry Potter, and if a parent isn’t as familiar with the Internet as their child is, the child may find pornographic Harry Potter stories without parents even realizing it.

    When it comes to library access, I guess it just depends on where you live. I know my school library did not carry Anne Rice (not even the High School library). I do know my public library did and they had specific rules on what books those under 18 could check out. I don’t know what kind of library you went to, but ours was/is moderated.

    #2 – Just because I dislike fan fiction in general, especially that portraying children in it, does not mean I’m a prude in general. In fact, I would say I’m actually quite open and accepting when it comes to sexual freedom. Things I disagree with include snuff, children/pedophilia, anything hygienically dangerous such as scat, anything non-consensual (which would encompass rape, bestiality, and children), and incest. The rest, if done legally and consensually, is none of my business.

    In relation to my views on fan fiction, I feel that my dislike of it comes from what I view as a lack of respect for the characters, which a person must have to write about them when an author dislikes the idea of using the characters she/he created, especially in erotic situations. Most authors spend years developing, fleshing out, and creating their characters. Why not let them have a say in whether they wish to share them or not?

    #3 – Being a fan of Tor publications, of course I know who Teresa and Patrick Nielsen Hayden (no hyphen) are. I would look on their fan fiction post though as others have also spoken of J.K. Rowling and how she doesn’t have a problem with fan fiction in general, just the adult fan fiction, which I believe is what I said.

  4. Sere says:

    You know, if you’re going to rail again fictional children in fictional derivative works having fictional sex, why don’t you start with Alan Moore’s graphic Lost Girls, in which Alice, Dorothy Gale, and Wendy all share erotic stories of their adventures in the worlds of Wonderland, Oz, and Peter Pan? I don’t see the descendants of Lewis Carroll, L. Baum, or J M Barrie complaining about this work being made about these beloved characters of children’s books.

    But then again, those three authors works are now in public domain, so using the ideas and characters presented there is free game for any author, pro or amateur. From Computer Associate Int’l vs. Altai:

    “Closely related to the non-protectability of scenes a faire, is material found in the public domain. Such material is free for the taking and cannot be appropriated by a single author even though it is included in a copyrighted work.”

    Grimm’s Fairy Tales, Le Morte de Author, Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, mythology, the works of the Bronte sisters, Dickens, every work of classic literature in public domain is open to another authors interpretation. Many of these works have already have derivative works with sexual elements added that weren’t elaborated on in the original.

    The only difference between these works and fanfiction is the copyright, which, once it expires eventually, lets the work enter public domain anyway. The purpose of the law is not to protect the authors and their delicate sensibilities, but to allow them enough time to profit off of their works. I don’t see J K Rowlings hurting for money for her books, do you?

    I don’t see her complaining today either. If you bothered to read the date on that C&D notice, it was back in 2003. Since then no other Harry Potter archives, adult or otherwise, have been shut down, but their numbers do keep growing. If your assumption that Rowlings doesn’t want these types of works based off her books to exist is correct, then why hasn’t she stomped them all out? It’s not like she’s selling more books now right?

    The legal argument for the allowance of fanfiction falls under fair use in the copyright law because most fanfiction can be considered a transformitive, non-profit work, or even a parody of the original. Given the rigidity of English society in the setting of Potter, seeing the free love reigning in many fanfictions of that would to be akin to parody, a commentary on how uptight people are about sex, any form of sex. Fans neither publish nor profit from their efforts, and in fact their efforts of creating content for free can be seen as promotion for dead series with no hope of continuation.

    But, alas, your original argument was all over sex in the first place and not even Harry Potter. Potter and fanfiction is a red herring because it all comes down to sex and sexual fantasies.

    Admit it, you’re squicked out by the idea of women and girls having sexual fantasies in the first place and expressing them in writing. You may profess otherwise, but your inability to separate the ideas of written word from actual action and real crimes is demonstrated by your continued unwavering stance that you’re right and anyone not seeing that too is a dirty, dirty pervert. No woman in the fifties were lusting after Opie or the Beaver, but Elvis and his swiveling hips were a whole other story, so potent that he could only be seen on TV from the waist up. I wonder what all the women and girls seeing him perform live were all thinking about?

    Good Lord though, if every woman was as pure of thought as you seem to wish, I’d be restricted to swooning over only male celebrities my age (none of which I can even name), but one impure thought on Sean Connery as James Bond is ::shock, gasp:: wrong, wrong, wrong! Gee, and I really liked imagining those nice short shorts on him in Thunderball too. I’m a bad, bad girl! Lock me up and throw away the key!

    But you know, that’s just my opinion, which I’m you’ll keep disagree with no matter how much I could be right. I should probably leave you be since you got your work cut out for you if your wish to keep protecting the children by cleaning up pop culture and the libraries. Just to be helpful, you might want to start with Lolita. I’m sure a lot of people will get behind banning that book once and for all too.

  5. Dominick says:

    I’m not squicked out on women having fantasies in a general sense. I think there are plenty of women who have healthy and active fantasy imaginations.

    What I am down on is men, women,or otherwise having fantasies about children. Go ahead and dream of Sean Connery if you’re over the age of 18. He’s not a child now is he? Children are innocent and pure. To make them otherwise is a degradation to youth as a whole.

    Sure, plenty of people say child molesters are disgusting and vile, but then they go and write smut about 12 year old fictional Jimmy getting spanked by his dad or much older teacher and that’s fine right? It’s not the same thing because they’re just words not actions eh? Many of these child molesters started out simply by fantasizing before acting upon their fantasies.

    I have problems with fan fiction as a whole. I believe it is disrespectful to authors IF the authors say they don’t approve of it. I’m not fond of people who take the work of others even in public domain and write new stories using those characters. Some of them may make a decent story out of it, but it isn’t any less stealing of an author’s characters.

    If I had spent years developing characters, fleshing them out, making them grow into something wonderful, you can bet I’d be mad if I saw people taking my characters and doing something with them. That is the author’s HARD WORK. That is their creation. I guess people who do not create on their own do not understand that concept. It’s not just about money either. A lot of authors write because they love it. They do it because they have PRIDE in their work.

    I see parody as a different thing because it is done in humor (and you can’t tell me adult fan fiction is done as such). However, I believe it is proper, even in parody, to ask the original author for permission to parody their work. Some people who parody things do, and others don’t. It’s an issue of respect for the original creator.

    A great example of this is Weird Al. He won’t parody a song without getting the original author’s permission. He has admitted that he’s had authors turn him down and that is fine with him. He won’t do the song. To me, Weird Al is a class act because of this. He has enough class to respect the authors whether they say he can parody them or not. Besides, most of his parodies are pretty damn funny.

    Furthermore, its a known fact J.K. Rowling still disapproves of Adult Fan Fic (just check out the link in comment #1). I noticed the 2003 year and I’ve stated that elsewhere. Regardless, why should she have to repeatedly monitor it? If people loved her work as much as they claim they’d stop doing what she asked them not to do.

