Torture in Fics (please read)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Gandalf the Grey, Sep 25, 2001.

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  1. Mr. P FanFic Archive Editor, Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 1, 2000
    star 5
    First off, before I go into the details of the subject, this board (the Jedi Council) is not PG-13. It is PG, according to the rules. The definition of PG, according to the MPAA (Motion Pictures Association of America) is:

    Parental Guidance Suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children. This signifies that the film rated may contain some material parents might not like to expose to their young children - material that will clearly need to be examined or inquired about before children are allowed to attend the film. Explicit sex scenes and scenes of drug use are absent; nudity, if present, is seen only briefly, horror and violence do not exceed moderate levels.


    We don't (as of now) censor stories posted here to be under the PG-level, but we do crack down on stories that are definitely above and beyond what is "Family friendly" (to quote our friend Josh), like NC-17 stories and such if/when they are reported, since it is absolutely impossible to read every single story posted here.

    About having "Obi-Torture" in the title -- it seems to be more of a notification of the genre than a warning; like when somoen puts "Ami/Ani" in the title to show that hte story will be an anakin/amidala romance.

    I don't know about shutting down all obi-torture stories; if it's emotional torture/angst, such as putting him through the time of a death of a friend or something, then it would be ok, I think; but if it's outright physical torture, I think that it might be open to question whether it is qualified to be posted here on these boards or whether it might be better suited to be posted at a different message board and/or site.

    At this time, even if we created a separate forum here for more intense stories, there would be no way of keeping little kids out of there -- even though people can't register until they're 13, they can still come here and read and lurk; we don't want to get JC.N put on all those stupid net-nanny programs' lists as one of the "censored" sites.

    Listen to what Josh said -- before you post a story, consider what a parent would say if they saw their pre-teen reading it.

    --Mr. P :cool:
  2. Gandalf the Grey Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 14, 2000
    star 6
    Mr. P: Sorry. My mistake. Won't happen again. :)


    Jane Jinn: You don't consider that over the limit? ?[face_plain]

    Um, how about anyone else? Am I being too harsh here, or would that fit into your idea of PG? Or even PG-13?

    The passage I'm refering to here is from page 652 of Wizards First Rule by Terry Goodkind.
    ?The magic will punish you for going against my wishes. When I place this chain somewhere, it is my wish for it to stay there until I remove it. I want you to learn that you are helpless to remove it.? She pointed at the door, which stood open. ?For the next hour, I want you to try your best to make it through that door-way. If you don?t try your hardest, this is what I wall do for the rest of the hour.? She put the Agiel to the side of his neck until he was on his knees, screaming in agony, and begging for her to stop. She took it away and told him to begin, then went to lean, arms folded, against a wall.
    The first thing he did was simply try to walk to the door. The pain buckled his legs before he was able to put even a little tension on the chain, and stopped only when he scooted backward toward the chair.
    Richard reached for the ring. The pain of the magic cramped his arms until he was shaking with the pain of reaching for it. Sweat ran off his face. He tried back to the chair, then turning, but before his fingers could touch the chain, the pain took him to the ground again. He pushed against the pain, the effort causing him to fall to the ground, vomiting blood. When it ended, he held himself up with one hand, tears dripping from his face as he held his stomach with the other hand. From the corner of his eye, he saw Deanna unfold her arms and stand up straight. He started moving again.
  3. JediKnight-Obi-Wan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 13, 2000
    star 5
    Well I'd have to agree with Jane Jinn...to ME that's PG-13, IF that....but as she said, I don't know how bad that part gets.

    However this does bring up the thought, maybe many of us are too desensitized to violence to recognize that something is rated as high as it is.

    However, I see many things on TV that I would find absolutely unacceptable for a child to watch. In fact, most of it is, but there it is easily accesible to most children.

    I also have to agree with whoever said you would be cracking down on the new or inexperienced writers.

    When I first started writing fanfic it did contain a bit of Obi-Torture. And some of my current fic's which have been going for over a year might have what is considered character torture in the earlier parts. But in the past year I've discovered that it is more tasteful and will also read better if such things are toned down unless the plot calls for it.
  4. Padawan_Di-Lee Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2000
    star 4
    Gandolf,

    I can't see that passage being rated anything more than PG-13, though I don't know how the scene proceeds from there, and I don't know how it fit into the overall plot.

    I agree that for the most part we see no actual torture in the SW films, but what about the Emperor's Force lightening used on Luke? That was certainly up close and personal for a few moments, and yet it was rated PG. The novel conveys the pain Luke feels and the intensity of the scene, but doesn't dwell on it.

    The start of the lightening...

    Soon, though, the shocks came with such speed and power, they coursed over and into him, and he could only shrink before them, convulsed with pain, his knees buckling, his powers at ebb.

    And then later...

