"Breaking into Tolkien's tomb and pissing on his bones would be less insulting than this game!"
communities, like any other fandom, have their own set of standards. While technically, all fanfiction is free to just do whatever it wants (hell, all fiction in general is, too), there are a number of topics and tropes that cause revulsion amongst these communities. The revulsion can range from forgivable (most beginning writers are given a free pass for this so long as they aren't particularly mean-spirited) to sending whole communities up in arms
(which will sometimes result in being banned as a particularly light sentence).
Also worthy of note is that many cases of traditional canon defilement actually are canon, but in those cases, it's always when a Promoted Fanboy
gets to Run The Asylum
and just abuses editorial fiat. It takes quite a lot more for them to really get this term thrown at them, but it generally tends to sting a lot more, since their influence will (usually) affect future stories as well. Please note that it isn't Canon Defilement if the original creative crew is responsible; it's just good old Seasonal Rot
An incomplete list of things that are generally known to cause this:
There are other things that a good portion of fanbases add to this list, but that many other people really like (or at least think it adds to the story) and are willing to defend:
- This is a common accusation leveled at Alternate Universe Fics and especially the highly-contested High School A.U.. The latter especially tends towards being little more than the writer playing out their personal fantasies while trying to appeal to readers with a vestigial connection to a canon.
- Although it should be pointed out that in canons where time travel, alternate universes, and the like are canonical, there is little to no controversy over Alternate Universe Fics. This is especially true in relation to fandoms that skew old, such as Star Trek (or at least Trek before 2009), where there are few High School A.U. stories because most writers are in their thirties or older.
- Sailor Earth, in general, is often viewed as this.
- The breaking up of Official Couples for any reason, whether paving the way for Fan Preferred Couples, Crack Pairings, or Relationship Sues.
- The great Slash Fic debate, along with the Lemon debate. The former has heavy ties with the Character Derailment argument.
- Alternate Character Interpretation is sometimes even viewed as Canon Defilement. Typically, whenever you lodge a complaint at a fanfic for interpreting the characters a different way, expect to typically be ignored or seen as nothing other than a Jerkass or Troll. Sometimes, people often cry Canon Defilement at this merely to say "My interpretation for this character is better than your interpretation."
- Elsewhere Fic can also be considered Canon Defilement, again, be careful with throwing this around.
- Fanfics built around "What If?" scenarios (eg, assuming that the characters decided to Take a Third Option) are, once again, sometimes viewed as Canon Defilement.
- Some people view Self-Fanservice as Canon Defilement. This largely depends on the person.
It is important to note that Canon Defilement does
have a subjective side to it. Sometimes, one person's Canon Defilement is another person's fanfiction idea — and criticisms about it being Canon Defilement sometimes get responded to with a big ignore.
This generally comes about because the author either didn't know better or perhaps just didn't care
. Often, though, it's an attempt to make it Better Than Canon
. Sometimes it's played for humor, but with something like this it can be hard to tell
No Examples Please!