  6. Sere says:

    ::blinks::

    Children are pure and innocent?

    I don’t know what world you’re living in, but it isn’t mine As a product of a standard American public school education from an upper-middle class predominantly white, Christian background, my entire class’s sexual innocence ended in the 4th grade when they separates us and played tapes on sex ed. By ten, I had already found softcore porn on cable television, and you know what? My young mind actually liked it without being embarrassed.

    I shouldn’t have to remind you what middle and high school is like if you attended one. The typical lunch conversations of girls from about 8th grade on revolved around boys and sex. Not to mention half the girls in my English class that year swooned over our hot, young male teacher when he wasn’t noticing. In my 11th grade year, two young men were caught having oral sex in the auditorium balcony while at least 15 young women were either pregnant or had given birth by the time I graduated.

    Real kids are not as naive as you would like them to be, but if kept naive about things related to sex, how else are they to learn except through bad experience and potentially harmful situations? An education is the best defense any child can have against real predators rather than trying to save them by banning fiction. What does it accomplish except to make the idea of teenage sex taboo when it is in fact a very real occurrence?

    So what if in a story, sweet 14 year old Alice can’t stop thinking about her 25 year old science geek teacher, and sets out to seduce him? It is a story. Fiction. Never happened, and pure coincidence if it does happen, ever. Being fanfiction or original fiction is irrelevant since both are fictional works, stories. If a reader can’t separate the real from the fictitious then be afraid of the reader, not the one telling the story, because they’re the ones with serious mental issues.

    You’re also assuming children, no, teenagers can only be victims, can’t be mature beyond their years, or can’t desire anything except to remain pure. Your logic not only damns authors writing stories student/teacher relationships, but also those exploring the problems and pitfalls of teenage sex within that age group.

    By your logic, any medium with extreme depictions of sex and violence, underaged or not, could inspire readers to real crimes. This sounds like the same argument Jack Thompson used to try to convince a civil court that video games were as responsible for school violence as gun makers. The courts keep tossing his cases out on that. You cannot just say one crime in writing inspires the committing of that crime while ignoring other acts in fictional works as well. That’s selective judgment on your part, that one crime is more heinous than another, that writing is more likely to inspire criminal thoughts than another.

    You can rail about how much you think fanfiction is disrespectful to the author, or even how public domain shouldn’t be allowed, but the fact remains that people are inspire by the works of others since the beginning of story-telling. Nothing has stopped people from changing and sharing their own takes on stories and nothing ever will. Variations to stories are as far back as the oral tradition of story-telling itself. The Grimms Brothers didn’t write their faerie tales, they compiled them into one version each from variations told all over Germany. The Authurian legends keep being retold and retold, yet I don’t see anyone getting upset over Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon, which is a feminist take on the stories.

    As I said before, the only difference now is copyright law. Whether you like it or not, it is meant to allow the original creator to profit from their work during their lifetime. Apparently, it lets their descendants profit from their works too even when it’s only supposed to last until 70 years after the death of the original creator. As long as Christopher Tolkien and the sons of Frank Herbert keep mining the works of their fathers, those works will never enter public domain even if the subsequent works will never match the genius of the original.

    As I said before as well, JKR isn’t hurting for cash, but if she ever wants to sell her new books again, she is hurting for loyal fans, after, as you say, her bad writing on the last book. You’re mistaking a fan’s loyalty to the property for loyal to the creator. Using Anne Rice, which you so nicely provided, for an example, her books have not sold as well since spurning her fans into taking down stories. Laurell K Hamilton’s fanbase has turned on her as well for spurning the fans on top of her shoddy writing.

    JKR may very well have feelings against adult fanfiction, but she’s not stupid enough to enrage her audience by suing all of them like you’re suggesting. She tried it once in 2003 and hasn’t done it since. Warner Bros. threatened lawsuits over Harry Potter in 2001 and hasn’t done a thing about it. Maybe it’s because they realize that any form of fanfiction is a form of free promotion for the original source. Maybe they figure it’ll be damaging to them in the long run in selling collectors editions of all seven Potter films. The fact of the matter is no one wants this legal issue to ever be decided because the fallout of hurt feelings from fans would utterly kill their profits.

    I can tell by your assumptions about fan writers that you haven’t even tried to talk to one of them. You assume that they don’t attempt original publishable works, but they do. You assume they aren’t as passionate about writing and telling a story, but they are. You assume they don’t take pride in what they write, but they do. You also assume they’re uncreative, but who’s to judge such a subjective quality? Also, you’re assuming the fan writers are amateurs by virtue of not being publish, which is a falsehood. Bestselling author, Mercedes Lackey has written fanfiction under pseudonyms for the MMORPG City of Heroes. I am sure she’s not the only author to have done so in other fandoms.

    You may not come right out and say it, but you’re also assuming that to write something is to condone it’s action, but you’re wrong. The majority of people writing slash fiction are women who would rather chop off their own hands than harm an actual child, but you’re still peddling the argument that their thoughts on paper of characters that don’t exist is the same thing. So then, to you, are all authors tackling this subject monsters in the making, or just the fan-based ones?

  7. Dominick says:

    I don’t know what school you went to, but our sex ed discussions were scientific and not a turn on for anyone, and while there was plenty of discussion on who was ‘hot’ by the girls at the lunchroom table, I know many of them did not start having sex until high school. I’m sure a few stray “bad seeds” were doing things before then, but I blame that on bad parenting.

    Children are impressionable. You can teach your children about sex in an educational and productive way without being condescending or overly dramatic. You can also have an open door policy. I have one at my house, and my son has used it to ask questions, but I have no doubt he is not having sex at this time.

    I know its going to happen one day. I expect my children to be prepared and knowledgeable. I also expect them to be responsible about it. I want them to really think about what they are doing. For example, my son knows the risks of having sex. To him, finding someone he cares about to share the experience with is far more important then doing it with just anyone and getting a disease or getting a girl pregnant. He doesn’t want to do that, especially at such a young age.

    Too many teenagers have sex just to do it, then regret it because they really weren’t ready. I hope to teach my children that they need to be comfortable and ready. The shouldn’t do it just to do it and risk everything for a quick fling. I also want them to know if they are underage they should not be having sex with someone much older then them.

    If a 23 year old guy has to have sex with 14 year olds, he’s either excessively immature or doesn’t know how to do it right so he can’t get girls his own age. If they are older teens then 19 and 20 isn’t such a far stretch, but between ages 16 and 18 kids really mature a lot. I see a lot of difference between a 14 year old and a 16 year old or even 15 and 16.

    Prior to that (especially in boys), these kids are still immature and yes I do believe not all of them are ready to have sex or capable of accurately deciding to do so. Hell, some kids in their early teens still can’t pick out their own breakfast or cook for themselves. How are they going to be capable to make such a big (yes natural, but still big) decision?

