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Where my brain goes when I've had enough sleep - Tactical Ninja

Sep. 9th, 2011

10:02 am - Where my brain goes when I've had enough sleep

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I am enjoying Game of Thrones a lot more now I'm watching them in order. Polly wants me to get her Khal Drogo for her birthday..

However, as the Youth of Today would say, "Needs more dragons". *cough* I get the feeling they'll turn up eventually.

And now I have a completely unrelated question for those in fandom. Y'see, my introduction to the existence of fandom was through slash. From that I learned that people like to write fictional sex stories about the characters in other fictional works, and not only the boys either. But now I'm wondering if this is all fandom's about. I'm thinking cosplay probably comes under fandom as well, and I'm wondering what else might. I mean, are there groups in fandom that just enjoy talking about the actual show/book/movie/whatever? And since slash can involve, well, pretty much anyone, the Really Weird part of me is wondering if people ship politicians. Cos that would be dead funny, but I'm afraid to google from work to find out if it exists.

*cough* I'll be just over here lalala


This morning while driving into work I got to thinking about a subversive art project I concocted with TAFKARF a few months ago, which I'm feeling like taking past the just musing stage. Anyway, it reminded me of an occasion when Dr Wheel and I were walking along and came across a billboard that was selling some kind of fashion thing. The tagline was "Make a statement." In the same moment, we both came out with, well.. a statement. Mine was "Chocolate fish can't swim." I can't remember what his was - probably an abstract mathematical one. It was one of those moments when I realised how wonderful it is to have someone in your life that's completely on the same wavelength.

<3 Dr Wheel.

Here, have a thing. It's Charlie Chaplin in a role you wouldn't be accustomed to seeing him in:



Two things about this - first, Charlie Chaplin's kind of hot. Well, he probably isn't now since he's dead, but he was back then. Second, I know it's a rousing speech in a movie, but what he's saying is still pretty relevant 70 years later.

The other thing I was thinking about was this filesharing thing. Yes yes, I know I harp on about that a lot, but while in Hong Kong, Dr Wheel reminded me that the new law didn't just make downloading movies illegal (which was already illegal anyway under copyright law) - it made using sites like BitTorrent illegal. What this means is that I can now be punished by the government for downloading Wikileaks releases, because they are propagated over filesharing networks. Awesome move, government! Gotta love the sneaky censorship eh?

[edit] Having looked more closely, it seems using BitTorrent is only illegal if you use it to share copyrighted material. Which leaves me wondering where state documents classified 'secret' fall on the copyright scale.

We all know that the filesharing law was driven at its root by the US film industry. Remember that site I posted the other day that I wasn't allowed to link to because of their stupid terms of service? The one that uses All Blacks to tell people to be well-behaved little consumers and just buy the movies when copyright owners deign to allow us? Owned by the Motion Picture Association of America. That would be the MPAA that has just been snapped out making stuff up again. Including the idea that if US families weren't so busy downloading, they'd each be buying 50 more DVDs a year. *cough*bullshit*cough*

We also all know, thanks to Wikileaks, that the US government offered to write our filesharing laws for us, and to bankroll a group to enforce copyright.

This means the US government wanted ours to crack down on filesharing. Now it has, and we can no longer legally download the information from Wikileaks that allows us to know how the US government is trying to prevent us from accessing Wikileaks. Yes, I know the main driver for this was more likely the money that the US is able to extract from us through preventing our access to timely media and charging extortionist prices for what we can get. However, I believe there's a censorship aspect here as well - it's no secret that governments don't want people to know the stuff that Wikileaks is letting people know.

Aside: I really wonder if they actually believe that extraditing/charging/assassinating/whatevering Julian Assange will stop Wikileaks? Personally I think it has its own momentum now..

Y'know, sometimes I wish I hadn't chosen the eductional path I have. Now, every small thing goverments do starts snowballing in my Policy mind down that mountain to the logical consequential outcome. But meanwhile, my Criminology mind looks back up the mountain to see what pushed the snowball to start with, and things go from personal to global really fast and my head explodes. It also makes me very sad, because understanding this stuff is not conducive to hope for the future of humanity.

You know what is conducive to hope for the future of humanity? Talking to individual people and finding out that individual people are generally good hearted and compassionate, and that many people are being subversive in their own small ways. The more I hear about that, the happier it makes me.

I've always been a bit contrary and had a problem with authority, but since I got all educated 'n' shit, it's gone from being hoha at airport security staff to wanting to actively subvert the social contract. I feel as if I'm a conscientious objector to just about everything these days, and I don't know if that's conducive to my future happiness either.


