Meg Thornton (megpie71) wrote,
Meg Thornton

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More on FanLib

Well, things are getting interesting in the whole "FanLib" thing. I got involved with a thread over on fanthropology last night. I posted a total of seventeen questions for the person from FL who stated that she was willing to answer questions. Just for the sake of kindness, I'll post the questions below.

(To be fair to the person I was asking, I did interlard these with a certain amount of uncomplimentary material about the company and the site. This is essentially an abbreviated posting of just the questions).

1) What association with fandom do the board members have?
2) Which fandoms do they have associations with?
3) Who is their favourite fan author? What is their favourite fan story?
4) Can they provide us with any proof whatsoever that this is more than just a cynical money-making exercise on the part of some people who think they've seen a market in need of exploitation?
5) How much of the money generated by FanLibs is going to wind up with the original content creators - that is, the authors, writers, artists, scriptwriters, producers, directors, actors and musicians whose hard work inspires their fans to write fanfiction, or create fanart?
6) How much is going to wind up with the publishing companies, movie corporations, and merchandising units which hang off the side of their efforts?
7) Oh, and is any of it going to be put back into providing any service to fans which isn't going to be charged for, or covered with someone's logo?
8) Was [the mass posting of a rather juvenile post by one of their directors] seriously meant to either impress or intimidate anyone?
9) Who elected the board of FanLibs?

They are the founders, its is a private company, they put together their own board which is what private companies do.

10) Where can I (a foreign national) get a copy of their annual report?

You can't, it's a private company.

11) Are shares in FanLibs publicly traded?

No, it's a private company (I'm sensing a trend)

12) Is there any plan to make these shares publicly available?

If the company is successful than it could go public just like anyother company. Who knows.

13) What is the corporate process for getting someone elected to the board of FanLibs?

There is no corporate process it's a small company of 16 people.

(Or, to quote Billy Bragg,
14) "Who are these people?
It's all right there on the website.

15) Who elected them?

As I've said above, no one "Elected" them. It is not a public corporation.

16) And how do I replace them with some of my friends?")

You start your own fan fiction website, that's how. They started this one so they get to run it.

17) What kind of account have your people taken of the fact that fandom, fans, fanauthors, content creators, entertainment media companies, and legal systems exist *outside* the continental United States of America?

So far, I haven't received a response to any of them. I *have* received a response to one of my comments, in which I compared the actions of the FL board to the actions of slave owners, in expecting to profit from unpaid labour. I stand by the comparison.

I'll keep you all updated and let you know whether I actually receive a response to any of the actual questions.

ETA: I should explain why I'm not going to be posting these over on the FL message boards. It's actually very simple - in order to post there, I'd need to create an account, and I don't want to.

Update 22 MAY 07: 8 questions answered out of a total of seventeen. I asked a supplementary question today regarding how much experience the various people in FanLib had with running a large fanfiction archive site, and got back a response which boiled down to "none whatsoever". This could be interesting... for Chinese values thereof.

Update 27 MAY 07: I prodded jdsampson to reply to the other nine questions on 24 MAY 07. There still hasn't been any answer to any of these questions. I strongly suspect there won't be any answer forthcoming from FanLib on these issues at all.
Tags: bitching, fandom, politics, rants, the crazy years, writing

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