    On the Death Star, Luke was nearly unconscious beneath the continuing assault of the Emperor's lightening. Tormented beyond reason, betaken of a weakness that drained his very essence, he hoped for nothing more than to submit to the nothingness toward which he was drifting.

    The Emperor smiled down at the enfeebled young Jedi, as Vader struggled to his feet beside his master.

    "Young fool!" Palpatine rasped at Luke. "Only now at the end, do you understand. Your puerile skills are no match for the power of the dark side. You have paid a price for your lack of vision. Now, young Skywalker, you will pay the prince in full. You will die!"

    He laughed maniacally; and although it would not have seemed possible to Luke, the outpouring of bolts from the Emperor's fingers actually increased in intensity. The sound screamed through the room, the murderous brightness of the flashes was overwhelming.

    Luke's body slowed, wilted, finally crumpled under the hideous barrage. He stopped moving altogether. At last, he appeared totally lifeless. The Emperor hissed maliciously."


    Would this be acceptable for this forum? I don't really see much difference between this and the excerpt Gandolf provided, though it is hard to get a feel for the intensity of a single scene plucked from a novel length story. This is about the level I write at when I do have violence/torture scenes, though I believe what violence/torture I have is part of the plot/character development and is not gratuitous.

    That being said, there are definitely fics out there on the boards that I feel push the envelope for this forum (and I mean beyond what is pro-written for NJO), though most I have seen provide a warning in the first post that the work may not suitable for younger and/or sensitive readers. I think I'll tell the authors I know that write at my level of descriptive violence or above to check this thread out so they can have a chance to voice their take.

  5. jodiwent Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 11, 2000
    star 4
  6. greencat336 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2001
    star 5
    As an author of the physical torture of Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon type of stories, I want to share my opinion on this issue . . .

    First, Gandolf and many of the others here have raised their concerns in a respectful manner, asking for an open discussion on this matter, which I appreciate. This subject is a touchy one and the calm, mature dialog that has appeared on this thread is something to be proud of.

    However, I must disagree with the idea of banning physical torture from fanfics. In most stories it is there to serve a purpose to the plot. Not all stories, I'll grant you, but most. The torture is portrayed as something very bad happening to the character and those that inflict it are most definitely the villians. I have yet to come across a story that proposes that hurting others is anything but an evil act.

    Beyond the hurt/comfort theme, is also the idea that despite the hate the characters encounter, despite the horrible things that occur, the characters remain true to their values. The tortured Jedi does not turn to the DarkSide, s/he refuses to meet hate with hate and seeks justice not revenge.

    I believe that most fanfic writers do keep in mind that this is a family friendly site. My stories can get graphic, but I draw the line at actions I think would go beyond the PG 13 rating. There seems to be a debate, though, about where exactly that line is . . . The passage that has been quoted above would earn, in my opinion, a PG-13 rating. The problem is, it seems to me, deciding where to draw the line. How much is too much? Unfortunately, I have no ready answer that would satifsy everyone. Obviously, from the type of stories that I have written and posted on TF.N, I am drawing that line much farther out than Gandalf & associates.

    Rather than the across the board banning of physical torture in stories, how about requiring authors to put warnings at the start of their stories and if anyone feels it is too graphic, notify an Admin? Perhaps a balanced group of pro-torture and anti-torture people could make the call on what is too graphic. I am worried that 'overenthusiastic' people could start 'hunting' down the torture fics complaining about the content, though. The Red Scare of the 50's comes to mind all too quickly . . . The slope between keeping things within appropriate bounds and extreme censorship is very slippery. . .

    As to the torture = sex: Two points. First, I think it is very strange in our culture that violence is okay for teens to watch/read about/play video games but the physical act of expressing love isn't. But that's the way it is, folks. In my stories posted here I respect that boundry and avoid any direct references. Second, when I have my characters tortured in stories, it is not as a substitute for placing them in sexual situations. Sex is about love, torture is about hate. Yes, some people may get the two confused, but not many . . .

    As a teacher and an Aunt helping raise 3 kids, I am very concerned about keeping children away from ideas that they do not yet have the emotional development to handle. My nephews and niece have been told that certain TV shows, movies, and books are off limits until they are older. However, the torture which I have read and written on these boards is nothing that the majority of 13 year olds could not handle. (I say majority because there are always exceptions when dealing with people)

    Finally, I have some censorship issues. By posting here, we authors have agreed to follow the rules of no graphic sex, no swearing, etc. However, these boards are not rated G. Stories that use physical torture as a plot device have, according to what I've read on this thread, been around for three years. If you don't like them, don't read them. In return, we authors will post our 'obi-torture' warnings and keep it below the R rating.

  7. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    Gandolf the Grey has actually brought up a good subject to debate about. However there is one primary fact about fiction: it's fiction.

