Author has written 18 stories for Naruto, Aliens/Predator, Oh My Goddess!, Final Fantasy VII, Dungeons and Dragons, Command & Conquer, Diablo, Dragon Ball Z, Bleach, and Malifaux.
Also folks, just in case, make sure to backup your fics, dont want anyone to loose any hard fought work :( And for those wanting to send this or anything else, I believe their e-mails are under the help link on the upper right.
I am one of many members of Fanfiction.net that is deeply concerned with your current actions on this site. The deletion of countless stories and numerous accounts has already called in massive protest, both in the form of authors publishing letters of worry and in two petitions against this sweep, one of which at the present moment has over 11,500 signatures, found on change(dot)org. However we feel that a more direct approach may also be needed to make our voices heard.
Many of us feel confused about this sudden sweep, as up to the present that you have, as we believed out of respect for the artistic freedom of us authors and the understanding that in our current society both violence and sex have become, largely due to the easy access of visual and acoustical material through the world wide web, such mundane parts of life that an average sixteen-year-old or older is well aware of them, and as such suited to read a story containing them, considering that many teenagers around the age of sixteen often already have direct and personal experience with sex, and indirect experience with violence through television, cinema and/or computer games, kept a tolerant stance regarding such content in our stories. We labored under the assumption that you were aware of the mixed ages of your members, and as such accepted that a thirty-year-old man may be neither willing nor able to write like a fourteen year old boy. We were also certain that you were well aware that certain genres such as romance, tragedy, horror, drama, angst, crime, and hurt/comfort need violence and/or sexual content on the higher levels of literature, as without it such genres quickly become stale and boring. Your sudden, unannounced and absolute purge of countless stories, without giving the authors a chance to edit their work, as such feels to many of us as nothing more than the callous and malicious stomping on months, if not years of hard work.
We were all assuming that you were aware of the spread ages of your users, how else would we explain the existence of the K and K-Plus Ratings, yet with your current actions many wonder why you have two whole ratings of stories for a group of users who are according to your own Terms of Service not supposed to be on this site, as your ToS clearly state Fanfiction.net is intended for users aged thirteen or older, yet none for the adults that make up a large percentage of the members on this site.
Your current purge of stories, while perhaps not illegal, although morally questionable as you are in some cases destroying stories for which your ToS clearly grants us ownership, has also concerned us authors for a different reason. Your current policy of removing stories and banning authors without warning and, as those who have received a notice of this, both intended and 'accidental' messages, know, without explanation as to what is wrong with the story, where in the story that part is, and what we should keep in mind for future stories we might write, is unnerving, as it leaves no option for debate or improvement. We authors are also not given a chance to edit and correct our work to save it from deletion. While this was not your intent, your actions worry us authors because they clearly show us that on Fanfiction.net we have no right to object an unjust treatment, nor do we have any kind of protection against the arbitrariness of the administration. We are not accusing you of maliciously deleting our stories without cause, we are merely noting the fact that the administration too is human, and as such not infallible to error.
Many of us fear that with this purge you are opening a rift between the administration of Fanfiction.net, and its users, which is something we hope to avoid. You may have intended this sweep to be a simple matter, however for many authors it is the end of an era, an era of artistic freedom on this site. We are all members of Fanfiction.net, and many of us were very proud of this fact and the site itself, striving to stay true to its motto: 'Unleash your imagination'. With the current policy of deletion, many of us fear that we will soon be faced with the choice of either leaving this site we all took pride in and derived joy from for years, or find ourselves in a shadow of the site we knew and loved, where censorship demands that we no longer unleash our imagination, but instead are forced to bind, gag and cage it. Neither option is something we truly want.
We of course understand that children should be protected, although current society makes this pretty much an exercise in futility, however simply deleting everything is no solution. There are alternatives, from having Adult-stories only visible to actual members to a simple 'are you above 18?'-button, all far less drastic options.
The simple fact is that we authors see Fanfiction.net as something unique, and we are of the opinion that simply going to another site is not a viable option. The closest match allowing the MA-Rating, Adultfanfiction.net, has multiple issues, including the fact that there is apparently no supervision and essentially no organization, stories belonging into the yaoi-folder clogging folders like 'general', where our stories would likely land. Adultfanfiction is also almost entirely composed of pure smut, and many authors who worked hard for their stories would not want to see the fruit of their labor stuffed between two porn-flics just because there is a single lemon-scene of perhaps 3.000 words in a 200.000 word story that's there because it fits or furthers the plot, or even a story that has no sex and was flagged for violence, where the author will feel even stronger that his work does not fit into the general style of the site.
