thegreatpeanuter (peanutbaby13) wrote in fm_alchemist,

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First of all, I would like to sincerely welcome all the self-proclaimed newbies into the fandom. It’s always nice to see enthusiastic fans join a community...

But over the last few days I have been seeing a trend and it’s been bothering me...

I've been a fan of anime for over 10+ years (I'm not old so don't try to date me ;P ) And I have to say some of the posts I have seen in the last few days have surprised me in a very negative way. The reason I believe for that (because I really don't want to think that people are nasty) is that maybe there is a lack of knowledge in the area of general anime fandom. I am going to list some things I have learned over the years that I follow adamantly and do believe helps you to be a more knowledgeable fan. This is not intended to start a posting war. If you feel the need to rant, please feel free to do so in your own journal. I only meant this as a guide for those who truly wish for the information and are maybe curious as to why some of the 'overtly sensitive fans' have been becoming upset recently. So onto the basic information.

1.Copyrights. I only bring this up first because this is a bit of a catch 22. Technically we all infringe on copyrights by watching/downloading fans subs (not to say that fan subs are bad because I love fansubs as much as the next person. The way I personally have tried to amend this is that once I get into a fandom, I will go out and buy the domestic release of a particular series. I understand that not everyone has the money to do this, but this is a way to correct this infringement (and for anyone who wants to know....I work to support myself and yes I really do buy that much anime and if you are really really curious I will take pictures of my entire stash just to prove my point). Now with fanart, although its technically not considered 'stealing' because there is no monetary transaction involved, it does upset the artist and that is why it is not acceptable. I will say this for the benefit for all people that do not speak Japanese...95% of Japanese fanart sites have a blurb in the site that says you are not allowed to use their art unless you have their explicit permission. In some ways they are more sensitive about this than English speaking artists. In much the same way that you are supposed to credit people for using icon templates or when you want to use an English speaking artist have to ask for permission. Obviously there is a larger fanbase in Japan than in the US or rest of the world and therefore there will be more fanbased works, but the same concept applies. If you had spent hours laboring over a fanwork, only to have some else copy it, edit it, use it , and give you no credit for it...that would probably upset you. That's why this upsets people in communities. People that have had this done to them in some way are generally averse to doing it to other people. So the best way to avoid this is the either ask or not do it at all. I love Japanese fanart, its beautiful and I could spend hours editing it as well but its not right. Lastly, there is the 'official art' which is art taken from either the anime (such as magazine articles) and manga. That is the type of art that is 'alright' to use for things like icons and webpages. Technically you are supposed to credit the place you take the image (like vol 1 page 18 of chapter 6 of the manga) many people don't but the reason that is acceptable is because it is generally know that the art came from an official release.

2.Homosexuality. The Japanese culture is not as shy about homosexuality as the Western seems to be. Also in certain genres, the fan base in Japan is mostly female. Although I am not sure how this exactly works, many anime released nowadays, usually has sort of homosexual (towards the male variety) flavoring to it. FMA is obviously not the case, there are no homosexual pairings, but that fanbase is still there. In Japan there are fanbased publications called 'doujinshi' which are fan created comics involving the characters of a particular series. Many of those comics involve adult situations and pairs that, although unlikely to ever see the light of day in a particular series, are homosexual in nature. This is a booming industry in Japan, many voice actors/actress will even go as far to lend their voices to audio drama CD's involving rather 'awkward situations' (I won't go into detail here for those easily offended). This is why you see the same treatment for an anime series in an English based community. Its not meant to be offensive but rather is simply a part of most fandoms...this leads me into my last point...

3.Yaoi vs Shonen Ai. I will explain this for those of you who honestly don't know. The technical definition of Yaoi (if memory serves me correctly) is yama nashi, ochi nashi, imi nashi (meaning 'no mountain', 'no peak', 'no meaning')...basically a story that involves homosexual sex with no real sense of a plot ie PWP smut. Its very graphic and should not be viewed by people who are easily offended by that sort of thing. Typical Yaoi material is released as 'hentai' or commonly understood as anime porn. Shonen Ai is often translated as 'Boy's Love'. Shonen Ai is what everyday viewers are exposed to in anime viewing. Think DN Angel, Gravitation, Hatsuharu and Yuki from Fruits can be as G-rated as a boy professing that he really cares for another boy to something PG-ish as a kiss from a boy to another boy. In communties…materials that are of the Yaoi persuasion need to have a warning and lj-cut since it is of a graphic nature. Things that are 'Shonen Ai' do not seeing as how they are released into mainstream viewing.

I hope this helps alleviate any miscommunications there have been recently. I am not saying that anyone has to follow anything I have posted here to the 'T' but I simply did this in a non-obtrusive way so as not to offend anyone but offer some understanding to the different varieties of fandom in the community.

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