    I warn my readers about the content I write. They see the warning, and those who don't like it stay away. That's their right and I respect it. I respect Gandolf's view of things and it is genuine and just.

    Again though not all of us can share in that view.

    Why? Because there is controling content, and then there is controling creativity. The Boards here, and the reason why I like it here, allows us to explore possible writing scenarios. Some of us, and I must say it's MORE than anyone may think, all ready have been exposed all ready by both long, drawn out torture: REMEMBER, STAR WARS IS NOT JUST A MOVIE FRANCHISE ANY LONGER!

    Case in point: New Jedi Order. The very first book, Vector Prime, is riddled with such horror. Most of us, if not all of us, read that book. And one of it's off shoot stories, Hero's Trial, begins with the slow, detailed death of people. Prior to that, they were all made to stand in a area and wait, not knowing for sure that they were going to die. As readers we knew better, but for the benefit of story telling the shocking event was written out and showed for everyone.

    But wait, there is other forms of torture in printed SW books. It may not be seen as such, but for a good long time the Solo children WERE TARGETS FOR KIDNAPPING CONSTANTLY!

    That's torture. Pure and simple. Maybe not the torture defined by Gandolf, but torture nonetheless.

    So ask yourselves why have it in a universe like Star Wars?

    ANSWER: IT'S FICTION!

    Pure, simple, and the truth. Fiction is not real life, although real life elements can be found in them. The most simpliest being love and family. But to constantly write about that, Star Wars books would not be sellers.

    But of course, does that mean such content should be banned on the boards?

    ANSWER: NO.

    Why?

    Simple: story telling. Each individual here is a individual with their own taste in story telling and story reading. We authors here are constantly writing and trying to 'sell' our fics and usual the best way to go about that is to be totally different than anyone else in story telling. It makes things here refreshing because otherwise this would be a very boring place.

    One thing we should all remember to be true is that VISUALIZATION is much more dramatic and remembering than writen word. Of course we only see glimpses of Han and Leia being tortured. If you want a good example of Visualization being worse than written word, then test yourself: If you can remember all the lines in any SW movie at a particual scene, then can you remember what is said in Vector Prime on page 146, second paragraph, 7th sentence?

    I think we all ready know the answer: NO.

    As for the sexual aspect of torture replacing sex in fics.....

    Gandolf may have a point. Then again he could be wrong too. Like it or not kids sex is everywhere and it's most clearest form of it: males and females. That's it: simple as that when you write, or look, or in real life the first signs of sexual content begin with us being on this world. Therefore, whatever we write, the indications will always be there.

    Now Gandolf is pointing out graphical details, which does have a tendecy to offend people. But then again we are writers with a story to tell. Again, this goes back to story telling. Lots of us detail matters in order to eliminate a lot of questions from not just our readers, but from ourselves in regards to our story telling power. Let's face it I may have a good plot and write good, but if I miss a detail or two, and someone catches it and lets me know, I will go a little nuts.

    Another matter: why can't SW be dark? I don't mean torture or sex, and this next thing is a little off topic, but let's face it: SW moives are screwing up our imaginations a bit because they are too 'light' when it will come down to nearing dark events.

    What am I talking about? The extinction of the Jedi. Not only is that mass mur
  8. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    And another thing: ratings on movies are all ready a hyprocracy, so we don't need them here; a warning at the beginning of each fic works out fine, thank you. I for one have watched the recent kids movies and they feature more sex-oriented themes, and certain degrees of torture, than a R-rated fic with swearing.

    And don't get me started on Kid's cartoons either, but I leave you with this point: the more innocent the show, the more adult it is period.

    As far as I am concern, what WE all write is tame compared to the rest of the world.
  9. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    And one last thing:

    I noted someone saying that they wouldn't want a kid to stumble into a torture thread, or a bad thread of any kind.

    Once again I must stress this point: PARENTS ARE TO CONTROL THERE CHILDREN, NOT US. That means they should be there, at the computer, if they worry so much about their children lurking in unhealthy domains. Heck, there are parents out there that don't want to children to know about SW PERIOD. Again, it is the PARENTS responsibility to their children and what they watch, read, and pretty much think.
  10. Jenn-Kenobi Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 2001
    star 3
    I am not sure how I feel. I guess I am more toward the Obi torture. Now I have read some stuff that I wish I never really had read. *Some was really really bad Obi torture* anyway, I think that most of it is ok, but there have been times where I think that it has got a little graphic. I don't mind PG13, I read R from time to time, but the story itself has to be good and not just torture, torture, torture and that it has to have a real plot line. But me peronally, I would like to stick with most PG13 stuff. Which in this case I just may put my ratings PG and PG13 on each of my stories if it has some sort of torture, just to be safe, I had been thinking of ratings long before I saw this board.
  11. KSkywalker Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 7, 1998
    star 3
    Wow!! How can you top the last few posts? Very well put!!! :D

    The main reason I've been reading these "Obi-torture" stories is that they far surpass the novels!! I lost interest in them because they're too military oriented. They just don't "speak to me" like most fanfiction does! I like the Jedi Apprentice series.