    Perhaps this is why teen pregnancy rates are so high…too much watching soft porn and reading dirty stories and not enough parental supervision. Parents need to be active in their children’s lives. Otherwise, Alice won’t think she “has” to seduce her nearly 10 years older teacher, which is something I would most definitely not approve of my daughter doing.

    As for your assumptions about my assumptions, I know some authors like fan fic. Some even admit to writing it. However, I said that an author’s wishes should be respected and some don’t like it. So, what’s the big deal? Write from the authors that do.

    Furthermore, Anne Rice fell off the bandwagon with her “Christian revelation” BS in her last vampire book. Fans hated the course of her last book, and how she suddenly made a damned being holy because she had just found God again herself. I don’t believe it had as much to do with her opinion of fan fic as her wacko book and nasty attitude in response to the bad reviews to it.

    LKH has shoddy writing and if you want to talk about pornography then her work is a cesspool for it. Her entire books are sex, sex, and more sex. I’ve heard too many fans say it was too much sex and they just got tired of it.

    As for fan fic writers, if they write their own stuff, good for them. That doesn’t mean their using already created characters unoriginal because it does. If anyone touched my characters if I ever published anything, I’d sue, plain and simple. I’m not working for the fans or the money or anything else. I’m writing for the joy of storytelling and the characters.

  8. Rose says:

    I wonder what your opinion is on fan art? According to what you’re saying, fan art, adult or otherwise, should be illegal as well as fan fiction.I think you would have a hard time censoring the art community.

    People have been enjoying writing fan fiction long before the internet came into being. Now they can share with others, of the same ilk, these fantasies that once remained private in a journal. Parents need to limit and monitor their children’s use of the internet. And Rowling’s writing is full of violence and dark themes that such children should not be reading likewise.Furthermore, let’s not forget that many successful writers’ characters and plots are not entirely original as they may seem. They too borrow from the past and have the added benefit of profiting from it.

  9. Dominick says:

    I don’t believe I mentioned fan art. Art has different copyright rules then literature does. You also have to look at each individual piece of art to determine whether it is smut or not.

    For example, a naked statue, such as the statue of David is art. Sure he’s naked, but when you look at it, you are focusing on the magnificent detail and not the penis. When you have little graphic images though of a child in god awful sexual positions with an adult, to me, that isn’t art. That’s exploitation.

    You seem to think I’m against naked bodies, sex, and sexuality in general. I’m not, nor have I said or implied that anywhere.

    The naked body is a beautiful thing. However, it is also something that must be protected from the elements and protected from predators, especially those who seek to exploit nakedness in children. The naked body can be exploited, and made to be ugly. This just encourages bad body images and low self esteem; things kids don’t need to deal with.

  10. Drea says:

    There is a fine line between exploitation and art, is there not? Writing is a form of art,that much is obvious. Some prose is so beautiful that they put the Mona Lisa to shame.

    And yet there are people who try to stifle creativity. Such as the pope who went on a spree with the nude statues, the statue of David included. (Ahem, hacking off the penises and putting fig leaves over them…horrid.) Defacing art, whether it be the written word or the stroke of a pen, is wrong.

    Fanfiction isn’t all bad and some of the writing is magnificent. Just because we find the worlds that these authors creatived intriguing doesn’t mean we dont respect them. I love JKR and greatly respect her work, but I play around with fanfiction (mostly in the “Founder’s Era” where we know little about the characters).

    I openly admit that she is the one who wrote it first, who created the world in which I play. Does this make me a skeeze for “stealing” her work? I don’t think so because I don’t make money off of it. If I were cashing in on her world then perhaps.

    As for the child issue…I think that some work written about rape are deep and moving, not exploiting. Such as Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. Matilda was still in high school, no doubt underage at the time of her rape. The book shows how she dealt with it and brought her rapist to justice. So I ask, is that exploiting?

    To you, perhaps, to me, no. I found it inspiring. Would that make me a bad person? I highly doubt it. I’m sure others found it inspiring too.

  11. Chris says:

    Well, my opinion on the matter is the following:

    firstly, look at the name: FAN fiction. Not, ‘lets rip you off for all your worth’ fiction. Fans write this kind of stuff. Does it affect sales of JK Rowlings books? Probably, but for the better. Also, are people actually infringing on copyright? no, because you can only infringe on copyright if you MAKE MONEY FROM SOMEONE ELSES IDEAS! And as all fan-fic people (myself included) include copyright statements that explicitly say JK owns the lot, i doubt we can be sued for anything.

    Also, let me write a story for you:

    Jimmy was 18, and he went and had sex with his girlfriend (nothing shocking there!)

    Jimmy was 15, and he went and had sex with his boyfriend (Oh my,underage sex! And gay too! Oh the horror!) Any pedofile looking at that will probably have a boner now. Grow up you tart, the fan fic community has more bloody sense than that. We write stuff like that because a) it reflects REAL LIFE (unlike the seemingly very Christian life you and your family lead) and 2) because it serves a point in the plot. Have you ever read a Dredd novel? How many people die in greusome ways? Loads! Are they advancing the plot? Hell no! Yet you complain that kids have access to material which actually comments on real life, and you have the audacity to go ‘here, read something else because you might have an understanding of someone elses view on life’ that is both very conceited and narrow minded of you.

    And besides, if you ever released a novel, i would post a fan fiction so fast it would blow your head off. And there would be nothing you could do about it. Why? I would say that all character names, conventions, places, etc… were copyright to YOU (something all fan fic peeps do anyway) and I would also state that I am making NO money from any of it. Thereby getting me round your shitty ‘copyright’ mumbo jumbo.

    you say you’re not writing for the fans, or the money or anything? You obviously have never been published at all then. If you write just for the joy of it, YOU ARE ALREADY DOING IT!!!!! once you have been published, you’ll come to realise how important the fans of your work are. Without them, you wont get anywhere. So just think of the ostracising you are doing.

    Just one more point here. You seem to have some underlying morals regarding pedofiles and children and underage sex. I applaud you for wanting to keep children safe from this. However, you are completely fire and brimstone about this. People do have sex – and yes – some of them are underage (hell, I was 14 when i first had sex!) but trying to block that in story form? Preposterous! What about all of these books where the authors recount gruelling tales of their own abuse? Surely child molesters everywhere would buy this kind of book, no? No! These kind of people seek quick fixes, so they go to porn and such like. To even suggest that there is a link to fanfiction and pedofilia is unfounded and insane.

    The majority of people who read and write this kind of stuff are teenage girls. (admittedly, i’m a teenage lad, but hey – we’re all different!) NOT 50 year old sweating child molesters from Austria.

    You will find ‘links’ to child abuse in many areas involving children (like child modelling, child play centres, pediatricians), if you look in the shadows enough, and believe enough superstition. However, i think you can discount fanfiction from that (though not entirely, i’m sure you will find one or two somewhere in the millions of people who read and write it)

    It’s like most things in life. You wouldn’t keep carrier bags away from teenagers because they could suffocate themselves with it. You trust them to be smarter than that. Likewise you wouldn’t keep fanfiction away from fans, just because some people like a bit of smut in their stories. The majority do keep it clean. You’re just focussing on another minoroty to pick on for your blog.