We of course realize that the administration cannot work miracles, and that some things take time, however there are things we can ask for. First is the immediate stop of the deletion of stories and accounts, and, as far as possible, their restoration, at least for a time-period in which negations can be held. We are aware that you will not immediately jump up to completely change the rating-system, however we have listed a number of, as we feel, reasonable demands that you should take into consideration before continuing this purge of stories: 1. Many authors and readers were not yet members during 2002, and have trouble seeing where exactly the problem is. We ask that the administration give us the reason the MA-Rating was banned in 2002, and if you insist on your current stance, give us a detailed explanation as to WHY the rating cannot be reintroduced to this site.
2. Authors put a lot of work into their stories, work that the administration takes advantage of by allowing advertisements, including noise-producing advertisements that pose annoyances for readers, to be placed on our profiles and stories, which doubtlessly is a way to finance this site. As such, seeing that it is the work of the authors that keep this site alive, every author who works on his stories and in that manner supports this site has the right that, if his or her stories are deleted from the site, he is given a concrete explanation why, to prove that the story, or as it was referred to in the Terms of Service, the User Submission, for which the site reassured him he retained the ownership-rights in its ToS, was removed, and in the cases where no copy exists destroyed, for a valid reason and not solely on the whim of an administrator. Another reasonable request would be that the author in question be given a period of at least 24 hours before termination so that he may edit his Submission to meet the guidelines, or save it to be reposted on a different site so that his work will not be lost.
3. If the Administration can afford the resources for actions such as the current purge of stories or the Image Manager, an addition of debatable usefulness seeing that many, if not most, authors will lack either the motivation or the artistic talent to create individual covers for their stories, then the community may request additions that are actually helpful to a majority. Here two suggestions.
3.1 We request that, if the Administration insists on keeping its current policy on the Ratings, they do a review of them and clearer define what conditions must be met for a Submission to be given a specific rating, seeing as the current explanation of the ratings is extremely imprecise and leaves a great deal to individual interpretation. The perhaps most important statement 'Detailed descriptions of physical interaction of sexual or violent nature is considered Fiction MA' (Source: Fictionratings) could hardly be more vague, seeing that every individual has a different concept of what precisely counts as 'detailed'. An explanation as to why the rating for adults, who make up a large percentage, if not the majority, of the users of http://www.Fanfiction.net is banned, yet the ratings K for children five years and older, and K-Plus for children nine years or older is valid despite the fact that the Terms of Service clearly state that http://www.Fanfiction.net is 'not intended for children under 13' (Source: http://www.fanfiction.net/tos/), would also be appreciated.
3.2 In the recent years the genre known under terms such as 'Slash/FemSlash', 'Yaoi/Yuri' or 'Boys Love/Girls Love' on this site has grown steadily, and while in the name of tolerance it is only correct, and even admirable, that these stories remain on this site like any other, there are a number of readers that, while not against homosexuality in any shape or form, are simply not interested in reading such stories. However, there are Categories in which the ratio between Slash-stories and non-Slash-stories has reached a point where a reader looking for a non-slash story has to browse to up to six pages of summaries just to find a single one. This has doubtlessly led to the point where some readers have given up searching in that category, which means that authors writing non-slash stories in that category have lessened chances of getting the views, and reviews, that many hope for in order to improve their works. As such, we request that the site allow authors to tag their stories as slash, as most already do in their summaries, and enable users not interested in such stories to filter them out so that they may easier find stories they are interested in in all categories, and so that users who are interested may also find such stories easier.
We members of Fanfiction.net have stood silently for years and watched how this site changed. In recent years some of the changes have concerned us, as they seemed unnecessary and, and here I apologize for the bluntness, as useful as foot-fungus. We see no point in having 5cm of white space to both sides of our forum or on our profiles, and especially not in our stories where we appreciate every millimeter of space filled with plot. We see no point in ordering stories by popularity instead of alphabetical, as we can read the numbers of stories in a category, and we can find a category by alphabet, but may not know how popular a story is, meaning that we now have to manually check every single category to see if it is the one we want. We see no point in having the 'advanced'-button when we press search, as it is obvious we want the advanced options when we clicked on search instead of typing our search word into the bar that appears when you let your mouse wander over the word 'Search' in the gray bar at the top of the page.
We took all these things, and we would have taken the other changes, however this purge of stories is a step far too drastic. When we joined Fanfiction.net, Section 11 of the Terms of Service clearly stated that we have a duty to protect and defend this site. In accordance to this duty we break our long silence now, to protect Fanfiction.net from itself.
We implore the administration of Fanfiction.net to rethink their radical stance, to protect the sanctity of the authors and their works, and to help us that Fanfiction.net will still stand tall as a bastion of creative writing in the future, that it will still be the wonderful ground on which people of all genders, ages, religions, and colors may freely Unleash their Imagination.