    I have a question reguarding "NC-17" warnings on such sites as Fanfiction.net. Do they REALLY prevent underage readers from viewing??? As far as I can tell, all you have to do is click on the "yes, I'm 18" button and your in!!

    Furthermore, there is no safer way for kids to explore the Internet than with a parent there with them!! Folks are just asking for trouble if they depend on filters alone!! I've innocently followed some links into a few questionable sites with no warnings!! I'm thirty!!
  12. Knight Obi Wan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 1999
    star 3
    hmmm, most of what I could possibly say on this subject has already been said...but I feel the need to say it my own way.

    I agree that gratuitous torture for the sake of torturing the character is in poor taste. Should we go so far as to ban it...well, fortunately I don't have to make that decision. The Admins have a tough choice in this one. These are obviously meant to be family oriented boards that can be read by those of all ages w/o parents having to worry about what their children are into. Afterall, isn't that the beauty of Star Wars? It's a world that can appeal to the youngest child and the oldest man or woman. Its ideals encompass all religions, races, cultures, and beliefs.

    ::adding another level to soap box::

    Admittedly and regrettably, I haven't been able to spend as much time on the boards as of late as I had at the beginning, but I am familiar with a few authors who I believe have a reputation for "Obi-torture" as it has come to be called and I can honestly say that I am often left in awe of the ability of some of them. Their works stand as testiments to the dedication of SW fans and a tribute to Mr. Lucas's creations that have inspired many and changed lives.

    I have to say, though, that with all the long, lengthy legal definitions of ratings and what does and doesn't count as "torture," I still hold the belief that nothing I have read has ever fallen into the category of inappropriate.

    Every story I have ever read, to my recollection, that has contained torture has always had a much richer underlying meaning....that you can overcome anything with strength of heart and the love of those around you. I can't think of another message that should be brought to EVERYONE that stands stronger than this. Admittedly, some of the younger writers on the boards will stumble and fumble trying to find themselves in their stories and some do not fully understand how to construct a story appropriately to make sure that it all melds together. I think the older authors around will agree that sometimes we struggle with this. Members of the boards that are readers and not writers have no idea how much goes into the stories that we post here. It's not mere words that we put together...and it's not even the ideas and concepts. EAch story written by each author, whether they intend it or not, has allowed a small piece of him/herself to be revealed to total strangers for criticism and scrutiny. It's not easy.

    I'd like to take Jodiwent for example. I haven't asked her permission, so I'll edit this if she wishes, but I truly admire her strength. She tackled a very difficult subject matter and made it one of the most popular threads on the board...at least if you judge by number of posts. Why is it popular? Not because of any so-called torture, I can tell you that, but because Jodi continues to show in that story exactly how much strength of will and love can do to right any wrong. Is that a message I'd want my kids to see...absolutely.

    Now, let's compare. What do kids see every day on TV? Absolutely nothing in any story I've read can compare to some of the stuff I see young people watching nowadays. I was in a theater watching "Hannibal" with a six year old and an eight year old in front of me...with dear old dad. I would much rather those kids be on these boards reading than at that movie.

    In conclusion (yes, I'm winding down) I feel fortunate not to have to make the decision on this one. You want to keep the boards family friendly without compromising free speech. I do ask you to consider this though...does the presence of torture in a story overscore the underlying message the author is trying to get across?

    Hope that made sense
  13. the-Ewan-Pixie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2001
    star 1
    That was an amazing post and point, Casper.

    Awesome job! This is all becoming very interesting!
    :)

    EP
  14. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    KSkywalker: You hit it! You hit right on the nail. When access is so easy on the internet, parents must be there. NetNanny software doesn't work. And I hear you about innocent links becoming rabid.

    And consider this: YOU HAVE JUNIOR OR JENNY MESSING AROUND WITH A 2000 DOLLAR COMPUTER BY THEMSELVES? If anything that alone is borderline irresponsible. Simply put you are one downloaded virus away from kissing a 2000 dollar computer, or whatever the dollar amount, or a improper shutdown, goodbye.

    Or worse, with the increase of 'smart super predator' Child Molesters using the Internet to find their next victim, I for one, if I become a parent, don't care if it's a Teletubbies website without a chat room I wouldn't take the chance. I would be there for my kids.

    Knight Obi-Wan: well put question and it does make sense. You can apply it in regards to anything topical, like instead of torture lets say.....two people falling in love during a story about conflict. Does the love affair, based on the title (let's say for the arguement Kill'em All) overshadow the fic?

