October 25, 2015

Update: Teen.Com’s Fanfic Shaming Post – Does Editing Fix it?

Update: Teen has taken down the blog post entirely (I’m glad I have these screencaps), my thoughts at the end of this post

update teencom shamingYesterday’s post was spread by a fair number of people on the internet, and that makes me happy. It wasn’t just spread by fanfic writers, but by people who understood that bullying is wrong.

On Twitter, I said I was convinced that while Teen.com did do an about face and edit the title, they changed more than that. And I was right! I wonder if Ms. Daluisio edited herself.

First is the original, I included the address bar, so you can see it was the cached version. Pay close attention to the end of the second paragraph.


Title: 11 Scott McCall-Stiles Stilinski Fanfics That Prove Teen Wolf Fans Are Nasty AF
Text: Teen Wolf fans DGAF about crossing any ~personal~ boundaries…

If that isn’t judgmental, I don’t know what is.

Now, the edit.


New Title: 11 Dirty Scott McCall-Stiles Stilinski Fanfics All Teen Wolf Fans Must See
New Text: Teen Wolf fans love to get personal when it comes to Sciles!

While the change is a baby step in the right direction, it’s still clear that the original post was geared towards shaming Teen Wolf fans who write a pairing the author doesn’t agree with, as well as those who write NSFW fiction. While the new tone attempts to make it seems as though they’re celebrating these fics, there’s still a few word choices in there that make it seem like she’s judging.

Like starting the second paragraph with But. There’s no need to do that unless she really doesn’t think it’s cool that people ship Sciles.

It’s also clear that teen.com is interested in covering fanfiction (since the world is aware it exists) without understanding it. Without caring that fandom offers new writers a chance to hone their writing, while sharing it with people who appreciate it. Or understanding that when you pull fanfic out of the context of fandom, it can seem odd.

Doing a little digging, Ms. Daluisio’s posts on Teen.com either have clickbait titles or are posts geared towards shaming fans. I admit, I’m tired of seeing people tweet sexual things at celebrities, but it doesn’t mean you should collect them and frame it as the way that fans act as a whole, not a subset of fans.

Teen.com needs to rethink how they cover fan life, and at least have a writer on their staff who can promotes the positive aspects of fandom, rather than solely exploiting it for clicks- without caring who they’re harassing in the process.

Your thoughts? If you know a teen author who needs a fanfic beta, let me know. I’m going to do more to help a new generation of writers get out there. And I know how much fanfiction has helped shape my writing as a whole – here, in my novel. Fanfic has helped.

Update: As I mentioned above, Teen deleted the Teen Wolf post, and posted this to their Twitter account.

Do I think it was an appropriate action? Yes. Do I think that Teen still owes those writers a public apology? Absolutely.

The fact remains that Teen’s other post mocking fanfic writers is still live, and Ms. Daluisio continues to post # of Nasty Tweets from [Celeb]’s Fans type posts as well. While it’s a good idea that this is handled, to me “handling it internally” is code for – we’re hoping all of you stop paying attention to our site.

Your thoughts – is that enough?

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