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Why ban Tintin fan fiction?

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#11 · Posted: 28 May 2005 05:30
Apparently George Lucas allows these things to exist as long as they don't make any money out of it, or pay anyone to appear in the films, or do animation etc...

George Lucas is very different from Herge, who is not alone in not wanting people imitating his work after his death. The creator of popular Czech children's TV show Krtek ("Little Mole") felt the same way Herge did. Furthermore, Hayao Miyazaki ("Spirited Away") most likely won't tolerate imitators either; he is known not to make sequels of even his own work (at the credits part for "My Neighbor Totoro", there were unusual scenes that were not part of the original story. Most people thought that a sequel was in the works until Miyazaki announced otherwise).

Herge is not alone in his attitudes about restricting works. It may be unpleasant, but we'll have to live with it...
UK Correspondent
#12 · Posted: 28 May 2005 17:23
It's all very well and good to produce Tintin fan art and fanfics for free, but it doesn't mean they'll stay that way. The advent of eBay has assured that anything that can potentially be sold is sold. The case of the person who printed out Rodier's "Tintin and Alph-Art" on their desktop printer, and the companion volume featuring Edwood's work and general images is a good example of work being produced for non-profit purposes, and then being taken by unscrupulous people and being sold.

I can entirely understand where Hergé was coming from when he said he didn't want people to continue the books, and I suppose we have to ask ourselves if anyone is capable ? The one example we have of a non-Hergé book widely available is Tintin and the Lake of Sharks ... 'nuff said. There's been few continuations of other books or series that I have found sufficiently faithful : even Uderzo's Asterix books fail to live upto the Goscinny-penned volumes.

A fanfic, whilst not attempting to capture the feel of the series - especially as it'd be written in prose-form - should seek to add something to the original, and the openness of Tintin's character means we project ourselves into him, and therefore would object to anyone's suggestions about what he may have done earlier in his life, what he's upto now etc.
#13 · Posted: 1 Jun 2005 02:47
From what I have gathered from looking at the posts on this topic there are a few major issues. These are:

1) A fear that there will be more works along the lines of "Breaking Free", "Tintin in Thailand", etc.

2) Moulinsart's desire to respect the wishes of Hergé as well as preserve their livelihood.

3) Loyalty to Hergé's wishes (Moulinsart notwithstanding).

4) Concern that any attempt at a "legitimate" Tintin book would not measure up to anyone's expectations.

Someone, I believe one of the moderators or staff members, liked the idea of a novelization (I do too!).
A novelization, it seems to me, may be possible. My reasons for this, in the context of the above four points are as follows:

1) Unfortunately there will always be works like "Breaking Free" etc. Anything of any lasting value is always fair game for this sort of thing. It doesn't mean that it will all be like this. A novel would take away some of the graphic impact of the shock value.

2) Moulinsart and/or Hergé's estate did allow Tuten's novel to be published after all. Regardless of the circumstances, a Tintin based novel (such as it is) has already been published. The precedent has already been set. The door has been opened for the possibility of another "sanctioned" attempt.

3) Anyone loyal to Hergé with any talent could come up with something better than "Tintin in the New World"

4) A novel, I believe, would be easier for most Tintin fans to accept because it still relies on one's own imagination. There would be no visual shortcomings to disappoint one and therefore detract from the story. Granted, one would have to write in a convincing way but the burden of having to match Hergé's excellent graphics would be gone.
#14 · Posted: 1 Jun 2005 09:39
Moulinsart and/or Hergé's estate did allow Tuten's novel to be published after all.

No, that wasn't the case. Hergé gave Tuten the permission himself, before he died. He was apparently quite aware that Tuten was going to explore extreme themes, but respected him as an artist, and allowed him to do it. There may have been mechanisms by which the estate could have prevented publication - I simply don't know - but in the event, they (again) respected Hergé's point of view (that he was happy for the book to exist), and the book came out.
#15 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 03:35
I think a lot of you guys are missing the point: fanfictions are fanfictions, and nothing else. They aren't published, they aren't sold, they aren't printed and distributed -- they are solely for the enjoyment of fellow fans. Fanfictions aren't meant to be taken seriously, and they certainly never, ever are equal to the original work of writing (or movie, game, etc, etc.) They are written because the author of the fanfiction might be frustrated with the ending of a book, and wants to elaborate on what *might* have happened. (I hated the end of "Lord of the Flies", and so I did a 'fic.) Or perhaps he/she really admires one of the characters, and wants to write a little piece on what could have happened during the early years of this character.