    Perhaps, but I must quickly point out that many things in the SW movies alone overshadow the title to a degree. Han and Leia's romance is one of the most obvious and off topic if you think about it. But why is it there? Because:

    1.) the circumstances prior to and even afterwards created it.

    2.) the writer of the Empire Strikes Back needed another avenue to their story telling, and therefore the romance was linked up with the story by having that one scene before Han was frozen he had kissed Leia. That, at that moment, overshadow all the plots.

    ___________________________________________

    Again, the readers of threads have to make up there mind. There is no rule that requires them to continue reading a thread after they have posted on it. No one has a gun to their head. No one is forcing them to read fics. Either you like a topic or you don't.
  15. Cheryl_Kenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2001
    star 4
    Look a lot of you have good points but


    I don't know if it was on this broad or on another (I think this one)but doesn't say somewhere that children under the age of 13 shouldn't join?

    You people are saying that children should not be exposed to this. That violence is something like a siner. If I'm wrong please tell me but your saying sex is better then torture.

    Now I don't see why people say that sex is so bad. If you break it down these "bad words" and "torture" and this "siner" stuff, is only something that you THINK is bad. But tell me. F***, Isn't that something you do?
    Isn't H*** a place? So our torture is only a limit in your mind. Something you think is god-awful someone else may think it's not that bad.

    I'm not saying that stuff like rape should be here. But when it comes to whipping and stuff like that: children get whipped from their parents when parents see fit. Saying that there should not be any torture is like saying hey! lets ban the news that has violence in it and I'm sure there will be more cuz we may go to war so if your saying that torture should be banned in these broads, then my answer in NO.

    I have written a story and posted it where Obi-Wan almost bleeds to death.

    One of you said hearing about it and seeing it are two diffrent things and that seeing it is worse, when it's the other way around. When you hear somethng but not see it you will think the worse there is, no doubt about it. Your mind will come to the worse thing and stay with it until proved otherwise.

    And the drugs use that is part of life you listen to the radio and you will hear in about a hour at least three songs that deal with drug use. And almost EVERY song has to deal with sex.

    No. torture should not be ban. No, not any GRAPHIC sex should be here.

    And if you don't like the stories with torture in it DON'T READ IT.

  16. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    Another good point. In life there is drama and I don't know about the others, but bleeding to death in any case is a form of torture that people seemingly have no problem in fiction. And honestly in the terms of 'graphic sex', kissing IS STILL considered in that catagory by most. If anything, the closes any romantic interlude should be between two people is holding hands to those folks, and honestly that's just so lame.
  17. Cheryl_Kenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2001
    star 4
    Oh but it's not lame if your five years old
  18. Jedi-Faith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 21, 2000
    star 2
    To my knowledge, an NC-17 fic is totally sexually oriented. Extremely violent stories that don't contain graphic sex are given the rating of R, not NC-17.

    As for the whole Obi-torture debate, I'd like to point out that not all of them are plotless. In fact, I've read very few that are plotless. Most of the time, the torture is just a part of the story; very well written stories I might add. And all stories are properly labelled; it's not the author's problem if one chooses to ignore the warnings.

    Regarding movie ratings, I hope people are aware that movies receive different ratings in different countries. In general, films are given a lower rating in Canada than in the United States. For example, "Final Destination", which contained lots of death by decapitation, strangulation, stabbing, electricution, etc., was rated R in the United States, but 14A (age 14+) in Canada. It's all relative.

    To me, most of the fics rated PG-13 and display graphic violence do not exceed the boundaries of the rating. As an archivist, I have, on occasion, bumped a rating because I felt the original was too low. But I don't think I've done it for PG-13 to R; most if not all of the bumping I did were for G to PG or PG to PG-13...

    As for why sex is considered inappropriate while violence is not: the main reason, I think, is that society is becoming more and more numb to violence. Think of all the "kids" TV shows now: they all involve fighting. Sex remains a sensitive issue, but tolerance for that has increased greatly as well.

    Also, torture and violence is global, sexual acts aren't. A kid knows that if you hit someone, they hurt; but they might not know anything about sex at all. And I've read stuff that I personally didn't even know could be done by two or more human beings... Everyone knows pain, but not everyone knows exactly how many ways people can "go at it", and they might not want to find out.

    Certainly, knowledge and tolerance of violence doesn't make it right; but I think it may be why we tend to ignore physical torture and yet view depictions of sex as inappropriate.

    That is the difference between writing action and writing erotica- in an action story the writer does the "torturing" him/herself, while in an erotica story it's another character doing the dirty work.

