Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/70733
Type: Thesis
Title: "Please don’t sue!": regulation, control and ownership in fan (fiction) communities.
Author: Oakey, Sarah Alice
Issue Date: 2011
School/Discipline: School of Humanities
Abstract: In 2008, J.K. Rowling and her publishers instigated a lawsuit against one of her biggest fans. The Warner Bros. et al V. RDR Books et al lawsuit successfully enjoined the publication of a secondary work which would have competed directly with author J.K. Rowling’s future project, a Harry Potter encyclopaedia. This incident is utilized in this thesis as an example of a larger issue. That issue is whether a society founded on an industrial economic framework of property rights should continue to strengthen a culture of corporate creative monopolies, and whether it is prudent to re-examine notions of ownership and creativity to incorporate emergent methods of information dissemination. This thesis seeks to document modern fan practices while simultaneously identifying many of the reasons why they are under threat. This thesis will incorporate recent theory on user-generated media content and attempt to relate them to the activities of fan communities. It examines the deconstruction of notions of authorship and property in these communities in order to facilitate fans’ non-market knowledge economy. There are two very important questions which drive this research; what are the legal and social concerns surrounding intellectual property and moral authority in the process of fan creativity and publishing? How do online fan communities negotiate their enthusiasm for popular media under the threat of legal prosecution? With the aforementioned lawsuit as a case study, this thesis will address the changing roles and relationships between producer and consumer. It will argue that fan creativity is deserving of greater legal protection and acknowledges that there is an important distinction between ‘derivative’ and ‘secondary’ works.
Advisor: Griffiths, Mary
Prosser, Rosslyn Winifred
Humphreys, Sal
Dissertation Note: Thesis (M.A.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Humanities, 2011
Keywords: copyright; law; fans; fan fiction; Harry Potter; lawsuit; intellectual property; Warner Brothers
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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