Today in the Zelda community we can see many large sites. Yet, only a few have what would be considered a large fanworks archive. Zelda Universe for one has a reasonable sized fanworks archive. However, these are one of the few sites that follow the policy of "fans come first". We can see sites rise from the humble beginnings on a free host with advertisements everywhere. Content, slowly, but steadily being worked on. They rise slowly but surely to paid hosting. And then they become what the Zelda Community knows as an "established site", an integral part of the community. And yet, there is no community. We see a few of the larger Zelda sites sharing content, ideas and ideals. Although, the true integral part of the Zelda site is being ignored and neglected. The fans.
For a year or more I've seen many brilliant pieces of fan literature being written, and fold. They will often fold because they receive no support from the people around them. Many sites will receive the fan content, and ignore it. Not out of laziness, but because it's not considered a priority. Yet, where would your site be without the fan that just wrote that? You'd be nowhere at all. Many of the fans in the community are fabulously creative in literature and in actual art. Their works go unappreciated all over the internet because no one cares. This is not acceptable at all. Without such dedicated and loyal fans, who go to the lengths of writing and drawing such masterpieces we would have no fan community at all. There would be no community at all. Why would this happen? For the simple reason that, most Zelda Webmasters are huge fans of the games themselves. They have their own ideology of how the Zelda world is. They have their own fictions in their mind and their own timeline theories. However, it does not seem to be a priority to allow the fans of their website to express their ideas and ideals on the website. Why create a website at all then? For the gaming content? Psh, it's not that important. Go to GameFAQ's if your stuck in a game, or IGN. There are hundreds of sites that go through every aspect of the Zelda game to an intricate detail. So, most Zelda sites have either full, or near full content on the games. A few articles written by the webmaster, a load of graphics and videos for the fans to further their own ideas and ideals of the Zelda world, yet nowhere to express them. Is this the fate that we want our community to forever fall into? No! We want webmasters and webmistresses to follow the examples of brilliance in the Zelda community. Before the loved Zelda Elements closed down, they had an entire subsite dedicated to fanworks of all types. Zelda Universe has a few automated systems, as does Zelda Legends. These are prime examples. However, the best example that can be seen is Kasuto.net. That site is the fanworks archive. There is little else. So I am telling you to ditch the idea of content and fall into the fanworks archive site? That is also a no. I want fansites to have an equal amount of concentration on fanworks and game content. For, as I said above, where are we without the fans of our sites. If they want to submit something, allow it. Without the ideas that have been given to us by such dedicated fans then the community would be stagnant. For the sake of progress allow us to have fanworks archives, however, if we progress too fast, then we forget the traditions and the ideals that set us apart from the rest of the web. So we must prune our own ideals to make sure that we can progress with the ideals that we have always had within the Zelda community. So, in conclusion, what I'm trying to say is, without the fans you are nothing. Do not ignore them, do not criticise or censor them either. Embrace their ideas and ideals, they may not be alike to your own. However, they have been thought out, and cannot be considered totally wrong at any time. Take their ideas and merge them with your own. Yet, remember what made your site great, remember the content and your own ideals. That's the only way for true progress in the Zelda community.
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This page was created by Juliet A. Singleton © 2004. All rights reserved.