Last night I went through my bookshelves and managed to come up with 2 Woolies bags of books that I can bear to part with. Does anyone know if there's a charity that takes books? I don't want money for them but some are quite old (like, may have historic value old) and so I don't want to dump them.

Today, Rugby World Cup fervour* is rife in my office. Everyone's wearing their team colours and there are flags everywhere and people are excited. For those who aren't already aware, today is the first day of a month-long rugby tournament. I've been afraid of how this will affect my beloved city, but so far all that's happened is more people have stopped me to ask for directions** than usual. Phew.

I will be at Fidels tonight. Oh, while I remember, does anyone want about a cubic metre of firewood? It's in chunks too big for our firebox and too knotty to split with an axe. Would suit someone with a log splitter or a chainsaw. Free for the taking.

* This term is probably protected and I'm probably not allowed to use it, so if I don't make it to Fidels it's because I'm in a cell somewhere under the stadium.
** This happens to me a lot. I think my pink hair makes me look approachable.

Comments:

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From:vernacularity
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:27 pm (UTC)
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yes!

I came across this in the wiki I linked to in a previous comment on your LJ, the equivalent of tvtropes but for comics/fiction/fantasy/etc, and they talked about slash being one tiny but most-publicised aspect of fandom/fanfic. urg. where is that link.....
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From:crsg
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:31 pm (UTC)
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I mostly hang out in various anime fandoms, but Game of Thrones seems to have an especially vibrant fan community from what I've seen of it. Sure, there's plenty of writing - much of it slash - but there's also things like fanart, discussion groups, fan music videos (fanmix), people creating LJ icons and other assorted graphics, even people making their own clothing and things. So I think fandom in general is a pretty wide concept, regardless of what the fandom is for. With something like Game of Thrones I imagine it's especially dynamic because there's the books as well as the TV show - so in some ways it's almost like two fandoms joined together to create some kind of mega-fandom thingie. http://game-thrones.livejournal.com/ is probably the largest all-purpose LJ fan community out there for Game of Thrones, but I imagine there are many more for more specific purposes, e.g. communities only for certain characters and pairings.

No idea about the politicians thing. But I wouldn't be surprised. (Just kinda grossed out.)
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From:tatjna
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:34 pm (UTC)
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Do you think if I went to that fandom they'd give me a Khal Drogo for Polly? Mwuahahah.

The other thing I've heard about fandom communities is that they're often drama-filled, although I imagine that's more to do with individuals than the concept of fandom.
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From:vernacularity
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:39 pm (UTC)
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also there is a "books for samoa" or similar bin downstairs at the WCC at the moment. I think.
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From:vernacularity
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:39 pm (UTC)
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yes i will come get your wood!! or share it with someone else who also wants it?
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From:tatjna
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:41 pm (UTC)
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You can have it all if you want it. ;-) Thanks!
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From:mundens
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:43 pm (UTC)
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When I see you say "Dr Wheel", They Might Be Giants appear in my brain singing :

My name is Dr. Wheel.
Good morning. How are you? I'm Dr. Wheel.
I'm interested in things.
I am a real doctor,
But I'm not a real Wheel.

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From:tatjna
Date:September 8th, 2011 11:27 pm (UTC)
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He's apparently not a robot either.
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From:tyellas
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:44 pm (UTC)
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Yes, there's more to fandoms than the slash. Far, far more. The slash is just more interesting/bizarre than minutae such as the following.

I went to an LOTR fan meetup the other day, hoping to find fellow fans with whom to deconstruct the images of the dwarves in the Hobbit as conceptualized by Weta compared to Tolkien's own writing. But, alas, everyone there was a bunch of film buffs, and didn't want to discuss Tolkien's footnotes.

Still awake? I don't blame you if you're not! That's why people talk about the slash part more...

And yes, during elections, slashy people DO ship politicians. It helps if they're sexy politicians - during the last US election, Obama and one of his chief advisers Rahm Emanuel were a popular couple. Link here! People were slashing Palin and Clinton? In 2010? Oh, my brain.
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From:bekitty
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:59 pm (UTC)
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Exactly. In my experience, fandom seems to be about getting obsessed about the Details of Stuff. For example, take a look at any Star Trek manual about any model of the Enterprise. No sex there, just lots and lots and LOTS of... detail.
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From:richdrich
Date:September 8th, 2011 10:46 pm (UTC)
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Which leaves me wondering where state documents classified 'secret' fall on the copyright scale.

I'd guess that (like your shopping list or anything else written) they're copyright unless that copyright's relinquished by the "owner" or carved out by statute.

