Dear SIYE writers and readers, new and old,
Since the beginning of the summer, the site has entered a modest growth phase -- the first time in quite a while where we're slowly but steady gaining active new users faster than old members drift away. As a result, we thought it might be useful to start a quick dialogue about what you can expect from the SIYE experience.
We're going to offer a few thoughts here, but we welcome comments and questions from all others.
Firstly, SIYE is intended as a friendly and supportive place for writers to try their hand at fictionally celebrating the Romantic, Dramatic, and sometimes downright Comical pairing of Harry Potter and Ginny Weasley. By the same measure, it's also a great place for readers to browse many many (thousands) of fine stories, and interact with the writers behind them.
SIYE aims for a happy balance between a desirable 'friendly and supportive' atmosphere without bogging down into an excessively saccharine smurfy little love fest. To achieve this, I think we all strive to use common sense, and are prepared to self-correct if ever we get a bit out of line. That said, some basic principles are to aim for constructive rather than destructive exchanges, and to avoid any matters that get overly personal, such as comments that verge upon racial, gender or sexual discourtesy, and/or infringe on members' privacy.
A few questions arose recently about SIYE standards on stories. First of all, we do have a story classification/rating system that helps people to steer toward types of fiction they enjoy, and away from those they prefer to avoid. However our full breadth of story content is a small bit narrower than some fan fiction sites span. Here's some background and perspective on that:
Years ago, Jo Rowling was approached by major fanfic sites and asked for comment and guidance the sort of derivative fiction she, well, would be willing to not sue. I don't recall her exact wording, but she responded with parameters that proved to be a decent compromise between good taste and permissiveness.
SIYE has always adhered to a reasonable interpretation of her intent which tends to hew fairly close to the film industry's R (permitted) vs. X (no) boundary. I can't state everything exactly but F-bombs and other hard phrases are tolerated if they're important to the story. Some violence is to be expected in fiction like this; it can get quite brutal if the plot demands it, but gore is not part of the culture. Sexuality is fine if tasteful and not pornographic. Alternative sexual identity is generally fine, as long as it's within plausible character, but it's worth one more reminder that SIYE does have its special mission to uphold the special nature of the Harry/Ginny pairing. So, be tasteful.
That's the quick primer. Comments and thoughts?