    This is Chris, signing off!

    Cheers!

  12. Dominick says:

    #1 – I’m not Christian, but thanks for playing. I’m not even a monotheist. Nice assumption though numb-nuts.

    #2 – Where are your statistics that show most fan fic is written by teenage girls?

    #3 – I hardly think Hermione, Ron, and a Owl having a threesome is realistic (and yes, a story did exist about this) or Hermione and her much older teachers (with Hermione supposedly aged 13 or 14)

    #4 – The aforementioned teacher-student story was written by a self-professed woman in her 30s with children of her own who all love Harry Potter. Just because you read mild fan fic from people in your age group doesn’t mean there aren’t older folks writing about teenagers (and even younger kids) doing things they shouldn’t be doing

    #5 – There is a difference between a realistic portrayal of teen sex in a story and raunchy, dirty, pornographic smut with underage characters who are doing things with adults, animals, etc. It’s tasteless and it’s stuff like this that ensures I monitor my son’s usage of the internet

    #6 – If you say that pedophiles seek out porn and some fan fic is incredibly pornographic…isn’t that an oxymoron?

    #7 – There is no comparison between an author writing about abuse they’ve endured and smut which condones terrible acts against children. There is a difference between ‘he forced me to do it and I hated it” and “wow what a great adventure the 10 year old had with his Uncle Billy when they played doctor” (only imagine a lot of dirty words to explain what Billy’s doing). That’s the difference between something acceptable and the type of smutty pedophilia driven smut some of these adults are writing (sometimes with characters that aren’t even theirs).

    #8 – Fan fic does not ‘honor’ an author. It’s disrespectful, unoriginal and wholly pathetic. I wouldn’t expect a twit like you to understand that. You think it’s “cool” to live vicariously through someone else’s creation because you’re not original enough to make your own. That doesn’t make you a “true fan” or a “writer” it makes you a loser.

    I hope my children grow up to realize that there is so much more to life than being a wannabe and that fan fic is a waste of time for people that seemingly have no lives other than living in the “made up” world of others.

  13. Krista says:

    Wouldnt fantasizing about minors be healthier than actually going through with the fantasy?

    Honestly I find your blog offensive and shows nothing more than a rant of ignorance.

    Have you READ the author’s notes at the top andor bottom of the chapters to fanfics? They claim no ownership of characters or setting. That is not copyright… we give credit to Rowling, and we admire her works. But as much as I personally love her books, I dont like Ron and Hermione together so while i acknowledge her books, I prefer reading Hermione and Draco stories.

    AND! Most of those adult fanfics take place in the students’ 7th year, at the age of 17… in the wizard world of harry potter, 17 is the legal age of adulthood.

    pedophilia debunked…

    I don’t appreciate closed minds opening their mouths. You dont seem to know ANYTHING to the fanfic community. We’re a bunch of people different races, ages, ethnicities, and nationalities coming together with a common interest and having fun while experimenting with a popular work.
    nextly, Im pretty sure that you were masturbating to porn at the age of 14ish or 15ish (thats illegal)… dont play innocent and say we’re sick freaks for having our own fetishes… I personally have written a fic of hermione and her teacher… it came out great and people loved it. Your opinion is ignorant and uncaring to anyone else.

    you dont have any reliable facts to back your opinions so you’re just ranting.

    You’re down right opinionated and egocentric.

    If you want to censor your child from such a “terrible” world and screw him up for life, thats your business… but you dont have a right to bash all the adult fic writers because we enjoy smut.

    Im a 20 year old girl, I’ve been writing these since I was 14. I absolutely love it. You have no right to EVER judge me, you have NEVER read my works which have been deemed tasteful and hot by MANY.

  14. Krista says:

    wierd al HAS to ask for permission, he’s trying to make money off of others’ ideas.

    I love him, think he is amazing.

    You however, are very ignorant. You know nothing of the mentality of a fanfiction author. I have written loads of harry potter fanfics, gundam wing fanfics, and some sailor moon fics, however, i’ve written twice as many original stories. Some of my originals, and my fics, are extremely smutty and sex filled, but others are mellow or even depressing.

    You cant say that it is disgusting! Smutty fiction is nearly the same as erotica, its just using already created characters.

    As much as I adore and respect jk, I will continue writing smutty fics, mainly because I like smut, and I like Hermione with Draco, not Ron.

    Go ahead and censor your child so that when he gets out into the high school world, he wont know what to do when approached by sex.

    you remind me a lot of my parents… the censoring and parental controls and highly moral raising… Know what happened to me as a result of their negligence? I knew nothing of sex until I reached high school, so when 15 year old me met 18 year old “Mr Right- or so I thought” I lost my virginity.

    Kids arent innocent… we learn a lot more than you think we do, and if you dont talk with kids and let them explore harmless pixels, they will explore flesh…

    I have a feeling your son will have a girl knocked up if you deny him sexual pleasure =/

  15. Dominick says:

    Wow…thanks for your post. I do know that there are some smutty fics that offer Harry does “his owl”, Harry at 13 does his professors, Harry and another 13 year old (Hermione) have a threesome with their teachers, etc. The list goes on and on. This is what I consider gross, disgusting and immoral.

    I personally think fan fic lacks originality. That’s my take. I don’t need to steal other ideas. I can write my own if I want to. Even my four year old nephew knows “stealing” is wrong. It’s pretty much theft. You can disagree, but I am entitled to my view, as well. Since many of the top rated authors feel the same way, I’d think that those who generally write fan fic aren’t exactly getting published.

    As for my son, I teach him sex education. I let him know the truth about sex. He is homeschooled. He has an entire sex ed class this year (eighth grade) as a part of his health curriculum. This looks at contraception, STDs, pregnancy, abstinence, and all the other things teens really need to know about sex.

    Considering my AUTISTIC son is 13 and still refers to penises as “wieners”, I hardly think he’s interested in getting girls pregnant. He’s more interested (thankfully) in his Saturday morning cartoons and playing games on 4KidsTV. Still, I’m smart enough to know teens DO have sex, so I will arm him with all the knowledge he needs without incorporating nudie magazines and smutty fan fic into his curriculum.

  16. Royce Pember says:

    I must say I have read Dominick’s blogs and the replies and have found it an incredibly fascinating debate.

    I actually got to this blog as I just visiting one of the fan fiction sites in question, and read a couple. Mostly I was laughing at the titles and pairings. But mainly I was marvelling at the amount of stories, and just how far they were willing to go.

    Essentially the argument of fan fiction, not including the specific subject content, pretty clear cut. Personally I find tasteful fan fiction acceptable, as long as its non profit, as it is in many ways allowing people to develop there own writing skills and celebrating writing as an art. Some find it insulting to the author, a valid opinion.