    The first thing I have to say is, "WHAT?!?!?"... ?[face_plain] So, let me get this straight... If I'm writing a story, and in the fic, I suddenly jump into the universe, take out a whip, and beat the living daylights out of a character, you'd call it "action". But if I write that another character is the one who takes out the whip and beats the other guy into a bloody pulp, it's "erotica"? Uhhh... ok... I'm confused.

    Well, in the end, what you see as appropriate or out of line is up to you and you alone. Plenty of other people will disagree. It's up to you to avoid what you don't want to read. An author should not be silenced and held liable for consequences that arise when people don't look at the warnings.
  19. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    Then again, why would a 5 year old be online, at this site or any site, without any parental supervision, with a 500 to 2000 dollar computer? Again, with parents in sight and warnings applied, a 5 year old will not stumble into areas that are deemed offensive and wrong.

    And once again why would a parent allow a child to play with something all by themselves that's worth more than what they bring home a week, or even every two weeks, in salary? It's like giving that 5 year old keys to the car and saying, "Go ahead. I trust you because everyone else on the road will be looking out for. They will get out of the way. They will give you the right of way. And even though you are not old enough to drive, they will understand why you are driving."

    Wrong. Totally wrong.

    Jedi-Faith raises another good point on ratings: different countries have different ways to rate matters. Again this goes back to my kissing anthology: people don't want to read that stuff because they truly believe it's an act of sex. Now the ratings system, if such were adopted here, would not only have to be universally accepted term wise, but also in definition.

    I'm against that.

    Again rating systems are both flawed and hycritical. This will also mean that ALL FICTION MUST BE PRE-WRITTEN AND SUBMITTED FOR RATING REVIEW. Now it may not appear that way with the way this thread was first outlined, but in order to actually ban certain content labeled offensive such a strict and restrictive policy would have to be enforced.

    That means no more round robins, no more plot bunnies, and no more game show story threads like Star Wars Survivor or SW Jeopardy. It also means we can't just post short stories that might last one post because content, any content and not just sex and torture, would have to be screened.

    Why? All Content would have to be screened. The most innocent of stories would have to go through the same procedure, in which it would have to in order to make things fair for everyone.

    And the Family Friendly point, all be it just, is also wrong. Definitions of 'Family Friendly' differ with each family. Plus what is allowed under some new policy may be offensive to them, and so there goes those readership on that front.

    And remember, Star Wars is NOT just a family thing. It reaches out to individuals of all walks of life. Those individuals would like to see different forms of storytelling in SW. If the story telling is not acceptable to someone, then all they have to do is not read it. AND AGAIN, PARENTS, NOT US, ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT THEIR CHILDREN READ, SEE, AND ULTIMATELY DO!

    And quite frankly the last time I checked NO NJO BOOK HAS A WARNING LABEL ON THEM ABOUT VIOLENCE OR ANYTHING THAT SUGGEST TORTURE OR IMPLIES SEX! In fact go deeper; no SW book has that. None of the movies have a warning label about violence, in which the 'Rated-PG' emblem is conviently made small on movie posters and video cassettes.

    Here is a point by point of what this thread does suggest is wrong with SW movies as examples:

    A NEW HOPE(special edition): a much longer, up close shot of the burned remains of Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru. We are left with a speculative feeling that either they were shot first, and then burned, or that they were wounded and then burned alive. Nothing to suggest otherwise either way, but the ear marks are there and any kid can imagine it.

    EMPIRE STRIKES BACK: Luke getting his butt handed over to him by Vader. Sure it's combat, but it is torture; let's not muddle the waters with a clear diffinition of torture because there are too many forms of torture, or too many activities that are often referred to off hand as torture. Luke's beaten, has his hand cut off, and of course Vader admits he's Luke's father. Now that is torture because mentally to Luke that is inconceivible to him. And the truth hurts, and it will hurt for a very, very long time.

    Under the diffinitions outline to end torture in fics, ESB would be eliminated.

    RETURN OF THE JEDI: Holey crow, Princess Leia and the other slave girls scandally cla
  20. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    And one more thing I agree with Jedi-Faith: NO AUTHOR SHOULD BE HELD LIABLE IF THE READER READ THE WARNING!

    That is what a warning is, and if people choose to ignore it, than that's THEIR RIGHT.

    If folks read that warning and read the story and found it offensive, that's THEIR FAULT.

    And once again we are not holding a gun to anyone's head to read our fics. There is no Force being applied here, no affect mind. No mind tricks. We give you warning. A reader choose to ignore the warning and a reader finds a story offensive, then that's READER'S FAULT!

    And once again, the kid can be 13 or 16 years old, or has Mr. P put it preteen, by honestly if their parents don't want them to find or read content not suitable, than the parent should be there. After all, if they are under age, THEY ARE CHILDREN!
  21. Whiskey in the Jar-Jar Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2000
    star 4
    I agree with Casper, as well as anyone here who thinks that our own sense of self-censoring is not enough.

