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The dictionary defines notability as a quality of prominence, if something is worthy of attention or prominence. The way we define the prominence of a work or creator is not based on how famous they are. This page is in response to the Wikipedia Updater and others who are used to a different standard of how important a work or creator must be before an article can be written about them.

All works are notable.

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Much of our wiki relies on the "Examples" section, where we pull our many articles together. If events in a work fit the trope description, then it can be included as an example, even if you have to Red Link the work name. All it requires is someone to put it in there. Simple as that. It could be a multi-million viewer ABC sitcom, or an all-but-forgotten Japanese videogame, or a Sprite Comic about EarthBound that died after seven strips.

Removing any work example because of "notability" stifles the wiki. It can intimidate new editors who wanted to put in an example they liked and had it shot down. This is a double-edged sword. Someone could add an example they made up and there is really nothing you could do to stop them. If the discussion finds an example to be purely fictional then it might get deleted, might. That's the way of things. But remember, we're here to have fun. Don't let this stuff burn you out.

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What is a work?

We have examples ranging from media as diverse as Film to Fan Fiction and everything in between. But does that mean everything counts? Are we going to collect examples from your second-grade homework assignment? Not really.

The first hurdle that has to be crossed is that the work must be published. Why do we require that works be published? That's because we expect editors to be able to verify the existence of the trope. See our rules on Speculative Troping for why this is important.

The second hurdle that has to be crossed is that the work must have some creative element. The dry recitation of films that were published in 35 mm projection gauge is not really information on storytelling. We accept Non-Fiction works, but we require some sort of creative element. Cosmos: A Personal Voyage is a great example of how creative storytelling can be combined with factual information. Figurative language, their choice of vocabulary, the design of the "Ship of the Imagination", and several other factors were used to illustrate ideas that many people were unfamiliar with. That's what we want to collect examples of, and we often refer to these as narrative tropes, as opposed to production or Trivia.

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Some performances count as works. Preferably there's some record published of the performance, but we also draw a line between the creator and their work. They are not the same thing. In places where we can make such a distinction, such as the stage for a stand-up comedian or the wrestling ring for Professional Wrestling, as long as it is "on-stage", it is the persona. In other places, such as in Let's Play, Play-by-Post Games, or a Reaction Video, the line is usually too nebulous. In that case, anything about the creator is considered gossiping and is not allowed to be troped.

By, for, and about fans

TV Tropes Wiki was started by fans. People, that is, who like stuff. You will see that articles work better here when they are about something you like. This is a little bit of a shock to folks that are used to cynicism about the media. It takes a minute or two to get used to.

People who come looking for a place to bash stuff and rant about how dumb this or that is are in for some disappointment. Here, anyway. There are plenty of places on the 'Net to bash stuff. Shouldn't be too hard to find one.

This doesn't mean, of course, that every article is all sweetness and light, just that the articles trend more toward constructive criticisms than toward cynical bashing. More toward what does work, and how it works, than what didn't work and why it didn't.

If you really must vent, we have a Reviews section, and a forum. The main articles aren't for that.

Other than that, all we ask is that the examples fit the trope. Notability is not an excuse to shoehorn an example on a page when it doesn't fit the trope. Go on, have fun.

Just because it's notable doesn't mean it's safe to host

We consider every work notable. But despite the creative elements of some pornographic works, we aren't here to provide for people's fetishes. We replaced our Fetish Fuel content with a Content Policy to evaluate what works are appropriate to review/host on this site. We don't need porn in order to understand storytelling, and it makes our advertisers happy when they know our content is reasonably family-friendly.


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