    However, the issue of the subject matter of fan fiction and “how far is too far” is far harder to argue, and this point I feel Dominick wanted to get across far more than the legality issues. People are becoming more and more sexually adventurous and express sexuality much more freely than ever before. I can see how people may be immersed in a story and apply there own sexual thoughts to that story.

    But it is still, and will always be, socially unacceptable to cause pain or exploit using sex. An 11 year old may consent to sex to an older adult, but later in life would they truly look back at that situation positively? The pain and trauma this can cause is completely unacceptable in society, yet it can be expressed in fan fiction in a social forum?

    The other stories involving consensual adults or utter ridiculous stories involving house elves ultimately cause no serious harm to someone with a level head. But honestly, is it really that hard to censor the rape and incest stories?

  17. Sara says:

    Look…
    First, the same thing that happened to Royce above also happened to me: I stumble across this ‘discussion’ of sorts, while researching harry potter fanfic.
    Second, I’d like to say I’m a Big Fan of J.K Rowling’s work. Like a HUGE fan, I actually began to read her first book, when I was about 10. I’m from Portugal and I actually own one copy of the first Portuguese edition of the first book, with the original purple cover, (a very tattered copy, from the use) and I consider it one of my most prized possessions.
    Third, and most important: I’ve been writing Harry Potter fanfiction since age 13. I actually wrote my first harry potter fanfic for a writing class! I loved it so much that I continued to write fanfiction (not just harry potter fanfiction) and I’ve written lots of original stories with original characters too! (Although I prefer to write in my original language, when writing with my own characters and world). But I’ll never forget that it was FANFICTION that started my love for writing! At 13 I was a bookish kid that suddenly discovered through the internet that there were people that shared my interest and love for the Harry Potter characters and their world! And that I could communicate and pass on that love and admiration that I have for all things Harry Potter, through fanfiction, my own, and by reading (avidly) other peoples fanfiction too! ( I’ve a friend who tried reading the harry potter books, after reading a piece of fanfiction, she had never read the books before, and she got interested in the world and the characters… now she’s totally addicted and a fanfiction writer herself!)
    Fourth and the last point in my little speech of sorts is adult fanfiction, I’m 19 but I had a sex life and perfect knowledge of all that is considered “adult material” long before this age, and long, before I read any adult fanfiction (yes, harry potter adult fanfiction too!), adult fanfiction that I might add,I love to read and indulge in doing so as often as I can.
    Some of my best friends are adult fanfiction writers and I absolutely adore their work. I personally have no talent for it, and believe me it takes talent, lots of it, to write adult fanfiction, and to write it the way they do. I could never let anyone diminish their work and effort by comparing it to porn, it is nothing of the sort!

    As a conclusion, I’d like to say that you have the right (and actually, I personally think you also have the duty) to have and share your opinion on fanfiction, adult fanfiction and all other types of fics, about not just harry potter, but also all the other characters and worlds from all different authors! But I also think that you should take into account the weight that fanfiction had and still more than ever has, in so many lives, and yes, children’s lives too. (I read fanfiction, and adult fanfiction, before I was considered ‘the age of consent’, and I loved it, made me no harm whatsoever). Besides, like was said by many other people here, so many authors agree and support fanfiction! In fact, one of my favorite writers said:
    “I think that all writing is useful for honing writing skills. I think you get better as a writer by writing, and whether that means that you’re writing a singularly deep and moving novel about the pain or pleasure of modern existence or you’re writing Smeagol-Gollum slash you’re still putting one damn word after another and learning as a writer.” -Neil Gaiman
    In the end the real question is:
    Who are we to judge? Do we know all the facts? Do we know how much writing or reading this or that piece of fanfiction helped someone, become a better writer or in any other way? Do you? I certainly don’t.
    That is all.
    Fanfiction 4 Ever.

  18. ashley says:

    In what you’ve said so far, you mentioned that you don’t believe fan fiction is necessarily morally wrong, just fan fiction involving underage characters and pedophilia. I was just wondering what your take was on adult fan fiction in which the characters are over the ages of 18.

  19. Jo says:

    Normally I wouldn’t bother commenting, but some of your replies were extremely rude and I feel that’s unfair. So I’ll be expressing my opinion as well.

    First I’ll comment on your views of fan fiction in general. I disagree and think you’re extremely unfair to fan fiction writers. To say that it takes no creativity to write a fan fiction is extremely untrue. In some cases it takes more creativity–like trying to fit the events you want into an already existing canon.

    Now, I can only speak on Harry Potter fanfic, as it’s the only variety I read. But I don’t see how something like Maruaders era fanfic, or Next Generation fanfic can be considered uncreative. With Marauders era fic, all you have is the basic setting (Hogwarts, Hogsmeade, Diagon Alley, and a few shop names) and the names of the main characters. You don’t even know much about them from the books. So that still involves a massive amount of creativity. With Next Gen, you’ve got the same settings (although frankly anything could change 15 years in the future, so really you’ve got Hogwarts), and you’ve got the names of the main characters. Beyond that you know exactly nothing about that world from the books, so you create it yourself!

    Why is fanfic created? Well, I certainly don’t think anyone sits down and writes these stories with the idea of ripping off the author. As far as I can tell, it’s generally because an aspect of the story world was not fully explored in the original work, so the author explores it. This is especially the case in any HPFF set in a time other than that in which JKR wrote. We don’t know much about the past or anything about the future, so we explore those ideas. And if we write it down to share with like-minded people for fun, what’s the harm? Is that really that much different than just having a discussion about it? I don’t think so.

    And for reference, I’m an author of original work. I’ve never done fanfic, as I find it more difficult than creating my own worlds. I’ll also say that my love of reading has been reignited by HPFF. It’s difficult sometimes to find a good book. But with fan fic, you already know you love the world, you just have to find an author who can portray it in a way you like.

    As for adult content. I do understand what you’re saying, and to an extent I agree with you. Harry bumming his owl is a bit out there. Harry, Hermione, and Ron in a consensual three-way during their seventh year? That’s fine by me. When it gets into student-teacher relations I’m more iffy. First-year Harry and Prof McGonagall? Not okay. Seventh-year (17 year old) Harry, and McGonagall… not so bad. As long as it’s consensual in the story world, I’m okay with it. (I personally wouldn’t read it because I don’t like the pairing. Seventh-year Hermione and Prof Snape I could maybe go for…although that would have to ignore canon and I hate that so I wouldn’t read it.) I think it’s all relative with regards to what’s too much. It isn’t a black-and-white issue, are never is. There’s always shades of grey.

    What about stories where both characters are the same age? Two seventh-year students going at it? Is that wrong? Is it wrong if two professors have a sexual relationship, because some girl might read it and fantasize about her professors? I mean, if an adult reading about children is wrong, is a child reading about adults wrong? Genuinely just curious here.