    Frankly, I'm tired of the continuous droning on and on and on ad nauseum about political correctness and that children should be kept as innocent as humanly possible and blah blah blah.

    The fact, ladies and gentlemen, is that the JC fanfic board is already one of the most tame, calm, and evolved content places I've ever had the pleasure to work on. Having come from a furry fiction background in my younger days, the most horrific thing I've seen on these boards is still nothing compared to what's out there.

    The JC authors are the unequalled masters of self-censorship as it is. So-called torture or heavy angst stories are intense, yes, but they work out in the end, and the intense scenes are written well enough that I don't believe many people instantly stop reading because it's deemed 'disturbing.'

    While Gandolf has definitely brought up an interesting point on the use of so-called torture in fan fiction, the feeling I'm getting here is that the authors know that the word is being used connotatively, not literally. i.e. torture = heavy angst, some violence and not sadistic whippings, gorings, disembowelings overshadowed with satanic laughter and the like.

    And, if anyone has a problem with a certain fic or scene, they have a number of options already open to them without the need for further restraints, IMHO:

    1. Post a message on the thread, stating that you find something offensive.
    2. PM the author and really let them have it.
    3. Contact an admin and request that the thread be locked pending a review.
    4. Hit the BACK button on your browser and select another fic to read.

    Of course, that's just my opinion...I could be wrong.
  22. Gandalf the Grey Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 14, 2000
    star 6
    Jedi-Faith
    ?As for the whole Obi-torture debate, I'd like to point out that not all of them are plotless.?

    I?m not saying that they are. I?m just saying that there are better ways to advance the plot than to detail the torture.

    ?The first thing I have to say is, "WHAT?!?!?"... So, let me get this straight... If I'm writing a story, and in the fic, I suddenly jump into the universe, take out a whip, and beat the living daylights out of a character, you'd call it "action". But if I write that another character is the one who takes out the whip and beats the other guy into a bloody pulp, it's "erotica"? Uhhh... ok... I'm confused.?

    No, because if you were to jump into the universe you would yourself be a character in your own story.

    Take the Lord of the Rings for example. It?s widely considered one of the greatest works of fantasy ever written. By end of the third book, Frodo has been stabbed, speared, beaten by Orcs (Off screen!), bitten, stung, gotten dehydrated, whipped, lost his friend and mentor, and he was carrying the One Ring through Mordor itself on top of that. This is one of the best examples in fiction of an author torturing his character.

    But do we see Frodo getting beaten by Orcs from Frodo?s perspective? No. We only see him being dragged away by Orcs at the end of the Two Towers, and then we see him afterward, after Sam rescues him, in the Return of the King. Do we see Shelob toying with him as she slowly ties him up, helpless to move because of the poison in his veins? No. We see him run off, and we see what happens when Sam finds him again, but we don?t actually see anything. Even when Frodo and Sam ?join the army? and are being whipped if they fall back, this isn?t character-on-character torture. There is no directed maliciousness behind it, only general suffering. If the Orcs with the whips had taken Frodo out of the ranks and simply flogged him, then it would be character-on-character torture. As it was, it was just another painful obstacle between Sam and Frodo and the Mountain.

    Does that explain the difference I see between the two? In one, the author uses events and obstacles to torture the character from a remote perspective. In the other, the author puts the reader into the head of the character being tortured or the character doing the torturing. In this case, it?s better to tell but not show.



    Casper Nightshade
    ?but bleeding to death in any case is a form of torture that people seemingly have no problem in fiction?

    Bleeding to death I have no problem with. A Padawan slowly and painfully bleeding to death while his master watches, unable to do anything, I don?t have a problem with. Someone slowly making a thousand incisions with a razor blade into a Padawan while his master watches so that the Padawan will slowly and painfully bleed to death as the torturer rubs salt into the cuts, I have a problem with.

    ?honestly in the terms of 'graphic sex', kissing IS STILL considered in that catagory by most.?

    You?re joking, right? If it?s allowed in a G rated Disney film, I don?t think that anyone outside of Islamic Fundamentalist countries considers it graphic sex.


    Cheryl Kenobi
    ?If I'm wrong please tell me but your saying sex is better then torture.?

    Yes. In my mind, when a writer writes sex into a story the writer is at least being completely honest, with no pretensions, about what they are writing. I think that explicit torture is a way of sneaking around a ban on sex. Also, this just being personal taste, I would rather read about two people in love making love than a blow by blow account of someone being hung up on rusty manacles and beaten twice a day.

    ?So our torture is only a limit in your mind. Something you think is god-awful someone else may think it's not that bad.?

    Yes and no. With my contention that torture as it appears in fics is a substitute for sex, I consider torture fics in much the same light that I consider slash or lesbian fics. It just appeals to another sexual preference.