The point I'm trying to make is, is that fanfictions (and I'm not talking PUBLISHED books, or PUBLISHED comics, or ANYthing that could be sold or marketed -- that's a WHOLE different story) are just simple (and often, short) narratives that an adoring fan likes to type and post on the internet (the MAIN base for fanfictions). At the beginning of each fanfic is a clear DISCLAIMER, and a statement that the story is not being sold, and is not being written to pass off as the original author's.

I'm a big defender of fanfics (as you can see) -- keep in mind they are NONPROFIT, they are (almost always) written by teenagers and college students, and that they are simply meant to be whimsical and fun.

Fanfictions DO NOT EQUAL works that are published and sold in bookstores, on the black market, etc, etc. Please differentiate from these two.
#16 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 03:43
My thoughts exactly MoonRocket, but you put is so much more eloquently.
#17 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 06:12
Woh! Do please calm down, MoonRocket! :-)

MoonRocket wrote: [fan fictions] aren't published, they aren't sold, they aren't printed and distributed -- they are solely for the enjoyment of fellow fans.

Some form of distribution must occur for a piece of fan work to reach others--and it is the potential of a derivative work being circulated uncontrolled (by whatever means and for whatever ends) that concerns copyright owners.

Moulinsart are not as liberal about fan fiction/fan works/derivative works as some other copyright owners might be, but they are within their legal rights to be this way. We do not permit the distribution of Tintin fan works on Tintinologist.org only because it is the right thing to do by the law.
#18 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 08:44
I think a lot of you guys are missing the point
No, I think you'll find that we have seen your point - but that doesn't automatically make it one that people can, or are able to, agree with.

fanfictions are fanfictions, and nothing else
Quite so - but you have a position that the law would not recognize.

The point I'm trying to make is, is that fanfictions (and I'm not talking [i]published books, or published comics[/i]

Yes you are. Putting things on the internet is publishing them - just not on paper.
Again, were you yourself to put an original creation on the net - original characters in an original adventure, which you sweated and slaved over, and on which your livelihood depended, why shouldn't you be protected? What does it matter it isn't on paper?

So not a valid argument, I'm afraid...

or anything that could be sold or marketed -- that's a whole different story

Well, that doesn't hold water either, because a) the point Richard made above is that pirate works are being lifted wholesale by third parties and sold, even when the original pirate was free; and b) if you choose to stand outside someone's sweet shop, and give away free sweets, surely you can see that that will still be damaging to the owner of the shop? Even more if they are sweets from that shop.

are just simple (and often, short) narratives that an adoring fan likes to type and post on the internet (the main base for fanfictions).

That's probably the most damaging fact of all - the internet.
In the days when writing a story was a solitary endeavour, and never got beyond the author, it was no problem at all; when fanzines started up, they generally didn't move beyond a small group, who actively had to seek them out.
Now, with the internet, you are setting out your stall to everyone on the planet with access to a computer: no marketing effort is needed, and as no quality control has to be in place as the author is anonymous and practically untraceable, the fan-fic writer actually has as big a potential audience as any mainstream writer, and none of the responsibility. Don't pretend that the internet is just a few friends hanging out - it's everyone!

Now I'll get back off the high-horse...! ;-)
#19 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 20:50
Sorry, guys, but I'm not even going to even try to validate my argument any further, because it's obviously no use. I guess, for those of you who disagree with Tintinrulz and I, it might be different if you were part of the fanfiction community. It's usually (almost always) an honorable group of (many) people who would never, ever sell or take credit for their fanfictions. Ever. Those examples (Tintin in Thailand, Breaking Free) are from crazies who have taken the fanfiction level to an unnecessary extreme and are marketing their stuff.

I see a fanfiction as a way to honor a piece of work (whatever media it might be), but according to earlier posts from you all, being a "fan" just doesn't seem to matter. Whatever.

I'll still continue to write my Tintin fic, and I'll still keep posting it on the site where it's being "published" (if you can call it that).

Don’t pretend that the internet is just a few friends hanging out - it’s everyone!

And that's the beauty of it, jock123.
#20 · Posted: 2 Jun 2005 22:23
I mean, I'd understand if it was for profit or something, that would be wrong, but the fanfict I want to write would be free, just for fun, on the internet. It's like when we were kids and we were playing to be batman, or superman, or any other hero. We've all done it when we were kids! The only difference now is that I'd put it in words, and no profit would be involved.

It can't be worse than some of those porn unofficial books they make... (I hate to see one of my childhood heroes hijacked like that, but freedom of speech! If we make them shut up, who's next ?

Anyway, usually I post my fanficts on a popular fan fiction site. Maybe they have some room for my work in the Cartoon Misc section, it's still a shame that we get let our imagination free about Disney characters, Peanuts, Garfield, Marvel, but that there's no section for Tintin.

[Edited by Moderator - removed link to fan fiction site.]

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