    I personally have a problem with censorship. I don’t think censoring something because the wrong person might see it is just wrong. I mean, to me that’s like saying that elementary schools can’t have outdoor playgrounds anymore because a pedophile might walk down that street during recess. I think it’s a parent’s duty to protect their children. I shouldn’t have to censor myself because someone else can’t take care of their child. And frankly, if I want to read a story about 17-year old Sirius Black and his 17-year old girlfriend having sex, then I should be able to. Romance novels and porn are both legal, and unbelievably easy to get ahold of for most people (especially youths whose parents aren’t paying attention), why should fanfic be censored?

    That said, I do appreciate sites like harrypotterfanfiction.com which has rules in place to block explicit descriptions of sex/drugs/rock&roll (j/k on the last one), and also doesn’t allow student-teacher relationships. I’m not sure if it’s that site, but one even bars relationships where the younger person would’ve been a student at the time the older person was a professor. There’s also a ratings system for the stories, but obviously kids could just ignore it.

    One more point specifically about HPFF… while the novels were written for children, when did the first book come out? 1997, I believe. That’s 13 years ago. Many of the major fans have been following the series since the first or second book came out, over a decade ago. So while we were children when it started, we’re adults now. The argument that “it’s kids searching Harry Potter” doesn’t hold water. The novels themselves are at AT LEAST a 4th grade reading level, and anyone whose gotten through the whole series is likely in middle school if not high school. And while middle school might’ve been innocent when you were there, it wasn’t when I was (and that was a full 10 years ago! JC I feel old!). And even if the gossip and things we talked about weren’t actually happening, we all certainly knew about sex, and we knew a LOT. So it’s distinctly unlikely that the average fanfic is going to warp the mind of a innocent youth, since that youth would need to be about 5 to still be totally innocent, in which case they wouldn’t understand enough to be harmed by it.

  20. Dominick says:

    It’s called bastardization and therefore requires less creativity. I can take anyone’s characters and write a little diddy. The hard work of creating the characters is already done for me. Creating in depth, well rounded characters is difficult. A lot of writers do not like fan fic. They do not like their worlds or characters taken or used. Maybe JK Rowling didn’t want these aspects of her world to be explored. If she did, she would have written them herself. What gives these writers the right to do it for her?

    Further, I’ve pointed out SEVERAL times the problem I have with the sex has to do with YOUNG characters (we are talking 13, 14, 15 year olds having sex with 40, 50, 80 year olds). We don’t let people have underage pics on their computers. Why allow stories about such young characters in pedophile-esque situations? I also find it very creepy to think of 17 or 18 year olds having sex with 80+ year olds. It is different if it consensual. This means those involved are of SOUND mind and legal age. Young teens do not have the maturity to know for certain they are ready for sex, which is why they have statutes for the ages of consent. Some 14 year olds still have trouble picking out what cereal they want in the morning let alone who they want to sleep with.

  21. Amanda says:

    I am curious about your view on people how draw fan-created comics based off of another authors work. I know that (especially in Japan, I’m not sure about elsewhere) it is very popular for people to sell comics like this. I have seen a few HP ones before (though admittedly I don’t know if they were actually for sell or not). I know that the Japanese officials have had trouble with dealing with this issue before and I think that generally it’s largely an ignored activity now. Like I said, I’m just interested in you opinion on this matter and I am not trying to start debate of any kind.

  22. Dominick says:

    Fan-created comic book art faces the same criticism I have for fan fic. The only exception here is artists who encourage their fans to model off their creations. I think people are missing the point that a lot of the authors whose stories/characters get turned into fan fic do not wish their works to be bastardized (or used in any way, really). It’s a respect issue.

    I would also have to say 95% of the fan fic I have encountered has been sexual in nature. Essentially, the primary purpose of the story is to get someone’s rocks off, by having the characters have sex. I have NOTHING against sex. I think sex is GREAT, but it seems sad to me that this is how these people get their sexual enjoyment (off other people’s creations). It’s not really a story if the only purpose is to turn literature into porn. Imagine all the great books turned into sex=filled romps with no other real plot; The Three Musketeers, To Kill a Mockingbird, A Farewell to Arms, Lord of the Flies, etc. It kind of ruins the story, don’t you think?

    Back to comic book created art, since I went off course for a second. I think art is an entirely different situation when it is not fan created. Look at all the comic book characters written, drawn, and conceived by different artists. The original creators of these characters encouraged other artists to continue their legacy, by developing new incarnations and stories. I am fine with that. But, again fan created art really depends on what the creators of the original characters think, and whether the fan is trying to profit from their borrowed creation.

  23. Sara says:

    Well, it’s clear that you have a high opinion of fan artists and do not hold them to the same codes as fanfiction writers. I’ve got issues with this. First, fan art can be just as racy as any fanfic. Really, more so. I can’t tell you how many HP fan art pictures I’ve found that were just pure porn. So I find it insulting that you do not hold artists to the same standards as you hold writers.

    Next, fanfiction not being creative???? Wow, you probably don’t have much of a fantasy life do you? I find it a lot harder to write in other people’s characters than my own. (Yes, I do write both.) Frankly, Harry Potter going to Hogwarts means I have to write in Harry’s voice and my readers know his voice just as well/if not better than I do but if I write about Greg Litman going to boarding school then I can say anything I want because the fans don’t know him as well as I do. To me that makes original fiction easier than fan.

    As for protecting kids from adult fanfiction…OMG I’ve just died laughing. I was writing fanfiction in fourth grade. Yes, some of it was sexual in nature. Why? Because reading and writing it was an acceptable way to explore my sexuality. No one got hurt and at the end of the day I had nothing to regret. More importantly I think this type of exploration allowed me to realize what is very important to me and also help me to save myself for marriage (Yeah that’s right I’m 25 and a virgin and I owe it all to fanfiction.)

    So maybe some fanfiction is a bit out there but these people might just be exploring the sexuality in a way that is safe. You telling them they are wrong may only hurt their self exploration process and cause people to repress their desires. We all know what happens with repressed things… (hehe I went to a private school and it is true.)

    Finally, I find your arguements slightly predictable. You’ll say something about fanfiction is only wrong if the orginal author is against and some crap about under age and not address any of my actual comments.

  24. Dominick says:

    Oh, c’mon now! You have chosen parts of what I’ve said for your own benefit. Did I not say that I believe. “Fan-created comic book art faces the same criticism I have for fan fic”??? I believe that to be true, especially when authors/artists dislike having their work tampered with, as many have said they do.

    I personally am against fan fic (adult or not) because I find it unoriginal and disrespectful to the author. You like being disrespectful and hide under the guise of, “I’m honoring their work”. This was not what my original article was about – it was about adult fan fiction and underage characters. However, some authors do not mind fan fic, when it’s clean, so therefore, it’s not my work, and not my say. Still, I have never heard an author say they are for adult fan fic (in fact, JK has stated she is AGAINST it – her characters aren’t meant to be the sex objects of some wannabe author’s fantasy writing), especially when it concerns underage characters in any form. That is bordering on illegal.

