All The Tropes:Why Fork TV Tropes
If you've stumbled upon this site, you might be asking, "How are you different from TV Tropes, other than the slightly different content?" This site is what is referred to in the software community as a "fork" -- a point where we decided to go a different direction from the original site. It's a major undertaking, so we should explain the reasons why we built this site.
- Modern Wiki Engine
- We have a website that supports multi-level namespaces, and where any character can be in the title. We have an auto-completing search box, to help you find pages faster. (And the suggestions the search box offers are all live links, so you can open any of them to a new tab without waiting for a results screen first.) We run all web traffic through SSL. We have an editor that doesn't rely on weird hacks to display page captions, but actually has buttons to help you with formatting. Once you get used to the new syntax, you find it's quite easy to work with and much more flexible.
- I've chatted over dinner with Patrick Michaud, the author of PmWiki. I like him a lot. And his wiki software has seen better days. He's moved on to become part of the Perl 6 project, and so we should move on too.
- No Advertising
- We're not going to annoy you with ads, and we plan to stay that way. We won't be influenced by corporations to regulate our content, just from the income. If you want to help with the upkeep of our servers, you can Donate to Miraheze to help cover our costs. Or not. It's entirely up to you.
- Just so we're clear, embedded videos may feature ads from the video-hosting site. We have no control over these ads, nor do we profit from them. It is your right to use browser add-ons to disable these advertisements.
- No Anti-Ad-Blocking Shenanigans
- TV Tropes actively attempts to subvert ad-blocking and ad-disabling technologies in its users' browsers, and when it can't, tries to make using its wiki with them enabled annoying or inconvenient (see "Better Search Tools" below for one example). We don't do ads, so we have no reason to try to take over your browser to maximize our profits.
- Better Search Tools
- We have an auto-completing search box, to help you find pages faster. The search function also works with ad-disabling add-ons; not so on TV Tropes.
- We're not Interested In Censorship
- We want to create a place where people are free to offer literary criticism (and in-jokes) about any work of fiction -- not just those that are approved as goodthink by the Censorship Bureau. This doesn't mean that we are free from censorship either -- we just have much less. Sexually explicit material will be removed, but discussion of explicit works is encouraged.
- This policy derives from our sense of Academic freedom -- the idea that no researcher should be barred from any field of inquiry. While we're a lot less formal than a scientific paper, we believe that there is value to be had in looking at the tropes in famous works like Deep Throat, La Blue Girl, and Lolita (yes, even that was briefly banned). These works may be unpopular with some, but they address an important part of the human condition.
- Debate is Encouraged
- That's right -- this wiki is not a hugbox for the administrators. We want people to feel comfortable disagreeing with the administrators without fearing retribution. Far, far too many people have been banned from TV Tropes for expressing opinions contrary to the staff. We even have a Policy for Wiki Staff designed to prevent these kind of abuses.
- It's not a free-for-all, but TVT-style censorship is not the answer. Ultimately, the community will make the rules that it wants to see. All the administrators are there to ensure that the wiki space is open and fair to everyone. This is not "my site", this is everyone's site.
- Collaborative Culture
- While Fast Eddie has described the Creative Commons license used on TV Tropes as a source of "stealing because you can" and "straight up plagiarism", we believe that community content creation is good for the community. You can see the results of such collaboration on websites like Wikipedia, see Flickr photos incorporated into Irregular Webcomic, or read community-writen works like in Fenspace's wiki. Sharing the content widely drives even more creativity.
- We're 100% non-profit, so we could easily take the content from the current version of TV Tropes with its non-commercial license. We choose not to do so, because we want the knowledge on our site, such as it is, to be as freely available as possible. Instead, we use the same Creative Commons license as Wikipedia, so that content may be freely interchanged between our two sites and through any other means.
In short, our site is about fairness, openness, more features, less censorship, and zero advertising. And you're welcome to join us.