    ?children get whipped from their parents when parents see
  23. Ginger_Jedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2001
    star 6
    I'm 15 and I've read somethings that maybe I shouldn't have and I KNOW when to stop reading if it is that bad and I have done in the past. I've never found anything at the boards that was so disturbing I thought it should be taken down. I found those fics at other sites.

    I write Obi torutre and read it as well and I do my best to (hopefully) have a plot behind it. I never just sit down and type out a plotless Obi torture fic because I know it would be rubbish and no one would really read it. And I have very rarely stumbled across one that was plotless. They are all excellently written and have always evoked an emotional reaction in me.

    I admit my latest fic was rather violent. In the title I put Horror and at the beginning of each post that I felt was for older readers I warned readers to use their discretion. But even then there is no way we can stop someone under age from reading a fic that they are too young to view because it's we aren't in control of them.

    I don't like smut or slash fics but I don't say that people should stop writing them just because *I* don't like them.

    What I'm trying to say is this is pretty much down to a matter of opinion. You either enjoy torture fics or you don't.

    Now I hope no one minds but could you explain something to me? I live in the UK and our rating system is different.

    U (Universal) = G
    PG is the same
    12 = PG-13
    Then we have 15 and 18. I'm not entirely sure what American rating they are the equvilent of. What is the higher rating NC-17 or R?
  24. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    True on all points, Gandolf.

    But with all that has been applied at the beginning and during this thread, it means even the SLIGHTEST HINTS are viewed as wrong. Going back to the ANH example, Lucas may not have shown us, or little kids, exactly what happened or how those people felt, but then again HE LEFT IT UP TO OUR IMAGINATION TO DETERMINE WHAT HAPPENED. Folks have different points of imagination, and therefore NO ONE CAN WRITE ANYTHING IN WRITTEN WORD THAT MAKES IT A UNIFIED INTERPETATION REGARDLESS OF WHAT THE TOPIC IS PERIOD!

    And kids have a very creative imagination that requiers no input from outside sources.

    And once again, let's not muddy the waters on torture: Luke being hit over and over with flying objects is indeed a form of torture. In essence, he is being beaten into submission. I don't care if it's in a combat situation because that's what it is. It's not a sexual thing, true, but it's torture period. Ban one form of torture, must ban it all or good people will misinterpt it as such.

    Based on everything discussed, and if that part was written in the way it appeared in ANH and in ESB, it would be considered wrong.

    As for the Ana/Ami view, I totally don't see it as that, BUT OTHERS WILL AND DO. It's a simple matter of fact. I think that's why many people actually stay away from SW and even this forum. They have a very tight view on matters, be it moral, ethical, religous, or otherwise. Of course you and I might not see such 'big sister-little brother' relationship as wrong, but some folks look at that as being ultimately perverse based on the fact that Ami and Ani are not related.

    And you are right it isn't up to you or I to make the rules on the boards, but when someone brings something like this up I have to view it as one wanting to make a rule, or dictate the rules of the boards. If that is the case, then you are trying to do what you don't want to do. If it's on purpose, please stop. If it's on accident, then you caught yourself and it's time to move on.

    Either way, you made your opinion perfectly clear and like I said before I respect it. You don't like Obi-torture fics: Fine. You don't like what you interpt as the overall theme in some stories: Fine. That is your opinion.

    Like you said, it's not our boards. It's not mine. It's not yours.

    And to say an author is liable for what they write even with a warning label, then I would have to say ALL CONTENT IS WRONG AND THEREFORE ALL AUTHORS ARE LIABLE. Because with all honest the most good nature of stories give readers, and little kids, bad examples just as equal to sex, violence, and torture. You might not agree with that assessment, but it's the truth.

    If that's the case, then the Boards must be shut down.
  25. Casper_Knightshade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2000
    star 6
    Ginger Jedi makes a good point and she illustrated very clearly that she stopped reading a fic she found too vulger.

    And all rating systems are flawed terribly.

    And yes all fics would have to screen before posting if such measures are put in place to rate fics.

    And the target audience IS NOT KIDS, IT'S EVERYONE.

    And let's not forget one important fact: Star Wars is a movie that is story driven. That means it's a drama. And you know dramas, even kids dramas, have been getting too favorable of ratings. The Original Trilogy was written that way. The Phantom Menace wasn't, and Lucas himself with the new movie is trying to reverse that mistake. Will he do what some of us do in writing a fic? No. But that's him, and that's how he views his drama.

    Personally if he doesn't stop gunning for the 6 to 12 demographic the whole franchise will fall.

    Another thing: a warning about fic content is not about justification of what an author writes. It's a warning! Again, that's your opinion that you are entittled to. But that's your opinion.
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