    Further, I don’t care if you knew about sex when you were 10 (or any other age). You should not have been reading or writing such fan fic. That just speaks of bad parenting on the part of your parents. Believe me, my teenage son has never read or written such things nor would he be interested in reading stories about children in this manner once he is of legal age and able to access fan fic of this sort. We talk frankly with him about sex. We let him know it is natural and not to be feared or repressed. However, he also knows he needs to be mature enough to handle sex, and fourth graders ARE NOT that mature. Some 18 year olds are not that mature. I can only wonder what kind of parents you have that they had no idea what kind of smut you were reading/writing on your computer at such a young age.

    I can see exploring your sexuality, but why do it with a 13 year old, made up character? Really? If a man was writing about his 13 year old niece or neighbor in the same way, it’d be deemed kiddie porn and he could potentially get arrested for it. He’d be deemed “sick” by anyone and everyone and, at the least, be expected to get help of some sort. Yet, when it’s a 13 year old, but the character is made up, it’s okay? Talk about the hypocrisy!!

    I find it hilarious that every one of you have decided your defense is to insult me because I don’t approve of 13 year old Harry doing an owl or an adult professor. I don’t have an active fantasy life? Why? Because I think adult fan fic is trite? I assure you my fantasy life is just fine, but then I don’t have to rip off anyone else’s ideas to come up with all the amazing places my mind has the ability to go.

  25. Jess says:

    I agree and disagree with you.

    First, I agree that it is wrong to write about sex involving minors. I would never want to read about 13 year old Harry and hundred and something Dumbledore getting it on. Or someone having sex with an animal. In my own opinion, that is gross.

    But, I don’t know what sites you are visiting that you think 95% of all fanfiction has sex. There are soo many more that simply deal with life, family, friends, relationships, jobs, etc. They can be cute, sweet, uncomplicated, or even drama filled. Regardless of what you seem to think, some of us do not use fanfiction simply as a way to write porn.

    On that note, I find it hilarious that you seem to think that characters make up the entire story. Who cares about the actual plot, the backbone of the story, what actually happens to the characters, that is unimportant, right? I get that you think we are stealing someone else’s characters. And it is less creative to use preexisting ones than think up others. But the plot of those stories (hopefully) is ORIGINAL. (Mostly, I will admit. Some do steal the plot of another movie/book/etc.) That is the point of fanfiction. To put the characters that we have spent hours and hours caring for, growing to love, laughing with, into different situations. We cannot bear to let them disappear, do not wish their story to end simply with the conclusion of the book. Many times, I will find my mind straying into a random story, and I think, hey, this character would go great in this plot. Please, do not sit there and call what I have slaved over writing, editing, and rewriting uncreative.

    You can not like fanfiction, many people don’t. That is ok. Don’t read it and please do not insult the people who do like it.

  26. Heather says:

    Firstly, I must say that some of your replies were unessecarily rude. You threw random insults in there when the previous poster was simply asking questions or projecting their opinions. Frankly, that makes it even more difficult to consider your position on the matter when you seemingly cannot express your response without slipping into childish name calling.

    I began reading the HP series when I was 11. In between books, I discovered FF and it kept me sated until the next real installment. I wonder what you are googling to say that 95% of FF is smut. When I was younger and searching for FF, I never encountered NC-17 rated fics, only mild, age-appropriate ones. That isn’t to say once I looked I didn’t find them.

    Now, my opinion of adult fics based on the Harry Potter series may be skewed. I’m just a few years older than the actors in the movies, so to me when I was reading the mature fics, I was pretty much the same age as those involved. Ask me in five years or so how I feel about it. For instance, I remember thinking Tom Felton was very hot when I saw the first movie, and now when I rewatch I just think “Awww, how adorable.” Same now, the older version of the same boy is still pretty damn attractive. In a few years I’m sure I’ll just have the same “Awww” reaction.

    And really…why do you keep bringing up the Harry/Owl thing? I have NEVER come across anything that strange (nor have I looked) and for someone who is so outspoken about these situations being inappropriate, why are you looking for them? Yes, people write about strange things. It is one of the internet rules: If it exists, there is porn of it. So be it. Not my thing, but someone else may like it. To each their own. These adult fics are written for adults. Granted there is no surefire way of keeping young eyes from finding it, but it they are old enough to know what to look for, and understand what they are reading…well, I surely don’t blame it on the parents. Nearly all I knew about sex from a young age came from my best friend’s older brothers. At a young age we knew about it, and had enough sense to know we weren’t ready to actually DO it. That didn’t mean we were not still curious, so we wrote mild adult-themed fics. It was fun and exciting and something to let out all that lovely sexual fristration being a teen causes without actually submitting our bodies to the same acts.

    I agree that if an author wishes for their works to be left alone, then websites shouldn’t let people post it. If you simply MUST write a fic, keep it in a journal. You still get the satisfaction of writing, but you are respecting the author’s wishes.

    I myself started writing by writing fanfic. It fueled a previously unrealized passion I had, and encouraged me to write my own stories. When I first began wiring, it was horrid. However, I feel that the aforemention Neil Gaiman quote describes how I view fanfic quite well. Writing fanfic helped me better my writing, which to me, means the world. If using another person’s characters to better yourself is wrong, then I’m guilty as charged. I have never posted a fanfic on any site. I write on my own computer for my enjoyment only.

    If I were a published author, I would be honored to have fanfic written about my characters. To see where people think they should go with their stories after I was finished with them. Whether it be a neutral, G fic, or a steamy smut fic with bizarre pairings, I would still be touched that someone enjoyed my creations enough to give them new life. For once the words leave your pen, they belong to the world. Now, with that being said, I would not condone child abuse or beastiality and such, but one cannot keep that from happening. And like previous posters have mentioned before, writing something and doing something or even feeling the same way is not the same thing. One could write a detailed sex scene and still be a virgin. Or write about bondage, but in reality be appalled by it. What the characters do and feel is not the same as what the author does and feels, fanfic or not.

    You have a right to your opinion, and I am not trying to sway that. However, my opinion is that you are a prat.

    Mischief managed.