An interesting question (to me, anyway) is to what extent the copying of a document released under the (New Zealand) OIA is a breach of copyright. It's probably fair use, but maybe not if you made a complete database of such information.
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From:tatjna
Date:September 8th, 2011 11:12 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, that's an interesting question. NZ has fair dealing instead of fair use and from what I understand it's about the purpose of the sharing rather than the material itself - like, would it count as review or journalism if you were to share it?
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From:thatgirljj
Date:September 8th, 2011 11:21 pm (UTC)
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Once upon a time I became aware that there is a fandom that ships Clarkson/Hammond/May from the UK Top Gear. Right there I decided that I want nothing to do with fic ever, ever, EVER again. Yeeeeeech!
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From:n3m3sis42
Date:September 9th, 2011 12:08 am (UTC)
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Real people slash totally exists. There is also stuff like Bible slash. WTF? Google "Obama slash".
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From:tatjna
Date:September 9th, 2011 12:15 am (UTC)
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Noooooooooo! (at least, not from work)

O.o
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From:caycos
Date:September 9th, 2011 12:22 am (UTC)
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Other random comment - the RWC is closer to two months... at least most of the end-game stuff is not in Wellington.. (says she who lives within puking distance of the stadium)
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From:tatjna
Date:September 9th, 2011 12:24 am (UTC)
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Yeah I was thinking things might get a bit.. um.. look-where-you-put-yer-feet.. around your place.

I move on the 8th of October and I understand that's the last weekend anything's happening here, so I may miss out on living in amongst it. I'm a bit relieved about this to be honest.
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From:dragonvyxn
Date:September 9th, 2011 03:41 am (UTC)
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If you want to explore fandom with discussion etc. Try readandfindout.com :-)
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From:heartofawarrior
Date:September 9th, 2011 08:24 am (UTC)
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Rule 34: if it exists, someone has porned it. lol

Fandom is a total guilty pleasure of mine - and it's been a major benefit to me in that some of my dearest friendships started out because we were in the same fandom, and found we got along very well.

The funniest thing to me is that even my dad notices the dynamic between some people - during races and various TV shows and movies, he's been known to point at the TV and yell "BROMANCE!" And now with the advent of social media (especially Twitter), we can follow drivers/actors/whoever, and witness their interactions with others, and get their comments on people and situations, and that can add fuel to the fandom fire, so to speak. It can be great fun, or a major source of drama - so far, I've been lucky that the fandoms I've found myself drawn to are pretty low-drama. The racing groups, especially, have been really laid-back - there are always going to be differences of opinion, especially in a sport-based fandom, but everybody's been respectful and supportive. And that's what keeps it a fun thing - when drama starts, it's no longer the fun escape it ought to be.
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From:ferrouswheel
Date:September 9th, 2011 08:33 am (UTC)
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The reason I say you are at risk when using BitTorrent is because of the way finding peers to download from works in the p2p network. Last I checked, one of the optimisations means that if you happen to have your BT client helping someone find a copyrighted file, you could get a copyright notice for it... even though you didn't actually download the copyrighted file.

So while BitTorrent isn't illegal, if you use certain optimisations that allow the p2p network to work well and be healthy, you expose yourself to being served for infringing.
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From:ferrouswheel
Date:September 9th, 2011 08:38 am (UTC)
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After the rape scene with Khal Drogo I could never quite like him after that (even if it was a culturally accepted thing in the series).

I can't remember what statement I made, but I remember making a statement. Successful advertising at its finest!
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From:tatjna
Date:September 9th, 2011 08:40 am (UTC)
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Apparently that is written completely differently in the book - which I haven't read. And yeah, it made me go *gnng* as well and I couldn't watch the show for a few weeks after.

Was your statement about fashion?
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From:wildilocks
Date:September 10th, 2011 02:02 pm (UTC)
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Fandom is far more than just slash, and in fact I'd say slash is probably a very minor part.

For the fullest spectrum of fandom, conventions run the gamut - the real life ones are quite varied generally, not so often focusing on a specific fandom, though single fandom cons do exist. There's enjoyable meta commentary on fandom with movies such as Galaxy Quest and the soon to come out Knights of Badassdom... and a host of docos on everything from WoW to D&D to Star Trek. Basically, if it involves social/creative fantasy-related activity based on a canon of some kind, it's fandom.

Talking about control and people being subversive in their own small ways - we watched Gattaca last night and the end of it definitely has that core message, that no matter how much control is meted out by the Powers That Be, individuals still can make choices to say F*** the System. I do hope we see more of this kind of thing, as the last year or two has seemed to be more and more people just toeing the path of least resistance...
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