  27. Je n'aime pas child porn says:

    I agree and disagree with what you’re saying. I agree that writing porn based on underage characters is wrong but it should not be illegal for the most part. It’s gross but other than with the example you gave of someone writing about a real-life 13 year old it shouldn’t be illegal. If the characters are based off of real people, than it shows that they really want to do that to a real life 13 year old. When the characters are hermione and Harry getting freaky even though they’re underage, it’s gross but not child porn. Let me compare it to murder. If you were to say that you were going to kill the next flying space pirate fairy you saw, even if you were completed serious about it and gave details on how you plan to do it, no one would think you were actually going to kill anyone because they don’t exist. If you were to describe to someone the intricate way in which you plan to murder your neighbor, eat his flesh, and make a hat out of his skull, then show them that you’re completely serious (presumably by signing your contract with the devil in blood, guaranteeing that he would lead your unsuspecting neighbor into your clutches) they would probably call the cops on you, because that can actually happen. The same is true in fan fic. Writing about how a 15 year old Ron is having crazy gay sex by traveling back in time and doing his twin older brothers while a 9 year old Dudley watches and then dumbledore goes there and rapes all of them (I am willing to bet that a fan fic of that actually exists) is demented but does not mean that you actually want to do that, because it is impossible. On the other hand, if a 45 year old writes a story about someone breaking into his 11 year old nieces house, murdering her family, and forcing her to take a shower with him, odds are he’s planning on doing it by next Monday and you need to warn the cops. That is also why it’s not illegal to draw Hermione porn or to Photoshop an underage Emma Watson’s head onto porn, because it’s not real. If it was actual underage Emma Watson porn, it would be child porn but it’s fake so it’s legal. (Again, if some old guy does that with a little girls picture, call the cops)

    And about fan fic being theft of the original authors idea and being totally uncreative, allow me to introduce you to http://www.jamespotterseries.com/muggle_index.html . They are entire books of fan fiction. Read the intro. If that is someone just ripping off JKR then I am a flying turtle. The guy wrote entire books. It wasn’t just how much he wrote that is incredible. He specifically designed the books to seem as if they were written by JKR. If he were to publish them, they would sell even if Harry Potter didn’t exist and this was written entirely by itself. So yeah, fan fic isn’t disrespecting the author. Erotic fan fic is disrespectful but just because they are turning the characters into sex objects. You see, most fan fic is written because people don’t want the series to end. The reason I read fan fic is because I love Harry potter and this is the only way I can keep it going. JKR probably won’t write more books so this is all thats left to us. And most people write it because either they weren’t satisfied with some points of the story or because they wanted to improve on something OR because they wanted to keep the story going. So while I hare Hermione and Draco shippers, I this thatits a good thing that they’ve written 5 billions fan fics about it.

    Oh and check this out. Go on YouTube and search for A Very Potter Musical and watch it. Thats an entire musical based off Harry potter. And there’s a sequel. And they’re better than any of the movies were.

  28. Jay says:

    You’ve performed a useful service setting this hare running, Dominick. Some wide-ranging and well argued points have been made, scattered amongst the histrionics (which add entertainment value).

    The dilemma between wanting “freedom” (to express oneself however one wishes) and “censorship” (the desire by others to control that expression) is as relevant now as it was during the UK obscenity trials of Lady Chatterley (1960) and Oz (1971). Probably more so given that today’s technology enables pretty much anyone to create and access any type of material that can be imagined. I find myself alternating my own position back and forth!

    Just to pick up on a few points:

    1/”Children are innocent and pure. To make them otherwise is a degradation to youth as a whole.”

    As a bald statement this is simply not true however much adults may want it to be so, and most likely never has been. Examples? Too many in fiction and in real life e.g.

    * Lolita (Nabokov’s notorious novel, already mentioned above by Sere)
    * Edlington brothers 2009 (horrific torture and sexual abuse of two young boys by two brothers aged 10 and 12)
    * Jamie Bulger 1993 (horrific torture, sexual abuse and murder of a toddler by two 10 year old boys)
    * “Future footballer’s wife” T-shirts and padded bras marketed at and worn by pre-teen girls (what are these companies thinking? Oh how stupid of me, capitalism means making money wherever you see a business opportunity without having to worry about pesky inconveniences like morality. Sorry, I’ve wandered off topic here).

    2/Dominick, you finger “bad parenting” as an underlying issue and Rose adds “Parents need to limit and monitor their children’s use of the internet.” This is a whole subject in itself and in this context the failure by many (most?) parents to put in place appropriate controls on access to and use of technology by their children seems to be key (because they don’t understand the technology? haven’t got time to do anything?).

    3/”Young teens do not have the maturity to know for certain they are ready for sex, which is why they have statutes for the ages of consent. Some 14 year olds still have trouble picking out what cereal they want in the morning let alone who they want to sleep with.”

    It’s interesting how views on sexual matters are so often held by reference only to current social mores as if they are “set in stone” for all of humanity and for all time. But this is not so and never has been as history and other cultures confirm, for example:
    * historically it was common to be married at, say, 12 (Shakespeare’s Juliet was just 13)
    * in many countries it’s currently legal to have sex at 14 – all permutations! (e.g. China, many parts of Europe and in at least 3 USA states!)
    * Jerry Lee Lewis married a 13 year old legally in the USA
    * Elvis Presley fell in love with a 14 year old
    * likewise Don Johnson (he later married her)
    * some cultures had (still have?) sexual “rites of passage” at puberty in order to “become a man” that would be considered disgusting, perverted and criminal by reference to present “Western” customs, values and laws – but these societies functioned happily – who are we to condemn them? – what right do we have to impose on them our Western values as “cultural imperialists”?

    4/”I believe it is proper, even in parody, to ask the original author for permission to parody their work … It’s an issue of respect for the original creator.”

    Disagree. Some “original creators” deserve no respect and are rightful targets for non-consensual parody e.g. much of the execrable output of Hollywood and US TV.

    5/”That is also why it’s not illegal to draw Hermione porn or to Photoshop an underage Emma Watson’s head onto porn, because it’s not real. If it was actual underage Emma Watson porn, it would be child porn but it’s fake so it’s legal.”

    Warning: this may not be illegal in good ole’ USA but it most definitely is a criminal offence in the UK – you’ll be sent to prison if you do this and be put on the Sex Offender’s Register.

  29. ashley says:

    I don’t know why its such a big deal, I mean if I was an author and I saw fanfic that people had written about my characters I would be flattered that people were actually using my characters in a way to entertain others, because I know that no matter how I may write something I will not end it the way everybody wants it too end. For example, when Fred Weasley died in Harry Potter I wrote a short story where he survived because I couldn’t handle the thought of him dying without crying. Fanfiction, is a way for fans to get to know their authors characters better, heck fanfiction is sometimes used to escape a fan’s own life because that may be all they have. Besides the fans have paid for the books, movies, and various other merchandise. Is it really so wrong that they want to write about the story with their own version? That just seems wrong to me, and I know that your main problem is the underage sex. Sure, not everyones right in the head, and they will continue to write it; that however does not mean that you have to read it. I think that as long as they are not making money off of it whats the big deal, I value your opinions but it is a known fact that not everyone shares the same opinion and as I value yours it only seems right that you value others.

  30. Sheogorath says:

    Therefore, children will look up Harry Potter, and if a parent isn’t as familiar with the Internet as their child is, the child may find pornographic Harry Potter stories without parents even realizing it.
    Are you speaking from personal experience? If so, I’ma call the CPS right now since it’s your job as a parent to monitor your children’s online activities, not ours as authors to censor ourselves in order to protect them. After all, if you can’t even be bothered to use a web filter, then you’re not really a responsible parent, are you?
    @ Chris: Actually, the definition of copyright infringement is to make unauthorised copies of works, whether or not they are being sold. So yes, my non-commercial fanfiction would be copyright infringement if not for the fact that I live in a country where copying for the purposes of parody, caricature, and pastiche are allowed.

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